Leaning In

Check out my latest post from a blast from my past. LEANING IN!

Here’s an excerpt:

We’ve often heard the term LEANING IN as way to listen to hear and not to respond.

In Andy Goldsworthy’s film “Leaning In”, he sees it as one of two ways- You can either walk on the path or go through the hedge.
Trailer to leaning in

I’ve always seemed to pick going through the hedge and the “most difficult” path, but it certainly has been the most adventurous.

On a family camping trip many years ago, we were going down a mountain path on the million dollar highway in Colorado. We were in a 25 foot motorhome we had rented for this adventure. I had 5 little kids in that tin box and as we headed down the steep windy roads, my fears and imagination took a new level. I have always been afraid of heights and being on the passenger side seeing the edge and the seemingly endless bottom of the mountain, the thought of my precious cargo spiraling down the edge of that rocky cliff sent me into a panic.

I actually started yelling while half crying: “LEAN!!! LEANNNNN kids-towards the mountain!!!”

That was back in the days of not as strict seat belt use and I really thought our 7 bodies leaning towards the driver side would stop our spiraling life in that moment.

Apparently it worked. We survived! But for years, my kids never failed to tease me at every opportunity to LEAN! LEAN Towards the mountain! That day we stayed safe on the path. I leaned into (away from?) my fears, I suppose.

Brene Brown told Oprah many years ago what I have now come to realize is true in dealing with our emotions,

It’s he or she who’s willing to be the most uncomfortable can rise strong,” Brené says. “Discomfort: the way home.”It may be more tempting to lean away from discomfort with “a glass of red wine, or six,” Brené jokes, but leaning in is far more powerful.
Brene Brown-leaning into discomfort

Think about it, those who seem to have an “easy life” tend to be the ones who can handle far less. I’m not faulting them, everyone has a deck of cards they are dealt and they play them the best they can. For those born into wealthy and/or healthy families, I commend you.

I once had a co-worker who figured out that we both knew a mutual acquaintance. She proceeded to tell me what a wonderful human this person was and I wholeheartedly agreed. In my mind, though, I was thinking, “she’s had a cushy, easy life with alot of supportive and wonderful family around, why wouldn’t she be?” Of course, I have since learned that appearances are misleading and we NEVER know what obstacles a person goes through personally, NO MATTER what they post on social media.

“A hard life build character” the old timers used to say. So then, if being uncomfortable (or doing hard things) is a way to work through our emotions, how do we help a new generation of kids stay true to their core selves and just BE OKAY with their emotions? How do we teach them not to distract themselves with wine or beer or electronics or sex..later.. of course? Maybe the answer is in the 8 steps to wellness that I outline in THIS POST.

I think that acknowledging our emotions AT THE TIME, is the first step. This requires that we give ourselves the time and space to do that. I mean, how do you acknowledge sadness when you have to be to work in 5 minutes? You have a good cry, wipe your eyes, and go into work I suppose. That’s what I do most days. Is it deflecting or ignoring it by doing the things we have to? I dont think so. I think we have responsibilities with limited time and we still need to Get up & show up.

As long as we are giving ourselves the needed self care AFTER work and ACTIVELY working on the 8 dimensions of wellness, we can learn to LEAN IN, MOVE FORWARD and be our BEST version of ourselves that we can be.


Published by

Samantha Waters

A unique perspective on the world from a small town girl turned big city nurse. Now a grandmother to 6 gregarious, resplendent boys and 5 endearing, magical girls, she strives the make the world a more understanding, pleasant place to experience this intense thing called life.

Leave a Reply