Several years ago, I remember having a conversation with a few of my friends about our personalities. It came up for me, that I am a very stubborn and determined person.
Those who know me are free to snicker… because to this I am guilty.
It turns out that astrologically speaking, I am a Capricorn (1/3/86) and was born during “the week of determination” – check out this cool article.
So yes, I’m stubborn. I’m determined. I’m unconventional and I push the limits with most of the experiences and even some of my relationships in my life. On multiple occasions I’ve toyed with the idea of publishing a book someday and calling it “Determined to be Happy”… because at my core, that is what I am.
We’ll see, there’s still plenty of time right?
On January 1st of this year, I began the workbook section of A Course in Miracles…which is a spiritual text that was channeled in the 1970’s by two psychotherapists. I have been listening to the teachings for quite some time and as my New Year resolution I began the workbook section that helps to change how you are thinking.
Today’s lesson is a continuation from yesterdays.
The lesson yesterday: I am determined to see.
The goal was to use this as a mantra for the day, repeating it in your mind as often as twice an hour for several minutes.
I have to admit… within the first few hours of using this mantra, I began challenging some of the things I see in my life. I started to see them in a different light, not so much as obstacles, or bad things that were happening to me, but as reflections to me… reflections of my belief, reflections of my own internal dilemmas.
Today, the lesson is I am determined to see things differently.
Now this concept is just a bit deeper than what was presented yesterday, but it’s power is just as strong – if not more so. Today I have been looking more at the things in my life that are upsetting to me, and applying the mantra.
I look at relationships that may not be overly peaceful and apply the lesson. I am determined to see this relationship differently.
What happens then… my mind actually begins to open up to possibilities with the hard relationship. It starts to see that there may be a part of me that is inviting in this struggle, there may be a part of me that is exactly like the person who I see as difficult.
Maybe I’m not as easy to be around as I think.
Maybe I could be kinder.
Another arena that this idea has been really profound is in the field of finance and career. I know what I want. I know the salary I’d like, the funds I’d like, the type of work I want to be doing. But right now, they aren’t overly profound in my life… in fact, a lot of those wants are downright missing. So I look at that.
I ask myself, how can I see this differently? How can I see my financial situation differently? What do I not understand that could be brought to light? Where did I miss the lesson every time it was presented, and how can I do it differently. It’s humbling. It takes a strong amount of self compassion and brutal honesty to admit when we’ve f***ed up and then to know that we can change our future in an instant.
Just by being honest with ourselves. Maybe – probably – almost definitely… the lessons I’m learning now are part of what I’ll bring to my practice. I have seen so many times that a client enjoys working with me, but has a whole new level of respect for me when I share my own personal hardships. It makes me more easy to relate to, it makes me human.
I firmly believe that our thoughts are what create our world. I believe it, I teach it and I try to live it. But I’ll be honest… it is always easier for me to look at a client or a family member or friend and point out how they may want to consider how they’re thinking about their circumstances. It’s easy to help others, not so easy to help ourselves.
But just by setting up these mantras, by being open to see, and open to seeing differently, we begin to create a new trajectory. We begin to see new paths that weren’t there before. We begin to see with new eyes and our lives begin to take us into uncharted (and often really exciting!) directions.
On Friday my friend told me to pray for clarity.
She prayed for that for me as well.
Clarity is coming with new vision, new determination and the ability to see my life differently than I did before.