If You Feel Like Shining A Flashlight, Pick Up A Mirror

There are times when we all judge people in our lives, we think we have a better solution, or better way of living, or we don’t agree with the decisions they are making. Before stepping on this path, I often had opinions of how others should be doing things, but never wanted anyone to do the same to me, and I certainly didn’t want to do it to myself. It made me feel better about myself to tell others what they should be doing, what they were doing wrong but that behavior was really must a smokescreen, what I was doing in my own life also could have been done better, and I was doing plenty of things wrong, even though I wouldn’t have admitted it then.

What I’ve learned on this path is that when those urges to direct other people’s lives comes up for me, that’s an indication that I need some direction myself. That I’m not practicing my own self-care and because of that old behaviors are coming up to deflect those feelings that I am not doing the work to give myself what I need to live a healthy life. For me, my mental health hinges on me taking care of myself and when I don’t, those voices, that negative bullshit committee, starts to chime in and get rowdy. It will tell me that I’m fine and have me look out instead of in. I used to fall for those voices, listen to them, and even though there were times I knew they were lying to me, it seemed easier to focus on everyone else’s life and what I thought they were doing wrong, than turn the spotlight on myself. Now, having been on this path for over 12 ½ years, I know when I start to have those thoughts or urges to direct others today, I need to look back at myself, because there is probably some work to do there.

What we typically find wrong with other people’s lives are the same things we also should change or look at within ourselves. We find those things in others so offensive because we recognize our own behavior in them and want to fix them, but may recoil at the thought of applying those same fixes to ourselves. We may have gotten comfortable being stagnant, we may have dug ourselves in there, thinking that’s where we belong, but to truly be happy, to truly reach our full potential and to truly live authentically we need to be constantly checking in to make sure we’re doing all the things we need to do to give ourselves what we need to be happy and healthy, and that does require some work. It’s funny how, when we’re in a lot of pain, we’re willing to be to great lengths to find a solution, but when things get good we can get lazy, and that’s when the bad sneak can sneak back in and find a home, because as much as we’re learning so is whatever drives the negativity of our mental health, it’s learning right along with us, and it’s always trying to figure out the workaround and how to crash that bus.

In those times when you feel the need to tell others how to fix their lives, pause, and use that opportunity to look within and make sure that all those things you like to do tell others to do, you are doing yourself. SLAY on!

SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you feel compelled to show or tell people how to run their life? Why do you think you do that? Do you take your own advice? How well do you receive direction or suggestions from other people? How does it feel when someone does it to you? Do you think about what is said? Do you take action on what they suggest? Do you see how your need to tell others what to do can be a deflection of work you should be doing and are not? Write down some examples of when you’ve noticed this. What was the result of not doing the work? Did you finally do the work? How did that feel? When you recognized what need to be done, was it the same work that you have suggested others do? When you have the urge to look out SLAYER, use that as an indicator to look within, to take inventory and see if there is work there that you have been putting off, or should do to be your best self.

S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you

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