Thursday, June 29, 2017

Relationships: What is seen and what is buried?

This is not a column of how to make relationships work, nor how to find the perfect relationship. It’s about you and me. There is something in the core of us that wants to be loved. To be cared for. To be treasured. To be safe and protected. There is a want to share fun things, to share achievements, to share troubles. Someone who just “gets” you. Someone who values you and respects you. Who really listens. Someone to show love to, to care for and do things for. Me too.
For some people, these relationships are with family members. For some people, these relationships are with close friends. For some people these relationships are with animals. And for some, the love is between love partners.
What do you bring to a relationship? You bring your personality, your behaviour patterns built up over years, your way of talking, the words and phrases you use, your habits, your love language, your values, your beliefs about life, your beliefs about yourself, your need for control, your need for physical closeness, your need for spontaneity, your need for clarity and rules, your need for understanding…………….. And then, do each of these things match those of the other person? Not in terms of whether these factors are there and apparent, but rather HOW they manifest in daily life for you and the other person. What is the sea-saw effect inside you when there are differences? How much internal movement happens when you try and be the same? How rocky do you like things to be? How much conflict can you tolerate? Do emotions such as resentment build up inside?
Notice what goes on inside you. You are questioned …… do you interpret these questions? You are told what to do………do you interpret this as being controlled or not? You are given feedback………do you interpret this as criticism or not?
And do you notice that all these things depend on how you feel about yourself? If you feel great and confident in yourself, things just slide off? If you are feeling a bit down then differences in comments, beliefs, values can seem important.
Our perspectives and interpretations are how we see our world. Inside you are an amazing being. In relationship you have the opportunity for connection with another. But there may be a gap between you. What is dropping into this gap and being lost?
Our innermost needs arise at odd times and we may not always be aware of them. As they arise, observe how they sit in you. Maybe you can meet your own needs. Maybe you can take care of you. Show yourself compassion. Show yourself love. Treasure you. Take time for you to meet your needs. Maybe you need some quiet time, some walk in bush time, some creativity time, some listen to yourself time. And then your expectations of the other may not be so definite.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

What do you put up with and how does it affect you?

Do you ever feel like you are putting up with stuff? Putting up with pain? Putting up with being uncomfortable? Putting up with put-downs? Putting up with being criticised? Putting up with people’s anger? Putting up with being told what to do? Putting up with people being negative? Putting up with your living arrangements? Putting up with people not caring?
Why do you put up with these things?
There are probably many reasons. Underlying these reasons that your mind tells you, will be some issues inside you.  Could be a lack of confidence to speak up. You might be too scared to speak up.  Might be a lack of courage. Could even be a feeling that you deserve this treatment. Might be that you don’t feel strong enough in yourself. Maybe you don’t have love for yourself, or even respect. Or value yourself enough. And your need to avoid conflict could be strong. As well, you may fear the consequences of speaking up. Could simply be an old habit that just carries on because it’s comfortable and familiar. Could even be connected to a sense of commitment.
What is the cost of this putting up with stuff? The cost to you as a person? Does it matter? Do you value yourself enough to realise that putting up with anything is not doing you a service. The cost is that you are not free to express who you really are. The cost is that you are not living your life in your purpose. The cost is that inside you are building up resentment. It may be bubbling away at a very low level. The effect of this resentment is that the anger underneath may explode at an unexpected moment. The possible cost to you is your health. All that pushed down emotion can affect your physical health.
What to do? Spend some time contemplating the questions mentioned. If they apply to you, then do some searching inside you. What do you really believe about yourself? Be honest. And how does this affect your behaviour and your ability to speak up clearly and calmly for yourself. What would you like to change about yourself? Maybe you could do with some help to change yourself.
Personally, I was in a place of putting up with most of the things mentioned. For many, many years. I lacked courage, I lacked self-esteem, I lacked the belief that I would be heard. I did not value myself. I did not feel good enough. The physical health issues were a gift because they meant that I then looked for help. And found more than the help for the physical issues.
When we feel strong inside ourselves, when we feel of value, when we feel we are worthy, then we can make changes to how we talk, to how we perceive situations, to what we will put up with. We can be happy and enjoy life.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Directing your life.

There is agony in trying to direct one’s life. We think we want to.  We have a plan. We may know what we want to do. We may have expectations about the future. And we know that these expectations are right for us. We may have a purpose. We may have read about how “thoughts become things”.  So let’s think those things into reality. The agony arrives when it doesn’t work out. Recently I experienced this agony. And it was real emotional agony. I was feeling so restricted by money and by circumstances. I had been so sure that I knew what I was supposed to be doing. I had been so sure that things were going to flow in the way that I wanted them to flow.
Wanting something actually creates a barrier to getting it. How can that be? Because in feeling the wanting, we learn how wanting feels and experiencing it more, just means it get more and more familiar, so it stays right there inside. We stay wanting. It’s like the wanting creates a block. 
So some people create vision boards, some people list the detail of what they want (e.g. the qualities of a partner they would like or a house they would like), some people write gratitude lists, and some people use other strategies of manifestation to get what they want. Does trying to get what we want mean that we are in charge of our life and directing our life?
Be clear on your values. Because these will allow your life to flow. I don’t mean the usual old-school values like honesty (and there are different levels to this!), respect, trying your best, goodness, working hard, pleasing people.
There are even deeper values that you can decide on. Values that can govern your every word, every action and every thought. For me these are inner truth, recognising the goodness in everyone, love, living in each moment. The inner truth is a deep knowing of rightness which is different to the mind saying what is right. Recognising the goodness in people is a real knowing that people behave the way they do because of the conditioning from their youth and their emotions……..there behaviour is not who they really are. Love is more than loving other people and more than loving oneself. It is being love. Living in the moment means the acceptance of emotions that arise (feeling them, not acting on them) and the ability to look at each moment freshly rather than from the ideas of the past.
So I experienced the agony of the emotions that arose when my thoughts went round and round about limitations. I allowed myself to feel the agony and the emotions that were under it. Tears came aplenty. And that was what was there is those moments. Until they weren’t there. Until acceptance and love filled that space.