THE MANY YOUS
“I won’t ever fall in love again,” she started, “I’ll just be the weird one in my social circle. Everyone else will be married and me, I’ll end up alone and miserable.”
“He doesn’t want me anymore and I’m starting to think no one ever will. I’m only getting older, I’ve passed my prime.”
“It never works out. It starts out with so much promise every time and then eventually, like every other time, it ends. It’s never going to be different.
With all due respect, you’re an idiot.
I’m (half) kidding of course.
BUT, SERIOUSLY NOW
Notice how much credit you give yourself for being clairvoyant when you’re suffering; how you’re convinced you know what the future will hold.
Anxiety and fear are giveaways that you’re confusing yourself with a picture in your head. A mind-movie of a future. A future that is made up of pure imagination.
And if you’re like me or any of the other delightful humans I’ve met, it’s likely you’ve fallen for this pseudo fortune-teller many times.
Remember that thing you thought you couldn’t handle…and then you did?
Remember that time you were convinced you weren’t ready for something…and then you were?
Remember that experience you were sure you wouldn’t have…and then it happened?
Not a very good track record, eh?
You’re a lousy psychic at times.
WHAT WE DO KNOW
Although we can’t know what the future will hold, what we do know is the effect of believing a thought like, “I’ll never fall in love”.
This is what it can look like for me:
When mental images are running in the mind of a dark, lonely, dejected future and I confuse who I am (in this moment) with them (those images of “myself” in a mock-future) the effect is that I feel dark, lonely and dejected now. And the fallout is a sweeping anxiety.
The mind then uses the anxiety as proof that something terrible is going to happen (i.e. a loveless future) and the circular reasoning kicks-off: the simulated future generates the anxiety which in turn reinforces the simulated future.
STRAIGHT UP CRAY
How open is your heart when you’re convinced your love-life is doomed? How available are you to meeting someone? To dating?
Notice how the effect of the belief itself can create the circumstances for the fear to unfold.
When I believe that “I’ll never fall in love,” I stop being open to the possibility of it altogether. Dates feel doomed before they happen and I’m already disappointed in men I haven’t met. When I think I know what will happen, my mind becomes closed to what’s possible.
When anxiety hijacks your reality with a running story, ask yourself: is that you or a picture in your head?
In moments of fear, it could be that you (like me) are just a sweet, endearing fool.
“An open heart is not a possibility without an open mind.”