This is a speech I wrote for a women's seminar several years ago and today it found it's way to me again as I was doing research for a client feeling less than.
What a reminder that life cycles, as do our emotions and life's events.
I Am Not Broken
Throughout our lives, we encounter many events that, at the moment, feel overwhelming, impossible, sad, or downright devastating. They can leave us feeling empty, unable to cope or find the answer - perhaps even feeling broken.
For many years, I fought back the truth about how I felt inside. Yes, I felt a little broken. I came from a family dynamic requiring you to be on guard and in control at the best times. Life was about survival for all of us at some level. I did not want to see myself as broken, although my parents did an excellent job reminding me of my imperfections according to their standards, so I would laugh and say, "I am Not Broken, just a little cracked."
I developed a great sense of humour, which has served me well in many circumstances. However, this notion of being a little cracked implies that you are not whole; you are missing a part of yourself, and you need to find or fix that missing piece. It can imply that you are a victim of your circumstances and past and because of that, you are no longer a completely whole healthy individual.
Life is messy, that's the truth, and at some time, we all have felt like a little broken, damaged or bruised to some degree. We can't go back and fix any part of what we lived through - it is gone. We can only look at our current life and begin to fill the spaces with concrete – concrete being the metaphor for learning to learn and grow with love for ourselves exactly as we are.
Perfect in our Imperfections.
There is no such thing as a perfect life. Everyone had their hard times and scuffles with life events. It is important to understand these are lessons to learn from and if we do, we become stronger, smarter, more adaptable to change, and more appreciative of the good that is in our lives.
The beauty of it all is YOU get to decide. You have the control over that part of the equation.
Everyone has a past, and what you choose to do with that past rather than what it contains makes all the difference. Bad things happen to people, but how they handle it determines what kind of person they are.
You cannot control what life throws at you, but you can control how you react and handle what is thrown. It seems so simple to change your mind about how you think of things, but it makes all the difference in the world and is a lot harder than it sounds. You have to start going against all that you thought was so. You have to fight against what feels like a natural instinct and change how you see a situation. You have to educate yourself on ways to empower yourself and start to see yourself as a unique and gifted person brought into the world for a reason and with a higher purpose.
No more pity parties; instead, celebrate you and how far you have come despite it all.
A good friend and colleague who wrote a chapter in a book with 34 other empowered women called Succeeding In Spite of Everything, said something that resonated with my realizing I AM NOT BROKEN – "turn barriers into benchmarks, obstacles into opportunities and setbacks into stepping stones."
When I survived my heart failure some years ago, I got a little stuck in a pity party, and my 'stinkin thinkin' said, Why me? Because of my heart failure, my body expanded, my muscles weakened, and walking/breathing became challenging on the best days. For a moment, I felt broken, and then I talked seriously with myself and said, "WHY NOT ME."
This lesson taught me that most of my life, I had a crack in my heart emotionally and felt broken, and not dealing with it made me a victim, which eventually affected my physical being. Our bodies are incredible reporting systems when we learn to listen to what they tell us.
Every Day gets a Little Better
I am fighting back, and every day life gets better and better. I decided that it was time to start learning to love myself more, and by doing so, I could step out into the world in my imperfect perfection and help others who may be stuck in their 'stinkin thinkin' discover their point of power and not be afraid to Sparkle Brightly into the world.
As I was preparing for this speech, I read a quote from a mentor of mine, James Arthur Ray, who said, "If you're currently struggling in any area, it doesn't mean you are broken, off the course, or not perfect. It just means you are ready to make a shift."
It made perfect sense to me. There were many times throughout my six decades that shifts occurred, where I took a leap of faith and stepped outside the box to adventure into things that brought out my inner sparkle. After all the years of feeling off course, I understand more now that it was all about adapting to change and shifting towards better.
So often, I see women settling for less than their value because they allow themselves to be defined by what other people think they should be, instead of listening to their inner voice and trusting their instinct that inside of them is a remarkable, fantabulous woman capable of doing anything she sets her path towards.
A few years ago, I shifted and discovered how to love myself exactly as I am and to be happy and grateful for what I had in my life, not what I thought I was missing.
It is an ongoing process of thinking positive thoughts even when life throws you a curveball, practicing self-love and gratitude for all things good, bad, or indifferent as life lessons, and staying mindful every day that...
I am Not Broken, I Am Enough!
Lee Pryke, MPsy, Intuitive Life Coach