Held Hostage

So often, friend, we are our own biggest enemy.

We hold ourselves hostage in so many areas of our lives.

Locking ourselves away in mental prisons.

Prisons erected within our own minds, carefully built stone by stone from the wreckage of failures of our past, the heavy stones of overwhelming anxiety that comes from things we cannot change, and mortar of debilitation caused by the unknown.

The past can have a powerful hold.

Poor choices, disappointments, failures. These things can take root in our mind and spread like a disease causing suffocating paralysis.

We become stuck. Rooted in the whirlwind of self hatred and doubt that often accompanies the disabling disappointment of realizing we are not who we said we were.

We are not who we thought we were.

As long as you allow the past to have hold on you, you will be a prisoner of that past.

Held hostage in our own thoughts.

Terrorized by our own self hatred.

I know what this feels like, as I’ve drank this cool aid, punishing myself and trapped by a past that I refused to let go.

Beating myself up over decisions made that I felt I should have known better than.

A prisoner.

We can also be held hostage by things we cannot change.

Perhaps we come from a background and history of poverty, and we let this dictate to us what we can do and be. Thinking that because this is where we came from, this is what we are meant for.

Or, maybe there has been abuse, sexual assault, or victimization in some fashion. This, again, is not something we can change and these are the types of experiences that will always be with us.

We can be held prisoner, enveloped in despair and hopelessness, shrouded in despair.

Crippled by people, events, and situations that we are powerless to change, unable to undo, rectify, or ‘fix’.

Situations that just, for lack of a better word, are.

So maybe we go round and round in our heads, thinking all of the what-ifs.

Dismantling and reassembling what could have been.

This I also know.

I know what it feels like to blame myself for a circumstance that I was powerless within, and to let that guilt worm its way into my thoughts, ruminating on a situation that was not within my power to change.

A prisoner.

Unknown situations can also be debilitating.

For this reason, many of us refuse to change. Trapped in our current situations merely because they are known and familiar.

Comfortable only because of familiarity.

Our mind becoming a battlefield of pondering and imagining as we try to envision the outcome, the next step, the finish line.

Refusing to act because of sheer uncertainty and our inability to measure and calculate the final result.

What will happen if I am vulnerable and reveal my heart to someone?

How will my boss react if I ask for a raise, a promotion, a new assignment?

What if I strike out on my own in a business venture?

How will people respond if I share my words? My voice? My thoughts?

Round and round we go, questioning and anticipating the what-ifs, yet stuck in inaction because we’re too afraid of rejection, disappointment, failure, and the unknown outcome.

Mired to our chests, deep in the known.

Trapped and stuck.

This place I know well, friend.

So often have I bit my tongue, held back my voice, restricted my heart, and limited vulnerability for fear of the unknown quotient.

My inability to know, for sure, how I would be received or understood.

A prisoner.

Release it all, friend.

Learn the lessons the past offers you, and move forward.

Step into the power that only failure can give you.

Accept that there will always be situations that you are powerless to change.

Step into the knowledge that comes from the places you have been, the things you have seen, the people you have known.

Open yourself to what the unknown can give to you, and the surprises waiting there.

Step into vulnerability and take risks that can’t be calculated or measured.

Release yourself from the prison you’ve erected.

Always,

Your Trusted Friend ❤

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