How about, just as an experiment, you explore re-inventing yourself. Create yourself anew. Savor and celebrate all the wondrous elements you’ve been growing yourself with over the years. Consider what you might like to add, tweak, or omit. You may discover you allowed parts into yourself that, upon examination you figure, “Hey, I don’t really want that anymore. Actually, maybe I never wanted it. I didn’t think about it. I just let it be a piece of me.” How do you choose which parts to keep in the re-created you and which to leave out? One way is to weigh them on the Green Light/Red Light scale. In general, Green Light is the good stuff. Red Light is the other stuff. For example, if you want to bake a great cake, you think about gathering ingredients. You remember chocolate, flour, sugar, butter, eggs, and vanilla bean extract are good things to stir in. Onions and ammonia, soap, and sand make bitter batter so they don’t make the list. Likewise, in creating an even greater new YOU, you probably want some of your favorite personal ingredients, like your passion and compassion, your creativity, sense of humor, and your ability successfully to complete significant projects. You might also sprinkle in your strengths, interests, achievements, relationships, goals, dreams, and aspirations – those hearty elements that renew your Self. These are Green Light ingredients.
What color is your style? How do you think, speak, ACT?
What you don’t like
Focused on : Obstacle
Attention: OFF goal
Intention: MISS goal
What you prefer
Focused on: Objective
Attention: ON goal
Intention: GET GOAL
Old insults, grudges, arguments, embarrassments, failures, and feuds don’t make it to the pot of possibilities when cookin’ up the new You. Sarcasm, put-downs, belligerence, dishonesty, selfishness, and cruelty only show up in the garbage can. They may appear in pity party recipes (with more pity than party.) These are Red Light ingredients.
Red Light: Life is a pile of pits. Green Light: Life is a bowl of cherries.
We can’t change our history. We can change our view of it. We can’t rebirth ourselves by picking new parents and a new childhood. We can, every day, rebirth ourselves by picking new viewpoints. They can range from deep dark Red to bright glowing Green. It’s a bit Red to expect to be Green all the time – yet it’s a good target at which to aim. Practice the skill of Green Light and watch your life get Greener. Count your blessings.
Red Light: I don’t have ONE! Green Light: 101, 102, 103….
People can paint the world Red. For example, check out the weather reports. One day it’s sunny half of the time, cloudy half of the time, with five minutes of rain – in one small area. What’s the report? “It rained.” Rain is often considered Red weather. Red gets reported. A day 95 percent Greenish may get reported as 100 percent Red. So make your own weather report. It’s an interpretation anyway, so have at it. You want a Green day? Rain or shine, just tune in to your own Green weather report! What color do you focus on?
|Red Light * Magnify the bad stuff. Minify the good stuff.
What you don’t have
What you don’t want
What you want less of
What makes you scowl
What makes you angry
* Doing something destructive about it could make it Red.
|Green Light * Magnify the good stuff. Minify the bad stuff.
What you have
What you want
What you want more of
What makes you smile
What makes you excite
*Doing something constructive about it could make it Green.
Create a Green Light life. Consider it a game: how Green can you be? How quickly can you catch yourself when you tilt toward Red? How fast can you shift back to Green? How long can you maintain the shift? Just playing around with these questions lightens your spirit and makes it easier to Green up your viewpoint. With apologies to Dr. Seuss, go get some Green eggs – and ham it up. Take a swig of Green bean extract, then playfully, artfully, create your new role. Act the part of a Green being. The world needs more Green beings!
Take the Green Light game a step further and view a situation as a stage production. Your life is the play. The current scene is being written. What role do you want to play? What role do you not want to play? How will you choose to play it in various situations, with various characters? Pick a scene from your recent past that didn’t go the way you wanted, where you didn’t handle it the way you prefer. Replay it in your mind. Rewrite the script the way you like, then Green up your role in the next performance.
Who is your Chief Life Officer, your CLO? You are!
Red Light: Why I can’t… Green Light: How I can…
When you see life as a game, you can step back a bit. You see the things you missed when the focus was on how others disappointed you, ignored you, treated you unfairly. (Insert whatever Red Light stuff is in your life). To keep the game going in your favor, when you find yourself in a challenging situation, ask yourself three questions:
1. How does it look from a Green Light viewpoint?
2. How does it look from a Red Light viewpoint?
3. How do I want to see it?
Then decide to see the view you chose. Make a conscious choice instead of auto-piloting through life. That helps free you from being locked in old patterns and beliefs – and seeing Red.
Red Light blocks creativity. Green Light unlocks creativity.
When you feel yourself slipping back into Red Light modes, commend yourself for noticing. Then just repeat the process. Ask the questions. Choose the view. You’ll soon recognize the Red earlier in the game and shift more quickly and easily. Handle the Red stuff Greenly.
Who makes you grin? Who makes you frown? Who turns your world quite upside down?
Who decides it’s ease or it’s strife? Who’s in charge of you and your life?
Green Light - first aid for the Red cross.
It is easy to be cross with oneself. Be careful not to harp at yourself – it’s not a pretty sound. Notice your self-talk. What do you whisper so softly in your head that you don’t quite catch the words but you sure catch the feeling? That’s the Red Light stuff – discouragement, ridicule, failure feelings – a nagging, a doubting of your abilities. Pitch those contaminated ingredients into the Red refuse bin – to be refused – tossed out with the rest of the trash of putdowns and deflators. Mine your experiences for the nuggets you can grasp. Keep the lessons. Lose the lectures. (Failure is just an event minus the message. If you got the lesson, it wasn’t failure. It was an experiment that led to a discovery).
Put on your Green glasses. See the world you want. Who decides?
Who decides what you think, what you feel?
Who decides what you say, what you do?
Who decides how you view a memory?
Who decides how you interpret a life event?
Happiness doesn’t depend on circumstances. They change.
Happiness depends on our decisions. We, too, can always change.
The most intelligent life – on any planet – is Green!
So – go ahead. Get the Red out. Turn yourself into a bright Green bein’! The Jolly Green Giant pales next to you.
Red Light: The universe is conspiring to do me harm.
Green Light: The universe is conspiring to do me good.
So WAKE-UP! Live the life you love. Choose today, at this moment, this tiny precious piece of the present, to create a Green Light being. It’s as easy as that – and as challenging as that. Collect the choicest Green ingredients and cook up a delicious, splendiferous new YOU – a human being Green. A Green being. Tis the season. Tis always the season for reNEWal. So grow your Greens!
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(“Cook Up a New You” appeared in “Stories of Personal Transformation,” Little Seed Publications, 2007.)