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It’s Easier to Believe the Bad Stuff

June 3, 2010

Svadhyaya, or self study is one of the niyamas (a term I don’t have time to go into in this post, stay tuned!) of yoga. Self study is simply noticing the way you are. And the way you are with the way you are (if you are still with me, good!). At some level, everyone engages in this practice of self study. Take for example, Vivian Ward, the glorified prostitute from “Pretty Woman” when she says to Edward “It’s easier to believe the bad stuff. You ever notice that?” Pretty insightful information for a hooker from the streets, don’t you think?
On a deeper level, the practice of self study can be transformative. Just live Vivian, I find that it is so much easier for me to believe the bad things about myself than to believe in the good and wonderful parts of myself. I have so often in the past not felt that I deserved good things. When something good would happen to me, I shrugged it off as being lucky. Other people in my life noticed this tendency of mine long before I did. Years ago, a mentor of mine told me “you just need to know that you’re worth it and go for it!” At the time, I pondered about whether or not that was true or whether he was just nudging me in the direction HE thought I should go. Now, it has become all too clear to me that he was right on the money. Years later, I am just now seeing the truth to that statement and seeing changes in my attitude surrounding what I deserve. Whether I am hesitant to buy a great piece of clothing that I have been wanting or hesitant to apply for that great job because I am afraid that I won’t be good enough to get it or because I haven’t worked hard enough to deserve something like that terrific job, that same idea follows me around.
But as I was reflecting on the wonderful things in my life yesterday, my third wedding anniversary I realized that though I feel incredibly grateful to have my wonderful husband in my life, I do not feel lucky. Instead, I feel that I truly deserve to have such a terrific person to go through life with. At the risk of coming across as a television evangelist who has been relegated to the late late late night time slots among a never ending cycle of infomercials, I am still going to say it. I deserve good things! I deserve positive things in my life! I deserve to be happy! I’m good enough. I’m smart enough and gosh darnit, people like me! (Well, not most people, but that’s another story. And if you get my SNL reference, hooray!).
I am now making every effot to *not* expect bad things to happen and blow off the wonderful things in my life as “luck.” Though I do believe that luck does play a part in the world, I have given it a much bigger role in my life than it actually deserves. And in doing so, denying myself the notion that I actually do deserve goodness. This realization seems so elementary and yet at the same time, completely life changing.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. June 3, 2010 10:08 AM

    I cannot believe I have known you for more than 3 years. I love this post and love the SNL and the Pretty Woman reference. 🙂

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