“Theres gonna be points where people are gonna mistake my confidence for arrogance because they don’t understand the process I went through and how much I had to believe in myself in order to make these things happen. I feel like you can will yourself into a good space. Things that are meant to happen, will. As you believe in yourself enough, you can help yourself learn. You can inspire yourself in different ways… where you can actually discipline yourself to the point that you can become good enough.”
– Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson
There’s this reoccurring lesson that keeps presenting itself to me in various forms of my day to day interactions with others. And for a while I didn’t recognize just what it was truly about. In fact, in many of those instances, I thought that somehow life was playing a cruel trick on me. Yes, even I played the victim role. But it hasn’t been until recently that I had to take several steps back and connect the dots in every single one of those scenarios. From interactions with family, boyfriends, co-workers, potential business partners, employers, on down the list… I had been experiencing what felt like a tug-o-war over how I wanted them to see me vs. how I felt I was being treated. And let me tell you, as foolish as this feels for me to admit, I understand that its all a part of growing up. We all have experienced or will experience such a feeling of being under appreciated, or undervalued, especially when we truly know who we are inside.
The trick to something like this is that it’s never really about the people that you are interacting with. In fact, they aren’t even half of the equation of this battle that you’re facing. From what I had to learn, and I’m still absorbing nuggets of wisdom from, is that:
We teach others how to treat us, by the way we treat ourselves
We show people how to interact with us, by the way we interact with ourselves
We inform the world of how much we are worth, by the way we value ourselves
The world looks at us the very same way that we look at ourselves
When we see and feel ugliness and pain within, the world will reflect that same ugliness and pain to us through our interactions
When we see beauty, love, and kindness within, the world will reflect that same beauty, love, and kindness through others
When we show forgiveness for ourselves for our own shortcomings and flaws, it is easier to forgive others, and it unknowingly makes it easier for them to forgive us
When we stand up for ourselves and become our own biggest champion, others will rise to meet us, defend us, and cheer us on
When we feel amazing, unstoppable, and fearless on the inside, life will give us more evidence of just how amazing, unstoppable and unconquerable we really are
When we understand that we and GOD/SOURCE/UNIVERSE are ONE, we understand that we too possess unlimited power and NOTHING or NO ONE outside of us has control over our lives
YOU ARE IN CONTROL of YOU and ONLY YOU!
These nuggets of wisdom come in handy as I continue to sort through what I feel is best for me within my interactions, and in order for me to live my best life. This includes how I wish to be treated by family, friends, significant others, and so on. I’m understanding my role in all of these interactions and how I am hardly ever a victim in any of them. Its all about learning to love myself on the deepest levels, feeling whole and complete at all times (regardless of what I have or have not accomplished), being confident in the woman that I’ve become so far, setting boundaries for what I will and will not tolerate from others (and sticking to it…there’s no point in betraying what you really feel on the inside, otherwise you will attract experiences where others will betray you as well).
Are you starting to get the point here? If more love is what you desire, then figure out where in your life you are not loving yourself enough. Do you often criticize yourself and the way you look? Do you feel like you don’t deserve certain things, even though you really want them? Or do you feel like others won’t do certain things for you, even though you would really like them to? Do you beat up on yourself when you make mistakes or not so great decisions? If so, this is exactly what you are training others to do when they interact with you. To turn it all around, learn to be kind to yourself. Learn to do things for yourself that you would like others to do for you (remember, they are watching your movements and ultimately following your lead). Know that you deserve any and every good thing that you can imagine for your life. And perhaps the people that you are interacting with are not the one’s to give you what you really need. Instead, they are a reflection of who you are choosing to be in those moments. So when you finally wise up and learn to value yourself, perhaps those same people will either step their game up in how they treat you, or disappear altogether and make room for people that will honor this new and improved version of you.
This lesson is something kinda special. I’m not saying that its easy to do either, because one of the hardest things to do in life is to unlearn bad habits. But with effort, gentleness, and time, you can become anything that you want to be!
The new year is already 8 days old and there have been so many lessons that I’m sure we all have walked away from 2012 with. For me, the journey of 2012 lead me to places I never thought I’d be… spiritually, physically, and especially emotionally.
Last year alone I experienced every human emotion possible, oftentimes feeling more lost than found. For a while I couldn’t understand what God and the Universe were doing with me. And at one point I felt resentful for some of the experiences that I had endured. That was until I realized that I had more power than what I had given myself credit for. Yes, I had the power of choice! It’s the one thing that we as humans have complete control over, even if we can control nothing else… We experience life according to the choices we make. We can choose to play victim and have life happen to us, or we can choose to be a co-creator in our own happiness. Yes, we can CHOOSE HAPPY!
Happiness is a choice that we make with every passing moment. We can choose grace, love and gratitude, or we can choose misery and fear. Since I’m writing this post, you can probably guess which choice I made. That’s right, 2012 may have been quite the challenge, but it wasn’t the deciding factor in my journey. If last year’s phase taught me nothing else, I learned that I can determine my own happiness with a simple shift in awareness and the courage to choose different. If things are going well and you feel a sense of contentment, keep doing those things that serve you best. But if you start to feel that your world is being turned upside down and you are becoming a helpless observer to your own misery, then my friend you need to make some different choices.
As for me, I chose to write this blog post after so long because writing is one of the things in life that makes me happy. I’ve also made some major choices about the direction that I want my life to go in. I’ll be sure to keep you updated with my progress through BCSTARKS.com. Until then, choose wisely.
Its currently the wee hours of the morning as I write this post. I guess you could say that sleep has gotten away from me. This is mainly because of a few negative thoughts that I just couldn’t seem to let go of as a result of a seemingly challenge filled day. I won’t dare bore (or entertain) you with the intricate details, but I will share with you the invaluable lessons that I’ve learned.
The lesson touches upon one of my favorite affirmations by my favorite author of all time, Louise Hay, and deals with the subject of forgiveness, and it goes like this:
“I forgive you for not being the way I wanted you to be. I forgive you and I lovingly set you free.” –Louise Hay
Part of the reason that I love this affirmation so much, is because it not only helps with directing one’s thoughts towards thoughts of forgiveness–forgiveness of others, and forgiveness of oneself– but it helps to direct one’s thoughts towards thoughts of compassion and being non-judgemental.
It’s so easy for us as human beings to judge those people who do, or say things in ways that we disapprove of. So much so, that we become angry or upset with them, often applying labels as we recount those experiences. These very labels that we apply to others are just one more reason that we tell ourselves that we cannot forgive that person.
For example, If someone is having a really bad day and they take it out on you, many would naturally feel some level of offense, and possibly label this particular person as being rude, or offensive in that moment, and choose to respond to this person from this feeling space. Now whether the response is positive or negative, ideas have already been formed about who, or what this individual is like.
Pretty reasonable rationale right?..
But how often is it that before passing judgement on the situation, we actually put ourselves in the other person’s shoes. Now I’m not saying that one has to give a pass to others for negative behavior. But I am saying that perhaps having an understanding that “hurt people, hurt people,” and that no one’s negative behavior is ever something to be taken personal, would help us to see life differently, and have more pleasant experiences to be grateful for.
This affirmation expresses this best because when we are offended by someone’s behavior, it is because we are judging them for not being the way we want them to be. This very judgement is what keeps us from having compassion and understanding of the human experience. And a major part of the human experience deals with the ways in which we cope with life, based on the experiences that we have while we are here. If we can’t place ourselves in the shoes of someone else, yes, even if they have somehow wronged us, then forgiveness and peace about the situation becomes difficult to achieve and there will be a constant internal conflict whenever this person is in your presence, or you speak of the situation.
Most importantly, judging others is merely a reflection of the ways in which we judge ourselves. We must learn to take other people’s behavior and choices less personal, and understand that they, just like you and I, are only responding to life based on coping mechanisms that have been built as a result of life experiences. Becoming aware of your own ways of coping, and being gentle with yourself as you look to those coping mechanisms that serve you best is the beginning of learning how to forgive. Once you learn to love yourself through your own transition/journey– just as God and the Universe loves us despite our flaws– forgiveness, compassion, and empathy will soon follow with a lot less effort.
But it starts with YOU.
…Some lesson to receive at this hour of the morning, but its one worth sharing… Now off to sleep I go.