In the past few weeks I’ve been going in and out of the state of depression without realizing it. I don’t even want to use this word here – depression. Too strong for me. I never viewed myself as someone who would experience something like this.
I am an optimistic person. Sometimes to the point of where it is stupid. The sky might be falling and I will be standing there and thinking –It is for the best. And everything truly is for the best. But sometimes being always positive and optimistic is not the best thing to do.
In the last few weeks I went numb. I bet you noticed that considering there was almost no posts on this blog.
Main reason? My divorce. Divorce that I tried so hard to make not a big deal out of.
Let me tell you. It is a big deal. Freaking big and quite stressful deal. Especially when there are kids involved.
For whatever reason I was afraid to admit it. I was afraid to face it.
I painted a nice picture in my mind of us peacefully getting divorced but staying best friends who share a child and spend time together often. Didn’t quite work out that way. We are to the point of hardly speaking with each other.
And our son is in the middle of it all. I so wanted to prevent him from seeing us like this. He sees it all now.
So there I was. In the middle of a quite stressful divorce trying to convince myself that it was not a big deal. I would repeat over and over again to myself and everyone else around that it was just an experience. I am moving to a better place. Everything is good. I would also throw a joke there when someone asked.
And to make the situation more ironic I met an amazing person who I really like and who likes me back. When I am with him life is secure, exciting, unbelievable. But then I get back to reality where there is “soon to be ex-husband”, his “moods” and all other kinds of stuff related to our divorce.
So I went numb. At first I thought that I just needed a little break. Read my previous post. But turned out it was more than that.
I literally wanted to become invisible for the outside world. Opening my email was a painful task. I haven’t checked Facebook or Twitter in forever. I wasn’t checking my voicemail, nor returning phone calls.
My dear friends and everyone who emailed or called me in the last few weeks and didn’t get a response, I really hope you didn’t take it personally.
All I wanted to do on the most days was sleep.
The funny thing is that I was still not realizing what was happening.
To make it worse I stopped working almost completely. I wasn’t promoting my coaching nor my newly released product in any way and wasn’t even responding to coaching requests I was getting. Quite an irresponsible thing to do when you are getting divorced with a child.
Everything that had such meaning to me became meaningless.
So when the stack of bills on the desk became bigger and the feeling of “I don’t even want to look at them because I don’t know how I am gonna pay all of that now that I don’t know who I am” became unbearable, it finally hit me – something is really wrong.
That’s when I faced it. The denial was over.
Yes, I am in a damn stressful situation. Yes, it didn’t work out the way I wanted it to. Yes, I am not as strong as I always thought I was. And, yes, divorce sucks. It really does.
Tony Robbins always says that to change the situation you have to see it as it is first, and only after that see it better than it is. I was avoiding seeing my situation as it was.
Awareness. I preach it every day. And there I was not allowing myself to become aware.
Why do I write all of this?
Because I know that there are people out there who experience something similar. It might happen to anyone one day. And usually when you expect it the least. I was happy releasing my new product. And right before the launch this happened. And then it got worse and worse. And I got number and number. It felt like I was paralyzed and even though I knew I had to do something, I couldn’t do anything.
Here are the steps that helped me to get out of that state.
1. Face your situation. See it as it is. Admit it. If it sucks, say it. It is ok to be negative from time to time. Stop the denial.
2. Ask yourself – What do I want to do right now? For whatever reason this step is crucial to be able to get to the next ones.
Forget about what you should do. Forget about what you need to do. What is it that you truly want to do right now? Take a nap? Go for a walk? Call you friend you didn’t talk to in years?
I felt like going to the park to a special place I and my son love spending time at. And there in the park, sitting on the bench by the river my mind started clearing.
3. Clear your mind.
My mind was so foggy and jumpy that I couldn’t focus on finding the solution. Sometimes meditation might help with calming and clearing the mind. But in extreme situations like this one meditation often doesn’t work.
What really helps me is to do a brain dump. Take a piece of paper. And start writing everything that you have on your mind. Don’t worry about it making any sense. Just write. And write some more. And more. Until nothing else comes out. Mind clarity you’ll feel after doing this is unbelievable.
4. Find the underlying conflict. Often putting my thoughts on paper leads me to the core of the issue. If you don’t see the core, start asking yourself – Why am I numb? Where is this coming from? What is the core limiting belief that is causing it?
The core is usually some deeply hidden limiting belief that often comes from your childhood or some kind of painful experience from the past. Your subconscious got so impressed by the feeling that you experienced because of it that now you repeat the same pattern over and over again without realizing it. I learned that just remembering the core experience and becoming aware of it helps to release the limiting belief.
No belief – no pattern anymore.
I won’t tell you the exact experience from my childhood that I remembered but the feeling that it left behind was – “I am not responsible for my life. I am not in control. I am helpless. There is not much I can do to change the situation.”
And that’s exactly what I was experiencing this past few weeks. That’s exactly why I went numb. Why I wanted to become invisible. Because it felt like there is no sense in doing anything. I can’t change it. I felt helpless.
I am always amazed how all the answers are already there. All I had to do was to ask. What is the core? Where is this coming from? And right there and then I remembered the situation that happened over 15 years ago.
Your mind has all the answers for you. Just start asking questions.
Like I said often just becoming aware of the past painful experience is enough to let limiting belief go. I used EFT and Sedona method to make sure I really let it go. Google them. There are plenty of info online about both.
5. Figure out the next steps. Only after you cleared your mind, found internal conflict and let go of the limiting belief, can you start thinking of what’s next. And usually the next steps will come to you easily once the mind is clear. Write them all down.
6. Do something right away. To keep the momentum rolling take some action. No matter how small it is, do something right away. It will be a signal to you mind that you are serious, that you started moving.
7. And as a bonus step, I really recommend to get rid of the clutter in your physical space. My home never gets too cluttered, I make sure to get rid of the stuff I don’t use/need often. But sometimes I clear everything out just for the sake of clearing my mind. It works each and every time. There is definitely a very strong correlation between clutter in our physical space and clutter in our minds.
Those are the steps I used. I feel better. And so much clearer now. And even though the situation is still stressful, I face it. I am not numb anymore. I take full responsibility. I am not helpless. If I got myself into it, I can get myself out.
I learned lots of lessons on the way. And I am sure there are more lessons to come and more limiting beliefs to clear.
I am moving. Moving forward. And it feels good. Feels like myself again.