We are not born with emotional muscle, we create it!
At birth we are thrust into an uncertain world with the goal of growing and learning as much as we can. Some of the mechanics we intrinsically know but emotionally we start to learn by making meaning with every experience, building on another to form the tapestry of what we call our lives and our personal reality. Within this human experience our emotional muscle and our ability to adapt and learn will always be tested to varying degrees.
I like to think of my emotional muscle like my physical muscles, and as an exercise instructor I'm aware I am not powerless, and I have a level of control when it comes to muscle conditioning. Our muscles have a function, they not only support us, but they store energy and enable us to keep moving — they literally hold us together. Some of us prefer to consciously push our muscles past their perceived limits to maintain a degree of preferred "fitness", resiliency and strength, we like our muscles to be as effective as possible and "fit" for purpose. At times we get symptoms and signs that the load is too much, which if left can often lead to damage. When we encounter an injury, emotional or physical, we need to treat them the same way. In any acute damage the first thing we need to do is to STOP and REST, or down the line there is a much bigger and a more expensive problem! After an injury what should come next is a personalised plan designed by ourselves or someone you trust. The design of this rehabilitation plan will be determined by the degree of injury, after which we should be more aware and informed should this occur again.
There really is no excuse these days for lack of knowledge, as information is available at the click of a button. We are in the best position more than ever before to take more responsibility for educating ourselves around our own physical and emotional health. However, some folk are still stuck, simply accepting that they are OK with doing nothing but wonder why nothing changes. Until we stop and ask ourselves why we always find ourselves in the same situation yet desire something different, then we remain asleep. Expecting to keep responding the same way as we did yesterday but wanting a different result is like having your foot on the brake and the accelerator at the same time — we simply idle and stay still.
The fact is we all struggle at different times for different reasons and no matter what "muscle", ANY muscle will respond to how you decide to treat it, irrespective.
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