My Personal Choices and Consequences

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For every choice we make, there is a consequence. Some choices lead to amazing outcomes and other choices lead to suffering and pain. For better or worse, each choice is the unavoidable consequence of its predecessor.

Where I am right now in this moment, is a result of choices I’ve made.

No need to look at or blame anyone else. It is the choices I, and I alone have made, that have brought me to this moment.

Are we influenced by others? Yes. Do we have a choice about how we will react? Yes. Are we in control of our own happiness? Yes.

So, where does true happiness lie?

It lies in our choices. We get the beautiful freedom to decide how or if we will be influenced by others in such a way that it steals our happiness. We create our own experiences based on our choices.

This has been a difficult reality for me to truly grasp and make it my truth. I have found myself being heavily influenced by others to the degree that I’ve allowed it to steal my joy. I made the choice to be influenced and the consequence was sadness and depression.

The same is true for my personal behavior and actions. I have not always made the choice that was best for my personal, spiritual, and mental growth. As a result, the consequence has been getting stuck in my emotions and spiraling downward into a depression. My choice to sabotage relationships has led to me being single at 56 years old. Not exactly what I wanted but it is because of choices I made.

At times, I feel like Jonah with the story of him in the Bible. He did not listen to God (Spirit) and he ended up in the belly of the whale. How many times have I chosen the wrong path and ended up in the belly of the whale? Far too many to count.

It is easy to say, “I’ve been hurt by family.” “He cheated on me and hurt me.” The truth is, I made the choice to be hurt. That choice led to painful consequences. There seems to be a tendency to want to blame someone for where we are. I am guilty of that. I am learning more and more to look inward. I am becoming more aware of the need to embrace where I am.

I recently had a situation with my family. One of many with this being the latest. When I was explaining the situation to my best friend, his response was, “okay, what role did you play in this?” “What could you have done differently?” It’s a challenge to look at one’s self.

Every day we are faced with thousands of choices, make hundreds of decisions, and either enjoy or suffer the consequences.

What choices have you made? Has the consequence been happiness and fulfillment or pain and suffering? There’s a lesson in it all. It is all part of our life’s journey. We learn from all our choices. Or at least that’s the hope. I seem to be a little hard headed and as a consequence have repeated the same lesson over and over.

It is time to make better decisions. Decisions that add growth to my life. Decisions that remind me of my truth. Decisions that move me in the direction of peace and happiness as my consequence.

Pause and make better decisions moving forward. Follow your Inner guidance (Spirit) and don’t end up in the belly of the whale. Make sure your choices lead to enjoyable consequences and not suffering.

Deeply grateful for each of you and I look forward to you sharing.

Much love,

Vince

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Hi, I’m Vince. I am a Critical Care Registered Nurse and Author. Welcome to my site. On this site you will be provided inspirational, educational, and motivational articles. It is my mission to have this information help you achieve Optimal Health which includes Physical Health, Spiritual Health, and Mental Health. My ultimate goal is to create change and stimulate self-healing.

 

My Need For Validation

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Validation is not a bad thing. It can be affirming and positive. It is reasonable to want your ideas, achievements, and choices validated by those around you. Recognition and acceptance of someone else’s experience can be a beautiful thing.

So, when does validation become problematic?

I recently came to the awareness that the desire to get people to like me has motivated the majority of my choices and actions. Particularly in my early life. That awareness and realization has caused me to contemplate. So, now that I’m aware of my need to feel validated and desire to be accepted, where did it all come from. When did it all start?

How can I get to the bottom of this and heal from it? Heal from the root cause of my need to feel validated and accepted.

This is requiring that I go back all the way to my childhood to uncover where that need came from. Through the process of energy work, meditation, a lot of tears, a lot of time alone and the support of a few amazing friends, I am still here. Otherwise, I feel I may not be.

My journey to discovery also is requiring that a few difficult decisions be made. Painful decisions.

My need for validation and acceptance at times has led to behaviors I am not pleased with. Behaviors that left me feeling more void than before I participated in the behavior. Behaviors that have cost me some valuable relationships. I recognize now that the behaviors were yet another subconscious attempt for validation and acceptance.

It certainly does not help that for much of my life I have been clinically depressed. Something I have struggled with but have become very good at hiding and always pretending everything is okay.

For me, my bouts with depression stem from that feeling of not being validated and a feeling of not being accepted. Even as far back as my early childhood, I can remember feeling depressed. Of course, at that time I didn’t know I was depressed. I just knew I felt different and out of place. I found myself feeling sad way back then. Often sitting over in a corner somewhere watching others while at a gathering.

Having a father who was verbally, mentally, and physically abusive left me feeling unworthy, unaccepted, and not validated. This led me to seek that validation in other men. I have allowed those feelings from my father to stick around for far too long. Now when Mr. Right shows up, I end up sabotaging the relationship because deep inside I still feel that sense of unworthiness that was deeply embedded in me from my father.

As my life has progressed, the depression has continued with frequent thoughts of suicide. The break-up of my 18-year relationship and the tragic loss of my beautiful angel and Mother just added more weight to my depression. I knew I had to get help. I started crying out for help to a few close friends. My dearest friend Greg, who is an Energy Healer and life coach has dug me out of the quick-sand more times than I care to mention.

I now know that first and foremost, I need to give myself validation.

One way I am moving toward self-validation (approval) is by keeping a self- appreciation journal. It is a good way to begin to acknowledge the things I am most proud of about myself. The first entry in my self-appreciation journal was, “The work I do both as a writer and nurse makes a difference in people’s lives.”

So now that I’ve discovered where my need for validation comes from, Am I healed? Do I still feel the need to be validated and accepted?

It is a journey for me and not a destination. It is a daily work. If I fail to do the work, I fall right back in to the same pattern of seeking that validation (approval) from others. There is always work to do. Work to become and remain my highest and best self.

I will continue to work at bringing more awareness to my validation seeking thoughts and behaviors. I will continue to work on dealing with the past that led me here in an effort to free myself and feel worthy the next time someone shows me true love.

In Summary: Don’t we all want to be accepted and validated?  I think it becomes problematic when we seek external validation as opposed to looking internally for validation. The truth is, no validation is needed from anyone. It is okay to be who you are. It is okay to live in your truth no matter what that looks like. Those who truly love you will accept you in your truth. Now, I just need to remember this and work on applying it to my personal life.

My Personal Affirmations:

  • I am worthy of love
  • I am ready to receive love
  • I validate and approve of myself
  • I openly receive validation (approval, love) from others

Your continued love and support of me move me deeply. I am grateful for each of you. It is a pleasure to share my journey with you.

Is the need for validation (approval) holding you back? I look forward to your feedback.

Much love,

Vince

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Vince is a Critical Care Registered Nurse, Published Writer, and Columnist living and loving in Atlanta, Georgia. Enter your email address to receive his monthly Educational, Inspirational, and Motivational 5-minute reads straight to your inbox. You can also follow him on FacebookInstagramLinkedInand Twitter. Your support and feedback are deeply appreciated.

 

 

True Love Allows

 

fullsizeoutput_1a2eTrue love is about allowing. It is not about controlling someone or trying to change someone. True unconditional love simply allows.

There are many different philosophical views about many different topics. Different is the key word here. They are just different. Different does not mean wrong. It just means different. Many wars are fought over our different philosophical views.

I think we can look at the state of our country currently and see what happens when one tries to force their views on another. It ends up in war. It ends up in hate. It ends up in ugly rhetoric instead of love. Love truly does conquer all if we just give it a chance. Instead we are too preoccupied with trying to get our point across and prove we are right and they are wrong.

More specifically in relationships, there can be differing viewpoints on what a relationship looks like. Differing does not have to mean division. It can mean discussion. Meaningful discussion that loves and allows. Loving and allowing also does not necessarily mean agreeing. It is perfectly fine to have different viewpoints. It is not fine to disrespect someone for their different views.

Stop trying to make your companion be what you want them to be. Stop trying to change your companion’s views to line up with yours. That’s control, not love. Simply allow them to be who they are. Allow them to believe what they believe. That’s true love.

We all come from different backgrounds that influence our philosophical views and behavior. Instead of arguing over the differences, have meaningful respectful discussions to understand one’s background and views. That’s true unconditional love.

Fully accepting someone is also accepting who they are. You do not have to agree with them and you may not even understand them, but you must continue to love them. No room for hate.

Life is too short for hate. Life is too short for arguing. If today was your last day to be alive, would you spend it arguing with your companion over your different beliefs and views or would you spend it just having fun with them. Simply loving them. For that matter, would you spend it arguing with anyone.

Let’s take more time to listen to each other. Let’s take more time to simply love and allow. Let’s be respectful of others views without judging, shaming, or condemning them.

What a better place this world would be if we spent more time loving instead of judging. What a beautiful place it would be if we spent more time allowing others the right to their own beliefs and views without judging them. That’s love.

How beautiful a relationship could be if the two involved simply loved and allowed with zero judgement. Love and allow with zero expectations. Love and allow without projecting your own worry, stress, fear, and anxiety on your companion.

How beautiful a relationship could be if you focused more on self-improvement as opposed to constantly doing a performance evaluation of your companion’s life. Allow them to simply be.

Until next time, simply love all those in your life and allow them to be exactly who they are. No approval needed from anyone.

Much love,

Vince

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Hi, I’m Vince. I am a Critical Care Registered Nurse and Author. Welcome to my site. On this site you will be provided inspirational, educational, and motivational articles. It is my mission to have this information help you achieve Optimal Health which includes Physical Health, Spiritual Health, and Mental Health.

Theres Two Of Me: My Ego and My True Self

fullsizeoutput_19f2For much of my life I have felt there is 2 of me. Two different people. Two faces. I guess you could say at times my actions are different from my core beliefs? My actions being one person and my core beliefs being someone completely different.

For me, this all started as a child when I felt forced to be 2 different people. I certainly did not feel free to be my true self. My true self would have been considered an abomination in the site of God. My true self would have been considered the ultimate sinner. My true self was completely unacceptable in the small town I grew up in. As a result, I always felt as if there was 2 of me. My true self and my ego.

That feeling of there being 2 of me was actually quite an unsettling experience. I think we all just want to be able to live our true authentic life but sometimes allow the rules, limitations, and beliefs of others to prevent that. (Ego). We have an innate desire to fit in and be accepted. (Ego). As a result, we try to be that person that fits in even when that person is not our true self.

On one hand, growing up I always tried to follow the rules and be a good kid but the other side of me was just wanting to have fun in school and be the rule breaker. I wanted to be rebellious by doing all the things I was told were forbidden. The tough challenge for me was how to keep the rule breaker part of me in check.

There’s one side of me that was playing the piano on Sunday mornings and the other side who was trying to fend off the sexual advances from men in the church. I guess in hind sight, we draw to us the energy we put out. While I was confused by it all, there was certainly a part of me that enjoyed it because it was feeding my ego that had a desire to feel needed. So, I was both the good little boy playing the piano but I was also the one who enjoyed being what would have been considered the bad little boy. I was presenting one persona but something completely different was going on behind the curtain. Behind the curtain, my ego was being fed.

Fast forward to where I am in my life right now as an adult.  On one hand I still find myself trying to follow all the rules while on the other hand being the rule breaker.  I have spent the past 3 years of my life writing columns and weekly blogs helping others to find the path while at the same time struggling to find the path for myself.  Helping others to see the light while at the same time spending a lot of my time in the dark.  Helping others to live a life of authenticity while at the same time not always being authentic myself. Helping others to understand the importance of exercising and proper diet while at the same time doing the complete opposite for myself.

I am a caretaker. I am gifted. I am intelligent. I am worthy. I am love. My true self beliefs that fully, yet the other me (ego) puts myself and my life at risk with actions that go against the beliefs of my true self.  Two of me. One is my ego and one is my true self. The ego wants to fit in. The ego wants to be accepted. The ego wants to be in control. My true self is none of those things. So, basically it is a struggle between my ego and my true self. My true self doesn’t care what others think. My ego does. My true self knows the truth of who I am. My ego tells me I have to be someone else in order to be accepted, feel validated, and fit in.

The past 6 weeks or so, I’ve had this strong gut feeling that I’m on the wrong path. I have been on a path full of pot holes and bumps in the road. Despite knowing this, I still continue. Continue down that path that causes me suffering and anxiety. My true self is speaking loudly, “turn around.” “You’re going the wrong way,” while my ego is speaking loudly “keep going,” look at all the attention you’re getting.”

Even though at times the path I’m on is not the best path, it is one I know well. It is one that is feeding my ego but not my soul.

I am 56 years old now. It is past time that I muster up the courage to listen to my true self and let ego go. It is past time that I truly live my life authentically. It is past time that there be just one of me. The true me. No pretending that everything is okay if it is not okay. No pretending to be exactly who others think I should be. It is time to start living a life of Optimal Health by following my core beliefs and convictions. It is time to start loving the real me and truly believing I am worthy of self-preservation.

How many times have you done something that went against what you wanted to do just to please someone else or fit in?  How many times have you said yes, while hearing no? I can’t begin to count the times.

As I become more aware, it is my intention to continue on this path of awareness. It is my intention to be who I say I am. It is my intention to practice what I preach. It is my intention to let go of that need to be validated and wanted. That need to be validated and wanted has led me to not being completely authentic. It is my intention to fall in love with myself. Falling in love with self is key to living your authentic life and being who you really are no matter where you are and no matter the situation.

In conclusion, be who you are and not who your partner/spouse thinks you should be. Be who you are and not who the church thinks you should be. Be who you are and not who family/friends think you should be. Be you and not who a certain political group thinks you should be. Who you are is perfect. Who you are is beautiful. We are all a unique expression of the divine. See yourself as just that. Flaws and all. Be your true self and let the ego go. You need no one’s approval or validation as your ego would lead you to believe.

Until next week,

Much love,

Vince

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Vince is a Critical Care Registered Nurse, Published Writer, and Columnist living and loving in Atlanta, Georgia. Enter your email address to receive his weekly Educational, Inspirational, and Motivational 5-minute reads straight to your inbox. You can also follow him on FacebookInstagramLinkedInand Twitter. Your support and feedback are deeply appreciated.

 

 

Rock Bottom

 

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I think we have all heard the saying, “Rock Bottom.” Rock Bottom implies that there is nothing but rocks on the bottom. No green grass. No beautiful flowers. No amazing landscape. Just hard rocks. Ever feel like you’re at the end or on the bottom? Ever feel as if you’re all tangled up in your emotions and can’t see your way clear? These have become all too familiar feelings and thoughts for me personally. By definition, the bottom is the lowest or deepest part of anything.

Is it necessary to hit rock bottom? Is it necessary to feel like you’re at the end? I think there are certainly lessons to be learned on the bottom but also important to realize that the rocks on the bottom can be beautiful also. Just as beautiful as the green grass, beautiful flowers, and amazing landscape.

Way too frequently in my life I am raw with pain on the inside. Yes, I often write about and promote positivity. However, I must admit at times it is a struggle for me to stay off the bottom. My ability to move upward toward the surface and away from the bottom is met with fear and meaningless mental chatter.

I allow my thoughts to get caught up in a loop. Repetitive cycle of negative thinking and emotions. How do I untangle myself from the emotional mess and muster up the energy to swim to the surface?

I have concluded that my unresolved feelings and continuous unhealthy choices are what keeps navigating me to the bottom or to feeling like I am at the end. Even with this knowledge, I still find myself on the bottom. Laying on the rocks. Not exactly comfortable.

The choice to keep going back to that unhealthy relationship. The choice to keep hanging out around negative energy. The choice to continue in an unhealthy work environment. The choice to continue to eat unhealthy and not exercise. All unhealthy choices that affect my mental state and lead me back to the bottom. These unhealthy choices coupled with unresolved feelings such as fear, worry, and hurt keep bringing me to the bottom. They keep me tangled up in this emotional mess.

The real question is, have I truly dealt with those unresolved feelings? Do I continue to make unhealthy choices? The answer is yes. So, knowing that those unresolved feelings and unhealthy choices are the reason I end up on the bottom is not enough. I must take consistent action.

There are many ways to deal with the unresolved feelings:

  1. Energy Work
  2. Meditation
  3. Counseling
  4. Forgiveness
  5. Gratitude
  6. Compassion

Find what works for you. It could be a combination of the above.

As far as unhealthy choices, it just requires changing and making better consistent choices. Choices to be healthier physically, mentally, and spiritually. I think what derails me and causes me to end up back on the bottom is the lack of consistency with my choices and behaviors.

Sounds like an easy fix, huh? It takes work, awareness, consistent action, and commitment.

Last minute thoughts:

Remember that the bottom is an opportunity to look up at the top. The end is really just the beginning. When the second hand on the clock makes it to the 12, it is the end of one minute but the start of a brand new minute. Think about why you keep ending up on the bottom and realize you have the power to change it all.

Be encouraged on this beautiful week and stay above the surface. Reach for the sky. Reach for what it is that you long for and desire. You were not intended to stay on the bottom. We all get there but we do not have to stay there. Learn that lesson and swim like hell back to the top where you belong.

Much love,

Vince

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Vince is a Critical Care Registered Nurse, Published Writer, and Columnist living and loving in Atlanta, Georgia. Enter your email address to receive his weekly Educational, Inspirational, and Motivational 5-minute reads straight to your inbox. You can also follow him on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter. Your support and feedback are deeply appreciated.