Choose Joy

What would your life be like if you knew that your life purpose was to feel the emotion of joy?

What would you decide to think and feel and do differently if you intended joy as your focus?

Imagine.

When you are in joy, you are in alignment with Source, wanting to experience  expansion through you.

You are Source energy in the form of you are here to experience!

Be brave.

Care how you feel.

Go in the direction of your joy!

Choose better feeling thoughts.  They will  lead you toward joy,

You have the right to create a life of joy.

Your Choice.  Choose Joy!

The You-ness of YOU

In our competitive culture, our patriarchal culture, our left-brained culture we are all about comparison and competition. We have been sold on the belief, conscious or otherwise, that if we do not compete we will end up on the bottom of some imaginary heap. Or that someone will get the better……you name it: car, position in line, deal at the store, advance in career, innovative idea that earns millions of dollars and accolades that we dream will finally make us feel like enough.

It is a lie.

Your being enough is not a ticket to sit on the couch and play video games all day.

Your being enough is an alert to you that you are the only YOU on the planet.

Now bring the uniqueness of your “you-ness” to life and share it with the world.

What are your unique gifts, capacities, one of a kindnesses?  Are you great at putting together costumes? ( There was a “Hot Chocolate 15 K Run in Golden Gate Park today and one of the female runners ran in a tutu over her black leggings)

If you love to sing, let the birds and the shower and maybe five other people hear you sing.  Do not compare yourself to your idol. Learn from him or her, yes. But bring out your voice, your expression.

Are you a math whiz who loves crunching numbers? A hands on creator of some kind? Notice you. Notice what is wanted by your being. What gets you up in the morning.

Bring your “you-ness” out to play. Bring those ideas, personal expressions out of the clouds of the mind and put them into an active practice. Ground yourself through moving your body into the creative action of your dreams and desires made manifest.

Make a vision board. Tell a friend. Write yourself notes. Put you out there. Make you a contributing member of our world through your gifting us with your uniqueness. Give us a chance to share your uniqueness.

Tit for Tat

Tit for Tat sounds something like this.

“You are cranky,” I say.

“So are you,” he says.

(Both are hurting and complaining)

Or

“Sweetheart, would you mind putting your dirty clothes in the laundry hamper at night. I hate tripping over them in the dark on the way to the bathroom when I have to pee in the middle of the night.”

When one has a complaint, no matter how deftly crafted: right words, even paced slowly, carefully, with the best guessed timing may be met by:

“Well, You……..”

Fill in the blanks.

Your mate feels like an oily duck. Nothing sticks. It all rolls off.

Infuriating! Your angry mind goes to labels, “Prick!” “Bitch!”

Irresponsible you think.

Most of us have a tendency to ward off complaints or criticism with a counter attack:  Tit for Tat, which is a serious relational problem.

Weakened with low self-esteem, tit for tat is a form of retaliation. It signals we are not feeling very good about ourselves or about the relationship.

The egoic thinking of self-preservation is running the show. We are usually in what I call our ‘survivor self’ when we retort like this. Our survivor self is a kid self with the maturity of about 6-18 years old that only cares about ourselves. In this state our thinking is more primitive, less mature. It correlates to a part of our brain that Stan Tatkin has coined the “Primitive”.

We think, “If I am being called on the carpet by you, I have the right to reply with an equal offense I have suffered at your hands.  I have a list that I’ve been stuffing away, thinking they were petty or offending or troublesome in some way. But if you are going to point out my mistakes, I get to point out yours.  Let’s at least level the playing field after all!

Now STOP

Take a few deep breaths.

Get some oxygen into the brain.

Look closely at this person.

Even look into their eyes.

Slow yourself down as you zip your lips.

Remember this is the person who fixed your dinner last night. Or took the splinter out of your foot this morning, or woke up and gave you a big hug and said I love you or scrambled to go grocery shopping between work and picking up the kids.

Then employ the humbling practice of apologizing.

Tit for Tat or Defensiveness, as shown above, is a moment of relational disharmony.

It breaks the connection.

We have to work this all the time.

Here is an example of my husband and I working Tit for Tat.  We’ve been married 29 years.  (You don’t have to be married that long to learn it. It just never goes away.)

We were both tired. We were looking for a park we had seen on-line to lay out our sleeping bag and nap.

As he drove past the park, I looked at the entrance and said, “There is no parking.”

He said, “Yes, there is.”

“I didn’t see any,” I said, trying to be gracious as a slight burn started in my belly at being summarily dismissed.

“You mean no empty spaces?” he asked?

I sensed the tension that just started to build. (We are energetic beings. Our emotions are felt even when we don’t speak them.  Especially between two people who have worked to stay tuned to each other as we have.)

“No.  No parking,” I said.

I had seen that the entrance to the park was a walk way not a drive way.

He turned the car around and drove into the Community Center Parking that I had not seen.

There was no park parking but there was community center parking.

As we entered, we had to go right or left to find a space.  On my right I only saw handicapped parking signs under the trees.  I pointed left to the open lot where there were many spaces out in the open sunlight.

“Yes, there is,” he said.

“Ok,” I said, derision and protest in my tone.

“I don’t like how you are talking,” he said.

“I think it is time for a nap,” I said.  “You will feel better after a nap.”

“It is not just, me you know,” he said.  “You need a nap too. You have been contradicting everything I’ve said.”

I have a choice right here.

Tit for tat:  “So have you.”

Or

Apology:  “I am sorry.”

I choose, “I am sorry.”

I had to swallow my pride.

I find pride is so sticky. It is hard to swallow.  I took a long slow breath and swallowed.

“I am sorry I have seemed contradictory.” (I used his words. I acknowledged his perception was right for him. It didn’t matter if it matched mine. It was his experience of me that I wanted to repair. I couldn’t defend against that.  It is his. I could only be sorry that my actions had come across, to him, as contradictory. That is why defensiveness is useless.)

We are now parked.

I got out of the car.

In my mind I was thinking, “If he says anything but I am sorry too, I might not be able to keep the fighter in me muzzled.”

I came around the car to his side.

He was waiting for me there with his arms open to hug me.

“I am sorry too” he said.

Whew! We’d made it once again.