A little background before I share my secret to my best lunch ever. Recently, while visiting Long Beach, CA, I had the honor of being part of a five-day transformational training program with Jack Canfield. Yeah – the Chicken Soup for the Soul Guy. About day four, following a guided group meditation, we were taking turns sharing our experiences and feelings from the meditation. Folks would stand up, declare their feelings and sit down. That seemed safe enough, so I stood and shared. When I finished, Jack asked me to stay standing. Mind you, there were one hundred of us in the room, each paying Jack $1,000.00 per day for this workshop. I did the math; when the world’s #1 success coach, and a talented psychotherapist in his own right, grossing $100,000 a day wants to give you a some personal attention and spend time with you, you figure he must know something you don’t. A little nervous, I did as I was told.
Jack proceeded to ask me personal questions. Within a minute, he had me mentally standing in a house I hadn’t seen in 43 years, feeling exactly how I felt at the time. He walked me (and a hundred of my closest friends) through the process of undoing a memory, replacing the memory with a preferred experience, and solidifying the new experience at the cellular level in my body. Essentially, he used the RIM method (Regenerating Images in Memory) which is a modern and unprecedented scientific inner technology that reconstructs affirming images in cellular memory. This is all still a little Greek sounding to me, but it has something to do with neuroplasticity and creates subconscious changes for both emotional and physical wellbeing. Not the point of the story anyway, but you can visit www.riminstitute.com for information on this fascinating science. What does this have to do with lunch? I thought you would never ask.
The next day, I met a woman who, in total silence hugged me. Without a word spoken, we had what seemed like the longest hug. When we separated, we were both in tears and she never knew why. For me, she represented the missing image from my guided meditation. I felt I had come full circle; until lunch time the next day.
Enjoying a day off, we were walking the pier, enjoying a little California sunshine before heading back to New Hampshire. Early in the morning on this pier, most locals are older, homeless men, who sleep on the benches along the pier. They are very nice, will converse if you like, and ignore you otherwise. Then I met Robert. Robert looked up at me and asked if I would buy him lunch. He quickly went into his pitch that he didn’t want to scare us – I suspect many people respond with fear when the homeless speak to them. I have never done this, but something compelled me to sit by him and with my hand resting on his arm, I listened to his story. Then he changed the subject to tell me about what God tells us in Philippians I. Now, I am not a big Bible-quote person, perhaps because so many people use Bible quotes to judge and bash others with whom they disagree. However, I will admit the Bible is full of great wisdom and hope. Robert tells me that God promises to never leave us alone. I do not think he was saying God is like a pesky salesman - I’m sure it was meant in a good way – we never need to be afraid of being alone.
If the woman I met was the missing image from the guided meditation, Robert gave me the missing message I was guided to hear, and simply did not. Now, my week was complete. I am not sure I ever felt any more connected to another person as I did to Robert the homeless man on the pier who needed lunch. My cynical readers will say I was taken advantage of. I say I got a free life lesson, a new friend I will always remember and great content for another article. All this, for one crisp Jackson. (Note to self - carry smaller bills if you’re going to buy lunches for the homeless). To make sure I added value for Robert, to whom I owed so much, I asked him to buy lunch for a friend as a favor to me, then he would have the gift of giving – perhaps the only gift I was qualified to provide such a rich man.