Thank you for this day!
Here we are again. Each morning, and each day, can seem so much the same as the last. Especially when we don’t look too closely. When we tell ourselves that each day is like the last, each week like the last, each year… Well, we may not pay attention or notice as much. We may choose to overlook and ignore any differences that do exist. We switch on the auto-pilot and sleepwalk through our life.
Disengaging and not actively participating in our lives is another form of numbing. Like self-medicating or over-scheduling and over-committing, going on auto-pilot creates a distance between us and our life. It separates us from the thoughts and feelings that can hurt us.
“What’s wrong with that?” you may wonder. “Who wants to hurt?”
Well, I’ve worked with people who spend a lot of time concerned with feeling pain and hurt. They tell lots of stories around past hurt, and they fear encountering any more; so they strategize and construct their world in an attempt to avoid even the risk of getting hurt again. These are the same people who describe themselves as numb, who tell me they don’t have any joy in their lives.
Because, we don’t get to pick and choose which feelings we feel. We either open ourselves up to feeling – anything and everything; or we shut ourselves down and feel nothing at all.
Often, these people will defend their choice. They argue that they are willing to forego feeling any joy or contentment in their lives; they are that certain they could not endure any more hurt.
Have you ever felt that way, Dear Reader?
I know I have. I believed that I needed to achieve perfection; anything else was failure. And, failure made me unworthy and unlovable. This was a downward spiral of pain – believing myself unworthy and unloved made me hurt; and the more I hurt, the more unworthy and unlovable I felt.
Yet, when this is the story we’ve been told, it’s the one we believe. And, we don’t imagine any other story; a better story. So, we try to hide our hurt and try to act like we are fine – by going numb. Sadly, this disconnect just adds to our hurt, our belief that we are unloved and unworthy.
What we need to do, and what we can do, anytime we are hurting, but especially when we are feeling this down and low and disconnected…is to change the station, change the channel. Dare to change the Story.
What we are desperate for, always, is connection – to matter, to be seen and heard, and to love and be loved. What we need to do to break the spiral of hurt is to risk connection. To dare to hope.
I’ve been in that place where I felt the only way I could survive the world, and my hurting, one more day, was to armor myself up, keep everyone away, and teach myself not to care how others felt about me.
Every one of those days was a battle. A battle I never truly won.
Only when I accepted that I need connection, and that I want to matter, and to love and be loved, did the spiral pause. Only when I changed the station, tuning to kindness and compassion rather than judgment and shame, did my world brighten, and my heart lighten.
Only by risking to feel did I learn that I am strong enough to survive the hurt and that even the hurt shows me something about the world, and myself. Only by daring to feel did my life fill with Joy and Abundance.
My Life is still often messy, chaotic, and imperfect. And, I still struggle with allowing that messiness to be seen.
Because, the truth is, I do get judged for my messiness and imperfections. And, it does hurt.
And, here’s a bigger, deeper, uglier secret. As much as it can hurt me to be judged, I still find myself judging others’ messiness and their imperfections.
It hurts my heart to recognize that fact. But, it’s true. I recognize that it emanates from that part of me that is still small and scared. So, I see it, I learn from it, and I continue to practice changing the station I’m tuned to.
For me, it keeps coming back to the same things.
First – Be loving and kind to others without doing yourself harm. At the same time, be loving and compassionate with yourself without doing harm to anyone else.
Second – My heartache is the reminder that I desire connection, to love and be loved. That heartache does, in fact, come from a place of love deep within my heart. It is the message of the unconditional love I already have, reminding me to tend and nurture loving connection in my Life.
Because, Third and Fourth – with that loving-kindness and connection, we are all angels to each other. As we walk each other home.
Tired of being tired, of hurting, of wondering how things could be better? Dare to change the station. Dare to make a change in your life. In you.
It’s the bad news and the good news. It’s time to stop waiting for the world to change for you, and time to choose to start with one small change in yourself.
TMHI. Try doing this exercise daily for a week. The phrase is: Today my Happiness is _______. Put this phrase on a post-it note, somewhere you’ll see it every morning (I’ve put mine on my bathroom mirror). Each morning, choose a focus, a source, for your day’s Happiness. Honor your intention, holding it in your consciousness as you start your day.
Thank you, My Spirit Guides, for waking me up to My Life!