Menu

Where to find strength

HomeForumsEmotional MasteryWhere to find strength

New Reply
Viewing 15 posts - 76 through 90 (of 92 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #376581
    Peter
    Participant

    I often fail to communicate my thoughts effectively. I apologized for any confusion.

    #376584
    anita
    Participant

    * Dear teaK:

    I read a good portion of the communication between you and Peter this morning, and I think I have some understanding about a misunderstanding that I detected. I thought it might be helpful if I share with you my understanding of .. the misunderstanding:

    You’ve been talking about inner-child work, healing childhood wounds (metaphorically, climbing a mountain), and Peter has been talking about the Buddhis principle of detachment (letting go/ freeing himself from the desire/ attachment to climbing that mountain).

    You believe that either Peter didn’t do any inner-child work, or that if he did, he didn’t do enough of it, and therefore, he needs to do more. You’ve been telling Peter: climb that mountain again! If you do, once you get to the top, you will be healed and all will be well, and that mountain will be gone, no more climbing!

    Peter is saying: I don’t want to climb that mountain because even if I climb it for the rest of my life, the mountain will still be there. So better I accept that the mountain is there and leave it alone, no need to climb it again.

    As I see it, from personal experience, both principles are valid: an adult who was emotionally injured in childhood, to a significant or severe extent, needs to do inner-child work (and you described that work very well, teaK!). But at one point, the person needs to slow down and eventually, let go of doing the inner-child work even though the work has not been completed. The reason: this kind of work cannot be completed, there is no summit to that mountain.

    At one point, looking at myself in the mirror, seeing a face of an ageing woman, I realized that some of the pain of childhood injuries will never go away because of its consequences: I cannot get my youth back, I cannot get my health back, I am facing more ageing, I can’t go back in time and undo all that immense waste of life, lost opportunities, a life unlived.

    And I realized that this waste is not my tragedy alone, but that it is a human tragedy. I am not alone.

    Realizing this, there was nothing for me to do but to let go of that mountain, to stop climbing it, to accept that it is there.  I am still interested in healing and learning, this is why I am here on tiny buddha,  every day. But I am not desperate, I no longer live under the delusion that there is an ending point to healing, and that better I get there sooner than later. There is no ending point, no summit to that mountain.

    anita

     

     

     

     

    #376588
    TeaK
    Participant

    Dear Anita,

    thank your for your perspective.

    “You’ve been talking about inner-child work, healing childhood wounds (metaphorically, climbing a mountain)”

    I actually didn’t equate the inner child work with climbing the mountain. It was Peter’s metaphor of his own process. I just noticed he said he’s tempted to climb it again (and similar metaphors, such as re-crossing the river), and that’s why I thought he isn’t so sure that he let go of say guilt of whatever emotions he was struggling with. I was simply noticing a certain hesitance, a certain doubt in his words, and thought that it means he hasn’t really let go, or that he might have let go just mentally, but not emotionally.

    I know that many teachings talk about climbing the mountain and finally reaching some “enlightened” state, or a completely healed state. I don’t believe that, because we’ll never be perfect human beings, there’s always room for growth, so I don’t believe that we can reach some ultimate state of perfection.

    And I agree with you, the inner child work isn’t supposed to go on forever, because once we’ve healed our main emotional wounds, the inner child isn’t hurting any more, isn’t craving for love, attention and validation, and we sort of integrate it into our adult personality. So it’s not the miracle cure for everything, but it can help in healing our major unmet emotional needs.

    #376589
    anita
    Participant

    * You are welcome, teaK.

    anita

    #376590
    Peter
    Participant

    Thanks Anita you have caught my intent

    I know that many teachings talk about climbing the mountain and finally reaching some “enlightened” state, or a completely healed state. I don’t believe that, because we’ll never be perfect human beings, there’s always room for growth, so I don’t believe that we can reach some ultimate state of perfection.

    The Zen quote I was referencing agrees. We climb the mountain, and the mountain becomes more then a mountain,  after achieving the view (can’t live on top of the mountain though we may be tempted to try) we return and the mountain becomes what it always was, a mountain (seen as if for the first time).  Returning life asks of us to proceed where their will be other mountains and rivers. That is the human ‘tragedy and gift’

    My observations was that many people get trapped in a cycle of retuning to the same mountain and climbing it again and again.  I was trying to explain through personal examples that I understood that temptation to return as I have in the past done just that. Realizing that tendency to return in myself was part my journey in learning to ‘let go’.  My intention was to encourage  those that may find themselves in that predicament. That they might ask themselves the question and not to panic if they find themselves stuck.

    The mountain and rivers will always be part of our scenery. Depending on the lighting somedays these mountains may appear wonderous and beautiful and on others daunting and dangiours.  Actually they can appear as both beautiful and daunting, even horrific in the same moment. That is the nature of mountains.

    Using Anita example part of the process of healing is getting to a place where we can look at those mountains as they are, without becoming desperate about it.  That is no small thing.

    This has been very helpful.

    I know Felix is feeling alone and is looking for a specific kind of relationship to help heal that hurt. I hope he finds what he is looking for. I also hope he can see that as Anita said he is not alone. Here in this odd ball community are people that he may not know but that generally care about his happiness and progress.

    #376591
    anita
    Participant

    * Dear Peter:

    Thank you! Your input in this thread has been helpful to me beyond the topic of the (figurative) mountain: I was impressed that when you were repeatedly pressured to climb that mountain, you did not appear perturbed, but calm and collected. You did not push back, or become aggressive in any way, a true Zen attitude.

    This strengthened my resolve to be gentle with people, to not pressure or push… but let (non-aggressive) people like you (1) express themselves in their way, using their words/ style, and (2) choose to examine or explore this or that idea- or not, without judgment.

    anita

     

     

    #376814
    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Felix,

    I’ve enjoyed reading through this thread and I found your “metaphor kung fu” comment very funny.  On a more serious note, in your most recent post you shared:  I lost my health, most of my savings, my home, my wife, my job, had cancer, had to file for bankruptcy, and many other things went wrong…I am afraid I’ll break one of these days, and the title of your thread is Where to find strength. Maybe strength starts to materialize once you allow the feelings you have to just be there. In other words, by being distressed about your distress, you are creating another level of distress. What if you decide that you don’t mind your distress anymore? What happens then?

    B

    #376848
    Felix
    Participant

    Hi Brandy. Good point, but I don’t know what that means, as in I don’t know how to not mind my distress. I don’t know how to let go, how to accept everything that’s happening to me as is. I am taking everything too seriously because I feel like if I do not then I am screwed. I have a finite amount of time to rebuild my life, start saving for retirement, and whatever else I have planned, but I feel like a total failure because I am in this position. All those things are making me feel sick. I wish I was one of those people who just says IDGAF and enjoys life. I truly do. I wish I was OK with being where I am now, even if I am the biggest loser in the world, but I can’t because I have some ambitions that are driving me to be more successful than I am now. If I had a caring partner, intimacy, supporting friends, and loving family, I would be happy as hell, but I don’t have a partner, my friends are great, but we grew up in a different culture where men are not soft and we all have to figure sh%t out on our own. My parents love me, but couldn’t support me if their lives depends on it. I also don’t know how to ask for help. Life is hard enough and things are not easy for anyone now, but I am making it much harder for myself because I am distressed about my situation and can’t seem to accept it as is. I am fighting against something, but don’t even know against what.

    #376850
    TeaK
    Participant

    Dear Felix,

    I also don’t know how to ask for help.

    It seems to me you do know how to ask for help – at least you did it here on the forum – but it’s much harder for you to accept help, or even just to open yourself to the possibility that there is help, that your situation isn’t helpless as you believe it is. Many of us here wrote giving ideas and suggestions, but you mostly brushed them away, or didn’t respond, always returning to the same narrative: that it’s extremely hard for you, that you’ve had horrible losses, you’re alone, you’re getting older, you’re trying like hell, doing your best, but nothing seems to be working, and you’re exhausted and desperate.

    I am sorry to say this, but you sound like a broken record. I know it’s hard for you right now, but it appears as if you switch on the “automatic response”, which swiftly repels a possible solution, a possible relief of your problem.

    I am fighting against something, but don’t even know against what.

    You’re right, you’re fighting against something, and it seems you’re fighting against yourself and your own happiness. You’re focusing only on the negatives, repeating them again and again in your mind, like a broken record, and actively rejecting possible positives. I am sorry to say this, but it will be very difficult to find a way out, with this current attitude.

    #376852
    Felix
    Participant

    Hi Teak,

    First, please understand that I didn’t brush anything off. If I didn’t reply to something, it’s only by accident. I’ve been busy interviewing and studying a lot the last month. I am just exhausted mentally and emotionally. In terms of brushing things off, I did not. You’re right, I do know how to reach out for help, but I don’t know how to accept help. I am not sure if it’s because I don’t want to feel weak or it’s because of low self esteem (feeling that I am not deserving of help), but it’s a problem. When it comes to work, I don’t shy away from reaching out to my team and asking for help, but when it comes to life, I simply don’t know. The good side of who I am, that’s my grandparents. They raised me and gave me love. The bad side and the broken side, that’s my parents, my absent stepdad, my materialistic and superficial mom. My grandparents are gone so I have no one to turn to. There are all these great groups and activities on Meetup.com and other mediums, but I am ashamed and embarrassed to join most of these activities. It’s not me brushing them off and anyone here, it’s me not knowing what to do next. I am not shy and this is not introversion. I am not shy to talk to girls or random strangers. It’s my low self esteem and low self worth. It’s affecting my interviewing process, it’s affecting my friendships, it’s affecting every aspect of my life. I am not shy, I am not rude, I am not dismissive and I always appreciate help. I am simply not feeling good enough. I feel strange when people do something for me because I feel like they are wasting their valuable time on me and I am not worth it. This goes to the root of my post. I am stressed to the breaking point because I know what I am doing (looking for work, studying, eating healthy etc), but I also need help and I don’t know where to get it and when I know where to get it, I don’t know how. I have an appointment with a therapist tomorrow and self-esteem\self-worth will be our primary subject of discussion. I’ve let go of most things and attachments. I am free as hell and happy about that, but I am also empty. We have to love ourselves or everything else is going to crash. And I don’t know how to love myself. I don’t know what that feels like. I never got the love a child deserved from his parents, how do I now at 43 start loving myself? It’s probably why my marriage failed. She loved me, but I didn’t know what that meant. I know know how to love, not how to be loved.

    #376853
    Felix
    Participant

    Regarding your past paragraph. That’s depression. That’s what it does. It gets your to ruminate on the negative. I know all this and I fight it daily. Clinical depression is when people feel depression regardless of what is going on in their lives. I have situational, or life depression. I don’t feel sad or depressed when things are great, but because things have been pretty crappy for sooooo long, I’ve forgotten what joy feels like. I don’t remember the last time I felt happy. It’s been at least 4 or 5 years, may be more. Even the happier times in the last 5 years have been filled with sad and sorrow. How can stop ruminating on the negative when I have been going through so much crap? I know, I know, I am trying. I will not give up. Just tired of this feeling of feeling lost. I am watching Finding Joe now. I’ve watched all these amazing movies and documentaries about dark times, finding ourselves, and many other interesting topics, but then I come back to my grim reality and I sink in deeper and deeper. Hey, at least got my meditation cushion delivered today. That def put a smile on my face. I love meditation and it’s truly been a helpful thing since I’ve started using it to look inside myself (I use the Waking Up app by Sam Harris).

    #376856
    TeaK
    Participant

    Dear Felix,

    first thing I’ve noticed, not just now but in at least one previous occasion too, is that you send your replies extremely quickly. Ten minutes after I posted you already sent a pretty long response. It’s a similar pattern to what I described earlier: someone gives you a suggestion, and you immediately swing it back, like a ball, explaining why this suggestion doesn’t work for you, or repeating more of the same problem. Now you haven’t done exactly that, you did reflect and comment on what I’ve said, but it feels like you’re rushing to give a response. You don’t allow yourself to really hear it, to reflect on it, but you immediately shoot it back.

    This can be one manifestation of your inability to receive – receive advice, help, or perhaps receive love as well. In order to receive it, you’d need to slow down, and perhaps there’s fear of what you might find within if you do slow down. You said you feel empty, and also that you’re ashamed and embarrassed, and that you have low self-esteem, although you aren’t shy to e.g. talk to girls. That’s possible because we might have self-confidence (because we’re good at presenting, selling, doing sports etc), but we still might lack self-esteem and self-worth – because that goes deeper, to the core of our being.

    I believe your feeling empty has to do with the lack of self-esteem and self-worth. You don’t believe there’s anything worthy in there. That’s why it’s also hard for you to slow down and listen to your inner voice. It’s cool that you meditate, but I am figuring there’s still some disconnect there.

    One way you can connect with yourself is to close your eyes, put one hand on your heart and the other on you belly, and breathe, and feel your belly rise and fall as you breathe. It’s a hug of sort, where you feel yourself, accept yourself and comfort yourself at the same time. Try it if you’d like.

    I could go on, but would first like to ask your opinion about what I’ve wrote, and whether you have received it.

     

    #376857
    Brandy
    Participant

    Felix,

    I think I understand how you feel.

    All my friends are enjoying their lives with their wives and children, spending time in the backyards and traveling the world

    Felix, do you realize that all of these good things in your friends’ lives are threatened by collapse every single moment of the day? At any given instant one of your friends could acquire a terminal illness or have an accident or have a spouse leave or lose a job, a house, or even worse a child. Sooner or later distress will invade everyone’s life through sickness, accident, loss, death, etc. It happens to everyone. When you find a partner, Felix, there’s no guarantee that your relationship will last;. in fact, I can guarantee it will not last either through a break-up or eventual death, either of which will create distress for you, your partner, or both.

    I don’t know how to not mind my distress.

    At 43 years old you’ve endured a lot. The distress you feel is warranted. We all experience distress at some point. If we aren’t feeling it now, we’ll feel it later, so we’d better get comfortable with the whole idea of feeling distressed. Even when all is resolved for you and you experience a distress-free period, life will happen and, well, cause you more distress. So, Felix, you may reach a point in your life when you say to yourself I’m feeling distressed but it’s okay because I’ve felt distressed before and I’ll feel distressed again so I’m going to decide not to mind feeling distressed anymore because by fighting this feeling of distress I’m creating another layer of unhappiness within myself.

    Why not give it a try? What do you have to lose?

    B 🙂

    #377411
    Felix
    Participant

    Apologies for late response. It’s been a hell of a week.
    Dear Teak. You’re right about my quick responses, but it’s not out of anything other than me being me. It’s nothing personal. I feel like I am doing the best I can being where I am right now. It’s a really tough situation and I don’t feel well. I have an analytical mind that think logically and like a computer it spits out answers based on that logic. But I am going to try to slow down and let things cook for a bit before responding. I am not talking about here, but more in general. I’ve already done a lot of that in every day life and it has helped me with staying more calm and centered. And I do listen to advice, but if I don’t know how to love myself then no advice can help until I learn how to love myself. Right now, I am trying to love myself, but there is too much loathing instead. I don’t truly hate myself, but because of my current situation in life, I just want to shrivel up and disappear. I feel pretty sad. The Sun is out, nature is beautiful, my dog is with me, I have good friends, but I feel sick and empty.

    Just when I was giving praise to my family, they showed their true colors. It was my sister’s birthday this week. We have the same mom, but different dads. I don’t consider her to my half-sister. I love her like a sister and I love her very much. We were celebrating at this restaurant on a patio and without going into every detail, out of nowhere she turned to me and said, “STFU you idiot”. I was floored, then just got up and quietly walked away and left. She apologized the next day, my parents tried calling me, but at this point I don’t want to speak with them or have anything to do with these people. Family was one of the few things I had left to hold on to during these complicated times and they really let me down. I am not mad at them. I see them as primitive beings who are operating on a lower level of consciousness.  I truly feel sorry for them, but I can’t allow them to treat me like this ever again. I give them all I can, all my love and support, I come to help at the drop of a pin, but in return I get nothing. No love, no support, no positive emotions, nothing. In any other situation, almost any other person with more or less normal parents would be able to talk to them, but I am dealing with people who simply not very intelligent. I love them and will always love them, but I don’t like them and this was the breaking point. I am done with them. It hurts because I already haven’t spoken to my real dad and sister for many years. They don’t seem to care. And now I am done with my mom, stepdad, and sister. It makes feel sad and scared because now I am truly alone. And that’s OK, but it hurts no matter how you spin it.

    Everyone tells me that I should love myself. I get it. I just don’t know how to love myself when even my own family doesn’t. Those who did love me are either no longer alive or are too old to know the difference. I haven’t been this broken inside my whole entire life. But I am not giving up. I am working on fixing things, but it’s hard work and there is lots of pain.

    #377412
    Felix
    Participant

    Dear Brandy,

    What you are referring is to is letting go. I’ve let go. I truly have. I don’t sit there and dwell on what I have lost or why I don’t have what I want. I just don’t feel well. That’s the problem. There is no balance between stress and peace. I am deep in job searching\interviewing with these soulless corporations and being rejected one after another. Then the rest of the time is spent studying and getting ready for certification exams. And struggling because I have minor ADHD and it’s hard to concentrate 5 hours a day on this stuff. I  often just want to drop it all and get a trucker license so I can drive trucks and not have to worry about any of this, but that’s what my dad and grandpa did and I don’t want that. I believe I am capable of more. There is nothing, but stress in my life right and I have accepted this feeling. It’s been with me more or less for the last 4-5 years. I gave this example to my therapist, I am a gazelle that’s being chased down by a tiger, I am fast and agile, I can do all kinds of tricks to avoid the tiger, but at some point I get tired. The gazelle doesn’t want to give up or die, but there are physical and emotional limits set by the Universe on everyone and everything, so the gazelle gives up. I am not the gazelle and I am not giving up, but I am so tired that I simply don’t know what to look forward to. I celebrate the small wins, but there havent been any small wins. There hasn’t been anything good. Granted, there hasnt been anything really bad either, but that’s not enough. I am desperate for something good. I am trying to be my own parent and love my self, my inner child, but I am just too exhausted. The grief is great and the power to be optimistic and look forward to a better tomorrow is fleeting. But I am not giving up, If the universe me not to exist, it’s gonna have to work harder. If I die then I die, but right now I am doing what I can. Hopefully things will improve. As I wrote in my last comment, my family has disappointed me for the last time. So I am now truly alone. I am not weak and I won’t let anything or anyone break me. I’ll do what I can and if that’s not enough, well then I don’t care and then world is a crappy place, but that’s not up to me. What is up to me will be done.

Viewing 15 posts - 76 through 90 (of 92 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic. Please log in OR register.