09 December 2014

What Do You Really Want For Christmas?

It’s that time of year again ... summer is in the air (in our southern hemisphere) and Christmas is fast approaching.

So what do you want?

When asked that question, many people often experience anxiety and react like a rabbit caught in the headlights ... wary, anxious or frozen.

When faced with a blank piece of paper and a pen and the encouragement to write down whatever you want, whatever you can imagine, what do you do?

Do you get scared to dream BIG and ask for what you really want?
Do you hold back, play small and ask for what you feel is appropriate/reasonable/not too much?
Do you say “I don’t know” because you can’t figure out how you are ever going to get what you really want?

Or do you go for it, ask for exactly what you want and open yourself to receive?

The reluctance to ask for what you want is yet another ego-mind control tactic designed to ensure you stay at the effect of your “not-good-enough” thoughts and feelings. The infernal internal critic chants “don’t ask for too much”, “you don’t deserve to have everything you desire” “stop being greedy and selfish” and on and on.

I know, you DO know what you want. And I also know it’s not “stuff” that you really want. It’s love and joy and peace and fun. It’s connection and communication and inspiration and contribution. It’s in BEING who you are that you get to DO and HAVE what you really want ... and that’s what you really, really, really want.

"All I want for Christmas is ... YOU."

04 November 2014

Can You Stop Terrorism?

If you want to create change externally, first you need to make the shift internally.

So what has the external world view of terrorism today got to do with your own internal state?  Have you stopped to consider where and how “terrorism” lives in you?

Well I have and what I have realised is that I terrorise myself when I agree with my endless infernal, internal, hyper-critical ego-mind! Every time I agree with this internal critic, I terrorise myself with the possibility that I am somehow really in peril ... and the feelings of anxiety, fear and terror begin. The behaviour that follows is anything but pretty - closed rather than open, reactive rather than response-able and resisting rather than accepting.

This “home-grown brand of internal terrorism” is insidious, surprising in it’s ferocity and comes unexpectedly at times. It is the voice within constantly chanting the “not-good-enough” refrain while relentlessly causing you to question your own self-worth and self-value. It’s you agreeing with the thoughts and feelings that you are not okay the way you are, that the world is a frightening place and the best you can do is manage, protect and defend.

Stopping the internal terrorism is not easy and it’s also not hard. It’s just unfamiliar. It requires practice and diligence and rigor. It requires consciously choosing to remember who you really are and who everyone else really is too: magnificent, powerful, lovable, valuable and creative ... willing to choose from LOVE rather than fear, willing to respond rather than react, willing to BE bigger than your feelings and thoughts and perceptions and judgements and limitations ...

And willing to show up in love even when you feel afraid.

"If you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make the change."

Michael Jackson - Man In The Mirror

07 October 2014

What Are You Certain About?

The quest for certainty, for knowing what’s coming next is a national epidemic right now. With all the talk of terror on our news 24/7 and the heightened sense of fear palpable in the energy of day-to-day living, more and more people are seeking a sense of security and safety ... personally, professionally and on a world scale.

Yet, certainty, for the most part, is one thing that you can’t count on ... not now, not ever.

Life is a paradox ... unpredictable and mysterious ... things happen that you are not aware of until they do and yet you still seek certainty BEFORE they happen. Fruitless and pointless. The quest for certainty only increases your feelings of fear and uncertainty ... and the more you seek certainty the more fearful you become.

If you want to feel safe and secure, you need to remember WHO YOU ARE - powerful, magnificent, lovable, valuable creative being able to choose. When you remember who you are before you go seeking certainty about what’s going to happen, you put yourself in the driver’s seat of your life and can choose how to respond to whatever shows up.

When you source yourself in love rather than fear, you have more choices about how to respond. Rather than automatically reacting, defending, protecting and managing what shows up, you free yourself to choose how you show up in response....and if you are willing to fully embrace whatever happens next as your loving creation and your opportunity to respond, you find yourself flowing with the mystery of life rather than trying to predict it and control it. It’s the difference between choosing to operate from the biggest context: I Create The Whole Of My Own Reality and being unconsciously consumed by the paradigm of fear.

And if you really need certainty about anything, it’s that YOU are the one who gets to choose ... always.

"Let go of certainty. The opposite isn't uncertainty. It's openness, curiosity and a willingness to embrace paradox, rather than choose up sides. The ultimate challenge is to accept ourselves exactly as we are, but never stop trying to learn and grow."

Tony Schwartz, Author

09 September 2014

Prepare Yourself For Feeling Fallout

Whenever you go all the way with telling your truth, you will be confronted by the reactions and responses such truth telling elicits ... Feeling Fallout.

Feeling Fallout can be mild to extreme and always occurs when uncomfortable truth is shared. And because no-one likes feeling uncomfortable, sharing deeper emotional truth is often avoided because of the feeling fallout.

I once had a client say to me that she was only willing to tell her truth when she could be certain that no-one would get upset, thereby ensuring that she never went all the way with her truth when things got emotionally charged. Net result ... nothing much got resolved and she was often left feeling anxious and incomplete.

You cannot resolve conflict if you are not willing to share the whole of your truth (which includes how you are feeling) AND be willing to hear and receive the others’ whole truth including their feelings. It’s not difficult to share your feelings ... it may feel challenging but it’s not hard. It’s just unfamiliar because you have been conditioned to be “nice” and “polite” and avoid conflict at all costs.

So how can you prepare yourself for feeling fallout?

  1. Remember that feelings are simply energy-in-motion - they let you know how you feel and what you are making things mean, and how the other feels and what they are making things mean.
  2. Feelings are not facts, they exist to be acknowledged, validated, felt and released.
  3. You cannot have an effective conversation in the middle of a feeling reaction so when feelings arise, breathe ... allow and let them move through you ... and they will if you let them. As Jill Bolte-Taylor observed: It takes 90 seconds for the feeling to move through you and be done.
  4. Expect some feeling fallout when addressing conflict and remember to keep communicating until the energy shifts.

Simple and, once again, not always easy when you start. And the more you practice, the easier it will become.

"... emotions heal when they are heard and validated."

Jill Bolte-Taylor

12 August 2014

Consciously Withholding

I recently went on an overseas holiday for a special birthday celebration with a group of girlfriends. Early on the morning of the big day, I received the news that a friend had died and I realised I would not be back in time for the funeral. I felt the grief rise up and asked myself:  “What is the most loving choice I can make in this moment?” I was surprised to feel that rather than go into the grief and feel it, I needed to accept it was there to be felt later, tuck-it away and make a conscious choice to withhold my news from my friends for a few days. So I did.

I didn’t want to impact the birthday celebrations with my grief ... and I also wanted some time to process before sharing. I felt very sad yet managed to put it aside and fully participated in all the activities from breakfast through lunch and then onto a sumptuous and beautiful dinner ... all of which were lovely. In bed later that night, I let myself feel and cry and then went to sleep. When I woke up, I felt physically blah and had a rough start to the day. The plan was a full day trip to another town, exploring and shopping and lunching together. I decided not to go and told the girls I was not feeling up to a full day out. Once again, the most loving choice I felt I could make was to consciously withhold all the reasons for my decision. I knew I wanted to spend the day by myself with no need to explain or share ... I just wanted to feel my feelings and be with myself ... which I did.

The next day I told the girls what had been going on with me. When one of them said: “Why didn’t you tell us before now?” I asked: “And if I had, would you have wanted to stay with me and forgo your day out?” “Yes, of course ...” she replied. I then shared all the reasons I did not tell them earlier, I took responsibility for the whole communication ... and they all got it.

The rest of our holiday was wonderful and nurturing and fun.

What I realised ... once again ... is that I am ok and feelings are ok. And sometimes the most loving choice is to consciously withhold until ready to share fully.

"What would love do now?"

15 July 2014

What's Wrong?

This is an automatic and very common question when enquiring after someone’s emotional state - particularly when you see someone in obvious distress - yet from the paradigm of fear it simply cements the belief that feeling anything distressing is somehow “wrong” or that there is something “wrong” with the person feeling whatever they are feeling.

Asking someone “what’s wrong?” doesn’t allow the responder any space to consider what is actually going on from the paradigm of cause. The very question usually catapults the communication into the paradigm of fear and elicits one of two responses: Either some blurt about how awful something or someone is or “nothing”, which is actually true ... even if not realised in that moment.

In the paradigm of cause, nothing is wrong and nothing is right.

There is only what’s so and any judgement about it (right/wrong; good/bad; negative/positive etc) is something you are doing, it’s meaning you are making of whatever is happening. And the most pervasive, unconscious judgement filters you have will concern feelings and emotions ... hence your unconscious and automatic judgement of intense feelings rears it’s head in the form of the question: “What’s wrong?”

Time to change those filters and become conscious and aware that feelings are not wrong or bad or good or right ... they are simply feelings -  there to inform you how you feel so you can feel them and respond. So the next time you are tempted to ask “what’s wrong?” consider asking this instead: “What’s going on?”

When you let go of your automatic judgement filters, you can more clearly see what is really going on and you can fully respond from love.

"What would happen if everything I thought was ‘wrong’
was actually ‘right’?"

Conversations With God Book 1 by Neale Donald Walsch

17 June 2014

Nobody's Perfect

I have been hearing this a lot lately ... and although many agree ... I do not.

Actually I know that YOU are perfect, in fact, every single human being is actually perfect although you will not accept this premise from the fear driven paradigm of “not good enough”.

When you say you are not perfect, what you actually mean is your behaviour is not perfect, not ideal, not saintly ... simply put ... not good enough.

And there it is again, when you forget WHO you really are and think that what you DO defines your “perfection” or otherwise, you end up on the relentless roller-coaster of doing more to get approval, agreement or acceptance. It’s a sticky trap of self-judgement and self-criticism that keeps you on the wheel of “never good enough” and on it goes.

WHO you are is perfect LOVE and what you do sometimes reflects this and sometimes does not. When you decide that how you behave defines your okayness, it’s a lie that you tell yourself in order to justify your relentless doing, doing, doing in pursuit of excellence and avoidance of others’ judgement and it never works.

Accept your intrinsic and inherent perfection - WHO you are BEING - as a context for whatever you do and it will be much easier to do “better”. When you let go of needing to DO everything perfectly in order to BE (and feel) ok, you can choose to do whatever you want to do. When you fully own that you are OK and then choose to feel how you want to feel rather than letting your judgement of what you have done inform your feeling state, you will “get better” naturally.

"Perfection is a state in which things are the way they are, and are not the way they are not. As you can see, this universe is perfect. Don’t lie about it."

Werner Erhard

20 May 2014

Change Yourself

If you want to change anything ... start with yourself.

A simple yet powerful frame of reference is always, always, always, the self first ... then everything and anything else.

Yet the temptation of the ego-mind ruled paradigm of fear is to jump immediately into judgement and critical analysis of whatever is happening. This is quickly followed by endless thinking loops seeking to figure out how best to get them or it to change. It’s tiring and for the most part, a fruitless endeavour that does not (and will never) deliver what you seek.

As cause of your whole reality, you get to choose where to put your attention and what to focus on. Whatever is happening is out of the choices you have been making, some are deeply unconscious and others, quite deliberate, and always you are the one who is choosing whatever is occurring, the whole of whatever is happening, the all.

Here’s the kicker: Acceptance of yourself as loving valuable creator and the whole of your reality is key which means abandoning judgement about yourself and everything and everyone else. So be aware, when you choose this path, your ego-mind will fight hard to enrol you once again in managing, protecting and defending from fear. All you need to do is remember WHO you are - perfect love -  and not agree with the voice of fear.

When you willingly engage from the paradigm of love in acting as cause and accepting that whatever is happening is simply a reflection of you and your choices to date, you become more conscious of the whole and thus have more awareness about how to respond i.e. what choices to make next ... from love.

"Be the change you wish to see in the world."


22 April 2014

Arguing With Reality?

In the new paradigm of cause ... that you create the whole of your own reality ... whenever you find yourself arguing with how it is ... remember this ... YOU made it up!

That’s right, you did. You chose the reality you are experiencing even though you may be unaware that you chose it ... choose it you did. And even though you may resist being responsible for the whole of your own reality ... create it you did.

When you are willing to step-up and own the whole of your own reality as your creation, when you truly take responsibility for the whole of whatever you are experiencing, you are free to choose to create anything else you can imagine ... anything you desire ... anything at all.

The kicker is this: before you can create something new, you first need to fully accept and own the whole of your current reality. No matter what is happening, you can accept that ALL of your reality is yours, that you are powerful and able to respond because you are the cause. If you are not, then you have to wait for whomever or whatever caused your reality to decide to change it ... and some of you are still waiting.

Arguing with how it is does not bring lasting change, happiness, contentment or peace. Pushing back on the idea that you cause ALL of it does not change anything. Real and lasting change comes from you truly embracing and being responsible for the whole -  the whole of you and your whole reality the way it is - then you can choose again!

"Arguing with reality is like trying to teach a cat to bark — hopeless."

Byron Katie

25 March 2014

No Judgements But ...

Have you been on the receiving end of this sort of communication and ended up feeling persecuted judged and condemned ... not to mention confused. After all, if a family member, friend or close colleague is delivering the feedback in the spirit of open and honest communication then surely you are the one responsible for feeling judged ... aren’t you?

The short answer is - as with all things in the paradigm of cause - “yes”. You are 100% responsible for creating the feedback and you are 100% responsible for whatever you choose it means and thus what you choose to feel about it. AND you are also responsible for buying into the lie inherent in “no judgement ... but ...” because the very act of saying it ensures that is exactly what will occur.

Chances are you have also been the one saying those words (or something similar) ... and then proceeded to vomit your judgement and opinion all over the other ... once again in the spirit of truth.

What a load of rubbish!

Your judgements and opinions are not facts ... they are not “truth”. The only truth that is occurring is the truth that you are judging and forming opinions about something or someone. Broadcasting your judgemental truth is not the key to open and honest communication ... in fact it often leads to defensive interactions and conflict.

The key to open and honest communication is you being willing to own your judgements and your opinions and realise they are really about you not about the other.

Once you see that you are the one choosing to judge, you can respond to whatever it is about for you and then have the open and honest conversation you need to have, free of your judgements masquerading as truth.

"When one experiences truth, the madness of finding fault with others disappears."

S. N. Goenka

25 February 2014

What's Your Real Purpose?

The short answer is: Nothing ... well nothing in particular!

As long as you seek answers to such questions from the point of view of what you think you should be doing, doing, doing ... you will never find out. When you ponder the various forms of self-expression, occupation or vocation on offer, searching earnestly and diligently for the “right” something to do ... you will never find out. If you think you have some “special and unique” reason for being here and if only you knew what it was then everything would be ok ... you will never find out ...

Your reason for being here is exactly the same as everyone and anyone else. Your purpose and mine are the same and we each have complete freedom to choose HOW we will realise it and actualise it.

In order to do that, you need to accept that who you are is magnificent, powerful, lovable and valuable and that what you do doesn’t really matter. The value of you is that you are YOU, doing whatever you do. The quality of your experience and impact is about who you are being in the matter and not what you are doing. And when you choose to focus on being the most magnificent you that you can be in any moment, what you do takes on a whole new meaning. Rather than seeking validation solely through other people liking or approving of what you do, you become aware that being yourself - loving, open, honest and responsible - is what makes what you do so powerful and effective. It also means you know you are free to choose to do whatever you desire and not what you think you “should be doing to be ok”.

When you fully accept that Who You Are is perfect love - unchangeable, inviolable and constant - no matter what you do, you are free to do whatever you choose!

"The purpose of life is to create your Self anew, in the next grandest version of the greatest vision ever you held about Who You Are. It is to announce and become, express and fulfill, experience and know your true Self."

Neale Donald Walsch

28 January 2014

Who Wants Help?

Whatever your response ... the simple truth is ... everyone wants help with something at some time. Yet your automatic reluctance to ask for help says more about your attachment to your “not good enough” story than whether you want help or not. The simple truth is that wanting help is no more or less an indictment on your okay-ness than anything else you think or feel!

Over the holidays I spent some time with a young coach just staring out in her own business. She is smart and aware and committed to her own growth, yet when she called me (for some support!) she was clearly distressed and finding it hard to admit that she wanted some help.

She explained that although she knew she needed some help, she felt not okay to ask for it because she felt she really “shouldn’t need it”. After all she was a coach, supposed to be helping all these other people and to admit she needed help was perceived as somehow weak and not good enough.

And there you have it ... again ... the old “not-good-enough” story and feelings informing her decision making and resulting in her feeling even more distressed and unworthy. Her reluctance to acknowledge her truth and ask for what she wanted meant she continued to struggle with her own stuff. Then she called me ...

I pointed out that in my world, asking for help and support was as necessary as breathing in and out. Not only is it okay, it’s vital to my work and my life that I ask for and receive support and guidance so that I can continue to learn and grown and develop myself for my benefit and also for the benefit of my clients. I reminded her that the paradigm of ultimate cause meant that she has created a lot of amazing people in her world who could guide and assist her in her process and on her journey. Her willingness to not only ask for help but also consciously invest in working with her own coach/mentor was crucial to her living her vision in the world. Her “not-good-enough” stuff was simply to remind her of her commitment and not a reason to agree with it and continue to struggle with “going it alone”. I also pointed out that if everyone felt the way she did and agreed with their feelings she would have no clients at all! When you work with people you need to have regular support and guidance ... just like your clients have with you.

She got it and has now committed to her own ongoing process with another coach.

What about you?

"Asking for help does not mean that we are weak or incompetent. It usually indicates an advanced level of honesty and intelligence."

Anne Wilson Schaef