Underneath the anger

Written by Amie on September 20, 2012 – 1:26 pm -

“By clinging to the mind in the form of memory and thought, we are held captive by the movement of our conditioned thinking and imagination, all the while believing that we are perfectly rational and sane.” ~Adyashanti

 

no longer trapped

I really am just an onion…so many layers of me I must peel away to get to the true me. The layers peel away faster and faster these days. Clarity comes much quicker and easier than it did a few years ago. Or even a year ago. I am grateful I am just an onion now, and not stuck inside the bullet proof box I was trapped in before. I was locked in my box of protection, so trapped in the deep dark place that I called depression. The sad thing is that I didn’t even know I was stuck there, I thought how I felt was normal. Well, I suppose you could say it was normal at the time. There is no right normal or wrong normal. I still believe we are always exactly where we need to be in every  moment of our lives. For reasons yet to be revealed to me at the time, I needed the protection of that box. Once I started peeling away layers, I can see and appreciate why I needed to protect myself emotionally.

furious beyond words

That idea leads me into how I am feeling right now. I will start with a few days ago. I was furious beyond words. Anger is powerful. It can lead us to do something destructive to ourselves or others, or it can lead to awareness, acceptance, and clarity. I wasn’t sure which route I was going to go at first. I wanted to scream at the person who was unkind to me. I wanted to part ways with her for the rest of my life. I wanted her to “know” that her behavior was wrong and unacceptable! I wanted her to know that she should never mess with me. That was my ego talking, and it was also the little girl inside me who has been hurt repeatedly by this person. It would have been easy to fall into the victim role of “oh poor me, why does she continue to act this way?” That is the route I probably would have taken many years ago. Instead, I let the anger provide fuel for me to empower myself. Anger is an emotion (really it is energy), but it is rarely the actual emotion we are feeling. It is an emotion that is easier to have than the true feelings underneath. My anger led me to the realization that nobody can make me feel inferior without my consent, a quote by the very brilliant woman Eleanor Roosevelt. My anger spurred me to take my power back.

 

healing begins with becoming aware

After allowing my anger to just be there for a few days, clarity began to move in. I was thinking about a friend of mine who is so confident in her own skin and is not afraid to let her truth shine out there in the world. Many people might look at this as being arrogant or self-absorbed or whatever other negative traits we have been trained to think. However, this is not the case at all with her. She feels safe to shine her light in the world, and will not apologize for doing so. There is nothing to apologize for, why should she? I wish everybody felt this confident about themselves (we all have the capacity to do so). Then the world could be blessed with  every single beautiful part of every person!  Sadly, until we do our own internal work, most people feel guilty or shameful about feeling confident about themselves. So many people are still believing those damn voices that are telling them, “you shouldn’t say that, people will think you are a know-it-all, or people will think you are stuck up, or people will think you are….blah blah blah…” and the list goes on. We have been conditioned to believe we should care about what others think of us rather than living out the truth of who we really are. We learn that it isn’t emotionally safe to be ourselves in the world. Our true beautiful selves were smashed down too often for us to trust that it is safe to be who we really are. Our job is to become aware of the messages we were conditioned with and then question them. Healing begins with becoming aware of the voices in your head and what they are saying to you.

they confirm your feelings of self hate

Okay, back to the thought of experiencing guilt or shame when feeling confident. I realized after thinking about my confident friend that a huge part of my anger towards the person mentioned above is due to her being uncomfortable with my joy and happiness. When I appear confident to her, she starts judging me and expressing her disapproval of what I choose to do in my life. The main thing is that she is making up her own stories about my life. She actually believes she knows me and knows how I live my life. This I find amusing. How can a person know who I really am when I rarely see them, AND when I rarely show my true self to them? I protect myself from people that judge me. Until you have done a lot of healing work, it is best to avoid being around unkind and judgmental people because it is easy to stay depressed around them. They confirm your feelings of self hate. By limiting my time with them, I am accepting them as they are. I accept that this person is judgmental, and will most likely continue to act in the same manner. I accept it for what it is, but I also choose to avoid being around her.  I have no place in my life for people who claim they love me but then judge me and talk badly about me to other people in my life. This is how I take my power back. I choose to either eliminate them from my life or severely limit my time with those who continue to betray me and to be judgmental of me.

someone is judging you

I will have compassion for them from a distance. I understand what it is like to have so much self hate that it is easiest to look at everyone around me to judge them instead of doing my own inner reflection and healing work.  I am so far removed from self hate now, there is no way I will choose to be around people who are unkind to me. I wish them well, and I do hope they find the courage to heal those parts of themselves that need love and compassion, but I can’t do it for them, and I won’t be a part of their negativity. When someone is judging you, it is ALWAYS because of the feelings that were triggered inside them. It is never about you! They may try to blame you or try to tell you you should change, etc. but if they could become aware of their true feelings, they would begin to see the truth. The truth is that something about you or your life triggered an emotional wound in them. THIS is the work each of us can do. Asking the questions. Why does this person “make” me feel angry, why does that person “make” me feel self conscious, why does this person “make” me feel like I don’t matter……..question everything. It is the beginning of awareness and the path to healing.

 

YOU ARE NOT YOUR THOUGHTS……….YOUR TRUTH IS INSIDE YOU HIDING UNDERNEATH THE CONDITIONING YOU HAVE BEEN BUYING INTO……NOBODY CAN MAKE YOU FEEL INFERIOR OR BAD WITHOUT YOUR CONSENT……YOU HOLD THE POWER IN YOUR LIFE…….IF SOMEBODY IS UNKIND TO YOU, SET A BOUNDARY TO PROTECT YOURSELF……YOU ARE PURE LOVE UNDERNEATH THE MESSAGES YOU HAVE BEEN BELIEVING….DEPRESSION EXISTS AS LONG AS YOU BUY INTO THE UNTRUTHS YOU HAVE BEEN LIVING WITH…….IF YOU ARE HIDING OR PROTECTING YOURSELF FROM THE WORLD, YOU ARE BLOCKING LOVE FROM  COMING INTO YOUR HEART……BEGIN TO HEAL BY QUESTIONING AND BECOMING AWARE OF YOUR THOUGHTS…..YOUR THOUGHTS DICTATE THE LIFE YOU HAVE……YOU ARE WHAT YOU THINK…….THINK LOVE……. 🙂

 

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Depression,loneliness,authenticity,and vulnerability

Written by Amie on February 19, 2012 – 3:53 pm -

naming the feeling of loneliness

I received an e-mail yesterday from someone asking me about loneliness. She told me she feels lonely even when she is surrounded by people who care about her. I told her I can totally relate to the feeling, and I also told her what a gift it is that she recognizes this part of herself. I remember so many times that I felt this way. It took me a very long time to figure out what was really behind the feeling of loneliness. Honestly, I didn’t know it was loneliness I was feeling. I knew the feeling felt really big inside me, but I wasn’t sure how to name it. At that time in my life, I had the habit of turning these feelings against myself. In other words, I had this big feeling inside me that I bundled all together with all of the “bad” feelings I was having, and called it depression.  I would tell myself there must be something *wrong with me* for feeling bad even when I had people in my life who loved me. How could I be around people who say they care about me and still feel depressed? The answer eluded me for quite awhile. Maybe the real situation was that I didn’t want to acknowledge my truth. If I were to actually name this feeling I was having (loneliness), I believed I would then have to act on it right away.  That isn’t true. The first step is always to acknowledge the feeling, and then allow yourself to feel it. Once you allow yourself to feel your emotions, a part of you will open up to new possibilities, and action will follow if that is what needs to happen.

I was dying inside, I felt so empty

It took me awhile to figure out, or acknowledge that I truly was feeling lonely. It also took me awhile to see the patterns I had set up in my life to support this loneliness. I am not being judgmental here, just stating what is true. Somewhere along the path in my life I learned that I needed to protect my sensitive spirit from people who had the potential to hurt me. When our true selves are not nurtured and supported starting from a young age, we learn other ways to be in the world as a way of protecting ourselves. I thought if I could keep myself from being vulnerable with another person, I was protecting  myself. I only allowed myself to go to a certain level of connection with people, and then I would put up my walls of protection. Nobody could get past those walls. It appeared as though I was sharing myself with others, but I wasn’t. Not by a long shot. I appeared strong and I appeared as though I had it all together. But I didn’t. I was dying inside. I felt so empty.

it has taken me almost 6 years to get to where I am today

With the help of a therapist, I finally came to see how lonely I was really feeling. I found a therapist who (after going through many therapists that I could never open up to) I felt safe with. It took awhile, but she was finally able to help me make a crack in my wall of protection. It was a slow, often painful process. My mind was like a steel trap. It did not want to budge. It has taken me almost 6 years to get to where I am today. That seems like a long time when there are promises out there telling us you can pop a pill to get relief without having to do the work of looking inside yourself. (I am not saying medication should never be taken, I tried that route myself) However, to put things into perspective, I remind myself that it took me much longer than 6 years to get to the breaking point of depression, so I knew it wouldn’t happen overnight. I had to rediscover the authentic person behind the wall of protection, and that takes work.

most people feel lonely because it is not “small talk” they are really wanting and needing

And…back to the issue of loneliness….I can see now that people who have a wall up around them are most likely feeling lonely most of the time. Most people feel lonely because it is not “small talk” they are really wanting and needing. Most of us settle for this because it is the norm. But on a deeper level, we want to feel connected to each other, we want to know what is really alive in the person we are talking with. We want to feel authenticity with each other. It is so sad that most people have been trained to ignore the real stuff, and go straight to the small talk. My first real connection with someone was my therapist. I know that may sound weird, but I don’t care! lol She was coming from a conscious healthy place, and I felt it.  I felt her authenticity, and I wanted more. From there I met a wonderful friend (at a book store!) who is so authentic with me. At first, it was scary because I didn’t trust that she could be real. I didn’t trust that she wouldn’t hurt me. But I hung in there, and I now call her my soul sister. I am also a part of a women’s spiritual growth group with like minded conscious women who are also seeking authenticity and truth. Another person who I relate to on a soul level is a friend I met years ago at a health food store! She is someone that I know connects with me at a very deep and authentic level.

the more I love myself, the more I bring people into my life that will mirror that love back to me

I feel so grateful for all of the people in my life right now who are real with me. I notice that the more I love myself, the more I bring people into my life that will mirror that love back to me. My kids have done this for me since the day they were born. Talk about authentic! To this day, they call me out on my old patterns. So, I guess what I am trying to say here is that if you are feeling depressed, ask yourself if you are lonely. Be as honest as you can be with yourself. Just admitting it but not putting pressure on yourself to do anything about it will help. Just allow yourself to feel the truth of what is there in your body. I would say to myself, “I am feeling really lonely right now”. Then I would tune in to what my body was feeling in that moment. Tightness in my stomach, almost always. Just stay with the feelings in your body. You don’t have to solve anything….just feel…..

 it’s time to fall in love..with yourself

The more you allow yourself to feel what is true for you, the more you will begin to crack open your wall of protection. What I am also saying here is that if you don’t have at least one person in your life you can be 100% real with, it is time to find one. Finding one will lead to finding another. I promise you there are people out there wanting the same thing you do. Authenticity. Vulnerability is a part of the process. People who are willing to be vulnerable, willing to show their human side, will attract others who want the same thing. People are lonely because they are guarded. We shut down our truth; our human side. The act of pretending to be happy, the act of going through the motions of being human, doesn’t cut it for very long. Many people are okay with living their lives like this. I am not one of those people anymore. If I would have continued down the pretending path for much longer, I most likely wouldn’t be here today. That is the truth. I need to be real, I need to be who I was born to be, I need people in my life who are willing to be real with me. I refuse to pretend. One more thing….actually a very important point…..once you start truly loving yourself unconditionally, you won’t feel lonely anymore. When you love yourself, you will stop looking for someone else to make you feel any certain way. Nobody can ever make you feel unconditional love for yourself. You need your love in order to be happy. You can start loving yourself right this minute by asking yourself what you honestly need right now. Being honest about it will start your path to self-love. We all crave authenticity and love and deep connection….so you really can’t truly feel these things unless you are madly in love with yourself!!! So, maybe it’s time to fall in love..with yourself! xo

And in the spirit of love….I have to put this song in here yet again…I just love it so much! 🙂

 

 

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