Friday, October 10, 2008
I am no financial or spiritual guru. I am just like you. I am a single mom, running my own business, an artist trying to make ends meet. I have financial and emotional baggage like anyone else. With the way the economy has been turning the past couple of weeks, as well as events occurring in my own life, I have been thinking a lot about perspective.
I was talking to a friend recently about creating your own reality. She said to me, "If it's really true that you can create your own reality, I have to look at the world today and think, 'This is not my reality!'" It's not mine either, and there are a lot of things happening in the world that I have absolutely no control over. So what can I control? What can I change? How can I take all of this negativity and turn it around in my own life? I don't have the answers, but here are some of the things I have been thinking about. I would like to share them, first to solidify them in myself, and second to hear your opinions and ideas.
First of all, the economy. If you watch the news, you are probably terrified. I saw Suze Orman on tv the other day talking about credit, and how we are turning back into a cash economy. At first that sounded so scary! Then I thought, I have terrible credit, but I have no credit cards, no house payments, no car payment. Besides living and business expenses, the only debt I have is my student loan. Not so bad for someone with bad credit! So, maybe I don't have any credit, but I haven't for a long time, so that doesn't really affect me. I may not have good credit, but I do work and darn hard, and I do have the capacity to make money. If anything, this global financial crisis gives me even more of an impetus to work harder, increase my income, and save like I never have before.
So, speaking of the news, I have been thinking about television. Lately I have been watching, besides the handful of shows I normally would watch in a week, a lot of movies and dramatic series (like Law & Order, for example), on Netflix during the day while I work. Sounds harmless, right? Except that many mornings I wake up with these characters and scenarios in my head. I don't remember my dreams very often, but I have to wonder, if I am waking up this way then what the heck was I thinking about all night long? How are these shows affecting my psyche?
I am not saying you or I should stop watching tv, but it's time to take a step back and consider what you are inundating your subconcious with. Watching Heroes every Monday (for example) may not be a problem, but how many other shows do you watch? What does that do to your thought patterns? What if, instead of watching horribly stressful and dramatic shows like ER or SVU, I watched comedies, or shows with a more relaxing and positive message, or listened to music? What if, instead of watching the news and listening to their panic-creating tactics, you checked out a video or a book from the library that inspired you to get your personal financial life in order? It may not seem like such a big thing, but I have a feeling that some underlying stress and anxiety may just disappear.
The third thing I have been thinking about is my own self-image. There are things I love about myself, and others that I'd really like to change. My problem with change is that I often take on several self-changing projects all at once until I'm so overwhelmed that I fail at all of them. Sounds fun, huh? ;) But I have been trying to regard myself with more love and compassion, to not be so hard on myself for my failings. Again, I don't necessarily have the answer. But this morning I was looking at my refridgerator, covered in Indigo's art, and realized it was one of those times that I needed to clear it off to make room for this year's projects.
As I took down all of the pictures, I uncovered one that Indigo had drawn of me. As a mama, it can break your heart if you think too hard about how you feel about your child, and even more if you think about how they feel about you. All young children want in the world is their mama and their daddy, and they see you as beautiful and wise, and perfect just how you are. I decided at that moment to leave that particular drawing up. Not only because I love it, but as a gentle reminder to let go of my guilt and try to see myself the way she sees me. Always beautiful, always wearing a princess dress, and always surrounded by lots and lots of floating hearts.