There is a feeling that comes when someone who could not talk clearly or stand straight has somehow turned a corner and their eyes open in a way that was wider than before. It is of course by no one else’s doing or because someone urged or supported but instead, morning comes and it’s like a new day. The sun is shining. The wind is calm and suddenly, yesterday is gone.
The pain or the fears are overrun by a sense of reconciliation. Or better yet, this is when the mind comes to a specific realization which is impactful enough to spark a change. This is when people come to a moment of clarity. This is when people identify and understand and it’s like EUREKA!
“I got it now.”
There is a tale about this too. The tale goes on about a man named Archimedes who coined the phrase after coming to a solution. So, “eureka” means I found it or I have it.
This means, “I got it now.”
We come to these moments in our life and, oftentimes, after we’ve banged our head against the same wall or did the same thing over and over again and hoped (or expected) different results.
And then something clicks. The student was ready so, the teacher appeared.
Understand, there is no realization as valuable as our own because our realizations support our belief systems. Whereas belief is like electricity, which is neither positive or negative. Instead, as an energy form electricity is agnostic and only in need of direction.
One thing for sure is the mind is always working. We are always making decisions (more than 35,000 each day to be exact). There are surface level thoughts and ideas and subconscious thoughts or programs that run like a computer in the background. Our mind is always looking for the ease of math. We want peace and we want comfort. However life is not always a comfortable place to be.
There was a person who I had the honor of interacting with and I say this not because of any level of importance or hierarchy. Instead, this was two people speaking, peer to peer, or person to person. There was no talk about job titles or positions. There was no need to separate us by our differences or background. Instead, we put our masks away. We put away the decorations that people come with and decided to speak to each other. We did this without trying to promote our needs for comfort, image or self-preservation.
I love conversations like this.
I love when two people talk and, somehow, both are better because of it. I love when a person struggles to decipher between the nonsense that goes on in their head. But more, I love when a discussion is mutual and somewhere, somehow, two people come to an understanding together. They come to a conclusion or a realization and, together, they create a moment and Eureka!
They’ve got it.
It has been my experience that conversations like this are more helpful and impactful than being told what to do (or how). It is when we come to our own levels of understanding that we reach a new level of awareness. And this is what constitutes our best personal changes.
One of my required classes to earn more credentials discussed a person’s belief system. This was to educate us on the belief system of our clients, which means if people don’t believe it then people can’t achieve it.
Let’s take alcohol abuse for example. Let’s discuss the problems and the aftermath. Let’s look at the loss that follows the drink, which is obvious.
Well, it would appear obvious; yet, alcohol and substance abuse is on the rise. Overeating and self-destructive behavior is on the rise. Depression is on the rise and crutch related deaths such as smoking is high. Obesity claims lives. Heart disease, cancer and, sadly, suicide are all real factors.
Meanwhile, there are wellness models and empowerment programs. There is online health support, gym memberships, diets, dietitians, rehabs, therapists, doctors, mental health professionals and coaches who are readily available and these numbers continue to rise.
I offered a piece of my story to a person who said things that connected with pieces of my life. I talked about the natural assumptions that I have, which are frequently inaccurate; yet, there is a part of my thinking that usually assumes I am disliked or judged.
Earlier, I mentioned rejection sensitive dysphoria in one of my previous entries. This is very common by the way. There is always someone who will say, “You have to toughen up.” There is always someone out there who says, “You need to thicken your skin, or “Don’t be so sensitive.”
To them I say, great idea.
Now, why didn’t I think about that?
Dysphoria is a state of dissatisfaction; it’s anxiety, it’s restlessness. It’s an idea that keeps moving and moving and building and building until the thoughts change, amplify and then mutate. Next, the sky is falling. Everything is wrong and the impending doom is clanking along the tracks, churning like an angry train with no brakes and I am tied to the tracks just waiting for the pain.
Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria is the perception of being rejected or unwanted and criticized. This is an extreme level of sensitivity which makes it difficult to bounce back. But for me, this has always been the ongoing assumption that there’s a joke out there only I’m the last one to get the punchline or, worse, there’s a joke out there and I am afraid that I will be the punchline.
My fears of exposure and public humiliation were punishing to me throughout my life. I was always afraid of being the fool. I was afraid to be gullible or vulnerable or worse, to be seen as the perfect mark or punching bag that no one liked or wanted around. In fact, there were times I would have accepted the role of a punching bag because at least I’d have the opportunity to be around or pick up the “attention’ scraps like a dog that was desperate for attention.
I have fears that people do not like me, in which case, I judge myself harshly. Therefore, I struggle to like myself. There is no positive feedback from within; therefore, if there is no external acceptance or approval, I struggled with the lonesomeness of believing that I am unwanted (like the village idiot) and that being as I am is not good enough. This meant that I was incapable of sitting or talking with people who are smart, educated, or who sit in high positions of corporate structures.
I have met with people who hold manager and executive positions but, there is a fear that comes which assumes that eventually someone is going to come along and reveal the truth about them.
Someone is going to expose a weakness or a lack of know how or understanding. There is a fear of inability or weakness and, therefore, there is an anxious mindset that assumes the worst as well as judges the intentions of others.
(By the way, somewhere around 75% of people struggle with the ideas of impostorism.)
Part of my challenge to overcome this was to believe that people actually liked me. Another part of my struggle was that I had to adjust my internal voice.
My good friend Mitch once told me, “Don’t play that movie out in your head.” And I agree with him because this has a way of coming true.
I offered this information to a friend who was going through a rough time in life. I did not speak for my friend nor did I speak over my friend. Instead, we spoke together. We spoke with each other and not to each other. We allowed ourselves to come to our own conclusions, to improve our personal belief system, even if for no other reason than to say, “At least I’m not alone.”
As I close this entry, I know that my thoughts and assumptions can be inaccurate. I know that my physical health habits need to improve and I know how to improve them too. However, there were times where there was a stall in efforts because of my belief system.
This is when my beliefs hinged upon my personal reward system. Either the results were not fast enough and the shame-based ideas lingered or the quicker fixes come to mind. Things like food or eating until I am stuffed and in a food coma were my reaction to reach a reward. Granted, this has a shameful aftermath but for the moment, the eating binge triggered the receptors to honor my reward system. I could feel the numbness overtake the anxiety because my thoughts were replaced by a gratifying action. The same thing works with drinking. Or drugs. Or any self-serving, quick fix.
I offer this openly; however, I understand personalities and triggers change and have the right to be unique. Yet, pathology is science and learning about our own science does more than make us physically fit. This helps us become mentally fit as well and suddenly: it’s like ”EUREKA!”
I got it!