Growth has to be intentional – Jason Barh
For us to grow and flourish; to explore life, accept and grow in our authentic selves, I am discovering that I have to grow intentionally in every relational aspect of my life for in it is the key to continuous joy and refreshment.
I am also discovering that for me to be established, its my responsibility – our responsibility – not to build sorrow into success, progress, breakthrough, and divine blessings which never come with sorrow.
For the longest of time, I had a fear of communicating my thoughts, dreams, visions, plans with my mother and other most family relatives because whenever I mentioned these things, I was often ferociously shut down. I admit, I am a sensitive guy but its not until recently that I began investing in a thick skin.
But, before this I unconsciously carried these childhood fears of rejection, abandonment, and trauma with me. I often used the word privacy to hide myself and my fears. Of course, that did a lot of harm to my growth, diminished my self-esteem, and blurred my perceptive lens among other things. My communication was negatively impacted. I began to hide everything I did behind the word “privacy” to avoid talking about them.
Yes, it is true,
Having a vision is necessary, but sharing that vision is not -Rabbi Daniel Lapin
But Newsflash! There is a difference between privacy and deception.
Privacy is important and we may agree we don’t have to tell everyone everything. But the more intimate the relationship, the greater both the possibility and the longing to tell – and the bigger the emotional consequences of not telling – Harriet Lerner (The Dance of Deception).
We sometimes underestimate the impact of a lie, secret, or silence on our relationships. But, in time, the silence or secrets tend to drive wedges through the bonds of trusted and valuable relationships.
I’ve always had to justify or couch what I was doing, especially spiritually related things, in fear of how I would be seen or addressed. In time, the fact that I did not properly and courageously communicate my intentions and actions impacted my relationships. Down the road, I noticed I had built sorrow into God’s blessings only while living them.
And that’s why in a recent essay titled A NEW MEASURE, I wrote,
Each time you enter a new level of success or receive a breakthrough: if its not directly accompanied by a breakthrough in your friendships, there is a problem.
Each time you enter a new level of success or breakthrough: if its not directly accompanied by a breakthrough in your family relationships, then HOUSTON, WE HAVE A BIG PROBLEM!
With questions, I went on an introspective quest to discover triggers, biases, and traumas and invited the Good Lord to heal. Meanwhile, knowing that it was my responsibility to steward the goodness and blessings of the divine in my life, I designed a process to change shift the momentum and ensure I would be carrying “my people” with me.
Given that these have been times of refreshing, minor wins, and breakthroughs, I decided to find a way to involve my people. After praying, I approached my peeps with –
I presented them with ideas I had been working on, soliciting their ideas, discussing new developments, the new connections, what the lawyer said….and so forth. The first presentation was met with no interest. To me, it felt like eating a rat sandwich. I was angry. But, I tried it again and it was met with surprise, encouragement, prayers, and suggestions.
Then, I approached some of my other peeps with –
Here, I went back and made corrections to untrue statements or corrected misinformed thoughts. For example: several months ago, my cousin prepared dinner I didn’t like but I told her I enjoyed it to make her feel good. Well, as part of my process, I corrected that statement. I told her I hated it. It felt good. I felt empowered and free. Not sure how she felt. But, we seem to be talking about everything more openly. Hmmm…that’s strange.
Initially, what led me to build sorrow into my growth and blessings was poor communication – silence, secrets, lies. I developed a process around that to lead me through the process of truthfully communicating precious things with friends and family (my peeps) which I feared would be tarnished with speech and attitude. However, this process has resulted in –
Their appreciation and encouragement. It has improved our relationship, taking it up a notch. It has caused my peeps to buy into my vision, and informed them of how to physically, spiritually, emotionally, and perhaps, financially, invest into my life at the current level of growth whenever they want.
In short, I am carrying my trusted friends and relatives with me on this journey to dreams and visions.
As I am growing, as I enter new levels of growth, success, and breakthrough, I am making sure that my people, the community around me, is growing. It’s part of my intentional growth.
Its your responsibility to ensure that at each new level of growth, you initiate or transmit that breakthrough into things that matter – the relationships between your friends (confidants) and trusted relatives.
How would you know who a trusted friends (confidants) is?
One who celebrates and promotes you irrespective of where they are or what they are doing in life. Note – they will celebrate – you – more than – what – you do.
How would you know which family relative to trust and who is with you?
If they don’t throw your pearls to dogs, if they are discreet, and if they give what you the time and attention you and your idea needs.
In the process, I learn not to share or trust those who trample on my pearl carelessly. The speech or action of these will reveal that they aren’t ready to come along. So, even though you may end up losing some people on the way, you will gain quality ones.
However, for those who don’t make the cut, tag them with the BOD (benefit of doubt). Why? Because, as I wrote in On Not Burning Bridges, its wise to –
Never burn a bridge. Never, under any circumstance, break or burn a bridge with any person even if they act like jerks and you have to separate from them. We have all been jerks at some point in our lives. So give other people a break. Instead, let people be people.
And if you have to separate from people, it is wiser to be strategic in your separation, rather than spontaneous in your answer. It will keep you from being alienated and serve you well in the long run.
After all, you don’t know what the future holds. Plus, people can change and often do change. You did! What makes you think others can’t!?
You never know: people will surprise you. After all,
Life is not full of surprises, WE ARE!
One Love, One Spirit