Would you be fine?

Would you be fine?
If the worst possible thing in your life actually
happened, would you survive?
How much time do you spend thinking about this?

The truth is that there is a deep practice and
commitment to the incitement of fear around the
‘worst possible thing’.  Governments, businesses
and churches are trading fear; even brands trade
in fear. 

I believe it’s simply the wrong kind of story.

This week I also watched Tony Robbins say, “we
are defined by the stories we tell ourselves,
every one of us has a story or a set of
stories….the question is, is your story empowering
you to maximize what god has given you, or is your
story causing you to fall short.”

When we tell stories that keep us in fear, it’s
the wrong kind of story.
We have so many better stories.

When I was about 5 years old my sister told me
that strawberries, my absolute favorite fruit at
that time, grow on the ground and are full of
worms.  She was kidding, I was horrified.  I
didn’t touch a strawberry again for years.
Finally as a teenager, I started to eat the
delightful fruit again, but could never put a
whole strawberry in my mouth; I always had to bite
it in half first, take a look inside, before
popping the rest in.

To this day, I hesitate before I put a whole
strawberry in my mouth. 

Sounds ridiculous, right?  It is.
But here’s another.  I grew up knowing; yes
that’s right, not just hearing but actually
knowing, that I could do and be whatever I chose.

That meant that when I decided to start my own
business, it never occurred to me that I would not
succeed.  Not seriously.  I knew that if I really
wanted to do this, I could and I would.

Now that’s an empowering story.

And it’s not about success, it’s about knowing
that I’d be okay even in failure; that the doing
and the being were the most important thing, the
outcome would take care of itself.

Last week, at the end of the stunning days I
spent with Byron Katie at the ‘Forgiveness
Intensive’, she played the song “That I would be
good’ by Alanis Morissette.

Not only was it incredibly beautiful and moving,
it also struck a chord deep inside me.

She sings,
‘That I would be good even if I did nothing,
That I would be good even if I got and stayed sick
That I would be good even if I gained 10 pounds’

This is not some kind of wishful thinking or
blind faith.  This is the right kind of story.
It is complete acceptance of what is, a state of
A place of peace and love.

She sings,
‘That I would be fine even if I went bankrupt…
That I would be grand even if I was not all

Let’s tell that story. 
The story of empowerment, peace and love.
What’s yours?

Please leave a comment below.

Best wishes and best stories


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13 comments on “Would you be fine?

  1. Hi Lisa,

    I love your stories. When reading them I’m always reminded and taken back to stories in my life. This one made me think of my sister who told me that MY imaginary friends didn’t exist (how funny is that) or my brothers and sister who told me their was an “Avocado Monster” in our orchard growing up.

    I so enjoyed your recent Story program and thank you for helping to bring my stories to life!

    – Carla

  2. Today’s story would be about walking between the rain fall, a daily e-conversation with a beloved sister, a rainy drive to work, meetings with people who seem smarter but who I know only understand some things better, sunshine peeking from behind the clouds, walking up and down stairs to keep the cobwebs out (of my brain, not the stairs), words with friends during lunch, and pleasant anticipation of what the evening will bring.
    That’s my story (for today) and I’m sticking to it.

  3. Today’s story is a rare day in my life. A day of being all alone just with me to loiter over coffee this morning, check my email, work on the seminar I am presenting in four weeks and eat meals at my leisure. A perfectly wonderful sunshiny day in the Western North Carolina mountains.

    Then there were a few other happenings such as a call from my son, an email from my webmaster needing information, filtering water, checking my online bank account, airline, car and motel reservations for my trip to OK and the seminar, two calls to check on my Mom, registering for a free online seminar, using dictionary.com and checking my snail mailbox.

    It is now 7:30 pm Eastern time and there is still dishes to take out and put in, clothes to fold, preparations for my trip to my Mom’s in the morning for a three day stay, a shower and maybe a movie I had hoped to watch today.

    It has been a fabulously fantastic day most of the hours have been spend organizing my 6 hour seminar and selecting stories, poems and mini lectures for it. But, it has all been done at my leisure – no rushed or hurried moments. I am not sure when my next full day alone will be but it will come and I will again enjoy the day. In the morning I am off to enjoy my tomorrows with my Mom and eating out and doctor appointments, etc. etc etc

  4. Lisa, I completely agree. I think the worst offenders in terms of trading in fear are the press, rather some of the press. It puts me in two minds about what to do about it. Can we change the way that the press filter and tell the news without restricting press freedom? Something tells me that this is a slippery slope. On the other hand, restrictions on freedom are with us all the time in our everyday lives. We cannot say or do what we want for fear of transgressing, either a law or social norms. Why then, can we not expect the same standards from the press?

    • thanks for your comment David, yes, the press…don’t get me started!!!!! glad to hear your voice here! Best wishes, Lisa

  5. I find it reassuring to know that I’m not the only one to have these ordinary days, a mix of blessings, curses, and mundane. It’s quite comforting really.

    The story I want to share is about personal stories. Over the past year I went through a painful end of a relationship, The impact on me was devastating at the time. My mother began telling me stories about her past, stories of a difficult period that she had never told me before. At some point, she said to me, “I never imagined when I went through this that one day I’d be telling you about it, and that by doing so, I would be helping you.” Telling me her story helped me heal. Not to mention, it drew us so much closer than either of us could have imagined. There is great power in personal stories. Living them. And telling them. You never know what power your story may hold.

  6. Hi Dear Friend:
    Woke at 4:45 am to a hard rain that lasted most of the day. I thought of my Mom. I miss her. The rain reminds me of how it sounded on the roof of her home in Maine. There is no one I love there anymore. I sat drinking several cups of coffee as the morning light pushed its way through the raindrops. Talked with my sister. I am glad she is at the other end of the phone, though many miles away. I am facilitating a merger between two divergent arts groups. Had a long conference call to help them work through disagreements on parts of the by-laws for their new governance structure. Worked on new design for a conflict coaching training we are scheduled for in May. Lunch was home made anadama bread; a recipe from my grandmother. Thinking about our amazing trip to Israel and the good and dear friends we shared special time with there.
    Life is good. I am happy and full. Each day is filled with new awarenesses, old memories, learnings and letting go….work and above all, love.
    A big hug for you.

  7. Lisa, (Could you comment also to my emai? Thanks)
    I know it’s late and I should be in bed by now. But I wanted to comment about appreciating the good every day things in life. Like Saturday mornings when my sons come over for lunch and we discuss this and that. And Friday nights when my father-in-law joins us. And how his eyes lit up when I told him about my singing, doing my monologues and storytelling (remember how I met my husband…that I told at your storytelling workshop?) for a whole group of my husband’s friends from work and their spouses sitting in the hotel lobby and how they said I should get paid next time as I’m so good (as it’s the second year I’ve performed in the lobby at the seminar). So I’m presently unemployed – but wasn’t it great to stay home during the worst of the winter storms and my husband was glad to get the car to take to work. And I had time for my 2 choirs/concerts and a beginner’s acting course. Now I have another monologue to do at the next seminar (Juliet’s monologue before she takes the poison). Tried it out on my friends and they said it gave them shivers. But at my age – can I start a new career? Well, they don’t pay for English acting in this country. This is what I wanted to do ever since 9th grade – to be an actress like That Girl on TV (Marlo Thomas). But my classmate, Martin Wasserman said with my brains I should be a scientist. So my talk on career day was to become a microbiologist. Until Sandy Lipshitz asked what would I do if I’m married and have kids. Well, then I’ll teach science. So our teacher smiled and said finally someone wants to become a teacher. That’s what I’ve been – of English – off and on since 1989. Well, it’s the closest thing to acting…

  8. BTW, my son who is ultra-orthodox (very religious) won’t eat strawberries because of the tendency to have bugs/worms. The same with broccoli, cauliflower, corn on the cob, and figs. So my husband is careful to cut and wash every individual strawberry open and check them.

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