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Detecting patterns

We humans are pattern-detecting machines. We love patterns. We live by them -- seasonal patterns, cultural and social patterns. We create them because it helps us organize our life. Think of your daily routine. You know what to do when. You know the way to get where you're going. You know how long you'll spend there and when you'll get home. Patterns, and their corollary, cycles, help us do the things we do without having to relearn them each new day.

Sometimes we can get into a rut, repeating a cycle that is no longer serving us. Think being stuck in heartbreak or partying like a teenager when you are 30 years old. Sometimes we perceive a pattern that is not really there. Think fretting over what someone thinks of us when they've actually moved on. Or maybe you perceive that events and people are conspiring against you.

Truth is, we are active agents in the creation of patterns and cycles in our lives -- the ones we like and the ones we don't like. Yep. We actually create situations we don't like (and we aren't always fully responsible for the ones we do like!). The important thing to understand is that we are always capable of choosing. No matter what you want in life and no matter what events that are out of your control are happening around you, you are always in control of how you choose to be at any moment in time. Know this and be aware.

So, how do you do that? Awareness begins with mindful acknowledgment. Notice your feelings. Notice your thoughts. Notice your words. Don't judge. Just notice. Spend some time on this. Take a week. Take a month. Really sit with it and practice. Just notice.

After a while, you'll begin to see your part in the creation of your life. And after that, you'll start to notice the patterns. Eventually, you'll recognize your own creative agency. You'll recognize and own your part. And once that's happened, you'll see that all you have to do to create the life you want is to intentionally plant the seeds. Be consistent. Not every seed you plant will root. But with awareness, intention and commitment, your thoughts, words and actions will blossom into the life you want.

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