Monday, May 11, 2009

It's not you . . .

Scene from Seinfeld: Girlfriend breaking up with George

GF: It's not you, it's me.
George: Are you giving me the It's not you, it's me speech? Because I invented the It's not you, it's me! Let me tell you something: if anything, it's me, baby!

I heard a new one recently: it's not you, it's your patterns. Nothing personal, it's just the patterns you're running. Or are they running you? What's so automatic that you aren't even aware of it until someone points it out? And then if they do, do you see it? Or do you tell them how they're wrong? What keeps showing up in all your relationships? That's a clue.

And by relationships, I'm not just talking about people. We have relationships with everything: our house, our finances, our work, our car. What kind of patterns are you running? Do you see a common pattern linking everything?

What if your pattern is procrastination? Things pile up: laundry, dishes, bills. Your houseplants are thirsty and your friends think you've forgotten their birthday until they receive the belated birthday card. One pattern threads its way through all your relationships.

Patterns are neither good or bad. As Dave would ask: Are they useful? Dave used to say that most people are resistant to change. It's much easier to outgrow a pattern than to change it. It's much easier to update yourself than to change. How do you go about updating? The first thing is to become aware of it. As John says, Notice when it shows up. Awareness is the first step to throwing in the clutch. And then you can get curious about how to create a more useful pattern now.

These patterns are installed by our amateur parents & others as we're growing up. That's not a license to blame your childhood, just recognition. As adults, we're given consciousness so we can choose. How's it working for you? It's not you, it's your patterns. Choose a different pattern, and have a different life.

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