Someone recently told me that he felt depressed and was struggling to awaken his deeper sense of self-value. He recognized his childhood pattern of self-blame that came from the fear of being punished for his innocent curiosity. He grew up in a very critical home, and developed the belief that he is unworthy of love and that he therefore deserves to be punished.
Understandably, his belief formed into a pattern of self-punishment and withdrawal, for as a child he didn’t feel safe enough to be curious and joyful without the threat of being punished.
Whatever beliefs you uncured as a child, they are derived from coping mechanisms.
Depression becomes a coping mechanism, a way to make sense out of chaos. Our minds have such a strong need for rational understanding, and since other people’s behaviour, such as our parents, cannot always be clearing explained, we tend to find fault in ourselves.
“I must have been criticized, neglected, abandoned… because there is something wrong with me,” is a common belief that many people have.
There is nothing wrong with you – the world just has a harsh need to change you.
Why does the world have such a harsh need to change us? Why do people judge and struggle with others and with reality?
Because we are afraid of one another’s differences, and afraid of the unknown.
Therefore, we project our familiar perception of reality and live in a small protected bubble that prevents us from fully enjoying life.
We reject what we don’t understand and we expect perfection from others and ourselves in order to safeguard our familiar perception of reality.
We live in a world where our differences need to be accepted, especially our inner world.
Our differences don’t need to be changed, resolved, fixed or even forgiven; they need to be accepted and loved.
There is nothing more healing than a welcoming heart. Yet, we tend to compare ourselves to others or to our own version of who we think we should be. And then we fight with that incongruent reality; we fight with our own unrelenting perfectionism; we fight with our belief that we’re not good enough as we are. And that’s profoundly depressing.
I want to add here a quoted passage from Prem Chodron’s book: Awakening Loving-Kindness. Chodron writes, “The problem is that the desire to change is fundamentally a form of aggression toward yourself. The other problem is that our hangups, unfortunately or fortunately, contain our wealth. Our neurosis and our wisdom are made out of the same material. If you throw out your neurosis, you also throw out your wisdom.”
Being perfectly imperfect
When we no longer compare ourselves with the consummate version of perfection, we are free to be happy and free to be loved, and we are restful in mind, body and soul.
When we no longer chase after a flawless version of enlightenment and bliss, we are at peace with ourselves and with life.
When we cease expecting others to meet our expectation of perfection, we discover the gift of compassion, acceptance, and we become curious about their behaviour, thoughts, and feelings, as well as our own.
Normalizing your feelings and your needs is the key to happiness
The more and more we gain friendship with our feelings, needs and desires, we accept who we are with profound curiosity and spiritual integrity. And we accept the hurt, fear, anger, despair in others, as well as their strengths and wisdom.
Masiandia: “There is so much joy that comes with recognizing that your emotions are beautiful expressions of a deeper truth; your needs are a tiding from your soul, and your desires are a new path awakening within you.
“If you were to accept that every bump in the road, every discomforting feeling, every grey cloud is part of a emerging landscape of deep spiritual reverie, and that you’ve incarnated to experience and celebrate all the seasons of your life, not just the blissful moments, you would discover the path of least resistance. You would come to realize that all your feelings and your needs are sacred and meaningful – that nothing is wrong – you are not unworthy – you are divine.
“Divinity, bliss, love, harmony, joy… are not separate from loneliness, sorrow, fear or anger. Rather, they are what loneliness, sorrow, fear and anger need in order to be accepted and held in peace.”
“Dear ones, love is all there is!”
If you struggle with depression, please consider working with me.
Come out from beneath the weight of suppressed emotions to discover
your wisdom and worthiness, and learn life-skills to better navigate the
sea of other people’s emotions.
Take your first step and contact me now for your free 20 min consultation
Feature photo by Gabriel