limits

Absolutes are much easier.

Keeping an open mind and allowing anything and everything to be possible at any time is tricky. It really stretches us. 

That's why absolutes are so much easier. And absolutes are what we humans cling to, it's how we're hardwired, so to speak. Absolutes are right/wrong thinking--when we think we are "right" and someone else (or a group) is "wrong". We know best. They are confused. Things should be done "this" way, not that way. 

We surround ourselves with absolutes so we can feel a sense of ground beneath our feet. We invest in absolutes to feel control, to have certainty.

So why don't we ever feel content? Why are we so restless and unfulfilled? Why are we so quick to frustration with others? Why don't our absolutes make the world work better? Why do we still have so much anger, death, loss, violence, and aggression? 

Because without absolutes, what we have is surrender. And many people associate surrender with defeat. And if we're defeated, what will happen to us?!

Maybe we think if we surrender we've given up and we lose. We're failures. We didn't work or try hard enough for the thing we believe in.

Maybe we think if we surrender, something really bad will happen to us.

So we fix so firmly to our beliefs and we see them as right and real and the Truth. 

Have you ever read the story, "Old Turtle and the Broken Truth"? It really inspired my thinking about what we see as good and right and how that actually impacts the world. I sometimes consider reading it for an episode of my podcast. Would you tune in if I did that? Or other books or snippets that might be inspiring?

While absolutes are easier, the wisdom is that there is no real ground there. There is no refuge, no safe space to hide. The absolutes we cling to only seem to make things more challenging because they limit us. And they limit other people. 

They limit what we can be, do and have. They limit how others can speak, think and act. 

And if it's freedom and love that we're after, limiting people and ourselves moves us in the wrong direction. It's the opposite of freedom. It's the opposite of joy.

So, Dillan (you're probably wondering), are you suggesting we just let people do and say whatever the hell they feel like? 

Perhaps, Because if you've noticed, they are doing that anyway--despite your feelings about it. Despite your feeling or thinking and living within your particular absolutes, people just keep peopling.

And it creates a lot of frustration, anxiety, and war. 

What would be possible for you if you lived with fewer absolutes in your life? Would you feel less stress? Less reactivity? Less frustration? Less annoyance? Less limits--first and foremost for yourself--and then for others?

What would that feel like?

What would you be able to do, be or have?

 

 

 

If you hear yourself saying "I Don't Need This S$%^", chances are you do.

  Is this sentence familiar to you, too?

No? Just me?

OK. Maybe you have your own version of it. Take a look.

What do you say when you're completely fed up, done, overwhelmed, frustrated, annoyed and hopeless?

This is what I say: "I don't need this s%^*". It's my back door. My exit strategy. It gets me off the hook and I'm no longer responsible.

mj

I don't have to be compassionate when someone calls me female pronouns, despite that fact that I've corrected the person five times in a year. We even had a sit-down about it. And he's in a leadership role. Yeah, I know.

I don't have to accept that I didn't manage my time well and rushed my grad school paper and that's why I got a less than awesome grade.

I don't have to wake up early (like 5:30am, early) to write blog posts and put my newsletter together because my schedule is packed tighter than a tin of sardines lately.

Basically, I don't have to be who I need to be to do what I want to do in this life.

Guess what? You don't have to, either. You can actually make the decision to be, do and have anything you want. You can be as angry and nasty or as kind and compassionate as you choose. You can blame, judge and criticize people as much as you want or you can treat them with love, respect and patience. You can avoid timelines, deadlines, move commitments around, cancel appointments you make for yourself and with others. You can forget to call your mom. 

You can do all of these things. Or none of them. The only thing that gets in your way is you. But the opposite is also true. The only thing that can make anything possible, is you.

My life changed when I heard myself say, "I don't need this s%&^" and realized it was true, but it was also an access to realizing that in fact, I DID need it, in some way. I saw that each time I felt stopped, stuck or limited in some way---either in my words or behavior--it was a lesson. It was like someone pressed PAUSE so I could actually see myself stuck. I could decide, in that moment, what I wanted to do with the opportunity being presented. Why was I feeling challenged, annoyed, frustrated or hopeless? 

Often we get stopped when we're up against our own growth. It means we either see something about ourselves that isn't so awesome or we might feel vulnerable in some way, open to being wounded or hurt by someone.

Sometimes we see how awesome our lives might be if we keep being our awesome selves, even if it takes a lot of work. That's intense. It can be tempting to quit.

Next time you hear yourself say 'your thing' ask yourself if perhaps you really do need it in some way. Try to rise above and see yourself in a 360 degree view. What is this moment or experience teaching you? What are you seeing that you couldn't before? What can you do differently to change your life for the better?

Get frustrated. Life is hard sometimes. But it's all about how and what you choose to do with it. When you see yourself as responsible for your life, you'll hear yourself and 'your thing' in a different way. But don't miss a lesson for growth when it hits you smack in the face. At least use that s%^& for something useful.

 

How Not To Get Stuck

There have been many things I've overcome in my life. I've overcome an eating disorder.

I've overcome the divorce of my parents.

I've overcome my first broken heart.

I even threw myself off a 40 foot tower to ride a zipline. I have a fear of heights, so this was a biggie. It helped that there was a harness attached to my hips.

Overcoming adversity, fears and tough situations takes courage to push forward when we feel stuck.

 

But still, I get stuck. Oh yes. Yes, I do.

 

We get stuck when we get caught up in sentences like this: "If only I _________, then I would _________."

or

"If that person ___________, then I would ______________."

 

Things like that.

And when I listen to the voice that makes those conditions, I sit and wait. When or if those conditions don't happen, I have a pity party at a table for one. I get stuck.

Much like I almost did recently when I thought I had secured this awesome opportunity for my business. I had taken all these steps and had gotten all these green lights and I was super jazzed. Things looked really good and I thought I would get to inspire some folks, have a lot of fun, and make some money. And then, things just stopped. No response. No flow. Just nothing. 

That doesn't work for me. I'll go where the love is.

Do you like that sentence? It helps me get unstuck.

"That doesn't work for me. I'll go where the love is."

I learned that at a workshop I did last year and it was scary and startling the first time I heard it. Then I tried saying it--even scarier. But it also felt good somewhere deep inside. Try saying it, yourself.

The truth is, it doesn't work for me (in my business, or in my life) when I'm trying my best and getting nowhere. It's an old pattern for me persist, anyway. I'm doing work so I change that old pattern and instead focus on where the green lights are shining down on me, where the love is. Because they are there. There are greens lights of opportunity all around each of us.

All green traffic light

Want to know how NOT to get stuck? Focus on the green lights. Focus on the opportunities in your life where people are open, honest, kind and work with you. Where things flow. I tend to become a little bit like a hamster who gets trapped in a corner of the room not realizing that all I have to do is turn around and head in any number of directions to "free" myself.

corner

 

Don't get stopped when you come up against experiences like this.

Don't get stopped by someone else limiting you or themselves.

Don't get stopped because you focus so much on the wrong thing that you make 10 other right things sit waiting, patiently, with their arms folded across their chests.

 

Get out there and try. When you come up against some resistance, give it another go or two and then ask yourself if you're being tenacious or if you're stuck in a corner again.