Life

It’s Peaceful Inside My Own Hulahoop

Do you ever compare your insides to others’ outsides?  For years I didn’t realize that was what I was doing.  I learned what was causing it… For me, it was about not being spiritually centered.  Anytime it happens, when it gets uncomfortable enough and I reflect, it always seems that is the reason. 

The most recent example was my at 45 year class reunion.  I posted a blog about it last week. Things were going along well until they started highlighting people that had accomplished incredible things professionally.  As I looked back on my life, and with the help of my therapist this morning, I had some realizations that I thought were worth sharing.

When a sentence starts off with “I didn’t…” it portrays the negative.  That sounds like a no-brainer, right?  Until I started paying attention to what I am saying, I didn’t realize how often that is what comes out of my mouth.  I had a similar experience with could, should, need to, ought to, etc.,  years ago.  This is another version of the same behavior.  The good news is that now I know what to do and can work on it

Society measures success by the things we own, do, and have accomplished.  Careers, family, material possessions – you understand.  I easily get sucked into that when I am not centered.  I didn’t have children, own a business, have a successful marriage, etc.  Years of 12 step recovery has taught me another way to measure success.  I ask myself the following:  Do I honor my truth on a daily basis?  In other words: are what I think, say, feel, and do in alignment?  Am I of service to others? At the end of each day, do I take an inventory of what I did, didn’t do, could have done better so I can improve myself tomorrow?

Part of this involves changing my perspective of what I have done.  Getting off drugs is not easy.  Staying in the rooms for 25 years, taking things that I used to use as excuses for who I was and using them as reasons for who I can become has not been easy.  It is simple to blame myself for failed marriages.  Taking myself out of violent and emotionally abusive relationships is an act of self-love, even if I didn’t know it at the time.

When I take time to re-frame my perspective, the view is quite different.  As the end of my life gets closer and I reflect, will I feel good about the person I was?  I’m not there, but I can’t believe it will be about the material things I owned or what I did professionally.  It surely won’t be about comparing myself to who you are and what you have.  For me, it will be more about deciding if I was the best Karen I could be. When I stay focused on that, there is no comparing. 

2 thoughts on “It’s Peaceful Inside My Own Hulahoop

  1. If I listed all the things I haven’t accomplished in this lifetime, it would be an endless list. And it’s absolutely a negative view. I like to remember when I first got clean and was given the assignment to go for a 20-minute walk with three different people send ask them to name three things they liked about me. My self-esteem was so low, I couldn’t think of anything for myself, and I procrastinated so long that the next week rolled around and I hadn’t done the assignment. So my new assignment was the same, except now I had to ask six people. So I got it done. At the end of each walk, I wrote what people liked about me on a page in a tiny notebook I carried. I actually carried that page in my wallet for years after, and when my self-esteem was low I’d take it out and read it. It still represents something I accomplished at a time that it was very difficult to do. I don’t have to compare my accomplishments to others’. I can’t do what they’ve done with their lives because their lives aren’t my life. ❤️

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