Self-Possession and Progress

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“To conquer oneself is a greater victory than to conquer thousands in a battle,” the Dalai Lama.  Yesterday I spoke of the loneliness of being on top, of spending our lives trying to prove we are the best.  There is often no one to join you and celebrate with you when you spend your time demonstrating you’re more proficient or more powerful than them. Knowing who you are and how to share those gifts is far more rewarding than climbing to the top alone.  When you behave as if you know it all, no one is there to help you.

It takes an incredible amount of resilience and determination to pull yourself out of the rat race and learn to value yourself internally rather than externally.  When you learn to master yourself you see you are capable of anything.  You also acknowledge that there is no need to prove anything.  When we stop trying to prove our worth and start using our inherent gifts, the world changes.  We naturally start seeing the gifts in others and may even learn how our gifts fit together to do something even more powerful.

All of this starts with our individual mindset.  How are you viewing yourself?  When you wake up are you happy with what you see in the mirror?  I’m not talking about the physical portion, I’m talking about seeing yourself looking back and being happy with the type of person you are.  Are you operating from integrity?  Do you have clear boundaries around what you are and aren’t willing to do?  Are you operating in a state of love?  When times are tough, are you battling yourself or are you trying to win?  Are you the person you want to be?  If you aren’t that person, or if you don’t recognize yourself anymore, then it’s time to look at the gap.  Who ARE you and who do you WANT to be?

I’ve spoken of radical honesty many times.  It’s something I’m still getting used to because I told myself a million lies a day—the habit is hard to break.  Everything from believing I was a bad person and the universe was punishing me to feeling like I would never get out of my current situation, like I deserved to be miserable.  I also went through phases where I believed I did nothing wrong and that I was simply a victim of circumstance.  I think that was the hardest mindset to break because that is a generational thing in my family.  I spent so many years educating myself in mainstream nonsense, regurgitating “facts” (and some real facts too) that I learned to operate from a perceived infallible mindset.  When you know everything you learn nothing and it kept me stuck.  I had to acknowledge that it was my ego and the habit that was keeping me locked in place—not the universe.  So I started asking different questions.  I started asking myself, “Is this really true?” “Is there room for another side to this?”

The funny thing is on a subconscious level I knew that I wasn’t always right and I was ALWAYS quick to acknowledge if I was wrong.  But when it came to my marriage and raising my son, I started to ask if that was even who I wanted to be.  I didn’t want to teach my kid that the important thing was to be right—I wanted to teach him how to get to the right answer.  I didn’t want my husband to be a child that needed correcting—I wanted us to get to the right answer together.  See, being right is nice and all, but there comes a point when you realize that you need people.  It isn’t necessarily about conquering them or even yourself—it’s about conquering the demons we carry and the whispers we hear every day that keep us in our perceived safety.

So when you recognize the gaps between where you are and where you want to be, identify where that is coming from.  Is it a real thing?  If so, what can you do to overcome it?  Is it something in your head?  If so, what are you going to start telling yourself in its place?  Is it a generational belief passed down? If so, what do you want to learn instead and how do you want to break the habit?  The bottom line is opening your mind to the possibility of your power and your potential.  Once you recognize that in yourself, there is no better feeling.  There is no need to prove—your actions speak for themselves.         

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