Move On! Get Over It! – or Stay and Deal With It

When people say you have to let go and move on, I always wonder why?  What’s wrong with being where you are?  Why can’t you just be here, do what you need to do, until here naturally evolves into another place, another state of mind, one that’s truly resolved?

When you’re grieving, or are unhappy about something that’s happened to you, you have a lot of pretty uncomfortable emotion.   Which is uncomfortable for others to see.   We hate seeing somebody unhappy.  And maybe we don’t like getting our buttons pressed.  The easiest thing is to put pressure on whoever is emoting to drop it, get over it, move on.

But shut the door prematurely and it’ll just open again, later on, anyway, and then you’re back where you were.  I think it comes back to what you do with emotions.  Generally we’re not so good at dealing with them so of course they’re uncomfortable, it’s natural to want them to go away.  But they have a purpose.  They’re symptoms.

So many people believe we shouldn’t have them.  But we have got them, and we don’t generally have anything that’s useless to us.  Evolution takes care of that – the less we use something the weaker and more insignificant it gets until it disappears.  Well, emotions aren’t disappearing are they?  It doesn’t matter how little we use them, how much we repress or try to ignore them, they keep getting stronger and stronger.  So they must be pretty important.

It’s the western way, to try and make the symptom go away without dealing with the cause.  Ridiculous, the symptom is only there because of the cause.  With this business of moving on  I think we stay stuck in our emotion, because we need something.  It’s usually some form of love.  If we figure what it is specifically and give it to ourselves, a) the emotion dissipates  and b) we naturally move on.

Say you have a garden and you go away for a month, and the person who was going to water for you didn’t pitch.  You get back and some plants are okay, but others are wilting.  Wilting tells you there’s something they needed that they didn’t get, duh.   Well, you don’t criticize or pep-talk the plant, tell it to move on, do you?  Of course not, you give it water.  Then it moves on.  It lives, it flourishes.  The symptom has disappeared.  Because you met the need.

I don’t think we’re any different.   Emotions are our form of wilting.   Well we’re different in this: we can shove the emotion down and ignore the need and then tell ourselves we’ve moved on and achieved great wisdom.  But it’s only because some part of us has gone numb.  Plants are very smart, they don’t bother with such subterfuge.  Animals don’t either.

Well, our subterfuge only lasts a while.  Pretty soon the cracks start showing.  We don’t have any control over that, because we’re born to express and resolve, not repress.

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Letting Go, Moving On – Emotions and Needs

People can get quite aggressive when they think you should move on.  It always annoys me, brings out the rebel, and I wonder why the pressure?  What’s wrong with being where you are?  Why can’t you just be here, do what you need to do, until here evolves into another place, another state of mind?

I wonder if it’s because when we’re miserable about something it’s uncomfortable for others to see.  So they try to force us to be happy – then they can be comfortable.  Well, partly.  Partly it’s just horrible to see somebody unhappy if you love them.   Even if you don’t know them.  But I don’t think the solution is to shut the door on unhappy or angry or scared.  It’ll just open again, later on, anyway, and then you’re back where you were.

I think it comes back to what we do with emotions.  Generally we’re not so good at dealing with them.  So it’s natural to want them to go away, because they’re so uncomfortable.  But that’s a bit like braking when your car goes into a skid, it’s counterproductive.  Or leaning backwards when you’re learning to ski.  Or if you’re really cold and you resist inside of yourself.  It’s actually the resistance that hurts, not the cold.   If you breathe into the cold and embrace it it’s easier to deal with.

So many people seem to think we shouldn’t have emotions, that the uncomfortable ones are negative.  But we have got them, and we don’t generally have anything that’s useless to us.  Evolution takes care of that.  Usually with evolution, the less we use something the smaller it gets until it disappears.  Well it doesn’t matter how little we use emotions, how much we repress or try to ignore them, they keep getting stronger and stronger.  So they must be a pretty important survival tool.

I think they’re very useful when it comes to this business of moving on.   Maybe we stay stuck not because we’re bad or stubborn or neurotic, but because we need something from whatever we’re stuck in.    If we figure out what it is and give it to ourselves, the emotions dissipate and we naturally move on.

Think about it, say you have a garden and you go away for a month, and the person who was going to water for you didn’t pitch.  You get back and some plants are okay, but others are wilting.  Wilting tells you there’s something wrong – in the plant’s past.  Well you don’t criticize the plant, or tell it to move on, do you?  Of course not, you give it water.  Then it moves on.  It lives, it flourishes.  Because you met the need.

I don’t think we’re any different.  Moving on, letting go, they’re the result of something, they’re not proactive actions in themselves.  Plants tell us they need something by wilting.  We know we need something because we feel.   We don’t move on because there’s something we need.  We stay stuck until we figure out what it is, and get it.  Then we move on.  For real.  Simple.

Otherwise, it looks to me as if it’s just a charade.  The moving-on charade parade.  Always leaping forward into the next moment and not getting what we need out of this one.

Judging Others (I’m okay you’re not okay) and Being Judged (ouch)

Thinking about judgment today.   Here’s the thing about putting anything that you do in front of people.   It’s going to impact on them and press their buttons.   Some are going to tell you you’re doing something wrong.  Some are going to hate it, possibly even dislike you.  Some will love it, others will be indifferent.  So if you judge yourself or the merit of what you’re doing by other people’s reactions, you’ll be blown about like a tumbleweed in a wind storm.

It’s easy to believe people who tell you you’re doing something wrong.   But this I know for myself: when somebody else does something that presses my buttons – annoys me, scares me, whatever – I can say they’re doing something wrong (to myself, or to their face) or I can deal with whatever’s firing off inside of me, which will allow me to respect that they’re doing what’s right for them. So my choice is to either embrace them in the place they’re at, or walk away if I can’t. But I leave them intact.

If I’m trapped in some way and I’m not dealing with it, then when somebody expresses their own trapped-ness in a way that I think isn’t going anywhere, my own buttons are going to fire off like crazy.   Don’t do it like that, can’t you see what you’re doing wrong! I’ve often judged or imposed my opinions on others before I realized what I was doing, then had to go back and make amends.  I’m sorry, that wasn’t about you at all, it was about me.

We’re so conditioned to judge others rather than face our own truth – it’s pretty much one of the foundations of our culture. We love looking at people and saying “you know what your problem is?” It’s a form of I’m okay you’re not okay. We see ourselves as better, more informed, more complete, more empowered, (whatever) than the other person. It makes us feel real good about ourselves. Doesn’t make the other person feel so good, though!

What’s the difference between concern and judgment?  Well, concern comes from a place of self accountability – I’m worried about you, are you okay, is there something I can do? That leaves the person feeling loved, and equal.   It’s hard to look inwards when somebody has provoked us, but at least then we move on from whatever’s bugging us.   Then we can see that if we hadn’t been provoked by the other person’s seeming incompleteness we might not have seen our own.   Also, we avoid saying things that could be pretty demoralizing.

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Blog Titles and Vagaries of Life

Lately I’ve been sometimes bothered about the title of my blog – or, what’s the word? – torn?   Yes, that’s it, but a more interesting word than that one.   Never mind.   Torn it is.   When I started, I was in the thick of a spectacularly stubborn impasse, feeling hugely disempowered, being super-dependent, becoming super-aware of my inner critic and the warped ideas that are hard-wired into my being.   Facing very uncomfortable truths.

The word I was looking for is conflicted!  Aaaaaaaaahhhhh.  V. Satisfying to suddenly retrieve lost word.   But I digress.

The past seven months – oops, ten months – have been filled with epiphanies, dark tunnels, moments of wild inspiration and thrill at being alive, potholes, rage tantrums, crying jags, plateaux, rants against members of my family, rage against god and the universe, confusion, moments of clarity, of absolute certainty that I’m effecting huge change within, building a foundation.

Time rushing by at the speed of light, my heart getting out of control.   Wildly angry angry angry, sore, discontented.   Feeling lost.   Terrified I’d end my life saying “I tried to change but I couldn’t do it”.    Gaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh.    Scary times.   Inspiring times.   Alive times.

So far I’ve been very sure what my blog is about – articulating this process for myself so I can see it.   But something feels as though it’s changed radically.   For a while haven’t felt like writing about it, not on a daily basis.   It may be time to get down and write the book, so it’s all out in one place.   Tell the story and be done with it.    I’ve tried writing that book a gazillion times, and couldn’t.   I’ve had lots of theories about the why of everything, but I haven’t been resolved about it.   Too sore, too angry and scared.   Probably still too trapped.

Now?   I’ve got a better understanding of my place in it all.   I wouldn’t be writing the book to blame or punish anybody but to show my understanding of what caused my crisis, and how it  lead to understanding what prohibits development of potential.

Hah!   Hahahahahahah!   Success!   Have truly become woman of substance, am finally really Turning My Life Around and Stepping out of History.   Feel v. calm and beatific.   Well, not really calm.   Not v. good at calm.

Thing is, what about the title of my blog?   It’s ironic: when I started, nobody saw the title as meaning “figuring out what went wrong and what part you unwittingly played, then learning how to change so the present and the future can be different”.   Seemed logical to me.   I thought everybody would say oh I know what that means.    Well, when I first Googled the title about 6 months ago, all the search results were about history.   125,000,000 of them.

Oh.

Now most of the first page of those results are either articles of mine or my blog.   And now I ‘m not sure any more that I can justify the title for ever!  Hmmm.   Probably don’t have to worry too much.   Probably haven’t reached penultimate ephiphany state yet.   Probably never will.

Gotta write!

I woke to the sun shining after a grey, storming, freezing day yesterday.  Sore throat last night.  Horrible dreams.  Yesterday I couldn’t get my pig parent out of my head.   Nobody wants to hear this story any more, so why don’t you just move on for Christ’s sake.

We move on when we’ve meet whatever need is holding us back.  So I must still have unmet needs over my bankruptcy and my more distant past.  When I can identify them enough to meet them, I’ll move on.   If I look at people around me who don’t deal with their past it looks like they’ve moved on, but have they really?  Maybe they’re addicted to food, alcohol, or money even, or neurotic relationships.  The only way I can avoid that is to do what I’m doing.  Feel, articulate and express the energy, listen for what I need, meet the need as best I can.

It’s got to be okay.  Moving on is a natural consequence.  You can’t force it.   I long for it, though.  There’s such a huge gap in my mind between where I am and where I want to be. I’ve spent all of my life being so uncomfortably conscious of that gap, hoping resolution will be round the corner, hoping I’ll figure it out.  I haven’t got there yet.  I think I’m on the way, though.   What am I saying?  I know I am.

I often forget that my current poverty isn’t a sign of my future, it isn’t a death sentence on my dreams and my real needs to be secure and mobile in the world; stimulated and productive.  That’s when fear constricts my being. I try to remember not to listen.

My best prospect is to carry on writing and somehow try to survive.  Hold onto my faith.  I’m working on film scripts, my blog, crime fiction.  The thing you put your energy into, that’s what you end up doing.

One day it’ll be over.  “Yes, I can” makes me feel much better about myself and my life than “I don’t deserve and I can’t”.   My choice.  I’m thrilled that I can at least some of the time make the choice that adds value to my life.

Gotta go.  Gotta have breakfast.  Gotta write!