For anyone who has issues with patience, this is a must read….it is so beautiful.
This was a call from January 19th, 2011. Neale answered a caller’s question on the monthly Spirituality in Action Community call.
Caller: I’ve already broken my new year’s resolution…I’m being very hard on myself and can’t snap out of it….I’ve even chewed myself out in front of a mirror….how do I get back on track….I resolved to be more patient with my children….I’m not doing so well with this.
Neale: First of all, I want you to see the gift that has occurred. Conversations with God has made it very clear. The minute you decide anything about yourself and how you want to be and experience life, everything unlike it will come into the room. Everything unlike it, will permeate the space and you will find yourself immersed in a field that is producing the exact opposite experience from the experience you are intending to create. That is the sure and first and certain sign that you have embarked on the right path, not meaning right and wrong, but right meaning the path that will get you where you want to go. There is no such thing as right and wrong, but if you are traveling west in the United States to use an example and you to get to the west coast, like California or the Washington state shoreline, if you are driving into the Pacific and you want to get to San Jose you probably wouldn’t want to turn north to get to Seattle. You want to turn south to get to San Jose. Not because going to Seattle is the wrong way from a moral point of view … In truth it doesn’t have anything to do with morals. It has to do with what works. What works ~ if you want to get to San Jose, turn south.
So what I’m saying here is the first thing you want to do is congratulate yourself, “While I’m on the right path…this is a sure and certain sign, it is the law of opposites playing its effect and demonstrating itself to me, just as Conversations with God said that it would.
Inevitably, in my life whenever I’ve made any resolution, whether it’s be more patient with my children, creating more abundance in my life or be kinder or less verbally sharp with adults around me and my staff ~ whatever it might be ~ better health, I’m going to eat better, I’m going to lose weight ~ whatever the resolution is that I make, and not just at New Year’s time, but throughout the year, the exact opposite inevitably shows up in my life in some form. And that is to create a larger and more meaningful context in which we can experience ourselves as who we really wish to be.
And there is an irony to how life does that. I want you to hear me carefully. Isn’t it ironic in your resolution to be more patient and tolerant and compassionate with your children, that you have become less patient, less tolerant and less compassionate with your children and yourself. As you are bawling yourself out, you are making yourself wrong ~ you are yelling at yourself with your “inside your head” voice, even talking to yourself in the mirror, and doing exactly with yourself what you no longer want to do with your children. That is you are being less patient and less compassionate with the child within.
I’m glad you asked this question so you can see that because when you make a resolution of any kind, and Steve Farrel [Worldwide Coordinating Director of Humanity's Team] would say, you must start with your inner work. That is, you cannot ignore yourself and hope to create a different result outside of yourself.
Now I know it started with loss of patience with your children, and now you are losing patience with yourself, and I understand that, but what I want you to see, what I want you to learn is that when you begin to have the ultimate compassion and patience with yourself, only then will you be able to truly have the compassion and patience you want to have with your children. So what life has contrived to do ~ and this is a beautiful design ~ it’s a magnificent design ~ life has caused you to look at how little patience and compassion you have with you by causing you to lose your patience with your children. Even though you promised yourself at the beginning of the year that you would try real hard not to lose your patience with your children, you lost your patience anyway. And you did it enough that you started making yourself wrong and talking to yourself in the mirror. The whole thing was set up so that you could have that confrontation. The whole thing was set up so you could see what you are doing to yourself.
Now, your first step in switching around the energy in this whole experience is to have enormous forgiveness, compassion and patience with and for yourself. When you look at yourself in the mirror tonight or tomorrow morning say “I love you.”
I deeply understand the extraordinary challenge of the human condition. I understand that you are trying to do your best and I understand in the moment of trying to do your best, you have actually shown up as your worst. Isn’t that interesting? And I understand how it could happen that way. You are talking to yourself in the mirror now: I want you to know something now, face in the mirror, that even when you fail, and fail badly, to keep your New Year’s resolution with your children. I’m going to be here with you to love you, to forgive you, to have compassion, and to have all the patience in the world with you. And I’m going to ask you something, face in the mirror, did you really think you were going to solve this in 14 or 16 days? Can you give yourself a few weeks at least? If not a couple of months or so to begin to see some real change in habitual reactions which have marked your experience heretofore?
And what I want to suggest to you my lovely friend, and thank you for asking the question, now this is Neale speaking to you, not you speaking to the mirror, I want to suggest to you my friend, it is the patience that you show yourself when you finally feel experientially what it is like to receive that kind of patience, to receive that kind of forgiveness, to receive that kind of compassion, from yourself, given to yourself by yourself, when you finally experience what it is like to be on the receiving end of that in the biggest way, then you will have found the key. And when you see your children doing things for which you have previously lost your patience, then you will see your own face in the mirror. Then you will say, “As I forgive myself, so too, do I forgive them.
There’s a wonderful line from the Catholic version of The Lord’s Prayer: and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us ~ including ourselves. And so my friend, I want you to ~ you should really be jumping for joy ~ Life has contrived to put you in a wonderful position, I mean you have lost your patience a few times with your children, even though you promised you wouldn’t do that anymore. How terrific! How ironically wonderful for providing yourself with the opportunity and gift, to give yourself, Self with a capital “S” to give yourself the gift, the gift you want to give to your children. For you cannot give to your children what you do not have, don’t you see ~ we cannot give to another what we do not have ourselves. Therefore, we give it to ourselves first. And then when your children do things that would ordinarily cause you to lose patience, you will see them across the room and your own face in the mirror will jump up right in front of you. And then you will have the kind of patience with your children and the kind of compassion for them that you have for yourself.
And then you will sit down with them and create a quiet space and the gentle moment and say to them, now parent to child, my dear and wonderful child, oh how I understand how it easy it is for you to behave the way you are behaving and to lose your own place of peace in the world ~ I totally get how you can do that because I have misbehaved too. I make the same mistake and now I have compassion and patience for you and let’s suggest another way. Let’s see if there is another way to get through this morning or this afternoon or this moment or this dinner table or this time together in the car.
You will show your children the same kind of compassion and patience that you show yourself. But you cannot show them any more than that, because what you do not give to yourself you cannot give to another. And so we say, “Thank you God, thank you God, for showing me that. It took me only two weeks to learn this. That was a New Year’s resolution? And we’re just barely past the second week of January and I’ve already learned that? Oh wow what a gift that was! That could have taken me a whole year to learn.”