I’ve been on this self-improvement journey for almost a year now. I am learning so many things about myself – both good things and bad things. Last night I was thinking about changes, more specifically, the changes that I see in myself. It has been such a long road for me. At the end of last year, my life was a complete and absolute mess. Everything was wrong, I wasn’t happy with anything, and every part of my life was affected by that. I was depressed, I was miserable, and I didn’t really like myself. There were so many things “wrong” with me that I didn’t know how to go about fixing them.
So I asked for help fixing my character flaws.
I went to one of my friends and I asked him to tell me the three things that were most “wrong” with me, the things I needed to work on to be a better person. In my head I had such a long list that it was overwhelming to me.
Three things seemed manageable, three I could do. I got an answer. I needed to stop holding grudges, I needed to stop punishing people, and I needed to control my anger. (Secretly the answer I wanted was “you are perfect just how you are” but honesty was so much better.)
So nine months later this is where I am. The day after we had this conversation I sat down and I made a list of names and all of the grudges I was holding against those people. It was two pages long. I’m not kidding. Some of them were little things that I refused to forget, some of it was things that happened a decade before, but it was all resentment. I was carrying around so much anger and bitterness and I realized for the first time in my life how much. It was absolutely shocking to me.
I worked on letting it go.
Today if I were to recreate that list it would involve one person and a handful of grudges. Nowhere near the two pages of nine months ago. I learned that 99% of grudges aren’t worth the energy involved to keep them.
Secondly, punishing people which goes hand in hand with the third, which is my anger. When I used to get mad I handled it like this, I was passive aggressive and if you confronted me I would blow up on you. I found myself turning into a verbal abuser. I would say things specifically to cause hurt to someone. I’d be cruel, I would attempt to tear people down and damage their self-esteem, combine that with my grudge-holding and I could be one terrible person to you.
I’d throw things in your face six months later just because I could. (Those freaking grudges)
I feel ashamed right now writing about it, but I’m telling myself that this is my truth and I’m not that person anymore. Pride not shame.
I feel like I have healed in so many ways just by concentrating on those three things. Confronting the fact that I would verbally abuse others made me deal with my issues of my self-esteem. Dealing with my anger showed me that a lot of those feelings were just hurt that I didn’t know how to deal with.
A long nine months, but I feel better, I feel more “whole” than I’ve felt in a long time. It has been so long since I said something mean or hateful and I do not miss that part of myself. I’ve worked on forgiving myself for being the person that I used to be. Asking someone for help isn’t a bad thing, that one question, “What three things do I need to work on within myself?” and the answer, completely changed my life.
I am proof that you can change.
You can become better, greater, than what you ever thought you could be.
It just takes a little bit of work, all good things in life do.