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December 6, 2005

Internalizing Friends

We all internalize stuff, but we usually do it unconsciously. I've heard of concentration camp survivors terrorizing their families. They have internalized the camp. Inside, they abuse themselves again and again. How can someone abusing themselves be expected not to abuse others.

I wasn't in a concentration camp but I've got a lot of negative ideas about myself internalized: I'm not good enough, I can't do it, I'm not lovable, or I'm worthless. They play through my mind again and again, quietly sabotaging my peace.

An effective way to be free of these thoughts is to become aware of them, to accept them and love them and then they will leave me alone. Another method that I'm using is to internalize my friends. It's really about internalizing the positive ideas that they have about me. It's like an antidote to a poison.

This has been my practice: I remember an experience of someone loving me, validating me or appreciating me and in my mind I bring that person into my heart. If you're somatically challenged like me, you might not realize what I mean. I mean that I literally imagine picking that person up in my mind and whisking them into my chest.

That positive concept then becomes a part of me. I am recreating my internal reality and I am really benefitting from that person's love.

I am trying to do this as much as possible. Whenever someone says or does anything loving or positive towards me, I try to do this. I then find myself repeating this at odd moments throughout the day.

Since I started doing this, it seems like more and more of this love has been coming to me. It could be that I am creating a different external reality for myself but more likely it's just that I am able to notice what was already there. It feels like other people's love and appreciation of me is starting to flow into me, because I'm able to allow it in. I'm starting to realize that I deserve it. And I can see myself being so moved by people's appreciation. The way it moves me inside is so sweet.

This reminds me of Jesus aparently saying that whoever already has something will be given more of it, until they have lots of it.


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