(Originally from the Newsletter sent to our subscribers on June 9, 2022)
I was struggling to find words to start this newsletter. There have been a lot of emotions surrounding so many things happening around us. I was finding it difficult to anchor my thoughts to write something positive to you. Then, I acknowledged that maybe trying to say something positive was not the point.
A friend reminded me that I am not alone in feeling this way right now. No one has to feel OK or positive in light of the horrors of violence and bigotry around us. I was reminded of a quote by Brené Brown:
“Staying vulnerable is a risk we have to take if we want to experience connection.”
At times, when I struggle to articulate my emotions or feel overwhelmed because of the sheer amount of information coming at me, I turn to a life-giving method that helps me to process the type of collective grief and angst we have been experiencing these past few weeks. For this newsletter, I thought of sharing that process with you.
Step 1 - Permission: I give myself the permission to feel. I also give myself permission to stop when it gets overwhelming. This allows me to be flexible with navigating through the world of “feelings” and “emotions”. Brown says “We cannot selectively numb emotions, when we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.” Emotional well-being is critical for the work that we do at Neuma Being. That is why, when Nelson and I came up with the framework for Neuma Being, we identified 5 aspects of being: Body, Energy, Emotions, Mind, and Environment. For other aspects of our lives to be in balance, emotions also need to be in balance. Step 2 - Identify: When I allow myself to feel, I can identify the specific emotions. I ask the question: “What is this emotion?” or “What am I feeling?”. Brené Brown’s Atlas of the Heart is one of the books that can help with the classification of emotions. You can read this book or watch the HBOmax Show by the same title. Step 3 - Articulate: Then, I take the time to articulate. “What am I feeling in my body when I feel this emotion?”, “What are some topics coming up along with that emotion?”, “Why do I feel the way I feel” or “What specifically about this situation triggered this emotion?” Step 4 - Take the time: I allow myself ALL the time I need to sit with this emotion. Rushing through helps no one. Meditation, reflection, journaling, and Mind Spa journeys help me with this. It is through this reflection that I find which actions need to taken. Step 5 - Action: Sometimes action is actually sitting with these emotions until I get clarity with my thoughts. Other times, action is taking solid steps to address or rectify the situation - for example, that could be going out and voting for leaders who align with my values, and supporting organizations that fight for the causes that I care about so much.
“Authenticity is a collection of choices that we have to make every day. It’s about the choice to show up and be real. The choice to be honest. The choice to let our true selves be seen.”
- Brené Brown
So we invite you to take time this summer to explore all the emotions and feelings that you may be feeling around the chaos of our present society. No one has to deal with the terrible tragedies that struck our communities across the US these past few weeks alone. If you feel like you need support to go through this process, please work with a therapist, psychologist or counselor. Use this link to locate a therapist near you. The Mind Spa is also here to supplement that process. If you or anyone you know has been struggling or could do with a bit of an uplift, stop by for some tea or book a session at The Mind Spa. I’ve created a discount code for anyone who needs my support. Book a session at The Mind Spa by Neuma Being and use code 10%OFF to get 10% off any of our services.
I leave you with one final quote from Brené Brown:
“Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.”
Continue to be brave. And I am here to support you!
With warm regards and blessings,