THE BENEFITS OF DARK TIMES AND EMOTIONAL PAIN
I’ve been sharing quite a lot of my vulnerabilities going through these darker times recently on social media, on YouTube, on Instagram.
I always kind of get the feeling in the messages and the comments and emails that I email that people think it’s a bad thing when I’m going through a hard time or when I’m facing life’s challenges or when I’m having a depressive episode or when stuff’s coming up but from what I’ve learned on my journey going inwards into all these depths that sometimes they’re really yucky and painful and difficult but what I’ve learned is that they’re not actually bad and even that in itself when when we label as something as good or bad, that’s just a human construct, we just come up with these words and then we condition ourselves that when I cry and when I feel pain and when I feel sad or lonely, that’s a bad thing, but when I’m happy, and everything’s awesome, that’s a good thing, so if we just completely overthrow those labels and this kind of conditioning that we’ve been exposed to our entire life, we can actually start looking behind all of that and question the belief that dark times are bad because I started to get challenged by my coach maybe a year or two ago ’cause I was like why do I have to keep going through the same stuff over and over again? Why do I have to suffer from depression every few weeks? Why is all this happening to me? Why is everything so heavy? Why do I have to feel sad so much? Why is life so painful sometimes?
Eventually she kept asking me but Conni, what if all of what’s happening to you, what if when you feel depressed, what if when you feel really sad and lonely, what if these times, what if these feelings are actually good? How do they actually benefit you?
And we had a lot of sessions going deeper and deeper and deeper into these questions of how do the dark times benefit me and I found quite a few answers and recently I’ve been going through some depressive episodes, so a lot of sadness and loneliness and every time I come out and I mentioned this in a previous video, oh man, there’s so much more clarity in my head and in my heart and I slow down with myself and I go inwards and when that happens and yeah, of course, it might be painful and most times in the beginning, like the first couple of days I full on resist it. Of course I don’t want to feel bad, none of us do and yet, once I surrender, that’s when the magic happens, once I surrender to all these feelings and emotions and all these energies, that’s when I can actually move through these waves.
That’s when I can dig deeper, go deeper within myself, question a lot of limiting belief, embrace a lot of emotions maybe that I haven’t been trying to feel, cultivate a lot of compassion for myself but also for others, so in the end when I do surrender to my shadows, I learn so much about myself and what’s actually going on and so, when I come out, there’s so many insights, there’s a lot more understanding and usually there’s also always a bit more love that I feel for myself or let’s take about breakups, for example. I’ve had to go through a lot of really painful and sad breakups in the last few years but each and every one of them and especially my very first really tough one about six years ago, they put me deeper and deeper onto my spiritual and inner journey and for that I am forever grateful.
They really helped to cultivate a lot of self-love and compassion that I never had for myself my entire life. They helped me to grow as a human being, as a soul, as someone who’s trying to navigate through life but my personal growth, my personal development has been skyrocketed and boosted really hard because of all those heartbreaks as crazy as it might sound to you and so, because I’ve been able to connect to myself deeper on this journey, I also have been able to really explore and discover my own personal truth.
I had no idea who I was six or seven years ago and I’m so glad that where I stand today knowing myself and just that connection that I have to myself and through that I can have way deeper connections with other people and also, going forward into the future cultivated a lot deeper and more intimate romantic relationships and that in itself is so, so important. I mean, I could go on and on how these breakups and all the other stuff that I’ve had to face in my life and the depression and the loneliness and all of that, how all of that benefited me, I’ve already started writing a long list and I encourage you to do the same, sit down and whatever maybe you’re facing right now or you faced in the past, sit down and make a list of the benefits of what it taught you, how it enabled you to grow and I’m sure you’ll see that a lot of good stuff comes out of facing our shadows of being confronted with them and of working through them.
The only danger is is when we get stuck and in this place of being a victim but once you move out of that, and keep saying it over and over again, I will keep saying it, is that life doesn’t happen to us, it happens for us and once that sunk in for me, I was like okay, yeah, I get it, life isn’t out to get you, life is not to get me, I’m not here on the plant just to suffer even though some people might look at life like that or because you’re going through some really horrible illnesses but that’s why I’m so passionate about diving into spiritual teachings and buddhism and just acquiring a lot of knowledge and wisdom and teachings from other people because I want to understand why we’re here, I wanna understand why we’re suffering and for me, back them in the beginning, buddhism gave me a lot of answers, I understood that enough.
We are all suffering but doesn’t mean that we have to stay stuck in this place and actually the work with Tony Robbins also opened my eyes a lot to that that life happens for us, even if we’re really deep, down in the darkness.
So, look all these challenges that you have to face in your life, let it be relationships, let it be your health, let it be death, depression and what not, but look at those challenges as your shadows and realize that these shadows can contain amazing gifts for you and that these dark times actually get us in touch with these gifts and get us in touch with the extra light that is within us all along, all the time.
It’s just that sometimes we can’t see it but you don’t have to stay stuck in the darkness. When you open yourself up to the possibility, then you can turn the darkness into beautiful light. How would that influence you, your life, your every day, your thoughts, your feelings? What if you became friends with whatever horrible thing happened to you in the past or is happening to you right now?
And so, I encourage you as you are going through a really hard time, investigate what’s actually happening within you, investigate really deeply all these emotions and all these thoughts and all of it and instead of pushing it away and resisting it, that’s what we’re kind of used to doing and as I said, that’s still my very first reaction to them, I’m like nah, I don’t wanna feel sadness, I don’t wanna feel loneliness, I don’t wanna feel lost.
But the more we go into resistance, the bigger all of this is gonna get but if you start to actually embrace it and make friends with it and investigate everything that’s happening, you’ll find out so much and when you start asking yourself what am I not trying to feel? What am I avoiding to feel? And actually feel that and then ask yourself how is what you’re trying to reject, would you not want to experience and feel but how is this actually benefiting you, what’s the gift in this shadow?
And maybe we’re not able to immediately or ever get rid of some shadows or wounds that happen to us in our lives but we can find a meaning in them and that to me has made all the difference.
I have a little quote that I wanna read out to you. It’s by Eckhart Tolle and he says in The Power of Now, one of his very famous books, if you’re trapped in a nightmare, you will probably be more strongly motivated to awaken than someone who’s just caught in the ups and downs of an ordinary dream.
So, look at these challenges, look at these shadows, these rules that you carry and have to experience as something that helps you on your spiritual path as something that helps you to awaken and to be honest, before I had my initiation six years ago that put onto my spiritual journey inwards, I was sleepwalking, I didn’t know who I was, I was in trance and then I had the boom happening to me, I had to wake up and since then it’s been basically a journey of waking up more and more and more and shedding all these layers of who I am not and really discovering and exploring more and more of the human being and soul that I am.
And I believe the only way to really transform our shadows into light and into our gifts is to allow, accept and embrace. It’s really to let it all be there and make it your best friend.
So, I really hope this video maybe gave you some insights, some epiphanies, a little bit of support and if you have any questions or you wanna share your thoughts or experiences, put them down in the comments below.
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