“To be nobody but yourself
in a world which is doing its best,
night and day to make you everybody else –
means to fight the hardest battle
which any human being could fight;
…and keep fighting.”
~e. e. cummings
I do think that the hardest battle we fight in this world is to be ourselves—our true Selves that we were born to be. And while I agree that pressure from the outside world and our desire to fit in and be accepted is one of the great challenges of this battle, I don’t think it’s the greatest one.
One of most eccentric characteristics is that I don’t own a TV. Not only that, this lack of ownership is something that makes me very, very happy. As a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP), I find the sensory overload that comes from TV (or movies) to be literally painful—physically and emotionally. It tends to send me into extreme emotional tailspins even on short exposures.
Likewise, I don’t follow the news on the internet for the most part. I definitely avoid the videocasts of news, but I don’t even regularly check the headlines unless I have otherwise been alerted that there is important news that I need to know in order take effective action. (I emphasize that the ability and need for me to take action in a situation is the real key for me.) I’ve made this change more recently, but it has freed up so much energy for me to focus elsewhere and has radically decreased my level of negativity and pessimism about life in general.
“Live life fully while you’re here. Experience everything. Take care of yourself … and your friends. Have fun, be crazy, be weird. Go out and screw up! You’re going to anyway, so you might as well enjoy the process. Take the opportunity to learn from your mistakes: find the cause of your problem and eliminate it. Don’t try to be perfect; just be an excellent example of being human.” ~ Antony Robbins
It was only a few months ago that my friends were getting bored (and a bit frustrated) with my constant whining and negativity. (To be clear, I don’t blame them at all!)
I’m afraid I’m soon going to start boring them with my constant joyfulness at how good life is. Today, like yesterday, was another day filled with wonderful things, and I am feeling remarkably blessed.
Some of the causes of this joyfulness are purely circumstantial—the fact that it is spring, changes like leaving my last job, the joy I am finding in yoga—but the vast majority of it is coming either directly or indirectly from shifts in my outlook on life. One of the biggest of those is encapsulated in the quote above.
“The moment in between what you once were, and who you are now becoming, is where the dance of life really takes place.” ~Barbara De Angelis
So much of who I once was had died along the way of this journey through the chrysalis. I have vague glimpses now and then of who I am becoming, but that person is still a bit out of my reach, so she remains out of focus.
This process of letting go of who I was and moving toward who I am becoming is an ongoing one.
“Care about people’s approval, and you will be their prisoner.” ~Lao Tzu
Yesterday’s DailyOM posting was about other people’s agendas. It talked about the pressure we get from other people to live our lives in a way to line up with their agendas for our life. Sometimes their agendas are a reflection of their care for us, but sometimes they are a result of some need of their own. Often they are a mixture of both. The challenge is in finding a way to appreciate and consider their point of view while retaining the right to make our own choices for our own lives.
I tend to attract people into my life who have strong agendas for how I should live my life. I suspect that some of this is due to me repeating unresolved issues with my mother until I get this figured out; some of it is also likely a natural outcome of my co-dependent nature. Regardless of the cause, I find myself repeatedly in situations where I care deeply about having someone’s approval in some way which causes me to wind up a prisoner to their agenda for my life.
“Follow your heart and be true to yourself. Never live the life of another. You have to create your own road.” ~James Van Praagh
This is amazingly simple advice, but it’s also one of the hardest things for me to manage to do, especially as a co-dependent. I have a great deal of practice in being true to those around me; I have very little in being true to myself. I cringe in guilt at the very thought of being true to myself when doing so brings disapproval or criticism from those around me.
And then there’s the whole concept of creating my own road!
It’s once again time for Synchronicity Friday where I review the moments of synchronicity that I encountered during the last week. As usual, this week was full of quote and posts showing up just when I needed them to either validate something I’d just written about or add a new depth to something I’ve been working on.
I had the opportunity earlier this week to try changing my usual pattern of reacting to something that would normally trigger a real emotional breakdown. While I don’t think I completely broke my usual pattern, I did manage to take enough baby steps in the right direction to experience a real benefit from the new approach, including avoiding the usual meltdown.
The precipitating event, as is often the case with these kinds of things, was a small thing in the grand scheme of things, but it was something that seemed to question something important about the way I see myself. Continue reading →
“It is important to remember that at first flush, going sane feels just like going crazy.” ~Julia Cameron
When life is turning my point of view upside down, how do I tell the difference between going sane and going crazy? Are the old paradigms that are melting away the ones that kept me sane, or the ones the kept me crazy?
As Julia points out, in this stage of the game, they feel pretty much the same. Either way, the foundational beliefs, motivations, and goals on which I have based my life are being destroyed, and I am still in that gap waiting to see what new things will take their place. It could be a long while yet until I know whether what is to come is saner or crazier than what has gone before.
It’s once again time for Synchronicity Friday where I review the moments of synchronicity that I encountered during the last week. This week’s list is relatively short since I have already mentioned two of my cases of synchronicity for this week in posts during the week. However, I do end this list with a rather humorous instance that brought me quite a chuckle.