Friday, October 03, 2008

Peace From Within

Have you ever thought about how much we solely rely on other people, whether it’s their approval, their attentiveness, their ability to make you happy or by their help? We rely on other people’s love, friendship and understanding. We rely on too much really. The one person you thought you could rely and trust upon can easily take a turn in another direction and become your worst enemy.

People are human. Common sense.

People are complicated little creatures. They have feelings and get hurt and sometimes feel insecure which can lead into indirect punishment for other people in their lives. Have you ever had someone yell at you without a sufficient reason and wonder, “What the hell was that about?” A person can totally go off the handle on an innocent waitress just because they had a bad day—not even because the service was bad. They need to vent; they need to direct their anger without their human GPS system. They are emotionally lost. “They” are sometimes “we”.

Hats off to you if you’re one of the few people who are truly independent and not relying on other people’s approvals or judgments. I give you credit, because it’s a hard thing to do. I would love to give the advice of going only by God’s judgment, but even I can’t do that. I try, but my human conditions get in the way. When I do follow the path of only relying on God’s judgment, my life does get a little easier. But, it doesn’t last that long for some reason. I get caught up in the whole, ‘what do they think’ type of mindset or, ‘is this is ok to do’ type of thinking. It can really debilitate you. The more you hold onto other people’s approvals, the more insecure you’ll eventually get. It happened to me and it totally killed my self-esteem. I had to stop writing for some time, just because I felt insecure by other people’s actions, words and judgments. I was emotionally torn down, ripped apart and criticized by one of the closest people in my life who truly disappointed me. It left me without words. It left me without positive reinforcement about myself, as well as my outlook on anything in life. Because of “people” and my reliance on their approvals and judgments, even my faith in God had dwindled. I was spiritually dead.

This past year, I’ve been “emotionally resting” from all the chaos that went on in my life the past couple of years prior. The emotional abuse and mental torture that I went through because of the actions of another person, and my reactions toward that same person, left me feeling depressed, bitter and resentful plus very insecure about myself. Through prayer, mediation and self-analyzation, I regained my sense of “self” again. I finally felt good after some time and realized my entire outlook of who I was relied on other people. It was the darkest place I’ve ever been. I was paralyzed with fear. I couldn’t write. I was afraid I would be studied like a bug under a microscope. I didn’t go out much, in fear someone would notice me or think negative things about me. I was traumatized. Funny thing, I kept it so well hidden from my friends and family that they never even knew.

I kept it all inside… I felt all the pressures of the pain and the emotional scars that added up and kept reopening just to torture me some more.

I wanted to die.

I also wanted peace.

I had two choices: either quit and give up or strengthen my core and keep pressing on. God knows there are more things that are going to take my life for a few loops. Life’s a test. God gives us tests, but God doesn’t give us anything we can’t handle. And if we’re too weak to handle them and give up on life that easily---then why are we even ‘here’?

“I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.” –Philippians 4:13

I chose life. I chose to live my life and take the punches as well as see the lessons that I have learned along the way. I’ve come to the conclusion, depending on what personality type you are: you can only allow people to affect you. I believe it’s all how we internalize the outside world and those who intentionally as well as unintentionally, hurt us. Instead of trying to change the person(s)’s outlook and behavior, we can change ourselves inside and decide to not let it affect us any longer. We can step back and rid ourselves from the negative energy that some people naturally give off.

If you’re feeling bad about yourself, as I did many times, and still do periodically: visualize seeing yourself from another person’s eyes, walking into a room. What are your thoughts? How do you look? How secure and confident do you appear? Are you friendly? Does your face have a welcoming smile that invites positive people to gravitate toward you? Or, do you see yourself through negative lenses?