This morning was another “dark night of the soul.” My sleep was interrupted by an early am vibration of the dumb phone. I heard truth from another and it hurt. I’m still processing. My aim is not to be liked but to be a builder. Oftentimes, my building efforts are rewarded and rewarding. Sometimes they are not. Sometimes my performance is perceived as lacking; sometimes not. I’m flying home after a long, ten day trip. I’m tired. I’m not on my A game and know it. Hurts to admit this but it’s true. I’m behind on my life’s work. Funny, life is what got in the way.
Tomorrow and Thursday will be busy. I will enjoy a long weekend with Miss and a few friends. It’s only Tuesday and I’m already thinking about the weekend. This is hard opus. I’m telling myself to keep working and live hard while loving harder. The problem is not what others are calling me. The problem is what I call me. When I’m tired and playing from behind, I call myself all kinds of unedifying names. I forget whose I am and who I am. I don’t protect my name from my mistaken identities. I too suffer from a weakerthanIwanttoadmit sense of self; at least some of the times. Protect your name, friend. Do not waste energy attempting to change the names others call you. Your name is yours to protect. Are you? Write your thinking please…
6 thoughts on “Day 26 (Protect your name)…”
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Reputation is what others think of me. Character is who I am. There is a big gap between these two. Some think I’m far better than I really am, some think I’m far worse than I really am. Both impact me more than I should allow it. Instead, I’m working to build my CORE and more clearly define my “I am…” statements, the names I give myself. This sounds far easier than it’s turning out to be…
Instead of doing the hard work to define these for myself, I have adopted the names given to me by others. This is dangerous for multiple reasons. First and foremost my reputation is out of my control. Like Chet wrote, my reputation is what others name me. Chasing after the approval and words of others often leads to living and acting out of alignment of my beliefs. In contrast, when the hard work has been done, my CORE has been strengthened, and I clearly know my names, both the praise and the criticism of others loses its power over me.
Character over reputation.
Yesterday’s Becoming BTL talked of anxiety. Today, of Identity. I’m seeing the common thread through different posts…at least for me. I’m learning that my mindset affects my tension. I’m learning that what I focus on (who and whose) affects how I feel and how I react to others. My morning reading had me in Matthew again – hearing the words that smacked me in Blue Like Jazz – “love your neighbor as yourself” – it’s the ‘as yourself’ that gets me. It took me a long while to understand – It’s implied that you do indeed love yourself, that’s a given. What a humble reminder that HE wants us to love ourselves. Hard on self, not down on self. I need to watch those names, own my roles, and look up for help. Prayers for peaceful rest tonight, Chet.
It can be all to easy to fall into listening to the wrong voices define who I am. Especially when I’m tired, hungry or anxious. Fear and faith are opposite spiritual forces. If faith is the substance of things hoped for, then fear is the substance of things not hoped for. As Job said, “For the thing that I fear comes upon me and what I dread befalls me.” Yet even in his suffering he said, “For I know that my Redeemer lives!” I choose to focus on who I am, in Christ, a child of the King. In the world but not of the world.
I say sometimes you just go easy on yourself. Who says you’re behind on your life’s work?
“Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness. How do you know this is the experience you need? Because this is the experience you are having at the moment.”
― Eckhart Tolle
Great to hear from you, Alison. Hope you are doing well and riding your bike…