Breaking the Spell of Inhibition
As you do inner work, you literally unlock energy - more of you. This sounds all well and good, but what if something in you is still reflexively tamping it down? In other words: What if you’re unlocking all this power, but you’re afraid to use it?
Today we’re gonna talk about inhibition and how becoming uninhibited is the most ridiculously difficult and wildly rewarding process you will ever undergo. This message isn’t for everyone, but if it’s for you, you’ll know.
First, we have to understand this problem in all of its glory. If you struggle with a deep sense of inhibition, like you can’t let loose, can’t just be yourself, or can’t express yourself naturally, you probably grew up in an environment that taught you control. You were probably raised by people who (purposely or accidentally) taught you to control your energy, control yourself. But of course, energy is not meant to be controlled, it's meant to be flowing, so this sets us up for a myriad of issues down the line.
As an adult, these people may develop a subconscious fear of losing control. Their life, when zoomed out, is often a comically predictable pattern of gaining and losing control (no judgment here folks, it takes one to know one).
Examples include: strict dieting and then binge eating, being polite all the time and then losing it and ripping someone's head off, OCD, constant worrying, perfectionism, hyper-controlling your appearance, personality, or posture - these are just some common examples of symptoms.
When someone is inhibiting themselves, they typically hold too much tension and nervous energy. As it builds, they can become afraid of letting it go, and so they keep trying to control it (imagine pulling a rubber band back really far… you wouldn’t want to let it go for fear of injury).
So what does this have to do with healing & integration work?
Well, the more of this work you do, the more energy you free up - so this problem can actually get worse! Now, if you are inhibiting yourself, it’s like trying to keep down a boulder rather than a pebble. It’s like you’re trying to stop Picasso from painting.. or Tina Turner from singing.. Who the hell has the energy for that?
Ahh yes, this brings us to our next point: burnout and exhaustion. Because now, not only do you have more energy you are inhibiting, but it takes energy to inhibit it! This person may try all the conventional tricks: more sleep, a better diet, meditation - but none of it gets to the root issue, which is that your actual lifeforce is being bottled up and you don’t know how to release it.
If this is you, you may have tried searching for answers, and who could blame you? But alas, the problem is usually only worsened by society’s answers. People who are very sensitive, intuitive, and aware often get less mirroring than others (aka, understanding and validation that what they are experiencing is normal and correct).
So what happens instead? They are gaslit, told that they’re way too sensitive, imagining things, or have a mental illness.
It is at this point that the individual experiences the worst blow of all: I call it the clouding. You become disoriented, self-doubting, and unsure what to believe. Continuously being met with confusion or looks of disapproval convinces you that something must, in fact, be wrong with you (shame enters, stage left). You might always feel like you’re wrong and need to conform better, or you may feel utterly alone and rejected because the people around you can't see the dysfunction in the culture itself.
Sadly, this is what it often feels like to be emotionally ahead of the curve.
If you struggle with inhibition, you are probably in pain because you are not in your rightful place in the world (hello belonging issues). Instead of confidently standing in your power, you allow it to be castrated for the sake of “being a good person” (oh good, people-pleasing, as if we didn’t have enough issues to deal with). In short, when you inhibit who you are, people who are truly compatible with you can’t find you.
For this reason, we can end up in a metaphorical padded room - isolated, accumulating bad relationships, health problems, or awful jobs. We’re exhausted, disoriented, and don't know what actions will get us back on track - or should I say, off-track from this spell of self-inhibition. We may feel like we are losing control, and thus the self-control instinct kicks in even harder.
Speaking of instinct, what exactly is inhibition? According to Google: a voluntary or involuntary restraint on the direct expression of an instinct.
This is key to understand. Inhibition is a deeply-embedded social survival strategy, a compulsive choice we are making, not a weakness.
So how do we end the nightmare of excess self-control, castrating our power, and living in martyrdom? (check out my video on martyrdom if this hits home for you)
We learn to release self-control as a coping mechanism - a tall order indeed for the nervous system, but doable. We become uninhibited through:
- creative outlets
- encouragement & listening from others
- anything that puts an end to people-pleasing
- building self-esteem, self-efficacy, & radical self-acceptance
This is what gets the energy flowing and gets you feeling like yourself again.
Becoming expressive, pleasure-seeking, free, un-obligated, whatever comes natural. if what you are feeling is negative, you let it fly. If it's positive, you have no reservations, even if others are trying to drag you back into the cage of limiting beliefs they live in.
You are not here to live enslaved. You weren’t designed to hold it all in.
You broke your own wings to fit the social unit you grew up in - but now you can't remember how to fly, and this is heartbreaking. Life isn't heartbreaking because of the news or because you got dumped or because your parents didn't pay enough attention to you. All of that is surmountable. Life is heartbreaking because you lost access to that creative force within you, and so you are grieving.
Once these issues are dealt with, we can actually build a life that is correct for us. We are freed at the deepest level. Our power & creativity return and we let ourselves exercise it naturally.
You don't need fixing. You don’t need self-improvement. You need liberation - liberation of your signature energy that exists nowhere else on earth. There is nowhere else you can go to scratch that itch - It is you that you are looking for. And whether you believe it or not, there are others who are looking for you too.