Why Mental Health MATTERS!

๐Ÿ“… MAY IS MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH! ๐Ÿ“…

For my well-being as a whole, Iโ€™d say Iโ€™m a pretty optimistic person with dashes of realism. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

But for the Intellectual in me, I’m more of a pessimistic optimist. โ‰๏ธ

To clarify: I prepare for the worst, and I hope for the best! ๐Ÿ˜…

As weโ€™ve entered a new decade, I am pleasantly surprised to look out at our society and see how far weโ€™ve come.

๐Ÿ’ง We have water we didn’t have to filter! ๐Ÿ’ง

๐Ÿ›ฃ๏ธ We drive on streets we didn’t have to pave! ๐Ÿ›ฃ๏ธ

๐Ÿ“š And we read books we didn’t have to write! ๐Ÿ“š

๐ŸŽถ We listen to music we didn’t have to produce! ๐ŸŽถ

๐Ÿ’Š We use medicines we didnโ€™t have to create! ๐Ÿ’Š

๐Ÿ™ And we have so many things we can be grateful for! ๐Ÿ™

๐Ÿคฌ “DONALD, DON’T BE NAIVE! WHAT ABOUT…?!” ๐Ÿคฌ

Of course! The history of our humanity hasnโ€™t been all sunshine and rainbows, no doubt! ๐ŸŒˆ

Big shifts in our world included mass plagues, wars, and violent revolutions, things most of us have never had to experience in our lives! ๐Ÿ‘

I agree with you; thereโ€™s no point in denying the dark points in history! ๐Ÿ’ฏ

๐—ช๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜โ€™๐˜€ ๐—ฒ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—บ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—น๐—น๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ฏ๐—ถ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜๐˜† ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—บ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜โ€™๐˜€ ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐˜€๐˜ ๐˜€๐—ผ ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ป’๐˜ โ€œ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—บ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ถ๐˜” ๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—š๐—ฒ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฒ ๐—ฆ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜๐—ฎ๐˜†๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฎ ๐˜€๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐—ฑ. โœ๏ธ

But, in spite of all that, in spite of all the negatives I could tell you about in history, we as humans have nevertheless continued to move forward. Consider this: we have not yet allowed ignorance to completely destroy us and our neighbors to oblivion! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Looking at our current society, from modern agriculture to medicine to artificial intelligence, I see us continuing to make great strides forward in science and technology! ๐Ÿค–

To give you one stunning fact: the average life expectancy in the past century has gone up from age 30 to 70! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

๐Ÿคฌ “DONALD! HELLO?! COVID-19!” ๐Ÿคฌ

Of course! We’re all currently going through a crisis right now with the COVID-19 pandemic. And indeed, there’s a ton of things I can tell you I feel very concerned about during this time. ๐Ÿ’ฏ

I could tell you about my concerns for loved ones who are very susceptible to this virus. I could tell you about my concerns for those who think the virus is a downright hoax. I could especially tell you about my concerns of mental health and the impact our lockdowns have had on it. ๐Ÿ˜จ

…and speaking of which, that’s why I share this post with you today! ๐Ÿ™Œ

In honor of May being Mental Health Awareness Month, my hope in sharing this post is we continue expanding our understanding of mental health and focusing on long-term solutions to improve it. โค๏ธ

โค๏ธ ๐‘พ๐‘ฌโ€™๐‘น๐‘ฌ ๐‘ด๐‘ฐ๐‘บ๐‘บ๐‘ฐ๐‘ต๐‘ฎ ๐‘พ๐‘ฏ๐‘จ๐‘ป ๐‘ด๐‘จ๐‘ป๐‘ป๐‘ฌ๐‘น๐‘บ!!! โค๏ธ

While I personally can acknowledge the progress above and am grateful to be living in this day and age, I’ve noticed many people, even before COVID started, are more pessimistic and cynical than ever! โ‰๏ธ

Factually, we’ve come so far as a civilization. But for many people emotionally, it doesn’t “feel” like it has. ๐Ÿ˜จ

Why is that?! If we live in such affluent times with more resources than ever for us to be happy, why are so many still unhappy?! โ‰๏ธ

If so many of us have more than our basic needs for food, water, and shelter, why have we seen suicide rates rise?! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

Yeah! ๐…๐ซ๐จ๐ฆ ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ—๐Ÿ—๐Ÿ— ๐ญ๐จ ๐Ÿ๐ŸŽ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ–, ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ ๐ซ๐จ๐ฌ๐ž ๐—ฒ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜† ๐˜†๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ ๐ข๐ง ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐”๐ง๐ข๐ญ๐ž๐ ๐’๐ญ๐š๐ญ๐ž๐ฌ! (Source: https://bit.ly/3eCcMkJ) ๐Ÿ“ˆ

๐ŸŒบ How, if thereโ€™s so many flowers in our gardens, do we still feel like we’re missing something? ๐ŸŒบ

Are we just so ungrateful that we canโ€™t see whatโ€™s right in front of us? ๐Ÿค”

Are we just not reminded enough about the facts and how great we have it compared to our ancestors? ๐Ÿ—ฃ๏ธ

Are we just simply more open these days about our emotions, hence the increase in depression and anxiety diagnoses? ๐Ÿ“„

I think these answers may be part of it, but I also think it’s multifaceted. So if you are looking for a simple answer to these questions, you’ve come to the wrong post! ๐Ÿ˜…

But while I don’t have all the answers, I will propose at least one big contribution I believe our society greatly neglects. ๐Ÿ‘ฅ

To explain, Iโ€™m reminded of the words of Palmer Joss in the 1997 film “Contact”: ๐ŸŽฌ

โ€œ๐‘จ๐’“๐’† ๐’˜๐’† ๐’‰๐’‚๐’‘๐’‘๐’Š๐’†๐’“ ๐’‚๐’” ๐’‚ ๐’‰๐’–๐’Ž๐’‚๐’ ๐’“๐’‚๐’„๐’†? ๐‘ฐ๐’” ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’˜๐’๐’“๐’๐’… ๐’‡๐’–๐’๐’…๐’‚๐’Ž๐’†๐’๐’•๐’‚๐’๐’๐’š ๐’‚ ๐’ƒ๐’†๐’•๐’•๐’†๐’“ ๐’‘๐’๐’‚๐’„๐’† ๐’ƒ๐’†๐’„๐’‚๐’–๐’”๐’† ๐’๐’‡ ๐’”๐’„๐’Š๐’†๐’๐’„๐’† ๐’‚๐’๐’… ๐’•๐’†๐’„๐’‰๐’๐’๐’๐’๐’ˆ๐’š? ๐Ÿค”

๐‘พ๐’† ๐’”๐’‰๐’๐’‘ ๐’‚๐’• ๐’‰๐’๐’Ž๐’†. ๐‘พ๐’† ๐’”๐’–๐’“๐’‡ ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’˜๐’†๐’ƒ. ๐‘จ๐’• ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’”๐’‚๐’Ž๐’† ๐’•๐’Š๐’Ž๐’†, ๐’˜๐’† ๐’‡๐’†๐’†๐’ ๐’†๐’Ž๐’‘๐’•๐’Š๐’†๐’“, ๐’๐’๐’๐’†๐’๐’Š๐’†๐’“, ๐’‚๐’๐’… ๐’Ž๐’๐’“๐’† ๐’„๐’–๐’• ๐’๐’‡๐’‡ ๐’‡๐’“๐’๐’Ž ๐’†๐’‚๐’„๐’‰ ๐’๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’“ ๐’•๐’‰๐’‚๐’ ๐’‚๐’• ๐’‚๐’๐’š ๐’๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’“ ๐’•๐’Š๐’Ž๐’† ๐’Š๐’ ๐’‰๐’–๐’Ž๐’‚๐’ ๐’‰๐’Š๐’”๐’•๐’๐’“๐’š. ๐‘พ๐’†’๐’“๐’† ๐’ƒ๐’†๐’„๐’๐’Ž๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ ๐’‚ ๐’”๐’š๐’๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’”๐’Š๐’›๐’†๐’… ๐’”๐’๐’„๐’Š๐’†๐’•๐’š ๐’Š๐’ ๐’‚ ๐’ˆ๐’“๐’†๐’‚๐’• ๐’ƒ๐’Š๐’ˆ ๐’‰๐’–๐’“๐’“๐’š ๐’•๐’ ๐’ˆ๐’†๐’• ๐’•๐’ ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’๐’†๐’™๐’• ๐’•๐’†๐’Ž๐’‘๐’๐’“๐’‚๐’“๐’š ๐’”๐’†๐’๐’”๐’‚๐’•๐’Š๐’๐’. ๐Ÿ’จ

๐‘ฐ ๐’•๐’‰๐’Š๐’๐’Œ ๐’Š๐’• ๐’Š๐’” ๐’ƒ๐’†๐’„๐’‚๐’–๐’”๐’† ๐’˜๐’† ๐’‚๐’“๐’† ๐’๐’๐’๐’Œ๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ ๐’‡๐’๐’“ ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’Ž๐’†๐’‚๐’๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ. ๐‘พ๐’‰๐’‚๐’• ๐’Š๐’” ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’Ž๐’†๐’‚๐’๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ? ๐‘พ๐’† ๐’‰๐’‚๐’—๐’† ๐’Ž๐’Š๐’๐’…๐’๐’†๐’”๐’” ๐’‹๐’๐’ƒ๐’”. ๐‘พ๐’† ๐’•๐’‚๐’Œ๐’† ๐’‡๐’“๐’‚๐’๐’•๐’Š๐’„ ๐’—๐’‚๐’„๐’‚๐’•๐’Š๐’๐’๐’”. ๐‘ซ๐’†๐’‡๐’Š๐’„๐’Š๐’• ๐’‡๐’Š๐’๐’‚๐’๐’„๐’† ๐’•๐’“๐’Š๐’‘๐’” ๐’•๐’ ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’Ž๐’‚๐’๐’ ๐’•๐’ ๐’ƒ๐’–๐’š ๐’Ž๐’๐’“๐’† ๐’•๐’‰๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ๐’” ๐’•๐’‰๐’‚๐’• ๐’˜๐’† ๐’•๐’‰๐’Š๐’๐’Œ ๐’‚๐’“๐’† ๐’ˆ๐’๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ ๐’‡๐’Š๐’๐’ ๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’”๐’† ๐’‰๐’๐’๐’†๐’” ๐’Š๐’ ๐’๐’–๐’“ ๐’๐’Š๐’—๐’†๐’”. ๐‘ฐ๐’” ๐’Š๐’• ๐’‚๐’๐’š ๐’˜๐’๐’๐’…๐’†๐’“ ๐’˜๐’† ๐’‰๐’‚๐’—๐’† ๐’๐’๐’”๐’• ๐’๐’–๐’“ ๐’”๐’†๐’๐’”๐’† ๐’๐’‡ ๐’…๐’Š๐’“๐’†๐’„๐’•๐’Š๐’๐’?โ€ ๐Ÿงญ

The words of Palmer Joss also remind me of the words from Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl: โ€œEver more people today have the means to live, but no meaning to live for.โ€ โœ๏ธ

I want you to read Franklโ€™s words again but slower:

โžก๏ธ โ€œ๐—˜๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—บ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ผ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ผ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ, ๐—ฏ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—ป๐—ผ ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ.โ€ โฌ…๏ธ

๐ŸŒบ We have many flowers in our garden. But we have little meaning to WHY these flowers matter. Weโ€™re told to appreciate them, but we don’t understand WHY we should. ๐ŸŒบ

โค๏ธ ๐‘พ๐‘ฌโ€™๐‘น๐‘ฌ ๐‘ด๐‘ฐ๐‘บ๐‘บ๐‘ฐ๐‘ต๐‘ฎ ๐‘พ๐‘ฏ๐‘จ๐‘ป ๐‘ด๐‘จ๐‘ป๐‘ป๐‘ฌ๐‘น๐‘บ!!! โค๏ธ

The problem I see happening is:

Weโ€™re mastering Quantity at the expense of Quality. โš–๏ธ

Weโ€™re mastering the Objective at the expense of the Subjective. โš–๏ธ

And weโ€™re mastering Intelligence at the expense of Emotional Intelligence. โš–๏ธ

Weโ€™re mastering our Outer Worlds at the expense of our Inner Worlds. โš–๏ธ

Weโ€™re mastering what we Want at the expense of what we Need. โš–๏ธ

And weโ€™re feeding our Heads at the expense of our Hearts. โš–๏ธ

Or to use the Hopi word: Koyaanisqatsi, which means โ€œlife out of balanceโ€. โ˜ฏ๏ธ

I see no better time than this day and age we live in for more and more people to be experiencing an existential crisis, a serious contemplation on whether oneโ€™s life has any purpose or meaning. ๐Ÿคทโ€โ™‚๏ธ

I can tell you from personal experience, having an existential crisis is VERY unpleasant! And sadly, I know some individuals who didn’t make it out of them alive. ๐Ÿ•ณ๏ธ

In a world filled with paradoxes and contradictions, a world weโ€™re told has absolute truth yet contradicting ideas keep filling us with doubt, a world which at times seems pretty absurd, what is a person supposed to believe anymore?! ๐Ÿคฏ

Think about it: If everything you were once told to believe and embrace about life was irredeemably challenged, and the ideals you once stood for were now reduced to a pile of rubble, what is the next rational step for a person to take? ๐Ÿ™‰

It’s why I can’t blame someone who has had these life experiences and has become so cynical because of it. As George Carlin put it: “๐˜š๐˜ค๐˜ณ๐˜ข๐˜ต๐˜ค๐˜ฉ ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜บ ๐˜ค๐˜บ๐˜ฏ๐˜ช๐˜ค ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ ๐˜บ๐˜ฐ๐˜ถ ๐˜ธ๐˜ช๐˜ญ๐˜ญ ๐˜ง๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ข ๐˜ฅ๐˜ช๐˜ด๐˜ข๐˜ฑ๐˜ฑ๐˜ฐ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜ต๐˜ฆ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ช๐˜ฅ๐˜ฆ๐˜ข๐˜ญ๐˜ช๐˜ด๐˜ต.” ๐ŸŽญ

But let me assure you: ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž’๐ฌ ๐ฉ๐ฅ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ฒ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐›๐ž๐ญ๐ญ๐ž๐ซ ๐จ๐ฉ๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐œ๐ฒ๐ง๐ข๐œ๐ข๐ฌ๐ฆ. ๐“๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž’๐ฌ ๐ฉ๐ฅ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ฒ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐›๐ž๐ญ๐ญ๐ž๐ซ ๐จ๐ฉ๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐ง๐ข๐ก๐ข๐ฅ๐ข๐ฌ๐ฆ. ๐€๐ง๐ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž’๐ฌ ๐ฉ๐ฅ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ฒ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐›๐ž๐ญ๐ญ๐ž๐ซ ๐จ๐ฉ๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐ญ๐š๐ค๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐ฅ๐ข๐Ÿ๐ž. โค๏ธ

โค๏ธ ๐‘พ๐‘ฌโ€™๐‘น๐‘ฌ ๐‘ด๐‘ฐ๐‘บ๐‘บ๐‘ฐ๐‘ต๐‘ฎ ๐‘พ๐‘ฏ๐‘จ๐‘ป ๐‘ด๐‘จ๐‘ป๐‘ป๐‘ฌ๐‘น๐‘บ!!! โค๏ธ

I believe Johann Hari said it best when he said our society is great at doing many things, like the things I mentioned above with science and technology. ๐Ÿ‘

๐—•๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—ถ๐˜โ€™๐˜€ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—ต๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ฏ๐—น๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ผ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฒโ€™๐˜€ ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ ๐—ฝ๐˜€๐˜†๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ผ๐—น๐—ผ๐—ด๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ๐˜€. ๐Ÿ˜จ

We all need to feel like we belong in this world, the need to feel like our lives have purpose and meaning, the need to feel like we are seen and appreciated by others, the need to feel like we have a compelling future to look forward to. You could even call these “the needs of the soulโ€. โค๏ธ

And yet, how many people right now are actually getting these needs met? ๐Ÿ’”

How many people are instead just being told to โ€œbe happyโ€ or being told to just remember “how great our country isโ€? ๐Ÿ’”

๐ŸŒบ ๐—œ๐˜โ€™๐˜€ ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—ถ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ณ๐—น๐—ผ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐˜€ ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐˜„๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ๐˜€. ๐ŸŒบ

And when you understand the problem in this way, it seems more than reasonable to me that we can’t just keep telling ourselves the story that Depression and Anxiety are only caused by a lack of brain chemicals. ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

Perhaps our emotions have been messengers trying to tell us something important. ๐Ÿ“ฌ

Perhaps our emotions have been signaling to us the way we’re living is making us ill. ๐Ÿ˜ซ

Perhaps we’re living in an environment which magnifies, reinforces, and exacerbates our psychological problems. ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

To clarify, I’m NOT claiming any conspiracies here. I’m also NOT saying any of this is being done intentionally. What I am saying is that this may be the long-term result of a society which continues to turn off the alarm bells when the alarm bells keep going off for legitimate reasons. โŒ›

Weโ€™ve been so focused on external factors to โ€œfixโ€ these alarm bells, whether it was through drugs, alcohol, food, or needless distractions that we’re in the collective habit of inadvertently killing the messenger! ๐Ÿ’Š

โค๏ธ ๐‘พ๐‘ฌโ€™๐‘น๐‘ฌ ๐‘ด๐‘ฐ๐‘บ๐‘บ๐‘ฐ๐‘ต๐‘ฎ ๐‘พ๐‘ฏ๐‘จ๐‘ป ๐‘ด๐‘จ๐‘ป๐‘ป๐‘ฌ๐‘น๐‘บ!!! โค๏ธ

Iโ€™ve talked in the past about being very passionate about advocating what I call “the psychological development of the individual”.

โฌ†๏ธ ๐—ง๐—›๐—œ๐—ฆ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ต๐˜†! โฌ†๏ธ

THIS is the reason Iโ€™m so passionate about it. It’s why Iโ€™ve surrounded myself in the field of Personal Development. It’s why Iโ€™m such a fan of philosophy. It’s why Iโ€™m such a supporter of Tony Robbinsโ€™s work. ๐Ÿ’ฏ

๐—œ ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜ ๐˜„๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ธ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐˜€๐—ฒ ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ฑ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐—ฑ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€ ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ผ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฒโ€™๐˜€ ๐—ฝ๐˜€๐˜†๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ผ๐—น๐—ผ๐—ด๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ต ๐—œ’๐—บ ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐—ฑ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐จ๐ฎ๐ญ๐ฌ๐ข๐๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ฆ. ๐Ÿ˜”

Compared to where we were a few decades ago, weโ€™re now living in a much more complex world. Weโ€™re no longer going to be able to solve these complex problems with the same simplistic thinking which created them. ๐Ÿ‘

So what Iโ€™m advocating for is developing our Emotional Intelligence, developing our Cognitive skills, and encouraging the Psychological Development of the Individual. ๐Ÿ’ฏ

We’ve assumed for too long these skills would simply develop naturally with little effort. But again, look at where many people are now. ๐Ÿ˜”

Itโ€™s important I emphasize: โ›” Iโ€™m NOT saying to start neglecting or throwing out what science and technology has to offer! Not at all! โ›”

Iโ€™m not saying we need to choose one OR the other; ๐—œโ€™๐—บ ๐˜€๐—ฎ๐˜†๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ผ๐—ผ๐˜€๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—”๐—ก๐—— ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฟ. โ˜ฏ๏ธ

As science and technology moves forward with greater complexity, I want to ensure we as individuals move forward too, with a more complex understanding of “knowing thyself”. ๐Ÿ˜Š

But what will this require?

๐ŸŒŸ We need to appoint and elect more leaders of integrity, of emotional intelligence, who build trust in leading through their example; that’s how we decrease cynicism.

๐ŸŒŸ We need to create meaning where there’s meaninglessness to be found in peopleโ€™s lives; that’s how we decrease nihilism.

๐ŸŒŸ We need to teach people HOW to think and not WHAT to think; thatโ€™s how we develop cognitive and critical thinking skills.

๐ŸŒŸ We need to develop self awareness, to challenge our black-and-white thinking, and learn how to communicate civilly with those we disagree with; that’s how we develop empathy.

๐ŸŒŸ We need to learn to compromise, to promote societal order, to re-establish moral standards and mutually agreed upon truths; thatโ€™s how we decrease anomie.

And I won’t be so naive as to think implementing these ideas will be easy, that they will be some quick fixes, that people will be so easily convinced they are necessary endeavors. โœ…

I know that me just saying this here doesnโ€™t mean people are going to take any action to do these things. But at the very least, I hope I planted some seeds in people’s minds to think about. โœ…

These initiatives will require many more people to step forward and be a part of the change. This is not meant to be like some political statement; it’s just something Iโ€™ve been passionate about sharing for a while. I now have the words finally written out! ๐Ÿ˜

๐Ÿšจ Because I don’t want to keep seeing people needlessly suffer! ๐Ÿšจ

โค๏ธ ๐‘พ๐‘ฌโ€™๐‘น๐‘ฌ ๐‘ด๐‘ฐ๐‘บ๐‘บ๐‘ฐ๐‘ต๐‘ฎ ๐‘พ๐‘ฏ๐‘จ๐‘ป ๐‘ด๐‘จ๐‘ป๐‘ป๐‘ฌ๐‘น๐‘บ!!! โค๏ธ

These ideas I share with you now are NOT EVEN MY IDEAS! They are not original! These ideas have been around a very long time! ๐Ÿ˜ฒ

The problem is weโ€™ve either forgotten how important these ideas are or we were simply never introduced to them in the first place. And if you have never before, consider yourself introduced now! ๐Ÿ˜…

You wonโ€™t learn these ideas browsing social media posts, I can guarantee you that! ๐Ÿ˜‰

๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒโ€™๐˜€ ๐—น๐—ผ๐˜๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐˜„๐—ถ๐˜€๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—บ ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ, ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐˜„๐—ถ๐—น๐—น ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐˜€๐—ผ ๐—น๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ป’๐˜ ๐—ธ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—น๐˜‚๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—น๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ผ๐—น๐—ผ๐—ด๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ฏ๐˜‚๐—ฏ๐—ฏ๐—น๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ต๐—ผ๐—น๐—น๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ฐ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€. ๐ŸŽฎ

I can assure you: there’s a profound sense of humility which comes when you realize how little you know, how far we can all expand our understandings of the world, if we all make the conscious choice to. โค๏ธ

Iโ€™ll leave you with wisdom from the philosopher Bertrand Russell. When asked what advice he’d give to future generations, he said this in 1959: ๐Ÿ—ฃ๏ธ

๐Ÿ’ฌ โ€œ๐‘ณ๐’๐’—๐’† ๐’Š๐’” ๐’˜๐’Š๐’”๐’†; ๐’‰๐’‚๐’•๐’“๐’†๐’… ๐’Š๐’” ๐’‡๐’๐’๐’๐’Š๐’”๐’‰. ๐‘ฐ๐’ ๐’•๐’‰๐’Š๐’” ๐’˜๐’๐’“๐’๐’…, ๐’˜๐’‰๐’Š๐’„๐’‰ ๐’Š๐’” ๐’ˆ๐’†๐’•๐’•๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ ๐’Ž๐’๐’“๐’† ๐’‚๐’๐’… ๐’Ž๐’๐’“๐’† ๐’„๐’๐’๐’”๐’†๐’๐’š ๐’Š๐’๐’•๐’†๐’“๐’„๐’๐’๐’๐’†๐’„๐’•๐’†๐’…, ๐’˜๐’† ๐’‰๐’‚๐’—๐’† ๐’•๐’ ๐’๐’†๐’‚๐’“๐’ ๐’•๐’ ๐’•๐’๐’๐’†๐’“๐’‚๐’•๐’† ๐’†๐’‚๐’„๐’‰ ๐’๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’“. ๐‘พ๐’† ๐’‰๐’‚๐’—๐’† ๐’•๐’ ๐’๐’†๐’‚๐’“๐’ ๐’•๐’ ๐’‘๐’–๐’• ๐’–๐’‘ ๐’˜๐’Š๐’•๐’‰ ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’‡๐’‚๐’„๐’• ๐’•๐’‰๐’‚๐’• ๐’”๐’๐’Ž๐’† ๐’‘๐’†๐’๐’‘๐’๐’† ๐’”๐’‚๐’š ๐’•๐’‰๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ๐’” ๐’˜๐’† ๐’…๐’๐’โ€™๐’• ๐’๐’Š๐’Œ๐’†. ๐‘พ๐’† ๐’„๐’‚๐’ ๐’๐’๐’๐’š ๐’๐’Š๐’—๐’† ๐’•๐’๐’ˆ๐’†๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’“ ๐’Š๐’ ๐’•๐’‰๐’‚๐’• ๐’˜๐’‚๐’š.

๐‘ฉ๐’–๐’• ๐’Š๐’‡ ๐’˜๐’† ๐’‚๐’“๐’† ๐’•๐’ ๐’๐’Š๐’—๐’† ๐’•๐’๐’ˆ๐’†๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’“, ๐’‚๐’๐’… ๐’๐’๐’• ๐’…๐’Š๐’† ๐’•๐’๐’ˆ๐’†๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’“, ๐’˜๐’† ๐’Ž๐’–๐’”๐’• ๐’๐’†๐’‚๐’“๐’ ๐’‚ ๐’Œ๐’Š๐’๐’… ๐’๐’‡ ๐’„๐’‰๐’‚๐’“๐’Š๐’•๐’š ๐’‚๐’๐’… ๐’‚ ๐’Œ๐’Š๐’๐’… ๐’๐’‡ ๐’•๐’๐’๐’†๐’“๐’‚๐’๐’„๐’†, ๐’˜๐’‰๐’Š๐’„๐’‰ ๐’Š๐’” ๐’‚๐’ƒ๐’”๐’๐’๐’–๐’•๐’†๐’๐’š ๐’—๐’Š๐’•๐’‚๐’ ๐’•๐’ ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’„๐’๐’๐’•๐’Š๐’๐’–๐’‚๐’•๐’Š๐’๐’ ๐’๐’‡ ๐’‰๐’–๐’Ž๐’‚๐’ ๐’๐’Š๐’‡๐’† ๐’๐’ ๐’•๐’‰๐’Š๐’” ๐’‘๐’๐’‚๐’๐’†๐’•.โ€ ๐Ÿ’ฌ

Thanks for reading! Let me know if you found this helpful! โค๏ธ

Your MOST Important Valentine!

โค๏ธ ๐˜๐Ž๐”๐‘ ๐Œ๐Ž๐’๐“ ๐ˆ๐Œ๐๐Ž๐‘๐“๐€๐๐“ ๐•๐€๐‹๐„๐๐“๐ˆ๐๐„!!! โค๏ธ

What does today’s holiday mean to you?

๐Ÿ’“ A day to share love with the people in your life?

๐Ÿ’˜ A day to spend time with that “special someone”?

๐Ÿ’” A day to remind you of the fact you’re still single?

๐ˆ๐Ÿ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐š๐ง๐ฌ๐ฐ๐ž๐ซ ๐ข๐ฌ #๐Ÿ‘, ๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ฌ ๐ฉ๐จ๐ฌ๐ญ ๐ข๐ฌ ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฉ๐ž๐œ๐ข๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ!

For all my single friends out there, me being single myself: no need to fret! ๐Ÿ˜

What if I told you, me at age 29, I’ve NEVER been in a relationship?! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

“๐๐‹๐€๐’๐๐‡๐„๐Œ๐˜!!!”โŒ

Don’t get me wrong, I used to DESPERATELY want one myself! Back in high school, I was on ALL the dating sites and apps: Plenty of Fish, OkCupid, Tinder, etc. I had them ALL covered! ๐Ÿ˜…

๐Ÿ—ฃ๏ธ “๐˜ž๐˜ฉ๐˜บ ๐˜ฅ๐˜ช๐˜ฅ ๐˜บ๐˜ฐ๐˜ถ ๐˜ธ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ต ๐˜ต๐˜ฐ ๐˜ฃ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ ๐˜ข ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ๐˜ญ๐˜ข๐˜ต๐˜ช๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ๐˜ด๐˜ฉ๐˜ช๐˜ฑ ๐˜ด๐˜ฐ ๐˜ฃ๐˜ข๐˜ฅ, ๐˜‹๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ๐˜ข๐˜ญ๐˜ฅ?!” ๐Ÿ—ฃ๏ธ

At the time I didn’t really know, nor did it ever cross my mind to really ask myself why. All I knew was I simply wanted to be in one! ๐Ÿคทโ€โ™‚๏ธ

I wanted to find that “special someone” that would make me happier. ๐Ÿ™

๐ŸŒŸ BUT THEREIN WAS THE PROBLEM! ๐ŸŒŸ

๐ˆ ๐ก๐ž๐ฅ๐ ๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ฌ ๐ž๐ฑ๐ฉ๐ž๐œ๐ญ๐š๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง ๐ข๐ง ๐ฆ๐ฒ ๐ฆ๐ข๐ง๐ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐š ๐จ๐ง๐œ๐ž ๐ˆ ๐ ๐จ๐ญ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐จ ๐š ๐ซ๐ž๐ฅ๐š๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐ก๐ข๐ฉ ๐ˆ ๐ฐ๐จ๐ฎ๐ฅ๐ ๐ฆ๐š๐ ๐ข๐œ๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐›๐ž๐œ๐จ๐ฆ๐ž ๐ก๐š๐ฉ๐ฉ๐ข๐ž๐ซ.

โค๏ธ ๐˜๐Ž๐”๐‘ ๐Œ๐Ž๐’๐“ ๐ˆ๐Œ๐๐Ž๐‘๐“๐€๐๐“ ๐•๐€๐‹๐„๐๐“๐ˆ๐๐„!!! โค๏ธ

Often we’re taught, especially through romantic stories, that if we’re in a relationship with that “special someone” the heavens will somehow magically open and all will live happily ever after. ๐Ÿ˜Š

It’s quite a romantic way of looking at relationships…but as a teenager I didn’t understand that that was NOT reflective of reality! ๐Ÿ˜…

And I get why we keep believing this idea: We tend to only see the POSITIVE moments of a couple’s relationship, on display in our social lives and for all to see on social media. ๐Ÿ–ผ๏ธ

We typically don’t hear about the negative or challenging moments that happen in relationships. Who wants to hear that negativity, right?! ๐Ÿ‘

๐–๐ž’๐ซ๐ž ๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐ž ๐ž๐š๐ฌ๐ข๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐œ๐จ๐ฆ๐ฆ๐ข๐ญ๐ญ๐ž๐ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐Ÿ๐š๐ง๐ญ๐š๐ฌ๐ฒ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ซ๐ž๐š๐ฅ๐ข๐ญ๐ฒ. ๐–๐ž’๐ซ๐ž ๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐ž ๐ž๐š๐ฌ๐ข๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐œ๐จ๐ฆ๐ฆ๐ข๐ญ๐ญ๐ž๐ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ฏ๐ข๐ฌ๐ข๐จ๐ง ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ฉ๐ž๐ซ๐ฌ๐จ๐ง. ๐๐ฎ๐ญ ๐ฐ๐ข๐ญ๐ก ๐ฆ๐š๐ญ๐ฎ๐ซ๐ข๐ญ๐ฒ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐ซ๐ž๐š๐ฅ๐ข๐ณ๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐š ๐œ๐จ๐ฆ๐ฆ๐ข๐ญ๐ฆ๐ž๐ง๐ญ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ฅ๐š๐ญ๐ญ๐ž๐ซ ๐ข๐ฌ ๐ฐ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ฆ๐š๐ค๐ž๐ฌ ๐š ๐ฅ๐จ๐ง๐ -๐ญ๐ž๐ซ๐ฆ ๐ซ๐ž๐ฅ๐š๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐ก๐ข๐ฉ ๐ฉ๐จ๐ฌ๐ฌ๐ข๐›๐ฅ๐ž. โค๏ธ

But I didn’t know all this as a teenager! So, as a naive teenager, WHY WOULDN’T I want to be in a relationship? They seemed to be nothing but smooth sailing! They looked like mindless fun! ๐Ÿ˜

But it was around 4 years ago that I finally had this big change in perspective around relationships. I made the unanimous decision to UNINSTALL and DELETE ALL the dating apps I was on! ๐Ÿ˜ฒ

๐Ÿ—ฃ๏ธ “๐–๐š๐ข๐ญ, ๐ฐ๐ก๐ฒ?!” ๐Ÿ—ฃ๏ธ

Of all the countless hours I had spent on those apps, I had finally become drained of my willingness to keep searching for that “special someone”. ๐Ÿ˜“

If I could take the ratio of time I spent browsing those apps to the amount of time I actually spent talking with someone, it would be like 500 to 1! ๐Ÿ‘Ž

โค๏ธ ๐˜๐Ž๐”๐‘ ๐Œ๐Ž๐’๐“ ๐ˆ๐Œ๐๐Ž๐‘๐“๐€๐๐“ ๐•๐€๐‹๐„๐๐“๐ˆ๐๐„!!! โค๏ธ

Ultimately, my excessive searching was a time-waster! And the worst part of all: I kept making myself feel worse each time I logged off the apps when I had no luck. Each time I blamed MYSELF for it! ๐Ÿ˜ฅ

โš ๏ธ ๐ˆ ๐๐ž๐ฏ๐ž๐ฅ๐จ๐ฉ๐ž๐ ๐š ๐›๐š๐ ๐ก๐š๐›๐ข๐ญ ๐ฐ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž ๐ˆ ๐ฐ๐š๐ฌ ๐ฎ๐ง๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐ซ๐ž๐ข๐ง๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ๐œ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ญ๐จ ๐ฆ๐ฒ๐ฌ๐ž๐ฅ๐Ÿ: “๐๐จ ๐จ๐ง๐ž ๐ฐ๐š๐ง๐ญ๐ฌ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ญ๐š๐ฅ๐ค ๐ญ๐จ ๐ฆ๐ž! ๐ˆ ๐Ÿ๐ž๐ž๐ฅ ๐ฅ๐จ๐ง๐ž๐ฅ๐ข๐ž๐ซ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐ˆ ๐๐ข๐ ๐›๐ž๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ๐ž!” โš ๏ธ

…And then holidays like Valentine’s Day came around every year. They would only FURTHER reinforce a cycle of self-pity that I wasn’t in a relationship. And it SUCKED! ๐Ÿ˜ซ

So, you may be asking: what was the “final straw” for me to make such a drastic change?

โค๏ธ ๐˜๐Ž๐”๐‘ ๐Œ๐Ž๐’๐“ ๐ˆ๐Œ๐๐Ž๐‘๐“๐€๐๐“ ๐•๐€๐‹๐„๐๐“๐ˆ๐๐„!!! โค๏ธ

Since my teenage years, I’ve come to greater realizations about why I wanted to be in a relationship in the first place:

โš ๏ธ I thought being in a relationship was the answer to making me happy. But it wasn’t.

โš ๏ธ I thought by being in a relationship, I could seek recognition and validation from others. But I wouldn’t.

โš ๏ธ I thought that if I was in a relationship, it would fill the void of loneliness I felt inside myself. But it wouldn’t.

As awful as it sounds, ๐ˆ ๐ฌ๐š๐ฐ ๐š ๐ซ๐ž๐ฅ๐š๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐ก๐ข๐ฉ ๐š๐ฌ ๐š ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ๐ฆ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ฉ๐ซ๐จ๐ฉ๐ž๐ซ๐ญ๐ฒ, ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐จ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ ๐ฉ๐ž๐ซ๐ฌ๐จ๐ง ๐›๐ž๐ข๐ง๐  ๐š ๐ฉ๐จ๐จ๐ซ ๐ฌ๐ฎ๐›๐ฌ๐ญ๐ข๐ญ๐ฎ๐ญ๐ž ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐š ๐ญ๐จ๐ฒ ๐ˆ ๐ญ๐ก๐จ๐ฎ๐ ๐ก๐ญ ๐ฐ๐จ๐ฎ๐ฅ๐ ๐ฆ๐š๐ค๐ž ๐ฆ๐ž ๐Ÿ๐ž๐ž๐ฅ ๐›๐ž๐ญ๐ญ๐ž๐ซ.๐Ÿงธ

But people aren’t objects! And owning more objects won’t make you fulfilled in the long-term! ๐Ÿ’ฏ

๐Ÿšจ ๐ˆ ๐ซ๐ž๐š๐ฅ๐ข๐ณ๐ž๐ ๐ฆ๐ฒ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐ฐ๐š๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ญ๐จ ๐›๐ž ๐ข๐ง ๐š ๐ซ๐ž๐ฅ๐š๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐ก๐ข๐ฉ ๐ฐ๐ž๐ซ๐ž ๐Ÿ๐š๐ซ ๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐ž ๐’๐„๐‹๐…๐ˆ๐’๐‡ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐’๐„๐‹๐…๐‹๐„๐’๐’. ๐Œ๐ฒ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง ๐ฐ๐š๐ฌ ๐ฅ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ ๐š๐›๐จ๐ฎ๐ญ “๐–๐„” ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐ž ๐š๐›๐จ๐ฎ๐ญ “๐Œ๐„”. ๐Ÿšจ

How many of us get into a relationship primarily for selfish reasons? I challenge you to seriously think about it! ๐Ÿ’ฏ

So, in sharing my story with you all, I hope you see a part of yourself in this. Sometimes what we’re actually looking for is not that “special someone” but actually something much closer to home. ๐Ÿ 

โค๏ธ ๐˜๐Ž๐”๐‘ ๐Œ๐Ž๐’๐“ ๐ˆ๐Œ๐๐Ž๐‘๐“๐€๐๐“ ๐•๐€๐‹๐„๐๐“๐ˆ๐๐„…๐ˆ๐’ ๐˜๐Ž๐”!!! โค๏ธ

๐ŸŒŸ ๐ƒ๐จ๐ง’๐ญ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ๐ ๐ž๐ญ ๐š ๐ซ๐ž๐ฅ๐š๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐ก๐ข๐ฉ ๐ฐ๐ข๐ญ๐ก ๐˜๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ๐ฌ๐ž๐ฅ๐Ÿ ๐Ÿ๐ข๐ซ๐ฌ๐ญ. ๐๐ž๐œ๐š๐ฎ๐ฌ๐ž ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐œ๐š๐ง๐ง๐จ๐ญ ๐ ๐ข๐ฏ๐ž ๐ฐ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐๐จ ๐ง๐จ๐ญ ๐ก๐š๐ฏ๐ž. ๐ŸŒŸ

Again, for all my single friends out there: no need to fret!

โค๏ธ Relationships are not all sunshine and rainbows. We often don’t see what goes on behind-the-scenes, the ongoing commitment required from both people, or the negative moments which happen in them.

โค๏ธ Inner happiness and fulfillment has to come from YOU first. Fill your cup up first so then you can easily share it with a future lover. If you can’t love yourself first, you can’t expect it to come from someone else, because you’re going to be waiting forever.

โค๏ธ Self-love is one of the greatest gifts you can give. The only person you’re with 100% of your life…is Yourself! So learn to be comfortable in your own company.

โค๏ธ Today is an opportunity for you to change your perspective on how you see relationships. They are not a place you go to GET but a place you go to GIVE, and not being in one DOESN’T determine your self-worth.

Make today a day for you to give love in whatever way you know best! For me, writing this post to share with all of you is one of them! ๐Ÿ˜

Please SHARE this post with anyone who needs to hear this today. Truly, you’re not alone! โค๏ธ

Why Your Shadow MATTERS!

๐Ÿ’ฌ “๐„๐ฏ๐ž๐ซ๐ฒ๐จ๐ง๐ž ๐œ๐š๐ซ๐ซ๐ข๐ž๐ฌ ๐š ๐ฌ๐ก๐š๐๐จ๐ฐ, ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ฅ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ ๐ข๐ญ ๐ข๐ฌ ๐ž๐ฆ๐›๐จ๐๐ข๐ž๐ ๐ข๐ง ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ข๐ง๐๐ข๐ฏ๐ข๐๐ฎ๐š๐ฅ’๐ฌ ๐œ๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐œ๐ข๐จ๐ฎ๐ฌ ๐ฅ๐ข๐Ÿ๐ž, ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐›๐ฅ๐š๐œ๐ค๐ž๐ซ ๐š๐ง๐ ๐๐ž๐ง๐ฌ๐ž๐ซ ๐ข๐ญ ๐ข๐ฌ. ๐€๐ญ ๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐œ๐จ๐ฎ๐ง๐ญ๐ฌ, ๐ข๐ญ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ๐ฆ๐ฌ ๐š๐ง ๐ฎ๐ง๐œ๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐œ๐ข๐จ๐ฎ๐ฌ ๐ฌ๐ง๐š๐ , ๐ญ๐ก๐ฐ๐š๐ซ๐ญ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐ฆ๐จ๐ฌ๐ญ ๐ฐ๐ž๐ฅ๐ฅ-๐ฆ๐ž๐š๐ง๐ญ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ.” ~ ๐‚๐š๐ซ๐ฅ ๐‰๐ฎ๐ง๐  ๐Ÿ’ฌ

The Shadow is the parts of ourselves we reject, the primal emotions we suppress for the sake of societal approval, the parts we deny out of a personal desire to deny they exist. โŒ

You could also think of the Shadow like “the devil on your shoulder”. The Shadow includes the thoughts that come up in your mind you’d never tell anyone else you thought. ๐Ÿ‘ฟ

Think of an individual who is so kind, so loving, and so quiet. But one day you hear about an incident where they lost their temper, and you think to yourself: “NO! That is NOT the person I know! That is NOT who they are!” ๐Ÿ›‘

Or think of the priest who vocally condemns homosexuality in his church but is eventually found to have participated in homosexual acts. ๐Ÿ˜ฒ

โžก๏ธ These are examples of the Shadow at play. โฌ…๏ธ

๐–๐ก๐ž๐ง ๐ฐ๐ž ๐Ÿ๐š๐ข๐ฅ ๐ญ๐จ ๐š๐œ๐ค๐ง๐จ๐ฐ๐ฅ๐ž๐๐ ๐ž ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ ๐ซ๐š๐ญ๐ž ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐’๐ก๐š๐๐จ๐ฐ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐จ ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐ฅ๐ข๐Ÿ๐ž, ๐ข๐ญ ๐ฐ๐ข๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐œ๐จ๐ฆ๐ž ๐จ๐ฎ๐ญ ๐ข๐ง ๐๐ž๐ฌ๐ญ๐ซ๐ฎ๐œ๐ญ๐ข๐ฏ๐ž ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ก๐š๐ซ๐ฆ๐Ÿ๐ฎ๐ฅ ๐ฐ๐š๐ฒ๐ฌ ๐ญ๐จ๐ฐ๐š๐ซ๐๐ฌ ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ๐ฌ๐ž๐ฅ๐ฏ๐ž๐ฌ ๐š๐ง๐ ๐จ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ฌ. ๐Ÿ”จ

๐–๐ž ๐ฐ๐ข๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐ฉ๐ซ๐จ๐ฃ๐ž๐œ๐ญ ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐’๐ก๐š๐๐จ๐ฐ๐ฌ ๐จ๐ง๐ญ๐จ ๐จ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ ๐ฉ๐ž๐จ๐ฉ๐ฅ๐ž ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ฉ๐ซ๐จ๐œ๐ฅ๐š๐ข๐ฆ: “๐“๐ก๐ž๐ฒ ๐š๐ซ๐ž ๐ข๐ฆ๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐š๐ฅ!” ๐ฐ๐ก๐ข๐ฅ๐ž ๐๐ž๐ง๐ฒ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ฏ๐ž๐ซ๐ฒ ๐ข๐ฆ๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐š๐ฅ๐ข๐ญ๐ฒ ๐ฅ๐š๐ฒ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ฐ๐ข๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ง ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ๐ฌ๐ž๐ฅ๐ฏ๐ž๐ฌ. ๐ŸŽญ

It’s why there’s so many people with emotional issues. It’s why we have many immature adults, ones who’ve never taken the opportunity to be better in touch with themselves. ๐Ÿ˜”

Instead, many have unfortunately had to settle for cultural expectations of possessing certain personality traits while suppressing others. ๐Ÿ˜ฉ

A man needs to always be masculine and suppress his femininity (“Boys don’t cry”), while a female needs to always be feminine and suppress her masculinity (“Girls, know your place”). โ†•๏ธ

๐ˆ๐ญ’๐ฌ ๐ฐ๐ก๐ฒ ๐ฐ๐ž ๐ฌ๐ก๐จ๐ฎ๐ฅ๐ ๐ง๐จ๐ญ ๐ซ๐ž๐ฌ๐ข๐ฌ๐ญ ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐’๐ก๐š๐๐จ๐ฐ. ๐ˆ๐ง๐ฌ๐ญ๐ž๐š๐, ๐ฐ๐ž ๐ง๐ž๐ž๐ ๐ญ๐จ ๐›๐ž๐œ๐จ๐ฆ๐ž ๐š๐ฐ๐š๐ซ๐ž ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ข๐ญ ๐ฌ๐จ ๐ฐ๐ž ๐œ๐š๐ง ๐ฐ๐จ๐ซ๐ค ๐ฐ๐ข๐ญ๐ก ๐ข๐ญ. ๐Ÿ’ฏ

In some circles like self-help and spirituality, the idea of the Shadow can be frowned upon. “Let go of the things which don’t serve you.” “If you focus on it, the more energy you give to it.” ๐Ÿ‘Ž

I understand those perspectives, however I take Carl Jung’s perspective: “I’d rather be whole than good.” I’d rather accept every part of me, the good and the bad, the gentle and the aggressive, than suppress it. ๐Ÿ‘ค

๐Ÿค” So, how does one integrate their Shadow? ๐Ÿค”

The first step is acknowledgment of its existence. Whatever your Shadow is will differ from person to person. ๐Ÿ™Œ

This DOESN’T mean you have to start expressing your Shadow or have to start identifying with it. It’s simply about acknowledging it, you making a personal commitment to being brutally honest of seeing every part of yourself, whether you are “proud” it or not. ๐Ÿ’ฏ

๐Ÿ“ ๐“๐ก๐ž ๐ ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ฅ๐ž ๐ฆ๐š๐ง ๐š๐œ๐ค๐ง๐จ๐ฐ๐ฅ๐ž๐๐ ๐ž๐ฌ ๐ก๐ข๐ฌ ๐œ๐š๐ฉ๐š๐œ๐ข๐ญ๐ฒ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐š๐ ๐ ๐ซ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ๐ข๐จ๐ง.

๐Ÿ“ ๐“๐ก๐ž ๐ฌ๐ž๐ง๐ฌ๐ข๐ญ๐ข๐ฏ๐ž ๐ฐ๐จ๐ฆ๐š๐ง ๐š๐œ๐ค๐ง๐จ๐ฐ๐ฅ๐ž๐๐ ๐ž๐ฌ ๐ก๐ž๐ซ ๐œ๐š๐ฉ๐š๐œ๐ข๐ญ๐ฒ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐ฆ๐š๐ง๐ข๐ฉ๐ฎ๐ฅ๐š๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง.

๐Ÿ“ ๐“๐ก๐ž ๐ก๐จ๐ฆ๐จ๐ฉ๐ก๐จ๐›๐ข๐œ ๐ฉ๐ซ๐ข๐ž๐ฌ๐ญ ๐š๐œ๐ค๐ง๐จ๐ฐ๐ฅ๐ž๐๐ ๐ž๐ฌ ๐ก๐ข๐ฌ ๐œ๐š๐ฉ๐š๐œ๐ข๐ญ๐ฒ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐ก๐จ๐ฆ๐จ๐ฌ๐ž๐ฑ๐ฎ๐š๐ฅ ๐๐ž๐ฌ๐ข๐ซ๐ž๐ฌ.

๐Ÿ“ ๐“๐ก๐ž ๐ƒ๐ซ. ๐‰๐ž๐ค๐ฒ๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐š๐œ๐ค๐ง๐จ๐ฐ๐ฅ๐ž๐๐ ๐ž๐ฌ ๐ก๐ข๐ฌ ๐œ๐š๐ฉ๐š๐œ๐ข๐ญ๐ฒ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐Œ๐ซ. ๐‡๐ฒ๐๐ž.

We acknowledge our capacity for evil while simultaneously choosing to be good. ๐ŸŽญ

As written in The Gulag Archipelago ๐Ÿ“–: “If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them.

๐๐ฎ๐ญ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ฅ๐ข๐ง๐ž ๐๐ข๐ฏ๐ข๐๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ ๐จ๐จ๐ ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ž๐ฏ๐ข๐ฅ ๐œ๐ฎ๐ญ๐ฌ ๐ญ๐ก๐ซ๐จ๐ฎ๐ ๐ก ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ก๐ž๐š๐ซ๐ญ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ž๐ฏ๐ž๐ซ๐ฒ ๐ก๐ฎ๐ฆ๐š๐ง ๐›๐ž๐ข๐ง๐ .” ๐Ÿ‘ค

So, with this acknowledgement and acceptance of our Shadows, we can then take action! ๐Ÿ˜„

๐‘๐š๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐ฅ๐ž๐ญ๐ญ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐’๐ก๐š๐๐จ๐ฐ๐ฌ ๐œ๐จ๐ง๐ญ๐ซ๐จ๐ฅ ๐ฎ๐ฌ, ๐ฐ๐ž ๐œ๐š๐ง ๐ญ๐š๐ค๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ซ๐ž๐ข๐ง๐ฌ ๐จ๐ฏ๐ž๐ซ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ฆ! ๐Ÿ’ช

“๐˜ ๐˜ค๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ๐˜ด๐˜ช๐˜ฅ๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ ๐˜ฎ๐˜บ๐˜ด๐˜ฆ๐˜ญ๐˜ง ๐˜ข ๐˜ฌ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ, ๐˜จ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฏ๐˜ต๐˜ญ๐˜ฆ, ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ค๐˜ฐ๐˜ฎ๐˜ฑ๐˜ข๐˜ด๐˜ด๐˜ช๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ๐˜ข๐˜ต๐˜ฆ ๐˜ฑ๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ๐˜ด๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ. ๐˜‰๐˜ถ๐˜ต ๐˜ ๐˜ข๐˜ค๐˜ฌ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฐ๐˜ธ๐˜ญ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฅ๐˜จ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ’๐˜ด ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ ๐˜ข๐˜จ๐˜จ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ๐˜ด๐˜ด๐˜ช๐˜ท๐˜ฆ, ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜จ๐˜ณ๐˜บ ๐˜ฑ๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ต ๐˜ฐ๐˜ง ๐˜ฎ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ข๐˜ต ๐˜ด๐˜ถ๐˜ณ๐˜ง๐˜ข๐˜ค๐˜ฆ๐˜ด ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ค๐˜ฐ๐˜ฎ๐˜ฆ๐˜ด ๐˜ฐ๐˜ถ๐˜ต ๐˜ธ๐˜ฉ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฏ ๐˜ฑ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฑ๐˜ญ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ต๐˜ข๐˜ฌ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ข๐˜ฅ๐˜ท๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ต๐˜ข๐˜จ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ง ๐˜ฎ๐˜บ ๐˜ฌ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฆ๐˜ด๐˜ด. ๐Ÿ˜ 

๐˜๐˜ฐ๐˜ธ ๐˜ค๐˜ข๐˜ฏ ๐˜ ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜ต๐˜ฆ๐˜จ๐˜ณ๐˜ข๐˜ต๐˜ฆ ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ช๐˜ด ๐˜š๐˜ฉ๐˜ข๐˜ฅ๐˜ฐ๐˜ธ ๐˜ฑ๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ต ๐˜ฐ๐˜ง ๐˜ฎ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ ๐˜ข ๐˜ธ๐˜ข๐˜บ ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ข๐˜ต ๐˜ธ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ’๐˜ต ๐˜ฃ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ฅ๐˜ฆ๐˜ด๐˜ต๐˜ณ๐˜ถ๐˜ค๐˜ต๐˜ช๐˜ท๐˜ฆ ๐˜ต๐˜ฐ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ๐˜ด?” ๐Ÿค”

What are some ways you could use your Shadow energy of anger and aggression for more constructive means?

โšฝ๏ธ You could take up a competitive sport.

๐Ÿ‹๏ธ You could use this energy in your workouts.

๐Ÿ’จ You could use it to get your work done faster.

๐Ÿ™Œ You could use it in situations which legitimately call for you to become more aggressive.

๐๐ฎ๐ญ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐๐ข๐Ÿ๐Ÿ๐ž๐ซ๐ž๐ง๐œ๐ž ๐ง๐จ๐ฐ ๐ข๐ฌ ๐˜๐Ž๐” ๐€๐‘๐„ ๐ˆ๐ ๐‚๐Ž๐๐“๐‘๐Ž๐‹. ๐˜๐จ๐ฎ ๐š๐ซ๐ž ๐ฎ๐ฌ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐’๐ก๐š๐๐จ๐ฐ ๐œ๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐œ๐ข๐จ๐ฎ๐ฌ๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐ซ๐š๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ง ๐ฅ๐ž๐ญ๐ญ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐’๐ก๐š๐๐จ๐ฐ ๐ฎ๐ฌ๐ž ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐ฎ๐ง๐œ๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐œ๐ข๐จ๐ฎ๐ฌ๐ฅ๐ฒ! ๐Ÿ˜„

It’s what I mean when I tell people “don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater”. ๐Ÿ‘ถ

Integrating our Shadow can be VERY useful. But we always need to make sure we’re in control and using it for a healthy means. ๐Ÿ˜Š

๐–๐ข๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐ฉ๐จ๐ฌ๐ฌ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐’๐ก๐š๐๐จ๐ฐ, ๐จ๐ซ ๐ฐ๐ข๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ๐จ๐ฐ ๐ข๐ญ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ฉ๐จ๐ฌ๐ฌ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ? ๐Ÿ˜ˆ

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LET ME KNOW IF YOU FOUND THIS USEFUL! โฌ‡๏ธ

Why Separation is EMPOWERING!

Take the example of a bow, an arrow, and a target.ย ๐Ÿน

You’ve practiced for months. You’ve spent countless hours shooting arrows. And today is The Day, the day you decide you’ve practiced long enough to hit the bullseye multiple consecutive times!ย ๐ŸŽฏ

But somehow, you’re not at all nervous. You’re not even worried! You’ve practiced a lot, that’s for sure. But there’s one valuable lesson you’ve also learned in your life which rids you of needless worry…

๐ŸŒŸย Separate the things which are in your control from the things not in your control.ย ๐ŸŒŸ

To be kind to another person is within your control. To know if the person will be kind in return is not in your control.ย โค๏ธ

To tell the truth is in your control. To know if telling the truth will benefit you in your current situation is out of your control.ย ๐Ÿ—ฃ๏ธ

To keep a promise is in your control. To know if someone else will keep their promise is out of your control.ย ๐Ÿค

To practice, to prepare, to aim, and shoot an arrow at a target is in your control. But to know if the arrow will hit the bullseye once it’s left your bow is not in your control.ย ๐Ÿน

The problem is we so often put focus on what’s not in our control. So much of the news we read, hear, and absorb today are about other people, other events, and things which are not at all in our control.ย ๐Ÿ“บ

So then we focus on the arrow even though it’s already left our bows. We focus on all the arrows of others even though they have nothing to do with our everyday lives. In doing so, we’re causing ourselves needless worry and anxiety!ย ๐Ÿ˜ซ

So what then? We must flip our focuses back to what we can control, not just for our own mental health but for the impact we make by doing so. We focus on being a good person. We focus on setting the example. We focus on taking action on things within our control.ย ๐Ÿ’ช

Because once you make a habit to start separating these two, placing all your energy into what’s in your control, you will save yourself a ton of time and stress!ย โค๏ธ