tiistai 18. marraskuuta 2014

Day 411: Sensitivity


The Princess and the pea

Lately I have been thinking about the concept of sensitivity. The existence of “sensitive people”, an entity of its own kind, has been spoken of as a fact whereas I have rather been questioning the whole existence of such a fundamental trait. To me the ones I have thought to be included in “sensitive people” have appeared to be products of their environments and not so much inherently of a quality that others have less of.

During the past couple of months I have appeared in stark contrast to my partner. I have been going through some intense points that have required active work for me to walk through, and consequently I have been very emotional and worn out both physically and mentally, crying a lot and reacting strongly to the issues at hand. All the while I have been flipping out he has been quite stable, stoic even, to the point where his unemotionality becomes an issue for him, although that's another matter. The point here is, I now have empiric data that under these conditions I feel a whole fucking lot even though I've thought of myself as a relatively stable person, and that brings new light to the question of sensitivity.

I haven't really wanted to think of sensitivity – the ability to feel emotions oneself and to empathize with those of others – as a special trait. I've really more thought of it as something that others have practiced to enhance and others have practiced to extinguish. I'm thinking I might have been wrong about this. Maybe there are in fact inherent differences to people feeling things and picking up on messages around them; maybe our brains are wired differently. Every now and then when I share something I have felt or experienced I get confused responses, and I have interpreted them to mean that these people have not allowed themselves to feel those things in their lives in order to be able to empathize with me. What if they simply have never experienced that kind of a feeling at all? What if there are people who, as opposed to my anxiety-painted existence, have lived their lives mostly emotionally blank?

This came back to me today when I read a quote that spoke of “sensitive people” in an explaining way, as if how they experience life would be news to the ones reading it. I found myself empathizing with how the sensitive people were described because I recognized myself from the text. Only in reading the text and looking at the response it got from others I realized the possibility that not everyone experiences life through guilt, shame and pain. Even though I have known people who do not agonize over life, I have simplified them into a category of “self-denialists” or “those who suppress their emotions”. Boy, what a generalization.

This also brings perspective to how I have treated myself and the conflict I have faced with others throughout my life. In school I was easy to pick on because I reacted strongly to the smallest of insults or even constructively meant criticism. I have for a while now thought that this is because I haven't learned the right coping mechanisms or social skills or that I have learned to search for messages in my social environment for validation – that I have lacked a learnable skill – and I have whipped myself with the disappointment and self-blame that have followed my attempts to acquire these skills. But what if I should be focusing on mercy instead? It might be that I am physically constructed in such a primary way that my emotional sensitivity cannot be fully unlearned or switched off. If this is the case, I might as well stop battling the windmills, accept who I am at this point of time and space and learn to cope with it.

For example, I have hated having to cry all the time. I've been trying to stop the tears and cover up that I'm feeling bad and hide myself and cry in secret, because I have been afraid that my constant emotionality would burden others and make them leave me. In other words, I have not accepted myself as the emotional being I have been recently, which has of course made handling the issues themselves more difficult because a part of them is kept barred within me. (As a side note: this fear of being abandoned for being emotional has only become apparent now that I've spent much more time with people than I previously have. It's been easier to cry before when I've mostly spent time by myself.) So instead of blocking it up I could admit to myself that it is typical and natural for me to express myself and converse with myself through crying; that despite other people's reactions to crying it's not actually a “big thing” to cry; that I may cry even though nobody's dead and I'm just having a difficult time growing. “I don't know about you guys, but this is how I experience things.”

perjantai 29. elokuuta 2014

Day 410: Social anxiety - introversion as a learned quality


Yesterday evening I went to visit a friend's commune for the first time. The preceding few days had been very stressful and tiresome for me and I felt stretched, tense and exhausted.

When I got to the place and sat down with the people, I noticed that a calm came over me. I noticed that as compared to the other social situations where I had been for example during the same day, these people appeared to have no expectations of me. We didn't know each other, and the activities that people were engaged in didn't require anything of me unless I wanted to contribute. As I realized that I was in a space where I didn't have to strain myself, I started relaxing myself by allowing myself to focus on myself and my well-being only. I was in dire need of my own attention (i.e. I really needed to rest my body) and so I allowed myself to simply be and let others construct the situation.

I eventually slowed myself down more than I have in a long while. I was simply in breath, observing myself and my motions. I realized how much I stress about social situations and what a relief it was to be in one where I didn't require anything of myself. The keywords that night were: “I don't need to” (“ei mun tartte”). Whenever a thought came saying I “should” do something, I released it with the realization that no, I shouldn't, as these requirements are not practical but ones that serve to build and uphold my self-image and self-ideal. I was forgiving myself for setting myself standards striving for perfectionism.

This state of peace continued on to this morning, and because it was in such contrast with most of my experiences from the entire summer, I noticed when it started to crumble. I went out of the house with my partner to have lunch with some of his friends whom I hadn't met before. After the lunch I had become withdrawn, anxious and tense (or “weird” as my partner expressed it – the contrast was pretty noticeable). After writing about it now I realized that after we left the house, a series of “I should” -thoughts had been triggered by different situations, which brought up stress as I attempted to attain to these thoughts and judged myself when I didn't.

  • “I should keep up with him” / “I should be able to keep up with him”
  • “I should make a good impression on these people”
  • “I should be able to pay for my own expenses”
  • “I should talk with these people”
  • “I should participate in the discussion”
  • “I should be more independent” / “I should make an initiative to ...”
  • “I will look stupid if I do that – I should look impressive”

The thing is, I'm starting to see what my social difficulties consist of: these lines of code containing the words “I should” - or rather, the thoughts or lines of code as experiences and not so much as words spoken in my mind. I've been what one might call an “introvert” ever since some time in elementary school when I started being bullied, and the thing is, I remember the time before that: I know I haven't always found social situations difficult, and that introversion at least for me is not an inherent quality. It is something that got created somewhere along the way when I learned that there were unwritten rules to socializing that could be broken with dire consequences. I didn't know how to cope, so my response was to withdraw.

I'll continue with specific self-forgiveness on the “I should” -statements above.

keskiviikko 27. elokuuta 2014

Days 408-409: The healing process is to learn from mistakes

This post is a continuation to:

Day 407 - Being ill


I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to think about the disease in a dramatic way.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to use dramatic words, tones and phrasing when describing the symptoms and/or consequences of the disease, such as saying the virus will remain in my body “for the rest of my life” or exaggerating the pain or discomfort I have been in and the length and magnitude of the symptoms.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to think of having the disease as a dramatic story, where I have been the victim of unfair adversity.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that by thinking and speaking of the disease in dramatic terms I assign myself a role / a position where I am “the victim” and thus justify not carrying responsibility for the disease.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe and perceive I am helpless to prevent disease and/or to direct my healing process when I am ill, not realizing that as everything in this reality is connected, nothing that occurs in my body is a coincidence.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that thinking about the disease in dramatic terms triggered a feeling of despair in me, one that continued into depression and anxiety, and that I created these feelings by separating myself from what is HERE and what can be done about it.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to expect the disease to pass in a few days as I assumed it to be a normal flu, not realizing that the long-term symptoms would have pointed to another direction had I examined them more carefully.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to resist looking at the long-term symptoms (prolonged muscle pains, fatigue, swollen face) as I have been afraid of having an uncommon illness.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to avoid looking at and evaluating my symptoms because I have been afraid of what I might find: an illness as the consequence of how I have lived my life.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to react with frustration and fear when and as my expectations were not fulfilled as the disease continued longer than expected.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear that other people will get tired of taking care of me and abandon me as I am no longer “useful” (entertaining, engaging, stimulating) to others but instead become “useless” (unfulfilling, boring, burdensome).

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear that my partner will get tired of the relationship being “on hold” while I am physically incapacitated from any form of interaction and that he will leave me as a result.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to get frustrated when the disease continued as I became afraid of being abandoned.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to want to heal as fast as possible to avoid abandonment.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear losing my friends because of prolonged sickness.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear “missing out on life” while I am sick, with this referring mainly to social events I have been unable to attend while sick, not realizing that I am not missing out on life in fact, as LIFE is here even when I am am sick – sickness is life, too – but that I am “missing out” on “fun”: experiences of joy, excitement, belonging and happiness.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe and perceive that the experiences of joy, excitement, belonging and happiness are dependent on specific social conditions and cannot be experienced while sick and alone.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to confuse the experiences of joy, excitement, belonging and happiness with stability, believing and perceiving that the positive emotional experiences can provide a stable focal point to my life, not realizing that the nature of experiences is inherently unstable and fickle, as no emotion/feeling can be made to last forever or to remain the same; Thus, I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that reliable stability can only be found outside energetic and emotional experiences.

- I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to stress about “missing out” on positive experiences (and fear facing negative experiences) as I have believed them to be “the fuel” I would need to live on.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to react with fear to physical disability, as I have been afraid that I would be somehow disabled for the rest of my life.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear making mistakes that can't be amended, not realizing that in the end there are very few mistakes the consequences of which couldn't be directed.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear making a mistake that will permanently disable my physical body in some way, not realizing that this fear is a sign of my mistrust towards myself – of the fact that I know I am not living as self-honestly as I could and that it can bite me in the ass some day.


But hang on. What if this is the greatest fallacy of all?

One of my clearest personality traits (or issues) is perfectionism: trying to do things as well and flawlessly as possible, because I see no point in aiming any lower. The whole low self-esteem thing with “I'm not good enough” popping up everywhere is tied to this survival mechanism, where I kind of try to compensate for myself with my actions – myself, which I perceive to be very small, insignificant and insufficient. Most of the people closest to me, and even those that are not that close, have picked up on this, although not many discuss it directly.

Because the people in my life have helped me become aware of this personality trait learned somewhere way early in my childhood, I have become more careful about walking this process. I fear that I am looking for “fault” in myself where there is none, because there IS an actual risk for me misrepresenting myself to myself, and often people respond to my attempts to develop myself by dismissing my attempts to carrry self-responsibility with “you don't have to be perfect”. I know this is probably in most cases a defense mechanism, but I'm still doubtful. What if I am doing myself harm by trying to be “perfect”?

But I am not aiming to be perfect. I am engaging in a process to become the best possible version of myself: considering the circumstances I have been born and raised in and the possibilities I have now as the outcome; the time I have left; the skills I have and the skills I am still able and willing to learn; the support I have available in my environment. I by no means expect myself to ever be “ready” or “done” with this process, I do not expect myself to learn everything there is, I do not expect myself succeed flawlessly in any of my attempts. What I do expect of myself, however, is patience, perseverance, consistency, self-management (I prefer this to “self-discipline”) and absolute self-honesty – at least eventually, as the cycles of self-deceit sometimes can't be unraveled right away. Can this be called perfectionism? I'd rather call it integrity or self-respect. Why would I disgrace myself by not showing myself respect?

Also, I do not see the process as linear, where I'd have a single outcome to reach for. I do not see myself lying on my deathbed and thinking “this is who I became!”, lol, and waiting for judgement. What I refer to with the “best possible version” of myself may be different in different points of time and space – it is simply the potential that I would be able to live out, and this can and will vary as I change and my environment changes.

So, when writing the last self-forgiveness statement above, I wrote the words “I'm not living as self-honestly as I could” and I saw self-judgement.



I commit myself to show myself that most mistakes can be amended by redirecting oneself and managing the consequences of a mistake, just like an illness heals once the cause is addressed and dealt with and the symptoms alleviated.

Thus, I commit myself to live out the commitment above by following this self-corrective statement:

When and as I consider myself having made a mistake - by for example thinking about having made a mistake, blaming myself for having made a mistake or feeling bad for making a mistake – I stop, I breathe and I remind myself that a mistake is also a chance to learn and develop, and that a mistake is not a negative (nor a positive) thing. I take care to not believe my self-judgement, I look at the cause of my mistake and I forgive myself for it. I look at the consequences of my mistake and I ask what could be done to reduce their impact. I take action to make amends for the consequences of my mistake and to redirect myself in a way that will prevent the same mistake from happening again. I remind myself that a learning process is a series of mistakes and that mistakes are inevitable if one wants to learn.

The next time I get ill, I commit myself to focus primarily on resting and self-care to support myself with my immediate circumstances and secondarily on piecing together a picture of what events and actions led to the disease in order to support me in my long-term process.

The next time I get ill, I commit myself to face the illness as LIFE, not as something that separates me from life.

sunnuntai 17. elokuuta 2014

Day 407: Being ill


I have now been sick for 14 days, of which I have had a fever during the last 11 days. The disease was identified as mononucleosis or “kissing disease” (a nickname derived from the fact that the virus only transmits through direct contact with another's saliva). The symptoms include high fever, muscle pains, swollen lymph nodes, swollen face, sore throat, stomach cramps and an overall fatigue that in the most extreme cases can go on up to months or even years. Once infected, the virus will remain in my body for the rest of my life.

The first few days with the muscle cramps were heavy, because I thought I was dealing with the usual kind of pain that comes as the result of having a bad posture or not exercising enough, and then got frustrated when the pains were just getting worse despite my attempts to support my muscles in healing. When the fever struck on day 4, I was overwhelmed by how “everything” can happen at once, as I still thought that all of my slowly-occurring symptoms were unrelated to each other. By Sunday the fever was reaching 40 degrees celsius, I felt like I was going to die and I was so unbelievably frustrated, as I had “been a good girl” and given myself rest - despite the fact that I wouldn't have wanted to - because I just wanted to heal as fast as possible so I could get on with my life. I didn't know why the fever was going up, I didn't understand any of my symptoms and I was getting depressed and anxious and thus cried a lot and tried to write during those few hours of the day I was awake. I felt cut out and separated from the world, a prisoner in my own home. I didn't sleep for many nights because I was too restless to empty my mind, and all the entertainment I had consumed to “keep myself busy” while hurrying up healing attacked me mentally during the nights.

On day 9 I got the diagnosis and my anxiety dropped, as I now knew I wasn't dealing with a normal flu and that I had done nothing “wrong” to not be healed already. With the knowledge of what was happening in my body I could give myself the peace of mind to rest and the time needed for the body to go through the process of adapting to the presence of the virus - I mean, my body's gonna have to deal with it for as long as I live! The fever lowered a bit and I started having energy to be awake and do something light, but as these kinds of days have now been rolling by, I've increasingly felt how everything that I am doing or thinking of myself possibly doing is somehow useless, a pastime, as if I was just killing time – and when I pointed out to myself that I am now simply on sick leave and that it is OK to not push myself too much, I asked myself: if I wasn't sick and didn't have all these constraints, what would I be doing now? And the response I got from myself was just as unfulfilling and depressing as all the thoughts I'd had before. I felt that everything I would be doing during these last few weeks of my summer holidays would be “killing time”, constructing sandcastles only to let them be blown away, and besides that, I'd be doing it alone or with people I didn't like or with not enough of a variety of people.

I'm a university student with a 3-month-long summer holiday, and for many reasons I decided not to plan anything special for this summer. I'd stay here in my hometown, working as much as I could (which turned out not to be much) and just give myself space and time to focus on myself and whatever personal projects I wanted to give my attention to. My semester begins on the second week of September, and until then I still don't have many plans.

So, where has my focus been during this summer? I have had a new relationship I have invested quite a lot of time in. I have traveled a bit, gone to some festivals, prepared for and celebrated my sister's wedding and experimented with having cats. I've read some books (not as much as I planned to) and played some piano (way less than I intended to). Basically, I don't think I've had a moment where I've had to wonder about what to do next, because the opportunities have been presented to me – one could even say I've been a bit busy, lol.

So I'm guessing a partial cause of this unfulfillment experience is the fact that I am now for the first time actually facing what my summer would have been like in some scenarios: if I had to spend it alone (as I am now doing in isolation) and without going anywhere (as I can't now take up anyone's invitations). I am in shock of this leisure, especially because I cannot do anything physical yet, which is probably what I would be using a lot of my free time for. I don't find fulfillment in studying when I can't balance it out by going for a run. I don't find satisfaction in making music when I can't shake it off with yoga. I have figured that I am a very kinaesthetic person (not saying that everyone isn't or couldn't be), and not being able to move has been tiresome for me. I've felt as if many of my preferred channels of self-expression have been cut off, as I haven't been able to dance or sing or even fucking walk properly.

So, the reason I'm writing all this is to try and make sense of the experience of unfulfillment, resistance, loneliness and dissatisfaction that has been triggered during this illness. It's been a tough 2 weeks for my psyche, as during this time many points concerning my new relationship, proactiveness and in general just living a life have surfaced.

I'm also curious about the infection itself. It may be quite telling that I got a “kissing disease” while coming down from the rush of endorphins of embracing and establishing a new relationship – I could say I've been quite easy pray, lol, with my guard way down. I don't know where I got the infection, but because it only transmits via saliva, a good guess would be my new partner. There are some things that have been straining the relationship as the premise of it was left a bit unclear, and I'm kinda thinking how this is now the “payment” for my carelessness, as I did see the things we slid under the carpet and chose to ignore it. “This is what you get for constructing a relationship in this manner.” In a way I'm not surprised at all.

Ok. There's a lot to process here, so I will continue tomorrow by going through what I wrote today and writing specific self-forgiveness on what I find.

sunnuntai 22. kesäkuuta 2014

Day 406: The Desteni of Living - expansions, part 2


The video log linked above is a continuation to:

In this video I expand on point number 2: I commit myself to living by the principle of what is best for all – guiding me in thought, word and deed to always in all ways direct problems to the best possible outcome for all.

Previous video logs:

Day 405: http://youtu.be/OFUjJ3i988U

lauantai 31. toukokuuta 2014

Day 405: The Desteni of Living - expansions, part 1


The video log linked above is a continuation to:

Day 404: The Desteni of Living - my declaration of principle

In this video I expand on point number 1: I commit myself to realising and living my utmost potential.

Day 404: The Desteni of Living - my declaration of principle



I am here to commit myself to the following statements, on which I will expand in upcoming blogs and vlogs. These statements were put together by the Desteni group, and I have gone through them independently to be able to stand fully behind them as myself.

I thus commit myself to:

1. Realising and living my utmost potential

2. Living by the principle of what is best for all – guiding me in thought, word and deed to always in all ways direct problems to the best possible outcome for all

3. Living by the principle of self honesty – to ensure I am pure in thought, word and deed: that my within and without is equal and one. Who I am within is who I am without and vice-versa

4. Self Purification through Writing, Self Forgiveness and Self Application – the action of realising I am responsible for my own thoughts, words and deeds, to forgive myself for transgressions and change myself to ensure I take responsibility for who, what and how I am and through this know that I can trust myself to always be honest with me and so others

5. Living the principle of Self Responsibility – realising only I am responsible for what I accept and allow inside of me, my relationships and my outside world and so with this responsibility: only I have the power and ability to change that which I see is compromising who I am, what I live and how this affects others

6. Realising that who I am in thought, word and deed affects not only myself – but others as well and so with Self Responsibility in thought, word and deed – I take responsibility for myself and so my relationships to be Self Aware in every moment and live in such a way that is best for me and so others as well

7. Living the Principle of Self Awareness – to be aware, to see, to recognize my own thoughts and Mind, to be self honest to the extent where I can take responsibility for when I see my thoughts / Mind is not what is best for me / others and commit to immediately take responsibility and change for myself and so for others

8. With taking responsibility for myself, becoming aware of myself – take responsibility and become aware of others in my life, to assist and support them as I am assisting and supporting myself – to give as you would like to receive and do the extra bit every day to see where I can contribute to other’s lives and so my own

9. Living the principle of self trust – as I commit myself to remain constant in my living of self honesty, self responsibility and self awareness, I stand as an unbending trust that I always in all ways know who I am no matter what I face and that in this I know, as proven in the constancy of my living that I will always honour and stand by what is best for all and so best for me

10. Making Love Visible – through me not accepting/allowing anything less than my utmost potential, I support those in my life to reach their utmost potential, to love them as I have shown love to myself by gifting to me my utmost potential, the best life/living experience and show others as I have shown myself what it means to LIVE

11. No one can save you, save yourself – the realisation that the tools and principles of Desteni is the guide, but I must walk the path myself. We are here to assist and support each other in this process from Consciousness to Awareness/LIFE and what it means to live – but the process itself, where you are alone with yourself in your own Mind: is walked alone

12. Not waiting for anything or anyone to take responsibility for me and this world – but that I realise I have created who and how I am in this moment, therefore I have the responsibility to change who and how I am and so the realisation that we as a collective created how and what this world is today and so it is the responsibility of the collective to change how and what this world is today

13. Honouring the life in each person, animal – everything from the great to the small of earth, that we expand our awareness and responsibility to creating the best possible life for everyone and everything and so ourselves

14. Relationships as Agreements: individuals coming together using agreements as a platform to one-on-one expand, grow and develop as individuals in life and living to support/assist each other unconditionally to reach their utmost potential where the agreement is a coming together of individuals understanding what it means to stand as equals and to stand as one

15. Sex as Self Expression – where sex is an united expression between individuals in honour, respect, consideration and regard of each other as equals, two physical bodies uniting in equality and oneness – a merging of two equals as one physically.

16. Realising that by the virtue of me being in this world – my responsibility does not only extend to my own Mind / my own Life, but to the minds and lives of everything and everyone of this earth and so my commitment is to extend this awareness to all of humanity to work together and live together to make this world heaven on earth for ourselves and the generations to come

17. I must in my thoughts, words and deeds – but most importantly in my living actions, become a living example for others in my world that is noticeable and visible when it comes to the potential of a person to change themselves and so change their world. So that more people can realise how we can change this world, by standing united in our self change within the principle of what is best for all to bring heaven to earth

18. I am the change I want to see in me and my world – to bring heaven to earth is to bring into being, into living the LIVING PROOF of a PRACTICAL HEAVEN that can be seen and heard in our actions and words. We are the Living Heaven that must come into creation in this living world.

19. Through purifying my thoughts, words and deeds – my inner becomes my outer, so I bring into creation me as heaven into earth, realising it is not enough to ‘see the change / be the change’ – for change to become REAL it must be a constant, consistent living of me through the words I speak and the actions I live visible and noticeable to all in every moment of breath

20. Realising that my physical body is my temple – my physical body is the living flesh through which and in which I will bring into being and create / manifest heaven on earth as me in my thoughts, words and deeds and so I honour, respect and regard – nurture and support my physical body as I would nurture and support me as equals: my body is me

21. We are the change in ourselves and this world we have been waiting for: and so I commit to dedicate myself and my life for each one as all to realise this, as nothing will change if we don’t change in all that we are, within and without

22. The realisation that for me to be able to change myself in thought, word and deed to the most effective living being that I can be and become – I first have to ‘know thyself’ and so commit myself to investigate, introspect and understand how I became who I am today, to prepare the road before me into self creation of a responsible, aware, self honest and trustworthy person for myself and so for all

23. The realisation that for me to be able to contribute to change in this world – I have to get to ‘know thyself’ as this world and so commit myself to research, investigate and introspect the inner and outer workings of this world and align the systems of today to present and give the best possible life for all on Earth

torstai 29. toukokuuta 2014

Day 403: Shedding the spikes


2011 - http://efana.deviantart.com/art/Spikes-30DC-258571057

After three days of accumulating self-judgement through various points, I came to a culmination point where I stopped and started to trace back those three days worth of chain reactions. After walking through each point in detail I realized that I had clenched myself into a state, where because I was afraid of judgement I took upon a defensive stance to protect myself from external judgement.

What I realized today as I was walking through these experiences was that the defensive state that had been triggered is a remnant of the armour I have built around myself throughout my life. Four years ago a person told me I reminded him of a porcupine, because it was as if I was putting up spikes and needles to fend off people. From his words I realized that I was in fact aggressively shutting everyone out and I have been walking through this porcupine identity ever since. Today as I thought of this concept of an armour I realized that in order to protect myself from external judgement and rejection I have tensed myself up, not realizing that the judgement is not in fact coming from outside of me but from within – and that the armour has not been keeping judgement out but rather functioned as a lid to keep it in.

According to current leading theories in development psychology when a child is born he/she doesn't yet have an inner “voice” to direct his/her behavior. This voice is in fact internalized from the voices, commands and guidance of the people who the child has in his/her environment when growing up. This development happens mostly within the first few years of a child's life, but major life events may also affect it later on.

The “inner voice” I have constructed – meaning the thoughts, sounds, images, beliefs and reactions that direct my behavior – has become one of judgement, guilt, shame, demands, perfectionism and cruelty. This has been the result of my family environment (where teaching a child was often done by pointing out what was wrong through one's own reaction of anger, frustration, weariness, irritation and/or aggression), school environment (where teaching was based on validation) and social environment (where kids exerted their mindfucks on each other with no support or interventions from adults).

My back, shoulders and neck have been very tense, stuck and painful for at least the past few years, and lately I have been focusing on figuring out the cause for the remaining areas of tension, which are mainly in the other side of my my upper back and both shoulders. I realized today that those are the last of my porcupine spikes – the armor I have not yet shed. They are held in place by my patterns of self-judgement, all the small points where I jab myself mentally and believe it. The key here to releasing the remnants of my spikes is to stop with each point of self-judgement I come across, to realize it is not valid and to correct my line of thinking – to rewrite the lines of code in my mind. For example, there have been several moments within the past few days where I have judged myself for waking up “too late”. This is where I need to walk through my definitions of “late” and “early” and to realize that my definitions, which I base my judgement on, are quite possibly not valid at all. These definitions, for example, come directly from my family without me really stopping to consider what I find most commonsensical, and the judgements are even spoken in my mind with the voice of my mother/father/sister. Thus, I need to evaluate my life and the reality on my own and redefine what is practical in my living.

Because my spiky defensiveness quite frightened me when I looked at my behavior, I went looking for softness today through swimming and meditation. It was interesting to see how after a tiring workout all of my muscles were really tender and soft, except for these tension areas in my back/shoulders. I realized that once I stop judging myself, the need to defend myself will also vanish. I just need to pick up the lid, set it aside, take the points out one at a time, discuss with them until I release them and repeat until I'm empty of all judgement. The spikes are not only pointing outwards, but also inwards.

maanantai 19. toukokuuta 2014

Day 402: Back stabbing


I listened to this speech by Bernard Poolman, and I started thinking if I have accepted and allowed myself to create and maintain relationships that are causing me harm through secret negative thoughts, attitudes and/or emotions. The idea of us “voodooing” each other, jinxing each other with negative backchat, got me to realize that some of my current physical ailments for example may be the result of unraveled baggage in my relationships towards other people, or more precisely, in others wishing me ill. Because I sense these attitudes, whether I allow myself to actually look at them or not, the anticipation and fear itself may be causing me physical tension and pain.

There are specific points in my family relations that I realized I've not handled with these people directly. I'll begin with these close family relations because they're most crucial in how I've been constructed, and thus the source of any other relationship issues I may have.

  • father: shame / disagreement / revulsion / disapproval towards me because I have “turned my back on God” - rejection / lack of acceptance
  • sister: envy (mutual), competition
  • both brothers: dismissing and belittling them, their lives and achievements (for reasons I don't really know yet, I only just realized that I do this)

Concerning my mother I didn't really find anything. Out of my family I have probably had the most open and communicative relationship with my mother, and this may have made way for cleansing whatever tension there has been between us (because there has been some, if not plenty).

The physical ailments I am referring to here are mainly my shoulder/neck tension issues, which have become chronic during the past few years. I am not sure about the origin point of this specific issue, but from some memories I can gather that 2011, when I was made to realize there was an issue in the first place, I had already been stuck for a while, meaning some years probably. I have recently placed my focus on this specific issue and tried if regular exercise would help with it, but so far I've only seen it to alleviate the symptoms for a little while with the problem itself persisting. Occasionally the pain/tension has been “magically” lifted under completely random circumstances I have not found a pattern out of, but it has always returned. I have considered contacting physiotherapists and other kinds of medical assistance for perspective on this issue, but I haven't done so yet due to lack of time and funding.

When listening to Bernard's metaphor about “back stabbing” it kinda got to me, because my issue is specifically in the back – I can literally feel the stabs, lol – and now that I think of it, the word and concept of “back stabbing” is one that I have used a lot to describe my experiences with abandonment and rejection. Whoa, OK, so this might in fact have more to do with the bullying theme I talked about in my last post than with my family relations.

When I was around 10 years old my school friends all turned their backs on me and refused to have anything to do with me. Because I did not understand why they did this, I later on dubbed their actions as “back stabbing”, doing something hurtful unexpected and unexplained. I then went through experiences that were almost identical when I was 12, 15, 18 and 20: a group of friends suddenly expressed their disapproval towards me, either directly or passive-aggressively, and I responded with whatever coping mechanisms I had available, from aggressive dismissal to submissive withdrawal. I remember that each of these times the rejection came unexpected, even though as time went on I learned to distrust people all the more and to expect the worst. For some reason I still never thought or believed that these people I called my friends would do something so cruel. Now that I think of this pattern and how obvious it is in hindsight, I appear to have been totally blind to the reality of those relationships: to who the others have actually been in relation to me, to how and why our relationships have been formed – to the fact that they were bound to fall apart because of how we lived them out.

It is this attention to relationship forming and the effort to see people (including myself) as they really are that I think have changed my relationships the most and actually broken the cycle I used to repeat every few years. At the moment I think I am building relationships based on more solid ground than ever, prioritizing communication, honesty and self-reflection. So why does my back still feel as if I am being stabbed? Am I afraid of it all starting over again?

I have begun the healing and forgiving process to let go of any bitterness or spite left from these past events, but partially because I have not managed to open lines of communication with some of the key people from the past I am not yet done with this. I fear (or know, or sense) that with specific people there are negative thoughts being harbored towards me, and because people never speak them, never express them, always keep them hidden from daylight, it is difficult for me to transcend what happened and “clear the air” all by myself. It's as if some of the old “stab wounds” are still infected and refuse to heal, and this might be a part of the cause of the persisting physical pain.

Especially with the tension my shoulders tend to stiffen as if they were becoming crystallized, if not constantly opened with exercise or massage – which is when they usually just flame with pain before stiffening again - and this crystallization seems to speak of old wounds being locked in and integrated into my being. I do not wish for this to happen, and I think that I still have a chance to sort myself out before I become a living manifestation of spite, resentment, bitterness, anticipation, distrust and fear.

So what I guess I could do is go through the unresolved relationships (as well as those that appear resolved) in specific detail, mapping out what exactly I fear with each one, how I experienced them, what I desired from them, what it is that is still weighing on me. How do I believe them to perceive me? How would I wish to be perceived? Who are/were they to me, and who am/was I to them? What were the relationships based on? Why did we attract each other? What secrets did we have from each other that tore us apart?

Cool, I'll continue with this mapping. It's cool to know what I'll be writing about next, makes the treshold of writing a bit easier to cross.

torstai 15. toukokuuta 2014

Day 401: Trust issues


I have been writing things down again lately, but I haven't yet been able to produce text comprehensive enough for publishing. This is why today I chose to record a video based on what I had processed in writing and application earlier.

tiistai 6. toukokuuta 2014

Day 400: Fear of being happy


I realized today that I am afraid of being happy. I was talking to a friend and trying to explain how I have experienced myself and life lately, and when it came down to saying “I have simply been happy” I noticed a resentment towards making a statement like that. To break the moment down: there was an impulse/idea to express myself through the word “happy” - I reacted to the word with resentment – a push to say the words despite the resentment – followed by the fear of having made a mistake – followed by thoughts along the lines of “what does he think of me now”, “did I screw it up”.

When I stopped to think about this experience I realized that because I have grown used to thinking of life in polarities – the good and the bad – I am constantly both afraid of being unhappy (because it is unpleasant) and happy (because it always leads to unhappiness, which is again unpleasant). Because I have seen how the ups and downs of living life in autopilot always lead to each other, I have created an ideal and a desire to find the in-between, the equilibrium – a state of balance that would be neither here nor there. I realized that because of this goal I am afraid of any experience that is NOT bad (unpleasant), because I interpret them to be in the “good” end of the spectrum (red flag - “you're gonna crash!”, “this is not going to last!”), when in fact this might not be the case.

In my experience there are three ways to position oneself towards life and the experience thereof. One can either filter one's experience through the negative (pessimism, cynicism) or through the positive (optimism, hope) – or one can do neither, and simply take the reality in as it is (realism, pragmatism). I do not mean to place these three in any order, and I do not claim that the latter is the “best” way to live life – I have simply found through my own experience that it is usually the most real, genuine or honest way of living, and I do prefer truth over happiness, as focusing on the truth usually leads to solutions whereas focusing on happiness usually leads to compromises.

The dilemma that bothers me here is that what I have defined as the in-between/equilibrium is actually enjoyable – just not in the same way as the positive polarity. I interpret myself enjoying life as “bad” because I believe I should not be enjoying myself, that enjoyment is bad because if I enjoy myself I must be off-balance. This is a misunderstanding I need to correct. There is a clear difference between enjoyment and having my head in the clouds, so to speak – as well as there's a difference in experiencing pain and suffering. The equilibrium does not mean that I should not be experiencing anything at all, but that I simply experience the things I come across without holding onto them, without transforming them into mental scenarios, into rocks that I load onto my back, and instead allowing them to just flow through me as space flows through time. Perhaps to be in balance is to know how to bring myself down from the clouds as well as to pick myself up from the ditch.

I realize that the experience I now labeled as “happiness” has not been just pure enjoyment but that I have slightly gone to the positive end, and what I need to realize is that IT'S ALRIGHT – I don't need to panic, lol - “oh fuck, I'm gonna crash now?!” - lol – no, what I need to do now is simply to land gracefully from the heights. I can trust myself to handle myself well enough to not plummet back down.

And to be honest, I am not entirely sure how much of my happiness experience has been balanced and how much of it has been hype, precisely because of the resentment. I am probably looking at my enjoyable experiences through the resentment filter and seeing “bad” in them even though there would actually be none (or very little).

This dilemma of what kind of enjoyment is OK and what is not calls for an experiment:

  • I commit myself to allow myself to enjoy life and self-expression without guilt.
  • I commit myself to allow myself to use the word “happy” to express myself (because when I observe myself it is clear that I am living this word at the moment – no point in suppressing myself).
  • I commit myself to observe and take note of any and all energetic sensations I experience in order to map out my happiness experience.
  • I commit myself to not suppress any of the energetic sensations (feelings) I experience, but to instead live through them within and as breath.

tiistai 29. huhtikuuta 2014

Day 399: Of existence and will



Today a chain of events, triggers and reactions led to me realizing that despite the fact that I tell myself that I am of the same value and worth as every other bit and piece of life, I do not actually believe it. I kind of entered a new level of self-honesty, where I finally admitted to myself that my mantras do not work: despite the knowledge of how things are, I do not live out or live as that knowledge.

I asked myself why I crave for appreciation, acceptance and affection from others, as the perceived lack of them triggered a reaction in me. I realized how it all – again – comes down to the phrase “I'm not (good) enough”, the one thing I keep on returning to in every moment of crisis. I realize that the issue is not that others take me for granted or don't appreciate me, but the fact that I allow the thoughts, actions and feelings/emotions of others to define myself, my value and my worth. On a rational level I know that my value is unchangeable, stable, in precise unity with everything else – but I don't feel it. I don't believe it. I am not living as these words. How can I be of value when I don't live as if I did? What is worthwhile living and am I doing any of it at all? Would I find value in myself through actions? If so, what kind of actions would those be? How do I need to live to live as if I mattered? And yet, how do I live so that I am of value despite my actions, so that I don't act just for the sake of salvation?

Apart from this existential crisis, which raised some really valid questions, I also came across one of my old behavioral patterns. I have lived a life of seclusion because whenever I have wanted myself to not be seen, I have pushed people away from me. I realize my wish to hide is to cover myself from my own eyes, so that I wouldn't be exposed to myself, and thus I have refused the approaches of others as I have not been willing to embrace myself as I am. I had an inner dialogue with myself and an imagined person in my mind, where I was explaining this to the other and they responded:

“You're pretty fucked up, aren't you?”

“We're all fucked up to some extent, that's nothing special. But I am tired of being broken. I want to be whole. I choose to want to be whole. I know I can be. I could choose otherwise, but my will is to mend myself. I choose to not stay broken.”

I see how this behavioral pattern of pushing people away and escaping them is still a part of me, and today I felt pity towards myself for it, as I saw how I cause all of my own misfortune by following the same routes over and over again. But I also realized that pity will only give me an excuse to not change as I define myself through it. “Poor pitiful me, this is who I am.” NO. I have a choice, and I have it right here. The past cannot be changed, but most of its effects can be mended, and so I choose to do. I refuse to be a victim of myself.

What I need to learn is to let people see me – to embrace the exposure as it is a gift and a lesson. Self-forgiveness will help me work my way there, and I will continue with it from here.

maanantai 7. huhtikuuta 2014

Day 398: Learning to embrace experiences


I had an interesting experience today concerning music. I have been practicing this big-scale choir piece with the choir I'm in for a few months now, and the past four weeks or so have been especially intense: not just with the rehearsals, but in emotional terms as well. Somehow this piece of music has become woven into my experience with other things in life, and I find fragments of it echoing in my mind daily, sometimes constantly. I can see how this happens as the result of me linking all of my individual experiences in my mind into this one big storyline experience – the story I tell of my life to myself with pictures and words – and how the music kinda serves as current background music to the movie that is my life experience.

Today I was sitting in the bus and spacing out, wondering around in my mind and not really being here in breath, when I suddenly realized that I was not responding to the weather conditions (gray, rainy and cold) at all with the usual gloominess and weariness. I felt as if I was “glowing from within” - because the music was again playing in my mind, speaking words of light and divinity, reminding me of my experiences of joyful living – and that the feeling of light and warmth I got from the music/experience/feelings was kinda acting as a barrier between me and my surroundings. I found this experience positive, because from within it I was able to face other people with clarity and balance, not responding to their apparent low moods. I did not feel like complaining about the weather, because I had not really even noticed it was “bad” weather – to me it was just weather, how it is every now and then; logically rainy of this time of year, lol.

Upon writing this I noticed waves of self-judgement, as if I was “not supposed to” be feeling anything at all and that standing within an energetic experience like this is not appropriate. This shows how I have misunderstood some parts of this process. Rather than denying my experiences and thus suppressing them, be they positive or negative, I could try to walk, live and breathe through the experiences to fully know them and harness them, whatever that means in whichever context. In this case, for example, I am fully aware of the role of this particular music piece in the workings of my mind. I have seen where and how I have given myself permission to embed the music with my experiences. I am not yet sure if this serves any purpose at all, other than crafting myself nice memories, bonding with others and thus structuring my social networks, or just learning to know myself through relieved self-expression. Through this process of “giving in” to music I have for instance rediscovered the experience and state of being inspired (excited, motivated, seeing possibilities where there were none before – and then acting upon it!), and that alone tells me that I have managed to remove a block that has been in place for years, more or less.

What concerns me is the fact that this wave of positive stuff comes straight after a very low phase of depression and being stuck. I fear that this is “just” another “up” and that I will eventually come crashing down. I am working on this at the moment by stabilizing myself with breath whenever I see myself getting carried away by an experience, or rather by channeling the energy of the experience and living through it, after which I stabilize. I know that I don't have to crash down once (if?) this stuff gets exhausted, but I do realize that whenever I go up, the return to stability will always feel like a dip in comparison. I guess a part of it is also to learn how to deal with the state of “coming down”, which I guess I know a bit better than dealing with “going up”.

It might also be that some of what I am experiencing in my life at the moment is not in fact an energetic “up”, but simply a relieved state of balanced being, which just feels “lighter” in comparison to the constraint I've been under.

I'll continue with this topic later. The jumble of stuff from the past few weeks is kinda big and requires more digging.

tiistai 1. huhtikuuta 2014

Day 397: Compiling secret spite


A couple of days ago I faced harsh and direct judgement to which I reacted to quite strongly. I took the message personally and felt really bothered by it with an awful feeling in my gut. The message I received pointed out a mistake I had made, but it did so with a tone that I responded to with a negative reaction, and so I missed out on receiving the valid feedback and only focused on the element of judgement.

Now, a couple days later, the situation came to a culmination point. Because of my reaction of taking the judgmental tone of another personally, I had made decisions to act upon my self-judgement and in a way punished myself for being judged – not for the mistake itself, but for the fact that somebody wasn't pleased with me! So in a way I was trying to redeem for my mistakes, but not the ones I had actually made. I perceived my fault to have been the fact that I was so “bad” that another had judged me, and again ignored what I could have originally done better.

So these actions of mine were noticed and responded to with common sense, which is when I realized I had been wrong all along. I was acting just like my father has in similar situations: compiling secret spite under actions of self-punishment. And with the same people, even! I realized that in this situation I was the spitting image of my father, with every tone, posture, gesture and word, and having seen the consequences of my father's actions on himself I will not accept and allow myself to follow in these footsteps.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to react to X's tone of voice and choice of words as I have learned to fear aggression as a child.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe and perceive that aggression directed towards me is valid and always my fault.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to submit to aggression without questioning the validity of the aggression.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to ignore the message under the aggression as my focus has been on the way the message has been delivered.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not see past my fear reaction to aggression.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to react to aggression by shrinking and withdrawing instead of standing up and breathing myself open.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to forget to breathe when facing aggression.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear X as an authority.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear receiving feedback from X – be it delivered with any tone, aggression or not – as I have known her feedback to be (mostly) valid and direct and thus feared facing conflict within myself, forgetting that conflict is an opportunity to change and develop myself for the better.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to measure my worth according to how much/little feedback I receive from X, wanting to be “ready” so that she would have nothing to criticize.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that my relationship to X has been created on a basis of imbalanced power relations – when I was a child and she was my mentor – and that for this relationship to work now that we're both adults equal in power I need to change my stance towards her from fearful to fearless.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that these complications in my relationship to X are not surprising at all, as we have started off in an unequal relationship, and that now that I can see the cause of the complications the dynamics of this relationship can in fact be changed.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to refuse to see the feedback behind X's aggressive message as I have not wanted to admit to having done something “wrong” (not as well as possible).

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to deny myself the opportunity to learn from the feedback by not looking at what was said and instead secretly blaming X for being “inconsiderate”, “irrational” and “hysteric”.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to try and appear as if I was redeeming for my mistakes by acting upon self-punishment, not realizing that I was doing this just to appear submissive while I was secretly compiling spite towards X.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe and perceive that I “shouldn't” be making mistakes now that I am no longer a child within my relationship to X, not realizing that people of all ages make mistakes as mistakes are an inevitable part of learning.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to refuse to see and embrace the mistakes I make around X.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear making mistakes around X.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not see, realize and understand that my father reacts and responds to X in the exact same way as I do.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that by mirroring my relationship with X to my fathers relationship with X I can easily see what mistakes I have made.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to live as the spitting image of my father, not realizing that as I do so I also repeat the same mistakes he has made and end up suffering the same consequences.

I commit myself to focus on moving from fearfulness to fearlessness in practical application within my relationship to X.

I commit myself to accept and allow myself to make mistakes around X and to receive feedback for them.

I commit myself to support and assist myself with breathing when and as I react to aggression with fear.

keskiviikko 26. maaliskuuta 2014

Day 396: Resentment towards "love"


Magical love rainbow beams oh god I just want to VOMIT

While reading through my last post about falling in love I realized how I was trying to distance myself from the concept of love in my writing, trying to make it appear as if “love” was something of lesser value and separate from me. I realized that this is a pattern I have had ever since childhood: I fear admitting to loving or liking someone. I have created a separation between myself and love, alienating myself from love, resenting it – thinking of it as a weakness. This is basically how I have felt myself when exposed in loving someone – weak and vulnerable – and so I have taken on that judgement towards all love, seeing all caring as “infatuation”. To protect myself I have taken an aggressively defensive approach towards the concept of love.

I've been examining this mindset in my habits for some time now. For example, I've had the habit of avoiding the people I like and waiting for them to come to me. I've realized that this is really backwards behavior: how would anyone know I want to approach them if I avoid them?! I have now been practicing for example allowing myself to show and express the fact that I enjoy the presence of someone or that I am happy about seeing someone.

But only now I am starting to see how this refusal of love extends a lot further than just some habits. It is fear of exposement, trying to appear strong and stoic, not realizing that exposement IS the only way of being unwaveringly stable, as then there are no weak spots left to be jabbed.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to separate myself from my feelings of care, attraction, enjoyment, joy and enthusiasm (love) by thinking of them as “foolish” and “stupid”, not realizing that I have been distancing myself from these feelings because I have felt weak and vulnerable when experiencing them.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear that if my feelings of care, attraction, enjoyment, joy and enthusiasm are seen I will be ridiculed and thus hurt.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that all this is actually circular reasoning:

  • I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that I only get hurt by the remarks of others if I accept and allow myself to take these remarks personally.
  • I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that if I had nothing to hide, I would not be afraid of others seeing who I am.
  • I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that if I showed myself to others, I would not have to fear getting hurt.
  • I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that by hiding my feelings I sabotage myself by causing myself to be in a position where I will eventually get hurt as something of me gets exposed.
  • I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that if I didn't hide myself, I would in fact be safe.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that exposement is strength.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself as a child to learn to fear and hide my feelings by observing my parents.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself as a child to reinforce this pattern by succumbing to group dynamics in school where I took the role of the “quiet kid”, thus not expressing myself unabashed but rather letting others take the stage.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself as a child to lock myself into this position of not speaking / not expressing, not taking the chance to learn to express myself even when our family dynamics changed.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself as a child to learn to hide my feelings because I experienced my family environment as “chaotic”, thus attempting to bring balance into my environment by denying my own experiences.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to continue to hide my feelings in an attempt to avoid chaos/conflict as I haven't had a ready model on how to deal with it – not realizing that I am no longer a child and no longer have to fear chaos as I am not “at the mercy” of my environment but can in fact shape it through my own actions.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that if there's chaos/conflict in my environment, I know how to deal with it.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not trust myself to know how to deal with chaos/conflict as I have forgotten to breathe.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to forget to breathe and thus lose my stability in challenging situations.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to forget to breathe when I fear getting exposed, thus forgetting that getting exposed is not dangerous as I will remain here nevertheless.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to forget to breathe when I get exposed (by my own will or another's), thus getting stuck in the situation as the reaction of fear paralyzes me, not realizing that through breathing I could accept my exposement and stand within and as who I am.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that by remembering to breathe and remaining HERE I also support others to remain stable when and as they expose themselves.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to deny myself the experience of love.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear losing my status and image if I allowed myself the experience of love, not realizing that I am not actually afraid of my image breaking in the eyes of others but of my self-image breaking in my own eyes, wanting to be stoic and strong because this is the role I assigned for myself as a child per to my circumstances.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that I don't have to be stoic and strong.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that self-suppression is not strength.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to be embarrassed about using the word “love” as I judge love to be stupid, irrational, worthless and air-headed.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that the feelings, actions and motivations we compile under the word “love” - which differ from definition to definition – can in fact be beneficial, supportive, constructive, wise and worthwhile, and that it simply depends on how I choose to define “love” for myself.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to resent all concepts of love based on those that define love to be possessive, addictive, exclusive, irresponsible and a “mystery”, not realizing that this is not what “love” has to be.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to define love according to how it's portrayed in the mainstream world through stories and images.

  • redefining the word 'love' for myself:
    • an act of good will considered upon what is the best for all.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to define love as a bundle of feelings when in fact love can only bear fruit when it is acted upon, not when it's just felt.

“Love, love is a verb
love is a doing word
fearless on my breath”

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that simply breathing can be an act of love.

I commit myself to explore the word 'love' and the concept of love in my daily living.
  • I commit myself to use the word 'love' to work my way through the resentment I have built against it.

I commit myself to support myself through my fear of exposement through breathing.

I commit myself to show myself love/care by reminding myself to breathe.

Now that I see, realize and understand that I am alive so that I could enjoy life with other living beings – enjoyment here not only meaning positive feelings but all learning experiences, be they more or less painful – I commit myself to take chances with other beings and take “leaps of faith” by exposing myself, thus showing and teaching myself that I have nothing to fear.

I commit myself to investigate my reactions to perceived criticism when I take things personally to lessen my fear of rejection/refusal.

maanantai 24. maaliskuuta 2014

Day 395: Mapping out the experience of "falling in love"


Type "falling in love" into google image search, and you'll see just the other side of this coin.

I have recently been walking through the energetic experience many call “falling in love”. This has been interesting, because even though I have gone through this experience many times before, I have never before had awareness of how the experience is created, and thus I have always been “swept away” by it more or less.

First off, I am frightened about this experience, because I fear it will warp my relationship to the person the energy is directed towards. My experience so far has shown that every experience of love eventually turns into an experience of hate. I have ended up resenting every person I have “fallen in love” with – and god dammit, I do not want to resent this person, or anyone at all, I really don't want to create a relationship that is doomed to become charged with underlying negativity and fall apart. To build on the experience of “love” is to bring about the polarity at some point, and it would be irresponsible of me to just ignore it and “go with the flow”.

Secondly, I am a little overwhelmed by the massive energy build-up that I've accumulated through feelings, reactions, thoughts and imaginations. I can see the thoughts and fantasies when they're here, and I have been trying to map them out to see what need it is I am fulfilling in the thought/image. I haven't been writing any of them down, and this has made it more difficult to track what's going on. During my highest energy peaks I've been trying to teach myself to channel and release the energy and direct myself according to common sense, although here lies the risk that I am suppressing myself, which is no good either.

I realize that this energy build-up has already started many years ago when I have first met this person, and that now the circumstances have simply been favourable for acting upon it – I've thought to myself that I am “finally ready” to face this person. In a way this is accurate. I've come to realize that who I've believed the other to be is not in fact who he really is, because the image I've had of him has been shattering when I have changed my positioning within our interaction into one based on self-honesty (occasionally I am still scared shitless and play along with the usual social patterns on auto-pilot). So yes, in a way I have been “ready” to see him as he is. I used to react to him with a mixture of fear and awe, but with the image of him being replaced with knowing him as a human being both the fear and the awe have vanished. This hasn't decreased my affection, quite the opposite, it has simply brought me down to earth.

Having released those reactions, the “love” aspect still remains. I can see that it's an accumulation of energy that has been triggered in reactions I've had within our interaction – many small moments of “oh!” turning into a fucking fanfare. These reactions require precise mapping, because right now they're still a blur to me.

  • seeing him (wanting his presence / fear of not having his presence) –> fulfillment / unfulfillment
  • touching him (wanting acceptance/attention / fear of rejection) –> gratification / disappointment
  • discussing with him (wanting to succeed / fear of failure) – looking for signs of approval –> success / failure

  • reacting to opportunities: when the circumstances are right, seeing a storyline that could be fulfilled –> choosing to want/resent the outcome –> creating anticipation –> blocking myself with tension

There are probably many others, but these are the most basic ones I could find based on memory. I need to start paying attention to these reactions when they occur – not to suppress them (note to self) but to know myself and to direct myself according to who I reveal myself to be. Fuck, I still have a big issue with self-suppression, because on some level I still believe that I “shouldn't feel like this” or that I most definitely shouldn't act upon any of this. Some of the guilt aspects I have worked my way through, but some remain.

I don't believe I should be too hesitant, though. I can trust myself to see what I'm doing and if nothing else, to carry responsibility for the consequences of my actions, whatever they may be. I, like many others, fear making mistakes above all, and I haven't yet solidified the fact that as well as on other fields of life one learns through trial and error, so does one learn in relationships as well. I've already done some of the major mistakes and learned a lot, so I don't think I can fuck this up that badly, lol.

Continuing with self-forgiveness and with more mapping.

keskiviikko 19. maaliskuuta 2014

Day 394: Failing at life


I have thought about my participation within the Desteni group and how it's been wavering quite a lot within the past 6 months or so. I make commitments to keep up a steady pace of producing content, to interact with the other group members, to partake in the maintenance of the group projects – and I always end up failing more or less. I haven't been able to keep up my pace of writing this blog at least 3-4 days a week – a drop from the 7 days a week I used to do for several months – and this blog is pretty much the last piece of participation I've been holding onto, because I have really not wanted to let it go. I have seen the practical value of writing and publishing my writings, and I feel that if I were to completely drop the blog I would completely and utterly FAIL, like giving up on myself in some way.

I just now asked myself about this, and I was surprised how clear it all suddenly was. The reason I fear taking on this commitment and investing my time on it is because I fear losing the people around me. I fear that if I were to change into the next gear (“next” here doesn't imply “better”, just a stage of movement to a direction), the people I hold dear would scatter away. But I can see that whoever I become, there will always be someone to agree with me and get into the car with me – lol, such a good metaphor – and that me holding onto people is an act of fear and not one of practicality. Of course this doesn't mean that I will lose the people around me, but I am not even giving them a chance to face that decision.

In a way I am living within and as a compromise: I see that to change my living would be impractical in terms of coping, and so I adapt to my circumstances. I adapt myself because I fear there would be no one left if I didn't.

What I mean by this in practice is that even though I am currently very busy with my studies and work, I am also spending plenty of time on recreation and procrastinating (not that they're the same thing). I realize that recreational time is important for me because through it I give myself freedom to create and express in ways that do not fit within my work schemes, and through recreation I also give myself time to rest and recover from any possible stress my body and mind have undergone. But not all of my “free time” is used in this manner. Sometimes I simply avoid doing anything of relevance because I have driven myself into mental exhaustion, and I justify this with the need to “rest” without asking why the fatigue is there in the first place and whether it could have been avoided. There's also a guilt aspect to this, where I accuse myself of having “indulged” in recreation, even though when I honestly look at my doings I know that this is not the case. I have taken care of my responsibilities – except for this commitment to participate with Desteni.

It might also be that I am simply trying to carry too much, that I am only starting to recognize my own limits. Maybe I am way too occupied at the moment to add on any more responsibility without turning it into a stressful compromise of a life. I know that my studies will be over in a couple of months, and that I will then be able to for a while focus on other tasks. I know that stressing about it will only make it worse.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to feel guilty for not living up to my commitment to participate in Desteni.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to feel obligated to take on responsibility as a part of the Desteni group.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear failing to update my Journey To Life blog because I have defined upholding the blog to mean that I am “doing OK”, that I am active and willful, that I am consistently walking my process towards becoming a competent human being.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that I have already failed at upholding the blog, if not a year ago when I broke my writing rhythm for the first time, then at least this winter when I failed to write even once a week.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe and perceive that I have failed my process by not writing a blog post every day, not realizing that I have in fact been walking my process in practice and in private writings, if not every day of the week, then at least more than half of the days, and that I have not failed my process but simply failed the task of reporting about it to others.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fail the commitment to report about my process to other people.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear failing to walk my process because I perceive and believe that I will then fail at life and as a living human being, not realizing that “failure” and “success” are simply different outcomes of different choices and actions, and that I have just decided to charge some with positive meanings and others with negative meanings.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe and perceive that when I die there will be someone/something to measure how “well” I have lived my life and that I would then feel shame / pride according to the result – not realizing that shame and pride have to do with this world and this reality and how things work in this dimension of existence, assuming that life after death will be as it is here when and as the human mind dictates how life is experienced, not realizing that life after death could be ANYTHING unimaginable – and that to fear possible feelings of shame by judgement – which can be breathed through and released, as they can be in this reality - is thus to focus on the irrelevant: if I cannot know something for sure and prepare myself for it, why stress about it at all?

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fear that there is an authority who decides whether my life has been “good” or “bad”, not realizing that it is ultimately up to me to decide and carry responsibility for my decision.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to secretly wish for there to be an authority to decide upon the “preferable” and the “unpreferable” so that I wouldn't have to look for the truth myself and make a stand as myself, not as a vessel of God/universe/whichever authority.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to want to participate in Desteni so that I could feel better about myself, as if I was then “saved” from The Judgement, and not from the starting point of wanting to work for this world as a whole.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to participate in Desteni from the starting point of self-interest and fear.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that to really contribute to the Desteni group and not only slow it down, my starting point needs to be selfless, as it needs to be in whatever I do with other people for all of the world.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that selflessness doesn't mean that I'm excluded from everything else, but that the concept of “self” disappears in favor of All.

I commit myself to map out and revise the ways I use my time.

I commit myself to focus on my main responsibilities – studying (to establish a position for myself in the world system / to educate myself), working (to sustain my living / to apply what I've studied into practice), and civil society participation (to rehearse working with people / to create networks and relations) – and to thus give them my full focus and energy, only taking into consideration other possible responsibilities when/as/if I have time left over from my current main responsibilities.

I commit myself to regularly revise my responsibilities to see if some need to be let go and replaced with others.

I commit myself to take into consideration the fact that my capacity is in fact limited even though it can be expanded to some extent, and that I cannot take on too much responsibility without the quality of my input decreasing.

I commit myself to build my life to be enjoyable, constructive and fulfilling in a way where I give to Life more than I take from it.