Sunday, November 10, 2013
We are habit-forming creatures, and the habits we develop out of self-protection form early and hold on tight. And when we can't control our circumstances, we learn how to shield ourselves from the impact of the people and things that can hurt us.
And we can hold onto the hurt and hold onto the fear that we're going to be hurt long after the danger itself might be gone. The memories and experiences of our past, even the long-ago past, can hold us in their grip, making us feel like victims, defined by our suffering.
But the spiritual journey gives us back options. Instead of holding onto the past, it invites us to reach up and out of habits, up and out of the past, and to move past those old limitations. The spiritual journey calls us to step into ourselves fully, not holding back any part of who we are from fear, or uncertainty or a feeling of powerlessness.
Instead of trying to control our circumstances, we have words and the ability to express ourselves and the capacity to make decisions that honor who we know we are now. There's no promise it will be easy, but it will never be harder than living with a sense of being a victim of the past.
It helps to stay calm and clear and centered to face yourself and your fears as much as you possibly can. And the more you do it, the more confident you become and the more you develop the habit of taking care of yourself. And it is this - the certainty of knowing that you can be trusted to take care of yourself - that shows you how far you've come.
You're not depending on others to make things okay. You're not afraid of becoming a victim again of the same things in the same way, because you are no longer the same. You're not waiting for things to change, because you yourself are changing. It is never too late to give yourself a new start.