I understand “painful existence”. When drowning in various addictions (food, alcohol, drugs), I was simply existing…not living. Temporary moments of fun, but very little joy. I was asking myself often, ” What is wrong with me?” I had to put it all down before I could connect with myself, with others, and actually start living!! I could not be “alive” until I stopped running from myself. This is my experience – I could not let go of my “painful existence” until I put crap down and was willing to go through versus running from.
I notice when I am afraid or unsure about some area in my life, I can be quick to fall back into “comfort” behaviors. What is so bizarre to me is that these behaviors actually hurt me. So why does some part of my brain tell me they will make me feel better? Because…they USED to make me feel better. Need to create new grooves in my brain. Self-indulgence is not self-care nor self-compassion. Darn!!