When you experience emotional difficulties, what is your default reaction?
Move away from them? Or fight back? Or try not to pay attention to them?
Emotional difficulties are sometimes a message from our life:
“You are not true to yourself”
“You are ignoring your true feelings and what is important for you.”
Recurring emotional pain is not the sign that there is something wrong with us. It is the message from our life that we are suppressing our emotional truths.
We suffer when we are unable to live true to ourselves.
I wonder since when I became someone else?
Although I am dying to live true to myself, I am afraid to be myself.
I am afraid perhaps because I have experienced so much emotional pain in the past.
It is not that I do not want to live true to myself!
I had no choice but suppressing myself in order to protect myself,
in order to protect my parents and people I care for.
in order to protect my dignity.
(By Yuka Kato)
When our life feels hard, we try to fight back in order to protect ourselves from further hurts and disappointment.
We could temporarily avoid hurts, but it comes at a huge cost.
We avoid recognising and honouring the parts of us that are true to ourselves. Those parts are so vulnerable that we have learned to suppress, ignore and push them away.
We move ourselves further away from, rather than towards, who we really are, as a result of avoidance.
The suppression of ourselves is very often unconscious. It is therefore difficult to become aware of what makes our life so hard.
How can we find a way back to who we really are?
It’s actually simple.
To accept what spontaneously arises from within here and now.
Bring your attention to how you feel, rather than story.
When we are upset, we often get caught up with what’s happening externally. We get lost in endless story telling. We then disconnect with what’s happening internally.
Being true to ourselves means that we do not judge any of our feelings and thoughts, no matter how bad and awful you think they are.
My favourite poet, Rilke, writes
“What is happening in your innermost self is worthy of your entire love.”
When we are able to get in touch with our spontaneous feelings without judgment, our sense of being ourselves will grow deeper.
The practice of self-acceptance is simple but very powerful and transformative!!
As your sense of being yourself and being real grows stronger, your life will begin to flow into a better direction.
Because through learning to be true to ourselves, we will have deeper understanding of the patterns of thinking, feeling and behavior which causes us to suffer.
With increased self-acceptance and self-awareness, we will be much more able to respond to our circumstance differently, rather than being reactive.
We will be also feel more OK towards ourselves.
The more accepting and loving towards ourselves, the more accepting and loving we become towards others as well.
Because when we can hold our vulnerability with compassion, we will also be able to be empathic with others’ vulnerability.
I have come to think that issues and challenges in front of us are here to give us an opportunity to recognise our emotional truths that we have previously denied and learn to be true to ourselves.
We can definitely move things forward in the best possible direction if we summon up the courage to be true to ourselves.