Tiny, Bruiser & Neville Are No Friends of Mine

by Joel Levin, Western Australia

It has taken me some time to track these guys down, but I can now put a name on some characters who do everything in their power to stop The Way of the Livingness becoming my way.

What is The Way of the Livingness? It is simply a way of living that is in deep connection and respect of yourself – so that you bring that same depth of connection and respect to others and everything you do.

The first character that tries to get in my way of living is not very nice and not very easy to get along with. ‘Tiny’ is his name. Tiny just wants me to fit in, to not make waves, to not feel wonderful and to not enjoy the simplicity of life. Tiny is great at using fear and comparison. He baits me with simple questions like ‘what if ‘x’ happens?’, ‘why aren’t you ‘there’ yet?’, ‘you’re not as good as x’…. I’m getting much better at not getting hooked into answering Tiny’s questions. I’ve noticed that if I start answering these questions, it doesn’t take long before it feels like he has put one hand on my head and one on the base of my spine and squeezed me tightly. Tiny is good at making me feel tiny.

I can sidestep his games by appreciating myself more and noticing a similar appreciation of others. Tiny feels tiny… when I let myself feel how huge people can truly be.

This is when Tiny brings in his backup partner. Let’s call him ‘Bruiser’. Bruiser is bit of a bully and likes to push me around, call me names, and make sure I focus on every fault I have.  He also likes to remind me of all those things I ‘need to get done’ or haven’t done yet. It can be a real drain to live with him and it can feel like walking through mud on the day I decide to march to his tune, rather than my own.

Strangely, getting around Bruiser can be easier than Tiny because his approach is so forceful. On the days I remember to move at a pace that works for me, it’s easy to see him coming. It doesn’t stop him from trying, but by moving at my pace, and not his, it seems to create a wake around me that Bruiser just can’t cross.

On the days that neither Tiny or Bruiser have any effect on me, they call on their boss, ‘Neville’ (I have just decided to call him Neville to make him sound less sinister). Neville has a lot of pride, and plays every and any game in the book – the ‘wise’ sage, the helpless child, the repentant son and even the willing student.

Neville is tricky and will tell me whatever I want or need to hear, so that I back-off feeling myself, thinking for myself, or enjoying myself. My success in getting around Neville is fleeting, but becomes more of a reality each day I remember to feel myself first.

The moment I feel first (both me and the rest of the world), I know what is true and what is part of his game.

From time to time, these characters and their games still catch me out. After all, they are aspects of me that I created and have chosen to live with – in the strange belief they were somehow there to help me. The cleverest trick of these internal bullies is their ability to make it seem that they are more powerful than me – but all they ever had over me is my own choice to play the game they were offering. All they have had over me is a mis-held belief that life is better when you’re locked in some kind of internal struggle.

Everything I have ever needed to set myself free from this struggle has always been inside of me. It is the deepest truth I have ever felt – my own love – and my own willingness to live that love, and the joy that comes with it in a world where people are battling their own versions of Tiny, Bruiser and Neville.

197 thoughts on “Tiny, Bruiser & Neville Are No Friends of Mine

  1. The internal struggle that goes on fuelled by our pictures and images which only keep us further away from our joyful essence, the more we choose to connect to the love that we are the simpler life becomes and the struggle subsides.

  2. Being Loving in all we do sets a standard that when we feel the drop and the opportunity to put on a different Hat we respond with deepening our Love so we do not get caught out in pigeon-holing our-self by a different handle!

  3. I would have to say tiny has played a big part in my life along with the other ones, their sway is so much less these days as I listen to my body with much more loving care, knowing the truth of who I am and the love I hold within.

  4. Tiny, Bruiser and Neville can easily go unnoticed if we do not pay attention to the way we are with ourselves and our thoughts.

  5. Great way to describe how we fight ourselves, how we’ve created it and when we remember to come back and feel ourselves, our bodies, that life can be simple and joyful.

  6. Thank you Joel for sharing how these three sub personalities play out in your life. I know when I separate from who I truly am I create openings whereby all manner of dodgy characters can raise their ugly heads to try and nudge me off course on my return journey to my soul.

  7. Funny how we think life has to be a struggle, we create issues that are totally unnecessary but they are successful in keeping us small, not expressing and now being who we truly are. When we allow all that mud to drop away life becomes so much simpler and more joyful.

  8. Putting names and ‘faces’ to what stops us evolving helps us all enormously because it helps us to realize that these are characters living inside us who try to take us over and to own us.

  9. It’s such a great reminder that you say people are also battling with their own versions of Tiny, Bruiser and Neville.

  10. The entrapment of living in struggle- I am coming to observe how when there is no struggle in my life I will create it and bring it in for there to be a greater tension in my life. It is like I can not be at ease in life and so I will draw on things to bring me down or make life hard or create issues in relationships.

  11. If I allow Bruiser to have his way I can get exhausted! Bruiser crushes, caps and can me feel overwhelmed in life but hey I am getting to know him! 😉 I am getting to know him well. I can spot his presence almost immediately and boy this awareness is having an impact on my wellbeing and commitment to life. Sometimes he catches me out when I have been a little hard on myself and although he may try, he doesn’t succeed in having his way in building anxiousness, overwhelm and distraction in life. Getting to know and make friends with him has been a blessing as I continue to expand our friendship and build on the relationship I have with myself developing my awareness of getting to know him more deeply.

  12. An internal bully I’ve been putting the spot light on lately is the ‘caring parent’….this one, to anyone looking on would be justified but in truth it’s not and leaves me on a roller coaster of ups and downs. It likes to feed me lines like ‘you’re doing it for their own good’ and ‘you have every right to do/say that’. It’s days are numbered, as I’m calling it out as best I can each time.

  13. The power of love supersedes any force that is imposed by any self-created character or otherwise. As it is love that defines who we innately are, and living in connection to our love the truth is known, as such our power is naturally lived. When we live our love, who we are is naturally lived and all that is not of love is rendered powerless.

  14. I am back here again to remind myself that if I feel myself first, feel the love I am then nothing can truly distract me from living that love I am.

  15. To feel ourselves first is it, and allows us to address any patterns or characters we’ve previously chosen to be. For they would not exist without our say so, and to know that means we can choose differently.

  16. Yes its is true, it is always our own choice whether to entertain such internal characters and give them the space to operate in. Or we can choose to see through their ploys and not play their games.

  17. Joel this is a very powerful piece of writing, thank you. Perhaps the hardest thing to admit is that our power is greater than any perceived adversity, including that which is within us. A great line here is “all they ever had over me is my own choice to play the game they were offering.” We are so very powerful, and it all comes down to what we choose and align to.

  18. Is this a form of Schizophrenia I wonder!?! The way you have written this Joel highlights the characters/thoughts we let in that try to thwart our natural expression.

  19. This is a brilliant description of how badly we treat ourselves and the different ways we do it. We would never think it’s acceptable to speak to others the way we speak to ourselves, or treat another the way we treat ourselves – it’s not ok yet I know for me it’s quite normal and I’m just learning to catch the abuse and use these moments of self bashing for something much more beneficial.

  20. To combat any thing that is not us and as perfectly described by you Joel, is being in ‘the moment I feel first (both me and the rest of the world), I know what is true and what is part of the game’.

  21. ‘The moment I feel first (both me and the rest of the world), I know what is true and what is part of his game.’ And that sums it up perfectly … discern what is truly there in us and around us. And understand that it is us who empower the bullies in us, and so the more we see and feel them, the more we can untangle the web they create.

  22. Yes at times we entertain many of these characters with many different names but they all evaporate under the light of love.

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