• Brian MacKenzie

Building A Life From Which You Do Not Need To Escape - Part 4: The Project Manager

This post is a follow up to previous posts Building A Life From Which You Do Need To Escape Parts 1, 2, and 3, so hopefully you have read those.


In Part 1 we focused on building an internal life from which we do not want to escape and suggested that PRACTICING PRESENCE PERSISTENTLY is the foundation upon which the rest is built. In part 2 we suggested that SELF -AWARENESS was also an important part of the process. In Part 3 we focused on ACCEPTANCE. This post will focus on The Project Manager and PERSPECTIVE.


Imagine building a house and the electrician was also the project manager. Now imagine this particular electrician was convinced that because they have decided they are a project manager and in charge of the project, they know what is best for the entire project and start trying to tell the interior designer among others, how to do their job. What would you do? Can you trust an electrician who is not trained in the art of interior design but is convinced, because of their title as project manager, that they know what is best? It seems fair to assume that most people would have concerns about this and would seek to hire a more qualified project manager. We can probably agree that a good project manager likely needs to be able to understand and appreciate the perspective and skills of each contractor, while also knowing and honoring each contractors’ limitations. The project manager has to be able to oversee all contractors, be aware of each contractor’s limitations, leverage each contractor’s strengths, and be willing to hold all of them accountable and make sure they are not practicing outside of their scope of work.


When building a life from which we do not need to escape, we also need a strong, qualified, project manager. Also, as you may have already guessed, yes, this position is already yours. The good news is that you are qualified for the job and already have everything you need to do it successfully. The first big question however is, until now has your electrician been running the show? Who is my electrician, you may ask? In this analogy, the part of your mind that perceives, interprets, and generates thoughts is your electrician. As talented and helpful as this skilled worker may be, many of us have put a little too much value in it, and even allowed it to step into our role as the project manager. The good news is, our electrician is most likely feeling a little burnt out and overwhelmed, and will be much more effective and efficient at their primary role, once we relieve them of the project management tasks.


So, what does this all mean and how do we apply it? Some people may even be a little confused by this analogy itself, so let’s take a moment and clarify before discussing how we can embrace our project management role. In our daily lives, many of us can become a little too identified with the content of our thoughts and even begin to allow our thoughts to dictate what we do, and run the show so to speak. The trouble with this is, as much as our thinking mind can be a very useful tool, it can also often be unhelpful, inaccurate, and very limiting. The analogy above is simply suggesting that we are capable of employing and appreciating our thinking minds, while also remaining aware of its limitations. In a deeper sense, the analogy is also suggesting that if we go so far as to lose sight of our role as the project manager, and expect/allow our thinking minds to perform that function, then we can expect for the project, which in this case is building a life from which we do not need to escape, to be limited at best.


Embracing our role as project managers and being aware of and leveraging the strengths and limitations of all of the tools that we have at our disposal, definitely requires presence, self-awareness, and acceptance, but it also requires PERSPECTIVE. Without perspective, it is easier for us to become a little too identified with the content of our thoughts and even begin to allow our thoughts to dictate what we do. However, when we embrace the perspective of our project manager, we are more able to observe our thoughts as they arise, decide how helpful they are, and choose a response or simply unhook from them and let them pass.

To be equanimous means to be psychologically stable in the face of our experiences. To be able to observe whatever we are experiencing emotionally, or whatever thoughts happen to arise at any moment, with a balanced non-reactive mind.

So, how can we embrace the perspective of our project manager? Simply put, we need to be able to observe ourselves and all of the tools we have at our disposal, equanimously. To be equanimous means to be psychologically stable in the face of our experiences. To be able to observe whatever we are experiencing emotionally, or whatever thoughts happen to arise at any moment, with a balanced non-reactive mind. To take the perspective of our project manager, is to embrace the responsibility of overseeing all that we are. We are emotional, cognitive, physical, and spiritual beings, and from the perspective of our project managers, we are able to observe and honor each of those realms without giving any of them too much reign over the others. Perspective allows us to unhook from any sticky, heavy, desirable, or addictive experiences and leverage the wisdom that comes from that higher perspective.


When building a life from which we do not need to escape, we need to honor all that we are and rediscover and cultivate our higher PERSPECTIVE. Although this is a natural process, the journey is unique to each of us, and the team at Solace is ready to walk alongside you.


Please stay tuned for Part 5 of Building A Life From Which You Do Not Need To Escape.

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