How to Make Peace with Your Reality.
By Nadia Ballas-Ruta
Most of human suffering, when stripped of the particulars, is basically a discontentment with reality.
We often cope with reality by doing our best to avoid it. We either engage in overeating, getting drunk, doing drugs, promiscuity, etc.
Human beings will avoid dealing with their discontentment at all costs in the belief that avoiding reality will somehow mean that it does not exist or somehow ignoring it is a solution in and of itself.
Distraction may make you feel better but all it does is keep you stuck. If you are not in love with your reality, then you have a problem. Forgive me if that sounds harsh, but let’s be honest and real here for a moment.
If you have to avoid the reality of your existence, then guess what? You are not fully living. You are wasting precious time by burying your head in the sand.
Avoiding your reality basically is like hitting the Pause button on the river of life. The pain is not going to go anywhere. It will be front and center in your life until you take an honest look at it.
The problem is that most people don’t want to look at their pain… their reality. So they go full force into their modes of distraction, thinking that they are doing something.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
And for the record, I spent many years doing this too. So I get it. I used to sweep my issues under a carpet for many years, thinking that by doing so, I was somehow handling it.
Eventually, the carpet became a Mount Everest and sure enough, the Universe sent a Cosmic wrecking ball into my life which forced me to hit bottom. And when I was lying flat on the floor, that Mount Everest was happily waiting to greet me. I had no choice but to dismantle that mountain.
It was one of the most difficult things I had to do, but the rewards were amazing.
So how did I do it? Each person’s journey is going to be unique to them and the specifics of my journey may not necessarily apply to you. We are each unique and there is no set formula to living. However, there are some basic principles that you can apply to your own existence.
The first principle is that you have to stop running and take an honest look at your life. Assess where you are content and where you are miserable. Don’t negotiate or spiritualize your emotions.
Yes, you may hate your job but love the money, and so you justify the hatred because of the paycheck. Well… that says a lot. What means more to you, happiness or money? Are you prostituting yourself for a nice fat paycheck?
Yes, this sounds harsh. I used to sell my soul for a paycheck too until my body could not take it any longer. Then, my boss gave me an ultimatum which, in my mind, sounded like a choice between money versus my health. I went with my health and have never looked back.
Once you assess your reality, accept it. Denying the problems does not mean you are solving them, nor does it mean that the problems do not exist. So take ownership of how bad things seem or that you are not happy with how things are at the moment.
If you have friends who are more interested in putting you down than raising you up, then face it. If you are involved with someone whom you really do not love but are using them for their warm body, then accept that too. If you are at a job that absolutely compromises your ethics but you are petrified of having to look for another job, then own up to that as well.
A bit of a warning here: this will not feel pleasant at all, but this is where the next principle comes into play — express what you feel. Cry, scream or stay in bed in tears for hours; it is okay. If you are angry, then acknowledge it. In order to build a new life, you may have to grieve. This can take hours or it can take months. If you need to go talk to someone, then do so.
The bottom line is that if you have pain, one thing that is usually needed to get over it is to express it. You cannot keep it inside of you because that is not a solution because unexpressed emotions will eventually show up as physical problems.
Epigenetics, an emerging field in science, states that we all have genetic predispositions for various health issues but in order for the health issue to appear, it has to be triggered. Stress is a huge trigger. So for the love of your body and your soul, vent if you have to.
I had a very traumatic youth due to intense abuse (mostly emotional and verbal, with a few physical encounters) and bullying. I spent decades denying both until I had no other choice than to face reality. I went to therapy for six months, two hours every other week.
I screamed, yelled, threw pillows and so much more in order to make peace with my past. Therapy allowed me to finally acknowledge what had happened to me and start healing. It also allowed me to get my health back in order after it had been negatively affected due to working at a job solely for the paycheck.
As much as this may be hard to believe, there comes a point when you know you are done grieving and expressing your pain. You will wake up one day with the realization that you are ready to move forward. And this is where you take some time to contemplate and to engage with what your heart/soul is trying to tell you.
Your soul is always trying to get your attention. It does it often in very interesting ways. We all know when something feels off. However, many times we negotiate away the feeling by dismissing it. Please do not do that anymore… that is your soul trying to get your attention. Your soul always has your best interests at heart. Your ego does not.
As you engage more and more with your soul, you will begin to notice what it is telling you, and this is when you act on those feelings.
If your inner voice is telling you that your day job is killing you and that making gluten-free fruit pie is your bliss, then find a way to start learning how to make those pies. This does not mean that you quit your day job. You will know when it is time for that because self-initiated plans usually never lead to successful results.
Just trust and know that the next step will always make itself known when it is time. Now I realize that this may sound contradictory, but hear me out.
Remember how I said I worked at a job that was zapping away at my health because I was more focused on a paycheck? I knew that the job was impacting me negatively but could not see any viable solution. Within two weeks, my boss gave me an ultimatum, and it was time for the solution… and so I resigned.
The Universe is not stupid. It sends you what you need at any given moment. The problem is that most people are avoiding their reality and they don’t pay attention to where they are, and the Cosmic lifeboat does not get noticed.
Anytime we try to force something to happen, it will never succeed. All you need to do is focus on the moment, and learning to listen to your soul will enable you to do that. You just have to stop running from reality.
Illusion, although powerful and sometimes convincing, is not real. Denial of your emotions does not mean that the emotions do not exist. In order to conquer your fears, you have to face them. Reality is a beautiful thing once we confront it. This is one of those ironies of life.
In order to have a life you love, you have to own up to your truth.
Owning up to your truth is hard but the more you do it, the easier it will become.
Just remember… no one spends time on their death bed lamenting about the amount of money they earned or how much they weighed. They lament about the dreams that were lost or they lament about how they should have told that one person that they loved them when they had a chance. Regret is not fun.
For the love of all that is holy… please face your reality, and do whatever is needed to create a life that you love. You are here for a reason. You are so very important.
The world needs you. So please show up for it.
Nadia Ballas-Ruta is a spiritual writer and vocal advocate for bringing spirituality back to its core. She is the product of a mixed-ethnic and religious marriage. As a result, she was free to pick whichever religion she wanted to follow, and the concepts of God and the Divine became huge subjects of fascination for her. At age 25, after pursuing various worldly goals, she began to ponder over what was the meaning of being alive. With that one question, an intense spiritual journey began. It is still going strong. To her, spirituality is not a hobby… it is a way of life. You can read more about her work at Covenant Of The Soul. You can also follow her on Twitter and Instagram, or contact her via email.