One of my favorite websites, Daily Om featured a great article by Madisyn Taylor called “Creative Cuts: Editing Your Life.” She describes life as a movie script that we can edit or change when our story no longer works for us/serves our purpose. By taking control of our lives and changing things we don’t like, we become empowered.
Lately, I’ve been “editing” my life quite a bit. A few months ago, I ended a 6-year relationship that was no longer working for me. I’d tried to hold onto it for as long as I could because I actually loved the guy, but I realized that I wasn’t truly happy. I’m also very shy and wouldn’t interact with people much (I always told myself that I was bad at socializing) but I’m also discovering this isn’t true, either. I’ve been putting myself out there and talking to my coworkers and even strangers in the grocery store or on the street. I still need to work on this though because I find myself slipping back into my old patterns.
So what keeps us playing the same ol’ parts in the same ol’ story? Fear. Negative thoughts. Getting too comfortable. I stayed in a relationship for 6 years when I really should’ve left after year one because I was afraid that I wouldn’t find anyone else. Afraid I wouldn’t find anyone who could accept my introvertedness, shyness, lack of assertiveness (which I’m still working on), lack of experience with certain things (you don’t know how to ride a bike or roller skate? What!), etc. Once I started interacting with different guys, I realized that I could date and find someone else. I think the thought of starting over with someone new and throwing away something that I had invested so much time in freaked me out. But I knew that ending the relationship was the best thing to do.
Fear also prevented me from getting close to people. I had several experiences in my life where I felt like I constantly ridiculed/talked about negatively and as a result, I didn’t want to be bothered with people. Why should I, I reasoned, if all they’re gonna do is talk about me anyway? I know you can’t trust everyone, but deep down inside, I still wanted to have meaningful relationships with people. I realized that I needed to stop living in the past/going by past experiences and actually give people a chance to prove themselves instead of automatically assuming that they’re gonna be negative. It took me several years to realize that someone’s words or behaviors had nothing to do with me; it says more about them since they’re probably unhappy with their lives, struggling with certain issues, etc. And if they do turn out to be negative, then I can decide if I want to continue dealing with them or just leave them alone.
I’m at a point in my life where I’m just sick and tired of being sick and tired. It’s so easy to live in fear and stay stuck in the same situation, but it’s also exhausting. I know things happen—things that frustrate you and piss you the hell off—especially things that aren’t fair; we have a right to be angry and feel our emotions. But it’s not
helpful to stay stuck and to constantly complain; how will you ever accomplish anything if you’re doing the same thing and expecting different results?
So what about you? Are you ready for a change? What are you doing to make it happen?