In order to learn and grow, you must have the freedom to connect with what you want and to disconnect from what you don’t want.
In order to learn and grow, you must have the freedom to connect with what you want and to disconnect from what you don’t want. No one can give you that freedom. It’s your birthright as a human being. You don’t need anyone’s permission to decide which connections are best for you. It’s up to you to take the initiative to connect with what you want and to disconnect from what you don’t want. By consciously making connections that feel intuitively correct to you, you bring yourself into alignment with the principle of love.
When you understand that there’s no such thing as an external relationship and that all such connections exist solely in your mind, you’ll become aware that the true purpose of relationships is self- exploration. Whenever you communicate in any fashion, you are in truth exploring different aspects of yourself. When you feel a deep sense of communion with another person, you’re actually connecting deeply with an important part of yourself. By communing with others, you learn to love yourself more fully.
The irony is that when you’re feeling disconnected, connecting with people is the cure. If you spend more time with positive, upbeat, interesting people, it’s unlikely you’ll be feeling down in the first place. In truth, your disconnection from other people is a sign that you’ve disconnected from the best parts of yourself. You’re a worthy human being. When you hold back from connecting due to fear of rejection, you rob other people of the chance to get to know you. Many people would love the chance to connect with you. They want someone to understand them, someone who can remind them that they aren’t alone. When you connect with people, you’re giving them exactly what they want. Reaching out socially does entail some minor risk, but the long-term benefits are so enormous that the only way to fail is to refuse to try. In Chapters 3 and 6, you’ll learn to build your power and courage in order to overcome this common block.
When you want to enrich your life with new connections, it’s wise to seek out people with whom you’re compatible, notably in terms of character qualities, values, and attitude.
As you continue to grow, your compatibility preferences will surely shift. This is no one’s fault. Allow yourself to let go of any group, person, career, or activity that no longer resonates with you, and you’ll soon attract more compatible opportunities into your life.
The process of letting go can be very difficult, but it’s an essential part of personal growth. When you fail to release incompatibilities from your life, you settle for mere tolerance and prevent compatible new connections from forming. Moreover, you create an even bigger disconnect within yourself. Tolerance is not an act of love—it is resistance to love.
Something very powerful occurs when you fill your life with compatible connections. First, you’ll feel lovingly supported and encouraged to express yourself authentically. Second, you’ll find it easier to connect with people who’d otherwise be totally incompatible with you, since you know you have that stable base to return to.
Personal Development for Smart People: The Conscious Pursuit of Personal Growth by Steve Pavlina
“We all are learning, modifying, or destroying ideas all the time. Rapid destruction of your ideas when the time is right is one of the most valuable qualities you can acquire. You must force yourself to consider arguments on the other side.
— Charles T. Munger”
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