A Little Goes a Long Way: An article on the Basics of Self-LoveBy rythea Lee
December 09, 2009
This article by Rythea Lee offers a practical tip on how to track your false beliefs on a daily basis and turn them around into uplifting, supportive and spiritually connected insights.
I have achallenge for you and this could take some effort of attention. The payoff for this level of concentration could be huge, at least it was and continues to be for me.
Here it is.
Step 1: Do your best to notice the stories you tell yourself all day and how they make you feel. For example, every time my husband doesn't do the dishes, I tell myself the story,"It's not fair, he's making me do everything, it's a violation of my core values!" Each time I tell this story (I've been telling it for at least 2years but some stories have been running for a lifetime, right?) I feel angry, sad, scared and alone. Still I tell the story over and over again hoping this time, it will make the situation different. Sometimes I act on my story by pulling on my husband to do things differently, to take care of me, to be a "better" partner. It never gives me the relief I need.
Step2: Notice the story, how it makes you feel, and THEN tell yourself a different story, one that makes you feel good inside. Find just the right story to make your heart open and your shoulders relax. Here are some of the new stories I tell myself now when I see the dishes in the sink, "Here are the dishes, what do I want to do with them, do I feel like doing them?" or "I know I often think that Patrick should do the dishes at this time but he does so many other things that help me like give me massages, make meals with me, and go on long walks with me. I'd rather take this moment to appreciate all those things he gives me instead of going into the complaint" or "Look at the abundance of food and sustenance that we have in this house, I think I'll do some dishes." When I tell myself these stories, I feel gratitude, peace, and relaxation. I have been surprised at the difference a story makes. When I stop telling this story, I am free to notice how often Patrick does help with the dishes and can see how I am not letting that part of reality in. It makes it clear that old recordings block me from the present moment.
I use a small, mundane example to show you how often we think these things. I have the opportunity to run my negative story every single day. Each day, I have the same painful reaction to the same painful story. What helps even more is to imagine that God/Spirit/Source is giving you the new story, the true story, the story that is good for your health. When I open to my spiritual connection, the payoff is even better because it is not coming from my mind or the need to control. It allows me to open to love and to let love speak to me through true, uplifting stories.
Don't take my word for it, try it yourself. Try it as often as you can and you will see the sad, shaming, stressful stories you tell all day long (I know this because we all do this). Try opening to the truth in whatever way feels authentic to you and see what happens. So far, I find the results amazing and sweet. It's the whole glass -half -full situation. The more I open to the truth, the less time I spend feeling like a victim, like life is just happening to me to screw me over.
This is an essential practice that begins to heal the pain of childhood because that is where the stories come from. Yes, all those old stories come from some old place in your history! With me, my Father never helped with the dishes, are you surprised? My Mother and we kids did them every night and my Father would jus tsit there and read the paper or leave the kitchen. Deep inside me, I fostered a resentment and anger about entitled men getting to take advantage of the weaker ones. So it's not so remarkable to see why I run this tape over and over againin my adult life. When I run this tape, I am a little girl again who feels oppressed by the adults around her. The truth is the present is nothing like that and this story is out dated and has lost its use.
So,a little goes a long way. One positive true story can change the mood of an entire day. One loving story can open your heart to someone you spend your time resenting. One fun story can unlock a bit of creativity that can reveal your playful, innate nature. One grateful story can help you slow down and smell the flowers. Try changing one painful story at a time and see what happens. It's so simple but it takes focus. You can do it!
Rythea Lee is a certified Inner Bonding® counselor with a private practice working individually with clients and groups for the past 11 years. She works out of her office in MA and gives phone sessions to people from all over the country. She recently published "Trauma into Truth: Gutsy Healing and Why It's Worth It" which includes prints of her paintings throughout the book and can be found on Amazon.com. This book integrates her work with clients with her own inspired discoveries of healing. She loves being part of the IB village.
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Today, every time you feel any anxiety, say a brief prayer of gratitude - even for something simple like the light from a lamp, or a soft tissue to sneeze into. Then invite Spirit into your heart and you will notice your anxiety subsiding.
By Dr. Margaret Paul