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What sets you at ease?

I used a quote from Arundhati Roy, the author of The God of Small Things in today's TOTD.

When you go to Europe or America for the first time, you arrive in a city where you don't see any mud, and everything looks really nice, all the cars and the steel and the glass. But I look at a car and I think, 'Somehow this came from earth and water and forest.' How? I don't know. But you need to know--you need to know what the connection is; who paid the price of what. If you at least know that, there'll be some balance. There has to be some balance.

-Arundhati Roy



This sparked a response from a friend of mine who currently spends the bulk of his time in Las Vegas casinos pursuing a career as a high stakes video poker player. He's got some money and loves travel and first class pleasures. The quote may have struck him as representing an mindset that would pass a negative judgment on him and his lifestyle choices. Perhaps not. I certainly don't have a direct line into anybody else's head.

What about you?

Can you remember a time when somebody told you something and it changed the way you think?
Changed it for the better?

How did they do it?

How did they communicate the new idea to you which then lead you to abandon your old practice or mindset and manage to do it so that it didn't come across as criticism? People tend to take an automatic defensive stance to criticism, or what they consider criticism. How did the person who introduced change into your life slip past those mechanisms?

Did they use humor?

Did they employ an easy mix of sincere compliments and sleight of hand?

What did that person do to allow you to feel safe and esteemed while you took a fresh look at long-standing assumptions and attitudes?

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