WHAT IS DENIAL? (I wrote this to our Aligned Action Group in regards to our module on moving into action around our BODYMIND):
As we come up on naming your Aligned Action Vision Around your BodyMind and moving into babystep Action, I invite you to meditate on the concept of denial up until our call tonight. And possibly for this entire module. Or this entire year!
While we are all about undoing the thoughts that scare us by debunking the concept that our fears will materialize, I think there is another kind of debunking that comes into play in decisions we make around our compulsions, and failure to acknowledge the cost to our bodies, our bank accounts, our relationships, the quality of our contributions.
What is DENIAL? What motivates it? Where is there a fine line between something we are doing to ourselves or our bodies being “bad,” just because we read it somewhere or we believe it’s bad (and therefore react to it as such); vs the times when our actions and choices toward ourselves and our bodies really DO have harmful consequences (that we may beat ourselves up for later) but we are somehow able to deny those consequences when we are engaged in the act?
This is a huge question when it comes to our stuck “holdout” places. Where have we trained ourselves to “look the other way” and pretend it will all be OK? vs where IS it all ok just because we believe it is?
My hunch is, while we don’t want to be hard on ourselves, there is also a later under that “it will all be OK” that in some cases actually does not believe it but wants what we want or fears losing something enough that we ignore the part of us that doesn’t really believe it is OK.
I am going to go out on a limb and say there is another version of The Work when it comes to compulsions and self-destructive patterns where we want to consider using TW to question our statements of denial.
“It doesn’t hurt my body when I am so sedentary…. or go to bed so late.” “It would be harder on me to exercise.” “I need to eat this much of this sweet thing.” “Sugar doesn’t hurt me.”
For me the thought of the consequences or the truth of how I really feel about what would be best for my body almost always comes to me later. Either in the form of regret, or an intention to do better next time, or more denial that comes in the form of non-action around those intentions.
This group is not for the faint of heart. We are addressing the toughest things that separate us from living our divinity—we have been tackling shame, blame, regret, and unforgiveness as it relates to our inability to act in alignment with what we believe, but what we have not tackled is denial.
“It’s OK to go to bed this late.” Is it true? “Eating all that peppermint bark won’t hurt me,” Is is true? “It’s Ok to get his upset and yell at my husband.” Is it true?
Can I absolutely know it’s true? We also can’t know for sure that it will hurt me or others either.
But I do know that the pain in my side has been acting up with the richest lobster bisque, egg nog, and white chocolate peppermint bark ever.
What are the long and short term costs to us of our denial? Can we make them into a big enough WHY that we are motivated to change our behavior? How bad do the immediate consequences to us need to be in order for us to stop a destructive behavior? (Ie diarrhea and lactose intolerance, etc).
What would it look like to be so in touch with the benefits and have debunked the denial in our why nots that we truly live in alignment with the highest understanding we have in any given moment about what would be good for our bodies—and not from a place of denial?