Comparing Robs Us

Things will be going along. There is contentment, a type of surrendering peace, purpose, happiness and then one day we pause. Maybe we look at the smiles of the other couple too long . . . . Next thing you know, we are putting our relationship under a microscope, looking at every tiny and perceived flaw. Once we start doing that and focusing on every little thing we don’t like, it magnifies and grows. We distance ourselves.

What you focus on is what you see.

Whether it is a job, a relationship, a path, it is easy to get distracted and assume the grass is greener on the other side. I have found that whenever I do this, I rob myself of the glorious present, the beautiful and even tiny but magical moments.

Talking and sharing is an exquisite form of intimacy. It can bridge the divide and reduce the clutter. It can help us get clear and open our heart. I am so happy when my heart is open, when I notice the beautiful dance that is my life.

Comparing robs me of this beautiful present.

Releasing Shame

I have talked often about focusing on what we want, shifting perspective, focusing on all that is good in our life! I have talked often about when we are in the dumps, changing our perspective can be as easy as snapping our finger. I have talked often about how we can get into a rut, but when we look back at our thoughts and what we have been thinking about, it is clear WHY we are in that rut. Affirmations, visualizations, imagining what we want, pretending we already have it, focusing on a solution can move mountains!! For me, it has been a game changer especially in dealing with depression and manifesting my dreams.

However, the feelings of unworthiness, the feelings of deep seeded beliefs that tell you there is something seriously wrong with you, and that you don’t deserve happiness, can linger long after all of the serious work has been done. Deep seeded beliefs can stall any serious work we do because deep down there is a belief within that tells us we are unworthy and don’t deserve it.

That is when I knew I must take action. If you have children, you might relate to this. When my son was a toddler, he used to hit a lot. I would get upset, tell him not to do it but of course it continued. It wasn’t until I came up with a plan, an action every time he hit, that he started to learn what to do instead. We have to teach and take action.

In my journey, I have been guided to many healing modalities and I have learned a lot of tools along the way. One day the word SHAME popped up on my radar and I realized THIS was the feeling I was continuing to struggle with and had been struggling with for as long as I could remember. I had it when I was little and felt bad. I had it as I grew up and felt there was something wrong with me. I had it as an adult when I added more experiences that caused great shame. I had buckets full of it.

I did some research and found a guided meditation online by Michelle Chalfant (A guided meditation and exercise for releasing shame) and started to do the meditation any time I recognized it was shame holding me back. For me, the feelings of release were strong. I sensed a lightness in my load and was thrilled I had another tool. It was very powerful for me and reminded me of similar work I have done in the past.

I am grateful today that the awareness of shame came up. Sometimes we don’t really know what is holding us back, the beliefs inside that keep us stuck. Awareness, afterall, is the first step.

The sky is the limit – let go of victimhood!

Some people just really want the dramatic story to continue. I mean I’ve been guilty of it! Like how many more stories can I add to the “this happened to me” saga?

It’s real. 

Things do happen.

But in every moment, we have a choice to change our perspective, our beliefs, our truth, our reality and create a new story. 

Sometimes it’s as simple as saying “ENOUGH” at the top of your lungs. Notice, describe, yell to the universe then use your anger and declare that this is my new truth!!

I did this when I moved away from OCD and battled it once and for all.  When an obsessive ritual came up I declared, “I see you but I don’t do that anymore.”  Not easy, sure, but doable with perseverance.  Anyone battling mental illness will tell you the fight is real. But you can’t keep doing, thinking, feeling the same things and expect anything to change. 

Sometimes seeking the right kind of help is the first step. But continuing to talk about your labels, your struggles, your pattern will most likely keep you right there, the perpetual victim.

Declare “enough” today.  Make a change. Take one small step. These are some small steps I have taken throughout my life:

  1. Seek help but make sure its the right kind of help for you. If it feels wrong, seek different help.
  2. Notice all that you have, even if it starts with one small thing, like warm clothes for the day. Focus on that, feel gratitude for it, and you may notice more things you feel grateful for. Continue daily and you may notice a shift in perspective.
  3. See that finger pointing? Turn it inward and ask tough questions. Everyone is a mirror.  Things you can ask are what is this bringing up for me? What am I not doing? What do I need to heal? How can I fulfill myself and fill up my cup?
  4. What do I love? Do it!
  5. Go within, spend time in nature.
  6. Forgive often! We are not perfect either. By not forgiving, I am only hurting myself.
  7. We can’t necessarily see the big picture! Someday it may be revealed. In the meantime, trust the process of your life.
  8. Do a body scan. In meditation, slowly focus on all parts of your body one part at a time and observe what comes up. Grieve, if needed, and allow it to flow down stream when you are ready. Then pour love and light into your body and love it thoroughly. 
  9. Do something for someone else.
  10. Remember, you are the master of your ship and can achieve anything.  If you feel like you can’t then you are listening to old tapes, conditionings. Declare that you are the love of your life and are capable, strong, courageous, powerful, and quite Awesome!  Declare your new truth. Create the new story.

Just do a RE-DO!

Whether we are talking about children or our own partnerships, sometimes a major reaction/event can be as easy as doing a re-do.

We all get triggered and sometimes find ourselves exploding over little things (in the grand scheme of life). It usually has its root in something much deeper. Possibly a deep seeded belief we have about ourselves.  Possibly it was modeled for us so it’s the only way we know how to react. Possibly it’s an issue that has been building and it hasn’t been talked about.

Regardless, in those situations I sometimes find myself walking away so it doesn’t get worse. Then making time to talk about. What did it bring up? What was the reaction really about?  Using “I” statements share and really listen to the other side. I can assume they, too, have similar feelings.  

Once that is out of the way, one thing that works with students and in my own marriage, is we do a re-do.  We go back in time and we try again, this time in an appropriate/safe/loving way.   This can even be done via imagery regarding painful events from the past.  It’s a type of closure that affirms the new pattern, belief, story and can bring about healing.

Try it.

Choose

It’s not immaculate and I’m ok with that!

It was an amazing summer full of backyard relaxation and work in the yard. It was a beautiful balance, a way to recharge from a hectic school year.

School is now back and on another blistering hot Saturday morning, I was about to set out for my morning jog. Neighbors were doing a neighborhood project outside my home and we got to talking. The discussion turned to the prior owners of my house and how the house looked. Maybe 3 times this neighbor told me that the prior owners kept the house immaculate. . . the yard was immaculate!

I eventually excused myself and went for my jog. What went through my mind was that this neighbor was basically telling me my house looked like shit even after the hours and hours of work I put into it regularly.

The trigger being I am not good enough.

This happens to us all. Someone says something that triggers our own stuff whether that is what the person meant or not. Our triggers give us clues of what else within needs healing.

My first feeling was one of utter shock at them saying this to me. I felt the judgment loud and clear.

My second feeling was anger. I actually turned around from my jog so I could go back and tell them that we do our best. . . but I thought twice about that and continued on my way.

My third feeling was sadness. It brought up those feelings of unworthiness. Those words felt like a slap in the face because of the big love and care I put into this home.

My final feeling was one of acknowledgment. I looked around and realized this person was right! Wow! It’s true. My yard is not immaculate. . . but I’m actually ok with that. This person only mirrored some thoughts I had about my front yard and some things I wanted to do and my own judgements I had about it. It actually motivated me.

That moment lead me to my favorite affirmation which states: I am doing my best and my best is enough. That made me smile and love on myself a bit.

This dread: Is it fear (I must push through) or just not who I am?

This subject came up recently. It is a topic that I have struggled with all of my life and I continue to explore to this day. Many times we find ourselves in situations in which we wonder what decision to make. Is it fear…or just not who I am?

In my life I have run, when I should have stayed. I have stayed because of the fear of trying something new.

I believe this gets easier when we figure out this most important question.

Who am I and what do I want.

I will give a couple of examples.

1. When I had fear or nerves take over at work, I chose to push through the fear because I really loved my work and wanted to grow. I always felt amazing after.

2. I once volunteered at this horse farm. I thought it would be great and on path because it was working with children and horses. But I got this dread about going. In exploring that further I realized that I felt bad for the horses. I did not get the impression they were happy at all. I gave myself permission to let it go. What came to me was to trust myself.

3. I once dreaded going on this trip with a group of people. I was not sure where it came from but I was feeling in a funk over it. In exploring further, I realized it would be good for me so I pushed through the angst and had an experience I will never forget.

In trying to come up with the answer it is important to trust yourself. But it is equally important to know yourself and know what you want. When in doubt, I close my eyes and picture the two paths of my inquiry. I turn my brain off and connect with my greater self. I then see which way my body goes and I trust it.

If I do decide to push through my fear, I utilize a trick Gerry Starnes (author, mentor) once taught me. I turn my fear into excitement. The body doesn’t know the difference.