* A terribly uncomfortable situation - "I'll deal with it later."
* Starting to exercise - "I can start tomorrow."
* I'm not happy in my relationship or my career - "Perhaps one day it will change".
Dealing with my feelings from the past - Let's take something, numb myself, busy myself or just skip over that, so I don't have to feel it.
Avoidance is something that many people (myself included) become familiar with. Whether a feeling or a situation is too intense, too painful or brings one face-to-face with their fears, avoidance can become a coping mechanism that also can become a ticking time bomb.
Let's take a peek at addictive behaviors. Most of the addictive behaviors, clients have shared with me (relationships, shopping, the scale, exercise, perfection, control, alcohol), have some level of avoidance buried deep within them - avoidance of childhood situations, avoidance of feeling the gravity of hurtful relationships, or avoidance of experiences that happened in the past and have not been fully worked out yet. Addictive behaviors are usually a symptom of something much deeper. That "something" is usually avoided, hence why the addictive behavior crops up in the first place.
What I share with clients (and I'm guessing you already know this on some level, so perhaps this is just a reminder), is whatever you are avoiding is still there, and needs to be dealt with. The longer "it" is avoided, the more "it" builds and gains strength.
Here is a Challenge for you:
Think of one thing that you are avoiding.
Take a few deep breaths and then ask yourself the following questions:
- "What do I need to do in order to not avoid this anymore?"
- "Do I need someone else's help?"
- "Do I need to perceive this situation differently than how I have been looking at it in order to deal with it?"
- "If so, how?"
Now, make a commitment to yourself that you will find time this week, during which you will start the process of taking care of this thing, situation, person or emotion that you have been avoiding.
Do you know what an opposite word of avoidance is? CONNECTION. Really?? Really!! If
you are avoiding something, then that is part of yourself you are not connected to. Dealing with anything you are avoiding will bring connection - perhaps with another - and most importantly to yourself. And, when we are fully connected to ourselves, avoidance is not an issue anymore.
What if you were to look at it from;
This is a gift that you are giving yourself" perspective
What would it feel like to deal with something that you have been avoiding because you are choosing to love yourself more? What do you feel would happen if you were to give yourself that precious gift?
If you have chosen to accept the challenge, I would absolutely love for you to share with me, how this process goes for you. I would love to hear your story.
Much Love & Blessings to you! Joanie