I was reading Untethered Soul, agreeing strongly in the part about breaking down the barriers we build around ourselves... Then I came home and my window wouldn't close because it's broken.
Immediately I felt fear. It's cold where I live! What will I do when it's not hot and sunny out? What will I do to get my landlord to fix this? Panic spoke for a moment. Then I literally looked past the open crack and saw plain beauty in the nature beyond. Wow. Outside is majestic. There isn't anything to fear in sight. I have views over trees, mountains, birds, and insects. A cool fresh breeze wafting through. Sunshine peaking over the mountains. It is life-affirming. What I can see is incredible!
Ok, Universe. I get your message, loud and clear. I will get out more. I will open the windows of my mind and let in the unlimited brilliance of nature. I receive your challenge to be more open, and I meet it without fear.
That said, does anyone know a good window repair person?
In case you haven't read it, here's a particularly moving excerpt from Michael A. Singer's Untethered Soul, page 122-124.
"There are two ways you can live: you can devote your life to staying in your comfort zone, or you can work on your freedom. In other words, you can devote your whole life to the process of making sure everything fits within your limited model, or you can devote your life to freeing yourself from the limits of the model [the cage]. …
When you are truly awake spiritually, you realize you are caged. You wake up and realize that you can hardly move in there. You’re constantly hitting the limits of your comfort zone. You see that you’re afraid to tell people what you really think. You see that you’re too self-conscious to freely express yourself. You see that you have to stay on top of everything in order to be okay.
Why? There’s really no reason. You have set these limits on yourself. If you don’t stay within them, you get scared, you feel hurt, and you feel threatened. That’s your cage. …
Going beyond means going beyond the borders of the cage. There should be no cage. The soul is infinite. It is free to expand everywhere. It is free to experience all of life. This can only happen when you are willing to face reality without mental boundaries. If you still have barriers, and you know what they are because you hit them every day, you must be willing to go beyond them. Otherwise you remain within your cage.
And remember, decorating your cage with beautiful experiences, fond memories, and great dreams is not the same as going beyond. A cage by any other name is still a cage. You must be willing to go beyond.
… Eventually you will realize that it cannot actually hurt you to go beyond your psychological limits. If you are willing to just stand at the edge and keep walking, you will go beyond. You used to pull back when it got uncomfortable. Now you relax and go past that point. That is all it takes to go beyond. Go beyond where you were a minute ago by handling what’s happening now. ...
When you are trained, like a great athlete, to immediately relax through your edges when they hit, then it's all over. You realize that you will always be fine. ... You end up loving your edges because they point your way to freedom. Then one day, when you least expect it, you fall through into the infinite. That is what it means to go beyond."
Let’s talk about self-hate. If I'm honest, I spend a lot of time quietly hating myself. That happens. I own it.
One thing I know for sure is that my life is easier when I am living from love. By that I mean when I’m allowing space for that self-hatred to be here, when I’m hearing its nasty garbage dialogue… and letting it speak.
I let it have the floor, without reacting. Then I start to watch over it with a sense of okayness. I hear you, nasty voice. I'm just listening. Just giving you space to speak.
But who is this part of me who is listening to it and watching over it? Does this part of me have the gumption to give love to the other parts? The answer is yes. I can always deliver love. I can’t always shout louder than the garbage dialogue, but I can quietly shine kindness upon it.
And just like that, it’s ok. The loving gets louder than the hating.
I learned as a kindergarten teacher that the kids who act out with hate or nastiness are starving for patience and kindness. So I gave love to them. And they would respond with softening, loosening, then joy, self-acceptance, and better behaviour.
Now I apply this same compassion towards my own inner dialogues: Nastiness, I love you. I am here for you. I don't know where you came from, but the world is an OK place and we’re going to get through it together. It might get weird, and that's OK too.
I got you. Even when you are nasty or cruel. And I love you anyways. Because you don’t need any more shit from me. I give you love instead.
Lost Lake Whistler - water barely above freezing. It feels so wrong and also so right.
I've committed to plunge daily.
I'm immersing in the outrageous to remember what it is to be human. That's a thing I like to do. By facing the very unpleasant, I recognize that it's actually quite fine. When I step into the terrifying cold, I get to experience eternal okayness. My body and soul confirm that I am alive and well.
Then I feel impervious! I celebrate that I have the agency to choose.
Life is more than a series of good moments and bad ones. Being truly alive means having a wonderful openness to what is beyond that. Let's go there.
A month ago I made a decision to stop pretending. I was in a very dark place and I needed to fish myself out. I had been pushing away the reality that my relationship was failing, and I was hiding from the pain that it obviously wasn't going where I wanted it to go.
Somehow, I left.
It was very sad. But it was right.
I'm committed to getting back to living with honest, down-to-earth joy. And I'm willing to take care of myself first, even when it means letting go of something that I love. I'm slowly reconnecting with the quiet wisdom my body eternally whispers. I'm remembering what it means to listen, and to feel.
I am willing to go through this pain because I know that it's unavoidable. Pain is a fair emotion on the spectrum of my life. And I want to hit that spectrum at every angle and in every colour.
Onwards. With headlamps and clear light. With hashtags for clarity, presence and truth.
RETREAT July 6-8 in the Sea to Sky Retreat Centre - Living from Love
FREE MOVEMENT WORKSHOP May 5th Whistler on feeling your inner joy
SOBER SUMMITS May 26th hiking for the fun of it in Whistler WANDERLUST Aug 2-6 in Whistler - for Prancing Your Heart Out
BLACK ROCK CITY Aug 26- Sept 2 - Free Movement and Lifing so Hard
Did you know that I'm a control freak? Yep. That's how I learned to be compassionate.
Before self-love, I had to look harshly on all the uptight, wound-up habits I have in the world. (There's a lot, and they're hilarious.) The only way I could live with them was to learn how to love them.
Great counselling has taught me to regard uptight clenching as my "growth zone," and that I can love myself anyways. By loving my stiffness, closed-mindedness, and other unsavoury digressions, I can move past the agony of being, and get into just Being.
And I take myself less seriously - which is about the only thing I actually control. To me that means moving around, prancing. It's fun, and that is a gamechanger.
Some days I choose to hide behind fear and rigidity. I just want to know everything now. I can't accept the mystery, so I choose misery instead.
And other days, I can see that I'm blinded by rigidity and I know that it's time to move my body. With that bigger perspective I see that I don't need to know; that the mystery is a much bigger gift; that humility is joyful.
So here I am, putting one foot in front of the other. Sometimes more freely than others. Sometimes with calculating and other times with courage. Always onwards, into more willingness to be open and love.
So the next time you hear me talking about "loving yourself" in a workshop or class, know that I am up to my elbows in doing it with you.
If you want to try this "being lighter" thing with me, check out my upcoming events.
Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates.
At the first gate, ask yourself: 'Is it true?'
At the second gate, ask yourself: 'Is it necessary?'
At the third gate, ask yourself: 'Is it kind?'"
Speech is more powerful than simply getting a point across. It connects us with other humans and forges a relationship between ourselves and the outside world. So speak truth. Be kind. And share what is necessary.
Keeping my foot out of my mouth today, and hopefully every day.