In order to do a job well, one must have the proper tools. You wouldn't try to build a house with a paint brush any more than you could paint a mural with a hammer. Well, you might be able to paint with a hammer, but it's not likely you'd do the job as well. My dad used to say, "No job is hard if you have the right tools."
I know a thing or two about tools. I am the daughter of a master carpenter, so I've been exposed to what works best for what (job). Among them are various saws (power and hand), drills, hammers (of course!), and assorted other cool tools that will can carve details into the smallest spaces. I love power tools. I'd rather go to the Home Depot than Nordstrom's any day.
Then there are the other kind of tools. Those used when one is building a different Life. Tools like breathing and focusing and awareness. Books and audio tapes, DVDs and posters. Drums and wind chimes and bird feeders. Oh...and let's not forget Chocolate. An absolute essential for the toughest jobs. (grin) All these are the tools that are most often reached for on a daily basis. Handy tools, all. Tools that I would rather not do without. Ever.
Even the most devout Spiritual Adventurer is going to run into some foulness (on occasion). When this happens, I reach for a tool. Like when someone calls and spews their nastiness. I could have not answered the phone. I could have ignored it completely. And sometimes I do. But then there are times when I'm feeling all empowered and centered, and I think, "Hey. Why not give it a go? How will you know if you don't give it a try?"
So let's say I answer that call. And it turns out to be just as nasty as I suspected. Instead of allowing it to ruffle my groove, I can reach for a tool and handle it. Right then and there. No waiting. No stewing. No suppressing. Handle it. NOW.
Got to give it a go just last night. In the midst of a very fun and happy show, the phone rang. I saw who it was and thought about ignoring it. But then I opted to pick up. Not surprisingly, the caller was just as ugly as ever. I kept it short and did not react to her attempts to unnerve me. Just said what I had to say, calmly and ever so quietly, and hung up the phone.
The moment I did, I realized my heart was racing and my breathing had become shallow. SHEESH! In less than two minutes. But rather than staying in that sweat, I got up, went to my outdoor sanctuary, with drum in hand, and just sat for a while. Beat on that drum and breathed deeply with every stroke. Closed my eyes and listened for the Tree Whispers. Within moments I was back to Center again. Just like that! I'm talking moments here, not hours. Wind and Sun and Nature Songs...right back to Center. Right back to calm.
I love that I reach for those tools now. Because there was a time when I'd have gotten myself in a tizzy over something so lame. I'd have carried that crap around with me for days on end. I'd have made myself sick over something so stupid as ugly words. But no more. Not ever again.
Today I can reach for that tool box and choose the most appropriate tool for the job. And that, my friend, is a marvelous thing!
So tell me....what's in your tool box?