The Caterpillar's Struggle
The last article began with Pooja’s transformation from Caterpillar to Butterfly. Our caterpillar had to endure a lot to eventually fly like a butterfly. Let us dive into a little more detail about the struggle she had to deal with and her evolution.
During her conversation with the counselor, she mentioned,
“My mother behaves as though she was a victim, always blaming me for her difficulty or conditions. She will never leave an opportunity to elicit guilt through emotional blackmail, manipulating my weaknesses to make me feel bad, and intervening in my life to exert control.
She suffers from bipolar disorder. I’m not sure how much of that influenced her personality. I’ve known several persons with bipolar disorder who are generous and caring.
She appears to the outer world as an apostle of generosity and forgiveness.
In reality, she is a sadist. A self-centered opportunist who is an expert at severing people’s lives and has no regrets in doing so, rather she savors her exploits as if she were an incarnation of Themis sent on earth with a mission to balance the Karma.
For her, making a new friend is going to war. She needs to know her enemy(or friend?) to deploy manipulative strategies to get an upper hand.
When I would be sick, she’d take out her bible and randomly open it to read God’s special message to me. If you pray, God will heal you.
She wanted me to “Focus” on my studies when she wanted to spend quality time with her loved one behind my father’s back.
I have grown up with hopelessness, feeling worthless, confused, and overwhelmed. I have always been scared of making new friends. It felt like I was incorrect all the time and that nothing I did or said was ever sufficient.
I was always afraid of reporting my injuries or mishaps to her. I was yelled at, shaken, slapped in the face, and told I was a foolish and thoughtless selfish young girl.”
She continued, “My mother took violin lessons alongside me when I was young, and only stopped when I outperformed her.
What she has done to my life and psyche is beyond words. If she dies tomorrow, I’m quite sure I won’t even go to her funeral.
I am the family’s black sheep, and I am quite content with that status.”
Pooja was advised to set strict boundaries, instead of sabotaging her future by going for any imaginary gratification in the present.
“Dominating people have nothing in their life except wanting to control other people’s lives. They are highly insecure individuals whose life is so dependent on others, that they can’t leave others free”, conveyed the counselor.
She further added, “Getting past a toxic presence in life is a must. It takes a decent level of misery to be so dramatic. It’s why growing up with negative people is so damaging to children. Everything is warped in the child’s mind, and it’s not their fault.”
On her journey of personal development, Pooja had to reduce and eliminate interactions with her mother. It was a difficult process but it was her freedom that was at stake. To be inside a venomous cage or breathe free air. It was she who had to decide. She decided on getting past her history and making a fresh start in her life, and she did a fabulous job at it. Will is not just required for winning Olympic medals but also unheard of triumphs in individual life.
Other than the story, let us hear some expert advice on will so that one day we all fly like our champion butterfly.
“To increase willpower, connect with the reason you are doing this task. Clearly understanding exactly how this task will help you – and also understanding what bad outcomes might happen if you avoid the task, will make it easy to achieve it. The problem comes in when we are doing tasks because others have told us to, or we think we “should,” but we aren’t understanding the direct cause-and-effect benefit of doing the task. We can feel like, “I know I should do this, but I just don’t want to,” and then endlessly procrastinate.
For example, maybe a family member tells you to keep your house cleaner. You don’t want to bother and feel resentment and annoyance when you think about cleaning. However, if you think it through, and list all the benefits for yourself of having a clean house– perhaps getting to enjoy your own house fully, having others over for dinner or parties, not being embarrassed if a friend drops by unexpectedly – as well as the possible bad outcomes for keeping things a mess: mold growing on dishes, attracting bugs and having to pay for an exterminator, not being able to find important items, it will be easy to see how this benefits you directly, regardless of the opinions of others.
When you feel a clear connection with a good outcome for yourself, as well as avoiding bad outcomes, it’s very easy to do that cleaning. The same applies to work, starting a business, friendships, and relationships. Often, we just haven’t yet thought about the cause-and-effect outcomes of various actions, and this makes it hard to find motivation.
Another example is, let’s say you run a small business and do the cleaning yourself in the office because you are still struggling financially. You know you should empty your trash can full of papers at the end of the day, but you feel lazy and don’t want to. You let the bin overflow, and your employees notice this, and also don’t empty their trash cans either. Then, a potential investor shows up one day, and while on an office tour, notices the overflowing bins.
The investor wonders if the business is not being run well, since they don’t even have time to empty their trash cans and questions if there are workflow problems. They decide not to invest. This is just one example of a bad possible outcome. Keeping these possibilities in mind makes it a lot easier to find the motivation to empty all of the trash bins. On the flip side, if the office is sparkling clean when potential investors or clients drop by, they will likely get a positive impression and be more likely to want to work together. The excitement of growing the business (and no longer struggling financially) can motivate you to do this otherwise boring task that seems unimportant and boring otherwise.
I used the example of cleaning above, but the same is true for any task. Whether it is an excel spreadsheet for a business you are building that you are putting off, proofreading an essay for school, running errands, keeping a promise to a friend or family member, researching recipes to start cooking healthy meals, exercising – in any area of your life, a boring task becomes important and meaningful the minute you understand the potential benefits to yourself as well as the potential bad outcomes you want to avoid.”
“Our willpower aligns with our true Higher Self, our Soul. Our heart is the key focus to generating willpower that will self-sustain for a long time. The heart is where our passion is. The heart is connected to our Souls.
When we quiet our mind’s chit-chats ( which are mostly conditioned/ programmed by our human societies/ traditions/ cultures/ shoulds and have to), our true Self emerges.
Finding that True essence of ourselves free from the nay says, or conditions of external influences become the main task of your willpower. that is just the first step. our heart/ passion/ true joy pinpoints the direction of our will. If the direction is right/ suitable to our Soul, the will free flows.
Our wills are nurtured by patience. We do not need to race. We are programmed to race against others by competition. There is no competition. there is only a natural unfolding of who we are from within. Much like a Jacaranda tree’s blooming and growing. When a tree grows, it cares not whether other trees around it grows faster than itself or not. When the season is right, the timing, weather, temperature, and needed five elements ( fire, air, water, earth, and love ) are present, the tree has its innate knowing deeply encoded into itself, its buds stretch, its branches expand and it blooms.
It expresses itself and evolves. If you are a jacaranda tree, enjoy and embrace being a jacaranda! do not worry about racing against a wattle tree for blooming. Always look within first. Be proud to be a jacaranda tree even if the whole world knows nothing about the jacaranda tree. When we do things because we are expressing the highest version in the grandest vision of who we truly are, our will freely flow endlessly and joyfully! Namaste, Li-Ing Wu Beautiful Shining Jade”
“Always be independent emotionally, psychologically, socially, and financially.
Never be rude or point out others’ mistakes rather politeness, patience and kind nature along with forgiveness have to be used to help them change.” Mounika Burra
“Set realistic and achievable daily goals, and aim for consistency so that healthy behaviors become daily habits.
Don’t beat yourself up if you slip up or don’t always follow through. Instead, practice self-compassion and accept that we are all imperfect humans. This approach will help increase your motivation to keep trying!” Sarah Cox
“I think it’s less about willpower and more about desire and managing your thoughts. Willpower is limited and takes a lot of energy to implement. If we have less desire (or more desire) to do something, that’s going to get us where we need to go. For example, using willpower to eat less sugar takes more energy than just not desiring to eat the sugar. So we have to change the story we’re telling ourselves about the sugary snack. And we do that with our thoughts.”
“Here are a couple of things. Hope helps.
My tips for Willpower are:
Don’t take on too much at once. Try setting small, achievable goals and focus on small changes at once and build the trust muscle
When planning and fewer decisions have to be made then eliminated being in a position where decision fatigue sets in and not the best choices are made. Yes, decision fatigue is a real thing.
- Avoid temptation
Set intentions, and remove certain things from around you that were needed depending on goals.
Strengthen your willpower.
Try a food-tracking app for better eating. Reward yourself with other things, not alcohol and food. Get support from others a coach/ mentor.
Feed Your Brain. Listen to audible and things that will lift and support your goals” Kate Kendall
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