Apr 15, 2021 | Your Self
What Provides Me Comfort in Times of Pain...
My heart feels heavy this morning.
Heavy for the lawless deaths that continue to occur in my home country.
Heavy for the growing divide between those who will get vaccinated and those who will not.
Heavy for the economic lag effect that this pandemic is only beginning to reveal on those who will be affected by this pandemic for years to come.
And heavy for the individuals I speak with each week who seemingly have so much from the outside looking in and yet still feel a deep sense of pain and that there’s something missing on the inside.
It has been a lot to be with energetically.
As a coach and healer, it has required me to be more gentle and compassionate with myself of late, so that I’m able to hold that much more space for the clients I work with as they process their experiences.
I haven’t always had the sufficient tools or mindset as an empath and HSP to know what I need and reliably meet those needs.
I’m grateful that that time in my life feels ever more distant.
Coming back to my journal each morning; coming home to my yoga mat; getting outside in nature; and surrounding myself with my plants, my fiance and my puppy occur as nonnegotiable.
But that time in my life where having a sense of loving myself felt like a foreign concept is one I will never forget because it is truly the heart and soul of why I’m a coach, of my message, and the foundational maxim in my business.
I also believe it is one of the foundational places you can look in your own life or business if you are not generating the experience you desire for yourself. And it is this:
How are you resisting love, being loved, and being loving?
If your business is on track to have its best year to date, yet you continue to find yourself exhausted and terrified that your revenue growth is not sustainable, how are you resisting love, being loved, and being loving?
If your relationships have a familiar pattern to them, feel imbalanced, or perhaps you feel like you always give more than you receive, how are you resisting love, being loved, and being loving?
If you know that being your own boss has technically freed up your schedule, yet time continues to play peek-a-book with you and boundaries still feel like a foreign concept, how are you resisting love, being loved, and being loving?
If you know that you crave deeper and more intimate relationships yet you continue to resist being vulnerable and default to being right or righteous about you have been wronged by others, how are you resisting love, being loved, and being loving?
If you recognize your privilege and feel hurt by what is happening around you but have yet to identify how you can be of service to others, how are you resisting love, being loved, and being loving?
Growing your capacity to love, be loved, and be loving is the greatest gift you can give to yourself.
It has been the single greatest source of my happiness and my success.
It is the single most important and most impactful mindset shift literally hundreds of clients I have worked with over the past seven years have made.
And it is still something we inherently resist, avoid, feel confused about or blatantly reject.
But if any of the questions I’ve offered above resonate with you today, what have you got to lose?
If you are resisting love:
Start with a morning routine. The concept of self-love used to feel foreign to me as it is does for *most* of the ambitious Type-A women entrepreneurs I work with, but most of us get self-care. Most of us understand inherently that the way we begin our day is the way our day will go. If you start the day prioritizing yourself, you will have that much more muscle memory to make decisions throughout the day bearing you, your needs and your desires in mind.
If you already have a morning routine, begin expanding your capacity to spend quality time with yourself. Reconnect with your lost hobbies, pastimes, what you most love doing while on vacation, and what makes you uniquely you. When I was trying to heal my heart from one more unhealthy relationship, I began taking myself out on a weekly date with myself and started treating myself the way I wanted to be treated by others.
If you are resisting being loved:
Many of us prioritize others and others’ needs over our own as a way of earning love, which often breeds resentment, unhealthy relationships, and a lack of knowing who we really are.
Start with strengthening your muscle memory about what you want. Print and post the reminder “What do I want and need in this moment?” and start strengthening your muscle memory around always having an answer to this question. If “I don’t know” or “I don’t have a preference what we do, what do you want to do?” is a common thing for you to say, consider that you are disconnected from your desires and yourself. It’s not actually true, it’s simply a habit you’ve developed likely over many years, and it is a huge contributor to resisting being loved. If you’re still resisting this one, start with what you don’t want. What we don’t want is oftentimes an indicator of what we do as well.
Boundaries is the next place to lean in here. Many of us who resist being loved, really struggle with allowing ourselves to be supported. The more boundaries you put in place around your time, your business standard operating procedures, and your accessibility over email, cell phones and social media applications will create space for others to show up for and love you.
If you are resisting being loving:
Many of us who have experienced an empty love tank over the years tend to close our hearts to others. This pattern may manifest itself through being critical with our words or judgments towards loved ones. This similarly may manifest itself through closing our hearts to what’s happening in the world at large and relegating ourselves to living in a bubble.
Start with appreciation and acknowledgement. Begin listening for how and what you can celebrate and appreciate your loved ones for. Share with your significant other what you are grateful to them for. Let your children know daily what you’re proud of them for. Look for the smallest things to recognize and appreciate in others. Our resistance to acknowledge and appreciate those closest to us is so often a reflection of how little we celebrate ourselves. But this practice goes both ways. As you lean in to appreciating others, you will grow your capacity to appreciate yourself and hear others’ appreciation towards you.
Lastly, open your heart up again towards caring for the world. Guarding your heart from the pain all around us just sustains that frequency and general sentiment of heaviness and fear. Express your pain, be witnessed by others, find ways to contribute and be of service to others. We all need this right now.
I hope today’s post has been helpful for you. I am sending you so much love.
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Catherine is a Professional Certified Coach and bestselling author of Belonging: Overcome Your Inner Critic and Reclaim Your Joy.
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Empathy for Change with Amy J. Wilson
I am so delighted and thrilled to have my esteemed friend, Amy J. Wilson here with us today. Amy is a change leader, community builder, movement maker, and an empathy advocate. She is the author of Empathy for Change: How to Build a More Understanding World, a guide to create positive, compassionate change where we work, live, and play. All of this guides our conversation as we cover the different types of empathy and why they are important, dismantling current power structures and rebuilding them with empathy at the core, prioritizing rest, and so much more. Being empathetic does not mean you lack power, and this episode is going to tell you why – enjoy!
Visit this episode’s show notes page here.