Week 3: Time To Clean House

Time to cleanhouse!     The MKMMA daily readings and assignments have yielded me one common denominator: “Subby” is in need of an overhaul – it is time to clean house!

I noticed that some days I am more excited and positive in my readings and others I am a bit lackluster; even cynical. Some days are drenched in belief and others are overcast with clouds of doubt. I am grateful for both the good and the bad days because each are necessary. Truth be told, I am suspect of anyone who dives into a new way of thinking/behaving and claims to only experience clear sailing.  Waves are part of learning; we all have to ride them out. Undoubtedly, our best learning comes from overcoming troubled waters.

Fortunately, the process of doing the daily assignments has kick-started the necessary cleaning. As I read, I am RECOGNIZING the thoughts and emotions that derail my dreams; that stop me from taking chances or moving forward. That these thoughts pervade my mind and directly contradict the words on the page I am focusing on, shows how strong and ingrained they are in the “Subby”.

Their disruption causes me to pause and acknowledge the discrepancy. It enables me the opportunity to grab hold of those negative thoughts and consciously seek a different perspective. I am then able to REFRAME such thoughts into ones that are in alignment with truth. To put the “Subby” in check, so to speak, and clean house of cynicism and false beliefs.

Armed with new thoughts, I am able to move forward and engage in active thinking and purposefully RE-APPLY the thoughts in order to manifest my needs and desires. I am developing new habits and new ways of thinking. It’s a slow process, one that involves work day in and day out.  Yet, small incremental steps are best for yielding permanent change.  I will not rush the process.  Instead, I remind myself to be patient for God is not through with me yet.

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Week 2: Jumping The Hurdles of Resistance

hurdle2    I am by all definitions a creature of habit.  I have a routine for just about everything; getting ready for the day, loading the dishwasher, feeding the cat, grocery shopping…the list goes on.  These habits are good as they enable me to ease efficiently throughout my day.  Conversely, I also have bad habits; eating the same foods over and over, turning on the tv when I get home, hitting the snooze button.  While these may not seem like much, they rob me of experiencing life more fully.

What if I had more variety in my diet; stimulating my sense of taste? What if I wasn’t distracted by the sound of the tv and embraced silence; allowing myself to hear something new?  What if I woke up earlier and had more time in my day; embarking on new adventures?

All too often we find ourselves wanting the benefits of change but find it impossible to achieve. Our well-meaning efforts are bombarded with hurdles of resistance set out to slow us down and, if possible, stop us in our paths.

In my attempt to introduce a new habit of daily readings and journaling into my routine, I ran head on into numerous hurdles of resistance.  They came in many forms:

Mental – forgetting, confusion, writer’s block, rationalizing

Emotional – indifference, irritation, frustration, anger

Physical – tiredness, body aches and pains

Sometimes the hurdles were obvious; other times they lurked around corners and caught me by surprise. Each one needed to be tackled individually.

My greatest strategy to tackling each hurdle was awareness.  Once I was able to identify the type of resistance hurdle I was dealing with, I was able to fight back. Recognizing them for what they were, I began to reconcile the feelings that were detouring me from my goal and chose not to give into them. Instead, I made a conscious effort to push through to finish my course of action; not relying on feelings but on my determination to break through and do something new.

In the past, I routinely gave in to the hurdles of resistance.  I would let my feelings determine my behavior. No matter how much I wanted something, I wouldn’t act until I “felt” like it.  Needless to say, this didn’t serve me well. This week I looked the hurdles dead in the face and jumped.  Yes, I stumbled a bit; not always making it on the first try but, I made it around!  

I am learning that developing new habits lies in small, progressive, persistent victories. My eyes are now open to hurdles of resistance.  I see them coming and I am ready. TIME TO JUMP!

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Week 1: Everyone Shows Up For Opening Night

theater-masks-colorful-squareI thought starting the Master Key Mastermind Alliance experience would be easy. After all, I successfully made it through graduate school. I figured I’d get the syllabus, gather my supplies, go to class, and start the readings and assignments. You know…ease into it. What I experienced was a bit different; perhaps because I’m older and more set in my ways than I was in those grad school years or because I’m in a stage of life where I am encountering several major life changes. Yet, most likely it’s because with each passing year of life, I have let emotions and experiences guide me as opposed to giving intentions and desires full reign. Thus, the exact reason I chose to embark on this Master Key Journey.

As with the start of any new venture comes an array of emotions. Change seems to be a two headed monster for me. Head One is eager, hopeful, excited; I like her. It’s her evil twin sister I can do without. Yet, Head Two is always there with her fear, doubt, and cynicism. Head One longs to be an only child.

The type of change doesn’t really matter… relocating cross country, a new job search or business venture, meeting and making new friends, or embarking on a six month self-discovery course. Whatever the case, for me, an array of characters show up to play, comment, and struggle to get their own way:

The Achiever is best described as awesome! Eager to get started and a consummate cheerleader continuously shouting “You can do this!” She’s the reason I press on and move forward. My motivator and lifeline. After all, this journey was all her idea as she knows I am more than a conqueror!

The Child is my FAVORITE of all that show up. Simple. Joyful. I LOVE HER! Harnessing far more excitement than the average person for organizing supplies for success, she jumped in with both feet. Notebooks, binders, dividers OH MY! Colored pencils, highlighters, and index cards too. I could barely contain the 8-year old inside of me that was ready to break out the Lisa Frank stickers and start embellishing! I settled for making my own cover pages for the binders and told myself it was time to focus because The Child would play for hours if left to her own devices.

The Dreamer is my dear friend. Always hopeful and idealistic. I love her but sometimes feel like I have to shake her back into reality. She desperately wants change and the desired outcomes and effects that come with persistence and hard work, however, she seems to lose her way and not know how to reach them. Thus, causing her to throw in the towel. If only she could stay the course.  

The Perfectionist is a fair weather friend. She definitely puts up the strongest fight to stay alive despite several attempts to put her in her place. She brings with her feelings of being overwhelmed and a need to second guess every decision; leaving me feeling as though there is a continuous game of ping pong in my head. The reality is that I hang onto her because I believe her to be a driving force in my accomplishments but, truth be told, I’m on a quest to have her permanently replaced with The Spirit of Excellence who is much better company.

The Critic is my biggest bully! Inciting fear and doubt into every nook and cranny possible. Despite knowing her manipulative lies, she continues to rage on; occasionally catching me off guard. I’m amazed by how long she has been able to keep me on a detour. But, no more! I have a keen sense of direction and she will not succeed in running me off the road. God is my GPS and he goes before me making the crooked path straight. I will reach my destination.

It’s only week 1 of the journey…opening night if you will. As the “actors” battle it out in my head running lines and fighting for screen time…My Heart begins to scream… “Clear the stage for the TRUE STAR of the show!”

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Preparing for the Journey

change the road

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find a way...make it happen

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