These are certainly divisive times. Everywhere you turn groups are lining up on opposites sides and attacking the other person or group. As I watch this on television or read the newspaper, or see it on social media like Facebook or Instagram, I see tension and anxiety sweeping people up into the loud cacophony of fear and hate. It is so easy to get caught up in the emotions of the moment and sadly, a good portion of those emotions are negative and increase one’s belief that divisiveness is normal and one’s perspective is being attacked.

Using the Life Puzzle perspective, the current divisive environment swirling all around you is really a keen opportunity to discover the power of wholeness for living your life. It’s the decision to move from reactive, unconscious and doing what everyone else is doing and shifting to proactive, conscious and making choices that benefit you and others.

Reactive people create reactive systems—and that’s what you see all around you now. Proactive people create proactive systems and that’s the opportunity you have before you. Yes, the grand majority of people are on the 0-5 reactive side of the Wholeness Continuum but does that mean you have to stay there? No—you can switch to the proactive/wholeness side of the Wholeness Continuum any time you want.

Reactive people and systems chase the current event and generally see it from a very narrow view of what’s in it for me and how do I get my needs met?  Proactive people and systems look for solutions that will improve their lives and those of their family and community. Wholeness enables a broader view as you take in your own perspective while also stepping back and saying to your self—what is the other perspective? How has that other person or group come to this position and are we really completely opposed to each other or can we find common ground?

One of the greatest things that occurs from a Wholeness perspective is that it affords a calmness that comes to the way you live your life. On the 6-10 side of the Wholeness Continuum, you know you are on a daily journey of learning, growing and changing. Every day you are open to learning and the experiences that come into your life are accepted as that day’s learning challenge. Yes, some days that learning challenge can throw you out of balance, force you to dig deep or step back in order to seek new information that can help you get through what’s in front of you. With practice, you discover that putting your focus and energy on wholeness provides a solid groundwork from which to respond to life.

Don’t misunderstand. There are lots of issues out there that have a wide continuum of views and ways that people can approach them. And yes, you’ll run into lots of reactive people ready to ram their views through. They’re noisy and loud and sometimes very difficult to interface with and they’re attached to staying divided. It doesn’t occur to them there’s another option. Deep breathe and open up your mind and heart to wholeness and you can begin to see their fear and hatred coming at you while also knowing you can hold your own around it. Ask them a simple question—What do we have in common around this issue? What can we all agree on? Let’s find that first!

When you do that, you’re setting the framework for your wholeness. You’re open to learning. You’re seeing the other person and perhaps discerning that in their reactive mode they are in fear. You know that fear makes communication more difficult. Wholeness helps you see that fear and try to transform it just enough to take the tension down.

So take some time to think about this. Where do you want to put your energy and focus? Divisiveness or Wholeness? Right now the world seems stuck on divisiveness but it doesn’t have to stay that way. I suspect we are soon approaching a shift.   Because one of the things that happens time and again across history, is that eventually divisiveness, which does not bring great outcomes but instead results in limitations, well, it gets boring to people! They redirect their attention and that’s what you have the opportunity to do now. Wholeness is solution focused, sees a brighter future, and is a calmer way to live. Why would you want to get stuck in divisiveness when Wholeness is available?

You be the start!