Today is one of those days when I am quite angry of myself because I am still allowing my fears to control my life and behavior. I still have a problem defending my opinion and expressing things important to me. From one point I am trying to be peacemaker even if I see sometimes I will not benefit from that but still because of fear I do it. From another point there are people who just express whatever dissatisfaction they have without caring about the outcome or considering how other person would feel. And the thought that I am compromising my life because of these kind of people makes me angry. Angry that I am not able to fully step up for myself and I treat myself as a less equal.
But maybe it is good to have a bit of an anger inside because it gives me a kick to push myself further. To just have more and more confidence to not allow fear to control me and to be one more step closer to reach my full potential. I am for sure on the way to have a better self understanding but moments like that when I just compromise too much where I should not have raises a bit of a frustration. So today I will use it to my advantage to not forget and keep moving forward because no one deserves to compromise too much of their own life and happiness. For some it comes naturally but for some like me I need to practice it until I make it.
Remember how much of yourself you are compromising to meet the approval of others. Twisting your personality until it breaks completely. Rachel Wolchin
Do we have enough compassion and understanding towards ourselves? Or it is just better to let some things go and let it be even though we would compromise something just to avoid some conflicts. Especially when around the corner is Christmas and lots of celebrations it so easy to just forget who deserves first the most of your compassion.
I know how great it feels to help someone and bring joy to them. However, sometimes maybe it brings more pressure than joy. Pressure to give the “right” gift to a family member, to plan enough time for everyone or just to not disappoint a friend. And the list goes on especially when there is also a personal relationship involved. So in this case I need to have enough compassion towards my partner so I would not look like I care less about this person. And all of this can be really stressful especially for those who are struggling with social anxiety and fear of judgment. It is so easy to get lost in this circle where you are not included.
So this time of the year I ask you to give yourself a special gift – compassion. Compassion towards yourself, love yourself and to be understanding of all the good and bad moments. No matter how stressful you are feeling try to come back to yourself and start building again your circle but now first including yourself. And to have a happy you is the greatest gift you can give to yourself and then to others.
Self – compassion is simply giving the same kindness to ourselves that we would give to others. Christopher Germer
I have recently started to notice that my practice of speaking up and just doing things which have made me really uncomfortable for many years has been finally working. To finally starting to believe in results and seeing that I can overcome myself has taken me over 1 year and it is definitely an ongoing process. But to see that I can look over my fears and step by step express my true self strengthens my hope that it is possible to be free. Free as I have always wanted to be but did not dare to be.
Therefore, today I am grateful that I was able to start my journey of practice and no matter how hard or scary it has been I still have managed to push through and move forward. With the practice also came better understanding on how my mind and emotions function. What are the triggers for anxiety and my fears and how to better reduce them. And after each time I pushed myself I realized that actually it is not that terrible and I can do it next time again.
So today I can say that it is true that only by practicing things which make us afraid and uncomfortable will help us overcome them. With time it will get easier and fears will slowly decrease and one day they will be so quiet that you will be living in peace with yourself. Note that practice period for each person is different so do not be discouraged by how long it takes and just push through – because you deserve to be free.
Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear. Mark Twain
The most wonderful time of the year is here – magical Christmas time. This December I have decided to write short thank you letters and share some nice experiences in order to be more grateful and inspired to work more on myself and just to appreciate where I am now and how times have changed comparing to some years ago and even last year. I can say that this December I am at much more better place personally and professionally I have not been for a long time. So today I am thankful for believing in myself and not losing my hope that one day it will get better and I have all what it takes to follow my dreams. I am grateful that I am able to finally learn to be good and compassionate first to myself. I am grateful and thankful for all the lessons and people I have met and I am taking them with myself so together with practice I can keep moving forward.
Even though it is important to have a hope for brighter future, it is also important to live in the present. To enjoy the moment with loved ones or sometimes just being alone. I was thinking about it few weeks ago and I came to conclusion that I have most of the time just lived for the future. I did not enjoy my present when I should have and I would say I even was angry at it. So for the next year I am promising to myself not only be more grateful but also live more in the present. Because tomorrow will be another day and it will not be possible to relive that missed present again.
If you live in fear of the future because of what happened in your past, you will end up losing what you have in the present. Nishan Panwar
Last few weeks I am more intensively feeling resistance from my scared part which is always hiding and choosing excuses over action. Especially when it comes to go out or do something new and unknown. It is just quietly whispering: “Why should I do that? It is better to stay as it is. It can be only more stressful and riskier.” And so these past few weeks it is more like a fight with my own self. The more I question this part the more resistance I get. It expands to uncomfortable feeling and pressure within. It feels so comfortable to give in and stay safe but from the other side I know it is wrong. And I will say that I have been mostly doing that and staying safe. But then it still does not feel right, it does not bring peace and safety as I thought. It is just for a moment but the day after I know I am feeling again disappointed because I did not do something that could be beneficial to me. And knowing that I chose fear over myself makes me a bit angry.
It always comes to feeling like I am standing in front of a big wall and the other side is just too unknown to be explored. And then I just feel like I am living in a prison made by myself. Knowing that I am the only thing standing from being free seems really easy and I have set myself free 100 of times. But somehow I am still not free or at least free as I would want. I can say I have improved a lot but knowing that my resistant part is still there sometimes makes things harder.
One thing I can say is that one of the biggest steps towards being free from my prison was acknowledging that something is not working right. That the way I was living before was not anymore suitable for me. I was far away from events which caused certain behavior and I should have put them behind me. However, after I started to question myself I realized I am still stuck in those events. So through past year I am learning how to trust people and that I do not need to fear them. I learned that in general people do not wish me bad as I have always imagined and that it is ok to meet with them. One benefit of going out and not letting fear take over was joining a German class where I learned that people are mostly good and they are not against me. And for me this was a big realization. Because I had always thought first that they will hate me and be against me. It also makes easier to speak up and accept that others will disagree and it is ok so.
You can just start with asking one question to yourself if you feel something is not working right and then there will come more and more until you will start to get some answers. These questions will guide you to things and places where you have always wanted to be but did not dare to try. So step by step.
Find comfort in questioning yourself. Bryant Mcgill
Fear – one part of my body which is always there. If not active it waits for that trigger moment to attack. Fear – it is starting with a racing heart, hard breathing, heavy feeling in my chest area, shaky hands and just feeling hopeless. Like it will never end and there is no way out to stop it. And in that moment I am alone and no one can help me to escape it. Even more when you are put in a corner and pressured form an outside world – how you stand up for yourself? How to listen to your gut if you are so confused and lost that only word I can hear is to run. Run and never look back but I cannot, I am frozen in the moment. So there I am just sitting looking so calm but deeply inside I am frozen. Frozen form fear and unable to function. Waiting for the storm to pass until the next time.
I ask myself why I am still feeling like that and allowing myself to put me down. Even though one year has passed since I started to work on myself, I am stuck still in my fears and I am feeling like a kid in a school bullied by my classmates and sitting there quietly waiting when it will end. So here I am again wondering what would be if someone then would have finally listened to that girl and helped to feel safe. But it will always stay as a thought because here I am many years later still stuck in my emotions unable to move on and live.
I am not sure if I can ever feel unstuck but I am not yet giving up.
Frozen by fear. Not able to move. Your mind screaming… James Dashner
I am currently finishing an amazing book which has helped me to understand better why I am the way I are. Why I have some parts of me which I would like to forget and leave it in a past – fearful, silent and closed. At some point sometimes too fearful that I am not able to open up and be in a healthy relationship not only with people around but also with myself.
The book is by Bessel van der Kolk M.D “The Body Keeps the Score” – where the author detailed describes how the trauma stays locked in the body and where it all begins starting from our brain and how the aftermath of a trauma can be better understood and treated.
One year ago through a therapy I started my journey of understanding and overcoming myself. However, I was not completely able to understand why I have certain body reactions when I need to interact with people and why it is so hard to keep calm inside and not go into anxiety mode. Was there something more that I have not thought about. I got some explanations during my sessions as well but still I had some missing pieces. I asked my therapist And so I accidently found in the internet this book and I bought it. After I received it I started to read chapter by chapter and my missing pieces slowly were coming together and I could finally start to answer my question – why? It was so fascinating to read how the body locks the trauma and fear inside it and how any trigger can bring me to a mode of war inside myself and feeling again the same fear and just shutting down.
I am still on the way to learn how to deal with my emotions and saying my body – it is ok there is not anymore reason to feel afraid. That part of my life is past, however, I know it still remembers and that is why it is so hard to release and move on. But thanks to the book I have much greater understanding and compassion towards myself. The following quote just perfectly describes who I lost during my times in the darkness.
We can hardly bear to look. The shadow may carry the beast of the life we have not lived. Go into the basement, the attic, the refused bin. Find gold there. Find an animal who has not been fed or watered. It is you!! This neglected, exiled animal, hungry for attention, is a part of your self. – Marion Woodman –
It looks like this week is one of those times when most of the plans are just not happening as planned. Even weather is against me so I decided to let go and go with the flow. I know again I am saying to myself “go with the flow” but somehow even if I am fighting against that it just happens. Of course I feel a bit tension in the chest and my usual thoughts want to come out but today I feel stronger to just say “No, STOP“. I will not go to that dark place and make me feel bad about myself, about the day and at the end about everything. Resistance always makes it worse and I should be much more compassionate to myself when outside is not working in my favor.
I know so well that it is hard to follow that but when I look back to my life and different periods the more I was resistant and pushy nothing was working in my favor. And it got me more anxious and frustrated because things were not happening as I wanted. But then I did not think that maybe there is another path I need to go and the more resistant I was the slower things were going to improve. And one of the examples was my move to the Germany. I was so resistant for some time to consider moving away and starting studies in Germany that it was just not working. Since I was unsatisfied in my job I tried really hard to change it but somehow there were always rejections and so I clearly remember one day I just sat down in my room and said to myself: “Just let it go and see maybe it will work with Germany”. And once I shifted my mind and focus from being frustrated to being more open and relaxed everything fell into place. Of course later there were other challenges and sometimes I was able to keep with the flow but not always. I know for sure I have missed a lot of good moments just because I was too concentrated on the negative and I kept it always in my mind. So these lessons are a good reminder to me to just let it go and relax. It is OK to give myself a break because that it is the only thing I can influence.
Go with the flow. Force nothing. Let it happen… trusting whichever way it goes. It’s for the best. Many Hale
I lied and said I was busy, but not in a way most people understand. I was busy taking deeper breaths. I was busy silencing irrational thoughts. I was busy calming a racing heart. I was busy telling myself I am OK. B Oakman
It sound so familiar to my heart and I have been doing that myself and maybe sometimes too much. Especially when an outside world can be sometimes so overwhelming and in order to calm myself down I need to just shut it down and be in a quiet environment. Because sometimes nothing can be more difficult than to silence a mind going out of control.
It is ok to decide to be alone and to be busy with yourself. The only way to feel better and to get back outside is to be OK and at peace. And from my experience it takes a time to understand that as well. I have so often decided to put myself second and to go further not respecting my need for peace and recharge. Only because I would feel guilty and I would have imagined already 10 reasons how it would hurt someone. Therefore, I just continuously locked my emotions in a box thinking it will go away. But little I knew then that all these actions will lead to an even bigger confusion and chaos in my mind.
In order to avoid that or at least to start to decrease it – it is ok to take a break once in a while and be busy for yourself. It is like a circle – only a happy and peaceful inside will help you to be more a happier and calmer outside.
It is quite fascinating how a persons mind can play with feelings, understanding oneself and the perception of the outside world. How mind can make build walls inside a person to protect from certain situations, people and oneself. And while living like that it is almost impossible to convince the mind to give a break and let go. That it is not anymore necessary and there are no threats around. But still it is like an ongoing engine sometimes slowing down but never stopping.
Even though I have decided to change the way I think in some ways, I still have many rules I am unconsciously following. While looking at my own mind, the behavior of myself and thoughts I noticed a pattern, that for me the most biggest rule comes from the fear of judgment. It just spreads through the whole body and takes over my mind whenever I face potential triggers. The biggest challenge is to keep the rational mind on in close relationships. Once it comes to different opinions or trying to follow my instincts I just step back and feel stuck between my rules – to please others to be liked or to do what is best for me so I would like myself. And it is still hard to do the right thing for me because I have always followed my rule.
Of course for every rule I created in my mind I had a reason in my past. Long time ago I did not have someone giving me advise that everything will be fine and that all bad things will pass. I am learning this just now and this has allowed me to better understand my mind and how I can try to force it to let go of these rules. Furthermore, while talking with other people about similar struggles I was amazed how mind can project things and it is so sad how a mind can lock in someone to fear so much of outside and even oneself. For now I am still my own mind prisoner but just for a bit more..
Rule your mind or it will rule you. Buddha