Sunday, April 14, 2013

" Numb ... "

They say life is a battlefield
I say bring it on
If you wanna know how I feel
Live it till it's gone

I'm just saying that what don't kill, only makes you strong
If you don't recognize what is real
Then forever is a long, long, long ... Time

Some things never change here we go again
Feel like I'm losing my mind
Shake it off, let it go, I don't care any more
Just go numb
You never know until you let go
Let's go numb ...

Can you feel it?

~ Usher ~ Numb ~

Thanks to a recommendation from a good friend, I have been reading “The Gifts of Imperfection” By Brene Brown.  Wonderful book, full of insight, knowledge and written in a very straight forward manner.  And the cool thing is that I am finding hidden gems as I read.  The recent one is about numbing.

All of us have experience vulnerability, discomfort and pain that we want to avoid.    So you may wonder why not ... why not just numb the emotions because isn’t this just another coping mechanism?

Think about it ... ... booze, food, affairs, money, work, shopping ... used to numb the pain or at least to take the edge off ... resulting in emotional numbness.  Numbing is when you are tired of fighting the feelings of anxiety, depression and just want detachment or to escape.

But according to Dr. Brown, “we cannot selectively numb emotions because when we numb the painful emotions, we also numb positive emotions”.  Well that’s not any good is it?

Severe feelings of detachment makes it hard for us to access normal feelings.  You don’t know yourself, you lose joy, love and happiness in your life and you use a lot of energy to avoid having an authentic emotional experience.

So how do you overcome emotional numbness 
and live with emotional integrity?

Personally speaking, 
I went from avoid, avoid, avoid ... to allow, allow, allow.  

Now, I respect and allow all emotions no matter what they are.  I realize that to feel and to act can be different.  I try to sort out where the emotions are coming from ... am I angry, hurt, sad, etc.  I ask for help when I need help.  And the most important for me is that I am patient with myself ... learning to trust myself again and just be me.

Also, “facing emotions is different than soaking in them until they drain you dry”.  So I stay mindful and notice that these feelings are a part of my emotional health where sometimes a brief break is purposeful and an opportunity to recoup.

You see, once you have allowed the emotions, recognizing a pattern or theme from the experience can allow you to look for meaning or a lesson to be learned.  

Believe that in our ever changing world, emotions pass and time helps.  If we learn acceptance instead of suppression we can understand that feelings are much like life waves, we can't stop them from coming but we can choose which one to surf ...

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