Hello fellow courage practitioners. Today’s focus is on guidepost #3 – Letting Go of Numbing and Powerlessness and Cultivating a Resilient Spirit
In an article by BusinessTech in May this year, they reported that “South Africa’s alcohol consumption rate has climbed, with the country now ranked as one of the top 20 biggest drinking nations in the world. This is according to a statistical update from the World Health Organization, tracking alcohol consumption per capita, across 194 countries….This pushes South Africa up to the third biggest drinking nation in Africa, and the 19th biggest drinking nation in the world, tied with Poland.”
Most of us are familiar with the concept of “getting the edge off”. We have a glass of wine at the end of a stressful day, pop in the “happy pill” or occupy ourselves with work so as to “numb” ourselves from feeling vulnerable and uncomfortable. Except…when these go away, we are still feeling fearful and scared. When we numb the feelings do not go away, and when we numb, we do not just numb the bad feelings, but the good ones too. When we’re anxious, disconnected, vulnerable, alone, and feeling helpless, the booze and food and work and endless hours online or watching TV feel like comfort, but in reality they’re only casting their long shadows over our lives. You can chat on message boards for half an hour and be energised by community and ready to go back to work, or you can chat on message boards because you’re avoiding talking to your partner about how angry he or she made you feel last night.”
How often have you faced fear in the eye, and lived to tell a tale of resilience and strength? Facing our fear and conquering those helps us find and define the light which keeps us strong when we face adversaries and when we feel vulnerable. Facing our fears head on says; “I can do this.” It shines the light in an otherwise dark and scary room. When we numb ourselves we miss out on showing up with all our strength and shaping our spirit of resilience. Resilience is the ability to “spring back” when something bad has happened. It teaches us to embrace vulnerability in a way that helps us move through our pain and discomfort.
You cannot avoid fear by numbing it. You have to face it. That is what resilience enables us to do. It enables us to realise what we are made of, and to celebrate our victories without worry that something will go wrong if we do. Resilience helps us say; “I am … enough.”
“We cannot selectively numb emotions, when we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.”
Feel free to leave some comments, or send me an email at email@example.com for a private conversation. Please note that it might take a while to get back to you, as I get swamped with emails every day. But I will respond. Welcome to Wholehearted Living.