Do you feel free? Seriously, if you are reading this you are likely in a “free country” — but do you feel free?
Here is one definition Webster uses to define freedom: the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action
Constraint. I think constraint is directly correlated to not having a feeling of freedom. A feeling of peace. A feeling of non obligation. When I am constrained, I am limited. When I am limited, I am less than. When I am less than, I am worried and anxious. When I am worried and anxious I am miserable. When I am miserable, I am no help to anyone. When I am no help to anyone, I am a loser. When I’m a loser….
Thank God I rarely feel constrained anymore. I don’t like where this process leads. It doesn’t feel good. It is a slippery slope to despair, unhappiness, anxiousness, and self doubt. When I am sitting in these feelings, I most certainly am not free.
When I find myself feeling this way, the 1st thing I do is try to bring awareness to what is going on and why I am actually feeling that way. By having some awareness, you have a chance of making a different decision or grabbing a thought that feels better. Without awareness, you are doomed to stay in that feeling and vibration and never really get rid of it or allow it to wash over you.
Then I remind myself that true freedom comes from trusting. I think we collectively have often learned that the world isn’t a safe place and we need to protect ourselves. When we are in protection mode, we put on our suit of armor or put up our protective wall or barrier. From inside our constructed “bunker”, we feel fear, worry and doubt. When you are defensive, you cannot trust. When you cannot trust, you cannot be free.
For me, the issue is usually around “what gives me the right to be successful?” and “I sure hope they like me”. I want to be successful and I want people to like me. Of course, the cousin’s of these phrases would be “I am afraid I will fail” and “I worry they will judge me”.
I can sit in these feelings and feel terrible and be justified in doing so. And be a prisoner of my feelings. Or I can release my need to be liked. I can remember that it is impossible to fail unless you give up. I can focus on being who I really am and release my fear and doubt and release my need for approval. This is not easy, but it feels so much better. It is not easy to trust, but it is crucial if you want to feel good. Do you feel good? Are you happy? Are you at peace? I hope so.
If this resonates with you, I would suggest you do the following:
1) Really try to pinpoint how you are feeling and why you are feeling that way.
2) Ask yourself if you are justified and allowed to feel the way you are feeling.
3) Ask yourself if there is another way you can choose to feel instead.
4) Choose the better feeling and get one step closer to freedom
One of my favorite Authors, Dr Wayne Dyer says it best: “You can choose to be right (justified in how you feel) or you can choose to be happy. Try to choose happy and see how that works for you.