Let’s suppose you want to change your life. You might want to change your job, your routine, or some bothersome habits, but you don’t know where to start. So you ask yourself, “Who am I?” “Who would I prefer to be?” “What do I really want to do?”
Change is frightening and the temptation to resist it is powerful. However, the rewards of change – the opportunity to learn new things, to rethink tired processes, and to improve the way we see ourselves – is worth the effort.
Change is a process. It takes effort on your part. And the fear of losing what you have depended on for your identity or the fear of failing can feel very intense.
Things do not change; we change.
Henry David Thoreau
We can only change our circumstances from the inside out. As Wayne Dyer says,
“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”
I was watching the movie, “Starry Night”, on Amazon recently. Although the movie is a fantasy of Vincent Van Gogh coming back to vindicate the wrongs done him in his life, toward the end of the movie, there are several true excerpts from letters Van Gogh wrote to his brother, Theo.
One of them shines a brilliant light on Van Gogh’s beliefs about himself and his art. He says,
“What am I in the eyes of most people — a nonentity, an eccentric, or an unpleasant person — somebody who has no position in society and will never have; in short, the lowest of the low. All right, then—even if that were absolutely true, then I should one day like to show by my work what such an eccentric, such a nobody, has in his heart.”
When Van Gogh was alive, his work wasn’t appreciated. But that doesn’t mean his work didn’t have tremendous value.
To live mindfully, according to Thích Nhất Hạnh in his book, The Art of Power, ”the most important thing is to have confidence in your work, to make sure that your work embodies your best in terms of understanding and compassion.”
Van Gogh’s art contains insight, understanding, and compassion, all the attributes of a masterpiece. Van Gogh tells Theo in the letter he sent to him that he wants to make sure that his work embodies all the beauty that he is not personally thought to be.
So, what does this story have anything to do with why your sense of self is important?
Despite the suffering of his soul, unable to attain success through his work, Van Gogh was able to let go while painting to find a deep well of satisfaction and a sense of merit. He couldn’t have painted the beauty in his work without having let go of his sense of self. When he painted he was able to let go and “get in the flow” of painting.
Then why was only one of his paintings sold during his lifetime?
John Kehoe, pioneer in the field of Mind Power, says your subconscious mind is a second, hidden mind that exists within you. It’s a reflection of what you believe you deserve. The subconscious acts upon the predominating thoughts that reside within your conscious mind.
You know more about your conscious mind. It’s the mind that exists to take care of and protect us. It’s our thinking mind. But the thoughts flitting through our mind can be, and often are, full of fear.
Fear generates judgments, blame and, ultimately, beliefs based on fears we’ve harbored for many years. Experts say these fears are mostly generated from birth to age seven. Perhaps these beliefs served us well when we were younger, but they have now become the negativity that is preventing us from all we want in our lives.
The subconscious attracts circumstances and situations that match the images in your mind. When we pay attention to the concepts conjured by our past negative thoughts the way Van Gogh did with his evaluation of his worthiness, the subconscious delivers what it believes to be the truth, but not what we really want.
By believing himself to be the “lowest of the low”, Van Gogh was telling his subconscious that he wasn’t worthy. Since the subconscious delivers us a match to our predominating thoughts, attracting success would have been hard for him, if not impossible.
When we’re closing ourselves off from the Universe’s abundance and unlimitedness, we can only receive that which we believe we deserve.
Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you’ll start having positive results.
This brings us back to the beginning of this blog. When we know that we’re the reason we’re not receiving what we want, that it isn’t fate or anything else outside of us, we can begin the process of discovering the thoughts, fears, and beliefs that prevent us from receiving what we want.
You may be able to do this for yourself. Many have. But if you’re like me, you’ll need motivation. Here are some inspirational quotes you might need to get over even your hardest obstacles.
- “Your desire to change must be greater than your desire to stay the same.” — Unknown
- “Don’t make a change too complicated, just begin.” — Unknown
- “Small changes eventually add up to huge results.” — Unknown
- “Action is the key to all success.” — Pablo Picasso
- “Don’t expect to see a change if you don’t make one.” — Unknown
- “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” ― Mahatma Gandhi
I’m in the process of changing who I am for the umpteenth time. It doesn’t get easier-there seem to be new blocks every time I strive to have more for my life – but it does get more rewarding each time I change. That’s because I’ve found that digging deeper and admitting the truth goes a long way to manifest all that I want to be and have.
For more on “Who Am I?”, go to this link, https://dorettab.com/answering-big-questions-life/