(Distinctions are subtleties of language that, when gotten, cause a shift in a belief, behavior, value or attitude.)


Have you ever wanted to not feel something and chose to numb out? Most of us have. Pain, upset, discomfort, fear, shame, anger . . . ugh, hard to even read the list, isn’t it? There are times when we just don’t like how we feel, or are afraid of how we will feel, and so choose to mask, medicate, suppress, or cover it up and be numb to it. It happens, hopefully not often or repeatedly, but it is a route most have taken.

How did that work for you? After the numb wore off the feeling you were suppressing probably came back. (I recently experienced a root canal so I know clearly what “the numb wore off” means!)

Numb is the (current) absence of pain. Peaceful is the absence of pain sources.

When you are peaceful you have handled your stuff. You’re not affected by the TV talking heads. You see the current weather as a cycle, not waves of potential disaster. Your relationships are warm, meaningful, supportive, lasting. You have something to look forward to which engages you. You have chosen to build reserves. You have a clarity about yourself and your journey. You look for possibilities. True, upsets occur, but for the peaceful person, they pass without the need to be numbed.


Coaching Point: Numb is trapped. Peaceful is free. This Distinction is for the mass of us who have not yet chosen to make peaceful living a priority. What are you like when you are peaceful? What is your next step in having more of it?


Copyright 2015 Steve Straus. All rights reserved.