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Archive for the ‘dealing with emotions’ Category

One of the really difficult lessons I’ve found, as I’ve grown my business, and gotten increasingly known, is dealing with the projections (sometimes extremely negative) that people have placed upon me. So: where do projections arise from – especially in regard to authority figures, such as teachers, leaders, coaches, etc.?

My experience is that projections upon authority figures usually reflect people’s issues with their parents. Like how Dad yelled, and how you felt angry/rebellious/blamed/anything… how Mom didn’t listen, and you had to try extra hard… that kind of thing then affects how we deal with anyone who we believe holds a semblance of power over us.

In this circumstance (and in many others), people begin to perceive themselves as victims, and to place all the blame upon the other. Of course, I have been at fault of doing this in the past. I’ve gotten better at it… and being on the other side of it has certainly accelerated my learning.

While this is still a working model, here are my thoughts on how to handle it.

1) Notice whether how you are treating authority figures, of any kind, is the same as you felt about (or wish you could have responded to) your parents.

2) Remember that they’re people too. They’re only “above” you if you choose to have that perspective.

3) Take responsibility for your own actions. When you go into blame, you are disempowering both of you, and creating a distortion of what actually happened. Instead, take responsibility for what you may have created by simply acting out old patterns, and placing someone in shoes that didn’t belong to them.

4) Choose to be vulnerable, and engage in heartfelt dialogue. Have an intention to create healing and connection, to see if the other person can talk on that level.

These are my initial thoughts. No, not everyone can meet you there. It’s a choice to step up, and to be a responsible person. Yes, sometimes to be more responsible than the person in charge – and at other times, to simply assert we are equal, and we are enough.

And yes, something pretty yucky happened that precipitated this post. (Keeping it confidential, since that’s the appropriate path here.)) Being on the receiving end  – and, in this case, not being able to do anything about it – I choose to take responsibility by choosing to treat all people as well as possible, and to return to a space of gratitude for my life.

Thanks for reading. I hope it’s of service. Please leave your thoughts below.

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This is for all who are single. While I received this guidance for one friend, I felt called to share a version of it publicly.

For most of us, it feels very difficult to be single, when being partnered feels “normal.” You may feel out of place and different, maybe sometimes even like there’s something wrong with you.

Here is the truth: you have been given a gift – even if it sometimes feels like a curse.

But it was a choice made on the highest level – which you may know. Like me, you have needed time alone to more deeply find yourself… even if we haven’t always wanted that. And this time you’ve had will allow you to blossom more than you ever knew.

Dive deep into your own river. Drink your own waters deeply. The deeper you dive, the more the Divine You that you will become. The deeper you go, the easier it will be for your future partner to find you.

Dive deep into your own beautiful heart. Love and treasure it. Let it open and open. Release all of the walls you’ve put up to protect yourself. Open and open and open and laugh and be free and cry and shake it out. Release and feel and contract and breathe and open. Even if others don’t get it and sometimes think you’re crazy. Let yourself be guided.

In the meantime, you may meet other potential partners. Enjoy them. Enjoy their support, their affections, sometimes their love, and their play. Let yourself be comforted. Notice your own desires and projections and attachments, and own them. And, in those moments, when you feel deeply alone because it’s obvious that the person you are with is not the one you’re waiting for, honor yourself. Move on, and dive deeper into the endless ocean of your soul.

Trust every moment. There is nothing lacking in your life. You are on the path. You’re doing it right. And you’ll never be alone.

Today marks the start of using more video – and the start of a new YouTube channel called “The Performance of Your Life,” which you’ll hear more about in the future.

Let me know what you think. -Jonathan

 

Most of us have no idea about what we can do with our voice, or how to use it in all of its potential. Many people don’t conceive of what it means to discover their true range of vocal power.

Then again, perhaps it’s difficult to grasp what it means to truly reside in our power.

This is a topic I think about quite often; it’s been a big part of my own journey, from feeling very powerless early in life, to eventually coming more fully into my power. This is a life journey for many of us…. It’s about owning all that we are, and embodying and wielding it responsibly, and with heart.

And the same thing goes for your voice. Did you realize that your voice reflects your experience, your power, and what aspects of yourself are easily accessible?

For example, if you’re uncomfortable (be it in life talking with one person, or in a speaking engagement), it’s incredibly common to freeze up and lose a lot of your vocal and physical expression. Your voice gets “flat” and your TMJ area may get tighter. In this case, you’re locking up your true expression, which perhaps only those closest to you get to see – and are not releasing into our power. Power isn’t about trying to be “big” or forcing it out; it’s about relaxing into all that we are.

Having a Dynamic Voice – and Thoughts on Authenticity

As well, we have so many vocal dynamics available to us… and yet most people generally utilize very few of them. With my clients and in workshops, I often address dynamics like pitch, tempo, volume, enunciation variation, and powerful pronunciation. Did you know that each of them has a different energetic and psychological correlation? For example, I’ve found that if you don’t enunciate strongly, that’s energetically associated with holding back from really impacting others. In terms of pitch, if you habitually have a high voice, your voice is likely disconnected from your power center – and needs to be reclaimed.

You can radically enhance your voice – and, as you do, reclaim more of your power. This is, of course, not power over others… but power within. And yet, it affects others strongly. All sound is vibration – and your voice resonates within other people when they hear it.

Because 50-80% of communication is nonverbal – both body language and vocal tone – how we speak often matters more than what we say. For example, learning how to have a more resonant, fuller voice will affect others’ feelings about you (even though they typically won’t know why).

When we transform how we speak, it challenges our ideas about ourselves because we’ve never heard our voice that way before. Some people tell me, “Oh, using my voice that way isn’t authentic!” My response is, typically, “No – that’s not being habitual.” Because enhancing self-expression is a process of self-expansion.

What’s needed first?

Before you start to radically enhance your voice, however, it’s essential to begin with stepping into your power – and your presence – as a speaker… and in your life. Foundations must be laid that will open up your voice and your presence. Once those are set, you can then start to find the incredible self-expression of which you are fully capable.

And, on that note… keep an eye out for a special invitation soon. I’ll be announcing an intensive 3-day retreat in the San Francisco Bay Area mid-November, that you won’t want to miss. Hint: it has to to do with finding power and presence – as a speaker and in life.

How aware are you of the potential that your voice holds? Do you realize when you freeze up and are holding back? And… do you know that this can radically change?

Please leave your comments and questions below!

 

Every Saturday morning that I’m in town, I walk over to the farmer’s market near where I live (a cute neighborhood in Oakland, California, right by a lake). I love buying organic fruits and vegetables, in season, straight from the people who grow them – and have gotten to be friends with some of the vendors too.

At the farmer’s market, I’ve made it a regular practice to buy flowers. Sometimes I see a glint in a passerby’s eye, a “knowing look,” wondering what lucky woman is getting them.

But they’re for me. That’s right: every week I buy myself flowers. Sure, if I’m dating someone, she may be getting flowers too. 🙂 But I first buy for myself the color and arrangement that I intuitively feel will nurture me that week. And when I look at them across from my desk over the coming days, I feel kindness toward myself.

It’s a self-love practice.

Self-love is one of the most important things we need to find confidence – in life, and certainly as speakers. 

As you know, we are our own biggest critics. Which means that we’re generally the ones getting in our own way, and stopping ourselves from enjoying life and appreciating our successes. For example, many speakers get angry at themselves when they make a mistake.

Have you ever had a speaking engagement, or something else with high stakes, where it mostly went well… except for that one thing didn’t go quite right? Did you fixate on that one little issue, and blow it out of proportion? Or, did you notice it, take note of what to adjust for next time, and then appreciate all of your hard work as well as everything that went well?

Yes, it’s possible to do that! But it takes practice, and changing our orientation around what happens when things don’t go as planned.

One of the most essential aspects of speaking, and confidence, is our relationship to ourselves. Instead of being self-critical, could you be kind to yourself? Become your best friend, instead of your worst critic?

For some, self-love feels like a tall order. So I often start my clients off with generating compassion instead, using a compassion meditation that begins to change their response to themselves. This is a repatterning of self-destructive thoughts and feelings that, unfortunately, we pretty much all do. Your goal is to be able to be kind to yourself when something doesn’t go right – when speaking, or in life.

There’s much more to the topic of dealing with “making mistakes” (if there really is such a thing), including more fully trusting the flow of life. And we can develop greater capacity for handling whatever arises – because with public speaking (and everything else, for that matter), it will never quite go as we expect! Still, generating lovingkindness toward ourselves is a pretty great place to start.

So, whether you buy yourself flowers, do a metta/compassion/lovingkindness meditation, or another practice, please: be kind to yourself. I guarantee that when you are nicer to the person you spend the most time with – yourself – you’ll not only feel better. Your audience (and everyone else, for that matter) will also sense this, and feel safer with you as a result… and welcome you into their hearts even more.

Will you share your comments and feelings about this below? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

I had the great fortune to spend the past few weeks in Bali, and wanted to share a little about my journey – and some insights that might be of service to you – for your business, for public speaking, with networking, or in your life.

Why Bali? Well, I was going to go to Detroit… and decided Bali sounded better. No, really: I was headed to Detroit to see my sweet baby nephew Luca and for a business workshop, when I realized that what I truly needed, and hadn’t had for quite sometime, was a vacation – a journey both outer and inner. And I desired a blend of the spiritual, adventure, and culture… and chose a destination I had always wanted to visit. It’s *amazing* how something that feels so far away can become yours so quickly.

One other qualifier: I desired a place I would enjoy going as a single man. I completed a long-term relationship this spring with a woman who was wonderful, but we had to admit it just wasn’t serving either of us anymore, despite our best intentions. While I’ve done a huge amount of healing and growth work during the past several months, and am in a truly wonderful place now, this would be my first time doing a long solo vacation in many years.

And… the past 3 weeks were utterly magical. I meditated and prayed in traditional ceremony in temples throughout Bali, seen incredible performances, and much more. It was also a process of inner growth: when I felt lonely, I realized I had left the Divine Flow, and remembered to return to it. Much of my trip was taking trust, and committing to the divine flow of energy in life, to an entirely new level. When I was truly in a place of trust, things flowed, I always met amazing people, and my cup truly ranneth over.

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How does this apply to public speaking?

In two ways, actually. First of all, our public speaking fears often arise when we don’t feel or trust the flow of an event and its energy. It’s easy to become afraid (either before or during an event) – afraid of what might happen – or to feel out of control by thinking that things are supposed to go a certain way. They generally don’t. That’s just not what life is. Lesson: let go of any preconceptions of how a speaking engagement (or, really, anything in life) “should” go. Instead, notice what is actually present. Know that everything is truly just fine – no matter what it is – and do what is called for in the moment. Then you never need fear again what could “go wrong.”

Second: we are never alone. Trusting the flow of life brings true connection. If you haven’t heard me talk about it, I totally geek out on connection; I’m a little obsessed by it. Because we’re never alone. We can be present with ourselves. There is Divine Source with us always too. And there are many other people around who are available to connect with – if we open to them. But we must begin by connecting with ourselves. Then we honor ourselves and have an inner foundation from which to relate to others.

And as far as getting clients is concerned… Connection is the heart of networking. True connection must be made – not superficial banter – in order to make contacts that become clients, referral partners, and friends (which I find just as valuable). If you haven’t heard my talk on networking, I bring a very unusual perspective on it, and am speaking about it on an upcoming interview.

I’ve now returned to the US, with a great tan, but far more importantly with a greatly enlivened spirit. Now that I’ve connected inwardly, and had an incredible journey, I’m renewed to be of service again. I’ll be leading a private training next week in LA, then have a trip to Colorado. Note: If you’re in LA or Colorado and want in-person support, email me to get just 1-2 session times available in either location.  

And, check out the offerings below for some great support and free resources.

EVENT: The Abundance in Business Telesummit

MY TOPIC: The Art of Connection: How to Make Networking Enjoyable, Meaningful and Profitable
Money isn’t the root of all evil. In fact it’s simply an exchange of energy. It’s essential to realize that being compensated in full for your work is part of the spiritual law of giving and receiving. Zahra Efan has brought together a series of experts who will help you if:

  • You think money isn’t “spiritual.” (You can’t share your deepest gifts with the world if you can’t pay your bills!)
  • If you’re feeling ‘not good enough,’ ‘not ready yet,’ or wonder ‘where do I start?”
  • You would appreciate an approach to business that integrates Divine Wisdom

Zahra’s experts, including myself, invite you to take this step now, not only for yourself… but for the world that is calling you to share your gifts.

Register here – yes, it’s free: http://zahraefan.com/cmd.php?Clk=5107983

You will love the grounded, earthy and inner transformation that will guide you…
before you jump into taking tons of action. (Take the right steps – not just random ones!) The result will be less overwhelm, more income and a life and business filled with ease and abundance.

Oh! And something else important: when you register, you get instant access to the Abundance In Business eBook: get it here

Get Your Niche On!
Look, here’s the deal: it’s far, far more difficult to be successful or attract a stable client base if you don’t have a niche. I work with clients all the time to help them clarify who they truly seek to serve – and spend time with – and to make a real mark in the world. Finding your niche is essential. Yes, I know you can help everyone. But there isn’t exactly time to. Where do you want to make your mark? Who do you deeply and truly want to serve the most? It takes time to find a niche – and most coaches and practitioners need to narrow their niche far more.

One of my very favorite coaches in conscious business – who specializes in niche-finding – is Tad Hargrave. If you don’t know him, please check him out. He’s doing three free 90-minute webinars (the same one 3 times) on finding your niche:

http://marketingforhippies.com/events/

Some of what he’s covering:

  • six reasons most people avoid niching (and why they’re not true)
  • the nine biggest niching blunders
  • four simple steps to identifying and honing your niche
  • lots of real life niche examples
  • how even something like yoga (that can help everybody) can be niched a bunch of different ways.

I find Tad to be totally down to earth (his business is called Marketing for Hippies, after all!), and some of my clients have worked with Tad and adore him. He’ll also be discussing an upcoming course on honing your niche, which you can check out here: http://nichingforhippies.com/

One last note on connection: Strategic Alliances

My friend and colleague, Tara Butler Floch, is putting on an exciting free webinar called “Savvy Strategic Alliances – 6 Steps to Creating Fun & Profitable Partnerships with Other Professionals.” This webinar will:

  • Talk about the 6 savvy steps to creating fun, profitable partnerships with other professionals
  • Dive deep into the first step of the 6 step process which is all about how to assess and choose the right professionals with whom to partner PLUS give you an interview guide to help guide you through the process
  • Discuss the common challenges entrepreneurs have in choosing the right partners

I have partnered with Tara, and I know this will be totally juicy – and inspiring. Sign up here: http://www.broadviewpreneur.com/strategic-alliance-call/?ap_id=wholespeak

No matter what, remember: connection, with yourself and with others, provides meaning as well as makes for good business. Take a peek at these great offerings to support you. And no matter whether you’re on vacation, at home, or in a networking event, trust that you are being guided forward on your path.

Most professionals and entrepreneurs who need to give a presentation, talk or speaking engagement will do some degree of preparation. Unfortunately, they prepare the wrong way! Many focus on their content, trying to get every word perfect, maybe making tons of last-minute changes. And others “prepare” by procrastinating. Finally, some will just look at their notes and mumble through it… but that also doesn’t prepare you adequately.

As well, I often get calls from people who get nervous when they speak. Or I get asked to help them craft a talk. Or they want to know how to speak “off the cuff,”  and to not be worried too much about what to say.

These are all signs of a lack of knowing how to prepare.  So, here are some important elements to keep in mind.

Know the core of your message. When it comes down to it, it doesn’t matter if you mess up  a little, or find the perfectly nuanced phrase. Simply stay in touch with the central idea or transformation you are trying to convey, and that’ll keep you on track.

Focus on helping and serving your audience. Place your attention on how you can be of service. Make it about them – not about you. This is your intention. When our intention is about being of service, rather than about our own desires, it can help us relax.

And, more than anything… warm up! It’s absolutely essential to have a great warmup routine. You wouldn’t run a marathon without a lot of stretching as well as eating right beforehand, would you? The same goes for speaking. Here are several elements to a good speaking warmup.

  1. Warm up your body. Stretch, move around, and practice body language like gestures and facial expressions. Speaking is a full-bodied act!
  2. Open up your voice. Do vocal warmups, enunciation exercises, diaphragmatic breathing, and more, to find the full power of your voice. Practice using different vocal dynamics.
  3. Warm up emotionally. What do you need to do to feel ready? To take care of yourself? To be present? It’s essential to have your heart in it, and to feel good.
  4. Get in the game. This would also be called your “mental” warmup, and could be done in part with the aforementioned focus on serving your audience. You can also do affirmations. I teach mindset shifts to my clients, and these are also helpful.

And, once you’ve done all of these, you can finally apply these to your presentation, and practice your talk. Remember that 50-80% of communication is nonverbal. So, focusing on everything but the words may also help it go well. Also, last-minute text changes tend to throw you off, not help; it’s  more important to get comfortable than get the words totally perfect.

If the above are a mystery about how to do them, keep an eye out for the Claim Your Voice training – it’ll make it all really clear.

What surprised you from these ideas? Or, what are your own ways you warm up for a talk? Please share and comment below.


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