Making It Happen

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One of the cards I drew today was the shovel.  The interpretation talked about doing the work, no longer sitting there and waiting for things to happen but making them happen through aligned action and effort.  As we were unwinding for the evening, we were watching an old movie and one of the lines was about people always waiting for things to happen to them and needing to make them happen.  It’s important to remember that we need to set a goal and have belief, but we also have to DO.  I’ve had dreams and fantasies about different lives I want to live and different things I want to do but I find myself running in circles doing different things because I’m not patient enough to wait for them to happen.  So I end up doing random things thinking the activity is moving me forward rather than actually creating.

I was so obsessed with the how and the details that I never allowed things to happen as they were meant to.  I had a specific vision on certain aspects of my life but I wasn’t clear on what I actually wanted.  I wanted to control everything about the how but I didn’t even know where I was going.  How can we have any direction if we don’t know which way to go?  How can we know where we are going if we don’t know where we are?  And, honestly, doing isn’t the same as intentional effort.  Controlling isn’t the same as doing what we are meant to.   It’s in the details and the effort you make that yield the results.  No amount of control can force something to happen that isn’t meant to. 

There is a divine order and timing when it comes to making things happen.  We are still a player in the game but we didn’t get to write the rules.  We didn’t even invent the game.  But that doesn’t mean we aren’t a part of it or that we aren’t important to the result.  We have roles to fulfill and there are objectives we are meant to fulfill that are not our own.  When the time comes, we are called to do the work.

Belief

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My husband and I were rewatching a show that discusses different beliefs and different faiths and how those things lead us to take action.  In the course of the show, I noticed that no matter how different the beliefs were, the variety and the depth, the things they believed in were nearly always supported.  They believed in nature and nature supported them.  They believed in light and the light guided them.  They believed in spirit and spirit answered.  The same is true for us.  Our beliefs lead us down the path we think is right. Talking about belief and what it means is this: our reality is based off of what we believe.  And what we believe makes reality.  Anything we believe becomes real.

We always have a choice in what we entertain.  In what we take in and in what we share.  We know what makes sense to us and we have a choice to follow that or deny it.  But I have seen in more cases than not, when we follow what makes sense and what feels right to us, amazing things happen.  Miracles happen.  Suddenly new ways open up and we find our way out of the dark.  The bottom line is we have to choose.  We have to commit and we have to believe.  There is no half-way around a belief.  I’ve spent a lot of my life on the cusp, the precipice, the edge, dipping my toes in the pool and waiting to see what feels right.  And suddenly, watching this incredibly violent yet meaningful show, it clicked.  Making the choice and dedicating to it is what makes things happen.

So I guess that’s the next step, right?  Figuring out what beliefs fit.  I’m not talking about zealotry or even idolatry,  I’m talking about the principles we define for ourselves and how we follow them.  I’m talking about making peace with our identities and honoring that.  I’m talking about where that identity takes us in the grand scheme of things as it relates to our purpose.  The things we like aren’t just about acquiring things or power, they are about guiding us toward what we are meant to do.  I know there has been the age old discussion about right and wrong, good and bad which naturally evolves into WHO is right or wrong and good or bad.  But the truth is it doesn’t matter.  Those definitions are arbitrary in the grand scheme of things because the point is that the universe responds to frequency and vibration and when we believe, the universe answers.

It isn’t up to us to make the distinction between things and their worth.  All we are meant to do is fulfill our purpose based on what we know is right for us.  But we need to honor other people’s rights to their beliefs as well.  We aren’t all meant to believe the same things because we do not have the same purpose to fulfill—I know that seems pretty basic and even redundant but the point isn’t lost.  In Dogma, the thirteenth apostle says, “I think it’s better to have ideas.  You can change an idea.”  And this still ties into belief.  Yes, ideas create the foundation for belief because at that stage we can still shift and stack and move them.  But beliefs become the guiding force as the ideas solidify.  We need both, the flexibility and the foundation in order to create what is right for us.  Nature isn’t one thing and we are part of nature.  Do not become so rigid you can’t see a new way and do not be so flexible there is no direction. 

Recalibrating

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The cards today spoke of recalibrating toward joy and having fun to allow the universe to work and reminding us of our connectedness.  We are all one.  I read a daily reminder/book of passages to keep my inspiration going and it told the story of a family separated by distance but always held together by their bond as family.  What we need to remember is that we are all family, in every sense of the word.  We are all connected; our joy is everyone’s joy and our pain is everyone’s pain.  We need to work on lifting each other up and work on realizing that there is no room for the type of power play, competitions we have endured for millennia.  We need to remember our connection to everything always.

We were brought here as a gift, to live in tandem with the natural course of things.  There was a time when survival meant creating a hierarchy of sorts, but we are not meant to operate from that state forever.  We are meant to evolve and develop and learn new means of coexisting.  But we develop beliefs (more on that this week) that steer our course and we become rigid with the ability to pivot.  The truth is this is all about staying connected with our intuition.  We know when things don’t make sense and we know when they don’t fit.  This is when we develop moral conundrums like, “I know this may hurt people but my beliefs tell me to do this,” and we wrestle with which direction to go.

I want to share this as a reminder that those moments are the signs that we need to question everything. Just because we have always done things a certain way doesn’t mean they need to continue that way.  Just because we can doesn’t mean we should.  We have an inner knowing that tells us what is right and what is wrong and guides us toward a greater peace.  We need to recalibrate that as well.  We need to recalibrate the sense of love we have for ourselves and others.  Our stories and experiences may be different, but that doesn’t mean the heart of who we are as humans is any different.  We all bleed the same.

So when I make my choices, I lean toward not only what feels good, but what feels right.  Some days are harder than others to steer that way because it’s easy to fall into victim mode or even martyr mode upon doing the “right thing.”  We have to trust that we are guided and that we will do the right thing, not just for ourselves, but for everyone.  We all go different directions at times, but at the core, we are all connected.  There is room for us to do what we need to do AND to do good.  We don’t have to live in a world of “or,” we can create a world of “and.”  That is the beauty of it all: we can always redirect the sails and get somewhere new.

Sunday Gratitude

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Today I am grateful for expanding experiences.  I’ve been focusing on my physical health lately and I joined a friend yesterday with a group she runs/walks with.  We went to a park not too far from me and we caught up a bit while we worked out.  I got to meet some new people and hear about some wonderful causes and experiences that they work for.  I’ve been working out in isolation for the last few months so it was a nice change of pace and we could not have asked for more beautiful weather.  Everything is coming alive and it’s green and the water of the river is flowing and there is life everywhere.  It’s a beautiful reminder of connected ness to see that life while taking care of yourself.

Today I am grateful for healing.  Healing is not a new topic in this blog, but I feel the need to express gratitude for it because the healing is what moves me forward.  The healing is where I make peace with what happened (that can’t be changed) but feel an understanding for where it fit in.  There are events in all of our lives that we have zero control over and it feels helpless.  We can make the choice to become a victim or we can incorporate the lesson.  In full transparency there are lessons I’ve had to repeat nearly my entire life—I’m still repeating some of them.  But the beauty of healing is when those lessons finally click.  The beauty of healing is when we no longer feel controlled by what we need to learn and we accept it and then bring out the next level of ourselves.  Healing brings more hope for the future than pain over the past.

Today I am grateful for inspiration.  I’ve been following people that keep me motivated for a long time.  They have similar goals and mindsets and a lot of them have goals and mindsets that I’m striving for (even if I’m not there yet).  Recently one of the women I follow got a book published for the first time.  In Gabby Bernstein’s teachings, she says that when people around us start manifesting the goals we have for ourselves, we should get excited.  It means we are on the same frequency if someone seems to be getting what you want.  When I saw this woman was getting published, my first reaction was shock.  I had no idea that she was going the author route.  Then I had a moment of jealousy and victimhood, feeling like everyone was achieving something but me.  And then I saw her reaction video to holding her book and I remembered Gabby’s words: that is my goal.  I’m so grateful to remember that our power is linked and that there is plenty of room for all of our words in this world.    

Today I am grateful for listening to my body.  I’ve been pushing hard mentally and physically for a good stretch of time now and today, the weather is a bit gloomy, so it is a perfect day to listen to my body and rest.  To hear what I actually need and stop all the busyness for a while.  To readjust and recalibrate.  To simply be for a little while.  I’m trying to take care of my body better but there are moments when, even if you’re doing something good for yourself, you can push too far.  It’s too much and you need to heal. I’m letting my body adjust to this new me and it’s about listening to what works now.  It’s not about giving up, it’s about protecting my longevity. 

Today I am grateful to dream.  I’m grateful to get out from under the weight of reality that traps me where it feels like I deserve the anxiety and believe the lies it tells me.  I’m grateful to enjoy the moment and spend time with my husband and son, watching some TV, resting my body, reading a book, and connecting.  Sometimes we have to create our own peace in spite of what’s happening around us.  The truth is we always have to create our own peace.  We need to find what keeps us steady so we know how to adjust the sails when the storm comes or when to find harbor.  Today is a day of harbor but it is no less productive.  I’m in touch with me. 

Today I am grateful to simply be alive.  I feel my body and I hear it speaking to me again after not speaking for so long.  I hear my intuition ramping back up and I know it is right on time.  I have no idea what some of it means and I’m still learning to fully listen without my anxiety chiming in, but there are signs everywhere.  I watched a movie I used to watch as a kid yesterday and today while my husband and I were watching a show, one of the songs I used to sing from that movie was in it.  I’m grateful to be alive and remember that there is a reason for it all and that I am right on time.  I’m grateful to do what I can with that time.

Wishing everyone a wonderful week ahead.

Productivity

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Our theme of productivity continues this week.  I think a key thing most of us overlook in this day and age is the acceptance of the need to constantly be moving and the need to be connected.  Before we get too far, I want to note that I think connection is incredibly important—as long as it is the right type of connection.  But it is not normal to constantly be on.  We are not meant to be alert and at attention 24/7/365.  We need downtime and we need internal connection, connection with nature, connection with people. We’ve lost the ability to separate time and the ability to focus on one thing at a time. We move too fast and try to do too many things at once thinking we need to accomplish everything or we need this constant state of busyness. We don’t know how to slow down and focus and savor and plan.  We lose track of what we are meant to do.  This nostalgic idea of going back to childhood when in reality it is trying to create safety.  I’m not sure if I truly ever was safe and I know that led to control issues—I digress.

 I notice this in my 9-5 the most.  I’ve mentioned before that my job covers multiple unrelated areas and I’ve also mentioned my struggle to navigate between them on a daily basis.  The brain isn’t meant to switch and pivot more than it’s in a state of focus.  Setting that as an expectation is a recipe for failure.  We are not machines and the fact that our computers, tablets, and phones are able to have multiple tabs open and shift with a click does not mean that we are able to do the same thing.  And honestly, all of that tech needs to shut down every now and then as well.  You give your phone a break, you charge it every night, if there are too many apps open you close them.  We have forgotten and willingly given up the fact that we are human for the sake of an extra hour of time behind a desk. 

I notice this in conversation with nearly everyone as well.  We can’t have a conversation about one thing or it’s at least very rare to be able to focus to long enough to get a point across.  We also have this expectation that people will automatically understand what we have to say and that we don’t need to explain anything.  I wrote about that earlier this week as well—I felt that struggle myself as I placed the expectation on my teams that they knew what I meant.  I felt the same expectation placed on me as well from my boss and coworkers.  There is so much pressure on us, both self-created, societal, peer to peer, and in relationships that we don’t even realize that we are placing our unmet needs on the shoulders of everyone around us. 

We do this distraction technique more often than not because there are often feelings we don’t want to acknowledge.  Even if we can’t place our fingers on it, chances are we are feeling something we don’t want to work through.  There is pain and anger and things we forget because we can’t keep it in our minds so we find any and every way to distract ourselves.  I’m guilty of that.  I mentioned in the first paragraph looking for safety.  I faced loss early in my life and my siblings being older than me meant they left me early.  School was easy but forming friendships was not.  I relied heavily on my parents and the times I remember feeling the best were with them.  I remember always being able to count on them.  They were my source and my friends and I was happy to be the same for them because they were constant.  Trying to numb the lack of security I feel now along with the latent feelings of loss as a child means doing things to keep me away from what I need to.

Finding safety means slowing down enough to do one meaningful thing at a time.  It means recognizing that we are safe enough to do one thing at a time and we don’t need to rush through anything.  Rushing through life won’t get us further from what already happened.  The only thing that can do is get us further from where we want to be.  Keep centered and trust you know what is best for you.  Set boundaries and limits and learn to disconnect from the constant connection and the expectation that you will always be available.  We do not owe anyone unlimited access to our energy and it is up to us to set that limit in spite of how quickly things move.  We are entitled to our space and to refill our cups as much and as often as necessary.  It’s only when our cups run over that we can sufficiently share with others without depleting ourselves.  Let’s create some new expectations and use our capacity for good.

Follow up–Stagnation

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I want to talk about divine timing as it relates to stagnation.  I’ve always been impatient.  I’m a doer and I literally always had to be doing something whether it was productive or not.  My mind races a million miles an hour in a million different directions on about five or six different tracks at the same time, so I HAVE to do something to keep myself occupied.  For example, even as I write this, I have three other pieces going through my head at the same time—and I know I will forget them if I don’t acknowledge them now.  The point is that I’ve struggled to accept or believe that anything will result from my actions and now it makes sense: I’ve never allowed for the follow through.  I’ve never allowed anything to get done because I was always doing and not finishing.  It kept me exactly where I was, running the same track over and over again for years, thinking I was possibly getting somewhere when I was just widening the circle (we’ve talked about that before).

Last weekend I woke up on Saturday and the laundry list of things that needed to be done immediately went through my head.  I got overwhelmed and I couldn’t tell if it was because I overcommitted or if I just wasn’t happy or if this is just life.  So, I started checking some things off the list and then I sat down to do my cards and they talked about flow and I wrote a brief caption about adjusting the sails and letting it happen.  Shortly after that, I came across the opening quote from yesterday’s post about healing and releasing baggage that can’t be taken with you.  And immediately after that, I read a piece by Logan Ellisen talking about trusting divine timing.  There is no way those three things can be coincidence.  So I listened and I realized that all of the emotion I’ve been harboring has been about that.  I’ve been carrying too much with me when I need to leave it where it belongs: in the past.

It’s funny how that type of timing works because for weeks I’ve been wrestling with the idea of the type of person I am.  My brain isn’t always a kind place so I’ve been edging on some darkness with these thoughts.  I’ve said it before, learning the truth about who we are is not work for the weak.  It is heavy and it hurts.  For example, all this time with my son, I’ve thought I was engaging with him and showing him different experiences (aside from video games) and trying to make him happy.  Trying to give him memories that I had as a child and things I enjoyed doing.  We had a conversation, and as five year olds do, he told me he doesn’t like me.  He also said I wasn’t the only parent in the house and those things got me really thinking.  I’ve been trying to make my kid like me.  Instead of meeting him where he is, I’ve been seeking approval from my child just as I’ve sought approval from everyone else my whole life.  That isn’t fair to him to carry that burden. 

So, when it comes to stagnation, I’ve learned that waiting for someone’s approval or permission isn’t going to move me forward.  That is some of the baggage I need to leave behind.  I can’t carry that with me.  Making people like me isn’t allowing me to be me.  It isn’t allowing for authentic expression because I’m tailored to what you expect of me.  THAT has to stop.  What moves us forward is doing—but in the form of productive action, not activity.  For the brain that veers off easily, this is when you have to learn to pause long enough to assess whether or not that activity is aligning or getting you closer to what you want.  Then you can make a decision to continue or to find something else to do.  The more you can do things that get you closer to what you are meant to do, the further ahead you will be and THAT is the farthest thing from stagnation—that is productive.  

Stagnation

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Someone told me, “Whenever your life is feeling stagnant or as if nothing is happening, that means you’re being given the time and space to heal and release the baggage that you cannot carry to where you’re meant to go soon,” via beingawoke. Healing is a doozy.  It is vulnerable work and time consuming.  And to do it right, it exposes the parts of us we either keep hidden or protected.  Healing and releasing for the sake of moving forward means letting go of what we carried as an identifier and stepping into who we are.  Healing looks different for everyone whether it is ending a relationship or habit or changing a way of being that we are used to. 

I personally always felt frustration with stagnation.  I wanted to do as much as I could and that goes to the speed my mind operates (more to come on that tomorrow).  I couldn’t handle sitting still and I certainly couldn’t handle waiting for the results to come when I put in all the effort and wasn’t seeing any fruit.  I interpreted that as not doing enough.  I had no concept of patience, I merely wanted the reward—they say the fruit is always the last thing to bloom on the tree but I expected it when I wanted it, not when it was ready. Regardless, I’ve told you the stories of how I’ve repeated the same day for a long time, thinking it was getting me somewhere only to continue the same pattern day after day.  Sometimes those patterns aren’t ours.

Sometimes those patterns and the healing work we are supposed to do comes from someone else.  For me, I remembered my grandmother talking about my great grandmother and her anxieties related to illness and disease.  I knew exactly what my grandmother had described because I do that myself: I exaggerate and fixate and automatically go to worst-case scenario in my head.  That is something that needs to be healed after carrying it for over 100 years in the family—that we know of. The patterns we learn about our worth and our place and the things we are supposed to do also need to be released.  There comes a time when we have to find who we are on our own.

Part of that healing is learning to actually slow down in the slow times.  As the quote says, we are being given space to heal and release the baggage we can’t carry to where we are going.  When you have a busy mind, you can physically slow down easier than you can mentally.  But that is the trick.  You have to learn to be ok with shutting off every now and then.  The operating system isn’t designed to go at peak level forever.  It needs to heal, pause, reboot, and reset.  The only way to do that is to accept the lessons in the slow time.  Stop looking for activity when rest and healing are what you need. Stop looking for distraction from what is really going on.  Get ready to level up by being who you are.  Allow.

Handling Emotion

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I’ve always found it funny that self-expression or the expression of any emotion can be deemed ‘too much”.  I mean, I guess it makes sense because we’ve been in a sustained trauma for years now, with no real resolution or solution and we’ve been told that this is “normal” when it is anything but, and to some degree, was avoidable.  Watching people continue to not deal with all of their traumas and issues has created a powder keg situation of emotion, ego, and temper-tantrums in nearly every arena. We mask it by citing business or necessity or believing there isn’t time to deal with it when the truth is we were never taught to process emotion and we are expecting people to operate business as usual when we are dealing with an emotional state.  The expectation to move on without addressing what is happening and what the emotions are that are there.  The sadness and feelings that people have that get repressed and suppressed for the sake of moving on and pretend that everything is ok.  That isn’t handling ANYTHING.

Pretending something didn’t happen may be an effective strategy for some, but it doesn’t work for most things.  The bill always comes due as they say, and even if we are able to push away the feelings in the present, they will eventually come back to us.  They will manifest in other ways like in control dramas or emotional breaking or extreme insecurity or lack of self-worth.  Ignoring the truth for the sake of peace doesn’t create peace in the mind.  We need a break and we need to acknowledge that we need help.  We need to acknowledge that we are human.  I’m no longer interested in performing in order to gain acceptance.  I shouldn’t have to drain my energy to the point of not being able to see straight in order for you to tell me that I’m worth my existence.

Dealing with emotions is tricky when you haven’t been trained in what they really are or to acknowledge them effectively.  I admit that.  It’s also really hard to acknowledge them if you’ve never been allowed to express them or if you’ve ben dismissed when you express them.  I think that’s what started this whole piece for me: the outright dismissal that anything happened.  I’ve been surrounded by a group of people, including in intimate relationships, who feel the best way to move on from something painful (even if they caused it) is to pretend it didn’t happen.  I’m a lover and user of words so that literally doesn’t work for me.  I don’t enjoy harboring resentments or unexpressed anything and I know that the way to move forward effectively is to work through it whether we want to or not.  The truth is, you pretending you didn’t do something that hurt me doesn’t take away the hurt. 

Perhaps it’s that person’s way of coping with their mistakes—a ton of people do this, it is completely normal.  But just because it’s normal doesn’t mean it’s healthy or right.  We are human and we will naturally do things that hurt each other whether we mean to or not, that isn’t the point.  The point is there needs to be a mutual understanding of what happened and an acceptance of how to rebuild the trust in order to move on.  For some people it’s as simple as saying sorry.  For others, it takes time.  We all process emotion differently and we all feel it differently. You don’t get to dictate how someone feels…anything.  And you don’t get to ignore how they feel as a result of something you’ve done.  Sometimes all it takes is admitting we’re wrong—and that hurts the ego more than anything.  And I’m here to say take the hit to the ego because worthy relationships are harder to come by than how you feel about yourself.

Joy Reprise

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The act of finding joy means finding what lights you up from the inside.  It means genuinely being yourself and aligning with that definition of who you are.  Finding and experiencing joy when you’ve previously been a people pleaser to the point of denying your own instincts in favor of what other people like is a different story.  On a personal level I’ve been hitting some really difficult things mentally over the last few weeks.  All of the dissatisfaction and distraction have created a breaking point of sorts where I know I don’t want to feel how I do on a given day. I want to head toward joy.  I want to feel joy—not this anger or confusion or sadness over everything.  That requires a deep knowing of who we are.  I want to reiterate that finding joy is not a selfish act, this is a necessary act.  In order to be of service to the world, we have to fill our cups.

There are people who don’t know how to do this.  They may come across as narcissistic or selfish because they tend to be a bit more focused on themselves than other people.  The truth is, these people are not selfish.  Often they have the biggest hearts because they want to make sure they aren’t disappointing anyone.  Other people’s validation means so much to them that they are constantly focused on how they should behave.  And then, if and when they are given the opportunity to define what they want for themselves, they still look at how it impacts other people and they are more often than not spending most of their time figuring out how their choice is going to affect people down the line.  This happens even when we choose breakfast.  And no, I’m not exaggerating.  Some of us are so trained and traumatized that we believe our actions alone can derail or harm others or even inconvenience them.  Then we think about how that will impact our relationship with them.  We fear loneliness and then create isolation with overthinking.

I want to talk about the psychophysiological component as well in that finding joy can be challenging because people who believe their actions can inconvenience others honestly no longer know what joy feels like.  Any time they’ve gotten close, they’ve been shut down or told it’s wrong so in their brains, and their bodies, that feeling of joy is uncomfortable and they will tend to shy away from it. If you associate your happiness with making someone else miserable (or if you’ve been trained to believe that) you won’t allow that joy into your life.  You will spend your life feeling guilt over happiness and waiting for the other shoe to drop.  It’s a constant state of anxiety.    

How do we do that when we haven’t been in a position to do so or if we’ve been led to believe that self-care is selfish?  How do we learn to trust our instincts again so we can lean toward what feels good?  And how do we do all of that in a society that tells us productivity is key?  On that note, when we look at society’s influence on our decisions, we aren’t even able to differentiate between productivity and activity, and believe me, sometimes it is more productive to take a break and watch some cartoons or to go for a run than it is to continue to fight a computer—or other people.

The answer is: do it anyway.  Other people aren’t going to source your happiness for you, only you can do that.  So take the time you need to get familiar with what that is, what those needs are, and what that feels like.  Those are the feelings you need to cultivate and that is the behavior you are looking for.  And the world needs that now more than ever. I will say it over and over again, a million times, in a million ways (perhaps just to remind myself) that anyone who makes you be something your not or makes you sacrifice your boundaries/happiness in favor of theirs is not your person.  Relationships aren’t about winning over another or making one person bend to the other’s whims.  If your joy is the price of being with someone, even platonically, that price is too high. 

The rest of the answer is to stop what you’re doing and learn to differentiate between what you like and what you are told to like.  Find what makes you feel good.  Does the breeze on your skin make you smile?  Does the smell of a book store send shivers down your spine?  Does cuddling with an animal make you calmer?  Does talking with a friend inspire ideas?  THOSE are all signs of joy.  Find those things and go do that.  Do it over and over again until it feels natural.  Then make that part of who you are and integrate it into your routine and make it your identity.  Then light up the world!

No Need to Explain

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Some days it feels like being with people is a chore.  It feels like nothing we do comes across or our point is missed.  Nothing hits the mark.  Sometimes that miscommunication goes on too long.  We start to internalize and ask what we are doing wrong or what isn’t making sense.  In those moments we almost lose a sense of identity and it’s hard to not take it personally.  We feel like we’ve been a pretzel, bending and folding in every direction to make people understand.  I’ve had many moments like that in my life and sometimes I wonder if we are simply communicating from two different levels.  If we don’t understand each other because we aren’t ready to. 

Truly all we want is to be heard and seen so when someone doesn’t seem to “get” what we are saying, we feel violated or disrespected.  As I’m getting older, it seems like communication has degraded.  We use emojis and symbols and use words that have multiple meanings and we remove all context for them.  I mean, I guess communication has always been that way to some degree.  But we don’t take the time to think out what we mean or even understand/process what we mean before spouting out nonsense.  Plus we all have the expectation that people will understand us simply because we are talking.  Not true.  Most people have the attention span of a gnat these days and they use that to focus on themselves and what they have to say.  We don’t respond, we try to get our point heard.  

The truth is I reached a breaking point with communication the other day.  Words are my life and I try my best to be as clear as possible, especially at work. I had a few weeks in a row where people just didn’t get it.  I couldn’t tell if it was intentional or if they just had too much on their minds but I found myself thinking, “I’m so tired of having to clarify and adjust my speech and my train of thought and make people understand what I’m trying to say.  I am so tired of the struggle to get my point across.  I’m tired of having to go back and reexplain everything all the time, in new ways, in ways.  I mean, my goal is to be clear and concise and to work with people, but I can’t deal with intentional misunderstanding, or reading so deeply into something that they miss the point of what I’m trying to do.”  I fell into victim mode.  My breaking point was actually when I was standing up to take the lead for a group project and my boss didn’t even acknowledge that I was making the effort.

Everyone operates from a different level of understanding based on their experiences.  That I will always make allowances for, but if someone is intentionally misunderstanding or making life difficult, that is a different story.  If we can meet at a certain level, that’s great, but for those who refuse, it can’t always be up to us to lift them up to where they need to be.  And the bottom line is, I think if we are with the right people we don’t have to explain anything.  If communication is that much of a struggle then it may be time to let go.  It may be time to find the place where people DO get it.  Not everyone is for us and not every environment is healthy for who we are.  That is ok.  Avoid the ones who make you feel alone when you’re screaming in a crowded room and focus on the ones who make you feel heard without a word.  THAT’S where you belong.