Our words are POWERFUL. Words have the power to create our reality and form a path in the direction of our dreams. Then there’s the power a statement holds above our heads making us accountable to what it is we are saying. Words are THAT powerful. But it isn’t only what we are saying that matters. Sometimes what we are not saying matters more.
Today in class I focused on the notion of ACCOUNTABILITY with our words. In the words of 13th century German Priest and Scholar, Martin Luther, “(We) are responsible for what (we) say, but also for what (we) do not say.” Choice is a function of awareness and once we are aware, we can choose our next thought, word, attitude and action. We can choose what it is we are saying. And, by saying IT we take on that responsibility. We’re accountable to the promises we make, the challenges we are taking on, or the goals we’re working toward. But, we’re also responsible for what we are not saying. We’re responsible for the thoughts we hold on to; by not acknowledging and releasing them on some level, they only end up on the same path as our dream-declarations. They are the roadblocks, challenges-the reasons we feel stuck and limited from having our IT. But, the great news is when we choose to take responsibility for our words, when we choose to say what IT is we are NOT saying, when we “out” IT, our path becomes clear, our vision grows stronger, we become FREE.
The question I posed in class today and I ask you to reflect on as you go through your week is:
What are you NOT saying? Why are you not saying it?
What don’t you want to be held accountable for?
For me, this is an important question to pose this week as the series we are doing, “One Day at a Time,” is about raising our level of awareness. It’s about choice. It’s about training our minds once day at a time. It’s about taking responsibility for what IT is we think and say and do and making sure our words, thoughts, attitudes and actions are in line with each other. In others words, integrity. And, when we act in integrity, we are accounting for our actions.
For me, this is an important question to answer this week. I talk so much about the power of our words. And I use my words-my intros-to illustrate this point. I use anecdotes to illustrate the theme we’re focusing on. I’ll use inspirational quotes as the backbone for setting our intentions. I’ll occasionally share my personal struggles, particularly with my eating disorder, to show that we can use our words to declare what IT is we want (in my case FREEDOM) and to show you that no matter what you are struggling with, you can struggle with PURPOSE.
This week I received a very emotionally charged email from a close friend. The contents of the email are not so important as the questions it raised for me. This email (serendipitously enough) was followed by seeing another good friend imitating my (bad) example. You know, the whole ‘do what I say, not what I do’ thing? Both of these events formed the backbone for this week’s focus: what am I not sharing? why am I not sharing it? what do I not want to be held accountable for?
The idea of accountability shot through me like a lightening bolt. I talk about my struggle with my eating disorder and like to quantify it in numbers: “Well, I’m 90% there” (why must everything still be in numbers?). And, by encapsulating it like that or even by saying “I’m almost there” I’m seeking a means to justify the progress I’ve made…not the work still needing to be done. I don’t mean to undermine my progress by any means. I have made amazing strides since five years ago. I don’t work out 5+ hours a day. I don’t count calories or restrict them or even categorize my food as “touchables” and “untouchables”; I don’t require myself to have frequent weigh-ins with consequences (more working out) for bad results (higher or same numbers). In fact, I have not weighed myself in over a year and a half. I say all that.
But what am I NOT saying? What I’m not saying is that I still struggle. I have months, weeks, sometimes days, sometimes moments throughout my day where I still struggle to harness my mind. I still have to fight thoughts of how I perceive myself and what it is I think I see in the mirror. What I’m not saying is when I have those moments and I don’t practice right thought, when I have those thoughts and give in instead of switching it, I find it hard to cope. What I’m not saying is the coping mechanisms I have in place are rooted in my eating disorder. What I’m not saying is because I lack coping mechanisms, I find myself occasionally reaching for my weight loss drink mixes, my “fix-it” solution. And once I acknowledged what it is I wasn’t saying I knew why I wasn’t saying IT: What kind of example or leader am I if I share this? (read: SHAME) How can I possibly be free if I keep engaging in these thoughts and behaviors from time to time? (read: GUILT) What is everyone going to think if I dare speak this? (read: FEAR) How can I even hope to inspire people to be the change they wish to be if I can’t even do that for myself? (read: WORRY)
Shame, Guilt, Fear, Worry…they’re the “reasons” we use as to why we don’t say what IT is we need to. They’re also the reasons we’re stuck on our path. It’s what’s holding us back from the freedom or the strength or the abundance we seek. But if we truly desire to live a life we love in a body we love we must muster the courage to acknowledge and release those hidden truths. We must take accountability for those words, knowing that when we say what IT is we are NOT saying, we make ourselves a promise to account for our actions and to make sure our actions are aligned with where IT is we want to be.
So, my lovely Warriors, I invite you to ask yourself: What is IT you are NOT saying? Why aren’t you saying IT? What don’t you want to be held accountable for? I invite you to acknowledge those hidden truths. I invite you to release what no longer is serving you. I invite you to join me in becoming agents of change-taking responsibility for what it is we say, but also for what it is we do not say.
May you find the courage that always been deep within to bring out the inner light you so seek.