Yesterday was a very interesting day for me. Not that all of my days aren’t interesting, but this one brought home an undeniable truth that I have seen many times. This truth is; regardless how hard and how long I work for self improvement, strengthening of character and living a righteous and just life, if I allow one erroneous thought or judgment to arise, all of that is gone in sixty seconds!
I am normally a fair and just person. Regardless of the circumstances, I always try to allow for the fact that I don’t know a person’s history, and therefore, must allow that they are doing whatever it is they are doing based on those experiences and their perceptions of them. My history of an abused person has give me the understanding of this truth as more times than not my words, actions and intent are misunderstood. Unless I hold a person in especially high esteem, I don’t bother explaining what my motivation is. I presume the same for most people. Yesterday, I forgot this lesson.
I have spent months in almost total seclusion for the purpose of escape and healing due to severe, self induced neglect that occurred as I was struggling against the negative nature of a number of people whom I took into my home in order to help on their journey. It is my weakness that I always tend to place others’ well being before my own, and therefore end up in this state of neglect because of my delusions.
This disruptive behavior is the result of many years of training as a child to place others before my personal needs and happiness in the hope that they will respond in kind. My ideal world is one whereby everyone takes care of everyone else and in this way, no one is ever neglected. My behavior is such that this ideal is already a reality, when in fact, this is not the way things work. Of course once this objective truth displaces my subjective one, I become angry and frustrated and all of my good will goes out of the window as my ego demands satisfaction. Herein lies the loss of all good fortune due to my meritorious deeds.
This is a cycle I have repeated all of my life. I give until I have nothing left to give and nothing left for me. My unmet expectation than turns into anger and frustration and my temperment goes from one of a loving person to one who is egotistical and self centered as I realize that I have needs and desires which also must be fulfilled. I find a way to release this anger through self imposed isolation and introspection, applying the laws of cause and effect and in this way, heal and rejuvenate myself once again. Of course I return to the fray with the same rules for living intact. Balance is still missing.
I am well aware that we all repeat patterns because of whatever reinforcement for those behaviors in the way of reward that we get from performing these acts or saying these words, or thinking these thoughts. If there is no reward, than we try to change our pattern in order to receive the reward. Normally, we don’t concern ourselves with what we do to get our reward, as long as we acquire what we seek. In other words, all of our thoughts, words and actions are geared to accomplish a specific goal.
Examples of this might be a child who will use both negative and positive behavior to receive the attention of his/her parents. Adults with attention seeking behavior do the same thing. A person who is vain may do whatever is necessary to garner the complements about their beauty and do those things that make others respond accordingly. Or, a person who has a need for solitude may exact behavior that drives others away. I believe our ultimate goal, conscious or unconscious is to be loved in its many forms of expression and therefore do what is necessary to feel, if not loved, at lease accepted.
The strange thing about this is that those who have acquired greatness, seemed to behave in a way that did was exactly the opposite. They did not concern themselves with acceptance or being loved, they did what they believed they needed to do in their lives to accomplish their ultimate and usually, a spiritual goal. Of course there are those who were infamous that accomplished greatness in a negative form as well. My point is that we all have a driving force within that dictates that we behave in a specific way to reach our internal goal. They followed an objective truth beyond the understanding of most people. They became unpopular, their theories and beliefs were denied as a general rule by most, yet they forged ahead to fulfill their destiny.
People such as Mother Teresa, Mahatma Ghandi, The Buddha, Jesus Christ, Galilleo and many more chose this path. Almost always, the majority of those witnessing their journey believed them to be in error at the time. Yet, as we know from history, they proved to be right on point in serving a greater purpose for humankind. They had honed their focus in such a way that in everything they did, they were working toward the goal that was driven by an internal directive. Had they strayed or become discouraged based on the external workings around them, we might never have known the great things that they brought into the world.
On a much smaller scale, I too, listen to my own drummer, so to speak. However, I am often thrown off track by the slightest weakness of perception. If I am distracted for one moment by the behavior of another, or, my ego demanding fulfillment, I lose ground in fulfilling my purpose. Fortunately, learning is a cummulative process. Once I have become aware of my error, it is easier to resume my focus.
Earlier on in my life, the time off track, was much longer. I had not the knowledge or the experience to understand that these distractions were a balancing, a reckoning, if you will. That is, I am being made aware that there is still a weakness within that needs to be corrected and strengthened. It is not the person or event in the external environment that is the problem, it is my response to it that is the cause for my loss of focus. I am the one in need of an overhaul. When my focus is external, than it is easy to blame my circumstances for my failures or my distractions. When I am centered, I am aware that my perception and response to those circumstances is what I need to correct.
I was watching a motivational video presented by Tony Robbins. In it he stated that if we are not realizing success than there is an internal conflict. That we are out of alignment. Although our goals may be clear, if we have a conflict in regard to those goals, than we will not succeed. I’ve mentioined this concept on alignment in other of my articles previously, so when I saw this video, I had to laugh. This was the synchronicity that usually takes place in the universe when I am on track. Although I had realized that alignment is necessary, I wasn’t doing anything about aligning myself. I had been so busy, as usual, teaching others what I was learning, that I had forgotten to use that information where it was intended to be used; in self improvement. I still wasn’t getting it, so yesterday, my environment became totally disrupted as I further extended my focus to the external and concerned myself with things which were none of my business; someone elses behavior and intent about something that I said and they not only misunderstood, but made it personal for them. I was mimicking their behavior and totally unaware that I was doing so! I was being self-centered, taking what they had said personally and not accepting that this is their response to the world based upon their perceptions. I cannot change others or their perceptions, I can only change mine.
It took me half the day to realize what was going on as I dived further and deeper into the needs of my ego. They were wrong; they didn’t understand; they were selfish and egotistical and I was sick of the insanity. In the moment I had no clue that the insanity was mine because I wasn’t doing me, I was doing them. I am aware that if I am doing them, I can’t be doing me, yet I seem to invariably fall into this trap. I know who I am. I know my intent. I know my heart and I hear my drummer. Yet, I always want to respond as though I am someone else. I can go on ad infinitum about how I have been so abused, that this is my protective mechanism, that I learned to be this way because of the abuse of others and they deserve whatever they get. But, the bottom line is: I’m being them and am not being me.
I was born a kind, compassionate, loving and generous human being. I have a history that was often repeated by the elders of my village of what a wonderful person I was as a child. The elders of my village are all gone but one now. I have to live and write my own story. There is no one who knew me, except one, from beginning to now. Who I was yesterday can never be the same for today, if I choose to live a different story. I can hold myself in the greatest esteem eternally based on who I was, but it is only who I am that is of any importance.
The great person I was in my youth, was buried under the barrage of lifelong abuse for a very long time. This person was encased in a shell of fear, unhappiness and confusion. For more than thirty years, she has been trying to rise like the pheonix from the fire of erroneous beliefs and misunderstanding. And all of those victories are gone in the sixty seconds that it takes to lose my focus. This one great truth still holds true; It is in this moment that I have the opportunity to make the choice to be true to myself. It is in this moment that I can begin anew, with all the knowledge and understanding which I have gathered over the years. It is in this moment that I choose to be my true self