18 December 2012

When Giving Isn't

Well here we are again ... the end of another year and the festive season is upon us - a time of peace and joy and giving ...

Or is it?

Giving is a choice ... a choice to freely give means to let go and expect nothing in return ... and that is the sticking point because so much giving really isn't. At this time of year giving has become synonymous with giving stuff and along with it goes the stress and frustration of shopping and spending money and battling crowds of people all hell bent on giving stuff too. And not just giving stuff but giving more stuff we really don't need or want to those who really don't need or want it either!

As Christmas looms, I have found myself confronting some old beliefs about giving including the polarising adage "it's better to give than to receive", which in the paradigm of cause, is utterly ridiculous because it is not possible to give without receiving ... two sides of the same coin! I have become acutely aware that sometimes I make choices to "give" when really I am not! As soon as I realise I expect something in return, I am confronted by the truth that my "giving" is really a trade-off, a tit-for-tat reaction that has nothing to do with giving. I usually end up feeling disappointed, resentful and/or angry because the choice I am actually making is not about giving ... it's about being attached to a particular outcome as a result of my "giving". And it never works.

So this Yuletide I am making a different choice: To give me, not just stuff or things, but me, the whole and the all in every interaction, in every situation. To give freely the love that I am without expectation of anything particular in return. I know that something will be returned and my choice is to detach from any expectation of form and instead to receive with ease and grace whatever shows up.

Nothing like a challenge to kick-start 2013!

"You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give."

Kahlil Gibran

20 November 2012

Feeling Stressed?

Much has been written about stress - what it is, indicators, why it occurs, how to manage it, etc - and when I started researching the many and varied definitions of stress I got 580,000,000 hits on my initial google search! Talk about stressful ... !

Yet with all the information and help available today, it would seem that we are more stressed than ever. According to some recent research here in Australia: “Young adults 18 to 25 years of age reported significantly higher levels of anxiety and depression than the general population.” (Ref: The Australian Psychological Society)

Other research done by Medibank tells us: “Australian employees are absent for an average of 3.2 working days each year through stress. This workplace stress costs the Australian economy approximately $14.81 billion.” (Ref: Medibank)

So what’s going on?

My take on all of this is that many people just don’t get the power and possibility of our own minds, hearts and souls to consciously, consistently and effectively respond to what’s really going on, moment by moment from love. We are so scared of what we really feel that we distract ourselves with all the “stuff’ going on outside us to avoid going within and dealing with our own fearful thinking and feelings.

Stress is not a feeling. It’s a convenient catch-bucket response to the question: “How are you going?” or “How are you feeling?” and that sums up the source of the problem ... your own thinking mind. If you are feeling “stressed” it’s because you keep agreeing with your infernal, internal, ego-mind that keeps you focused on the past (“remember when ...’) or projected into the future (“what if ...”) and there is no peace or joy in either location!

Time to move on. Let go of the past and the future and BE. HERE. NOW.

Stop and breathe ... and breathe ... and breathe.

Let yourself BE while you observe the thoughts and the feelings. Let the energy move through you rather than attach to you and breathe ... breathe ... breathe.

Keep breathing until you feel the energy shift ... it will and so will you.

"If you do not go within, you go without."
Neale Donald Walsch

23 October 2012

Enough Already!

This month I find myself sufficiently aroused and suitably fed-up to speak out and speak up so please stay with me as it’s a bit longer than the usual offering.

As taxpayers, our leaders and politicians at all levels are employed by me and by you... in fact all of us are their employer. To sit back and do nothing is to tacitly accept that this toxic political culture of persecutor/victim/rescuer wrapped in blame and shame is ok. If someone who worked directly for you was behaving the way our leaders from all spheres of influence are behaving would you keep them on the payroll? Or say: Enough!

Enough I say to all the leaders of influence in our great nation. Enough I say to our Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, to the Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott and every politician in this country; Enough I say to the media owners, journalists, broadcasters and reporters in all media forms and forums; Enough I say to Business Leaders and all persons of influence.

Enough of the immature personal attacks and bullying, enough of your ego-centric grandstanding and point scoring, enough of name calling and cruel remarks intended to personally wound and hurt; enough of your wounded inner 3 year old running the show ... enough, enough, enough!!!

I am sick of the game you are playing and I have yet to find anyone who thinks or feels that what is going on is ok. It’s not. The role models that you have become are nothing short of appalling ... and we all wonder why bullying in schoolyards, in cyber-space and in the workplace is so very common in 21st century Australia. Well take a good long hard look in the mirror ... the fish rots from the head down and as the heads of the various fish that make up this whale of a great island nation, you are rotting at a very fast pace.

I wonder if you have considered that your legacy may very well be that you were directly responsible for the transformation of our political and social paradigm from one of “A fair go for everyone, respect, loyalty and fair-dinkum mateship” to one of “Profit before people, spin before truth, deceit, betrayal, me before you and us against them”?

How sad you cannot see that what you are doing, out of your unconscious yet insidious fear of “not good enough yet”, is continuously making choices that are divisive, limiting and above all sourced in your ego-centric thinking far removed from love, compassion and kindness. You keep creating exactly the response you get out of what you give yet blame the other for being a mirror of your own thinking. You fail to see that you are the source of all the conflict and aggressive behaviour you experience and encounter. And as the source, you can choose to change your way of Being, thinking, feeling, and doing. Your humanity is slipping and it’s time to get real, open up, tell the truth and be responsible for the whole of what you are creating. Only you can choose and ... you can choose.

Time to do something different. Time for a personal paradigm shift from Fear to Love.

How about it Ms Gillard? Mr Abbott? Anyone? Are you up for it?  Have you got the heart to drop your masks and let go of needing to prove you are good enough, accept that you (and every other human being on our planet) are fundamentally ok. Accept that you are essentially love in a skin bag of unlimited choices and start consciously choosing to BE the most magnificent you that you can be while you do what you do from love. Choose to really and simply start leading from love and truth and kindness and responsibility for the whole of how you show up and what you do, for the whole of what you cause moment by moment and the people of this great country will join you and support you in ways you never dreamed of.

That’s what I am doing by writing this piece. Telling my truth about how it is for me. And I want you to know that I wholeheartedly support you to BE your most loving self. I see you beyond the fearful stuff you keep choosing to do and I know you can BE who you are. You can.

All it takes is a new choice, a first step, an honest, open conversation free from attack and “staying on message” and spin and deflection and bullying, one real moment of truth could just change everything ...

So, what are you going to do next? Who are you going to be from now on?

I’m going to hit the “send’ button.

"insert quote"

25 September 2012

You Don't Understand ...

It can be frustrating to communicate something important and not be understood.
And just saying it louder, or slower doesn’t do much to increase understanding!

So when you feel you are not being heard or understood ...
ask yourself: “What am I NOT saying?”

Remember mis-understood is a myth!

Although it feels real ... “you don’t understand ... they just don’t get it” ... it is not. Whatever is understood is a direct result of what you have communicated (or not!). The response you get is showing you not only what you have communicated but also what you have not. The key to understanding and being understood lies in the reaction/response because in the absence of explicit meaning, everyone gives their own meaning to whatever is being communicated. Your reaction/response shows the meaning you are giving to what is being said. And so it is with everyone.

The response you get shows you what the other thinks/feels you meant and when you react to the feedback/response with: “But I didn’t mean it that way,” what you are showing yourself is what you didn’t say. You didn’t say what meaning you meant! When you allow the feedback/response to show you what you have communicated (and what’s missing), you can then respond in a way that makes clear what you meant to say.

If you want to be understood, communicate the context before you blah all the content and say what you mean: openly, honestly, clearly directly and completely. When you respond to whatever comes back from the context, you will get the response you want and you will experience being understood the way you meant.

"Say what you mean to say."
John Mayer

28 August 2012

Enough is Enough!

Enough of the constant noise of fear and anxiety and confusion ... in the world, in the street, in the office and in the home (and in our heads!)
Enough of our leaders behaving like children who won’t share or play nicely together
Enough of thinking that the world will get to be a place of peace and joy by continually fighting with each other and ourselves in the name of right!

Everywhere I go these days I am conscious of how much anxiety runs our lives and our world. Fear is the currency of power and control and polarity and we have created a world rich and abundant in fearful thinking, doing and feeling. Ever forgetful about who we are, we are convinced we are powerless to affect real change, we are scared of being powerful, magnificent, creative loving beings. Well enough is enough!

It’s time to step-up, show up and say enough of the illusion of fear, enough of being held hostage to the pervasive paradigm of power and control ... enough already.

The antidote to this insane way of being and doing and thinking and feeling is very simple ...

It comes down to LOVE.

Love as a context NOT as a romantic, idealised feeling state. Love is the whole of us all, the heart of each and every one of us and must be appreciated and acknowledged and lived as a moment by moment choice until it’s a solid habit.

Time to be and do and have and share love.

"Love is nothing you can demonstrate or prove. It’s what you are."

Byron Katie

24 July 2012

The Power Of Telling The Truth

There is great power in telling the truth. No matter what’s going on, when we tell the truth to ourselves and others we feel better, we are more engaged with people, we make better decisions and life becomes easier, less stressful and more joyful.

You can change anything when you tell the truth about it - anything at all. Yet we live in a world where pretending and lying and withholding and secrecy is accepted as normal, where many people are afraid to be open, honest and truthful and where many believe that what we keep from others rather than what we share is what makes life work - well it doesn’t. Avoiding the truth only increases our fear and helps create feelings of isolation.

The power of telling the truth lies in the simple fact that everyone knows what their truth actually is, even when it’s not overtly communicated. And each of us knows when we are not being completely open and honest with others. The ENERGY that we expend withholding is a false economy, an illusion – because everybody knows what’s really going on and we all know they know we know they know … The great cosmic joke! So, what actually stops you from being totally truthful/honest with everyone, about everything, all the time? Why do you withhold, omit information, embellish, exaggerate, fudge a little, or just plain lie? FEAR

Fear of the EMOTIONAL consequences, fear of how the other will react – fear of how they will feel and then how you will feel and then fear about what each will do as a result of saying what’s really going on.

Here’s the good news: it’s ok to feel scared and you can still tell the truth!

In fact the first truth to tell is whatever you are feeling in that moment about telling the truth! If you are feeling scared/anxious/nervous etc., say so. When you acknowledge your fear, it shifts and when you tell your WHOLE truth, there is definite shift in your energy. If this does not occur – you have not yet told ALL of your truth, so keep going! The energy shift, release, relief … will occur once the whole truth is acknowledged.

When you tell your whole truth – including what you are feeling – in the moment – the experience is liberating and freeing. When you are willing to take full responsibility for your truth - how you give it and how it is received – and respond – then you will know the extraordinary power of telling the truth.

"insert quote"

26 June 2012

Positive & Negative Rubbish!

Ever said this to yourself: "I am going to think positive" or "I want to be more positive" or something along those lines? And you have probably experienced it's not sustainable and that's because ...
There's no such thing (really) as positive OR negative thinking ...
In fact NOthing is really positive or negative ... nothing!

Positive and negative are simply judgements that signal to the world your preferences, your likes and your dislikes. they are extremely, nay, completely subjective and as such are completely made up by you according to your model/map/filter of the world.

And as with all judgements they are Context dependent. In one context killing another human being is seen as negative while in another context killing another is seen as positive. So which one is the right one? Which reality is the real one?

Answer: Both and neither (love the paradox!)

The whole idea that "thinking positive" is better than "thinking negative" is simply more fuel for the not-good-enough fire that burns within. And your ego-mind will work hard to convince you that only focussing on one side of the polarity (positive please!) and separating what is actually whole, will bring lasting rewards ... it does not.

At best, all you really get is half the story, part of the experience, a bit of the whole. And unless you can accept, acknowledge and embrace the WHOLE nothing really changes.

The paradigm of ultimate cause, lasting peace and divine love says; I Create The WHOLE Of My Own Reality ... nothing to do with positive or negative ... just the whole, the all, everything. Yet when you persist in judging yourself, others and everything that occurs though a polarised filter of negative or positive, it's almost impossible to accept yourself as cause of the whole. Your fearful ego-mind will kick in and whisper (or shout!): "You couldn't have created this awful/terrible etc. thing ... you wouldn't create something like this!" and you will agree and nothing will really change.

When you detach from your insidious habit of judging everything you create as positive or negative, when you truly step into the space of BEING the one who chooses your WHOLE reality, when you accept whatever you have created as yours and respond rather than react out of your judgements, you will discover the joy and freedom and ease of creating the whole of your own reality from love.

"Without the prior awareness that everything is one, whole, motionless, all our science and knowledge are going nowhere."
Peter Kingsley, Reality

29 May 2012

Hidden Impact

You are probably aware of the obvious and immediate impact you have on others but have you ever considered the hidden impact of what you choose to think, feel, say and do?

A few weeks ago some neighbours put some household items out for the twice-monthly collection. They neatly stacked 2 large armchairs and various other items on the nature strip next to an access road (to 4 large blocks of units) that borders our property ... exactly where it was required to be for our council to collect it on the designated day.

Sometime in the wee small hours of Saturday morning I was woken up by loud voices and noises (not unusual around here on the weekend, so I went back to sleep). It seems some late-going-home or early-rising people decided to scatter the chairs and other items all across the access road creating a blockade for the cars, bikes and prams etc. that use it.

Next morning, I could hear (and feel) a kerfuffle outside and when I looked, I saw the stuff blocking the road and a very angry driver, trying to move it out of the way so he could get on his way. Next, a delivery truck could not easily get up the road because the chairs were in the way, so he squeezed through and scraped his truck on the fence! A few more people got involved and the energy was quite heated. The stuff got moved a bit out of the way until someone else came along and moved it a bit more and on it went for most of the day.

Wow! Look at the hidden yet pervasive impact of that one choice - to scatter the rubbish - on a whole bunch of people. I got disturbed from a sound sleep, a man got held up and became frustrated and angry, a delivery driver damaged his van and other neighbours got involved to move all the rubbish back to the nature strip so it could be collected.

Whoever did this probably did not stop to consider how it might impact a whole bunch of people, and then a whole bunch more ... after all "they" were only having a bit of fun ... yet how do you think the "angry" man's day panned out, or the delivery driver who scraped his van, or the many other people walking around the roadblock or grumbling and being annoyed ... the impact just kept on going ... all for a "harmless bit of fun" ...

It became clear to me (again) HOW I create the whole of my own reality and that every choice I make has an immediate obvious impact and a not-so-immediate hidden impact. Which then leads to other people making choices that then impact others and on it goes. Every time I choose to do something without considering the consequences, the impact can create a chain of emotions that then continue to impact others.

We are all connected and ALL my choices have impact. It sure pays to consciously choose the impact I want to have and be aware of ALL the impact I am actually creating.

"If you think you're too small to have an impact, try going to bed with a mosquito."

Anita Roddick

24 April 2012

Goodbye Mum

My beautiful, amazing, wonderful Mum passed away on March 29 with me, my sister and my niece at her side as she took her last breath and smiled. It was a profoundly beautiful final moment - very different to the previous 36 hours which were tough, tiring and sorrow-filled. It was moving and humbling to be present and witness her last goodbye on this earthly plane and I was so glad I was there.

Then there was a huge gap ... a big space ... of what I did not know.

I felt so many things ... sad, happy, upset, relieved, scared, calm, lost ...

The rollercoaster ride of my grief had begun and from past experience, best to let go and go with it. So I am.

It is often said that the death of the last surviving parent is a crucial transition time for the children left behind, whatever age they may be. That certainly seems to hold true for me and my siblings. This is a time where all the things Mum did for the family - like organising the family get togethers, creating the special occasions, being the birthday/anniversary/send-a-thank -you-card reminder etc. - will now be done by someone else. And life goes on.

It is a surreal time for me. One moment feeling clear and happy, the next in a pool of dripping tears (happened in the bank today ).

And through it all I am blessed to be so loved and supported. My beautiful and generous family have been awesome, my gorgeous friends have gone the extra mile for me in so many ways over these past few weeks, my amazing clients who have moved their appointments and been completely ok with how I am feeling and what I need to do for me including running from a coaching session to hop on a plane to be with Mum. Thank you one and all for your love and support. And thank you much for your flowers, cards, messages via email, text and facebook which keep pouring in. I am comforted and embraced by love.

I know Love is who we really are and when we die we return to Love.

I am so happy my beautiful Mum is now free from the pain of her physical existence, once again enjoying the freedom to BE who she is.

Goodbye Mum ... I will love you always and miss you much.

"All of your life you think you are your body.
Some of you think you are your mind.
It is at the time of your death that you find out Who You Really Are."

Conversations With God book 1, Neale Donalsd Walsch

27 March 2012

Stress Crash Miracles!

One moment's loss of focus, a few seconds of being distracted and the sound of metal on metal was deafening ... I had just pulled out of a parking space (in my Mum's car) and hit another car. It happened so fast it took my breath away. Luckily for all concerned no damage was done to any living thing but the cars were both a bit of a mess. I realised fairly quickly that this stress crash was a wake up call. Time to stop and really acknowledge (and feel!) how much stress I had been creating for myself over the past few months. I thought I was handling it all really well. I felt quite well physically and although I knew I was anxious, I kept telling myself to "let go ... and breathe ..." and it worked ... until the day I hit another car! No amount of letting go and breathing could unhappen what had now happened ...

The effects of the stress crash kept rolling on for the next few days ... I hurt my back clearing out the car so the tow truck could take it away, I stubbed my toes (hard) when running for the phone to tell my Mum I had totalled her car and then I left the house (to catch the bus) without my keys and for some hours retraced my steps anxiously looking for them!

I had booked in to see one of my counsellors a few weeks previously when I recognsied I was stuck in "worry mode". I was feeling anxious and distracted and nothing I did was making any real difference, so I was glad the first appointment was imminent.
When I arrived for my session the lifts weren't working properly and after much waiting and waiting I finally got there ... late. I was feeling frustrated and upset as I collapsed into the chair and proceeded to unload for about 3 minutes ... then I was given a fluffy pink halo to put on my head as my counsellor said ... "Lighten up! It doesn't matter ... stop taking it all so seriously." I burst out laughing and we were on our way.

At the end of the session I felt different ... more present, in my body and able to breathe and be, rather than stuck in my mind. I shared that I was aware of being more spacious and my counsellor asked me to notice what was different over the next week, rather than focussing on all the stuff that wasn't. The last thing my counsellor said to me was: "Enjoy all the miracles, no matter how small they seem ... they are everywhere ..."

We walked out to the foyer, I pressed the lift button and the lift door opened immediately ... then we both started laughing.

"When you realise how perfect everything is
you will tilt your head back and laugh at the sky."


29 February 2012

You Make It All Up!

As the insanity in the external world continues to reveal itself to be based in fear fuelled behaviours and outcomes - stop and take a moment to contemplate the awesome power of accepting that you make it all up!

Really ... you make it all up. Everything that you experience externally starts internally with how you think and feel and then act. When you change the way you think and feel and act, the world changes. Accepting, nay embracing, this simple yet stunningly potent truth is all it takes for you to remember that you are the force of transformation in your world.

Yet I suspect you hesitate to accept. You are still reluctant to really get that you are that powerful, that magnificent and that able. Able to create the reality you choose from the whole of who you are, pure love.

Well no time like the present to choose again and right now ... and I mean now, accept without question that you are the source of all that is. You don't have to feel it or even believe it, you just need to accept it as a truth to live by then BE who you want to BE while you do what you do.

BE loving and you will experience love, BE caring and you will experience being cared for, BE open and you will experience openness, BE honest and you will experience honesty ... are you getting it?

Stop focussing on all the doing, doing, doing and pay attention to who you are BEING in this moment and who you choose to BE in the next moment from love. Then notice what happens to and in your reality.

Go within or you go without

25 January 2012

Let Go ... or ... Go!

2012 is here and so are we!

I believe this year is about letting go of fear as the predominant operating context and embracing LOVE ... by and for every human being on our glorious planet. We have seen enough evidence on the world stage of late that those who choose to hang onto the way it was are being "forced" to go while those who choose to let go, are going forward and creating a new reality.

Letting go is a relentless moment by moment activity. When you are willing to let go of your expectations that the content of your life (things, other people, yourself) should be different, you will experience the freedom you seek ... freedom to BE who you are and to let others BE who and how they are. When you free yourself from expectation and judgement and accept, allow, embrace and respond to what's so moment by moment then nothing is a problem and everything that occurs affords you an opportunity to respond from love.

When you are attached to things/people/yourself being a certain way, it's a surefire prescription for disappointment. The constant need to manage, protect and defend your own position in relation to yourself, others and whatever is happening is exhausting ... not to mention futile in achieving lasting transformation.

The paradox is this: When you are willing to let go of your attachment to any and all of the content and focus on BEING who you are and responding moment by moment from a context of LOVE, you will have everything you ever dreamed of! What it really takes is choosing to let go of fear and then keep choosing to let go, and let go and let go ...

"When you let go of what you are, you become what you might be."

Lao Tzu