“In Touch” : Being Intimate with Experience

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Shag Green
Photograph by Michael Melford, National Geographic
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“How do you relate to your experience—particularly your more challenging or emotionally painful experiences?
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Do you welcome them, or do you try to distance yourself from them?
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Do you lean in, or do you lean away?
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Are you intimate with them or distant from them?
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The path of distancing is well-worn and familiar: we judge ourselves or others, and then we attack, withdraw, or numb.
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These reactions are all variations of the classic defensive repertoire of fight, flight, or freeze.
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The path of welcoming our experience, of becoming intimate with it, is less familiar.
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While it seems riskier, it is far more rewarding.
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We tend to instinctively avoid both physical and emotional pain.
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Who wants to feel worse?”
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