David Wilcox sings, “will we ever land a man on Earth, instead of blasting off to space”? What if you knew that you are exactly where you need to be in this moment right now?
By Amy Goldbeck, LPC, R-DMT, CHt
It’s blog time, and I’m searching for a topic. Ideas float into my awareness and then flutter away. What was that thing that just happened? It had a really good lesson… If I could just remember. Someone shared something with me that was really profound. It seems like everything has been connected to this one theme, and it’s on the tip of my tongue.
While I let that percolate, let me tell you about this book I’m reading on radical acceptance, by Tara Brach. Maybe if I read one more chapter, I’ll understand enough to tell you more clearly what it all means. It’s getting really good, and I can feel the clarity forming. I’m almost there! Oh wait—that’s just it! The theme is that we fall into the trap of unworthiness in which we are always longing for, striving for something else and unsatisfied with our current state. Brach calls it “the trance of unworthiness.”
So, I challenge myself to write—right now, knowing that I am enough and know enough to share with you and to model the way to embrace yourself in the moment. And so, I am noticing how I feel a bit vague and fuzzy in my mind, and how that leads to negative self-judgment. I’m noticing how I want to procrastinate, how I want to feel more knowledgeable and prepared, and how I fear that I’ll submit a bad blog! I also notice a tiredness in my body. Of course, I am also aware of the concern that if I don’t produce something good, it will reflect badly upon me and let my employer down.
Tara Brach suggests leaning into the experience of the moment by noticing everything about it, the story, the body symptoms, the way it affects ourselves and others, the emotions connected, etc. In doing this, we can begin to see clearly or be more mindful of the present. Naming or acknowledging all of the details is helpful in this first step. Part two is meeting and holding that condition with compassion and unconditional love, just as a parent does for a child. Just as the Divine does for each human being. So, I do this for myself through some positive self talk and though continued steps to write.
So often, we don’t feel good enough or have terrible regrets, or feel unforgivable, even unlovable. And this is the trance or trap that keeps us stuck. This belief that we are separate and unworthy. This idea that we have to be something other than who we are. This idea that we are not good enough until… This fear or shame that we are flawed and undeserving. This idea that perfect exists. But this is simply not true! The metaphors that come back to me are that the wound is where the healing happens, and the crack is where the light comes in. Brach says we start to become tender to our vulnerability, and this is where great wisdom and compassion can enter. We have to stop running and come back to ourselves. David Wilcox sings, “will we ever land a man on Earth, instead of blasting off to space”? What if you knew that you are exactly where you need to be in this moment right now?
Can we remember that it’s normal to experience a range of emotions? It is our human condition to feel deep sadness, fear, and anger at times just as it is part of our human existence that enables us to feel happy, peaceful and loving at times. We have to think of emotions as passing visitors rather than permanent residents. Can we accept the waves of thoughts and emotions that rise and fall? Can we sit with ourselves in the discomfort and find compassion with ourselves, knowing we are not alone? Knowing we are all connected, and knowing that we are loved? Knowing this is all part of our experience or journey? Maybe it’s an opportunity to connect or shift.
Carl Rodgers, founder of Humanistic Psychology, says that “the curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change” (found in his book On Becoming A Person: A Therapist’s View of Psychotherapy). It’s okay to strive for healthy goals, but know that at each point in your journey, you are enough. You are whole and complete just as you are. You may notice imperfections, judgments, impulses etc., but hold those things with kindness and compassion. The practice of radical acceptance naturally leads to a shift by removing the blocks of fear and unworthiness. Do you accept and love yourself completely in this moment as you are? The irony is that it is a process with no endpoint. However, rather than a linear road map, we are unfolding into wholeness. Like a blossom—each stage is beautiful and necessary.
Do you hope to bring radical acceptance into your life? Contact Amy today to schedule an appointment!