Mindfulness as a Political Act: The Wisdom of Willie Horton

“You gotta see this guy, Willie Horton. What a hard-hitting, tell-it-like-it-is approach!” my friend said. And he sent me a link to one of Willie’s videos.

A couple of weeks ago, a friend told me, “You gotta see this guy, Willie Horton.  What a hard-hitting, tell-it-like-it-is approach!”  And he sent me a link to one of Willie’s videos.

According to his website, “Willie Horton works with Fortune 500 companies – including Pfizer, Deloitte, Merrill Lynch, KPMG, Wyeth, PwC, Nestlé and Allergan – enabling their top people to become super-effective, super-successful. Author, world-class speaker and mentor to leading figures, Willie’s Irish charm and wit masks a deep and encyclopaedic mind that can impart life-changing wisdom in the space of five minutes.”

I signed up for his mailing list and last week, synchronistically enough, his mid-week article was about mindfulness – just as I was writing about it – and how it relates to success in our economically challenging times.

Willie urges people to stop being “normal.”  The norm is mad, mediocre and mindless, he says.  To give you a taste of Willie’s style, here are some excerpts from his June 9 article, “Forget the Recession – Here’s How to Succeed:”

“If you want to see things change, you can’t expect other normal people to effect that change, it has to start with you and me.  It has to start within, with a change of heart.   Hard factual evidence from the US Federal Government proves that the state of mind of a small group has a ripple effect.   Hard evidence from the world of quantum physics proves conclusively that energy – yours and mine – has an effect on the energy of the universe.  In other words, it is up to you and me to change the world – a change that cannot and never will take place until we change ourselves. . .

“The cards are stacked against you – not only is your default state of mind negative, but you are surrounded by people who share the same default settings.   It’s up to you to change, to pull yourself together and call a halt to the nonsense of so-called normal living.  You need to rise above all that and become abnormal.   Unlike normal people, you need to develop your innate ability to be mindful, to pay full attention to what is actually possible – you have to stop feeding the negative frenzy.

“Mindfulness is simply about paying attention – not to what you think is going on, but to what is actually happening in the present moment.   We are alive, we are living and breathing.  And each breath that we take we are presented with a once in a lifetime opportunity to behave outside the sad norm of the negative.   Each moment provides us with a unique opportunity to take control of our state of mind and do the right thing – because perpetuating the negative is clearly the wrong thing.

“You develop mindfulness by clearing your mind, by taking one step back from the negative circus in which so many people seem to be taking a perverse pleasure.   You need to start each day by ensuring that your mind is within your own control.  This is done by taking a few minutes – only five or ten minutes will do – to pay attention before the challenges of the day or cares of the world come seeking your acquiescence.  So, tomorrow morning, slow down.  Take time to experience shaving, showering, brushing your teeth, chatting with your family – before the day starts.  It is in these few moments that we can change our minds – and change our lives.”

The same ezine issue features a wonderful video on “How to be Inspired – and Inspirational,” that’s well-worth the investment of five minutes of your time.  In addition to his insights, you get the added treat of hearing his delightful Irish brogue.

Mr. Horton’s website is chockfull of free articles and videos on a wide range of self-development topics.  Sign up for his free ezine and you’ll receive one of his inspiring, no-nonsense videos each Monday and an article on Wednesdays.  Take some time to explore it and you’re guaranteed to find more than a few things that will be of personal value to you.

 

 

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