Why I Coach: Depression, Suicide, and Crossing the Threshold
I was recently told life needed to teach me the lessons of being knocked down (depression/contemplation suicide too many times to count) from being full of myself and of pride.
The depression years seemed to be onset by lack of discipline. At least in hindsight, it appears clear.
I had great visions of possibilities for my life and what I could offer, things I could accomplish. But, inconsistent discipline consistently thwarted any real progress.
My outer world and actions did not reflect my inner. Indeed, I also was extremely hard on myself with unreasonable expectations.
I bet you can relate?
How many of you have made this a habit like I did?
The ideal I set was where I am currently at; free.
Habits were hit and miss.
It is almost like my entire physiological and psychological systems were so incredibly out of tune.
I fell “victim” to the darkness.
If my innate and destined path is one of discipline then I was completely turned around.
Lost in the unknown without a trace of a trail, you can be assured this is a scary and sometimes terrifying place.
My body, brain, and mind sent the warning signals upon arriving here.
The warning signals quickly turned into survival mechanisms of the sympathetic nervous system: fight, flight, and freeze.
I did a lot of running away in my mind.
I ran away from challenges.
I ran away from responsibility.
And I froze in my bed.
I froze completely at times.
The outside world felt like an eternal judge.
I wasn’t even in the same Universe as the Ideal I set.
These times really broke me.
It’s amazing to even be here now when I sink deeply into how I was feeling.
Have you ever been there?
At times the symptoms were temporarily relieved with obsession. Obsession fueled me and a lot of it started with the control and manipulation of my body through physical training.
This coincided with reading books associated with conquering the mind.
It didn’t take long to feel like I was on my way again.
But the Ego is a trickster and wants to keep us comfortable in what we know. It sells us safety and security. It does this through self-sabotage. I took the bait more often than not during the dark times.
So while physical and mental training were beneficial, it didn’t appear to be the Root.
I needed to dig deeper.
The deeper the descent the more difficult the path. Going further for the Truth requires even more resolve. The darkest parts of yourself are hiding in there and will pull everything out to crush you.
And that happened too many times to count.
Is self-sabotage a theme in your life?
It took nearly ten years of entering, leaving, and re-entering the abyss.
It was familiar. We’ve all done this. Creating a comfortable hell we know is easier than traveling into the unknown. It’s not more meaningful, however.
Both paths will bring suffering.
Which cross will you choose to bear?
This place of comfort is a place where self-sabotage wears many masks.
A place of comfort.
A place of slow death masquerading as “good enough.”
I don’t know all the reasons and answers for why I made it out. I’ve got ideas. And part of my life is dedicated to sharing these strategies, approaches, and principles.
I was asked yesterday, “What is your writing process?”
Beginning to go over the details of my morning routine I soon realized a moment of clarity. The reason I meditate, write affirmations, write, write poetry, read, take notes, and move my body is to stave of Death.
It’s easy to tell a narrative of serving others to sound like I’m sitting on top of some mountain, like a guru.
This isn’t that.
The understanding came as clear as the memory of your first kiss.
I do all these things so I don’t enter depression.
I do them so I don’t become suicidal.
I do them so I don’t kill myself.
I do them because I am terrified of slowly dying the slow death.
So I move further and further away with each day’s practice.
Remembering the depth and intensity of the dark times fuels me.
It’s embedded into my nervous system.
It provides unconscious energy and drive.
With the habit of practice and discipline honed in, the superpower of belief furthers the advance away from the Slow Death.
I am drawn into the light not because I am special or chosen. I’m drawn to the light because I died and have been given another shot at this Life.
There’s no going back.
All the lessons will be shared.
All of me will be given.
Nothing will remain when I die.
This is why I Coach.
Overcoming the hell I created was difficult enough but the journey doesn’t end there.
The part of the story I have come to understand lately is “The Return and The Crossing of The Threshold” from Joseph Campbell’s Monomyth.
Alexander J.A Cortes tweeted this today:
“The Crossing of The Return Threshold Once the hero returns, they must resume normal life, which is difficult. They have a gift to share, but they are among the mundane once more, and they will struggle with integrating themselves back into the Known”
“In this stage of mundane life, you must integrate and accept NOT being understood, understand by few, and that life will never be to height of what you experienced in your adventures You are still mortal, regardless of what amazing things you have done”
Self-sabotage and the ego come back during this part of the story in their last attempts of keeping the status quo.
This came in the form of me questioning if people would ever listen to me.
Is it even worth it?
What will people think?
Will people even care?
Intermittently, I would go on a spree of writing, video, and audio creation. But these were short-lived.
Then I would question if I was cut out for creating, coaching, and telling the story.
I questioned if I could be the Hero Coach I imagined when I was six years old watching the high school basketball team dominate.
I questioned if I would sink into a life of little expansion and reach.
But something continues to keep beating. The intuition continues to send signals. It has become more powerful than the fragile ego.
The tides have turned.
I’ve gotten out of the way.
I know better, now.
The past month has taught me to completely detach from being understood on my journey.
I am not here to please everyone.
I am here to share.
I am here to Coach.
I am here to help others heal themselves.
I contemplate how my life would be if I refused this call to adventure for the rest of my life. It brings me down an illusory path ending in total Chaos.
Refusing our Soul’s calling breeds an overwhelming volcano of resentment, regret, and crisis.
That life is a Choice.
And I’ve been there for a short time to understand what it could be. It could be me if I don’t go all in with Coaching.
This isn’t a game to me.
It’s Life over Death.
It’s not simply having a pulse.
It’s being FULLY alive.
I feel like I’m bursting at the seems to continually grow, remove unneeded parts, and helping others.
If I don’t, you should know by know, I’ll die.
I’m not full of myself.
Full of life.
The gratitude for my life, the people who have crossed my path, the “good” times, and the “bad” have all added into this moment.
I’m resolved to go forward all the way to the end.
It’s why I train.
It’s why I’m up at 4am writing, meditating, deep breathing, and moving my body.
It’s for all of you.
I’m preparing for the inevitable challenges awaiting my arrival.
Because if I’m not able to conquer myself, how will I ever help anyone?
It’s not about me.
It’s about all of you.
Call me Coach.