You’re into yoga, and meditative practices. You’ve worked on yourself, have a deep understand of how your mind works, and have become proficient in predicting your emotions. You’ve self-studied, and you’re self aware. And still, you are unhappy. Is that your fault?
When do we get to relax and NOT blame ourselves for our less-than-happiness? By assuming we have agency over own happiness, do we automatically blame ourselves when we’re feeling blue?
A dear friend recently told me, verbatim: “Be careful of that new age bullshit”. She was referring to the implication that if we have the power to make ourselves happy, it must be our faults when we are not. Already feeling sad, lonely, and doubting her ability to be loved, she was beginning to feel guilty and pathetic for not trying hard enough to be turn those feelings around. “If only I worked harder, worked smarter, I’d be happy”, she originally thought. Turns out, she HAS worked hard and intelligently, and still she’s not happy.
Who needs this?!
Not everything is necessarily our responsibility, or in our power to choose or change. We don’t have agency over every aspect of every thing that happens in our life. We DO however, have the ability to focus on the thing that is most important to us. We can identify the most pressing, most “I can’t live like this anymore” issue and address it dead-on. For my friend, it was not feeling lovable. Therefore she’s demonstrating to the world just how well she deserves to be loved by loving on herself in a big yummy way.
We can all do a little (or a lot!) more of this. We can love ourselves passionately and indulgently, without fear or hesitation. The first step is compassion. Compassion for your sweet fragile heart, your internal struggles, and the confusion and doubt that sometimes clouds your spirit. Cradle your heart like you were rocking a small child to sleep. Love the whole package of you.
As for my dear friend, in the past she would have beat herself up for not “doing happiness” right. Today, she’s more interested in just being kinder to herself.