In the weeks leading up to the New Year, I’ll begin to hear and notice particular words that resonate with me deeply. It’s as if the words are calling out to me.  I notice how the words feel in my body. The sensations they bring me when I close my eyes.  I stay open to all the words that appear and call out to me.  I ponder the essence of the words and what that essence means for me, until there’s no doubt that one word, over all the other words, is “My Intentional Word for the New Year”.

My Intentional Word for 2019 is RELEASE. This word encompasses my overall attention for the next 365 days on my recovery journey.

RELEASE, in its purest meaning is “to set free from restraint, confinement, or servitude.”  A fitting segue from my 2018 Intentional word “Surrender”.

In 2018, my bodily pain had reached epic proportions and there seemed to be no way of predicting when a debilitating flare up would occur. I allowed myself to surrender (Intentional Word 2018) and flow with the self-awareness that came through me in 2018 and I was guided to a Myofascial Release practitioner specialized in releasing emotions trapped in the body. Allowing feelings to come up and be felt without judgement or resistance is the key to this powerful therapy. I followed the cues from the universe and added Myofascial Release Therapy to my healing practice.     

Some of my sessions were extremely emotional and some were quite peaceful. During these sessions, the emotions of unresolved traumatic experiences trapped in my body surfaced, were validated, I allowed myself to feel them, and then my body could finally release them from deep in my cellular structure. Myofascial Release Therapy proved beyond any doubt, that a lifetime of suppressing my emotions (a survival mechanism I adopted in my chaotic family of origin to live through the behaviours that resulted from my parents’ own unresolved childhood trauma) had caused those suppressed emotions to pile up and remain stuck in my body.  The physical pain was the symptom and the messenger.  The message was for me to finally deal with the suppressed emotional pain and suffering of unresolved ancestral trauma as well as my own childhood trauma. My pain; their pain, all of the pain and suffering of multiple generations of trauma, endured by us all. The suffering had penetrated beyond the emotional and into the physical and cellular structure of my body. 

 Myofascial Release Therapy coupled with a month of Radical Self Care of my mind, body and spirit relieved much of the physical pain.  This jump-started the restorative journey of my body, mind and spirit that lead to the transformation of my state of emotional overwhelm and overreaction into a healthier state of emotional regulation and healthy responding. The releasing of trapped emotional trauma has allowed me to re-connect with my body.  I can feel exactly what my emotional triggers are now. Prior to this therapy, the only way for me to cope was to refuse and suppress the emotions, people and situations that were so painful.

This year I intend to allow emotions, triggers and situations to flow through me.  I intend to feel, process and release the emotions as they come up rather than surpress them and allow them to pile up and get stuck in my body again. My former strategies of being oblivious of my environment; suppressing my emotions and ploughing through life without observing the cost to my well-being is no longer an option for me.  The days of ignoring my feelings for the sake of keeping the peace or being pleasing to others are gone. The physical cost to my body is much too great. 

A beautiful unintended consequence of this therapy is a new focus on boundary setting. Because I’m allowing myself to feel, I need to be diligently self-aware of the people, words and situations that negatively stay with me and cause me suffering.  I intend to make choices to create healthy boundaries, speak up and/or completely release the unhealthy behaviours, people or situations from my life.  

I will create choices for myself based on all that I have learned about myself and my well-being regardless of whether they will be pleasing to others.  This will take practice; and while I may stumble and need patience for myself and others, my intention is to succeed in creating the healthiest version of myself that I am meant to be. 

Here are the steps I take to process and Release my feelings/emotions.

1.     Be aware of my feelings/emotions.
2.     Allow my feelings/emotions to be felt.
3.     Be curious about the feelings/emotions I’m experiencing.
4.     Let myself experience and go deep into my feelings/emotions.  Feelings are the messengers of my inner truth (intuition) and emotions are my unique translation of what the moment means to me. I do not rush this step. I let the feeling linger long enough to see if I can connect with the awareness that the feeling is bringing to me. 
5.     Accept the truth that my feelings brought to me. I don’t deny myself the time to move through this new awareness. I allow myself to be sad or to grieve or to be angry; whatever it is, and I allow it to go through me into full, powerful, fluid acceptance of that truth. 
6.     Breathe it in.  I hold it for a moment.  Then release it all with a strong exhale back to mother earth.  I ask her to transmute the dense, dark, negative energy into divine light.
7.     Find stillness and breathe into my heart. I feel the peace of releasing what does not serve me. 
8.     Take a moment to be in gratitude for my conscious choice to release negativity instead of suppressing it and causing suffering.
9.     Get ready for the unfolding of the new and different choices in my life to reveal themselves to me and move me in the direction of my dreams. 

I am excited and ready to usher in the New Year and “Release” all that no longer serves me.  I look forward to the visions, choices and paths that practicing release will open up for me in the coming year.

Is there a word that has been getting your attention? Maybe you are ready for this powerful spiritual practice?  Share it with me on Instagram, @mietcetera