ego

Warning: Some People Don’t Want You to Grow

Jealousy-300x168Shining too bright, eh?

Not everyone likes when you grow.

When you quake, it shakes their ground, too. Especially the people closest to your fault line.

Understand this: You are an evolving creature, radiating brighter than ever before, making empowered choices. You are changing. And some people hate that. They don’t even know that they hate that, they might never admit that they hate that, but when you change, and they do not, it’s a reminder. You become a mirror of what they are not. And most people don’t like reminders of what they are not.

Quite often, the ways you are changing also have direct implications for them, and the dynamic of your relationship.

They might have to pick up the slack in the relationship, or around the house. They may need to make more effort. They might have to change their minds and let go of preconceived notions or outdated beliefs about who you are. They might have to grow, too, to keep up with you, and this doesn’t always go over well.

Unfortunately, it’s a rare and preciously self-aware person that can say “The growth and change you are experiencing is making me uncomfortable and I feel scared. So in order to not act out in a way that is hurtful to you, I’m telling you what’s going on.” Nah, hardly happens like that.

Instead, there’s the acting out.

The resistance, the arguments, the distancing, the gossip, the jabs.

There might be snide or snarky comments or complete verbal punches in the gut, that take the wind right out of you. There might be knockdown-dragout arguments. It might even feel like the world itself is crumbling.

There might be a complete and radical breakdown of the relationship, where a choice has to be made, and it may be the most difficult, painful choice you have ever made.

No one ever said evolution would be easy.

But there’s no turning back. You can’t ungrow. You can try, in all sorts of unsavory, self-sabotaging ways, but even THAT is growth, believe it or not. No, you’re here.

You are evolving, you are growing in delightful, beautiful ways, and to some people, that’s just scary.

They have ideas  and beliefs about you, after all. And when you shake up someone’s ideas and beliefs, it makes them feel wrong, and feeling wrong is one of our least favorite feelings, so we will do what we need to do to stay right. Feels safer, after all. We’ve all done it. It just sucks when it happens to you. At you.

But what if it was happening FOR you?

Guess what? It is.

The distillation process gets hot. And then, there is purification.

Go ahead, grow.

Let those old skins peel and fall from you.

Become the next evolutionary version of you, without apology, without shame, without regret.  Trust your path. Claim your power. Own your shine. And know that there is a place, a world, a reality, where your shining brightly does not diminish the light of others, where you are invited and encouraged to be your most amazing, fabulous, beautiful, radiant self, with others being their most amazing, fabulous, beautiful, radiant selves.

I know this because it’s the reality I live in. It’s my address, and I won’t settle for living elsewhere.

When you shake things up, things get shaky.  Hold on to something stable, ground your feet, and keep growing.

You’ll be okay. In fact, you’ll be more than okay. I promise.

 

 

Original post date 10.1.13.

Adventures with Ego (My Clever, Cunning Sidekick)

Curb-your-ego-Timothy-Krause-flickr-9345844474_8e4de81467_z

You may have heard me say many times that I am not an “ego-basher”. I don’t wish to kill my ego, or destroy it, or even transcend it at this point, because, well, I’m human and I’m here to have a human experience, and egos come in handy while being human. They make the short blip of our human experience that much more… human.

Instead, I like to think of Ego as my sidekick. A crafty, clever, cunning and paranoid sidekick that likes to arm wrestle my heart and soul for power.

Ego needs to be kept in check. She brings her own unique qualities and gifts, perhaps for another blog, but when left to her own devices, with uncanny finesse, she can rapidly turn any situation to shit.

Take last night, for example.

My fiance’ Matt came home and wanted to share a story. He even set up the story to let me know it would be a feel-good story.

He was at the gas station, filling up. A young woman, my daughter’s age or younger was having car trouble, and quite upset. Without getting into car-talk here, he helped her. He helped her, her car started, it felt good, she was grateful, and he felt blessed by being able to bless her, and get her back on the road.

I could feel myself, while he told the story, getting triggered… I was not able to celebrate his good deed. Ego was activated. Silly jealousy laced with insecurities and I blurted snottily “What makes you think I’m impressed by your tales of rescuing the damsel in distress?” Sweet, huh?

I even managed to follow up with a nice jab (more like a low-blow) in there about a long-ago relationship choice he had made before we met that still bugs me (or I still enjoy judging)– I’m talking a story more than ten years old! Ego lets nothing go.

Then, I saw it happen before my eyes: the pride and glimmer in his eyes deflated like a pierced balloon. He shook his head and shot some angry comment at me, and Ego felt nice and smug and best of all, right and the rest of me, my heart and soul, felt like crap.

I tried the “I’m sorry baby, but…” still holding onto my righteous (and ridiculous) position. That didn’t help him or me feel better. Because it wasn’t an apology, really. It was righteousness in disguise as an apology! Ugh, I’m ridiculous.

I wanted him to understand what I meant, that I was right, that I was entitled to my feelings of jealousy and insecurity and yada yada yada. I totally made the story about me. And organically, it had NOTHING TO DO WITH ME. At its root, I had stolen his moment, I had hurt his feelings, yet I was too caught up in my own stupid head drama to even catch it. I wanted him to understand me.

I milked my crappy feeling for a while, then realized I did not want to feel crappy, wasn’t on the agenda for the evening.  I started thinking about it. Heart guided these thoughts… I realized that I had basically hijacked his moment, made it about me, and now we both felt shitty.  Ego, you are so crafty!

Finally, my heart put her foot down. Yes, Heart has a foot. Heart decided just friggin’ apologize. No justifications, no excuses, no positioning. Just an apology.

“I’m sorry I made you feel bad, baby. You didn’t deserve that. You’re such a good man.”

And I meant it. Because it’s true. He is. And damned if I’m going to let my Ego distract me from that.

While Ego didn’t win the battle last night, I’m sure she’ll be vying for power again. That’s what she does, after all, that’s how she survives. And she LOVES to feel threatened, insecure, triggered. It gives her purpose and passion and power. She gets to steer for a little bit, ruin a good story or an entire night, if she has her way. She gets off on this stuff, you know.

Luckily, Heart and Soul are onto her, and they stopped her in her tracks, turned the story around and saved the night. Love wins (this one.)