People often say things like “if only I had a $1,000,000…. then I’d be happy” or “if only I had a great body (etc)… then I’d be happy”.
Well… here’s the thing, if you want to change your external world, you need to find who’s the one at your core. It’s said that life is simply a reflection of YOU.
So where do you start?
First look at your circumstances and constructively assess what you can do to help yourself, rather than hoping or wishing that something external to you will change and make things better for you.
The fact is we’re all born into this world in exactly the same way, i.e. naked and dependent on someone for survival (usually our parents).
As we grow, our perception of the circumstances and environment around us is shaped so that we can make sense of the world we call reality. Due to this shaping of perception to fit with the circumstances, we lose touch with our core strength and true essence. We then simply rely on how others perceive us in order to determine where we stand in society.
For example, a child born into a family that treats children badly, either physically or verbally, will grow with the imprint of that pain in their psyche. Unconsciously they’ll then believe that there is something wrong with them and that they’re not really worthy of love.
The child generally finds protection mechanisms to avoid the pain and on the surface it can take many forms and seem as though they’re doing ok. Although the pain never really leaves, it’s always lurking in the background and comes out in anger, frustration or hurt from time to time.
The bottom line is that no matter what circumstance you’re born into, we all form an identity/ego so that we can function in the world. As part of that developing ego we all have a level of fear, doubt and uncertainty as we grow and we look for reassurance from the people closest to us. We then gauge ourselves by comparing ourselves to others and we find a way to help us feel secure in that moment.
We all carry around with us some degree of childhood fears, doubts and uncertainty and this creates great pain when certain events or interactions trigger that feeling of not being safe. These “insecurities” often have us feel separate and alone from the ones we love.
Having said all this, if you consider for a moment what it takes to create a human, you’ll understand that each and every one of us is a miracle born with amazing abilities (that most of us take for granted of course). We have a functioning body to move around in with an amazing brain and mind that’s helped our species to not only survive for millennia but also to evolve and thrive. With this understanding, given the obstacles that we have overcome to be here, we undoubtedly also have the talent or ability to resolve any issue that shows up for us.
And yet, we find ourselves living in a period that is plagued by people with depression and disharmony even though most people in Western society have more materials items and modern conveniences than in any other generation in the past. Obviously having more “stuff” isn’t the answer.
We have a tendency to always look to the future to attain something and we want it ASAP (if not now), it’s the perfect recipe for unhappiness!
The future is only this moment replicated with slightly different circumstances, the way you feel now is the same way you’ll fee in the future. We hope that the future will be better and will give us the one thing we really want. On the other hand, if we perceive that the future is not going to be better, we get depressed and may even take drugs (either legal or illegal) to deal with it.
The key then is to find the good now so that in the future you will still have this present goodness with you.
The reality is that anything that offers you something in the future that you don’t have now is simply a band-aid and doesn’t address the real issue. The real issue being that most of us don’t know who we are (at the core) and we look externally in the hope of finding it!
Until a shift is made from the external seeking to the internal finding (your core), nothing will change for you fundamentally.
Angelo Campione is a writer and publisher of Mindfulness related articles. He has real life experience in dealing with emotional pain and now walks the path that has him live a life of purpose and joy. Website www.studentisready.com