Lean Into The Discomfort
I recently watched a Ted Talk by Brene Brown that explored the concept of vulnerability. It reminded me, once again, that true resilience is associated with both acknowledging unpleasant emotions and having the ability to lean into the discomfort. Doing so gives way to vulnerability, but vulnerability itself can be the birthplace of tremendous personal growth.
We unplug from our emotions just about every chance we get. Let’s face it, who wants to sit in despair, loneliness, shame, guilt, and betrayal? Yet, our feelings have an evolutionary purpose. Feelings help us reconcile the impact that the outside world and human interactions have on us by providing an internal barometer. What if we didn’t have them? How would we protect ourselves from unhealthy, destructive or dangerous relationships? How would we experience the joy associated with love or the gift of empathy which provides us motivation necessary for meaningful human connection?
When you embrace vulnerability, which is often a by-product of allowing yourself to experience difficult emotions, then you expand your emotional courage. You allow yourself to be imperfect. Imperfection is the place where personal growth embarks. Without it, our journey would be uninteresting and unproductive.
So, how does all of this play into your healthy lifestyle journey? For many of us, food, alcohol, cigarettes, compulsive spending, etc. are the distractions we use to avoid uncomfortable emotions. They numb us so we don’t have to truly feel the vulnerability. In the end, however, the distractions not only bolster our poor health but also suppress the courage inherent in vulnerability. If you want emotional resilience, you have to lean into the discomfort to allow growth. Brene Brown says it much better than me, so watch the link below and ask yourself if it’s time to truly feel.