You’ll be surprised what you find down there…
I will never forget when my doctor looked me in the eye and said,
I don’t know what to do for you now.
After all the blood tests, brain scans and X-Rays, she finally shrugged and offered anti-depressants to, help me through it, although she couldn’t say exactly what IT was.
I was so sick I could barely get up off the floor most days, and the one person I was relying on to fix me, the one person who I believed had ALL the answers, had just thrown in the towel.
That was my first real rock bottom.
The first time I actually surrendered to failing horribly, then finding out it might just be the best thing ever.
That’s why I think you should try it.
Not because it’s fun, or even fair, but because you are conditioned to avoid it. You run from rock bottom because you are told failure is the end of days. It brings shame and the untold terrors of being talked about in whispers or taken into therapy.
So even though you may be miserable and your life is a pretence and you hate your job/boss/spouse (delete as appropriate,) you will resist rock bottom with every cell in your body.
And you’re missing a trick — because rock bottom has something beautiful for you.
You Need Rock Bottom
You know how it feels when the problem you’ve been avoiding keeps getting bigger and bigger, until you’re standing at the edge of the abyss, peering into the blackness?
You’ve done the facade of sure, fine, great, of course everything’s ok, for so long you convinced everyone else, and almost yourself.
But here’s the truth…one day, when you pop your head above the parapet and the coast looks clear, so you dare to think it’s all going to work out…rock bottom will open wide and swallow you whole.
And that’s just the way life works.
You may scream for help, hurl questions at he universe and demand to know WHY this is happening but finally, if you’re smart, when your salty tears have dried, you will stop trying to escape and take a look around.
And you will realise rock bottom is where you needed to be all along.
To meet your true self.
The Surprise at Rock Bottom
Rock bottom is the mirror you can’t avoid looking in.
All you see is you, and where you screwed up, lost everything, got dumped…or whatever.
And it’s hard at first, until you stop caring. Because rock bottom doesn’t give a shit about what society says. Rock bottom reveals the truth about your millions, your mansion, your Porsche and your good-time friends…and none of them matter.
The things that matter at rock bottom are your body, and whether it still functions, having people you love in your life, a roof over your head and something to eat on the table.
The rest is fluff.
This revelation will free you.
And you will be surprised how GOOD this feels.
Why You Shouldn’t Rush Out of Rock Bottom
Rock bottom is life laid bare.
It’s an intimate table for you and your life.
And down there, the small things you took for granted, will become hugely important. Like the way sunlight glistens on wet grass, or the sound of birds singing, or the laughter of a child.
And you will be grateful that, despite what’s happened, you are still breathing. You will feel more alive than you have in years and you will make a promise to never let yourself forget this feeling of gratitude, because when you realise what’s REALLY important, you rebuild from a new perspective.
From rock bottom there’s only one way out…and it’s up.
And although when you begin the climb many things in life will look the same, YOU will be transformed.
You will forgive. You will change the way you live. You will love.
You will realise rock bottom was the catalyst you needed to save yourself.
And you will breathe again.
The Relief of Rock Bottom
In your lowest moments, you can choose to wallow and fester — that’s the downpayment on a long-term residence in rock bottom. Or you can peel back the layers and start uncovering the lies and secrets that bound you.
You can shed your old skin and start over.
Because at rock bottom secrets have no purpose (you are already at the bottom) and therefore no power.
Rock bottom is your chance to release everything and re-set. You can let go of the lies and the cultural conditioning that got you into this in the first place. You can change what you believe and rebuild yourself better while you have the chance.
At rock bottom your eyes are open, your mind is receptive and your body is ready.
There is much to let go of and this will feel painful.
But in this pain lies your power.
Why Vulnerability Works
The world teaches you to build armour around yourself, but rebuilding from rock bottom requires that you let your walls crumble.
Yes, rock bottom will feel raw and exposed and uncomfortable.
(Ok that’s an understatement.)
But the good news is, allowing the pain to exist, accepting yourself as you are, where you are, is the first step on the ladder up and eventually out.
Pain is an essential component of rock bottom, but you are not mean to suffer and endure endlessly. The point of pain is to FEEL and RELEASE.
Staying in the vulnerability of the pain, and why it hurts, whether it’s physical or emotional, gets you out of your head and back into your body.
Here you can stop analysing and simply allow and accept what got you to this point.
Because it’s history. It’s already over. And acceptance allows release. And release creates space.
Space to shift out of the struggle of the past and into the possibility that awaits you.
Because anything is possible…even life without walls.
Then you’ll realise rock bottom is not only firm, but also kinda spongy.
Much like a springboard.
And suddenly you’ll feel like bouncing…
Learning to Love Rock Bottom
While you will never be sad to leave rock bottom, I guarantee you’ll be glad you stopped by.
Rock bottom is your fast track to a new kind of freedom — if you’re willing to do the work.
At rock bottom you will see yourself so clearly that you stop craving more and realise what you have, and who you are, is ALWAYS enough.
You will love the way this feels, because it feels like hope. Like someone lifting the veil off your life and showing you what was there all along. You as pure potential.
You as your own solution.
The Truth About Rock Bottom
Rock bottom is a blessing in disguise.
If you step into the abyss and walk through it, as calmly and openly as possible, you will emerge transformed.
Being sick or broken feels like the end but it’s a beginning.
I have been back to rock bottom since my health crisis. Several times in fact. And whether it was over work, money or a relationship, each time the journey got easier, the way out clearer and faster.
Now when the blackness beckons I understand there is work to be done and I embrace the change my life is calling for. I know the bigger, better version of me lies beyond rock bottom and I am ready to discover her.
If this sounds radical know this — when you go somewhere no one else wants to go, you’ll learn what only a handful of people truly know.
Because rock bottom has ALL the answers you seek.
Your genius, your gold dust, your treasure, it’s all down there.
Stop resisting rock bottom.
When it rears up before you and opens its jaws, take a deep breath, pack an overnight bag and jump.
You might just like what you find.
This article was first published on theascent.pub