Avoiding or Allowing?

Who likes to feel happy? Me! Anyone like to feel sad? What fun is that? Avoiding sadness seems fairly common. I sometimes do not even recognize that I am avoiding.  

As I walked to my pantry for the umpteenth time yesterday, I paused and finally questioned what I was doing. I knew I was not hungry and must be avoiding something. My routine seems to be thrown out the window and perhaps I was just avoiding some work. While sitting on the couch, the realization swept over me that I was avoiding feeling sad. I am grateful for my life and all the goodness in it. Yet, I felt sad and then felt guilty for feeling sad. Like being with a good friend, I acknowledged that it is pretty natural to feel a little sad right now. Acknowledging and understanding lightened the heaviness. Then, I shed a few tears. Allowing myself to experience the sadness, rather than stuff it down, released it. Being truthful with ourselves  about feelings and needs, and allowing ourselves to express that truth in a healthy way, brings healing. 

When I handle divorce mediations, people sometimes bring up past hurts. Taking a moment to acknowledge that hurt makes a huge difference in helping folks move forward. Issues not addressed in the present moment often lead to bigger issues in the future. It may feel a little uncomfortable to talk about certain things, yet avoiding conversations tends to damage relationships in the long-term.  

Be gentle with you. Be gentle with all. Be the peace, friends.  

A civil and family mediator, peace builder, and educator, Sherry Ann Bruckner lives in Alexandria, Minnesota. Visit brucknermediation.com/services to learn more or call Sherry at (320) 808-3212 for help to transform conflict and create peace.

As always, be gentle with you. Be gentle with all. Be the peace.