This is the first in a series: Ex-Mormons - Creating Better Relationships with Still Active Family and Others
We’re going to start this series with a foundational concept. That is choice!
One of the unique things that makes us as human, is that we have the conscious power of choice. When you were a Mormon, you gave up much of your choice-making ability to the Church. For many, many things in your life, you were told what to do, how to do it and when to do so.
But at some point you made a huge, courageous and likely scary choice to leave the Church! And you reclaimed your own power and ability to choose what to think and believe, what to say and do, and how to live your life.
Yet the question for you today is this. In the context of the relationships you have with your active Mormon family and acquaintances “How much of your ability to consciously choose your thoughts, words and actions do you actually use?”
If you’re like most people you likely often let habits, hurts, stuffed emotion, prejudices or other old patterns determine your thoughts, behaviors and feelings about the relationships in your life.
In order to make useful conscious choices that help you fulfill your desires, it really helps to know what your desires are – what it is that you want! So, in these relationships, what DO you want?
If you don’t like how the relationships currently occur, do you have a positive vision for how you’d like them to be instead?
- Ideally, how do you want your relationships to be?
- Ideally, how do you want to be able to feel about the people in your life?
- Ideally, what kinds of interactions would you most like to have?
Describe them in terms of qualities. For example some positive relationship qualities might be:
- Open communication
The list of qualities can go on and on…
Remember you do have the power of choice over your thoughts, words and actions, and you can choose to use it!
Once you have an ideal vision or understanding of what you really want out of your relationships, you have something that you can use as a reference point.
When you change the way that you relate with them, the way they interact with you will likely shift too.
It’s easy to just complain about the way things are with your family, but it’s much more empowering to actually step up and take responsibility for making the circumstances of your life more satisfying.
In the next few blogs/videos, I’ll go into some specific kinds of choices you can make to immediately improve how you feel in relation to your active Mormon family and others.
Until then, I strongly encourage you to take a few minutes and think about how you’d ideally like your relationships to be. As you do it, let go of all of the negative thoughts, judgments and ideas that say “they’ll never change” or “that won’t happen” and just let your imagination run free.
Then make a list of qualities you’d like to experience in those relationships. Then you’ll have a reference point for making different kinds of choices.
It’s all about your power of choice.
Okay, watch for another in this series soon, and until then, choose your power!