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Is Contentment Possible?

Do ever get asked a question that hits you like a ton of bricks?

Years ago a good friend of mine asked me something that I’ll never forget.

At the time I was pretty much all over the place. Feeling emotions very intensely, even taking on other people’s stuff. It was a huge energy suck. At the time I had no idea of my HSP trait. I just thought I was a little crazy.

So when I was asked this question it caught me off guard. Like somebody had “found me out.”

“Are you ever just content?”

Of Course, I Feel Contentment!

My first thought when I heard this was to scream out and defend myself: “Yes! Of course, I am!” But I knew it wasn’t true.

So I stood there, kind of stunned.

You see, I was truly all over the map with my emotions. I was in college, stressed to the core, and had zero ways to deal with it.

What was so eye opening about hearing this question was that it brought me face to face with just how stressed I was.

I was either really happy or down in the dumps. There wasn’t much of a healthy middle ground.

Even though I was feeling exposed in that moment, I was grateful that someone had the guts to check in with me at that level.

Where Is Your Contentment?

Now I want to check in with you. Do you ever just feel contentment?

Are you able to be with what is in your life, while still dreaming up whatever is next for you?

Being stressed can make us feel stuck because we are either reaching for the past or the future. Living on an emotional rollercoaster can keep us playing the “up and down” game – happy when things are up and sad when things are down.

But where does that leave you in all of this?

Where is the constant in your life, the underlying sense of “I’m OK”?

And how do you live in that place more often?

Something I love to do to help re-set and actually look at what is going on in my life is to schedule quiet time every day – even if it’s just five 5 or 10 minutes.

Close the door, turn off the computer, silence the phone. Take these few precious minutes to do what feels good to you and recharge your battery. Cultivate the awareness of how you feel when you are about to get into a “burn out” state, and give yourself a break before you begin to get to that state.

If you find yourself easily swayed by whatever’s going on in your life, this is a must. Give it a try and let me know how it goes for you.

What else brings you back to center, to your healthy middle ground? Let me know in the comments. Can’t wait to hear.

About Kathryn Nulf

My passion is working with women* (*cisgender, transgender, nonbinary, genderqueer – I welcome you). I grew up emotionally sensitive and through therapy I learned tools that taught me how to move through the world in ways that embraced my sensitivity. I soon realized my sensitivity was actually my superpower. I love to help women feel this empowerment, too. I came to therapy through healing from chronic pain and depression and an infinite curiosity for human behavior and a love for the complexity of people. I get what it’s like to feel up and down with your emotions, to get depressed or anxious and not know what to do, or even feel unsure of who you are. I have taught yoga for more than 10 years, and enjoy teaching my client's tools to regulate their emotions, communicate in ways they can feel good about, manage stress more effectively, and move toward what they want to do in your life. I believe that people are doing the best they can and that we cannot shame ourselves into a better life. I love to introduce clients to how they can practice compassion for themselves and create more meaning in their lives. You can find my practice at Therapy for Women Center in Old City Philadelphia, or find me on Instagram @counselingwithkat.

19 Comments

  1. Maik on August 20, 2014 at 4:32 pm

    Actually I try to meditate at least once a day half an hour, if possible twice. Beyond that I meditate 3-4 times a weak 1 1/2 hours in a Dojo (Soto Zen practice).
    I catch at every straw and try so many things, even most of the things mentioned in David Servan-Schreiber’s book “Healing Without Freud or Prozac: Natural Approaches to Curing Stress, Anxiety and Depression”.
    But there are times like just now I feel like I can’t stand it anymore and draw on alcohol and cigarettes in order to numb my feelings when I’m down.
    I am aware of my actions when I decide to go and buy the stuff, but I just have the feeling that I need instant release sometimes so that I have neither time nor will to try a more productive way getting out of this slump.



    • Maria on August 20, 2014 at 4:37 pm

      Hi Maik,

      I am sorry that you are struggling. It sounds to me that you are trying everything in your power to feel better and it is not working. I do Transcendental Meditation twice a day and have been doing so for 20 years. It help me to release. I also like New Age music which has a wonderful feeling of space and helps me find space as well. My best suggestion is that the more I let go the more content I am. You cannot control the world, and life is mostly challenging, so I simply try to take care of my contribution and let it go at that. The more you get rid of any mental and emotional burdens the better.

      I hope this helps,
      Maria



  2. Elisabeth on August 22, 2014 at 7:07 am

    My comments aren’t showing up, for some reason. I’ll try again tomorrow 🙂



  3. Elisabeth on August 23, 2014 at 3:23 am

    test



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