Monday, October 01, 2007

The Success Principles ~ Principle 29

This week's success principle is clearly an extension of last week's clean up your messes and your incomplete's. Principle 29 is complete the past to embrace the future. According to Canfield, when we hold onto our past resentments, angers and hurts, it ties us to the past in a way that drags us down. He recommends a process of expressing ourselves in writing or verbally with permission to the person we have outstanding issues with. The goal is not to change the other person but rather to allow you to get free of unexpressed emotions. He encourages us to express those feelings and then forgive the people involved.

I agree that carrying around resentments and anger and hurt is a heavy, heavy load. And I have learned from experience that to resolve my feelings, especially old ones, I don't always have to go to the person involved. I do need to express them and I do think it is valuable to have one other person in the world hear my pain, be it my husband, my sisters, my mom or my coach.

I've also learned that there is a real physical impact to holding on to those feelings and there can be real healing in finding ways for those trapped emotions and reactions to find their way out of your body. Sometimes crying at the plight of a character in a movie can be away of releasing uncried tears for yourself. Sometimes sweating can release anger and pain. I know that I had a lot of uncried tears for not becoming a dancer. And when I found Nia, I cried in every class for a year. I had a year's worth of tears being stored in my body. And now when I get a Thai yoga massage, I can feel in my body where I hold onto fear and resistance and by letting them go physically, I can spend my days with more ease.

Releasing these pent-up feelings is so important, and once you realize that so is keeping yourself as free from this load as possible. You can do that by being honest with yourself and others about your emotions and your reactions. I learned this lesson early on with my husband when we were dating. We hadn't been dating that long and one night I became a little insecure and jealous (Now, I have to say that Justin is a dream in this area, always behaving in a way that makes me feel special and supported and never giving me reason to feel jealous - this was totally my own stuff). I didn't want to talk about it. I didn't want to admit my insecurities. I knew it was my own stuff, so I thought I'd deal with it on my own.

Justin would have nothing of it. He could see I was upset and insisted that I share with him what it was about, saying that feelings like that work like poison and just spread, potentially creating serious difficulties in a relationship. I trusted him and told him what was going on. I was scared and embarrassed, worried that my insecurities would blow my cool, confident woman image. The beautiful thing was that yes, I felt loved and supported and that's thanks to Justin. But what was between me and me (which is the only thing I have control over) is that I felt free and honest. I was being me. The truth of how I felt was on the table and I wasn't hiding anymore. Sometimes being wild and free means being vulnerable.


Sacred Suzie said...

I am so glad you have Justin in your life Jamie, what a difference he has made to your sense of safety and security, that no matter what you say or do he supports you.

I also totally agree that you don't always have to face a person to deal with an issue, you can deal with that issue in other ways without delving up the past for them as well.

I love that Nia has helped your spirit heal, what a beautiful analogy!

Jessie said...

i liked reading about what you've learned about yourself on a physical/emotional level. knowing oneself that well is really something to work towards. jamie, you are so in tune with yourself these days and it comes out in so many ways!

i also have to tell you that after last week's post, i broke down and (nearly ran) to the bookstore to buy the book. it's fat! :) and i was happy to see that your success principle posts will continue for a while longer. i like his book...but i especially like what you add to it.

i can see why you've decided to do one chapter a week. there is a lot to take in and to digest. thank you for sharing all that you are learning!

lots of love,