I’m reading a book I picked up a month or so ago when I attended the Hay House Writers Workshop in Chicago.
Nancy Levin was one of the keynote speakers that weekend. She had a compelling story to tell about her life, her writing process, along with a good dose of humor and insight for those of us in the room who aspire to be published authors.
I enjoyed her talk enough that I bought a copy of her book: “jump… and your life will appear”
Over the last few days, I’ve begun to read and work with the ideas that Nancy shared and the frank and honest disclosures she makes about her life have once again caused me to reflect back on mine.
Those who know me likely know that I’m a touch prone to overthink almost any situation, and like most of us walking around on legs, I seldom hold back in my criticism and harsh treatment of myself. This time though, my approach to myself seems to be a bit kinder. Not totally without a touch of regret here and there, but not the beat myself bloody type of self abuse that used to be quite common.
THAT is an awareness I celebrate! It appears to be possible to learn from past choices and then move on with gratitude for what those situations taught me about myself and about the people and world around me.
In the opening pages of the book, there is a small segment on forgiveness. When I read it, I really laughed to myself, as it served as the final reminder that forgiveness has been on my mind over the last several weeks. As my thoughts would turn to forgiveness, there would be a few faces and/or situations that would present to me (again) as if to say “we’re not quite there yet!” or, “you thought you’d finished with me, but there’s still a bit more that needs your attention here!”.
The places where it appears more might be needed were not a surprise to me in the least. However, there were some faces and names that did not present that I would have likely expected to need to revisit.
But as I looked at the people and events that was no longer on the needs attention list, I realized that I was in a good and peaceful place, and felt like the process that was needed had been successfully completed.
As it often is, the timing is pretty much perfect. I’ve been excavating through old files, old writings, old journals as I mine for what has already been written that feels like it is a part of the 1st book. (working title: “The Road to Happyville, hence the name for this blog section of my website). Over the last 7 or 8 years, there are a stack of journals that chronicle my life. There are tales from the journey that as I re-read them make me thankful for every step along the way, each person who stepped in to play the role we had agreed they would play and then either became important, ongoing parts of my life or stepped away upon the completion of what was needed.
I’ve said before that I’ve become the man I am because of the experiences I’ve had, the people who have helped teach me what I wanted/needed to learn. The people who have lifted me up, the people who have attempted to extinguish my light and wear down my resolve.
It is this last group that I am likely the most thankful for. Though I prefer to interact with the others in my daily life. The ones who I perceived as being evil, unnecessarily harsh, nasty and hateful helped bring me to a place where I was no longer willing to accept their inaccurate vision of who I am. I was no longer willing to roll over and play dead rather than standing proudly with the knowledge that I have skills and gifts and an important part to play in life.
Some helped me to see that I’m not a total dumb ass, (though occasionally I can still act like one), others that while I’m happy to carry the load and help in most any way I can, I’m nobody’s roadie…that while I don’t need the spotlight to shine only on me, I am not willing to stand backstage in the shadows until the show is over.
I’ve lived enough years to know that there’s great truth in the idea that when the student is ready, the teacher appears. Also, that every person and situation we experience is something we invited, one way or another, and if we are honest as we look at each and every one, there is value to be gained.
So, as my reading of old writings is reminding me of tools and processes that were so incredibly powerful and helpful as I needed them that I forgot about them. It’s also reminding me of where I’ve been, the journey I’ve walked, the way some of my old, very harsh feelings for people and situations that have come and gone, on the overall, I’m good with who I am and where I am.
That said, it is once again time to reactivate some of those tools and do what could be the final little bits of clean up relative to a few people and situations who I’ve allowed myself to hold onto a bit of frustration.
My assessment of the amount of work that is needed on these very few situations is that it’s fast and easy. But that does not diminish in the least the importance of completion.
If you’re interested, many of the tools I’ll be putting back into action are on my website at RedefiningSuccess.net under the FREE TOOLS section.
Help yourself, because by doing that, you will truly be helping yourself.