There’s a moment when you can see pain leave a person’s body.
Sometimes it happens when they finally leave this world. Other times it happens when they experience something that allows them to let go of whatever it is they’ve been holding onto so tightly.
My job allows me to witness and help facilitate these moments for people quite regularly – not the end of life moments but the “holding onto something and finally letting it go” moments. One of the practices I am trained to use is called HeartHealing®. It’s quite new and not a lot of people have heard of it, and essentially, it helps people uproot feelings of being “not good enough” or “unworthy” in some way.
I did one such session today and witnessed the moment where my client experienced the release.
It’s a visible, tangible thing, like the part where they’ve been carrying the pain softens, as though a stone has been loosened by a passing river and flows away. It’s extraordinary to see – and it’s usually followed by the faintest of smiles or, in some cases, really beaming smiles.
The Practical Implications
Seeing my client experience such a visceral release today got me thinking about all the heavy things I still carry within me unnecessarily.
Talking about “heavy things I carry unnecessarily” makes it sound quite vague and esoteric, but here are some of the ways these heavy things show up in emotions and behaviour:
- Self-imposed barriers / Limiting beliefs
- People pleasing behaviours at the cost of self worth
- Self-sabotaging behaviours
- Judgement – of the self or others
- Emotions we can’t tolerate – in ourselves or others
- A desire to hide or withdraw from the world
- Overwhelm / Burnout
- Blocked care (a form of parental burnout that makes it difficult for you to experience compassion for your child because you feel so disconnected – I have experienced this twice so far and it’s really hard)
There are many more but hopefully this gives you an idea – the heavy things feel heavy – or maybe brittle, hard, or inflexible. They create a “stuckness” and usually cause us to lose perspective or become blind to options, possibilities and, yes, joy.
Mindset gurus would have us believe that all we need to do is “just think differently” but I haven’t found it to be that simple. Yet, today, as I saw that client release this brittle, stuck thing that had been holding her back and I saw the relaxation that spread through her body, I got the sense that the answer lies in allowing ourselves to “soften”.
For me, that happens most easily during meditation and breath work exercises when my mind is silent. I think that’s the key – to get beyond the loud mind and all its chattering and send the attention to the body where “softening” can be experienced as a sensation.
I also think we have to stop “playing shark music” but I’ll share more about that one tomorrow.