Find Your Island Paradise (In You-Not on Expedia)

In a world that is packed with projects, people, and crises that constantly need your attention, what are some ways that you can return to a sense of calmness and confidence from which you can make your best decisions?



Imagine if you will a deserted island in the middle of a beautiful aquamarine sea. The environment is perfect with a comfortable temperature, plenty to eat, sandy beaches and warm water. It is a human paradise. The only aspect missing is, well, humans. We can’t live in isolation and as soon as we introduce two or more people in the same environment there are bound to be decisions that must be agreed upon, daily activities that must be completed (deadlines) and some conflict.

So, how can we make the best of all of our human experiences, whether in a hot stuffy office, a loving albeit hectic household, or an island paradise?

Let’s start by first looking at basic human needs—yours, mine, and theirs. Each of us has an internal need for a few basics: 1) shelter 2) food and water 3) companionship. We are each willing to pay dearly for these necessities if for some reason they go missing. We also each have separate thresholds for how much we need. Some individuals need a lot of companionships, others, not so much.

For today’s conversation, let us assume that you are with an individual who sits at a different threshold level than you for companionship. You both recognize the need to spend time together; however, one of you wishes to spend more time alone compared to the other. It is a simple human difference; however, because we also have a brain that rarely turns off, as soon as one of us says, “I need a little time alone,” the other starts to over-analyze. Is there meaning behind this request other than the spoken words? Does this perhaps mean that this person does not like me? Our brains are a wonderful gift; however, it can be a challenge to keep them from working overtime.

This is a simplified example of what happens every day in every walk of life. The same issue occurs at work, at home, and at play.

First, rejoice in the fact that we are all different. Imagine a garden with only one kind of flower, or a banquet with only one kind of food. Diversity brings us pleasure. We love to try new things and explore new places. If all humans were alike we would be in a dire position. So, open your mind and heart to the idea that perhaps this request for time alone is sincere. Perhaps this person simply needs less companionship. There are several ways that the other person can respond. She can simply allow the person to take the additional time alone, she could try to persuade the person to change to be more like her, or she could escalate the emotions and get angry, hurt, or resentful. You can see that there are a wide range of responses to any request.

So how can we take this simplified scenario and tie it back to our original issue—too much to do, not enough time, too many demands? The answer is simple too—don’t overthink or overanalyze the situation. Take everything at face value and if others have an ulterior motive or an underlying agenda, then it belongs to them, not you.

Imagine how much simpler and easier your life would be if you didn’t try to determine everyone’s motives. What if you didn’t try to foresee each person’s next move? What if you didn’t assume that they were out to undermine you?

For one day assume that everyone is doing the best they can with the resources they have available. Assume that their only goal is to take care of themselves, and that any request they make of you is simply that—a request. No strings attached.

Find a bit of island paradise in every day and remember challenges are present even in an island paradise.  And don’t forget to rejoice in the diversity of human nature.



Author Information:

Rebecca Woulfe conducts Breakthrough Seminars that provide people with the opportunity to explore beliefs and behaviors that hold them back in their personal and professional lives. She works with individuals and businesses to break through these barriers to find their success.

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