Tuesday, June 4

Our Ideal Self Isn't, Revisited. Going Easy On Myself .........6/4/13

         "Our past, released by forgiveness and gratitude,  frees our            present to be all it can be."    Tim Blessed
Image: "Field and Country: Spring Shine by Tim Blessed.   Copyrighted photo.  His caption fits this post well. 
      I'm bumping this up.   I wrote this two years ago.   Let me know your response.

My Gratitudes for 6/21/11:
1.  I'm working out, making exercise a priority.  I feel good when I take care of
2.  I love myself when I stay in the moment, learn from mistakes and delight in the wonders of the day. 
3. I'm thankful for the recovery I've known the nine plus years.  It has largely eliminated perseverating: obsessive and compulsive thinking of the negative kind.
4.  I appreciate allowing others to have their space.  Instead, I focus on what I can do to make my life more manageable.
5.  I enjoy serenity.  It's the result of letting others be who they are, even if I disagree.
6.  I celebrate that we care for ourselves when we don't base our worth on what we do or what other people think of us.

Our Ideal Self Isn’t: 
        I'm thankful self-compassion is possible.  I've grown, as I've worked on my vulnerabilities.  I'm thankful for an insightful, patient, gracious mentor and healthy loving principles.  They help me see that much of what I held as ideal is errant, less than perfect.

         As a result, this once demanding part of me, my ideal self, has transformed.  It is no longer the terrifying specter that once haunted me, when younger.  It no longer condemns or beat me up.  Imagine that.  Instead, it now loves me. Amazing. Gosh, even.

         I'm grateful for the healing my soul knows.

         My ideal self once judged the vulnerable parts of me---those areas needing growth.  Because of caring, mentors, friends and family members---my Balcony People, especially note the last half of this link----the image of my ideal self has changed.  Because of their unconditional, healing support, I now apply compassion, gentleness and grace, towards me, particularly towards the less than best parts of me.

        Love received from others enables me to tell myself, "that's okay sweetie," as I haltingly take steps that help me get characterologically stronger.  I no longer kick myself with the pointed boots of self-judgement, because of past mistakes.  I don't wound my soul with the painful dimples of condemnation.

         My ideal self---now compassionate towards myself and deaf to the internal voice of the demanding, negative, critical parent---supports the weaker portions of me.  When the real, vulnerable parts of myself are loved, they emerge from hiding, experiencing healing and transformation.

        When my "real self" used to feel condemned, this roguish part of me ran away.  It donned a psychological fig-leaf.  It attempted to avoid shame.  There's no healthy emotional outcome, when I found myself there.
"Condemning my imperfections has never enhanced my appreciation of life nor has it helped me to love myself more. "  Courage To Change, p 19
The following helps instead:
I cannot be perfect.  I cannot make others perfect.  Yet I am worthy of love, respect, and joy.  Let me remind myself each day that I am the child of God.  That, in itself, commands respect---my respect--- for the miraculous "self" I have been given.  When I hold this at the forefront of my mind, I will not give up my "self" in the course of any endeavor.  
Today, when faced with choices, I will opt for the path that enhances my self-esteem.  I am learning to live a full life, one in which I like and care for the person I am.
       As we focus on improving areas our character, I'm struck that doing so allows us to start life over again.  We experience growth and healing from the past woundings of life.  That's a pretty good deal.
How About You?
1. How are you taking care of yourself?
2. What helps you to enjoy serenity?
3. What inaccurate image of your "ideal self' have you removed? I.e., being personally perfect, needing success in order to be valued, a certain body image, having perfect children or having a perfect relationship, etc.
4. In what way are you loving yourself more and being less harsh towards yourself?

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Quotes from the Posts

"I'm mindful that our thoughts affect the words we use, our words influence our actions, our actions shape our character and our character determines our destiny."

From "My Character Determines My Destiny." To read it, please click here.

"Progress not perfection, is better than no progress at all, especially when we're trying to rid ourselves from unwelcome dragons that dwell within the closets of our soul."

From, "Still Learning" which, within four days, became the most popular post
written. To read it, please click here.

"Worry does not empty tomorrow of its trouble, but it does empty today of its strength"
From the post: "Life Is Not a Correspondence Program." Click here to read it.

"Even though we cannot control our circumstances, we can control how we choose to respond to them."

From, "Handling Stress and Dealing With an Emotional Bully."Click here to read this post.

"Nope, being busy isn't exciting. Boring is good. Because boring is not boring; boring is being healthy, living a balanced life that has serenity"

From: "Do You Know What It Means If You Are Too Busy?" For more, please click here.