One of the exercises that I find most useful in my own life and offer to others who are experiencing emotional stuckness, is to imagine an encounter with a feeling. It may be one that’s bothering us, like grief or frustration, or perhaps it’s one that we’re seeking to encourage; one that doesn’t come so easily to us. The task is to picture the emotion as a character and interact with it.
When we do these imaginative exercises, we allow ourselves to feel the emotion rather than the reactivity which may result if it goes unfelt.
We haven’t all grown up in environments or cultures that encourage flexibility of soul and many of us need practice at getting comfortable with all of our emotions. Yet with a bit of creative practice, we grow more familiar with the nuances of our feeling life. If we skip over feelings, put a lid on them, or leave them to work through later, this can lead to soul congestion and a residue that impacts our lives, our sense of wellbeing, and even our health.
Like so many of us, someone I work with, Agnieszka, is striving to cultivate more trust in her life. When she contacted me recently in between sessions, I suggested that she imagine an encounter with trust and write about it.
She told me that writing the story came easily to her, she just followed the pictures that came to her as they emerged. If you’re trying something similar, then allow yourself to cultivate a mood of wonder and begin. It takes ‘allowing’ more than effort. We’re much more prepared to shift into wonder than we ever imagine and it becomes easier the more we cultivate it.
Agnieszka read me her story at our next session. When we talked about it, we were fascinated by what emerged in the story, both as an overall theme and then in details like the gender of trust, how to communicate with this particular being, and where trust is located. It’s a wonderful reminder—and most of us need a great deal of reminding.
the story of trust
I was sitting in my hut, when I heard a knock. I opened the door and saw a bright being, full of light.
‘Who are you? I asked.
‘I’m Trust,’ it answered.
‘Trust? That’s an interesting name,’ I said.
The being did not comment. It just smiled with its whole face.
I invited him inside and offered him a seat.
‘Would you like a cup of tea or a glass of water?’ I asked.
‘Whatever you give me will be fine.’
Hmm, strange being, I thought, she can’t even decide what she wants to drink.
Then I paused for a moment and felt what it was like to be that being and found I knew what she needed. It was a cup of warm tea with lemon and honey.
When I offered it to her, she said ‘That’s exactly what I trusted you would give me.’
While she was drinking her tea, I sat next to her and looked at her. She was beautiful, peaceful, radiating light. She looked back at me with a gentle gaze filled with love.
I started to feel a bit strange, but after a few moments I just allowed myself to be immersed in the light of that warmth and love.
I don’t know how long we were like that, just sitting next to each other. I only know that when I opened my eyes or rather got back to myself, I was filled with the quality of her being. I felt peaceful, so peaceful.
I didn’t know what to say.
‘It’s fine, you don’t need to say anything,’ said the being, ‘just allow yourself to be immersed in that feeling of trust—you have it right now and carry it within you. Remember,’ she added. ‘You can always reach it, whenever you need it. It is always within you.’
‘Thank you,’ I replied, ‘thank you.’
While we were sitting like that, Trust said, ‘Do you remember how you thought I didn’t know what I wanted to drink. That’s because I trusted you knew within yourself what was best for me. You paused, looked into your heart to feel being me, and you found the answer. Do that every time you need to make a decision, big or small. The truth of what needs to come is within you, the truth of the right thing to do and say. All you need is to reach within.’
Again she looked at me and smiled with warmth and love and patience.
Then she started to dissolve, slowly spreading throughout my hut, leaving only the light shining.
Since then I feel her presence all the time, the trust and light are in my hut.
Whenever I reach for them, I reach within my heart.
Thanks, Agnieszka, for letting me lightly edit and share your story.
If you’d like to explore overcoming some emotional stuckness, ask me about an individual session (either in person or via skype) or come along to a writing for wellbeing group in Warranwood or Thornbury. More information about these and other options here .