13 ~ The island

Now that I want to start the second part of my climb, actually applying what I have learned, I want to make my goals more concrete. I have decided that I am going to make a list for myself with everything that is important to me. Reminders for when I run into obstacles again. To complete the list, I am going to use everything I’ve previously written about in my journal. However, there is currently a visualization that I would like to add to my journal first. I got this visualization in my mind a few days ago and it has given me so much extra personal strength that I definitely want to write it down. 

I imagined myself living alone on a deserted island. I had lived there my whole life and was completely free of other people. I just lived with what I needed and with what I thought was important and pleasant. There was no urge for perfection or longing to receive social value. All there was, was life itself. My own life. 

In my visualization, at one point, a person showed up on my serene island out of nowhere and I imagined how I suddenly let my self-worth and self-esteem depend on that person. I imagined that I started to doubt everything that was previously just normal for me. What did that person think of my appearance? Was my body too thick or too thin? What did this person think of the cellulite on my buttocks and the shape of my breasts? What did this person think of my intelligence? Did I build my house the right way? Did I provide myself with food in the right way? And wasn’t my island too messy? 

My life on the island had always been just my life, but now, by the arrival of this strange person I started looking at my life, my island and myself critically. All of a sudden I only had eye for everything that in the eyes of that person might have been imperfect. 

Slowly but surely more and more people appeared on my island and they were constantly following me. With every act I did I felt their possible critical opinions and even though I had always led my life by my own standards, I now felt the constant fear of failure. 

The more people I placed on the island and the more my fear of failure grew, the more my island lost its color. My island changed from a warm, colorful island to a cold and colorless place. 

The island is symbolic of the way I experience my emotional world. What I’ve been realizing after this visualization is that I constantly disrespected my own personal boundaries. I allowed access to everything and everyone in my emotions all the time. 

I always thought I was very good at preserving my personal boundaries. For example, if a boy tried to kiss me, and I didn’t want to, I wouldn’t let that happen or if people wrongly accused me of something, I stood up for myself. But without knowing, I was the person who did not respect my own emotional boundaries. My physical world was well bordered, but in my emotional world I had opened the doors wide. 

My whole life I have allowed everyone on my island and all my life I have been haunted by everyone who entered my island. Now that I think about it, I might even say that I was holding everyone captive on my island. Once they were there, I wouldn’t let go of them. 

Now that I am aware of this, I use the visualization of the island to gain more emotional freedom. I apply it if I feel insecure or if I base my choices on an approval or opinion of someone else, but also if I cannot let go of past events. If I perceive negative thoughts and emotions, I imagine myself on that island and I realize that if I would be completely alone, all those thoughts would be irrelevant. 

If I would live on a deserted island, I wouldn’t be concerned about what others think of me, I wouldn’t be in emotional pain from things that happened in the past that continue to haunt me. I wouldn’t suffer from depression, burnouts, panic attacks, unbearable uncertainties or emotional trauma. I would just live my life with what I like and care about. 

I close my eyes and think about my little island. I experience the warmth, the beautiful colors, the calmness and freedom. This is my world, my life. Here I am nobody and everything at the same time. 

“I don’t have to search for happiness, because it’s already within me.”
(Mind Happiness 8 ~ The present moment)