We love new calendars. Those fresh, crisp pages (yes, actual paper) beckon us to adorn them with New Year’s resolutions. But as we all know, actually sustaining those resolutions can sometimes be a real struggle. What’s the trick?
To help us all along the journey of maintaining our emerging dreams and resolutions, we thought we’d share over the next few months different lessons that various Badger employees have learned on thoughtfully sustaining new intentions. To start this project, our Founder, Bill Whyte, shares how the act of “visioning” has transformed the evolution of his own dreams.
About 40 years ago, I did the exercise of writing down a one-year, five-year and thirty-year “vision.” I had read that a carefully articulated vision can be powerfully transformative and healing. The guidance was, “Imagine your mental, physical and spiritual ideal, strive to be of service, and start where you are “now” with what you have now to begin to practice the “ideal.”
Strangely (or may I say, “predictably”), much of what I visualized back then has come to pass. I imagined getting married and having three kids in five years. What was I thinking! I was barely able to get beyond one date back then! So this was an implausible stretch! But I married Katie, and we have the kids to prove it!
I visualized building aesthetic, ecological homes. I had no building skills at the time. But much later, after struggle and error, I became an accomplished designer/builder. I saw myself building and living in a healthful community. I did, and I do.
My overall dream is and has always been for every child and every family everywhere in the world to have food, shelter, safety, and love. So I hold this image always.
I’ve followed this process of “visualization” ever since those early days, and I employ it in my life/work as a father, grandfather, teacher, builder and business cultivator.
When life does not align with my vision, and when I screw up royally, I follow another principle–the “Over” and “What’s Next” principle. I do my best to let go of discouragement, accept what is, let it all go and move on to what’s next. We are going to screw up or fail. We get to let it go and move on.
In the early days of Badger, I said, “Someday, anywhere in the world, when someone picks up a tin of Badger Balm, they will say, ‘This is the best stuff! You can really trust these people!” The quality of the image deepens and informs the transformation. We know that you build trust by being totally worthy of trust.
Last year I turned 70. I decided to write out my seven-year vision. My practice of Aikido is very important to me. In my vision, I grow stronger, lighter, more composed, more fluidly powerful, more quietly accepting of change. I become accomplished! This is a profound stretch. And whether I succeed or fail, through having this vision, and walking this path, I cannot fail. I’m invested in the journey.
You might say that I am working on growing older and growing younger at the same time. And each contains some of the other. This is the essence of Yin-Yang. Light and dark. Warmth and cold. Old and young. Each informs and forms the other.
I tend not to have New Year’s resolutions. I visualized futures, and I set them free like seeds on the wind. It can be argued that good intentions are worthless without action. I would contend that creating and holding beautiful, positive, hope-filled images, is a positive action that makes an actual difference. The mind is the builder. A beautiful and fertile garden or a loving home was first created in the mind. The results I envision will first be created in the minds and hearts of the people, and in the minds and hearts of the children, who will grow into the builders of the future.
May kindness be our compass.
To help the good work you’ve started in this New Year, we are giving away two sets of never-before-released Badger swag! Enter to win our “Kindness is My Compass Tote” (made of 100% Organic Cotton) and our “Kindness is My Compass” insulated stainless-steel water bottle (made by Klean Kanteen) by submitting below. Contest ends Tuesday, January 29th at 12:00am EST.a Rafflecopter giveaway