It’s never too late to turn on the light. Your ability to break an unhealthy habit or turn off an old tape doesn’t depend on how long it has been running; a shift in perspective doesn’t depend on how long you’ve held on to the old view.
We’ve all had those quiet moments of uncomfortable self-reflection, when we remember that stupid or thoughtless thing we said or did. Or, maybe we think of an unhealthy habit we have—that thing we run to when we want to “numb out”. And sometimes these reflections can really destabilize us and leave us feeling as if we are defined solely by them.
We are not the sum total of our mistakes or unhealthy habits! Yes, there are hurtful things we have done and there are unhealthy habits we’d like to work on, but the path to freedom starts, as Sharon Salzberg so clearly states, with turning on the light.
When we turn on the light we see more of ourselves than this one particular trait or event we are focusing on. We see the abundance of goodness and kindness in ourselves. We shine light on the shaming voices and forces that harm us and instead fill ourselves with positive and healthy voices. This isn’t about delusion or ignoring or failing to take responsibility. Rather, it’s about working through the real-life challenges we face every day with a mindset of honesty, courage, compassion, and self-love.
It just takes one moment to turn on the light…