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There is no doubt that it is around the family and the home that all the greatest virtues, the most dominating virtues of human society, are created, strengthened and mentained.
The following are the highest-leverage activities we can do to lift our family members.
Help your family to be divinative.
Monitor any early warning signs.
Expand their vision with patience.
Words and acts of kindness.
Help your children assemble their advisory boards.
Be Divinative. We've certainly covered this topic of being deliberate and definitive in our resolve to have our divine brains be our dominant brains. As we personally see greater benefits from being divinative, the more we will want to share this with our families. Help someone be more divinative is a wonderful gift to give. However, this is a gift that can only be given after it has been received. Helping others to be more divinative requires us to be divinative first and be a model. Lifting our families by encouraging them to be divinative takes our examples and convictions. It may even require our testimonials that it works. Let your family know the difference that being divinative has made and continues to make in your life when you begin and end each day in the divine-brain mode. Be consistent in asking them if they began and ended their days with prayer or meditation and reading scriptures or uplifting literature. Remember the statistic that if you want to achieve a goal, your probably of achieving that goal rises to 95 percent if you make a firm decision to act, make a time commitment, create a plan, and hold yourself accountable to someone else. To achieve the goal of having your family members be divinative, as the leader in the home, share your decision, commitment, and to help each family member be divinative consistently every day. As a leader in the home, allocate some time daily to be responsible for being the person who will help each member of your family be accountable for divine-brain thinking.
How do you do this exactly? First begin your day with your personal prayer or meditation and reading of scriptures or inspirational literature. Then, having begun your day in the divine-brain mode, ask each member of your family in the morning with a smile, “Have you started your day with your smartest divine brain already going? This may sound cheesy to you, but imagine what it would be like from your children's point if you asked them to do something you had not done, and you asked them with a frown on your face? They would Think, Mom or dad wants me to do something that they don't look enthused about? If, on the other hand, they can feel your excitement. And if they can see the difference it is making in you, they will more likely follow your lead. This activity literally only takes a few seconds each day to complete, but it can make a profound difference to you and every member of of your family.
Monitor any early-warning sign. In my travels for work, from time to time I find myself in the middle of bad weather patterns. In such travels I found it a great benefit to find out in the news, early warning signs, whether the dangers that lurk ahead are winter storms or flash floods. In other parts of the world, there may be early warning signs for hurricanes, tsunamis, or tornados. Such warning allow all of us to prepare for dangers that we may not have expected or could not yet foresee. As you consider your family members, it is also possible to have early warning signs of dangers that you may not have expected or cannot yet see.
As you make it part of your daily routine and time management with your family to read together inspirational literature—whether you are reading the bible, Bhagavad-Gita, Qur'an, buddhavacana, or Aesop's fables—these are great opportunities to reach about character. It is of equal importance that as you read and learn together as a family, you listen and pay attention to how family members respond and comment on what you are reading. Their comments can provide early-warning signs on those principles where they have questions or are struggling. Inspirational literature teaches us lessons that others have learned in the past. They teach us about success and failure paths that others have taken in the past. The way your family responds to the lessons in inspirational literature will let you know whether they too are headed down success paths or failure paths. If they are headed down success paths as illustrated in your reading, congratulate them and let them know how you are pleased that they are living their lives in much the same way as the wonderful examples you are reading about. If, on the other hand, you discern that they are headed down a failure path, whatever scripture or inspirational literature you are reading, probably will give you helpful insights that you can then highlight. Have the wisdom to listen more than your lecture. Have the courage to speak plainly. In the complex world in which we live, straight talk with love is best. The ability to get early-warning signs of danger about your family members is worth every minute of time you spend to secure it.
Mom's tell me that at first the family is excited about these divinative activities, because of the novelty. Within a few days, however, at times the kids just roll their eyes in disbelief that this phase hasn't already passed. Persist. Commit to being consistent for twenty-one days, because it takes about that long to form a habit. Remember, you are helping family members begin and end their days in the divine-brain mode. You are facilitating the building of character, and you are helping them learn to listen to their internal voices of character. Think back to the achievement cycle. Our internal voices of character affect how we think and feel, which in turn influences what we do and say, which will determine our achievements. Learning together from scriptures or inspirational literature as a family is such a high-leveraged use of your time.
Pre-forgive. Along with personally being divinative, we have also covered the notion of Pre-forgiving yourself. It is a pre-requisite for you to pre-forgive others, especially those in your family. In a world where criticism, cynicism, and perfectionism are becoming more prevalent than encouragement and the celebration of successes, we need more than ever to be reassured and pre-forgiven. The spirit of pre-forgiveness is seeing the very best in your family members now, as well as seeing the potential in their divine brains for the future. Pre-forgiveness with family members is letting go of those times when they think more with their lizard-brains and monkey-brains than with their divine brains. It also means continuing to have confidence and faith in the best and the divine in them. As you consider how you manage your time, include pre-forgiving your family members as an area of focus.
Listen. As we go through our planning process, whether for the day or week, we are trying to come up with the activities that would be of greatest worth for us to accomplish. One of the greatest things we can do to lift family members is truly listen with the intent to understand them more deeply.
When you look at the history and the origin of the word listen, you will find that it means to hear splendor and honor. Listen also means to hearglory. Imagine how our conversations would be different if we listened with the intent to hear splendor, honor, and glory. We would be less inclined to listen with the intent of fixing someone or solving her problems, because we are first trying to appreciate how wonderful she already is. In a training session for teachers that I attended on teaching teenagers, the instructor said in essence:
If you could fast forward in time and realize who your students have the potential to become and get a glimpse now of what they will eventually accomplish, you would be too intimidated to teach them.
I'm not suggesting living in a pollyanna world, but simply encouraging all of us to give us much credence to potential as we give history. When we bring home a newborn from the hospital, we watch in awe at this beautiful baby. We wonder what her life will be like. We dream of what she can eventually be. In short, we don't worry about her history, because she has none. We only look at her potential. As each year passes, however, the scales slowly tip toward praying ever more attention to history and a little bit less attention to potential. In time, we give what people have done in the past more weight than what they can become in the future. Eventually, there comes a point where we decide that what we see now is all we will ever get in the future. Good or bad, we now have a finished product in reality, there is plenty of potential left. As long as we live, there are chapters in our lives yet to be written.
Have you ever had someone see you in a better light than you saw yourself? What were they looking at... Just your history? I don't think so. I believe they saw, in equal doses, what you have done in the past and what you can yet do and be. They then focused their attention on what you can be. Imagine driving your car with your front windshield covered, and you drive forward, only looking at your rear-view mirror. Disaster! Similarly, we sometimes try to move forward with our loved ones and work colleagues while only looking backwards. Listen with the intent to hear honor, splendor, and glory. See and focus more on the potential than history of others. You will marvel at the improvement in your relationships as you are deliberate with this skill. Schedule in your planner the time to implement this into your life.
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