Why you should respect but not fear looking within

October 5, 2020

My journal.

If you had asked me months ago if I thought looking within was challenging I’d have said “absolutely not!”

Well, not so damn fast.

I’m in my hometown, 2,500+ miles away from my husband and dogs, isolated in a hotel room much of the time, with nothing to do think. And write. On top of that, I am reading my favorite spiritual authors, Mark Nepo and Mike Dooley. That reading sent me back to journaling in a big way back in August, and I haven’t stopped.

My reading and digging deep have exposed my soul in all its vulnerability. Up close and personal are things about myself that I’ve long buried—and wanted to keep there. It can be painful.

What does “inhabiting our truth” really mean? How is it related (or not) to getting what we want? Should we choose what we want or what we know we “should” do? What is authenticity? How do we nurture ourselves when we need to?  My head is spinning. And tears are flowing.

I’m finding that looking within is neither easy, nor pain-free. But I can see that living with an open heart allows me to participate fully in life–to be alive right here and now. Being alive means allowing ourselves to be touched by life. No walls. Exposed.

“Each day we are reshaped by the rough and gentle currents of life,” Nepo writes. “The things we care for and the things we lose excavate a new depth in us until we sense that our heart has a new bottom.”

Indeed. And excavation can hurt.

Nepo says that everything we go through means nothing if we can’t take down our walls and allow life to touch us, forge us, shape us. That we can stand firm in our own worth without accepting what others project back at us.

None of this is easy. But, he adds, while participating in life requires that we ride the waves that come and go and even crash upon us in our life—we’re still here.

We’re still here.

It’s reassuring.

10 comments on “Why you should respect but not fear looking within
  1. The journey inside is the best journey you could possibly ever make. <3

  2. John Gatesby says:

    You are so correct, looking with in ourselves involve making us vulnerable to every experience, person and events that a present moment brings, survive that moment, evolve from the experience. But, as you rightly said, it could be an extremely painful process.

  3. Meryl says:

    Self-awareness and opening ourselves up to life experience, can be tough sometimes in the short run but worthwhile long-term…hopefully.

  4. Rita says:

    Yes, stand firm.

  5. Jennifer says:

    I watched the movie The Dig last night. Sounds like you did the same thing, carefully scratching through the soil to expose a framework that’s existed for years, just beneath the surface. If you keep going, then you dig through to the treasure!

  6. laurie stone says:

    Just downloaded Nepo and Dooley’s books. I love what they have to say, and could always use the help!

  7. It can be hard sometimes but insights come at the oddest times. Usually, when you aren’t thinking about it at all.

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