Staying Home…In My Own Business

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Staying in my business is not only a full time job…it seems like my ONLY job. And one which, often, I need to be reminded.

Who’s business am I in? ANYtime I think you should do, think, or be any different I have stepped over and entered the world of your biz-nessss.
Oooh. Sidebar: You have my permission to give me a gentle reminder of, “Who’s business are you in?” any time you suspect I might be leaving my own sphere. ‘Cause it’s painful to step out of my world and attempt to enter yours. It’s painful, I think, because it’s actually impossible to do.

I mean that’s the kicker isn’t it?

We THINK we have control or even influence over others but we-do-NOT. This includes our children (although, admittedly, this is a grey area…or is it?). People only allow the ideas in that they choose to allow. I had that revelation one night while contemplating a discussion I’d had with my, then 12 yr old, daughter. It was late, I was writing in my journal, and reflecting on the wisdom that she possessed.  I decided to relinquish control on her only to have the mind boggling realization that I didn’t have it anyway!

And..when I’m sitting in a room looking at you , worrying about what you think of me which, in turn, causes me to change my behaviour to entice your approval, I am in your business. And I am in pain…because who you approve of is your business…completely. Just as who I approve of, is my business.

That may sound crass or uncaring. It might be like I’m saying, if you don’t like me…I don’t care ’cause it ain’t my business. But staying in my business – and not obsessing over whether or not you like me – is the most generous gift I can possibly bestow. Staying home with me means that I can step fully into my own potential.
Gone are the fake niceties to impress you – gone is the need to impress you.
Gone is the approval seeking and the sucking of your energy.
Gone are the innuendos that you might not be meeting MY approval.
Gone are the uncomfortable silences because to just BE with you fills me with joy.
Gone is my neediness of you and that you are required to do anything but just be your own beautiful self.

Just imagine that. To sit with someone and have a completely accepting heart.
Mmm. Wait…
Imagine that. To sit with ME and have a completely accepting heart.
Now THAT is love’s divine…right there^^^.

“To think that we know what’s best for another person is to be out of our business. The result is worry, anxiety, and fear. When we mentally step out of our business, we think that we know more than he, she, or God. The only real question is, can we know what’s right for ourselves?” That is our only business. And, as we eventually come to see, not even that”. – Byron Katie

Subservience…How Exquisitely Innocent

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That word “subservient”….
When I wake up to one of my “stories” and reflect on the experience, “subservient” rightly encompasses my feeling.
I can be subservient to my thoughts and beliefs.  I can be subservient to my self-inflicted pain, hurt, and suffering.  To my misonceptions.  I can be – oh so – subservient to my perceptions of the world and projections onto my ever self-creating universe.

And…

I can also be FREE from them.

Freedom and Subservience.

Both are sweet in their love and innocence.

What if I was perfect just as I am? Who would I be?

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What if everything about you was perfect just the way it is…right now?
What if you couldn’t possibly think that there was anything wrong with you…or that anything needed improving?
What would life be like? How would you go about your day?

When I believe that there’s something wrong with me I feel deep dissatisfaction and despair.  Hopelessness.  Resignation even.  Constant comparison to others.  “Reading other people’s minds” – believing that they’re judging me.  Getting into their business.  This is an old feeling dating back as far as I can remember.  I have glimpses of memories – back when I didn’t believe there was anything wrong with me but they’re so fleeting that they’re more like dreams.  The kinds of dreams that when you try to bring them into sharper focus, they fade more rapidly.  I notice that when I believe these thoughts I judge others more readily.  I make myself feel better by finding fault in them.  Sad…but true.

So…what if I didn’t believe I needed improving.  What if I was perfect just as I am?  Looking behind those thoughts are like pulling aside an iron curtain.  What is on the other side of constant self criticism?
Peace.
Love.
Silence.
The world looks brighter.  Lighter.  I have a little more energy.  I feel like nourishing myself with good foods.  I feel like going outside and spreading my arms to the sky and twirling like a little girl.  If there was no goal – no magic number on a scale to reach – I could just be ME.  I could just BE. I could notice what my body craves and answer with love and compassion.

I could be free.

I Choose Peace…Except When I Don’t

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Over the last few years, there’s been a paradigm shift about how I view my role as a parent. I know the adage, “train them up” and all of that. And perhaps like all sayings of this sort this one has been skewed by some from the original intent. I just feel in my bones that it’s not my job to TRAIN my children. OR anyone for that matter. It implies to me like I have to change them somehow. And when I come from that standpoint war then enters my home. OF course, I still teach my children stuff. They have chores and responsibilities. I also see how much they have to teach me. About them. About me. And about life. They have unique perspectives that all their own. They are whole and complete individuals. I LOVE being their parent. And I struggle with decisions and hope we’re doing right by them.

I have noticed that when I meet my children with force that they bend to my will…or they don’t. And when I meet them with peace…they bend to my will or they don’t.

I struggle with the choice of peace over dominance every day.  This illusion that I have any control over my children is one that interferes with my best intentions.  Even when I THINK that I have somehow bent them to my will or asserted my parental authority, I have only done so by their willingness to submit.  They CHOOSE to do what I ask/demand or they don’t.  It’s up to them.  I can’t make them think, say, feel, believe, do anything.

I have influence…sure (as much as they allow).  But again…it’s up to them how much they invite my influence in.

Repeatedly I return to the choice.  I choose peace…except when I don’t. And when I don’t, I choose to learn.

“Learn from your mistakes and then let them go.”

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I love this. So often I notice that when I parent I operate out of previous guilt or future worries. Rarely am I in the HERE and NOW. In this moment.

Sadly I have been (can still be) a yeller in my parenting. It pains me to recall the times that I have put my desire for compliance and what I think is best ahead of peace using the very ineffective tool of yelling and – frankly – bullying to get my way. I MIGHT get my way in the moment but it costs me something very dear…my connection with my child, myself and, ultimately, my self respect. And it haunts me. That may sound over dramatic, but how ever we may want to spin it and find justification…when we wound our child emotionally we wound ourselves.

However, I believe we can heal that wound. I’ve started by forgiving ME. Cheesy? Cliche? Well, I’ve come to love and embrace both the cheese and the clichest (that’s right – I made up a new word) of all cliches.

I can’t speak for anyone else. We all parent the way we choose and I’m not trying to preach. I say with love: You do you…and I’ll do me. I’m just sharing what I’ve discovered is that when I yell and lose my temper it is NEVER about my child.
Ne-VER.
It’s about me projecting all of my agenda, crap, hurt, fears, anguish, whatever…onto them. And, blessedly, I’ve done it very innocently. I was simply believing something at the time. (And there-in lies the softness. And the love.)

I choose to let go of those moments. There have been some amends. After looking in and doing my work, I have found some forgiveness for me through the understanding of what I was thinking and believing at the time. I practice sincerely apologizing to my children. This is an ongoing endeavor. How many times have I forced my children to say ‘sorry’ to someone else? Well…now it’s my turn. And I’m loving every moment. Each time brings clarity, connection, learning, and healing. An amends isn’t about sucking up or grovelling. Or letting them walk all over me. It’s simply owning my part. The gift I often get in return is immeasurable.

In fact…I have another such moment to embrace tonight. A very snappy remark I lashed out at my daughter earlier today. Minor…and it deserves to be undone.