Emotional Chaos to Clarity: How to Live More Skillfully, Make Better Decisions, and Find Purpose in Life ~ Phillip Moffitt
The Life Balance Institute sent me an email and asked if I would review Phillip Moffitt’s new book Emotional Chaos to Clarity. They sent me a copy of the book and told me I could pick my own time to post the review. They also let me know that Moffitt would be at the Seattle Insight Center in November. Several years ago I had attended a workshop where Moffitt’s book Dancing With Life had been used as a primary reference. I was delighted to be given the opportunity of this new book.
I knew I was going to be taking some recovery time from some body work that needed to be done, so I planned an INTREAT around the reading of the book and the exercises contained within. A healing vacation, right in my own home during the reading experience and this experience totally changed my healing process and attitude; I was even celebrating the itchiness that signaled healing was taking place!
There were 20 major chapters in the book and I had 2/ 5 day sessions for my INTREAT with a busy weekend in between. I read the introduction pages when I was doing the planning phase and the Epilogue the day I began my draft writing. I took two chapters a day as my morning and afternoon workshop sessions and I completed all the exercises for each chapter. I did a short meditation as recommended before getting up for the day and focused on my emotional intentions and my large glass of water. I kept my first meditation period of the day as an hour long walk through the neighborhood, focusing on being mindful and not allowing my mind to wander and problem-solve. When I lost my way, I focused on the breathing or jogged for a moment to bring my full attention back to center. I was able to relax tensions, joints and discovered that my limbs were moving with more freedom and swing. I found with each practice I was ending in a state of contentment.
“…values come from understanding what is important to you and part of your personal philosophy, whereas intentions are the applications of your values in daily life.”
By Chapter 10 and 11 Emotional Chaos to Clarity found me truly wanting more and truly aware of how I was not understanding Loving-Kindness, Compassion and Gratitude and thus was not working those practices in a way which would enhance my well-being and sharing of my values. As a matter of fact, the way Moffitt explained what I was doing and his good examples indicated I was just tapping the surface of these practices and being rather “Pollyanna” to myself and others. I was avoiding the depth of these practices and avoiding the focus of how I was treating myself. I set aside a whole day in the future to spend on these two chapters. This was not new information, it was the way the author presented it that I could comprehend how shallow my practices had been towards myself.
“Sometimes we shortchange gratitude because our mind is stuck in problem-solving mode; it only notices what isn’t working and sets about trying to resolve it.”
I ended up with 10 quotes I wanted to put on this post and highlighted about 45 other paragraphs in the book; I then thought maybe I would not inspire folks to read this book because it might seem too much and not convey what I gained from my reading/INTREAT experience. I was nearly driven crazy wanting my partner to read this book. He is a very silent person who loves nature and the planet and cares for it with a passion. He is an architect and he shares his passions in the design of the buildings he creates and makes energy efficient. He avoids his own emotions and using them to create fullness in his life. Moffitt’s writing increases the emotional IQ of the reader/participant in a clear and deepening manner, and this book creates a heart opening and provides the useful tools for centering on the authentic self and how one approaches daily living with a clear and mindful outcome.
“It is a deeply satisfying experience to feel that your life is authentically your own.”
I was glad to have the weekend to make fresh foods and get all prepared for the second week ahead. I added a journal writing segment after each morning and each afternoon session/chapter. I included stretching, music, 3 documentaries, and a lush novel to each days INTREAT activities. I was never once tempted to throw a load of laundry in or clean the bathrooms!
Have you ever planned a day off and then followed through on your plan? Do you think you would ever try an INTREAT?