I’m sobbing into some balled up toilet paper while sitting in the bathroom breathing “let it go let it go let it go. You’re safe you’re safe you’re safe. You’re enough you’re worthy.”
There are times when I can see with crystal clarity that I’m stuck, that I’m looping that I’ve chosen an unresourceful pathway and whatever I’m choosing to do or be in that moment may not be the thing that’s actually “the best” choice or decision. Which makes me start to wonder so what?! What if actually at times we NEED that stillness, that wretched sobbing, that lost-ness to get us back to our us-ness?
My incessant need to evolve and to grow is what makes me me, and I do truly love that pure essence of my being. I do also recognise that at times it becomes incessant to the point of nagging, to the point of pushing, and pushing. And I know that pushing doesn’t work for me. Joy, grace and flow work for me – for my inner most self, for my confidence, for my joy, for my love for myself and for others. For the results in my business, personal, family life. For my overall wellbeing.
So what do I do when I’m stuck again?
When it doesn’t feel right or good?
I’ve had the moments where it feels good to cry it out. I’m not talking about those. I’m talking about the moments where it feels wretched. Where you just don’t wanna be there. Where you start questioning why, why, why am I here again?
I did it again. I’m stuck. And it feels like I can’t get out.
If you’ve been following us for a while you’ll know just how much I love and have learnt so much from Brene Brown’s work. She’s a researcher, story-teller and all round authentic being whose studies into shame, vulnerability, resilience and courage is unblocking the barriers holding so many of us back from being ‘all of us’. Brene (and countless others) talk lots about needing a team around you. This team doesn’t need to be huge, it does need to be the right fit though. Brene says you need that someone who you can and will be absolutely your most vulnerable with, so you can practice and build the strength of that muscle. So when you need to use it in the every day sense you already feel safe.
I believe in putting things into practice (knowledge with action is power), so I have busied myself categorising in my own mind who is on my ‘team’. You see I spent years as a bottler. You know, always being the listener, asking others how they are, and keeping zipped shut about my own emotions. I’d stay on the surface for fear of the dam bursting. It’s something I’ve been dismantling for years and year – forcing myself to speak it out even when it feels weird, uncomfortable or just plain stupid. Yet there are still those times when I’m at my most desperate or stuck (sobbing on the bathroom floor counts) where I go to reach out, to call that friend, or to tap into my support team and … I have no idea how. I run through the practicalities and realise either I’ve curated the wrong team (doubt it, my team are fab), or I’m going about this all wrong. I want to call my bestie, she’s on the other side of the world asleep. I want to go for coffee with one of my soul sisters, they’re at work. I want to talk to my closest confidante, my partner in love, life and business, but he’s the reason I’m feeling pissed off right now. I want to talk to my coach, but I don’t have another session booked in. I want to call a counsellor, but it all feels too hard or expensive.
So, what do you do when your team doesn’t feel accessible?
For me, the hardest part of speaking up about my emotions over the past decade or so, has been getting into a better habit of knowing it’s a must and not a nice to have.
Here are six steps I’ve been working with to build this habit:
- Challenging my thoughts. Our thoughts are not reality. They are simply perceptions of how we’re seeing the world. So questioning and asking myself ‘is there another view here’ can really help get me unstuck in that moment.
- Going through the motions. This means rehearsing the sentences out loud before I phone a friend, saying how I feel, writing it out, and still following through with the physical action of picking up the phone and dialling – even if they don’t pick up.
- More. Yoga has taught me lots about noticing my breath. I know when I’m feeling stressed, anxious, or emotional in general my breathing shifts dramatically. Spending time on taking full deep breaths, or simply pausing briefly to become more present about the flow of breathing puts me back in control of the situation.
- Writing it out. Even when you don’t know what to say. This is one I believe in so much and yet at times find so challenging to come back to. I pick up my journal and know that there’s a million thoughts running through my mind and yet nothing comes out on to the paper. Those days I simply write “I’ve got so much on my mind”. The physical process of removing that thought from my head onto paper is relief in itself.
- Doing something productive. My favourite here is asking “What’s the easiest thing on my to-do list I could do right now?”. I always feel so much more empowered and unstuck when I feel like I’m moving forward.
- This could literally be anything. Simply choosing words to say out loud or over and over in your own mind is a super way to focus the mind, getting it unstuck on any other thought pattern you might be looped on. I say things like “Everything is going to be okay” or “You’ve got this” or “Everything I need is within me right now”.
That’s all I got for now. I know there’s plenty more. For now, I’m sticking with the simplest tools in my box, because some days it’s best to pick the path of least resistance in order to move forward with grace.
And that’s my intention. My soul prompt in my day planner today (Desire Planner: Danielle La Porte) is: I aim to: grow and evolve with grace.
Who is on your team and could do with a little love right now? Share this post with them below!