For anyone who has sat through one of my Emotional Intelligence classes you probably have heard the story of my dads influence as a teen.
As most dads he was probably completely lost on how to love his daughter through the teen years. We had many ups and downs. However, there was something he always tried to do when we (or I ) was having one of those days where the world was ending.
He would make me sit through a funny movie. I remember many times he had to drag me to a theater and I was so stubborn I would fight him the whole way and most of the time at least half way through the show. However, what he locked onto was the result.
Without a doubt no matter how upset I was at him or the world, no matter how much I fought him to go, I would walk out of there with a smile on my face. It was his way of getting me to laugh. Because he knew that when I could get myself to an emotional state of laughing, I could get through anything.
Laughter has a way of healing. A way of us enjoying the journey and opens our eyes to see that maybe some things are not as bad as we make them out to be. In the moment we are laughing the weight is lifted, our EQ is raised, and we can make better decisions.
We are learning new skills from the day we are born. We take action in doing something. Reading, watching, experiencing, listening – however it is that we choose to learn. We learn the basics of eating, walking, and taking care of ourselves. We also learn how to survive mentally. We learn our core beliefs that drive our behaviors as we grow. We learn to be conditioned to our environment, whatever/wherever that is.
We grow, we change, and our world changes. What we don’t learn in school is how to un-learn. The reality is what worked for me at one point in my life, doesn’t necessarily work for me now. We can learn all the new skills that we want – our brains are amazing. But until we learn to un-learn the beliefs, the mindsets, and the behaviors that no longer serve us (and possibly never did) will won’t be able to put those new skills to the test and see what we can create.
I can tell you that my largest challenges in my personal growth have not come from learning something new. They have, and continue to be, in un-learning what is holding me back.
When I learn to let go of what I think is right or wrong, or what I know to be true and I choose to see things from a new perspective – new awakenings always appear. It is in these times is when transformation takes place. The kind you feel from deep inside that is so peaceful and feels so right. These moments are not usually huge and profound, they are little moments during each day.
I have this picture painted in my head that there is a box of light shining so bright from the core of the earth, through the ground below. The box is keeping that light at bay and every time I unlearn its like a hole in the box that allows that light to shine through. The box that I think is protecting me is also the box that is keeping the light inside. When there are enough holes, the walls start to come down as well until there is nothing more to block the unlimited potential. This is what un-learning feels like to me.
I was driving down the road today and the words were so clear to me I had to pull over and write them down.
”If you believe someone who has a limited mindset, you NOW have a limited mindset.”
We are all students, learning every day. Being able to see when others are and are not in alignment with what we want to experience is essential.
I have learned that where we focus is so vital to what we experience. How easy we slip back into old patterns and forget this. This is something I continually have to remind myself. Many times I am so shocked at how simple it is and how caught up we can get in the moment.
Where we focus grows. When we focus on problems, we see problems. When we focus on solutions we see solutions.
Focus on what we want to experience, feel it and see it, most of all believe it (law of attraction) and before we know it, we live it. We don’t need to know the how or all the steps. It’s amazing how fast our experiences can change when all we do is change our focus.
Maslow’s Hierarchy is a great theory that has been proven time and time again that we cannot achieve fulfillment in areas of our life until the foundations are fulfilled. However, the theory doesn’t say we have to be stuck on each level, just that it needs to be fulfilled.
The minute we change our focus to a higher level, it is really cool how fast those other needs just automatically become fulfilled. No need to figure it all out. It just happens as a by-product of our focus change to a higher level of fulfillment.
This one is for you buddy. Ironic how little alignments of moments and conversations inspire.
Nutritious meal first or dessert first is the questions around my house. Thanks to a very influential man in my life this analogy has rippled through laughter and fun at the dinner table as well as deeper thoughts for many years.
His theory was/is… or maybe it was just something to provoke me to think outside the box (it was also fun to order the huge ice cream Sunday first at every meal out together to make sure I experienced the theory as well). The theory is that if something was to happen (like choking to death at the table… or maybe he just meant we got full) between the meal courses that we should always enjoy our dessert first.
Do you agree? Let’s hear what you think.
Being mom, I of course am trying to get my kids to eat their veggies first but can’t help but let them have dessert first.
Take a dive deeper… in life are we making sure we enjoy the sweet moments first or the not so sweet but maybe needed moments filled with the fuel to keep us sustained long term?
Are we working the years at a job waiting for retirement… waiting for our dessert only to experience illness or even death before we enjoy the retirement?
Or are we always chasing the dessert that we never experience the amazing depth and fulfillment that comes with maybe more boring but nutritious moments?
I am still undecided, or balanced. I do enjoy the family dinners at the ice cream parlor. I also don’t order/eat dessert often.
One thing I have learned is there is never a lack of opportunity. A couple years ago I was going through a period of my life where every way I turned I hit a wall. If someone would have told me at that time that there is always opportunity, I probably would have spit at them (kidding, not kidding). I was going through so much internally and I was so overwhelmed with a life that was not going as I planned or wanted in any way, that all I could see were stop signs.
Today, all I see is opportunity. Every time I turn around there is a door that is opened a crack waiting for me to reach out and just push it open and walk through. So what happened? What changed? A lot and nothing at the same time. The easy answer was I changed my mindset – the hard answer is I had to clean out all the emotional baggage that was blocking my vision. I needed to see that my core belief was not aligned with what I wanted to experience. It wasn’t until I could clear the ways and see that I needed to believe it first, then things started to change.
So easy to say… “just change your belief and the world changes.” It really is that simple. However, the process never is. We have so many core believes holding us back. We have believes we hold onto that we are not aware of. They are so embedded deep down in us over the years. We also have many conflicting believes. One moment we believe it, we see it and even start to see the crack in the door opening, then the limiting believes sneak in and shut that door and build up the walls.
Looking back, I am glad the walls came up though. As hard and frustrating as it was, it was when the walls where up that I was forced to go within. To find my core believes that aligned with who I am – my journey here on earth. I realized that the doors were shutting because I was reaching for fulfillment of needs that were not in alignment with me. I found looking back I was seeking something to fulfill my fears – kind of like being addicted to drugs. Instead of looking for the fulfillment inside to feel whole, an addicted looks for the drug that they believe will fulfill that need. When in the end, all it does is grow the fear and take us further way from who we are.
Now… the learning (and unlearning) continues on. Learning to stay in alignment as opportunities arise. Learning to not open every door that is opening but going within to know what doors align with my purpose.
We must know the difference in the fear that protects us and the fear that holds us back.
My journey has been filled with fear. Our society has become filled with fear. We have more mental illness’ than ever before. More depression, more anxiety, more hatred, more people scared to live life.
We were given fear to protect us. We do not want to rid our life of fear. It is the fear inside that stops of from going over the edge or protects us from the bear or lion coming after us. Fear is the voice inside telling us something is wrong. It is a vital part of our protection that we must hold dear.
Fear is also that voice that stops of from living. The voice that tells us not to leave the house, or to share who we are with the world. Our fears have gone beyond protection and we have let the fear of rejection, the fear of shame… the fear of loosing love be the fears that guide us.
The line between protection and whats holding us back can be a blurry one. It takes going within, it takes being still, it takes inner work and inner healing to know that line. It takes a knowing from within that my line is different than your line. My fears are different than your fears. What may set you free may be the one thing that protects me. Because my story is different than yours.
There are times I listen to the voices of others. The voices that maybe don’t know anymore than I know… or even less. The voices that say I should do this or I should do that. The voices that are wrapped in the fear of others projecting on me. We must get to know our own fears. To know what ones are holding us back, and to be very clear on the ones that are protecting us. When we are not clear, we cross the line. We hurt ourselves, we hurt others. Most the time not in ways we see until much later. Get to know your line. Stay true to your line. Trust in your boundaries. Have faith in your protection, as well as your guidance.
The power is in the silence. It is in the faith. It is in the commitment to walk through the fire knowing you are protected.
It is not in the t-charts or the worry. It is not in the logistics of right or wrong. It is no where near the ‘doing’, it is all in the ‘being’.
In that space, and the space alone, you will not only make it through, you will soar above.