Freeplaylife Challenge…week 25!

Here I am, still typing from Peru, still trying to figure out these spanish keyboards. You would think a keyboard is a keyboard, but you`d be wrong. There are symbols on this thing that I`ve never seen before, and the symbols I need I can`t find. Everytime I need a backslash or ‘at’ symbol, I end up cutting and pasting it from the web. It makes typing tedious, but adventurous. Like, the spanish must love exponential numbers³! And other such things like this… ¬¤¢£±°

I`m still traveling alone, so last week`s challenge to look up and smile at people has made all the difference in the world to me. In my real life, sometimes I have the habit of looking down and maintaining a proper personal distance from people I don`t know. In my travel life, this would detract significantly from my experience. When you travel alone, you depend on help and connection. You also end up spending quality time getting to places with an insta-friend heading in your direction, someone who can help navigate foreign languages and confusing bus schedules.

Looking up and smiling at another human being is a great first step in feeling the humbling and self affirming power that we are all people on the same planet, going through shit and trying to make the best of it. On this trip I`ve met nothing but strangers, but I`ve gotten so much inspiration, self awareness, and unexpected adventure from the connections I`ve made with them…all started from a direct look and a smile. I hope you tried it last week, and if not, I hope you make an effort to this week!

For the 25th challenge this year, I`ve got a challenge that will require no real physical exertion at all. You don`t even have to smile for this one, if you don`t want to. It`ll take a wee bit of mental energy, and sometimes that is tiring, so stock up on chocolate and coca cola to compensate!

This week, please EXAMINE YOUR FACTS.

*all these are questions, by the way, but «i can`t find the question mark symbol on this damn keyboard*

What are the things you tell yourself about yourself.

To do this, you need to pay attention to your self talk. Recognize the things you tell yourself in reaction to something. They will usually all start with «I«

I`m too out of shape to start a running program.
I don`t like confrontation.
I don`t like food I can`t pronounce.
I am unprepared for this 3rd child.
I would rather stay in and be comfortable than go out and experience something unknown.
I need to ask for more input before I make my own decisions.
I should be better at this.

Often these are the things that keep us stuck where we are, or from doing the things we really want to do. These facts are actually different voices we`ve picked up along the road of life…from parents or teachers or friends or well meaning relatives. They speak innocently with labels that we take on and meld into our self.

Some of my facts that would have kept me from taking this trip to Peru are…

I don`t like new things.
I don`t like anything without a plan.
I don`t like new people.
I don`t like to be alone.
I don`t like feeling vulnerable.

And you know what…when I really examine them I realize that it`s all bullshit. As a young child I was wild and crazy and free. I was fearless with boundless energy. My parents called me Tigger and I bounced everywhere I went. I talked to strangers and I tried whatever I could. I don`t think I felt vulnerable in the midst of all my shenanigans because vulnerability has a component of fear to it. Fear of being wrong, fear of being called out, fear of failure, fear of not knowing. I learned all that fear from other people`s reactions…I didn`t carry it with me from the womb.

I love new things, new plans, and new people. And slowly, slowly I`m realizing that I love to be alone. I love how pushing through vulnerability has opened me up to being more humble and authentic, so I even love that feeling even though it makes me cry sometimes.

There is something in me that hates all that, though, I`ll admit it. It`s the same thing in you.

It`s my ego. My ego is what I think I am. It`s not WHO I am at all. But it does protect it`s self image through fear, anger, anxiety, depression, and defensiveness amoung other things. I love this passage by Osho.

You are more than what you think you are. You aren`t limited by your own associations and beliefs. You are unlimited and capable beyond belief. All you need to do is start realizing all the ways your self talk is affecting how your belief in yourself is formed.

Listen to yourself. How do you talk to you. Like a friend, or like a nitpicking critical drill sargeant. Like a lover or like an enemy. Don`t get frustrated and try to change it, just be aware of it. Awareness is like a light that drives the critters away on a previously dark floor.

Listen to yourself, but don`t believe the hype.

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6 Comments

  1. Signed up for a training program to get me in shape to walk a 5K by the first of November . . . shocking, but it’s something that I never would have done last week. Hurry home and be safe!

  2. Tiffany /

    Wow. I can almost see you growing before my eyes!!! (and how did you know I am unprepared for this third child!?!?)

    Great advice about self talk…. I’m going to sit and listen to see what I really say ..!!!

    Enjoy your adventures!

  3. Another great post.
    This will take reading it a couple more times for it to sink it, I think.
    I get to practice more of last week’s challenge tonight. Going to go to a local photo club for the first time. Having just moved to this new province gives me lots of opportunities to smile and meet new people :)
    I love seeing you grow too ?

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  6. I know, in my heart of hearts, that if you learn to walk with fear in the moments of your life that you create the space to express yourself without limit. As a popular book says, you feel the fear and do it anyway. So don’t simply read these words. Take them on, reflect on them, and don’t let fear deter you any longer. The whole world is waiting for you.