Guidepost #3: Cultivate a Resilient Spirit – Let go of numbing and powerlessness
After diving into all three books by Brene Brown I realized that The Gifts of Imperfection is the perfect companion to the work I do around the effect stress, anxiety, and feeling like enough have on loving your body and living a fulfilling life. To share in these gifts I am writing about a guidepost a week from the book for the next 10 weeks and how to embrace each one. I will also gift a journal prompt with each guidepost for you to use. I love this book and encourage you to pick up a copy!
Have you ever felt the need to ‘take the edge off’ - a glass of wine at the end of the day, an extra piece of cake, or multiple hours of a Housewives marathon? This is numbing, it is a way to dive into something as a means to avoid pain, vulnerability, or discomfort.
But the problem is, we can’t select the emotions we numb. When we numb the bad we also numb the good. You can hide dark things inside but it also means hiding your light. Most of the time you numb in anticipation of experiencing pain. You numb out of fear.
The solution? Practicing resilience. I like this definition of resilience, “the ability of something to return to its original shape after it has been pulled, stretched, pressed, bent, etc.” Now I realize that this definition is not exactly referring to people but what a great way to look at it. It’s the ability to spring back after something bad happens.
Cultivating a resilient spirit means feeling the pain and moving through. It means creating awareness about what pain triggers you and what story you are telling yourself about that pain. Things only hurt when somewhere inside of us we believe we deserve it or there’s some truth to it.
A short story for you…Not too long ago I wrote about how I was taking a program away because I didn’t see it working any longer and I felt bad about it. I never want to let my clients or readers down. I received some very kind feedback and some not so kind feedback. The stuff that hurt only hurt because it was my fear coming to life – criticism! Bleh.
Immediately my mind ran a story about how I wasn’t smart enough and the only thing that kept me from numbing the pain was talking to someone and not keeping it to myself. I allowed the pain to move through me and I found someone to support me right away - this is what practicing resilience can look like.
It’s not an ability to avoid or not feel, rather the ability to feel fully and embrace your emotions.
Cultivate a Resilient Spirit Prompt- Set 10 minutes on a timer and place pen to paper.
If I released my fears…