Tag Archives: mental-health

30 Days of Brené Brown — Day 6: #vulnerability #TMS #courage #Sarno #suffering #innovation

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Welcome to Day 6 of “30 Days of Brené Brown” wherein I’m relating, on my blog here, to each quote as determined by Goodreads.

Here is today’s quote:

 Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.
― Brené Brown

Today, I’m taking a risk of vulnerability to tell you about the physical pain we create in ourselves without knowing it.

Any volunteers? Oh. Me. Ok.

Never in my life have two people (until now), whose clinical work I admire, crossed jet trails: Dr. John Sarno’s and Brené Brown’s. Brown writes compulsively about vulnerability, emotional freedom, courage and the harm of perfectionism. Sarno just puts it all in a different framework:

from http://www.tmswiki.org/ppd/TMS_Personality_Traits - click on link for the complete online list

from http://www.tmswiki.org/ppd/TMS_Personality_Traits – click on link for the complete online list

That chart. That was basically my FBI profile. I’ve dialed way back on my people pleasing, legalistic and perfectionism stuff. Check out that chart… if you see yourself on it (and you will), high-five me.

On Day 1, Brown said something about the challenges in owning our stories versus running from them and that when we own them, when we step into the darkness we can come to know the power of our light.

Today, we’re here to talk about how vulnerability drives change. I owe it to myself to really do this right.

But first: I can’t tell my big life story on this blog because it keeps coming out in chunks. I need to sit and compose it in one place. I remember a friend saying last year, “Why would you write your memoir? You’re not famous.” The resultant shame I felt inside, burning and humiliating and basic resignation was unbearable; I remember my stomach immediately sinking. Sometimes friends suck at being friends.

Indeed, I thought, who would want to hear my story? Who the hell am I to think that anyone would give a damn? I don’t know who, but but I do know this: Keeping it inside breaks down my body, joint by joint and ligament by ligament. Maybe the best thing which comes from telling your story –once and for all– is that you can finally put it to bed.

This putting it to bed is something I have never done. Instead, I have repressed a bunch of heavy duty emotions to the tune which Sarno would determine as the catalysts for all manner of -itises on my elbows, knees, shoulders, stomach stuff, food allergies I ignore and some freakin’ sciatica that I want to heave.

The good news: is that I live my life despite these ailments, as many of us do. I’m dependable, I’m not a social mess, I’m physically active, and I do my best to be honest with myself. The other great news is that like a lot of people out there, I’m emotionally balanced, I’ve been married almost 20 years, I’ve got three great kids and my friends like me. I really try not to be a burden.

Hello?

Ok. Vulnerability leads to change.

In 2009, a relative told me about Dr. John Sarno’s book The MindBody Prescription. This relative plays her cards close to the vest and thus seldom recommends anything, so when she told me about this one, I had to believe it. She sent it to me, actually, as a gift.

Anyway, the book changed my life. I read it in three weeks (I’m a diligent, deliberate reader) with all manner of annotations and highlights. When I was finished, my gastric stuff cleared up completely. I mean… goneski for the entire season. Then it returned, but I understand it better and it’s under control.

Sarno’s other books, The Divided Mind, and Healing Back Pain talk about the same issues; The MindBody Prescription is his most recent book. He has a theory, to which I subscribe completely, that all these ailments I mention, AND some others including (I’m wincing, don’t get mad at me) such as migraines, fibromyalgia, Epstein-Barre, chronic fatigue, IBS, TMJ and allergies (yes!) are all symptoms of our mind’s ability to repress negative emotions until our bodies can’t take it anymore and then we have these issues.

He’s a medical doctor. He’s a pariah in his community. He has changed lives. His books piss people off.

These fruitless pursuits: invulnerability, perfectionism, people pleasing, rigidity/stoicism, “legalist” (being right) … and so many more all work against us. Our bodies simply can’t take it and the longer we fight it, the weaker we get, just from “trying to keep it together, man!” and we burst either by our muscles giving out, our bellies blowing out (sorry), our brains shutting down with migraines, or our bodies saying “fuck it” with fibromyalgia.

According to Sarno, the culprits (hang on to your hats) are unexpressed, unattended, pent-up, repressed, suppressed, denied, projected and completely ignored hidden narcissistic rage from our childhoods — stay with me — which can come from a shitty childhood, a horrific childhood, or a completely normal childhood.

Just because you had a normal childhood doesn’t mean you weren’t pissed when you didn’t get the red lollipop instead of the orange one and that when your little sister got the red one you wanted to smash it into her face. Admit it. You wanted to grind that red lollipop into her stupid sweet, smiling, ugly perfect, little face. (I feel better already and I don’t have a sister!)

Feeling those feelings is normal. Acting them out is frowned upon. Even (especially) in polite company we don’t share such feelings, but man… that’s where we done screwed up.

I’ve read The MindBody Prescription three times. Each time I do, I am relieved in one form or another. The crap I’m going through right now, this stupid sciatica, is bullshit. Plain and simple. There is nothing wrong with me physically, it’s in my head. You should hear me talk to my ailments, I’m like a cyber bully: “You’re nothing, useless, you don’t exist. You have no value… You suck…”

I discovered this morning on my walk with The Murph, that I have put off reading it this time because I said, “I don’t want to read nonfiction; I’m tired of it.”

Well, how urbane and smart I sound.

The bottom line, as I admitted to myself, is that reading nonfiction means reading reality and reading reality means I have to live in my reality and living in my reality means I need to admit and allow some feelings and allowing some feelings means I have to … see? I can’t even go there.

Oof! Butt pain!

Because I subscribe to all things woo-woo (Western medicine is so far from having everything figured out) I also know that the sides of our bodies have distinct messages to share with us.

The right side is the masculine side.
The left side is the feminine side.

All my pain, for most of my life, has been on my right side.  Since four months before Mom died, I’ve had this nagging sciatic stuff on my right. It’s mostly been nagging, nothing too major. But the last three weeks? Get me a gurney. It must be the holidays.

The joint and ligament stuff, it’s a bear. I really hate it. The fact that it’s on my right side is telling me that it’s about the masculine energy in my life. The fact that it’s been bugging me since spring, when my father stopped speaking to me because I made demands about my mother’s care, tells me that it’s likely about him and that I need to do some Work, emotionally, to truly give the pain the heave ho.

It means I have to let go. Let go of the resentment and the control. After all these years — decades upon decades of my life — I suspect I will feel lost. Is it better to hang on to the resentment that I knew forged me or let go and float down?

Letting go for me means have to live in the now and the reality of Mom never coming back and my never being able to fix her and the fucking frustration I have had inside me all my life about wanting her well. Phuuuuck. It’s acting up again. My right hamstring is howling at me; it feels like it’s about to snap and I’m just sitting here.

To me, a lot of what is causing our sadness, our Sarno issues, is that people are afraid to admit their fragility. We are gossamer, but we have limits.

We have an attachment to brawn, to guts, to bravery, to courage and strength and all attachments lead to suffering. This attachment concept is more than metaphorical: in the case of my elbow tendonitis — the grasping mechanism, I was told lonnnnng ago by my acupuncturist, “Sometimes we hold on to things too tightly.”

NnnnNnnn. What did he know?

I was “holding on” to Mom then, she was making headway, but it was elusive. The codependence was at an all-time high: it was as though she did it for me to witness it for her to do it for me to see her be well for me to see her do it… get it? There is no way to keep that up; it results in disappointment. We must pursue our health for ourselves; if we hinge it on anyone else, it’s too much — there will always be missteps. We are human; we make mistakes.

Brawn, guts, our modern attachment to them, they are all façades for the real action of vulnerability: it takes guts to admit flaws and sensitivities, to put ourselves (myself) out there.

The things I do for you people… 😉

So here’s the finalé of this post: if you’re suffering physically and you suspect you’re repressing emotionally, do yourself a favor and get one of Sarno’s books. Check it out on the cheap: read Mark’s Daily Apple about the physical effects of repressing negative emotions. Go to the TMS / PDD wiki website and learn more.

You don’t have to suffer. All attachments cause suffering. That’s your first truth.

For me, I hope this step into vulnerability will usher my innovation and change in the form of freedom from lies I’ve been hearing all these years.

Thank you.

ps – apologies for the length of this one; combining two writers in one post is bound to be verbose.

Grief: Relief and Release

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It has been 12 weeks since Mom died and I’ve written about it here as the mood has suited me and I’m grateful that those missives have been tolerated by you guys.

I’m in a good space right now and I’d likely chalk it up to the impending Thanksgiving rush but I’m not so sure because I’m not really overwhelmed by The Holiday. Then comes Christmas and the new year.

While the coming celebrations will have challenging moments for us as tribe, they will also be experienced in completely new territory for me anyhow in terms of emotional and psychic (mental) space.

Holidays and celebrations for me were not easy.

When you live your entire life with a troubled someone who occupies an equally troubled space in your heart and your mind, that space becomes a third “person” so to speak. It becomes a shadow, an entity, a space — something you end up welcoming (not really) to the “table” because there is no way to avoid it other than via a total divorce. No one was willing to do that in our family; I can speak for myself that I clung feverishly to a hope that Mom would repair.

I state all of this with as much detachment as possible. I am void of judgment or of complaint. I am bothering to share this because of the simple fact that I know a few people whose parents have deceased this year, some after my own mother, and I want them to know this: it’s OK to feel a release or allow yourself relief that you don’t have to worry about them anymore. If you are grieving the loss of a person whose slow and protracted illness and caregiving occupied your mind and or body, or like me the sudden and earth-rocking loss of someone whose death was completely unforseen at least in the near term but in either case whose existence was tied to attendance in your life, it’s OK to be OK with the release of the worry.  Really, it’s OK. This is part of the process. We can exhale now. Be OK.

As I said, holidays and celebrations were not easy. That third “space” or “person” was fear or guilt or shame or sadness and hope over my mother’s state and her condition. For all my life, at least as much as I can recall, I was always concerned about my mother. Shouldn’t it have been the other way around? Shouldn’t it? Since when is it a child’s duty to be occasionally charged or routinely in a passive state of being “on patrol” over its parent? She never asked help of me, though, it was just implicit. Frequently though she would say that I was a help to her, and if you’re a kid, you know that when you hear you’re being a helper you keep it up.

Living like that does shit to you. (Oops, I said I was void of complaint — but I really am, this is mostly reporting.)

Things were constantly such that worrying about her sobriety, safety, condition, whereabouts, status and then in the later years adding on her care, upkeep, attendant anxieties, predilections, tendencies and any other mechanism that revealed itself was a standard way of life. Even when we weren’t together, she was on my mind. I’ve stated this dozens of times. I have no regrets about caring about her although it did tax our relationship considerably. Last Easter was the first holiday I hosted at my home where I did not include my parents in any of the events. It was an emotionally difficult decision to make, but my father’s withholding of contact with me made it feasible and to me appropriate and healthy.

I would by lying if I didn’t wonder what they did for Easter. I had to hold my space; I had to grow up a bit.

So this year, it will be odd. We will be one space short at the table and two spaces lighter in my mind. The mental space has already started to happen, a fog is lifting. It’s like watching a ghost pack up its stuff: vigilance, fear, anxiety, woe, regret, anger and who knows what else that it has strewn about your psyche and heart, and put it into boxes to be taken away and to never return. I have observed the lightening of this space in an increased interest in my own family and domestic affairs — I kid you not! — I have had “attachment and brain fatigue” discussions and exercises over items in my home and I’ve unearthed several hundreds of pounds of items for charity. I’ve been able to attend to my family in ways I did before but with the presence of gratitude and love rather than a sense of obligation and “chore” that I’d had before. I was given my family that I created instead of the one I came from.

My mental clarity can best be described as like a “system defrag” back in the days of MS-Windows hard drive management. It’s like I couldn’t actually release the concern I had over my mother until she was actually and finally at true and undeniable somatic peace.

It didn’t come easily for either of us though — it took her death, and because I’m a truth seeker I suppose there is a lesson in it that is deeper than the obvious: nothing is in my control and I should occupy myself with the things that I can change (Serenity Prayer, anyone?). I accept the high-level lesson for now. Maybe that’s all there is to know.

A few people have inquired about my father: he is OK, managing and keeping busy. He’s a “bootstrapper” and has generally never had a hard time regarding himself. We went to a Mass of Remembrance last week and we tend to get together about every week. I will say no more; the rest belongs to him. He is making the stuffing for Thursday. That is some good stuffing.

Aha — I do know this: there is nothing I have to do at all about any of it. My ego can let go, or I can punt it, and its illusion that I had any semblance of influence over any of the affairs of my mother’s. It’s a tough thing to do: admit your impotence over the most important, first influence in your life.

Sigh. Sniffle.

Thanksgiving is basically here. Today my husband and I will bring up our spare table and chairs. After we drop off Thing 1’s forgotten gym uniform at school, we will go get the plastic flutes for the kids’ sparkling grape juice. I will find the extra salt & pepper sets and get them out. I will enlist my youngest son to make the place cards when he comes home. I will let him command the kid’s table and I will breathe a sigh of relief as I release my anxiety, my “third person” and be OK with it. I am ironically sad to see her go…

Mom, I’m sorry you had to go to teach me to finally let you live the way you chose. To finally get me to back off.

Happy thanksgiving to all of you; if you are wondering if you have any control over anything besides your own personal choices, take great peace and liberty in knowing the answer is: Absolutely Not.

Thank you.

Missives from the Mat 5 — Start and the Pressure Will Be Off #Yoga #Bhajan #Writing #Numerology

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It has been a long time since I’ve written.

I have actually wondered if I would be able to start up again; on the blog, I mean. I went from writing every day for 31 days about Carl Jung and how I interpreted him to stopping almost completely for almost a month. That’s a hard transition. I went from mindfulness on paper and sharing it to mindfulness in the ether and installing it.

Y’see, the yoga retreat was a profound personal experience. I remember driving away from my home, that Thursday afternoon almost three weeks ago when I began my journey looking in my rearview mirror at the three sons and husband I would be separated from for more than a fortnight. That rearview mirror moment was the last time I was the person I was before I changed.

That sounds weird. Let me rephrase: I am more the person I was meant to be now. I have less pretense, less interest in what other people think. I’ve always been pretty confident seeming, but that was because I wanted everyone to get along. Now, it’s not so much that I’m less interested in people getting along, it’s that I’m less interested in having to make people get along. They will figure out their way. I have my life to figure out and I have three boys to mother and a husband to partner. It’s just clearer now. There’s something to the power of being with complete strangers for 15 overnights (about 350 hours) for a yoga retreat. The moment some people say yoga, others envision pretzels or insane postures.

The yoga we practiced every morning at 6:00 am, one time at 4:30 am, is totally different. We would sit on a massive wraparound deck to watch the sun rise when we managed to peek out from under our shawls during a meditation. That 4:30 am practice is something that created a cosmic shift in my consciousness and it will forever be revered as one of The Most Inspired Moments of My Life. Each morning we were to be in a meditative state 10 minutes before the practice began. That meant for yours truly who loves her blankets and her bed that I had to be awake at least 40 minutes before the start. So on this 4:30 am day, I set the alarm for 3:50 am and I woke with little resistance; even with a sense of childlike glee. I’ll explain in a later post why this timing is so special. But it was as if my spirit knew I was going on a trip. And I did go on a trip even though my body never left the planet.

sun up.

sun up. 6:01am due east.

The sun never rose the same way every day; it never does and it never will. But it was always majestic the way the earth bows to the sun.

still glorious, no?

still glorious, no? this was shot at 5:53am i’m pointing west.

We were treated to some of the most wonderful weather ever for those 16 days. I kept on saying to people who were not from this area of the world that the Heavens must be smiling upon us because it has almost never been 59˚ on any morning in July or August in the Virginia Blue Ridge.

The yoga I talk about now transcends the poses. It goes right to the spirit and it means Guts, Determination, Growth, Strength and Self.

Strength and Self

The poses come later. The work, it’s a pleasure, most of it. There were some kriyas (sets of yoga exercises) that set my shoulders on fire. I miss them. I miss that wonderful, bearded wiseman, Kartar Khalsa, who would state to us, “I can show you how to get there, I can show you, but you have to do the work, you have to get there.” He wasn’t talking about stronger deltoids or trapesius muscles. He was talking about stronger Selves, with a capital S.

Kartar Khalsa Singh. Yogi. Badass. Compassionate.

Kartar Khalsa. Yogi. Badass. Genius.

This Self is part of the genius of kundalini yoga. Rephrase: the pursuit of the Self is the heart of kundalini yoga. One of our yoginis at the retreat, the owner and author of the program, Shakta Khalsa (and Kartar’s wife) has a phrase, “Yoga is the science of the self, and kundalini is the awakening of the self. It is that simple.”

This retreat was more healing than it was learning. Ok, that sounds bad. That’s not what I meant. I did a ton of learning. I can tell you all about how babies have this life stuff all figured out and if we’d just do with our bodies what they do with their bodies from time to time then we’d be totally happy. I can tell you about the eight limbs of yoga (I just can’t find the sheet in my binder) and the 3rd chakra and the lymphatic system and why cold water on the thigh is a bad idea (because it leaches calcium from the femur). I can tell you about acidic foods and the energetic transfers and releases of certain chants and kundalini exercises. I can. And intermingled in all of those discussions and lectures and yoga sessions and kriyas and asanas were life-affirming, life-changing lessons. It’s metaphysically impossible to attend a training retreat of this caliber without changing on the inside. Impossible. The bottom line is that it’s impossible also, for me to explain it all to both of you in one post. So natch, I’m considering a book.

These women, the 13 of us and then 1 extra and 2 of our originals left and then that 1 extra did too and then 4 more came in… (it was a little revolvy-doory there for a bit) are in each others’ DNA. We just are now. I will never forget them and seeing the pictures they are posting as well as the ones I will share in a photoblog post about the retreat (to come soon) bring back all sorts of warm fuzzies.

I wonder about the numerological significance of choosing 16 days for the retreat. Numerologically, the 16 converts into a “7.” A 7 represents the seeker, the thinker, the searcher of Truth (notice the capital “T”). The 7 doesn’t take anything at face value — it is always trying to understand the underlying, hidden truths. The 7 knows that nothing is exactly as it seems and that reality is often hidden behind illusions (I got this from http://www.numerology.com/numerology-numbers/7). I have a seven in my soul position, which is sort of a big deal, and it explains a lot of things which I will go into in a later post on numerology and how learning about it and myself has vexed liberated me in a lot of ways. Go to www.3ho.org to learn about your numbers.

When the 7 is in balance, we are elevated, happy, curious, philosophical, sensitive, a “solitary spiritualist” and we lean a lot (or we should) on our inner voice, our inner knowing. When the 7 is out of balance, we can feel lonely, reclusive, aloof, hypersensitive (I AM NOT!), fear scarcity, confused, find fault and demonstrate a lack of boundaries both emotional and physical. The bottom line is that we need a lot of alone time. This was something I wasn’t sure I was allowed to express as a need for myself because I’m a fairly gregarious and social person, but man, when I saw that I was WAHOOO! All you suckas git lawst! I need some alone time! Holla!!

I’ve just recently taken out my books from training. I went to the beach for five days after I returned from the retreat and so I’m just getting back into “normal” here at the house. Just having this time alone to do some writing has been nice. I really haven’t had much alone time at all, actually.

Yogi Bhajan, who to me looks like a movie star in the photo below had five sutras (statements / aphorisms) for the Aquarian Age. One of them is applying right now: “When the time is on you, start and the pressure will be off.”

Omar Sharif, anyone? Sheesh this dude was intense. Never met him.

Omar Sharif, anyone? Sheesh this dude was intense. Never met him. He “died” in 2004; I say “died” in quotes because in the tantric yoga and metaphysical tradition, there is no death. I dig that.

So here I am, starting and deciding to write.

Ok, ok, here are the other four:

Recognize that the other person is you. (Reminds me of that phrase, “when you point the finger at someone else, you’ve got three other fingers (yours) pointing back at you.”)

There is a way through every block. (Notice he didn’t say around every block… yuk yuk a*hem.)

Understand through compassion or you will misunderstand the times. (I got nothing.)

Vibrate the Cosmos, Cosmos shall clear the path.

Woo-woo?

Heck yeah. Ask me about the Soul Retrieval. No, wait, don’t ask. Just ask me where $100 went in less than five minutes. I’ll tell you, it went on a ride on a train through the desert. (I told you not to ask… I’ll explain in a later post. I promise, Marn.)

So no, I haven’t changed in a cellular way; my yoga retreat sisters would likely agree that none of us has changed cellularly; but we have changed in an energetic way and my manner of thinking and old patterns of reactivity and blame and fear are almost things of the past. Now it seems it’s like logistics are the stepping stones.

But embracing the woo-woo isn’t new to me.

Y’see, I was already On That Bus before I left. I was someone who believed in the things that were unseen more than the things that are seen. I learned on the retreat that it’s likely because I’m left-handed that I’ve already got some of that thinking in the bag. We right-brainers tend to be more creative and as long as we’re not suppressing it, we can easily relate to other people on an energetic level. We can let things slide because we know: it’s not real. Whether it’s an intuitive realization or simply because we are geniuses, we left-handed people have a different sense of the world.

As I said earlier, there were 13 original students on the retreat. I’m not taking away from the four awesome peeps who joined us later because they are cool too, but the 13 of us altered each others’ menstrual cycles (someone foolishly suggested that it takes a month to do that, well we yoginis can get that shit done in two weeks, holla!), we shed tears with and for one another, we held hands, we held hugs for more than six seconds, we chanted, we punched the air, we pounded our fists, we asked a ton of questions, we disagreed, we snarled a little, and we grew a lot. We drank and showered in fart water — that has to count for something, right?! — and we really miss each other. I never belonged to a sorority in college. I commuted to college. So this is my first sorority and I can tell you this without a doubt: I’m glad I waited to join this one.

Some of us are having an easier time than others re-entering the Earth you inhabit. I can tell you that going to the beach for a week with my cousin and kids helped a lot. I miss the mountains though. I’ll post again soon, mostly pictures about the days there. I would go back in a heart beat… but only with those soul sisters. It wouldn’t be the same without them.

Thank you.

30 Days of Jung — Day 31: The Post-Mortem Review / Index

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You knew I couldn’t stay away.

Well, I knew it. I didn’t think this whole thing would be complete without some form of retrospective and thoughts on all these quotes, like an epilogue (right, the afterward? the aperitif of a book?).

So I’ll provide a very fast recap of how each write-up affected me because you don’t know that. You just know how I approached them. I am going to try to limit myself to less than 150 words for each recap.

Each day will link to each post. You’re welcome. Every red word other than the title is a hyperlink. You can like the quote and it will take you to Goodreads. I’m sorry…

Here we go:

 

C.G. Jung quotes (showing 1-30 of 257)

 

DAY 1: Monday, June 17: “The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: chemistryrelationships

2,198 people liked it

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I wrote this about my relationship with my husband and it was largely based on a comment my brother made at our rehearsal dinner about me being like mercury and my husband being like granite. At first (and for the past 19 years apparently) I’ve been hurt by that comment, but in writing this post, I became unhurt. It was transformative and healing. The crap we do to ourselves at times is staggering. 

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DAY 2: Tuesday, June 18: “Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.”

― C.G. Jung

tags: knowing-othersperceptionself-awarenessunderstanding

940 people liked it

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Yes. I love and hate this quote. I can’t say that writing about this did anything for me other than bring to the forefront of my consciousness my own hypocrisy. That’s good. I guess. For a dead psychologist. Mad props to Jung. 

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DAY 3: Wednesday, June 19: “Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: introspectionpsychotherapistsecretsself-awarenessvisions

826 people liked it

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I actually drew something for this post and I will admit that I got caught up in the drawing quite a bit; doing that: applying a totally different technique to a way of processing can have that effect on me. I guess that’s why lists and graphs and quadrants have such profound effects on people; a visual interpretation is an often forgotten sense when it comes to processing. 

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Day 4: Thursday, June 20: “I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: life-experience

667 people liked it

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We are so much more than our pasts. Our pasts are finite, unchangeable yet some of us can transfix ourselves on the past, become obsessed with it so much that we lose our place in what’s our infinite future. What would you rather have: certainty that is behind you, unchangeable and over or the infinite possibility of “yes”? This quote challenges me daily to be my best, even as I ignore my laundry. Yet I know that ignoring my laundry is not progress.  

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DAY 5: Friday, June 21:  “You are what you do, not what you say you’ll do.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: actionservice

564 people liked it

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Word. That’s all I gotta say. This one hit home with a lot of people. Lots of people have endured broken promises. Writing this has helped me create a sort of social contract, code of ethics with myself and abide it. It’s important to our children that we do what we say we will do. 

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DAY 6: Saturday, June 22: “Knowing your own darkness is the best method for dealing with the darknesses of other people.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: darkness-self-knowledgesocial

528 people liked it

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We can’t pretend to know anyone without knowing ourselves first. This was a hard quote for me to sit with. I have a lot of things in my past that I would like to put aside, but I need to deal with before I feel “clean.” This quote reminded me that I’m not alone. 

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DAY 7: Sunday, June 23: “Loneliness does not come from having no people about one, but from being unable to communicate the things that seem important to oneself, or from holding certain views which others find inadmissible.” 

― C.G. Jung

499 people liked it

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I remember exactly where I was when I first started to think about this post: I was in the car with my husband and we were going to Costco (of course) and I was really struggling with the concept of “inadmissible” content and how we all have these moments of so-called views. I’m still not sure it’s loneliness. Comments on this were good.

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DAY 8: Monday, June 24: “The pendulum of the mind oscillates between sense and nonsense, not between right and wrong.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: intelligencemoralitypsychologyreason

445 people liked it

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This is when Wayne started to become a regular commenter on this series and I dig everything he’s said. It took me about halfway through this post for me to start making any sense myself and I’m still not sure I had a complete thought about it. I didn’t really like this quote too much. The funniest part of all this? I think this post got the most views ever. “Monkeymind” it must’ve been the tag…

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DAY 9: Tuesday, June 25:  “Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: self-awarenessself-discovery

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Heck yeah! I love this quote because it made me wake up and stop complaining. A lot of these quotes did, actually. This whole series is really about accountability and growth if you ask me. Jung was the king of “Keepin’ it Real.” He must’ve been such a bummer at a keg party.  

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DAY 10: Wednesday, June 26: “Every form of addiction is bad, no matter whether the narcotic be alcohol, morphine or idealism.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: addictionpsychepsychology

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Yeah. I came out on this one. I tend to be the awareness/morality police. It’s because of my need to over compensate for my loose childhood when I’d stand outside penny-candy stores and beg for a nickel to visit the soda jerk. 

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DAY 11: Thursday, June 27: “As a child I felt myself to be alone, and I am still, because I know things and must hint at things which others apparently know nothing of, and for the most part do not want to know.” 

― C.G. Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections

tags: childhoodpsychology

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I started to notice that some of these quotes were going to repeat themselves and their themes. This quote reminded me of my feelings of helplessness at times and that it’s “normal” to feel helpless. Sometimes growing up is a life-long process. 

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DAY 12: Friday, June 28: “The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: authenticity

358 people liked it

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Loved it. So much hope in this quote. Still loving it; riding its wave.

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DAY 13: Saturday, June 29: “People will do anything, no matter how absurd, to avoid facing their own souls.” 

― C.G. Jung

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Yeah, this was deep and true. I wanted to do it justice; I looked up the word “soul.”: soul |sōl|noun1 the spiritual or immaterial part of a human being or animal, regarded as immortal.• a person’s moral or emotional nature or sense of identity: in the depths of her soul, she knew he would betray her.• emotional or intellectual energy or intensity, esp. as revealed in a work of art or an artistic performance: their interpretation lacked soul. I enjoyed writing this post. It was cathartic. Thanks, dead Jung. 

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DAY 14: Sunday, June 30: “Show me a sane man and I will cure him for you.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: psychiatrysanity

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Lots of popular culture references in this one. We are all a bunch of people who think we’re tougher and cooler than we actually are. The trick is coming to terms with it all anyway.

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DAY 15: Monday, July 1: “There’s no coming to consciousness without pain.” 

― C.G. Jung

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Holla. This was a post about other people’s pain but my connection to it. I tried to avoid being all personal and what not, but I finally went deep into my own personal history and told a story about the pain from an argument with a loved one. It was through that argument and that pain though that I learned a lot about myself and how I treat people. I changed a lot after that.

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DAY 16: Tuesday, July 2: “As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: life

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I wrote several posts in a row on one day while on vacation and at this point, I was ready for a break. I felt I was running out of steam, out of “material” because we’d been trapped in this house for three days while the rain fell outside. I am glad my dog freaked out the night before, else I wouldn’t have had anything to write about. Check it out. 

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DAY 17: Thursday, July 3: “In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order.” 

― C.G. Jung

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Something wonky happened between these two days (17 and 18) and I remember it distinctly; there was a weirdness at the WiFi place I was using and I had to reload the quotes and these two swapped in order of rank by people who liked them; in that short amount of time, about two days, someone had read the July 4 quote and liked it enough to bump the order. No matter, they’re both still here, but I remember scratching my head and thinking… “WHA—?” but that’s part of the secret order isn’t it? 

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DAY 18: Wednesday, July 4: “One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.”

― C.G. Jung

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I love photography and for some reason it just struck me as a great metaphor for this post. Since I’ve written it though, I do catch myself setting up a photo more than I thought I did. It’s interesting, what this “subconscious” does when we’re not paying attention. I’m sure I do lots of things I’m not aware of. Like eat too much Cap’n Crunch.

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DAY 19: Friday, July 5: “Whatever is rejected from the self, appears in the world as an event.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: connectionpsychology

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I didn’t get it then, and I don’t get it still. But I liked what Wayne had to say in the comments. True to form, I inverted a little and played with the words. I had to. I switched “reject” with “embrace” and make sense of it all. I had to see this as an exchange in the cosmic sense. I still do. I can’t believe that our unconscious or rejected thoughts manifest as negativity. Weird. I guess I’m thinking about this pessimistically. It’s a pretty good post.   

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DAY 20: Friday, July 5: “Mistakes are, after all, the foundations of truth, and if a man does not know what a thing is, it is at least an increase in knowledge if he knows what it is not. ” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: lifemistakespsychologytruth

196 people liked it

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This was one of my favorite ones and not just because I ratted myself out for my stupidity. We all make mistakes. It’s how we learn. It reminds me of that great line from “Batman Begins”: “Why do we fall down, Bruce?” to which a very young and adorable Bruce Wayne replied, “To learn to get back up.”  This was a fun post. 

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DAY 21: Sunday, July 7: “Where wisdom reigns, there is no conflict between thinking and feeling.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: wisdom

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I liked this post. It made me feel good about my age and how far I’ve come and how much I’ve learned and the habits I’ve formed. I can’t believe I argued with myself online. You poor people. Goodness. I feel like this is drivel now. Is it drivel??

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Day 22: Monday, July 8: “The greatest tragedy of the family is the unlived lives of the parents.” 

― C.G. Jung

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An interesting debate on that one (above). Apparently I was dead wrong. The comments are great; I also read some stuff in Brené Brown in Daring Greatly about parenting and showing for our children that our lives do not stop just because they are born; that while our children enrich our lives, they are not our LIVES. It’s interesting. More to come on that…

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Day 23: Tuesday, July 9: “We cannot change anything unless we accept it.” 

― C.G. Jung, Modern Man in Search of a Soul

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This one was helpful to me. I came to some conclusions about what I say and what I do and how they sometimes don’t mesh as much as I’d like to think they do. Take my laundry for example. No. Really. Take it.

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Day 24: Wednesday, July 10: “The most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely.” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: self-acceptanceself-esteemself-love

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Yes, warts and all. It’s also very liberating to look at yourself in the mirror and say, “This is it. I’m just like everybody else: human.” It’s the inner stuff many of us turn away from and while I didn’t do too much of it in this post, I’ve done a lot of self-confrontation in this series. Lots. Deep stuff and real stuff. I’m better for it.

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Day 25: Thursday, July 11: “Where love rules, there is no will to power, and where power predominates, love is lacking. The one is the shadow of the other.” 

― C.G. Jung

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I loved this quote, but I had a hard time with the “will to power” thing, so I changed it to “control” and that set everything up perfectly. It’s sad how many people think control is love. I remember a line in “Goodfellas” when one of Joe Pesci’s girlfriends said laughingly and partly awkwardly, “He hates it when I talk to anyone else; he’s so jealous! It’s crazy!” Yeah. Crazy is right. Never confuse love with control. Ever; and never confuse “weakness” with purity; I know plenty of “weak” people who are freakin’ master manipulators. 

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Day 26: Friday, July 12: “The acceptance of oneself is the essence of the whole moral problem and the epitome of a whole outlook on life. That I feed the hungry, that I forgive an insult, that I love my enemy in the name of Christ — all these are undoubtedly great virtues. What I do unto the least of my brethren, that I do unto Christ. But what if I should discover that the least among them all, the poorest of all the beggars, the most impudent of all the offenders, the very enemy himself — that these are within me, and that I myself stand in need of the alms of my own kindness — that I myself am the enemy who must be loved — what then? As a rule, the Christian’s attitude is then reversed; there is no longer any question of love or long-suffering; we say to the brother within us “Raca,” and condemn and rage against ourselves. We hide it from the world; we refuse to admit ever having met this least among the lowly in ourselves.” 

― C.G. Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections

tags: anxietychristianitydenialfaithforgivenesslovemorality

145 people liked it

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This was hard, it was almost academic for me. I loved working through it though. I learned that loving ourselves is where it all begins. Nothing else is truly possible or pure without that. I also allow for myself that it can wane. I don’t have to love myself all the time, but I should have a basic love for myself.  

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Day 27: Saturday, July 13: “There are as many nights as days, and the one is just as long as the other in the year’s course. Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word ‘happy’ would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness.” 

― C.G. Jung

143 people liked it

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Balance! Loved this quote. I think lots of people went on vacation when this weekend came around; lots of drops in readership, but It’s ok. I loved this quote. I get to remember that there’s a swing to every swung. 🙂 and through this quote we had a nice discussion about “compassion” and that it must include ourselves and that what we often think of as compassion can really be enabling and codependence instead. 

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Day 28: Sunday, July 14: “The shoe that fits one person pinches another; there is no recipe for living that suits all cases.” 

― C.G. Jung

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Oddly, I wrote about venison. I didn’t know where it all came from. I write in the moment, but I wrote about gun laws and venison and hunting. I don’t have a gun, I don’t hunt and I have eaten venison, twice in my life. One time was just before I wrote this post. 

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Day 29: Monday, July 15:  “The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves. ” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: depth-psychology

138 people liked it

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I love to play and I play to live and I live to love. That’s it. We must have fun in order for work to make sense. Read it; it’s a short fun post. It has Scarface and Sesame Street’s Don Music in it… 

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Day 30: Tuesday July 16: “Through pride we are ever deceiving ourselves. But deep down below the surface of the average conscience a still, small voice says to us, something is out of tune. ” 

― C.G. Jung

tags: consciencepridepsychologyselfsuperego

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The end! The last one! I am glad it ended on this one; it was good and it is good to be true to ourselves and listen to that voice. Always. It will never steer us wrong. 

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That’s it — I’ll write soon again. I just need a little time away now. (I know, I said that yesterday….)

Thank you.