“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.”
~Carl Gustav Jung
If we extend the above quote about the irritations that others provide us, also to situations that irritate us—because other people are very often central in situations—we can conclude that there is something very personal about all irritations. It is no giant leap to see where this ends: how we take our irritations says a lot about our relationships with ourselves.
A highly irritated and moody person is generally very unhappy within.
Irreconcilable issues taunt us, and most often they occur unconsciously. Our best clue is our emotional state and how rational our behaviours are. Self-destructive behaviours, especially those that have a gradual impact on our physical health, are a key indicator of the frustrations within us that we struggle to contend with.
Working With The Symptoms To Define The Causes
Our biggest barriers to happiness are not symptoms of our unhappiness, but the causes deeper underneath. There is always more to be told. That is why it is pointless to work on addressing the symptoms of our problems, when the causes will continue to prevail. Working on symptoms proves unsustainable. Addressing the causes will prove healing in the long run.
If we can be truthful with ourselves regarding our inner issues, as we explore them, we can, at last, begin to self-actualise and even transcend our former selves.
In doing such a thing we address the key source of our frustration; this is our inner angst which is felt when we continually miss the mark regarding our deepest wishes.
As most of our deepest wishes remain elusively out of range, so to speak, we can still gain insight into ourselves through our frustrations and those goals we find hard to meet.
Anything that shows us proof of the frustrations we ordinarily bear should be heeded. But our human default is to deny these indicators of our frustrated inner selves. Our frustrations are indications of a denied spirituality; of the spirituality within each of us that lies ignored.
And perhaps we have more in common regarding our spirituality than we think.
Defining Our Common Spirituality
We are gentle spirits. God designed us to live peacefully, not to be at continual conflict. But our broken world, and our broken selves, are continually exposed to conflict; conflict within and conflict without. That is, conflict with ourselves and conflict with others.
Reducing our exposure to unnecessary conflict reduces our experiences of frustration.
If we are to give credence to our spirituality—our innate gentleness—where conflict has us reacting violently because we resent these attacks on our gentility—we need to acknowledge our gentleness and cater for it. We need to make room for it, declaring moratoriums on certain unnecessary activities and wasteful thinking that are foreign to gentleness.
At our happiest we are contentedly gentle spiritual beings; happy within, happy without. Our frustrations are vital clues revealing how to attend better to our spirituality. It is best that we take our frustrations seriously and learn from them.
The more we live in alignment with our gentle spirituality the more we will be blessed. The more we acknowledge our spirituality the less frustrated we will be.
© 2012 S. J. Wickham.