In interest of doing more aerobics (see post), I periodically "jump around" while watching Oprah. Yesterday there was a woman and her husband on. This lady has managed to get her family over $100,000 in debt. Her husband's job pays $100,000/year--so, this kind of debt was no easy feat. Oprah asked her why she spends so much and the woman admitted she was being extremely selfish. I'm thinking to myself, "Duh. Of course, this is selfish. Your kids have no health insurance, you stay at home getting your nails done and shopping, while your husband struggles to make ends meet."
Later in the show, Suzi Orman came on. Being that I haven't watched much Oprah for literally years, it was interesting to see Suzi for the first time in a long time. She has gotten even more certain and "deadly" honest.
The thing that struck me the most was when Suzi made an insistent point that this woman was NOT selfish. "You are selfless. Not selfish." Suzi looked out at the audience and said something along the lines of, "Do not sit in judgement of this woman. Don't one of you judge her. You all do it. Yes, this case is extreme, but we all do the same thing in our own ways."
Hard to say, since I was "jumping around", but I think I blushed. Caught in the act of judging another and believing I was somehow better. I like to think that I don't judge, but I do. I was not only labeling the behavior as poor. I hate to admit it, but I felt superior to this lady. Now it was my turn to feel a bit shameful.
Suzi went on to say that this constant buying of things was because she had no idea who she was. In her quest to really feel comfortable with herself, she kept looking outside to "stuff". When that stuff didn't work, she'd get more. Always searching for herself and happiness. Any Yogi would tell her, you'll never find yourself or true happiness outside. You must look within.
In this light, I felt compassion instead of contempt for a mother that so blatantly put herself before her children and spouse. Suzi provided advise about getting rid of the debt--a tough love approach. I'd like to add to that a Yoga class with a knowledgeable teacher would really help her find fulfillment on a deeper level.
"Coincidentally," this ties into something that Yogi Roger Eischens used to say, "It's easy to get along with people that have big egos. It's the people with no egos that are difficult." Ego is knowing yourself and feeling confident. It's those that are searching and "selfless" that try to prove themselves all the time. Those who are sure of their own being, have nothing to prove.
Today is the first day of the rest of your life!