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Monday, September 1, 2014

A Seven Day Thought Detox…

Hey there! Don’t go running away from this blog thinking I am writing about some Orwellian dystopic concept in which my THOUGHTS ARE BEING PURIFIED!

…Or, go ahead and run, because Orwellian or not, I am taking up a 7 day challenge: For seven days, I do not speak negatively about another person, I do not indulge in gossip, no negative self talk, and to check in on general negativity.

Now, I am not talking about pretending certain things aren’t going on for the sake of false “positivity” or some Pollyannistic Presentation of Life, nor am I talking about living in denial. I AM interested in the idea that if I engage in this 7 day challenge, I may not complete it perfectly, but I may discover some new ways I have been limiting my experience of love through negative attitudes, beliefs or thoughts, whether they be about myself or others.

Truth be told, this is my general policy, actually, to live according to this 7 day challenge. I work very hard to NEVER gossip and to replace any negative thought about my “self” (usually it shows up in the form of judgment about my legs) ASAP with a positive and true thought (My legs are so strong and powerful!) (I am love.) (etc.)

Before I accepted this challenge, I had for a few weeks and still now am doing some personal growth work in which I am listing EVERY THING, PERSON and SITUATION over which I have resentments, for the purpose of consciously asking my higher power to take my thoughts and feelings about those situations and change me into a person who learns, has boundaries, and then moves on in love and peace.

HA! Of course! This is just so like the cosmos, producer of such wonders as the stars and the blossoms and Shakespeare and the sonnets…

Why do I say it is SO like the cosmos?

Because for me, it would be easy to be doing my “letting go of resentment work” and just hide certain ones away for future negative rumination just when I least need and expect it. ;-p I like to think I’m soooo enlightened but I’m still in this human body full of secret memory cards tucked away in various cells and systems and let me tell you: those unwanted visitors pop up whether I want them to or not, reminding me of my resentments! They may show up in the form of unawareness and mistakes and accidents, or disease, or unconscious communication in the heat of the moment.

This is such an exciting prospect for me. One thing I have learned about myself is that I LOVE handing my life over to the divine, because it always works out better than I could have imagined and, quite honestly, is incredibly liberating. All I have to do is what is in front of me, with love/ compassion/ boundaries and as much awareness as I am capable of rising up to experience. Yup! That’s it. That’s my whole way of life. And so far, since consciously and consistently practicing that way of life, I have had some amazing growth, moments of grace in times of tribulation, and of course, as an added bonus, I met my hot Italian partner that way as well.

There are some areas of my life where I am aware that I hold myself back, where I am a bit dissatisfied and maybe even dismayed at my actions, and where I want to challenge myself to be more loving. One of these areas is surrounding friendships. I am so very lucky to have some wonderful longtime friends that I feel are like soulmates, and yet I honestly feel that I could be more loving toward the friends I DO have, and more understanding and compassionate about certain friends with whom I have what I will call “strange feelings.”

I know my persona in the world is one that is VERY friendly, and I LOVE people, lots! But I also am, honestly, pretty darn guarded about the inner circle of friends. This isn’t always a bad thing, because I certainly don’t need to be taken advantage of… that wouldn’t be true love, at least not in my book, because true love doesn’t ENABLE others. And yet…

As much as I am loath to admit it, sometimes, when it comes to friendships, I know I put up a lot of barriers. Again, part of this may just be- I mean- I need a lot of alone time. I really rejuvenate by being alone in nature, and I am not a super social animal but have cultivated the social butterfly wings very consciously as part of my desire to experience more life! I have to gear up to go to a party! Not because I don’t love the people there but because it takes a lot of energy for me to be around a whole lot of people at once! Performing is totally different. I am in my milieu on stage, and the audience gives me energy. But being one of the many such as at a party or out in public takes a lot of energy for me! And as an extension of that introversion, it takes a long time for me to create long lasting friendships.

So back to this 7 day thought detox. First day, right out of the gate, I wake up dreaming of an estranged friend from my history and a also another friend from more recent years with whom I have… strange feelings.

LOL I just realized strange feelings could sound so sexual. NOPE not what I meant. Just clarifying that for the purpose of this blog!

STRANGE FEELINGS, meaning, there is not yet a total bridge of complete and utter trust. One or both of us has an agenda that is either not revealed or not of service to us/ the relationship. The person may simply remind me of past hurts, or, in the instance of the dream, both friendships were hurtful to me through means of betrayal IN MY MIND. I could tell you the whole story and convince you that I was betrayed but that’s a waste of time whether or not it is true. I don’t want to sit and convince myself that I am right about terrible things happening to me! I would rather look at the ways that I and/ or we (my friends and I) allowed enough unawareness and miscommunication to get in the way of love.

In this dream, these two friends of mine were living together (something that could never happen in real life if only for the drastic distance between all of us!) and trying to get me to be their third roommate. I was driving everyone crazy because I couldn’t decide if I wanted to live there or not. I worried they would take advantage of me and yet I really wanted to just be in a sorority with them and share in the love. They were rolling their eyes and didn’t understand why I thought they would ever take advantage of me, ever!

And that’s why this detox commitment is so beautiful. I have consciously agreed that I will not say negative things about others (or self) and for me, because I almost NEVER SSSSAAAAAAYYYYY anything- out loud!!!- lol- it is also about feelings of ill will or negative thoughts. That includes, “that b!@#$ screwed me over!”

So here’s what I did instead of thinking “that b!@#$ screwed me over” or the passive aggressive or hidden version of that. I have done PLENTY of journaling about these folks, and of course the sting of what happened has come up a few times (meaning fresh incidents with each of them) since the initial struggle. So rather than continuing to write about my feelings being hurt- because I have acknowledged that- I asked myself:

What am I gaining holding on to my hurt feelings and resentments?

I must be gaining something, right? Or else I wouldn’t hold on so tight any longer.

Like, I try to remind myself about one former boyfriend who WAS abusive- not to perpetuate the anger- but so that if and when he ever calls again I feel confident ignoring his phone calls. He may have changed or grown and that will be great for him, but I don’t need that energy in my life! I set that free, with love and hope for a healthy future!

Why can’t I do the same with these friends? Is this conscious grieving a lost relationship or hurts within that relationship? Or is this a hobby and a habit at this point?

I went for a jog during which I thought, “God, change me. Change me into the woman who no longer harbors these resentments. Change me into a woman who is loving and free, who doesn’t need to prove anything to them or have anything proven to me. Free us all of these shackles and let unconditional love be the only energy present between us.”

Let’s see if it works! I figure, at the end, at least I can let go of a grudge. Some people in my life have told me they think grudges are important or justifiable and I am of an opposing viewpoint: they do nothing for you, the grudge holder. A grudge is a prison of your mind and your heart. You are subject to that prison as long as you hold on to that grudge. I want to walk free, and I want you to walk free, too!

Tonight, in my dreams, maybe we will all just go to Disneyland together, and part ways at the end of the day with smiles.

In the meantime, Have a great day, and good luck!

This video is presented as an affirmation that I love my legs. :)