Why that’s a good thing.
It’s Easier to Witness this in Others First
Have you ever met a person who struck you as odd? There is something about them that you can’t put your finger on. They misinterpret your intentions and you generally feel on edge around them. It feels like you’re constantly walking on eggshells because you don’t know what will set them off next.
Looking from the outside their actions and behaviors seem very strange and you can’t understand why they are the way they are. You try to understand them with your own logic which more times than not ends up with you jumping to the wrong conclusion and making the situation worse.
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You only fail when you give up. Every hero must fall, we live for the moments that the underdog emerges; rising to the…
Everything can be taken from a man but one thing; the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way. — Viktor E. Frankl
Not so long ago I felt at the mercy of politics, the media, and the economy. All I saw in the news and papers was media that was created with the intention of highjacking my emotions. Fear, unfortunately, sells well and media companies are aware of this.
I used to think that was life, I had to deal with it. That was before I started paying more attention to where my focus was coming from rather than the objects I happened to be focusing on.
Where focus comes from is much more powerful than the object of focus. I had innocently overlooked this little fact of life. Although it was a simple realization, it allowed me to focus on a new direction of my own making.
I gradually swapped out random television for books and I swapped out acquaintances and the habit of people-pleasing for a smaller circle of people who were OK with me being me.
I used to think everyone lived in the same world as me so I assumed that what they were doing was intentional. I assumed that the choices I can see in my world are what they can see in their world and so they were making life awkward for me intentionally.
“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart.” — Helen Keller
As a human being, I didn’t know the impact my life experiences, beliefs and values had on what I was seeing in the world day to day. I didn’t know that I was perceiving my own unique version of reality, I assumed I was experiencing the same objective reality that everyone else was living in.
Most people tiptoe their way through life, hoping they make it safely to death. — Earl Nightingale
I wasn’t aware of the power of my mind until the day I consciously chose to take personal responsibility for my life. Up until this point, I lived largely in an unconscious manner.
I didn’t understand my mind and I wasn’t aware of separate realities so I was often living in reactive mode. I had an overall feeling that life was doing things to me to wind me up and piss me off.
Once I made the decision to take personal responsibility I noticed that what I paid attention to began to gradually shift. Instead of reacting and focusing on what I couldn’t control e.g. the other person’s behavior, I began to focus more on my part.
As I started to do this I gained more clarity around my part in the situations I found myself in. It may sound funny but I began to gradually realize that I am an adult. Up until this realization, I was largely living with the mindset of a child. A mindset where I felt pretty much powerless to the outside world and limited in choice and opportunities.
Although it’s often difficult to see through some of my most ingrained limiting beliefs and habits, it’s also freeing to know I am finally looking in the right direction. I used to constantly look outwards and try and bend the universe to my will as I perceived life through an egocentric lens and a victim mindset.
Living in this way life felt unfair and almost like a punishment. I always felt like I was being judged and I would never be good enough. Life felt like it was about going through the motions and not questioning whether there was any purpose to me being here on earth.
When I looked around me the people who talked about having a purpose or a mission were generally laughed at by cynics who had given up hope long ago. But it’s wasn’t the cynics that were keeping me stuck, it was what I had internalized in my own mind.
Your Life isn’t always as it Seems
if someone annoys me:
they are annoying
blankif I want to feel accepted:
everyone needs to accept me
This was some of my default mental programming growing up. Living with mental scripts like these felt extremely limiting. These scripts felt like a barbed-wire wrapped around me.
Life felt static and my personality felt permanent. There were no options in the else statements in my mental programming so I often inhabited the role of a people pleaser and overall victim.
However, from realizing that the issue more times than not was coming from the limiting scripts playing out inside my mind and not from life itself I began to see the power of choice. At first, it was difficult to become open to seeing where the horsesh*t was coming from but now that I have seen it for myself I wouldn’t have it any other way.
What limiting mental scripts have you woken up to in your life?