Saturday, March 31, 2018

Those bothersome emotions.

Feelings are annoying. 
Well, some of them are. It would be nice to feel happy all the time. Isn’t that what we really want? It’s so painful when hurt feelings arise. It’s so painful when sadness arises. It’s so painful when anger arises. What do we do with this feelings? Tell them to go away? Push them down? (Become depressed!) Ignore them? Ride over them with thoughts?

Sometimes we feel like we should feel this way and therefore don’t wish to get out of it. You know, those times when grief is here and it feels like a betrayal to the other person if we let go of grief. And feeling sorry for someone, sometimes feels like a should feeling…..we should feel sorry. Then guilt can arise because the feeling goes. Complicated eh????

It really is impossible to figure out the right thing to feel. So give up trying. O..oh! How does that feel? Like you are not responsible? Like you are not a good person? Oh gee!! Can’t win.

What if you could really honour yourself by feeling whatever arises in the moment, with no self-judgement about how that is, or whether it is right? Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm   Well, that would be living in truth. But stuff gets in the way, doesn’t it? Stuff like the expectations we sense from others, and the expectations we have of ourselves. The blame we carry around for the things we think we can’t change. The emotions we have unconsciously held onto.

Actually, if you can trust yourself enough to welcome whatever feeling arises, this is the way to freedom. In our society, we so don’t honour feelings. We tend to criticise those who allow too much emotion, and especially if the emotion drives some undesirable action. And we fear emotion.

The secret, though, is to feel them in your body – no need to let them out, no need for the emotional energy to drive you to say things you don’t want to say, no need for emotions to be acted out in inappropriate behaviours, no need for them to stifle you. Just feel them wherever they show up in your body. And after that, if you wish to speak of them, then do, from the stillness that arrives after the feeling.
You can do it.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

What do you avoid?

Strategies we use to avoid.
Avoid what? Well, that is another question.
And a third question is: Do you embrace life fully? Is your life rich?
I don’t mean that you need to go off on adventures to embrace life fully. There is an internal adventure going on right now inside you. And by asking if your life is rich, I don’t mean money-wise, or love-wise, or experience-wise. These might be part of your life or they may not. They make no difference to whether your life is rich.
So to embrace life fully and to have a rich life, I suggest that we need to not avoid.
A big one for me is to avoid conflict. And criticism. And judgement. I know that these bring up feelings inside me that are uncomfortable. The feelings may be unworthiness and unloved……loneliness and hopelessness. Even despair with my mind telling me I can never get it right.
So recently I put myself into a situation where I might be judged. Intention – not to limit my life by avoiding potentially being thought of as not good enough to do a job. And I have been super aware of what was going on inside me. I was aware that other people see the situation differently from me. It depends on their understanding and expectations. So each time I wondered whether I was being judged, I had an internal conversation and really realised that I am probably not being judged. And then, even if I were, it actually didn’t mean that I am not good enough. It would be just one person’s interpretation of what was needed in that job. I can step out of the way and do what I think is appropriate, and not worry about what others think. In that situation anyway. (By the way, if someone said I was good, that is also a judgement and someone else may not think I am good. Or I might not.) Judgementless does not mean good judgements, it means doing what is true for you and the situation regardless. My parents used to tell me that my piano playing was good when I knew it was definitely not – too full of mistakes!
I suspect that not avoiding conflict, criticism and judgement will be a work in progress for me. A need to be vigilant, not about what other’s think or say, but about what I am feeling and how I interpret things.
So this has been my adventure recently, and it leads to living a more rich life.
What has been your adventure lately?

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Self- awareness

How well do you know yourself?

What do you have to know to know yourself?

Is it about how good you are at doing things? Or what knowledge you have? Or what makes you angry? Or knowing how you react to authority? Or knowing you don’t like a certain type of person? Or thinking you are sensitive? Or knowing what sort of music you like? Or knowing that you can’t do particular things?

Maybe you answered yes to some of these, and could add some more!

What if, right now, you consider changing the word “know” to “believe”. So that you believe that something makes you angry, you believe that you are sensitive, you believe that you are clumsy, you believe that you are good (or not good) at something. What happens to how you view yourself, if you change this word?      Or are you saying, of course you know things about yourself? And they are true and right. That it’s not about believing….its knowing. Knowing is stronger, right?

Just as an experiment, try out the believing way of wording what you know about yourself. Just for a moment be flexible and relax the knowing about yourself.
So the next step is to think that because a belief is not as strong as knowing, then you can change it.   AND YES, YOU CAN.   
As an experiment, focus on one thing that you know about yourself. It might be that you know that you can’t cook. Change it to you believe that you can’t cook. Can you see that then there is an opportunity to change your belief. Because it’s not set in concrete. Maybe you believe that you are not good enough. Change this too! Maybe you believe that you will never be fit. Change this too. You can! You really don’t know anything absolutely.

Anything is possible. We become restricted by what we believe about ourselves. We are doing this to ourselves……….it’s just old stuff that we took on board when younger. Look at it freshly. Do you still want this belief? Does it help you at all? When we become aware of any old belief then we can let it fall away. And try out a new belief.
I can cook.
I am good enough….of course I am.
I can do it.