2017-06-15 / Columns

Checking your baggage

Ela Lindsay

Do you ever stick Post-it notes up all over the place or have stacks of paper bits around to remind you of things, and then the longer they sit there the less you notice them?

As a positively motivated and spiritually inclined human being, I have many little notes, special sayings and inspired words of wisdom peppered throughout my place.

For instance, I can’t cook something without this reminder from my stove spoon rest: “To thine own self be true.”

My kitchen has other positive messages, including a sign saying “Friends are the family you choose” and a lovely handwritten note from my mom that I had framed and sits on my microwave to remind me to “Have a great day,” with a drawn smiley face and some shiny happy-face stickers she must have brought with her from Canada when she came for a visit several years ago.

I even have an affirmation for my dog that says “Live Love Bark” in bold letters, plus there’s a giant “Dream” sign on the wall behind my TV.

You get the idea: I’m a bit of a sap in that I like many positive messages around me. Alas, like many other things, I often take them for granted because they’ve become part of the scenery.

Lately, however, one of my notes has been screaming at me over all the rest.

It says, “Speak your truth.”

I figure it’s a loud reminder for me to take another step along my own path of self-discovery and understanding of what motivates me, what I fear, what I want and what I still need to work on in my life.

One might think that by this age I should have already figured it all out and be well on my way to Blissful, USA.

Alas, once again I am reminded that I’m flawed, human and, drat it all, not perfect.

Sigh.

So in order to take the next scary step in my own evolution, I’m about to share my latest revelation.

Ready?

I sometimes have difficulty expressing myself to people, especially if I think it’ll hurt them.

It’s something I’ve been dealing with since I was a kid—or not dealing with, as the case may be. It seems I’d rather say nothing or skirt around an issue that’s uncomfortable for me to talk about.

So what does all this have to do with being single? Well, it’s a missing piece of my personal puzzle because I sometimes hold back on sharing my innermost thoughts with people I date or become close to in case they reject me (based on past experience), stop liking or loving me (based on experience) or simply decide not to be in my life anymore (based on way too much experience).

This has become part of my “baggage” that many singles talk about bringing into new relationships as they get older. We all have stuff that we’ve accumulated over a lifetime.

I believe it’s important to work out such issues as much as possible before dragging them into relationships. The less we bring, the lighter and more open to meeting new people we can be.

After all, wonderful relationships are difficult enough to find, let alone nurture and maintain for a lifetime. So, as another popular saying goes: “Check your baggage at the door” because the less we keep, the more positive our relationships can be.

I’ll end with another quote someone sent me recently that I think sums up this topic brilliantly: “It’s ever so much more satisfying to get into a blissful place and attract a blissful person and live blissfully hereafter than to be in a negative place and attract a negative partner and then try to get happy from that negative place.”

Ela Lindsay is a single writer in Ventura County. To catch up on her bimonthly columns, visit theacornonline.com. For comments or suggestions, email elindsay@theacorn.com.

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