Brick Walls

imagesThe definition of insanity, as stated by Albert Einstein, is: “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

Why do I bring this up? Well, recently a friend told me: “You can’t keep running at a brick wall. Eventually, you have to try something else.” Now, I am not the type to listen so easily. I’m more likely to run at a wall until I either bust through or collapse trying. However, this time, I quickly realized how right he was.

C.S. Lewis wrote, “Don’t let your happiness depend on something you may lose.”

I’ve been doing that…for awhile now. I’ve noticed that the big mood swings are typically triggered by some event. I’ve seen it occur in fights with friends or family, big topics in therapy, breakups, etc. After a particularly upsetting day, I suffered a depressive mood swing more intense than I’d like to admit. I’d allowed myself to, once again, base my happiness on something temporary. This, among other things, led to a relapse in cutting.

In the past few months of talking with my therapist, I’ve learned a lot of coping mechanisms. And yet, when I was really tested, I failed to use them. I resorted to old habits. I ran at the same brick wall.

This happens to most people; I get it. However, I learned a big lesson in this last week – that letting go doesn’t mean giving up. It doesn’t mean you care any less. It just means you know when to walk away.

So, try something with me. Stop running at the same brick wall over and over again. Learn to walk away from what you can’t change. In the Serenity Prayer, there is a very significant line (whether you are religious or not). It reads: “O God, give us the serenity to accept what cannot be changed, the courage to change what can be changed, and the wisdom to know the one from the other.”

Your happiness shouldn’t and can’t depend on what’s temporary. Stop running at the wall. Be strong enough to walk away and find what will truly make you happy.

We’re still swimming, remember? Head above water (not through a brick wall).


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