At a certain point, I stopped counting the number of times people told me to “think positively” in order to cope with my sorrows. And while I admire those who have a predisposition towards such a state of mind that is naturally transformed from negative into positive, I’ve always found it almost impossible to achieve that peace of mind.
Through these apps and social media, many of us pretend that our lives are perfect. I’m not innocent either! So many times I have felt pressured to post on my Instagram just to keep up face even though I am having a real rough time. Whack a ridiculously filtered selfie up on your page, and everyone is none the wiser. But everybody knows – nobody’s life is perfect. So why are we striving so hard to pretend that we are blemish free when we all secretly know that some days we just want to crawl back into bed and cry all day?
People seemed to like me better when I was on my party-mode, and nobody ever hid those thoughts from me. I went from being the lame, silent kid in class, to be the King. My social circle grew as wide as the whole classroom and I didn’t have to worry about how I really felt because everyone around me was thinking that I was one of the cool ones to be around. Unfortunately, that reputation only lasted for a while.
While everyone reacts to a situation in a different way, one thing stands out for some people; the amount of time they take to process and react to the situation. These emotionally sensitive individuals think and feel a lot more deeply than most people.
Our lives are so connected to what we do, that I now feel naïve that I didn’t even consider the challenges that would come with letting go of this significant role in my life. I had never considered the feelings of aimlessness, hopelessness or frustration that might arise as a result of giving up this identity.
We can't hope to truly move on without releasing the ties and anchors that hold us down. It can be hurtful to find out that we are the holders of the key to release our leg, but I can promise that once you open the lock and release your emotional baggage, you will see happiness manifest and know that you empowered yourself to take the step. You are stronger than you can ever imagine. Begin today with basic honesty.
As I stand up, acknowledge, and validate these emotions, something weird happens. They disappear. As though, they were never real in the first place, just an illusion created in my mind. A cloud dispersing into the mist. A reflection from a mirror which turns out to be a clear window instead...
"If it doesn't challenge you, it doesn't change you at all." Change is that unique spice that gets thrown into the mix of life, and we all get to experience it. And yet, change is not something we tend to get on with easily because most of us have grown up with the notion that change is potentially something "troublesome" or even dangerous when in fact it could be easily just another beginning of a new exciting and exhilarating adventure!
After facing a chain of traumatic events in a short space of time and having an outburst of emotions to deal with; I got curious and wanted to look closer into how we process our emotions in the Western society. I discovered that we seem to be polarized in our approach to dealing with our feelings. We either don’t validate them and adopt the position of “I’m fine, really, I’M FINE” through gritted teeth or we’re encouraged to wallow in them and make an identity out of the story, whilst in the background we’re told to shove some pills down our throat to ease the pain.
What if I tell you that I have seen you every time you tried to hide. Every time you thought of running away or actually did run away because you were too unsure you can face your problems. What if I tell you that I was there when you couldn't stand to fight for what you have always wanted because you thought it was bigger than what you could take. What if I tell you that I knew how you let your problems outgrow you when you decided to avoid them.