I have been in a rut lately.
I’ve been the human version of grumpy cat, slouching around the universe. I have been stuck in an unfortunate cycle that I play off with long strings of silence, mixed in with the occasional splash of dark humor. I do this thing where I start seeing the worst in everything…and then down the rabbit hole we go.
The funny thing is that I have spent the last year “reforming my mind” for a more positive life and it’s amazing how quickly we can revert back to self-destructive tendencies. It’s something I have been giving a lot of thought to lately. How easily we let ourselves expect the worst…which results in getting the worst… and then blame the rest of the world for it.
The truth is that the quickest way to ensure that we will never get something (a healthy relationship, a bountiful career, a life of travel…) is to tell ourselves that we will never get it. If we decide that we are unworthy or incapable or just unlucky, we will self-fulfill every pessimistic prophecy that lives in our head. We will limit ourselves to what we believe is “achievable” and sabotage (perhaps unknowingly) anything that falls higher than our self-created barriers. If we don’t believe we deserve something…we will never get it. If we rely on the world to prove our own beliefs wrong, we will find a million reasons that show that the world is proving them right. It’s our job (my job in my own life) to train our minds differently…to expect more, work for more and not just assume and accept the worst.
We fool ourselves into believing concepts like “we only find guys who are jerks”…when in reality it’s because that is who we are seeking out…or “we will never be happy in our professional life”…because we are too afraid of failure to aspire above our current position or take a leap by changing course.
I am a bonafide expert at throwing up the necessary walls of defense before anything has the opportunity to hurt me. But the people in my life and the life that I desperately want will never align with that method of thinking. That reaction to the invisible monster of failure that I create in my own mind is a complete and total waste of the energy that I could be spending a million better ways. And that is the funny thing about the energy you spend…the good attracts the good…the bad attracts the bad. And if you live and breathe and expect the bad, that is what you will get. And I want the good.
Whether we like to admit it or not…and none of us do…we are all best at playing the victim in our own lives. Letting a lineage of failed relationships or addiction or financial failure or (my biggest fear) settling for a mundane existence, dictate where you end up in life is a cop-out that costs way too much. Nothing is decided. Nothing is pre-determined. We end up where we want to be if we have the courage to let ourselves. And failure is part of the game no matter what…but being so afraid of it that we never allow ourselves the courtesy of trying…well that’s the sort of thing you don’t realize is a horrible mistake until it is far too late and life has ran its beautiful course.
This is not a string of paragraphs that are meant to insinuate that I have anything figured out. I am constantly confused about my existence. And these thoughts only exist in me because I am surrounded by insightful humans with wonderful ideas and I’ve skimmed through a couple of self-help books. I don’t have any answers…just some ideas to pursue to live a better life. Because that’s the goal isn’t it? To always live a better life. I just walk through the fog that is my present and write about it when it gets too heavy occasionally.
I’m not even sure how to end this. I have about ten drafts in my folder that also prove that I wasn’t very sure how to start this either. Make life what you want it. Whatever that means to you, because I guarantee it’s not the same for me. Start working toward the life you actually want. And don’t just settle for the one you think you’ll end up with.