Every time you deny something you subsequently store it in your body and your energy system. Denial blocks your ability to potentially break those negative patterns in your life you wish would stop recurring. So how do you lighten the heavy weight of denial? I’ll give it to you straight up: be receptive!
(I was apprehensive when considering writing about the topic of denial and then realised I was succumbing to the very discomfort that is the point of today’s blog post! Ha!)
Firstly, let’s look at the definition of denial by the Merriam Webster dictionary. Why? Because it highlights the very reason why so many of us get uncomfortable just talking about denial. Nonetheless, getting raw and real with yourself is vital on so many levels.
“refusal to admit the truth or reality of something”
Both truth and reality can be hard pills to swallow. Can you remember a time when you were driven to see the truth for what it was? Perhaps it was a relationship that had run its course or an emotion such as anger or grief that you were doing your best to ignore. Or maybe you were denying a change that needed to happen such as taking control of your health. The biggest denial we often face is the reality that we were responsible and had a part to play in how something turned out.
The Primary Storage Point for Denial
It’s easy to think that ignoring something means that it doesn’t matter to you when in fact, it’s quite the opposite. You’ve placed the pain, discomfort, feeling or message in your ‘backpack’. Here’s the pain point—what you deny becomes one of many responsibilities which are often stored in your shoulders (where you carry your backpack). I’m sure you’re familiar with the phrase: ‘carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders’ (originally from Greek mythology whereby Zeus condemned Atlas to hold heaven on his back).
How many times have you said or have you heard someone say “I hold stress in my shoulders” or “My shoulders are always so tight”. Imagine if you became receptive to the idea that you were responsible for your actions and your emotions, or how things panned out?
So how does denial create heaviness in your life and why do you need to pull your head out (of the sand!)?
Every time you deny a message from your body, an emotion or a knowing from within your heart, you’re denying your own story. For example, denying that you’re actually quite angry about how someone treated you prevents you from holding your own healthy boundaries. You look for validation externally yet the best place to find it is within. Validate your experience with this person by acknowledging your feelings. Anger has a place in your life; it shows you that someone has crossed your boundaries. You’re not alone, society has fallen short with teaching us how to release anger in a healthy, non hurtful way.
If you’d like to explore a simple way to work through your emotions, check out my blog post Simplifying Emotions – The Dog In The Room. Or pick up a copy of Emotional Intelligence by Dr. Daniel Goleman.
Where You Might Store Denial (in this case, anger)
In the example of anger not only do you weaken your boundaries in life, the force of anger gets stored in your energy system and into your body (remember, it’s all connected). There are a number of common areas to hold anger depending on the particular scenario and your own patterns of stress. You might clench your teeth in your sleep; an often subconscious physiological response to anger. Or your anger might be pain between your shoulder blades; particularly the rhomboid muscles that lie in the back of the Heart Chakra where we feel past hurts . The rhomboids are also related to Liver Meridian energy that can store anger when blocked. If it’s not the rhomboids that the Liver meridian is communicating through, it can be headaches—ouch :o( It’s fascinating stuff! Your teeth and muscles can really suffer under the weight of denied anger, not to mention the costs of dental work and frequent body work!
The Functional Ostrich (yes, really)
I recently wrote about denial in my series Diary of a Flawed Healer. I was inspired to write about the inspiration I gain from working with clients week in, week out who are receptive and face their truth and reality. I affectionately call being in denial The Functional Ostrich and I share my experiences with imperfection, denial and overcoming adversity through receptivity and holistic medicine. If you’ve seen me at Live Well or worked with another kinesiologist, I’d love for you to read To Be Or Not To Be The Ostrich; The Great Denial and my Ode to You. Here’s an excerpt:
I am in awe of your sage offerings. I am in awe of your willingness to go deep within yourself— even when it’s scary or unfamiliar. I am in awe of how you listen; how you feel. I am in great awe when we tackle a massive session together and I wonder if it was too much yet you return to peel away yet another layer. I am in awe when the pieces of the mind-body-spirit connection finally make sense and we both bathe in the gift of insight. There is no denial, simply acknowledgement and gratitude. Whether you’re in the depths of your exploration or in the light of your awareness; you are almighty.
I also share a hot tip for help with moving through denial and you might be surprised as to what it is!
Why Choose to be Receptive?
Once you’ve faced reality and opened yourself up to your truth, you become receptive. Not only do you let go of the uncomfortable things you were avoiding, being receptive (open) and releasing denial allows you to:
- take a huge weight off your shoulders (a primary area in the body to hold denial)
- be fueled by a lightness in your life, your energy and your body
- find resolution within yourself and your relationships with the world around you
- creatively work through your challenges in a way you may not have thought of
- be more mindful and have a greater level of consciousness, and
- reach a greater level of possibility, potential and FREEDOM.
And that, my friends is pretty awesome if you ask me. If you feel that you’re rather wired to be in denial or you keep saying “no” then try Dr. Dan Siegel’s new book The Yes Brain. I love his motto: ‘Inspire to Rewire’! Or better yet, come and work with me.
As always my friends, with love and gratitude— you don’t have to do it alone, xkp