My awakening to the crazy world of self-help and recovery from its vice like grip occurred after a quite fantastical and unique experience. One thing I have learned is that you cannot download anyone else's 'system' or 'process' and make it work for you. I think you need to pick through each person's life experiences for the wool to weave your own tapestry. Certainly with the money, time, energy and hopes invested in other people's ego creations I could have weaved the Bayeux and then some!!!
What I can say though is that in a bid to understand my abusive childhood and how different I appeared to be from my family I embarked upon a 20 year quest to understand who and what I was. Yes, I fell, hook, line and sinker for the self-help and personal development game.
More recently, over the last 10 years I have stuffed myself silly with Law of Attraction (loA) type teachings that mainly block out anything negative or 'not of the light' and thus, have given my power away more or less to anyone with a cheering claim or nice smile...
Then, a catastrophe of epic proportions that turned all of the LoA stuff on its head, inside out and doing somersaults occurred!!!!
Essentially I met a psychopath (probably the physical manifestation of all the repressed and ignored negativity and blocked out critical thinking from the last 10 'positive' years!!!).
I sunk every penny into a series of businesses with him, got into a hellish personal relationship with him that involved every kind of abuse and threats etc, helplessly watched him systematically destroy several other people and then once I had withdrawn from him and the businesses despite what was on the line - saw him flee the UK leaving a quagmire of 103 serious problems that escalated into near bankruptcy, over 50 threatened court actions, insurance issues, tremendous weight gain and the utter desecration of everything I believed in...
Essentially 'I' ceased to exist. I became a recluse, stayed away from everyone and everything except what I could not possibly avoid, stopped going out, answering the phone, showering, getting dressed. The only respite from the fireball of pain and stress engulfing EVERY facet of my life was the safety net of suicide. I knew I could kill myself. I longed for absolute annihilation! I didn't just think it, I investigated the subject, formed a plan and came seconds away from carrying it out several times - stopped only by my love for my cats and who would care for them?
Without a doubt the worst aspect of all of the above was the belief I had created and attracted it. I spent nearly a year on a wild goose chase torturing myself further by trying to work out why and how a lifetime of positive thoughts and actions had created a monster and a monstrous situation that took 2 years hard time to resolve and was so permanently life changing...
There wasn't any answers other than the LoA was either horse s**t or used wrongly could be disastrous.
I stumbled upon your book which helped as it showed all the guru's in meltdowns of their own, and I started looking at the shadow stuff that was all around me. For 8 months I delighted in oozing out every shred of anger and negative energy that had long been encased in the basement of my psyche until one day I realized that negative energy was not better or worse than its opposite - just different and that both are required for a reasonably happy existence. Duh...
I knew I was in recovery when my critical thinking skills began to creak into action again and I started reading novels. I have emerged back out into the sunlight but armed with self reliance that life goes up and down and around and around and 'this too shall pass...'
I am content to not know who/what is behind everything and to surrender to whatever pulled me through. Forgiveness has and is helping me with all that happened - even the near murderous hatred I feel towards lawyers.
Hope all in your world is dark and light!!!!