I was recently having a discussion with a dear friend of mine. The usual conversation dips in and out of discussions of humanity, new science theories, truth (whatever that is), who we are, blah blah blah. Cool stuff.
And I had a HUGE personal discovery. One that I know so many people ‘suffer’ with, internally, without even knowing.
When I had this realization, it was like a tone of gravity had been lifted from my body, I felt lighter, freer… and strangely enough, more me (whoever me is…). So I hope in sharing this discovery, I can help many of my fellow brothers and sisters out there, who may also be having this internal battle, also be freed from their unconscious conditioning.
The crazy thing was… I didn’t know I was even having an internal battle until I had made the discovery. It was like winning the lotto without even knowing what the lotto was.
Only after having this discovery, did I see the numerous factors that shaped this internal unconscious battle. So in order for me to communicate this as clearly as possible with you, first I’ll share these few factors in brief!
6 Human Needs
Every human has six needs… Whilst we are all unique in the sense that we have our own experiences, conditioning, perceptions, personalities etc., we all have a nervous system that operates in the same way, and encoded into our nervous system are the 6 fundamental human needs. All behavior, everything we do, is an attempt to meet these needs. (I’ll only discuss 2 in this article…)
We value these needs in different orders and the ways to meet these needs are unlimited. As an easy example, one of the 6 human needs is certainty (comfort). One person could meet this need by unconsciously controlling everything in their life whilst another person could meet this need by surrendering control and adopting faith. While both are polar opposites, they both give that person the feeling of certainty, and comfort.
Like I’ve said in previous articles, every human also has the need to belong. This is the need for love/connection. A simple way, most human’s meet this need is the obvious; relationships and sex but also by giving themselves a label. (Either consciously or unconsciously). A scientist will label themselves ‘scientist’ … And that will give them a sense of connection to other scientists, in their science-community, which will deeply meet their need for connection. Feeling that sense of belonging.
Labeling and identities was the subject of my realization… Once I recognized this, I saw SO many labels and identities, everywhere!
I saw, that when you’re in a new relationship, eventually you find that you want to label yourself as boyfriend and girlfriend, or partners, because the uncertainty you experience prior to this ‘labeling’ makes you uncomfortable and unsure if this relationship is secure. You find comfort (certainty) in the labeling, in the sense that the label boyfriend/girlfriend means he/she is more serious about that relationship then they were prior to the labeling.
Along with this label also comes a book of unwritten and unspoken, assumed set of rules. If you’re my ‘partner’ this means you do x, y & z and you’re not allowed to do a, b & c. Marriage is the same thing; husband and wife… there is NO difference to the human or the relationship when a couple gets married, it is simply a re-labeling and a new set of invisible rules.
Handy side note: By the way, this invisible, unspoken, unwritten set of assumed rules is why so many relationships go belly up… The challenge is, there are 7.2 billion different people on this earth, which means there are 7.2 billion different perceptions. Although we have the same foundational functions, we meet them ALL in different ways. So whilst a “girlfriend” may have a set of invisible assumed rules that she believes her “boyfriend” should follow… The “boyfriends” set of assumed rules of how a “boyfriend” should be, is guaranteed to be different to the “girlfriends”. I actually find it very humorous. Because when “boyfriend/girlfriend” doesn’t follow “boyfriends/girlfriends” unwritten, unspoken, assumed set of rules, they are horribly mortified! “How DARE you not follow my rules that you & I have never seen of, heard of or spoken of!” … Anyway, that’s an ENTIRELY different article… My tip: rather than jumping the gun, pointing the finger and blaming when something uncomfortable arises within YOU, observe your thoughts and observe your feelings… And I can almost guarantee, that the uncomfortable feeling you thought the other partner did/gave to you, was actually ALL created by you…
|| Hmmm stay tuned for an article on relationships… ||
Back to my OH-SO-DRAMATIC! identity crisis…
An artist has the identity label of, ‘Artist’. And along with ‘Artist’ comes a set of invisible rules. Likewise for ‘personal trainer’ or ‘business banker’ or ‘stay at home Mum’ or ‘chef’ etc… Each comes with an invisible set of rules. And each person has a set of rules, different to every other person.
Although some are very similar, e.g.: If I’m a bikie I should have a tattoo, or If I’m an artist I should to be fashionable, or if I’m a hippie I have to be vegetarian…. (This is where generalizations come into play… We generalist because there are MANY invisible assumed set of rules that are similar to each other’s.)
Now this is where it gets dramatic and juicy and I bare to you my inner most emotions and thoughts…
WOO! I love this bit…
For about a year now, I’ve felt like I didn’t ‘belong’… anywhere specifically, though I wasn’t really troubled by it. However in certain social occasions, because I had this ‘unconscious’ sense of not belonging to any specific type of ‘community’ or not being a certain type of ‘person’, I’d find myself deliberately avoiding conversations and avoiding people, because I didn’t know who I was! I mean, I thought I knew who I was, but I couldn’t label it as something.
When I just started out ‘life coaching’ it was easy. I’d confidently say “Oh! I’m a life coach, and I do x, y, z ….” I had a label. And thus, a community of people I belonged too (love/connection) and a set of rules to follow (certainty/comfort) …
See where I’m going with this…?
So for quite some time now, I have been in search of a label so I could feel that sense of belonging… So I could have a community of people to relate to, and connect with. So I could have the ease and comfort of BEING and acting a certain way with this invisible set of rules this type of person comes with.
And I’ve been searching…
And searching a little more…
And I couldn’t find one.
**inset crowd sigh here**
When I had the realization, initially, I was like “Oh shit I’m no one. I’m nothing. I don’t belong anywhere. There is no one like me. I’m alien in this world. I won’t ever connect with anyone because there is NO one is like me. I don’t have a label… I don’t have a community… blah-blah, story, story, story.”
Then… the most amazing thing happened.
Minutes after my ‘sad-face’ moment above… I was overcome with this enormous sense of freedom and lightness.
I don’t have a label.
I don’t have a label!
This scary image of ‘not belonging anywhere’ turned into “belonging everywhere”.
Because I didn’t have a label, it meant I could be anyone, at any time and belong everywhere! I could be an artist today, I could be a business executive tomorrow, I could be a professional speaker on the weekend, I could be a science nerd on Wednesdays… I could be all of them all at once or none of them never. All this freedom to BE!
Why would I limit myself to being just one? I can be any one of them! At any time!
I realized that as a species, we find SO much comfort in this labeling and how detrimental it can be to our experience of life. How it limits us from other possibilities, how it isolates you from the rest of humanity. I could see in my past how many potentially beautiful conversations I’d missed out on, because of this invisible labeling and set of rules, because my identity didn’t match there’s.
I went from searching for groups of people who were like me to feel that sense of ‘belonging’, to realizing I have a community of 7.2 billion people, and I belong everywhere.
Not only have I now surrendered the need to find an identity or label that defined me as a person, I also surrendered the need to have a label at all. I found so much comfort, in my discomfort.
I don’t have to follow an invisible set of rules, I am my own person, and I don’t need ‘rules’.
My Lexi Bishop “Director of XYZ” and “Writer or XYZ” business cards are in the bin.
My next set will say “Lexi Bishop – Human Being”
What are your roles/labels/identities?
Do they serve you?
Is that really who you want to be?