Let us put our efforts toward becoming who we can become, who we were wired to be, who we want to be, what gives us pleasure.
We can get beaten up by wanting. Wanting to be someone who gets energy from being with people rather than from being alone. Wanting to be someone who is a finisher rather than grazer. Wanting to blend and lead and be chosen.
Some of this filters out as we age. Aging fills our lives up with so many responsibilities that wanting to be anything more than someone who gets solid sleep hasn’t crossed our minds in a very long time. Children get more of it right than us in this regard. They have space to want more openly. Our wanting muffles and cramps when we turn away from who we were genetically designed to be.
My patient came in depressed again. Depression was familiar for him. A psychiatrist works with a specific area of medicine. So I get to see people after multiple medication trials before their primary physician refers them to me. Well this patient hadn’t found lasting help from medications. He came to me with doubt. I wish I could say we worked it out. I can say that we are still trying.
What we are working on influences the way his genes express themselves. We can’t change the genes but we can affect some of how and when they are activated. We can do this by choices, such as medication therapy, sleep hygiene and exercise. Choices are more effective when we know what and who we were wired to be. What are our natural talents? What are we interested in? Feeling inner congruence when we are doing something points the way for this.
In Outliers, author Malcolm Gladwell says
“the biggest misconception about success is that we do it solely on our smarts, ambition, hustle and hard work.”
I don’t know if Mr. Gladwell recognized how closely his thoughts harmonized with Carl Jung‘s regarding temperaments. Doing what is natural for us recruits our best through the path of least resistance – our interest, our attention, our creativity. Rather than forced effort, drudgery and dragging feet, time looses some heaviness as we get caught up in inner and outer congruence.
Intuitively, we all surmise that when this happens, we have less stress inside and outside of us. Ah. What a relief. This is what my patient is working on and when he is able to say he is doing what he wants to in life, he is less hopeless and panicked.
Self Care Tip #40 – Get to know yourself to be a friend to yourself.
Question: What do you think? Have you been using these tools? Have they made a difference for you?