What comes out when life squeezes you?


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I just read that Dr. Wayne Dyer passed away last night. I was reading his FB page and this was the last entry he made yesterday.......

"I was preparing to speak at an I Can Do It conference and I decided to bring an orange on stage with me as a prop for my lecture. I opened a conversation with a bright young fellow of about twelve who was sitting in the front row.

“If I were to squeeze this orange as hard as I could, what would come out?” I asked him.

He looked at me like I was a little crazy and said, “Juice, of course.”

“Do you think apple juice could come out of it?”

“No!” he laughed.

“What about grapefruit juice?”


“What would come out of it?”

“Orange juice, of course.”

“Why? Why when you squeeze an orange does orange juice come out?”

He may have been getting a little exasperated with me at this point.

“Well, it’s an orange and that’s what’s inside.”

I nodded. “Let’s assume that this orange isn’t an orange, but it’s you. And someone squeezes you, puts pressure on you, says something you don’t like, offends you. And out of you comes anger, hatred, bitterness, fear. Why? The answer, as our young friend has told us, is because that’s what’s inside.”

It’s one of the great lessons of life. What comes out when life squeezes you? When someone hurts or offends you? If anger, pain and fear come out of you, it’s because that’s what’s inside. It doesn’t matter who does the squeezing—your mother, your brother, your children, your boss, the government. If someone says something about you that you don’t like, what comes out of you is what’s inside. And what’s inside is up to you, it’s your choice.

When someone puts the pressure on you and out of you comes anything other than love, it’s because that’s what you’ve allowed to be inside. Once you take away all those negative things you don’t want in your life and replace them with love, you’ll find yourself living a highly functioning life.

Thanks, my young friend, and here’s an orange for you!"


one day at a time
Wow I love this. Gives me a lot to think about in terms of my own journey, where I am today in my recovery and what is next for me in terms of continuing to learn how to grow up.

I have realized it is what we do when we are stressed that shows us what to work on next within ourselves.

Always, always work to do on me. A full time job.

Thanks RE.


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Staff member
I have realized it is what we do when we are stressed that shows us what to work on next within ourselves.

That is so true COM, thanks for pointing that out. I can look back and see how often in my past lives my first responses when "squeezed" were judgement, blame, seeing myself as a victim of circumstances or any number of negative reactions that I had either learned from my family or I designed to protect myself from being vulnerable. I still have some of those reactions, however, with time, therapy and a whole lot of refraining, I've come to the realization that those responses were my perceptions, not necessarily the truth........when we are stuck in that place of seeing things so black and white, it is challenging to figure out that our opinions and perceptions are not always' the truth', but a version of the truth seen through our own lens.

In regard to my "soft" spots like enabling, I will often ask my husband or my best friend if there are any holes in my thinking before I go off half cocked where there will likely need to be an apology or a big explanation of my 'behavior.' Sometimes I am shocked to find out that my big truth was yet another illusion, another perception, another opinion which bears no resemblance to any truth.........it's pretty amazing how we can see things so differently through whatever lens is filtering reality.

I think that is why I place such high regard on the therapy I've had, the therapists could point to my skewered thinking in ways I could hear which would then give me pause to dig deeper to find out the real truth......and in time I was able to learn to step back and see where my responsibility lie...which of course, judgement, blame and being a victim masks...once I could see that, I was empowered and on the road to being true to myself.