For the last few weeks, I feel I've had no time for working on my business; a thing that I've found most frustrating when my energy has been very present and willing. However the cause of this lack of time was that I've been organising the costumes for a local amateur theatre production. I've loved it, and I feel that my life benefits from interests outside of my holistic work, but I was very concerned with how much time it was taking and this was after I'd delegated some of the work to my wonderful team of helpers. I've been feeling torn. I basically abandoned my work for the duration apart from seeing scheduled clients, but I haven't been that happy with this. So I've been looking at what I can learn from the experience. Firstly, I've learnt that I can manage a project and achieve a result within a fixed time frame. Secondly I've learnt that I can manage people and they've seemed to be quite happy with how I've done it. Thirdly, I've learnt that I'm not good at focusing on more than one thing at a time, when the things require creative energy. And fourthly, I've learnt that I can work quite hard and long without getting stressed - something that didn't used to be the case. I joked to one of my helpers that my goal was to complete the costumes without having a nervous breakdown, but I surpassed this by keeping calm right up to the end and it made the whole process a lot more enjoyable and easier to achieve. We waste a lot of energy being agitated about things we can't change and although we often feel totally entitled to be stressed, it doesn't help us achieve our goals. So now, the show is over, I've refocused back on my work and the very day I got a new client booking. A sure sign that when one door closes and other one opens. If you would like to see some pictures of my lovely costumes, click here. You may need a Facebook account to view.
I first learnt about forgiveness when I was in school. It's mentioned in the bible and in the Lord's Prayer, but I never really understood what it was all about. I thought back then, that it was all about letting the other person off the hook; saying "I'm OK with what you did to me". I thought it was all about setting the other person free.
The credit for the title of this post has to go to my friend, Reid, who wrote this phrase on a piece of paper at a recent meeting. However, I thought it was worthy of a bit more exploration in a blog article. So, I've been pondering over this for the last few days. Firstly I wondered how true it is. Certainly for many of us, we like the status quo and resist change. But then there are the adventurous among us who often head off into the unknown. I've known people who tell me change is a good thing, and they're right, but do these people also have their fears before they step off the metaphorical diving board? It's definitely true that the familiar is often seen as safe. We know where we are with the present circumstances, even if we don't like them. The new and unknown change may be better, but then it also may be worse. The trouble is that we don't ever really know until we've made the change, and then it may be too late to go back. The familiar protects us. We know how to respond and what reaction we're going to get. We know where and how we fit in. We can easily visualise the future when it's exactly the same as the present. The new is daunting and it often involves taking a leap of faith into the unknown. So what is going to make us change. Well for some of us, the thought of adventure is enough. We take a deep breath and leap with a confidence that it'll be a good experience for us. For others, change only happens when the present circumstances become too unpleasant, or when external circumstances force it. Now, we're all influenced by external circumstances to some extent. So the way in which we adapt to forced change is also significant in our lives. Do we fight against the inevitable or do we go with the flow? Does it really do us any good to fight against the inevitable? Well, for our personal stress levels, the answer is probably no. However there are may people throughout history who've managed to bring about great changes for the positive by not accepting externally enforced situations. Often we don't know what to do for the best. We oscillate between the different options available to us. Do we change or do we accept? I find the best way is to try to split the arguments into those coming from the ego and those coming from the soul. The soul has our highest good as it's focus. It only wants what will expand us and help us to grow. It will guide us to that which will fulfill us and help us use our gifts in the world. The ego focuses on that which will keep us safe and therefore encourages us to do what will enable us to fit in, what will cause the least disruption and often comes from a place of fear. The soul guidance comes from a place of love. So I invite you to tune in to these 2 voices. They both have their places in our lives, but it's good to be able to differentiate between them. And lastly, I leave you with these well-known words of wisdom because I think they sum up this subject so well.
How do we see ourselves? Do we see ourselves the same way that others see us? And more importantly, do we define ourselves by what we see? When working with clients, I often hear "I am ...." or "I do...." as a way of explaining who they are. It's usually followed by "I've been doing this as long as I can remember". However, they are usually seeing me in order to change this very thing, and I'm hearing them affirming the old version of themselves over and over again. So my challenge to them and to everyone else out there who wants to change is:
We heal when our buried past surfaces and can be released. We all have some buried blocks as we've all had stress in our pasts which we couldn't resolve, but for the most part they stay buried. We carry on with our lives, our often very busy lives and we tell ourselves we don't have time to relax, let alone be ill. However sometimes that's exactly what we need to do. When blocks start to surface, they often feel uncomfortable. Sometimes we don't understand why we're feeling that way and even find that we can't actually pinpoint our exact symptoms. We're not exactly "ill", but we're definitely not feeling ourselves. This is often the time we reach for our addictions: a bar of chocolate, a cigarette, a glass of wine or even a pattern of behaviour. These addictive behaviours may make us feel better in the short term, but what they're doing is numbing us to what's happening and pushing the blocks back down into our bodies. Be warned, however, our bodies want to heal, so they will resurface again and again until we release them. Space also encourages our blocks to come up. This is why some people feel uncomfortable when they find themselves on their own with a whole day to fill and no clear objectives. We may moan about the pressure we find ourselves under in our lives, but it keeps us safe from having to deal with our past and having to feel the discomfort that can arise. However, I find that this discomfort is usually worse if we resist the process. If we give ourself the day off, listen to our body and address its needs, whether that's a day in bed, or a long walk, or curling up with a good book, the process will progress all the more easily. If we can't give ourself a whole day off, an hour each evening when we do nothing can be extremely beneficial. Also, it's important to remember that these emotions can't hurt us. It's our associations with the feelings and our resistance to the emotions that cause the problems. Also our panic that we don't know what to do about them. The word emotion comes from energy in motion and the motion bit is important. In fact, all we have to do is notice them, breath and watch as they flow through us, probably changing a few times on the way, and eventually go. And to do this, all we really need is time to heal.
I use the word "aligned" a lot these days, but when I had to spend an evening explaining what I actually meant by it recently, I figured there may well be lots of other people out there who have no idea what I'm on about too. The dictionary defines the verb to align as to bring into line or agreement. I work with energy, so I'm referring to the act of bringing our energy into line or agreement with our goals. Now, although this might sound a strange thing to try and do, we are actually doing it every day of our lives. In order to wake up, we move our energy from subconscious to conscious. In order to go to sleep, we wind our energy down from active to relaxed. When we go to work, we become the person who is an expert at our job. When we are out with friends our energy may change to a slightly different version of ourselves. People who reach their goals easily can align themselves to their goals. However many of us find this difficult. The most important thing to know about this is that we can tell how aligned we are by the results we are producing in the world. If we are aligned with what we are wanting to do, we physically produce results. If we wish to go on holiday, we'll be aligned when we actually make the booking and go. If we wish to set up a business,we'll be aligned when the clients come. If we wish to change a habit, we'll be aligned when we actually make the change. As regular readers will probably have guessed by now, the reason we are not able to align with our goals is that our blocks get in the way. Maybe we want to go on holiday, but we're fearful that taking time off work will cause more stress. Maybe we wish to be self-employed, but relying on such an uncertain income leaves us feeling insecure. Maybe we wish to give up smoking but it's very ingrained in our social culture. But what's more likely, is that we think we're aligned but the results aren't coming because these blocks are hidden from us. What we may experience is resistance to taking action, or we may feel that our heart isn't quite in it, or we may just have no idea why the results aren't coming. The good news is that if we remove all the blocks, we naturally come into alignment with our intentions and therefore our goals. That's the law of attraction: we attract things that match the energy we give out. So as long as we are giving out the energy of being in alignment with our goals, we will attract the physical results of these goals. The even better news is that kinesiology can help even if we aren't aware of our blocks. It has a rather uncanny and brilliant way of bringing them to awareness before clearing the stress they bring. So, now you understand this, I ask the question again, Are you aligned to your goals?
I've wanted to write about this for a while now as it's a subject that is dear to my heart - and as I run a holistic therapy business, my bank balance. Culture is defined as a state of manners, behaviour and intellectual development at a particular time of place. So how do we behave when we're ill? How do we go about returning our bodies and minds to optimal health? Do we even actively do this? This is traditionally the season of colds and bugs. Now I know from my days of working in an office, that there was definitely a culture of not having time off as people had "too much work to do". I was never in favour of this strategy as it seemed to me that if you have time off, you can heal better and return to optimal productivity quicker. But, alas, it was difficult for me to go against the culture, so I struggled on too. We also have a culture of going to the doctor only when we can't fix our health issue ourself and when it's got so bad that we feel we won't be accused of wasting time. This is backed up by advertising campaigns directing people to a pharmacy or a phone service for "minor complaints". This is obviously a necessary strategy by an underfunded organisation, but it still creates a culture. Now along come holistic therapists. We can help prevent disease by treating blocks in a person's system before they manifest into nasty symptoms. So ideally I'd like to see clients earlier rather later. However the majority come to me when they've been suffering, for longer than they needed. We also have a culture of free healthcare, which I'm very grateful for. I'd never advocate getting rid of the NHS, but at the present time myself and similar practitioners aren't funded by the NHS, so we have no alternative than to charge our clients directly for our services. This seems to be quite a large block. I often hear people say they can't afford sessions. Whereas this may be true for some people, after all therapy isn't cheap, I believe many people are just choosing to spend their money on different things. So my question to you is what is the most important thing you could be spending your money on? My personal answer to that would be health and wellbeing. In this section, I'd include food (of the healthy variety, of course), a warm roof over our head, and healthcare support. For those who are familiar with Maslov's Heirarchy of Needs, this relates to the lower levels of the pyramid. If our base is rocky, the higher levels aren't going to be firm and reliable either. So how would it be to go on a great holiday, but spend it worrying about going back to a stressful job. How would it be to buy new clothes, but to feel ill when you wear them. How would it be to subscribe to a TV service, while wishing you had the energy to be out actually living your life. Now I'm not criticizing anyone for spending their money on these things. Everyone makes choices about what they do and where they spend money is one of such choices. However, if you have any unwanted symptoms, I would invite you to challenge our culture of healthcare and invest in your health sooner rather than later so you can lead a more enjoyable and fulfilling life.
What do these three things have in common? The answer is fear. Phobias are pretty self-explanatory. We fear something to such an extent that it causes us problems in our present lives. They may have come from a past trauma. Maybe we were bitten by a dog when we were young and still become very frightened when a dog barks or bares its teeth. They may also be inherited from another person. Maybe your mother screamed every time she saw a spider, so you learnt very early that spiders were something to be scared of, even though you didn't know why. Addictions are habits we have developed in our lives, that produce a negative emotional response when they are taken away. Often they are something we take into the body - common examples are cigarettes, alcohol or drugs. However we can be addicted to patterns of behaviour or to people. What happens here is that we are blocking a negative emotional response by seeking so-called "pleasurable" behaviour. However, what that does is push the negative emotion down into our body, so it isn't resolved. Every time it re-surfaces, our bodies tell us we want the addiction. This gives us a positive "hit" and the pain is pushed aside for a while. The trouble with this is that the pain will keep trying to resurface in order to be healed. So often we need bigger and bigger "hits" to keep it suppressed Alongside that, we can have a physical response to addictive substances, but this is much easier to deal with if we've dealt with the emotional residue. Obsessions are fears projected into the future. This time there will be an initial negative experience from our past which we worry about happening again in the future. Like the phobias or addictions, it could be experienced by us or learned from another person. Things like believing we'll get ill if we don't clean things several times a day or worrying we'll forget to do something. Often we create rituals to cope with these things; checking something several times or obsessive cleaning. Alternatively, we avoid the triggering situations altogether, for example, not being the last to leave the house so we don't have to check the door is locked several times. Superstitions also come into the category of obsessions. These are usually learned from another person. Like addictions, if we treat the underlying fear, then the ritual becomes a simple habit which is much easier to break. So, if these patterns are causing you problems in your life, kinesiology can help you find and clear the root cause and take back control of your lives, even if you have no conscious idea of where they came from.
On Friday, I wrote about how we can all choose how we respond to any situation. I told you all that you have the choice about how you feel. But I expect there are some of you out there shaking your fists at the computer and saying, " But I can't just change how I feel about things. She's talking a load of rubbish." So, what's going on when we feel like this. Well, what's happening is that we're triggering our past. The sort of past we wish we hadn't had to experience. The sort of past that leaves a negative residue in our memories. We may have buried the memory. We may have consciously forgotten about it. But if we didn't resolve it, it will affect our current reactions to the situations we find ourselves in. So, for example, if we previously had to miss something very important because of the snow, we may not look too favourably when it snows again. If we've had a bad reaction to changing our plans, we may not look favourably on having to change our plans due to snow. And the list goes on - there are many things that could affect it and not all of them will be as obvious as those. Luckily, with kinesology, we can get rid of the past triggers and re-empower ourselves to make the choices and have the reactions that will serve us best in our lives. I'm always amazed how a session can bring such insight into how we can to have the pattern we are running, before clearing the stress and giving us back our choice. Please contact me with any other questions you may have or book an appointment.