Mine looks messy and it also looks amazing.
Here are 3 Messy examples from my healing journey:
(If any of these bring up sensations for you in your body, take some deep breaths, ground, when ready and making sure you are in your prefrontal cortex - notice them and know you can heal from those triggers).
1 - When extended family doesn’t get it, thinks you are overreacting or making up your abuse
2 - When you go to church or other spiritual places that once gave you comfort and now just trigger you
3 - When you need to process anger and yell and scream in “inappropriate ways and places”
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Each of these examples seem messy to me because they bring up so many emotions and memories and overall icky feelings.
And when I am able to ground, (do bottom up work if needed), and make sure I have access to my brain (top down)….
I realize they feel so icky because, I am letting others have the control.
I am letting my extended family, or my church, or culture/society - things outside of me - have more weight on the importance scale than me and what I know to be true.
I am letting what others think or say be true for me and actually become what I think and say about me too...
And then I make it mean even more terrible things with the what I think about me letting them influence me.
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And here are 3 amazing things that I also know to be true for me about these examples:
1 - When I can get my own back and set boundaries with that extended family or family member who can’t or wont honor my truth and my story of abuse I take my power back.
2 - When I create my own spiritual practice, either in the same places of worship or in finding new ones I create new meanings around triggers and around my ability to be safe.
3 - When I own my processing - I get to decide whether it really was “inappropriate” (sometimes others will manipulate and gaslight me because they are uncomfortable with how or even the idea of me needing to process)…
And I get to decide, (usually after I am finished processing), how/when/if I want and/or need to apologize.
What does my inner wisdom know about the need or lack thereof to apologize?
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Do any of these examples of the messy ring true?
How about the amazing things that are also true about you and how you are reclaiming your voice and your right to act in ways to keep you safe?
What is your inner wisdom telling you?
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There is a thing called cognitive dissonance where your brain can be telling you 2 contradictory things at the same time and you believe both stories to be true.
This can be a scary because it often puts us in all or nothing thinking:
You can either:
Act from one belief and the other belief starts freaking out about what you just did and how terrible you are now because you also believe this other thing…
You stay in confusion and don’t know how to act.
A tool I love to use in these instances, is to take a step back and be the watcher.
How can both be true?
When both are true, I get to choose which belief and meaning frame I will function from.
Then it becomes a tool of allowing contradictory thoughts, feelings or sensations to happen within me at the same time.
It can be terribly uncomfortable at first, but give it a try….
Using this tool in the first example:
It’s true that some of my extended family think that I am overreacting and making up my abuse. And…I can let that be on them. And…I can have boundaries, uphold my boundaries and not expect them to change or uphold my boundaries. I uphold my boundaries, that’s my job and I am the best person for that job.
I have taken back all the power and all the control.
When my brain wants to go into the messy and then feel worry as I think how their feelings will be hurt if I set boundaries…
Or go into messy and feel angry because I think they wont ever change, wont see my truth, wont even seek to understand me….they may not....
There are all types of messiness my brain and body want to offer….
And the amazing.....
I can process the worry and the anger and let my inner wisdom remind me of my right to safety, truth, love and my voice…..
I honor me by no longer needing to be in charge of them….I can let that go….
And more amazing.....
Now your turn - if you choose - what would using these tools look like for examples 2 and 3 that I gave…or better yet, some examples of ‘messy’ from your own life?