It’s an acquired skill.
We usually run away from discomfort, as fast and as far as possible. We are so afraid of ourselves! It’s quite staggering, really, to think about how furiously we work to avoid our own inner worlds. So much time and energy, and all we do is suppress and ignore what will never go away. It’s like trying to cut off all our limbs to keep ourselves from doing something wrong. Just makes no sense, and yet everyone does it. Runs away from discomfort, obviously, not dissects arms and legs.
What if we instead ran towards what feels unsettling? It’s against our basic survival instincts, of course. Our lizard brains warn us – this is dangerous! You can’t sit with your feelings! You can’t investigate your triggers! You can’t handle it! For some reason, those survival mechanisms in our minds think that we might die if we do anything that doesn’t feel perfectly wonderful.
We will not die if we face our shadows. It won’t feel amazing – more like awkward. It’s hard to look at ourselves and admit to everything we’ve spent years hiding or avoiding. There’s nothing wrong with feeling resistant – it’s natural. Our brains, wanting to protect us from pain, have taught us that’s the way to go. But it won’t help us grow or change.
If we want to have happier, evolved lives, we have to choose discomfort. We have to grow to enjoy it, knowing that beyond the unsettling feelings is a new breakthrough in the healing journey. We have the strength and self-compassion to see our darkness and love it until it merges with the light. We are all both shadow and sunshine. That is what makes us complex and unique beings. We can learn to embrace the difficulty, knowing that it is an essential part of our beautiful selves… even when it feels a little scary.
You can learn to love your discomfort, knowing that it’s for your highest good to move through it. I have faith that you can persevere on your path towards healing. Sending you so much support and love.