It started with a conversation where I said something that I thought upset the person I was talking with. And then I felt discomfort and, God forbid I sit in my discomfort and learn from it, I had to fix that and say something more to diffuse the reaction I thought I saw and make amends.
And, of course, the reaction that I thought I saw that I felt compelled to make amends for, that reaction didn’t exist. Except in my mind. Which I then projected outside of me and onto them.
And so I reached out. Hey, I am sorry I projected onto you. I am doing that a lot lately. Please feel free to call me out if I do it again. With a silly emoji smiley face at the end so I didn’t come across as too heavy and cumbersome.
This habit, of projecting out, it kind of lives in the same bucket as the perseverating as preparation that I reflected on last week, and the stories that I lay on others about who I think they are that I mentioned a few weeks before (do ya think there’s a theme here in my current soul journey lessons?)
But my projecting, while it kind of lives in this bucket, it is really a beast all its own. And here’s the thing about this. While these other two, in my head and creating stories patterns, are patterns of behavior I am aware of despite the fact that I sometimes/often can’t stop myself from doing them. This projecting, of my emotions and reactions and feelings onto others, this I don’t know I am doing till after.
And the after often means I don’t know that I did this until I talk about it with the person I did this with. When I reach out to make it all ok, because my discomfort is such that I have to reach out to make it all ok, and you say, um, nope, I wasn’t feeling that. That was all you. That’s when I realize I did this. Again.
I get that, my friend said. And then he said, it’s like looking in a mirror.
And there it is.
I know that we are mirrors for each other in so many really lovely ways. And I see this clearly. When I am triggered, and because I have grown to be grounded enough into self-responsibility around my triggers, I can (eventually) say thank you for showing up in just the right way for me to do my work. You are a mirror for me here.
And when those I love shine a light on my beauty and my gifts at those times when I can’t see myself clearly. You are a mirror here, too.
What I did not realize, until this conversation that I just had, is that you are my mirror in this instance, also.
And here is why I couldn’t see this clearly until now.
Because here, I don’t realize that I am seeing myself reflecting back, because I look like you. So, unlike my triggers and my gifts, where I know it is me, this…this looks like you. My defense mechanisms make this you that I see shining back at me. I see you. And so, of course these emotions that I project out onto you land squarely on you and feel, to me, like they are yours.
So now, what to do with this deep dive down into this projection dilemma.
The first piece of this puzzle of projection is a deeper self-awareness of what is actually going on. My mind is so quick to take my feelings that are uncomfortable and create a story and place that shit right outside of me for someone else to hold. My mind, she does this in an instant. Quicker than an instant, a nano instant.
Along with this too quick mind, I am an empath and a psychic at times which throws a wrench into the process because in these, laying my emotions on others, there are times when I cannot differentiate my gifts from my projections. When I am picking up a feeling that is then settling into me and when I am feeling a feeling that I am laying out on you. When I am receiving information from another and when the thoughts in my mind are mine first.
I need to slow myself down. Sit in the discomfort (there this is again) for longer to reflect more deeply on where I am at. Am I looking through a different filter than I think I am? Am I coming from a place of lacking or a place of disconnect within? Or am I truly grounded in my best and higher self, with gifts a flowin’ and lots of love?
And then once I know where I’m at, I can ask you where you’re at, too.
Seek first to understand and then be understood (Stephen Covey). I use this all the time in my mediations and my coaching with others and forget to use it with myself. (we teach what we need to learn, don’t we)
When I am in this place of not knowing and think am I projecting onto you? but I’m not sure, I just need to ask you. Ah, the simplicity in that.
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