Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Permanent Minded

There is always one area of our lives that is the least favorable for us to work on. We avoid it. We ignore it. We dread it. However, failure to work through that particular area is what prevents us from flourishing. If we would push ourselves out of the temporary, fearful, uncomfortable place, we could walk into a permanent, peaceful, healthy space.

In recent years there has been an area of my life that I avoided. I convinced myself that I could get by without working on it. My rationalizations were persuasive. It isn’t that important. I would never—no matter how hard I tried—reach a level of normalcy anyway. I deserve letting that one fall short because I have done so much work reconciling my childhood already.

The beautiful—and sometimes irritating—part of growing and being more authentic is that it eventually becomes impossible to brush off emotional deficiencies. Over time, we grow less satisfied letting areas in which we excel or have handled well compensate for areas we’ve hidden or neglected. Eventually, we can no longer ignore those gapping holes.

The more I grew, the more aware I became, and one day it was impossible for me to continue ignoring the gapping hole in my healing process. I freed myself to feel it and had the nerve to allow someone else to walk that journey with me. It was already scary, but it was increasingly unnerving because someone else was going there, too, and that's yet another source of difficulty—exercising trust and vulnerability. 

In the beginning, giving myself permission to be transparent didn’t seem to help. It actually seemed worse. Sadness crept up on me more often. I hadn’t felt that dependent or needy before opening up. I actually thought I’d regressed so I considered making changes to prevent the sad, dependent, and needy feelings from returning. I was certain I’d made a mistake and was actually mad at myself for thinking that I could discuss that area of my life and get better.

Even still, I couldn't forget how impossible it had become for me to overlook the holes in my emotional health. I forced myself to continue through that uncomfortable phase. What I realized was that I hadn't regressed. I hadn't made a mistake. I was being open about something I previously refused to acknowledge. Of course I had feelings! Working through those temporary feelings has given me permanent clarity. I've become aware and now understand that:
  1. I will no longer make excuses or apologies for my feelings. 
  2. I am no longer conditioned to suffer silently and alone.
  3. I am no longer convinced that it is acceptable for me to be anything less than whole. 
  4. I will no longer make a potentially permanent decision because on temporary feelings. 
Know that you are worth the work it takes to become whole. Recognize that how you feel at the start of a process is not a reflection of how you'll always feel. Push yourself out of the temporary, fearful, and uncomfortable places so that you can walk in a permanent, peaceful, and healthy space.

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