Exhibit A: A friend see’s you’re down and invites you out to a hot new cocktail bar for a drink, ‘I planned on watching the premier of Gossip Girl, tonight,’ you exclaim. Or perhaps you say ‘I don’t go out on work nights’, or perhaps (fill in your excuse of choice). But whatever it is that holds you back from things (and let me tell you blondie, PVR will still allow you to watch said Gossip Girl epi), just because they put a dent in your set way of thinking or doing, isn’t an excuse to not be open to change. Why? Because they are within your control.
It’s as if we stick to our ways to prove to ourselves we can. ‘I practice yoga everyday,’ you gloat as you push other important things (and people) aside in order to get in your daily practice, oblivious to the neglected and how those things and people could benefit you equally to the time spent on the mat. We do this because we cling to what we tell ourselves in a ‘this is how I do’ kind of way. As if following through on what we told ourselves we would do gives us a sense of control. (Note: this is a false sense of control. Control would be taking care of ourselves and being open to change).
To this I say notice it and let it go. So what if you miss your daily yoga practice one day, or dare I say ‘two days’, in a row? Is that going to change who you are? Make you lesser of a person? And if you answered yes to those questions you stubborn princess you, then realize that it’s you passing these judgments and limiting yourself, not anyone else. So what if you have that second glass of red even though ‘you told yourself’ you wouldn only have one tonight?
We often make these little set promises and rules for ourselves to live by, and give ourselves a hell of a hard time when we don’t follow through with them. So what? No seriously, so what? If you change your mind and do something different than you originally told yourself, so be it. Get out of your head, let go your own expectations and regulations and stop holding yourself back for fear of letting yourself down.
This way of being also applies to how we are in our relationships. With each new partner, we often tend to act in the same predictable ways which we’ve taught ourselves. We often fail to change our steps, and instead fall prey to doing things like we always have, even if the person we are with is more important to us than the last one. Rough break. Ever split with a guy only for people to say ‘I told you so’, ‘he always does this’, ‘it’s his thing’ (despite the fact that you thought you were different, and things with the two of you were in no way comporable to his past situations). Yeah, exactly. By being stubborn and not breaking free from our set-in-stone, stubborn as fuck ways, we risk both our own fulfillment and our own development. We don’t give our loved ones the respect they deserve, even when they ask it of us, because we don’t know any better, our patterns too ingrained from the past. When will we all learn?
Shake off that stubborn nature. It isn’t attractive and won’t do your great self justice. Let go of how you think things ‘should’ be or what you’ve told yourself you ‘would’ do. These are only promises you’ve made to yourself in your own head. There is no truth or law that this is how you must behave. You’re not a failure if you change your mind or plan.
- Jenny Jen
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