Friday, 11 July 2014

Spirituality and mental health

One of the pitfalls of the spiritual and self-help movement is that, once someone has been immersed in all the teachings, such as:
- Live in the present
- You can change your circumstances by your attitude
- Love is who you are
- Trust and surrender


.. which are all well and good .. but when you find that you still think negatively, it's easy to feel a little down on yourself. I sometimes find myself thinking 'Why has this issue that I've been trying to change for years still not disappeared' .. and I'm sure some of you can relate to that.


It's not true that everybody is on a level playing field. Some people do have it more difficult than others due to their personality and genetics .. and I know some people say you can change these things, but if you can, then it's pretty damn hard. It's true that it's been more difficult for me than most people to find a romantic relationship, and possibly also close friendships, and fear has played a big part in that - but it's not just down to my attitude. On the flip side, I have a level of resilience that a lot of people probably do not, which makes certain things a bit easier for me.

But just as some people have physical disadvantages and illnesses which prevent them from functioning 'normally', so do some people have mental disadvantages which can inhibit them in certain situations .. and my outlook on it now is, rather than trying to change these factors, which is the normal human response, to just accept as best you can what you have been dealt with, and to do your best and use what may seem as a disadvantage, in a positive way. Then things are more likely to change anyway, if they need to.


Things that will not work:
- Blaming other people for your problems
- Thinking that other people are lucky
- Comparing yourself to others - it's your own life
- Too much jealousy and anger (although these emotions can also be used in a positive way)
- Expecting too much of yourself
- Expecting immediate changes in your circumstances
- Thinking you cannot do anything to make a difference in your world
- Trying to shut out emotions with positive thinking and affirmations


Sometimes I have a bit of a wallow about things, about the cards that I have been dealt with at times - and there's nothing wrong with a bit of that - but if you stay in this frame of mind, then you will just end up miserable - and there's nothing attractive about that. Everyone has their own shit to deal with, and some people you know are probably fighting battles that you have no idea about. The important thing for me is to stay open minded and allow your life to be a positive example to others.


Please feel free to make any comments or ask questions. I could probably expand on this subject in great detail but I'm still learning about it all.


Peace 'n' love
Andy

3 comments:

  1. To me change comes through being with what is, not being with what is to change things. That is the problem with many people they think being mindful or present is going to change things, but its more about fully allowing our humanness and by doing so it creates a space within for self compassion and self kindness to begin to grow from within. If anyone tries to be present that's not being present.

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