People don’t like responsibility. They much rather blame someone else for their plight. But look at what we are doing when we machine gun blame in all directions. Talk about giving your power away. We take that power back when we take responsibility because it says “I am in control of my life. I created what I don’t like and I can create something different.”
I despair, and am at the same time amused, whenever I see mentions of the old fashioned adage of the term SNAP OUT OF IT. To me it always signifies the deep ignorance of emotional issues. Everyone would love to flick a switch and return to a normal existence. In Al Murray’s “Time Gentleman Please” sitcom was an excellent scene in which remonstrating with a depressed man he repeatedly shouted snap out of it and slapped his counterpart. Upon realising this was having no effect; Murray shrugged his shoulders and admitted with great surprise he did not know what to do next.
They say an addict does not quit until they hit rock bottom. From my own observations, you often wonder if we are aware as to when they hit that bottom. In a man’s world our expression of emotion is suppressed. I remember my upbringing at an all-boys’ school with its unhealthy stoicism, suspicion of self-expression and cruel picking on anyone who displayed emotional fragility. Is it any wonder that modern man is so deeply unhappy when his formative years are spent being forced into refusing to acknowledge the thought processes that go on in our minds?
I grew up believing that simply getting on with things was the way to cope with any downturn. I really want to stress that I would never encourage an overtly inward looking approach where we become self-obsessed, but it needs a full acknowledgment of our ills before we can fully develop and fulfil our potential. I’m almost 32 and it was only in the last year or so that I have been able to completely discover and be frank with the emotions that churned away at me. I realise in hindsight that to simply say things got me down once in a while or I was slightly aggrieved was not enough. My long running sense of loss would manifest itself in certain dependencies to which I clearly avoided questioning in my mind. Then came my own rock bottom and I had to wake up. This new awareness of why I was behaving the way I was to escape the sense of loss was a harsh and uncomfortable experience. The only person or thing holding me back was quite simply myself. Changing me was the only way out. It was illuminating and terrifying in equal measure.
Recovery finally came through speaking to friends and admitting both the fears as well as the despondency. After a while, you realise that it’s fine to talk and share your feelings. Long term friendships are transformed for the better with such honesty. The full-on admission that I was struggling was such a crucial moment and made it possible for me to move on.
Communication really is everything, be it with those around us or the internal dialogue in our heads. It allows us to make sense of the world and to realise that we can take for real what is purely an illusion. I really can’t stress enough the need to talk, even if not your friends then talk to professionals, it’s the best thing I have ever done. It is truly life transforming.
We live in a world which talks of obedience to a higher power or more commonly a godless existence where our five senses are everything and all that exists is what’s here and now. It does not surprise me that we have so many problems in the world, as the immense capability of mankind has yet to be harnessed. Our minds are in a prison and only when I become aware of how much I believed to be true without any real basis do I realise how much I was acting as my own personal jailor. Rather than hanging over a precipice, it is far more illuminating now to find the strength to cut the chords and become free. Everyone is special and has something to offer the world and I mean EVERYONE. We’ve just become conditioned to believe we are victims or unable to progress. The simple decision can be made right here and now – so get talking.