Linda is reading The Time Traveler's Wife1, by Audrey Niffenegger. I understand the story has also been made into a movie, but I've neither read the book, nor seen the film. But, as Linda was sharing the theme of the book with me last night, I was reminded of a thought experiment taught to me by a psychologist friend many years ago.
The idea is to completely relax both mind and body and let yourself travel back through time to your childhood. Imagine that you're that little boy (or little girl) again, and remember what was on his (her) mind. What was that child feeling? What were his fears? What did he need?
Here is the first reward of that exercise: As you relive that child's emotional experience and become aware of his needs, you - the adult - have the opportunity to put that child's fears to rest, and to offer encouragement. Give it a try. It may take your child's subconscious a few weeks to integrate your adult wisdom, but I think you'll be happily surprised by what you learn about your own psychology.
If you're still with me, try this, too: Go back just twenty years. (Yes, I'm assuming that you're over 40.) What was happening in the world in 1991 that had you worried?
Maybe, it was the Russian military coup that attempted to oust Gorbachev. I can still see artillery shells bouncing off of Kremlin walls. Or, maybe it was the first Gulf War. Many TV pundits were predicting $200/barrel oil even then, while others foresaw tens of thousands of body bags returning to Dover. The unemployment rate had risen to nearly 7%, and the Savings and Loan Industry was imploding. The AIDS virus was spreading. The first cholera epidemic in a century had killed 700 people in South America. On January 15, 1991, the day before the most massive air assault in history was launched against Iraq, the Dow Jones Industrials Average (DJIA) closed at 2,508.91. 2
February 23, 2011, the DJIA closed at 12,105.78.
Until next week,
PATIENCE, DISCIPLINE, and CONFIDENCE in the FUTURE! mh
PS. Someone is sure to ask, so here is the answer: Forty years ago, on February 24, 1971, the DJIA closed at 875.62.3
2 http://www.factmonster.com/year/1991.html #us
3 http://finance.yahoo.com/q/hp?s=%5EDJI&a=01&b=23&c=1971&d=01&e=28&f= 1971&g=d