You are a good person. You are smart. You are hard working. You are caring. You are deeply spiritual. You are a beautiful and wonderful child of God. You are a gift to yourself and to those around you. You are likeable, loveable, and worthy.
Yes, you are not perfect, nobody is. Yes, you have had your failures, everyone has.
I know what if feels like to compare myself to others. To other men, other families, to other parents, to other dads, and to other moms.
I have felt shame to the depth of my soul for my failures as father, a spiritual leader of my family, and a man who was so afraid of being alone. I not only submersed myself in toxic relationships, but I took my children there with me as well. I was unable to imagine, or much less do, life alone.
I can’t adequately describe the shame I felt. I used work and dysfunctional relationships to numb my pain and shame, and it worked really well until it didn’t.
If you can’t feel, you can’t heal
I have learned that “If you can’t feel, you can’t heal”. The armor we put in place in order to push-back the pain and shame is our best friend and our worst enemy. It gives us the sense of functionality in our life, but at the same time it forces us to disassociate from our sense of self and then it plays the biggest, most evil trick.
This armor we depend on is forged with the voice of “I am not. I am not good enough. I am not smart enough. I am not rich enough. I am not good looking enough. I am not happy enough. I am not nice enough. I am not loving enough. I am not….” and the list goes on. The voice of “I am not” does not come from goodness and mercy. We know this because it puts us at war with ourselves. It ensures that the relationship that we have with ourselves is one that tears us down. Yes, we have a relationship with ourselves. Not only do we think, but we think about thinking. Not only do we feel, but we feel about our feelings. We can think what we are thinking about and feel what it might be like to be feeling—this is our humanity and our human condition.
The piece of the Divine that each of us has is inside of us is not the source of the voice of “I am not”. The God spot is the source of “I AM”. God loves us unconditionally. Even when we commit the most egregious wrong, God never stops loving us, he never is the voice of “I am not”. God give us hope. Evil gives us despair. God gives us the voice of “I Am”. Evil gives us the voice of “I am not” and uses it to harden us against ourselves.
Learn more about Mike’s healing journey from “The Antics” click here