While I am a fan of the colon cleanse and liver detox, I wonder as we begin a new year if there is a deeper kind of cleanse that we can do to live more fully. One that is subtle and perhaps more challenging, A cleanse to create a new narrative for one’s life.
I’m not talking about a narrative in long form. I’m thinking more about the ideas or sentence fragments that define our life and serve as a vantage point going forward.
Let me give you an example. It’s like this. A patient comes into my office and within minutes says, “my mother never loved me” or “my father left us” or “life is unfair.” Clearly some of these assessments of reality are created in early childhood and perhaps affect the soul- as I am told the soul is most vulnerable into our tenth year of life. I can’t opine on that.
What I do know is that these conclusions seem to last a lifetime. Often, I’ve heard patients in her 70’s and 80’s reference upset from her very early years.
So now at the start of a new year, I am thinking about new beginnings. Besides the standard clean colon- after all the holiday feasting, what would a spiritual clean slate look like and how would I redefine my own personal narrative.Which stories from my young life about injustices and upsets I can let go.
Can I acknowledge and honor the pain of the past without letting it define the years to come? Can I rewrite my history, of course without fictitious embellishments like becoming Secretary of State, with a positive language full of gratitude and abundance?
A mental detox sounds simple, right? Perhaps it is. But to break habits and stories that define us, even to our detriment, is tough. Otherwise psychoanalysis would be obsolete and Woody Allen would have no material.
Can we through concerted effort break the arteriosclerosis of our minds? Can we chose to be mentally flexible and move into a new paradigm?
The future is ours. The time is now. And I don’t know about you, but in my 80’s I still don’t want to be bitching about my mother.
Join me in a Happy New Year !