Live as if being you is the only choice you have

“I wish I’d have known you. I wish I’d have shown you all of the things I was on the inside.”          -Top of the World (Dixie Chicks) Have you ever been in a situation where you didn’t fully show up as yourself? This might have been at work, or in your romantic relationships, with your family and friends, or even around strangers. In some way, you felt like you needed to be someone you’re not. Maybe that meant hiding parts of your personality – things you thought people might not like or may not understand. Maybe it meant trying to fit in or gain someone’s approval – seeking to find that sign which says you are good enough and worthy of someone’s affection and appreciation. I can honestly say this used to be a fairly common behaviour for me in my personal relationships. I never intended to be inauthentic; it just always sort of happened. I became what I thought people needed me to be – whether that was my friends, coworkers or someone I was dating. (And of course it was always based on my perception – it may not even have been their reality.) I often felt like I was “too much this” or “not enough that”.  I would bite my tongue and not speak up about certain things because I didn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings (somehow respecting my own never even crossed my mind). Or I would give more time and energy into a project than I wanted to. Or I would say yes when I meant no. All of these...

Remember who you really are, and do what you want

“There’s still time. Close your eyes. Only love will guide you home. Tear down the walls and free your soul.”  -What You Want (Evanescence) I have been doing something lately that I don’t like. I’m not judging myself, just noticing and being accountable. I have been “shoulding” on a lot of people, including me! What is “shoulding” you ask? You know it; you’ve no doubt done it and had it done to you. It looks like this: “My husband ‘should’ change the light bulb like I asked him to do earlier.” “My coworkers ‘should’ spend more time working and less time goofing around.” “That driver ‘shouldn’t’ have cut me off!” “I ‘shouldn’t’ eat that piece of cake because I’m already over my ideal weight.” (Actually, in the last example, I’m guessing you are more than likely calling yourself fat, disgusting or something worse.)< The list of what we think people (including ourselves) should and shouldn’t do is endless.  It’s one of the ways we knock ourselves out of the present moment (and our own reality) and start playing the blaming/shaming game. When we should on ourselves, it takes a huge toll on our self-esteem. When we should on others, we presume that we know how they can best live their lives and that our way of doing things is right. In both cases, we are not taking responsibility for our choices, and in the process, give our power away. “Don’t bullshit yourself about what you should be doing versus what you really want to be doing.” ~Albert Ellis~ Why do we should on ourselves (and others)? It’s easier to...

What if we questioned “the truth” and lived a soul guided life?

“Free, like a river raging. Strong, as the wind I’m facing. Chasing dreams and racing father time. Deep, like the grandest canyon. Wild, like an untamed stallion. If you can’t see my heart you must be blind. You can knock me down and watch me bleed, but you can’t keep no chains on me. I was born free!” -Born Free (Kid Rock) I remember very vividly not liking church when I was a child. I might have liked Sunday school, but church itself never thrilled me. I didn’t like sitting there listening to the minister talk, because I found it too boring. I also didn’t enjoy the singing of the choir; the songs sounded so forlorn. And…even at a young age, I had this sense that people were attending a service for one hour on Sunday to make up for all the ‘bad’ stuff they did the rest of the week (like gossiping about others in the community). It never made much sense to me. Yesterday, I went to church for the first time in years (for a baptism). I found it very difficult to listen to the minister because almost everything he spoke about was fear based. He talked about how we can’t allow people to think for themselves or make their own rules because then things would get out of hand and how we must follow the bible because it’s the “absolute truth”. (Never mind that each religious group interprets it a little bit differently.) He then went on to say that they (as a church) weren’t judgemental, although he was condemning those who don’t attend church every...

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