“Sometimes you have to overcome YOU, before you overcome them. Get out of your own way…” – Unknown
When it comes to life disappointments, failures and those lingering issues that tend to keep us up at night, we usually don’t have to look very far. The mirror in front of us typically identifies the culprit fairly quickly. We have the stories on playback on a moments notice, whether we’re ready to hear them again or not.
It’s like that when we become are own worst enemy. Things just don’t seem to go our way, or at least we tend to see it that way. We have developed a knack to find the gray cloud in most circumstances, whether there is rain in the forecast or not. Sound familiar?
I’ll be the first to admit that life can be tough, and some seasons are extremely challenging. So much so, that we may find ourselves wondering if we are being cursed for the sins of our past. Of course there is the law of reaping what we sow, AKA Karma, however even still we can also put more on the realities we are experiencing than what is called for.
Life happens, and often in ways that we can not predict. Just last night, I decided to pull off at a mall parking lot to have an important conversation, and literally 10 minutes into my conversation someone threw a large rock into the back window of my new sporty SUV. The culprit was never to be found, but almost immediately I could have thought of many reasons why this happened. The old me would have said I was being punished for something I did, or failed to do. However, my life (or yours) is not that simple.
There is so much more to us than the obvious and we need to keep that in perspective. Of course none of us our completely innocent to everything, but the circumstances aren’t always that black and white, but left to our own devices (and to the devices/judgement of others) there is a clear reason why a bad thing is occurring in our lives.
They tend to know and fully grasp why we are experiencing whatever it is, and even understand the steps we need to take to come out of it. Sad part is I use to believe these individuals, and even felt as if they had some keen insight into my life (that I did not), therefore could somehow fix me, or at least accurately identify what my issues were at the time.
But I eventually learned they were only spectators like the rest and only I could fully understand my story, next to God. No one else really understands, let alone knows the whys in my life. They only witness the what, which is the aftermath of my why.
That said, it became imperative for me to understand my why. What makes me tick. Who I am, and what I am made of. Once I begin to better clarify these questions, I became less of my own worst enemy, and more of my own cheerleader. The easy way of degrading myself to pointless acts of immaturity, was no longer my go to. Instead I examined all aspects of a situation and emphasized the essence of perspective, which mine was typically off in the past.
Having perspective allowed me to insightfully discern the big picture. I could honestly ask myself, “was this because of me, or something I haven’t fully grasped yet? And not that responsibility is thrown out the window, but you equally don’t throw yourself out the window either.
Getting a handle on this is not a simple task. It usually takes getting beat up for a while. Once we get tired of being the whipping boy or girl, we begin to take more responsibility for who and what we do. Every situation is not designed for our doom,and even if they are, we find ways to overcome, and spend less time about making excuses.
In some ways, I will always criticize myself before anyone does, however even that does not necessarily define me as my own worst enemy, but perhaps someone that is finally trying to do life better and address the complexity of who I am.