With the holidays here, I find it a great time to reflect on what I have achieved and to see how far I've come. It is also a great time to take a look at what I need to develop and to create new goals for 2013.
The more awareness I have about my strengths and weaknesses, the more I realize that I am responsible for how good my life gets. When I was younger, I found it easy to blame people, places and things for my unhappiness: "If he had only given me a second chance," or, "My boss doesn't appreciate the work I do," or, "My parents had their problems, which inhibited me from being myself." The list went on and on.
Yes, there may have been an element of truth in all these situations, but what I know now is that the buck stops with me. When I point the finger at someone else, it is usually because I don't want to take a look at myself and how I have contributed to the situation. If I run up against this resistance, I need to remind myself that I have choices. I can stay there, or see the payoff that I get from holding onto my resistance and decide to move on.
Whatever the dragons of my past were, I now know that "the dragon doesn't live here anymore" unless I let it. (Alan Cohen wrote a terrific book by that title.)
I had a powerful dream several years back that is on point. I dreamt that I was riding my bicycle on a path where I grew up, I was alone. I was my current age and I was enjoying the ride -- it was peaceful and I felt serene. When I had gone about a half of a mile, I started to feel anxious and afraid, like someone might be following me and it could be dangerous. I shared the dream with a wise friend and he remarked, "Helene, maybe that fear was warranted by some of the things that happened in your childhood, but that is not the case now. You have the power to handle whatever comes up, and why not choose to continue enjoying the ride."
I often walk around aware of the different parts of me: Helene the child, the teenager, and the adult -- they are all in me. But today, I can choose to have the adult guide my actions. So the question for me, and perhaps, the question for you is, "How good do we want our lives to get?"
Yes, new behavior does feel uncomfortable, especially when I step outside my comfort zone, but knowing that, I can choose to keep moving forward anyway. What helps me to do that is to reflect inwardly and let my intuition guide my actions. I've created many tweets based on this inner guidance.
Here are some of my favorite tweets that I hope will be meaningful for you too. You can use them as affirmations and retweet them to friends, if you like. They help me gain a positive perspective about challenging situations.
Tweet: No one can take away your peace of mind, except you.
Tweet: Think, "I am enough, I do enough, and I have enough."
Tweet: Forgive yourself, if you could have done better, you would have.
Tweet: Change the mood in the room by the words you use.
Tweet: Everything that happens in life has a lesson attached.
Tweet: You are the master of your life. Create a life that is joyful.
For more by Helene Lerner, click here.
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