Making Peace with Yourself
By Dr, Janolyn F Moore, PhD

"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Do not be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Do not let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And, most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary." Steve Jobs

A colleague of mine posted this eloquent and popular quote on Facebook. It is wonderful advice spoken by a man who knew his earthly experience was nearing a close. Jobs was making peace with himself and leaving a loving legacy to society in his final curtain of life. I read the post right before I went to sleep so I am sure it made its way directly into my unconscious mind and began to reprogram my thoughts. I woke up twice that night—both times thinking about the quote and the many times I have let other’s opinions, thoughts, and beliefs dictate my future. Of course, I started to berate myself for giving away my truth to the “well meaning” others. The old, inner self-negating questions jumped at the chance to remind me of my life’s mistakes and all the missed opportunities if only I had approached my life from a place of inner-strength and knowing instead of a place of uncertainty. If only I had not diluted my personal power by wanting to be “everything to everybody”.

I know I am not alone in replaying the dramas of the past. Going against our gut instincts, we have all entered into joint ventures with friends, family members, business associates, and self-proclaimed experts only to regret the decision later.

So, why do we do it? We all have a built in radar—intuition, and if we listen, it guides us in the right direction. Likewise, mind/body theory tells us that this guidance comes from the part of our brain that always knows the right answers—the higher self. Maybe it is part of our karmic plan; the lessons we chose to learn in this go-round of life. Maybe it is a way to make life difficult for ourselves because we do not think we deserve to have an easy life; a form of self-flagellation that we use as punishment whenever we feel that we do not measure up to society’s standards. Maybe we follow the lead of others because we just want to be liked by them. We calculate that if we play up the similarities between ‘them’ and ‘us’ that it will magically transform into a friendship, relationship, or acceptance by the ‘in’ crowd. Alternatively, perhaps we are just afraid to step outside of the confines of our family expectations for fear of losing their love.

Following our inner guidance is not new. As far back as the 1500s, Shakespeare reminds us of that very fact in his play “Hamlet”. One of the most outstanding lines from this play is, “To thine own self be true”. This maxim was one of the self-righteous philosophies that Polonius offered to his son Laertes, prior to Laertes departure to France. Obviously, this line has meaning as it is still in use today and mimicked in other semantic phrases such as, “Follow your bliss” and “March to the beat of your own drummer”. As well, countless New Age and success books remind us of that very fact. Two that come to mind are Marsha Sinetar’s “Do what you love, the money will follow”, and Terry Cole-Whitaker’s “What you think of me is none of my business”. Both recommend that we listen to the voice within and follow our own path—regardless of what “the critics” may think.

Many factors are at work here. Our egos beg to be satisfied. Sometimes satisfying the ego means that we give up our personal truth in order to be worthy of acceptance by others who simply perceive life in a different way than we do. On most occasions we give in to the ego and like Andy Warhol’s 15-minutes of fame example, we feel great for a short duration of time. However, when the excitement dims and life returns to normal, we begin questioning our decision. We may feel left behind or hurt by the very ‘others’ we wanted to please. We compromised our inner knowing; our personal power and now instead of the anticipated reward, we feel hurt and rejected. On most occasions, the hurt is not resolvable so it festers and grows into anger—anger at the ‘others’ and anger at ourselves for being duped into thinking that we were on the wrong personal path.

The truth is that life itself is a long lesson that continues to be morphed and refined many times over. When we are young, we follow the advice of our parental role models. When we reach our teens and twenties we begin to question what we have learned. We rebel and have temper tantrums. Our peers replace our parents as the gods of knowledge. Eventually, in mature adulthood we keep the teachings of family and friends that work for us and throw away the rest. Hopefully, we also let go of the anger and resentment we feel when we first discover that our parents are not perfect—and neither are our friends.

I believe that (in most cases) the older we get, the easier it is to follow our own guidance. We begin to take unsolicited advice with a ‘grain of salt’ or a ‘thank you for sharing’. Whether it is truly wisdom or overt stubbornness, we do more of what we want to do and less of what ‘they’ want us to do. It is easier to find and listen to our inner guidance. However, our spiritual being is still pushing through the illusion of the human condition so we continue to replay our past life moments—all that are good, more of what we consider bad, and those that are neutral.

Life is about perceptions. Unless we are purposely trying to harm a living being (which is just plain wrong) it is our perception of the event or the behavior that causes our mental angst—not the event or the behavior itself. We know that our memories are not exact. Memories are plastic and over time, they morph, change, and re-arrange themselves. As an example: How many times have you re-read a passage from a book, or re-read old letters from friends or family members only to discover that the perception or ‘meaning’ you originally attached to what you read has shifted or changed? In most cases, when we are able to release the emotional attachment to whatever decision, behavior, or action we followed it becomes less of a big deal and we see it for what it truly is—a moment in time—a day in the life.

We cannot change the past. It is what it is and always will be. The only ‘time’ we really have is this very nano-second. In another second, that time will be part of our history. And yes, I know that our ‘future’ depends on how we embrace those nano-seconds; however—knowing that life is a long learning lesson—maybe it is time to stop berating ourselves and begin respecting and loving ourselves for surviving all of our battles.

Making peace with yourself means giving yourself the gift of forgiveness. Making peace with yourself means loving who you are while continuing to move toward the person you strive to become. Making peace with yourself means letting go of what no longer works for you and listening to your inner voice for a new set of directions. Making peace with yourself means having the courage to find your personal truth and live it in all aspects of your life. Steve Jobs knew this—and he was at peace.

Author's Bio: 

Before relocating to North Carolina in 2011, Dr. Janolyn Moore owned and served as co-director of the Golden Branch Wellness Center in Woodland Hills, California. Her Golden Energy technique of healing grew from her interest and years of research of mind/body correlations to disease and healing. The result, Golden Energy, accomplishes all of the aspects needed to promote a total holistic healing experience. Subtle energy work combined with psychology, imagery, and hypnotherapy assist in removing physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual blocks to the healing process. Her approach enables her patients to experience better health and well-being, increased success in all aspects of life, and to experience better and more fulfilling relationships.

Dr. Moore's integrative practice augments traditional Western medicine and psychological approaches to accelerate the healing process. It helps improve the quality of life for those who experience physical illness, chronic pain, or emotional or mental problems.

Dr. Moore served as a staff member for ten years at Northridge Hospital Medical Center in California. She facilitated group psychological counseling for both the in-patient and out-patient Behavioral Health unit. She served as a member of the hospital's Integrative Medicine team and taught classes in hypnosis, guided imagery, mind/body heath, and a holistic approach to managing menopause for the Healing Arts program. As well, she facilitated cancer support groups and provided counseling for patients in the Oncology unit.

In 2004, Dr. Moore was voted best hypnosis professional for the greater Los Angeles area by the readers of the Los Angeles Daily News.

Dr. Moore is an accomplished teacher, published writer, public speaker and seminar leader. She teaches her holistic approach to healing to medical and mental health practitioners throughout the country.

Dr. Moore's clientele extends throughout North America and Europe. As well as combined energy sessions, she offers integrative mind/body counseling, hypno-imagery, and expressive arts therapy. Phone sessions are available and very popular. Each session is 1/12 to 2 hours in length and is recorded in either an MP3 or CD format for the patient so that they may continue to experience the benefits of the session at any time.

Dr. Moore holds a PhD in Clinical Psychology, with an emphasis in Depth Psychology, from Pacifica Graduate Institute, in Carpinteria, California. Additionally, she holds a BA and MA in speech communications. She is a certified Clinical Hypnotherapist and studied Oriental medicine at Samra University.

Dr. Moore is available for private sessions, public speaking engagements, or seminars. To contact her for more information or to request a session, please use the email request form found on the Golden Energy web site.