Thursday, January 18, 2018

From fed up with life to being on purpose


From yucky feelings to peaceful and happy feelings.

How? Well, I can only suppose that it’s because my intention was to feel whatever was coming up. I refused to distract myself by reading or watching movies or anything else. I wanted to be free of the stuff and the only way was to welcome the feelings.
On Saturday I ran an Inner Path one day retreat. As part of the introductions I asked people to close their eyes and let arise a couple of things that they would like to share with the others about themselves. I had thought that I should think of what I want to say….this is my usual way…I don’t want to get caught out not knowing what to say!! However, I had not thought about what to say, so I had to completely follow my own instructions. I went first and the words came straight out of my mouth, with me having no idea of what was going to come out. What I said was “My passion is to live in truth and to support others to live in truth”. So there it is. In words. My purpose. Yahoo!
Since then, this has developed into ideas and possibilities. Another Inner Path day with a theme of LOVE and to make a labyrinth that is shaped like a heart. 3rd March.
Someone mentioned that I could run regular sessions at my home for people to experience the solar plexus quartz singing bowl. Mind gets busy – really, do I want to commit to a regular thing? YES. I do not need to be rigid about it so let that go. So a fortnightly session of Qi gong, meditation and quartz singing bowl. Email me if you would like to be notified of when it is. It will be at Paraparaumu Beach so maybe not possible for south island people or others who don’t live round here.
Continue with my own spiritual deepening. YES. Attending 2 retreats in Auckland in February. The first one is with Gangaji and Eli Jaxon-Bear, and the next weekend is with Eli and Jared Franks on the Enneagram. This will support me to allow my truth to shine effortlessly and support me to support others.

The Inner Path day unfolded according the group of people there. I had a flexible plan. I criticised myself afterwards as I analysed the day. Until I realised that I was not even remembering each part clearly. Fantastic. This was then, that I got at a deeper level, that the day is playing out through me and not because I am in control of the day. Everyone gave lovely positive feedback. Let me believe it. It was a day that was perfect for everyone.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Fed up with life?

The gift of this time of the year can be that we slow down. By that I mean, that after Christmas we can be in holiday mode. Once the organising is done, then what? Do you bury yourself in a book or watch movies? These are great for relaxing and also great for avoiding internal stuff. Maybe you go walking. Maybe you play with the children in a more carefree way than usual.  Or maybe you carry on being busy, just in a different way. Do you find it hard to slow down? Do you find it hard to let go of work mode? That’s a clue that you probably need to experience some time for yourself. Sitting in nature can be an experience of allowing yourself to stop. Sometimes the mind wants to keep being busy. Allow the mind to think and be light with the thoughts. Allow yourself to dream lazily and after a while the most amazing refreshing ideas can pop up.

Being in this holiday time can also mean that old emotions come to the surface. Previously they were controlled and covered over by all the work and responsibilities of life. The routines of daily life can cover up so much. So this time can be a gift. Personally I’ve had some old stuff arise. Could be entirely a story that it’s old stuff actually. How would I know? Can I believe my analysis?  So really it’s a case of allowing whatever crops up. Anyway for me, the stuff had to do with being fed up with life and feeling directionless.  I remember this feeling from my teenage years and also from a few years before finding The Journey. On both those occasions I buried myself in historical romantic novels. Not so this time.  My intention is to feel this stuff, because I want to be free of it. The only way out, is in! My mind, and other people, say with understanding, that I have gone through so many changes in the last 3 and a half years – 3 house shifts, 3 town shifts, left my husband of 42 years, left my job of 25 years, had another job for 2 years, was in a relationship for 18 months, left that, now live on own, getting to know different people. Yes, that’s enough. I guess, however, my expectation is that I have tools to cope with all of this. And they have been very useful.  And right now, they are still useful. One of these, is the ability to observe myself – to know that this that is happening does not affect who I really am. I didn’t have this skill those other times. As well, an opportunity arose for me to have a Life’s Purpose Journey Process.  What an opening to layers of emotion and then through the dark void to the beauty and stillness inside. I am so grateful for this work. #thejourneymethod

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Acceptance

If you were to accept everything in your life just as it is right now, how would that feel? I know you probably don’t want to. You probably want to change lots of things. Seems a very human thing to do. We want to improve ourselves. We want to improve our circumstances. We want to improve our relationships. We want more love, or more money, or more fun, or better health, or a better job, or a better house.
But if for a second, you were to imagine accepting everything just as it is, how would it feel? If you really cannot imagine this, then what is the block? Does it feel like you might be letting yourself down? Does it feel like the current circumstances might just be all there is for you? Do your thoughts then tell you that you are not worthy of anything better. Ah ha. Here is some stuff for you to look at, in you.
If just for a second you are able to imagine accepting everything just as it is, is there an opening and relaxing feeling? This is how it is for me. There is no way I can stay in it, because there is so much I wish to change in my life. And yet, I can feel the expansiveness that occurs when I accept totally. And in this expansiveness, I can sense that everything is possible. What a dilemma! On one hand there is acceptance and total expensiveness including that all is possible. On the other hand, there is no wish to accept because it might mean that this is all there is. What to do?
One suggestion is to imagine accepting and feel how it feels. Then to actually accept, just for a minute. But is it possible to come back from this? Because I don’t want to stay accepting. Or do I? Who knows!!  Of course, not being able to answer this is just like life. We really do not know anything. Everything we think we know may or may not be right. It’s likely that it isn’t right.
So maybe there is no choice anyway. Maybe we have to accept, so we may as well do it willingly. Instead of fighting it.
And just know that acceptance does not mean that things won’t change. It does not mean that we are stuck. It actually allows the universe in to expand our life. It allows possibilities to present themselves and us to actually see them. It’s our minds and thoughts that get in the way. It’s thinking we know that limits us.

Friday, December 15, 2017

The Christmas rush

At this time of the year, do you find yourself spiralling into panic? Do you feel overwhelmed by the things to do, by the music, by the….everything? And to be really honest, it’s not all about how much you have to do, is it? Even when plans are coming along perfectly and easily, it can feel like there is an increase in rush, and pressure. The traffic seems more, the shops are more crowded, people move faster, things get remembered and have to be acted on before the rush or before the holidays. There are parties to go to, more shopping to do, people to coordinate for getting together, events to organise, presents to buy, cards to send. Children get frazzled and tired. Adults get stressed and anxious. It can all add up to……..too much. And yet somehow, we continue to go along with it. It’s almost like a habit….. to feel rushed and stressed just because it’s Christmastime. Where did you learn this habit? There’s almost an expectation that you will feel this way, even though you say you don’t want to.
So can you get yourself out of this?  Somehow, even when we plan things in advance, something else crops up, and plans need changing. It can stir up feelings to have to change plans. Somehow trusting oneself can go out the window. Trusting that things will work out okay, can go out the window. Trusting others to do their part can go out the window too. Chaos can be felt. So time for a recharge of you. Breathe, slow down, stop for a moment and acknowledge your feelings. Funnily enough, often when we slow down, more gets done. Weird eh? Try it. Be present to each task. Do it mindfully. Leave the next task until you have finished this one.
And whatever feeling arises inside you, just know that you are allowed to feel it. You can respect yourself and acknowledge how you feel. You may want to do something from that feeling, such as speak to someone connected with the feeling. Or change your plans. Or you may be able to feel the feeling in your body and let it dissolve. You can feel it and carry on with whatever needs doing. You can act from the best part of you even if you are not feeling like the best you. You can feel overwhelmed and breathe into that feeling. You can feel chaos and breathe into the feeling. We can feel panic when we think we can’t cope with how we feel. If you take a couple of minutes to feel your feeling inside your body, before carrying on, it can make all the difference. Feelings react quite well when acknowledged. They often disappear.


Friday, December 1, 2017

Taking care of yourself.

There is a lot of talk these days about looking after oneself. And it’s not selfish to do so. Sometimes, the reason people tell you to look after yourself is because you are doing everything for other people and forgetting you. Or it could possibly be, that your behaviour is governed by a neediness in you to prove yourself to others, or to gain other’s approval. And in doing so, forgetting to take care of you. Or maybe it feels just too hard, because there is so much to do, and everyone needs you. Just stop and consider if you really value yourself. Do you really have to be everywhere at once, looking after everyone else?
Looking after oneself does not necessarily mean that you go off and book yourself a holiday, or a massage or a dance class. It may do, but not necessarily. There are many ways of looking after yourself and only you can know what this truly means. If you need touch and aren’t getting it, then a massage could well be the answer, or even regular massages. You may think that you need some excitement, and this may be great in the anticipation and even on the day. It can also be a distraction from the issue that is bothering you. We do tend to think that we will be happy when we get………., or if a certain thing happens. And it may do for a short time, and then the old issue will start rumbling away again, pushing you to gain another excitement or pushing you into depression.
5 simple ways to look after yourself:
1.       Give yourself some positive feedback. Think back over the day and consider what you did or what you said. Give yourself a mental pat on the back for those that you were pleased about. Let the rest go and know that you did your best.
2.       Take a few minutes at the beginning of the day, maybe even before getting out of bed to lightly run over the day. Then set an intention for you. It could be as simple as intending to take 5 deep breaths when you get in the car. It could be to be aware of how you feel and know that your feelings are valid. Or it could be to have that difficult conversation.
3.       Have some fresh air and exercise. Even a 5 minute walk can be refreshing.
4.       Take time to eat. Rather than stand and gobble down your breakfast as you look after everyone else, sit down and be mindful about eating. Give your body a chance to actually focus on what is happening inside without the rush.
5.       Develop awareness of this moment. Be honest with yourself to yourself about what is going on inside you.


Friday, November 17, 2017

Making decisions.

 It’s easy to get into a muddle. Our minds are a bit of a liability. They are a bit of a responsibility. They need looking after and keeping track of. Otherwise the thoughts go round and round, and off on a tangent and back again, with nothing solved. It’s a mystery that we get any answers really. Because the mind gets hopelessly tangled up. 
When do you make your clearest decisions? For some people, the answers arise spontaneously in times of peace and calm. It might be walking in nature or relaxing in the bath. (Didn’t Albert Einstein find answers to his problems in the bath). The answers might pop up when you least expect them. Like when you have taken a break from thinking about them. Maybe when you have relaxed and had some fun. It seems that when we forget to try and make a decision that the answer just arises. From where? 
For me, I sometimes ask a question as I go to bed and the answer is clear when I wake. Or I sit at the beach and just “be”……feeling whatever is here and dropping through these feelings to the stillness that is inside, and then the answer arises. 
The thing with the mind, is that it is programmed by our up-bringing. The brain goes through massive development during the first 3 years. What we experience, especially to do with attachment to our significant carer, creates our security in ourselves, develops our ability to trust, it creates our ability to connect with people, it creates our beliefs about ourselves. And the further early years reinforce or develop these even more, depending on our experiences. 
Trust, security, connection, and beliefs will affect how we make decisions. The state of these factors will affect how you live your life and affect your ability to be true to yourself. When you were little, if the only time you received love was when you pleased others, then your adult decisions will be coloured by an unconscious desire to please. This can stop you sticking up for yourself. It can stop you from being true to you. If, when you were little, you developed a fear of arguments, disagreements and conflict, this will influence how you make decisions as an adult. You may not be consciously aware of it, but you may delay making a decision until life forces it on you. You may delay making a decision until someone else makes it for you. You may be afraid to step up and state your mind. You may not be able to make a decision that honours you. You may just follow along with other people’s decisions. 
So much of how we are in life stems from our early childhood. Can we change? Certainly. Develop awareness. Observe yourself and see the patterns. Observe how you talk and how you behave and what you avoid. Then deliberately challenge yourself in tiny little ways. Find the stillness that is inside you. Especially when you need to make a decision. Trust the stillness. Not the doubts, shoulds, should nots, wants, can’ts, don’ts. Take time to be inside you. 

Thursday, November 2, 2017

What are you suffering?


Are you suffering worry? Are you suffering pain? Are you suffering trauma? Are you suffering stress? Some spiritual traditions suggest that to be human is to suffer. Well, to be human means we feel emotions and we have an active mind. And we want to be loved. And we want to be happy.
So consider this question…………If you didn’t think would you suffer? If you mind didn’t go round and round, would you suffer? If your mind didn’t come up with doubts and interpretations, would you suffer?
I am suggesting that your mind creates the suffering. If you didn’t think so much about whatever is going on or worrying you, then you wouldn’t suffer.  So you might then think: well I can control my mind with positive thinking and affirmations.
Trouble is, your willpower will only work for a while and then the other stuff will creep back in. Before changing your thinking to positive thoughts you need to face whatever is bugging you.
Recently I had something bugging me. It meant that I lost sleep for a few nights. My mind was going intensely, over and over the whole situation and the memories associated with it. A variety of emotions were being felt. And I did allow myself to feel them. I felt them in my body. Then I thought about them, and because our thoughts keep the emotion there, I felt them some more. Eventually though, I dropped through them into a place of stillness and from there clarity arose.  As in, what I needed to do. The important thing is to do what I sense is right for me. Not what someone else says to do, or what someone asks me to do, or what my mind suggests I could do, but what is right from my deepest truth.
Here’s my formula to escape suffering.
1.      1.  Let emotions be felt as they arise. If we feel them in the body without the thoughts about why they are there, then they dissolve.
2.       2. Acceptance of how you feel about the situation. Acceptance about your own feelings allows your body to relax. In this relaxing, solutions and possibilities will arise. If you are tense you close off to ways to change the situation.
3.       3. If you have past trauma, and you are aware that it’s affecting you, seek a safe helper to guide you to feel and release the internal trauma.
4.       4. Exercise self care. Think (give your mind a job to do!) about the food you eat, the exercise you do, comfort, rest, fresh air, the company you enjoy.  If you don’t value yourself enough to take care of yourself, then this is the issue that needs attending to.
5.       5. Don’t believe everything your mind tells you. Be light with your thoughts.
6.       6. Live in the moment. Feel emotions, concentrate on the task you are doing, be present to the person you are having a conversation with. If you need to plan the future, then attend to the task of planning for the future, in this moment.


Remember, inside you are a person of value. You are someone worth respecting, so respect yourself first and then others will respect you.