It Took Me Two Decades To Realize These

November 04, 2018

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Life is a journey of self-discovery. These past few months, I have noticed a significant slump on the road. Many seemingly minuscule and massive events made me realize how important it is to undergo a personal cleanse.

No! I am not referring to the latest dietary cleanse or juice fast in the market (which I probably consider). I am referring to taking necessary actions to become a better version of myself. Actions needed to become a better daughter, a better friend, a better co-worker, a better partner, and a better person. 

I turned to social support, spirituality, and Philosophy for guidance. A school of thought that shifted my mindset entirely is Stoicism. Stoicism highlights the division between what is happening to the world and how we emotionally respond to it. It is founded by Zeno, a wealthy merchant who had lost it all. In his despair, he turned to Philosophy for strength. 

Stoicism helps us deal with our lives through virtues such as logic, temperance, justice, and courage. It encourages its followers to submit to the hardships or good fortune without complaints. Instead, you must understand the world and the people around you in a fair manner. 

Deep introspection made me realize these important points. Firstly, I realized that there areas of my life that I took as responsibility. I saw the act of helping as a responsibility instead of coming from a place of generosity. Genuine generosity should come from a place of understanding that you can lessen the burden of someone you care about. Now, the acts of responsibility are slowly turning to acts of love.

I came to realize that my words can hurt as much as physical offenses. Being honest and direct may be beneficial for some people, but it is not always the case. There are others ways to show how much you care and one way is to speak from a place of respect. Think about how others will be affected by your opinions, suggestions, or jokes

I came to realize how dreadful it is to be obsessed with social media. It feeds on your energy as you compare your life to others. Constantly comparing what I have or do not have to what I can observe in the environment contributed to some of my actions in the past. A Stoic exercise that helped me was Negative Visualization. Negative Visualization is a technique that encourages you to contemplate on negative outcomes. What will happen if you do not have a job or your beloved one passed away? Doing this exercise will make you realize how blessed you truly are. It made me thankful for the things I used to take for granted.

I came to realize that Ellen Degeneres was right. We must "be kind to one another". I do not know what your going through, neither do you. We are all tackling a battle in silence. Thus, we need to treat each other with kindness. Lessen the gossips and judgments and practice kindness instead. 

I do agree that no matter how much you try to change or have changed, some people will still dwell on what you have done wrong. When this happens, the best that I can do is to accept. Accept that the perceptions of other is beyond my control. 

You see, I came to realize that the only thing that I can control is myself. It is easier to overcome the hurdles if I put things in the right perspective. We need to stop blaming others for the things happening in our lives and start being accountable for everything.

Many of my negative emotions are based on mistaken judgments. Because these are based on my judgments, it means that these are within my control. Again, it goes back to leading my thoughts in a positive path. I need to forgive myself for the mistakes I committed in the past. You do too. Forgive yourself, let these negative energy go, find a solution, and move forward!

All meaningful and lasting changes start from the inside. Wish me luck in this journey!

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