There comes a time when we all search for something more. That’s not a maybe, it’s a given because one condition of a healthy and vibrant life is to always be moving ahead. So when we get to the point where we can’t go further, even though we still do have to, it becomes unhealthy.
When this happens to me, I don’t know what’s going on, just that I’m not so happy anymore.
Then comes the questions, “Why am I here? … Is there more to me than just this life? … How come I’m not as happy as I used to be? … Is there something wrong with me?”
Sometimes the feelings and questions comes with anger but more often, it’s frustration!
After many years of going in and out of these sorts of feelings, it doesn’t happen so much any more. I feel like I’m in a pretty good place these days.
I no longer have to search for things to make me feel better and to help me escape, like I used to. During times of searching, it was so easy to fall into addictions, some good and some bad. For about 15 years I was into cigarettes and believed that I could never be rid of this addiction … but I did and I’m so glad about that.
Personal growth is the addiction I ended up in and this has worked out well for me. I know others who ended up overusing things like drugs, alcohol, gambling and the like and it didn’t work our so well for them.
What we all want is something to make us feel better. Things like cigarettes, porn, drugs, gambling and the like can give some amazing and immediate good feeling ‘hits’. But the hits don’t last long. You can’t keep the great feeling forever because over time, long term bad feelings take over to outweigh the short term good feelings. This is when the realisation comes that the immediate great feeling ‘hits’ come with a really high long-term cost.
Myself, I decided to look elsewhere and checked out the self-help movement. I discovered lots of people, all with ‘the answer’.
“Hey Robert, come on this journey with me and make yourself feel great!” Mostly these were well-meaning people with something to offer the few people able to take it up.
I personally got lots out of it, but it wasn’t complete. It was a journey of new understandings about the mission to create a better life for myself. There were lots of books, plenty of gurus, personal therapy, and high hopes of finding that special someone who could make me feel better permanently. And in the beginning, it was great and with lots of fulfilling feelings and hopeful expectations. And for a long time, the answer was so very close … but not quite within reach.
Sure I felt fantastic and perhaps even superior, but it didn’t last. When the crap feelings crept back in, my everyday existence became the reality of my life, and I realised that the old patterns and habits had been laid dormant, but only for so long.
So I kept looking and checking out even more things; beaded bracelets, pretty rocks, lucky charms, spells, superstitions, affirmations, self-talk, meditation, motivational videos, buying more stuff, a new relationship, a new job…… the list goes on. Round and round in circles. More courses, more coaches, more books and an emptier bank account.
But I was never quite nailing the happiness I was looking for you.
Searching, searching, searching … and finding a never ending circle of short term fixes which I learned to recognise and to have no confidence in.
Of course something had to burst and this happened when a new type of ‘hit’. It was the realisation hit that on the path I was on, there was little hope of an even better life. Instead of fighting against it, I needed to accept that it’s ok and even normal to feel lost, and then be determined to give in. It is not ok to give-in!
So instead of me telling myself that it’s all bullshit and instead of me allowing the cynicism to take over, I decided to change direction just a little.
I decided it is all about me and that in me, must be every answer I need. All I have to do it find them!!
This is when my feelings changed and when my real journey began. This is the journey I am still on and for the rest of my life I am a work in progress, dedicated to making sure I have the personal strategies within to deal with the blocks so I keep moving forward no matter what.
I am now out of the danger zone that I used to be in; positive on the outside yet fearful on the inside, funny and motivated on the outside yet falling apart on the inside, full of confidence on the outside yet a living hell on the inside, wealthy on the outside but so poor on the inside.
On reflection, I’ve had profound experiences that have left me feeling great about me and the world … but only most of the time of course!