Once we have cleared the way and listened within to identify our soul’s urgings, we most likely will meet inner resistance rooted in fear of exposure, judgement, failure, the unknown, loss and/or embarrassment.
Many of us have internalized the message that what we most desire pursuing in different areas of our life is not worthwhile or within the realm of possibility. Some of us do not feel worthy of realizing what we aspire to experience.
We imagine that we lack the talent, skills, ability or courage needed to pull of what we envision. We assume that, if we express what is in our hearts, the people in our lives will not hold our feelings with care, receive our truth or consider our needs.
We all have myriad strategies to back away from discomfort and vulnerability. The irony is that, in our attempts to stay within our comfort zone, we spin in a form dissatisfaction and longing that we have grown accustomed to.
Sometimes we move forward in fits and starts, reaching for substances and distractions that numb or sidetrack us from being fully present to our desires, intentions and feelings. We hold inside what we need to express only to have it come out sideways, increasing the issues in our relationships.
I engaged in avoidance until I realized that did not wish to die not knowing what was on the other side of discomfort and vulnerability. When I engaged my fears clearheaded, awake, present and centered, I learned an key lesson. If we navigate with skill and strategy, we acquire precisely what we need to claim what our Soul is urging us toward.
The tendency to avoid venturing into new territory is biological in the sense that we are hardwired to avoid risk and pain. Our reticence is reinforced as a conditioned response reflected in the behavior of family, peers and culture messaging.
Both of these inner dynamics are strong and require conscious effort and practice to shift. The practices and processes I incorporate in my offerings combine ancient techniques with modern methods informed by brain science to support us in overriding our biological urges and social conditioning.
Different regions of the brain are activated depending on the stimulus we experience. When we contemplate a change in our lives or an action that would advance our aspirations that involves risk, we engage the area of the brain responsible for fight, flight and freeze reactions.
Using breath work developed over thousands of years in the Yogic tradition to calm the central nervous system, we can shift from this reactive response to the rest and digest mode. In this state, we can calmly identify the sources of our resistance in order to look more objectively at the thinking and beliefs that underly our choices and actions.
When in rest and digest mode, we can engage our fears and address our vulnerability to choose from intention and move though the resistance that arises with skill.
I offer this three part practice that supports us to skillfully shift gears and move mindfully toward discomfort and vulnerability.
1. Use the breath to center and stabilize.
2. Inquire within asking what do you fear when you think about moving toward a Soul's urging that you have identified. Record what you are feeling and what thoughts and beliefs underly the feelings.
3, Name it. Look objectively at it. Hold it in conscious awareness and consider how you might move through it taking note of what emerges.
It is simple process. I have found in my experience that the most powerful practices are simple in their structure. It is putting them into practice with intention and consistency that we experience truly profound outcomes. Dr. Dan Siegel who directs the Mindful Awareness Research Center has coined the phrase, “name it to tame it”.
When we work consciously, we learn to override the impulses of the brain to mindfully lean into what the brain tells us to resist. This is the key because what the brain is conditioned to perceive as risky and “to be avoided” is often what we need to step toward to grow. Through consistency we realize that we can handle the discomfort and vulnerability.
It is my honor and joy to guide individuals in practices and design personalized processes to support healing, growth and manifestation. If you are interested in support in building the skills shared here please email firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about working together.