What the heck am I holding on to?

I’m a firm believer in the Louise Hay school of thought that says your limiting beliefs can often manifest as physical ailments (a person who is a pain in the back will literally be a pain in your back). So while dealing with the onset of physical issues (medicine for the flu, massage for back pain, dental visit for aching tooth…) you would be well advised to look at the emotional and spiritual issues that contributed to this current state of being. Sometimes your dis-ease* (*I know, sometimes the hyphenation is annoying to me too: why can’t you just spell the word properly?! I will get to that…) is obvious:

My ex is such a pain in the back”– oh my back is killing me and I need the gnarest of massages!

…But other times the root of what ails you is not so easy to discern. You may all of a sudden have this crazy horrible pain in your knee cap that doesn’t seem to make any sense! So in those times when you feel perplexed, the issue may be resistance to an emotion and the physical challenges make the issue arise for you (like bad teeth or an ingrown toenail– whatever it may be!). Alright, you get the drift and you’re open to interpretation! You’re ready to tackle these issues head on! It’s no fun to have a tense back, a bad tooth, acne all over your face/back/arms whatever. It’s no fun to be snotty, fatigued, irritable, or have crud in your eyes… Whatever is causing this– let’s fix it! Before we get our hands too dirty, the way I like to address this some of these “concepts” (challenges, resistance (et. al.) arising from physical and spiritual challenges) from two perspectives: the believer and the skeptic. The way I see it is that both ways totally work, are completely compatible no matter your belief system and either way, this is sound advice. You don’t have to believe that your reality is as permeable as Chayefsky might imagine, but even the most flowery metaphysical stuff has a root in the practical and scientific inquiry. First, with the skeptically beneficial perspective… Let’s say that my emotional resistance is a super horrid person that I have to regularly interact with– can you picture all the passive aggressive and really rude, selfish things this person will do to me regularly? Just insert whatever dumb annoying crap would trigger you in this hypothetical dummy and there you have it. So after trying lots of different ways of dealing with this person, it’s just largely apparent they’re a pain in the ass and there’s not much to do about them other than minimize the conversation (from sentences to words– or less! Now with zero f–ks!). However the truth is that dealing with a douche bag is is stressful and operating in stress mode suppresses my immune system. Suppressed immune system = sick. So I get sick because my defenses are down. THE SET-UP, amiright? Despite the emotional cause, there is a perfectly logical and biological (SCIENCE!) cycle that has been created by dealing with this situation. Because I’m probably resisting (because no one wants to deal with douche bags) the sickness from a suppressed immune system is directly attributable to holding on to some sort of resistance (dealing with douche bags). In the case of this dummy person, it’s the resistance of not being authentic with your desires (to never speak to them again), being authentically yourself (to tell them to go suck an egg), or authentic with your needs (to not deal with annoying turds… EVER). Not being able to be authentic in your reaction (chasing the turd-nugget down the street with a broom hurtling expletives at them until they cry for mommy and never return to bother you again…) causes stress. The stress that you’re being caused is directly influencing your physical body as much as it is your spiritual body. With that in mind, the emotional and spiritual act of reclaiming your authenticity will reduce your stress and therefore boost your immune system. Whether you feel empowered to claim your inner and outer authority (or not) is a separate issue, but it’s the important foundation to consider. In another example, some people are very shy and like to drink alcohol to loosen up. Or they drink to relax. Drinking, however, has the side effects of disrupting sleeping patterns, depleting the body of essential nutrients (especially mood boosting nutrients), and even suppressing health and immunity by over-burdening the liver and kidneys. It also dehydrates you but whatever, you get the point. So drinking is avoiding doing the personal work that says “why am I so stressed that I need a quick escape?” or “why am I too shy to participate without alcohol in my system?” Because of the nature of the chemical, there are secondary problems that arise from the initial challenges that went un-addressed. Of course– caveat– there’s nothing wrong with drinking or not addressing your issues (if that works for you). If you recognize that sometimes these physical ailments are a companion to a great understanding – feelings or otherwise– it can greatly aide you in figuring out just what the heck you need to do to avoid having these challenges in the future or what you need to do to get out of the frustration of the challenge at hand. Science hasn’t forsaken logic here! If your mind is aligned with your body, things work better. If you’re stressed, your body is suppressed. If your body is suppressed, you’re further stressed. If you change your mentality, you can change your body chemistry too (like switching to the parasympathetic nervous system and releasing dopamine et al instead of cortisol and adrenaline). Onward to the woo! So you’re all mixed up and you don’t know what to do— what might you be holding on to? What might these issues symbolize? If you’re really lost, there’s a great book you can peep because let’s face it– sometimes it’s a jungle out there in mind-body-spirit land and a guide is golden. But let’s say it’s fairly sensical, intuited, or obvious to you– you know exactly what the dealio is. Going back to the dummy example… You know exactly what’s bothering you (this person) and you feel that you can fix it (get rid of all the dummies!) but the solution may not be practical. So what then? Well the solution is not a solution if you can’t actually use it. While most woo-woo advice would tell you to raise your vibration effectively shutting this person out, it’s largely irrelevant when they’re bringing you down. You need Practical Advice more than #aspirations. In other words, you need solutions that work for you where you are, with what you have, right now not trendy suggestions for an ideal time and place that isn’t yours. I wish this was the one-size-fits-all of solutions for every problem but unfortunately you have to put some thought into it or ask for help. So here’s a little checklist: First, address the physical challenges you’re faced with. If your back hurts from stress, get those stress reduction tactics into play like yesterday and start eating healthier– no more vegan cakes and margarine slathered bread. The healthy eating will help give you energy and reduce the deleterious effects of stress so you can start to repair the physical foundation while you work on the spiritual aspects. It’s hard to have major life changing revelations about yourself when you’re sick and tired of being sick and tired. So at least take the sick and tired part out so you can deal.

First you pack your bags (figure out what you’ve brought along with you), then you get to the station (arrive in dis-ease and seek re-harmonization), then you board the train (begin the healing) and then you’re on the midnight train to raising your vibration (the final destination)!

Now that you’re starting to look for help or at least improve some aspects of the physical arena, you can start to address the issue of the spiritual/emotional. In the case of a difficult person, this might take a few levels of dissection. While it may just seem like the person is difficult, it’s prudent to ask why this bothers you. Theoretically, it shouldn’t bother you if someone is really stupid and insists on being stupid toward you. That should be the psychic equivalent of distorting space and time Matrix style as these insults (bullets) whiz past your smirking face. Obviously this isn’t the case– those bullets are hitting you square on and you’re totally not Superman (yet?). So what’s the deal? There’s always a reason why things bother you like it’s disrespectful, rude, a bad example, hurtful, whatever. So let’s say the reason is because it’s disrespectful to treat you poorly. Why does being treated respectfully matter to you? It may be tempting to say something snarky in response like “because everyone should be treated with respect uh-duh” but that’s not really addressing the issue. You have to look at why it’s important to you to be treated respectfully. Breaking this down even further, this person is a turd so why do you care if they treat you respectfully? You already know they won’t (or assume they won’t, or generally know they won’t) so clearly something else is being triggered. If the root of the issue of respect isn’t immediately clear, ask yourself why it would bother you if the person disrespecting you was someone you actually cared about. If someone you cared about was treating you like this dummy, then why would that upset you? Now you’re getting to the root of the issue. Perhaps that disrespect makes you feel like you aren’t worth much or that you aren’t asserting yourself or being authentic. Whatever the reason is, knowing it starts to help you form a solution. If you feel that when you “take” disrespect, you’re really dishonoring yourself and accepting that you suck, then it is clear why this situation is stressful. You’re asking yourself or forcing yourself to act in a way that makes you feel powerless, victimized, low and weak. It’s okay to acknowledge the negative– you don’t have to unpack and live there but you do need to understand what the underlying sentiments are so you can move through them.

Friendly reminder that everyone is different so remember these are examples. 🙂

But let’s go scientific for a moment– remember how we said that everything can be explained many ways? The desire to solve an emotional problem like being disrespected has roots in evolution. If we are to take Dawkins at his word, then forming a psychological preference for resolution is a survival tactic (of your genes, albeit) to make you restore the optimal replication vehicle. If you’re all messed up from stress, your DNA is degraded and genes are less likely to replicate optimally. The desire to resolve your issues (however– no judgment) comes from the desire of the genes to replicate optimally having evolved this little wonderland of DNA replication to do so. That is if you’re in the Dawkins-got-it-right crowd (because if you’re not, then you are totes annoyed and I’m sorry). Regardless of how you want to view it, you’ve got to get to the bottom of your resistances so that you can break free of the stress that’s binding you to physical duress. So far we have: solve the physical ailment, figure out what’s bothering you, figure out why that’s bothering you. Now we get to the root of the issue: how to solve your problems! It’s all well and good if you do some self reflection but likely you’ll fare much better if you decide to change the habits that are bringing you to breaking points. Finding a solution that works Here’s where it gets fun! You get to look for a solution to your problem so that you can stop feeling like crap. In the example of the dummy being a dummy, let’s say you’ve found:

  • they’re a pain in your back (literally)
  • it’s because you feel disrespected
  • your family disrespects you so when other people do it, it triggers you
  • it makes you feel powerless and stupid

Now that you’ve got a kind of framework down, you can ask “so how can I stop myself from being triggered, feeling this way, and being disrespected?” You may not be able to avoid all the rude things this person inflicts upon you so avoidance perhaps is not a complete solution. You may instead employ deep breathing (anti-stress, grounding) to help calm yourself through an “attack” from this person. Then you won’t be triggered as badly. Perhaps you also carry around some crystals or special trinkets to help you connect to happier thoughts or better energy (for example: kyanite is a great neutralizer of negative energy). Now, let’s say they get to you anyway, what next? You can stop the emotions and neutralize them before they get too out of control. For example, they do something inconsiderate (like get a tattoo instead of pay you back the money they owe you which they swear they don’t have) which pushes you over the edge. So you can stop that and turn it into a learning experience. Why am I angry? Why am I sad? Why do I feel this way? Am I surprised? Have I done this myself to other people? How can I communicate with this person that it’s unacceptable for them to do this to me? If they won’t listen, what other recourses do I have? If I won’t employ all my options, should I bother being upset? — Serious self reflection time. 🙂 Finally, it would help you to do healing work around the root of the issue that keeps triggering you! People are always going to disrespect you (because people are people…) but if you neutralize the triggers for those actions to bother you, you’re constantly operating from a place of greater peace which makes it way more challenging to actually bring you down and tap you out. It’s not fun being put through the spiritual boot camp that a lot of us find ourselves in, however, it doesn’t have to be a break-down every time. Going through tough spiritual experiences can totally be a break-through and make you stronger (just like boot camp except without the propaganda and tunnel vision). And you’re totally not in this alone! Know that at least I am here for you and would love to hear what you have to say, answer your questions to the best of my ability and support you through this journey. 🙂 Namaste!

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