I have improved immensely. By diligent attention I have learned to be consistent. The learning may have started from a motivation to please others. Unfortunately that form of motivation never found consistency within me. It finally came from a drive within to become personally empowered.
First I started claiming ownership of my thinking. I started to see my thoughts as a whole lot of ideas I had accepted from dubious authorities. I came to realize that every idea I accepted from somebody else was an act of giving away my power at the most fundamental level. I had been taking the accuracy of my thoughts for granted simply because I liked certain people. And I was making those thoughts mine.
Once I had owned them I couldn’t let them go or change them at the risk of letting myself appear stupid. Whether I had swallowed a line from some other uninformed believer or not I had chosen to accept every idea I used to frame my life and relationships. My good opinion of myself demanded that I should not easily admit errors in judgment, to admit my mistakes would have undermined what I viewed as ‘a strong sense of self esteem’.
So the time came for me to start looking at the beliefs I held so dear, to weigh them in the most discerning way I could, and to discard them when they didn’t work.
Some thoughts were easy to discard, any that I saw as bigotry went quickly. Many that weighed against the laws of the land, stealing and such, when noticed, were also easy to discard. Yet I found that as I progressed it became increasingly difficult to find those beliefs. I turned to science; a belief had to, where measurable, equate with scientific law. Again this process proved relatively simple, and it helped that I had always held a scientific outlook. It did not help that Science, Religion and Politics were so fundamentally opposed to each other. I couldn’t just throw out all Religion because it was in opposition to Scientific Law, nor could I throw out all Science because Religion held the moral ground. And where politics provided a harmonious and healthy living environment it had to be maintained. I realized I had to look at my beliefs individually; I had to find some way to measure each one without encumbering myself with an intellectually deadening process.
Finally after years of trial and error I arrived at a measure; I developed three questions to ask myself that seemed to work. Did my belief cause me pain or discomfort or did they increase my sense of well being? Did it in any way as a belief decrease from another’s personal freedom to think or act for their well being? And did my belief promote a world of greater peace, joy, beauty, love and life?
The last step was to be willing to chase my beliefs back to their seed thoughts and thereby release any ill judgments I may have imposed upon myself or another. When I started to follow this practice I discovered a freedom within me to follow my passions, to do the things that brought me joy. I discovered old relations healed and new found fulfillment. One of the side benefits I discovered was a freedom to give without expectation. More importantly, because I had come to own my own power to think, the expectations of others became irrelevant. I was giving because I wanted to give as I wanted to give and the greatest getting was all coming from an indwelling essence that started and continues to grow. I discovered giving for the sake of giving.
I no longer take much for granted; I understand that what I love grows because I give in to it. I have discovered a deep compassion through this realization because I now see that no-one gets anything except to the degree that they give. More and more I realize that we don’t get good deals or freebies; as we give things come to us. They come to us in exact correspondence to our desire and willingness.
I know many people who have filled their lives with clutter and junk in their attempts to get things for cheep; they are typically cheeping themselves. When we give to the highest level we are able we are stretched to greater degrees. We attract quality because we give quality; we increase our worth because we are worthy givers.
Do you have good friends; then you give your soul as a friend. Do you have quality belongings; then you put your soul into the quality of your thoughts and actions. Do you find your life abundant? If you do you will find your heart and soul is given to creating abundance.
I no longer fret about others taking me for granted because I recognize their disappointment is their loss when they have not invested of themselves and sought only to give little for much. When we give much to the things we appreciate we empower them to grow; and we grow with them.