Am I the Only One Who Feels This Way?


Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Psychology, Thought | Posted on 06-28-2017

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

What wise or stupid thing can man conceive that was not thought of in ages long ago?

–Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Faust, Part 2, Act II, The Gothic Chamber

Am I the Only One?For the past month or so, I’ve been hanging out at a few Facebook anxiety groups. A common question I see there is: “Am I the only one who experiences X, Y, or Z? Or alternatively, “Am I the only one who thinks these things and feels this way?”

The answer, of course, is a big, fat NO, as evidenced by all the others who join in and comment about their similar experiences.

Yet so often, we really do feel like we’re the only one who has crazy thoughts or who has unexplained anxiety. This is because it’s happening privately in our heads.

But guess what?

None of us are that special! All the weird stuff that goes on in our head…it’s happening in just about everyone else’s head too. Even the calmest, mellowest-seeming people, aren’t as together as we might think.

As humans, we’re all the same.

It’s highly unlikely that any of our thoughts have not been had by others as well. Probably by lots of others–regardless of how crazy they may seem to us.

Even the most seemingly composed people on Facebook, or others you look at from afar who appear perfect–ALL have their doubts, worries, fears and anxieties. It’s all part of being human.

Every worry, wonder and weird thing you’ve ever thought about–have been thought by others before you. Perhaps in a different flavor, or a different wrapping, but otherwise, we’ve all been there.

You are not the only one who feels the way you feel or thinks the way you think.

I hate to burst your bubble, but…

You are normal.

In fact, part of why you feel so bad, worried, anxious, sad, paranoid or depressed is because of your belief that you’re the only one. The good news is that the crazy person living inside all of us is NOT the REAL us. Because of this, we don’t have to believe it, listen to it or act upon anything it says or tries to tell us to do.

Our true self is underneath that crazy dude.

It’s that quiet space we find ourselves in when doing the stuff we love, or when we are being creative in some way. It’s the feeling we have when we’re in the flow, playing sports or doing the things we’re super good and experienced at.

It’s where we need to look towards more often.

The quiet space inside of us is who we REALLY are.

It’s here with us always. Even when the “crazy us” is kicking up a storm inside our head–it’s happening within that peaceful space. And even when the “crazy us” is creating feelings of panic and dread–it’s doing that within the peaceful space too.

Everything arises out of the peaceful space.

Whatever thoughts we have, crazy or otherwise, have to pop up from somewhere. Have you ever investigated where or what that somewhere is?

I encourage you to take a few moments to get quiet and watch your thoughts arising. It may take some time for your mind to settle enough to be able to do this, but if you’re patient, you’ll start to see it. Just close your eyes, and “look at” your thoughts.

The more you do this, the more you’ll notice that space where the thoughts arise from. The space itself is calm and peaceful. It’s your true nature.

But for the thoughts invading that space, there would be nothing but quiet.

During our every day lives, we get so caught up in thought that we barely notice the peaceful place within which they arise. But if you take a few moments to look for it as you go about your day, you’ll feel it there, just below the surface of your thinking. It’s there, just waiting for you to notice it, so it can bubble up to the surface. 

It might be helpful to picture this space within us like the clear blue sky. When thoughts invade it, as they always will, it’s like the clouds forming in the sky. The clouds haven’t touched nor hurt the sky. And they certainly aren’t who the sky really is. The sky is still blue and pristine and pure. It’s just that the clouds are temporarily obscuring it.

And so it is with your true self.

No matter what thoughts you have, they can never touch or harm who you really are.



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CONTACT JILL WHALEN to learn how she may help you be the best you can be.

Jill is the author of Victim of Thought: Seeing Through the Illusion of Anxiety

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For the past 20 years, Jill has consulted with companies big and small, and spoken at conferences all over the world. She is currently a transformational speaker and mentor to businesses, individuals, coaches, leaders, groups and organizations. She helps them uncover their natural well-being and happiness so that they can operate from a clearer state of mind and take their lives and businesses to a higher level.

Jill's blog, What Did You Do With Jill? is a personal account of what she's learned throughout her transformational journey. Jill has many "viral" articles on LinkedIn and is a contributing writer for P.S. I Love You.

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