One morning, I was talking to someone who said, “I just can’t get out of the teacup.” What I heard was, “I’m stuck in this really small space and when I try to climb out, I just slide back down to the bottom.” The teacup felt like heartache to me, and not knowing how to escape that sorrow was changing how this person felt about life in general. Even in my typically “glass-half-full” mindset, I completely get that.
Many of us humans are easily bruised; sometimes we’re even emotionally broken beyond repair.
When you’re regularly bombarded by ricocheting words of pain (or dismissive, stony silence) you can begin to feel small and without value. Then, the piece de resistance—the negative self-talk that destroys your sense of self-worth—jumps on the bandwagon.
Once you expect something less-than-good to happen, it often does. Expectations create feelings.
As we continued to talk, it occurred to me that the place where this person was stuck seemed more like a tall, narrow vase than a teacup. At least, that teacup has a wide opening.
You can get stuck in a space so confining that you can’t even hold your arms out to experience anything beyond those tight constraints.
Disappointment and loss often lead to grief, making it hard to see outside that tight, restricted reality. You know there’s something else out there, but climbing out of the dark and back into the light of peace-filled living can be challenging.
Sometimes we fertilize another person’s control so much that it chokes out our lives. We need to find the courage to yell, “STOP” and take back our personal power.
Once you give up your voice and your belief in yourself—you create different realities. When you say/think/believe something like “he makes me sad”, instead of “I’m sad”, your current belief system holds that another person’s behavior can change how you feel.
If you allow (or invite) others’ experiences, assumptions or emotional reactions to influence how you think or feel, you sabotage your happiness.
Each time you’ve risked being vulnerable, only to end up being discounted or unheard, probably made it a lot tougher to take those chances again. But, you are worth it.
When you don’t feel safe, you can build walls so high that you forget: your place in the world, to be true to your spirit, to honor the God part of you.
How many times you choose to “turn the other cheek” is, of course, up to you. But, remember that there are relationships so fraught by pain, challenges or loneliness, that they simply may not be repairable. Please do not let another person destroy your sense of self-worth.
This life is so very fragile and fleeting. In the blink of an eye, we will be part of history.
Many of us regularly dance at the intersection of understanding our value, importance, and contribution to this world. What if in that dance, instead of putting ourselves down, we actually find our true, filled-with-value selves?
And, what if, instead of leaving the ground littered with our pain, insignificance, and less-than-ness, we leave behind footprints of joy, value, and a true sense of our self-worth?