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Sunday, February 27, 2011

self made prisons

It seems a common ailment among humans...unfulfilled wishes and the lack of initiative and courage for change,willingness to risk..I certainly have been guilty of it and in some ways still am.

We are creatures of habit and comfort, and it requires a pretty high probability for a really big "treat" in exchange for our efforts in order to make us consider a change in behavior, a risk, a leap of faith.

By the time we have reached maturity we have become well adept at identifying our comfort zones, our areas of expertise, we know what we can and cannot do (or we think we do), and it is so much easier to live within those limitations than to change, right?

It may be easier, but is it really living? Is limiting ourselves to what we know and what is easy and comfortable the wisest use of our short time on this earth? Is what we have to lose so important that we'd rather not risk? In some instances it might be. But more often than not, the fear of taking a chance only has to do with our pride, with coming face to face with something in us we'd rather not see, losing something we never really had in the first place. It may very well have to do with facing reality as opposed to living an illusion.

Change is hard, no doubt, and most of us only change when it seems there are no other alternatives. Some of us do take chances and risks, some fail, some succeed but that hardly is the point. I believe the point is to live life with a hope that we are rewarded for the steps we take, not for the results; that we are rewarded for getting up after falling, learning from our mistakes and trying another way. We are rewarded with insight and wisdom and a knowledge of ourselves and the world around us that we might not have had if we had stayed in our safe cocoon of self preservation.

I want that. I want a life that is dynamic, full of trying, failing, learning, succeeding. I want it because until now I have stayed "safe". All this time I have thought that my many decisions to stay the same had to do with how much work changing is, and how much time and commitment it can require, and how I was choosing to focus my time and energy otherwise, but I was only lying to myself. I realized, and have slowly and gradually been realizing, that so many of my decisions have been influenced by my need to feel safe and comfortable and NOT fail. Because failing..well...who wants that? It would say so much about who I am and who I'm not. It would maybe prove the nasty things I think about myself that I don't share with anyone, it could mean I have to change even more in light of what I might learn about myself in the process.

But I do want that. I want life. I choose to risk now, because not to risk is a level of self denial I am not willing to impose on myself. I choose to love myself enough to take a chance because failing would not be any worse than subjecting myself to a self made prison that keeps my world and who I am limited to a set of rigid beliefs that might no longer truly apply. I choose it because I refuse to let fear motivate my decisions.

I choose to be uncomfortable.. to invest and to change if only just a little at a time...so I may learn and grow, because "it is hard to let go of a comforting illusion, but harder still to construct a happy life out of perceptions and beliefs that do not correspond to the world around us."(Too soon old, too late smart, by Gordon Livingston)

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Shakespeare Sonet 116

I felt like sharing this tonight. It needs no comment or explanation.

"Let me not to the marriage of true minds

Admit impediments. Love is not love

Which alters when it alteration finds,

Or bends with the remover to remove:

O no! it is an ever-fixed mark

That looks on tempests and is never shaken;

It is the star to every wandering bark,

Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.

Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks

Within his bending sickle's compass come:

Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,

But bears it out even to the edge of doom.

If this be error and upon me proved,

I never writ, nor no man ever loved."



William Shakespeare

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