Sometimes I take my current level of mental health for granted to the point of forgetting how crappy I felt before. It’s easy to lose sight of just how much I used to struggle.
In hopes of helping others level up their own mental health, I reflect daily on the following: How did I go from barely surviving to so thoroughly thriving?
It occurs to me today that the two insights that transformed my life, and that consistently transform the lives of everyone who sees them for themselves are as follows:
- Every human being has innate, immutable well-being.
- Every human being is connected to an infinite source of wisdom.
Yes, even you. Yes, even the person who’s hurt you the most in your life.
I invite you to play with the possibility of these two ideas. Reflect on them. What if they were true?
May you see some truth behind these words, and may that change your life for the better as well.
1. Every human being has innate, immutable well-being.
“But it sure doesn’t seem that way. Lots of us have mental illnesses. We have real chemical deficiencies that result in things like anxiety and depression.”
Yes. And, I don’t mean that we experience well-being all the time, but we do have the capacity to experience well-being at any time. We are more than our experiences of anxiety and depression. We are the beings experiencing mental illness.
Underneath it all, we are innately psychologically healthy. The human mind (spirit, heart, psychological engine, soul, whatever word you like here) is wildly plastic and resilient. No matter what we are experiencing — no matter how choppy the waves of our experience — a profound sense of well-being lies in the calm placid sea underneath.
The only thing that takes us away from our experience of well-being is the fact that we forget it’s there. We get lost in our fears, we take our our insecure thinking seriously, we innocently believe that we are ever anything other than connected to the stardust from which our cells were formed.
When we remember that well-being is our innate state — that we are always connected to everything and everyone around us even when we forget — then we’re back.
Knowing this is not something you do. It’s something you see. When you look in the direction of the fact that well-being is your true nature, no matter what you’ve experienced up until this moment, you can’t help but begin to wake up.
2. Every human being is connected to an infinite source of wisdom.
It is now well-documented that insights occur after moments of distraction, and not during periods of rumination. And yet most of us operate under the assumption that effortful angsting — of trying to figure things out — is our only hope.
We bang our heads against problems. We rehearse future conversations. We obsess about things that happened in the past.
We mistakenly believe that we are on our own, that all we have is our little minds, that all we have at our disposal to help us learn something new is what we already know.
But of course this is not the case. We cannot learn something new from what we already know. We cannot create fresh solutions from our stale ideas.
Fortunately, we have the capacity for insightful transformation. This is how we were designed to learn, grow, and collaborate.
Imagine how much more room for insight and realization you would have if you no longer believed that worrying was necessary? What would happen if you came to see that your best ideas come from surrender, and not from effort?
What problems would you solve, what adversity could you overcome, what stress would fade away if you came to know that wisdom is there waiting for you as soon as you drop what’s on your mind?
To sum up, my friend…
You already have the well-being and wisdom you’ve been seeking. You already have what you’ve been working so hard to uncover, manifest, and cultivate. The sooner you realize that, the sooner you can stop trying so hard, for the trying is what’s keeping you stuck. It’s time to get out of your own way, let the magic happen, and begin to live.