What contents are within?
I have a tendency to have a favorite mug to drink from. If memory serves me correctly it once belonged to my paternal grandmother and somehow I ended up with it. That makes it in the very least over thirty years old. If you have read my shares for very long, you will know with a smile, that my drink of choice is coffee. Good ole, regular, usually black coffee. This mug, is rarely empty.
So what metaphor am I presenting here? Only in how that mug, can represent life.
Let’s say that you are that mug. As a child you were filled with either the good things in life such as love, strength, imagination, self esteem, or the not so good such as neglect, abuse, ridicule. Obviously one would want to retain the good, while pouring out the bad.
If you had a good childhood, you want to secure what you were given. Taking the inner strength that you were taught to place a lid securely on your life. Knowing that what you have is important and will always be needed going forward. You would want to make sure that what you have, cannot be contaminated by the things around you. One would not want a fly in their coffee, and one would not want incorrect beliefs to ease into their thoughts. For those who have dealt with a painful childhood, the opposite is true. You would want to remove that lid or in the very least find the opening to pour out the pain. Holding onto pain is like trying to drink coffee that has cooled. Its still coffee, but not as good. Just as a life of pain, is life, but not living.
As one grows, it is important what we fill that mug of life with. It is important that we drink from a cup of good things. It is essential that we know when and what to add, and what to refrain from.
That we are always educating ourselves. Reading to improve brain functions, reading to increase vocabulary, reading to know what is going on around us. Reading so to be able to discern fact from fiction; truth from lies.
Learning new ways of doing things, learning new things.
Picking up a hobby to help lessen stress or even as ability improves, earn a dollar or two. Creating beautiful things, to brighten one’s surroundings.
Practicing charity to others. Acting and living a life of compassion with all.
Fighting for the right causes.
Supporting those who deserve that support.
Keeping healthy physically and mentally by what we feed ourselves. Keeping fit through exercise. Keeping fit, by helping others work toward their own fitness goals.
Those are merely a few of the many.
But what, must we empty from our mug? What contents should we seek to pour out of our life, so to make room for better?
low self esteem
Any and everything that makes one less than who they can be.
I do understand that some, if not all of the above can be a mindset from the beginning of understanding. Things that a child has dealt with for as long as can be remembered. It is a stain well set on their mug. Yet not impossible to remove. If one is determined and dedicated enough to making the change for the better.
Take me for example.
This mug that I am drinking my coffee from, has been around a long time, but it is still useful and used. It has purpose. While in my youth, I was filled with good things, I removed that lid and allowed it to become contaminated. The unique me that I didn’t know how to express created an opportunity for bullies which caused even more contamination. I didn’t know how, or that I even could, close the lid.
Once a life is contaminated, unless there is someone who sees, understands and helps guide the decontamination process, the spoilage only gets worse. As mine did. I won’t go into all of that now, it would make this much too long.
Over the course of the last four and especially this past year, I have done a lot of self examination and clearing away of the bad things in my life mug. I still have a few stains in need of cleaning, but then cleaning is a process that takes time. It took time to reach this level, it will take time to undo. Which is true for every individual and their situations. Just as long as we know it can be done as long as we work on it and don’t give up.
Methods of cleaning vary by the stains and by the individual.
Find a quiet place to work toward finding yourself. Nature is wonderful, but even a quiet park bench works, or a museum, a ballet, what ever brings you peace.
Meditate, pray, concentrate on finding peace within.
Seek the balance lost.
Music, art, reading. Learning, especially learning about yourself and believing in yourself.
Seeking the company of others, or finding healing in solitude.
Do something afraid.
See life as an adventure, see your mug as flavorful and flavor filled.
Know, that where you stand, what ever fills your mug, you are worthy. You are special. You are important. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.