Since May 2016, I have been on the healing journey. Releasing and purging your mind, body and spirit is a daunting task. It is funny how you thought you had worked through something but you come to realize that the residue bled through the depths of your heart. As such, you have to spend time spiritually bleaching the heart stains.

I never would have dug as deep, felt as much residual pain, and subsequently get to this place of self awareness and willingness keep running the race toward authentic wholeness if I was not given the gift of the safe space. I cannot stress the importance in having a safe space to talk about all of the brain clutter. I was blessed with someone who is truly interested in my wellbeing. The interactions never felt obligatory; the person was engaged and ready to give me the time I needed to work through all the violent storms in my head. I never feel judged. I can talk about anything no matter how minute, off base and stupid it sounded. I could cry until my eyes swelled. I received loving yet constructive feedback on my thought patterns and how I contributed to my issues. Last and most importantly, we talk about solutions that would foster emotional intelligence.

In my observation (and Iyanla Vanzant’s), the reason why it is so difficult for people to heal from past wounds is because they have no judgment free zone to lay those burdens down. People have a tendency to disconnect and dismiss issues of others, especially when those issues are foreign to them. The disconnectedness and dismissiveness sparks distrust in the person who needs the safe space, which leads to one’s thoughts and emotions staying bottled up. Also, one may feel like they are not heard, especially if they are told in no certain terms to suck it up, buttercup. Not being heard leads to one holding on to residue that may be damaging to their mind, soul and spirit. Holding on to residue also leads to so much pressure on a person to the point they fragment.

The safe space did more for me than any mental health professional. I am not saying that clinicians are not important at all. But I am saying that having someone that is willing to walk the path towards wholeness with you and and help you unpack baggage is worth its weight in gold.

If you have the bandwidth to be someone’s safe space, don’t be afraid to provide it. You just never how you may change someone’s life for the better.

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