It’s all About the Lemonade!

It is hard to believe I started this blog just over a year ago and it has since then allowed me to pursue my life goal of writing a book. When I look back on the person I was when I started blogging, I am proud to be able to point out the differences between who I am today and who I was then. I think it is very important to be aware of these changes in ourselves, because it helps us to connect with who we are and reminds us of the actions we do not wish to repeat. Back then, I had nothing but hesitation to put myself out there (in any form). I was fearful of rejection and in a place mentally where self-defeating thoughts ruled my every day life. I second guessed every decision I made or thought of making. I harbored feelings of resentment and anger for those who wronged me and most of all for my mother. I was weighed down with the pain of my past and in some cases the weight of my present. I did a fairly good job of covering up my feelings of inadequacy, but those who knew me well knew what I was feeling.

My old boss told me once that people looked up to me and held great respect for my opinion. I just laughed at her. At the time I remember dismissing the comment as truth and attributed it as consolation for the promotion I was just over looked for. I realize now the reason I didn’t receive the promotion was because although the majority of the office felt more comfortable coming to me as a manager than many of the managers, it didn’t matter because I did not believe in myself. How can someone put you in a position of power when you feel that you are powerless in your own life? I had a great deal of resentment for her for a long time about this and I am not ashamed to admit now that I was wrong and she was right.

I am a strong believer that everything happens for a reason. Had I received the promotion I wanted so much, I would have probably never left the company to pursue my true happiness. I may have been content, but I am not sure I would have ever been genuinely happy. I no longer hold any resentment for the situation. Instead, I am thankful to have been overlooked.

Now, please don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that we all need to pick up everything and move half way across the country in order to find our own self-worth. In many cases, we simply need to take a small step back for a moment and ask ourselves the hard questions in respect to who we are and what we really want. Everyone works through their issues in their own way. Personally, I was in such an emotional rut that it was necessary for me to take a much larger step back and out of the situation. I am a very loyal person and because of this, I sometimes find myself compromising my own wants and needs for the wants and needs of others. I have always had a problem with using the word: NO. I had started on a downward spiral of emotional hell and stepping out of it for a moment was just want I needed to realize what a bad state I was in.

I needed to find my strength and learn to have faith in myself and others again. I needed to feel that it was possible to love without tragedy again. I knew this would not be impossible where I was, because I am easily distracted by tending to the needs of others. I don’t plan to say away for ever. The Midwest is my home. I will be back there in the near future, but not until my search is over.

When the familiar feelings of inadequacy begin to creep in, I try my best not to fall back in to the same self-defeating actions of my past. It is not always easy to snap myself out of the cycle, but I find comfort in having an outlet for these emotions. When I am feeling discouraged, I am able to look back on many of the posts I have written and remind myself of just how far I have come. This allows me the realization that the situation is not hopeless and I alone hold the ability to rise above. My two most thought-provoking posts of late are those that I wrote on Random Thought by Insane Roots;  Why do we do What we do? and The Freedom of Forgiveness.

Both of these posts remind me of where my self-defeating thoughts are coming from and that I have the power to stop them from taking over my life. We must forgive those who have wronged us and move on with our lives. It is not productive to dwell on our mistakes or the mistakes of others, but rather to find the lesson to be learned and move forward with wisdom and grace. Everyone has their fair share of heartbreak in life and the more tragedy we are faced with the stronger we can become. In the end it really is all about the lemonade. The first pitcher you brew from the lemons of life may be bitter, but as you practice the recipe and learn to add a little sugar to the mix, it becomes a bit easier to swallow. As you become more and more confident in your abilities, you are able to try out new recipes and eventually the bitterness subsides and the tragedy becomes refreshing rather than depressing.

The first step in personal growth is believing in yourself. Only then will you be able to internalize your true potential. Don’t let the world tell you who you are or define your purpose in this life. Know yourself, support yourself, and trust yourself. It is not a sin to be confident and it is okay to feel disappointed or discouraged at times. After all, we are only human and to be human is to encompass all the emotions inflicted on us by our surroundings. However, you must also learn to free yourself from inadequacy and revel in the power you have within yourself. Although you may be flawed (we all are), you are amazing, you are beautiful and you are powerful!

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