Change Your Mind When You Cannot Change Your Body!
I am writing this blog as a therapeutic and developmental exercise to promote mind changes that will translate to a healthier body. This is truly an exploration in self-discovery and possibility.
I was recently diagnosed with a rare auto-immune disorder (I can’t say disease). The last two years of my life have been an uphill struggle to maintain equilibrium as my body was overtaken by an alien invader. The symptoms don’t matter. The psychological results are the focus of this writing.
I use the word struggle because I was taught that in order to “rise above” something, I MUST struggle. Or, maybe I am the only one who ever received this message. Somehow, I don’t think so. I was taught to struggle “to get over” something/anything. I was taught to struggle to achieve something/anything. I was taught to struggle “to just get by”. I was taught to struggle to survive. Thriving was not on the list of benefits and rewards. Struggle was a kind of penance to insure that the really bad things would never happen. But, the cost was to never expect miracles. And, what is a miracle but a gift granted?
STRUGGLE – STRUGGLE – STRUGGLE. So, I am thinking that maybe struggling is the problem here. What if I could FLY above something/anything. What is I could FLY over something/anything. What if I could joyfully achieve something/anything. What if thriving was the expectation rather than the exception? In other words, could I be happy with my individual uniqueness rather than be in some unsubstantiated debt to a perceived global struggle and the view that flaws (like illnesses or challenges) were weak links in my character?
When I was a young adult, I wrote:
Life was simple once
Although I can’t remember when
But, if I could, I bet it would
Be simple once again!
What made life so complicated? I believe it was the introduction of the struggle to succeed, to achieve, to be happy, to be accepted, to be financially secure, to be respected, to get to the top of the proverbial mountain (wherever that is).
And, here I sit writing this blog – feeling like I’ve fallen off the proverbial top of the world (wherever that is). Yet, somehow I feel like I am on more solid ground – – more in touch with the earth beneath my feet – – more aware of the air I breath. The air on top was thin and weak. I felt the struggle in more than just my lungs. Initially, my instinct is to take a deep breath of this hearty, reality-based air to prepare for my beginning steps to rise to the top once again. But, I am hesitating! Do I really want to get back to where I was – to where there is only a relentless struggle to maintain my precarious perch upon an illusory mountain top? Or, is there somewhere else for me to be? Can I grow in contentment and experience success as a by product of following the path that resonates with my uniqueness and talents? I think of a Tug of War. I want to let go of the rope. But, I’m afraid to fall harder and deeper into mediocrity or obscurity. Somehow, I am afraid that without the struggle I will cease to exist. I fear that by letting go, I will turn to dust and vanish in my own inadequacies. But, nothing points to my inadequacies. They are all in the imagination of MY FEARS.
This leads me to my work – my passion. The think I love more than anything except for my family and friends.
I am a clinical therapist and a hypnotist. As such, I believe that my role is to help people reach their highest potential – to train their brains to expect success. But, what happens when your goals are changed OR the goal post is moved OR you are called to play another game?
The simple answer is to ADJUST – to find a new and relevant goal. For now, I will choose health as my goal. Health – that once came so naturally that I believed it was my inalienable right and in some ways my earned right based on a healthy lifestyle.
My goal is also to reach out to others who are going through a similar journey – whether with health or other challenges. Company is always good. So, I welcome your company along the way to understanding myself more fully. And, I welcome any and all insights by those of you who are farther along the journey of self-discovery than I am.
I would like to say that I am shifting my thinking to encompass a wider path that allows for exploration into my real essence — an essence that I was born with and never had to struggle to obtain. An essence that still exists in my more fragile body. We all have our unique essences. But, we can’t find ourselves and our true essences on a narrow path of limitations and rigid expectations. We have to be willing to follow our unique path wherever it takes us – even if it means in the valley of the proverbial mountain. How can we be ourselves by following a cookie recipe for success? After all, treasures are not readily accessible – out in the open. They would not be treasures if they were easy to find. Treasures are buried beneath fertile ground to keep them safe from pillage and abuse. We are the guardians of our own treasures. Maybe this is my time to unearth them so light can be shed on their intentions.
We all have challenges. But, I believe that we all have the gifts we need to overcome them. The question is whether or not we can change our version of ourselves to become who we were meant to be.
I look forward to this opportunity to share my journey and to hear about your challenges and the gifts you have discovered along the way to playing another game – to becoming more authentically you.