OK, this one can be a bit difficult and may bring up a few feelings. But that’s OK.
It’s is natural to want to feel good, to go through your day with an easiness, a relaxed happiness. But sometimes we come into contact with situations where we allow our need to keep the peace to keep us from saying what we really think or feel. This is more prevalent is some cultures than others and in some places in the world it is an extreme.
You bite your tongue because you don’t want to cause an argument. And then you hold those feelings deep inside. They don’t go away, no matter how much you hope ignoring them will make them eventually disappear. And the next time you come into contact with that person or situation, it is a little bit more difficult, and then even more difficult until you finally either avoid that person or situation all together or you explode.
I am not going to ask you to go address those things in person right now. So, you can relax. No worries.
I am not even going to ask you to think of a specific situation where this has been a problem for you. (I heard that sigh of relief!)
What I am going to ask you to do is to consider a thought process that can help break a pattern.
I had (OK maybe still have a little bit) a problem with endings. I rent an apartment for a while and everything is wonderful until I decide it’s time to move on and then I seem to create drama. I saw this pattern in my life and had no idea where it came from. All of a sudden, I no longer wanted to talk to the home owner (I move a lot, lived out of a suitcase for years and stuff). It seemed like there were problems that were too uncomfortable to address and so I would let things go and say nothing until finally, I would decide I had to move out under stressful circumstances.
Trust me, moving a lot is not easy, and moving under stressful conditions is the pits.
So, I started asking myself WHY things seemed to always go downhill so fast right at the end. And it wasn’t long before I realized, it wasn’t even MY pattern originally. It was my father’s. I love my dad and admire him greatly and this is no way is meant to be a reflection on him. Perhaps he inherited it from his father. Anyway, I saw that from the time I was a very little girl, my dad had a pattern of things ending badly after going so very well for a long time.
I really don’t know for sure why things went badly for my dad, but I did know that avoiding talking about uncomfortable issues was why they went downhill for me.
Enter the rental car.
Moving a lot requires occasionally struggling with transportation. I recently moved to Mexico and ended up renting a car for much longer than I planned. The guy at the rental company was really nice at first. Then when I wanted to extend my rental, he of course wanted me to come in and write up a fresh contract and exchange the car. No problem. But then when I wanted to extend it again, he seemed a bit concerned. (I guess people don’t usually rent a car for three months!) I told him I understood it was a bit unusual and I could rent from a different company, but of course he wanted the income so he wrote up a fresh contract again and gave me another fresh rental car.
My transportation didn’t resolve itself as fast as I wished, and I found myself realizing I would have to go to him AGAIN to renew, which I seriously did not want to do. I felt I had worn out my welcome (which is just silly because he was making money and I was taking good care of the cars). My old, “things are going to end badly” feelings started rushing in with full force. I started envisioning a long trail of progressively angry emails and a smattering of unanswered phone calls. All over a silly rental car.
Then I stopped. I asked myself why it needed to be that way. I decided I would not go down that road, and I would instead do everything in my power to not avoid confrontation, AND to make it as pleasant as possible. I decided I DID want to change rental companies because I really did think my renting for so long was making the car rental guy uncomfortable. But I set a clear intention to end our business relationship with flowers instead of a hurricane.
So, I took the car in a few days early instead of waiting until the last minute in an avoidance stance. When I arrived, the guy was really happy to see me. I pulled happy smiles from somewhere near my toes and breathed into them even though I was still feeling nervous. I addressed how odd it must have seemed to him for someone to rent for so long and I told him how much I love Mexico and how I needed the car for such a long time because I was making a transition to make Mexico my home. He beamed. We laughed. I paid him. He called one of his workers and instructed him to use the car I returned to give me a personal and free ride to my new home.
WOW! What a difference! I was happy and felt so blessed! Addressing the thing I was trying to avoid had great results. And what I learned was that it was really just my own fear that could easily have turned the situation unpleasant.
So, what is the ritual for today?
Get two pieces of paper and some colored pencils, crayons, pens, whatever you like. You will also need a container you can put burning paper in (not a glass jar that has a candle in it, trust me, the paper will become a wick and burn forever) and a lighter or matches. And lastly, a favorite stone or incense or something you feel has wonderful energy.
One piece of paper, draw some clouds. You can make them as simple or as fancy as you like. You can add rain or lightening (but no sun). While you are drawing, think about how it feels to avoid saying what you really want to say. Take your time drawing and really allow the emotions of unsaid words to flood your being. If you feel angry or sad or disgusted or disappointed, you can write those words on your picture. The clouds represent hidden things. Things not shared. Words obscured. Feelings pushed down. Not honoring self.
When you are finished, write the word FEAR in big bold letters over the entire picture. You are doing this because it is fear that keeps you from saying what you really want to say. It is fear that drives you to a place to feel all those uncomfortable feelings you were just experiencing.
Now fold your paper up, light it on fire, put it in a glass jar or in something that can safely and easily withstand direct flames, and watch it burn. As it burns, imagine your fears being burned away with a cleansing fire.
Now take the second piece of paper and draw a sun on it. Make it as pretty or as plain as you like. As you are drawing feel how it feels to finally get everything out in the open. Don’t imagine the process because that will bring up those fearful feelings again. Imagine the feeling of having nothing bottled up inside you. The sun represents light. It stands for your personal truth, for clarity, and for wholeness. It is a symbol of honoring your authentic self. As you are drawing, allow feelings of relief to come. Allow yourself to embrace yourself as you really are, what you really think, how you really feel. Validate those feelings. You are a bright being. Your center is kind. Your motivation is peace. Feel free to write down any feelings you have as you are doing this. Make them part of your picture.
Now take your picture and consecrate it with something you feel has wonderful energy. You can touch it to a powerful stone, wave burning incense over it, place it between the pages of your Bible or a much-loved book. Anything you feel with help you to set it apart as something special. As you do this, pull into yourself feelings of acceptance, permission for your own unique authenticity, and joy.
When you finish, put your sunshine picture inside your pillowcase on the side of the pillow opposite where your head will be. Tonight, as you fall asleep, remind yourself of the wonderful feeling of being free to say what you really think and feel. Hold that feeling gently as you fall asleep.
Changing our thought patterns and then our actions, is closely tied to our emotions. The more you can connect a good feeling with a situation, the easier it will be to transform how you think and react to that situation. When you get up tomorrow morning, put your sunshine picture in a special place where you can take it out and stick it in your pillowcase again whenever the need arises.