When you discover you’re not the person you thought you were you might get a little down. It’s okay. A bubble that big getting popped can stop a person. But only for a little while. After the shock wears off, you might just find a way to be thankful about it.You might find freedom to be the person you’re meant to be.
The best thing you can do is NOT ignore it.
Ignoring it jump starts the cycle again. And if that gets going, who knows when it will roll back around. You could get stuck not facing the facts and pretending things are better (or worse) than they really are for quite some time.
That’s not what you really want.
I don’t think anyone sets out to believe a lie about themselves. It just happens. And it goes both ways. Sometimes people think better of themselves than they really are. They think they’re kinder than the next guy. Funnier. Smarter. More attractive. And more in control.
And then there’s the other person who goes the opposite direction. No matter what they do, it’s not enough. They’re never nice enough, funny enough, or smart enough. They look in the mirror and hate what they see, and there’s nothing they can do about any of it.
The worst thing that can happen to either kind of person is for them to never face down their false image of themselves. To avoid it is to never conquer it. To give in to it is to never be who you’re meant to be.
Psychologist, M. Scott Peck, author of The Road Less Traveled, said, “Life is difficult. This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult – once we truly understand and accept it – then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters.”
I think this same idea can be applied to examining our failings (or victories). Once we recognize our inadequacy in an area (or our excellence), we can then begin to improve or move on. And once we cease wallowing in where we are, we can venture to focus on someone else besides ourselves.
Our “issues,” whether they be good or bad, no longer become our focal point or defining factor. Instead, they are just steps on our journey to becoming who we’ve been created to be.
I’ve been applying this concept to my writing. As reviews from my beta readers come in, I get to examine what my story is really doing and saying to people, and I get to work on it.
When I got my first response from a reader, I paused. Would they point out something unfixable about my story? I feared the feedback, but then I realized feedback isn’t a definition, it’s a suggestion. The definition comes from what I do with it.
It’s the same with seeing the truth about ourselves. Our failures, flaws, triumphs, and excellence do not define us. Our definition comes from somewhere else entirely. If anything, seeing the truth about ourselves should give us hope. Hope to move past that reflection in the mirror to discover someone who is beautiful, loved, and complete in the eyes of God.
Fear not, warrior friend. The best is yet to come! I’d love to hear from you. Which is harder for you to see about yourself, the good stuff or the bad?
Check out this great video from Mike Donehey from Tenth Avenue North. Come into the light and find freedom and healing!