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Self above narrative

One Friday evening, I found myself confronted by a choice: work or not? I couldn't decide and felt uneasy.

I decided to meditate before making a choice.

As I meditated, something became clear to me: I had two conflicting stories in my head about what I was about to do.

Story A:
Work and see myself as a workaholic, the type of person that actually works on Friday evenings. Isn't that troubling?

Story B:
Not work and feel like I hadn't done enough for the day. Feel unproductive, guilty and be a slacker.

As you can see, I was putting myself in a lose-lose situation.

Why do that?

Choices endorse stories, stories endorse identity

Play or work? Stay home on Friday or go out? Check Twitter or read a book?

They are all choices we can make. But the aren't just that.

Every action we take forms a moment in our personal narrative of our lives. And that narrative tells us what kind of person we are.

Because I did this, I'm this kind of person. Because I didn't do that, I'm not that kind of person.

That narrative, however, can restrict us and lead us into our own private dead ends and lose-lose situations.

Back to my dilemma, 15 min meditation allowed me dissociate my self from this inner narrative.

When I understood what I was doing, I decided not to endorse the negative sides of either story. One evening working doesn't make a workaholic, one evening not working does not make a slacker.

I did end up working, but with a feeling of calm. I simply wanted to do more work, and so I did. Simple as that.

What narrative might be playing out inside your head?

What effects does your inner narrative have on how you view yourself?