By Lesya Li
“I wish I could show you, when you are lonely or in darkness, the astonishing light of your own being.” – Hafiz of Shiraz
I’ve been preaching for years, that holding on to negative feelings and emotions will never do any good. We all need to learn to let go. And yet somehow until this moment, I wasn’t aware that I was bottling down all of those odd zesty bubbling emotions that were hard to spot at first glance.
I put on my mask of ever blooming positivity with a fake smile trying to fool everybody into thinking that I am Mrs. Sunshine and all is peachy and that I know it all; like my mum likes to say. But the truth is, no. I don’t always feel good about myself and everything. I have a tendency to give in to emotions that cloud my better judgment and… yes, sometimes I act irrationally, dumb and even reckless.
I was running from all the unpleasant things I didn’t want to face and admit their existence; I was running deeper into the dark. And no matter how many coats of paint I was about to put on the cracks of my soul, the pain from the past never had any plans to capitulate. It always stayed there…
Finding Your Inner Light to Get Through Dark Times
Facing The Mirror
I’ve learned that tool a couple of years ago. You need to take a mirror and look deeply into it. You have to say to your reflection: I love you and I approve of you. Simple, right?
But when I was about to say those words that weird feeling of that lump in the throat prevented me from saying anything. I looked deeper. Instead of celebrating all the good in my past self, I saw only the negatives. I felt ashamed, gutted and wanted to draw my eyes away from the mirror.
I felt as if not only I wasn’t good enough for self-respect, I also felt that I wasn’t worthy of love at all. That negative image grew bigger and bigger. That negative belief brought so much pain. I’ve been the most merciless critic of myself, and I was nitpicking and punishing myself for everything that seemed wrong – rather than seeing everything as an opportunity to learn and to grow from it. That resentment towards myself grew even stronger. Any feeling of resentment, any reaction at all indicates that positive change is on its way.
I was wrong. I know I was. And that merciless unwillingness to forgive myself for doing something because I didn’t know better at that time was far too overwhelming.
No matter what people say, the most valuable opinion about yourself is yours. Always.
I tried again. And I looked at myself in the mirror. I looked deeper into my eyes, and finally, that understanding kicked in. “I FORGIVE YOU.” – I said to myself.
Into The New Beginning
Then I went through my old childhood pictures. I found one image I adore the most. The image of a three-year-old girl with golden curly hair, big white ribbon, and a flowery dress. With that heart-warming smile that could have lit up the whole world with positivity, I swear. The image of the girl I was once.
I went deeper into the beginning. Being connected with your inner self, with your inner child is very important. The happier she/he is inside, the better your life gets. I didn’t know that back then. Until I dug deeper into that simple yet challenging notion.
Whenever I go into a dark place, I have my “anchors” that help me come back to the surface. I can go for a run along the river. Fresh air and that blood pumping feeling inside literally rids me of any negativity. It makes me feel ALIVE with my heart racing, lungs expanding and all the beauty around me for my eyes to see and admire with appreciation. It all derives from my heart.
Whenever emotions take their tall, it’s good to go and just… scream! I remember when I was a kid, and I wanted to let the steam off, I would jump into the river or lake and just… scream. But that was dangerous. So I replaced underwater screaming with screaming into a pillow so no one would be disturbed.
It’s also good to mention that I am a former kickboxer. And I know for a fact that 10-20 minutes of going on a punching bag can save you loads of money and time spent in therapy. That is solely my humble opinion. When I punch the bag, I instantly feel better with all of that excessive energy being released.
Sometimes I like to draw. I find it therapeutic and helpful. All crafts and arts were of great help to me over the last couple of years.
The main idea is to release everything that’s been bugging you. The less grimy thoughts and negative emotions you hold, the better your overall life experience becomes. Never lose hope.
Love, Love, Love
I strongly believe that love and that tender, warm feeling it comes with is a true beacon of hope. It pulls us out from darkness into light.
I believe that one of the greatest lessons we came here to learn is to learn how to love and accept yourself. That healing comes from within. We cannot truly love someone else before we learn to love and appreciate ourselves and our existence here and now.
I’m coming out of the dark into the light. I found the light in love. And I believe that you are capable of doing the same.
With much love, Lesya.
By Lesya Li
Photo from vk.com