For the longest time in my life, I didn’t trust my happiness and joy. It was like I had this fundamental belief that said, if it feels painful and hard, then that’s the truth. That’s what’s REAL. A belief that said: pain = reality.
And because I had that belief, it meant that I absolutely could not trust my happiness or joy.
That meant that whatever made me FEEL happiness and joy, I must be delusional about, it must be delusional. I can’t trust that. It can’t be real. I cannot possibly trust that, because, “ Life IS pain Highness. Anyone who tells you differently is selling you something. “ — as quoted from The Princess Bride.
What this meant was that anything that was good and beautiful and wonderful feeling in my life, could not be counted on, and could not be truly believed in. My happiness and joy about things meant I was “crazy” and living in a fantasy land. The magic that I sensed and knew to be true must also mean I am “crazy” and living in a fantasy land.
Listen… I am not saying life does not have pain. As we ALL know well, it does. But that is a far cry from believing that pain is what is REAL and that happiness, joy and ease are fleeting at best, and merely a fantasy at worst.
Are we TERRIBLY out of practice in the art of happiness, joy and ease? YESSS! Is there pain in life we have to move through sometimes? Absolutely. But pain is not more real than joy, and happiness and joy and ease CAN absolutely be trusted, because they are JUST as real, and can be expanded exponentially, if you choose to shift your focus and open more to that.
When I had this belief running the show in my life it meant that if things were easy, or felt good to me, and lit me up and felt magical, I didn’t trust it. And I didn’t trust myself in it. And I would subconsciously kick up ALL KINDS OF DUST until it felt hard and painful again, because that is “reality”. That was the reality I believed in. And it’s the only one I thought I deserved.
In my belief system then there was no such thing as ease, and joy, and true happiness. With that belief system of COURSE I would always have to be waiting for “the other shoe to drop” because in that belief system, a peaceful, joyful, easier life simply DID NOT EXIST!! It was not even in my realm of possibility. The other shoe would HAVE TO drop, because my model of reality did not allow for happiness. Not really. And not for long.
But listen… the difference between a happy life with some pain, and a painful life with some happiness, is that in one view see’s life as beautiful and as a gift with challenges to help your soul grow along the way, and the other view is that life is hard and shit but you get some sweet breaks every now and again (usually right before the other shoe drops).
This was my feast or famine pattern in a nutshell.
If I found joy in my partner, my work, my direction, my beliefs, my spirituality, my food choices, my ways of doing things… if they made me feel lit up and happy… then I must be delusional about them, I must be kidding myself on some level, I must be living in a fantasy world.
So I would get on my “guard” against what I expected to be coming, which was loss and heartache and struggle and pain because that’s what’s real, right? And in that expectation, I’d unconsciously CREATE it. Again, and again, and again. Even when I saw that was what I was doing! Because the belief is REALLY REALLY in there in our culture and in our whole world.
People get BIG kudos for pain and struggle and self-sacrifice! Just look at all our hero stories! And bible stories! In all religions! They get ALL the kudos for ALL the horrible pain, suffering and sacrifice. But that is a misunderstanding.
All those stories are just a metaphor for the inner journey we take in facing our own villains — the villains of doubt, and fear, and shame and that make us feel unworthy of unconditional love, and support, and safety, and joy, and happiness.
The inner-villains we must face to reclaim our soul’s truths and our true power… to reclaim who we really are. The inner villian’s who say your magic-believing-in-self is nothing but a foolish child. The one’s who say you can’t trust in your power, that you have no power, and that their pain is more powerful than you. And just like in the movies, it’s a lie.
You ARE powerful, magical, and worthy of everything you set your heart to, and that includes love, happiness, joy, ease, big dreams come true, and deep peace in your life. And you CAN absolutely trust those things.
In fact… I am willing to bet that if you ask yourself when you feel the MOST like “you”, the most “yourself” and the most at home in your body and soul is when you are doing or being with whatever it is that makes you happy. We are taught we cannot trust that joy, that it must be a dream, that it’s not reality.
But the truth is the opposite. From an ultimate zoomed-out perspective, the pain is a dream, it is not reality. Because our true reality is an unconditionally loved and loving source, the source of all things.
And though we are human, having a very human experience, that wide-open-blue-sky part of us is always there, ready and willing to assist us in our TRUE reality, which is LOVE and the unbounded joy of living.
You will feel it and know it when you enter this place in you… but it takes practice! And it takes a commitment to that practice.
It takes clearing of the beliefs that you cannot trust that place in you, and that it will not, or cannot, help you in this world. It can, and it IS, as much as we’ll allow it.
This is the work of our lives, trusting that deeper truth in ourselves. And releasing all the lies we’ve been sold and have innocently believed.
It’s time to take your power back, and lean harder into happiness, ease and joy.
Who’s with me? If you’d like some help doing that, you can get my free Make More Doing Less Guide at sunnichapman.com/more
Originally published at https://sunnichapman.com on February 7, 2021.