Many years ago, I was in Findhorn, Scotland. It is one of the best intentional communities in the world with an award winning website. It is spiritual, environmental, artistic, creative, innovative, inventive, brilliant, beautiful, inspirational, healthy and fun.
I had the pleasure of going to a class there. It was taught by a husband and wife team who were life coaches before life coaching became popular. At Findhorn, they light a candle at the beginning of classes to invite a certain, sacred air. This class was a short, small experience, yet it left a huge, lasting impression. I wish I remembered the names of the teachers so I could give them credit.
They taught about tolerations. Tolerations are those things that we spend so much wasted time on without even noticing what we are doing. The example they used was a tiny spot of red paint that was found on their white mailbox. Every time they passed by it, they thought to themselves: I must paint that spot white. That amounted to about ten minutes a day multiplied by the days they passed by their mailbox. It added up each month. Hours were spent on this tiny detail that would have only taken ten minutes to fix.
The point is to notice what can be done and to do it in order to save hours of time in the long run. I realized that I had unfinished art projects that were a constant bother to me. They began to keep me up at night. I even got sick over them. I learned a lot about myself. I learned that big projects that take a huge time investment may not be a good idea to start unless I have a really good reason. I think I want to do something creative, but I often bite off more than I can chew and it becomes a toleration. So much time has been spent on the need to complete a project that would take less time just to complete it than it has in thinking about completing it. Then it becomes a toleration. We may have many tolerations. In fact, our whole life might be filled with tolerations to the point where we might be bogged down by so much unfinished business that we actually deplete the needed energy just to live. This takes tolerations to the level of Red Alert.
I believe that if we have created the emergency situation of toleration overload, it would be a good idea to call in help from others. I have noticed that some people are better at helping others get things done than they are at getting their own finished. Here is the solution: we help each other with our tolerations. That just might be the definition of Heaven: helping each other.
However, some tolerations we just have to do on our own. I have to finish my own art piece. If I ask someone else to help me, I will have to do twice as much to change their influence. It is from my imagination, not theirs. I have the choice to keep the undone project as a toleration and possibly develop acute and chronic insomina, to throw it away or give it away and create tremendous guilt, or to eat a lot of chocolate to drug myself just to get this piece done. I opt for the chocolate idea. In this way, I can finish what I start and begin to look at myself in the mirror again.
Incidentally, I have a few of these big art projects that have to be finished all staring at me. That is a lot of tolerations, not to mention the tolerations that I do not even know that I have.
Do yourself a favor: look at what is a toleration in your life and vow to clean it up by the end of this month, if possible, or the end of this week, or the end of a very long day with chocolate that is destined to become one of the best days of your life. That day is the Self-Independence Day leading to complete freedom. We will probably be really careful about what we intend to accomplish and not forget that the word “simple” is next to the word “ecstasy,” well not quite, but close to it.
If you plan to write a huge first novel and create the Taj Mahal made out of porcelain flowers, don’t begin them both in the same lifetime. I have done similar and had to heal my health because of it. Better to understand fully about tolerations and put visiting Findhorn on your Bucket List.