Thursday, June 2, 2016

Spilled Milk

Have you noticed that when you start to look within yourself, your dreams suddenly become more meaningful? It is as if your Psyche, your Spirit or your Unconscious has been sending you letters for years and finally you've started to open them and read the messages inside. And so your wise dreamer thinks, ah ha, now she is paying attention I can start sending dreams worth paying attention to.

In this dream I was carrying a tray of water and I spilled some of it. I was upset, but the person who was with me did not appear to notice. I became more upset at this lack of sympathy and cross with myself for spilling the water. My upset spiraled into a temper tantrum as I deliberately threw the rest of the water on the floor and suddenly we were sloshing around in water which was over our ankles. Realising this was not good I opened the back door and began to sweep the water out, though it took a long time to get the floor dry again.

When I woke I was struck by how accurate the dream was in terms of how I can get carried away with my emotions. In my daily life, if I make a mistake or something has fallen short of what I hoped, my response is often to feel angry or disappointed with myself - and my pattern is to become stuck on that emotional response and amplify it, making it bigger and more dramatic - until I am flooded with emotion, have  a melt down and then, recognizing I have gone too far, start the process of recovery.

This dream is speaking to the card I pulled last week, the 5 of cups which showed where I was getting stuck - fixated on those fallen cups, the failures, instead of paying attention to the cups that were still standing. 

The wisdom of the dream gave me a great visual to my pattern of over-reacting emotionally - and pointed out how much more effort and time were involved in clearing up the flood.

More deeply it got to the heart of the matter - it was to get attention, to get sympathy for the small spill, for not having achieved what I had hoped, for the disappointment of making a mistake of some sort.

The words 'Spilled Milk'  then come into my head.  I remember the saying: no point in crying over spilled milk. I imagine how I would treat a child who has spilled some milk and is upset - I realise I need to give myself sympathy when the first upset arises, reassure myself this happens to everyone and point out what we have achieved - the milk still in the glass, or the cups still standing.

Spontaneously, what now happens when I experience a situation of upset, is that a voice in my head says, kindly, but firmly: spilled milk, mop it up, move on - and instead of getting caught in an escalating emotion I am able to smile, give myself an imaginary hug and let go of the emotion.

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