Through my entire existence, I have been labeled by others and self-identified as sensitive. I did not know I could change the oft unflattering connotations that this label has held for me. I have carried the burden of being so completely outside the norm that it broke me. It broke me hard.
Eventually, I realized that it does not matter if I am or am not sensitive. I am dropping this story as much as I can in as many ways possible. So what if I am? So what if you are? Let us look instead at where these false assumptions about ourselves lead us. If we stay stuck in the personal, if we stay married to the labels, then we miss the entire point.
Every single one of us is somehow ‘not enough’ or ‘too much’ or ‘too this’ or ‘too that’. If you want to spend your days in judgment determining what are acceptable levels of these traits in yourself and others, then this is your right. Maybe sometimes a little good will come from these judgments. In my experience, this is rarely the case. I believe labels and our judgments about them keep us looking outward where no solace can be found.
If you want to keep focusing outward, I hope you are able to at least consider the crosses you bear only hurt because you carry them.
At the beginning of 2017, I started a daily yoga practice. Often, during my time on the mat, various teachers and instructors have said, “Take what serves you and leave the rest.” This is a guiding principle for all of life and recently, I have realized it is especially applicable to relationships.
We make relationships harder than they need to be. If we are conscious, we can interact with another without making them responsible for how we feel. We can allow them the space to be a full expression of who they are. We can learn to judge less and observe more.
It’s never the person hurting us, it is our story about them that hurts us.
We must learn to ‘take what serves us’ in a relationship and let go of everything else. If the relationship does not serve, then we have to let go of it completely.
Hope means you wish something to be different than it is.
Faith is acceptance of what is regardless of how it may be judged by you or by the world.
Hope means that you look to the future for peace.
Faith means you are at peace right now.
Hope itself is neither bad or good. It is part of the tapestry of the personal self’s story in the world. Sometimes the tapestry is rich and full. Sometimes the threads fray and the pattern is muted into oblivion. Faith loves both equally.
It is not up to you to let go of hope. Sometimes hope will move you in a way the self deems helpful and sometimes hope will lead you nowhere. Either way you choose to go, faith is happy to follow.
A personal self will always hope life will be different. True freedom means allowing this hope to rise and fall like the tide. The tide does not belong to you. Faith has always known this. Isn’t it time you know this too?