Turning Toward Practicing Cooperation

Spread Some Joy Today > Allowing > Turning Toward Practicing Cooperation
“Whatever I fight weakens me.
What I cooperate with strengthens me."
— Essence of the Tao Te Ching, 68th verse
by Wayne Dyer
[Classic post from 9-19-11]
It seems like whatever we do, we have an agenda. Sometimes we might call them goals, or to-do's, wants or desires, and rules. Sometimes, they might even be must-do's, have-to-do's or even more urgent agendas.
Many times, maybe even most of the time, our agendas have a way of controlling our experience so that we experience less rather than more. I liken it to the tail wagging the dog. I see it in my own personal agendas and I see it in businesses all around me. I especially see it in businesses that are focused on competitiveness and fear of loss.
My dog (actually, my wife's dog, rescued from the dog pound at age 10, but I am the official trainer in charge of exercise), is a dinky little Cheeewawa (sorry, had to do it. . .) who is teaching me to let go of my own personal agendas and relax in cooperation.
Here's the deal. I love to walk and if I were going out on my own, I would typically walk around 5 miles in about an hour and a half. I'm out for the exercise, the cardio, the calorie burning, the joy of it, the outdoors, the sun and shade and well. . . there are quite a number of agendas or intentions.

So, then we get this dog–Charlie, by the way, and he loves to go and do pretty much anytime, anywhere with jumping and enthusiasm that I only dream of. I take him along. If I walk a mile, he must walk five with those little legs, but he eagerly persists in leading me even though I know the way and he doesn't. But, he obviously doesn't care about my agendas. He has his own: find smells, sniff them, pee on them, scratch with is rear legs like he's covering something up, then on to the next with ears wide open anticipating other furry friends and foes alike.

At the end of the walk, still leading me
Of course, I want the exercise which means to keep moving, but he's having none of it. At first, I would gently yank on the leash and say, 'come on,' or something or I would become impatient when he would find a particularly good smell, and say, 'that's enough, come on,' or such. But, as much as I tried, he was not learning, and for a while, neither was I.
Then, one day I just decided to let go of my own agenda and cooperate fully. If he paused to sniff for five minutes, I stood there patiently enjoying it with him in spirit. Well, to be fair, I practiced doing that and got better as I went. Patience requires practice for the goal-oriented.

We got about 1 mile in an hour and I was getting no cardio benefit, but I was getting a far greater list of benefits, such as patience, enjoyment, love, relaxation, and more. Sometimes we would get more exercise, even going up to three miles together, although he would sometimes demonstrate his need for rest by just stopping and laying down in the shade somewhere, so I went with that too. He loves to rub his face and back in the grass and I just lay down there with him and watch.

Resting in the grass
My walks have taken on a whole new joy. I find them relaxing and most enjoyable. I don't care how far we go any more, or how long it takes. I have my thoughts, my little notebook, and I'm good. See–you can teach an old dog new tricks!
Oh, How We Let Our Own Agendas Get In The Way Of Enjoying Our Short Time On This Planet.
Spread Some Joy Today–Start practicing letting go of your need to control the outcome. You might find a great deal of joy in that space.
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