Updated: Oct 19
Spam Filter For Your Brain - Episode 40
Sometimes you see those things going around the internet of "What would you say to yourself if you were 13?" "What would you look back on and wish that someone had told you or older you advise to the younger you?"
And there's lots of sort of trite little things and lots of things that we all kind of know and feel that come up when I see those threads or those things being passed around. And I often hone in on one particular message that came up for me when I was thinking about how I used to use self-help and self-development work and trying to overanalyse all of these big thoughts and big feelings going on. Where to place them? I used to use that stuff as an escape route.
My God, it was hard-hitting when I realised that you could actually numb out with self-help, try and use that as a distraction technique not to have to feel all of the feelings. That was a blow to realise what I was doing there, managing to catch myself out by reading all of the books and the things so I didn't have to feel the things I was reading the books about. What a blow to the confidence.
And if I could hone all of the work that I have done to get me to a place where generally, even when life gets really, really hard, I don't feel too knocked about by it. I'm able to sort of sit in it and go, "Yeah, this is tough, or this feels quite painful, and it's meant to this bit of life is meant to be quite tricky", and I can see it for what it is rather than feeling like I'm drowning or I'm going to be lost in it forever.
And if I could hone all of the work that it took to get me to a place where generally I feel quite stable no matter what's going on around me, it would be to not disappear on myself.
Don't try and lose yourself. I'm talking weirdly first and third person. Come with me on the journey, don't try and lose yourself in the people around you in the hope that it will give you validation. Don't try and lose yourself in the work so that you can come out the other side of it looking like you are part of the solution. You have merged into it like some repetitive trope of some self-care mantra, then disappear on yourself into your work so that you think that if you manage to get to some level of financial solvency that, you'll feel safe or that things just won't be so hard. Don't disappear on yourself. Say that you're willing to screw yourself over physically for the sake of both trying to keep your head above water and also to try and be what other people expect you to be, even if that's something you've created for yourself. Don't overstretch yourself so much that you become transparent, and there's nothing there left of substance for you to either come home to or for other people to recognise in the person that they love.
I think it's this not disappearing on yourself image that really holds me to keep checking in and making sure that no matter what else is going on, have I got a solid outline? Is there enough of me left to colour in with some crayons if I felt the urge and frivolity? Where is it that I am ever so occasionally still prone to emptying myself into other people in the hope that it will win me an emotion that I haven't yet granted to myself? Where is it that I pour myself into my work in the hope that if I can get a few more people on a course or if I can just sign off a particular proposal or a contract, then I'll feel like I'll feel safe.
It always comes down to feeling safe.
Where do I pull myself into the action of trying to think that I can do all of these things around me, this kind of frantic energy so that I can fill up this hole that has been left by me just not being willing to sit and be with who I am and what I'm feeling and what's going on for me, the more I keep bringing it home, the more I keep checking in with what my emotions are, what I'm feeling, what are the thoughts that are causing that? What are the emotions that are surrounding my world right now and running through me? And I don't need to escape to try and create myself somewhere else or to try and create some validation from something or someone else. I'm able to sit with who I am.
And when you can get to a place where you... It's a little bit of age as well... I'm old enough to know that this is the story I've got, and I'm comfortable with it. It's a very, very exciting roller coaster of a ride. And when life is toughest, I do try and remind myself that if this were a film, I'd probably go and see it.
This is my little thought nudge for you for the week. Where are you disappearing on yourself? And could you bring it back, check in with yourself and get those outlines a little bit stronger?
I hope that you are taking very good care of yourself, and if you need any support filling up your own cup, then I can definitely teach you some great tools to help you get there. Do reach out for one of the courses or drop me an email to speak to you next week.