(Mount Usher in Ashford, Co. Wicklow)
The story of our lives is not the story of what happened… It’s the story of what we are. The story that starts “I am….” The story we think we became because of our behaviour or our actions. The story that says this is the type of person I am. This story is probably built up from lots and lots of small experiences and things other people told us… From the moment we learned the story of us everything that happened after that had to fit into that particular story. It had to make sense in our story. If it didn’t then it got deleted… We become very attached to our story.
(Strong, beautiful tree even with all its flaws…)
Like a film maker producing a movie about a famous politician – only stories that agree with the filmmaker’s belief about the politician will be included…. if he believes the politician is a wonderful honest statesman then the stories from his life that show him as an honest and a wonderful statesman will be included. If the filmmaker believes that the politician is a dishonest scoundrel then the film maker will depict stories from the politician’s life where he is dishonest and a scoundrel. The filmmaker may be completely honest in his choices, i.e. he truly believes the politician is honest or he truly believes the politician is dishonest.
(At the boundary of Mount Usher there’s a fence. Beyond the fence there’s a field with very old trees. You can either see the fence or shift your focus a bit and see the trees…..)
Same with our choice of what fits into our story – the movie of us. If the story we truly believe about ourselves says we are flawed then we will only include the times we have been flawed into our movie. Even if we have been a good friend at some point in our life we will delete or distort that memory and remember instead the time we were a bad friend. This is in order that our flawed friend story remains intact. If the story of you says you are flawed then fortunately, you can start again with a new story.
Choose something in your story you don’t like and start to notice the opposite. Mairead.