I am the flow of change,
and I am grateful for the gifts that shifting brings.
In order to believe he is loved, the wounded child behaves the way he thinks he is supposed to…. Gradually, the false self becomes who the person really thinks he is. He forgets that the false self is an adaptation, an act based on a script someone else wrote. ~John Bradshaw
The Way is an analogy for our life. I think of it as a river that flows at varying speeds as we float along. If we are able to stay present, we stay centered and balanced. When the river of our lives runs into turbulent waters, which it is prone to periodically do – we veer onto one bank that takes us to our past, which encompasses old behaviors and beliefs about our worthiness. While this typically triggers feelings of unworthiness, it also feels familiar and normal at the same time. On the opposite bank, we encounter the future, which is plagued with fears and doubts that are directly linked to the messages we are playing out from the past. Essentially, slipping back into the old thinking and behavior of childhood often propels us into an unhappy future based on evidence of the past. By stepping into the past, we are at the same time taking a leap into the future and projecting more of the same based on old information. Neither the past nor the future is real, but we tend to reside there as if they were.
How do we find our way back to The Way? What enables us to escape the Battlefield of the Past and the Forest of Fear in the Future? By taking an observer’s point of view, we can step back and see ourselves operating under the old tapes and mandates formed in childhood. One of the greatest gifts of writing Too Much Gold to Flush was allowing myself to see how I had played out the rules that felt etched in my brain. By taking that perspective, I finally saw the prison I had created for myself. The looming fear of being trapped in this cycle of insanity gave me the courage to step back on The Way. While I did not immediately begin operating in a state of staying present and breaking the shackles of my old negative core beliefs, this realization did give me the perspective to realize that I could vary how I see things. The idea of change felt scary since I had no idea how to go about doing it. I also knew I did not want to stay stuck in the limited beliefs that currently held me captive, so I vowed to first of all determine what I wanted the new guidelines to be. Second, it felt important for motivational purposes to lay out how I expected to benefit from these changes. How to actually make the shift and experience the expected benefits I hoped would come with time.
How would you like to change your core belief? Obviously you cannot change the past, but we always have the ability to make up new rules that we live by and look at how much easier and more pleasant our lives could be operating under new guidelines. When I began journaling about this topic, my immediate impulse was to look at how I could “fix” my family and slip back into my default mode of trying to gain recognition by doing so. I quickly realized what I was once more employing my negative core belief – gain validation by trying to feel successful in others eyes. Instead, I want to find worth by looking to myself rather than depending on others to give it to me. The benefit of gaining self-worth is escaping the never ending loop of asking the impossible – looking for something externally that can only be found internally.
No one is in control of your happiness but you; therefore, you have the power to change anything about yourself or your life that you want to change. ~ Barbara De Angelis
Please share your response to the following questions about this concept:
What changes would you like to see in your core beliefs? What benefits would you experience if you were able to make this shift?