“Admit it. You aren’t like them. You’re not even close. You may occasionally dress yourself up as one of them, watch the same mindless television shows as they do, maybe even eat the same fast food sometimes. But it seems that the more you try to fit in, the more you feel like an outsider, watching the “normal people” as they go about their automatic existences.
For every time you say club passwords like “Have a nice day” and “Weather’s awful today, eh?”, you yearn inside to say forbidden things like “Tell me something that makes you cry” or “What do you think deja vu is for?” Face it, you even want to talk to that girl in the elevator.
But what if that girl in the elevator (and the balding man who walks past your cubicle at work) are thinking the same thing? Who knows what you might learn from taking a chance on conversation with a stranger? Everyone carries a piece of the puzzle. Nobody comes into your life by mere coincidence. Trust your instincts. Do the unexpected. Find the others…” Timothy Leary
You might yearn to say tell me something that makes you cry. This excerpt rings one word loud and clear to me. Meaning. We are desperately seeking, craving and yearning for meaning.
The train halting truth is that you might look the same, dress the same, walk the same and talk the same, but you’re not the same. You might even be looking down at your life like an outsider; going through the motions, wondering who the heck you even are.
Arrogant questions might pop in your head – questions such as how can everyone aimlessly wander through this existence without question or purpose.
But isn’t it true that you never even considered that everyone might be thinking the same thing as you.
What’s the point?
How can you fill the emptiness that is growing inside of you?
We trudge through our days – work, kids, errands, demands, annoyances and non meaning. Some days we might wonder how we stop from smashing our computer screens in with our staplers before jumping out the third story window?
But we don’t jump (well, maybe a few of us do) but the majority of us don’t jump and do you know why? Because on some level we all know that what we are seeking is right there; it’s just under the surface.
It’s so close. It’s so close. It’s so close.
“It’s so close we don’t recognize it and because it’s so easy we don’t believe it and we go looking for it everywhere else.” ~ Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpouche
I’ve always felt slightly different from my peers; I would describe the feeling as a slight disconnect. I couldn’t understand how everyone could sail through life – work, families, clubs seemingly happy without asking any difficult questions.
My mind has always ran a thousand miles a minute; seeking happiness and contemplating deep questions and philosophical meanders – deep to the point where I shyed away from small talk because of its triviality. I was always confused over the meaning of life and I was desperate to quiet down my non-stop questions.
I struggled, struggled for years to fill up that hole that was expanding inside of me, a hole that was threatening to swallow me up.
So what did I do? Well I did was any crazy, 20 year old, immature women would do. I searched for happiness – I searched everywhere. I dated intriguing men, travelled around the world and had exciting jobs. But the truth is, and maybe this is a truth that only experience and wisdom can reveal; is that none of these things filled up that emptiness. All it did was leave me broken hearted, broke and even more confused about the meaning of life?
You might be yearning to call me out on this – c’mon, travelling to Australia with your intriguing boyfriend didn’t fill the void? The answer is really. Really, it didn’t!
I felt empty because I was looking outside of myself. It’s as simple as that.
So stop it. When you never look inward you don’t fill up yourself. You drain out, the meaning empties out. You need to look inside.
The truth is that anytime you try to distract yourself from feeling what you’re feeling, you’re avoiding the fact that you feel broken or empty.
If there is a void inside you then no amount of distraction is going to fill that damaged, gapping, broken hole. Until you face the void head on no person or thing will ever make you feel complete.
You need to really feel and experience the uncomfortable space that is the void. When you are able to do this you will begin to heal the void.
Maybe you feel like your life is empty without a certain person who loves you… but the truth is that maybe you don’t know how to define yourself without it.
You need to come face to face with who you are. Your raw true existence. And when you do the mask you wore above, the one that left you feeling like you might jump from the third story window if you had to pretend any longer is gone. You are no longer in disguise. Everyone can see you. It’s refreshing.
You need to feel. You need to feel, feel, feel. You need to feel pain, jealousy, sadness, hurt, fear and loss. You need to face it. Take a look at what’s missing.
You need to mediate on the void, let it be, let it out. Cry, get mad, but whatever you do, don’t try to stuff the void with another job, man, or vacation. Allow yourself to heal. Allow yourself to be authentic. Discover your inner beauty and joy.
Filling the void starts with a single step today. You know what to do, you know you have to do it. Let go of the past, what you were doing is all wrong.
You know the next step, you are already on the path. Take the step, then pause, contemplate and take another step. Explore and take chances. Take another step; fail, cry, laugh and be authentic. Step backwards, step forward again – love, love love.
Featured photo credit: Undazir