Claiming Our Past

“If we don’t claim our past it will claim our future. It is not possible to know where we are going, if we can’t admit the places we have been.”

I have seen countless situations where people deny their past. They deny what they have done, or what has been done to them. They deny their experiences. Their fear of admitting mistakes or failures enables them  to continue in their negative cycle. Simply put, it cripples them and they can not grow as a person. Instead they keep making the same mistakes, again and again.

By denying our past experiences we set ourselves up to fail.  If we can’t admit where we have been or screwed up in life, how could we even begin to correct it? By hiding it or denying the experiences we are merely doing a patch job. As we know, patches only hold so long.

By laying it all out there and owning every experience: nobody has anything over us. We can walk in peace, with no secrets. We live in light  instead of darkness.

There is nobody worth keeping secrets. We are worth more than that. By owning our past and our experiences we begin to walk in truth. We can then break the negative cycles and patterns; and begin to experience peace and happiness.

We have to own our experiences, and learn from them. It is the only way to level up in the game of life. If we can’t admit them, how can we ever truly recognize what needs changed?  

© Angela Bininger and The Empowerer, 2009-2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this websites author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

Truth or Dare – The Game of Chances


Truth or Dare is a game we play daily, and a game of choice. We can either speak the truth, or dare to bear the consequences.

The consequences of taking the Dare or telling the lie could be; losing a relationship, a job, a child’s heart, losing others respect or whatever else may apply. No matter what the case may be, we are always better off choosing the truth. It is the safest way to play.

The consequences of truth are well-known in advance. So, the person may not speak to you for a while. They may avoid you or the issue at hand. They may even try to turn it around or blame you or others. However, over time they will most likely respect you for telling them the truth.

Telling the truth will cause some sort of friction but only because the truth does hurt. What we must all remember is; the truth never hurts as much as not being worth the truth at all. We should be honest in all things, because, nobody is really worth lying to. Why sacrifice ourselves?

Each dare that we take has a hidden price-tag. The price will not be visible until we get to the register. Usually, if there is no price-tag visible it is because we can’t really afford it.

Due to the expense, each dare will eventually lead to emotional bankruptcy. If we invest in lies then we will be guaranteed to lose in this life long game of Truth or Dare.  Why play to lose?

There is only one guaranteed way to win this game of Truth or Dare, and that is by picking the truth every time. Although the dares may be ones way of filing for bankruptcy, the truth is more like purchasing stock. There is no better investment in life, than having emotional freedom. The truth is not only free to invest in, but it sets us free too.

The truth is what keeps us upright and walking in light; whereas taking the dares will force us to walk in darkness. What do you get when you mix darkness and light, or black and white? Gray skies, and cloudy days!  Keep those who rebuke the truth, far away.

© Angela Bininger and The Empowerers, 2009-2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this websites author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

ABC’s of Life Series — Day 7 Letter G : Give Others Grace To Grow

ABC’s of Life

Day 7 Letter G

Give Others Some Grace To Grow

We believe we would react to situations in particular ways or that we would behave differently than someone else until we are placed in the other person’s shoes. Once we put those shoes on that were once worn by someone else; we not only have new shoes, but a new pair of new glasses too.

Those who accept us where we are despite any decisions we are making at the time; are giving us grace to grow. These are those people who no matter where we are or what we do in our lives; they love us anyway. They do not judge us, because they understand. They listen, they advise, and they care.

The concept of allowing one grace to grow is a concept that many should grasp. Once grasped, one will find themselves no longer in a position that they feel “above” someone for making better life decisions. They will not utter phrases such as: “I can’t believe they ___” “I would never”, “He/She shouldn’t ____” You won’t believe what ____ did now” etc.

I have observed that when I utter phrases like those mentioned above; I am quickly served a piece of humble pie. When I can’t understand people, their lifestyle, behavior, and their decisions I am often given a situation shortly after; where I can. It may not be an identical situation, but it is a situation that allows me to comprehend where they were at that time, and what they were thinking. Or better yet, a situation where I can relate to their emotions.

I have written often about the fact that we are all given the same lessons throughout our lives and that the lesson plans slightly differ. One may experience grief through the lost of a parent, another through the loss of a child. One may experience adultery through their parents, or through a marriage of their own. Nonetheless, the emotional processes are the same.

No matter the format of the lesson, the lessons eventually produce the same results. We will all face temptations, and struggles. We will have to find a place and time at which we will have to forgive ourselves and each other.

We will all feel: neglect, abandonment, taken for granted, mistreated, disliked, unloved, and many other emotions at some point in our lives. The lessons differ, but the emotions are the same.

Grace is essential to provide for others; because we all need it to grow. Those who accept us despite our choices have allowed us grace to grow. Those who watch us make a mistake but love us anyway, are one of a kind. 

For Today: Find someone in your  life that has a situation that you can’t or couldn’t at one point  understand. Analyze what emotions that person may have been feeling at that time, and compare it to a situation in your life where you experienced the same emotions. 

 

© Angela Bininger and The Empowerers, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this websites author and/or owner is strictly prohibited

ABC’s of Life Series — Day 3 Letter C ; Cherish Every Breath You Take

ABC’s of Life Series

From A – Z

Day 3, Letter C

 

Cherish Every Breath You Take

“Life can end or be forever changed in a millisecond. It is important that we live it to the fullest and not take it for granted. We must find our purpose, and fulfill it.”

I learned at an early age the stages of grief by the loss of loved ones. By the age of 20, I had been to more funerals than years I had been alive. The trend continued well into my thirties. From friends, to co-workers, family members, and classmates it didn’t take long to realize; the shortness of life. One minute we are here, and the next we are gone forever.

 

Signs that a person is cherishing every breath:

– They treat others as though it was the last time they will see them, every time that they see them.

– When they are in the wrong, they apologize.

– They find themselves thankful for all things, both good and bad.

– They dream big and follow through.

– They live the best life they know how to live.

– They begin to build new bridges once they cross them instead of burning bridges that they may need to cross again someday.

– They focus on the big picture, and try hard not to get caught up in the minuet details.

– They make sure they have left no stones unturned.

– They accept the past and build towards the future.

– They live as best they can to have no regrets.

– When they are present, people notice.

– They give life all they have.

What matters the most in the end is that our spirits are free enough from any baggage, to enter into the after-life. Otherwise, we are just another episode of ghost hunters. Who wants to be another lost and broken spirit wandering the earth after death; due to unresolved business? Surely, not me.

As for me personally, I want to make peace with people while I am here and live the best possible life that I can. It is the only way to rest in peace, when our time here has expired.

Day 4 Letter D – Dreaming Is A Must

© Angela Bininger and The Empowerers, 2009-2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this websites author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

Shared Parenting With A Controlling Parent

The following question has been asked by a reader:

What is shared parenting like when one parent is already controlling?

What most people do not realize; is that when they go to leave a controlling person  the control does not  stop there. Especially in regards to a divorce with minor children. Often the children are used as pawns. They are bribed, manipulated, and in some cases completely brainwashed.

In today’s court systems; shared parenting seems to be the most common agreement reached in regards to custody. In some cases, it should be named shared chaos. I don’t find these agreements to be appropriate in cases where there have been control issues. It is only setting up the stage for a show that the children will never forget. “If the two parents couldn’t agree and cooperate married, odds are they never will. There will always be hiccups.”

The controlling person may not show up when they say to pick up or return the children. He/She may not return their child’s calls. And often times, he/she uses mind games with the children to get his/her digs in on you. It is a sick game that they play, and often feels to those being controlled as though they are imprisoned. They got away from the environment, and away from the person. Yet still today, that person manages to control them with the children they share.

Examples of control issues post decree:

You have planned a day with the children. The other parent is fully aware. He/she decides you can’t have the kids that day at the last-minute. Now he/she is in control again.

He/she knows that you have a busy day. It is his/her day with the children. Suddenly you get a call from your child/children asking if you can keep them on the other parents parenting time. Of course, you say yes. But then find yourself wondering how you will ever get everything done now, who will babysit, etc. The controlling person has just caused you to get worked up, and he/she wins!

He/She tells the children things such as : “NO, you can’t go see your mom/dad it is MY week!” Or better yet,” NO, you can’t call your mom/dad!” I have read in countless books that this is the absolute worst thing for any parent to do. Interfering with their relationship with the other parent will cause deep seeded issues. They need to figure out who is who, themselves. Nine times out of ten the child as an adult will resent the parent that interfered.

When a person has issues with control and their partner walks away; they begin to lose control themselves. The children this now divorced couple share are the controlling person’s only way left to control their former partner. Whether it be mind games with the kids  or you; the control does not typically stop just by filing for a divorce and divorcing.

In time the intensity of the control may cease but time is the key factor.  It is usually when the children are grown and have finally find their voice to speak up for themselves. This typically does not bring favorable results for the parent with control issues. SO meanwhile, just bite your tongue whenever necessary and bide your time.

Until a controlling person discovers who they are and solve the issues that turned them into a controlling person in the first place; things will be as they have always been. Stressful and overbearing.

© Angela Bininger and The Empowerers, 2009-2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this websites author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

So What Is There To Get? Some People Stay Friends After A Divorce

I guess you could say this blog has been a long time coming. It probably hadn’t written itself till now because, well, I just wasn’t ready. This blog is dedicated to all of you who have ever uttered this phrase:  “I just don’t get it”

Humans in general often struggle to accept in their lives  that which they do not, cannot, or simply will not, understand. They will then turn the thought, idea, whatever it is, over and , and then push it back  on to the original source and give it a label. Often, it’s an incorrect label. It’s one of mankind’s biggest disgraces. What we don’t understand, we criticize, because it’s the only way we can make it fit into our pretty little box.

We like to call ourselves open-minded, but in reality, very few of us really are. I myself have even fallen into this trap of labeling something as “Odd” or “Weird” that I simply could not grasp.

We will use our own upbringing, our supposed morals, or society in general, as a way to validate that label. And in doing so, we create an even bigger mess of things.

In my case, it happens to be my relationship with my ex-husband. This statement could apply to numerous other things in life, but for the purpose of this blog, we will stick with the ex-husband.

Society and history, more often than not, has taught us that there is no plausible way that two people who once loved each other enough to get married, have children, go through life together, could ever decide to STOP doing that, and still remain cordial.

As a matter of fact, society seems more than pleased with itself when the two individuals battle it out for the whole world to see. Deny it if you must, but people love  drama.

If they don’t immediately see it, they have to then create it. For some reason, other people’s drama often makes us feel better about OUR lot in life, so we kind of need it in many ways.

In my case my ex-husband and I are not only cordial, we are actually still friends. What? That simply cannot BE!!! (Insert collective cyber gasp here!!!!)

Yes. I am afraid it’s true. We are best friends technically, and I still talk to him about 3-4 days per week. Now add to your already overwhelmed brain that my current boyfriend of three years is also  friends with my ex-husband.We hang out frequently together.

I will just give you a minute to process that…

Okay, done?

Here’s the deal. My ex and I were always friends. We built our marriage on that friendship and for the most part we had 13 GOOD years. Our marriage was based on respect and friendship. There was love, sex and all that other good stuff. We also had a slew of great moments and a only handful of bad moments. We couldn’t, despite our friendship and outside counseling navigate those bad moments; so three years ago we divorced.

Now everyone has weighed in on that over the years and that’s fine.

I have always held to the belief that no one, no matter how much you think  you know about another person, ever truly knows another person completely. The same goes for couples or any relationship in general. You can view pieces of it. Snap shots if you will. And sure, you can probably accurately judge what is and what is not a great relationship. But really, at the end of the day, what goes on between two people, behind the walls of their home, is really only between those two people. The real truth lies between those two parties.

It was never easy. Divorce rarely is. Make no mistake. We weren’t dancing around in party hats under a confetti shower, but it was the decision that was made at that time.

But here’s the thing…Divorcing someone does not erase the love in the heart, the memories, or the life you built together.  I never stopped loving him as the person he was. Intelligent. Funny. Easy to talk to. He was a good husband. He was and is a great guy. He simply was no longer my guy. And people don’t “get” that. And you know what? that is okay.

None of us here on earth will ever understand, or “Get” everything that goes on in the world.

In any break up, people want a bad guy. They need to place their anger and frustration on one of the parties. And so I suppose in this one, I got the brunt of it, since I was the final decision maker. And I have taken more than my fair share of the anger and hurt from our friends and family for sure but the reality is, sometimes there is no bad guy.

Sometimes what was; no matter how good, simply ceases to be. Our job, in any circumstance whether it be a marriage, a friendship, or even a career, is to recognize that it has passed its due date, and then go about making the changes that need to occur so that everyone gets to live their best life. No matter how hard or scary those changes can be.

We can never let fear of the unknown prevent us from action.

Sometimes there is nothing to get. Sometimes a situation just IS. We can analyze it to exhaustion if we want, but at some point you have to just say it is.

There is nothing more to get. This is a decision we made. All three of us. Adults, with previous relationships under our belt. And it is working; or us.

Our way may not be your way. And that’s okay. I don’t expect or really even need you to do it our way. But for me, there was no other way. Our relationship changed. It didn’t end. And at the end of the day, all three of us are better for it.

Our unique situation and friendship has made all of us better people.

You want to see what you are really made of? Spend a few hours in a room with your ex-husband. Guess what?? All those things that drove you nuts before, while you were married… Well,  they’re still there and guess what? Now you can’t say squat about it. You turned in your “Free Nagging” pass when you signed on the dotted line. Hah!

Learning to keep my mouth shut has been the greatest gift this friendship has given me. In addition to that I now have TWO great men in my life. One who loved me once. One who loves me now. We have risen above the criticism, the jealousies, and the naysayers. Because of that  we have better, more enriched, and more well-rounded lives.

It is my humble belief that if more people did what we are trying to do the world would be a much more peaceful place. Right?

We were married. We were divorced. We have remained friends. Because we were always friends. There is nothing else to get. When you are comfortable with yourself, when you like yourself and the people in your life, then it really becomes a simple choice.

We  can only analyze something for so long before we must accept that it just is. Life is too short to waste energy trying to sort it all out. It’s too short to live your life full of doubts. Regrets. And full of hate and anger.

We only get one shot at this thing called life. Why not walk the path surrounded by a great group of eclectic people? Why not go crazy and do the unexpected? Why not look society in the face and say screw you, it can be done, it is being done, and I will show you how.

Go out and live your best life friends. And don’t let anyone else define how that life should be. It’s your picture. Color it as you see fit!

Be Careful Who You Choose

We must be careful who we choose  as friends,  partners, companions or spouses.   

If they lie to others in front of you, they will lie to you too.

If they talk about others in front of you, they will talk about you too.

If they steal in front of you, they will steal from you too.

If they disrespect others in front of you, they will disrespect you too.

If they hide who they are from others, they will hide from you too.

If they cheat on someone to be with you, they will cheat on you too.

If they blame others for their problems, someday they will blame you.

Watch their actions and hear their words. Then decide what kind of company you would like to keep. What we watch them do to others, is often what they will someday do to us. How they speak of others is how they do or will eventually speak of us. It has proven to be true in many situations.  

If they aren’t treating others the way you would want to be treated, it may be a flag. Perhaps they are putting up a front for you? It may be time to question a few things.

© Angela Bininger and The Empowerers, 2009-2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this websites author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Angela Bininger and The Empowerers with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.