The first step in healing is, to be honest. We suffer because we are unwilling to see the truth or accept life as it is at the moment. Instead of facing the truth, we avoid and find fault.
We look for outlets, blame others, or tell ourselves the truth is not real. One of the most common examples of how we do this is by complaining. Typically, complaining is a sign that something isn't sitting well with you, but instead of examining our feelings and what they are trying to get us to see, we play the victim.
During my time in politics, I complained a lot. "No one took me seriously," "I wasn't paid enough," were my go-to victim narratives. A few months before leaving, the "ah-ha" moment came to me (during my spiritual awakening, imagine that.). I discovered that I was just unhappy. What I was doing was not fulfilling or enjoyable anymore. No one took me seriously because I didn't take myself seriously. Why would anyone pay me more money? I had outgrown this place in life.
The truth was always there, but I didn't want to believe it. I was conditioned to blame others for my discomfort. As a result, I made life unbearable for myself and everyone around me. There is no honor in denial.
Those days, I felt lost and, I now know it was because I was trying to fit where I didn't belong. My distress was a manifestation of the universe and my higher-self trying to get my attention. My awakening came as a relief to me. I was tired of fighting, trying, and blaming the world. In the end, I let go of making it work.
Facing the truth lead me to another exciting discovery - as I learn to accept the truth, I began trusting myself. I learned to trust the ques or signs when they came. I learned to trust the small, gentle voice inside. Once I acknowledged that I hated what I was doing, I had to practice trusting myself to do the right thing: leave. I needed to trust that in the face of my truth, what I would do next, was the right thing.
Sometimes jobs, relationships, phases in our lives just come to an end. We outgrow circumstance, and this does not make us or it wrong. It is only the end. We are told to follow scripts or what I like to call the "the checklist" of life. Any deviation from our mind's plans (the ego) is hard to overcome. Here is where having or starting spiritual practice helps.
During times I doubted or questioned my choice to move on. I practiced remembering that all I needed to do was to listen to still voice. This voice knew me better and was guiding me to more of my truth. I learned to be gentle when I got scared. I practiced facing my fear of the unknown and avoiding myself less.
I remembered that facing the unknown was better than forcing an outcome. I practice quieting the voice in my head. The useless loop of fear-based thoughts and trusted the eventuality of the answers coming to me.
My mantra at the time was "not today." My monkey mind could no longer control the narrative. It had been proven wrong, and that pattern needed to stop. Second-guessing my decision to leave would only make me more unhappy. When I connected to the loving, peaceful presence within me, acceptance came naturally.
'Acceptance of what immediately frees you from mind identification and thus reconnects you with Being. Resistance is the mind."
Learning to accept myself as I am was the answer I was seeking. On the level of Being, you are free, you are peace, and you are open. For so long, my life needed to make sense according to some rules defined for me. The rules said, "work the plan, stay in politics. Politics was my square peg, and I felt compelled to make it fit in the round hole of my life. Ultimately, it's like swimming against the current of life. Over time, all that swimming in the wrong direction takes its toll one's life.
Then, one day, I let it go.
When I finally let go, a peace washed over me, and I vowed never to force another thing in my life again. I learned a few lessons: accept when things don't feel right, make room for what's next. In the end, all the mattered was freedom from the pain and suffering I was causing myself.
The next statement is overused, but it brings this piece to a beautiful conclusion - the truth will set you free. When it is all said and done all we want is freedom. Tell yourself the truth and experience life from the other side.