Pontius Pilate is famous for this question, but it has been asked many times over the millennia and answered many times by many people. I’m talking Socrates, Voltaire, Ben Franklin, and even Einstein- among others. There are spiritual aspects, scientific ones and personal or emotional ones. A previous post was about making the list of labels for yourself . (Full disclosure- i pre write a lot of posts so that on the days i don’t have time to write , i can still post something-that one was written last week. SO, if you have those pages done- i can continue here. If not, get cracking!Lol..only if you want to of course. Also, i will repeat- i am NOT a counselor.These are simply my OWN suggestions and experiences.)
Choose one or more of those lists ( or if you only made one long one- start at the top). Which of those are absolutely, without a doubt “truth”? This gets a bit sketchy. Because , indeed, what you believe is true, is true for YOU. That doesn’t make it real , right or productive , however. Some of the “truths” we tell ourselves, especially about ourselves are nothing but excuses, fantasies, or outright lies.
i stated that i am a frequent failure. I base this on the rational that:
- i have failed to keep all of my goals all of the time
- i have failed to become wealthy and financially independent
- i have failed to win a mother of the year award
- i have failed in many relationships
- therefore, i have FAILED to live up to my own impossible standards.
If i am to change any of this thinking i have to identify how i came to believe it first ( and start looking past the smoke & mirrors)
Next, I also stated that i am an alcoholic. Ok, if you know anything about alcoholism , you know that only the individual themselves can make that statement about themselves because there are many different types: functional, dysfunctional, weekend warriors, daily drinkers, social drinkers, binge drinkers etc. What one person may consider too much alcohol, another may not. AA tells you that the first step is admitting you have a problem. My own definition of my own problem is different than someone else. I only drank on my nights off, but i binged. It became a weekly habit that lasted for years. Once i started, i did not want to stop, nor could i. A daily , heavy drinker may look at me and call me a lightweight, and say i am not and never was an alcoholic. But it’s not HIS or anyone else’s call.Nor can i state that someone is a “worse” alcoholic than me. Not my call.
These are just 2 examples.
As you look through your list a few times, maybe circle some that you are not sure of or desire to change. Maybe someone told you that( baggage). Maybe you WANT to identify as that( fantasy). Maybe its just a negative mantra that plays subconsciously in your head( more baggage).Maybe- its not truth at all. You just thought it was all this time.After you circle them- try to start figuring out the very first time you believed it , heard it or knew it. Then look at the source and make SURE it was a reliable one. Most times, it wasn’t. And i am not just talking about the negative ones. Sometimes, for instance, we believe we are strong- but there is no external evidence of that( i.e. no one else would say that about you, and evidence points to your frequent inability to cope and constant need for help). Yet another humbling challenge that i will leave you with. Namaste!