How do you know when something has been healed?
This is the most important question as it relates to the entire healing process.
It is important for many reasons, because without knowing it, we can make assumptions about what we think and not about what actually is. People believe that if they have survived something then it is healed or behind them. If the person is no longer around them, then it means healed. If they are away from the place or circumstances, then it is healed
So much of our lives seems to be about putting as much distance between us and our wounds as we possibly can and that will fix everything. This is not healing.
For every person there is a test, and it is when you are put back into the same or similar situation with a person, place, or event – maybe the exact same thing. If and should that happen, then how would you feel? If it were a person, would you have the same old feelings around them of being hurt, afraid, uncomfortable, or wounded?
How would it be to return to a physical place that you avoid or don’t want to be at? Would it bring up a lot of old stuff? and if so, is that old stuff healthy or is it hurting?
This is the variable we cannot control. How we will actually react when we end up in a situation, and it is the Litmus Test for healing.
Try to think of it as a spectrum, and we navigate the spectrum as best we can. The range is from completely un-resourceful and unconscious, to more resourceful and conscious.
If you can perform better than you used to, then you have progressed more towards healing, and if it is the same or worse, then nothing has healed and may have even regressed. We understand in healing that we are not looking for a “perfect” response, but one that is better each time we are tested, and it needs to be a forgiving process for you.
If your behavior is usually non-conscious and you used to simply react, and you can now have more conscious awareness, then that is a great start. The point of having that conscious awareness is to use it. To become aware of options you have in that moment, and be aware of potential feelings and emotions that can guide a more conscious and resourceful response.
You can be afraid of something and still navigate it with grace and towards a healed outcome, and that is being resourceful. Our emotions no longer govern us or affect our performance.
We learn to live through the emotions by turning into them, not away from them, and in that they dissipate and lose their emotional charge.
Here are some indicators that your issue is healed:
- Little to no emotional charge around the issue (when you talk about it, it is mostly benign memory);
- It no longer impacts or affects your decisions or decision making (you are not trying to avoid something now based on something that happened back then);
- You see it somewhat differently and have taken some important lessons from it (meaning the issue has processed, and as its form has changed, so has its affect on you);
- You have no biases, fears, or anxiety about if happening again in the future;
- You can authentically help guide someone who has been through the same or similar thing to a more healed outcome;
These indicators help guide you to a more healed outcome. For example, the person who has had their heart broken needs to be able to risk again, to take chances again, and be vulnerable again to love and be loved. The old hurt cannot guide them in their decisions by telling them it is too painful to try again based on the “old stuff”. They learn to heal and navigate knowing it is less important that they can get hurt, and more important than they can heal whatever should come.
This is the true path of the Medicine Person – we are less concerned about what can or may happen, we walk knowing we can heal whatever happens, and because of that, we are going to make it.
This is freedom – true freedom.