Over the last five or six years I have found increasingly that paying attention to my own interior areas of unfreedom has been instrumental in my development and growth. Interior unfreedoms present themselves in different ways – there are two key markers for me.
- A sense of ‘stuckness’ – recognising that I am either clinging to something or resisting something.
- Over reaction – recognising that whilst my reaction may be legitimate in essence, that the intensity of my reaction is out of proportion to the incident.
In both cases it may take a while of gently noticing, befriending and becoming curious about the unfreedom before I am able to identify its origin. In almost all cases the roots are deeply embedded in my own wounding.
Once I can name the real underlying fear I begin to pray for the grace of freedom. In many cases where that issue is linked to relationship with another it will require an honest conversation. Once I know the source of the unfreedom, I can have the conversation I need to have.
The whole process requires truth telling – I need to be honest about my interior freedom. I need to be honest about what is actually triggering me. Finally in my communication with the other I need to be honest about what I am feeling and how I am making sense of what is going on.
Engaging the other person requires discernment – are they able to have the kind of conversation I need to have? If not, it is probably wisest to continue the interior journey alone. But on the occasions that I have dared to tell my truth I have been delighted at the outcome.
Not only have I regained my interior freedom, but the relationship is on a firmer footing.