My demons and I were sitting on the couch, their encroachment into my personal space as annoying as ever. “Demons” seems to be a dramatic label, but fear, doubt, worry and lack can feel like entities that chase us into the darkness.
We can all feel like this from time to time - hopefully it’s fleeting, but sometimes it’s persistent. So much of our life and our thoughts are us wanting “it” to be different that it is. Buddhists believe that our unhappiness comes from our constant “wanting” of things we don’t have or that “aren’t.”
Really we are resisting the moment we are in. For whatever reason, it is uncomfortable or sad or hard and if it were socially acceptable, we would happily throw a grand tantrum to express how we really feel!
As “they” say, “What we resist persists.” The same lessons come back to us in different forms until we learn them for good. The grief lingers because it hurts too much to face. We can’t get to the next level until we figure out how to get out of our own way. I’m intimately familiar!
And yet, all of “that” are made of thoughts, and we don’t have to be our thoughts - those we can change. We are conscious beings who can change our beliefs about any situation. We can choose between worrying about the future or living in the present and taking constructive action. We can sit next to our grief and allow ourselves to process it. We have choices.
When we are feeling particularly vulnerable to our demons, we also need to proactively change the channels we are tuning into. Shift the satellite dish. Listen to positive podcasts or music. Turn off the news for a day. Fill yourself with positive sources and let it wash out the negative. Hang out with positive peeps. Start somewhere.
I’ve stopped watching the news. I don’t need to listen to so much negative energy compressed into sound bytes and video. I don’t live in a hole, I just mind how news comes into me - I control the feed.
I “plug into someone else’s oxygen” when I am feeling like my demons are breathing down my neck. I reach out to a friend, I watch something that makes me laugh, I play with my dogs.
Like everyone, sometimes I just want a “witness,” someone to hear my story - good or bad - and “sit on the edge of the bed” and just be there. The difference is, I want to get out of the bed these days. I want to shift my thoughts. I want to be there for others.
It’s not comfortable for us to admit that we invite the demons in and serve them tea - who would do that?! Yet, we do. We invite them over the threshold like a vampire in a campy movie when the audience is shouting at the screen, “Don’t do it!!” I can’t say for sure why we do this. Sometimes sitting on the couch with demons is better than being alone. Sometimes it’s easier to say that “things” are happening TO us rather than FOR us in order to grow. Who knows?
What I know for sure is that we can kick those demons the hell out! It’s a great visual, actually, to usher those fools off of your couch Buffy-style!
We have a choice over what we conjure with our thoughts. Choose well and often.