Like Britta mentioned in the first newsletter this month, the spiritual journey is a subject that we hold dear at COR. It’s embedded in so much of our workshops since we aim not to necessarily “fix” people—we already view them as good and complete. We more so support people in welcoming the journey, letting it take them deeper—deeper into their hearts and into deeper healing than they imagined was possible.

When I first came to COR, I came hoping to be fixed. My goal was to eradicate any sort of self-doubt or pain, thinking that would give me happiness. I thought personal growth workshops would help make me more “perfect” so that people would love me more.

It was at COR when I finally realized trying to get rid of my pain wasn’t really the solution. As we go through life, pain and failure are inevitable—just like joy and happiness. However, I could either shut my heart down when in pain, or I could learn to let it break open. I could similarly stifle my joy and happiness in fear it might hurt when it’s gone, or I could let that joy crack my heart open even more.

I saw that constantly trying to fix myself was still a defense. It was still a part of trying to find more success to give me happiness. I hoped that by doing these personal growth workshops I would somehow get rid of the pain and ensure I’d never feel it in the future.

What I’ve learned is my defenses—trying to be perfect, wanting everyone to like me, comparing myself to others, believing I have to carry every burden on my own—still come up. I used to see that as bad, like I had done something wrong and I was missing something. I felt I was flawed.

I hoped that one day, with enough self-help, those parts would cease to exist. Instead, my lesson wasn’t to shun them or get rid of them, but to let them take me deeper into more love, trust, and compassion. And that’s still my lesson to this day.

We just had an incredible COR Woman workshop last weekend, filled with so many powerful women who learned how to let the pain crack open their hearts to more love. They learned getting rid of fear isn’t the answer. Instead, it was how to welcome the fear with compassion and let that fear make them stronger.

Before the workshop, I was overwhelmed and stuck. My old patterns came up again—fear of failing as a facilitator, fear I didn’t prep enough, fear I’d somehow let people down. Ultimately, I was afraid that somehow people would realize I wasn’t good enough all along.

Rather than getting upset about these defenses and patterns, my spiritual journey has been learning to see the return of old patterns as a gift. It’s a gift that I get to keep learning how to show up as myself, rather than as what I think others might want me to be. It’s a gift that I get to learn how to let others in to support me rather than continue doing everything on my own. And it’s a gift that I get to have compassion for all the people out there who are terrified of being abandoned, disowned, or rejected.

These are the gifts of the spiritual journey. And it isn’t meant to be easy. But if we say yes to it, that’s when we get to deepen even more. Being vulnerable, the struggle, the dark nights of the soul, and the times we feel stuck and overwhelmed—this is when we grow. This is when we crack our hearts open to even more love, freedom, and joy than we ever thought possible.

So dear one, where are you being invited to deepen in your own journey? Where can you let your heart crack open rather than wall itself up? We’d love to hear about it on our FB page!

Much love to you on your own journey,