A Commitment to Experience Myself Differently


If you’re determined to think of yourself as limited, fearful, vulnerable, or scarred by past experience,

know only that you have chosen to do so,

and that the opportunity to experience yourself differently is always available

Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, The Joy of Living

(Quote found at Mindful Balance, one of my favorite pages)

This quote smacked me in the face at 5:00 this morning.  And I mean, smacked me and called me its runny-nosed brother, and smooshed my face into the carpet, calling me names all the way.  It knocked me the eff over.

Why didn’t I ever think of this?  Why hadn’t I listened when I heard it before?  How I see myself is a CHOICE.  Self-perception is IN MY HANDS.  I can keep the good and dismiss the bad.  I don’t have to perseverate on all the bad things that have happened to me throughout life.  They do not define me.

I have this breakthrough every now and again.   Usually after Goddess of Mindfulness has said something or after I read something like the above quote.  It just never seems to stick.  With the life I am living now, the life I am trying to build, you know, that life worth living, this MUST stick.  I MUST reinvent who I am.  Embrace the good, out with the negative thinking of myself.

The  one thing in the quote I don’t agree with, is making it sound like being vulnerable is a negative thing.  Perhaps if you consider yourself overly vulnerable, like any little thing is going to reach into the safe world you’ve built and snatch it away.  That’s a negative form of vulnerability.  But the vulnerability I see in myself, I consider a good thing.

Maybe this is because I am equating being vulnerable with being open, with being willing.  These are two things I am striving toward, and maybe they don’t equal vulnerability.  I only say they do because, well, they sure do make me feel that way.  I think you have to be willing to open yourself up to new things, new ideas, new people in order to grow, and that does make you vulnerable.

With that being said, I’ll take the majority of the quote as pure words of wisdom, and leave that one word out.  For me, being vulnerable is a place I need to be at, for now.  I need to leave myself open, even if it means I’m going to get my feelings  hurt or laughed  at or rejected.  It’s something I need to do, for me.