Growing up, I was a “good girl”. I did what I was told, and learned not to question authority. I was an excellent student, and I didn’t talk back. Now, as an adult, speaking up for myself is proving to be a challenge.
I’m starting to notice, working with Kali, that speaking out for myself is beginning to come a little easier. Not that it is easy, yet, just that I’m starting to do it once in a while. And it feels really good.
For example, I recently felt strongly about a decision that was being made at work. Higher ups wanted to do one thing, and I felt strongly that we would be better to do it sooner rather than later. I presented all of my reasons, and was backed by other staff members. Ultimately, higher ups still decided to do it their way. I still voiced my opinion.
And just this weekend, someone pulled up in front of my house, blocking part of my driveway as I was getting ready to leave for work. They were going to a garage sale at my neighbor’s house. In the past, I would have waited until they left (fuming all the while), or just maneuvered my vehicle around theirs (still fuming). This time, I rushed out, and asked if they would pull forward to clear my driveway. The man was extremely rude, and refused to do it, so I ended up driving around him anyway. I still went out of my comfort zone to ask.
It is interesting to note as I reflect on these situations, that I didn’t get my way in either case. It was quite uncomfortable for me to even speak up. In a way, it would seem to reinforce my early experiences to keep quiet and stuff how I feel.
And yet, quite to the contrary, it has strengthened my resolve to continue to speak my truth in a clear and compassionate way. As uncomfortable as it is to begin speaking out, it is becoming increasingly more uncomfortable to hold my tongue. My early conditioning may serve me well in keeping me from attacking others, while still valuing my own thoughts and feelings.
Kali is helping me to honor myself – first my body, and now my thoughts and feelings. I am so grateful.