I recently had a beautiful conversation with a client, during which she said that she was having doubts as to whether or not she could navigate her way through her current situation with grace.
It got me thinking about that word, grace. I think we have an interesting interpretation of what that word means, so I asked her, “What does grace mean to you?” As a practitioner/trainer of NLP I know that we all have a different picture of what words mean and my definition might have been different than hers.
What she described to me, is what I suspect many of us attribute to that word. The image of being all zen and calm and gliding with total ease through the shit show that life can often be. It made me smile because I get it. So I offered the following paradigm shift:
What if grace was messy? What if we could redefine what even Webster’s Dictionary has to say about it.
- Elegance or beauty of form, manner, motion, or action
- A pleasing or attractive quality of endowment
What if we decided that what is “elegant and beautiful” is what is real and raw. That “pleasing or attractive” were not what society deems as such, but rather the actual truth of being a human being which is often gritty, unpredictable, and wild.
Having grace is not about having it all figured out. It is not about skating through the difficult times pretending to be enlightened about it. That is quite simply just spiritual bypassing.
Grace is having the courage to be in the thick of it. Grace is having the strength to lean into the discomfort and go through the muck of it. And to do it all with compassion, self-forgiveness, and above all else, kindness.
With that, I asked her again, “So with that new perspective on the word, can you move through this with grace?”
With tears in her eyes she said “yes…yes I can.”
The truth is, no matter how far down a spiritual or personal growth path you are, you DO NOT have to have it all figured out. We DO NOT need to pretend that it is easy. Especially true for women in our society, but in many ways relevant to men as well, we do not have to make it all look pretty and pristine.
Authenticity is what really defines beauty and elegance. Being in a space of honesty is what ought to be pleasing and attractive.
So dear one, please hear me when I tell you that you can be in a space of grace and be messy all at the same time. One does not preclude the other.
Now that you have been reminded of this, how can you choose to be in a state of grace as you navigate your way through a dark time? How will you allow yourself to be both messy/real and in that state grace?
Take some time to journal about what that would look, sound and feel like to you. Feel free to share it here, post it in the Radical Resilience Facebook group, or simply keep it close to your own heart. And know that you are loved, supported, and held in grace.
From my graceful and messy heart to yours always…