My family's wintering turned into the epitome of "winter". We had joyful holidays and then- dealt with COVID, losing power, other health issues, quarantine, snow days (rare in NC!!), and a partridge in a pear tree! There are obviously way worse problems. My various points of privilege provide me with much more security and support than many people have on a regular basis. However, the last 6 weeks have felt like test after test- on top of a couple very difficult and pressure rich years.
These challenges definitely triggered my triggers as they do. Giving me plenty of opportunities to shine a light on what parts of me need more care, compassion and healing. My anger and reactivity were dialed up and overwhelm seemed to be the dominant feeling. What my intuition kept coming back to is “acceptance”. Acceptance for circumstances and self- acceptance. Acceptance that I am whole and love-able just the way I am. That I'm doing my very best. That what might bring me the most shame (showing big emotions, anger, reactivity and the fear of not being love-able or rejected because of these) might be the reason I am here- I can love these parts of myself- and help support you in doing the same. What if when I am (or you are) triggered, what if we just gave ourselves the nurturing, validation, listening that we expect from others?
Thich Nhat Hanh, the Vietnamese Zen Master, Monk, World Changer, died at 95 a couple weeks ago. His work has greatly influenced me. Especially his work on anger. He teaches that to be angry is to be human. That you can use the negative energy and channel that into positive energy.
“A flower, although beautiful, will become compost someday, but if you know how to transform the compost back into the flower, then you don't have to worry.”
When you know how to handle negative feelings, you can channel them into what you need- creativity, compassion, understanding, empathy.
How can you embrace the “dirt” or “compost” parts of you and turn them into beautiful flowers?
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