If you’ve been following the blog you’ll know about my battle with depression. I’ve written a lot about this shadow person that kind of took over, it’s a bit mad because I woke in the middle of the night and an article came up on Facebook about Carl Jung and his theory on everyone having a shadow side. I didn’t even know there was such a thing.
So all this time I was referring to my shadow and it’s actually something that’s out there all ready. How bizarre! I used to fight against my shadow side, it was the part of me that didn’t want to go out, didn’t want to mix with people, wanted to stay in bed most of the time and do nothing. Now I actually listen to it, I know this probably sounds like I’m cracking up altogether, it’s hard to explain but I’ll try.
The days where I feel like I can’t do certain things I just don’t do them. The old me would have pushed myself and forced myself to do things that I really didn’t want to do but that I felt I should do. I usually always ended up either exhausted, used or generally fed up. These days I’m far more inclined to think about things before I agree to them and do what I feel is right for me not for others.
In the past I did an awful lot for certain other people but it never felt like enough, I never felt good enough. I felt like a failure and the more I felt like this the more I tried to please them. In the end through the depression I realised that nothing I could have done would have been right, not through my fault but just because that was the way they were. That’s OK, I’ve made my peace with it. It took me a long time but I got there. I wish them all the best and I hope they found what they were looking for in life.
I’m living life in the slow lane these days. Enjoying the little things, not rushing everywhere. Taking time to appreciate things. I know when I’m tired and when I need to rest. I don’t go to everything but I go to the things I really want to go to. My friends are few in number, most fell by the wayside and that’s OK too.
The best things to come out of my shadow so far is that I’m learning to relax, I could never relax before, I always had to have a least ten projects on the go at one time. It’s still a bit of a test to take things easy as I feel quite guilty if I think I’ve let someone down or should have done more. I’d like to sort my guilt out but I suppose that’ll take a bit of work. The other thing is that I seem to have opened up this creative side of me which I absolutely love. It’s so exciting to be exploring this and it’s something that I didn’t know was there. I’m looking forward to progressing with this.
I’ve also realised that I don’t have to look to others to find a solution to my problems. I bounced from one thing to another looking for the answer. I ended up going to talks and events that just weren’t right for me. This is the biggest thing for those suffering from depression – what works for one person might not work for another. The counsellors just don’t seem to understand this, I’m wondering if it’s because they may not have had depression or mental health issues. I’d far rather go to someone who had an idea of what I was talking about rather than someone who had no clue. We aren’t all ‘text book’ cases.
I’ve been to a few events where the speakers thought they were gurus and the audience were falling over themselves to talk to them. I was quite disturbed by one of them where the speaker said nothing in life is permanent and not to get close to anyone as they’ll either die or leave you. When you are in a depressed state of mind this really isn’t what you want to hear. Yet people go in their droves because they are crying out for an answer.
For now I’m quite content listening to my inner self, who seems to be a much calmer version of me. It’s quite reassuring in a way because I don’t feel so alone and yes I know that sounds strange but if it helps me it’s all good.
Beautiful said my friend, well done, and huge work on your part. Well done for listening to your body and mind and getting in touch with what is right for you. I have a theory that the shadow side has wisdom, and is holding some very precious treasures- thats why it is so fierce in protecting it. Mind you in the beginning of my work, I believed the shadow side was bad etc, and I came to realize I believed that because it also held a lot of pain, but I have now come to not only acknowledge but honor my shadow. I’m happy you have found a new passion and so glad you are enjoying it. Life in the slow lane may not be seen as the thing to do,-society sure says its not- but believe me it is so much richer, deeper and real. Mind you- I’m not perfect- I know that may surprise you 🙂 – and I still have moments where I rev up and have to catch myself, especially when its things I want to do, but am getting better at pacing myself.
I to get disturbed by these guru’s and no, nothing in life in permanent, that is why its good to be grateful for those moments, those nano seconds when you see a beautiful flower, reach the top of a hike etc,smell the salt air from the ocean, feel the cold air as it tingles your nose, being in the moment is so important, and enriches our lives.
I’m not a guru, don’t really want to be one, I’m just an average person with lived experience and you are so right, what works for one person, may not work for another, and we all need to listen to ourselves and what works for us, and this may also change over time, I know it has for me.
Take good care of yourself on this journey, you are worth it ❤
PS- those "feelings are guilt" are most likely old tapes playing in our heads from what others in our past wanted us to believe. Stay strong and be true to yourself ❤
Good for you. Go with what brings you peace.