“Strong Back—Soft Front” 💜

HELLO! It’s been three months since my last post, and I’ve got to tell you the minute you think your healing is complete is when your next mission starts. Let’s dive in!

All too often, our so-called strength comes from fear, not love; instead of having a strong back, many of us have a defended front shielding a weak spine. In other words, we walk around brittle and defensive, trying to conceal our lack of confidence. If we strengthen our backs, metaphorically speaking, and develop a spine that’s flexible but sturdy, then we can risk having a front that’s soft and open…How can we give and accept care with strong-back, soft-front compassion, moving past fear into a place of genuine tenderness? I believe it comes about when we can be truly transparent, seeing the world clearly—and letting the world see into us. —Roshi Joan Halifax

Chapter 7 of Dr. Brenè Brown’s “Braving the Wilderness” inspired me to dig deep into having a strong back while maintaining a soft front. What’s a strong back? Well, it starts with the acronym BRAVING. Dr. Brown provides this to show how true belonging begins with trust.

Via Facebook

“I’ve got to do this on my own.”

Do you remember the first time you disagreed with someone you genuinely admired? Maybe they liked apples, and you preferred oranges. Did you stick to your fruity preference, or did you abandon the ship? Criticism and fear shape a lot of our beliefs and thought processes. The fear of being the “only one” can be pretty daunting. That, combined with life, is where you find the wilderness.

Being alone is one of those catch-22 situations. On the one hand, you need time to focus on yourself and your wants and needs. On the flip side, it can get pretty lonely in isolation. I’ve learned that things don’t heal in isolation. You can’t heal relationships by staying out of them. Love is an action. Being brave is an action, so it’s important to know that “Braving the Wilderness” isn’t about being alone; it’s about trusting your thoughts and calming your mind to be your best self. Community is at the end of the wilderness, and we must remember that.

“We’ll need both courage and vulnerability as we abandon the certainty and safety of our ideological bunkers and head off into the wilderness.” (Dr. Brenè Brown)

I mentioned earlier that at the end of the wilderness is a community, and that’s true. When you reach your authenticity, you will find your tribe along the way. A true tribe doesn’t agree with you 100% of the time; they help you navigate your journey by respecting your process and encouraging a strong back and a soft heart. That’s all any of us can ask for.

Find the courage to stand alone—that’s the strong back. Trusting yourself and being open to a community—that’s the soft front. Bringing things to the light doesn’t make them magically go away—it makes them easier to navigate. Navigation is the key to a better life. Seeing through the fog of disappointment and uncertainty makes “roughing it” not so rough. I hope you continue to journey through your wilderness. There’s so much sunshine on the other side.

Take Care,

ToriB 💕🌻

One Comment Add yours

  1. Barbara B says:

    I truly enjoyed this read, you have definitely inspired and encouraged some changing that requires the work and the need of others. Love this

    Liked by 1 person

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