The Stories that Run Our Lives

Sep 30, 2022
Creative image of open book

Stories don’t just belong in books. They live inside our heads and they kick in whenever we try to explain the reality around us. Why did he say this? Why did she do this? What does this mean? Our brain jumps in quickly and fabricates a story. We then believe that story is true and we live accordingly. And by doing so, we actually make the story true. Stories have power. We can choose the ones that hinder us or the ones that move us forward in life.

I have learned one precious thing during my energy medicine training. It’s not worth having your future foreseen by someone else. No matter how psychic they are, how accurate and how well-intentioned they might be. It’s simply not worth it because inevitably they will tell you a story. A possibility of the future they can see. The problem is that this story has power and once you receive it and once you believe it, you will make it happen.

How does this work? A fundamental concept in energy work says that where your attention goes, energy follows. By thinking about something, you give it power. By believing something to be true, you give it power. By thinking repeatedly about something, you give it enough power to create what is called a thought form. This is a concentrated bundle of emotions and thoughts around a particular subject. Depending on how intense and repetitive these emotions and thoughts are, a thought form can become so charged that it starts running your life, like an invisible computer programme.

So, in other words, if you go to a fortune teller and he or she tells you that you’ll be single for 7 years you might actually create this reality by believing what you were told. Or you may go to a past life regression therapist and he or she tells you a story filled with vivid details about a past life when certain things happened, certain karma was created and why this means you cannot make money in this current life. If you believe this story strongly enough, you may just make it happen by the power of your belief.

And so, we move through life surrounded by stories. Some we make up in our own minds. Others we hear from other people, and we believe them. Some are empowering stories and these will push us up. Others are disempowering and these will harm us. And there is no greater uplift or harm we can experience than the one we do to ourselves.

But what is it that pushes us to create these stories in the first place? The answer is simple: pain. Most stories are born out of a deep desire to cover up some pain.

Where does this pain come from? Most often it comes from unresolved emotional issues. Sometimes it may come from the stories others carry, from the collective consciousness or trauma passed ancestrally. Sometimes it may even come from past lives. Most often though, this emotional pain comes from wounds we have experienced in childhood and which we are unaware of and have not taken steps to heal.

Here’s how it works. Let’s suppose I feel emotional pain. I may know where the pain is coming from. Maybe it’s because I just lost my job or because my boyfriend broke up with me. Or I may not know where this pain is coming from. Maybe I’m just feeling depressed. Or anxious. Or lethargic to the point that I can’t get out of bed.

Whether I know where it comes from or not, I must find a way to deal with this pain. The easiest way is to make up a story in an attempt to ease my pain. I explain in my head why my boyfriend left me. I find a reason why I lost that job. I create a story.  This can be either an empowering story – something along the lines of “I lost that job because it wasn’t right for me and the Universe has a much better one in store for me”-  or the story can be disempowering: “I lost my job because I carry a karma of having troubles at work and it’s because of this karma I’m not going to be able to hold any job. So, poor me, there’s not much I can do. I’m going to start searching for a new job, but I’m prepared to lose this one too. After all, that cool past-life regression therapist told me about this karma. He must be right.” And so, I create a reality that matches my beliefs.

The pain brought up by the event is real. The story, however, is fabricated. But because the story has power, once we believe it, we’ll make it real.

We also create stories to protect ourselves from the pain we may feel if we accept the truth of a situation. So we dilute what we instinctively feel it’s true with a story. For a woman stuck in a bad relationship, the truth is that she needs to move on. But because this hurts, she may choose to tell herself a story instead. “He works late every evening because his job is really important and he's got a sense of responsibility. Once he changes jobs, it will get better.” These stories are designed to keep us in the status quo – and they come from that deep desire to protect ourselves from emotional pain. The unfortunate consequence though, is that by avoiding feeling the raw pain of truth, we feel many smaller pains instead, all supported by the stories we fabricate.

Without stories, life can be simple. A certain thing in our life can be either good or bad. And we know this because we know how we feel in that job, in that relationship, in that house, in that city. No story, just emotion. How do I feel right now? Is this right or not? Is this good for me? Is this true? Your soul will know the answer to these questions. Every time. It will be a quick answer. Yes or no. Good or bad. Expansion or contraction. And it will be a true answer. No thoughts, just sensations, feelings, emotions and, underneath all this, a sense of knowing without words.

On the contrary, when a story kicks in, it comes with many words.  A story is something you will feel compelled to repeat many times. To others or to yourself. You do so because the only way you will manage to trick your mind into believing it is if you repeat it often enough. A story engages your mind, it occupies your thoughts. It ends up running your life.

How do we get rid of the stories? We simply let them die. They will hurt as they go because letting go of illusions always does. It’s because we have invested so much time and effort to keep them alive and when we finally let them go, we pay the price of all that lost time and energy. They die when we allow ourselves to feel the pain they were supposed to mask. When we feel strong enough to face the truth and accept it, feel the pain underneath and move on.

And how about the good stories? Is it worth hanging on to them? Good stories melt into knowing, into the fabric of who you are. They do so effortlessly and by doing so they disappear as stories anyway. If I lose my job and I believe it’s because I’m meant to get a better one, I am creating an empowering story. It’s a story that helps me go forward, it helps me feel good about myself. As I believe this story, I invariably make it happen. I find another job and I tell myself it’s a better one. And because I tell myself so it will be. And this story will quietly sink to the bottom and become part of who I am and how I see life. How I make life happen.

And you? What type of stories are you telling yourself?

Do they serve you or are they only meant to mask the pain?

And if they don’t serve you, are you ready to let them go?

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