ALWAYS REMEMBER THE THINGS YOU COULDN’T DO
Modern humans are little armies of marchers. We “get through” things, we move on, we keep going – ideally in a forward direction.
We don’t pause very often, we no longer do as our forefathers did and tell each other stories of past heroic achievements, to remember and pay respects to our ancestral history and lineage.
Even the much used Be Present trope seems to be a command against looking back.
“Don’t look back, you’re not going that way” wins the award for bumper-sticker-most-likely-to-be-spotted-in-a-traffic-jam.
There is a problem with refusing to look anywhere but forwards and its name is self-doubt. When we are self-doubting, we can come up with any number of reasons why we might not be able to do something in the present or future. Self-doubt is powerful, it can be overwhelming. And yet throughout each of our lives is a path of perfect evidence to suggest that the idea that we cannot do something, or will never be able to do something successfully, is quite plainly false.
Looking back is exactly what we should be doing.
Once upon a time there were things you couldn’t do, and now you can. How often do you celebrate those triumphs? How often do you remind yourself that you have the resources to move beyond fear, to turn things around, to create new opportunities for yourself? How often do you celebrate your recovery and healing?
When I was a lot younger I had a car accident, after which I refused to drive again for ten years. I felt I could not trust myself in the driving seat. I did not feel safe at the wheel.
Now I drive everywhere and all the time. But I never forget what it took to get me there. I never forget my courage, my determination and what it took to rebuild my trust and sense of safety. Every now and again as I am driving on the highway, windows rolled down, singing along to the radio at the top of my voice, I hear a voice in my head saying “Girl, look at you now!”
I will never forget how amazing it is that I returned to a place from which I thought I would be exiled forever.
In those moments, I feel the steering wheel between my hands, I hear the roar of the traffic around me and I see the road stretched out in front, and a life-affirming, celebrating voice resonates through my whole being:
“Wow, look at me!”
It may be a small things to most people – driving a car. An everyday, ordinary thing. But to me it is a big thing, an extraordinary thing that represents hope and healing and the capacity we all have to do the things we think we cannot do.
This voice is telling me I am the embodiment of healing. This voice is telling me I can take charge of change. This voice is speaking to me of the power of belief in inner resources, this voice is reminding me I am a transformer and therefore I can never be stuck. This voice is singing a mantra to me: “Wow – Me”
It is because of this that I encourage all my clients to have a personal “Wow-me” meditation in their repertoire. It simply involves acknowledging all the things you have done that you once thought you would never do. It is a much-loved one in the repertoire.
I suggest they might even keep a journal by their bed, much like a gratitude journal but in this case a “Celebrate Me” journal.
Celebrate your spirit and your spirit will celebrate you back and empower you in those moments when self-doubt attempts to lure you away from what is your to follow.
My album Strong Sensitive Soul has a track “Inner Strength” – a meditation which may help during those times when you need to reclaim your “wow me”. I also recommend “I Am Proud of All My Efforts” – a free-to-listen meditation on my Soundcloud.
#selflove #personalgrowth #mentalhealth