No one like you has ever been born, no one like you will ever be born again. You are the only you that has ever lived and if you cannot hear the sound of genuine in you, you will spend your days on the ends of strings that someone else is pulling. ~Howard Thurman
Are you brave enough to find out who you really are, the genuine you?
The answer may be difficult to utter at first, but the journey to find this answer within is uniquely worth it!
Granted, the reason there is a certain level of difficulty attached to this type of pursuit is because as Michael Waldron Jr puts it best, “When you’ve been raised in a maladjusted world, it’s easy to believe something is wrong and become fearful when the true YOU begin to emerge.”
This fear is evident, as many have begun the process, claiming a desire to be “real” but fail to complete the journey after discovering the unpleasant images this introspection reveals.
WhenLoveWorks, individuals are not comfortable being “fake.” They begin the journey toward their genuine self, commit to the work and victoriously celebrate a new birthday. ~Elitia Mattox
“There is more hunger for love and appreciation in this world than for bread.” Mother Theresa
In the midst of arguably the most difficult economic times in the US, I take comfort in knowing that two of the most priceless things remain accessible even to the most economically challenged. And in the midst of my own personal belt-tightening, I haven’t witnessed any degradation in how I show LOVE and appreciation to my family.
While money is a necessary tool in a material world, LOVE and appreciation are huge components of our intangible world. So recognizing money for being a powerful tool is great, but the challenge in our commitment to relationship vitality is to become more sensitive to the transcendent power inherent in true thanksgiving and true LOVE. For example, being thankful and appreciative of my husband has the power to transform the way he looks at himself and helps me to re-center my thoughts on what a gift he is to me.
Oftentimes, mainstream media will tell us that our relationships are in a state of lack unless we possess the latest trendy item. And too often people are caught up in the pursuit of this next big thing, that unfortunately they take their partner for granted and miss the organic items that are already present within their relationship. Unfortunately, this behavior is equivalent to going to the grocery store to replenish the pantry’s inventory before checking the pantry.
Showing appreciation is a LOVE assessment that allows us to take inventory of what we have. Then we are able to demonstrate how LOVE and appreciation are as critical to the life of a relationship as oxygen and blood are to living, thereby eradicating relationship hunger. And giving our mate a sincere compliment, looking at her/him adoringly and smiling, then becomes the new currency.
WhenLoveWorks, people find a way to see through the clutter caused by having to make a living in a material world to see the free gift of LOVE and appreciation staring back at them. ~Elitia Mattox
“You tried to crush my plant early on. But now, I’m an oak tree.” Cullen Mattox
Most people think pain isn’t going to end. So they make permanent decisions for temporary situations. However, in my own painful experiences, I’ve had to learn to yield and allow alchemy to do its perfect work. I know alchemy refers to chemical transformation of metal elements but it holds the same power in our personal lives. Alchemy is taking pain and transforming it into a life changing moment.
But just as pain has the ability to prompt positive transformation, we must understand that it can also have the opposite effect. Pain also has the ability to transform the most beautiful person into a monster. Transformation in a negative sense; where pain prompts a person to abuse drugs, alcohol, sex and even other people.
The difference in the type of transformation solely depends on one’s response. Positive transformation requires one to stop and reflect before providing energy toward healing. On the other hand, the opposite requires no action. One just has to give way to the temporary pain, imagine it will never end and remain entangled.
WhenLoveWorks, individuals recognize temporary pain isn’t worth the scar of a permanent decision and instead see an opportunity to be a transformer. ~Elitia Mattox
“Understanding is the first step to acceptance, and only with acceptance can there be recovery.” J.K. Rowling
Have you ever been in an unhealthy relationship, experienced financial turbulence, or disliked the state of your physical fitness?
When undesirable circumstances like these engulf us, it’s reflexive to go into problem-solving mode. But, how many times have we delayed the immediate solution to assess the underlying root cause?
I must add a disclaimer here—those who pause and engage in reflective, intense work to delve deeper to the root, will undoubtedly make discoveries that cause some discomfort.
Because it’s uncomfortable to embrace a negative pattern in the way one dates and engages people that result in unhealthy, lop-sided relationships.
It’s uncomfortable to embrace a pattern of irresponsible spending and undisciplined budgeting that results in overwhelming debt and a bad credit rating.
It’s uncomfortable to embrace one’s pattern of poor dieting and limited exercise that results in unwanted ailments and excess body fat.
But what’s more uncomfortable is having to embrace a worsened condition later. And though some discomfort is experienced now, it pales in comparison to the rewards of breaking harmful patterns.
WhenLoveWorks, individuals embrace the temporary discomfort to reap the long-lasting rewards. ~Elitia Mattox
“To be yourself in a world that’s constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
In a society shrouded in conformity, the individual truly stands out!
I may not be alone in my queries, but oftentimes I wonder:
Is the price to be an individual worth the attacks from the masses?
Why is the cost of standing out, so steep?
Well personally I surmised that if media were left to determine who I am, my identity would then be linked to my hair, my clothes and my car. Of course this summation is based on an analysis of the amount of money spent to retrain one’s thoughts about who they are and who they are not when they have certain hair, clothes and cars.
Similarly, if I allowed those around me to establish who I am, my identity would then be linked to our most recent interaction and the person’s memory of this encounter–good, bad or indifferent.
Ultimately, to offset conformity, one must be able to create and embody edifying affirmations at the same rate as a TV commercial advertises the next “big thing.”
WhenLoveWorks, a person’s affirmations become their new belief system and when done properly, they trump any outside voice attempting to gain power of their true identity. ~Elitia Mattox
Don’t be cool. Cool is conservative fear dressed in black. Free yourself from limits of this sort. ~ Bruce Mau
At face value one may question the motive in this saying and regard it as an attack on his/her swagger and style. However, it must be viewed contextually.
Within the confines of a relationship, I’ll be the first to admit that “coolness” is great as long as it doesn’t place limits on one being vulnerable and courageous. It just can’t be the go-to move all the time.
And who can honestly admit that after reflecting on their relationship; utterly remembers the times when he/she was calm, cool and collected. I would even speculate that no one was on their deathbed saying, “I should’ve been more cooler with my mate.” Admittedly so, because there are times in my life where I led with “coolness” only to fall short of expressing my intended outcome.
Instead, I contend the opposite is true and believe the most vivid relationship memories are the ones when one fearlessly went all out to express their love for another.
WhenLoveWorks, individuals ensure that in the intersection where love, vulnerability and bravery collide, their “cool” button is turned off. ~Elitia Mattox
Ain’t nothing like a relationship with two covered people who are waiting to be uncovered. ~Michael Walrond, Jr.
Unfortunately our society is steeped in marketing goods that support us in covering, camouflaging, and contorting our true identity. But what’s more tragic is the countless number of people who’ve given themselves over to this societal concept. A concept that reinforces the misnomer that without “x” we aren’t good enough or adequately equipped to: meet our soul mate, create our dream business, or even advance our education.
When did we have to wait for society to give us permission to be great?
When did we depend on other’s validation of our greatness?
The moment one becomes aware of their inherent greatness, believes it and then moves in its power, I believe, is the moment a covering falls away and the true essence of that person is revealed.
The challenge undoubtedly lies at the beginning of this process. But, until this process of “uncovering” takes place, one will continue to lament of the struggle to find that special someone, to receive support in launching a business or matriculating in higher education.
WhenLoveWorks, individuals brave the uncertain depths of the “uncovering” process knowing that they will emerge anew. ~Elitia Mattox
“Half of the troubles of this life can be traced to saying yes too quickly and not saying no soon enough.” ~Josh Billings
Usually when relationships begin, everything just flows…it’s easy to get along, it’s exciting, intriguing and fun. However it can also be the time that one is most prone to being disingenuous because he or she is still intoxicated with euphoric bliss. And also because no one wants to be the one who deflates this balloon.
Unfortunately, every time one isn’t genuine he or she creates a debt that will eventually demand payment. So in week 12 when that person isn’t who they said they were in week 1, that’s when the tab will have to be settled. Is it really worth it?
WhenLoveWorks, individuals understand the perfect economy of letting their yes be yes and their no be no. ~Elitia Mattox
“The opposite of courage in our society is not cowardice – it is conformity.”-Rollo May
Nurture, which is defined as: the sum of the environmental factors influencing the behavior and traits expressed by a human being, has been the biggest prison system known to man. And one needn’t look far to see its tyranny and hoards of victims.
All of us know individuals following in the same dysfunctional paths of their predecessors despite having been vehemently defiant about following said path. But most of us don’t know how and why this happens?
Nurture would be the easy answer, the prime suspect, but my experience and observations led me down a different path, to a different culprit. And that culprit–I found to be cowardice.
Almost unanimously, everyone wants better relationships and all-together better lives, but few people account for the fact that these “wants” will be put to the test by life.
Unfortunately when these tests come, they often crush the dreams of these once ambitious souls, and cause them to cower back to what’s familiar. CS Lewis said, “Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point.” The life you want and dream of is within your grasp, but it won’t come without passing some tests, even if it’s done while trembling.
WhenLoveWorks, individuals take on what’s comparable to the role of both director and main character in a stage performance. But the glaring difference is in the human drama that is life; the script and casts are assembled to minimize drama. ~Elitia Mattox
Trust is built with consistency. -Lincoln Chafee
As humans we are subject to the law of undulation, which basically means that part of the human condition is to go through peaks and troughs of emotion, passion and enthusiasm, highs and lows. However, in spite of this truth, willing people still manage to be consistent in the way they love their friends, partners and family members.
Consistency is the perfect accompaniment to all of the other virtues one brings to a relationship. Because without consistency there’s only repeated contradiction. Which may account for why so many people report having love/hate, on again/off again and other dichotomous-type relationships. At the end of the day, without consistency there can be no trustworthiness and without trustworthiness there can be no real trust.
WhenLoveWorks, people build trust as they would a bank account and willingly make ongoing deposits of consistent, unconditional love. ~Elitia Mattox
“The significance is hiding in the insignificant. Appreciate everything.” ~Eckhart Tolle
As early as grade school, I learned the valuable lesson of paying attention to the details. Because each time I ignored even a minute detail of an assignment, its effective completion and solution would escape me. Of course as a child I didn’t know that finding significance in every request and thus treating it as priority, would have far-reaching consequences. And I had no idea that this elementary lesson would shape the future interactions between me and my family, my future employers and my friends.
But just as one can be attentive to the details of an assignment, one must also be willing to attend to the details of their relationships. Consequently, this type of attentiveness naturally fosters appreciation and significance. The benefits then allow families to trust with more freedoms, employers to develop unwavering confidence, and friends to know they are supported.
WhenLoveWorks, people are constantly engaging in the work that recognizes there are no minute moments and no irrelevant people. ~Elitia Mattox
Pain is inevitable, Suffering is optional. – Buddhist proverb
Pain, psychological pain anyway, never lasts past its function. Yes, even pain has a function in our lives. I believe pain serves as a catalyst for change, for awakening, for intentional focus on a wounded area of our lives; wherein healing of some sort is consequently required.
Be aware however, that within this healing process, one will also encounter some level of pain. And many contend that this “healing pain” is far worse than that of the initial wound.
Even at an early age though, we were taught to refrain from tearing away the scabs from a physical wound, as the scab is indicative of an underlying healing process. Similarly, our responsibility as adults is to resist the urge to interfere with the process that comes with healing psychological injuries. Because just as ripping off a scab means cells must initiate the restoration process all over again, diverting any pain that accompanies healing will prolong recovery and induce suffering.
WhenLoveWorks, people are truthful about their pain. They identify its purpose, and then brave the healing process. ~Elitia Mattox
“Here’s something else to think about: calling when you say you’re going to is the very first brick in the house you are building of love and trust. If he can’t lay this one stupid brick down, you ain’t never gonna have a house baby, and it’s cold outside.” Greg Behrendt
In the many conversations I’ve had about relationships, love and trust are among the top responses to the question: What must be present in a healthy relationship?
But, while love and trust are compared to the foundational properties necessary in building a house, these alone won’t eradicate some other needs within a healthy relationship like: communication, consistency, courage, and commitment.
Don’t get me wrong, when it comes to building, if a house’s foundation is stable and well-built, then I believe it has a chance to become a beautiful piece of art. However, if builders were only committed to completing foundation work of a house and ignored additional details like: framing, windows and doors, then it would be considered an incomplete house. And what could have represented an aesthetically pleasing feat by a team of committed workers, is curtailed. Similarly, relationship building is incomplete when the parties involved truncate the details of a healthy relationship like: patience, selflessness, humility, kindness, etc.
WhenLoveWorks, people commit to completing the work they start; recognizing no detail is too small or insignificant. -Elitia Mattox
“Cheating is easy. There’s no swank to infidelity. To borrow against the trust someone has placed in you costs nothing at first. You get away with it; you take a little more and a little more until there is no more to draw on. Oddly, your hands should be full with all that taking but when you open them there’s nothing there.” Jeanette Winterson
I must warn, if you are anticipating an attack on cheaters, then these words will surely disappoint. I would love to be able to tell you that cheaters, especially of the serial variety, are miserable and inherit emptiness. But studies confirm that most serial cheaters love their lifestyles and feed on the inherent danger and excitement they feel within these trysts. Additionally, of the 28 percent of men and 18 percent of women admitting to having affairs, 12 percent of the men and 13 percent of the women say they’re glad they cheated. Which is why I concluded that it would be a logistical nightmare to address a cheater the way the above quote does, because the driving force behind a cheater’s actions could be any number of things, ranging from boredom to the thrill of the forbidden. Furthermore, the actions of a cheater clearly reveal that they’re unconscious. And that means I would, in essence, be addressing someone in a coma.
Instead, I almost always opt to address the cheated, who is usually the more awake of the two, with some version of the following message: Cheaters exist in our ecosystem like snakes and scorpions exist in nature but they pose little danger to the journeyman or woman who is alert and awake. Likewise, most of human pain can be avoided by accepting the truth and removing all resistance to what “is.” In this way, even if one is currently the victim of a serial cheater, by removing the non-acceptance and resistance to the truth, he or she is effectually planting the seeds to change and thereby paving the way to determine their next move with dignity.
WhenLoveWorks, individuals accept a cheater in their path as they would a snake in their path. And without any judgment, they simply step aside before the venomous creature has a chance to strike. ~Elitia Mattox
“The willingness to change one’s mind in the light of new evidence is a sign of rationality, not weakness.” Stuart Sutherland
Relationships by nature are interactions. At their best they can be co-creative and edifying. However, at their worst they can be co-dependent and invalidating. It seems unrealistic that these extremes could exists within the same relationship, but all relationships, no matter how promising, are destined for disagreements.
So how does one handle these disagreements so they aren’t at the wrong end of that spectrum?
For starters, one has to silence the ego, because then and only then can you recognize truth during an argument. And next, recognize that arguments aren’t inherently bad. They become bad when the ego turns being right into a life or death struggle for one or both debaters, thereby making truth irrelevant. With the ego quieted, arguments become more like brainstorming sessions that capitalize on co-creativity to arrive at optimal solutions.
WhenLoveWorks, couples see themselves as a mastermind, and inherently know that changing their mind is not only rational but also essential if they are to grow and evolve as part of a relationship.~Elitia Mattox