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Localization manager/translator and coach/intercultural consultant living in Berlin (Germany), passionate about diversity management and intercultural communication, self-awareness and coaching, SFBT and NVC, languages, cultures, body art, dancing, self-empowerment, and, last but not least, vegan gluten-free keto food and good movies. How about you?
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Monday, October 19, 2015

The kind of party everyone would go for, or why one should just let go, and love

What would you choose, between a party and a tragedy?
Between being happy and being miserable?
Between feeling loved and feeling lonely

Some things in life are out of your control. You can make it a party or a tragedy. 
Nora Roberts

If your name is not William Shakespeare or Sophocles or you are not just one of the extremely few people that admit being OK with being miserable because, while being unhappy, at least you know what you have to discuss during your weekly psychoanalytic therapy session - you know, like in the famous Woody Allen quote -, I bet that you would probably go for the party. 

I was in analysis. I was suicidal. As a matter of fact, I would have killed myself, but I was in analysis with a strict Freudian and if you kill yourself they make you pay for the sessions you miss.
Woody Allen

So... Almost everybody would go for the party, right?
Everyone would go for the party, the music, the fun, the booze or the good food, right?

[Who would say no to a party like the ones in
Moulin Rouge! (2001) by Baz Luhrmann?!]

If you ask me... Yes, and no.

Most people would officially go for the party, and yet they are unconsciously set on getting a tremendous, bloody tragedy. And to actually enjoy being sad and defeated and crushed, to some degree. 

We like to think that we would love so much to be happy, if just things would be right, circumstances would be different and people would be nice to us. "If this would be like that, then I would do this and that, but now I can't, because..." And so on.
Do you know this mindset? Does that ring a bell for you?
I know it does for me for sure, because I have been there. Until lately, I have to admit, even if I was sure to be in for the party all the time. I was not. Ops.

[Everything is ready for a huge purple party.
A party called life. This time for real]

I kept telling myself that life is short and I want to be happy. That serendipity is awesome, going with the flow is my second nature and I enjoy every second of it. And I really meant it.
I thought that I had a very resilient attitude and that I was able to always look for the sunny side of a situation, to either enjoy a positive outcome or to make the most out of a negative one.
To accept uncertainty.
To learn a lesson, to improve my life anyway, to change for the best. Or to stay cool and keep fighting if needed.

In most aspects of my life, it was also true, above all for situations related to my career, my skills set, my health, my fitness habits, my dancing classes. 

And still, the scenario has been certainly different while dealing with people on a personal level and while experiencing unpleasant or just uncommon situations with friends, acquaintances, colleagues, lovers and loved ones.

While being emotionally involved with someone - it doesn't matter how much involved, exactly - and confronted with something I didn't like or I was not hoping for and I was not able to control, I went very often for the tragedy without even realizing it. 
I was so busy with holding on what I wanted the situation or the person to be or what I expected someone or something to be or what I considered the right thing to get, that I didn't even notice that the tragedy I was the main character of was created... by me.

Discovering it, at last, was very painful and very beautiful at the same time, because it set me free to change my attitude, my patterns, and my behavior and it gave me a precious chance to change what I want to be different in my life.

To be, even more deeply and sincerely, the person I want to be. And this not only when it's related to improving my language skills, or my way of dealing with celiac disease or to stay cool while experiencing professional stress or when I work out on a regular basis for my six pack or struggle with a new bachata song.
To be the person I want to be for myself and for the people around me, it doesn't matter if they are here for staying or if I will see them just briefly or even just for some minutes.

[Woody Allen's Melinda and Melinda (2004) 
and You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger (2010):
even if not Allen's best movies, are very interesting reflections
about how important attitude is in one's life]

We want people, situations, and circumstances to be different, and yet we have to be different instead. To stop playing games. To stop desiring consciously or unconsciously to gain power over people and situations. To stop trying to be in control. To stop worrying and having specific ideas in mind that have little to do with reality and a lot more to do with our comfort zone.

To change our way of dealing with what we don't like, to engage every day for changing it if possible and to accept it in a more healthy way if changing it is not doable and we have to keep dealing with it on a regular basis or also just once in a while. 
Or if a change is doable, but not as soon as we would like it to be and it is not a matter of a short period of time.

Like in the old songs, love is the answer.
Love in a broader sense, as acceptance, tolerance, openness, freedom, caring. Love as letting people, situations, and circumstances be. Where there is love there is no control. Where there is control there is no place for love.

[All you need is love, they say.
Cheesy, and yet true, if one understands love in a broader sense]

How about loving and accepting the circumstances of one's life for what they are, if we can't change them?
How about loving and accepting people in one's life for what they are, so they would do the same with us?
How about accepting oneself for what one is and so it will be easier to become stronger and happier?

While doing it, it is possible to concentrate on what really matters. And to save time, skills and energies for what should be actually changed and improved: our attitude, our perspective, our skill set, our behavior, our way of giving love to ourselves and to others. Without conditions, without restrictions, without setting rules for that. 

Oscar Wilde once said that "Everything in the world is about sex. Except sex. Sex is about power". It could be true. But I prefer this beautiful quote from the movie Her (2013) by Spike Jonze instead:

The heart is not like a box that gets filled up; it expands in size the more you love.

[Joaquin Phoenix, amazing as usual
as Theodore in Her]

Saving time and energy makes it easier to focus on the next party too: the one not perfect, usually messy, a little bit chaotic and yet wonderful called life. Like a very good party, life should not be all about power and control. And a party with too many rules is not a party anymore, after all.

This one, written with extra gratitude and acceptance, is dedicated to M.: someone that helped me to understand this, at last. Thanks for helping me change my life for good.
I will never forget you and what you did for me.

Tags: Positive attitude, Positive thinking, Love, Relationships, Quotes, Self-awareness