I totally reacted today ... and hope I learned something in the process.
It's not my nature, for the past couple of years, to sleep in. I've successfully completed my 180-degree turnaround from being a night owl to appreciating the sunrise and becoming an early morning riser. Today, however, was an exception as I allowed myself to sleep in on this Saturday morning.
I spent the morning lazing around, reading the paper, checking my Facebook status, still in my pajamas, when someone knocked on my front door.
I couldn't avoid answering because I had left the door open when I got the paper, so the screen door was the only barrier to the outside, and it was obvious I was home. (This did go through my mind as I decided to go to the door, in my pajamas with my morning face and hair.)
There stood two nicely dressed middle-aged people, holding bibles in their hands and wanting to get my opinion on a verse.
And right then I fell into default mode. Not that it happened a lot, but when I was a kid, I remember the phone ringing in our house as the neighbors called us to warn us of the people on their way to our house. We got really good at hiding and pretending we weren't home, because you never wanted to let those people in. Their job was to brainwash you and just opening the door to them was, apparently, the opening the "devil" needed to get into your home and your head and heart.
I never really understood why this was such a scary prospect, but it was certainly one of those subconscious conditioning moments that evidently made its way into my current-day programming.
As soon as I shut and locked the door behind this nice couple, stumbling over my excuse for not allowing them to share their ideas, I had a second thought. If I'd have been dressed and presentable, I surely would have let them in to hear what they had to say. I feel pretty confident in my own beliefs and I'm always open to learning and sharing and growing, so what was really behind my reaction and the result of my decision?
I'm not saying everyone needs to let strangers into their homes to convince them of something or sell them something or anything like that.
I'm just noticing what kept me from actually walking my talk, which is all about surrounding myself with opportunities to engage in bigger small talk. Given a perfect opportunity to do just that, my default mode - i.e. non-thinking mode - kicked in.
Where are we operating on auto pilot without even realizing it? Where are we asking for things to be shown to us that could lead to our own growth and then rejecting them because it's unfamiliar or calls up some past belief from a time before we were even able to develop our own opinions, independent of the opinions of others?
Just notice for yourself when that happens and when situations could lead to your growth.
ASK for what you know will be for your greater good: Ask and the answer will be given; Seek and you will find; Knock and the door will be opened for you. That's it - you just need to ASK.