1- Pain comes from my thoughts and stories: I thought about death every time I thought about life. I saw joy and sadness, love and anger. It was hurtful to accept that everything had an opposite but then I realized that I can’t reject reality. What I learned (and still learning) is to see opportunity in darkness. I learned that death and sadness don’t mean anything unless we give them a story; our thoughts are what create our stories yet thoughts cannot be trusted 99% of the time. I learned that negative thoughts create pain, happy thoughts create joy.
2- I learned to choose life instead of death: One my biggest fears is abandonment. I was afraid of losing people I love so dearly and I was afraid of being left behind as well. This created a lot of stress in my life. I’ve worked through this fear for seven years and I can tell you that I am so much more trusting and relaxed now than I ever was. I studied myself and my fear and I learned that by choosing to protect myself from the pain that comes from abandonment, I am choosing to live being abandoned and I’m choosing to be with the dead instead of being alive.
Now, I practice to choose life, reality and gratitude. I choose to be human which means I will have pain, joy, sadness and happiness and that’s a good thing.
3- My story is chosen by me: I dwelled on my past for so long. I felt ashamed, embarrassed, different as if there was something wrong with me, with my past. This only caused separation and more loneliness.
I realized that the story I was telling myself was not real. It only drove me away from the blessings that God was giving me. It drove me away from people I loved most, it blinded me from witnessing my body, my soul and how much I’ve grown. Now I practice to change the stories that do not serve me.
4-Blaming others won’t solve my problems: I blamed my family, my xbfs, my husband, my friends and the world for the negative emotions I felt. Why? because It was easier to blame someone for not appreciating who I am, for not loving me unconditionally instead of doing it myself. I realized that blaming them gave them permission to take over my power, over my body, over my emotions instead of embracing that what I need is within and owning my power will set me free.
5- When delays happen in life, it’s for many reasons: One of my biggest strengths is the “activator” which means I get things done fast, I’m very efficient and I don’t take breaks. When I faced delays in my life, I went crazy. I thought that something bad was going to happen but now I realize that delays happen for many reasons. One of them is that we may not be ready to have what we want yet or what we want may not be for our greater good.I learned to trust every moment.
6- Keeping myself small will only damage me (and others): We are designed to grow physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Stopping this growth goes against our human nature and it’s not doing the world any favor. Believing, trusting and accepting that I am designed to grow helped me serve more people and do a greater good in the world.
7-Living my purpose was not what I thought it was: I often thought that purpose is something huge, it’s something that you plan for and that will change the entire world magically. Then, I realized that living my purpose is extremely simple. Much simpler than I ever thought it would be. Living my purpose is purely to allow myself to be who I am and to love myself.
When we function from a place of love; we let go of blame, shame, anger, pleasing others, comparing ourselves to others and we become grounded, loving, empathetic, compassionate and clear on how we could serve others.
8- Ambition is good as long as I question it: I am a dreamer, I am an achiever, I believe that everything is possible and I love to feel that I’m making a difference in people’s lives. But then again, it’s important to question the reason behind all of those needs. When I asked myself this question, I realized that I don’t need to look into the future to feel that I’m significant, I can satisfy this need in this moment and through self-love.
9- Faith is the seed of life: Faith is about letting go of controlling every single aspect of my life. It’s about doing my job and letting God do his. Faith is about a deeper knowing and trust in God and seeing the story being fulfilled. Without faith, we’re crippled with stress, anger and disappointment.
10- Self-love (opposite of selfishness) is the foundation of happiness: I expected people to love me and see me for who I am, but I got disappointed. I expected others to appreciate me but I got disappointed. I tried finding my purpose through different paths but I got disappointed again. I reached out for success to feel significant but I also got disappointed. I told myself stories about why I was unhappy but I also got disappointed.
Why? Because I was looking outside of myself. I was asking for the impossible to be possible.
When I realized that self-love is the foundation for happiness, for success, for feeling loved, significant and appreciated; the world turned from being an enemy to a loving friend. Self-love is the opposite of selfishness. It means looking at myself through the eyes of a loving mother and asking myself: Is what you’re thinking, saying and doing loving or hurtful towards yourself?
11- Being a people pleaser hurts: It was hard for me to say NO to anyone including people I was not a big fan of. I now know that I am hurting myself every time I do something that goes against my inner voice, against my heart and energy. Setting healthy boundaries and practicing self-love is the key for healthy living.
12- Never take anything personal: I had a tendency to take everything personal as if someone wanted to hurt me or as if something was wrong with me. When I started my own coaching practice, I realized how much people are so overwhelmed with their own fears, own issues, own negative thoughts and own problems.Now I know that nothing is ever about me. People only project what’s inside of them.
13-Friends come and go: I used to think that friendships last forever. The truth is that some do and some don’t. People grow and change paths. Some friends accept this change and some don’t. We are here to help each other grow. Going on a different path does not mean we don’t love each other anymore, it only means that we learned what we were meant to learn and it’s time to move on.
14- Shame is very mean: Shame is mean when we don’t question it. Shame is telling ourselves that there’s something wrong with us instead of saying I did a mistake. Shame is simply a sign that in this moment, we’re not loving ourselves, we’re not owning our power, we’re not being who we are. It’s a great reminder that we’re hungry for self-love.
15- I can’t fix myself (or anyone): At some point, I thought that I’ll be able to be a superwoman (I’m not joking). I used to say if I overcome this fear, fix my past, do more therapy, take more degrees and so on, I’ll be a better person. The truth is, accepting and being who I am for better or for worse is the biggest gift I could give the world. Why? because I’m a human being and my path is to teach and be taught.
16- I can only compare myself to myself: I often compared myself to people I look up to or people who have what I am working towards. The truth is, each person has their own path and I’m not their body, I’m not their story, I’m not their past and I’m not their path. How can I compare myself to someone who does not have my story, my soul, my background and so on? It’s not logical and it’s crippling.
17- Prayers are magical: Every single morning when I wake up, I pray to God. I tell him: Thank you for letting me breathe today. I surrender my thoughts, my heart and my day to you. This little prayer helped me let go of control and surrender to something that’s much bigger than me.
18- Changing paths does not mean I’m crazy: I changed career paths, business models and niches so many times. I felt schizophrenic at some point but then I realized that I’m only growing and change is inevitable in life.
19- I thought I was speaking my truth until I realized I was not: I’m a lover of speaking the truth. If you want to piss me off, then lie to me or fake your emotions (and I always know when someone does it). Then one day, I realized that I am also a liar. How so? I was dishonest with myself SO many times. Every time I rejected myself, every time I beat myself up, every time I kept myself small, every time I pleased others against my will, I was being dishonest. My job in this world is to allow myself to be who I am and by not doing so, I’m simply lying to myself and to the world.
20- My parents, husband and friends have stories too: I stopped judging myself and others (almost) when I realized that each person has his own stories, his own insecurities, fears and anxieties. I learned to put myself in their shoes and practice compassion instead.
21- I need to be reminded of what I teach: The truth is that I teach people what I need to practice myself. I’m a human being. I’m not perfect. I’ve failed many times. I’ve had so many fears and still have some. Bottom line is, helping myself is what helps me help you. You are my biggest teacher and YOU are exactly what I need and I am what YOU need for your personal, spiritual and emotional growth.
P.S: Reality has set me free many times and it will continue on doing so.