Aug 18, 2019

Are you stuck in the knowing but not doing?


Ever been stuck in a place of knowing but not doing? You’ve read the books. You’ve watched the videos. You’ve taken the courses. You have the knowledge. You have invested in the time to learn the thing.

And yet, you are stuck here. You can't quite get yourself to move.

I talked about the excuses our mind makes up that prevent us from taking action in a previous blog post here and how we may need to get really honest about how we are sabotaging our growth here.

I often get stuck because I am too afraid to ask for help. I believe that I should be doing it all on my own. 

  • I can do it all on my own. 
  • I don’t need help. 
  • I already know this. I’ve read the book (or all the books).
  • What will people think if they know that I don’t have it all together? 

If these are things that you find yourself saying to yourself I feel you, but you couldn’t be more wrong. This is self-sabotage, pure and simple.

Taking risks. Investing in yourself. Saying yes to something new (a job, a partner, becoming a parent, a new way of living, etc). All require vulnerability because the outcome is unknown. 

Admitting that there is something in your life that needs to change requires vulnerability. And it can feel easier to choose to stay stuck in the place of knowing rather than stepping up ourselves...because fear. Fear of not doing it perfectly, of failing, or of being judged by others. 

In the Awakened Book Club this month we are reading Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. Every time I read this (and all of her work) I am reminded of how scary it is for me...and how very important it is for me to be vulnerable. Because my deepest desire is to live my life as a wholehearted person and this requires vulnerability.

And what is the biggest obstacle to vulnerability? Shame. There is no escaping shame if we want to live a life on purpose, a life that requires us to show up authentically in a big way. But, what we can do is build resilience to shame so that it doesn’t high-jack our lives. When shame is present we go directly into fight, flight or freeze mode and our higher brain goes offline, which means our limbic system (the emotional center of our brain) is making the decisions. This is a survival mechanism, but it’s not good for reasoning or connection.

Shame resilience is a strategy for protecting connection, to ourselves and to others. And we are hard-wired for connection. We need it to survive. 

There are  four ways that we can build shame resilience (Daring Greatly, p. 62)

  1. Recognizing shame and understanding its triggers
  2. Practicing critical awareness
  3. Reaching out (asking for help)
  4. Speaking shame

I want to focus on reaching out today because for me the most vulnerable thing is to admit that I am not ok. To admit that I need support or help. That I can’t actually do this on my own. That, this time, willpower and discipline is not getting me to where I want to be. This is true in my personal life and in my work life. It’s true in every relationship I have ever been in. 

Asking for help requires a ton of vulnerability. And in my past life vulnerability meant weakness (which is one of the myths of vulnerability). After reading all of Brene Brown’s books and participating in several of her online courses I learned all about the importance of vulnerability. And, of course, I already knew this was mandatory to a wholehearted life...but, man vulnerability sucks! Knowing and doing are two completely different things, right? Stuck in the knowing, but not the doing. 

Through my yoga asana practice I have been able to build up more shame resilience. Yoga asana prepares us for shame resilience because it teaches us how to sit in the discomfort rather than bypass that which feels scary, and to self-regulate the nervous system. It teaches us how to track the physical body and use discernment. 

Now when I am in a shame spiral I invite myself to reach out...immediately. Whether it is in therapy, with a friend, a spiritual accountability partner, my sisters, my parents, my partner...I reach out. I say out loud that I am not ok. That I am feeling shame. That I am afraid of failure (perfectionism is my favorite way to self-sabotage). Because when we name it shame no longer has a hold on us. 

When I want to make changes in my life because it has become glaringly obvious that the way in which I am living my life is out of alignment with my core values and with the woman I envision myself becoming I reach out. 

I have committed to seeking all the help I can get over the past two years and it has changed my life and my career. And man has it saved me a whole lot of time!!

I’ve invested in a mentor and a coach. I have invested both time and money in a mastermind group, where I get to connect with other women who are working to bring their passion to more people. We support one another and we hold each other accountable. We call each other in when our fears are showing up. It is hard work. It is vulnerable work. And it is work that has changed the trajectory of my life in so many ways. 

I now feel empowered to take bigger risks because of this strategy of shame resilience.

If you are stuck in the outdated pattern of thought that you have to do it all on your own, that independence is better than collaboration and that asking for help shows weakness I'd love to invite you to begin the process of building shame resilience. Isolating is often times just a way to hide and this is detrimental to our growth. It stops us from taking the jump into something bigger for our lives. Growth and transformation happen so much quicker with the help of a supportive community.

You don’t have to go it alone. Align & Awaken was created with the structure to support individual growth through the support of a motivated group all working together to shift to a life feels whole. We support one another. We hold each other when it's needed. We compassionately call each other up when we see self-sabotage creeping in. 

Here is your call to action today. Build your own shame resilience. Reach out. Schedule a FREE call with me today. No strings attached. It's a practice of reaching out. And it gets easier the more we do it. 

Other posts

The Gifts of Imperfection
Sep 16, 2020

The Gifts of Imperfection

Living Wholeheartedly is not the old pattern of pushing through and powering ahead. Instead it is an invitation to prayerfully, intentionally and thoughtfully do something restorative. 

Come Back to Your Center
Sep 11, 2020

Come Back to Your Center

What I know to be true from both personal experimentation and my studies of both Yoga and Ayurveda is that if we can align the whole body with the rhythms of nature we can more easily access that place within us, our truth, our center. This is where the magic happens.

How are you coping?
Sep 1, 2020

How are you coping?

Stress inevitably puts the body in fight, flight, freeze or fawn. This is a healthy, normal, short-term response to the circumstances we are living in. It's our body's way of protecting itself. But, many of us get stuck here and this can create problems. Both internally and collectively.