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UnLearning

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By Jo De Rosa

 

I am starting to find out that so much that I’ve grown up to believe to be true, is in fact not.

And just because society tells us something is true, we need to not blindly trust but to discover if it is true for us. Buddha taught about his own experience but always sent his followers out to determine their own truth, for what is right for one may not be for another.

 

Conditioned Behaviour

We all grow up having experienced a different back round. For some swearing at home was allowed whilst others seemed to have much more freedom than everyone else. Whatever our experience it becomes what we would class as ‘normal’, meaning everyone’s normal is different!

In my first serious relationship in my twenties I was verbally abused everyday. I knew this was wrong but put up with it for too many years. It sat uncomfortably with me how someone could call another person such vile names until I met his parents and saw how they treated each other! I was shocked to the core, but suddenly understood how he saw his own behaviour as ‘normal’ because that was all he knew. For him the cycle of verbal abuse will continue until he steps outside of his conditioned response and sees that, in fact, it is not the correct way of treating another human being.

 

For me when I finally walked away from that relationship, I gave him perhaps his very first signal that all was not well. What he did with the message I will never know, but he will have to go through the process of ‘UnLearning’ if he is to have a truly happy and fulfilling relationship.

 

Society Tells Us Alcohol Is Fun

Now I bang on about this all the time and I am passionate about changing the way we view alcohol.

It is a toxin. Period.

The news is always about a glass of wine being beneficial for this and that, when the truth is that it kills. Whatever the latest research says there is always a healthier alternative to a glass of wine. Some will disagree with me and that is your prerogative, this is just my opinion, but I would perhaps suggest that you look closely at what society wants us to believe around this subject.

 

For we have deeply embedded beliefs around how ‘fun’ and ‘relaxing’ drinking can be. But how can something be relaxing when it is actually a stimulant, and fun when it is poisoning us. Doesn’t make sense to me, and I drank till the cows came home up until 18 months ago, when I UnLearnt my drinking beliefs and:

 

Of course I can still have fun without alcohol!

Of course I can still relax without alcohol!

 

In fact my life turned around when I stopped drinking. At the ripe old age of 42 I feel younger now, and happier than I ever have before. I would NEVER go back to the booze and a life of anaesthesia.

I say YES to vibrancy, authenticity, and youth!

 

Bad Nutritional Advice

I have an in-law who has a bad back, is in his late 70’s and putting on weight at an alarming rate. On return from his GP he showed us what the doctor has guided him to eat, and it’s the ‘fat is evil’ old-school advice. My husband Dominic (who does all the cooking at our retreat centre) and I have argued with him until we’re blue in the face that this is outdated information and the correct fats are integral to a healthy diet, but he will not budge in what he believes to be true. He is going to have to UnLearn a lifetime set of beliefs to move beyond his weight problems.

 

I’ve not eaten packaged food and sugar for a long time, but was shocked relatively recently to discover that the natural fruit sugars and raw Nakd bars that I love so much are keeping a layer of unhealthy fat around my waist. I’ve had to work through my own conditioning of what I believe is healthy and watch as my husbands metabolism burns off the fruit effortlessly, whilst mine seems to stand as still as cement! I’m UnLearning the old nutritional beliefs, and embracing greens for breakfast –yum!

 

Never Enough Money

Up until recently I held this belief, and have struggled financially all of my working life until I UnLearnt the pattern.

We are told by society that “we have to work hard for our money”, and “money doesn’t grow on trees” etc.….

But what if by following your passion and living from your heart, you could earn unlimited money and never work a day in your life? This is my new reality. This is what I now believe, “money comes easily and frequently”.

 

Acceptance

Struggle is part of life yes? “Life is hard”, “why does it always happen to me?”, “it’s not fair”, and the one I always came out with to my parents as a teen, “I didn’t ask to be born!”.

When in a traditional mindset there is a lot of struggle. We hold on to our problems and don’t realise that by doing so we are reinforcing ourselves to the past, and remaining stuck in one place. I did this for years with the abusive relationship: I knew there was more but kept myself in a place of doom and gloom, watched negative programs like EastEnders, and kid myself that by ‘watching someone else’s problems it made mine all the more bearable.’

What an utterly awful way to live, and I did like that for most of my twenties.

Then I realised –through meditation- that I was holding on for dear life, and to be truly free I had to let go and trust that everything was ok. I had to experience a whole range of feelings, experiences, relationships and struggles to become a rounded person. I had to UnLearn the ‘victim’ in me, and instead take responsibility of my beliefs, because:

 

Beliefs become thoughts, thoughts become words, words become actions, and actions are our destiny.

Now life flows. I have invited acceptance into my day, and made peace with me. The addictive urge has subsided and I have enough money, love, and happiness. And ‘stuff’ still happens to me. I have a disabled mum which I find upsetting, live far from my relatives, and right at this moment a blown pump meaning no hot water in the house. But none of this do I take personally, as I acknowledge that struggle is part of life and doesn’t mean I should give up or feel sorry for myself.  Instead I learn to cope and become stronger because of it.

 

Meditation Gives Answers

The way I have learnt to UnLearn is through meditation. Towards the end of my meditation sessions I like to bring in a problem/challenge/intention. As once I’m in a calm and connected space then I find it amazing how much clarity I get when asking certain questions. I absolutely know how I feel about a subject when I’m in my internal world, and from here I can make important decisions to get balanced and attuned ready for my day.

 

Web:  www.innerguidance.co.uk

Email:  jo@innerguidance.co.uk

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Copyright: Jo De Rosa 2014