The moment we recognize that we need help is a moment of surrender, an admission that we are not perfect, or we do not have control over some aspect of our lives.
Many times we find ourselves unable to control the state of our unhappiness and thus conclude that we are helpless to change our circumstance and see ourselves as victims. So, the act of seeking help is perceived from a place of victimization and lack of control.
However, the moment in which we surrender to our imperfections is actually a moment of empowerment that sometimes takes a different turn.
The declaration to yourself that you need help breaks the cycle of pretending that you are in control of what you are not. Many people pretend to be in control just so they won’t have to admit to themselves that they are not, to keep their current image or to be accepted by others.
The moment you allow yourself to see your emotions and conclude that you do not control them is an empowering moment. You break out from the illusion that you can escape your emotional reality, and keep pretending to be something you are not. Breaking out from your illusions puts you back in clarity and gives you the ability to make new choices. That is why admitting to a mental problem, whether it is an addiction or a depression, considered by many practices as the first step to self-help. Once again, admitting you are not in control is empowerment and not victimization or weakness.
Make it a habit to identify the aspects of your life that don’t feel good, and cause you to continue to be involved in them trying to control or manipulate them.
The things that don’t feel good, which we persist on changing – are interpretations of our emotions that we don’t want to see or accept. For example – Your job might not be a perfect fit for you, but you prefer to suffer doing it rather than doing something you love that might compromise your social status or lifestyle.
We pretend to be something we’re not, struggle to accept our circumstances and ourselves because we were led to believe that who we are or what we have – is not enough.
However, the thoughts we have about ourselves did not come from us. They are all learned from society. We care about being not enough or not having enough because we want to be accepted by society. If you think that you don’t care about what others think about you, then ask yourself why the way you look is so important to you?
Don’t let fears about what others might think about you to prevent you from seeking help. If you’re looking to help yourself it doesn’t mean that something is wrong with you, it means that you’re looking to regain your power, to awaken to the truth and the misleading ideas that led you to your unhappiness.
So now that we perceive self-help as an act of empowerment and not weakness lets see what can we do to empower ourselves and create the life we want.
To feel empowered, we need to have some sense of control over our state of being, which is comprised of – thoughts, emotions, and body. We believe that we are in control of all three aspects. However, it is not the case.
Thoughts to which we agree that pop in our minds are just a summary of what we have learned from society and consider to be true about the world and ourselves. So if a thought such as – “I am worthless because someone said so” doesn’t feel good to you, you can give yourself full permission not to give an F about it. Simply because it’s origin is not you.
Later on, you might feel the need to address some thoughts that don’t feel good to understand your condition more profoundly and free yourself entirely from believing in what doesn’t feel good. But for now, to calm yourself and begin the process of empowerment, it is enough to give yourself permission not to care about your thoughts, simply because they are not yours. You just perceive them as your own because you hear your own voice in your head. But that voice is the voice of a parrot repeating what it heard from someone else from the moment it was born.
Emotions, on the other hand, are more challenging to ignore because we feel them physically. Fear, anxiety, sadness, depression are all chemicals that react in our bodies, increasing blood pressure, making us sweat, etc. If you engage with an emotional reaction that is taking place, you will find out that it is only increasing its effect.
Trying to understand depression or fear while you are afraid or depressed, can only worsen your situation if you don’t know what you’re doing. Any conclusion that you come up with about what you feel will be tied directly to what you feel which is – fear and depression. Meaning, you’ll still find yourself thinking about fear and depression, which leaves you exactly where you started.
The best way to react to emotions is not to try to figure out why are they here or what are the consequences to them being here. Understand that emotions are a physical reaction of the body, just like a cut or a bruise. Pondering about why the bruise hurts doesn’t change the fact that it does. Thinking about what it means also doesn’t contribute to anything at that moment when you are focused on pain. Emotion is a physical manifestation of a prior thought process or belief that is already deeply embedded into us. Trying to stop it is like trying to stop a truck going downhill.
The reason we try to stop our emotions is that we don’t like the meaning we attach to them. The physical aspect of fear is no more than an increased heartbeat, sweat, or something of that manner. The mental aspect of fear is unrealistic. It is a concern we come up with while we fear that adds to the existing fear. Hence once we engage in the meaning and the consequences of our emotion, the emotion becomes a rolling snowball that keeps on growing.
However, we can make it easier on ourselves going through the process of feeling our emotions and letting them go. If you understood that fighting emotions is pointless, then the only thing that’s left is to let them pass.
Concentrate on breathing to assist the body to do its job of resolving all chemical reactions that are now occurring. Try to envision yourself in a calm state, or imagine something soothing. The more you relax your mind, the sooner the emotion will pass.
Emotions, desires, addictions are all expressed in our bodies. We can assist our physical healing through mental balance and relaxation. If you react to your body’s addictions, desires, emotions in destructive ways, you become a slave to your body.
When you understand that your choices are not beneficial to your health, all it takes is to awaken completely to your choices to stop the destructive patterns. Break all the illusion of control that you’ve created by seeing that the way you react doesn’t help, it only wastes more of your time. Relaxation, on the other hand, is an instant resolution of emotion. When you’re relaxed, you are balanced and have better chances of seeing the whole picture instead of fixating on one emotion. Don’t succumb to what your body and mind want you to do. Create yourself as you want to be by choosing to see yourself as you are today.
Your past choices manifested today as your thoughts, your body’s demands, habits, addiction, and beliefs. Change is possible if you allow yourself to change over time without judging and being stuck thinking about the past.
If you want to change, make that decision now. Even if you don’t see yourself changed tomorrow, even if you feel your old emotions and fears, know that you are on your way to living the life you want, allow yourself to relax into that vision. Choose according to that vision. Your body will eventually keep up with you if you give it time. Give yourself time and permission to change. Become interested in doing this compassionately and effectively according to where you are today. Always acknowledge where you are right now and do what you can from there.