Doing what’s needed, not what’s wanted
What I’ve noticed about expressing the quality of presence to its fullest is that helps us do what’s needed rather than what’s wanted. To make the distinction here, doing what’s wanted is, for me, attached to personal wants and desires – our own or those of others. What’s needed is about addressing the situation, unattached to the personal.
At one level this gives a great deal of clarity about what to do, at another though it muddies the waters because it requires a whole other level of self-awareness and self-management to ensure that we’re doing the right thing for the right reasons i.e. our ego is in check and we’re not in the grip of hubris.
This goes to the qualities on which we need to draw to ensure that presence and our ensuing action – even if that is doing nothing – is pure, appropriate and makes an uplifting difference rather than damaging.
Chief among these is our heartful-ness. Engaging and leading with our heart allows us to listen and see the situation from a more empathic and compassionate perspective. It communicates to others our positive intention. It assures the quality of that intention. It provides the courage to act and supports the quality of how we do that.
My reflection on my own practice around presence reveals a scorecard that isn’t perfect – occasions where my wants got in the way with feedback not given, the challenging question that may have shifted the situation unasked. And occasions where I have been fully present, where the question posed and perspective shared allowed some new light into the situation. And what I particularly noticed is that when I was fully present it felt like a whole other me.