Smarty Pants

My sister-friend Heidi and I were checking in with each other this morning. “How is your New Year so far?” we took turns asking, two days into 2012.

 

“I’m failing miserably,” I confessed. “I wrote my 10 self centered resolutions in It’s All About Me last week. Since then, unfortunately, I have been more efficient than ever. I am caring about everything to the point of mild paranoia and I am talking to fill all silences. It’s like when I say I am going on a diet and then I eat more than I usually do.”

 

Heidi agreed. “Yeah” she said, “I think we both have a defiant streak.” We laughed in recognition of our resistance. When I hung up the phone I felt my curiosity engaged.

 

It occurred to me that if I had read these 10 steps in the newest, Oprah approved, self help, spiritual journey, new age, 2012 revelation, daily meditation book I bought for $21.95, I would be practicing them! I would be paying close attention to each step, perhaps doing one a week to focus and anchor the wisdom in my body, mind and spirit. I would also be buying the book for all of my friends, telling them “You have to read this book, it is so simple and so powerful.” I would be a believer, at least until the end of January.

 

The problem is I don’t always value my own wisdom. “If you came up with it, it must not be that important,” my inadequate self reminds me. With her not so gentle reminding I diminish my wisdom and defy my best laid plans. I don’t listen to myself. I get in my own way, over and over and over again.

 

Making it All About Me really challenges my inadequate side. She gets scared. What happens to her if I start to feel empowered? She doesn’t want to be killed off. She has

served me well, especially as a child. When I felt full of myself, cocky, my mother asked, “Who do you think you are Miss Smarty Pants?” or “You are getting to big for your britches.” I don’t quite understand the clothing references, but in the face of those questions I shrunk. I quickly learned if I stayed small my mom liked me more. Voila, my inadequacy was born and kept me in line. Today, I need to find her a new job along with some big girl pants.

 

Maybe she could become my goodwill ambassador to myself. In that important role of promoting ideals and delivering goodwill she could answer the question, “Who do I think I am?”

 

“I am the girl with the Smarty Pants on!

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