Free Write (1/1/2018)

Happy new year.

I was talking with my friend the other day and we came across an interesting thought. He commented that he found it really easy to help other people find the solutions to their problems and fix things, but it was so much harder to do it for himself.

I thought about it and realized that the difference there was when you view another person’s life, you are able to view it calmly and neutrally. But when you view your own life, your perception is skewed by your emotions and beliefs about your identity and you don’t even know it. You just follow the path of least resistance because it feels good.

This is why things like journaling, reflecting and meditating are so important. Your aim when doing these things is to develop an ability to see your emotions. When you meditate and mindfully reflect on passing thoughts, you can start to separate the memory from your reaction to it.

Say you remember the time you said something embarassing. When you reflect on it, you notice you have an immediate reaction of shame. The truth is, however, you don’t have to react with shame. You could also react with amusement, or pride that you tried to socialize. But in order to see those possibilities, you first must realize that the action and reaction are separate.

The other thing I greatly benefited from here is blogging. The first thing blogging gave me was an ability to read my thoughts from a distance. I could see more clearly when I read my words at a later time. The second thing was that the act of publishing made me constantly question whether I believed what I wrote.

And if you ask that question enough, you will find the answer.

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