You Can't Get There From Here
What do you want? Seems like a simple question doesn’t it. For those who have a tendency to people please, this question is nearly impossible to answer. If you’ve spent a lot of time and energy trying to either be what you think others want you to be, or trying to make things okay for others – you may feel unsure of what your answer is to this simple question. And that’s okay.
Or, you may give a vague answer… “I want to be happy.” A good starter plan, yet not exactly a clear path. I recently asked our sales staff at work to tell us their definition of success. It’s very interesting how our place on the path of our lives influences what this definition looks like. When we are younger we often list financial related things to what success means to us. Later in life it may be about contribution, leaving a legacy. There is no wrong answer - you just need to know what YOUR answer is.
No matter how YOU define success, the most important thing is that you know what your definition is. Once you have this clarity, if you want to set some goals – they need to help deliver you to the destination that looks like success for YOU.
Tony Robbins says something powerful in the quote above. He uses the example of the well know actor and comedian Robin Williams when he talks about this concept. Tony knew and loved Robbin, who accomplished pretty much every single goal he set out to accomplish, yet ended up taking his own life. A true example of achieving goals, yet not goals that were related to feeling fulfilled or his own definition of success.
I list my own definition of success as the amount of joy I feel. How much joy I tap into. That’s how I know if I’m being successful. The great thing about this definition for me is that I am totally in control of it. It’s not up to anyone else, conditions, circumstances – I have free will to tap into it the best I can from wherever I’m at emotionally. I can always reach for the best feeling thought and feeling available to me that will take me closer to the feeling of joy. I also like this definition for me because it’s not about getting something – it’s about ALLOWING it, tapping into it. If I simply let go of my resistance, joy floats right up to the top and is available. When I feel it, I automatically share it and contribute it to the world.
This leads me to the title of this edition of the blog. We can't get where we WANT to be by focusing on the fact that it's missing. We can't get to success by focusing on or thinking we are failures. So here is a concept that at first is going to sound kind of counter-intuitive… You don’t get what you want by going after it. You get what you want by BEING it.
Think about a time that you really went after something that you felt you wanted. Once you had it or achieved it, did you feel fulfilled? Did the feeling of fulfillment last for years? Months? Days? Minutes??? If you didn’t feel SUSTAINED fulfillment once you acquired what you wanted, it’s likely that your goals and your definition of success are not on the same page. Look at your definition of success and then take a look at your goals. If the goals have nothing to do with what you determine success looks like for you - you are going to end up without fulfillment. #fail.
You’ve probably heard this idea right here in these blogs before – but if you want to attract a mate, a friendship, a situation, a thing, you have to BE a match to it. You have to BE what it is you WANT. If your goal is to have harmony in your relationship, you must BE harmonious with yourself. If you want to be cherished by your mate, you must cherish YOURSELF. We are getting what we ARE over and over and over again.
How can you tell where you are in your attainment of success according to your own definition? What is happening in your life? How are you feeling? These are indicators of what you are attracting. Feeling angry? You’ll get more reasons to feel angry or you'll feel attacked by others. Do you complain about people not returning your calls? Guess what… you’re going to get more people not returning your calls or the feeling of being ignored. We get what we focus on and what we are whether we want it or not. So if you have a vision of what you desire in your life – start BEING it. If your answer earlier was “I want to be happy”, you know exactly what you must do to have success in having what you want, you must BE happy – right now.
The quote above came from my counselor Joy last week. Things happen, we get in foul moods, we feel like we aren’t making progress, someone hurts our feelings. These things happen, there’s no denying it. Feeling the feelings that come through when these times appear on our path is crucial. Notice and don’t judge yourself for those feelings. Don’t abandon yourself and say you “should” feel differently. Just notice and offer compassion to those feelings as they come up. Stay loving to yourself and to others while you allow the feelings to pass through.
If we use the dressing room melt down example from last week’s Sandy Chat, I can feel the feelings of disappointment, frustration, discouragement and STILL stand in my own light. I can love myself and have compassion for myself and then re-aim myself toward my definition of success. This stuff takes practice and an awareness of what is it we actually WANT. Compassion for yourself when you aren’t seeing yourself as successful is calling up the feelings of kindness, caring, tenderness and gentleness. Most of us have had the experience of compassion towards others, but not towards ourselves.
Take some time and ask yourself the question of what is your definition of success. This will help avoid the tragedy Tony Robbins refers to in reaching our goals and not feeling fulfillment. Then notice how often you are making success happen throughout the day by BEING what it is you believe success is. If your definition is about being loving – notice how often you are BEING loving throughout the day and realize you are being successful. If your definition is about finances – notice how often you are BEING abundant in your mindset throughout the day and realize, you are hitting it out of the park!
Just one more tip I learned from Tony, we humans typically feel the most fulfilled when our vision of success involves growth and/or contribution. When our definition is more about significance, or variety, or safety or getting something we tend to not feel fulfillment with those definitions. Expansion and giving are the routes that fulfill our spirit. So if success to you means love, make it about GIVING love rather than getting it and you’ll feel fulfilled rather than at the will of others treatment of you.
Speaking of giving… the quote below kind of says it all for me. We tend to think that when we are feeling successful, happy, fulfilled that is not contributing to others. But just as our grouchy, angry, defensive energy is a focus on lack, has an impact on everyone we encounter - our joyful, happy, fulfilled energy can light the way for others, inspire and uplift them. Our own fulfillment is one of the greatest gifts we can contribute to others. I encourage you to think about what your definition of success is and then catch yourself BEING it!
Trying on pants in a store’s dressing room. A close second for most avoided shopping experience for me with swimsuit shopping the clear winner for first place. For someone with long time body image issues, going into a brightly lit dressing room to try on these two items is a kin to a recovering alcoholic going into a bar. I mean – you can recover anywhere, so why put yourself through that??!?
Last weekend a shopping stop to try on some pants brought up some body image shame when none of the pairs that I had selected to bring into the dressing room that I believed to be my size – yeah, not my size apparently. Menopause has not really been my friend on this particular item.
I get it, most would look at me and think “Hey, what’s her deal? She looks good!” What I’ve realized is that this subject is just a really easy go-to for me when I am searching for evidence that I am TOO MUCH or not enough. For decades, heck for nearly a lifetime, I have been fixated on the number on the scale. If it’s what I think it should be – I can accept myself. If it’s too high, well then, the self-talk gets very nasty in my head.
In trying to remember a time when I felt good about my body image, I would have to say it’s easily before age five. Just realizing that kind of sounds heart breaking to me. That a person (me) would spend a life time berating themselves about anything, let alone a number on a metal box. Yes, I have been at “THE number” at times in my life and as you might guess, I still didn’t accept myself. Some other area of my life would flare up and convince me that I was “wrong” in some way.
I was in a dance club last weekend and it was happening! A lot of people, on the dance floor, all having fun, smiling. There was one woman in particular that I found a lesson in on this body image subject. She. Was. Beautiful. The reason I think I saw her beauty is due to her radiating something that telegraphed that she felt good in her skin. She was African-American, not a twig in size, wearing a very form fitting outfit, and she was bald. This description may not sound like beauty when you read it, but believe me, to see her – she was amazingly gorgeous. She OWNED it. Women like this truly inspire me.
Here is what I gave her that I seem to never give myself on this issue: APPRECIATION. We tend to think “as soon as I loose these 10 lbs., then I’ll feel good about my body.” If we are always waiting for some magical moment to finally arrive so we can love and appreciate ourselves (or others), that’s conditional love. Something we wouldn’t tolerate from a partner or a friend. It’s much like saying “I want it, BUT.” I want it, BUT.”
Maybe you do this with waiting for an event to happen. As soon as you make the money, buy the house, go on the trip, get out of the relationship, get in the relationship, happiness, self-love and appreciation are always on the horizon and the horizon keeps moving each time we get closer to it.
So the day after the dressing room melt down, I had bought myself a gift for passing the Martha Beck life coach certification. It is three Blue Morpho butterflies, framed in a case that was built custom for them. So I had selected the butterflies and the size of the hanging. I hung it on the wall in the space I had planned to hang it. As I sat there looking at it from my breakfast at the kitchen island, I started to second guess it out loud to Don. “Maybe I should have done five instead of three?” “Maybe it’s too small for the space?” “Maybe I will need to get something else to go with it to fill the space more?” He looked me in the eye and calmly said “Or you could just enjoy it.” Melt down #2 for the weekend happened right about then. Once again I was second guessing myself. Not enjoying the beautiful little guys who probably gave their lives to hang on my wall! Not APPRECIATING right now.
Now, let me quickly add that I am coming to understand that what appears to be the “problem” is often not really the problem but an opportunity. And very importantly – we can’t solve the “problem” by trying to just silence it, pretend it’s not there, pretend we don’t feel what we feel. The solution lives in the releasing of resistance. In this case, self-compassion, appreciation and love would be the paths of least resistance as Esther Hicks would say.
So if I try to just mentally change my self-talk to “You shouldn’t feel that way Sandy.” I am just creating more resistance and making my feelings “wrong” which keep my unwanted pattern very much alive. Have you ever said to a friend “You shouldn’t feel that way – stop it!” Did it cause them to make a change to stop the behavior or the thoughts? My guess is no. It actually just creates another thing to kick our own butts about. Now we shouldn’t feel what we feel!
I’m going to try a new tactic on my self-butt-kicking talk. When it starts in telling me I’m too much, or not enough in some way I’m going to talk to myself the way I think my Source or God would talk to me… “It’s alright, it’s all right on track, it’s all unfolding perfectly, there there – you’re doing great, things always work out, I’ve got you, I’m right here with you, relax, it’s going to be great up ahead, you’re exactly where you are meant to be at this moment.”
If you want to go even deeper with this finding the opportunity in what appears to be the problem, here is what you would do with the dressing room melt down thoughts… Describe what the extra weight feels like. What are the adjectives you would use to describe how it feels to weigh more than you would like?
Heavy, frustrating, uncomfortable, limiting – those would be my words for how it feels. Now, where else do I feel those feelings in my life? THAT’S where I need to look. What seems to be the problem, is really just an opportunity to learn something important about myself.
Then, what would the feelings be when you lost the weight? Describe that in your own words. For me it feels like: free, light, solid, easy, fun. So how can I practice feeling that way NOW? How can I act as if and rehearse those feelings even before it arrives? How can I launch my resistance to what I don’t want in a direction of what I DO want?
We are all powerful creators. We create with our thoughts and our words. Even if you don’t believe that practicing how you want to feel will bring it about – it’s a whole lot more fun and feels a lot better than focusing on how we are “wrong” in some way for just being who we are.
We’ve all heard it a gazillion times… “You can’t worry about what other people think”. Yup, we know that, it’s clear to us, got it, and yet… we keep right on trying to manage how other people experience us. Call it people pleasing, call it insecurity, call it whatever you like, and it’s still an attempt to direct what other people think about us.
My theory on this deal is that we just don’t feel all that spectacular about ourselves, so we seek approval, being liked, some sort of evidence that we are okay. Even if you claim to be one of those people who “don’t give a care what anyone thinks of me”… we all know it’s almost impossible to actually live that unless you aren’t really striving to become more in some way in your life. It’s easy to say we don’t care what others think of us – when we stay under the radar and play small.
Not everyone is going to understand you, your motives, and your back-story. And they don’t need to. They are also just as busy as you are, trying to figure out their OWN stuff. It’s much like what you quickly learn in a group exercise class – many first time participants are very self-conscious and worried what others think of them and their abilities. The fact is, everyone else in the class is focused on their OWN experience – not you. They are all way too busy managing their own workout to notice what's going on with yours. It’s the Cat in the Hat quote… “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
I’m a firm believer that if you are coming from a place of love, if love is your intention, then there’s no need to try and explain who you are to others. If we get clear about loving ourselves, trusting ourselves, and giving ourselves compassion – that will ooze out of you and all over those you interact with. You will feel less of an urge to explain yourself because you are okay with who you are and oh by the way! you will automatically love and accept others more readily when you love and accept yourself. Bonus!
Yes, I get it that we have some programming left over from caveman times that says if you displease the tribe you will be shunned, sent out to fend for yourself and you'll starve or be eaten by wolves or something. But in the words of Jen Sincero, there's another version of that story that is equally plausible; get booted from the tribe and start, or find, another tribe that's more your style. You might just end up surrounded by people who love you, want you to be whole and will be supportive of you. How others react to you depends on a ton of things, especially their own growth pattern, their consciousness, their own happiness, their self-esteem, their own demons. All of which you have absolutely no control over.
We tend to get caught up in this self-inflicted trap of not wanting to make other people more uncomfortable than they just made us. We want them to approve of us. What is really going on is we use the excuse of other people to avoid standing up for ourselves. It's about respecting yourself, instead of catering to your insecure need to be liked.
Trying to manage what other people think of us is exhausting because it’s impossible. Ya see there is just no way for you to know the nature of someone else’s thinking. They may not be in a place that they can possibly understand what is up with you. Does that mean you should dim yourself to gain their acceptance? How does that serve the planet? Let me just go ahead and tell you the answer to that - It doesn’t. It actually doesn't serve anyone or anything. Period.
Who you are or what you do just might be what someone else needs to take themselves to a new understanding of themselves. If you dim yourself or try to control their experience of you - that robs them of what they need to possible grow. Let's try an example... my friend wants to see a movie that I know I will not enjoy and wants me to go with them. I don't want her to be mad at me or dislike me or think I'm no fun, so I agree to go to the movie. I'm trying to manage what my friend thinks about me.
But what if the thing my friend most needs to experience in her life, is how to handle rejection or being told "no"? I just robbed her of that opportunity by trying control what she thinks of me and people pleasing. I actually got in the way of the growth of both of us by not loving myself enough to say no!
In the words of Byron Katie…”It’s not your job to like me… that’s mine.” If you focus your energies on THAT job – of liking yourself, loving yourself, being kind and compassionate to yourself, you will find that you are less concerned about controlling how other people experience you because it’s a full time job to manage how you feel about YOURSELF.
Ultimately, there ARE people whose opinion of us DOES count. Those are the people who are in it with you. The people who love you, want the best for you no matter what it may mean for them. As Brene’ Brown (click on her name for an awesome video) states so perfectly in building on the quote from Theodore Roosevelt… she says that if you aren’t in the arena also – along with her, getting your ass kicked from time to time, she’s not interested in your feedback. She won’t try to manage how you experience her if you aren’t also someone who is in the arena, putting yourself out there in growing and owning your story.
If you are going to go into the arena, show up and be seen in your life, you are going to get your ass kicked by critics. It's the only thing that is guaranteed about doing this. Most people won't expend the energy to think, take responsibility for their growth. Instead most of us will judge others, because it's easier than working on ourselves.
Even with the core group of people in your life that you love, ultimately you must trust yourself and love yourself enough to do what’s TRUE for you, no matter what their experience is of that choice.
So what do you do when someone chooses to react to you in a way that is uncomfortable? What if they are angry? Judgmental? Blaming? Grumpy? Manipulative? Needy? Or any reaction that causes you to feel guilt or shame. The best response is to lovingly disengage. Dr. Margret Paul suggests that we walk away saying that we won’t engage with the person until they are open and caring. If saying this further inflames the other person, we need to walk away without saying anything, and perhaps send a prayer that they open to learning.
Believe me, this sounds sooooo easy and it’s a big step if you are used to thinking you are responsible for how other people feel and experience you. Practice-practice-practice and be patient with yourself. When you slip into the old patterns, just OBSERVE what happened without judging yourself, be willing to keep going and loving yourself through changing your habit.
Truly... we can stop trying to figure out what is best for everyone else, because they are just as capable as we are to create their own experience. You can't control it for anyone else - only yourself. Remember that none of us feel 100% sure about ourselves all the time. Reaching for SELF-acceptance is the key to letting go of our attempts to manage what other people think of us. Unconditional love for who we are – knowing that we’re flawed & (still) worthy, let's other people off the hook for our happiness. What a great gift to give yourself and others!
This topic always kind of makes me laugh a bit. The reason I find it funny is because when you boil it down, what other possible perspective can any of us have other than from the self? We have all lived what we’ve lived, experienced different things in our time on earth and that colors how we view pretty much everything.
You can really only see the world from your own perspective. This is often criticized as being “selfish” and that word has some harsh connotations connected to it.
Of course, we all WANT to be kind, loving, and compassionate to others – this is considered to be Unselfish. The hitch in this plan is that if we are not kind, loving and compassionate towards ourselves, there is almost no chance that you can emit that to others in a meaningful way.
I recently heard Esther Hicks state this idea of selfishness in a way that you may want to consider… “Usually what people mean when they tell you that you are being "selfish" is that they don’t like what you are doing or saying because it’s not what THEY want you to do. They would prefer that you make THEM the focus of your attention, actions and decisions. In essence, they want you to stop being self-focused and focus on THEM instead. Nothing selfish about that mindset now is there. Hmmmm...
If you find yourself being actively upset about someone being what you deem “selfish”, I suggest that you stop in your tracks and get honest. Anything that causes judgement in us is a beautiful clue because it means on some level, the behavior or action has meaning to you. The things that upset us about others – remind us of something in ourselves that we don’t like very much, or it triggers a fear or insecurity we have but may not realize.
I love this example from Jen Sincero’s book, You Are A Badass… "Would you be offended if someone kept making fun of how short you were if you were six feet tall? It most likely wouldn’t even register, or if it did, you’d just think they were strange. But if they teased you about being selfish and deep down you feared you were, it would definitely get your attention." The traits we try to deny in ourselves or fear we possess are the traits we will judge harshly in others.
Here’s a news flash for ya… we all have ALL the traits and parts of our personalities that everyone else on the planet has. It’s not that only other people are selfish and you’re not. You have that same stuff in you too and if you own it, accept it, and forgive yourself for it – you will probably stop noticing it in other people. What we notice in others is what is typically unhealed in ourselves on some level when it's negative. The good news is that what we notice in others that we appreciate - is also in us, just not yet fully developed.
I love you no matter what that means for me.
Selfishness is based in fear. My feeling is that there are really only two emotions: love and fear. If someone comes at you with love – our obvious response is love. If someone comes at you with fear – the only true response is love. Love is always the answer. Fear shows up in blame, insecurity, judgement, anger, and selfishness to name a few. You can't win over fear with fear... love is the only thing that can squash fear.
When we love someone, we want the absolute best for them. We want them to feel whole, live their truth, be happy, all the goodies! If we are TRULY loving and UNselfish, I believe that we want these things for them no matter what that means for us. It may mean they want to go off and join the circus and not be with us. It may mean they want to change religions, or careers, or patterns we’re used to. To be selfish would be to want them to remain the same for US. To make US comfortable by not making changes. You see, often what we deem selfish in another, is really just our own selfishness. We don’t want someone to be other than what we need them to be for US.
Don’t misconstrue what I’m saying here to mean you should become an enabler. That’s a whole different animal. Boundaries are still part of compassion and love. I’m simply saying that wanting those whom you love to be happy and fulfilled no matter what it means for you is the ultimate expression of love when it comes from a place of our OWN self-acceptance. If we enable out of fear there will usually be a sense that we are owed something for our sacrifice. To want another person’s happiness out of love and our own self-acceptance carries no after-taste of being a martyr.
There are certainly those who believe loving ourselves is selfish. For me, if we can't love ourselves and we spend every minute of every day with ourselves - I'm not sure how the hell we could ever truly love someone else. Loving ourselves just means that we let other people off the hook for our happiness. What an awesome gift to give! We make ourselves responsible for our own happiness - not based on conditions or the decisions, behaviors, words of others. When we don't love ourselves, we expect others to MAKE us happy. This, for me, is the ultimate selfish act. To ask another to make YOUR happiness their priority when you won't do it for yourself.. just sayin'... pretty unfair.
So my challenge to you is to see if you can take the above quote from Dr. Wayne Dyer literally… Can you truly want the happiness of those you love no matter what it means to you? Even this is slightly selfish!!! Because when you want the best for those you love it also tends to bring us great joy to do this! So call me selfish. This is what love really is, to want others to be whole and happy - no matter what it means for ourselves.
In Greek mythology, the bird known as the Phoenix obtains new life by arising from the ashes of a fire it puts itself in. The Egyptians version of the story said that knowing that a new way could only be found with the death of it's worn-out habits, defenses and beliefs, the Phoenix built a pyre of cinnamon and myrrh, sat in the flames and burned to death. Then it rose from the ashes as a new being—a kind of combination of who it had been before and who it had become through burning away the parts that no longer served it. A new bird, even more itself; yet at the same time, changed.
Two years ago today my life changed in a big way. Something in my life that was very private became very public in the matter of minutes. It was like a fire that went completely out of my control and pretty much destroyed a lot of things. A lot of that devastation I never ever saw coming. The other thing I never saw coming is how a hugely painful event like that, can be an amazing gift, if you let it transform you.
I did a ridiculous amount of extraordinarily hard things right after that emotional fire bomb went off. Faced those I cared deeply about, apologized to those I had agreements with, asked for help from my trusted inner circle & mentors, gave those I interact with daily the opportunity to ask me anything – and I do mean anything – they needed to, in order to process the events that took place. Then I left the country for a while… literally. And most of all, through all these “flames”, I worked like never before to find myself. The woman I had lost a long time ago.
So I don’t know about you, but I don’t like to give homage to the dates that people die or dates of when tough things happened. I like to celebrate births, beginnings, that kind of stuff. While this date seems like it falls into the later category, what I am realizing is that it is actually when my whole life changed, and sparked some major personal growth for me.
There are some key things that are very different for me now in my relationships. I’m not claiming to have these items all knocked by any means, but I was barely even aware that I was doing them before this happened and now I have transformed these behaviors in big way. It’s also interesting that these aren’t about adding something, they’re about remembering things you already knew and burning away the stuff that no longer works for you…
1. Chasing. I used to chase Don’s mood day in and day out. I had deemed myself responsible any time he exhibited a "bad mood" and it was my job to find out what was causing it, fix it, ask him ten zillion times “Are you okay?”, “Are we okay?”, was he upset with me?, bla, bla, bla. I had done this in pretty much every intimate relationship in my life – just typing this description makes me say ICK! People pleasing, approval seeking, rescuing, insecurity and codependency – all in high gear at all times prior to the fire bomb going off in my life. That has changed RADICALLY. It took a lot of personal work, awareness, counseling, and working on loving myself to quiet this monster – and I’ve done it. Doesn't mean it never gets triggered, but I've learned a ton about myself in just working on this one part of my pattern.
2. Boundaries. I had plenty of them everywhere BUT in my intimate relationships. Codependent relationships typically lack boundaries. This was a huge thing for me to understand – that having boundaries makes us MORE compassionate.
3. Codependency. I have dialed myself down from about a 10 on the codependency scale, to somewhere around a 3, with occasional spikes to 6ish. I have to stay diligent on this one. Re-framing my victim thoughts to being a CREATOR of my own life and a COACH instead of a rescuer of others continues to have a huge impact for me, when I do it.
4. Compassion. When we go through hard things, we have a choice: become a victim or learn compassion for ourselves. If we don’t learn compassion, I feel the fire of the difficulty consumes us. Compassion for yourself can lead to acceptance of yourself and acceptance of others.
5. Unconditional. This one is the toughest and I’m working on it still. To decide how I want to feel and care enough about wanting to feel good - that the conditions don’t matter. To be unconditional is to feel good/love/be connected to your Source – no matter what the conditions are. No matter how anyone else chooses to behave or what is going on, to decide how I want to feel and be committed to that is to be true to yourself and it’s empowerment. Loop this one back to gift #1 above and it becomes a super power when you remember to invoke it.
6. Ask for help. You find out who your inner circle is when something like this takes place. It’s a major gift to know who those people are. Also, getting a counselor who is on your frequency and can open the window for you to see some light along the way... crucial. Leaning on those in my tribe was pretty new for me. I still have to work on this, as I often am reluctant to do it. Find those who help you remember who you are. That’s your tribe. I am deeply honored by how much my tribe has loved me and shown me compassion. What's really cool... I have seen them all grow right along with me these past two years.
7. Trusting myself. This is probably the gift I am most working to open at this point in my path. I’m not very patient in general and especially not with myself when I think I SHOULD be further along than I am, Or when I slip on any of the above items I start forcing things and judging myself. Trusting, allowing, and letting things unfold and knowing that I can trust myself is crucial, because the only person who is gonna ride outta this life with me, is me.
My whole gig is that I hope that by putting myself out there, sharing what I learn from both my experiences and the training I do to expand my knowledge, that it might help someone else feel hope, like they’re not the Lone Ranger in how they feel or what they’re going through or have been through. Let’s face it, it takes someone who has actually been there to really light the way on what might be ahead when the way gets dark and scary. Sharing our story in an empowering way not only helps ourselves, but also others.
Martha Beck coach training has taught me about the concept of "story fondling". This is where we hang on to our story, keep playing it over and over again and use it to explain our emotional bruises. There is a big difference between understanding the past and being stuck in it. I admit, I think I have been fondling my story a bit, and this "anniversary" I am committing to myself and to you to remember a quote from A Course In Miracles from this day forward... "Your past, except for it's beauty is gone. All that remains is a blessing." I am focusing on my life's work, moving forward, growing, being present and loving through the beautiful blessings my story has given to me SO FAR! I honor that beauty and refuse to disown it. Just understand it and thank it versus discounting it, feeling shame about it or blaming anyone - including myself.
When the hard things happen in your life, remember it’s an opportunity. It’s a chance to remember who you are and burn away the stuff that no longer serves you. Keep your eye out for the gifts of the conditions. It may take time to find them – but they are there. Try what I did here in this blog, make a list of what you’ve learned and show yourself that you are MORE because of the tough things, not less. You renew yourself after the pain of the flames and become even more beautiful. That’s the way of the phoenix.
Sandy Edie Hansen
I use this space to "Chat" about things I am working through and learning in my life currently. Join me!