By Tara Pilling
The ability to feel is often seen as a burden combined with a blessing.
It is not only one of the essential mediums that you use to navigate life and the world; it is the point where your greatest joys begin and your deepest sorrows take root.
Heartache and happiness exist on different ends of the same spectrum of feeling. How you react to what you feel is often your greatest source of dissatisfaction and stress.
More so, your past and present manifest themselves through your ability to feel. Your conditioning is not just something that is intellectual; it is also experienced through the sensations you feel in your body.
How you feel often morphs from something that is meant to inform you into something that dominates the way you think and act. Healing and personal growth are grounded in establishing a new relationship with what you feel.
The default for many is that they let their feelings make decisions for them.
This does not always yield the best results, because what you feel often dramatizes the narrative in your mind and leads you to make big decisions based on impermanent emotions.
When you let your strongest emotions take centre stage, it becomes easy to feed your own tension, like when you react to your anger with more anger, which simply makes the tension you feel bigger and bigger.
We often react to strong emotions by forgetting that the ever-present law of change ensures that what we feel in this moment will not last forever. A storm may be powerful, but no storm is endless.
Giving space to what you feel is always valuable because it is an essential part of healing and letting go, but if you let it take control then it will be too easy to fall into past patterns. Being with it is better than becoming it.
There is a subtle space you can become more familiar with. The space where reclaiming your power is truly possible. The space where you can feel a fire burning within you without giving it more fuel.
This spaciousness of mind becomes more available to you when you realize that your first reaction is just your past trying to recreate itself.
Left unchecked, your reactions will keep you in a loop where you are looking at your present life through the lens of your past emotional history.
If you keep giving your power to your first impulse, then you will keep reacting the same way you have reacted in your past. This way of living leaves little room for growth and for anything new to emerge.
The challenge all people face is building enough self-awareness so that we can actively and repeatedly say no to our past when it wants to take over.
Saying no to your past doesn’t mean suppressing it. It just means that you will let yourself feel whatever has come up but you will make the choice to allow your present self to remain as the dominant force.
The days of letting your old fears and anxieties make all the decisions for you are over. A new time has arisen where you are patiently creating room so that your present self can decide what actions will keep you on a path that is truly nourishing and liberating.
It is time to let the past rest and fully embrace the present.
Tara Pilling owns Kelowna’s Diamond Mind Consulting
This column was submitted as part of BWB Wednesdays
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