I used to announce that I suffered from depression with every introduction:
“Hi, I’m Tamara and I suffer from depression.”
It was my reality for so long. By “reality” I mean it was a pattern I observed within myself for so many years that it became my identity, so much so that there was absolutely no room for a different possibility.
That is, up until I stopped saying that shit. I stopped announcing it like it was part of my name. I have always been much more than depressed (smart, creative, kind, thoughtful…), but in order for me to see that, I had to stop asserting that specific truth about me as the ONLY truth.
You know what I’m talking about, don’t you? Those things you say about yourself, not necessarily because they’re true…they just feel true because you’ve been saying it for so long. (Chicken/egg paradox, anyone?)
So what’s true, then? I suppose that’s the question. Was it true that I struggled with depression? Yep. I have scars on my arm from when I used to cut myself as proof. But did that need to be my ONLY truth? Hell naw.
Like, is it the ONLY truth available to you that men suck, or that women are petty and relationships with them are problematic? Is it the ONLY truth available to you that you struggle with money, or that you’re just not cut out for <insert lifelong dream>? I mean, if all that’s the REAL reality, then what? What does that mean for you?
I suppose it means you’re stuck, so why try, right? Some larger force is at work and you have no role in any of it. How does that feel?
Shitty, I know. You don’t have to say it.
I remember weighing 260 pounds, a side effect of my aforementioned depressive state. If I didn’t think healing was a possibility, I would still be 260 pounds. The weight on my body was a reality, but it wasn’t the only reality available to me. Once I acknowledged that, BOOM–100 pound weight loss.
Many shitty things about my life could be considered true. I was abused as a child. I was in a homeless shelter while pregnant with my daughter, now 15. I dropped out of HS. I dated men who were shitty to me…quite a few of them actually. I’ve held jobs with bosses who were shitty towards me. Shit shit shit. LOL, I’m literally laughing as I type this, because that’s all that is, it’s BULLSHIT. It has NOTHING to do with RIGHT NOW. It has NOTHING to do with RIGHT NOW.
IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH RIGHT NOW.
For example, my reality now is I earn 6 figures a year with a GED and 1 year of college (which I ROCKED), despite many people telling me I couldn’t land the kind of financial opportunities I garner for myself because I’m a HS dropout with no degree. That was their truth, their reality, not mine. And even as I live this 6-figure reality, I know there are other financial realities available to me still. Because the only difference between 6 figures and 8 figures and NO figures is my belief about the amount of money available to me.
Sometimes we get stuck on the how. We can’t see how to get to where we want to be, and that’s how we kill any chance of being different. We spend more time proving why we are right about our limitations than surrendering to the possibility of success. And because we are limited by the filters of our perceptions and beliefs, we just keep recreating the same ole same ole. And because it’s familiar, it seems real. But no, it’s just familiar.
You know what’s really real? Your desires. What you want. I mean, those core, impossible to ignore, keep you up at night longings. You know what I’m talking about.
Spare yourself the “truth” about how they haven’t amounted to anything yet. That’s only true because that’s the only “reality” you acknowledge. You are counting all the evidence about why the bullshit you’re so righteous about is true, and you are discounting an infinite number of alternate potentialities/realities.
I get it. You’re a skeptic who needs to see it in order to believe it. Because no scientist or innovator ever looked beyond what was considered “realistic” in order to bring us medicine, air planes and computers, right?
Reality belongs to the creators, baby, and that’s what you are.
You know how to break a pattern? Start telling yourself a new story. Stop being righteous about your truth if it’s a truth that hurts you. There are other truths out there for you–start authoring them.
“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution.” – Albert Einstein