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Kick Start Your Wellness: A Guided Meditation

Self-Medicating or Coping?

First things first.

Welcome back!

It’s been a minute.

Sometimes life (and writing a book) get in the way of one of the things I love the most… connecting with YOU through these newsletters!

I’d love to hear how you’re doing.

In the meantime, let’s jump right in!


Are you self-medicating or coping?

If there is one thing I know for certain, everyone is

struggling with something.

Some struggles are loud and dramatic.

Some are painfully private.

Some are sharp and acute.

Some are chronic.

They may be looming ahead.

Or they may be quietly tailing behind.

The question is, how do you deal with struggle? In particular the emotional side of struggle.

Do you look painful feelings in the eye and invite them to

coffee so you can hear what they have to say?

Or do you shove them in the closest in the attic and lock the

door, hoping they stay quiet and slowly whither?


Self-Medicating and Numbing

   

I think its fair to say that we all have used numbing or self-medicating at some time in our lives.

No one has the bandwidth or the emotional capacity to face life challenges head on 100% of the time.

So let’s put self and other judgement aside since we all do this in some form or another.

So what is numbing?

Numbing or self-medicating can include any behavior intended

to distract you from or avoid uncomfortable feelings or

emotional states. It can include overeating, substance use

or abuse, excessive phone use, even shame and blame

(of ourselves and others).

But why would we not want to feel our feelings?

The answers to this question are many-fold and can include

fear, disempowerment, personal history, and so on.

But for our discussion, let’s consider the purpose of emotional struggle.

If emotional discomfort exists separate from our souls, then numbing out makes sense.

Who wants to feel pain when there’s an easier alternative?

Get through life feeling the least amount of pain and you win!

But if challenge comes to change us, when we numb out we

deny ourselves the opportunity to heal and grow.

We may even be setting up road blocks to achieving our

purpose in this lifetime.

In other words, when we don’t explore tough feelings in the

face of struggle, we actively render our personal challenges meaningless.


So what’s the alternative?

Coping.

The Oxford definition of coping is to

‘deal effectively with something difficult.’

  

 

  


No Person is an Island

Identifying and processing difficult feelings is often helpful with someone else. Choose someone who you trust has your best interests in mind and can listen actively and empathetically. It can be a friend, relative or colleague. It can be a therapist, coach, support group or another health professional. Let them know that you aren’t looking for solutions but rather for them to reflect thoughtfully what they are hearing you say.

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