I know what to do. I have read all the right books, gone to all the right workshops and done all the work on myself that I can do. Paramhansa Yogananda (author of Autobiography of a Yogi) said, “Environment is stronger than will.” Very simply stated, we become like the people we are around. Ever notice that? I sure have.
I know what I need to do to feel good, yet for some reason, I just don’t do it. I get caught up in the day to day of life and forget. I need reminders.
Looking back on my life at the times that i have been most successful, I realize, I had accountability partners. I remember years ago, when i was in the monastery, I made a pact with a brother monk. At 4am, every morning, one of us would be standing at the others door, knocking. It became our way to wake up to meditate. Many were the days, that were cold, rainy, snowy when I thought to just turn over and go back to sleep. But I knew he was counting on me to wake him up or be there when he knocked. In every single case, I woke up because of the commitment I made to him. Without him, for sure, I would have turned over in my bed and gone back to sleep. But, we held each other accountable. And every day for two years, we meditated together at 4am.
When I started working out, I used the same strategy. I would wake up and meditate with a friend for an hour and then drive to get a coffee and go to the gym. We would work out for an hour or more and be home in time to shower and start our day. I was in the best shape of my life going to the gym in the morning before work and running in the afternoon afterwards. I felt great and I noticed a huge change in my body and my mind.
Then somewhere along the way, life crumbled. My struggles got the best of me and the routine that had made me strong, disappeared. I stopped working out, my body got sore, I gained a lot of weight and even more excuses as to why I could not start up again. I lost my accountability partner and I lost my way. I thought the habits were so entrenched in me, but in a matter of a few weeks, a new habit pattern took over. I had reasons, valid reasons why I could no longer do what I had done. I lost my community.The power of my mind is so strong. It gets me to believe things that are simply not true. With no one to bounce my beliefs off on, i just reinforce the beliefs i have over and over again with actions. This is crazy. It is not leading me to where I want to go.
I realize now, this is the power of another. The power of group. The power of community. Having someone else there to hold me accountable, makes me do things I tell myself I cannot do. This is why, I am so focused now on creating group. It is not that I don’t know what to do, it is just that I need accountability. Group holds me accountable. It is why we are creating a group in Encinitas to help each other take the next step in our lives.
I have found a calling. It is a mission of mine, to help create community. It is the way of change. When small groups of people come together to support each other in what they believe, and help each other achieve it, miracles happen. Be it in the creation of a strong culture in the business place or in the strengthening of each individual by becoming a part of a group that helps them live the life they desire, community is powerful. Together, we become stronger than we are alone. Think of it, how strong is a table standing on one leg? How strong is that table now standing on 10 legs?
It is something that I/we desparately need: COMMUNITY. One of Yogananda’s reasons for coming to America was to create World Brotherhood Colonies. Places where people would come together to help and support each other to live full out. How have I forgotten this so completely? Whether through fear or self doubt or whatever, i have believed that I could do life on my own, and that i thought it was working. It is not working.
Having an accountability partner is what has always worked for me. Community is what has worked for me. That is why, I want to build community now and help facilitate others who feel the same way, to build strong communities to help them grow. Community builds power. It makes all of us stronger.
Will you join in this mission? start by finding one other person who believes like you and help each other achieve your dreams. Let’s stay connected. I will let you know how my community grows. Please let me know about yours . . .