By Ije Ude

I’ve been practicing some of the tools in The Resilience Toolkit for a little over 2 years. My life has shifted in subtle and noticeable ways during this time. When I first started practicing the tools, I was looking for big, magical shifts. And sometimes they would appear. The chronic pain in my knee would subside. I’d go from drowsy to buzzing with energy. I’d be in a familiar situations and respond differently.

Over time I started to appreciate the subtle, tiny shifts happening along the way. Here are my top 5 most unexpected side effects of practicing Lumos Transforms’ Resilience Toolkit.

1. I realized I’m not as calm as I thought I was. What I thought was inner peace was really numbness. My system had wisely decided to numb out what I was feeling in my body when it became overwhelmed. This lead me to my next discovery…

2. I have silent rage and grief brewing internally. Surprisingly, this can actually be a sign of increased resilience. The more I practiced the tools from The Toolkit, the more my system began to unthaw. I now have the capacity to feel my body and my feelings again. Nowadays, I let myself feel angry and, more often than not, express it in the moment. No more holding things in and analyzing them to death in my head while my resentment grows. I feel the feelings and safely express them.

3. I’m better at setting boundaries. I’ve spent years reading books and taking classes about boundary setting. I’ve made shifts in the past, but eventually old patterns would resurface. I realize now I was bypassing my body’s wisdom and guidance and treating boundary setting as if it was a purely intellectual exercise. Really, it’s a whole-body process. Today, setting boundaries comes easier because I notice when I’m uncomfortable sooner. Because I’m more present to the sensations in my body, I’m no longer willing to tolerate my discomfort just to keep other people around me comfortable.

4. I’m not as hard on myself when I make a mistake or fall short of my own expectations. Instead of saying, “What’s wrong with you?” or “You’re not good enough,” when things go wrong I say, “What’s going on? What do I need to get through this?” This shifted because I realized that what I thought were personal flaws or failings were really just symptoms of chronic stress and unprocessed trauma.

5. I have more energy. I used to wake up almost every day feeling tired and groggy. Now on most days I wake up before my alarm feeling rested and ready to start my day. This is HUGE for someone whose constant refrain was, “I’m so tired.”

So often, we dive into a healing path expecting big results right away. I didn’t notice these changes immediately, but when I stopped and looked back, I noticed all these seemingly small (but actually huge) benefits of sustaining my Toolkit practice over time. It took me about 2 years to get here, so here’s to the tortoise pacing across the finish line.

Want to learn The Resilience Toolkit with Ije? Sign up for her upcoming session in Brooklyn, NY.

For all other sessions of The Resilience Toolkit, click here and check out our calendar.

  • Kimberley Stern

    This is a beautiful narrative and one that brings hope. Beautifully articulated.

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