Podcast Series 1, Episode 4: Insulate Yourself Exercise
Insulate Yourself Exercise
The Insulate Yourself exercise shows you how you can be unaffected by specific, recurring encounters, by preparing yourself from unexpected surprises.
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Hi, I’m Gary
Welcome to a series of podcasts on how to achieve a peaceful and mindful state, by using simple, short exercises.
Each episode focuses upon a particular element of our being, and will reveal exercises designed to expand our awareness, and build up a gradual sense of inner calm and alertness.
Today, we’re going to talk about an exercise called “Insulate Yourself”.
Another exercise I learned from a fellow in Texas.
It is a little like the exercise “Two Ends of the Stick”, which we covered in the last podcast, that was designed to free us from the results of any unknown encounter.
Whereas this exercise is designed to grant us immunity from some specific known encounter.
The family reunion
We’ll begin with the model of the Family Reunion.
Lots of people attend Family Reunions; and, in their family, somewhere, they all have an “Uncle Bob”.
Uncle Bob always reminds them, loudly, and when they are surrounded by a bunch of other family members, that they should have went to a certain school, or bought specific shares of stock, or gone into this career or that career, or not have married that girl, etc etc.; and that, if they had just listened to what he told them, their lives would have been so much better, and every time they go to the Family Reunion, they know it is going to happen.
So, here they are, at the Reunion, and here comes Bob, and the same thing happens, again; and they get embarrassed and disturbed.
Well, wait a minute.
They knew they were going to the Family Reunion.
And they knew that Bob was going to be there.
Why didn’t they insulate themselves?
Envisioning what will happen
Why didn’t they envision what Bob was going to say, what Bob always says – because they have heard it so many times before, and therefore they would have been prepared for it, been expecting it, and actually be looking forward to it… knowing that it is going to happen.
Then, it would not come as a surprise.
Now, every time Bob walks by during the Family Reunion, they kind of have a little smile on their face because they know it’s coming, they just don’t know when.
He didn’t say anything this time, that’s okay… it’s coming.
The Reunion goes on a little bit, and sure enough, an hour later, people are standing together and here comes Bob, and he says to them, “Hey did you ever buy that stock I told you about? You should have been as smart as me, and bought it!”
However, this time, they are prepared, and being prepared, they now say something like, “You know, that was really a good deal Bob. Have you got any other good stocks that I can take advantage of?”
And, all of a sudden, because they insulated themselves, they have no adverse reaction to what Bob says, there is no irritation, there is not a “something” there that disturbs their inner world.
In fact, they encouraged him to give them some other advice, and he goes away happy.
It takes all the force away from Bob and the things he normally says, because
What to do when meeting a dog
I suppose we do this instinctively when we meet a dog.
As we go to pet the dog, something in us says, “Insulate yourself, the dog could bite.”
Don’t jump, don’t act excited, don’t make any big, sudden movements if he happens to start growling.
Just go slow.
You are insulated, you are ready for any response.
So now, if the dog does growl, you are prepared for it.
You are insulated.
Instead of going, “Oh!” and jumping and screaming, or something else, because you are not insulated, you don’t further agitate the dog.
You are calm.
So, talk to yourself in advance to nullify that force, the force of Bob or the force of the dog.
Prepared for specific encounters
So, it is a little like “Two ends of the Stick” but it is more specific because you know what you are going to encounter: dogs, Uncle Bob, your boss at work, or that one client, etc.
Because every time you see that client, they are always the same way.
So, you insulate yourself against it.
And, since you are going to see that client today, and hear their repetitive complaints, you will be expecting what they are going to say, be ready for it, and have no adverse or unexpected reaction.
Now, it only provokes a smile because you are expecting it.
That concludes the “Insulate Yourself” exercise.
Thank you for listening.
Goodbye until next time.
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