1. Tim

    Quiet acceptance of the good things we have, coupled with a careful attempt to alter the things we wish did not assail us for the better tend towards emotional contentment.

    It starts to be alright when we start to understand this, and becomes better and better as we get better and better at implementing it.

    But that sounds trite, doesn’t it? It’s one of those awful platitudes we find folk speak at us in times of disaster, like ‘Time is a great healer’. Yet these things are true for all that we bristle when we hear them.

    I have a background of many unsatisfactory jobs that I laughingly called a career at the time. A dozen, yes, 12, redundancies, which are usually targeted at the folk whose face doesn’t fit first and the rest later, those didn’t help.

    I loved two people at once. One was real, the other not in the least bit real, and was an obsession from when I was 13, and last seen in 1970. I married the other, love her dearly, but it never seemed to be enough until recently.

    I took steps to cure my obsession. I learned what was good about what I have and started to enjoy it. With effort, and it took a lot, I avoided a breakdown (barely) and have learned to love myself.

    I wonder if that is Mindfulness, or if I was doing it another way? I never meditated, though I did think a lot about things. The obsession was thinking incorrectly about them. It was hard as hard can be to correct that thinking, and, for a while, very lonely. Today I value the freedom from it.

    • How wonderful it is to observe written and shared positive and empowerment, via self-elected choices. As importantly, perhaps, that our pains and the past from which we recall these do become ‘gifts’, which also sounds trite! Yet, as with you, Tim, I am at peace with every perceived negative event of my past, choosing to allow these to inform me of where each experience has brought me to. A place of greater acceptance and understanding.

      • Tim

        Negative events do not control us. They can do so if we allow them the power to do so. Equally, positive events must be treated the same; Kipling and triumph and disaster, in a way.

        We have the choice of how we reacted then, after thought, and, though we do not always remember this, how we react now. Those reactions are allowed to be different.

        That sounds preachy. Odd how the truth often sounds preachy.

        In my late teens an event at my school so terrified me on a personal basis that I wanted to die. I almost killed myself on the way home, as a simple traffic accident, no note, just death. I was in panic over it, unable to think clearly.

        At school the next day (look it’s obvious I didn’t kill myself, please try to keep up) I toughed it out.

        The other day, literally just the other day, I realised that I had been the victim in todays legalistic world, of a ‘hate crime’ for which the other brat could have been arrested and tried.

        What was, back then, awful in my enclosed world, in my head, is, today, mildly amusing.

        That doesn’t mean I forgive the brat who perpetrated the harm on me. I don’t need to forgive others to be free from the hurt they caused me. If I ever meet him again as the adults we both are he will be under no illusion about my antipathy towards him. What it means is that I have control over my emotions over this incident.

        The incident itself, while you might be curious, is a distraction fro the message.

        And yes, when something is new and raw, I am not in control. I have to think it over and determine what I do with it in the medium to long term. ‘Fight or Flight’ in the immediacy of a ‘thing’ is not a thing I can control. Nor, I suspect, can any of us

      • alison

        Wow this really is inciteful stuff!
        Coming from an emotionally toxic family ..i have only just (at nearly 50 ) found the courage to break away with no contact… divorcing my parents .. but even with the divorce firmly in place i find myself doing my mothers work, the voice in me that says… * you will never do that * * your sister was always the clever pretty one** im not surprised your marriage broke up ** and actually on that one neither was i !! I had never been given the unconditional love to emotionally attach to anyone … i have to work hard every day to believe that im worthy of anothers love and relationship after relationship i fail… mess up wuth the good guys for fear their feelings are disingenuine .. and cling to thr guys who exploit my low self worth….. keeping the toxic cycle ever flowing.
        But now as i set out on a scary adventure very much alone ,without guidance.. i try to remember that i have choice in selecting that path… and i have to choose to let go of the self limiting beliefs i have..
        My work is just starting and i suspect more pain to be endured…
        But with minfulness practise and learning to acknowledge im ok… i have a feeling i can get there… i love reading the comments and knowing that my story isnt an issolated story.. and that people recover, rebuild and redscover the person they really are… . To find their own true worth….
        Great reading thanks guys.


        • Wow, Alison – thank you also for sharing your powerful story.
          It IS so heartening to read your journey – and recognition of your old narrative along with the aspirations for the new.
          My heart and my warmest wishes go out to you.

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