Stop Trying to Fix what is Broken…

It’s difficult isn’t it?

Trying not to do something… especially once you’ve started doing it, whether physically or mentally. Many actions take place in the mind, more than in physical reality. It’s easier to stop doing the physical stuff, than the mental stuff. If the mental stuff is directing the physical… once you start doing something… it’s a ‘mare to stop!

And if your emotions are involved in your mental stuff… stuff is going to just keep happening and going and happening because it just can’t stop itself or you or others.

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“I took the other road, all right, but only because it was the easy road for me, the way I wanted to go. If I’ve encountered some unnecessary resistance that’s because most of the traffic is going the other way.”
― Edward Abbey

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I once read somewhere that the mind can’t process negatives.

My mind found this piece of information confusing for many reasons, but it was intrigued and perhaps gave the piece of random information more credit than it was due. It may have been bullshit, but… curiosity’s cogs had already started turning.

Basically if you’re using an affirmation which has a negative in it, all your mind hears is the part which is positive.

So if your affirmation (or other self-brainwashing words) is something along the lines of – Don’t eat chocolate – all your mind hears is – eat chocolate.

Apparently the colour red means go and the colour green means stop – I read that somewhere else… or was it in the same place?

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“There is science, logic, reason; there is thought verified by experience. And then there is California.”
― Edward Abbey

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Whatever… the source of things outside of us, we still have to deal with things and their sources within us.

Of course dealing with our own things isn’t that simple because… part of our things includes others and their things (and we don’t always know the source of their things, or which are our things and which are theirs, where our things begin and theirs end).

Take this thing…

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Chainsawed

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What is it?

Yes, it’s a chainsaw which has seen what comes after better days… but what is it?

Well, once upon a time it was something useful…

But then it evolved, and so did its uses… until its use became predominately the source of a fear.

That I was going to have a moment of lapse of focus, also known as distraction… and chop a limb off no matter how careful I was being.

So when it broke… as frustrating as it may have been, in the middle of doing practical things, it was also an almighty relief.

So what if I froze to death from having no wood to fuel my fire… at least I hadn’t bled to death!

Once it was broken… I no longer had to use it, and therefore no longer had the fear it inspired… or at least had to deal with that kind of thing.

Was it really that simple?

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“If people persist in trespassing upon the grizzlies’ territory, we must accept the fact that the grizzlies, from time to time, will harvest a few trespassers.”
― Edward Abbey

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My mother used to like to tell me (repeatedly) that she was terrified of the day that I would fall in love.

Her reasons for such a fear were selfish, but they were expressed in selfless ways so it gave the impression of being unselfish.

She liked to sound as though everything she did, felt and said was all about others… all about stopping others from getting broken… when actually it was all about her, all about her fixing others by breaking them, by telling them they were broken (even when they were not) and only she – the only unbroken one – could fix them.

But such a contract came at a very steep price.

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“An economic system which can only expand or expire must be false to all that is human.”
― Edward Abbey

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Before you think I’m being unfair towards her… she recently wished me happy birthday in the same sentence that she informed me of my father’s death. And… she didn’t see anything wrong at all with doing that. If I had called her out on it, she’d have played the victim of a misunderstanding on my part.

My bad…

Broken again…

When I did eventually fall in love… all my mother’s worst fears came to pass. My heart got as broken as she always told me it would… but not in the way she had said it would. I didn’t need her to pick up the pieces and play the saviour or any other role which she had mapped out for herself in her version of this story where she would become the centre of my world as she had always been… or tried to be.

My heart getting broken by love wasn’t a bad thing… it was a very good thing. Suddenly I could feel… everything that I had been forced not to feel while being encased in a ‘protective’ shell.

This broken heart was not broken in the usual sense of that term… what actually happened was that it was broken open by love, freeing the heart, freeing the mind, freeing the body…

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“I now find the most marvelous things in the everyday, the ordinary, the common, the simple and tangible.”
― Edward Abbey

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Sometimes when things get broken… we should not fix them, because they’re not the kind of broken which needs fixing.

Perhaps when we feel and think that we’re broken… rather than try to fix ourselves, we should try to understand what that breaking has freed…

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“Each thing in its way, when true to its own character, is equally beautiful.”
― Edward Abbey

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20 thoughts on “Stop Trying to Fix what is Broken…

  1. Thank you ~~ yes. I agree. The “breaking” transforms us into something new. And if it hadn’t been for the two narcissist/sociopathic relationships I was in, I would have never discovered my own strength. Some days are still really crappy. I still am trying to rebuild my life and find direction but I’m strong and now I know that. And I can use that strength to help other women who are going through the same things.

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    1. Thank you 🙂

      Crappy days are normal and natural – the natural world has them too. I find observing nature to be one of the most helpful and healing ways to approach our own nature, and to find the nurture we seek to help ourselves, and perhaps others too.

      We find our strength when we are tested by life’s vicissitudes, but just because we discover how strong we are, doesn’t mean that we always have to be strong. Vulnerability is a strength too.

      Let every part of you inspire you, and that will inspire others to be inspired by themselves.

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  2. Ursula when I read this I got goosepimples all over…it is profoundly wise and beautiful…and such an on target messagefor me at present
    To day I was thinking of a blog expressing how what seemed so wrong was and is actually perfectly right and then I read this…you are a gift to life and blogging ♡♥

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    1. Thank you 🙂

      Sometimes what seems wrong is just that… an optical illusion of something which may actually be right caused by all the varied lenses which influence perspective.

      Things get broken a lot in my home, not deliberately… although sometimes it is tempting to do that… and it always seems to release energy when that happens. So… what seems wrong may be a right in disguise.

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  3. A good insight drawn from that deep well of experience. And any of us who’ve grown up with people like that, or have been in other relationships with people like that — who break to appear to be needed to fix — can understand what you’ve shared. Thanks for the musing. Jamie

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    1. Thank you 🙂

      We seem to be most tuned into what is broken, in others, in ourselves… that is natural empathy at work. Some people work with this in very strange ways, we all know people like that, and we learn from them about ourselves, one way or another. Like Leonard Cohen, and many philosophers like him, said – the light gets in through the cracks.

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  4. This makes me feel so much better about all the broken things I haven’t fixed. Even if that’s not exactly the point of this terrific piece.

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    1. I love this post. 💜 One of the big biggest things I learned from being in a relationship with a narcissist is that sometimes, “you can’t go home again,” nor should you. I hated what I had to endure with that guy, but I am better in this broken state.

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      1. Thank you 🙂

        Narcissists in many ways are broken things pretending they’re in a pristine state, and due to that view everyone else has to appear broken for them to maintain their pristine status. My mother had a phobia about things getting broken (some of that can be excused due to her growing up during heavy world breakage – WWII – and subsequent rationing). If a glass or plate or whatever broke, she’d react as though it had caused a fatality. She had the same approach to mistakes.

        But at some point we all have to grow and sometimes that requires breakage – like an egg. Can’t stay in the egg forever. Nature is a great teacher about the freedom which comes from things breaking.

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        1. That’s so interesting because my mom was like that, also (and she was also a WW II vet – radar operator – who dodged a lot of bombs). Breaking something could really send her up, no matter how inconsequential the object. She always went into a rage.

          Yes, a very astute comment about nature and breakage. 🙂

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    2. Thank you 🙂

      When we read someone else’s words, it’s more about what their words mean to us than what they may mean to them. It’s an important part of sharing our stories. Our stories are a part of the stories of others, we’re all connected. It can be beautiful and healing, as well as other things.

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