I have had some personal insights start to come to light for me lately. Coming on the heels of a powerful coaching experience in Pula, Croatia.
Continued reminder that the statement “we don’t know what we don’t know” is so true.
And how we unconsciously battle with our conscious mind to maintain perceived safety.
To maintain homeostasis.
To avoid change.
To stay comfortable.
Whether I’m fascinated by it, or annoyed, is irrelevant.
Because it’s the reality of being human.
We naturally want to evolve, while simultaneously fighting it.
And, while I’m grateful for the insights I’m becoming more aware of – I recognize the dual nature of fighting them.
The part of me that observes the behaviors that has been unconscious, and now, brought to the light.
To shift the patterns, I must shift how I treat the new discovery.
It has been a pattern for many years to beat myself into submission and force myself to change.
And, while that has worked at some points in my life, it no longer does.
Calling myself “stupid”
Asking “what the hell is wrong with you?”
Expecting me to be somewhere I am not
No longer works..
In actuality, it strengthens the patterns I want to change.
Now, my focus is to be patient with myself and keep a consistent observational eye on my patterns.
Or, what a recent coach I worked with referred to as, “gentle reflection”
It’s not about force at this point.
It’s about allowing the changes to occur by nature of evolution through observation.
And in case you are wondering about the “insights” I have now mentioned about four times, I’m getting there.
This post after I was getting ready for a follow up call with the lovely people I met at the event in Pula, Croatia.
Pondering on what my experiences have been since the days we spent together.
When I reflected on it, the following is what I wrote.
“I feel something different stirring within me.
A different experience of living, it seems.
A back and forth dialogue without words between my mind, body, and the moment of now.
My ego wanting to label it as “awareness”, to “prove” to myself that some deeper change has occurred.
Yet, labeling will likely undermine the depth of what I attempt to explain.
But I want to make an attempt to speak it out loud.
To voice my experience.
#1 I have been experiencing the majority of my life out of the moment I’m within. Mostly in the imagination and conceptualization of mind. Lost in thought. Missing what is going on inside my body, and environment. Missing what is going on with the people I am speaking with. Missing what I could be enjoying right now
#2 Receptivity is a life long challenge I have experienced and created for myself. Directly connected to #1, living life of mind and perceived safety. Missing out on what is being sent my way, love, feedback, kindness. Whether acts of kindness, gifts, money, or feedback, I’ve struggled most of my life to receive. To receive triggered anger, guilt, sadness, fear. I’ve realized that receiving from people has felt unsafe for years.
For these two, I have been using gentle reflection to observe, but not trying to force change. And am practicing patience with myself.”
These were the deeper insights that are valuable to me. They represent a huge opportunity to shift the way I’m being in the world.
You may read this and say, “hey, me too!”
You may not.
What I know is, somewhere I “knew” these patterns existed, but I didn’t “get it”.
I didn’t recognize the depth of resistance.
I didn’t recognize the areas it showed up in my life
I didn’t recognize how I avoided being aware of it
I didn’t “get it”
I like when people make conversations like this practical. So to share how these patterns have affected my life..
How has #1 affected my life?
#1 Thinking about work when someone I care about is talking to me
#2 Worrying about what people think of me when I’m dancing
#3 Over planning my future for travel, career, relationships
#4 Traveling across the world and finding myself living the same way I did at home
How has #2 affected my life?
#1 Feeling guilty or saying “no” when offered dinner or “special treatment”. Especially if I’m not giving something in return
#2 Receiving payment for my professional expertise
#3 Letting someone take care of me when I’m sick, down, or hurting
#4 Assuming feedback from previous managers, or anyone was a personal attack
Realizing how those insights steer my behaviors and enjoyment of life, is profound.
Now that I have seen this, it can’t be unseen.
Think of recognizing new insights like this. Using an example from Michael Neill (A coach I follow and respect)
“Imagine you have a two hour commute to work each day. The entirety of the trip is full of bumper to bumper traffic, and is unpleasant to say the least.
Then, I show you a way to get to work that takes half the time and you get to drive the beautiful coastline.
How many times would I have to show you this new course before you remembered it and it became your new path to work?”
So if you find yourself in a place where you are…
1. Experiencing something changing within you but can’t communicate it
2. Trying to change a pattern you recently recognized, but it’s not happening “fast enough”
3. Are only curious about how you may make some changes if you decide to
Know, we all experience, doubt, confusion, and wondering if anyone else goes through it.
Be patient with yourself, kind, and keep observing how you are showing up.
When we can be clear on..
#1 What we want
#2 Reality of where we are
#3 The behaviors and beliefs that stand in the way
While NOT beating ourselves to a bloody pulp for being anything but perfect…
Change will start to occur.