Going through dark nights of the soul

We all have dark nights of the soul.

Thank you Glennon Doyle Melton for teaching me a few things.

If you haven’t read her book, Love Warrior, I highly recommend you do. It pulled me in like Eat Pray Love did years ago and this doesn’t happen often. I started reading it in Barnes and Nobles and then I sat down in kid section continuing to read and found myself there, in a chair waaay too small for me, an hour later and didn’t feel uncomfortable. I went home, didn’t do any of the work I was supposed to do and I read the last page just before going to sleep.

First of all, I would certainly be remiss if I didn’t mention what a luxury and freedom it is to take an afternoon off. I used to dream of having that kind of life and I realize now that, sometimes, I fail to appreciate the freedom I have and how it should never be for granted.

But I digress and not really. Read on.

As I was reading her book, I was mesmerized by her words, pulled in by the drama of it, afraid for her and her children, I felt her pain, I was annoyed by her writing style that often seem self indulgent and I was impressed by how griping the book was.

All of it.

Then, it occurred to me – so many women live these dark painful lives and say nothing. So many women suffer. So many women must think I am dumb little happy chick who never had any pain in her life since I seem to preach joy and happiness. Oh shit. What now? Do I stop sharing my “happy”?

I found myself wanting to explain my happiness and normalcy and needing to excuse the work I am doing since I must not have suffered enough. And then, at the end of the book, I remembered that I actually suffered plenty and that IS the reason for my happiness and joy.

I don’t want to disclose much of the book, I think every man and woman should read it but at the end of the book, she turns into a person who would want to hang out with me. Years prior, not so much.

The point in all of this?

We all have dark nights of the soul. Times when we feel that others don’t get it or that we are the only ones suffering the way we are (my non kid friends come to mind). When we are in the middle of that darkness, it’s hard to see a way out. It’s hard to be positive. I know.

Few weeks ago, I stopped nursing my son and my entire physical and mental capacity seem to diminish due to these hormonal changes that were gripping. Seriously, again hormones? I lost it, what the heck is happening to me? Why can’t you think clearly Jasna? Ok, let’s listen to some affirmations and some Abraham Hicks. Darn it, it’s not working and that always works. What now? Tony Robbins? Yup, he always does it. NOPE. Uh oh. This is not fun. I am a coach and I always get myself out of the funk. Arrrgh. What is going on? I read somewhere about Mercury Retrograde but I refuse to believe in that kind of stuff – maybe its true? 

And then the fog just lifted after few days, which seemed like an eternity. And my true self emerged and she is happy and peaceful again.

Lessons from all of this (since my brain always wants to find teachable moments):

1. You will undoubtedly have dark nights of your soul and they will come many times. Many, many times. And every time, it will feel like the end. And every time, you will feel like crap. Yet – every time you will emerge and if you are anything like me, be just a little bit more humble, graceful and thankful.

2. In a world we live in with many responsibilities, it is hard to do everything during these times. You can’t do it all nor should you want to. Just surrender to it and let yourself be guided. Do what absolutely needs to be done but don’t force, don’t try – just let it run its course (unless you know it’s something more serious).

3. If you are pushing against something, it’s not it. No matter how much I know this, I learn it just a tad more every time I forget to do that. Lesson is to understand that when you are guided by something and it’s the right action, it’s easy and fluid and effortless. Any time you feel it isn’t – step away.

4. In the meantime, dark night of the soul will feel excruciating.Dark. Horrid. Lonely and demeaning. I think it’s supposed to all of that and I don’t think you want it any other way my friend. I think that these moments break us and put us back together in a way that is stronger, that is more resilient and more observant and peaceful.

5. Most beautiful thing that comes out of it all: the need to connect with the Source, with oneness, with light, to go within and go back to basics. Basics always work. Talk to me God. Tell me secrets. Where would you have me go? What would you have me do? What’s the lesson in all of this?

And then I learn the magic of all of it, all over again and become a believer all over again. So, if you see me preaching joy and happiness and peace – it’s only because I know the darkness as one knows its most intimate partner. I have explored it, made love to it and hated it all at the same time.  But I am always a little more whole after it tosses me around and teaches me a few things.

We will all experience misfortune or dark nights of the soul. Here’s a recent video I did that will compliment these tips!

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