Thursday, April 18, 2013

You CAN Unstick Yourself

“We are taught you must blame your father, your sisters, your brothers, the school, the teachers - but never blame yourself. It's never your fault. But it's always your fault, because if you wanted to change you're the one who has got to change.”
                                                                     ― Katharine Hepburn

It's fair to say that I've had some issues in my life.  I'm sure at some point I'll blather on about all those issues and what the root causes were but what I'm most focused on NOW is moving past the reasons, the excuses, the insecurities, the drama and the insanity.

I am in the midst of metamorphosis.

There's a magic formula you need in order to go through a metamorphosis.  It's a very simple concept yet so elusive because we humans naturally want to point away from ourselves and BLAME someone for why our car won't start ("YOU forgot to buy the new battery!") or why we are still underpaid ("They don't APPRECIATE me!") or why our children misbehave ("They don't listen!") or why we're so angry and tired all the time ("No one helps me!").  Ready?

The answer solely lies with you.  YOU are the only one who can decide how you're going to feel about anything.  The bottom line:  No matter what, YOU are responsible for your choices and your life.  You can choose anger or you can choose laughter.  You can choose drama or you can choose peace.  YOU decide your own internal climate and your own external behavior.  If you're stuck in something, only YOU can decide to unstick yourself.

Let's take the above examples:
  1.  The car won't start because someone else forgot to buy the new battery.  OK.  The car won't start.  It doesn't even matter who forgot what, does it? The problem is the car won't start.  You can choose to be nuts about it. Or you can choose to stop bitching and moaning and just go buy a damn battery.  
  2. We are underpaid because our employer doesn't appreciate us.  You're underpaid? Ask for a raise.  They won't give you one? Find a new job.  Jobs are scarce?  Figure out another way to make money. Learn to paint houses, cut hair, do crafts.  I don't care what it is you do.  Stop complaining about it and do something about it. The answer lies with you. 
  3. Our children misbehave because they don't listen.  Whose fault is that?  Do your children have consequences?  If they have consequences and they still don't listen, maybe the consequences aren't consistent.  I don't know what your particular answer is...but I do know that often the answer lies within us.  If you've tried everything and your kids don't listen...well, maybe they're miscreants; their OWN answer lies within them.  :)
  4.  We're angry and tired all the time because no one helps.  Have you asked for help?  If so, do you criticize your helpers so they disappear when help is needed again?  Are your demands simply too high?  Look at yourself first and maybe you'll find another, far deeper, answer for your anger and weariness.
Stop looking around and believing that if EVERYONE ELSE would just do A or B or C, then you can be happy.  I was stuck in that trap for a very long time...truly believing that I was not going to find any kind of happiness because Person X wouldn't do this and Person Y wouldn't do that.  But once I realized that it was ME causing my OWN was a pretty quick switch.  Don't get me wrong, I still get angry and I still get upset about things.  But it only takes a few minutes these days to get my emotions under control and back on track.  I realize I cannot control other people...I can only control myself.  And I really CAN control myself even when I'm feeling completely Out of Control.  I'm sure my Ex-Husband wishes I'd figured THAT out a long freakin' time ago.  And I'll bet On-Again is reluctant to go to sleep these days waiting for whiny, cranky, unhappy Kelly to come back out of the closet.

But Whiny Kelly has been banished.  She's been gone for quite a while now.  I took a four-month long journey into exploring my numerous insecurities and came out on the other side stronger, more confident and more joyful than I've ever been...ever.  I'm always going to be a work in progress and I could probably use a bright yellow strip of CAUTION tape as a sash...but I feel pretty good these days.  I'm happier and THAT is healthier for my kids.

And THAT, my friends, is a VERY un-stuck place to be.

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