Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Be The Change

For some reason I can't seem to get the lyrics, "Do you know what it feels like for a girl, in this world?" out of my head. It's definitely an interesting way to wake up! Especially considering that I am not a girl. Although I am close. My mother, after all, was hoping that I'd be a girl. So this is what happened! So the moral of the story is, be careful what you wish for.

And no that is not the end of my blog post. Although I do think it would be funny to write a blog post that was so short, sweet, and utterly profound. Maybe after this one.

I changed my passwords last night. Have you ever stopped to think about how many accounts you have online that require a password? Not to mention computers, work computers, and even phones! It took me about an hour, and I don't think I have changed all my passwords yet. I went from using 17 characters and cut it down to 12 seriously ridiculous characters. But let me tell you why.

I feel like I've made a discovery lately. Perhaps not anything profound or nobel-prize worthy, although I think my life in general is worth a nobel-prize, but more of just simple satisfaction with what my life could one day be.

I'm not sure who said the quote, or something similar to this, "Be the change you wish to see in others". But it has really inspired me lately. Oh! And a quick google search turned up that Ghandi said it. Well, I am glad that one of my new mantras comes from such an incredible man.

A while ago, I wrote a post about work, where the kids wouldn't swear as much around me as they usually do, just because I didn't swear. But I've come to realize that this example setting reaches far beyond clean language.

I have a lot of friends. And some are closer than others. However, I am fiercely loyal with my friends. Even those who I have only recently met know that I will do my best to help them in whatever way I can. In return, they are just as fiercely loyal with me and will come to my aid with cupcakes, hugs, and listening ears. Ya that's right, I'm a big softy and all I need is that to survive.

So what of it? Why is it so important that I change first? Well, think about it. Have you ever, and I know you have, had that one friend or psuedo-friend that was always trying to change and/or fix you? They may have done it in very loving, or sometimes very not-so-loving ways. But they wanted you to be happy (the mom from Tangled singing, "Mother Knows Best" comes to mind).

But it didn't work did it...? They're nagging words and scornful gaze, or even loving intrigues and hope and prayers weren't enough. Well, we do have this instinct to fight change. What's the first thing you want to do when someone tells you to do something? Say no! Or maybe I'm just speaking from personal experience here and I'm way more of a heathen than I thought.

If you yourself are changing, people pick up on that. This allows them to choose for themselves whether or not they want to change. For the most part, it seems that humanity is on a quest to better themselves and their lives. So if you provide the example of how they *could* change, you are giving them new ideas, inspiration, and conviction to make changes for themselves. And, as I'm sure you are aware, the psychological benefits of internal conviction and motivation far outweigh outside rewards and punishments.

I have been a lot happier lately. I've worked on avoiding passive-aggressive facebook statuses, whiny poetry, sulking moods, and other negative stuff. Wow I just realized how much of a handful I am! Kudos to those of you who can handle this mess of emotions with the name Steven!

These are things that I've worked on for a while. As I've mentioned in a lot of posts, I struggle with a lot of shame-based behaviors, reactions, and motivations. But I am getting better! I find that really sticking to my convictions and being confident in who I am as a person helps greatly. And I've began to notice a change in people's reactions towards me.

I come off as friendlier, kinder, more gentle, fun, humorous, stable and confident. I've noticed more friends come into my life, past acquaintances re-emerge, and my current relationships become more strong and fulfilling. All these are good things!

And it's because I've had the internal motivation to change. I've pushed myself further than I'm used to and it's been fantastic!

But what gave me the motivation? Well, it was the example of someone very close to me.

He is the change he wishes to see in others. He does nothing but love and support his friends and loved-ones. He is an incredible example to me of someone who has true and pure love. He inspires me daily to be a little better, to push a little harder, and to try just *one* more time. He is one of many. There are tons of people in my life who really inspire me. He's just the one that I can't get out of my head!

So I am passing this message a long to you. Oh, and why did I change all my passwords? To give me a phrase to remind myself every day of my desire to be the change I wish to see in others.