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Monday, December 31, 2018

Break Your Own Cycles- What I Learned in 2018




2018 taught me a lesson I'll never forget. It's something I want to share with you. You see, I wonder if you're operating under the same stumbling block. And this stumbling block could be the one thing holding your life back. 

Here's what I know, every time I found myself repeating the same old patterns, there was something deeper within me that I wasn't willing to confront. It was my unwillingness to confront it that was keeping me from achieving my hearts desires.

What I realized is that our negative cycles revolve around a stopping point- a point where our current wounds won't allow us to continue until they are healed. Our deepest wounds will only allow us to lose a certain amount of weight, go after a certain level of success, live a certain lifestyle, accept a limit of love, and reach a certain point of happiness. When we begin to grow to a level that requires expansion, the wounds that hold us back have to be acknowledged, resolved and healed. Otherwise we stop ourselves from growing. We shrink or sabotage ourselves back to where we were, thus creating the cycle. Until we heal, there will always be a cap on our joy.

Why do we stay in the cycle? Because expanding beyond the comfort of our normal stopping point induces growing pains and nobody likes pain. We fail to recognize that pain means that we are touching a wound and that wound needs attention and care before we can move on. To me, running away from pain is like running away from a crying baby because it hurts your ears. The baby- your wound- needs comfort, compassion and unconditional love.

Pain isn't supposed to be normal. It's common, and most people live with a certain level of it, but I don't believe we were meant to live in pain. To me pain means that there is something we need to pay attention to. Unless we attend to our discomfort and sit in our pain long enough to understand it, we will never get past our stopping point.

I broke so many cycles in 2018. Before this last year, my life felt like the movie Groundhog Day. It seemed I had been living through the same cycles over and over with different faces and circumstances. I was almost able to predict where a relationship would end, or when I would have to get a new job. There were more restarts than accomplishments and it got to the point where I became energetically sick- like that feeling you get when you want to throw up but your body is just hanging on, nauseous with toxins and suffering rather than breaking through and letting it go.

In order to break free of those toxic cycles, I had to face the fact that I ran away from so many good things because I was afraid to address the wounds that kept me from living a good life. I didn't want to feel the pain of expansion. I lived the majority of my life more afraid of living my dream life than I was of staying stuck in my cycles.

My breakthrough came when I realized that the pain of holding onto the cycles was more than the pain of expansion.

Breaking Through.

I realized what I was missing out on and this became more painful than staying comfortable. Things became black and white; I could keep my wound protected or I could poke around at it until I understood why it was there and heal it, thus allowing me to move on!

The best thing I personally did was commit to being single for the year. My romantic life had become nothing but a series of bad cycles. So, I resisted the urge to distract myself with another guy and went to God instead. I brought to Him my broken heart and over the course of the year He did what He does best- He restored my dignity, and helped me to forgive the past so that I could trust myself again. I broke the cycle of running to relationships for comfort and instead focused on strengthening myself. I turned codependency into self reliance!

My career was another area that would cycle out of control. But instead of hitting the want ads again, I brought to God my fears of being successful. Once again, He did what He does best. He became my provider, CEO of my life, and constant muse. He taught me that when He puts a desire in my heart, to follow it. No matter how crazy that desire is, it will always lead me to where I am supposed to be. He taught me how to trust that I will always be taken care of, and has never let me down. I turned doubt into faith!

Instead of making desperate decisions, I began bringing all of my insecurities to Him. And you guessed it, He continued to restore and rebuild my confidence until I was finally able to break through my stopping point. He guided me out of other cycles I had been born into and helped me to forgive my family and society. I turned corners I never thought I could!

By the end of the year, I was brought to the point of no return, a place where there were so many brand new experiences coming at me, I hardly recognized my life.

Every time I arrived at my usual stopping points, I would become scared of the unknown. I trained myself to get on my knees instead of running. I would bring the pain to Him. A light would turn on, and I would be able to see again. I developed more bravery and strength to consistently break out of my comfort zones that had previously held me back. I tried so many new things last year that I began to feel like a whole different person. Suddenly my entire environment changed when I moved my family from the mountains to the desert over night in the last month of the year. This was the final cycle that had to break, as I had sabotaged moving out of Utah for over a decade due to an unhealed wound that kept me stuck.

I'm sure that while reading this, you are wondering what cycles you need to break. When it comes to breaking your own cycles, here are some things you may want to consider. These are the questions I asked myself in order to see where my pain/wounds were. These were the things I brought to God.

What wound would you have to heal in order for change to happen in your life? What would you have to address to get from the point you are now to where you want to be? What would you have to develop within you (example: strength, perseverance, compassion, self love, forgiveness, "badassery") in order to break out of a cycle? Are you willing to be patient with your healing process? What if it takes years to heal, could you still commit to your healing?

These are all questions I will continue to ask myself as I enter into this new year. Looking back to the way I was behaving last December, I can see a substantial amount progress within myself. I have become more comfortable in the face of intimidating new challenges and fresh starts. My threshold has been stretched, my tolerance has been broadened, and my drive for adventure has increased. My prayer for the new year is based upon my experience over the past 12 months: May all beings dare to push through the tendency to shrink back into old patters so they can see the gift that awaits them on the other side. And may we all have the strength to sit in our pain long enough to understand it, give it to God, and allow it to be healed so that we can indefinitely move beyond it. Blessings of expansion, growth and cycle breaking for 2019!

Photo credit: Anthony Turner

5 comments:

  1. You are my inspiration, Crystal. Thank you for being my life long friend!

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  2. ๐Ÿ’œyou are a lighthouse Crystal! Honestly we all need this reminder of grace and God.

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  3. No shrinking into old patterns! Ahau, thank you for sharing your valuable insights๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—

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  4. So beautiful Crystal! Thank you for sharing and expanding your learnings to touch so many lives who can learn and begin their work from here and now ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป

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