Finding time to decipher “time messages” you received as a child always rewards you, if you like revising old patterns.
But this “chronological makeover” might require more than a good memory. Did Mom and Dad’s actions match their words? Or did “What I say” and “What I do” contradict one another? It’s quite helpful to explore this, for one very compelling reason: Mixed messages speak loudest.
Let’s say that a family member told you one thing about time and then did something completely different. How did you feel then, and how do you feel now about it now? Conflicting messages that confused you as a child can easily lead to “disconnects” in later life.
And those disconnects may create painful, missed opportunities. Fortunately, you can untangle these time knots and realign your energies. Even better, you can take an important step forward today!
Try an exercise about double messages with double benefits:
1. Think of an instance where you struggle to match your time choices with your expressed values.
2. Now, think back to your childhood, when someone you looked up said one thing about time and did something that differed.
3. Quickly write down what was said and what was done.
4. How did you feel about this? Write that down, too.
5. Compare and contrast your current conflict with what you witnessed others doing when you were young.
6. What’s similar? What’s different? What patterns emerge? Patterns always tell tales.
7. Now that you’re listening to the actions beneath the words, consult your heart. How might stories from your parents’ lives carry clues about your current situation? What past incidents narrow your sense of possibilities?
8. Envision a path to more rewarding time choices! Make this as vivid as possible, so you can really experience your progress on this path. This visualization helps motivate you and alerts you to opportunities to move forward.
9. Finally, ask your intuition about how to proactively walk this path and align deeds with words.
Engaging in this exercise will enrich you in at least 2 ways.
- First, you gain a compassionate context for time choices you make that puzzle and frustrate you. That feels SO much better!
- Second, you are in a much better position to change a troubling time choice once you understand its roots.
© Copyright 2012 Paula Eder, Ph.D.