Being an active participant in one’s own life can be difficult and often not as straightforward as it might at first appear. As I’ve grown older, and perhaps a bit wiser in the way that exposure to events and philosophical debate can cause one to be, I’ve come to realise there are myriad convolutions to this thing we call life. I’ll be writing a series of articles exposing some of the issues I’ve discovered, using various bits of my own life experiences to illustrate how the way of these things have affected or influenced me, or at least the ways I’ve so far uncovered. The basic fact is this: You cannot be true to yourself if you’re still living by someone else’s rules.
It’s usually the tiny things that first bring this idea to the surface of our understanding. Then we push the troublesome thought aside because we’re too busy to handle it just then, or because to pull it out into the light of day and shake it off to have a good look at it would cause more ripples in our personal pond than we care to deal with at the time. In short, we’ve been trained to push aside our own deductions, our own perceptions, our very own thoughts; and to take on the thoughts, ideas, perceptions, conclusions and proposals of others. But for a lot of us, the niggles still remain.
It’s not until we undergo an experience that shakes our world strongly enough to rattle those niggles loose that we will take the time to assess who we really are, what we are really doing in this place and where we really want to be. Notwithstanding how sad the situation might be, or how negatively it might seem to have affected us; often such a tragic occurrence is the very thing our soul-self needed to get itself, and us, back on track to where we were wanting to travel in life.
When one takes the time to truly look at what might be behind that angry reaction, or that adamant ‘No!’, or that desperate ‘trapped again’ feeling when certain visitors must be entertained, that you can determine what your true feelings are. From there, you can either accept the same old crap you’ve been living in or you can make some choices about your own sense of worth and deserved-ness. It’s all very well to give lip service to those throw away words like, “I deserve good things”, but, it means nothing if you don’t back it up with actions.
Dig through those niggling aggravations, decide on a plan of action for at least one of them, then take some action toward the changes you want to make. It might be as simple as being mindful of a particular word or phrase you use that doesn’t have the accurate meaning for you anymore and making a conscious effort to change that.
For me, one of those niggles has been the throw-away phrases associated with spirituality, religion and self development. In the long ago, the child I was believed some of those words, they shaped her life. Then as an adult, they were questioned, found wanting, yet still accepted and, in many cases, still followed because there was nothing better to replace them. When wisdom finally came to that now grown child, she discarded the worthless adages and created some of her own.
The reason the usual facile style of affirmations don’t work for me is because I know the words are false, lies, not relevant to my truths, they are someone else’s suggestions to cause me to second guess myself and my own knowledge of my self and how to live my own life. I’ve decided that recluses have it a bit easier in some ways, they don’t have the outside constantly battering at them, taunting them with old patterns of behaviour, old words that are no longer relevant or accurate.
Being true to yourself first demands you question yourself, your motives, your likes and dislikes. It means you monitor your thoughts, the words you use, and your deeds – the actions you choose to make or not take. It’s an effort, yes, it surely is! But I’d rather have put in that effort and worked out the intricacies I already have, than to still be sitting in that same vapid space wondering what the fuck I’m doing answering to all of these people who have little to no real love for me as a person.