It’s happening. Cue Eminem’s ‘Lose Yourself’.
That’s my verbatim mental reaction to life b*tch slapping me right in the face. And this is exactly how I envision my dialogue with it going. Every single time.
Life: ‘Hey, assh*le you’ve got stuff to learn. Let’s go’
Subconscious: ‘Nope, I’m good. How about never.’
Life: ‘You will deal with this. Or I will make you deal.’
Subsconcious: ‘Try me’
Life: ‘I will.’
As much as I’d like to pretend I have this whole thing figured out, it’s always been this sort of ongoing balancing act. What I ‘think’ I know is constantly challenged and ideals re-shaped. Walls being torn down and built up again in new forms. Recently, I’ve felt hurdled through internal obstacles I didn’t even know existed. Confronting the ‘Big 3’ as I like to call them; life, death, purpose.
I’ve always had this sort of lofty perception and third-person perspective when it comes to these concepts. I’ve wrestled my fears and thought I had made peace with things I was certain I had identified, understood and accepted. Only to realize, I was merely, barely brushing the surface.
Although accepting I know nothing was a hit to my pride, it allowed me the courage to share with you things that have helped me through life’s unknowns. When the worst comes at you full swing, and you know you’re in it for real – recognizing that you’re not alone can be half the battle.
For me, when I’m right in the middle of everything, these reminders can be the difference between getting lost in a spiral of anxiety or finding my center amidst the chaos –
Change Will Find You: It is a certainty; we cannot hide from it. We try to mask its sting with meticulous planning, overthinking and the safety of the familiar – but it finds us, and it helps us grow. So don’t be afraid, and try not to hide away from the situations and scenarios that build you into the person you’re meant to be.
Be Easy: On yourself; with your thoughts of self-judgment, condemnation and critique. It’s okay; to feel the way you do, to not have the answers, to be right where you are in this moment. So ‘Be Easy’; relax in the moment and accept your current emotions. Release the feelings of having to control the outcome. Release your expectations of perfection. Don’t try to fast-forward past the lessons.
Talk It Out: Let people you love – and who love you – be there in your time of need. Yup, be vulnerable. *I’ll say it one more time for the people in the back* – BE VULNERABLE. Confide in those you trust to listen and assist in guiding your heart towards the encouragement and light you need during moments of transformation. It’s a strength to admit you could use a hand. It’s 100% okay to reach out, lean on and ask for support. You can’t receive help, if you do not ask for it.
Take Care: Nurture your mind, body and soul. This is your life, and it is your responsibility to play an active role when it comes to caring for your emotional well-being. We’re taught to ‘push through’ when times get tough. Our minds have a million and one expectations to fulfill; a running list of places to go, people to see, things to do. Of course, if we’re not acting on it, we’re worrying about it. That’s when you stop. That’s right, unplug from the matrix. Do not ignore your body’s red flags when it’s crying out for some serious R&R. Take the day. The whole day. Three Days. A Week. Whatever it takes. It’s on you, and you alone, to answer that call.
Find Your Faith: Tap into God; prayer, meditation, worship. Whatever way you reach for something higher, ask for guidance from that source to guide and carry you through, when you feel like you can’t carry that weight on your own. Releasing the burdens you’ve been carrying and understanding you don’t have to take on the weight of the world by yourself is the most powerful form of liberation. Ask that source to carry that weight for you. Your bullsh*t backpack (as I like to call it) is looking mighty heavy. The universe is strong enough and it wants to help. Let it.
Learn Yourself: ‘I know this must be scary moment for you – are you paying attention to it?’ This quote from Peaceful Warrior could not be more relevant. Challenges create opportunities. So, when you’re in the sh*t – make sure you are as fully present as possible. *Spoiler Alert*: It may suck. In fact, it will suck. But, if you’re hurting, be brave enough to ask yourself why? Identify the monsta; sit with it; learn from it. Knowing yourself – and finding opportunities to ‘meet yourself’, especially in times of suffering, deepen your personal connection and relationship on a spiritual, emotional and mental plane. Enhancing this bond, by spending time asking yourself the important questions, ultimately allows you to better grow to serve others. Knowing who you are is the best gift you can give to the world.
Transform Your Suffering: Let go of your pain and watch it transform into something beautiful. When you’re ready to let go, when you know with certainty that it’s time, stop holding on to hurt. [Drowning in suffering will not change the hands of time; resentment can’t serve as your ‘Back To The Future’ DeLorean.] When you finally allow your trauma to become your benevolence, you reach a new pinnacle of human connection. By experiencing and understanding suffering, it allows you to give a deeper source of unconditional love to the world with a renewed sense of freedom.
We all have a battle. You probably have something you are struggling with right this very second. In that, you are not alone. Remember how much you are loved. Remind yourself of what your suffering has taught you; what it is actively teaching you. Before you can be the light, you must know what it means to travel through darkness. What awaits you so soon and suddenly, is more extraordinary than could ever be imagined.
You can do it, I believe in you.