This story is one of my favourites for gently reminding us about the part we play in our own mishaps and marvellous adventures.
A friend was having huge issues with her mother-in-law over many years. While she was able to reduce the anxiety she felt over time, she still had a lot of built up angst prior to any event involving her husband’s family. Not long after I shared the following tale, she started repeating to herself “Don’t feed the wolf!” as a way to calm her nerves. Something about this simple metaphor clicked.
“I can’t tell you what a huge difference its made. I finally shifted focus and stopped adding to the drama with negative self-talk and complaints to others.”
When things aren’t going well, the idea that each of us creates our own reality gets a lot of resistance. So I share this one regularly with clients and friends and as a reminder to myself on the importance of cultivating attention to the world we want to create. I don’t think there is anyone who doesn’t immediately ‘get it’. I hope it will assist you in times where you are consumed by strong emotions.
One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.
He said, ‘My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all.
One is evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.
The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.’
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: ‘Which wolf wins?’
The old Cherokee simply replied, ‘The one you feed.’