A few years back, when this Spirituality thing was quite new to me, there was a whole new lingo to learn. One of the phrases that I heard a lot, but didn’t have words for, was “holding space.”
Little by little, I began to grasp this concept. At first I understood it to be like being there for someone, being there for a friend who needed a place to vent. Being that friend you could tell your trouble to, who wouldn’t go gossiping those same things around town.
Then, as I learned more and grew more, I understood “holding space” to mean that I was a safe place for someone to do whatever they needed to do in that moment in time; whether it was laugh, cry, grieve, or process whatever emotion they needed to, just then. It’s like there is a bubble around the two of us that is a safety net and a loving shield in one.
Now I feel that when I hold space for someone or for a group of people, I am energetically creating a literal space around them that holds the energy of non judgment, holds the energy of allowing, and is a safe place for people to express what they need to express to fulfill their soul’s highest wishes, and do this while infusing the energy of the highest vibration, of love, into that space.
When we feel safe and that we are allowed to express our emotions, years old blocks can dissolve in a moment. The energy of the feminine does this beautifully: creates safety and allows processing of all emotions. It can feel soft and flowing, yet very strong.
However, in our current society, we have been taught that expressing our emotions out loud, especially in public, is not ok. The masculine energies that have dominated for the past hundreds of years, the ones that have allowed fear of emotional expression to run rampant, are shifting.
One of the big deals about 2012 is the end of the era of masculine energy domination, and the resurgence of feminine energy, seeking to restore balance.
For me as a woman and a mother, it’s easier than perhaps for many men, to play the role of holding space for someone who needs to let out a lot of painful tears, because we are the ones who do this in our society with great regularity. We are a shoulder to lean on when a friend needs and ear to bend. We soothe and calm upset children and spouses. It’s accepted and even expected.
Our older men especially, were raised that a real man doesn’t cry. A real man doesn’t show his feelings. A real man keeps his cards close to the vest. But the tide is changing, and we now know that stifling our emotions, stuffing, denying, repressing, and blocking them, leads to disease and dysfunction in our physical bodies and our lives- think heart disease, cancer, addiction and anger issues.
So, the next time your child, your spouse, your friend, your co-worker, is having a tough time, instead of telling them to buck up, to suck it up, or get over it, put your judgments in your back pocket for a little while and just be there for them. You don’t need to solve their problems for them or even comment. Just be there. Especially with kids, you’ll be surprised how quickly they can move through the moment and on to a more peaceful state.
And make sure you have your person or peeps who can do the same for you.
A beautiful description of holding space. It is indeed an evolving process, as we evolve – because of course, to be able to hold the space for anybody, we need to be able to hold a space within ourselves, which takes quite a bit of practice!
For sure. 🙂
Thanks Sara. I’ve had some interesting experiences over the past several months, one of which was being able to remain completely centered and unwavering while a family member spun out in a bit of an emotional tornado (very unhappy with me). It was like I was outside of the conversation, watching her spin and get upset. It was actually very cool to be able to stay so centered.
Yes, being able to stay in our space, stay present in effect, is such an important skill, especially when the shit hits the fan.
We are constantly evolving or we stay in a mental box and in understanding that we see it in others and lend an understanding hand in their journey.
Yes, I would hope so. Although not everyone evolves, for those who do, helping one another along is a beautiful thing. Thanks for commenting.
Really powerful lessons here, and your message is shared in such a clear and loving way, Susan. It’s really exciting to see the personal growth and transformation you’ve experienced! I’m inspired. xox
Thanks Dawn. Appreciate your thoughts.
Another of those ‘just what I needed to hear’ posts Sue. Thanks – Jan x
You’re very welcome.