Monday, January 16, 2012

Validation – It’s A Personal Thing

Our lives are our own. We work at educating ourselves, building and nurturing relationships, fitness of body, and peace of heart and mind. We have jobs both inside and outside the home. The level of fullness of life or hard work is entirely up to us as individuals. What drives us? What determines the amount of time and brain space we give one option over the other?

I believe that validation means a lot. I don’t necessarily mean a, “Hey, way to go!” from other people. I’m talking about that sense of satisfaction and well-being that comes from within. We do things for ourselves or other people to get that feeling of a job well done, no matter how big or small. The little twinkle that might appear in our eye, that small smile on our face, that feeling of overcoming a particular episode or bad incident relatively unscathed, are examples of a little “feel good” moment we are entitled to. We give these moments as a gift to ourselves, most of the time we don’t even know it.
It is a special thing when others recognize our talents or accomplishments. When your happiness or sadness is acknowledged and supported. Most of us don’t look for this from the people around us, but when it happens it’s generally unanticipated and greatly appreciated. We enjoy, whether secretly or not, that feeling of validation. We like to know that our efforts or actions mean something to somebody, sometimes.
On the opposite end, if our feelings are hurt for one reason or another, a simple gesture of kindness is extremely healing. An offer of real sympathy or sincerity is huge. I try not to consciously hurt the feelings of those in my life, but sometimes it happens. I am working harder to recognize when it does and what I can do about it. A genuine apology or acceptance of a mistake can work wonders for you and for the person who has been hurt. Time does heal wounds, not all of them, but some of them. Reconnecting after a passage of time can help to forgive. I’m not really sure that it’s possible to ever forget.
We are self-soothers; we get hurt by some who have no idea or don’t care. We need to get over those instances ourselves and it’s a learning process. In reality, no one has control over your thoughts and feelings except you. No one can “make” you feel or do anything you don’t want to; choices are up to each of us.
The level of validation that we require is as unique and individual as each of us. We appreciate knowing that we aren’t a second thought that runs across the minds of those we care about. Remember to acknowledge or recognize the actions and accomplishments of those that we welcome into our lives. It will offer a sense of peace of mind and heart to you both…with love…

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