Nobody has their fucking shit together.

When the shit hits the fan and it feels like your life is falling apart at the seams. Relax. You’re not the only one. I promise.

Ever experienced those days where you feel like you can set the world on fire with your light and you feel like anything is possible? Where life is in ease and flow…. The days roll by seamlessly, shit falls into place like the universe is your best mate and it’s just giving you everything you’ve ever desired and nothing requires any effort. Days where nothing can bring you down. Where you’re an un-fucking-stoppable force of Nature. Where every encounter you have leaves you buzzing. Where everything just happens magically and it feels like you’re riding fucking unicorns over rainbows and magic mushroom filled fields?

Yeah? Well, yesterday was not one of those fucking days.

I found this on the interwebs, it pretty much sums up yesterday

Nothing major happened. I didn’t get crazy medical results. Nothing imploded. No major relationships failed. My business didn’t spontaneously combust. Nobody died. The sky didn’t actually fall in.

Yesterday looked, for all intents and purposes exactly like the day before. Except the day before was awesome. And yesterday? Well, yesterday was decidedly…..not.

I woke up, and Anxiety came at me like a fucking bat out of hell before I even got out of bed. By the time I got downstairs, Fear was taunting me like a pissed off Irish Mammy about every little fucking thing imaginable. When I went to check my phone, Comparison came crashing through the door like an unwanted guest. And then, just for shits and giggles, Shame poked her head around the corner too with that wicked smile and she’s like “Yep, I’m here too motherfucker…so, what are we having for breakfast?”.

So there I was, sitting with all my Demons, and it wasn’t even 8am yet. Fucking wonderful. Just what I needed. I had so much shit to do.

So foolishly, for a moment I tried to pull my shit together to get some work done.

It did not go well.

It was kinda like rushing to get out the door, but you’ve got five crazy ass toddlers hanging off you, screaming, puking, refusing to get dressed and just looking at you going “nah, that’s not gonna happen today mate”.

So I did the only other thing I could think of doing. I sat on the floor and cried. Like big fucking loud sobs with ugly messy tears. The kind where actual snot comes out and you’re so busy crying you can’t even be bothered to clean that shit up.

Me, ugly crying when confronted with my Demons

And I just let all the stories come flying at me. I watched as Fear and Anxiety went head to head to get my attention about all the things I should be doing. I listened as Comparison and Shame told me where they thought I should be. And man, did they have a lot to say. But I listened. I watched. I felt it all. I heard everything they had come to tell me.

Cos to me, that’s what sitting with your Demons actually means. I no longer run from them. I no longer try to shut the door and tell them “sorry but I just can’t speak to you right now, can you call me back at 5.30 cos that would be a little more convenient for me?”. Because I know if I tell them to fuck off, they’ll come back louder, and will probably bring some more of their fuckwitty friends with them.

So I sat there on the bare tiles of my kitchen, spiralling deep in my darkness. And I felt it all. Because when we’re lost in the dark, we can’t think our way out. The only thing we can do is feel our way out.

Jamie Sams, the Native American author talks about this in a story about Listening Woman — the Clanmother of Tiyoweh (Tie-yo-whey), The Stillness. It tells the story of a Spirit who arrived in human form in the depths of the darkness of a cave, and guided by the voice of the Earth Mother, she slowly learns to listen to her body, to feel her surroundings, she learns to listen to the stones and the water, and only then does she go towards the light at the entrance of the cave.

The medicine of this story is learning the art of deep inner listening, of feeling into our bodies, of hearing the truth. Because when we can sit in the darkness, and feel deep into the stillness beyond our stories, that’s when the truth can emerge, and we can find our way again.

The true beauty of this story is also patience. Listening Woman is guided by the voice of a Stone to spend a night sleeping close to the edge of the cave, so she can slowly adjust to the light. In this way she can stay attuned to her listening skills, and slowly absorb the newness of seeing. So often we want to rush out of the darkness and into the comfort of the light, but if we do this too quickly, our senses are overwhelmed, we focus too much on what we see, and we forget how to feel our way.

So instead of rushing out of the dark, I focused on feeling my way. And finding my stillness again. I picked myself up, dusted myself off, cleaned up the snot, and gave myself permission to just be a bit of mess that day. I gave myself the gift of space to find my stillness again. I meditated. I prayed. I played guitar. I did a movement practice and got into my body. I went into Nature….

And as surely as the dawn breaks and the sun rises… the fog of darkness eventually lifted, and I found my centre again.

Listening Woman

But here’s the thing. A lot of the time, we stay super stuck in the darkness for a really long ass time because we don’t allow ourselves to just be in it. We deny where we’re at. We think we should be somewhere else. We think everyone else has their shit together and we’re a fucking failure of a human being because we don’t.

You see, there’s this thing we do as humans. When the shit hits the fan, we look around us and we see everyone else floating along on their happy social media clouds of perfection. Couples with their smiling happy children and their vomit-inducingly-perfect relationships. Sexy tantricas who ooze sensuality and tell us that if we could only unlock our mystery box of goodies we too can be Goddesses. Business owners killing it and making millions. Changemakers doing stuff that inspires the shit out of you but make you feel completely inadequate. The spiritual kids telling y’all how blissed out they are and how they’re all love and light and rainbows and isn’t life all wonderful…

But guess what?

None of them have their shit together either. Not a single one.

That tantrica goddess you love with the 1,000,000 followers? She’s feeling insecure in her relationship and is crying into her fucking cornflakes today.

That business owner you admire so much? She’s trapped in a business relationship that is killing her slowly on the inside, but she has no idea how to get out. And those millions she has earned? Well, she’s in about twice as much debt with school fees and mortgages and car loans.

That changemaker doing all that inspiring shit and kicking all the goals and changing the world? They feel like a total imposter because they have no idea how they’re gonna get their next round of funding and can’t pay the rent.

The spiritual folks prancing about in their light filled bubbles? They’re constantly chasing the light cos they’re terrified to admit the depth of their own darkness.

Those perfect children? They shat on the carpet this morning and it took their parents 35 minutes to get them to stop crying over the fact that they lost at a game of Uno.

So why am I telling you all of this?

Because my friend, so often when we’re facing down our own particular brand of Shitstorm, we feel isolated and alone in it. Like we’re the only ones struggling. But the simple truth is this: We all struggle.

And do you know what? That’s ok. All it means, is that you’re human.

Buckle up motherfucker, here comes another one

So give yourself a break. Be gentle with that heart of yours. You don’t have to figure it out. You don’t have to do it all. And you certainly don’t have to do it right now in this moment.

Listen to what your Demons are trying to tell you. Make friends with them. And then go do something that’ll help you find your centre again — sing, dance, pray, cry, get out into Nature, have the kind of sex that cracks you open and brings you home, because it’s so consuming there’s nowhere else you could possibly be.

It doesn’t matter what your “thing” is that helps guide you home again, what is important is that you surrender to and accept what is happening in your life, and that you learn to find and listen to what’ll guide you home.

Because that my friends, is how we can feel our way forward, no matter what life throws at us.

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Avis Mulhall is a self development, wellbeing and innovation facilitator. She works with leaders, changemakers and entrepreneurs to guide them through the inner work it takes to create lasting transformation in their lives, their businesses and in the world.

Check out her latest free masterclass, The Clarity Quest here.

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