A Day in the Life of…

6 AM. Alarm clock rings. Time to wake up. Oh no, time to get up for work already. Where did the night go? I can’t wait for my day off, or my vacation, or my retirement. Maybe another job would be even better. I still feel tired and I’m uncertain about the day.

6:30 AM. Breakfast. My wife is already reminding me about the after-school soccer match I must attend, while I am already stressing over the project I have going on at work. Meanwhile, my two children are arguing about something and I discover that the morning newspaper is lying in a puddle of water.

Unable to read the paper and avoiding the arguing kids, I turn on the TV only to learn that my taxes are going to be raised once again because the government doesn’t have enough money. Next there is a report that torrential rains somewhere in the world have destroyed hundreds of homes and have left thousands of people without shelter. I quickly switch channels again, in order to get the sports’ scores.

7:30 AM. I ponder the meaning of life as my car crawls along at the usual slow morning pace. Suddenly all traffic comes to a dead stop and I realize there has been an accident up ahead and I may be late for work. Frustration soon leads to irritation, and then anger.

8:30 AM. I get to work just in time for my project meeting and I immediately find out that something has gone wrong with the project. I know it’s not my fault, but is obviously the fault of some idiot in another department.

10:30 AM. My boss calls me into her office to inform me that it wasn’t an idiot from another department who screwed up, but it was, in fact, me. I am the idiot who screwed up. What’s more, she now tells me that I better stay late tonight to correct the problem. I’m too afraid to tell her I can’t because of a game my kid is in after school. My stress level has just doubled. Just before 5 PM, too fearful of telling the truth about the soccer game, I fake illness and inform my manager that I have to go home. “Okay,” she says, “but you better get this corrected before the weekend.”

12:00 Noon. I am too stressed out to eat lunch, so I try to take a nap to forget my troubles.

5:30 PM. I arrive at the soccer game, but have missed the beginning and my wife wants to know why? I dare not say a word. Halfway through the game, my son’s team is losing and no one is happy. Meanwhile, I’m thinking about that damned project at work. My son’s team pulls through and wins the game, but my momentary happiness is quickly shattered when I realize that I locked my keys in the car in my rush to not miss the start of the game, which, by the way, I did anyway. My wife must drive home to get the spare keys while I wait by the car for her return. Dinner will be delayed tonight. We could go out for dinner, but we went out last night and our budget can’t handle it.

8:00 PM. We are finally eating dinner and my wife is telling me about the chores that must get done this weekend. I am nodding in agreement, but I haven’t heard a word because I am worried about correcting the mistake I (the idiot) made at work, which has delayed the project’s launch date. Meanwhile, another argument has broken out between the two kids and I scream at them to shut-up and go to bed. Having solved that problem, I decide to watch television and ignore the family problems.

10 PM. Bedtime, and I look forward to a “restful” night in order to be ready for another day.

Question: Did you identify any point in this person’s day when he could have applied the heart virtues? If you answered yes to any particular portion of this day, then you know what the when-which-how practice is all about—reducing stress by reducing the emotional chaos created by practicing the social order exclusively—in other words, without integrating the spiritual dimensions of the heart and soul into your dominant third-dimensional life.

So we need to shift our dimensional focus from exclusively centering on the third dimension by incorporating a fourth dimension and maybe even a fifth dimension. This shift is not about abandoning one dimension in favor of another. It is about shifting to a greater bandwidth of perceptions and awareness, to a wider range of frequencies that include the heart and soul.

Granted, your typical day may not be exactly like the day described here and there are many millions of people in this world who have much worse days than this; people who have no alarm clocks, no cars, and no televisions. Worse yet, they may not have breakfasts and dinners, jobs, or families. But generally speaking, if you are reading this guide, then you not only have most of the things mentioned in this scenario, but you also have a computer and Internet access.

According to Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, we are on a rung of the ladder in which many of our physiological, safety, and belonging needs are being met and we have the opportunity to focus on our psychological and spiritual needs. Consequently, we are fortunate enough to be in a position to work at emotional self-mastery, to improve our individual energetic fields and, in turn to improve the collective human energetic field (CHEF). We should take advantage of this opportunity not only for our own sakes, but also for the sake of humankind—for what we contribute to the whole, we contribute to ourselves.

Keeping all this in mind, let’s rewind this person’s typical day and play it back as if he had decided to apply the when-which-how practice to his everyday encounters. We are going to follow this man’s activities to see how the application of when-which-how affects the quality of life for this individual and for those who cross his path.