self discovery

Wise Words: The Past Is Present

[Originally posted 02-06-2015]

As I’ve stated before, for many people, the past isn’t really the past, it isn’t history. It is the present. When there is an emotional wound or unresolved issue, it lives in the present moment. The original hurt, trauma or fear gets recreated and repeated. Essentially it’s relived again and again in one’s current life. It shows up in relationships, at home and at work. There it is. The past is [the] present.

You’ve heard the phrase “same shit, different day.”

The physics of it are simple. You magnetize to you a match to what is active within you, what you believe, what you focus on. Energy begets energy. These simple truths largely shape your reality.

Here’s another…


Perspective

Recently my laptop went blank and then would not restart. Mercury is in retrograde after all. I tried a few tricks, but knew what I really needed to do was just pull the battery and begin again. It always worked with my old laptop. I was hesitant, however, because I had tried to pull the battery on this computer, but couldn’t figure out how to do it and had given up. To repeat that felt silly. Plus, the need to get at something on my computer, fairly quickly, was making me more determined.

I retrieved my folder containing all of the laptop information. There wasn’t much there, but all I needed was information on how to remove the battery. I opened the thin 3 page pamphlet which showed a few illustrations and even fewer words. But there it was. Once I saw it, it was so easy. And in this one sentence the profane becomes the profound. Once I saw it…that’s the key. Perception or perspective is reality.

What was impossible (removing the battery) suddenly became possible (removing the battery). The problem was that I kept looking at my new computer as if it were my old computer. I could only see how to remove the battery the old way. I wanted it to work the old way. And that was impossible. This computer didn’t work like that. So I couldn’t see the solution.

How often do we approach problems, issues, relationships in just this way? And in so doing, drag the past right into the present?

And so we stay stuck in the past…in the present….

 

Precious Story

We all have our stories we like to tell. Feel compelled to tell. Can’t help telling. Tell over and over again. Indeed, that was my history. I had stories that I would tell everyone. I couldn’t help myself. Everyone had to know my stories. I clung to them like a child clings to her blanket. They were precious to me. I took them on as my identity. I proudly claimed them as my own. I expanded them, embroidered them, cherished them.

Somewhere along my journey I had the eyes to see this habit. I became the observer of them. I developed the ability to stand back and see myself. I could see/feel the need to tell the story building within me. See myself telling the story. See people reacting, in a wide range of ways, to my story. Soon they didn’t feel so much like “my” story but “a” story.

In the end, it was clear that I had to explore the stories. One at a time, I delved into their origins, got at the roots. I feasted on them in order to know myself and just as much to know who I was not, or was no longer. I discovered, over a long period of time, that in the beginning, telling the story, knowing what happened in the past was filling a need. A coping mechanism. It was a way to own it, claim it, open my eyes to my experiences, rather than be in it with eyes closed, at the mercy of it. Telling the story felt powerful. It revealed a new level of truth to me. So, too, when that need is filled it’s time to let it go. I was not. I was reliving it over and over. I was propping up my identity with it. The story became stuck. I was now a victim to the story. What was once precious was now my prison.

Eventually I had to choose the compassionate way. To see, to feel, to know the past with clarity. Eyes and heart wide open. Glean the wisdom. And then let the story go. Stories can change. Or end. Truly.

As Adamus says, “The past isn’t what you think it is.” I now know things are always more than they seem. Multi-layered. Multi-faceted. Many perspectives. It is up to us to receive the wisdom and release the rest. Release the details, release the minutia. Give it its freedom, allowing it all to serve us. Where the past, history, our stories are concerned, there is a fine line between wisdom and wallow.

Where once we were victim, we now are wise.

Where once we were weak, we now are strong.

Where once we looked outside of ourselves, we now look within.

Where once we sought, now we know.

Want to see this in action? Watch the movie Groundhog Day. You can see Bill Murray’s character wake up and begin to rewrite his story. He’s self-serving and manipulative at first, but then real personal transformation takes hold. So beautiful!

 

Playing with the Past

If the past is just a story, really, one version of how things happened, then can’t we consider it somehow fluid? Couldn’t we play with it? I have used this idea on a number of occasions to overcome a pain from the past. You can rewrite history or rewrite your story. Here’s the gist…

When something from your past causes some concern for you…guilt, hurt, frustration, stuckness…rewrite it. Take this bit of history that has plagued you and turn it into something pleasant, empowering, or productive, whatever you choose. You’re the creator.

Try it for yourself…

Find a comfortable, quiet spot. A place where you feel safe, supported. I like to make a cup of tea, grab a soft throw and sit on my couch. Relax. Take some good deep breaths. Clear your mind of the day’s duties. Then conjure up the memories. Tell yourself the story. Remind yourself of the details. Feel all of the feelings that go with it. Sit with that for a bit.

Now, give yourself permission to rewrite that story. Take a deep breath. Loosen the grip you have on the old version. Allow yourself to go beyond the mind, beyond the old story. Begin to get clear about how you want it to go in this new version. Imagine the details. How would you want to feel? What do you want to experience? What is the outcome you prefer?

If this is challenging, you might try a tactic I use to help me get clear. I imagine the story as a photo snapshot. I’m very visual, so I give the story a picture. Then I imagine that picture on a chalkboard or a white board. And then I erase it. I just wipe it away. Simple? Works for me.

Once you have a sense of the new story, take a deep breath and dive into it. Let yourself feel it as if it is real. Picture it. Hear it. Walk through it. Live it in your imagination. Feel it in your body. Experience it.

Take a deep breath.

Congratulations! You’ve just rewritten history.

Wait…what’s that I hear???

Are the doubts coming in? Are you questioning it?

OK…here’s what I know…

Your perception is reality.

You’re the creator.

Everything is energy. [Except you. You are a sovereign souled being.]

This is all a very real, very important illusion.

Therefore…

You have just shifted old potentials, cleared out old energies that no longer serve you, and allowed new potentials to come into your reality.

If you allow it to be so, then it is.

So…

Can you allow it? Can you put those doubts in their proper place…tell them to sit down and shut up?

It’s up to you.

What do you have to lose?

…nothing but your old worn out stories.

Watch what happens. You might be surprised.

This is when it starts getting fun! That’s why I call it playing with the past…not working.

Now, in the wise words of EN VOGUE from their 1992 hit song:

“Free your mind and the rest will follow.”

 

 

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Wise Words: Begin

What’s that saying? The only thing that is constant is change.

Change. We want it. We fear it. We bless it. We curse it.

It can be something that just happens, happens to us. It can be change for change’s sake. Or it can be meaningful, intentional…transformational. The kind you seek out. The kind that calls to you. A compelling. You know there’s more…more to you, more to life. So you commit to it. You begin a process, a journey. Not a journey to a place. The journey into you. Discovery of you. A discovery of who you are, who you are not, who you want to be.

Like all of life and especially in this process of self discovery, the thing you can expect for sure is change. But isn’t that what you’re calling for? If you’re like me, though, you’ll need to be reminded of that along the way!

Change happens at multiple levels, in layers, even if our perception is singular, seeing only one at a time. The ones we engage most directly include the mental, the physical and emotional layers. The more you can allow the structures and patterns of the old, that which no longer serves you, to topple and fall so that the real and true structure of you can stand, the easier it all will be. In these things, the heart is a better guide than the mind. The mind will follow the heart. Can you stop forcing answers in the mind and allow them to flow to and through the heart? Can you allow the simple answers to come to you? If you call for them, they must come. Can you allow them to come to you?

Attitude and Perspective

In all things along the way, it is simple, but not always easy. That’s where your perspective, choices, and attitudes make a difference. Do you believe it has to be hard? Do you think if it’s simple instead of complex, it is somehow less than? My experience is that the wisest teachers, the most profound insights are simple and profound. If it’s complex, it’s false. Often that means someone’s ego or confusion or agenda has been infused into it. Your intuition, your discernment, your gut will serve you well in getting at what’s best for you. Distill it down to its simplest form, it’s core or root. That’s where the wisdom lives.

As you peel back the layers and levels, can you imagine that you’re unwrapping gifts for yourself? Can you see, feel and experience the changes and be grateful? Some days this will not be easy. You may curse yourself (and maybe me ; ) ) for choosing to begin at all. But, remember, you called for it. It is happening as it should. Not because of fate or destiny or karma, but because you called for it. You, the creator of your life, said I know there is more! Bring it on!

It’s all just experience. Can you take the charge, the judgement of right and wrong off of it? Can you let go of the expectations you had of how it would go and instead trust yourself? Trust that it is sacred. It is happening appropriately. The less you resist, the less you worry, the easier and more gracefully the experience will be. I speak from experience. I speak as one who was the QUEEN of WORRY for most of my life. The worry colored every part of my experience, making it challenging and scary at every turn. But, the more I got into a place of deep trust of self, the smoother things went. It took practice. It took discipline. But I did it. It can be done. Deep, conscious breathing helps. Stepping into the role of observer helps.

If this sounds all too familiar, for now, take a deep breath and give yourself credit for taking some of the first and vital steps into awareness of the grander You. I predict that you will look back on this time you have chosen for awareness and transformation, you will look back on even the toughest of times and see them, feel them and know them as precious. Don’t be mistaken. I’m not promising all sunshine and rainbows. It can be disruptive, dramatic. Things can feel like they’re getting worse, before it feels like they’re improving. But even that depends on your perspective. If you see things as if nothing is wrong, that everything is happening for a reason, your experience will be smoother and easier. What I can promise, though, is that you’ll ultimately be freer and more authentically you than ever before. And isn’t that worth some discomfort? It was for me!

Awareness

In the beginning it takes a while to see things differently. Even when you want to see, clarity may still elude you. These are layers upon layers you’re dealing with. It requires the greatest trust of all – the trust of self. That said, once you become aware of something, you can never become unaware. And 80% of personal growth is awareness, the process of becoming aware. The remaining 20% is applying the wisdom, putting it all into practice. But don’t discount the getting there! I think that’s the hardest part…the willingness to pay attention, to open your eyes, to see what you’re ready to see.

Processing, exploring, releasing and clearing, these are all ways to get started, but ultimately it will be about absolute trust, absolute acceptance of self, love of self, compassion for self and allowing you to be the true and authentic you. Period. A lack of trust in self results in isolation, restricted energy flow…life-giving energy flow. You pinch off the natural flow, allowing yourself only enough to get by. You give yourself just enough.

But what’s possible when you step into trust, when you begin to nurture and love you? What’s possible when you begin? It’s different for each of us, but common themes emerge. It’s possible that you’ll start putting yourself first. To notice and then stop the self sabotage and self betrayal (as I’ve said, the worst kind of betrayal). You’ll start speaking your truth more often. You’ll begin to feel more authentic, more like your true self. How you interact with the world will change. Your first relationship will be with yourself. Your expectations of self and others will begin to change. Your relationships will shift and change, becoming more based in trust and love. You’ll probably experience some peaking and plateauing. It’s normal! But, be certain, things will change. You will change.

It doesn’t matter how you begin, only that you begin.
~ Jessica Sackett

(I couldn’t find this quoted anywhere in this way, so you can quote me!)

Long ago someone told me that if I took one bold step, the Universe would take nine back toward me. I have found that to be true. There is magic in beginning. I send my blessings as you begin…or begin again, as I have done so many, many times on this journey.

xo
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