Beautiful fearless and messy

Retreat, a word I didn't understand to its fullness. As I drove into the Pochonos Mountains observing the isolation and quiet, I felt my anxiety creep in. I began planning my trip home and thought about changing my flight to leave early. I had my first taste of the “retreat" vibe and I wasn't ready for it. I like to stay busy, my friends even jokingly (but serious too) fully expect me to sit on top of the mountain and meditate with my lovely laptop companion.

Let’s say I like to work. I love talking, counseling and learning how I can help people. The realization that it was going to be on the receiving in was truly terrifying.

Walking into the room gave me an overwhelming sense of empathy for my clients who walk through the door and begin their process with me, surrendering their privacy and trusting me before they even know me.

My empathy didnt stop there. I was given an exercise I’ve used with clients hundreds of times. Tonight I was asked to scale my 0-10 emotional scale. I thought, oh I got this. Easy enough 0 was "disconnected" and 10 was “wholeness.” But wait what was my 1-9? I couldn't do it. And I've had my clients do it hundreds of times and now Im stuck, what the f*$*.  So after literally freezing with sham,  I wrote "20-messy".  I may not know my 1-9 but I sure as hell know what I need to do to find out. I jumped into the biggest emotional exposure possible, messy and vulnerable. All weekend vulnerable. This weekends retreat I pushed myself to create art, embrace discomfort, and encourage connection with others. It was SO hard! Emotionally I wanted to run but logically I knew in order to be my best-self I had to do this. 

I learned to trust my gut and most importantly how to grow into my mind and body. I carried a growth mindset which is to find opportunity is every moment. So tonight I ended my meditation with an intent to live a "beautiful fearless and messy" life. 

-Audrey