Really, try it, and I can guarantee that you will start feeling better.
1. How your generosity is received. I have friends who stress themselves out endlessly over the things that they do for other people, and their perception of what other people do for them in return. It is a battle that can never be won. None of us can ever expect that the gift we give of ourselves will be appreciated the way that we want for it to be. Giving takes courage and faith and that is why it is important for us to do it over and over again. Learning to let go of what we choose to give, leaving not a single string attached, is a great challenge in life. Remembering that the universe will ultimately keep everything in balance, whether or not we are able to see it, can provide great comfort.
2. What other people think of you. This is a gigantic challenge for me, and honestly it has been lessening year by year as my children get older. I don’t think that society properly addresses how strongly and fully new mothers are judged by their communities. I am coming out of ten years of speculation about every single damn decision I made on a daily basis in regards to raising my kids, and I made some pretty unpopular ones. I am finally breaking through the fear and I realize that I really do not give a flying fuck what anyone has to say about the choices I make. I do the research and I have the information to back up the reasoning behind my actions. Even if I am the only person in my entire state to do so, I can be confident in the decisions that I make, and the fact that they are nobody’s business but mine. At the end of it all, I find great pride, in going against the flow and succeeding on my own.
3. Television. It is a box made up for entertainment; this is something that each and every one of us should be repeating over and over again every single time that we take the risk to turn one on. The television exploits the absolute worst of every single thing that the people who produce it can come up with to shock and titillate even the very lowest of IQs. Don’t get upset or stress out over what they are saying on the nightly news, go and research it yourself. You will learn something, and probably discover that most of the things you were hearing from the television were inflated lies, and you will be actively doing something, not passively being spoon fed the things that the corporations that control our government want for you to gorge yourself on.
4. Labels. Labels exist uniquely to separate people when the thing that we are all ultimately meant to learn in life is how very much we are all alike. Labels are against nature. Just because you identify with a religion, or a class, or a race, or a sexual orientation does not mean that you are not a relevant individual and a part of the collective consciousness of the universe. When you choose to buy a car or a shirt or a handbag, or to travel somewhere merely because of the reputation of a name, you are only acting to put another barrier between yourself and the source that you ultimately belong to. When you choose to stop separating yourself artificially and start working to play a part in what is your natural destination, you will find yourself in a much happier place.
5. Your appearance. I have always believed that a person evolves in another’s eyes as they show their soul to other people. I have known ascetically beautiful people with ugly souls that I could not bear to look at for very long, and people with plenty of scars and wrinkles who have spirits so bright that I wished for my time with them to go on and on. Beauty comes from inside of all us, and all of the bullshit that we are being sold to supposedly make us look more attractive, only serves to poison our bodies and minds, degrade our sense of responsibility to others, and hide our true beauty away from the rest of the world.
6. Comparison. Stop comparing yourself to everything and everyone that you see all around you. Here’s a little secret: almost ninety-nine percent of them are doing it wrong, so why are you comparing yourself to them? The greatest sense of accomplishment that any of us can achieve is in beating ourselves at our own best, trying harder and doing better than we did yesterday. Comparing ourselves to the actions and successes of other people can only serve to make us miserable.
7. Being wrong. I gain the greatest insight when I come to those moments where I realize that I am wrong about something. I work hard to announce that I am not sure about something when I do not know whether or not I have the correct answer, to ensure that I am not passing on incorrect information, and I am vigilant about looking things up. It is important that we not fear being incorrect, because doubt generates fear and encourages inaction. When decisions are made and actions are taken with concern for everyone involved in mind, nothing is ever truly wrong, and lessons will always stand to be learned.
8. Getting old. So many people live in fear of aging, and it is in fact the fear that is causing them to age, possibly much more rapidly than they need to. Keep an open mind, never stop seeking out new information, and always keep your body moving. Feed yourself well with healthy foods and positive thoughts and your physical aging will become something that merely is rather than something that you need to fight against to survive. Work with the years and the wisdom that you are gaining along the way. You are here for a reason, to enjoy an experience. Stop counting the minutes along the way.
9. Reputation. To me the word basically represents the steps taken to present a lie to the rest of the world. Specifically in regards to family, a reputation is all of the skeletons that have been hidden away in the closet over the years to make the family look better. In the process of this we perpetuate sickness. You have no obligation to hide your past from anyone. You do not owe it to your father or to any other person to cover up the things that they have done. Many of us will never heal until we bring our secrets out into the light. Only there can we find the support and understanding that we need to move on with our lives.
10. Recognition. The quest to be widely known is the very thing that is taking out members of our younger generations in a terrible way. There are people in our communities who would willingly do horrible things to other people or to themselves just so that they might have a chance to be recognized by others, and it is a societal sickness. Each of us should know deep down that the message we have to share in life is what is vitally important, not who carries its banner. We can all find our greatest satisfaction in quiet success when we learn to love and respect ourselves as individuals. Whether or not any other singular person appreciates what we have achieved is entirely irrelevant to our happiness.