When Japanese mend broken objects they don’t discard them, they carefully repair the cracks and broken pieces beautifully with gold. They believe that something that has suffered damage becomes more beautiful as a result.
What if we started treating our painful life experiences as an opportunity to be healed with GOLD?
Would we look at our wounds differently? Could we actually heal from them?
I’d like to think that the real value of this Japanese tradition of gold filling is the love-filled tender care in which they treat these wounds delicately, carefully, and with honor as they fill in each crack. Scars can be seen as ugly or beautiful. When we see them as ” ugly” they become a constant reminder of the pain we experienced which keeps us paralyzed and frozen in that traumatic event. If we choose to see them as beautiful, we can then begin to heal these wounds with GOLD just as the Japanese do with their broken objects.
In order to begin to live again beyond a painful life event we can start by looking at the experience differently. As horrific as an experience can be, we can still choose to heal in a way that propels our life forward, that allows us to teach others and support others so that they too may heal. That is the GOLD filling. That is the LOVE.
In my experience, these 5 Tips can certainly help in the process of filling our wounds with GOLD:
1) Feel To Heal – It’s important that you surround yourself around people who you trust that will allow you the time to share your feelings about your painful event. Feeling these emotions rather than shutting them down allows you to regain control of yourself as you express your feelings. Whether its talking, writing, or drawing; find an outlet that allows you the freedom for your fullest expression so you may release that energy from within.
2) Take Constructive Action – According to Psychology Today, “Taking action restores a sense of control and directly counteracts the sense of powerlessness that is the identifying mark of trauma.” Taking action even in the smallest way will support you in regaining your sense of power and feel rewarding as you are contributing and connecting back to yourself and others.
3) Go Deeper – “In the wake of crisis it is possible to learn and grow at rates 100 times faster than at any other time, because there is a door of opportunity. Growth can go at warp speed in every domain of life”, says Psychology Today. Try to find the deeper meaning in what has happened to you. When you are willing to look for the blessing +lesson ( I call them BLESSONS) you have the opportunity to learn something about yourself, you didn’t realize before that you may actually prefer as it shifts your outlook on life.
4) SELF ForGIVEness - When we forgive we are essentially giving back to ourselves. Freeing up the space in our heart and mind so that new energy, and a new life force can enter. I strongly recommend Iyanla Vanzant’s book Forgiveness: 21 Days to Forgive Everyone for Everything as a powerful book that will support you and go on the journey with you to Forgiveness. The first stop though, is forgiving yourself. Forgiving yourself FIRST allows you to authentically express true forgiveness to others. It is a freeing and liberating experience and one of the best ways to begin to love again.
5) Find Your Tribe – A tribe is a group of people who are in it together with you. Even if they don’t experience the same pain as you, they allow you to space to vet your feelings, and support you in your healing and growth. Our tribe is our most trusted group of support. You can find this tribe in support groups, in friendships, and within your family. There is a tribe for EVERYONE. So get out there and find it.
What I have come to learn in my experiences of grief, pain, and healing is that as long as I am willing to; feel to heal, take action, find the deeper meaning of the experience, forgive myself and do all of this within my tribe; I am doing just as the Japanese do with their broken pieces. I am filling my cracks up with GOLD , I am more beautiful as a result.