Wow, what a week it’s been! Apologies that this post is late, but once you read it through I’m betting you’ll forgive me! LOL This week, I’ve been reminded of several things and have become aware of several more and things are shifting, shifting, shifting… Thankful for dear friends who help me work through things when I get stuck.
This week, your ingredient to create a blissful life is: Allowance
I like this word. Really like it! For me, allowance is mostly about occupying a space of ease with whatever circumstances are happening in my world, but there’s another piece of it that I’ve been missing. I’ve been working through so many things and somehow, I got stuck in a space of “Expert” and got really wound up in the idea that for me to teach something, I must be perfect at it myself. Ick! Ever find yourself in that space? It’s very unforgiving and judgmental and some of those really nasty gremlins live there. You know the ones? “Who do you think YOU are?” “You actually think you’re good enough for that?” “What are you thinking?” UGH!
Luckily, two lovely friends reminded me of some truths I really needed to hear! To give you some context, this week (inside 24 hours) I experienced an infestation of carpenter ants in my bedroom that was discovered after waking up several times to them crawling on me, the clutch went on my car, and our 30+ year old air conditioner kicked the bucket. It was really not a good day, and these challenges only reflect part of what arose to be dealt with in that same 24 hours.
To add insult to injury, someone who was trying to be helpful kept insisting that I laugh my way through it all and I’ll be honest, I didn’t feel much like laughing and being told that I should be really did not help my mood. It was a lot to digest, it happened in a very short period of time, and I really just needed a bit of time to process. And I was PO’d! The things that happened that require repairs alone are worth roughly $4000-5000 and it was all in ONE day! That is probably one of the most expensive days of my life!
And here’s where I fell into the trap. I bought into the idea that I was supposed to be able to laugh my way through it and that I wasn’t supposed to be angry and I wasn’t supposed to need time to take a few deep breaths and let myself process because I’m the expert and I should know better, right? And when I bought into it, I made myself wrong for feeling how I felt, and that just made me even angrier – and not at my critics, at myself! You can tell this isn’t going in a very good direction, right?
The following day, a friend called and I told her everything that had happened the day before and how frustrated I was with myself and I realized just how deeply this was affecting me. I somehow had gone from a space of being angry that a bunch of really rotten things had happened all at once, to making myself wrong for feeling upset about that, to starting to feel like because I wasn’t able to laugh my way through it I’m a fraud and a failure and therefore have no business teaching you or anyone else about creating a blissful life. HOLY COW! That really went off course and fast, didn’t it? Amazing how quickly that can happen!
So here are the truths that my friends reminded me of. I’m really good at what I do, I’m giving people tools that help them cope with life – and I have learned those tools because of the things life has thrown at me so all of these experiences are actually helpful to the people I work with, and (this is a big one!) if I require that my life be perfectly blissful every minute of every day before I share the tricks and tools I’ve learned, that time will never come.
And the missing piece in my definition of allowance? Allowing yourself the space and time to process whatever is happening and feel what you feel so you can get to a space of ease with your circumstances. Ahhhh, now that’s better…
Here’s the thing. Happy is a choice. Bliss is a choice. They are always available to you. But the mistake is in trying to force yourself to occupy that space before you’ve arrived there. Sometimes, we are dealt a really crappy hand! That, my friend, is truth. And sometimes, when things are really crappy, we feel sad or angry or frustrated or overwhelmed or afraid or….. (here’s where the allowance piece comes in)… and it’s ok to feel all of those things for a while. In fact, it’s when we don’t let them process and try to deny them that we cause ourselves real harm. These things get stuck and they will just sit there waiting for another time to rear their ugly heads.
I do choose happy and I do choose to do everything in my power to laugh my way through life. What I no longer choose is to force myself to deny my other feelings in order to make other people more comfortable or to pretend that life isn’t sometimes really hard. It can be. And you can feel what you feel and move through it to release it, or you can push it down and deny it so it can come back to be dealt with another time. Neither is right, neither is wrong. They are both just choices.
What do you choose?