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Brianna Wiest


Author of 101 Essays That Will Change The Way You Think, The Mountain Is You and more. Partner @thoughtcatalog . You can find my books below.
Every piece of you that hurts is a part of you that wants to be loved but does not know how to ask for it, or how to receive it, or how to allow it to seep into the openings where the losses and the lessons left caverns the size of your hope, your wide-eye awe, your child self, your true self; and in their place left hardness, and avoidance, and cynicism, and fear. When we don’t know how to say that there’s a part of us that wants to be seen, we often find an unconscious way to require that it is noticed. But if we began to recognize the most unseemly parts of ourselves not as the pieces that need to be amended or corrected or rejected — rather, the ones that most need to be nurtured and nourished and loved — we would transform. It would all transform. Every piece of you that hurts is a part of you that is asking you to pay attention to it. By bearing witness, by being present, by spending time. We think that loving something means to be unconditionally permissive when it is often in fact just the willingness to pay attention to the pieces that nobody else notices. To give the light of our awareness in the most tiny, ordinary ways. Everything heals and grows when it is loved well because everything reveals its true and whole nature to us when we care enough about it to see the perfection within it. Things tend to meet us at the level of our expectation of them. When we decide to look at the ugliest parts of ourselves as the ones most deserving of love, they become the avenues to the deepest and fullest experience of being loved. We come to find that the purpose was never to reach a completed state and then allow the floodgates to open; rather, to open the floodgates and let them fill us up from the inside out. To show us that cheap love walks beside us at our easiest, but deep love finds us at our lowest, and brings us back out into the light.
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9 meses atrás
When we find it too difficult to arrive fully into the present moment, it is almost always because the quiet is telling us something we are not yet ready to hear. The longer we avoid looking honestly at ourselves, the louder our inner worlds will become. When we find the courage to look long enough into the eyes of our demons, they dissolve into crying children just asking us to set them free. We don’t need a lot to be happy, but we do need things that are real. We do need things that grip our hearts and enliven us and make us feel like we are here for a reason, here to experience something that could only be touched by a human body, understood by a human mind, loved by a human heart. When we deny ourselves the authentic experience of being alive, we reach for more when what we really want is not to stretch wider, but to go deeper. You don’t have to run forever. The answers you’re looking for have probably been with you all along. The journey has not been about finding that truth, but strengthening your inner resolve to choose what you have always known is right, even if the world would not understand, even if you might disappoint some people, even if it might scare you or challenge you or make you feel vulnerable in a way you never have before. I hope you will discover that making it is not always about where you end up, but how you take each step. When you change your relationship with today, you change your relationship with tomorrow. These words are from my book of daily meditations, The Pivot Year, which will be out next spring. You can pre-order your copy through the link in my bio. I’m sending you all love, and I hope you have a great day.
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1 ano atrás
You are not waiting on another person, or for the right timing, or for everything to magically fall into place. You are waiting until you feel ready to live within the questions, to not need every answer, and to know that this life does not come to us to be fully understood, but fully experienced — in every direction we can possibly reach. If you are feeling like you need some advice, encouragement or guidance tonight, leave your questions in the comments and I will do my best to answer as many as I can. 🤍
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11 meses atrás
There is a path to everything you know is waiting for you, even if you don’t know what that is right now. Sometimes, the paths we plan too intently end up limiting us in some way. There are possibilities available to your future self that your current self wouldn’t be able to consider. All your mind can pull from is what it’s known, and if you’re trying to build a life outside of that, then you’re going to have to open yourself to the possibility that not only is there a path toward, but that it may very well lead somewhere better than you thought it would. Sometimes, we don’t know because we can’t know. The very fact of us knowing would disrupt the timing of what is unfolding. The very fact of us knowing would prevent us from learning the lessons that are here for us today. And those lessons? They aren’t a due we have to pay or a purgatory we are being stuck in, they are the building blocks of the character of the person who is opening up to this next level of their existence. What’s here for you right now contains within it the wisdom and the growth needed to unlock the next phase. I hope that instead of wondering and worrying how you will ever move forward, you can simply recall all the other times you feared you never would… and did. You can remember that you never would have imagined exactly what led you to most good things in your life, and I hope that will inspire you to keep your heart open to wonder, to mystery, to the infinite unknown through which everything beautiful and important will emerge.
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12 horas atrás
I know it is hard to have faith in a universe that does not seem to live up to its promises. One that has killed your dreams more than it has held your hope. One that has given you so few reasons to truly trust in it, that has so often seemed to withhold everything you needed. What I hope you will come to see is that your faith was actually in the things that were not meant to stay, the things that were not intended to remain. Your faith was in the lessons, the things that were meant to teach you something bigger than yourself, to show you back to a light within that you forgot existed. Your faith was in the idea that you would always know what was best, that you could see the full picture. Your faith was in the fact that you did not get what you wanted, when you were being handed what you actually needed. The universe does not have any one fixed agenda, there is no external source of consciousness deciding when, and for how long, you will be withheld from your heart’s desires. There is only evolution, and growth. There is the subconscious mind, and the superconscious one. There is the people we believe ourselves to be, and the parameters through which we have come to form our image of them. There are our past experiences and our blind spots. There are the things we learn from getting what we want, and the things we learn from getting what we don’t. Instead of focusing all of your attention on what has cycled out of your life, what has not held up the way you thought or hoped that it would, consider instead all that has. All the love that you have carried, all of the dreams that have not died. All of the people who have found you at every iteration of your journey, whose paths have magically seemed to curve and twist alongside your own. All of the things you were right about. All of the things that remained. There are always things to grieve over, and things to be grateful for. We get to decide what we pay attention to. We get to decide what we believe in. We get to decide what we see.
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3 dias atrás
I’m proud of you for being willing to lean into the unknown, for continuing to try even if you can’t quite imagine where you will ultimately land. I’m proud of you for leading with your heart, even when it’s trying to bring you somewhere your mind can’t completely comprehend. I’m proud of you for trusting that you’re not being pushed away from one thing, but called to another. For being willing to experience something you never have before, for practicing trust. I’m proud of you for living at the edge of your courage. I’m proud of you for letting yourself be guided. For remembering that the only regret is not making the most of what we had, while we still had it.
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5 dias atrás
This past weekend, I gave the commencement speech at my alma mater, and received an Honorary Doctorate in Literature. Thank you again to the @etowncollege class of 2024 for having me share such a special moment with you all. I wish you the best as the next chapter of your lives begin.
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6 dias atrás
I hope you learn to see yourself like someone who truly loves you does — someone who can see your imperfections but chooses you regardless, and forgives you regardless, and believes in you regardless. The truth is that when we observe something for too long, we inevitably discover every microscopic fault line within it, and when we focus on those minor imperfections for too long, we begin to piece together an image of that thing as being unworthy and broken and flawed. The way we see ourselves functions so similarly. If we allot too much brain space to finding, and shielding, ourselves from the ways in which we might not be enough, we inevitably end up burying ourselves beneath the mountain of evidence we didn’t even realize we were gathering in an attempt to prove ourselves right. We enter a complete denial of the beautiful truth of all we came here to be, and most importantly — we lose touch with the way we are really known, with the way we are really seen. If you were to ask almost anyone in your life to describe you, you’d probably find that the way they’d depict you would vary incredibly from the way you imagine yourself. You are so much more inclined to give weight, and precedence, to the things you are still working on, the things you are insecure about, the ways in which you are not living up to your own standards. You are so much more inclined to define yourself by what you aren’t, while the rest of the world is actually seeing you for what you already are. Do you know how many perfect moments are unfolding before your very eyes? Do you know how much you already have? Do you know how many quiet nights of peace you have already experienced, how many hearts have loved you, how many people would love to see your name pop up on their phone right now? Do you know how much you matter? Do you know how good you are?
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10 dias atrás
All the pieces of your story that have not made sense, that have left you with more questions than answers, that felt like false starts and endless cycles, will eventually reveal themselves to you as perfectly sequenced, perfectly timed, perfectly destined to set you up for all that you would one day come to know and be. Sometimes, you don’t know because you can’t know. The virtue of you knowing where it all ultimately leads would short-circuit the process, and the process? It’s a regathering. It’s where you wake up the parts of yourself that had been laying dormant as potential, where you recover the parts of yourself that you lost to the past, to grief, to fear; where you begin to uncover who you really are, and what you really want to be. Your path has taken you to the exact people, places and experiences that can will give you that knowledge. The losses were lessons, written by your own subconscious mind, with the intention of bringing you to your edges and allowing you to see past the walls you had been quietly living inside. The life you are meant for is the life you actually want. Not the life you are settling for because it feels easiest, because you want to feel safe more than you want to actually experience this world while you are still in it. Not the life that makes your ego feel as though it can compete, but the one that makes your soul recognize that there was never a competition in the first place. The only measure is how fulfilled we are, how much we can appreciate the day we have, the opportunities we’re being given, those who have chosen to walk alongside us — all we have, all we are, and all we will one day be. It is in our highest interest to listen to the discomfort, as it is attempting to lead us to peace. To honor what is not working so we may keep reaching toward what will. To remember that if something is not bringing us wholeness, it is trying to bring us to the piece of ourselves we first must self-realize in order to heal, in order to truly, and completely, be.
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12 dias atrás
Sometimes, we don’t get what we want because we are meant for things far greater than we’d ever let ourselves believe. Sometimes, we fail not because we are lost or inept or in some other way lacking, but because some deeper knowing inside of us is beginning to take hold, and some greater vision is beginning to take shape, and instead of a life we can tolerate, we begin moving toward one we can’t get enough of. Instead of a consolation prize, we start preparing for the victory lap. Instead of believing that we are not enough because we could not thrive within what was not meant for us, we begin to realize that we are not meant to excel at a life that is not designed to make the most of who we most essentially are, what we most fundamentally love, what we are most inherently born to be. You are not behind for the ways in which life did not turn out the way you once wanted it to. The gap between where you are and where you most want to be will be filled by the person you become — and that is why we have dreams in the first place. Not so that we might arrive somewhere that is perfect, but that we will press up against the bounds that we think limit us and move beyond them. To see with crystalline clarity that we are limitless beyond even our own comprehension. That we are designed with the potential to fulfill what quietly inspires us, what motivates us, what interests us, what enlivens us, what awakens us in every sense. We don’t only have to grow, we also have to learn. We have to confront our shadows and our demons. We have to know the ways in which we are inclined to self-destruct. We have to understand what we do not want life to be before we can grasp what we do. Becoming the whole of who we are is not a matter of solely embodying the beautiful things in our hearts, but also befriending the hard ones. We reside, always, at the edge of everything — all of the past behind us, and all of the potential in front, and all of the doorways around. The humbling, the losing, the stopping, the releasing, the slowing and the stillness is just trying to give us the eyes to see.
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14 dias atrás
For the May/June issue of @womenshealthmag , on stands now. ✨ Thank you so much to @lizplosser and the entire team for having me. Truly surreal. Photographer @justin_steele Hair + Makeup @smonden_ Written by @amymwilk Styled by @kgsaladino Executive Visual Director @fvleroux Editor @lizplosser
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19 dias atrás
I hope you stop talking yourself out of the person you actually want to be. I hope you will realize how often things meet you at your expectation of them. How presence is everything, but you also have a choice in what moment you meet. How the way you set your gaze is often how you find the view. That you can decide, in any second of that infinite now, to look for the silver linings, the glimmers, the doorways that are cracked open, inviting you to see the possibility, the potential, the goodness. Most of all, I hope you will understand that you become the person you condition yourself to be. You are a work of your own making, a nurturing that does not only happen by chance, but also, by choice. I hope you will start to see how all those tiny revolutions add up to something greater than their parts. I hope you will begin to realize the power you’ve always had deep inside. I hope you will come to discover that the life you’ve always wanted has always just been waiting for you to start walking toward it, one step at a time. I hope you learn how to bring yourself home.
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1 mês atrás