I read a post recently that said, “The journey to success isn’t a straight line, it’s a spiral that keeps bringing certain experiences around again for us to look at with deeper understanding.” I finally understand this now. I always knew that life would continue to bring you the same kind of lesson over and over until you learned it, but what I failed to do before was to look at the lesson with expanded awareness each time I found myself in the cycle. Expanded awareness simply means that you are going to apply the lessons that you learned the last time you were in the cycle, plus some more. Expanded awareness usually always includes additional patience, a clearer understanding of life as you know it personally, and so much more that is unique to the individual.
Life lessons that present themselves in cycles until we finally learn what we are supposed to, can present as financial lessons, or have themes of love and relationship, family, and even career. Often times we are so focused on fixing the outward manifestation of what our lesson is trying to teach us that we fail to go in deeper to learn about the root cause of why this particular pattern keeps presenting in our lives. We can get prideful and overlook examining the behaviors that may be bringing the cycle back to us again. It is perfectly human to lack personal responsibilities for our actions from time to time. However when cycles that are meant to teach us continue to come back, they will come back bigger each time in order to get our attention. This is often why some people can give a story of not knowing why they’re about to lose everything. Yet, almost always they would be able to trace it back to maybe one bad decision or choosing not to pay off one simple credit card when they had the chance, and instead acquiring additional debt. The point is that what we chose to ignore grows bigger. One can use the gentle nudge to take action, or one can wait until the sky falls on top of them. Either way, life will get your attention. Enter the case for personal responsibility and the pursuit of personal development.
For me personally, there is always one life cycle that has three very distinguishable events that happen close together that I always have to learn from. One event is that my car will break down and I will need to call upon friends and family after a few weeks of deliberately being reclusive. It’s like life is always trying to tell me to get out there and while I’m at it, practice humility. It seems to be trying to remind me to help others just as much as I find them helping me when I need it. It also teaches me about gratitude and can gently reflect back to me that I lack it the majority of the time. However the number 1 reason this cycle comes around is to show me that I have stepped off of the path to my life’s purpose. It happens when I get overwhelmed, fearful, or intimidated about my writing and the media that I know that I am going to produce. I have some inner critics in my head that I am sure that most people can identify with. Sometimes they force me to cease all creativity and find safety in my couch and Netflix.
Whenever you are living your life in a way that looks unlike other people’s expectations, it feels weird. To some, weird automatically translates to uncomfortable. From there we begin to worry too much about what other people think of us or what they may say about us. I’m past worrying about what people think about my breaking conformity. I do my own thing and never listen to other people when it comes to my life. Yet when it comes to creating my art, that is new territory for me and I can see myself holding back in order to protect my heart. I will acknowledge however that there will be always be people that will attempt to bring others down. They don’t want you to do well, and the reason has to do with them and what they lack. Psychologically it has nothing to do with the person that they are attempting to bring down. As for the rest of the population that one may be afraid will think they are weird, they are actually worried about the same thing that you are worried about…being looked at as weird.
In coming to understand what this particular cycle has been trying to teach me, if I am to apply my expanded awareness, then I also have to recognize that I sometimes wait too long in order to start things because I am a perfectionist. However there is no such thing as perfection. It’s just another excuse not to start or to fully live life. Perfection is a polished, edited and marketed idea that is not sustainable and keeps us from living authentically. So many of us fail to start what we want to in life because we are hiding behind perfection. We want to use perfection as a shield to keep people from being able to pick us apart. If we reach perfection, we’ll be safe from harm and others will only want to be like us and not criticize us. Only this is a dangerously false idea of safety. Perfection if attainable for a minute will eventually collapse because it isn’t real, therefore you can only chase it and never attain it. Truth be told, we don’t actually fear other people’s criticism, we fear our own. Maybe the external critics are what we focus on, but really it’s the internal critics that we are most afraid of. We’re afraid of turning on ourselves. Yet a funny thing happens to fear when you acknowledge it…it goes away. Light drives out dark and therefore dark cannot exist. So turn the light on.
I am now ready to follow my creativity wherever it leads; in between periods of self-doubt that is. Because I am human and I have to expect those moments as a certainty. I can choose instead to put those moments to good use by checking in with myself though. I can turn on the light and ask myself if I am living authentically, or if there are adjustments to be made. Self doubt usually stems from there being a lack of authenticity for the moment. You see, true safety comes from authenticity, which is another name for truth. I have found that when you are moving with authenticity, when you know that who you are and what you are moving towards is right for you and you have the intention to live with love, there is no critic on the planet that can hurt you. Not one. No matter how mean, how loud or how close to you they are, their miss-aligned actions are seen to be just that, miss-aligned and a plea for help. The best way that you can help, is to keep shining and living with authenticity.
In speaking of authenticity, you are about to see things and read things from me and from others that some narrower minded people may feel to be farfetched, or too new and revolutionary. There will be many artists, thought leaders, writers, performers, and inventors over the next several months that are going to step out from behind their shadows to do what they are inspired to do. If it looks chaotic, that’s because it is. There is always a period of chaos before a great change while old thought patterns are broken and altruism becomes the accepted way of life. Change, even good and needed change, makes some people uncomfortable. It evokes fear and a lack of safety. It evokes their need to judge others in an attempt to manipulate and control them. To those people I encourage them to acknowledge that pattern and those fears, but to keep it to themselves until they gain control over it. There is no need to get nasty or critical towards others, because all that does is show everybody who you really are, not the person who you’re aiming your criticism at.
It’s like the dearly departed Dr. Wayne Dyer used to say, if you have an orange and you squeeze it what is inside is going to come out. The same can be said for the human being. In the case of the squeezed orange, orange juice is going to come out. In the case of the person being proverbially squeezed by the trials and challenges of life, both grace and love will come out of them, or it will be anger and hate. I’m not saying that hate and anger do not have a place on the spectrum of our emotions, for I have spoken before that both are necessary. But if your default mode of being is anger and resentment, then you will be creating a life built on nothing but anger and resentment. Here is your warning that a life built on putrid emotions turned permanent, will look and feel very different than a life built upon grace, determination, love, and compassion. A life built on vengeance and anger will crumble at one point or another. It pays to do the personal work necessary to make your default way of living peaceful. In fact, it is your responsibility and yours alone to utilize the tools necessary to keep you at peace. And when you find yourself not at peace, you must utilize the deductive reasoning and the logic necessary to determine why you are not. Then you must cultivate and utilize the motivation and the discipline necessary to sit down and figure out how to get back to peace. Life really is about peace.
If this idea that your life lessons, cycles, reactions, and happiness are solely your responsibility sounds too radical for anybody, then I invite you to go back to the beginning of my blog and start again. Realize that I am only speaking from personal experience. I have lived on the auto pilot of angry. Part of my purpose is to write and to tell you from my experiences what was worth it and what wasn’t. The self examinations that lead me to a better way of being were worth it. Allowing my emotions to be just that, fleeting emotions and using them as a tool to get to the deeper meaning of where they were coming from was worth it. Recognizing the cycles that kept repeating in my life was worth it. Then realizing that you are never actually “done” examining yourself and there is no such thing as perfection was worth it. There is no pill or person that can do any of this for you. There may be tools that can be used like how a carpenter uses a ruler and a hammer, but the carpenter still does all of the actual building.
This is what this blog is all about. It’s what any book that I write, article that I publish, ebook that I sell, or video that I make is going to be about, self actualization and the effect on your life when you have it and the effect on your life when you don’t. I say the same thing in many different ways, and my readers have the Free Will to take what they need from what I say and leave the rest for a different time. The basic message is one of love, a message of mastery, and the importance of compassion for all of God’s beings. These are the three things that life needs in order for it to be a good life. It’s also the basic three things that humanity needs in order to perpetuate its existence, for every civilization that has fallen has lacked love, self-mastery, and compassion. A writer’s job is to tell the truth, and it’s an awesome responsibility. It’s a responsibility so great that many talented writers are too intimidated to answer their calling. But if a writer’s job to make sure that humanity doesn’t destroy its self like Albert Camus said, then for me it’s time to place the sensitive and easily crushed ego aside and write, and I no longer need a life cycle to continue to teach me this. No matter what one’s calling, purpose, or what one’s journey exposes us to, one thing is for certain; we’re all going to make it. I promise.
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