Who Are We?

Polarization of ourselves, our families, our communities and our governments are not serving us well right now. We are divided within ourselves, our families, our communities and our governments. This great divide is hurting us emotionally; we are becoming more lonely and long for the connection with others that we once took for granted. How did this happen? Who do we really want to become? How do we satisfy our own perils and still care deeply for others? Is loneliness the answer? Do we need to be okay with being alone? Yes and No. 

I get daily reminders on Facebook about looking after myself and caring for myself while being kind to others. I believe that being kind to others has been taken over by a need to protect ourselves from past mistakes and heartache. The real problem that I see are people distancing themselves from others in order to protect themselves from hurt and pain. Instead of healing themselves from the past, the past is showing up in the present. We seem to forget that healing past wounds is as important as standing up for our beliefs. I frequently hear, “I won’t let that happen to me again”. THAT usually being a relationship that was emotionally painful. How do we really care for ourselves in a way that doesn’t misjudge what we desperately need? While our pasts are kicking our butts—even though we think they’re not—we are kicking others and in the process, we’re making decisions based on past experiences that continue to be traumatic to ourselves. 

How can we truly be ourselves without putting the past to rest? Get out those values again. Are we really being kind, honest and accountable or does the past haunt how kind we’ll be, how honest we are with ourselves and how accountable we are with both ourselves and others? In short, can we heal our past mistakes and the trauma caused by others to build ourselves a new slate on which to stand? One that reflects core values untainted from past bitter experiences? Or are we doomed to live for a traumatized, mistake-driven, unaccountable SELF, family, community and government, still lost in the past? 

I’m going to step out on a limb here and actually profess that I don’t believe we can be our true selves without healing our past selves. If we’re still making decisions based on selves still hurting from our past, we are not being true to the self that we originally were. I want to be true to the self I was meant to be, not the self my past has made me. That being said, healed parts of myself contribute to who I am right now and through their continued healing help me become the person I am meant to be. The loneliness I feel is only one part of myself. It does not control who I am; although, it contributes to it. The fear I feel when standing up for myself comes from the past, not the present. When I show up with my healed self, I will be who I was meant to be. In the meantime, I am becoming, and still have much to learn, as do our families, communities and governments. I wish we could all just realize this.

The road to effective leadership begins with the whole-hearted living of individuals, families and communities. It becomes itself once our own personal needs are dealt with. The need for food, shelter and love within our own system has to come first if we are to be able to feed, clothe and love others. And we have to be accountable. We have to right our wrongs and own them. We need to show up in our families, communities and governments and lead from a place of effectiveness instead of selfishness. A place that understands our own personal inadequacies and those of our governments. You won’t be an adequate leader if you can’t show up!

peace balance empathy

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