What Clearing Can Look and Feel Like

ContemplationDo you ever have those special-occasion days that end up unraveling into an emotional heap?  Whether you are in the middle of a holiday season or not, may this excerpt from A Year to Clear support you.

As I see it, clearing at the level that I write about here gives us an opportunity to play a much bigger game where effort is minimal, success is assured, and everybody wins.

Happy clearing!

It was a beautiful Thanksgiving Day last year, and we were thrilled to have our daughter home with us. With dinner plans scheduled for later on, the day was wide open to have some feel-good time as a family.

Didn’t happen.

We couldn’t find our groove. We spent most of the day orbiting around each other in separate worlds: my husband going for a run, our daughter writing on her laptop, me working hard to meet a deadline for an online course I was creating. When I was ready to go for our walk, my daughter was out running, and my husband was taking a nap.

Seems benign, until you start to throw in expectation, disappointment, hunger, discord, impatience—the “perfect storm” conditions (in my case) for old abandonment issues to rear their ugly little head. Yes, my buttons got royally pushed on that Thanksgiving Day.

What made this perfect storm different, though, was that I was able to process the emotional weather the moment I became aware of it. Instead of letting the poor-me patterns fester like they used to in the old days, I closed my eyes and went inside to the place that hurt the most: my heart space. What I felt and saw with my mind’s eye was a dark, gucky, chaotic energy swirling around an image of the three of us facing outward, completely disconnected from one another. Beneath all that was a wave of deep, amorphous grief.

So I watched and felt and allowed my squirmy self to not like it at all. I watched my impulses to bolt and disappear and make everyone feel really bad. I witnessed the gucky energy. I felt the gucky energy. I inserted as much compassionate awareness as I could into that gucky energy.

For about five minutes I observed and allowed. I became my own witnessing presence.

Over the course of about fifteen minutes, I watched as the area around my heart space began to grow lighter, brighter, and clearer. My nervous system had calmed. I felt restored. I felt myself again. When I opened my eyes, I felt strangely cleansed and purified.

And the other best part is that my family seemed lighter, brighter, and clearer too.


  • This situation from my past has brought up an old wound . . . (what it looked and felt like . . .)
  • When I insert compassionate awareness into the wound, I can feel . . .

–From “Day 190 – What Clearing Can Look and Feel Like,” A Year to Clear by Stephanie Bennett Vogt

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