The Whole Truth – or at least a big Chunk of it around Reality and Mental Health.
1. We are all emotional people. That’s our gift – we have the senses and our senses experience the world through emotion. Too hot, too smelly, not beautiful enough, feels good, tastes bad… all these are the perceptions we know as emotions.
2. Emotions are not mental problems. Everyone has them. Most mental health problems, like depression, anxiety, stress, broken heart, fear, sadness, hate, trauma are not mental problems. They are emotional problems. And emotional problems are all based on our thinking process… or in other words, how we see the world – our expectations versus reality.
3. Some professions are more vulnerable to emotional problems but in general all people are vulnerable, actors no more than bankers or bus drivers. Our problems with emotion and health are universal. And they come from an ever increasing difficulty to separate what’s real from what’s imagined. Virtual reality, movies, some yoga teachers and even some institutions are selling fantasy in order to create better reality for people. But this is counter productive.
4. Helping people is a bit unique because a good performer in life or business, or an attractive individual may be perfectly trained to express themselves at work and not be able to separate “work” from “home” or putting on a work suit from being real and naked. Some people are actually paid to be emotional whereas a others are paid not to be. So some people are emotional at work while others are emotional at home. Either way, emotion and reality are always in conflict.
So, there are mental and emotional challenges.
a. How to switch off after work and turn up for family and kids and to know what a loving relationship really is. This ultimately means not compartmentalising emotions, because they can’t be, it means clearing emotions and coming home REAL.
b. Knowing how to not blame things for causing us to be happy or sad and bring mental health back into the care of the individual. An example might be a person who says “when I get work I will not be depressed” whereas, real mental health is “when I get not depressed I will get work.” Putting the cart before the horse is so important and this is achieved by eliminating blame.
c. How to break the cycle of self criticism and self pity, running the highs and lows of the life and build a stable financial base around us. Most people I’ve met with depression get triggered into depression by financial or relationship problems. The financial one and the relationship one are identical. We need to have some cash in reserve, we need to have a bit of life in the bank so if the market crashes, our relationship crashes, we are not left at the bottom of the barrel.
d. How to get people who are addicted to self obsessing “lifestyle and how do I feel?” to know the difference between truth, reality and lies? Underneath every human mask of endeavor is a loving, caring, kind and compassionate human without the mask of “woo hoo I’m so happy” Introducing the notion of serving others… it’s a tough call.
f. How to break the cycle of drug, alcohol and sex dependency to create a realistic resilience to the inevitable challenges life brings. The spirituality, sugar, alcohol, night life, drug and pharmaceutical industries enable significant delusion and emotional crisis to go undetected by masking the problems vanish temporarily beneath a “false reality.”
These are all opportunities for the world, not just in low socio economic environments but in all levels of society.
A Solution – BEING R.E.A.L
By 2050 almost 90% of the world’s population will be urban. Living in cities is such a necessity for ongoing development of humanity but there’s a cost.
Nature is a source of mental, emotional and physical health. This is not just about fresh air and holidays, nature reminds us of REAL. What the difference is between emotion and reality. And this rift, which is at the heart of mental and emotional illness, is getting wider.
So one proposal being touted as a panacea for mental and emotional health throughout the corporate, acting and personal wellbeing industry is to reconnect to nature.
I call it being REAL™
REAL™ = REALITY – ENERGY – ATTITUDE – LOVE/LIFE
1. Reconnecting to REALITY
There are great masters such as Emerson, Plato and many Asian Masters (Lao Tzu) who are convinced that if mankind lived life according to the principles of nature, then we would be at peace with ourselves and with each other. It’s a philosophy not uncommon in the ways of the East but has yet to be fully grasped by the western world. I believe this modern way of presenting this ancient theme will resonate with you, irrespective of your cultural or religious background.
Mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health is not as complex as the commercialised teaching and book manufacturing industry would like you to think. There are four steps.
- Build Energy – Enjoy what you do
- Store Energy – Want what you’ve got
- Stop the Loss of Energy – Mental and Emotional Health
- Direct your energy – A REAL Vision…
I believe this too could be taught in schools – and if not, it certainly exceeds the existing fragmented approach that causes adults to become disociated and confused with life and all its variables. This simple four steps is a radar that can detect the source of and therefore remedy for all manner of mental health problems while building a resilience.
It is all too easy to fragment the definition of healthy and wellbeing into achievement based reward systems which ultimately put the horse before the cart and imply that “when I get a job, I will be energetic” or “when I get a relationship I will be more loving” and in turn, we give our power to the material world and forget our free will.
By focussing on the four stepping stones of energy, we reconnect that which should never be separated and become holistic human beings again. Top to toe.
When you go to a casino or a kids play centre you find yourself with many games to choose from. This is also a metaphor for how you think. Inside your mind their are game centres. There’s the pity party, you can join that community in your head and give it fuel. There’s the righteous party, a fundamentalist part of you that can take a stand and cause a stance that agitates a stagnated audience. And, there’s another game that’s called WOW…. Balanced, Centred and Calm….
- Balanced Mind
- Centred Body
- Calm Heart
Achieving any one of these is a gift. Achieving two is profound. Achieving all three is wholehearted living and this is what we need to target when we set the bar for people in mental health.
In the ancient teachings it was written that compassion, kindness, gentleness and appreciation were the closest description of the human heart possible. Of course they are not the human heart but they are high emotions that approximate this space. To that end, they provide a magical pathway to stay wholehearted while the world demands thinking.
We go into our head, up into our mind, when the judgements we make on ourselves create insecurity and self criticism. Most of that is learnt from childhood. But we’ve inherited a bunch of Head over Heart from generations of men, who’ve dominated the Western management and leadership positions for the purpose of results without good process.
The ability to “feel” is a crucial component of living wholeheartedly. Put together with thinking up in the head, we create the perfect balance of human consciousness within one individual. Think and Feel, Head and Heart.
To this en
Acknowledging the Pain Emotional Delusion can cause:
I have climbed many mountains and competed in sport at a high level of pain. But I have also suffered the excruciating pain of heart break and I would rather have climbed a thousand mountains than experience one single day of heart break. Innerwealth has helped me to deal with emotion and now, the experience of heart break comes a significant second. This is the power of being REAL.
Inner strength is the endurance to enter a place you’ve been hurt once before with your heart wide open as it was once before.
This may be work. It may be play. It may be love. It may even be a mountain on which you failed. But ultimately, Inner strength is not as much about preventing hardship as it is about the willingness to wake up tomorrow and re-experience it wholeheartedly believing that, if challenge comes, you can work your way through it, again.
Building Resilience – Being REAL
Many times we find ourselves climbing hills steeper than we expected. A love gone wrong, an addiction, a business pushing back. When that pressure comes on us, we can begin to doubt ourselves, this is where inner strength must be build from real experience, not from theory. And the key here is “when the Why is big enough, the how will take care of itself”
Lets say I’m an actor and want a role. If you ask me why I might say “to become famous” or “to put bread on the table” – these are my realities. They are my WHY.
When a casting agent measures a performer for a role, the question will be how hungry they are and how good they are and more.. but the worst motive, the worst performance will come from a desperate individual, a person whose WHY is about themselves.
When I was a little kid, my stepmom hated me. I was her worst enemy and stayed that way for 14 years of her alcoholic and embarrassingly violent existence in my life. She hit me hard across the face and only when I dropped my guard to love her. I really did love my Step Mom – what boy doesn’t try to love their step mom? I got hit every day, hard, and abused and almost like a dog, just bounced back up with my tail wagging. That’s inner strength. It created a huge WHY in me, a determination to help bring more love to the world. And because I learnt it through experience it’s totally transportable into everything I do.
Another example for me was when my three children sailed away on a yacht with their beautiful mum to go on an adventure with her and her new partner. (new Dad for the kids too). I felt useless, valueless, loveless. I wrestled this wild animal with all sorts of brute force, until I surrendered and learnt how to get through it. And because I learnt it through experience and solved it through universal awareness (love and consciousness), I am able to be fearless in all matters of loss.
Each day your meditation is really life itself. How to get stronger, not by resisting the experience of pain but by letting life dish up what it needs to and then learning from it.
Like we don’t deliberately stub our toe but it certainly teaches us where the bed post is.
So the first step is to set the bar high
We don’t want to be stressed. We don’t want to be uninspired. We don’t want to be in a relationship that doesn’t feed us with energy and love. We don’t want many many things and so when they happen, we need to be absolutely vigilant about not blaming anyone but ourselves for the cause of it.
If you are not inspired at work it is because you are not turning up at work inspired. If you are not turning up in love then it’s because you are withdrawn and still at work while you cuddle your partner. If you are stressed it’s because you don’t know how to deal with something. Don’t blame the something.
Blame Blocks Resolution
Blame takes your power and puts it into the hands of the person or thing you blame and with it goes your self respect, your power, your life, your inspiration, your love, your money, your car, your work, your self worth and most other things you value.
You might say “My work is too stressful” – is better said “I’m blaming work for me not dealing things or taking control of my situation.” – best not to blame work.
You might say “my relationship isn’t good enough” – is better said “nobody treats me better than I treat myself so I’m not in love with me right now.”
You might say “I wish I had more money because then I’d be happier” – is better said “I know when I am happy, I make money.”
And If you set the bar high on your quality of life then the only impediment to your quality of life being super high is you.
Don’t blame the neighbours for keeping you awake, use earplugs. Don’t blame your mum for your depression, you choose your thoughts.
You’ll never meet a successful happy wealthy individual who does not micro manage but that’s another story. For now, we’re talking about life.
True strength comes in micro managing the moments between the moments of life.
You find your sense of giving and then do it over and over and over. Please don’t say “be in the now” or “be in the moment” because that’s how you deal with pain and stress. I’m talking about living, celebrating each moment. Each moment there’s something to be in awe about.
on giving love in micro actions – grace comes to me and i multiply it through my energy system and send it back double… so there’s a good need to keep this going.
each day we all can do a 10/10 – i do….
Simply 10/10 means you look for where you forgot about the gifts and blessings of your daily life
It is so easy to feel sorry for ourselves, I can easily, and then be angry which leads to depression and exhaustion
But we are never zero, only in our stories.
a zero is honest emotion. But all emotions are lies – stories of imbalanced thoughts.
Stories like “all great” or “all bad” are at the core of theatre .. white knight and dark Knight…
But emotions are never truth, they are stories, and stories are how we interpret and retell events so that we get maximum effect.
Taking our power back means knowing the difference between story (emotions) and truth (love)
“she did this (good or bad) and he did that (good or bad)” = Story
“I don’t have this, I don’t have that” = Story
Stories are incredibly believable….
Some people actually take their life because of a story.
Kids love stories
Adults are, in the most part, big kids
But one day, in an adult’s life … the childhood years start to merge with “what’s left” of my life years
and there’s an over riding humiliation about what I wanted to do versus what I’ve done
Even five billionaires I’ve worked with have this fear.
So, I have to remind them as I remind you
1. Never lose the joyful innocence of whole hearted childlike investment in the smallest thing.. I can even experience grace in eating a jelly bean to this very day of my life… nobody can take that away from me because I’ve spent 20 of my many years on earth searching to achieve things without that childlike joy and although I “made it” I lost everything important in the process. I found that the secret to the wholeheartedness is:
a. be thankful for the smallest of things
b. love abundantly and never switch it off
c. give more than I take from anyone
b. and, through the power of love, lower my expectations until I see that I am loved and loveable no matter what.
2. Count your blessings
a, the worst times of my life are the times when what I wanted became more priceless than what I’ve got… because, i lost more of what I’ve got until I nearly lost my own “self” while trying to find myself.
b. I often defined “self” as how I felt instead of what I can be thankful for… but this thankfulness at first was shallow. I said thank you for my kids and car and legs. But I wasn’t really thankful, I felt that those things were a privilege I deserved and earned in return for my effort. The fact is, when I became crippled and unable to walk about 5 years ago, even then I felt angry rather than thankful… but that doesn’t work. In the end I had to say, “I can still see, I can still laugh and love, and write” I had to look for what I could do, not what I couldn’t.” this deep spiritual habit saved me from severe sadness and inspired me so much deeper than 40 years of zen. It was zen.
a. Doubt is horrible. But it’s a part of living. Creation put doubt on earth, so it must have a purpose. All things on earth have a purpose, even the very worst. so dealing with doubt must be a part of loving life. For me, I let it in, let it do its work and let it out, just like a cockroach or mosquito, it’s just doing what it knows… Doubt however, can become a friend and when it does it can weaken us to the point of self doubt and immobilisation. So, it’ can’t stay resident for long or it will cause severe side effects worse than any addiction.
b. A great book is “Placebo” it’s boring after a bit, so there’s a million alternatives. Simply, distilled, it says “as you believe, so you will achieve” Neuroplasticity is the science that says “if you say “doubtful” thoughts long enough, you become doubtful and then you manifest the result you believed, which is the lowest. Doubt is my greatest pain. When I feel it, I want to escape it but I can have doubt on top of the highest mountains in the world, it comes with me. So, my mind must have the strength to allow it then release it. “I must plant flowers where ever i pull weeds” and. the flowers I plant and beliefs in the future, the courage and willingness to dream dreams, imagine, visualise and deny any other thought. My dreams will come true
c. My old mate, Sri K Pattabhi Jois – Astanga yoga Guru – passed from this earth with hundreds of millions of followers. When he was 12 he saw a yoga demonstration and said “I will be a yoga teacher” and left home to follow that teacher. almost 55 years later, he got his first western yoga student, and 10 years after that, he went from a back street cellar yoga school to live in Sting’s house, Madonna’s house, and you name it, he taught it. His classes were packed, his neck adorned with gold. I asked him in the car as we were heading to a workshop Id arranged from him in Sydney, how did you hold that space so long waiting he replied “all in god’s time.” in other words, he believed in his dreams long through the darkest storms of his son committing suicide and some matters worse
To that end, the need to believe in dreams … what are yours.