the past few weeks have been full of amazing progress and super energy highs and just, well, awesomeness.
unfortunately those highs seem to have little companions following them around that bring a few days of lows.
I shouldn't say a few days, but I've started to really learn about progression. yes, I've read it in my self help books and even in the scriptures, we have cycles. we do really well, then we are humbled, then we choose again to refocus, then we do well and yada yada yada.
but knowing, and then living through it are two completely different things in my humble opinion.
I taught the largest meditation class I've ever taught in st. George a few weeks ago to 25 women. I was super nervous, as it's only been to small groups. I also knew the women there had been through extremely difficult life challenges. And I didn't know how well the message of meditation and mindfulness would be received.
lately I've had small hints that a LOT of women are ready to change their life. and not by a new diet, or new workout routine or by any other way other than tapping into the true source of power first...God. and the only way to reach that power is through your surrender and looking within.
and after my last two meditation classes (where I basically just tell my story and how meditation has changed my life) that small hint was confirmed. people (especially women) are READY.
women are tired of relying on drugs to sleep through the night, or even fall asleep.
tired of relying on medications to get us through the day, and stay sane (nothing wrong with meds, I am not anti-meds, I'm anti-using meds to numb instead of problem solve)
tired of numbing our emotions with food, exercise, drugs, drinking, prescription meds, tv, drama, gossip etc.
tired of feeling like there is more to life.
tired of just plain being tired.
I was humbled to share my small story and to teach a little about mindfulness and meditation. It felt amazing. I was inspired and more motivated to share and help others.
and then...the me monster will follow. you know, the less than, everyone is better than, don't try cuz you'll go crazy again kind of me monster? yeah...her.
I also realized that old feelings were being brought up to be felt and processed. really old feelings. and it's been really good to feel them, learn from them, and let them go. most of them have been super important for my parenting journey and gave huge insight into where I was holding on, where I needed to let go and where I needed to just plain change.
I also had a lot of triggers of the "should" laws that people are still passing around, especially about family. and yes, I'm going to share some of that here.
4 years ago when I began seeing a therapist for cognitive behavioral therapy, the negative messages I had in my head about "SHOULDS" and "SHOULD NOTS" were almost killing me. they are what had destroyed my mental sanity and kept me miserable for a very long time. much too long. with help from my therapist I began setting boundaries for my own sanity and emotional well being. and stopped believing the should/should not society rules that are just plain bananas.
the general guidelines are this:
"if it harms me or my family, then I am NOT participating/going somewhere/inviting someone over/or doing something/talking to them etc"
"if it doesn't harm me or my family, then I WILL."
Regardless of what other people will "think" or "say". (yes, this included my parents and siblings and in-laws.)
at rock bottom I could not afford to give one second to managing other people's emotions anymore. I had been doing it my entire life and it ruined me.
My priorities now? my kids. my spouse and most importantly MY WELL BEING come first.
I know, it sounds radical. it sounds selfish. it sounds just plain horrible.
but let me tell you, it has been AMAZING as I implemented the following steps:
I cut out negative people out of my life. (it doesn't matter if we are related or not- (sorry, not sorry)
I cut out negative media/music/entertainment out of my life.
I no longer will go to something if I know it's going to drain me emotionally, energetically, spiritually etc.
I no longer choose to spend time with people that make fun of me, or my children, or make fun of other people who are a different/race/culture/poltical affiliation etc.
Here's the thing, stopping all of these things, it's not that I feel I am better than negative people/situations, it's because I have completely stopped living that way. Living that way made me depressed and suicidal. And that's because living that way is wrong, it's not who we are. We are love and light and compassion. And even though negative thinking and living make you feel like crap and make you want to not exist, negative thinking and living are addictive.
So hanging out with people/situations/media that are negative for me would be like an alcoholic going into a bar just to "hang out".
It's too easy to fall back into my old way of thinking and living, "that the world is out to get me", "that life sucks", that "I can't wait for this to be over or that to start and then I'll be happy" and "everyone is an idiot" mindset.
Life is beautiful and a precious gift. We can have peace and joy and harmony every. single. day through choices and perspective.
I love my choice to be a mother and am working incredibly hard to teach them how to have a happy and positive life.
I don't want to keep yelling, but deciding to be a full time mom that teaches positivity and love? THIS IS THE HARDEST JOB I'VE EVER TAKEN. it's like swimming upstream, or learning to write with my foot.
it's going to take a long time, the pay stinks, and that's ok.
It is WORTH IT.
And I know I've made plenty of people mad (or my self care has been a trigger inside them for anger). But guess what? If you are a negative person and all you want to do is complain about everything and everyone and then brag about yourself or bait me to feel sorry for you, I love you enough to not be around you. I love you enough to let you hit rock bottom. I love you enough to show you what self care and self love really means.
Gone with the wind are the days of suffering to make other people happy. Of sacrificing so people think better of me. Of putting myself down to make others feel better. Of comparing my life to other people's lives. Of feeling less than or better than.
I know who I am, and what I am made of.
which means I know who you are and what you are made of.
Which ultimately means I know you can change your life too.
and as each person declares the creative rights to their life and happiness and well being, it lifts just a little bit of the world's health and happiness and well being.
God's love and miracles are all around you, waiting for you to decide to let them in. Waiting for you to ask Him and let Him in.
If you want to be really want to make people happy, choose to be happy first.
You being miserable does not DO ANYTHING. and that thing, deep down, that you believe about yourself that makes you feel you only deserve to be miserable is NOT TRUE.
it just isn't.
so I take the good days, and the hard days. and I keep going. because I know this is worth it, and if just one person every day feels a little hiccup of courage, that maybe life doesn't have to be hard and miserable? that maybe they could actually be happy?, well, then I'm grateful my struggles help. I'm grateful they lift. I'm grateful for all that I've been through, because it brought me here.
and right now, right here, is pretty amazing.
*side note- just because I haven't texted you back and/or called or visited doesn't necessarily mean you are negative, it might be because I'm a mom of 4 kids that are in 800 extracurricular activities and I also love to spend time with my husband first. so yeah, double check first ;)*