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Walk A Mile In Your Shoes

By Janet Zimborski

There is an old saying, “Don’t judge a person until you have walked a mile in their shoes.” It implies that if you were to metaphorically walk in someone else’s shoes, you would understand what they were going through. Your feelings of judgment would be replaced with empathy. This is a very good discipline to follow, as it allows others to stop judging themselves also. Walk a mile in your shoes with empathy (with care and concern) for yourself as you experience your life; you will soon cultivate and demonstrate self-love, acceptance, confidence, trust, and personal freedom.

For the past three years I have felt a desire to move from my house. If you were to ask me why, I wouldn’t have a great answer. I like my house, my yard, my neighbors, and my life, but I have grown internally and have a need to explore my options. To say I have grown internally would be another way to say I have a different focus on life. Things that were important to me are no longer holding my attention, and yet different things have become more important. Well, apparently, that is not a “good” reason. I guess from the feedback I am getting, as I put my house up for sale, that you have to have a “good” reason otherwise it is not a “good” idea. So it was April 15 that the house went up for sale. I cleaned and organized for days. Wow what a great feeling! If this was the only thing that came out of this, I felt so energized. Then, on the last day of preparation, a friend came over and with intent we both put the finishing touches on the house to bid it farewell. It was now ready for the next owners. What an accomplishment!

The sign went up and drew more attention than usual. My house is on a highly traveled street, so it was viewed often. Within hours I had incoming calls to show the house. Now, if you have never gone through this process, know that the clutter in the house must be picked up and you cannot leave a scared little Chihuahua behind. All must leave. Every day for the next five days my husband, dog, and myself (except one day that I needed a break) would pack up a few essentials and leave the house for sometimes hours. The house received much attention. However, throughout this ordeal to sell my house I would be faced by many well-meaning family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers’ advice, opinions and questions. You can imagine there were many inquiries as to why we were leaving, and where were we going. We listened to many personal stories about all the things that can go wrong. It is human nature to want to share experiences. To add to all of that there were visits from our children and grandchildren who simply did not understand the house needed to keep picked up. I would run after them during the days of the showings. When I didn’t, I would come home only to find something that should have been put away, now it was sitting out in plain sight. Ugh! I forgot the part about the dog not being a good car traveler and we would have to be prepared for his upset stomach. I was firmly set on selling my house no matter how many distractions would try to enter my conscious awareness. I didn’t let anything or anyone distract me from my focus.

Within five days I had three offers. If you have experience in selling homes, you know that very few homes in these times get their full asking price. There were bids and other requests that needed to be considered, that were brought forth by the buyers. There are inspections and assessments that can also upset the apple cart, so to speak. Through it all, I held firm to what it was that I had set my intention on. So it is ……..  Accepted offer…………..we need to be out by the end of June!

How energizing to have come this far! What a great feeling! What next? Now it is my turn to find a home. This experience has left me with much wisdom and more. Every time I look at another house I look at the location, the condition, the price, the floor plan and the amenities. My determination starts to wane. I start falling prey to the well-meaning people giving advice, and words of encouragement wrapped around doubt, and those who out rightly say, “You have made a poor decision.“ “You had a very nice house.” “You will be homeless in a few weeks.” Ahh I doubt myself. I realize this is my pattern. I am starting to doubt my ability to manifest my intent. I am feeling unworthy. My determination has faded. The word homeless grabbed me like a cement brick and I foolishly held onto it. This is where all those years I have spent walking a mile in my shoes, and identifying my patterns of behavior can help me come to the finish line with a strong and focused intent. The word homeless needs to be integrated into my psyche so I no longer fear such an erroneous statement. So I take time to define “home”. At any time our “house” can be taken from us. It could be from financial mishap or nature’s crazy storms. Whether by choice or by force, if one is without a house they are not without options. It doesn’t speak poorly of you or your decisions. It is a fact of life. So I contemplate the possibility of not having a physical address. I am happy to say my real home is always with me. Home, as you know, is where the heart is. The process of ‘finding” a home is now an adventure and adventures can reenergize and empower anyone if you let them. As I write this I am aware of those without a physical home and am in no way taking their plight lightly. I intend to shed light (awareness) on the subject in hopes it can be viewed in our mind differently. Houses, careers, spouses, children, tattoos, religions, and any other thing cannot give you self-worth. The way you choose to respond to those things that are happening to you offer you the chance to discover self-worth.

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