‘The greatest burden a child must bear is the unlived life of the parents.’ ~ Carl Jung
Are you someone who follows after your parents footsteps? Perhaps you hate one of the two due to a divorce. Maybe your hatred tipped a boiling point where you would say “I will never be a dad/mom just like you!!”. It could be that you despise them both, or love them ofcourse. Maybe you never knew one of them, or perhaps you’ve been adopted.
Despite your situation some of the stories operate without our knowledge, dictated by scripts handed to us by others when we were young. We can carry around our parents expectations or suffer their criticisms, whether good or bad.
Where they have unfulfilled wishes and regrets, these are commonly passed to us as a template for storytelling. Many of these templates make it hard for us to feel happy: ‘You must achieve impressive things to be happy/loved.’Or, ‘You must sacrifice your own happiness to make others feel better: that is the measure of your worth.’ Not only parents, but it’s also similar to our peers, classmates and teachers, on tv or the in newspaper.
Our cup has already been filled for us, without our knowledge. Our predecessors started the pouring, a consumption of stories that society brought further into us. Giving you pointers to what is right or wrong, good or bad etc.
‘There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.’ ~ Shakespeare
This in turn leaves us living a happy storytelling dream-state reality, where only a few would independently question: What is real? Who am I? Wonder desperately, question everything “is it true?,”
’empty your cup.’
Out There and In Here are two very different kingdoms, and other people are not accountable for how we feel. No one, however their behave, has the right or the direct means to affect your self-control or dignity. No one need annoy us so much that we in turn become a source of annoyance to others.
How would you have lived your life differently if you had never tried to please your parents? If you never tried to show your parents that you were worthy? If you never felt burdened by one of your parents critical eye?
Do at least one activity a day, for a couple of days, that you have been avoided or suppressed because of the influence of your parents, society or whatever. In this way practice being free of their subtle expectations, which may now reside within your own self-judgement. Practice being free in this way even if you still feel fearful, limited, unworthy, or burdened by those expectations.
‘What upsets people is not the things themselves but their judgments about these things.’ Epictetus, a Roman slave.