Sit with the Pain in Order to Heal It

Our addictions, depression and other mental health issues are often manifestations of our resistance to our pain, the ways in which we try to run from it, hide from it, bury it, avoid it or escape it. Healing on a deep level means being able to face our pain, to sit with it and withstand all the negative emotions it brings up for us. This process allows us to incorporate our pain into the healing of our inner power rather than resisting and rejecting it which brings us more pain.

When we sit with our pain, we are embracing it. We are telling it that it is ok to be here. We are opening ourselves to it rather than running from it. We typically don’t want to feel our pain. We don’t want to admit it to ourselves or to others. Pain is an inevitable part of life that we all share, that ties every single human being together. When we reject our pain, we’re rejecting parts of ourselves and telling ourselves that we don’t love ourselves unconditionally. We’re depriving ourselves of the emotional nurturing and support we need to recover. Sitting with our pain and letting ourselves really feel it stops our cycles of self-rejection, of running, of avoidance.

When we’re ready to face our pain head on, we may want to use writing as a way to organize our thoughts and feelings. We can write out anything that we feel is unresolved – fears we still feel consumed by, traumatic experiences we’re feeling haunted by, wounds that feel unhealed. There is so much going on in our minds and hearts that it can feel like we are living with a cloud of confusion, with our thoughts and feelings running out of control, overwhelming us and making us feel desperate. Writing things down can help us begin to make sense of everything to allow us to really come to terms with it.

As you write about your pain, or if you choose not to write but just give thought to your pain, you will most likely feel physical sensations arising that feel uncomfortable and alarming. You might feel your heightened anxiety as shaking, tension or tingling in your body. Your heart might start racing. You might feel nauseous, nervous or exhausted. Sit with these feelings. This means breathing through them without acting on them. Allow yourself to feel the energy rise and then calm itself down. It has a chance to neutralize itself when we don’t resist it or try to change it by redirecting it in any way. With time and practice, this is a powerful way to heal our painful emotions, and to show ourselves that we can survive them.

We’re here to help you find healing tools you can implement in your recovery. Call (800) 871-5440.