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The Bliss Mistress Guide: Green Eyed Monster

by Edie Weinstein


This is a tough one to write, but I have learned over the years that what we resist, persists. This morning I knew I had to face a gremlin that has plagued me for years. It is oozy and slimy, insidious and clever. It is in cahoots with my inner critic that in a previous Beliefnet article, I have come to call Perfectionista. She tells me that someone else is more successful, talented and worthy of attention than I am. It hisses in my ear that I will never have my dreams come to fruition because, let's face it.....I'm just not enough.

Not sure where that came from since I was praised profusely by my family and teachers- heralded as precocious and prodigious. Maybe I internalized their high expectations for me and kept climbing higher even though the air was getting thinner. When I look at my accomplishments, I see praise-worthy work. I do this juxtaposed dance between humility; not wanting to be perceived as being too big for my britches, high maintenance and obnoxious, and wanting to be loved best of all, not just for what I do, but for who I am. I wonder too, how much ego is involved in this process. Being ‘ego-less’ isn’t the answer either, since, in order to be visible and empowered, there needs to be a sense of ego-strength. Heaven forbid that I should be seen as ‘full of myself’. I tiptoe lightly in this area, grateful for the opportunity to share my gifts with the world. Hiding my light under a bushel dims the possibility that what I share could be of service to others.

That's where the green eyed monster of envy comes lurking about. I am a big believer in being happy for someone else's success, and know that in no way, does it detract from or prevent mine and yet, there is a visceral response that sounds something like "Why is s/he getting attention for something I do, at least as well, from those whose approval I desire? My gut is twisting as I type these words, by the way. I love to celebrate the joys and achievements of friends who are immersed in what they love to do. I clap wildly for them and pout petulantly for myself. "What will it take," I ponder, "to receive the attention I sometimes crave?" Even bigger questions are "Why is it so important? What would it mean about me if I do get what I ask for? What story am I telling myself about someone else getting the prize in the Cracker Jack box? What is it about the ones giving the thumbs up that I grant them the power to decide whether my work is (as mentioned above) indeed praise worthy?"

I'll answer the last question first. Maybe it is because they have reached a pinnacle on which I desire to stand and by aligning with them, I will be seen as being like them and will be noticed too. What I am making it mean is that I'm not there yet. It is what I call 'The David Bowie Principle". I had heard a story several years ago that said before he was heralded as a musical icon, he wanted to be a rock star more than anything, but wasn't being noticed. He decided to act 'as if' he was already where he wanted to be, so he dressed the part and started hanging out with others who had achieved superstar status. Soon, the powers that be began to take notice and he became that household name. Of course, he had the talent to see it through.

The other queries will take some time to process and put in their places. I suppose I need to befriend the monster and find a way to appease her, so that she and Perfectionista don’t gang up on me and invite more of their motley crew to tag along. Before you know it, THEY will each want their own byline.

Edie Weinstein is a colorfully creative journalist, inspiring transformational speaker, licensed social worker, interfaith minister, radio host and the author of The Bliss Mistress Guide To Transforming The Ordinary Into The Extraordinary. www.liveinjoy.org


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