There are countless times we kick ourselves when we are down especially after someone or something has gone wrong in our lives.
Have you ever reprimanded a child only to find out that child actually was not the culprit? Perhaps you forgot an appointment after changing it twice to suit your schedule, or agreed to a radical hair cut only to denigrate yourself for being so (choose your word) stupid, impulsive, hopeless, ridiculous, for doing such a thing.
The same thing happens when someone we love dies. Someone very close like a mother, father, husband or wife. If only I had said I love her one more time. What if I had not missed that bus I might have got there in time. Why did she have to leave me before I told her the truth.
These scenarios are examples of kicking ourselves when we are down. Judging ourselves when we are already in pain. What happens when we do this is rather than recognizing our human frailty through kindness and compassion, we resort to punishing ourselves. It reminds me of a saying my mother repeated ad infinitum. Two wrongs don’t make a right. We tumble into a cesspool of self- judgment, self-criticism and even self-hatred. We ignite emotions such as anger, fear, resentment frustration and even shame and guilt. These negative emotions create stress in our bodies and our minds and when the level of that stress reaches a specific point our health can be affected.
Why is recrimination of self or other our natural go-to after something painful, tragic or shocking happens to us?
What to do? Strangely, trying to avoid these feeling does not work. However, to return to Connectedness and Harmony ( Level 2 of The 12 Levels of Being) we now have an opportunity to ask ourselves some important questions.
- Why am I so hard on myself? Who else was hard on me in my life? How did it feel? Do I want to become that person? If I don’t how can I begin to bring kindness back into my life.
- Do I know anyone who has never made a mistake? If someone did that to me would I tear into that person or would I try to understand what might be going on for him/her.
- What is the significance of all this? Is there a space in all this chaos to sit and breathe and allow what I had no choice in, to simply be.
We are not the sole orchestrators of our destiny.
We all have the power to ask ourselves those important questions and to listen to the answers through love and compassion for our self.
We all have the ability to recognise, acknowledge, allow and accept what we are feeling without judgement and when we do, we inevitably bring ourselves albeit slowly and gently back to balance, harmony and ultimately inner peace.