I have been through many periods in my life in which I felt stuck and suffered from depression.
On the outside I looked successful: an award winning photographer who works for top-notch newspapers and magazines. Inside however, I felt horrible. I felt absolutely unlovable and measured my value by my success. Whenever a project was finished, after it’s publication or award ceremony I fell into a dark place. Exhausted and overwhelmed, I needed a break but whenever I took one, I felt unlovable and alone in my pain. I cried for weeks but hid my tears. My friends, my family knew very little to nothing about my inner state.
After each project, I pulled myself together, came up with an idea for the next project and the same cycle started all over again.
My relationships were a mess. Scared of conflict and commitment, I was not able to stick around long. Even in company I felt alone, because I was too scared too show all of me. I tried my best, I endured as much pain as I possibly could because I really wanted to make it work – but in the end I had to leave. And every time I felt like a failure, which just confirmed my belief of being unlovable.
I tried therapy, family constellation work, energy work, etc. but nothing seemed to do the trick. Life got a little better for a while, but my patterns seemed to suck me right back into the same mess.
A magic mushroom experienced changed my life when I was 25. For the first time in what seemed like a lifetime I was able to see the world through the eyes of my inner child again. I experienced an afternoon of total bliss, free flowing emotions and being able to see through my conditioning and destructive beliefs. That led me onto the path of entheogens. I worked with many: MDMA, LSD, Psilocybin, Ayahuasca, Kambo, Yopo and more.
But it wasn’t until I learned the proper skills of integration that my life actually started to change. I needed to do more than just trip, because that can easily become another escape from reality, so I started going on journeys inside using entheogens with intent. I got the answers I was looking for and used these insights of my inner wisdom to actively change my life. I studied with the most amazing teachers and shamans but most of all I learned from life itself.
I learned how to set healthy boundaries, how to befriend my anger, how to co-create healthy relationships in my life in which I feel safe, how to let my emotions flow again and how to express the truth of who I am.
I have lost relationships on my way, which felt and still feels very painful sometimes. But I gained so much more than I ever imagined.
My life turned upside down in the most beautiful way.
I went from feeling terrified in relationships to feeling safe, from being an escapist to being fully committed, from being terrified of conflict to feeling capable of resolving it, from being a world traveler that never wanted to settle to creating a home base that I don’t want to leave anymore. I went from feeling absolutely lonely to feeling seen, heard and connected.
I left the vortex of messy relationship patterns, I stopped measuring my worth according to my success and I feel like a heavy burden was lifted from my shoulders. This is the most incredible feeling and I am eternally grateful for the entheogens that speeded up my path to self-awareness.
Today I am me and I feel loved and supported that way. I discover more of myself every single day and I am able to embrace all of it – most of the times 😉 …
Connecting to yourself is not a final destination. It is an ongoing process which becomes easier and more and more natural with time.
One week of entheogens will not solve all of your problems forever. The Shift retreat is about taking the first step of diving into our fears and learning how and why to embrace every inner aspect we meet along the way. And what we will find on that journey is the utter beauty and relief of simply being ourselves.