How often have you stopped yourself from saying or doing something because you don’t want to seem like a fool or just plain “bad”? I have.
And how often have we made a call that someone is “dumb” or “mean”? And then later hesitate before we speak or act to avoid being referred to as such?
We are only human, with flawed thinking and behaviours.
Sometimes I have thoughts about myself and of others which are neither innocent, pure, loving nor kind. I would not intentionally act on them, but I can’t promise I have not inadvertently or unintentionally expressed them 🙂 . Noticing the error of my ways reinforces my determination to be self-aware and mindful of my words and actions. Of course, I am still human and flawed.
Sometimes I say or do things that are downright silly; so much for the intelligent image I seem to have garnered. Luckily I can (usually) have a laugh at myself and not mind the scorn on another’s face.
This is the flow of human existence. Some light, some darkness. Some humour, some seriousness. Imperfections.
In those moments, we have felt shame for being who we are (instead of how we are) – when we are chided by “how could you?” or “that is so unlike you!” or “you are better than that”. We are faced with the verbalised disappointment of others; disappointment stemming from their expectation and perceived betrayal by us.
There are instances too when the mere fact that we do not behave in a manner that is expected of us puts us under direct fire of another’s judgment, notwithstanding the “goodness” or “rightness” of the behaviour.
What of our expectations of ourselves? These voices we carry with us always. Ought we to internalise the judgments of the many we have encountered in our walk? Should these past voices be tempered instead by the human beings we are today?
We are constantly changing and growing – we are not done. We won’t ever be done. Our reference point is now, doing the best we can with the resources, skills and abilities we possess now in the presence of mind and spirit that is evolving.
We are making it up as we go. Perfectly imperfect.
Where there is sunshine, there is also shade. ~ Kashmiri proverb
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