Posts Tagged With: Marianne Williamson

Day 310: Idiom Challenge # 1

This is the beginning of my post, where I explain the title.

Ready?

In this post:

  1. I intend to challenge some idioms I’ve internalized, and
  2. I am including a number in the title (#1) because I like numbers, I like indicating beginnings, and I like leaving room for the continuation of a process.

Okay!

Idiom #1: Don’t Change Horses in the Middle of a Stream.

Meaning (according to thefreedictionary.com):

To make major changes in an activity that has already begun; to choose someone or something else after it is too late. (Alludes to someone trying to move from one horse to another while crossing a stream.) I’m already baking a cherry pie. I can’t bake an apple pie. It’s too late to change horses in the middle of the stream. The house is half-built. It’s too late to hire a different architect. You can’t change horses in midstream. Jane: I’ve written a rough draft of my research paper, but the topic doesn’t interest me as much as I thought. Maybe I ought to pick a different one. Jill: Don’t change horses in midstream.

Looking at the last example in that definition: I’m not convinced that Jane should listen to Jill. Isn’t Jane the expert on her own experience? And wouldn’t it be better, for all involved, if Jane wrote about something that interested her?

Before I continue challenging this idiom, let me insert some results of a Google Image search:

19435396

(thanks to sheetmusicplus.com) (and by the way, I am not familiar with that Tower of Power tune)

 

james-taylor-quote-i-hate-it-when-they-say-dont-change-horses-in

(thanks to quoteshd.com for a full page of horse quotes!)

It’s interesting that both images I’ve chosen are related to music. (I love music.)

I got a little distracted, I have to say, by some of the other Google Images that came up for this idiom ….

Hold on …. refocusing ….

… And back to my intention: to challenge this internalized idiom! (And thanks to James Taylor for starting the challenging.)

Here we go:

I’m sorry, but I don’t find this a helpful warning. I just don’t.  It tells me to be afraid of change, of taking control, of doing something different. For heaven’s sake,  we are ALWAYS mid-stream, aren’t we?  And if I never change horses, then I’ll never get a chance to do something different, change direction, ride in a new way, and pursue new goals.

Okay!

Idiom #2:  Don’t toot your own horn.

Meaning?  Let’s go to thefreedictionary.com, again:

To brag. Gary sure likes to toot his own horn. “I hate to blow my own horn,” said Bill, “but I am always right.”

I’m not sure what happened to Jill and Jane, our previous Idiom Players.  Maybe Jane is busy re-writing her paper, and Jill has gone off in a huff, after Jane politely and firmly told her to keep her opinions to herself.

In any case, this time we get Gary and Bill.  And the implication, as usual, is that bragging is risky, if not down-right obnoxious. (See here, for one of several posts I’ve written about bragging, this year.)

Let’s see what Google Images has to show, about this:

tooth-your-own-horn

(Thanks to  eslculips,com, for the image and further explanation of this idiom. )

tootyourownhorn

(thanks to goproverbs.com, a site that looks at proverbs from around the world)

Again, my second image has started arguing with this idiom, for me.

Let’s see what else I can come up with, to challenge it …

Hey!  How about this poem from Marianne Williamson? I’ve quoted this poem previously this year (see this post), but I can’t imagine a better way to go:

Our Deepest Fear
By Marianne Williamson
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness
That most frightens us.

We ask ourselves
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.

Your playing small
Does not serve the world.
There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking
So that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We are all meant to shine,
As children do.
We were born to make manifest
The glory of God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us;
It’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine,
We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we’re liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.

Thanks to Marianne Williamson, for that glorious challenge.

And before I end this post, I just wanted to say one more thing:

Tower of Power, who created that song, “Don’t Change Horses in the Middle of the Stream”?

Man, those guys sure toot their own horns, and I’m so glad they do!

Thanks for listening, reading, and all of it, today.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Day 91: The difference between arrogance and confidence

I am writing about this topic  because I dealt with somebody today, in a position of some power,  whom I  experienced as arrogant.  “Arrogant” was the adjective that occurred to me several times during the interactions I had with this person and the interactions I witnessed with other people.

And that had an effect on me, especially because I spent a lot of time in the hospital, as a child, dealing with all sorts of medical people, who were in positions of power.  I found it particularly challenging — and painful, at times — to deal with arrogance in that setting.

I will look up a definition of “arrogance” shortly, but first I want to say that my definition of arrogance definitely includes the following: a disinterest in listening to and learning from others.

I hesitated to write about this topic today, because I am, obviously, being judgmental here. To a certain extent, I am mind reading — assuming I know what is going on in the mind of somebody else.  How do I know whether somebody is disinterested in learning and listening, really?  I’m just guessing.

Here is an on-line definition of arrogance:

n.  offensive display of superiority or self-importance; overbearing pride; haughtiness.

Looking at that definition brings to mind something else.  I also hesitated to write about this topic today because I see so many people who are afraid of being arrogant — to the extent that they are afraid of being confident in themselves.

That concerns me. I often want to encourage people’s confidence and their belief in themselves. And it’s tricky, because how do we know if our pride and our sense of our own importance is “offensive” or “overbearing”?  Fear of being too confident often results in “playing small,” as described in the Marianne Williamson poem I included in a post, here.
.
I don’t know if this will help, but here’s another of my own personal definitions of arrogance:

.

If you are afraid of being arrogant, chances are you are not.

That’s a nice simple rule, isn’t it?

_____________________________

I also wanted to take this space to respond back to another blogger’s kind wish to connect with me and other bloggers by asking a series of questions.  And, as I’ve written before in this blog, I love questions! (See here for more about that, plus a tres cool special about Jackie Chan.)

Caliwow asked me to answer the questions she posed in this blog post.  I will now do my best to answer them authentically (while also sleazing out of answering some of them):

Q.  How old are you? *muwahahaha!*      

A. I  made it to 60!  

Q.  What is your favorite country and why?              

A.   I will pass on that question, because I don’t want to hurt any country’s feelings.

Q. If you could be any other race, which would it be and why?          

A.  See above for not wanting to hurt any feelings.

Q.  How do you make decisions?    

A.  Very reluctantly.  According to my Myers-Briggs test results, I have a high level of Perceiving (vs. Judging), which means I love collecting more and more data before actually making a decision.

Q. Share one moment in your life where you legitimately thought you were going to crash and burn; end up either losing all your friends, becoming homeless, have to move back in with your parents, etc…

A.  I’ve dealt with a couple of severe — although thankfully short-lived —  depressions in my life.  I definitely had some fear of “crashing and burning” during those.

Q. What are some of your top things to blog about?

A.  Questions and answers!!!

Q.  Who you pick from history to sit down and explain McDonald’s to?

A.  I have trouble explaining most things, much less McDonald’s.

Q.  Would you rather wake up naked and sore with no memory of the night before next to the Burger King telling you “you had it your way” or next to Ronald McDonald who told you how much you were “loving it”?

A. See above regarding my difficulty making decisions.

Q. Which TV show would you like to be a guest on?

A.  The Daily Show.

Q.  If you HAD to be a dangerous criminal from history in your next life, whom would you choose?

A.  I’m not coming back, if that’s my only choice.

Q. What type of utensil do you prefer while writing? Pen, pencil, marker, crayon, calligraphy brush, etc…

A.  Oh, man. Those were the good old days.  These days, I’m writing with a keyboard.  When I do use a utensil, it’s a pen.

Thanks, Calliewow, for including me in this question tag,  and for your inquisitive mind.

And thank YOU, for reading.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Day 73: The Fear of Feeling “Too Good” — Part 2

Way back on Day  3 of this blog, I wrote this post  about the fear of feeling too good.

And, at the end of the post, I said I would write more the next day.

And then, I didn’t.

And that was useful, because I got to manage my guilt about making a promise and breaking it to you, my readers.

And I haven’t returned to the topic.

Yet.

Today’s the day!

And something that I’ve relearned — again! — is to have faith in my own process.  Or, as I wrote a few days ago,  in this post:

#17. Notice your resistance, letting go of judgment.

If you’re resisting doing something, assume that — on some level — that resistance makes sense. See if you can figure that out.  Even if you can’t, try to let go of judgment about the resistance.

Also resistance may mean that you don’t yet have what you need (data, support, completing something else first) in order to continue with your task.

I’m not going to write today about why I was resisting completing that task — of writing Part 2 of “The Fear of Feeling ‘Too Good,” even though that might be useful to explore.  That might be the post for another day.

Here’s what I want to say today about The Fear of Feeling ‘Too Good.”

At times in my life, I’m been afraid of feeling too good, because:

  • I’m afraid that I will be disappointed.
  • Other people in my life have been afraid of my feeling too good, for their own reasons (which I can only guess).
  • I’m afraid that if I feel too good, I will lose people.

I think those are the main punchlines, this morning.

I have a big day at work today, where I’m meeting with somebody where it will probably be helpful for me to feel very good about myself (even though I still believe there are some dangers in my feeling “too good.”)

Writing this post this morning helped me prepare for the meeting, which I’m actually looking forward to.

Before I leave, though, I would like to quote this poem by Marianne Williamson, which I have found very helpful.  (If it helps you to do so, feel free to substitute your own language for the word “God.”)

Our Deepest Fear
By Marianne Williamson
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness
That most frightens us.

We ask ourselves
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.

Your playing small
Does not serve the world.
There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking
So that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We are all meant to shine,
As children do.
We were born to make manifest
The glory of God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us;
It’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine,
We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we’re liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.

Thanks for reading.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

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