Be Bigger Than Any Problem

Be Bigger Than Any Problem

Taking Responsibility During a Setback

This post began as an email broadcast to the Responsibility Community on 16 July 2021.

This post is about 1500 words and takes the average reader 11.6 minutes. It’s chock full of value (I hope you think so) and a bunch of links to interesting references.

I’ve been ill. Quite ill. For years.


I’m bigger than this problem.

I have not shared much about this with you. I’ve spoken to a few audiences about it, a little — I’m thinking of some keynotes I did in Europe pre-pandemic. And I’ve shared some details with guests in Responsibility Immersion and members of the Responsibility Mastery community — my inner circle.

Why haven’t I shared?

(Ya mean, besides it being just plain awkward, or that I’m not looking to make excuses or earn pity, and that I deserve privacy if that’s what I choose?!)

Mostly because the symptoms come and go and have been somewhat manageable. They’ve never actually stopped me from traveling or made me miss a presentation.

But they have been pesky and have knocked me back plenty often. And for the last five or six months, with a new approach to treatment, I’ve been knocked back even more.

(Sometimes the cure sucks.)

What are the symptoms?

Imagine a really bad flu without any GI or respiratory symptoms. Just total fatigue, weariness, brain fog, pain behind the eyes, muscle soreness, and a complete inability to focus.

It makes creating content next to impossible.

So what is it? I’m not 100% sure. And that’s okay, because

I prefer continuing to look over grabbing at labels.

(Note, I could write on for pages about whether medical diagnoses get to causes or merely point to and treat effects, without ever identifying the true cause. Responsibility is about cause and effect. So even in the presence of a medical diagnosis, I continue to ask whether what is found [i.e., labeled, named] is a cause, the cause, or merely an effect.

I also believe that most — if not all — disease starts in the mind [i.e., dis-ease]. And Western medicine abandoned the mind-body connection in the 1800s with the application of the scientific method in treating tissues, organs, and bones. Including the mind at that time was too fuzzy, too complex, so it was dropped. [See The Divided Mind by John Sarno, MD]

So I don’t turn over responsibility for fixing me to doctors. It’s my Responsibility, and I enlist their collaboration.

Let me know if you want me to write more about this — or any of the topics I touch on today — from the point of view of Responsibility and what I have learned.)

It began nearly two decades ago with a hand tremor. Then routine morning fatigue. Then immediate onset one morning of ultra-high completely irrational anxiety (“Oh look, a butterfly. AGGHHH!!!!”), which didn’t make sense given my years-long Responsibility-thinking practice with which I release anxiety and stress every day. Then my brain chemistry went wonky, along with my perception of my world. This was diagnosed as depression.

(Check this. Western medicine calls the symptoms “depression” [and the diagnosis was based solely on symptoms, with no verification of cause]. My psycho-therapist diagnosed it as a “spiritual crash” and gave me some very interesting reading about teachers and spiritual leaders who experienced episodes of crash [in perceived reality] and ascension [in consciousness], crash and ascension.

And my acupuncturist told me that in Chinese medicine, it is called “Stagnation.” Hah! Perfect. I was at Quit.)

Two years of meds and acupuncture and I felt great again. I returned to full life, bought (the URL), changed the company name to The Responsibility Company, and started rebuilding with inspired vigor.

Then I would get knocked back down for a day, or three — or more — after which I would feel amazing again.

Repeat, at various amplitudes and cycles. Except, my spirit was not dampened, only my physical health and cognitive ability.

When I talked to my primary care physician, he would return to the old diagnosis of generalized anxiety and depression. My intuition — my spider-sense! — told me that those things were effects and not causes, and to keep looking.

I turned away from doctors for a bit.

Nearly a year ago I began weekly sessions — called “scans” — with a Biomagnet therapist. Joan is quite skilled at this very young and promising healing modality. After a number of sessions, Joan identified that we’re likely dealing with a long-standing brain infection involving at least two viruses. I likely picked up these viruses from insect bites during international travels decades ago.

And they’ve been busy ever since.

While Joan continues to treat me weekly, I am now returning to Western medicine specialists with this new hypothesis and inviting them to support me in confirming or ruling out the brain infection idea.

I’ll learn more in the coming months.

Stay tuned.

(I hope I’ve shared just enough of the details to let you in, while not indulging in TMI [too much information] or dragging you into the nitty-gritty.

This reveal might also explain why I did not submit a proposal for your conference, turned down your kind invitation to contribute a post or chapter to your project, or didn’t show up as frequently “out there” as you might have expected.)

Hence, soon after announcing last Winter our Declaration of Intention to provide more and better content on a routine basis, I pretty much lost the ability to deliver on that pledge. I fell silent in terms of broadcasting content.

What do I want you to do with this information?

First, I want you to know

I am bigger than this problem.

Yes, I’ve been knocked back physically and mentally on and off for years. AND, at the same time, my growth in consciousness has accelerated.

I’m honored. I’m blessed. Root for me.

Do not pity me.

Instead, consider the power of Responsibility-thinking.

Responsibility is the ability to respond. And I am responding to this challenge. I own my power and ability to create, choose, and attract (this is the very definition of Responsibility). And I respond to this challenge every day.

In a wide search for possible causes, I have

  • detoxed my life and home;
  • prioritized organics in food, clothing, and furnishings;
  • exercised vigorously when I feel good enough;
  • adopted a loving pet;
  • changed what I read, watch, and listen to;
  • discovered what is most essential in my life; and
  • much more.

I continue to live with purpose and am grateful for the opportunity to love and serve.

I am not anywhere close to done. Just bogged down a bit.

Second, I invite you to consider applying Responsibility-thinking to your own challenges, struggles, and setbacks. Adopt the principle:

No problem is bigger than me.

And work it. Work that principle every day with every problem.

You are completely in charge of the mental and emotional size of your problems. Every. Single. One.

The bigger we make a problem, the more powerless we become in relation. And

the more we acknowledge our power and ability to respond, the smaller our problems become.

Try it. Think of a problem that commands too much attention. Now, say to yourself “I am bigger than this problem.” Repeat five or ten times. Notice the change in amplitude — in power and freedom.

When the anxiety and depression were at their worst in 2017-2018 I experienced thousands of suicidal thoughts. But I never made a plan to, or attempted to, end my life.

Why? Because as badly as I hurt,

I knew that I was bigger than this problem.

Third, I invite you to exercise your compassion for self and others. Most people are struggling with something. Compassion elicits more relief, change, and growth than does judgment and criticism.

Be easy on yourself.

You are always doing the best you know how given your consciousness in that moment. There’s no need to beat yourself up for falling short of anyone’s expectations — especially your own.

I think those are the things that I want to inspire or invoke in you.

Thank you. I intend to continue to be here for you. And I hope to be producing valuable content again on a regular basis.

If you want me to follow up on anything that I touched on above, just ask. I’m all for hearing what you want to know more about.

Try us

Learn more about joining the Responsibility Community and receiving our all-content, no-selling emails.

Posted in Article, Featured
double line logo dark circle