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Sunday, November 4, 2007

Harmony

By Peter Vajda, Ph.D

Harmony

Each individual composes the music of their own life. When we experience upset of one kind or another it's usually because we are out of harmony with ourselves. When we experience difficulty in our relationships at work, at home or at play, for example, it's most often because our music and the notes of our life are not on the same page.

What is harmony?

Harmony is an alignment or congruence among four elements: what we say, what we think, what we feel and what we do. When there is harmony, alignment, and congruence between our thoughts, feelings, actions and words we experience an inner and outer sense of peace, called harmony.

Am I in harmony?

Consider the following life areas and reflect on whether you feel in, or out of, harmony with each ­ is the way you feel about, the way you think about, the way you act around (or about) and the way you speak about each of the following in alignment, congruent, harmonious?

Your finances
Your career and livelihood
Your relationships at work
Your (love) partnership and intimacy
Your personal environment and organization
Your personal, professional and spiritual development
Your health and wellness
Your family and friends
Your play and recreation

When I'm not in harmony

Are there disconnects in the way you think, feel, speak about or act with respect to any of these life areas? For example, do you feel one way or think one way about money and yet treat money, or relate to money, in a way that is counter to the way you think and feel? Is your behavior towards your co-workers in sync with the way you talk about them to others, or think about them? And your relationship with your partner? Does harmony flow through your relationship? What's your music like? Are the notes off? Do you experience harmony or disharmony?

In my coaching work, I often find the folks who are the most distressed, upset, overwhelmed, frustrated, bored, lost and confused are those whose music is out of tune, whose life is full of bad notes, whose music and notes are not on the same page.

Further, when we are not in harmony with others, it's because we are not in harmony with ourselves. When one is in harmony with one's self, one is often in harmony with others at work, at home and at play.

When we feel "out of sorts", "foggy", frustrated, lost or confused, it's most often because we are experiencing a disequilibrium among our mind, body and spirit, or head, heart and soul ­ between what we are thinking, feeling, saying or doing.

The downside of this state of disequilibrium is that we often make unwise and unhealthy life, work, and relationship choices and decisions. In disharmony, we keep sending ourselves mixed messages and it's no wonder we live in a state of confusion and self-doubt. Think perhaps of some decisions you made recently that turned out to be self-defeating or not so healthy. Consider, were you were in alignment in what you were thinking, feeling and saying as you made the decisions or did you experience a sense of internal conflict? Did you make that decision from a place of harmony? If not, where were you conflicted? And why? What wasn't working?

When I am in harmony

When one is in harmony with one's self, when one's thoughts, words, deeds and feelings are in sync, one has no need to look outside to blame, find fault, nit-pick, criticize and judge harshly. When one is in harmony with one's self, one can overlook the faults, the peccadillos, the imperfections and the "dings" in others.

When one is in harmony with one's self, one sings, internally and externally, the notes of gentleness, mildness, respect, humility, modesty, tolerance and forgiveness. When one approaches life and living from a place of harmony, one experiences the qualities of true and real courage, strength, wisdom, will, confidence, motivation, self-discipline, inner peace and love, compassion and what is known as "right knowing, "right action" and "right understanding" ­ qualities that are not available when one is in a state of disharmony. Harmony supports one to act from a place of authenticity and integrity; there is no fakeness or phoniness, no self-deception. Harmony allows us to be at peace within our own skin.

No one can compose your music

Each individual composes the music of their own life. The goal is to consciously hear and understand where there is discord. And then act to take steps to eliminate or reduce the discord in the melody of one's life. What notes do you need to change or discard? The one way to achieve harmony is to begin with your values. What are your values? What's really, really important to you? And, are you living your values?

So, our $10 food for thought questions are:
What thoughts and beliefs do I engage in that create disharmony in my life?
Do I often feel one way, or think one way and then act in another way? Do I know why?
Do I often lie to myself? About what? And why? What does the lying get me?
Is the music of my life harmonious?
Does disharmony in my life cause conflict with others at work, at home or at play?
Do I express harmony through qualities such as respect, acceptance, tolerance, understanding, empathy and compassion?
How do I promote harmony in my relationship to my self? Do I "walk my harmony talk"?
What do I say, how am I acting, how am I thinking and how am I feeling, when I'm in a state of disharmony?
Do I tend to blame others for my disharmony?
What are my top 15 values? Am I living these values on a consistent basis? If not, what's in the way?
What one or two baby steps could I take today, this week or this month to move in the direction of experiencing greater harmony in my life?

(c) 2007, Peter G. Vajda, Ph.D. and SpiritHeart. All rights in all media reserved.

You may reprint this article as long as the article is printed in its entirety, including the author's information.

---ABOUT THE AUTHOR---

Peter G. Vajda, Ph.D, C.P.C. is a founding partner of SpiritHeart, an Atlanta-based company that supports conscious living through coaching, counseling and facilitating. With a practice based on the dynamic intersection of mind, body, emotion and spirit - that is, Essential Well BE-ing - Peter's approach focuses on personal, business, relational and spiritual coaching. He is a professional speaker and published author. For more information contact pvajda@spiritheart.net or phone 770.804.9125

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