As humans, we have collectively fought the odds of survival. Whether from climate, disease, or abandonment. Surviving is something we do! Going beyond survival; thriving after is vexing; trusting our unseen Creator’s voice and guidance, after defeat or mistreatment, becomes the real test of valor.
We rely on our thoughts to be self-generated and a reliable guide. It seems as natural as breathing to believe our thoughts are safely generated by us and intended for our own good. We act off of our thoughts or when feeling inadequate, will lean towards co-dependency, attempting to draw strength from another person. believing without them survival may not be possible.
If our inner voice is trustworthy, why do we not excel at life?
When my own inner voice and actions and my dependence on others failed to give me the life I desired and having exhausted my resources- questions and evaluation began. If I am truly self-sufficient or could have derived strength from another human, why am I not satisfied and thriving? Shouldn’t I have been able to act and live in a way that was wholesome and nurturing to myself and the others we affect? Why did my actions and outcomes leave me lonely, fearful, and discontent? I disappointed in myself and my children. Many times doing harmful things to my body, mind, and soul.
Discernment of our inner voice-our thoughts
Even when we attempt to change a behavior or reach a goal, counter-intuitive thoughts conflict with our good intentions; directing our actions to stray from an ideal or goal. Could there be other influences guiding or stimulating thought? It has been revealed through research, that we have tens of thousands of thoughts throughout the day and night. Most at a deep subconscious level. Most cannot be captured without intentional mindfulness.
Try to quit a harmful habit: eating, drinking, sexual addictions, greed, or any of the seven deadly sins, and you will face fierce opposition. The opposing voice sounds like our inner voice, seems to be self-generated, but is characterized by condemnation, shaming, or fear. Other times, exaggerated desires surface making our previous goals pale in comparison, obscuring sound reasoning.
Negative self-talk: who supplies the fuel
There is an old Indian adage that states we cannot serve two masters. When I was examining my self-destructive behavior, stripping away layers of lies that haunted my consciousness. My findings were that I was listening to another voice, the other master.
For me, I could outwardly change behaviors, but until I was brave enough to let my Creator lead my thoughts, I was still trapped in internal self-loathing, feeling like a phony. The never-ending ‘If they only knew’ haunted me; regrets, the should’ve-could’ve, and fear of the next boot dropping-gripped me by day and continuing through restless sleep and nightmares.
Is the notion of evil or counter-intuitive influence so foreign or unbelievable?
Every successful, life-changing twelve-step program states that our problem lies in self-sufficiency. We want to be free from the bondage of self. Further spiritual investigation reveals that there is an entity that has us bound. Knowing this fact leads to the discernment of whom is influencing our thought life. We know our opponent and find guided strength for the battle. Not so essential to examine the misguided thoughts, as to acknowledge it is not coming from your desire and does not line up with our Higher Powers’ will for us. Then daily, moment by moment we ask to have our thoughts redirected by our Creator who knows our needs and wants better than we do ourselves. We are able to turn to our Creator’s voice and leading. Freedom, peace, and contentment lie in turning our thinking to come to believe that a power greater than ourselves will restore us to sanity. Sane thinking leads us away from fearful, harmful, or selfish motives and towards harmony, compassion, and contentment.
One thought on “What hinders thriving after surviving?”
For many years anger was my driving force. Then, when I met Steve, the anger faded, leaving a big hole where it once was. Not quite a wound, but an emptiness, like anger picked up stakes and left. It was unsettling. And it took a long time to figure out how to let other things in to fill the space.
I rarely feel angry anymore. And when I do, it’s exhausting and energy-draining. It makes me wonder how I made it through all those years.
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