Awareness is something that we are all born with but that few of us every utilize fully. This is because, as we grow up in this world, we are so distracted by the outer world and all of its influences, which condition us and mold us into who the world wants us to be. A lot of our thoughts, behaviours and actions are conditioned into us and bypass our awareness because they are programmed into our subconscious mind. This is also true of our inner demons, which usually revolve around negative thinking or painful emotions that we have suppressed.
The reason we continue to be haunted by these inner demons is because we have not shone the light of our awareness on them fully. This is why awareness is a powerful tool to start to root out your inner demons. A metaphor for this is a dark storage room in your basement. At night, there are all sorts of bugs and critters that come out at night and lurk there. However, what happens when you open the door to that storage room and shine a flashlight? They all start to scatter and scurry.
The same effect happens when you shine the light of your awareness on your inner world and illuminate those inner demons. They can no longer lurk there without your knowledge as they have done so in the past. In the last article I showed you how to identify your inner demons and the importance of having self-compassion despite them. Now that you know your inner demons, you must shine the light of awareness on them.
The way you do this is not to judge yourself when your inner demons surface but simply bring them to your awareness. You do this by recognizing when they are manifesting and bring your attention to your breathing and how you are feeling in that moment. Slow down your breathing and take deep breaths as close to six breaths a minute as you can. While you are doing this, pay attention to how you are feeling in that moment. Be careful not to judge yourself but to simply bring your awareness to how you are feeling.
What is the purpose of this? Awareness will not only help bring your inner demons to light but create a space around them. It will also shed light on your psyche when they manifest, by giving attention to how you feel. This is important because most of our inner demons manifest through painful emotions. If we can bring these painful emotions to the light of our awareness, we can allow ourselves to feel them fully.
You may be thinking that it is too difficult to feel painful emotions. This is the reason most of us suppress them. The truth is that painful emotions that go unexpressed, lead to suffering and are one of the main ways that we cultivate our inner demons. Once we are able to identify those difficult emotions, bring them to our awareness and feel them fully, we can begin the process of releasing them once and for all and ridding ourselves of our inner demons.
This may be difficult at first and you may feel resistance to bringing attention to your painful emotions and feeling them but one thing I know for a fact is that nobody has ever died of feeling their emotions. However, unexpressed emotions can cause physical symptoms over time and, eventually, manifest as illness, therefore it is more detrimental to suppress your painful emotions.
Now that you know what your inner demons are, I encourage you to bring your awareness to the emotions you feel, when your inner demons surface, and allow yourself to experience those emotions fully. You may need to do this many times in order to finally release those suppressed emotions but it is absolutely necessary if you want to release the shackles that your inner demons have had on you.
In the next article, I will go further into conquering your inner demons.
Dr. Nauman Naeem