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Archive for the ‘dealing with emotions’ Category

Recently my focus has simply been on self-love. Loving myself during my mistakes. Loving myself while I continue on this interesting human journey, with all its aspects. Loving myself, with compassion and care, as much as I do my clients, friends and colleagues.

Why is it so much easier to love others than ourselves? Although, anger and other negative emotions toward others are often a reflection of how we feel toward our own person. Interestingly, we often have the hardest time with those we know the best – spouses, coworkers, great friends… often can be the ones we’re also frustrated with. And, the one we know best of all (and, sometimes, understand the least) is ourselves. We judge ourselves, punish ourselves, and worse, for actions that we might have much more easily forgiven in others. Or, at least, in a small child who obviously would have known no better.

The step toward self-love can begin with witnessing and curiosity. Rather than just judging something you did, view it as if an aspect, or part, of you, was responsible for that. Imagine if the part who did an action you judge, or had a feeling with which you struggle, was a child. Would the most loving treatment be to yell at her or him? Would that help your inner sweet, innocent one feel safe?

Action: Write down a list of how you’d like others to treat you. Then, take an inventory of how you’re actually treating yourself. Begin to notice any gaps. And when you have a strong feeling, notice where you feel it in your body… and imagine as if that is part of you that needs to be heard and wants honoring and expression. Send a message to yourself, like…

“I hear you.”

“I care about you… and about what you’re experiencing.”

“I love you.”

After trying this, please note any experiences below.

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Let’s face it: the holidays are never exactly what we wished for. Whether you grew up with Leave it to Beaver, The Cosby Show, or other sitcoms, that’s just not what life is really like. People disappoint us, we frustrate ourselves, and it all shows up in neon colors over the holidays.

Yet, we often forget that we play an important role here. We can choose to consciously change our lives and our relationships. It takes both time and courage to approach friends and family that have difficult patterns, and state our needs and vision for what we want. Whatever has happened during the holidays that doesn’t match up with what you wished for, use this as fuel for creating intentions for the upcoming year. How would you like to consciously shape your participation in 2012?

Action: If you are having a hard time with a relative, friend, or even yourself, approach with kindness. Focus on what you want, rather than on the pain of the past, and move forward together.

How can we be both powerful and humble? Where does humility play a role within empowerment?

Some perspective: 

If we are in our power, and fully stand in the truth of what we are here to do on this planet and in our own communities, we simply need to do our work. When we try to be powerful, we effort from the ego. That is not true power. Real powerful is effortless.

In the Law of Attraction, it’s essential to know you are deserving of what you visualize – that you are worthy. Don’t confuse worthiness with being humble.

Humility comes more around receiving what we have visualized – and, in my book, the bigger the gift, the more humble we should be. To know that we are truly worthy of something wonderful is to let go of the ego.

And… don’t try so much. 

Trying hard to create results means trying to force results. And that’s just not how the world works – or, not without repercussions. If you try to force someone to do something, they may do it, but it’ll fly back in your face sooner or later.

Action: Relax into your power. Be thankful for all you have received, and all that is coming your way… whether or not you can see it.

Next: 3 ways to stay humble.

I more often talk about empowerment, and how we need to step into our power. What goes along with it as its important sidekick is humility.

It’s too easy for power to bring hubris. Many amazing people are so afraid to really be powerful – because so may strong figures in current and past world history have also been dominating and abusive. And many people suffered through difficult childhood experiences – and then have walked in the world as the mild-mannered counterpart of their true self, which is waiting to be powerful and strong.

Yes, we must be powerful – to live our soul’s purpose in the world is to live our full truth.

The secret? Don’t try to be powerful. Just be true to yourself.

Part 2: Don’t try so hard – and keep perspective.

If you feel inspired to experience love more fully, here is an exercise. It’s inspired by numerous sources, including Buddhist and Sufi methods.

  1. Close your eyes. Take deep, belly breaths. Relax your body from head to toe.
  2. Visualize your heart as putty. As you breathe deeply into it, see it softening, and becoming more pliable, and even porous.
  3. Picture the part of you that is most vulnerable and tender. This may be your inner child, or even the part that gets angry and tries to protect you. Give it love. See an energy cloud around it – perhaps pink, or, another color that feels loving and supportive.
  4. Have compassion for this struggling part of you. Tell it that it doesn’t have to work so hard, and you’ll be there for it.
  5. While still breathing deeply and keeping an awareness of the above, open your eyes with a soft gaze. Notice an object near you. Be aware of the crafting of it that took place for it to exist, that someone spent such time creating. Or, notice a person near you – who has these similar raw places inside, perhaps like your own. Notice their tender beauty.
  6. Become aware of imperfect perfection all around you – and in you. Nothing needs changing.
This is one technique. If you like, use

Why do we not reside in love, permanently?

First of all, we think it’s about someone else. Who are they? Do we feel a connection? Is there a romantic involvement? Have we known them long enough? Do we feel safe enough to open up? When is the right time to open our heart?

Or, you might ask, when is it not the right time?

On an energetic level, love is simply the expression of the heart chakra opening. Some say that God is love – the devotional path of the bhakti yogi.

We may not like some people or feel a strong affinity with all. Some people do things that we label as bad. Yet, on an ultimate level, who is not deserving of love?

Moreover, is there a time when we do not want to feel love? And how can we experience it, regardless of who is around us?

Part 3: How to actively choose love – always.

So often we think of love in relation to the other person. How do we feel about them? How close are we? Do we feel safe?

Many years ago, when talking to a spiritual teacher of mine about relationships and love, he said, “If you fall in love, you’ll then fall out of love. But you can also choose to reside in love – for that to be a state of being.”

Intellectually, I understood. But it took a lot more time to truly grasp the ramifications, and to choose to step into it.

Everyone desires love. Could it be that love has nothing to do with the another person, and her or his actions and feelings?

Part 2:  A new perspective about how love works.

If you want to get to the core of an issue, there’s one simple rule: dealing with it should feel hard. Why? Because you’ve had a block around it that you need to simply delve into – but have been putting it off because of a negative association (e.g., fear of the consequences).

However, once you’re in the discussion – or, possibly when it’s over, it should feel much easier. A weight will have been lifted.

Action: If there’s something you’ve been avoiding, you’ll feel better if you simply face it. Breathe into it. And read part 3.

Part 3: An easy exercise to deal with a difficult problem.

I just saw a blog post put on a LinkedIn group to which I belong. It followed the correct marketing structure to grab people’s attention – “5 Ways to…” – and had a title that pulled in attention: “5 ways to Take the Anxiety Out of Public Speaking.” Now, since I coach clients on this every day, I was intrigued to see how someone else would do it. Was it different than my work? Effective?

Unfortunately, I was quite disappointed. The author suggested that a nervous speaker simply make sure to include standard speech components, like a strong structure, to alleviate nervousness, and to only make eye contact with the “friendly” faces. But to someone who’s nervous, this false reassurance does bupkus (Yiddish for “zilch”). They’re still freaked out.

Part 2: How can we address core issues, rather than a polite nod toward them? How does true transformation happen?

Nervousness, fear and discomfort typically arise because we’re afraid of being judged. Rejected. Turned away. Maybe even lynched. (Well, it’s unlikely, but it sometimes feels like it could happen, doesn’t it?)

In fact, this is a fundamental misunderstanding, which most of us have, about what people actually are seeking. Whether you’re talking with someone individually or speaking to an audience of 10,000, everyone wants to be inspired, energized, and moved. In other words, everyone wants you to be great!

And, in my experience, even those who are critical or jaded are actually hoping you’ll save the day. At a job interview where they’re asking hard questions? They want to hire someone. They’d love to save more of their time by that wonderful person being you!

Action: Instead of waiting for someone else to take the first step, wherever you are, go first and speak with positive, bright energy. They’ll be thankful, and look to you for inspiration. …What’s could be more powerful than that?


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