What Is Your Story?

What is your story? Everyone has one. Your story stems from how you see yourself,how you see others and your view of the world around you. Your story reveals your perceived identity. Did you know that your perception of your “story” , up to this point, has a direct impact on your future? Do you realize that the current version of your story can be changed? Why?… You might ask. Why would you even want to change your story? Well, let me ask you another question. Does your story serve you? Is it one that revolves around victory or defeat? Do you see yourself as a conqueror or victim? Do you blame others for where you see yourself in your life right know or do you reflect back in sincere gratitude for the many lessons that you have learned. Are you better for challenges or scarred by them. Fostering awareness is the key. Without it , we are merely “dumb sheep”. In order to truly win in life, we must  begin to live it consciously while thinking critically. Each day you are building your life both consciously and subconsciously. We have a choice. The more engaged in life that we are , the greater , more fulfilling the experience. When I asked you about your story, I didn’t necessarily expect you to know. Honestly, I’m just finding out about my own story. Consider my question “food for thought”.

In many cases, we tend to reflect on memories that might not serve us. Please don’t get me wrong.I am not implying that your  past experiences are not valid. I am suggesting that past experiences revolve around your own personal interpretation. What would someone else perceive about the events that you personally witnessed. Would they come to the same conclusions? We can choose to reinterpret our experiences. This opportunity can be especially effective when dealing with the challenging ones. Do you know which one’s I’m talking about? I’m talking about those times that you would rather forget.

We , as humans, tend to allow these past experiences to define us. Some of the most common one’s are,” I grew up in a broken home.” or  ” I had an abusive parent.”, perhaps, physically, verbally, or both. Perhaps you were told by a teacher, coach or some type of authoritative figure that you weren’t going to amount to anything. You might have been bullied growing up or been through a number of bad relationships. Did you get your heart broken? Perhaps you spent time in prison or grew up poor. Maybe you have made numerous bad career decisions or dropped out of high school. You get the idea. The list goes on and on. Whether  consciously or subconsciously, we tend to allow these situations that we might have found ourselves in to define us for the better or worse. Again , you have a choice.

We are not designed to stay stagnant. We have the capability to both consciously evolve and grow. We are resilient creatures. It is programmed in our DNA to be that way. The vast majority of physical , mental and emotional challenges that we face , as human beings , is a result of our thinking , both past and present. Let’s take a look at some common examples.

When Someone Has Hurt You

From my own experience, there are certain memories of interactions that I have had with others in the past that I had allowed to emotionally scar me. For instance, I did not have a close relationship with my father. Frankly, as a child, I was scared of him. Although , as a family, we spent time together, I don’t remember any warm interactions with my father. The only time that he and I communicated was right before I was about to get beaten for doing something wrong. At 7 years old, I remember asking my father if whether or not he liked me and he said “No!!”. Perhaps he was kidding. It hurt anyway. He never told me that he loved me. I remember growing up resenting my father. For a long time , I hated him. Looking back , I now realize that it was never my father’s intention to hurt me. He responded to me in the same way that his father responded to him. The male figures in his life were his father and grandfather. Neither one of them were affectionate towards him while he was growing up. I remember hearing that his father even went as far as to point a gun at him during an argument. My grandfather disinherited him. There has been a vicious cycle of negativity and disfunctionality that has plagued the men on my father’s side of the family for generations.

The point is that each person has a “back story”. I am convinced that we all do the best that we are each conditioned to do whether we realize it or not. The key is to realize that we do not have to become products of our environment,especially, if it is an unhealthy one. It is possible for us to develop an awareness of the situations that we find ourselves in while we are experiencing them. We can learn to make more conscientious decisions. We can also learn not to take things so personally. Most people are unaware of the baggage that they carry with them throughout their lives. It takes practice to consistently step out of yourself and imagine being in someone else’s situation. It is more natural for us to react ,especially, if we are offended. Although the emotional response is real, there might be more to consider about the circumstances. There is a reason behind everything that we do. In many cases, our perception of an unpleasant reaction with another person tends to be biased. We tend to take our own side, don’t we? I’m not justifying the bad behavior of others. I am suggesting that we don’t have to allow ourselves to be defined by other people’s  reactions  to us , especially, if the experience was painful for us. We have the power to change the story.

Decide To Learn From It

My experience growing up with my father has inspired me to be a more engaged and loving father with my own children. I am not implying that I am “Father of the Year”. I, like each of us , am a “work in progress”. I will always be progressing in some area of my life for the rest of my life. Despite this process, one fact remains true as far as my kids are concerned. I make sure to both tell and show them that I love them. I have broken the cycle. Challenges and hardships can prove to help us become stronger and more resolved to do better if we allow them to do so. You and I can both witness an event and ,based on our perceptions , have  totally different spins on it. Even twins tend to have different personalities despite sharing obvious features and characteristics. Be determined to find the positive in each circumstance. Choose to be an active, conscious student of life. Every person and situation that crosses your path exist to “serve” you. There are no mistakes. This mindset significantly effects your viewpoint towards where you are now in your life as well as what you have been through. You will realize that you are both the narrator and main character in your story. You are empowered.

Momentary crisis situations, bad relationships, defeats and the like can prepare us to be that much more aware of the blessings that show up in our lives. They help us to clearly define the differences which lead to a sincere appreciation for who and what appears  on a daily basis. No experience is wasted . Your story can be richer due to the combination of all of them. You will begin to realize that  the perceived curses were actually blessings “in disguise”. You determine your  own definition of who you are. Your outer  world is a result of how you view yourself. There were no mistakes made with you unless you choose to label them as such. What is your story? Do you know? Decide to make it your best one. Until next time…

 

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