Telling My Everyday Stories
In one of the blog posts, I talked about how common for people unable to get passed the binary thinking system. This system makes people to only search for a clear YES or NO answer for a problem. Eventually, we will know about our options. But before getting there, how you interpret and give meaning on your reality can actually facilitate or totally stop you from discovering your options.
‘…I think about how as parents most of us try to feel our way through the challenges that come with being married and raising children. We have very little formal training for those roles, and they are two of the most difficult and important we’ll ever undertake’, by Bill Gates Senior when he reflected on his own experience raising his family in his book.
(And yes, he is the father of Bill Gates who founded Microsoft)
I like using quotes and stories for my workshop participants. One of the stories that I keep repeating is below:
There is an abusive father who is also an alcoholic. Together with his wife, they have three sons. After years of living under the traumatic influence, the sons have their own ways to interpret what it means to be a father and a husband.
The oldest son is married. He interprets marriage and having a family as a way to vent his stresses and emotions. Like his father, he beats his wife and his children.
The second son is not yet married. He interprets if the marriage and having a family is a way to hurt the other people, he rather stays single.
The youngest son is married and has children. He interprets the marriage and having a family is a way for him to be his best self and responsible for creating a safe and loving space for his loved ones.
Three men from the same family and each of them interprets their reality differently.
A while ago, I self practiced a meditation at home. I took out my journal for writing down insights. After breathing in and breathing out several times, I saw my 6-year-old self by the shore. I was hugging my sister who was 2 years younger than me, and I was determined to love her as much as I can. I love her and still see her as my best friend today. All of a sudden, I saw my mother. In reality, she seldom had any patience with me. I always felt that I was being rushed to finish something or I would be punished physically or mentally. It was interesting to see both of my happy self (when loving my sister) and helpless self (when my mom was about to hit me again). What was I going to interpret the meaning of it?
I recognized that despite the fact that I was always under stress dealing with my mom, there was my sister who would allow me to love her and build a strong bond together.
I could have chosen to be the victim and blame my mom for all the damages she had done on me (on top of the emotional damage, I still have a visible scar by my right eye). But I know victimization will take me nowhere.
What are the problems you are dealing with right now? What other meanings you can use for interpreting these problems? What are your new insights?
I’ll be interested to hear more from you. Please a comment below so that I can interact with you.
Remember, you don’t have to fixate on one answer (especially not the YES or NO one). You can always choose to pick different interpretation and see how you feel about it. When you open to new possibilities, there is the time when the real life transformation begins.