Personal Growth
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Before I go on, what do the dictionaries tell us about independent? The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines independent as "1: quality of state of being independent. 2. Archaic: competence." defines independence as "a noun: independency as the state or quality of being independent. 2. Freedom from the control, influence, support, aid or the like, of others and 3. Archaic: A competency." Wikipedia defines independence as "a condition of a nation, country or state in which its residents and population, or some portion thereof, exercise self-government, and usually sovereignty over its territory. Independent is the opposite of dependence."

It seems to me that the confusion begins when we use a word whose meaning has more to do with politics than human development. I like to go back to the origins of things because that was the beginning of the context which may have lost its way as human beings changed the use of a word from its origins to meet changing needs. However, sometimes getting back to basics can bring clarity to a muddle.

The 'back to basics' for me is that when I accomplished something I was not being independent, I was being competent. Now I know why I had felt a sense that something was off when people said, "She is so independent." In my perception this was confusing. I was still connected with myself enough to know that I needed other human beings and I was "dependent" on my caregivers. Actually, to tell me I was independent negated my competency and made my dependency needs not okay.

But, like most children, I lived up to the predictions of my caregivers. Even though I may have been misguided, I've tried to live my life as an independent sovereign being. I've done my best not to need anyone and to make sure that whatever I was competent at was done very quietly. This core belief has not been a healthy one. I became a human doing so as to not 'need anything or anyone,' which is such a lie. It also disconnected me from my spiritual being - my soul.

Out of this fog I claim my interdependence. I am a spiritual being having this human experience. I have been created as a social being that needs others to give and receive love, for companionship, for health, to give meaning and make life worth living. I claim my interdependence and in that I know that we are connected to each other. Everyone and everything is part of the same stuff that life is made from, whatever you want to call it. What we do and don't do has an impact for good or ill to those we love and those we encounter in our daily lives.

I claim my interdependence and in that recognize the value of every human life, every creature on this earth and the planet I live on and whatever is beyond this planet Earth. We are all connected.

Every day I see children and teens whose parents are pushing them to be 'independent' because they were pushed to do the same. Every day, children and teens tell me how much they miss their parents' presence; how much they want to 'feel' their parents in their lives; and how much they love and need their parents. Parents don't seem to understand the interdependence of their children for them nor themselves to each other and their children. Parents create an energetic environment in their homes that children feel because we are interdependent. What happens to one is felt by all.

What do you think it is that is making us feel like life is raging out of control? We don't realize that we interdependently experience the energy of the fear we are running in from our ancient brains that are screaming for us to come to our senses. In the wild, when one animal in the herd senses the predator coming, the energetic alarm is sounded. The whole herd becomes alert and takes survival measures, because they are interdependent. Likewise, in Texas, when fire ants get on you somehow they know to bite you at the same time and bring your awareness to their presence, because they are interdependent.

Unlike the animals in the wild or ants, we have the ability to make change in our lives that then changes the energy of the environment we create around us. We need to reconnect to the love-based core soulfulness that lives within our hearts. We need to realize our influences for good or ill on each other. We need to ask ourselves what kind of influence we choose to be in the world. We now have everything we need to make a shift from 'independence' and aloneness to 'interdependence' and community.

We need to begin making this shift within our own families. Husbands and wives need to pause in their daily doings, physically feel each other in a loving embrace heart-to-heart and reconnect to what brought them together. Out of that shift they need to expand that heart-to-heart embrace to their children who are desperate for their love and connection.

Not easy you say. Maybe not, but how easy is life for you now? For your children? For your relationships? It is doable because it is who you are at the core of your being. You just need to slow down enough to engage yourself from that place.

Deborah Chelette-Wilson is a relationship coach, authoress and speaker whose powerful message for women is "It's time to stop waiting for permission to be all that we can be(without being a bitch about it)." Her inspiring message helps women harness their personal power, find peace within and become part of the shift in creating healthier and more loving relationships, beginning with the one with their self. In order to honor someone else's heart you must first honor your own.

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