HOW CURIOSITY HEALS

By | 2020-02-05T21:24:54-05:00 February 5th, 2020|bravery, compassion, courage, Curiosity, Healing, perseverance, Self Acceptance, Self Love, struggle, therapy, Uncategorized|Comments Off on HOW CURIOSITY HEALS

This month I want to share with you two experiences that impacted me individually and professionally. The words and messages have stayed with me and inspired me for weeks following my first contact. I have this song on repeat. I re-read these words daily.

Bruised Not Broken

These lyrics, put to this great beat, bring a smile to my face, inspire a a pep in my step, and breathe more hope into my heart. Music is powerful. Music is vibration that moves through our bodies often awakening parts of ourselves that have lied dormant. This song is the message I try to share with my clients daily, gently supporting and empowering them to see themselves with more compassion and courage.

Never met a monster

The amazing civil rights activist Valerie Kaur wrote these words as an introduction to an online presentation. Each time I read them, they remind me the incredible value of being curious and to wonder. It takes bravery to be curious. Because to be curious is to step into the unknown and that we know is an act of vulnerability. I am drawn to my work as a psychotherapist because I’m allowed the honor of sharing these messages of compassion, curiosity and healing and to work with others to experience their own.

And so this month, I will let these words speak for themselves. I invite you to notice and be curious about what they evoke within you.

Bruised Not Broken

by Matoma

Searchin’, lookin’ all around
For somethin’ I still haven’t found
World’s so heavy, it gets me down
And though I may hurt sometimes
I know I will be alright
So I, do what I gotta do
Whatever will put me through
I put myself back together, I put myself back together
No I, don’t wanna be sad and blue
Even if I’m black and blue, I put myself back together
‘Cause I am
Bruised but I’m not broken
Damaged, but I’m copin’
Holding on and hopin’
I’ll find where I’m goin’
Bruised but I’m not broken
Took some time to own it
And though I may hurt sometimes
I know I will be alright
Bruised but I’m not broken
Damaged, but I’m copin’
Holding on and hopin’
I’ll find where I’m goin’
Bruised but I’m not broken
Took some time to own it
It took some time, but it’s gonna be alright…

Valerie Kaur

As a civil rights activist, I’m often asked how we can keep our hearts open in the face of cruelty and respond from a place of love and understanding. In other words, how do we “love our opponents”? Is it even possible?

I believe so. I believe that the first step to loving our opponents is to tend to our own grief and our own rage. I like to recommend a practice that I call “tend the wounds.”

Many of us, women in particular, have been raised with the lie that love and forgiveness require us to suppress our rage, to suppress our grief. However, we need to actually feel the fight impulse in our bodies—the warrior impulse that says, “No, you will not harm me,” or, “No, stop harming others.” That’s the warrior in us. It’s so vital to honor that impulse.

Men, on the other hand, are often taught to let their rage out into the world—but without boundaries, rage can explode into violence. The solution is neither suppression nor explosion.

The first step in tending the wound is therefore to find a safe container for your rage. For me it could be punching a pillow or imagining myself as a tiger ready to defend her cubs. The key is to tend your rage in safe containers.

Sometimes we find safe containers through shaking and weeping and venting; sometimes we find them in writing or journaling; sometimes our safe container is found in daily rituals and ceremonies. The point is to create and hold space for your experience.

Once we are able to tend to our own wounds and release that energy, we have the capacity to get curious and engage the simple act of wondering about our opponents … and ultimately make the shift toward empathy and compassion.

I’ve never met anyone in this world who is a monster—only people who are wounded, in pain, suffering in some way. When we tend to our own wounds first, we are better able to recognize them in others, and move toward understanding and healing.

If you’re interested to get curious, we would love to speak to you about our psychotherapy services. You can schedule a free phone consultation at a time that works for you.

About the Author:

Kathryn Grooms is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 20 years of experience working. Certified in EMDR and Gestalt Therapy, she is also a Certified Daring Way™ Facilitator and a Harm Reduction practitioner. She is a teaching faculty member and supervisor at the Gestalt Center for Psychotherapy and Training.