Kelly Spencer - Happy Healthy YOU
I came across an article that described what women in their 40’s and 50’s, should and shouldn’t be doing. Already mildly miffed by the title alone, I offered the blog a few moments of my time.
The audacity of the words had me getting more annoyed with each “tip” and “rule” they gave. They recommended specific age regulations in their suggestions such as don’t get tattoos after age 36 and never take selfie-pictures after age 34. This list included how long our hair should be, what body parts we shouldn’t pierce, how we should apply our make-up and what kind of pants we should or shouldn’t be wearing. I barely finished the article without slinging the odd mental profanity in its direction.
The rebel in me wanted to run out and buy and do everything they said I shouldn’t be doing, if I wasn’t already.
But instead, I took a few moments to get mindful about the influences on our life. Leading me to the question: What or who is defining our lives?
It seems a little absurd to take the advice in a written article from someone we’ve never met, but how we do we deal with the influences that are closer to our hearts? Perhaps we make our choices subconsciously or consciously based on what other opinions might be or advice from a family member.
We must remind ourselves that the advice that we are hearing and receiving from others is from the lens and perspective of the person giving the advice. That doesn’t mean it holds no value or the words are unwise, but it does require further evaluation and personal insight.
The most well intended suggestions may be in complete opposition of our true self. Or they could be perfect well times nuggets of love if truly aligns with where you are in this moment. Only by living mindfully with full of awareness of mind, body and soul can we differentiate between the two.
Can you imagine if we took the advice of every single person out there? We would have a robotic, Stepford-wife kind of situation!
Unfortunately, experiences in our past can also be the defining voice in our current reality.
Negative experiences such as past hurt, criticism or the formation unhealthy belief systems, can keep us in a place of uncertainty, fear and a general lack of self-confidence to tap in our true self and true desires and experiences best for us.
If we somehow were given messages when younger that we are not good enough or we were shown unhealthy versions of romance and love, then those old templates can dictate our current choices. We may not risk applying for the promotion or trying a new hobby, in fear of failure. Our choices in love might reflect the same unhealthy patterns we were shown or lead us to seeking safe relationships to avoid hurt or aloneness or worse, staying in dysfunctional ones.
If we are not in touch with our authentic self, our ego can get caught up in the fear of making risky decisions that might be in the highest interest for our soul.
Instead of letting past experiences or current outward sources define you and your life, see if any of these tips might resonate with you:
1. If you could have anything, what would it be? In the book “Who moved my cheese?” the author discusses this theme. If you let go the fear of failure or outside opinions, what do you want and what would you do? If you knew only healthy and lovely experiences were at the other end of the desire, would you act differently?
2. Examine the master of your domain. Are your past experiences or people, at the helm of the ship? Do you conform to be liked or people-please? Do you place the thoughts and feelings of others above your own? Are past belief systems running the show?
3. Ego versus Soul? Our ego can be a tricky jerk. Ego can lead us to live with fear, blame, victim-mentality, separateness, self-importance and belly aching. When we can mindfully tap into our soul we begin to truly understand what is important to us. Acting soul to soul allows us to live with compassion for each other but also for ourselves. We nurture self-love through comprehension and implementation of our truest desires. Ego decisions often focuses on “outer” world, while soul decision come from within.
4. Act. Knowing what we want and what we truly desire can be a painful energy if we don’t live it. Whether we know we want a certain experience in our life or we just want to dye our hair pink, if we don’t act on our deepest desires, then we are sabotaging ourselves. We must act, even if it is one small step in the direction of what is undeniable best for us.
5. Be okay with vulnerability and risk. Stepping into the new can feel intensely risky. Honoring our own autonomy and self-governing can create deep vulnerability. Try dipping your toe in the waters of doing what you really desire. It might create a loving stepping stone to completely immerse yourself in the world of self-confidence and self-leadership.
6. Trust. Many, many moons ago, when I was going through a really challenging experience, I felt paralysed by fear. I knew what was required to stay aligned with my souls speaking, but I was afraid to act. “What would others say? What if it was the wrong decision?” My father detected my focus on the “outer” world and reminded me to go inward. “You must trust that whatever choices you make for you, are the right ones to make”. Trust.
As a woman with long hair, new tattoos, a nose piercing, a wardrobe that my kids would describe as “organic hippy” and an attitude of “no one puts baby in a corner”, I recently went to the beach, wore a two-piece bathing suit, let my big, long hair down and took a selfie with no makeup on, despite these all being taboo on someone else list of right and wrong.
What and who allows me to be the healthiest and happiest version of myself? What and who defines me and my world?