I just read a chapter from The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer that BLEW my mind. It told me that all my perceived psychological problems have been created by my mind’s resistance to what is. That I have given my mind the job of creating a perfect world where everything works out the way I want it to and everything is okay…an impossible task. I then give my mind the job of analyzing all of my problems and fixing them, but my mind was what created the problems in the first place! This just creates an endless cycle that spirals me deeper into unconsciousness.
This has never been more prevalent in my life than in my most recent relationship. I spent the entire year and a half trying to analyze the relationship and make it what it wasn’t. We were not meant for each other, we never were. But in the first few months everything was amazing and I felt loved and we talked about what kind of life we’d want to live together. We even started planning our dream home (crazy, I know). I get incredibly attached to ideas of people and of my life, so when after a few months things started taking a turn for the worse, I clung to that idea of living the perfect life together. And when a lot of psychological problems started showing up and I became more and more critical of myself, I decided I needed to fix that and my mind went into analysis mode. What was different now? Why were things working out so much better before? What can I do to make it like it used to be? Why is he the way he is? How can I get him to change? What can I do to make myself easier to love? And then I’d come up with a list in my head of all the things that needed to change. I even gave him a list of all the things he was doing that bothered me…maybe a little crazy, but his road rage was getting on my last nerve. And did anything change? No. Because he was who he was and I was who I was and those two people just did not go well together. But I couldn’t accept that and so for at least a year I clung to this idea that things would get better while we spun deeper into an endless cycle of fighting, me taking the blame (because he could win ANY argument), me apologizing, and then we’d make up and we’d be in this little moment of bliss before everything spun out of control all over again. I became addicted to this cycle and trying to fix everything.
I felt crazy. I felt like there was something wrong with me. I felt like I had absolutely no control over my thoughts and emotions and that they were entirely controlling me…so I had to fix this. I had the right idea that I needed to get back into doing yoga and meditation, but I was doing it to fix myself so my relationship would work. And when nothing changed, I became discouraged and convinced there were different ways I could solve our problems. I needed to verbalize my emotions more, I needed to be able to let things go, I needed to be less needy…I quickly made myself responsible for everything that was going wrong in our relationship.
In the end, he broke up with me and of course I was devastated because this thing I had spent a year trying to fix finally came crashing down, but I just remember feeling like this immense weight was lifted off my heart. Of course I got sucked into the relationship a few more times (still convinced things would be different) and it took us graduating and moving away from each other for the whole cycle to come to a complete stop, but when I finally had the chance to take a step back and look at the relationship objectively, I saw it for what it really was. Unhealthy. Something you’d think I would have realized based on everything I just told you, but when you’re in it your vision of everything is clouded.
This entry from The Untethered Soul put everything into a perspective I had never seen before. These psychological problems I believe myself to have can not be fixed with my mind. These “problems” will only cease when I relieve my mind of its job of finding a solution to everything.
As Singer says, “Your mind is not qualified for that job. Fire it, and let go of your inner problems instead.”