How comfortable is your relationship with yourself?
People are, for the most part, social beings; we love to interact. If we spend too much time alone, most of us feel a strong need for the company of others. Aside from the most extreme introverts, all of us rely on our relationships to some degree or another.
Most of us work on those relationships. We buy each other presents, we laugh at each other’s jokes, we are polite, and we give compliments. But how many of us put in the same effort for ourselves?
Have you ever been so angry that you’re shaking? So angry that rationality goes right out the window? When you get angry, how do you handle it?
Angry people can be rational or irrational. Anger itself doesn’t have consequences, but acting on that anger does, and the consequences of those actions can be positive or negative.
Anger is designed to be a survival mechanism. When bad things happen to us, anger provides us with adrenalin along with a drive to overcome it. But how we define “bad thing” and what we mean by “overcome” is where we can run into trouble. When acting in anger, it would help to ask ourselves, “What do I hope to achieve?”
We all have had times in our lives when we’re desperate—feeling a longing so strong, it seems we will die if we don’t get what we want.
But desperation can come in many forms and for many reasons.
Someone who is about to die of dehydration is desperate for water. This kind of desperation is black and white. There’s no middle ground. There’s no way of interpreting the desire in any other way. It is desperation in its purest form.
Then there is the other extreme—those who feel they are desperate for material possessions or the latest technology. Although this may feel like desperation (and our brains can actually turn it into desperation), with a little perspective and soul searching, we can discover the true nature of these feelings.
As I learn more and more, I feel like I know less and less. But to me, that is a positive thing.
Learning new things keeps life fresh, but it takes an open mind and a willingness to let go of our egos. So many of the problems in the world exist because one group of people thinks they know better than another group of people.
It’s OK to not know. In fact, “I don’t know” is a very underused and underappreciated expression.
In saying “I don’t know,” we’re not saying that we don’t have opinions or beliefs, or that we don’t know certain facts. We might be very well educated on an issue. But there’s always more to learn, and in learning, our perspective may change. We have to be open to that.
You are probably already aware of what you are seeing, and possibly hearing.
How about your other senses—do they keep a place in your consciousness, or do they rise to the surface only when they come by something really good or really bad?
Our senses are our inputs from the physical world, but they can also influence our inner lives in ways we might not even realize.
When I’m in a natural place, such as the woods or a marsh, the inputs I get from my senses drive my emotions and set the tone for my frame of mind. Those experiences always create a space of contemplation and introspection for me, which can influence my inner life moving forward.