Updated: Jan 19, 2021
Finding Calm In The Storm tells the story of how I learnt to heal my relationship with myself and find acceptance in how I feel, look, and think. This blog post expands upon the 4 lessons I learnt and explains how taking even just a few minutes to sit in stillness could change your life!
1. You Can Choose How You Perceive Something
Firstly, I learnt that we can choose how we perceive a thought, feeling, or situation. When I decided to travel around the world and find myself (excuse the cliche), the question “What is the purpose of life?” filled me with excitement and a sense of adventure. After a week in silence and the realisation that one day everyone I know will die, the very same question of purpose filled me with dread. Rather than feed into this worry I told myself I had two options:
I could let this fear and uncertainty get the best of me
Or, I could conjure up the courage to see it in clear view. I chose the latter.
When faced with an emotional hurdle the mind has a tendency to spiral even more and get carried away with increasingly unhelpful thoughts. Yet, we have a choice; we can linger in the unpleasantries of fearing the unknown, or face it with curiosity and see that anything is possible. Life is limitless. We can let go of worrying about the future and rest in the now.
2. Nothing In Life Is Perfect
It’s our vulnerabilities that make us so loveable!!
As humans we are prone to pulling things apart to analyse, justify, or fix so that what we see, feel, experience is perfect. When uncomfortable feelings, emotions, and memories arise they certainly don’t fit into our perceived image of perfection.
We sometimes feel compelled to hide how we feel for fear of seeming weak or unworthy, stuffing our emotions down into the pit of our stomach and contracting to hold it all in.
But by hiding our vulnerabilities we are also hiding the real beauty of who we are, these quirks are what make us so lovable and unique. Nothing in life is perfect and as soon as we see that we can start to befriend ourselves a little more, which leads onto the final point.
3. Treat Yourself As Kindly As You Would A Friend
We often find it easy to comfort a friend and offer kind words of support, but how often do you offer the same care to yourself? It was so liberating for me to have ten days of silence as I had no choice but to listen to my own insecurities and worries.
I realised that many times in my life I have gone to others for help or advice, trusting their judgement more than my own, acting upon somebody else's advice ratchet than listening to what was right for me personally.
Of course there is a place for confiding in others and it’s important to have a support network to fall back on, but sitting in silence for just ten minutes can sometimes help you sift through the thoughts and level out a troubled mind.
It takes patience, but if you have the courage and patience to develop self compassion, life’s obstacles gradually become less overbearing and more manageable alone.
4. Trust In Yourself And Befriend Your Emotions
The shift to trusting in yourself and befriending your own heart takes patience, it is a lifelong journey with many ups and downs. As you begin to listen inwards you’ll notice how often your mind is time-travelling from dwelling in the past or leaning into the future. This leaves just brief glimpses of the present. If we base our life expectancy solely upon those moments in the present we notice that a significant number of years are slipping us by unnoticed, un-lived.
How To Regulate Your Emotions:
Pause - when you feel overwhelmed or confused about a situation take 10 long deep breaths with one hand on heart, one hand on belly
Be the observer - witness what comes up without judgement
Notice recurring thoughts - Thich Nhat Hahn talks of watering the seeds of positive thoughts. Each time a negative thought or belief arises, notice it is there but don't let it consume you. See it as something that like the rain will pass by
Establish a daily practice - whether it is yoga, meditation, or just taking 10 deep breaths each morning; set aside time for yourself to reconnect to the stillness within
Take baby steps - drop all expectations and welcome whatever arises. Whether you stick to your routine or not, whether your mind is busy of calm, it is all part of the journey
It’s been two and a half years since I began to open to my inner vulnerabilities and feel the strength within. I’ve noticed that since healing the relationship with my own heart I feel more joyful, I’m more present with the ones I love, and I feel lighter even when clouding emotions persist.
Find freedom within any situation by trying this free acceptance practice today!