November 25, 2015 at 5:56 pm #88291
Each and everyone of us has a story, a life-story. The older we are, the longer the story and possibly many of the dramas behind us.
Anyway, my point in starting this thread is to re-examine the story we tell ourselves about our past. If the story we tell ourselves has a lot of regret for instance, it might affect our current happiness. I might go as far as to say that, even if the story has a lot of objective truth in it, does it serve our current purposes well, to replay it in our mind?
My suggestion is that if we can’t avoid replaying our story in our head, we’d better to distort it in our favour than against . In other words, create a more positive story. Better I give my own example now.
The story I often replay in my head is one of a failed teacher. Behaviour management problems on a daily basis, going home with a headache everyday. I quit because I couldn’t handle the pressure of being in the hot seat, of living up to everyone’s expectations including my own.
On the other hand, if I use a different lens, a different perspective, I can tell a more positive story. Teaching was hard but there were some treasured memories. Some of those kids were really special, a privilege to teach. I learnt a lot about myself, about how to motivate myself and others, what I’m good at and areas I need to improve. I truly felt alive some days, exhilarated. Teaching was a phase of my life. Now I am entering another phase of my life and learning something else about life and myself.November 25, 2015 at 6:14 pm #88295
“if we can’t avoid replaying our story in our head, we’d better to distort it in our favour than against.”
Best not to distort any story. Better tell it like it is. Sickness and dysfunction reside in distortions. The whole principle of being buddha like awake, is to see the bare minimum of what is, that is – the truth after peeling off all distortions, in your favor or against.
There is no bliss in ignorance (“ignorance is bliss”) and there is no bliss in distorting in your favor. The example you gave may help you, let’s say, in an interview for a teaching position, but if you get the job based on the distortion you introduced into the interview and you end up in a classroom- same discipline problems and the truth will become clear to the employer.
P.S. I think that you and I, Jack, are the only ones on tiny buddha tonight. It’s been very slow lately AND tonight is Thanksgiving Eve in the U.S. I am here because I am home alone, my choice, but this night and tomorrow are the most family oriented holiday in the U.S. People commit suicide being alone on Thanksgiving. Not that I recommend it, not at all. Neither am I considering it. But I am alone on Thanksgiving, by choice, and it feels so STRANGE, so very strange. But I digress. You and I may be the only ones. If someone else reads this, please make yourself known.November 25, 2015 at 6:19 pm #88296
Part of healing then, is to look at the past with fresh eyes. We did our best at the time. What can we learn from past events? Forgive ourselves for unwise choices. Focus on some happier memories. You might even want to pat yourself on the back for surviving some tough times. As I get older, I feel that life is a kind of last man/woman standing survival reality show. I’m lucky to get to 57. Some people don’t even get that far. Lucky to have relative health and live in one of the safest countries in the world. My current challenge is to look at my future with fresh eyes too. Never too late to have goals. Maybe I can make a difference to someone’s life, no matter how small. We have to be happy with small successes.November 25, 2015 at 6:24 pm #88297
The truth depends on the author. Two witnesses can give different accounts of the same incident. We notice different things.
We gonna differ here Anita but I still respect your view. How’s that for broad-mindedness! 🙂November 25, 2015 at 6:27 pm #88298
I’ve been having computer problems, internet connection is vvvery sssslow and keyboard is just about f****!
happy coming thanksgiving.
do you ever miss LA or the city, by the way?November 25, 2015 at 6:40 pm #88299
Any time you disagree with me, is fine with me. I like you whether you agree or disagree with me just the same. Whenever you don’t feel like discussing anything anymore, like on the other thread this evening- that is fine with me. i will let it go!
I am all for forgiving ourselves, yes, I am. All for patting ourselves on the back. I also think of life as a kind of survival show: every evening I say to myself (I do): I have THIS evening and maybe I will have tomorrow morning. And this is all I have and all I ever had. When I was 20, and it was evening time, all I had was that evening and maybe the morning after.
I am also all for FRESH EYES and (some) goals. I like your goal – to make a difference to someone’s life. Interesting- didn’t I post too you this very evening that I was doing IST while on my walk? So with your IST and you standing up for me on this very forum, I assure you that you made and are making a difference in my life! So there, goal achieved with this tiny buddha member.
The truth of an incident is only ONE. An accident that happened, happened only ONE way. Different witnesses will give different testimonies because of all the distortions they perceived about the accident. It didn’t happen in the five different ways described by five witnesses. It happened one way only.
And so about anything- lots and lots of people are authors of fiction.
Please feel free to disagree with me anytime, Jack. And feel free to stop our exchanges when you get tired of those at any one time (I do go on and on and on with my thinking…)
anitaNovember 25, 2015 at 7:26 pm #88301
Hey Jack: Just saw your last post – I had problems too, had to turn on the computer again and again. Well, didn’t have to. Thank you for wishing me happy Thanksgiving. Do I miss LA, you ask. Interesting you ask as I am listening right now to KFI640, the radio station I used to listen to a LOT when I lived in Southern California (Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach, west Los Angeles, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Venice, Encino, Beverly Hills, to name a few (all these in Los Angeles County) and last, Oxnard, a city in Ventura County. Lived there from 1987-2013.
Such a long time, since I was 26- anyway, listened to KFI but can still get it online-
Don’t miss it. I prefer trees and green over the ocean. Much prettier here. I can’t believe though that I was 26 ever. Now I am closer to the backward number 62.
But I digress. Thanks for asking. I have never been in Australia. I wonder how that is like, where you live. You lived in Japan for a while, probably other places- where did you like the most? the least?
anitaNovember 25, 2015 at 7:33 pm #88302
Oh, jack, I am honoring your thread with a quote that my Ventura, California therapist emailed me on 4/7/2012. This is a direct quote from his email to me:
“Perhaps because of my privileged position “outside” your experience, I can view your current struggles as part of the journey…, as you successfully survived abuse, trauma, loss and grief, and rather amazingly carved out a more authentic and stable life. So, in a sense, to me what’s happening now is simply what’s next.
But your experience is, of course, not to be minimized. “What’s next” is indeed intense, frightening, and very difficult. So I understand that continuing the process of recovery is not an easy decision, especially since there are no guarantees of quick relief or simple solutions. So I deeply respect your reticence to carry on in therapy.”
It was one of the times after stopping therapy and going back. This is part of My Story then.
anitaNovember 25, 2015 at 8:05 pm #88304
thanks for sharing that email anita. Very personal part of your story.
I don’t think I’d be suited to living in a remote countryside area like yourself.The city is a good place for loners like me to hide and not notice how lonely we are. (but I am in fact not alone anyway)
as much as I like big trees and green rainforest type areas like the ones they have in northern Australia, I don’t want to be there to live. I live in a southern city of austrlia.November 25, 2015 at 10:50 pm #88333lovelimessParticipant
I’m making myself known, as I am all alone on Thanksgiving Eve.
Don’t get your hopes up though, I won’t be offing myself tonight.
I actually didn’t know that Thanksgiving Eve is a holiday, let alone the most family oriented holiday of the year. If I had known, I would have taken the day off and started celebrating.
I’m listening to your radio station and trying to relate…nothing yet.
I am sure that something will be worth of my time and hint to my intense, frightening, and very difficult future.
I can’t believe you are alone tonight too! It’s preposterous that someone that is so honest and sweet is choosing loneliness on this important holiday. Maybe your evening walk and rubber necking is really important to you. Perhaps it is the hobby that helped you to be so amazingly compassionate. I thought I saw that in a post once, directed toward yourself. You’re so much like Buddha!
Stay strong tonight, I need you to keep posting so I can sustain my paranoia about my future. How exciting (hilarious?) it is to confirm that your stories are never distorted. I thought you were legit!
Happy Thanksgiving!November 26, 2015 at 12:03 am #88335
You’re so much like Buddha!
You look a bit like him in your avatar, Anita. 🙂November 26, 2015 at 12:48 am #88337AnonymousInactive
There is nothing wrong with wanting to be alone on this holiday, if it brings you peace to be by yourself. My older brother at times skips family holidays because he doesn’t feel like being social with a bunch of people at my Moms house. My Mom loves the holidays and loves seeing all her kids at the house and all of us spending time together. Since I’m only home until tomorrow morning, I’ve made sure to do everything I can to make Thanksgiving easy tomorrow. She needed an electrical carving knife and some metal turkey roaster/holder for the oven from Bed Bath & Beyond and she was so happy when I brought her those two things to her house tonight. I bought all the groceries from Whole Foods on Monday, including the turkey and all the fixings/dishes that goes along with it from Whole Foods too. My Mom is the only parent I have left and every moment is precious & valuable to me, so buying her everything for thanksgiving every year is something I love to do for her since she’s the one who does mostly all the cooking. It’s what she loves and so I definitely don’t mind paying the grocery bill on the holidays.
However anybody chooses to spend this holiday is entirely up to them, as long as it brings all of you peace, comfort and happiness is all that really matters.
Much love to you all!November 26, 2015 at 6:12 am #88340
* ElleTinker700: I had to jump in and say: I have been a great fan of Whole Foods in California- shopped there and spent tons of time in the various Whole Foods locations in Southern CA. There is one store in Seattle but none in the norther part of WA where I live. I hear there is one in the planning in Bellingham- I will be there when it opens! When Jack asked me if I missed LA I forgot Whole Foods, now remember. Nice, the fact that you have a good relationship with your mother (you are so generous with your gifts) and I appreciate the sentiment that there is nothing wrong about wanting to be alone on this holiday.
* Loveliness: I am not sure I got it right: is your post sincere or is there humor there.. in the fourth paragraph? What is “rubber necking” you mentioned there? I don’t understand. “You’re so much like Buddha”- did you mean that, even for a moment? Because if you did, I am going to copy your post and print it. (And I am not kidding) because I don’t think I will ever get that compliment again. So waiting for your response, looking forward to it.
Can you share more about your “intense, frightening, and very difficult future.”- more???
anitaNovember 26, 2015 at 6:22 am #88342InkyParticipant
Hi Everyone! Happy Thanksgiving, no matter HOW you spend it! 🙂
Getting back to the original question, at my darkest hour, I can think of how I was Abandoned by Father, a victim, had failed, am not living up to my potential/”potential”, have had a spiritual identity crisis…
On my brightest day I can think of how I am the Princess Archetype, as well as a Priestess, Magician and Artist Archetype! How I met and married my soulmate, have three gorgeous children, am living “the Dream” in a nice house in a nice neighborhood, and how I’m in the prime of life.
It’s like the movie Bambi LOL. You can only watch the scenes where he’s playing with his mother and his forest friends, and falling in love and having children of his own. Then it’s the best movie in the world! Or you can only watch the scenes where he’s being chased by Man, his mother dies, he fights off a rival stag, is attacked by a pack of dogs, is shot himself and falls off a waterfall. Then it’s “What the heck is this Disney movie?!?”
I know most of us aren’t religious, but I found this gem of a passage in Psalms: “Forget your father’s house… Your sons will be princes throughout the land”. It’s like it was written for me, personally, on a spiritual level.
Take comfort where and how you can. And having a positive outlook is better than a kick in the azz.
InkyNovember 26, 2015 at 6:27 am #88344
Happy Thanksgiving, Inky. “Having a positive outlook is better than a kick in the azz”- one of The Best of Inky’s.