When Majestic pointed out my obvious flaws it reverberated loudly in my mind because they were irrefutable truths. I felt convicted by these truths and everything inside me wanted to resist and deny these things. Because man’s basic instinct is self-preservation which dictates that we must protect ourselves at all costs from anything unpleasant that we encounter. You know that thing in our unconscious mind that says “Fight or Flight” whenever we feel threatened? However, something inside me said this was the truth and I needed to face it head on. I can either change these things about myself or continue to suffer the unpleasant consequences a FU attitude and FU temper reek in my life.
The more we do something is the more it becomes a habit, and sooner or later that habit becomes biologically ingrained in us. Take drug use for example, the more a person uses drugs the more it becomes a habit, then the habit becomes so biologically ingrained that it seems almost impossible to quit using. Now, when this occurs the person starts to make statements like, “I can’t just quit like that, this is just a part of who I am now.” What is so peculiar about this is we are more likely to adopt negative habits than positive ones. Our negative habits are often based upon selfish hedonistic desires or the “Fight or Flight” defense mechanism we employ due to some personal hardships we encounter. So being the analytic that I was, I had to discover why I had such a defiant attitude and short temper because it was the only way I was going to truly change these negatives in my life.
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I soon discovered my attitude and anger came from the abuse I suffered from my mother. It hurt me to the core of my being that the woman who gave birth to me could beat me the way she did and say the horrible the things she said to me. To be a grown man and to not know what it feels like to be hugged by your mother or to be told “I love you” is a hurtful feeling, especially when I watched her give it so easily and generously to my younger siblings. This is where my destructive attitude and anger came from. And these were only magnified in prison after I got screwed over by my lawyer and the woman I was married to at the time. Yep, my ex-wife and lawyer became an item and quickly abandoned me and my case. These were the circumstances that I allowed to negatively shape my attitude and temper and consequently became a part of me.
I knew that I could not change those people or those circumstances, but I could change me and the way I dealt with those issues. So I started my journey and the process of change with a prayer I learned growing up in Catholic schools, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
One of the things I discovered from my life’s circumstances, my service in the military and being in prison, is that change is inevitable. We can either change because we want to change or because circumstances made us change. However, change is a journey and a process that is best achieved when we do so of our own accord rather than allowing circumstances to do it for us. Are you going to continue to allow change to happen to you or are you going to consciously make that change in your life?
Take care and God bless!
Man In The Mirror