As I’ve been exploring the idea (ahem, fact) that I am the ultimate creator of my life experiences, I’ve become more aware of my habit of justification.
In my last post, I wrote about my tendency to seek the permission of others when making life decisions. I’m noticing that in giving others authority, there is underlying need to justify myself and my actions…a sense that I must explain why I want something, my motivation for doing it, and why I’m deserving of it.
I haven’t let myself just want what I want.
When we constantly justify why we want something, we’re saying that our own reasons for wanting it aren’t enough (or aren’t ‘good’ enough). We thus have to show why we want certain things. We have to prove why it should come to us, why we are worthy of it. We have to work hard for what we want, so that others (god/the universe/whoever) can see that we’re serious about wanting it.
And it’s not enough that we just say this once. No. We have to keep repeating it, just in case the universe forgets, or thinks we don’t really want it.
The emphasis is on the doing over the being.
Once I became aware of it, I saw the need to justify operating everywhere in my daily life. It’s at work, when someone requests something I’m not able to do. Or in personal relationships, when I’m invited to something I’m not interested in. A simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on my part won’t do; I must offer an explanation of why I can’t do it – and often after much careful deliberation of my words.
Underneath my need to explain there has been fear of what others will think, if I don’t do what they want. Fear of disapproval. The logic is – if I explain myself well enough, they won’t be upset or think negatively of me. Their opinion of me affects my opinion of myself.
All this is so exhausting.
It’s so much wasted effort to prove ourselves and our motivations to others. It’s disheartening. It drains the spirit. We’re essentially telling ourselves that our own approval isn’t enough; that we need external sanction before we let ourselves move forward. But is this really moving forward?
When you’ve gone through life explaining yourself, it can feel challenging to break this pattern. One question I’ve struggled with is, How can I change the rules at this stage of the game? How will others react if my behaviour suddenly changes?
But who’s to say that this change must be negative? In fact, the opposite is true. While playing ‘nice’ may appear to keep some people comfortable, it’s not in integrity. When I am not true to myself, resentment builds up. It only gets stronger and louder as I stifle my inner voice. And then I project it onto others – regardless of what’s on the outside. They perceive what’s underneath.
Imagine how much tension, holding, and resistance is created in the body when we need to constantly justify ourselves. And how good it feels to surrender it all. To breathe. To release. To infuse the process of creation with more lightness and fun. To give ourselves a break!
I am ready for a new way. One that lets myself want what I want, knowing that I am intrinsically worthy of whatever it is that I want. That no other explanation is necessary. Trusting that spirit knows what’s in my heart, and that’s all that’s needed to help me achieve it. So I can start to relax, and let go of the effort in trying so hard.
While I don’t believe it has to take months or years or lifetimes to achieve this – change can happen in an instant – authenticity is key, as I evolve my thinking and being. This means savouring the process of transformation, whether it comes quickly or is taking more time than I’d like. Feeling every cell of my body adapt to this new way. It can be a delicious feeling, if I let it.
I also want to say a big thank-you to all those amazing bloggers out there who are having similar experiences…who have written about their own processes, and have left such inspiring comments here. We are all learning from each other, and it’s truly awesome what’s going on.