The other day I watched the ever-inspirational writer Jeff Brown talk on video about transforming ourselves.
He reminded us that our real hot spots are the issues and patterns that keep coming up again and again–THOSE are the things we should be paying attention to. He’s right.
Of course, immediately I thought of people I know who either consciously or not repeat the same unhealthy patterns. Over and over and over.
But then my thoughts drifted to my own life and whether I, too, had issues and patterns that I repeated, whether in relationships of any kind or even at work.
Of course I must have them. But what are they? What do they mean? Have I grown past them or do I still have work to do?
Worse, was I guilty of magical thinking? Believing that “it would all work out” without my having to do a lick of work?
Jeff’s pretty direct in sharing his own experiences and the wisdom born of them.
“We’re not going to change anything living in our fantasies,” he said. “That’ll serve us for a while, but not long-term.”
The “good students” among us go after growth and embrace change. But you and I both know people who are way more comfortable in their dysfunction than is healthy and who simply will not make the effort to transform themselves.
The big stumbling block, I believe, is the concept of “owning our stuff.”
It’s super-hard to reveal our stuff to ourselves, much less to anyone else. But it’s a necessary first step to owning it. And own it we must, if we are to grow.
Jeff pointed out that “owning our stuff” doesn’t mean we have to shame ourselves as so many do when they hear criticism of any kind, including their own about themselves. It simply means that we take responsibility for those things and do our part to expand and mature past them.
People like to talk about their journey, their path. We hear it all the time. But as Jeff so aptly points out, the path appears when we own our sh t. Because no one else can deal with it but ourselves. Period. As much as we’d like to avoid taking responsibility for it, it’s the only way to really transform our lives.
Yes, of course, I’m talking to specific people I know. In all probability they will never own their stuff and never transform. They’re getting up there in years and I see no sign of it, although hope springs eternal. And that’s the sad part. Because when we don’t move forward on our path, we never get to achieve our purpose. And that means we’ve got to come back and do the same damn shi t again.
The fear of which, by the way, is probably the only thing that keeps me on my own path, constantly asking myself the questions and working to grow. As hard as it is.
Because I sure as Shakespeare don’t want to come back and do all this again.