In life, if we are lucky, we continue to grow everyday in every way. For the past few days I was not taking my own advice and I felt like I was dying a slow death. I was feeling agitated, frustrated and angry with others reactions and comments to things that I was associated with. I let people rent space in my head for free and found myself reacting, not responding to everything around me. I become someone that I am not. Have you ever done that? React to a situation and feel as if you became another person?
I know that other person that showed up for a few days. She is no stranger to me. She was the person I once was when I took on other peoples problems as if they were my own. When I didn’t like myself and I found proof to stay the victim to everything around me. She was filled with tons of self doubt and dis-empowering thoughts finding reason to continually abuse herself. You see, that person doesn’t exist in my life any more today, so you can imagine my surprise when she showed up with guns blaring. It wasn’t me! It was her!
Feeling like a prisoner is something I wanted nothing to do with. I had to figure out how this all happened so I went back to the source and followed the chain of events. My husband had a great idea to serve the masses and I decided to support him to make it a reality. As a matter of fact there were dozens of others that also wanted to become part of something so magical and joined our crusade. But in every great story there is a villain and ours was no different. Not everyone agreed with what we were doing and how we went about it. So we came upon some challenges and an antagonist in our mission. I couldn’t understand how doing something so good could be seen as bad. This is a reality in all our lives when we set out with good intentions. How we deal with the situation will be the deciding factor in how well we live our lives.
At first I thought I failed. I resorted back to old behaviors and didn’t respond to the situation with the grace and charm I felt I possess inside. My first reaction was “Why?” Knowing that the question would only lead me to a myriad of reasons to support my unfounded therapy and continue to make me feel bad. I needed to ask myself better questions because the ones I was coming up with were not giving me great answers. I re-framed the question and asked myself “what’s really bothering me?” When I examined all the evidence I realized it came down to wanting everyone to be happy. Why wouldn’t everyone be happy with something so wonderful? That was the challenge, I wanted the impossible, to please everyone. It doesn’t exist. We have to do our best and forget the rest. I’ve learned if we come from best intentions it can’t be wrong but I still wanted everyone to be happy. When reality doesn’t meet expectations we have conflict and I did.
Spending days reacting to the situation I felt like I fell into an abyss of frustration and despair. I couldn’t see the light and began my old pattern of “all or nothing”. It wasn’t until I resorted to my favorite question that I began to see the light, “Compared to what?” When I asked myself this question it was as if the pearly gates had opened and gave me the answers. What was I getting upset about? How bad is it really? Compared to what? The answers began to flood in like a tidal wave and washed all the despair away.
We’ve heard the expression, it’s darkest before the dawn. Well asking the wrong questions of ourselves is the darkness and asking the right ones is the dawn. It is not where you have been, but where you are going that is important. Do your best to always be moving forward and celebrate every step you take along the way. I am grateful that I, Lisa Dawn Lieberman-Wang am experiencing the dawn once again.