At some point in the last few weeks, I decided to take some time off from my newsletter. I don’t know that I actually made the conscious decision to do this, it’s just something that happened.
Like everything else, you could say (I’m looking at you, pandemic).
But I’m back and I’ve made the conscious decision to continue doing this. It sounds stupid, but one of the things I’ve learned in the last few months is that life continues. It doesn’t stop because of a pandemic, or because you’re sick, or because your routine changes. Life continues. It’s just your actions that stop. Or change.
Actually, I’ve learned a bunch of stuff in the last few weeks. Being home with yourself will do that. When you don’t have all the usual distractions, you discover things about yourself that you normally might not have.
“Ya can’t run away from yourself.”Bob Marley
So what have I learned? Well, first of all, I don’t focus well. (Squirrel!) Also, I show myself very little compassion when I make mistakes or fail to live up to my expectations. My work habits are not great. I eat when I’m bored. I … you get the point. This time has been eye-opening. And while I’m not particularly happy with some of the things I’ve discovered, I’m not upset either. I learned a long time ago that if you don’t know what’s wrong, you can’t fix it. But also, why am I assigning any of this an emotion? We all have bad habits. We all are flawed. Should I feel more satisfied with myself because I can do something ‘right’? By that same token, should I kick myself because I’m not perfect?
The truth is, we all strive for perfection, but why is that the standard? I’m not saying we should settle for whatever is wrong with us, but I think we need to rethink our mindset. And we can start with this: it’s not that there’s something ‘wrong’ with me because I get distracted, or because I eat when I’m bored. Those are bad habits, that’s all. There’s nothing wrong with me, I’m just not as effective as I can be. We need to let go of the need to judge ourselves so harshly. After all, if God remembers our true nature and still shows us compassion–
As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him. For He knows what we are made of, remembering that we are dust.Psalms 103:13-14
Yet he was merciful; he forgave their iniquities and did not destroy them. Time after time he restrained his anger and did not stir up his full wrath. He remembered that they were but flesh, a passing breeze that does not return.Psalm 78:38-39
So what have you learned about yourself?