Misunderstood? Me too!

As a kid in the 80’s, one of my favorite T.V. shows was reruns of Threes Company.  Being that I was a preteen and my English was my second language, a lot of the “adult humor” went over my head.  What I found so hilarious about the show was the physical comedy of Jack Tripper (played by John Ritter) as well as all the misunderstandings that caused 99% of the comedic drama among the main characters.  Of course by the end of the epidsodes, all misunderstandings were cleared up, everyone hugged it out and all was good in the world again.  In a perfect world, all misunderstandings would be cleared up in 30 minutes (minus commercial breaks), this unfortunately, this is not the case.

Last year, I wrote and published a book called, Be Still: The Power of Biblical Meditation.  It’s full of true stories from my own life as well as other people’s lives on how biblical meditation played a huge role in helping us heal from daily stressors, people-pleasing, childhood trauma, divorce, domestic violence, and death of loved ones.  The book also contains many techniques to help create stillness through scriptural yoga, pranayama (breath control techniques), and scriptural meditation.  I even recorded all of the techniques and provided links to each of them.  It took me six months to write/edit/design/publish my book (which you can read about in my previous blog, Indie-Author Do’s and Don’ts), and I was so excited to share it with the world!

The first month, I taught scriptural yoga and biblical meditation classes at a big women’s retreat in Asheville, NC where approximately 900 women from the southeast states attended.  I received many words of encouragement, gratitude and confirmation that I was doing exactly what God wanted me to do.  The second and third months were the same, where I was humbled at how powerfully God was using the book He commanded me to write.  But then January came, and I saw a one-star rating review on my book (you can read them on Lulu.com and Amazon.com).  I felt discouraged at first, not because I doubted the purpose of this book (which all glory was to God) but because I felt misunderstood.  There was a part of me that wanted to somehow contact the reviewer and say, “Wait a minute, let me explain and address all your concerns.  Let me explain to you all of my training and research on this subject.”  But then I took a step back to re-evaluate my heart.  I fully respect the reviewer’s opinions and therefore, I am completely okay with being misunderstood.

Everyone is allowed to have their own opinions whether they believe they are right and others are wrong.  It’s completely okay.  It’s okay that one person is a republican while their friend is a democrat.  It is okay.  It’s even okay that I use Yoga to get closer to God while a friend of mine believes that it is not of God.  IT IS OKAY.  It’s not my job to try to convince someone that what helps me will help them.  They have every right to their own opinions.  We waste so much time and energy on getting worked up about disagreements and misunderstandings.  There was a time when I would lose sleep over such things.  But at the end of the day, none of that matters.  Unless someone is asking me questions with the intention of wanting clarity, it is not my job to debate or provide proof of why I think “I am right and they’re not.”

There’s something freeing about living this way.  There’s such a feeling of lightness within the spirit when you’re not living to prove yourself to others but rather living to move closer to your authenticity.  So this week, I encourage you to practice being okay of feeling misunderstood.  Let other’s have their opinions about you because this does not change who you are.  Continue to shine bright for those who wish to be in your light.

 

With Gratitude,
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Good Job!

The other day, I was going through some old boxes so that I can get rid of things that I no longer need (I’m working on becoming a minimalist), and I came across four sheets of mini stickers.  I immediately recognized these as the “good job” stickers that I used to put on my daughter’s completed homeschool assignments during her 2nd and 3rd grade years.  She’s now a high school sophomore and the majority of her homeschool assignments and tests are online, so I decided to use these stickers on my exercise log.

That “pre-week” sticker was from Saturday, 1/4. Since that was not a complete week in January, I decided that it should not be included in any of the weeks. 🙂

I didn’t think too much about it at first, but I noticed that each day that I filled an empty space on my log with one of these mini-stickers, I felt a sense of accomplishment, like someone was patting me on the back saying, “Good job, Jheni!”  It may sound silly, but this kept me motivated to exercise more than 3 times per week which was what I was used to doing.  It became a personal goal of mine to fill up all of the spaces with these “good job” stickers until I stepped back and saw that by the end of the month, the entire log was filled in! 

These “good job” stickers got me thinking about our human desire to be recognized for a job well done.  We all have an innate desire to be praised because we’re relational beings.  We need relationships that build us up and cheer us on; however, we need to make sure that we are also our own cheerleaders because we can’t expect others to always be available and know the exact words to say to cheer us up.

Here are some ways you can motivate yourself to stick with your goals and feel that pat on the back:

  1.  Join a program.

    I teach classes at the local YMCA, and I feel a sense of community the minute I walk in the door.  The members in my classes know each other and are in each others’ lives.  Their positive attitude makes it so easy for me to cheer them on and be cheered on.

  2. Become an active member of your community.

    Volunteer for community service.  Serve the poor.  Invite a neighbor over for tea/coffee/dinner.

  3. Cheer others on.

    You will attract the kind of person that you are.  If you are positive and supportive, you will attract positive and supportive people.

  4. Pat yourself on the back.

    As I mentioned, my way of patting myself on the back was mini-stickers.  Seeing a visual “good job” encouraged me more than I imagined.

  5. Share your victories with others.

    Because my exercise log was posted on my refrigerator, my husband and daughter would cheer me almost everyday.  I was hearing, “Wow, good job mom!”  and “You go, babe!” pretty regularly… and it encouraged me and made me feel loved.

After you finish reading this, go look at yourself in a mirror and say to yourself, “GOOD JOB!”  Image result for thumb emoji"

 

With Gratitude,
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