I’m 45 years old and one thing that I have learned about this life (among many) is that it will kick you in the teeth again and again. People will judge you and say unkind words behind your back. Some will tell lies and manipulate what you did or what you said. And some will cause you to feel invisible, like you don’t exist.
In this article I discuss the Light within, the real purpose of pain and how through pain you can create the best version you possible.
I also share my own experience of how to rise and how Hemmingway has been one of my greatest influences.
Like you, I have had my heart broken, been lied about, my words manipulated, and I have certainly felt invisible on more than one occasion. As you live through experience, most disrespectful encounters become easy enough to recover from. But the ones that hit hardest were when the people I love the most were the ones causing the pain. That’s when the pain consumed me, like a raging fire that tore me apart.
During which times I have often thought, what am I doing wrong? What is wrong with me? Why am I not good enough?
I can recall days when asking those questions I have felt nothing less than a shell, my whole system frozen in a hangover of emotion that beats me to a pulp, and while in it, it feels like there will never be any release from the pain.
I have worked as a psychic for the last twenty years and the only reason I can do what I do is because I am sensitive. There is a glorious up-side to that, but the downside is like having a holistic system as raw as fish’s scales. I have learned to implement the daily practice of honing a mindful awareness and knowing myself well and that practice has become my fortitude.
The irony of having those fish scales is, that that’s also why I have chosen to live my life from a spiritual perspective – for me it is how I make sense of life. It’s also why I trained in hypnotherapy, counselling and as a Life Coach. Each gave me a deeper understanding of the human mind and human behavior. They also showed me how to take ownership of my power, my choices and who I am to a level that serves my growth, my relationships, and my work. And for sure, it’s why I authored my book, Saoirse, because that heroin really shows us how to embrace pain and use it to set us free. If I wasn’t so sensitive who knows if I would have spent the last two decades educating myself in human behavior, the mind, awareness and in doing so becoming who I am.
The experiences in my life that have caused me the greatest loss and pain, have been the very experiences that caused my greatest growth and shaped who I am.
One sure thing about pain is that it will come knocking on your door. When it does it will cause you to feel ambushed in its hell and completely helpless at times. In the early stages of pain, you will most certainly forget who you are. It will belt you from all directions in its darkness, causing you to scream, cry and eventually go numb in its screaming, silent roars.
But within that silent scream, something else happens. As the events, experiences and the actions of others continue to attack like an echo on rerun, your mind will eventually go to another place. A deeper place. A still, silent place. A peaceful place. And there you reside for a moment or two. At first you stay there long enough to hear the reminder, before being thrown back to the echoes of hell. Then you are drawn there again, long enough to feel the reminder. The chaos of your circumstance still bellowing their deafening screams, demanding you stay in chaos. But the silent place draws you in.
You take a deep breath and give it your attention, long enough to feel its peaceful light rise within you, because within it is a knowing. An awareness of who you are. You hold on to it, almost afraid to make a sound or even move in case you disconnect from the clarity rising through your veins. As your spirit rises you remember for the briefest moment who you are, what you are. The pain and the chaos still fight and roar for your attention as does your anger, sadness, and your grief. The voice telling you that you are not good enough continues to fight for reign. But you center into the clarity of the Light.
That clarity is the fire inside you. It is your Light. It is your strength and within it you realize that your heart-breaking experience is not happening to destroy your strength. It is happening to remind you of how strong you are.
The most defining moments in your life will be created by what you do when confronted with pain and suffering. Heartbreak is inevitable. Anger is inevitable. Suffering is inevitable as is sadness, rejection, or any other level of disharmony. It’s not about denying these emotions. It is about acknowledging them, listening to them, and really hearing what they want to say. You must feel them. But then, (very important part coming up!)…
DECIDE WHETHER YOU ARE GOING TO REACT OR RESPOND TO THE WORLD BECAUSE OF THESE EMOTIONS.
We always have a choice to either re-act or respond. The one that you choose will determine one of two things:
- React: A reaction will feed dis-empowering patterns and support some pitiful diluted version of who you have the potential to become. It will also continue to hold you hostage to someone else’s conditioned idea of who you are – which by the way, if that idea limits your power, it is not true, it’s just someone else’s idea. A reaction feeds the drama and keeps you stuck in self-limitation.
- Respond: When you respond you effectively release and let go of old outworn patterns, hence dis-empowering their power over you. You begin to own, embrace, and show the world who you have chosen to become and in doing so you acknowledge and honor both yourself and your value.
For example: Last year I was incredibly hurt for the umpteenth time by someone I love deeply. Things got to the point where phrases like: ‘The straw that broke the camel’s back’ aired from my tongue (again). I was heartbroken and my anger exploded through every cell in my system. You know those times when you are so upset that your heart is racing, and your hands are shaking? That was me.
Just like all of the other times, I had a choice to make. I could repeat the pattern and do what I always did, which was to react. In my case, my reaction was to not react.
That behavioral pattern went something like this:
I keep quiet and say nothing, because they won’t hear what I have to say anyway. I know they see the world through a different lens than I do, so nothing is going to change regardless of whether I communicate my heartbreak or not. Plus, if I count my blessings enough (again) and call to mind all of the wonderful things that I am blessed for in my life, I will eventually ‘get over’ my anger.
But I never did get over it. Because you can’t get over anger by suppressing it. It stays there, ready to rise again the next time the same pattern comes around.
I could feel and acknowledge the anger. I could love and value myself and reflect on who I was choosing to become. I could ask myself my own truths, my own values. Ask what is truly important to me? Reflect on what the very best version of myself looks like and what can I do right now to create that version?
I listened to the answers as they flowed to the surface from deep within my soul. The momentum built carrying life giving clarity and tangible excitement. My soul happy to be asked and even happier to be heard. Words like, honesty, respect, trust, authenticity, and transparency took residence to the fore of my heart. I integrated and owned the thoughts, feelings and emotions that rushed through my veins and I aligned with the power that flowed from deep within my truth.
Ernst Hemmingway said that true nobility is to be a better person than your former self. It is a bedrock that I try to stand upon every day and this day was no different.
A few hours later, I picked up the phone and I stood in my truth this time and responded.
Even though my hurt and anger were the cause of my communication to those who hurt me, throughout the phone call I did not communicate with anger. Instead, my tone was one of self- love and love for them, but very clearly stating new boundaries and tolerances for the future.
Am I saying it was easy? No. it was one of the hardest calls I have ever had to make.
Did it hurt? It hurt like hell.
Were my actions understood? No. But standing in our power is not about how people are going to respond or react. It’s not about whether they hear or understand you. They may never see or understand you. But there is not one single thing you can do about that, especially if they don’t want to see. And, if you hold expectancy for what people are going to do or say in response to your behavior, you are continuing to dis-empower yourself.
Instead, standing in your power and speaking your truth is about acknowledging your Light, your fire, your strength. It’s about acknowledging who you are and who you choose to become. It’s about letting go of someone else’s version or expectancy of who you should be and going ahead and creating the very best version of yourself that you can and owning that. It’s about searching your soul and finding your truth, then speaking your truth and acting on it.
Because you have known pain it has caused you to go deeper into your strength. Own that strength. Go ahead and create the brightest version of you from that very strength. Why not? It is your power and your gift to this world. It is your essence to share with everyone who is able to see and recognize your Light for what it is.
But what is equally important throughout the process of growth and becoming is that you engage in the process of forgiveness towards those who hurt you.
Remember, everybody’s different. We are all on different levels of consciousness. As your consciousness rises and you grow, one of the most important things that you need to do is find forgiveness in your heart for those who hurt you. Remembering that they are coming from their own level of consciousness, seeing life through their lens. Regardless of whether they choose growth or not is not for you to decide. But the more anger you hold in your heart towards another, the more you are held captive by fear. You are denying the fire inside you and in doing so, you are denying yourself.
When you find it within your heart to forgive and let go of pain, you know that you have learned and grown from your pain. Compassion and understanding replace the anger, but only because you acknowledged the anger in the first place. You showed up and honored both yourself and the process. If you recognize yourself in this paragraph, I thank you for your courage.
That is how you rise.
My solid wish for you is that you find your Light and the path that allows you to live free from your soul, lighting the way for others to follow your lead. And while doing so, you remember, it’s the journey that counts, not the destination.