Own your Scars
By Isabel Galiardo
Due to our human condition, we are bound to suffer and to create suffering. We cause pain with our disconnection and ignorance, in the same way that we are hurt by other’s lack of awareness. When we embark in the process of self-development we choose to relate differently with suffering. Responsibility is key, we are responsible for the suffering we cause as well as for the suffering we experience. This realization is quite liberating as it means we have a choice.
Our scars define who we are, they carry our biography. Sometimes they are visible, but more often they are not. Once something happens to me, it is mine. It is my responsibility to deal with the psychological and emotional aftermath of the experience.
We tend to shy away from traumatic events to cope with the overwhelming pain and make it more bearable. This self-preservation strategy is understandable, but our painful memories continue living within us. Trauma keeps chasing us, every time our nervous system gets triggered we revisit the old painful experience. Painful, traumatic events don’t just go away when we bury them in the depth of our minds, they’re skeletons in the closet, ghosts, frozen memories stuck in our systems waiting for us to release them.
Think for a minute and ask yourself:
- Who made me suffer?
- What am I doing with my pain?
- How is past trauma affecting my current life ?
Only the pure, unconditioned side of ourselves can heal our trauma. This aspect of our psyches has the strength, kindness and courage to go back to the original distress and hold the space for our painful emotions and physical responses to be transformed. Once trauma gets liberated and integrated, it turns into wisdom and compassion.
Your own suffering serves you to better understand the impact your actions have on others.
Reflect on the following questions:
- In which ways am I causing pain to others?
- How can I change this?
- What is preventing me from having a caring and loving relationship with a particular person?
’’Compassion is born from understanding suffering’’. – Thich Nhat Hanh
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