Make an Effort to Know Who You Are.
My biggest lessons I wish I’d learned sooner: From Overcoming the pressure of Social Conditioning to letting go of the Fear of Exclusion.
The universe designs sneaky experiments to test what we are willing to stand for. The secrets are being reveled, yet the art is to find the keys.
1. Accept where you have come from
I was born in Poland. Child of the Communism system. Perfect material to stay the same, not to single out, to follow and to obey. Very well controlled and manipulated. Although I do not support Communism philosophy, it gave me strong ground to who I was. Never experienced poverty or extreme condition however scarcity and access to goods was the theme of me growing up. Obviously, as a teen I had my wants. Having waited for months to have my wish realized, taught me to appreciate things to enormous proportions, to never take things for granted, to use objects till the last breath is taken away from them, not to spent money if you cannot afford it, to be frugal. Thought me that you cannot ever forget where you are coming from. Regardless of what you do, where you live and who you think you are.
What it did not teach me, is how to be bold and creative. How to break the chains that strangles you, that cut your wings and although you know you can fly you never have a dam courage to take off
2. Escape conformity
I grew up in the house were the clock is a shrine. No clock no life. It dictated and still does, the unstoppable rhythm. The sound of the pointer reminds you minute by minute of your mortality and being at the mercy of whatever surrounds you with no free will, and you must comply with totally incapacitating reality. Apathy and resignation, anticipation for the worse to come because eventually it will.
3. To find yourself you must lose yourself
We cannot peruse both safety and freedom simultaneously. Caution and courage are mutually exclusive. The power lies in Personal Purpose — which allows us to follow what truly matters, especially in the face of difficult circumstances. It’s so easy to lose the sight of deeper desires when feeling bound by disapproval and lack of understanding. We are so accustomed and taught to define our identity and well-being upon gaining approval and meeting expectations of others’ while dismissing our needs and wants. It is not than uncommon to want to retreat to safety. Yet our soul is not interested in safety. The soul knows what it’s yearning for and it’s unwilling to compromise. It has been leaving us clues in the form of all the irritations and frustrations. In all these emotional triggers we can find invaluable lessons if we are only ready to learn and to have the courage to maintain the discipline of attention to the subtle way our soul calls. It is not unusual to discover what really matters to us and be terrified. To run away and to pretend we’d rather not know……
4. Flip the Switch — Fear the fear and do it anyway
We encounter all kinds of fears related to the adjustments required in our lives if we pursued a new direction. We scrutinize our perceived inadequacy and the possibility of failure. We see the clash between what others expect from us and what we have learned to expect of ourselves. Choosing, although comes from the heart, is tough because it demands of us more than a mere agreement or wishful thinking. It requires accepting at that moment all the risks that the choice involves. It means letting go of the ‘need to know and how’ and trusting that all will be discovered along the way. When choosing, we experience a powerful dose of anxiety. The source of angst comes from the internal structure of our beliefs about what is possible, how the world works, and/or what we need to become in order to be worthwhile. Those beliefs are the most significant obstacles in crafting what we want. Yet, the more we resist the change, the more frustrating and stifling our circumstances become. Nothing will ever happen or change without an effort and intention. No one is going to come with a magic wand, as only you are your magic wand. The only subtle difference is that miracles do not happen with one soft touch of a magic wand, you are in charge of your own miracles.
5. Effectiveness is a measurement of truth.
We can learn from own mistakes only when we know we have made them. Instead of continually hitting the wall and being surprised we have a headache, we should not mistake our stubbornness and inability to learn for being strong and unbreakable.
In our human race, filled with competition, broken dreams and victory of “ego”, we become our triumphs, our satisfactions and our accomplishments. We are defined by our possessions, achievements and reputation. We separate ourselves from the ‘others’. We are more concerned about how are we doing than what are we doing. Promise of moving up in the “get-ahead” culture and the need for gratifying approval shapes and determines our behavior, creates anxiety and leaves us detached from creating long-lasting, meaningful outcomes.
I am what I have — therefore my possessions define me.
I am what I do — therefore achievements define me.
I am what others think of me — therefore my reputation defines me.
The Mind — the mighty ‘judger and chooser’ — dictates the things in life worth doing and things that pay off. Not everything that pays off is worth doing and not everything worth doing necessarily pays off. Furthermore, commitment and dedication, desire and willpower are born in our hearts. Only empowered purposeful action will shift how you show up in your commitments as a promise to generate a possibility of an accomplishment.
6. Love Yourself Back to Life
I spent last 35 years with a person who had lived her life out of fear. The fear of death, fear of life, fear of not being loved, fear of not being accepted or being listen to, and being on her own. The fear of controlling and being controlled, of not complying enough or pleasing too much. Out of fear — denying herself and others the life which was theirs to live. She was a victim and a martyr at once.
She took off three years ago, leaving behind a bitter-sweet memory — bare reminiscence of predictability and stability — the ‘known’. The comfort and safety of the known and the familiar. The luxury of the status quo. The indulgence in the way things always have been since the begging of the world. Her departure brought sorrow and anger of those whom she had left behind along with disbelief and denial. Some still ask, “How could she…?” Some miss her and wait for her return. She — on the other hand — is really gone. Gone with the wind holding only onto a memory of how she came back to life.
7. “Life must be lived forward, and it’s only understood backwards.”
I would say repeatedly at various moments, twist and turns of my life, nonetheless with not as strong conviction as I have today that “There are no coincidences in Life. Everything happens for a reason or there is a reason thing are happening.”
A couple years ago, I came across a difference perspective on coincidence. I read: “In mathematics, two angles that are said to coincide fit together perfectly.” And it was mind blowing.
I am inviting you to reflect for a moment and to think of all the people that showed up in your life when you needed them the most. That everything in your life, unfolded exactly the way it was supposed to, and every single event was precisely crafted and delivered to you in exact sequence, timing and divine order.
Today I know that all that happened in my life led me to this very moment. All my choices and all my decisions. The errors and the mistakes. The disappointments and the triumphs. The regrets and the satisfactions. The accomplishments and the frustrations. All my tears and smiles, the sunny and the rainy days. And with all those experiences, my past seems to be worth it. And if I had done one thing differently, I may have never arrived at this point of time in which I discovered myself, found a passion and purpose in life.
Then, please, please believe in “as many as six impossible things just before breakfast” as Alice in the Wonderland would say. And whatever comes to your life — let it come. Whatever stays in your life — let it stay and whatever goes — let it go. And Remember Life is One Big Coincidence that only can be understood backwards!
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