“As the river surrenders itself to the ocean, what is inside me moves inside you.” — Kabir
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Arrogance is like walking a tight-rope. You’re balancing on a razor-thin line of humility, until all of sudden, you’re not. You think you’re under control, until you’re not. You’re dialed in and focused, until you’re not.
I lost my humility. After nine months of painstakingly working to strip away every protective layer in which masked my essence, I thought I had reached the pinnacle. I was confident I had surmounted my own ignorance, hellbent on interrupting the negative patterns I became aware of with headstrong discipline. I had finally returned to source, and the river could continue to flow.
The problem, however, can be explained with a quote from Pawan Mishra,
“Perception is to be blamed. It, if given due attention, keeps changing.”
It’s amazing how quickly an objective view transforms into a subjective experience. I knew I needed to consider the entirety of the situation but without constantly re-calibrating the context, you’re liable to get blindsided.
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I run a moving business for a living. I also write regularly, am a certified coach of NLP, and host a weekly podcast centered around dealing powerfully with human emotions.
In my business, my leadership platform allows me the freedom to say what I want to say without having to deal with many repercussions. My writing is issued out to the masses, with the medium of social media and hosting sites bridging the gap between me and my readers. When people contact me to work through problems, I’m given permission to say exactly what I feel is in their best interest without risking anything. And finally, the weekly podcast is an understood predisposition that I’ll be offering unsolicited advice for anyone who opts to tune in.
Naturally yet imperceptibly, I allowed the means of what I did to become who I was. I would operate with friends, family and romantic interests within the same realm of communication: constantly seeking the available improvement.
Despite the value of insightful and meaningful conversation, sometimes people simply just want to reminisce about silly shit they used to do back in their schooldays as opposed to pondering their existential angst.
If communication is always principle-based, authentic connection can be difficult to foster. If the chalkboard’s already been written all over, it doesn’t leave much space left to write.
I missed this entirely. Even rejected my best friend’s feedback, as he served up a plate of much-needed vegetables when I was intent on eating the high-cholesterol burger of my own making. It all came down to an underlying rhetoric I let slip from my grasp: I refused to bet on myself.
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My heart’s never been broken because it’s never been wagered. The overblown, yet damn-near universal fear of “not being enough” kept me wavering along the spectrum between resignation and posturing. Vulnerability has absolutely no value if you fail to show anyone.
The essence of who I am was missing from these close relationships. A safety net was always underpinning my communication. My point of view was present but I was absent. I was focusing on bringing value to the conversation, when instead I should’ve been focused on bringing nothing — allowing who I am to dance in the conversation, irrespective of who was leading.
In these close relationships, to truly provide and experience the love that both parties have a right to, I have to surrender. I have to give up convincing them I’m good enough, manipulating their view of me, forcing unwanted or unnecessary outcomes, avoiding certain subjects and most importantly, I have to give up withholding love.
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Much like the rapids of a river, arrogance has a penchant for taking one by surprise. Escaping your own reality is impossible, but you can certainly tow the line by giving up your own opinion in lieu of listening and accepting another’s. A hard lesson learned is a fair trade-off for bypassing another ego trip.
For life to work, you must let go. Don’t worry about dropping your opinion you hold so dearly — you’ll form another before you even realize it.
Respect the direction of the current, for you’ll drown swimming against it.
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