Dealing with Discomfort
by Nichole Eaton
It’s been a minute since I’ve written a proper blog.
Perhaps, like everyone else, I was patiently waiting for 2020 to improve.
It’s been a heavy year. Big themes, big incidents, big heartbreaks. I know there’s certain spaces “positivity” can’t touch.Death and injustice aren’t places where cheerful words are going to do anything but bounce off the side of the building and slide down the pavement.
I recently had a client session where there was a lot going on. A lot. And often I use sessions to talk about the future. Planning, preparing, envisioning, empowering, goal setting, desire mapping…all of that.But when life gets too heavy there’s only one option.
To take it day by day.
When it feels like you have so much on your shoulders. When you’ve just received the worst news. When someone you love has left or passed.When you discover betrayal. When your heart feels shattered or you feel completely uprooted and lost in who you are. We can’t pour frosting on it and pretend it’s a cupcake.
I had a great podcast interview with a Coach and friend of mine, Carianna. (Listen here)
We talked about how challenging it is to sit in discomfort. How discomfort feels like an alarm going off indicating we are doing life wrong. How we can easily begin to decide what being in this position or feeling says about us. But the reality is, if you're human, you've experienced it. Discomfort doesn't equal broken. It equals human. If we stop hiding our wounds in the back of the closet like we do with the kitchen table clutter when guests stop by our house, we could look at it in the light, instead of rummaging through it in the dark. We would realize we're not alone. We've all got our "stuff," our tender places. We can't shove it down and expect it not to show back up later, sabotaging us, restricting us, or keeping us from our highest self.
Discomfort isn't an indication of failure, it's a tool for growth. The uncomfortable is what changes us. You can’t crawl out of the fire without a few burns. Without it impacting you or changing your inherent shape. Discomfort is the key that unlocks our strength, our resilience. Parts of our personality are activated during tough times, that we didn't know exist.
If we can accept discomfort has purpose, it’s easier to meet our discomfort with compassion. With a gentle, “I’m so sorry this happened” with a lack of pressure to “get over it.” We can meet it with kindness and patience. What was this event meant to show you? What was it meant to teach you? Who did you need to shift into because it happened?
Being pissed that we're not feeling better creates a stacking and snowball of negative emotions. Acceptance is the great neutralizer of negative momentum. One of my favorite affirmations to use when i'm uncomfortable, "I don't know or understand why this is happening, but I accept that it is." Sometimes I even recommend the affirmation, "I accept that I'm resisting healing or my highest good."
Maybe you don’t know the answers. But in time they will reveal themselves.
Now the important part. We can visit discomfort. We can take the information we need about it. But it’s not necessary to pitch a tent and stay there.
We can start feeling better by going back to the basics.
Breathe, with intention. Get proper sleep. Get outside once or twice a day. Drink all the water. Move your body. Fuel your body with foods that are colorful and feel good to you.
Let’s just for now, approach today. Setting intentions for how we’d like to get through today. Connecting with the people that make us feel seen and loved. Listening to the music that brings our heart up instead of down. Reading books to inspire new thought or new action.
This time period calls for a day by day approach. So, if you’re going through the muck. If you’re in thick. We don’t need to figure out “how you’re going to get out of it” or “how you’re ever going to feel better or like yourself again.” We just need to breathe and get through today. And then do the same thing again tomorrow. Every day until you feel a little stronger and ready to write a new story.
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