Feelings Are Messy

As humans in an uncertain world, we seek certainty in a variety of ways. We ask questions that are fundamentally unanswerable. We ruminate and obsess on a single thought (otherwise known as intrusive thoughts). We Google and text and seek reassurance in a variety of increasingly technologically oriented ways. When I see someone falling into these common mental habits, the first question I encourage them to ask themselves is, “What are these thoughts/actions protecting me from feeling?”

We’re so identified with spending thousands of hours in the realm of thought that oftentimes this question doesn’t make any sense. What do you mean “protecting” me from feeling? What I mean is that somewhere along the road of growing up, somewhere between the innately healthy relationship that babies have to their emotional life and the disconnected relationship that most adults have, we learned that one way to manage the messy, amorphous, … Click here to continue reading...

Nature as Guide

It is with great love, admiration, and appreciation that I’m sharing this beautiful post by Sarah Love, one of our moderators on the Break Free From Relationship Anxiety/Conscious Weddings E-Course forum, who is now in the last days of her first pregnancy. Over the last six years, Sarah has journeyed through the darkest night anyone can walk through and has emerged with the jewels of wisdom that are reflected in this post. I can attest that she has followed her own words as she has mindfully and gracefully walked through the nine months of pregnancy, trusting in the guidance of nature to usher her through her own transition.

As we heal and connect to our inner column of strength, we all must find our anchor points, the places where we can ripple back into ourselves and tap into the flow of faith that informs our lives. For Sarah, one Click here to continue reading...

Intrusive Pain

I talk a lot about intrusive thoughts on this site, particularly how they pertain to relationship anxiety. I see thoughts as the flares from the Self brilliantly designed to attract our attention so that we can learn to turn inward and attend, possibly for the first time in our lives, to our inner realms with love, compassion, and healthy attention. The thoughts are not punishment for wrongdoing or evidence of unworthiness. On the contrary, someone prone to intrusive thoughts is almost always on the sensitive-anxious-creative spectrum, which means among the most compassionate, gentle, soft-hearted people on the planet. When we learn to work effectively with these thoughts, we’re well on our way to recovery.

Likewise, it’s essential to learn about and heal from intrusive pain. (I wrote last week about healthy pain; please read that post first.) We can define an intrusive thought as an unwanted, persistent thought … Click here to continue reading...

A Beautiful Cry

One of the most potent prescriptions for healing intrusive thoughts and anxiety from the root is to allow ourselves to live in whole-hearted, full-bodied expression. This means taking the lid off of our joy just as much as our pain, and learning to spiral out of head-realm and down into body-realm where the heart taps out its song to the rhythm of our emotional lives. And yet when so many people struggle with allowing themselves a daily or weekly cry – and bump up against the ceiling of their joy –  it’s important to delve further into this essential realm of Self.

A cry signals our arrival into the world. When a baby is born, we await with bated breath for the first cry, and its sound is cause for rejoicing and relief. Sadly, tragically even, for some babies that may be the last time their cries are received with … Click here to continue reading...

Holiday Pain and Gratitude

If you’re like most people, there’s probably an element of pain, dread and/or overwhelm as we enter the holiday season. The rush to consume, the pressure to feel joyful, and the expectation of experiencing perfect familial bliss set against a Normal Rockwell backdrop is enough to send any human being under a gray cloud. Add to that being a highly sensitive person that can veer toward anxiety or depression and the recipe for implosions or explosions is laid out on the holiday table alongside the turkey and cranberries.

Holidays, birthdays, and transitions are a set-up for disappointment and pain. Whenever we expect to feel one certain way (i.e. blissful, connected, happy), the other emotions inside clamor for attention until we break down in some form. We simply balk in the face of expectations. And the expectation itself for pure joy is, in a word, ridiculous. Why do we put so … Click here to continue reading...