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The Empty Space Creates the Bowl


I’ve been reading a passage from the Tao Te Ching each day. And after I read it, I contemplate and think on it the rest of the day.

I read it a few years ago but I am a different person now and am more ready for some of these lessons in this book of wisdom.

In today’s passage, I was reading about the ‘space between’. For example, we hammer walls up, but it’s the space inside that is livable.

We make pottery, but it’s the space inside and outside that makes the bowl.

Hmmm…

It’s the clay that makes us be able to use the space inside of it and it’s the clay that helps us see gaps in space that were previously unused.

Alas…

Each weakness we have can be a strength and each strength we have can be a weakness.

Allow me to use myself as an example because I am well, you know, an expert on myself. I was once incredibly persistent and driven, to the point of obsession. I wanted to be the best in the world.

That drive carried me far and separated me from the ‘competition’ (no such thing by the way). It made me take my chosen sports, basketball and bodybuilding, as far as I physically could take them.

Was that drive useful and does it remain useful (when used wisely), yes.

However, that strength, easily became a disease, a weakness that needed taming. At that time, I was present with Devon in body only, but not in mind or spirit.

My strength had become a weakness. Too much of anything is no good.

My weakness was balance and harmony. I was conflicted because I yearned for balance or so I thought. Many of the tattoos on my body represent balance but I wanted to be the best, so how could I create something that was the best while remaining balanced?

The answer: I couldn’t. People don’t pay you for being balanced, they pay you for being the best.

My quest to solve my weakness, balance or lack thereof, caused me to learn as much as I possibly could about energy management for my personal self, it caused to grasp onto things like the F-5 System and it caused me to look for a life of harmony.

Harmony has become my strength, what once was a weakness became my strongest trait. Harmony means living at peace with where you are at. Sometimes I am going to be a better husband than I am entrepreneur. Sometimes I will be a better leader than I am husband. Sometimes I am going to be a better dad than I am a friend.

And it’s all good. My strength led me to realize this and in turn, created another strength.

If I allowed this strength to go too far, it will once again become a weakness because a life in perfect balance is a life of mediocrity. A life in harmony is to be embraced for what it is (I hope you see the difference between harmony and balance).

If I lose my edge, my old strength that turned into a weakness would once again be called up to be built up like any muscle and turn once again into a strength.

I realized that there is a HUGE difference between working hard and working smart.

Anywho, this could continue to go on, but my point when I sat down to write was to shine some light on the space and gaps and how we all have strengths that are weaknesses and weaknesses that can turn into strengths.

X-amine thy self.

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Email Devon Newell at devon@newellstrength.com

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