What Comes Out When Life Squeezes You

Wayne Dyer speaking about an Orange and more.

Mo Issa
3 min readFeb 22, 2024

Wayne Dyer was speaking at an “I Can Do It” Conference when he brought out an orange and asked a bright twelve-year-old what was inside it. The boy insisted it could only be orange juice, not apple or grapefruit juice. When pushed to explain why, the boy said: “Well, it’s an orange, and that’s what’s inside.”

Wayne Dyer nodded and then looked at the audience to ask if it was you.

“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.”

Reflecting on myself, I saw that not everything that’s inside me is as pure as I want it to be.

When I went mad at the taxi in front of me, who was driving as slow as ten mph, it was only because of the pent-up frustration within me. I often feel that I’ve been living in a country and a place that’s just too comfortable for me. I need more novelty, urgency, and aliveness in my life.

The taxi driving slowly is just a metaphor for how I live my life. I end up screaming at the driver, overtaking him and speeding away. Fast-forward a few months, driving on that same road, I see that same taxi in front of me. Now, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Or when I belittle someone at my company for making an honest mistake, then it’s all about the fears inside of me. The stakes are high, and I know that one mistake could mean we can’t pay salaries or our suppliers come the month’s end. I have a hard time facing uncertainty. I need to learn to accept that not everything will be under my control. Also, to remember that the company has survived far worse times than now.

Most of our negative reactions are not about the people who irritate us but more about what is troubling us from the core.

Dyer continued:

“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.”

Whenever we overreact, then it’s an opportunity for us to step back and ask ourselves what’s really inside of us. What have we allowed to get inside of us, and what can we do to remove all the negative things we don’t want in our lives and replace them with love?



Mo Issa

I rise daily at 5 am, meditate, read and journal on my Self-awareness journey. Some of my reflections make it to my blog; others don’t. (http://mo-issa.com)