“Be… don’t try to become” -Osho
As I sail along on my SELFship (see previous blog post for background), I realize that negative thoughts and actions were creating holes in my ship causing it to sink. The holes came in the form of toxic behaviors and traits towards myself, my family, my child (future blog), in my relationships, and with God. When I realized I was sinking my own ship, I decided that I was going to make a conscious effort to change, so I decided to be…
Be happy. You are responsible for your own happiness. As hard as it may be to believe I did not understand how my happiness was my responsibility. In my last relationship I started depending on him for my happiness, making him responsible for my happiness. I put so much pressure on him that I pushed him away and in the end, I ended up hurting myself… AGAIN. Understanding that it is my responsibility alone to make myself happy was a daily struggle. One day I went to counseling and I was crying and exclaiming that I think am going to be sad and depressed forever. And she stated to me, “Damn it Lindsey, stop having a pity-party and just be happy.”, and I explained that I can’t be happy, I have tried. She said that’s the problem “YOU” have to STOP trying and just be…. it’s a choice. It took awhile and sometimes I still fail, but everyday I MAKE AN INTENTIONAL DECISION TO BE HAPPY… that’s it! You have to decide to be happy… stop trying… stop wanting to… stop going to…. and JUST BE HAPPY.
Be at peace. I read on Instagram once, “If something costs you your peace, it’s too expensive.” Knowing that having peace within should be a necessity, however finding peace is the hard part. I tried to find peace several ways… I tried buying my peace, creating my peace, and even stealing someone else’s peace. I wanted INSTANT GRATIFICATION peace, but I painfully found out that that’s not how peace works. You have to practice and consistently focus on peace if you truly desire to have it. At first when I made an intentional decision to find peace within myself I had to gain understanding that being AT PEACE and BEING HAPPY are two completely different feelings. Having peace doesn’t mean that you are going to be happy everyday, it just means in the mist of a storm you are going to be able to be calm and relay not on your own understanding but the works of God to be at the center of it to help you through it…. basically HAVING FAITH. When I made up my mind to be intentional with my peace that meant that I was going to:
- Allow God to be at the forefront of every situation
- Trust that things will work out the exact way it is suppose to work out
- Stop doing things in my own might
- Practice forms of self care, (i.e., writing, meditation, exercising, yoga, having quiet time)
- Unfollow, block, and remove people and things out of my life that disturbs my peace or made me feel less than
When I began searching for peace I had to wrestle with SO MANY inner demons, all of whom tried to aggravate my spirit and torture my soul. Listen, I have had many arounds with my inner demons and I have lost many fights but after losing I always remember this one saying I heard as a child. This woman (then teenager) named Toya Mole was talking to my sister and she said (and I quote) “If someone beats me up I am going to fight them until I win because if we fight 100 times and they beat me up 99, I can still say I beat them once.” I don’t know why that has always stuck with me but it did and that is my attitude when I am fighting my inner demons. They may beat me 9 times but that 10th time… that 10th time is ALL ME and I am going to MESS THEM UP (but not by my might but by HIS)!!!!! All in all, I just want you to know your peace is worth fighting for…. so fight hard, admire the scars, and enjoy the healing process.
Be positive. NO one has time for negativity because negativity causes stress, which causes anxiety, and eventually anger and depression…. AND NOT TO MENTION, WRINKLES 😩! “A steady drip of water will wear a hole in a rock.” (author unknown) As a depression and anxiety sufferer I have to consistently feed myself positive thoughts because consistent negative thoughts can severely damage the brain. When I find my thoughts going to a negative place I do my best to redirect them with three positive thoughts to help reverse the damage I have already done. Affirmations always works for me. If you follow me on Snapchat or Instagram, I am pretty sure you’ve seen my mirror selfies, which means you have seen my affirmations post-its all over my closet mirror. I read them daily or as often as I need to. On my journey of “BEING” I discovered that for some strange reason people are always trying to bring me down with their negative words and actions, due to their lack of “BEING”. But, I learned to counter act their negativity with positive words and acts of kindness towards myself.
Be reflective. As a healthy practice I try to reflect on what went well in my day and what I need to improve on (personally, professionally, socially, mentally, and spiritually). This is one of my favorite forms of self care. This is how I make myself better. The great Cassius Clay [aka] Muhammad Ali said “A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” Being reflective allows room for growth and maturity of your mind, body, and soul.
Being able to identify my strengths use to be extremely hard because all I wanted to do was focus on the need improvement areas. It was so easy to point out the negativity in my life, but when I began to change my thinking, finding the positivity in my life started to get easier…. “GROWTH”. I find using oral and written reflections works best for me. When discussing or writing down my thoughts, I strongly believe that I am more likely to follow through with my plans. When planning how I am going to enhance my “need improvement areas” I always:
- Identify the areas that I need to improve in
- Choose one as my focus area
- Set at least 3 S.M.A.R.T goals to help improvement that area. (SMART is an acronym for Small, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-based goals.)
- Work everyday to accomplish my goals, (its not easy but I try my best to grow everyday)
- Celebrate all accomplishments not matter how big or small
****** Know that it is ok if it takes longer usual to accomplish goals… just enjoy the journey.
Be great! Everyday I do all I can to be the best version of myself that I can possibly be. I am human so I am not always successful but I do my best and that is all that matters. Your level of confidence in yourself will determine your greatness. I had a tendency to talk myself out of doing something that I BELIEVE God purposed me to do (i.e. starting this blog). My hindrance was looking at what others had/have and comparing myself to them…. not knowing if that was their chapter 1 or chapter 21. I thought if I saw someone doing what I wanted to do, I should just forget about starting my own and help them with theirs, because my thinking was that I wasn’t going to be as good as them…. THAT’S A LOT OF NEGATIVE SELF TALK RIGHT 😩? I had to build my confidence in myself starting with having FAITH in God and in MYSELF. Supa Cent, a social media influencer, once said…. Just because you see someone else doing something that you want to do, doesn’t mean you can’t do it…. and the example she used was #bread…. she said go down the bread aisle at the grocery story… you will see many different types of bread but its that one that you like that you choose out of all of the different brands…. that’s the same thing with your brand… HAVE THE CONFIDENCE TO START WHATEVER YOU FEEL GOD PLACED DOWN ON THE INSIDE OF YOU AND BE GREAT AT IT!
Ktari (my late sister) use to say to me, “Lynn, don’t be sad because broken crayons still color.” And let me tell you, I am as broken as they come. When she would say that I would think about how a crayon starts off as one crayon and due to the pressure of coloring hard or someone actually snapping it into pieces, it becomes multiple crayons. Look at broken crayons like this, THEY MULTIPLY. When you allow God to work with what YOU THINK are broken pieces, HE can create a master piece. But the trick is not getting caught up in BEING BROKEN because that’s not the goal… the goal of BEING is to find “You” within your brokenness and BE ready to be restored.
Chic Educator 🍎