Last week was a doozie – filled with more than the usual happy and challenging issues. As any business owner knows, we make judgment calls and decisions hundreds of times each day. I do this for myself, and with clients as well. In just one week I gained a few new projects and lost my business website (and a whole bunch of blog posts!). But at the end of every week I try to stop and reflect and prepare for the future, shifting my attention to the mostly positive.
My favorite storytelling yoga teacher, Alyssa, always brings her own stories to class. This is something I truly look forward to on Fridays because as you might expect I see myself in these stories, and I guess that’s why her classes are so popular. While she is leading us through a hot power class that will kick your butt like no other, she is taking you on a journey through yourself and your connection to the external world. At the end of class, you are spent, you are stronger, and your mind is clear.
Last week, she ruminated on discussions she’d had with her Mom about the approaching the holiday season and wanting to make the family happy. (Yes, we are already talking about the holiday season!) But at one point, as I was deep in my practice, relating to my own stories of the previous week, she said, “Well, welcome to being human…”
Yes, welcome, indeed. We are human, but we are not hopeless. Now, I’m not sure if this next thought is because I surround myself with aware coaches, but I think most of us know we cannot possibly make everyone happy at the expense of ourselves. Because if we do that, then guess who’s not happy?
Every interaction we experience repeatedly comes back to our own story and our own socialized lifetime. We’ve learned to protect ourselves so that others will accept us. Our worth then depends on that acceptance and hopefully if we have acted “appropriately” enough we will remain worthy and good enough. Our poor brains! They just don’t serve us very well.
All this mental maneuvering inevitably closes us off from something better, something deeper; and we will never know what that something looks like because we repeatedly employ the same response we’ve learned since the day we were born.
…until we decide that we want more, and we begin to question our way of responding.
As a business owner and yoga instructor, I began to think about what happens when vulnerability shows up. Most often we get defensive. I’ve seen it. I’ve done it. We may get pissed and terrified, we’ll want a plan, we’ll want answers, damn it! We may even turn back to our safe fort and hunker down until it all shows up again. But I know beyond a shadow of a doubt, that if we try to tip-toe around recurring issues, they will remain. So, when do you feel vulnerable? In your own solitude, start there.
If you want more in your life, then you want to get used to being vulnerable. Don’t worry, it won’t last long. And like yoga, when you practice, it gets easier. There’s no way to please everyone, but we can certainly find ways to please ourselves!
As humans, when we feel vulnerable, it isn’t until we unpack and look at our vulnerability that we can begin to solve the “problem.” If you deny that feeling, you deny the solution. And who wouldn’t want to dissolve their own nonsense.
Welcome to being human.
And seriously, shifting your own thoughts is THE ONLY WAY. You can be, do and have anything your heart desires. It only requires your awareness and attention.