Monthly Archives: January 2014

Collaborating Instead of Competing With Ego

Last night I had a scary dream. I have always had a lot of dreams, and find tons of insights in them. So when I woke up this morning, the dream was on my mind. I know that whenever I wake up and am feeling upset by something in a dream, that there’s something there to look at (after I remind myself that it is just a dream, not real).

The gist of the dream I had was that there was a kidnapper who kept taking members of my family. I would rescue them, but he would always get someone else. No one else seemed to be too concerned about it. In fact, one time I found the front door wide open when someone had been kidnapped.

At first the kidnapper was not visible to me, but eventually I tracked him down and confronted him face to face. I could have killed him in that moment if I had chosen to, but I didn’t. Instead he has an army of about 50 people – that were more like robots – appear out of thin air. I felt defeated, and knew that I could not win against him.

When I woke up and started thinking and writing about the dream, it occurred to me that the “kidnapper” is my ego. It keeps “stealing” parts of my authentic self. My soul, or true self, is the one who has to stand vigilant to get those parts back from ego. The parts themselves (my “family members) don’t care who’s running the show: ego or my true self. So they do nothing to keep ego from taking them over.

I noticed that when I confronted ego directly, it got stronger (the army of 50 robots). The robots are my automatic thoughts that kick in when I get scared. Once I realized that the kidnapper was my ego, I knew I couldn’t banish it, or kill it off. Having an ego is part of being human.

So what I needed to do was to collaborate with it. During my meditation this morning I asked it what it wanted. Why it was kidnapping my family members. The answer was that it wanted me to pay attention to it. As much as my ego is based in fear and can get really out of control with fearful thoughts, it also pays an important role in protecting me. And as much as I wish it and its fearfulness would just go away, I know it won’t.

I also asked my authentic self what I needed to be able to trust ego. To be in a place of collaboration, not competition or war. (I’m just now seeing as I write this that trust is also involved, as in my post a few days ago.) I need to be the one in charge. I’m the general, ego is my trusted advisor. I make the final decisions, and ego shuts up if I tell it to.

So we had a conversation and reached a truce and a peace accord. I agreed to listen to ego when it tries to get my attention, and ego agreed that I was the one in charge of the final decisions.

Now I need to think about what this looks like in reality. What are the signals that ego is trying to get my attention that I’ve been ignoring or trying to banish? And, how do I tell the difference between ego’s fear and its valuable advice about danger? More to come…

When I Don’t Trust Others, I Really Don’t Trust Spirit

Last year I realized that I have been over-protective of my son in a way that is not healthy for either of us. I have taken on his difficult emotions so that he did not have to feel them. In doing this, I’ve kept him from learning and growing in certain ways.

In learning to have a more separate existence from him, I’ve realized that I don’t trust him to keep himself safe. That I have a very deep fear – terror really – that if I don’t protect him he will not survive. Intellectually I know that we each need to be responsible for ourselves, and that he has his own path and lessons to learn in this lifetime.

But as a mother, it can be really difficult to find that fine line between protecting a vulnerable child who doesn’t yet have the skills or wherewithal to take care of himself, and over-protecting to the point where the child doesn’t have the opportunity to learn those skills.

My son is almost an adult now. The line is much clearer than it was when he was younger. And yet…

Some things have happened in the past several months that have really brought to light how much over the line I have been in my son’s life, and the need to find a better balance. I totally get this. Again, intellectually. And yet the terror remains.

If I truly believe that we each come here with a purpose, and our own life lessons to learn (which I do), then I need to be able to trust that whatever happens is for my benefit, and for my son’s benefit. When I don’t trust him to take care of himself, I really don’t trust Spirit. I don’t trust that all things happen for the benefit of all.

I do have faith. I do believe that the Universe is benevolent.

I realize that being able to fully trust and surrender to the benevolence of Spirit is a remnant of my control issues. Throughout my life until somewhat recently I have felt that I’m the only one I can rely on. That it is my responsibility to keep myself and those I love safe.

We’re all works in progress, and I would guess that letting go of control (or rather the illusion of control) is one of my life lessons. How freeing it must be to be able to rely on others, and on Spirit. To not have to be in charge of everything.

And at the same time it feels pretty darn scary.

So, one step at a time, one situation at a time.

The circumstances with my son are there not only for his benefit, but for mine. To give me the opportunity to choose to trust him, and to trust Spirit.

I’m Fat

I’m fat.

There. I said it. I’m fat.

Not overweight. Not heavy. Fat. Because I want to desensitize myself to that word.

I want to see “fat” not as a judgment, but as a description of myself.

A few days ago I saw a picture that was taken on Monday, and I was shocked. I said to myself, “I look fat.” And I didn’t like that one bit. Because I judge myself when I think of myself as fat.

Lazy. Ugly. Not worth knowing. Those are the main judgments I have around being fat. If you told yourself you were lazy, ugly and not worth knowing, you wouldn’t want to acknowledge that you were fat, either.

So I’m on a mission to de-judge the statement “I’m fat.” I want it to have the same emotional pull for me that saying “I have brown eyes” or “I have short hair” has. I know this will not be easy, because I’ve spent my whole life judging myself on how I look, as have many other women.

And fat is the number one thing that you should not be if you want to be valued and admired as a woman.

Well, I’m done with worrying about what others think of the fact that I’m fat. I can’t control that. And, it says more about them and their issues than it does about me anyway.

What I can control is what I think about the fact that I’m fat. And, I’m choosing to learn to think of it as a description, not a judgment.

I’m Always Amazed at How Everything (and Everyone) is Connected

I continue to be amazed at how connected everything (and everyone) in my life is. There is no doubt in my mind that we are all connected and that everything that happens in my life is related.

The past several weeks I’ve been feeling a lot of doubt and confusion about my career direction. It has been really difficult for me, because I’m usually quite decisive and action oriented. Although I have just spent a year not doing much externally because I was going through a lot of learning and growth and change.

But in November I had my a-ha about the direction for my business and I was really excited about it. Then I wasn’t. Over the past few weeks I’ve really questioned my direction and what I should be doing with my life. For several years I have had the strong sense that I have a mission, a specific life purpose, and I have been incredibly dedicated to fulfilling that.

Now I was having the “run away and hide” thoughts that I used to have in my previous career. I was seriously considering, and beginning to pursue getting a “real job.” But it didn’t feel right. Each step I took in that direction I was confronted with something that made me recoil. I knew that was not what I wanted to do.

And yet, I was feeling tremendous doubt about my path forward on my mission. It felt like there was a big step up to the next level and I just wasn’t up to it.

Then yesterday I had a session with my BodyTalk practitioner, Pavitra. She does some other modalities, too, like Pysch-K and Access Consciousness. I told her about my doubt and confusion, and that was what I wanted to focus on. In addition, there has been some pretty traumatic stuff going on with my teenage son (who lives with his dad), but I felt that was kind of in a holding pattern and was not where I wanted to focus.

Pavitra began the BodyTalk process, which consists of her asking silent questions of my body and using muscle testing for the responses. There is a whole protocol that leads her to subconscious beliefs I hold that are creating the issues.

Anyway, the short version of the story is that this self-doubt and confusion I had was not mine. It belongs to my son, and I have been holding it for him. This made a whole lot of sense to me. I had become aware last year that throughout his life I have felt the difficult emotions for my son (as well as a couple of other men in my life, including my father).

I have been doing some work over the past several months to release those emotions that are not mine and send them back to their rightful owner. So when Pavitra said this doubt and confusion was not mine, it really clicked for me. Given the difficulties my son has been going through recently I could completely understand that he is feeling a lot of self-doubt and confusion about his life and his next steps.

Even though I did not consciously take on those feelings for him, I think it has been such a habit for me that it just happened naturally. I have been doing some work with an energy healer, Wendy, to help me separate myself from him energetically, but I guess old habits die hard.

The positive of all of this, is that because we are connected, doing my own work and healing myself helps to heal him, too.

So even though I was very specific at the beginning of the session that I didn’t want to focus on the situation with my son, here it popped up anyway – AND it was related to the issue I did want to work on, that feeling of doubt and confusion.

Amazing!

I’m Baaaaack!

More than a year ago I moved my blog to my business website. I totally lost the following that I had, and have missed the comments and support that I had received when I began this blog almost two years ago.

Last night I had a flash of insight. I realized that the purpose for beginning this blog was completely different from the purpose in having a blog on my website.

My purpose when I began this blog was to show up as my true, authentic self. To speak what was true for me. To test my courage and resolve to be honest and allow myself to be vulnerable enough to let others see who I really am.

When I moved my blog to my business website I suddenly began monitoring and censoring what I wrote. I wanted it to be helpful for other people. I wanted it to help me build my business. I started worrying that I would look weak if I was completely honest about myself, and that others would not want my services because of that. I felt that every blog post had to add value to the reader’s life and so I agonized over what the lesson was, or what tool or practice I could share.

So, you see, two completely different purposes. I can’t believe I didn’t see it before!

The reality has been that people don’t comment on my blog on my website. I really miss the engagement with others.

So, I’m back. And I’m rededicating myself to the purpose that I began with almost two years ago. To show up as me, warts and all. To share my experiences and what I’ve learned from them. Or to share my doubts and fears and ask for help from others when I need it.