Saturday, April 6, 2013

Taking Back Your Power!

"What happens to us externally does not determine our internal condition. It is what we tell ourselves about what is happening externally that determines our internal condition."

I find this quote to be extremely profound. In essence it is saying that it is not what's going on around us that causes us emotional stress and pain, but our own internal dialogue about what is happening. This also means that no one can hurt your feelings, without your permission! If the actions of another cause you pain, you are allowing it to happen, by "buying into it." Sound crazy? Let me explain.

The reason the words and actions of others have power over us and the ability to hurt us is that they touch a nerve deep inside us. This nerve is connected to an old wound that still needs to be healed. This wound usually occurred during childhood, when someone close to us did something to us, or said something and in that moment we decided it was our fault. We took on the guilt and made an assumption or decision about ourselves, most likely some version of "I'm not good enough", "I'm not worthy of love", or "I'm not perfect, therefore I am not lovable" (thanks to my dear perfectionist mother, this is my personal recurring one.) Once this decision about our own value and worth is made, we live the rest of our lives with this underlying, negative, severely-limiting, completely false self-belief. We move through life viewing all of our experiences through this filter, with our ego actually looking for "proof" to support these negative self-beliefs, and using it against us to keep us isolated and alone. It's only through learning self-love and acceptance that we can change that old belief structure, reprogramming our thoughts and redefining the "filter" that we experience life through.

In reality, the actions taken by another person are 99.9% about them, their mindset, their fears, their "stories" in their heads. But we are egocentric beings, and so we tend to take things personally even when they aren't about us. What happens is that in that moment when something is said to us, or done to us that touches that nerve, our ego sneaks in and uses it against us. It starts whispering what I call "scary stories" such as "See? I told you, you're not good enough!" Or "See? You're not lovable/worthy of love."  It is actually this internal dialogue that is causing the emotional distress and pain, not the actions or words of the other person! Whatever the person has said or done, it has touched an old wound in you, causing the ego to rear it's ugly head.

Here's an example: Perhaps you have a boss who rules through fear and intimidation. She is constantly finding fault with everything that you do. You know intellectually that you are very good at what you do, but her repetitive nit-picking makes you feel like an inadequate and incompetent five year old. This causes you to be upset and feel badly because her criticism is activating an old negative self-belief of being "not good enough" and the ego is seizing on this opportunity to push you into fear. Quite simply, her words are causing you pain because on some deep level you believe them! She is reinforcing something deep in you, a negative self-belief that you have "bought into", and this is where the disconnect from love is occurring. This moment, when you begin to feel this emotional pain is actually a red-flag that LOVE is needed! This is the moment to change your internal dialogue. Instead of telling yourself "See? I knew it, I'm not good enough!" and making yourself miserable,  this is the moment to step in and say "It's OK, because I KNOW I'm good enough! I am a being of beautiful light and love! I may not be perfect, but that's OK, I'm awesome just the way I am! And I LOVE ME!" This will enable you to return to a sane place, and to view the situation rationally. By removing that knee-jerk emotional response you are able to see that likely it is her own issues that are being projected onto you, and you can choose to not let it affect you.

I think every human being on the planet has ingrained in us some degree of "I'm not good enough" or "I'm not lovable", which gives the ego a weapon to use against us. I think the only solution is to change our inner dialogue with ourselves and pour love on it, to DROWN it in love!! If you truly love and accept yourself, flaws and all, and believe in your basic "goodness", then no one can hurt you emotionally, because you will be able to see that whatever is going on, it's not about you! By changing what you are saying to yourself, about yourself in those difficult moments, you will be changing what you are feeling, shifting from fear to love, pain to peace. Through self-love you are taking responsibility for, and control over your own feelings.

I know this concept may be hard to grasp at first, but it is so powerful. Once you learn to see and love your own divine goodness, and release those old notions of guilt and unworthiness, you gain the ability to stand strong in yourself and to not take on the negativity being projected by the words and actions of others. By rejecting fear and choosing love, you are taking back your power!

Love and light to all.

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