“Every woman I know is doing their deep work. Books, workshops, therapy, retreats, self-care – you name it – she is doing the work to become a better human being,” said a friend of mine the other day.
Ah, yes. Inevitably, life delivers us some pain, and we get to figure out how to come through the other side. Do we bounce back, better than before, or do we crawl into a cave and shrivel up?
Do I grow or do I shrink?
The good news is, the choice is always yours. The bad news is, it’s not always clear which choices are choices of growth, and which are choices of shrinkage.
Again, the good news is, that you can always choose newly. Every. Step. Of. The. Way. So, shrink one day, and grow another…but do your best to feel out your choices in the direction of growth.
So grow, we will. But obsess, we must not.
When we experience pain, we want to do what we can to not experience that pain again. (Relationships, anyone?) The problem with avoiding this pain is that it generally leads to over-protecting, or over-functioning.
You either won’t let someone into your heart, or you work waaaay too hard to pull them in and lock the door behind them.
This often comes from trying to do dating and relationships so correctly that you end up getting really twisted up around yourself and you royally fuck it up? No pressure, right?
That’s not personal growth. That’s obsession.
My own obsession, turned into growth. (It’s not what you’d think.)
There’s a place in my relationships I’ve been trying to grow recently. I’ve wanted to be intentional about breaking a key pattern, so I’ve been looking at it from a lot of angles. Studying it. Figuring out how to crack it.
Um, you could say that I became a bit obsessed.
This is where my story gets a little counter-intuitive.
A situation arose last week with a man where I could see the choice between doing it “the right way” or screwing it all up. The problem was, the right way didn’t feel quite authentic. It felt forced. And the truth is, I didn’t know if that was me breaking a lifetime of doing it differently, OR, if it really wasn’t the right thing to do.
So I did the exact opposite. My choice felt right in its own way. I was simultaneously excited and feeling like I wanted to vomit when I thought about it. (Funny enough, that’s the feeling I get when I’m really stretching myself, so I’ve come to interpret is as a green light for what needs to be done.)
In this place, I decided to trust what I felt more than I could intellectually rationalize my decision.
What if everything is perfect, exactly as it is?
My decision was perfect. Not because everything has turned out exactly as I would like, nor because I decided feelings are more important than facts.
The reason it was perfect is because really, everything is perfect.
This is a fundamental part of my belief system that allows me to find grace with myself – even when I’m being a total dufus.
What is this belief I speak of? Well, it’s that I am on this planet to have the experience my soul wants to have. I deeply believe that I have everything it takes to have that – and I just have to stay out of the way of deciding whether those experiences are judged as bad or good.
It can be perfect, without being good.
Wherever you are right now is perfect. It may not feel good, and it may not look good, but it is right. It is part of your path to knowing (again) who you are, so you can have the life you are meant to have.
Accepting your current experience is part of what is necessary to move on to a different experience. This takes being conscious and aware…and this is night and day different than needing to fix it.
What are you trying to fix that isn’t broken?
What about you? What’s not broken that you’re trying to fix? Where you can find the grace in accepting what is? Leave a comment below and let me know!