We’re halfway through “dark week of the soul” here in The Process, and I’m glad you’re still with me. Many of us don’t want to hear the truth—to have our real­ity shaken and house of cards collapse. For so many, includ­ing myself at low times, the allure of the illu­sions of comfort and secu­rity are a cruel temptress back into slum­ber.

When things get dark and tough, that’s when the voices of giving up get the loud­est. These dark times come in all flavors, and vary at differ­ent stages of devel­op­ment:

  • There are times when every­thing goes to hell…
  • There are times when you are rejected and ridiculed…
  • There will be times when the major­ity of people don’t under­stand you or your vision…
  • There will be times people let you down, or when you let those you love down…
  • There will be strug­gles with finances, rela­tion­ships, health, and focus…
  • There will be fail­ure after fail­ure after fail­ure…
  • There will be loss and pain…
  • There will be things that you simply aren’t good at…
  • There will be temp­ta­tions and no-win deci­sions you must make…

The voices of “caring” friends and family, crit­ics, teach­ers, parents, soci­ety, and our own ego. The ones you thought you squashed from doing EFT, NLP, or coach­ing, like:

  • “See, I told you that you couldn’t do it!”
  • “See, nobody cares!”
  • “Wow, you really do suck!”
  • “Looks like you suck so bad you can’t even fail correctly!”
  • “I knew it! Who did you think you were trying to fool?”
  • “Who do you think you are?”
  • “See, nobody likes you!”
  • “What makes you think YOU’RE so special?”
  • “You really thought you could do it, didn’t you? Haha!”
  • “Told you so!”

Some of these can be dealt with and elim­i­nated. Some of these are deep trau­mas that can be healed. Some of this can just stop. And I highly recom­mend work­ing on them ther­a­peu­ti­cally.

But some of them may stay with us our entire lives. Some of us will never get to the bottom of life­times of limi­ta­tions, fears, and trau­mas. It’s not prac­ti­cal to think all our doubts and crit­ics will ever go away. So we must move forward anyway, despite the lying voices.

Moving through the “dark nights of the soul” are how we learn some of the biggest lessons. It’s how we get to have the life we want. Those are the expe­ri­ences that call forth the great­est aspects of our human­ity; the things that remind us it’s a bless­ing to be alive in a time when we’re able to pursue our dreams.

These moments are when you forge your­self into the person who creates a legacy of love, hope, empow­er­ment, and free­dom for the world and those you love.

I don’t know anyone during these times that has not felt that feel­ing of despair, hope­less­ness, and confu­sion. Feeling lost and alone trying to figure it all out.

You are not alone. We all go through it.

I was home­less twice, trans­fer­ring PENNIES from bank accounts in order to afford a can of soup to eat. I was suici­dal as a teenager when I was bullied and teased, but too pathetic to actu­ally execute it. I faced rejec­tion after rejec­tion from women through­out my twen­ties. I had a six-figure soft­ware company go out of busi­ness after seven years. I cried myself to sleep as a teenager and adult from yet another week­end with­out friends. I have spent tens of thou­sands of dollars to undergo cutting-edge ther­a­pies that forced me to see my dark­est, worst, and most evil qual­i­ties of myself.

This was all a choice. Even if I wanted to blame some­body then and be a victim, I under­stand now that my choices created all these situ­a­tions. By taking respon­si­bil­ity, I’m empow­ered by them.

…but it doesn’t make it any easier. It doesn’t mean that I don’t feel all the awful feel­ings. It doesn’t mean that having support and feed­back from those I trust and love isn’t help­ful.

That’s why having a support network is so crucial; a group of people that under­stand EXACTLY what we’re going through because they’ve been there. While it can be a lonely jour­ney at times, we don’t have to do it alone. And in fact, we can’t.

It’s impor­tant that you surround your­self with the right people… but nobody can save you.

The will to go on must come from within, and be for a purpose greater than your­self. Yes we need people to believe in us, to encour­age, and support our visions. The times when people reflect back our divin­ity and gifts are awe-inspiring. But the outside will can only takes us so far with­out it also having to come from within.

If you don’t know your “why”, you are manip­u­la­ble and vulner­a­ble to quit­ting. A ship with­out a rudder, getting tossed in every direc­tion by the volatile whims of the oceanic market or an imma­ture, mercu­r­ial, emotional system.

You will learn more about your­self and what you really want during these times more than any.

That’s why they’re so impor­tant and neces­sary. It’s why I’m not sitting here trying to take your suffer­ing away or protect you from the dangers of entre­pre­neur­ship with trite affir­ma­tions.

The desire to share my gifts with the world runs so deep, it’s (almost) not even a choice for me anymore. Pursuing my purpose is like oxygen; I feel suffo­cated when I can’t. I’m not sure if that’s healthy, but I haven’t been able to quench it—and I’ve tried. Because I’ve had that haunt­ing thought… the one of “how much ‘easier’ it would be if I could just be like every­one else and live a ‘normal life’ and be into normal people things”.

It reminds me of that scene in The Matrix where Cypher has a meet­ing with Agent Smith, and discusses a deal to be plugged back into the matrix. How it would be so much easier to forget every­thing, to eat juicy steak every­day instead of slosh, and not have to worry about the fight for free­dom and survival. To even forget he gave up his free­dom for comfort. To skip all the strug­gle for truth and just be a famous actor… at the price of betrayal.

We all have the choice. We can betray ourselves for a fantasy, or make the truth the most impor­tant thing.

It’s okay if you continue, and it’s okay if you don’t. All our paths and lessons are differ­ent. You must be honest with your­self, because at the end of the day, that’s who you have to answer to and make happy. You have to do you, and this process isn’t for every­one.

But, for those like myself that have no other choice but to continue…

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