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Safe Spaces

A theme that has been percolating for me over the past couple of weeks has been safety. It’s amazing the connections that have come up for me through various conversations with different people. The Universe is trying to tell me something and that’s what I want to explore here today.

Safety. I never realized how central this is to me. It is a core value that I have not identified until this very moment. In recent years, it has subconsciously become so central to how I live my life and for that I am grateful.

In starting the Follow Your Arrow program, creating a safe environment in which women felt comfortable sharing, expressing vulnerability and connecting on a deeper level was most important to me. One woman told me the other day that after one of the meditations she had the realization that she hadn’t felt as safe as she had in that moment in a very long time. And then she thanked me. I attribute this to a group of 10 women coming together and very quickly establishing a trusting sisterhood. This comment meant the world to me. She was getting what she needed and I had unintentionally contributed to that on some level.

In bringing new people into my life, I have always been very cautious. Do I feel safe with them. There are very few people in the world that I will share my inner most thoughts with. And there are some people that I share very little with. And I think, it has everything to do with how safe I feel on an emotional level. As I said, this realization is new to me but it is enormous. I know that other people will relate to this and I most definitely want to do some more reading on the subject. I’d love to hear what others think in the comments below.

But what I do know at this point is, when we can sit down, shut up, listen and really hear another much so that they feel heard...we’ve begun to create that safe space.

Now. The key, as I’ve learned from being on both ends, is consistency. The more consistently a person feels safe in our presence, the stronger the relationship grows. The issue becomes when someone experiences a moment with us where they do not feel safe emotionally. As an example they are judged, yelled at, belittled, humiliated, criticized. In this case, moving forward, they won’t be able to predict which version of us they are going to get and they will have trouble finding a safe haven in us. Even if we try sitting down again, shutting up again and listening to hear again...they won’t feel safe and we’ve lost their trust.

Trust takes years to build, seconds to break and forever to repair. ~ author unknown

So all of this to say, I’ve had my aha moment this week and I’m about to go do my research to learn more. I know that I have failed at building safe havens in the past and I may inadvertently hurt peoples’ trust in me again from time to time. I just have to remember that I am a human being and that all I can do is my best to build a solid foundation so that when I do falter, it's not so difficult to pick up the pieces.

I am so grateful to the 8 people who helped me come to these realizations through our very different conversations over the past two weeks. This is a gigantic awareness for me, with which I will start to make new goals around. I will try my best moving forward to always offer a space that is non-judgemental, compassionate, empathic, loving, respectful and trusting. This is how I want to live my life. This is what success looks like to me and I will keep working on it. I think it’s a good goal to have :-).

Follow Your Arrow Facebook Group (join a wonderful group of women in a safe, positive, healthy space)

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