One of my favorite things about the self work I’ve been doing is trying out all of the little tools and tid bits that many authors/experts share. It’s pretty empowering and awe inspiring to put one into action and see results, to really start to feel a shift. Even those that at first sound silly or daunting or even impossible can make a difference. It starts with being brave, letting go of judgements, and jumping in.
Today’s post is about one of the tools I picked up at the Mastin event a little over a week ago. Mastin spoke about how often when something bad or even something unsatisfactory happens to us, we tend to fall into the classic question: Why. Why is this happening to me, why would he/her/they do this to me, why would God let this happen? But these questions only leave us feeling victimized, and perpetuate a circle of negativity, lack, and the idea that we are not in control of our lives.
Instead, Mastin suggests to look for the lesson in the harder moments of our lives. Shifting from the victim from the empowered: what is the universe teaching me? What can I learn from this? What am I gaining?
This really resonated with me because it was a tool that I had employed once before with great results. Caroline, my life coach guru, suggested that I flip the switch on my internal dialogue about being heart broken and instead put together a list of all of the things I gained from the experience. I did just that, and really found it to be transformational— it helped me to start to let go of the helplessness and the anger, and start to look for the positive in the experience, to feel hope. At the time, it hadn’t yet come full circle that this was a tool I could use in every day life. I thought it was just something to help me release my ex. Now, I understand it can be applied to most situations to help maintain the gentle hum of faith.
So, with that in mind, I’d like to apply this tool to my previous blog post.
For a bit of background, a little over a week ago I had to travel to LA for work. LA is where I fell in love with my ex, and that experience is really the only context I have for that city. It was tough to be back there, flooded with memories that I really miss. I found myself in my hotel room that night, exhausted and sad, wondering why I was facing this experience at this moment. We had broken up a year ago almost to the day. I had worked so hard on myself, on moving on and growing forward in more ways than one. I couldn’t help but ask myself: why am I still here? Why do I still feel sad? Why am I unable to move on? Why couldn’t those wonderful experiences of my past still be in my present life?
What’s amazing: you ask for the lesson, and the universe gives it to you.
I was writing this post with the intention of working through what I thought the lesson could be, hoping that it would eventually come to me. Instead, the universe delivered a nail on the head lesson.
I ran into my ex today outside of my apartment, after a year of never having a run in in our neighborhood.
The lesson, after that, was pretty clear: I’m ready. I’m strong, I’ve grown into a really happy person, living a life that I love. And it isn’t dependent on another person, it’s dependent on me. I’ve got a good story to tell these days, and I’m no longer looking to fill voids with someone else’s accomplishments. The areas in my life in which I felt most inadequate were areas were my ex really shined, in many ways I was so proud to be with him because it helped me to fill up the places where I needed filling. Where I wished my life could be better. Now, I realize that I was never inadequate in those areas at all, and that what I have is more than enough. I’ve realized that I’ve been the person I wished I was all along, I possess the qualities that I so admired in him too.
So while it’s hard to be reminded of loving memories and feelings because I still really want these things, the truth is, the sadness is no longer tied to him. It’s the sadness of missing the experience of falling in love. And that’s an experience that I have full faith I will have again in life. In a way that is bigger than I could imagine.