Do you find yourself doing the same thing you’ve always done? Responding like you did before, even though you want to do it differently? That’s a pattern. Patterns are like sticky webs: hard to see and difficult to untangle.
Growing-up we develop patterns as a way to address life’s situations in a structured fashion. It feels safer, more comfortable. Over time, these structures become patterns of thought and of behavior.
Our actions arise from these patterns.
We repeat actions in situations that appear to be similar to what we’ve experienced before. Every pattern we have has an underpinning that has been developed over a lifetime. Added to this are generational patterns that live within us as part of our legacy. A depth of patterning becomes established that can provide a rich tapestry of expression, or become chains that bind us.
Patterns to avoid threat
It helps to be curious about your patterns. Curiosity moves you away from being judgmental. It’s what is needed to begin to get free. A good place to begin is to ask yourself questions, to inquire about what you’ve noticed.
Have you noticed patterns of approval, of self-judgment or of needing to be right? Does competition drive your life? Do you hold tightly to your image of how a situation should be? Do you resist change?
What is simply unfamiliar can feel threatening to you.
The tendency can be to interpret the unfamiliar through structures that are known, in order to make it comfortable. You maneuver the situation to fit a known picture so that you can respond with a pattern that is well-established.
You work hard to do things the right way.
But the “right” way to be may become stifling. It’s like living life in jail. You become trapped in a feeling of victimization. With no opportunity for freedom, how could you possibly feel celebration? Or embrace life?
It’s layered: you may think there is no jail, but maybe you have just widened the bars.
The Universe seems to call louder and louder all the time, as life presents us with situations where you can discover and learn. What is a crisis? Is it an opportunity? Or is it showing you a path towards a greater sense of freedom?
If you look at life’s situations as a way to learn something new, then you have a framework to recognize where the truth lies.
We are all human
You can learn how to recognize what seem to be your shortcomings. Know that those shortcomings are not real. They are your self-imposed limitations, where you take actions that undermine your life force.
Why not receive the unfamiliar and let it be a new experience? If you view your actions as simply a series of patterns, then you can become free from those patterns.
You can create life with a freshness that opens doors to a new level of awareness: untangled…unchained…free to choose.
Take a breath. Release it. Take another. Devote some dedicated time of concentration/meditation. It doesn’t need to be hours of quiet, perhaps only 15 minutes. Then allow the question to simmer within you through the weekend. Let responses bubble up into your awareness. Notice new ways of thinking, of images or ideas that arise spontaneously. Pay attention to your dreams. Let it happen. Be aware. See where it leads you next. Let yourself savor this process of receiving from yourself. Don’t judge whatever comes up, just receive it. Make notes.
You may want to share something from this process. Sharing is an important way to anchor an insight in your body. It leads you to deeper insight. It stimulates action. Use this arena to share whatever moves you!