“You have within your right now whatever you need to deal with whatever the world can throw at you.” – Brian Tracy
In the journey of life, you often find yourself confronted with traumas and hardships that compel you to put on your emotional armour. This armour serves as a protective shield against the wounds inflicted by life’s challenges. However, as essential as it may be in the face of adversity, there comes a time when this armour becomes a burden too heavy to bear. Pain and suffering often appear as unavoidable companions. From physical ailments to emotional scars, the human experience can be rife with turmoil. Emotional armour is a form of resistance, a psychological defense mechanism that you adopt to cope with trauma and adversity. It manifests as emotional detachment, suppression of feelings, or an overly tough exterior providing temporary protection and resilience. Your armour helps you to survive and endure difficult experiences. However, bearing the heavy weight of your armour leads to suppressed emotions and long-term baggage. Bottled up feelings result in anxiety, depression, physical health issues, hinder authentic connections, and makes it a challenge to trust and be open.
How thick is your armour and has it become too heavy?
Pain and suffering come in many forms. It can be the agony of a broken heart, the relentless grasp of worry, or the persistent physical ailments that afflict you. This suffering often arises from unresolved issues, past traumas, or the struggle to find meaning in life. To find a solution, you must first acknowledge and identify that there is a problem. You often find yourself trapped because pain is a powerful force that leaves you feeling helpless and isolated. It is the fear that keeps you awake at night, the sorrow that makes you question the meaning of your existence, and the wounds that seem impossible to heal.
When you carry the weight of your suffering, it bleeds into every aspect of your life. Your relationships become strained as you struggle to communicate or connect with others. Your career and aspirations become stagnant, hindered by the emotional baggage you drag along like a ball and chain. Moreover, the toll on your mental and physical health cannot be underestimated. Chronic pain can lead to depression, anxiety, and a host of physical illnesses.
Lucy was experiencing chronic pain and becoming increasingly isolated, withdrawing from social activities and interactions. Her emotional turmoil deepened losing interest in hobbies and pursuits that once brought her joy. This withdrawal is a defense mechanism, a way to protect her from further pain. However, it led to loneliness and depression. Friends and family felt helpless, unsure of how to assist. Colleagues and management noticed a decline in productivity and morale, affecting the overall dynamics of the workplace. The cycle of pain became a cycle of suffering for everyone involved.
One way to shed the weight of your armour is by exploring the concept of purpose. Purpose is the deeper reason for your existence. It is the guiding star that lights your way through the darkest of times. Purpose is not just about what you want to achieve but about who you want to become. Discovering your purpose gives you direction, a sense of meaning, and a reason to get out of bed every morning. It allows you to align your “actions”. Shed your emotional armour through:
Self-Reflection and Self-Compassion: Begin by looking inward with forgiveness as a foundation for healing.
Vulnerable Expression and Support: Express your emotions in a healthy and constructive manner within a trustworthy support network.
Prayer, Meditation and Mindfulness: Tune in and discover what truly matters to you.
Setting Goals: Goals are steppingstones toward your purpose.
Embrace Change: Be open to change and growth as your purpose may evolve over time.
The path to shedding armour no longer needed is not without its challenges. Obstacles will arise. Fear of change or fear of failure can be paralysing. Understand them and move forward despite them. Be patient and persistent in your quest. It is not a race. You may doubt your abilities or the validity of your purpose. Know that self-doubt is a common companion on this journey that can be overcome.
The value of shedding the heavy armour and finding your purpose transforms not only your life but the lives of those around you. Is it time to shed your armour? With alignment, you will experience greater mental and emotional well-being, resilience in the face of adversity, stress freedom, and improved physical health. Become contagious and encouraging to others by being the authentic best version of yourself. Start now! Start small! Celebrate small victories!
“The only way out is through.” Robert Frost