How To Think Outside YOUR Box…

I imagine you’ve heard the phrase “think outside the box”. I am not really one to be excited about phrases such as this. But this phrase can really take on another meaning that I encourage you to adopt and use more than one time a day. It can be modified to help you remember the meaning and what you’re supposed to do. How does “Think outside your box” sound?

The idea for this modification came as I was walking with my dog and we passed a house that was watering the lawn in the middle of Stage 3 water restrictions. I began to wonder how important a lawn is compared to having water to drink. My mind then immediately ran to images of hurricane Katrina where people were desperate just to get a bottle of water and they guarded one bottle as if it were gold. And you know what? It was gold to them. They couldn’t survive without that bottle of water. The lesson from that one image is that “the box” is different for everyone. So when you tell someone to “think outside the box”, you need to figure out what their box is.

That’s one change to the phrase “think outside your box”. Remember that others may not be thinking on the same wavelength you are. You must define “the box”. If you’re a leader, whether it be a leader in business, in sports, or in your family, define the box before you instruct someone to think outside it.

But there’s another meaning to “think outside your box”. I want you to think about other people and what they need or what their circumstances are. Back to my initial thought about the water restrictions for a second. I wondered what the people in that house thought about when they turned on their sprinklers. Was it “I really want my lawn to look beautiful so that others will think well of me”? Or, “I paid big bucks to put that lawn in, I don’t want it to die because then I’ll have to shell out more money to replace it”? What about “Well, others do it so there’s no problem with my doing it”?

Do you think that just before they hit the sprinkler switch (which is probably automated but had to be changed when the stage of restriction was elevated) they said “maybe I don’t need to water my lawn, it would be better if I saved water today so that someone will have water to drink tomorrow”? Think about others with every move you make and every word you utter. What will the impact of your actions be on others? Many of us are taught, unfortunately, to think only about ourselves and what results our actions will have FOR us. This does not put out the really positive vibrations the Universe wants from us. If you think about our actions and words and the impact they will have on others, I guarantee your behavior will change. Using the water example again – do you let the water run while you brush your teeth? Do you know how much water is wasted when you do that? Estimates are 1 gallon of water. That’s a whole lot of water. What effort is required to turn the faucet off when you don’t need it? Will that help others? Maybe not today but maybe in a few weeks or months. It’s not all about instant gratification even though that’s what we’re after today.

Use “think outside your box” to remind you to practice gratitude every single day in every single way. When you do think outside your own box, you have to think of others and that, by itself will lead you to expressing gratitude for all that is surrounding you. The phrase will also remind you to “do” for others. If you’re outside your box, you have to think of others and what you can do for them. The more you give to others, the more you’ll receive from the Universe.

Remember to “practice what you wish to become”. This is a meaningful quote by Dr. Kunath.


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