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I know that emotions are important.  They are like signposts to show us where we are, indicators of our state.  An emotion points us to what we’re thinking.  If I’m sad, I must be thinking sad thoughts.  If I’m angry . . .  Susan Jeffers, the fear expert, said that fear is not the culprit.  It’s how we react to it.  The emotion we generate comes, not from what’s happening, but from our thoughts about whatever is going on.  In this world we live in most things are hard to have control over.  Our thoughts, however, are the one things we can truly control.  We have this great system of emotions to show us what our thoughts are doing.  I often say that emotions, once unleashed, are difficult to tame.  But eventually, their intensity dissipates and we can tackle the thoughts.  In this respect, emotions are critical and important.

One the other hand, my emotions drag me around and get me into trouble.  They interfere with my life and my intentions.  They can make whatever I’m doing that much more intense or difficult.  I need to turn them down, step away from them so I can function again.  Emotions move.  E-motion can take me into places I don’t want to go.

Working on an old wound that hinders my progress, I’ve found that if I turn away from it, along with the associated emotions and just do what I need to do, I’m fine.  Maybe there is no healing possible.  Or I’ve done all I can do.  If I tell those thoughts behind the emotion to just leave me alone, I can often move forward.

I was talking with a friend today who warned me that what I was doing could turn out badly.  When we got off the phone I got to thinking about all the ways it could go wrong.  Fear took hold.  Later, I discovered someone hadn’t done something.  I felt hurt that my request had not been followed.  Normally it would’ve just gone by with nothing more than a note to ask again.  But on top of the earlier fear, it really hurt.  Before I knew it, I discovered that there was something I had forgotten.  Now I was angry at myself.  It felt like one of those nasty punches someone whips up from spit, rotten vegetables and motor oil and then asks you to drink it on a dare.

I understand the value of emotions.  But damn they make me mad!

It’s funny to me how things I wrote 8 years ago can still have such relevance in my life. The lines in quotes were written January 21, 2001.

“You can’t go backwards. You can’t have less consciousness. You may go over the same ground, but you are never the same person.”

It’s so very true: You can’t know less. Life doesn’t move in that direction. It may feel like you’re going over the same old thing and you might rail, ‘Why didn’t I learn this before?’ But the truth is, you can’t go backwards. It’s very hard to unlearn what you know. We go through the same things over and over again, like a spiral.

As you pass by the same signpost, you are more aware than you were the last time. Your knowledge and understanding is deeper. I am not the same person I was in 2001 when I first wrote this, even though I’m going through the same things. Can I bring more wisdom and awareness to this situation? One would think so. There’s been a lot of water flowed under the bridge since then.

I like this visual of “coming up on locked doors and land mines, rustling up the ghosts and demons.” I am doing this once again. What will I find this time? I have a notion that before a significant change in my life, I tend to feel this way. Like all my fears and doubts are rising up and shaking their bony fingers at me. The more I venture forward, the more things blow up in my face or stop me in my tracks. I can’t open that door! I can’t find my way through the smoke and destruction of yet another life, idea, plan, self-destructing in front of my eyes.

My only advice to myself was to “Trust in my visions and the feelings of rightness.” I have to say that I have felt that “rightness” before and it hasn’t always played out that way. What happened next in my life, though, was good, for a time. It ended up in ashes like so many other things, but certainly it taught me a few things and expanded my capabilities. Still, it left me beaten and broken, once again.

“The negative gets me nowhere,” I added. That is certainly true. Maybe more so today. I was standing, in January of 2001, on the brink of a big change in my life. How I handled it a year or so later is for another time, I guess. But where I was at that moment in time, things were about to change for the better.

So, maybe now I can see that life is always changing and rearranging. It’s about resting into the uncertainty. Even the fears. Fighting it, railing against it, isn’t going to help. I can gain some valuable perspective that though I feel I’ll never make it through the land mines, I can trust I will. On the other side is likely to be a brand, spanking-new life, ready for me to embrace!

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