Right now, I would love to be asleep, but there are construction crews working a priority repair and I have this nagging cough… so jack hammers are at full blast at 2:45AM, and I am singing harmony with them using “cough counterpoint”; however, this is a “first world” problem. It’s not like I don’t have a bed, or fresh water, or a toilet. I have all that, and much more…so, a sleepless night – heck, some people would dream of being able to have a sleepless night where I am!
2013 has been quite a year. A lot of things have happened and some can be posted on a blog, and some of it cannot! Bottom line is that I am truly thankful for what this year has brought. I have been brought many gifts: time with family, good memories with friends, some solid career progress, a focus on balance and health, renewed energy towards goals which have been pushed aside for years, and renewed focus on achieving those goals. I have been brought many challenges: family members I am going to visit in person, rebuilding my life when certain plans didn’t go how I thought they would, overcoming the loss of people near and dear to me, and pulling myself off the cross I created.
That last one is probably the most important. For all my levels of introspection (and I do count myself as highly introspective) that was still another layer of self-sabotage that I had to crush this year. Nobody cares about my crosses, nobody cares if I nail myself to them and whine and complain about how painful they are… There are many rules of engagement I have generated over the years. Some of them are good, but some of them create patterns that hold me back. I’ve been re-scripting those. Then, even worse, there was my tendency to make OTHER people’s crosses MINE. Like I would be helping them if I did that? Welcome to the “classic enabler.” The line between enabling someone else and helping them is sometimes very fuzzy – especially if that help is expanded incrementally over time. I haven’t done it a lot, but there have been a few key places where I practiced this pattern – picking up other people’s crosses when the best thing I could do is let them build their strength and resolve by just coaching them instead!
Live and learn as they say! I am squashing unhealthy patterns – I am erasing negative self-talk, erasing unhealthy self-imposed rules, I am done making other people’s problems MY problems. Dunzo! I might need to clarify that a little more. I’m talking about the practice of making other people’s individual issues my individual issues; supplanting the priorities of my life with someone else’s priorities at the expense of achieving my aspirations. I still might assist with someone else’s priorities, but it will be because it furthers the goals that I have in place. Another example, there’s a billion people that do not have a bathroom. If I choose to accept the challenge of solving that problem, I already know I am not contacting one of the billion, making their bathroom problem MY problem and then building them a bathroom. They’d have a bathroom, but wouldn’t know how to maintain it, and then they would be mad at me when it broke or blame me if there was a problem with it… see how that enabling thing works? Unhealthy I say!! In this particular example, there would be strategy, like researching how to best have their home country tackle the project from both an educational and infrastructure perspective. Yes, education is a huge reason why building bathrooms is a “waste” of time (oh, that was definitely “potty” humor): Governments must be teaching people WHY bathrooms are important (health), and teaching a workforce how to build/maintain bathrooms (plumbing, parts, water/sewage systems, etc).
Anyway, I could go on and on (surprise). Happy Thanksgiving to everyone – and hopefully, in the near future, I will be doing more to make this little blue orb a more effective place for everyone. I will probably be writing more about that soon, but note the key word is “probably.” Even with renewed focus, I have found life is ever-changing and the best plans must bend instead of break. Sometimes the shortest distance between two points is a curve, anyway. It just depends on the terrain, and viable methods of reaching the destination. That’s the 50,000 foot view of 2013 and it is an amazing view, whether plotted as a line or a curve!