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Artwork by Jen Peer Rich

The Dance of Comfort and Discomfort

By Lisa Meuser.

As we have been discovering over the past few months, the topic of discomfort[1] has many, many tendrils – some of which are still to be discovered! Always “on the journey,” new sacred tendrils constantly reveal themselves as I evolve. Maybe you’ve discovered that too? The Field of Possibility is ever revealing, and limitless.

I often experience a sense of excitement when new discoveries are made, AND I can also feel the vulnerability in my system in the unfamiliarity of what has opened. My practices are essential during such times – slowing down, being outside/connected to nature, having authentic connections with people where I share my full self, and spending quiet time in meditation are some of my go-tos. How is it for you when you make new discoveries? How do you engage in self-care?

Moving Deeper
Spending time in curious inquiry and being with expansive questions is also central to my well-being. Getting intimate and familiar with discomfort, which occurred through extensive inquiry, disrupted the trauma response of discomfort being conflated with danger. Always deepening, I continue to discover. Today, while I was connecting to the topic of struggle, which feels related to the theme of discomfort, I could feel some left-over tendrils that are calling me forward. I am grateful that I have the resourcing, tools and agency to explore this territory.

Tonight I am wondering: what would it look like, to embrace, normalize, and even be comfortable with the territory of struggle? I’m slowly feeling into this one, as I can feel there is old territory here coming up lately around struggles I’ve experienced in the past, that were laden with trauma. In what small ways may I still be conflating struggle and danger, struggle and wrongness, struggle as an experience needing to be fixed, figured out, controlled, managed, or even repressed?

What things happened then, that I am projecting onto now?  And then I come full circle: What would it be like if struggling was something to respect and honor, to give space to? We know that discomfort is a part of evolution, and it would seem that at times struggle is as well, as it is often involved in change processes.

What deeper territory have you been connecting with that are related to discomfort? What would you like to have more clarity with, with regards to the topic of discomfort? What questions keep you in curious exploration?

Switching Gears to Comfort
It might seem strange to now bring in the topic of comfort, after so much focus on discomfort.  However, comfort is just the other side of the same coin – it’s what discomfort depends on, in a sense. Comfort doesn’t exist without discomfort, and vice versa – they are both expressions of a polarity, and always live in relationship with each other.

As we explored over the last months, many people are challenged by discomfort – I hope the blog posts of the last months have been useful in building a sustainable and intimate relationship with discomfort. Similarly, many may be challenged with being consciously intimate with comfort as well.

We all might say we like comfort, but in order to really embrace comfort we have to know how to somatically receive it – i.e. connect with it from our bodies. I might be in the most “comfortable” room in the world, but if my body doesn’t know how to take it in, then it will just be intellectually comfortable, which is a hollow experience as opposed to a somatic experience.

Receiving Comfort
Learning how to be in relationship with oneself includes discovering not only how to be in relationship to discomfort, and struggle, but also how to be in relationship with healthy forms of comfort, and the receiving of said comfort.

One of my first conscious experiences of receiving healthy comfort was with my cat. Really! I consciously chose this practice: every time my cat laid on my lap and purred, I’d put down what I was doing and engage in the sacred art of receiving. This may sound easy, but at times it really was not! Over time it became easier – whatever I was preoccupied with was set aside, and I surrendered. This practice opened a door for me and it wasn’t long until I deepened into my practice of receiving comfort in more mundane, yet profound ways.

These days I still practice receiving from my sweet cats, and also enjoy receiving comfort from baths and my warm bed, particularly these days when the weather has turned cold where I live! Receiving comfort in these simple ways is a part of my practice of self-care. I shared this in a recent gathering, and hearing about my connection with comfort gave others permission to name their sources of comfort.

In what ways do you receive comfort? How has receiving comfort been practical, and also profound for you in your journey?

We Never Know What’s Possible
I’m writing this last part a few days after writing the above sections and am left with some last-minute thoughts as I prepare to send this off. When I wrote this post a few days ago, I shared with all of you what had quite unexpectedly, and seemingly out of nowhere, just revealed itself: my struggle with struggle. While it may not seem like a big deal to you, this was a big reveal to me – it literally stopped me in my tracks.  Maybe you’ve experienced that before too, where you didn’t know THAT was coming? Asking the simple and curious questions I did in the beginning of the blog post was so helpful for me, setting the stage for my journey inward. Slowly but surely, committed, connected, and compassionate inquiry led me on a mysterious journey.
Unseen layers of my trauma rose to be met, which included revisiting the many times in my life and my ancestral lineage where struggle was very much akin to death, despair and immense disempowerment.

Today, a few days later, these energies are being transmuted, and I am now left experiencing struggle as I now know it, from where I am now, as a movement of change, growth, co-creation and joy. Yes, joy!  When we enter the field of possibility, we never know what’s going to happen. As I prepare to send this out, I am experiencing the profound depth of Matrix Integration. I am humbled, and I am grateful.

What’s Alive for You?
Please consider spending some time contemplating some of the questions I asked throughout this blog. I’d love to hear about your journey. And, as always, if you’d like me to write more about something please let me know!

If getting to know the deeper territories of yourself interests you, learning how to gently and compassionately do so, and/or, if supporting others in the discovery of their self, interests you, check out my upcoming 2021 Exploration or Gatherings.

[1] I started a series of blog posts on the topic of discomfort starting in August (click here to read them) and have been writing on this topic monthly ever since.

To read more about Lisa Meuser, click here.

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