Do you ever feel lost? Unsure of your next step? Hesitant about which direction you’re going to take?
Will you move house, emigrate or travel the world? Would it be more sensible to start your own business or remain an employee? Should you go after this guy or that girl or concentrate on your own growth?
Well, I’m feeling pretty lost right now. I’m all over the place. And I’m angry with myself for thinking so hard and not being present.
I’m impatient too. I want to find all the answers immediately. I need to make decisions. And I worry that I don’t have the luxury of time.
But I’m afraid. Should I take the risks and trust that it’ll all work out? That it’s already unfolding exactly as it’s meant to? That I’m okay just as I am?
Today, I opened up to a friend about all this. She reminded me to tell myself that even though I don’t know what to do, I love and accept myself. Even though I feel shame and embarrassment, fear and anxiety, anger and annoyance, sadness and grief, I deeply and completely love and accept myself. She got me to tap on the feelings that arose as I spoke these words. As I tapped, I remembered this quote:
“Wherever you go, there you are.”
I can find beauty and despair anywhere. It doesn’t matter if I’m in Ireland or Greece, Thailand or Australia, if I’m in my current flat or a quiet house in the countryside, if I’m loved up or single (I can be loved up and single too of course).
All I have to work on is myself. Once I feel inner peace, everything else will fall into place. I must raise my own energy and the right path will beckon.
Right now, I feel vulnerable. Shaky. Part of me is too proud to admit this. To show my weaknesses and risk disapproval. But I’m doing it anyway.
Here I am in all my naked glory. I’m not perfect. I feel scared and uncertain. And that’s okay.
I could ask friends and family for advice. I could make an appointment with a life coach. I could listen to my acupuncturist’s words of wisdom. And I’m tempted to do all of those things. But I know that I have the answers. I need to take time out, switch off my phone, be in nature, sit in stillness and listen…
I still don’t feel good. But these emotions, events, deadlines and ultimatums are mirrors that are reflecting back to me the things I need to look at. They’re presenting me with an opportunity to make changes for the better. And I’m grateful for that.
It might seem like doors are closing but that shouldn’t limit me if I see the world as my playground. So instead of shutting down and resisting, I’m unlocking and allowing.
I have cracked open and that doesn’t feel safe. But it feels right.
Posted in Modern Society, Personal development
Tagged acceptance, acupuncture, adventure, advice, allowing, anaïs nin, anger, answers, anxiety, approval, beauty, bereavement, business, challenges, change, choice, codependency, comfort zone, courage, death, despair, doubt, eft, ego, emigration, emotional freedom technique, emotions, energy, fear, feelings, friendship, gratitude, grief, imperfection, inner peace, life, life coaching, living, loss, love, meditation, mindfulness, mirrors, nature, now, open, opportunity, patience, peace, presence, pride, relationships, resistance, risk, sadness, safety, self-acceptance, self-development, self-employment, self-love, shame, single, stillness, tapping, the tapping solution, time, travel, uncertainty, vibration, vulnerability, weakness, wherever you go there you are, work, world
As I climb into bed, various opinions and pieces of advice that people have given me over the years flash into my mind. I recall their musings on my life and on what I should and shouldn’t be doing.
After bulldozing in with their tuppence worth, these supposed do-gooders continued on with their lives without a second thought. Meanwhile, I attached more value to their throwaway comments than to my own lifetime experience of being me.
I’ve spent long enough caring about how others perceive me. I’ve winced at their judgements, flinched at their criticism, basked in their compliments, and hoped for their approval.
Before taking action, I presumed how other people would react. This ineffective technique of mind-reading actually influenced how I was feeling and the choices I made.
Now in my thirty-fifth year on this planet, I’m finally getting sense. I understand that anything anyone says is coming from their perspective. People dish out suggestions that are based on a minuscule snapshot of my life. And even that tiny glimpse is filtered through the lens of their own history and beliefs.
Last night, as I walked alongside my sister, I was tempted to ask for her thoughts on something I’d spoken about earlier. But I realised that I would be doing it out of habit. It didn’t really matter what she thought about this subject. Getting her to advise me would be a waste of her energy because I knew that I would go with my gut anyway. And I mightn’t even want to hear what she had to say.
Not many people enjoy being told what to do. Nobody likes feeling judged either. And how can anyone know with absolute certainty what’s right for another person? By doling out our opinions and “friendly” advice, we run the risk of blocking the flow of communication.
All we have to do is be there for one another. We don’t have to stress about giving the right guidance. What a relief not to have to be responsible for coming up with the answers or fixing everyone else’s problems.
Instead of handing out answers, start asking questions. This will facilitate lateral thinking, which will enable the other person to open up to previously unexplored options.
Support your friends/family/partners/clients in whatever course of action they decide to take. Listen to them. And more importantly, really hear what they’re expressing.
All we really want is for someone to just be with us and really hear what it is we’re saying. Because when we are heard, we feel understood. And when we feel understood by another human being, that is the beauty of true connection.
Posted in Personal development
Tagged acceptance, action, active listening, advice, approval, awareness, beauty, beliefs, blocks, choice, clients, co-dependecy, communication, connection, ease, empathic listening, energy, family, fears, flow, friendship, guidance, habit, history, insight, judgement, life, life coaching, listening, living, love, now, open, opinions, past, perception, presence, problems, questions, reactions, realisations, relationships, responsibility, self, self-esteem, sense, stephen covey, stress, trust, unconditional love, understanding
The other day, my friend told me she’s reading a book called If You Want to Walk on Water, You’ve Got to Get Out of the Boat. “What a great title,” I exclaimed.
My friend replied: “I know. It’s really good so far. It’s all about looking at what your boat represents and when you should and shouldn’t get out of it.” “Yeah,” I muse. “It’s so true. The boat is your comfort zone. You want to do amazing things but you have to challenge yourself in order to do them. It’s so easy to stay in the boat. It’s safe. But you could walk on water if you just got out!”
Last night, I was having a similar conversation with another friend. She spoke about how opportunities often come our way but we have to be open to receiving and accepting them. “That’s a good point,” I agreed. “We need to be open to receiving them and we have to have courage to accept the challenge.”
Right now, I’m feeling anxious about an upcoming event. I want to not be so nervous. I’ve done the preparation and I’m getting on with my day but my stomach still hosts a basket of butterflies.
Suddenly, the book title pops into my head and I realise that I’m lucky to have something like this to be nervous about. This is what it feels like to get out of my comfort zone. I’m open to opportunity. I’m saying yes and rising to the challenge. I should be proud of myself. And I know I’ll do well and I’ll be delighted that I’ve gone through with it.
From now on, I’m going to treasure that feeling I get when I step uncertainly out of the boat, unsure if I’ll get wet or make a fool of myself or even drown. Because this is what it feels like to be alive. This is what it means to say yes to life.
Posted in Personal development, Positive Thinking
Tagged acceptance, alive, anxiety, challenge, choice, comfort zone, dreams, failure, fear, friendship, goals, if you want to walk on water, life, living, open, opportunity, pride, worry, yes, you've got to get out of the boat
Remember those noisy neighbours? Well tonight, I pop in a pair of earplugs and will myself to sleep. My body is tense from the anticipation of the noise that I wish would disappear from my life completely.
This time however, instead of trying desperately to block out the noise, I decide to really go into the feeling that it brings up in me. It feels like the noise gets right into me. I want to withdraw from it but I can’t. I believe that this shouldn’t be happening and that is what fills me with rage. I wish I could wrap myself in a safe little bubble where nothing can get in but I just can’t seem to protect myself from it.
Once I’ve felt all there is to feel, I access a memory of childhood summers snorkelling in Greece. I’d spend hours submerged in this underwater haven where all I could hear was the sound of my own breathing. There was another world down there, full of peace and colour and surprises. I long for that peace right now.
Suddenly, I have an awareness. I am insisting on shutting out a part of life. I’m not allowing certain things in. And if I’m closing myself off to the noise, what else am I resisting?
I lie in bed and tentatively begin to let it all in. I am open. I am open to the good and bad, the noise and silence, the love and despair, the fear and joy. I am open to the anger and happiness, sadness and inspiration, the beauty and simplicity, the light and the darkness. Life in all its forms. Once I start allowing the noise in, who knows what other wonderful things will appear?
I also realise that the noise isn’t an outside invader, robbing me of my calm. The struggle is within me. I am reacting to this perceived injustice. I can choose how this affects me.
Rather than viewing these things as outside of me, I accept that all aspects of life are a part of me. In my withdrawal from the noise, what noise of my own am I suppressing? I am the noise but I am also the peace. And I am the love that once seemed so external and conditional.
So tonight, I let it all in. Because it’s already there. And on that conundrum, I promptly fall asleep.
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged acceptance, allowing, anger, awareness, bad, beauty, breathing, calm, choice, darkness, despair, emotion, fear, feelings, good, greece, happiness, injustice, inspiration, joy, life, light, nature, neighbours, noise, now, open, peace, perception, present, protection, rage, resistance, sadness, safety, simplicity, snorkelling, stillness, struggle, surrender, thinking, thoughts, wonder