The limits we face are self-imposed.
We can travel the world, walking through a spice garden in Malaysia, ferns brushing against your waist, or meditating on the top of a mountain, shoeless in a Buddhist temple in Thailand, and swim in the tidal pools, catching fish with green nets in the Marshall Islands, and at the same moment be locked away inside the prison’s of our mind, surrounded by the smell of rusted iron, cement and staring at barren walls, looking for a way out of ourselves, imprisoned by our perceptions.
Perception can be the murky puddle of water we look through, or the crystal clear spring that we drink from.
We can build nations or destroy an eco-system with the way we perceive.
Our vision is meant to be fluid, flexible, knowing when to totally focus in, widen our view, and take in the entire picture or to view from the eyes of another.
What perspectives are we peering from?
Through a peephole, a magnifying glass, a telescope, kaleidoscope, a mirror, or from the window of a commercial jet obstructed by clouds, storms or staring through powdery blue skies.
The sweet smell of a pink rose can be relaxation to one or the scent of dread to another. The screeching sound of nails on a chalkboard can mean nothing but to another their body cringes as nails drag against it, legs, lips and arms contorting at the sound.
Our perceptions allow us to feel the innate beauty of a sunset, to experience it fully, not the colors of pink, burnt orange and white.
It’s the way we see our world.
A fine wine in the hands of a sommelier can smell the complexity of the bouquet, of a good, mature wine, and the smoky taste from wine stored in oak barrels, but to the untrained, it can smell sour, and too bitter to swallow.
Our perception must become refined to know what lenses we are looking through.
Is it through the eyes of a wounded heart? The ‘damaged’ lover? The one who feels responsible for everyone’s happiness? Is it Guilt? Anger?
Or is it through the eyes of the conscious leader? The Visionary? Confident creator? The Magician?
What perceptions aren’t true for you anymore?
Which of those make you feel constricted, tight or uncomfortable?
Where do you ‘hit a wall’ in your life’s experience and you can only see the possibilities that are right in front of you?
Identify where you strain to ‘see’ more than just the tips of your lashes and find yourself free.
I’ve spent almost half of my life trying to avoid my past traumas, and issues. I believed that the passage of time would heal the pain, each tick of the clock, every hour, every passing year would take me further and further away from it all.
With time, I found that I could paint them over any way I’d like.
Colour them with positivity, excuses, illusions, forget-fullness or denial.
Whatever made me feel better about the pain.
In Junior High School, I wasn’t popular at all. I was often teased, called ugly, stupid(among other things) and one day I remember ketchup being thrown on me by some of the kids.
It was soaked into my blue shorts, and my grey-blue Gecko T-shirt.
The smell of ketchup went everywhere with me that day.
It ate lunch with me, taking refuge in the cotton fibres of my shorts, and in my classes, wafting up at the perfect moment to remind me that I didn’t ‘belong’.
I went home that day and didn’t say a word to anyone.
I was eleven.
Through time I felt like I had gotten over it; that it didn’t affect me any longer.
But to the wounded eleven year old it still did. The emotions still happening, trapped in time, playing over and over again on repeat, with no end in sight.
They will come out. Inside us is where they live, echoing throughout our lives, setting off chain reactions until we find a way to diffuse them.
They are a part of us, uttered with our sweet syllables, gathering in the crooks of our elbows, the bends in our knees and in the recesses of our minds, sprouting like lima beans from the cracks.
When the sun rises they will still be there, living in each breath, moments we share with others, every drink of water, and co-mingled in the taste of cookie dough ice cream on our tongues.
Our pain will show up in many forms, as a selfish child, the abandoned one, the victim, the wounded lover, the revenge seeker, the insecure genius, the cowardly prince and the arrogant fool.
Without the shadows in our lives, following us, entangling us, haunting us, we would never know where we hurt.
We’d never learn that they are pieces of our soul’s light that have been forgotten, burned out by the pain, trauma, and moments that we thought we’d healed but have yet to touch.
Our shadows are asking us be held firmly, wrapped in our arms, swaddled like a child and given the opportunity to scream at the top of their lungs, or cry for hours with snot and spittle everywhere…
So that they can give voice to their pain, so that we can finally be free.
I invite you to download my complimentary e-book, Courageous Acts of Self-Love, filled with quotes to spark your state and mind.
From where we come, is untainted. The space and place is pure, clear as a spring of untouched water, powerful and gentle when required, and able to be malleable when we must.
Throughout life we begin to flavour our moments with love, pleasure, and in-between we experience pain, trauma, and the source of our greatness becomes twisted, pinched so that we cannot flow from our true potential.
The impediments that we’ve placed in our lives in the form of excuses, inaction, people, places, situations and things thrive because we have invested our energy into them.
These will continue to live in us, grow in us, forests watered by emotion, and create concrete monuments out of our unresolved pain.
We need a resolution to our past.
What do we think we’ve addressed but haven’t? What’s numb in us but isn’t done? What in our body is telling us that something has yet to be healed? Does the thought or memory of something create tension in your body?
We cannot shy away from our emotions. They guide us to greatness, to mediocrity, and to the darkest parts of ourselves. Our emotions can illuminate our lives like a flame-lit lantern in the darkest, dankest cavern and drown and coat us in a slick of oil(if we allow them).
The Power of Communication
Everything is communication.
It starts with the synapses in our brain, our cells, blood, organs and muscle movement. The taste of food on our taste buds, the feel of two hands holding (the rising sun across your eyelids), the view of a storm in the distance, the smell of steaming garbage during a New York summer on the side of the street, and the sounds of trumpets blowing in a jazz quartet.
We go throughout our days communicating through body language, ideas, states of mind, whether we feel secure or not in who we are/becoming.
Our social media posts or lack of posts or whether we are on social media or not. These are sending a message.
Each action is a reaction or response to the way that we connect within ourselves.
Our personal perception filters the way in which we share.
Outer communication starts with the relationships that we have with ourselves. Inner breeds the outer. The outer is a product of the inner.
It starts with you. It always has.
Do we harm others when we ‘speak’? Do we hold their emotions dear to us like a cherished family member or friend? Do fear, greed and anger taint our words and actions like an oil slick on the ocean’s surface, coating all that we express?
We must first go inside. To the places where it begins to feel uncomfortable, unlikable, avoidable, shame-filled and mis-understood.
To the places where the abuser, the murderer of dreams, the judge, the thief and the derelect live. The parts in us that we deem unfit to acknowledge.
They are there, influencing our choices, our words, our body language, our emotions, and our connection with everything and everyone.
That is why there’s hate in the world.
The parts of us that are hated have been harmed, violated and twisted so that others will pay for the pain that has been left unresolved; Like a child crying in the corner, forgotten, left alone, like a wound in your side that you have yet to treat, numbing the pain(which is communication) with vicadin. but never taking the time to get it looked at, so that it can return to the frequency in which to heal.
All the while your spirit has been striving to be whole, amidst the pain, numbness or the emotions that have been explained away with a lie.
Your soul has been trying to communicate with you.
And all avenues no matter how beautiful, mundane or challenging that come our way are guiding us towards this.
You see. We need to refine our communication. Stop avoiding each other, stop using our phones as barriers to connect. To really understand that everything we do is communicating something.
We can begin to infuse our interactions with purpose, path and graciousness. Create an emotional dialogue with ourselves so see where we are out of balance.
We must remind ourselves that the challenges we face communicate opportunities to remind us what we were born here for in the first place…And that’s Greateness.