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Posts tagged ‘well’

Choose Your Words Carefully in Case You Have to Eat Them

May the Words We Speak Be Tasty

https://www.flickr.com/photos/162733867@N08/29086322568/in/photolist-Ljg1m9-8b3Bcq-8dftDn-8mKHGw-kNJinr-7G5qTG-qqkYQy-8diVHq-icq54s-7G1vvv-8wSgbU-icquZX-7G5rPh-icquE8-icqcvj-dumDWG-c2Bg2L-9tJW5E-c2BjJY-dug3Ya-6CY1c7-F2Dn7m-6RgcKS-oTJEvg-myPgtn-5JppCu-b8Mizx-6zQ5G6-8mKTLQ-7KP9jG-dumDnj-8mGTPt-ryq1RH-sve5aR-7KK6Ec-4JjASd-9ATqPS-7KKbkz-8mGXFk-8mL5Ld-7RZ28J-4Jfkoc-8dfkdv-8mGyHH-8mGJdK-8afnPD-6Lg64e-biSy3F-pihYMh-8sRJY6In Lewis Carroll’s “Alice in Wonderland”, Alice is called upon to make a speech at the Mad Tea Party. She launches into a typical wordy monologue. Later, she’s admonished by the other party-goers who tell her she should have chosen her words more carefully, as now she has to eat them. In this case, and given the many unusual events during Alice’s trip down the rabbit hole, a speech was simply another word for placing your food order.

In life, we do much the same thing. The words we speak define our lives, whether we realize it or not. If we spend our lives complaining about how imperfect things are, what we don’t have, and how lousy we feel, we’ll attract more of the same. It reminds me of my dad telling me “stop crying or I’ll give you something to cry about”. In short, we get the life we order.

People Can be “Nellies” or “Pollies

Lately I’ve noticed my friends on Facebook (the ones I haven’t unfollowed for posting too much political https://www.flickr.com/photos/paulhami/2993662670/in/photolist-5yxiBC-8U5hPD-3edYTu-4CUgRY-3zQatC-5vmZ5c-bu1dBi-aGGHJg-aGGHaR-BrnmAC-JDHRGr-aGGG6n-anNJMT-aGGJDF-nhi5kC-URiXsy-8TU5Uu-7RHX6n-dSUfp3-8pz3GG-ax1E17-Gf1oKW-5wx88t-66XiHU-7U9YpL-7fcpGE-6C7S53-6AEtio-8YbMjQ-587zbz-MiRWFF-5htVfK-onWKYE-edRR9q-9jX3Pw-oZ6LzR-8pRD6w-9eVxUz-axUgNW-F6D6yL-dbZeKc-4cLsjY-b8ppRD-FfTkWW-7Lsz4B-66Xk3Q-2zs3Zi-7Lxsep-kyFmeu-RNnFfMnonsense, at least) seem to fall into one of two categories: Negative Nellies or Positive Pollies.

The “Nellies” are the ones who will post things like “I’m having a really bad day. Someone post the 12th picture on your camera roll to make me smile.” Or “I really hate my job. I wish I was {anywhere that isn’t their current reality}”. Or worse, “I’m so sick right now. I wish I could feel better”.

It’s gotten to the point where I don’t even click on notifications they’ve posted even though I know there is often something valuable buried amongst all the complaints. I almost want to shout at them If I wanted to see or hear something depressing, I’d watching the freaking news! But I restrain myself. I know they’re in a bad place, and may not even know how to get out of it.

Just as I choose not to see all their negativity, they can’t or won’t see all the positive quotes, comments, and graphics I’m posting, nor those shared by anyone else on their list. When we are deep in a wallow, we see all that positivity as a poke in the eye. How can everyone else be so perky and happy when we’re in the depths of despair? They’re probably lying. Nobody can be that happy with their lives because no matter who they are, shit happens.

Seeing the Value in All Experiences

The “Pollies” know shit happens, but handle it in a completely different way. They look for things in their life to be grateful for. They seek out other “Pollies” who post things that lift their spirits. The do their best to lift someone else’s spirits. Why? Because it’s a known fact if you do something for someone else, it will make you feel better!

That’s not to say the “Nellies” aren’t socially conscious, loving, giving people. I know some whose lives are spent doing good and helping others. Why can’t they find the joy in all they’re giving? Though it baffles me, I wonder if it’s coming from the wrong place. I don’t mean they’re giving with the expectation of getting something in return, and becoming despondent when that doesn’t happen. I think some of them give through a sense of obligation.

When my kids or a friend would thank me for a deed or gift by saying “you didn’t have to do that”, I’d always respond “if I had to do it, I probably wouldn’t have. I did it because I wanted to.”  The same holds true today.

Doing Good, Each in Our Own Way

Maybe I’m not working at a soup kitchen serving meals to people who can’t afford food. It’s not that I don’t care. It’s simply not where I choose to put my Samaritan efforts. Heaven knows there are more than enough causes and neediness to go around when it comes to doing our part to make the world better. I have causes I support, but have no need or desire to broadcast my efforts. I simply do what I can and know in my heart I’m doing something to make a difference, no matter how small.

“Pollies” go around spreading joy wherever they go, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t times when they need a boost too. It is a little harder to get them to admit it though! I have friends who are suffering from cancer, or a debilitating disease who are the most fervent broadcasters of joy and positivity I know. You wouldn’t even suspect there are serious challenges in their lives unless you get into a private conversation with them and give them the opportunity to open up a bit without feeling like they’re dumping on anyone. They find their joy and purpose in raising the joy level overall.

Giving From Our Own Well

There’s a younger couple I see at the gym whenever I’m there. They’re not the skinny minnie, or hard bodies, but they are something far more impressive. The first time I really noticed them was when the woman did squats holding a 75 pound dumbbell. You read that right. SEVENTY-FIVE FREAKING POUNDS! And she did really low squats, nearly to the ground, several times with that behemoth of a dumbbell. I almost had to pick my jaw up off the floor!

Not only that, they usually have one of those skinny minnies with them, showing them how to use the machines and weights properly. I was so impressed I finally broke my usual silence while at the gym to tell them how much they inspire me, not only with their physical strength and dedication to their own health, but because they take the time to help other people too. Of course, they were incredibly humble, and touched to be recognized doing what they clearly love to do. I walked away feeling uplifted and blessed to have had the opportunity to interact with people like that. They are giving back by using their own skills and talents, yet see nothing unusual or noteworthy about what they’re doing.

I’m learning when we give back out of desire rather than obligation, and do so in a way that utilizes our own unique skills and talents, we generate positive energy effortlessly. We’re doing what comes naturally, and because it’s natural, we create something genuine, honest, and in most cases, heart warming too.

Are You Giving Because You Can, or Because You Believe You Must?

I think that’s the greatest difference I notice between the “Pollies” and the “Nellies”. “Pollies” give because they can, and without even thinking about it as giving. They share what they’ve learned with others who might need a little help getting going. They give from a bottomless well because they’re doing what comes naturally; from a well that never empties because it’s source is soul deep and each act of sharing replenishes rather than drains it.

“Nellies” give because they feel it’s what they’re supposed to do. It may also come from the core of their being, but because they feel it’s obligatory, they’re not refilling their own well with the joy of doing something simply because they can. They’re doing it because they feel they must, or to get recognized for being a good person, or some other reason known only to them. The giving drains and depletes them because they do the right thing for all the wrong reasons.

Negativity is a Cry for Help in Changing Perspective

I could hide every one of my friends who typically spreads sadness and negativity, but know it’s their Created with Canvaway of asking for help. Somewhere along the way, they might catch the attention of a “Polly” who can help pull them a little way out of the hole they’ve dug for themselves. Though, sad to say, it’s likely they’ll attract more of what they’re broadcasting and dig themselves in deeper.

We all respond from our own perspective. Negative people don’t always see the positive aspect which exists in everything. For example, I started getting a migraine yesterday just as I was finishing my errands. My thoughts went something like this.

Dammit! Another migraine.

At least I’m almost done with my errands, and less than 5 minutes from home.

I’m so glad I have an early warning system that tells me a migraine is coming so I can do something to keep it from being really bad.

I’m glad I was able to get everything done before this came on.

In the end, I missed the night of dancing I’d planned, but instead, I got laundry done and got to talk to a friend, (another “Polly” as it happens) and learn a little more about her. In return, I got the inspiration for this post. In my mind, the migraine changed my plans, but put me exactly where I was supposed to be.

Learning to Flip Our Own Script

If I was still a “Nellie” as I was a couple of decades ago, the conversation with myself would have gone much differently, and I’d have missed an opportunity. I will always be grateful to the friend who introduced me to “The Secret” and helped me start recognizing my negative self-talk. The journey of discovery and resulting climb up the emotional ladder continues. I may still have begun without her help, but I’d have found the way a lot later, and suffered a lot longer.

I wish for all of my “Nellie” friends out there the help and guidance to start climbing out of their own emotional pit of despair. It’s a lot more pleasant up here where the sun shines and the flowers bloom.

Gratitude: The Ultimate Script Flipper

My gratitudes today are:

  1. I am grateful for the people who have been put in my path at just the right time so I begin moving in a new and better direction.
  2. I am grateful for the coaches, cheerleaders, and butt kickers who ensure I keep moving forward instead of trying to revisit and regurgitate where I’ve been.
  3. I am grateful for the inspiration and motivation to get ahead on some things so I’m more likely to get back to those things which will ultimately propel me forward.
  4. I am grateful fro new ideas and viewpoints which are constantly appearing, exactly when I need to hear and see them.
  5. I am grateful for abundance; love, encouragement, support, joy, positivity, friendship, variety, people, peace, health, harmony, philanthropy, and prosperity.

Love and Light

Special thanks to Becca Burnett who inspired this post.

About the Author

Sheri Conaway is a writer, blogger, ghostwriter, and advocate for cats. Sheri believes in the Laws of Attraction, but only if you are a participant rather than just an observer. Her mission is to Make Vulnerable Beautiful and help entrepreneurs touch the souls of their readers and clients so they can increase their impact and their income. If you’d like to have her write for you, please visit her Hire Me page for more information. You can also find her on Facebook Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author or in her new group, Putting Your Whole Heart Forward.

Dissed or Dismissed

https://www.flickr.com/photos/isfullofcrap/14380470592/in/photolist-nUKEU9-oMLPmB-8o71Ca-nPPNHJ-qd9RKP-okhmqR-fuWjT3-oML6M6-fuX8cK-p5e2Em-GERdfA-vFBnZi-oML9bz-p4ZHWk-o5JVM2-oMLPzT-aC6HoR-fuG2oD-5fJ4yk-p3e3fq-fvcbu9-fuxXyo-4vkQY2-fuWm8Q-o7cT4m-dxhEEA-nPPevH-9hDwZw-axGR4j-nWVbLk-ry7Zq9-nPNYbf-fuhu2e-o4eXnh-noF8Du-o5gnFG-6j3PHv-ocnr3Y-BKd9wG-dmwng-oMLLX9-fuWM6k-fvc3HQ-oMLjrL-fuXjMt-dFuNNC-o22Eqd-U1T3as-o5go5s-9T6eJo

When We Outlive Our Usefulness

Recently I was forced to accept a hard truth. A woman for whom I’d been doing a few simple kindnesses had been accepting them with little more than an off-hand thank you, almost as if my actions were her due. Then I witnessed her offering to compensate someone else for a similar kindness. It made me feel that in her eyes I had little value, a feeling which was proven when she approached a group of us talking and acted like I wasn’t there.

Sure, I was hurt at first. But then I remembered a friend’s wise words. “Don’t take another person’s actions personally”. In this case and a few others recently, I saw how well the words applied and am doing my best to take them to heart.

People and Their Stuff

People are always going through their own stuff. We aren’t always aware of what that stuff is (unless it’s one of those people who broadcast their entire life in true basketball play-by-play fashion on social media). Some are truly going through a difficult time. But like it or not, some are simply narcissists who direct their attention towards those who can benefit them is some way and blatantly snub those who might somehow stand in their way or worse, offer them no value. Either way, their actions are a reflection of themselves and nothing more.

Unfortunately, they are often quite adept at drawing an empath into their game for a little while. Their very real struggles to achieve value and validation can tug at sensitive heartstrings and bring a desire to help. But eventually their true, soul-sucking nature comes through and it becomes clear that this person will continue to take, never to be filled and will, if they’re permitted, drain the empath dry before seeking another soul to suck.

With Age Comes Perspective

As I get older, I don’t stop being taken in but I do learn to recognize the signs and extricate myself before any long-term damage is done. The knowledge that it truly isn’t personal has done a lot to help me withdraw and heal more readily

Although I wouldn’t go so far as to say these people don’t recognize their insensitivity or the harm they do, I do believe it isn’t a conscious choice to harm a particular person. They simply latch onto the easiest targets to fill a well in themselves which can never be filled. They themselves are a black hole of insecurities which absorb compliments and reassurances like a dry sponge yet never come close to saturation.

That would require becoming a complete human being capable of both giving and taking on a visceral level. They’re only capable of such actions on a superficial level at best.

Learning to Offer Pity and Nothing More

I’ve found such people earn my pity as they are incapable of having truly fulfilling relationships with others. They’ll always be looking for the next emotional well to drain in a fruitless effort to more than dampen the ground at the bottom of their own. But it just absorbs what it takes from others like a vampire sucks blood, never satisfied, never fulfilled.

I can’t imagine the emptiness of a life which depends on the emotions and approval of others, yet still finds no value in themselves. It must be a sad, lonely place where love and joy are just words with no meaning to which they might connect personal experience.

Experiences Help Me Better Understand My Mom

Then I think about my mom and the collection of faces she showed the world. I wonder if this emptiness I recognize in others was the life she lived and saw fit to cut short because she saw no reason to continue living in that infinitely dry well. Though I’m tempted to show more compassion for those who live their lives this way, I know it will not only pass unappreciated, but will end with me feeling used and hurt.

There are many people in this world who deserve our love and compassion; those who face their own struggles, yet put some effort into getting through each day on their own. But there are some who always expect others to fix what’s broken. Those who never recognize that in order to fix their own broken parts, they have to be an active and willing participant. To me, these people are no better than the man who pays for sex because he’s not willing to give something back to his partner other than the sightless, soulless cash he gives in exchange for a few moments of physical pleasure.

Recognizing Real Value

They believe they give value for what they receive, and I’m sure in their minds, that value is fair and reasonable. But that questionable value is something I’ve chosen to refuse. If I can’t give of myself willingly and lovingly, I’d rather walk away and leave a broken, lonely, confused person to someone else’s ministrations. To help them, even for the short time I’m able would only leave me drained and them searching for something they’ll never find.

Still, I can’t help giving them the benefit of the doubt for a little while, in hopes they can find the spark of humanity they’ve long since buried beneath layers of brick, mortar, and building materials proven impermeable to the balm of humanity we all come into this world bearing. My hope will always spring eternal. I’ll forever believe I can make a difference in just one person’s life. No matter how many times I fail.

There is Always a Reason for Gratitude

My gratitudes tonight are:

  1. I am grateful I toppled my own walls, despite the agony it caused for a little while.
  2. I am grateful my well is always full, no matter how many people have tried to drain it dry.
  3. I am grateful for friends who value me even when I’m not behaving like I deserve it.
  4. I am grateful for my writing which helps me work things out, sort things out, and just gain perspective over that which weighs me down for a bit.
  5. I am grateful for abundance; prosperity, friendship, love, hope, joy, compassion, inspiration, insight, motivation, support, peace, harmony, and philanthropy.

Love and Light

I invite you to visit my Facebook pages, Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author and HLWT Accounting. Please also drop by my website, www.shericonaway.com and check out my Hire Me Page. I’ve created these pages as a means of positive affirmation and would be very grateful if you’d “like” them or leave a comment! Thank you!

 

Photo courtesy of R. Crap Mariner via Flikr

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