When you attempt to make yourself into who you are not – someone based on society’s false images of whatever is current – your soul will rebel.
At night, in the privacy of your home, after playing at pleasing others, your mask will come off and you will binge on whatever soothes you – food, drugs, alcohol, television, the Internet.
You cannot live a life that is not yours and think that your inner soul child will not rebel against such unnatural demands.
Slow Down Here
Sometimes, slowing down to read words so they sink in can change your life.
Here are some.
…Many of us – men and women – are addicted in one way or another because our patriarchal culture emphasizes specialization and perfection.[Tweet “We are addicted … because our patriarchal culture emphasizes specialization and perfection”]
Driven to do our best at school, on the job, in our relationships – in every corner of our lives – we try to make ourselves into works of art.
Working so hard to create our own perfection we forget that we are human beings…
[Tweet “Working so hard to create our own perfection we forget that we are human beings…”]
Behind the masks of…successful lives, there lurks disillusionment and terror.
One common factor appears repeatedly.
Consciously the individuals are being driven to do better and better within the rigid framework they have created for themselves; unconsciously they cannot control their [compulsive] behaviour.
There are countless individual and collective reasons for the outbreak of chaos as soon as the daily routine is completed.
Will power can only last so long.
If that will power has been maintained at the cost of everything else in the personality, then nothingness gapes raw.
When in the evening it is time to come back to oneself, the mask and the inner Being do not communicate…
Compulsions narrow life down until there is no living – existence perhaps, but no living.”
[Tweet “Compulsions narrow life down until there is no living – existence perhaps, but no living”]
Long Quote Apology
I know that quoting long passages is not what I learned in blogging school.
Sometimes you have to break the rules to make a point.
And I can’t make it better than Marion Woodman’s passage from Addiction to Perfection: The Still Unravished Bride.
Reading that passage always knocks me over. I spent so many years believing that I had to be perfect, good, thin and successful by others’ definition. It had me in chains.
I didn’t have mentors to explain this to me or a way out, and it was a lifelong journey trying to figure it out for myself.
There’s a big difference between driving yourself mad, attempting to live up to the cultural norms you have swallowed whole, and doing your best, attempting excellence.
On the other side of perfectionism and its baffling manifestation of addictions is the creative, fully expressed life.
In attempting excellence and doing your best, you are secure in knowing that your quest, your mission, is to live into your whole self – and let others live into theirs.
As you recognize and then embrace your uniqueness and bring full expression and creativity into your daily life, the need to see what others are doing and to compare yourself to them diminishes.
When you see that you have so much to do in this all too brief life, there is not much time for compulsions that inevitably “narrow life down”.
There is an urgent requirement for full expression, and for that, you dive inward to the centre of your being to find the truth of who you are.
You do inner work.
You do soul work.
You investigate everything that your heart loves and begin to do it.
From there, you can fly into your own arms and heart and do what always needed to be done.
The unlived life is no longer an option.
[Tweet “The unlived life is no longer an option. “]
Living now becomes perfectly messy, maybe – but perfectly and completely yours.
Reflections for You
What would it mean to live your full expression of life? What would you be doing?
And how would excellence and doing your best serve you?
Click away. And write to me. Vulnerable is beautiful. And I write back.
© Miriam Linderman 2014