“Life Is difficult.” Thus begins M. Scott Peck’s “The Road Less Travelled” – and nothing could be clearer. Unfortunately, many manage to make life even more difficult than it need be, sabotaging and too often losing themselves in the foibles and sink-holes of being human.
When one is clear about the truth of self, however, life can become less difficult and manageable, even in the worst of times. Clarity is essential to acceptance and “dealing with.” It is the ability to see reality (truth) for what it is. Self, others, the shifting contexts of time and events carry a truth that can get lost in indifference, denial, emotional turmoil and worse. When that happens life becomes the enemy and clarity is its first hostage.
A self without clarity is an accident waiting to happen again and again. When the truth of a self, the inherent goodness at the core of one’s spirit, gets compromised by life’s all-too-human shortcomings, clarity can be the saving grace for reclaiming that truth.
But where – and how – does one find it?
Obviously, truth is found where it always is, in one’s self. It can get lost along the way in the tangle of life’s difficulties. Finding it is not always easy but there are at least three ways to do so: ask for help; keep a journal; share your struggles with an other or others and learn you are not alone.
Asking for help is the hardest part. It means admitting self is lost in a fog of one’s own making and feeling stuck.
“That’s when,” Dr. Peck once said in a workshop, “a person should sense they need therapy.” Asking for help, whether from a therapist, friend or other is like reaching for Windex for one’s soul.
Journaling sounds like a chore but it can be one of the best ways to name and claim one’s truth. Journals are a place for feelings. “Tell me what you think and I will know what you know; tell me what you feel and I will know who you are.” (If no one ever said that before, someone should have.) Putting words to the truth of self, even privately but out loud, can hold one accountable to making life clearly meaningful.
Sharing one’s struggles with an other or others not only helps a self to get clear about one’s truth but also to maintain it. Sharing one’s truth can be a warranty for safeguarding it as well as letting it be a gift to others. But always be careful sharing it.
Life and its difficulties need clarity – and deserve it. So does everyone who happens to know they are merely human.