year of living copyFollow your desire as long as you live.
— Ptah-Hotep


The ten-second miracle is important to every person, whether at home or at work, alone or with loved ones. If you do not know a conscious move to make during the ten-second windows that create your destiny, your unconscious programming imprints these moments with your old patterns. Then these patterns recycle and escalate as the relationship proceeds. A template formed during an initial meeting of two people can produce distress decades later. Laura writes of an example: At age thirty-four, I took a twelve-day, deeply intense personal growth class; one of my classmates was a woman with whom I’d attended high school. We now lived on opposite sides of the country, and yet had ended up sitting five feet apart as we deconstructed the stories we’d created in our lives. I found myself having particular trouble letting go of this one story: When Miranda and I met in high school, I was the president of the state student council, a cheerleader, always busy, always successful, always popular. Now, sitting here with her, I found myself glossing over trouble spots in my life, insisting that I had everything under control—while tears ran from my eyes. I was allowing myself to slip back into the tired (and ineffective) old template (ever competent, never unsure) from those days. Miranda, fortunately, wasn’t so easily fooled. In about eight seconds, she gently and firmly commented that it wasn’t necessary for me to be competent with her—and, in fact, that she found it very distancing. Since then, we have established a friendship via e-mail that resembles something very different from that friendship we had back in the late seventies. Our words now are honest and truth-seeking, and our friendship is forming around who we are instead of around who we think others might want us to be. In a ten-second miracle, Miranda gave me a gift that continues to reverberate throughout my life: the gift of encouraging me to be myself rather than some shell that is smooth in the hand but brittle upon examination.

Like the seasonal cycles that bring us the miracles in nature, you have your own cycle. The miracle lies in reprogramming yourself to allow that which is instinctual, like honesty, to blossom in your life and relationship. The ten-second miracle is not selfish or individual; its leaves and branches are oxygen to relationship and to the self, allowing you to breathe deeply at last.


Identify the feelings that serve as cues to you in a recurring, distressing pattern in a key relationship in your life.

Key relationship: _____.
Pattern: _____.
Feelings evoked (cues): _____.

Purchase “A Year of Living Consciously” by clicking the cover below: