I can only know myself

pink flower
photo by me

I am the only person whom I can truly know.

And that is a major part of my life’s goal: to really know myself so thoroughly, there is never a question about how I feel about something or someone.

The other part of my life’s goal is to contribute only positive energy to the world. I am going to stop complaining, stop worrying, stop second-guessing myself, and so forth. Whenever any of those negative thoughts or feelings arise, i will acknowledge them, accept them and move on.

Eckhart Tolle talks about 3 states of being in relationship to what you do in life. You can accept it, enjoy it or be enthusiastic about it.

Notice that there’s no hate in there? Such as, “I hate my job”?

I may not enjoy something or being enthusiastic about doing it. But in that case, I will accept it instead of resist it. Resistance only prolongs the suffering I create for myself. Accept something, and then I can make change happen much faster.

But I started this post talking about knowing only myself. I spent most of my life out of touch with many of aspects of myself, all of which had been hidden from me by the after-effects of abuse.

I realized just in the past few weeks, however, that the light that is me, the inner me, never died. It never even dimmed. It acted as a lamp, showing me the way through darkness.

Now I’m looking straight at that light. I’m looking at myself and discovering who I am. I intend to enjoy this journey.

 

Wow. Just wow.

flower
photo by me

In yesterday’s post, I said that I had made a financial mistake that really caused me a lot of personal suffering. It wasn’t so much the amount of money, it was more that I simply should have known better.

Last evening, my husband (who, by the way, is making an amazing recovery from depression) had to work late. So I had some time to myself to reflect on what I had done and why I had done it.

I took the advice of Eckhart Tolle and also applied the tapping/EFT (emotional freedom) techniques. I accepted the situation totally. I accepted myself totally, with all the flaws that brought me to that point in time. I did the tapping exercises out loud: “Even though I’m feeling anguished over this, I completely and totally accept myself.”

I then spent some time in meditation, which I just started doing daily this week.

After that, it was as if something shifted completely. I no longer felt any pain or suffering over what had happened. In fact, I saw it as a blessing. It was a way of waking me up to how much suffering I cause myself, needlessly.

I then did some work on my new business that I’ve started and went to bed.

For the first time in years, literally, I slept all the way through until my alarm went off at 6 am. I didn’t wake up once. I don’t even think I stirred much.

That was all the evidence I needed to know that I’m on the right path. I’m choosing to be present, to live “in the now,” to not concern myself with what is past or what might happen in the future. I’ll take steps I need to take to change my life situation and stabilize it. But I can do that without worry or anxiety. Being present allows me to do that; any other choice does not.

Today, as I’ve gone through the day I’ve done several minutes of meditation — even on the subway when I guy walked on the train without pants (don’t ask).

I’ve felt super creative and plan to work on my next fiction story this weekend as well as continue doing some work on my business; I’m designing an online class, which I’ll launch in October.

And then, I got a bit of a financial reprieve: with something I paid for but really didn’t want, I was able to recoup about 90 percent of what I spent basically by hounding this particular company for a refund. I have one other item like that — the jury’s still out on whether I’ll get a refund, but if I don’t, I don’t. It was a huge lesson to me, all of this. One that taught me that I have the power within to end my own suffering.

My PTSD symptoms are almost completely gone. The two that are left I will continue to address as the need arises.

Who knew that the simple act of tapping on one’s head, face, etc. and reading a couple of books by Eckhart Tolle could be so life changing? Wow.

Will write a 2nd edition in 2014

Swallowtail

Among my personal and professional goals for the rest of 2013 and 2014:

  • Finish writing and self-publishing my Amazon Kindle fiction series — I have 3 stories to go. I plan to publish at least 2 before the end of this year.
  • I’d like to write a 2nd edition of I Am Just A Woman, including a lengthy addendum about the healing I’ve done on myself since completing the trauma therapy in spring of 2012.
  • Start turning a serious profit from two new business ventures, both of which I’m starting right now.
  • And most of all, continue on the path I’ve begun by studying the teachings of Eckhart Tolle. I enjoy the feeling — even though it’s usually fleeting — of really being myself now. I don’t want to go back to living my life mostly unconsciously, and I’ve noticed in this past week, in particular, how much time I spend in that state. I plan to change that, starting right now.

A relatively easy solution to anxiety

one of my favorite places in the worldOK, as promised in my last blog post, I’m sharing a simple technique from Tolle’s “Practicing the Power of Now” that can help anyone with PTSD — or anyone else, for that matter, who ever feels anxious.

One of my main PTSD symptoms has been trying to anticipate what other people are going to do or say. If you think about it, it makes perfect sense. When you live with an abusive person, you never know what will set him off. So you walk around wondering if the simple act of breathing is going to make him lash out. You watch his every move, hang on his every word, searching for a clue: is he angry? WIll he try to harm me now? Will he try to kill me now?

I’ve spent the last few months really working on ridding myself of these symptoms. Something in the Tolle audio book that has helped is simply becoming rooted in my physical body.

If, for example, I’m on the subway and I start to feel anxious about other people’s movements, I can return myself to my physical body and focus on it, instead of on my racing thoughts (“Will he bump me with his elbow?” “Will she scowl at me when I have to push past her?”). I simply start to watch those thoughts pass by, and I concentrate my attention on my physical self. I start at my feet and work my way up, noticing how I’m physically feeling.

I also focus on my breathing. I breathe consciously and notice how it physically feels to inhale and exhale.

Within a couple of minutes, any anxiety I had has passed. I can continue to literally watch any anxious thoughts and not judge myself for them. It’s almost like they’re not a part of me.

Have you ever tried techniques like this (also called “mindfulness,” I believe)? If so, please leave a comment. I’d like to hear if they work for you.