Embracing consciousness was pivotal on my own healing journey yet the concept always felt so lofty and intimidating that I never actually understood what it meant. Interestingly enough, as I look back on my years of healing, it was through digesting and integrating the elements tethered to consciousness that truly fed me and brought me back to life making me feel less alone and awakening me to the fact that I was indeed on a journey. It’s taken me well over a decade to grasp the power of harnessing my own consciousness and it’s been beautiful to see how closely it’s been intertwined with the healing of my mind and body.
Throughout the articles you’ll find in this Consciousness section, I’m exploring some of the elements of my own journey to higher consciousness. What is consciousness? I’m glad you asked. I’ll be getting to that in a minute.
My hope is these articles allow you to connect and heal the aching parts of your own life – bringing you into your own wholeness because as one of my healers recently shared with me:
So, what is consciousness and how the heck is it connected to not only our daily lives but our mental, physical and spiritual wellbeing?
Let me start by saying that I didn’t begin this journey trying to understand any of this. I was 24 years old trying so desperately to feel better. Period. That was it. I didn’t care how doctors did it – I just wanted it done. Because that’s what we’re taught, isn’t it? Go get yourself a quick fix, stop complaining and get back to work for crying out loud. Well, that’s how I was programmed and this is how I ran the tight ship called my life for many years until my mind and body fell apart.
On the outside of my life at that point, I’m sure everything looked just dandy but inside I was completely overtaken by a force I now realize was a combination of panic, paranoia, anxiety, PTSD and overwhelm. I wasn’t aware I had any of this going on inside of me because it was so normal for me since childhood and I found ways to live above it so I didn’t have to feel it – I just assumed this was “Amie” and day after day I ran the machine called my life.
It wasn’t until pretty much every organ in my body started failing, along with my brain might I add, that I started to look for answers. And when I did look for answers, all I found were pills and potions and quick fixes that were supposed to temporarily make me numb to myself and sort of function a bit better. Like many of you, that didn’t work very well for me. I only lasted a few years until even more damage was done by these so called ‘fixer upper pills’ and I was left with a bunch of questions.
That’s what happens to many of us. Life as we know it – what we’ve been programmed to believe – no longer works. Not only does it not work, the way we’ve been taught to do xyz ends up merely kicking the can down the street to make matters worse in years to come. I remember thinking how insane this was, scratching my head looking around at how we were believing this. What I realized is we often don’t question anything until it no longer works for us – mostly when we find ourselves in a bit of a rock bottom. Until then, we just keep on going and pushing onwards.
I didn’t even realize I was seeking when I look back. I was just trying to figure out why on Earth it felt like my entire life and body was falling apart while everyone around me was happily building their white picket fence life. I can still recall staring into space one day feeling like I was in some sort of Pleasantville (remember that movie?) wondering if anyone else felt the same way I did.
Sure enough, as it goes for many of us on this journey, synchronicities or “occurrences” started happening in my life that I could not explain or even try to wrap my head around if I tried. The more I asked questions, the more books somehow magically fell into my life – topics ranging from suppressed emotions and energy medicine to forgiveness and the soul to quantum physics. I remember reading through these books feeling as though I was literally being nourished by the words – I somehow felt seen by the people who wrote these pages decades ago. It was wild yet I had no idea what to do with all of this information. I hadn’t yet pieced together how the past emotional pain I was still carrying unconsciously was impacting my health, my energy, my day-to-day life, my relationships and creating so much of my life. The more I read, the more people came into my life who were interested in yoga, meditation, spirituality, consciousness, etc. – things I had been too scared to dabble in.
As the years went on, I started to see the trail of breadcrumbs behind me – to begin clearly seeing where all of this was leading me. It’s as though life itself was trying to get my attention to say, “Hey, Amie – the reason your body and mind and your entire life is not working is because you are so full of pain from your past and you don’t even realize you’re using that pain to create your life.”
I didn’t know any different. I just thought there was something so wrong with me or that I was being punished for not being good enough – unworthy of what all the other girls were doing (dating, traveling, etc.). That was the framework I was using to tell myself everyday to try to explain the awful situation I was in.
I found myself wanting to stay home and listen to YouTube or read books by Louise Hay, Wayne Dyer, Michael Singer, Don Miguel Ruiz, Ken Keyes Jr. and so many others. These books and audios became my closest friends because my life was so isolated – it was as though the words made me feel better and took away the pain I was experiencing. They seemed to transport me somewhere else and it was wonderful.
It took me many more years to see why I was pulled to understand the deeper workings of life, to dive into self-awareness and become conscious of the unconscious loops of pain that ran through my mind day after day. I wouldn’t have been able to grasp the concept of “consciousness” years ago but if I had to define what consciousness is – in my experience – it is self awareness.
Consciousness, to me, is taking a deep look at what’s going on inside of ourselves – what’s driving us to think the way we do, react the way we do, act the way we do and so forth. What we’re addicted to (phone, TV, foods, social media, etc.), what we crave (sugar, love, attention, etc.) – the coping mechanisms we use to run away from our own internal struggle and so forth. The wild thing about this journey is that it takes getting quiet with ourselves and slowing our life down to actually be able to see what we’re telling ourselves, how we’re treating ourselves and what’s making us do the things we do – this unfortunately is the opposite of how our society is set up so learning to become aware of ourselves can be challenging. But, it can be done!
For now, I’d love you to take a minute in your own life to see where you can start to slow down or pause and notice what uncomfortable sensations arise when you slow down just one thing. Whatever you discover (whatever arises within you as you slow down) is information to help you uncover who you truly are and what you’re telling yourself / believing. This is how we begin peeling the layers inside of us – releasing everything we’ve taken on (anxiety, shame, guilt, etc.) that is not ours.
This, to me, is the start of the wonderful journey of transformation through consciousness. It’s a beautiful, wild ride. Overtime, it will bring you to where you desire to be and into who you truly are but this is not an overnight process.
Be patient with yourself. This takes time.