When someone does not live up to our expectations, then we often think we must give up on them, let them go, move on, scold them, teach them or maybe even ‘hurt’ them! Instead what if we pour all that energy into a reinvestment in ourselves.
They were supposed to pay the bill and didn’t how does ‘re-investing’ in myself fix that? Simple, we can learn to become more financially independent. It may not ‘fix’ the current crisis, but it will set us up for a future solution to live in.
They were supposed to get the kids and they didn’t show up. How does ‘re-investing’ in myself fix that? Instead of using the time to be mad at ‘them’ use it to focus on the children, communicate with them, help them understand the other person is not well mentally, emotionally and/or spiritually because anyone that was well on those dimensions could not exist in a pattern of flaking on their own children; which really means they flake on themselves. And think of this “So how does us flaking on ourself, by being angry at them, create a solution?” Yet is that not what we do? We get angry, focus on them, which is really only focusing on the ‘problem’ and it takes away from our own joy!
That is not to say that being disappointed, mad, sad, etc is unhealthy. It’s the ‘dwelling in this space’ which zaps our internal joy and energy and turns us into bitter people.
What if we are upset about our current circumstances, we feel stuck, we have some part of our life that feels incomplete, incorrect or in error? Why not use this time to look at our own internal patterns? Have we felt this way before? Is this the same old pattern, just with a new person or situation? Hmm, what is common about all these themes? Is not the common thread ME?
So how do I set myself up for this? What is my part in all this? What unhealed pieces of me keep attracting these unhealed pieces of another? What can I change about me right now that will change this pattern I am stuck in right now?
These are the questions that help me disconnect from them and re-invest in me! After all they are probably not going to change! And if there is hope of change do I really think it will be brought about by my anger? Do I think this ‘reactive state’ I’m about to engage in will make a difference? Is it not the same ‘reactive state’ I engage in every time and what has changed? So if I can’t change them, and the way I’m going about it is not working, then what new action am I willing to invest in my own personal growth?
And just like losing weight, or getting out of debt, or any other goal it takes time. We will have to work on this with dedicated focus. We will relapse. We will fall into old patterns. We will make mistakes. That does not matter! As Bikram says “your feet hurt, your head hurt, your hair hurt… Good for you, keep going”.
Change may not feel good NOW. Change may be hard NOW. Change my take longer than we had hoped for NOW. Change may mean we lose something we have NOW or not get something we want NOW.
Accept this NOW and restore our minds to sanity NOW!