Meeting Yourself in Stillness

When people say to me, “Done is better than perfect,” I often want to disagree. But the truth is, they’re often right — the imperfect expressions of life and the messiness are equally as important as the clean, polished, and pretty. They are two sides of the same coin.

Last December when I created Anchor & Leap, the emphasis in my own journey was on rapid change and evolution. Now, 10-months later, as I watch the pieces of my life float down into distinctly new positions within the fabric of my life, yet a new journey has arisen — the journey after the journey.

The journey of being called to sit still in a new way and swing the pendulum back.

“When you lose touch with inner stillness, you lose touch with yourself. When you lose touch with yourself, you lose yourself in the world.” — Eckhart Tolle

Though the lessons we are presented throughout our lives never cease, they do continually show up through new and unexpected teachers and modalities.

By noticing this endless and unexpected nature of self-growth and inquiry, we can also shift how we approach our own development so that it mirrors the efforts of training for a marathon — rather than racing to a sprint.

Why not race?

Because a powerful avenue for evolution is stillness — sitting with the moments that ask us to drop deeper into our emotional experience, rather than coaching ourselves away from those very emotions.

This dropping inward, this sitting still with who we are right now, accepting ourselves in totality right now — requires equal courage as it does to chart forward with external change.

Sitting with ourselves, being quiet, listening, feeling our emotions rather than intellectualizing the experience, is not a popular way of being. But it is a way of being that teaches us true self-compassion, which is a core transformational quality of stillness.

Why is this important?

Because without befriending ourselves through self-compassion, the pursuit of meaning and purpose in life runs the risk of becoming dogmatic and unrelenting.

We continually receive little, and sometimes large, messengers nudging us to grow again, and again, no matter how far we’ve already come. And so to stay in this pursuit sustainably, we must compassionately befriend our deepest, and most authentic self.

If you enjoyed this piece, you can peruse the full collection of my writing on my personal site: Anchor & Leap

Additional recommended resources on self compassion: A Fearless Heart by Thupten Jinpa.