Finding your core is like peeling an onion – you peel off one layer after another. In terms of an onion you peel off the skin of the onion. In terms of your personality you peel off your fears, your psychological conditioning until you reach your core – your real you.
“There is nothing to achieve, there is only something to reveal”
….This sentence has been sticking around in my head for a couple of weeks.
It got quiet on growthbuddy. The last weeks I decelerated. But this time it was not a micro habit challenge. No, something within me told me to focus on myself. To sit down and rest. To cancel social commitments. To stop overthinking. It felt like somebody pushed the mute button to silence the voices in my head – a psychological hibernation.
Like nature is renewing also I’m experiencing some kind of “renewal” now. It took a while to put this in words, because I felt like there is a bit more to “reveal”. There is something bubbling underneath the surface. This “something” is slowly changing it’s aggregate state. This article is the result, but it can only be a snapshot of a process. What guided me within the first quarter of the year 2018 was not this “days of clarity” kind of light – it was something way more fundamental. There are a few things I finally understood or rather experienced:
1. “I am enough” instead of “I have to become better”
The last years I thought I have to learn more, gain more theoretical knowledge, excercise more, be more disciplined. I pressured myself with self-optimization, but there is something very important I forgot on the way: I do enough. I learn enough. I work enough. I read enough. I train enough. I am enough.
2. My “tools” are already there
Two years ago a couchsurfing host told me “You need to develop your tools in life.” At this point I had no clue what he is talking about. Okay, I had a rough idea. I knew that I was controlled by the “wrong” forces. I felt this numb desperation deep within, but I couldn’t quite locate it. I suspected there is “more” to life, but I thought I have to work harder in order to find out what it is. Now I finally understood: These weapons are already there. I don’t have to earn them. Nobody will hand me my tools (including myself). Instead I am armed from early on. The universe had prepared me for my existence. My weapons are just bounded by a fence of fear and self-doubt.
3. The art of letting go
I’m repeating myself, but “letting go” is the most important thing in pursuit of overcoming these fears and doubts. The fence resolves itself as soon as I let go. As soon as I give away control true energy is released. What do I mean by that? “Giving away control” means stop planning, stop over-analyzing, stop controlling every situation in life. Finally I understood that I don’t have control. I’m wasting my energy trying to control the forces of life. Controlling finally yields acceptance of what is.
4. Judging is poisoning
Lowering the high demands on myself to a human level – this is something I’m practicing over and over again. I can’t let go, if I don’t stop judging myself. As soon as I stop punishing me for my shortcomings my real power evolves. I knew it all of my life, but finally I understand that I built the walls of self-doubt through self-judgement.
5. “Just keep walking” (my own pace)
As soon as I let go and do one step at a time I gain self-compassion and self-esteem. The tools I was talking about are revealing through my own experiences – through every encounter, every challenge I face, every conversation and every moment I spend alone in the forest or in my room. I don’t have to learn how to use them, because they are inherited in my natural design. My experience leads to self-discovery as long as I move forward accordingly to my own pace.
6. The challenge is to do the first step
The key to peel this onion of self-discovery is to do the first step into the dark corners of my personality. To find out how to peel it I needed these dark hours of self-doubt and despair in order to find the right techniques. The first step demanded a leap into the unknown, but then the unknown became my companion. Everything I reveal doesn’t belong to the matter of the unknown anymore and I finally become friends with my demons.
But patience is crucial for this process. It takes an undefinable time span of continous effort. This wall of fear is a very sturdy wall. Self-doubts are very stubborn contemporaries. No yoga retreat and no “self-awareness” workshop can teach us how to destruct these walls. It takes time.
These thoughts were already thought…
…but now they are manifesting. Don’t get me wrong – I wont stop reading books. I won’t stop seeking and learning, because all this (re)search, all this input brought me here.
The sun already gave a foretaste of what is about to come. But winter is not over yet. Slowly my heart is melting again and I’m coming back to life. I’m stretching my limbs, but I’m not about to run a marathon. It’s a lifelong process.
“ People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself. ”
— Marcus Aurelius