With a stressful childhood and recently a bad relationship, my natural state consists of anxiety, anger, stress and depression. Even if there’s nothing bothering me I feel stupidly stressed and anxious even when there’s no apparent reason for it.
Not easy for you. I will try to clarify things.
The way we think and feel seems strongly influenced by our mental and physical history. We see ourselves and the world through our conditioned mind, the mind that is naturally conditioned by our past – our genetics, parental and sibling attitudes, the culture in which we grew up and the ways we internalized and reacted to life experiences.
So, clearly, your current thought patterns and associated emotions reflect this difficult childhood you mention and the problematic relationship you encountered. Can you see that from this point of view your nervousness, anxiety and stress are pretty much unavoidable. This does not mean you will always feel this way, but still, at the moment, this seems to be your situation.
Your self-criticism flows from a deep misunderstanding and confusion:
- “I feel stupidly stressed and anxious”
You believe it is you that controls your thoughts and emotions. But just a moment’s consideration shows that this is an error. If you really controlled them, you would not allow negative thoughts and feelings. So apparently, you are not the owner. So, reacting this way is neither stupid nor clever, since it is not you that is reacting. Your body and mind simply act out of their conditioning, as all living systems do. When you understand this, the criticism is not found.
- “there’s no apparent reason for it” –
The error here is the failure to understand that your responses have two sources: 1. what is happening now, and 2. your historical conditioning
In practice, you do not respond to what is happening, but to what you think is happening. Can you see the difference? This is how the conditioned mind works. Instead of seeing the world, it creates its own world out of its mental conditioning. This world may be pleasant or unpleasant, depending on your mental history but it has not the slightest real existence. It is rather an expression of your natural creativity.
From the viewpoint of the unconditioned mind, however:
- You see reality as it is, with no influence from your past.
- In the unconditioned mind, it is clear that what happens, happens. That nothing else ever happens.
- There is neither self-criticism nor its absence. It simply does not occur.
- Nothing is either stupid or clever. These are no more than opinions, conditioned thoughts.
- You are unconcerned by whether or not there are reasons for things.
There is unconditional peace and happiness, flowing naturally from the absence of anything that can trouble you.
Can you make yourself some quiet time each day. Sit in a quiet, comfortable place at a time when you have no urgent demands on you for 20 minutes or so:
- You may hear and see things as they occur and disappear.
- You may notice changing sensations in your body.
- Thoughts and emotions arise and pass.
- Sometimes there is anxiety, stress, nervousness and sometimes there is not.
- Sometimes there is criticism, sometimes not.
- Things happen and are done.
- It is not you that controls any of this.
- But you can observe it.
That is all.
Can you allow yourself some quiet quality time like this once a day. A precious gift from you to you. With love.
Wishing you unconditional peace and happiness,