Samskara

find your voice

I just discovered a long deep-rooted samskara in my life! Samskara here is referring to a pattern in life. Once you recognize a pattern in your life, you can decide if you want to change that cycle or not.

I was listening to a guided meditation on self-confidence and realized, once again, that I am shutting down and not speaking up in my life. This pattern began for me as a child growing up in a home with an abusive alcoholic. Most people I encountered in my everyday life did not even know my dad had a drinking problem. When I walked out the front door, I learned to keep quiet and put a smile on my face as if all was “normal” behind the closed door of my house. In actuality, there was much turmoil.

I recognized this behavior of keeping quiet as an adult during a nonviolent communication weekend workshop. It was hosted by Peggy Smith, who by the way is an amazing teacher! A heated conflict arose in class. People were expressing their feelings to the group around the conflict. I sat there paralyzed in discomfort.  I was listening and tapping into how I was feeling in my body but not saying a word. I agreed in my head with what others were saying. I thought to myself, “Yes, that’s how I feel too.  I don’t need to say anything.  They are saying it for me.” It was an intense experience! When it ended, I got in my car and immediately began to cry. I sobbed all the way home.

I got home and did some contemplation as to what was coming up for me. Why was I feeling so upset? Then it hit me. I realized that in adverse situations I shut down. I have done so my entire life. I never want to be the one to “stir the pot,” if you will. That night, I made a promise to myself to speak up no matter how uncomfortable I felt.

We met for the workshop the following day and I was feeling terrified. My heart was pounding. My mind was racing and I could feel my body contracting. I knew that if I didn’t say something first off, I wouldn’t. So, when we all gathered for the day, I raised my hand and said I had something to share. I shared with everyone my self-revelation.  I said what I had wanted to say the day before during the group conflict. It no longer mattered to me how many people had already said what I too was feeling. I was expressing my voice. I was expressing and connecting with who I am. Afterwards, I literally felt lighter in my body. The love, support and understanding of those around me was amazing! It was a new beginning for me. I vowed to myself to speak up and let my voice be heard whenever I am in adverse situations. That was 2 years ago now. Done, just like that. Twinkle twinkle twink. Magic. Never again will I not let my voice be heard. Ha!

So, a few nights ago, I was meditating and became aware that I am still on my samskara wheel, but on a much refined level. I have been connecting with a few spiritual teachers that I resonate with, reading books and partaking in teleconferences.  I have also been meditating on what to write and say on my blog. When I would connect with what the teacher was saying, I would think, “Beautiful. I don’t need to write a blog. He is saying it all for me and probably much better. I can sit quietly here. He’s got this.” I realized during my meditation, it is not only adverse situations when I shut down. It is situations where I do not feel worthy or confident. I shut down. I do not speak. I think “Oh, that person is saying the same thing I would say. They’ve got this covered. I don’t need to say anything.” But I do! My soul does! My soul wants to express itself. It is my birthright. It is everyone on this planet’s birthright.

Not speaking up has to do with self-worth. It is thinking that what one has to say isn’t important or doesn’t matter. The beautiful need “to matter” lives inside of me. It lives inside everyone. Everyone’s voice has a need to be heard. What is your inner voice saying? Your inner voice comes from your heart and does not harm you or anyone else. Connect with yourself. Once we recognize our patterns, we can then decide to do something different, as scary as that may seem. Face the fear of the unknown. What will happen when I take an unfamiliar path? A path which honors the soul from the heart? Step into the fear. Feel the fear based emotions and breathe through them. How do you react in the face of discomfort? Do you run, yell, shut down, cry, laugh?  There is no “right” or “wrong” way. Once you realize how you respond, you’re there! That’s it. You are living in the moment and can say “This is what I’m doin’!”

Please share your comments, thoughts and feelings. Let’s connect and support each other.

Love and light

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