A woman sees her neighbor frantically searching around his lawn looking for something. Seeing as she had time on her hands she goes over and asks him what he’s looking for?
“My keys,” he told her.
“Well, where did you last see them,” she asks him?
“Oh, well I lost them somewhere inside my house,” he responds.
Baffled, she asks him why he’s searching outside his house if he lost them inside the house.
“Well, you see it’s dark in the house but there’s light out here, so I figured my best chance at finding them is to look for them in the light,” he said!
“You.. You will never find your keys looking outside of your house just because there’s light out here. You have to go in,” the neighbor told him.
That’s a rather silly exchange, isn’t it? Only a crazy person would seriously think they can find their keys outside in the light as opposed to inside in the darkness, right? But what if we change the objects that we’re referring to? Suddenly, it becomes what most people do. See the keys are actually just self-love, self-esteem, confidence, it can be whatever really. The dark house is your mind, it’s you during a dark time. And the light outside is material things, people, substances, whatever you think your light is. Suddenly it seems all too real doesn’t it?
You see, far too often when we go through a dark period in our life, we try to find something to ease our pain. For some people it’s drugs and alcohol, or sex. For others, it could be exercise or finding a new hobby, or working more hours. Because while under the influences and in the moment of those things suddenly it’s not so dark in your head anymore. Suddenly, our chest becomes lighter, and we can breathe a little bit easier. Suddenly, you catch a glimpse of hope that everything is going to be ok. But it never lasts. No matter how much of it you partake in it, it will never be enough. There is a void INSIDE you that OUTSIDE things can never reach. To heal, to feel better, you must look in, not out.
Back to our story from the beginning, while reading it you probably thought, just turn the light on and you’ll be able to see. And that is exactly right! In order to heal you must find the light within you. In order to find the light, you must first learn to forgive yourself, you must learn to understand and accept your emotions. Forgiveness starts with owning your mistakes – no matter how painful taking ownership will be. Taking ownership for your mistakes give you a sense of power. This then leads into you feeling like you are in control of your life again. The mistake(s) haven’t gone away but they are now yours and you can now learn and move on from them. But, you can only move on from them once you have learned your lesson. Otherwise, if you take ownership of them but don’t learn a lesson from that then that lesson is going to keep appearing in your life until it is learned. There are no skipping lessons.
In order to allow the light to return you must learn to accept your feelings for how they are and not try to change them. Think of your feelings as check points on a journey. Each one just as important as the other, even the negative ones. When a positive emotion arises follow it, revel in it, soak in how good it feels, and hold onto it for as long as possible. Positive emotions are your checkpoint to keep moving forward. When a negative emotion arises slow down, analyze it, find the reason why you feel it, learn from it, and then find the nearest positive emotion. This positive emotion could be as simple as looking at your pet and let the love you feel for them run through you. Negative emotions are there to let you know you may want to change course. Or there for you to learn what you do like. They are not there to through you off your path but rather guide you towards your truth.
Darkness inside your mind will only cease to be once you sit with it. You must learn to forgive yourself and learn about your emotions. It is only then will you feel the darkness leave. It is only then when you are no longer tired down by the weight of your negative emotions. The darkness only lasts for as long as you allow it to. The sooner you learn the lesson of a negative experience the sooner the weight of that emotion from the experience subsides. Understand you are in full control of it. You are in the driver’s seat and can decide what emotions you’d like to see on this journey called life. Choose good ones as much as possible. You are loved.