“Most of us, as a result of conditioning, have repetitions and predictable responses to the stimuli in our environment. Our reactions seem to be automatically triggered by people and circumstances, and we tend to make unconscious decisions”
- Deepak Chopra
Ever since we came into being, our parents, relatives, and teachers have modeled ideas of success, love, fun, and belonging for us. Whether they suggested what career you had to take, or designed certain value sets in you, the fact is this - we’ve been influenced. As a therapist, I’ve listened to all kinds of stories on career, romance, friendships, family, and so forth. And while we have been taught to the best of their ability, here are a few reasons why it’s time for you to revisit your definitions on love, relationships, success, and living your life:
It’s getting you stuck. As a therapist, the work that I do revolves around listening to the stories that we tell ourselves. Part of the job is really about gathering the themes that we create and love to re-create in order to assess why things “aren’t working”. You see, it is in our very nature to tell ourselves certain stories, and sometimes it is that nature that tends to get us stuck. To define is to state or describe exactly the nature, scope, or meaning of some particular thing / concept. The word in itself implies limitation and boundaries. The first step to revisiting your existing definitions is to find out what it is about it that may be limiting you. Are you stuck on a certain concept or idea that was introduced to you? Who passed this down? And why?
They might be outdated. Did you ever think about which generation this might be coming from? If you are set on a definition of marriage dated in the 1950’s, I can tell you now that you are going to have a hard time assimilating this in the 2000’s. Why? Because for starters, the roles in the home have already changed. If your definition of success is also tied to someone’s idea of big money in the 1970’s, then you might want to rethink things. Does success necessarily mean tenure? A certain number in your bank account? And why?
Have you forgotten? You have options. Explore them. Who doesn’t love a long standing tradition? The thing about traditions, though, is that sometimes the assumption is we “don’t have any options”. And while family traditions are always good to celebrate, you might want to revisit what other “traditions” or beliefs have made you assume that there was no other choice. See the thing is, you do have choices. And you are very much in control of achieving the definition of success, romance, freedom, and life that you WANT.
It doesn’t have to be a number. Connect with intention. It doesn’t have to be a number. It never had to be. What do I mean? When you define a relationship, have you put a number on marriage? You probably have - its the age. And when you think about success, there’s probably a number in your bank account, and a position, and property, and whatever else. You get what I mean. If you want to set yourself free from the confines of these definitions, then it’s time to go beyond the numbers. Connect with your highest intention. Ask yourself WHY. Why is success important to you? And what would it look like? Why does having a relationship hold value? What kind of relationship? How would it feel to be in one? What is your intention for the other?
Frequency over form. The reason I tell people to let go of the number is because this is the first element of form that we need to detach from. Form presents itself as a checklist. It’s the shoulds and wants that are clearly very definite. But the trouble with form is how attached we tend to become - unable to appreciate what else might be presenting itself - maybe in the right frequency.
Frequency on the other hand, is a feeling, a vibration, a resonance. Frequency is where the energy of love, kindness, humility, openness, authenticity, and understanding exist. And when we learn how to define our ideas of success, romance, freedom, and life around a certain frequency, then we can remain open to whatever opportunities the universe might want to present. It allows us to let go of form - to trust that when we are in the right frequency, for as long as we are in that frequency, then we can always be happy. We are no longer stuck, we no longer feel limited, we can explore our options, we can look beyond the numbers, and we can resonate with the people, opportunities, and situations that are meant to be in our space.