At War with Manifested Consequence – at War with Myself

In my previous posts I took on my relationship to correcting mistakes, which I am still very much walking. To clarify, I’m using mistakes in a broad sense of mis-takes. Where you had a take, you had an opportunity for something, but you let it slide, or didn’t create the optimal conditions for that particular instance or scenario.

Now, I’ve been banging my head (I wish I could say I just ‘looked’ and ‘introspected – but got to be honest, it wasn’t all that graceful) with the term Manifested Consequence.

Every action has a reaction, every input an output. Every initiation has a consequence.

Hence – Manifested Consequence.

This is where the results of your actions have manifested themselves that it’s ‘too late’ to do something about it or prevent it, it’s already here.

Like smacking a vase with a hammer. You can maybe glue it back together, but it’s not going to be the same vase. There’s going to be weaknesses, you can then learn not to smack other vases, but the other one’s going to forever show what you did with it.

When you cheat on someone, when you’re dishonest and relationships get damaged – there is no ‘going back to how things were before’. You can’t undo that act. You can introspect as to why you did what you did, and make the necessary changes within you so you don’t repeat it again – but the people or person involved may not want to have anything to do with you anymore. Maybe they forgive you, but it doesn’t erase the act. You’re all different people know – even if you let go and change.

Some Manifested Consequences are generational – like our economic system, political affairs, ecological collapse. You can’t go ‘I want a perfect beautiful planet with everyone living in harmony and I want it now!!’ We can work towards a better future, but we can’t save all of the thousands if not millions of people and animals suffering and dying, right now. That’s our Manifested Consequence. That’s our cross to bear.

What I found in the past few weeks, is that I can get really caught up in Manifested Consequence. Where something is ‘too late’, ‘already done’ , ‘got to face the music’ type of scenarios. I will squirm and pull and whine and tear at it, to try and make it go away. That this whole thing, is just so unfucking fair. That this shouldn’t be here. Where I’m focusing all my time and energy on trying to move or even just shake –  a solid wall that’s not gonna go anywhere. While in the meantime being surrounded by so many things that could use my attention, things that I can affect and change that slip me by completely.

Which is exactly the point I had missed. One evening in breaking my head over how I could possible change or reverse something, I was just feeling more and more and more at a loss. I felt shittier by the thought. While doing Self Forgiveness on believing that I ‘cannot affect a change on this’ and my disempowerment in relation to the Manifested Consequence (hoping I would gain some trust and confidence) – the pressure inside only compounded. My eyes fill up and I was ready to break down – when I asked myself ‘What’s the real point? Cause THIS is not IT’

In my forgiveness, I was more and more trying to dissolve the Manifested Consequence through forgiveness, to try and ‘forgive it away’. But that’s just not possible. I saw that there were things I could do to ameliorate the situation for myself, to do things different from now on – but even there, I didn’t even want to go there – unless I knew it was going to be absolutely reversible. That’s when I realized how very conditional I had been in many of my applications. Where I would change, push and do things – but only cause in the back of my mind I have a clearly defined result that I’m expecting to get back from it.

I had been so angry and frustrated at this wall that wouldn’t move, not even shake. This stupid, unfair fucking wall – that I completely missed and side stepped the issue of my own self-integrity.

I read Lao Tzu’s ‘Manifested Consequence’ article again on the Desteni website, that had been conveniently circulating in my newsfeed.

The article starts foreboding:

Not that it is actually foreboding, it’s stating a simple truth. Just truth I hadn’t allowed myself to swallow completely.

But once I did take that moment to swallow it, it was actually a huge relief. It was a moment of grace.

Because I had been bashing on myself hard and long, for things I couldn’t change, things that were outside of my reach. And now, I could let them go. Now, I could focus on things I could change.

And then the fear set in.

That ‘what if I don’t have what it takes to change all the way?’

And that’s when I realized that this fear is what got me to fixate on Manifested Consequence, got me to fixate on things that I cannot change. So that I could tell myself ‘I’m working on change’ – but have no tangible results to speak for. As if writing out my homework on a computer that wasn’t even plugged in and still insist that I AM DOING MY HOMEWORK! CAN’T YOU SEE ME TYPE AWAY??

Another key point mentioned in the article, is that we ourselves exist as Manifested Consequence. We’re the result of all our past thoughts, decisions, choices, actions, inactions, acceptances and allowances – not only this lifetime – but all time. Who we are is malleable however, and we can create ourselves as a New Manifested Consequence, one by design, one through our awareness in doing, being and living that which is Best for All, in every single moment. That potential is there – but we’ve got to start with where we’re at. And unless we accept and acknowledge all of what we accepted and allowed ourselves to become, we’ll always be at war with ourselves, trying to change something from the starting point of ‘undoing’ of ‘not having it be there’ – which necessarily makes you miss exactly those lessons you need to integrate to change and prevent the same from happening again. Cause otherwise it’s not about changing your ways for the sake of being a better person, but just having that one shitty aspect of yourself out of your sight cause you can’t stand your own self-judgment.

This is where I had to step into humbleness, accept the Manifested Consequence and to change, to do my best in all areas of my life – regardless if it was going to affect this one particular point that nagged me, or not. To do it unconditionally. To do what I can to ameliorate the situation involved, but to not let it take over to the extent that it starts compromising into other areas. Cause if I don’t, I’ll just create more Manifested Consequence that I can keep feeling ashamed, guilty and regretful about and diminish myself more and more over time. And it hurts to accept it, it hurts to embrace it and acknowledge it for what it is – but I can use that hurt to drive my focus, to move me into excellence instead of whining about what cannot be undone.

Powerlessness in the Face of Correcting Mistakes

In my previous blog, I discussed my relationship with making mistakes, not wanting to see mistakes because of the level of judgment attached to ‘making mistakes’ and ‘admitting mistakes’.

This assisted me in having a clearer perspective in dealing with mistakes in the week that came after. There was more of an openness and embrace that stepped forth to be willing to look at my mistakes instead of shunning away from them.

But, as with many paths in life – when we look at a path and we see a roadblock and we take a long time to muster the courage to overcome it – we suddenly expect that everything will go ‘just fine’ and that all it took, was this one goddamn hurdle and then things will just fall into place.


But in reality, you’ll get past that roadblock to then only realise that the road ahead is muddy and you’re wearing the wrong pair of shoes! Another roadblock lol.

And then it’s soooo easy to want to give up

While yes, oftentimes, the decision to get started on something is the biggest hurdle, it by no means grants you a smooth passage forward. Just more roadblocks, in different shapes and sizes, more layers within ourselves we need to embrace and give direction. But hey, you’re a few steps forward each time, you learn something new about yourself and you let go of a false limitation and self-belief.

Anyway – there I was, face to face with my mistake – slightly proud, that I was busy correcting my pattern to then realise ‘Oh shit, just because I’m willing to see my mistakes, doesn’t mean I immediately see how to direct or correct it’. Because with this mistake, I knew that how I responded was not ideal, there was something off about how I handled it; yet at the same time – I also wasn’t quite sure what the best way forward was. There, I went a bit into a low, cause I hadn’t looked ‘that far ahead’ and had expected for things to just unfold from there. I developed a direction, that seemed best with the info I had that time – but was still a bit disappointed that facing my mistake didn’t magically manifest the correction and way forward. I still need to test things out, get feedback and finetune as I go along.

Then – there was another instance, where I did see the mistake and solution simultaneously. But I didn’t like what I saw. And suddenly I got very, very, tired. Like – ‘I-want-to-go-to-bed-at-7PM-in-the-evening’-tired (I didn’t though) and – ‘I-slept-for-8-hours-yet-I’m-still-tired-what’s-going-on’-tired.

All-day long I was walking around asking myself ‘Why am I so tired?’, ‘Are my periods coming soon, is that why I am so tired?’

Being tired of the same repetitive thought, I then re-winded in time to see where and when this tiredness had set in. And it was: when I was looking at the correction for the mistake.

I zoomed in a bit better to find that exact moment where I dropped and sank inside myself. I played it in slow-motion for myself and saw that it was in seeing the correction, yet immediately perceiving and believing myself to be completely incapable of carrying out the correction. Where – I could see the correction, yet at the same time inside myself went ‘well, that’s off the table, no point even looking at it cause there’s just no way I can do that. Other people maybe, but not me.’

Boom – powerlessness set in.

And I started losing my power / energy, slowly draining away into a dark pit of despair.

This reminded me of many previous instances when faced with mistakes, where I would go into judgment, punishment, isolation and what not.

 When you come face to face with a mistake – you can either correct it, or you don’t – on a basic, simplistic level.

What I found with myself, is that very often: I wouldn’t.

Not so much consciously, but unconsciously I would anticipate that I am not going to be able to live up to the correction so ‘why bother’.

At the same time, you can’t ‘unsee’ your mistake or ‘pretend it never happened’. That part of you that reminds you of your accountability, tells you that this mistake requires some kind of response or action. But what kind of response do you give to a mistake that you “know” you’re not going to correct?

That’s where the self-judgment or depression or some form of self-compromise – anything that makes me ‘feel bad’ and ‘make me suffer’ comes in. To show that ‘look, I am giving this mistake attention, I am looking at it and contemplating my mistake’.

All the while knowing that honestly, I wasn’t going to move on correcting it. At least not really. I’m just going to feel bad for a while, and then I’ll find a reason to feel better and then it will all be okay again.

The sad thing is, that it’s not because I don’t care that I don’t move on the correction, but because I believe I’m just not capable. I don’t care enough about myself to find out, learn, explore and develop into a capacity to carry it out – that I settle for feeling shitty. Self-Punishment being a weak substitute for correction.

More to come in my next post…

In the meantime, you can check some of these EQAFE interviews! 

Self-Judgment and Sudden Tiredness – Quantum Mind Self Awareness  (Note to self: if you don’t know why you’re tired, just run it through the EQAFE search engine)

Self-Judgment and Sudden Tiredness (Part 2) – Quantum Mind Self Awareness

Standing by Your Choices – Reptilians – Part 313

Fear of Making Mistakes & Unconditional Hate

I was listening to an old interview from Bernard the other day while doing some admin work. After the interview was done I put down my headphones, let out a big sigh and push/rolled my chair away from my desk with my feet and just kind of ‘collapsed’ in my chair.

I was feeling majorly deflated.

There was just so much information, so much information that I would have never come up myself.

It reminded me of a conversation we had just before he died, where I was pregnant and he was explaining to me all the things that were happening as the baby was developing in utero. The conversation ended with ‘Do you understand now how little you actually understand of what’s really going on?’ – with me sadly nodding in defeat, sighing ‘yes…’ (cause you knew Bernard would always demand a CLEAR YES or NO or NOT YET– nodding or ‘mmm’ is not a present, direct answer!)

I was reflecting on some of my visions and plans of the future while in this deflated state and didn’t see the point of continuing my efforts in it. ‘What’s the point? There’s so little I really understand – I’m going to be making mistakes all the time! I’m probably making huge mistakes right now and I’m not even seeing it! I’m in way over my head!’

‘That’s it then’ I was thinking ‘This is just out of my reach’.

Then I felt this veil of suppression and depression slowly moving down in my body. I went ‘waaait a minute, what’s going on here?!’

See – my logical mind went: you clearly know shit compared to Bernard. Therefore you are less, therefore you’re inadequate and incapable and therefore why even bother. Which on some level is not completely untrue. I am not equal to Bernard in his understanding and application. Equal in potential, yes sure, as are we all – but not equal in fact. And here I’m not so much talking about Bernard the person, but more Bernard as Life. I am not equal to Life, I am less than Life – that’s not a judgment, it’s a fact.

But it’s the judgment part that always gets to me. It’s the judgment part that goes ‘Shame on you for not being Life yet, shame – on – YOU!’ And it’s the fear of judgment part of me that goes ‘Don’t change, because if you change, you’re actually acknowledging that something’s wrong with you, that you’re less than, that you’re…bad!’

It’s like my head can’t wrap itself around the possibility that you can be less than – yet – not be bad. That – there MUST be some kind of value judgment involved. There MUST BE some form of condemnation. There MUST BE someone who PAYS and there MUST BE someone who WINS and gets APPRAISED.

So – I had to look at these dimensions for a moment. ‘Yes, you’re less than Bernard, no that’s not a good enough reason to be all deflated and give up on everything’.

‘But I’ll make soooo many mistakes.’ (Ok so I don’t have actual dialogues with myself lol but I present myself with ‘thought-form arguments’ and then break it down for myself, move through the information, ground it for myself to ‘get to the point’ and what the correction is – but it works well to present it in a dialogue form for the sake of sharing )

‘So what, every mistake just shows you where your misalignments are, so you can correct them.’

‘Yeah but, I bet there’s soooo many, and it’s just going to be sooo embarrassing to see them all!’

                ‘So you don’t want to go forward, because it’s going to reveal your weaknesses and where you haven’t considered all dimensions because then you’ll find out exactly how little you actually understand about reality and yourself and how much room for improvement there is’

‘Yessss, exactly!’

                ‘So you don’t want to see yourself. You don’t want to reveal YOU to YOU’.

‘No, but, but, I do, because, that’s like why I walk process’

                ‘No you don’t, cause you’re just scared and super judgey towards yourself’

*GASP*

See, it’s not mistakes I fear. It’s my own hell and fury that I unleash unto myself when I do see a mistake. All my attention and focus gets sucked into the fact that I made a mistake. Not – why I made a mistake or what I can learn, if it was really even a mistake or just me feeling bad about myself for some other random reason.

Later that day I was doing a Life Alignment session on myself, and one of the words that tested out was ‘Unconditional Love’.

I was looking at these words ‘Unconditional Love’ and how there’s not much of that being lived in my life. I decided to turn it around and go, if I’m not Unconditionally Loving towards myself and others – am I then just Unconditionally Hating? Kind of a point of ‘you can’t serve two masters’.

It was a bit of a comical moment when that came up. Unconditional Hate – lol. But – there’s truth in that. I give myself and others a lot of hate – and if I need to come up with a good reason, well, there is no good reason. It’s just ‘what I do’ and just ‘how I live’ – just judge here, judge there, judge some more. And it’s because there’s no reason, that it’s just so unconditional.

But if it’s unconditional then I can change it. Cause it’s just a decision. It’s just something I decided to live. I decide to unleash hell and fury unto myself when seeing mistakes. But I don’t have to. Mistakes will come and go, for sure, they’re not going away. They’re a certainty in this Life, I’m going to make mistakes and I better see them, I better reveal them so I can work at it. BUT – I don’t have to thrash myself every time, that’s totally optional. And it’s only for the love of thrashing myself, that I don’t want to see the mistakes because then I start punishing myself. And I only love thrashing myself, because on some level I decided to unconditionally hate myself. And then I don’t change – because then all the focus is on ‘how bad I am’ and ‘how am I going to make myself feel better’ and not the who, what and why of a mistake – and then the ‘not changing’ becomes even more reason for being a total bitch towards myself.

So for this week I am going to pay attention to my experiences in relation to mistakes (though I am sure this also works for pretty much any experience):

  1. Is this necessary or is this optional?
  2. Does this serve me?
  3. Is there a better way of going about this?

And report back in my blog. Let’s see if we can turn this inner bitch around!

Also check out these related interviews on EQAFE.com:

Homesick

I arrived in Panama two months ago. On one of the first days I sat outside in the garden and I started to cry. Everything felt so foreign, so unfamiliar. ‘I just want to go hooomee’, I was whining inside myself while crying. I then thought of the farm we just left, the place I had called home for 10 years and was struck with a memory of one of the first days when I arrived in South Africa. I had just met Bernard and everyone else living and visiting the farm at that stage. I was in my room alone sitting on my bed, holding a pillow and I was crying. Everything felt so foreign, everything felt so unfamiliar. Bernard scared the shit out of me. What did I do? Why did I come here? I just want to go hoooomeee…’

Sitting in the garden in Panama I wiped up the last bit of tears and snot as I was going down memory lane. At least, I thought, I was feeling homesick then too – and it turned out to be one the best years of my life spent there. So at least I know I can’t use my current experience to determine my future experience of the place.

I sat a bit longer and placed my attention to my time in Belgium, where I lived before South Africa. I remembered how I was always in awe of people from other countries. How even though Belgium was my home country, my ‘motherland’ I had never quite felt at ‘home’ or as if I ‘belonged’. I didn’t particularly enjoy Belgian culture / way of life. I didn’t see myself staying in Belgium.

So if not any one particular country ever really felt like ‘home’ – and I’m feeling ‘homesick’ – am I really longing back for a place or am I longing simply for a state of being that I miss?

The ‘who I was’ – ‘while I happened to be over there’.

And yup, that was pretty much just it. I had just been missing me. With all the travel arrangements, the stress and whatnot that comes with wrapping up a life in one country and starting somewhere new – it was as if for a moment there were just so many things orbiting around myself, things to consider, things to keep track of, my reactions towards all that was happening – that I lost sight and connection with me. Everything ‘out there’ needed to be handled first and foremost.

Now that we’ve mostly settled down, I still get homesick – but now I know to use this as a reminder to check in with myself. To check where my attention and focus has been, how much of it has gone to trivial matters, how much of it has gone to reactions and patterns that could have been nipped in the bud way sooner? How comfortable am I in naturally flowing and expressing me? What’s holding me back?

In the end, this whole process we’re walking, our Journey to Life – is one big homecoming.

Demystifying Post-Partum Depression

In this video I share my experience with Post-Partum Depression and how I have come to look at it as being an Existential Crisis that envelops one’s whole life and the definitions we’ve ascribed to ourselves. Rather than being a short-term ‘localized’ experience, the Raw Truth of ourselves steps forth and we have the opportunity to look at some hard questions and experiences that’ve been with us our entire life.

Transcript:

Hi everyone, in this video I wanted to talk about Post-Partum Depression.

When I was pregnant and I first heard and read about Post-Partum Depression and the ‘baby blues’ it seemed like something ‘out there’. Just even the words ‘postpartum depression’ like all the ‘latin-ness’ in there, like it’s some specialized condition, put me off. And also the wording seems to localize the experience to only having to do about after the birth and the separation of baby and mother from the womb. But for myself… did I go through postpartum depression? Yes, I did.  I went through periods of lots of crying. I was exhausted mentally and physically.

Interesting thing is that in looking back I should have known. In that when I first found out that I was pregnant, I was freaking the fuck out and I was crying, I was petrified because knowing that I was pregnant brought out all these insecurities, those inherent belief that I’m not adequate enough, that I have no self-trust, no self-confidence and I’m just going to fail at this miserably. And that same signature, that experience of finding out that I was pregnant in that panic — was the same signature that I experienced after the birth. Because it’s not about the ‘after birth experience’ and ‘oh you may get like depressed because of the hormonal changes’ and you know, ‘if you do just let people know so we can just contain that because you know unstable moms scare us’.

What I found for myself was that it’s not about that small, little period after the birth, having a child — and especially if it’s your first — you’re faced with an existential crisis. In that moment of having a child, you’re not just faced with ‘Oh the child leaving my body and all these things happening’, you’re dealing with the very question of existence: Why we are here? Why are we doing the things we do?

Because whatever meaning we have given life; whatever meaning we have given to ourselves: is going to be reflected in our parenting. It’s the framework that determines everything. And at the same time in asking that question, you’re faced with the meaning and framework that your parents gave to life. If life on Earth for them is all about survival, competition,’ just making it’ — really being part of the human race, ‘you got to be a winner’. Then that’s going to translate into your parenting. Because it’s going to define how you feed your child, how you educate your child, how much you praise your child, how much you break them down, how much you compare them to others. It’s going to frame everything. And as much as you’re asking yourself that question about ‘who are you gonna be’, who do you want your child to be’, ‘what are you doing here with a child on earth’ —  your entire childhood, your entire development, everything that comes with that comes back to the surface. All these undealt with issues, all those self-sabotaging beliefs, all those limiting perceptions that we have about ourselves come up. And what comes to mind is like a paint bucket, that’s been kept under high pressure and now someone put a hole in it and it just splatters all over the walls. That’s then the postpartum experience, where everything is just so intense and emotional and you’re all over the place.

And it’s not that it is a new experience. Because if you look at the Paint Bucket example again, the paint was already there – but it was just contained. And having a child, becoming a mother just presents the opportunity for that to come out, full force, full view, everywhere around you. And the fact that you go through that emotional experience and that really deep feeling: it’s not a bad thing. Because you’re actually really being honest about how you experience yourself, how you have been experiencing yourself all your life and you are willing to look at those questions even though they hurt, even though it’s so uncomfortable, even though you just had a child — a huge responsibility. You know, other mothers may breeze through the initial stages of birth and having a baby but maybe it’s because they’re not asking those questions. Maybe those questions came up but they managed to keep that lid closed. It doesn’t mean it’s not there so we also have to be very careful about comparing ourselves to other people, other mothers, what they went through, did not go through.

But for me I know that what I went through is equal and one to my own experience of what I have been living, how I was brought up, the conflict that was always there.

When I first went to panic when I found out I was pregnant you know it was just initially you manage and you work with it but at the same time it’s also because you know on a level it’s nine months from now – I have time.

For myself I worked with what I could, I asked myself a lot of questions about my own relationship with my mother, what is the type of mother I want to be, what are the fears that are coming up… and just kind of already starts preparing myself for what’s to come.

But when you have the actual baby, I mean it’s like you have no idea what’s in that paint bucket and the colours that are gonna come out. You know there’s stuff there but you don’t know what it is. Because you you’ve been keeping it in the dark and there’s nothing that can prepare you for that. Like you can prepare yourself to the best of your ability and there will still be things coming up.

Then another interesting thing is that after two years — that’s kind of when my son started to settle where he had all his teeth, his major growth, physical growth points were done with, he got more stable I started getting some proper sleep and kind of settling to a normal life routine again.

And I was like ‘Aaah, I can rest now….’ and then shit started hitting the fan again and I’m like ‘What is going on?’ like I’ve got all these pains, all these anxieties, fears, depressions,… where is this coming from? And then I talked to a friend of mine and she said look from what I can see everything you’re experiencing now goes back to your pregnancy, it goes back to those first initial months after birth where there’s so much shit comes up and you just don’t have enough time, you don’t have enough space to work with it. Because you know, you gotta tend to yourself, you’ve gotta tend to your child and you do the best that you can.

And it’s like your body knows and goes ‘Okay, we’ll just we’ll just scrape all this paint off, put it back in the bucket and we’ll work with it later’. So two years was my later and it all like it all came back and I’m still working through many of those points because you know it’s an existential crisis, it’s a big point, it’s a big question and it’s a very cool opportunity really to get to know yourself better to really answer those questions of why you’re here or, what do you want to create, what do you want to create for your children, what kind of person do you want your child to be — because that’s going to determine everything that you do with your child.

Another friend of mine she had like awful, awful childhood she grew up in the slums, third-world country. There was death, panic, conflict, violence, fear…that was like the background music to her life. She’s living in a first world country now, she’s not in that survival mode anymore. She had two kids and yeah initially there was a lot of emotional turmoil but it settled down and the kids got to a certain age and it’s like her mind and body just start shutting down with panic attacks, deep, deep stuff.

With my own childhood I know it was a tumultuous and conflictual childhood and it was reflected in my postpartum experience and equally for her because her childhood had been so rough. Who she is and her self-definition was is so defined by those childhood experiences that that’s what comes up because that’s what you need to work through, that’s what’s going to shape the rest of your life, your children’s lives and to use that opportunity. So as everything comes up work: through it. And don’t judge yourself for it because like I said before, this is you actually really being in touch with yourself, allowing yourself to feel, to ask those questions.

And I think if we can stop looking at postpartum depression as this clinical condition that only happens you know for this little period after birth, but see it for what it is, as an existential crisis that really, actually started from the moment you were born — and it’s not just about those few months —  it’s about the very core of your being. We don’t necessarily have to change the name but give it a different name like ‘existential crisis’ or you know being faced with ‘who I am crisis’ instead of like a mental condition — I think we would all look at these points a lot more and be a lot more open about it and share about it.

Because now it’s like ‘Ooh, that mom has postpartum depression…’ and we start tiptoeing around them and we don’t want to set them off and it’s such a delicate thing … No I mean that’s not how I would want to work with it, I don’t want other people to do that with me, just talk about it for what it is, talk about the hard questions you are facing, talk about the truth of yourself that you are facing — for me honestly in the for the first time getting that raw feedback, use it.

Alright I think that’s about it.

Thank you for watching, if you have any comments please do share

Thank you

 

Is my Child Abusing me?

In this video I discuss some of the aspects that may be involved in the experience of feeling like your child is abusing you. Remaining conscious of the variables that define the balance in our parent-child relationship will assist in tweaking our own approach and behaviour. Whenever a conflict or friction arises, we have an opportunity to re-assess and learn to come to a new sense of harmony.

 

Transcript:

 

Hi everyone, a topic I wanted to bring up …well not so much the topic — a question someone asked was ‘What do you do when there’s moments where you feel kind of abused by your child or another child?’

To give you some context this question came from a friend of mine who lives with me. She is kind of like, I call her ‘alloparent’, which is like in the animal kingdom it’s generally like another female in the group or herd who will just kind of co-parent and take care of your child when it’s needed. And at some point she was staying with my son and he started hitting her and in general just disregarding her and for a moment she is like feeling abused here. So she asked me like ‘ how do you deal with that, what do you do with that?’

And my perspective was basically that ‘Yes, he was abusing you and No, he wasn’t abusing you’ — in that you created the conditions for him to enter into that behaviour.

Now my son is four-and-a-half when he was very young a baby, he required constant care, he was very vulnerable, very dependent. And as a mother, and if you’re a new mother it’s like for the first time you realize what it means to sacrifice yourself and to be there completely for someone else and it’s a very hard thing to do. Like you have to break through so many comfort zones, so many ideas about yourself, about what you thought was possible, what you thought you would never be able to do and you end up doing it. Because the need is there, the call is there and you answer.

And for myself I really wanted to also challenge myself. How much can I do? How hard is it really? How much of my suffering is coming from my attitude, how I’m looking at things, having an emotional background – instead of coming from actual physical reality, of there being you know real physical limitations. And I really enjoyed that period, in this sense of breaking through a lot of barriers. But as your child grows up and gets older over the months, that role is no longer required.

Where it’s like you have you and your child and it’s like an equation sign here you know for each part of an equation. Initially the equation is as such that your child is like…. it’s this little vulnerable baby and you have to take this huge role of doing like everything for yourself and your baby. But you know the baby starts growing and you know. When the baby starts growing he starts understanding more, he starts to be able to do more and this part of the equation changes and then you equally have to start changing your part of the equation.

And for myself that was really difficult you know. First it was difficult to break through and just completely let go of any type of choice and put yourself in that position of just doing everything for your baby. Some babies can be very…. not that they’re demanding but they are such that they are very sensitive, they need a lot of care, you don’t sleep all through the night, their eating is like constant and erratic. You have other babies who are calmer, they sleep easily, you know it depends from baby to baby what kind of experience you go through as a parent.

Mine was more on the extreme side like he only started sleeping 6-hour stretches once he was 2.  But because I sooo enjoyed — not really enjoyable — was more proud of myself that I was able to let go of so many points of self-interest I kind of kept doing that because I thought ‘Oh my god, so cool I didn’t know I could do that – let me let me stay in that role’ even though now the child is changing, he doesn’t really need you that much, he’s understanding more about the

world and can take on more say ‘responsibility’. Now I’m talking two, three, four and a half years old. And the thing is you know that initial self-sacrificing, in really having to evaluate whether you can’t do something for your child whether that is based on your comfort zone or an actual limitation — that’s a big challenge for a lot of people. To be really honest about why they can’t play with your child for twenty minutes, like do you really have to work now — or you’re just in a stressed out state of mind, focusing on lack that you create the experience and you create the conditions inside yourself and around yourself, making you not being able to play with your child for 20 minutes or doing something for them? So I really enjoyed breaking through those things and I think it’s very important for everyone to look at those aspects and to break through them.

But the thing is you get to a point where your child can do more and you are not required to kind of be so strict with yourself because there’s more leniency in terms of your child understands that you’re busy and he has a capacity to understand that he can wait five minutes and then you know you’ll get him some food or it’s not gonna happen now. And if you’re personally still struggling with that aspect of dropping your own comfort zones and moving yourself to be completely there for your child you can sometimes get stuck there and believing that that’s what you have to keep doing. Well yes it’s still relevant for you to look at these points to see okay am I just being lazy or am I just using an excuse to not do something with my child or someone else’s child. But you also take into consideration that you have more space and leniency in how you direct yourself and your child.

So for instance what happened with her and my son was that she was… even though he’s four-and-a-half years old she was kind of placing herself in that position of “it’s all about him, it’s all about his well-being, and I’m just like this is the situation and I’m kind of just like not really in it but also not really out.” But everything’s about him and how he’s doing and she wasn’t taking herself into consideration she wasn’t putting herself into the picture. And children are very good, very, very good at picking up on those dynamics and they will start to push those buttons and they will start behaving… it’s almost like you’re inviting the behavior by not setting certain parameters and then they will start acting out and before you know, it’s like ‘oh my god this child is abusing me!’

It’s not they’re abusing you, it’s just that they kind of see the setting you’ve created for them and they take advantage of that. And it’s not to be mean,  it’s like … should you give a child a big room they’re gonna run in that big room they’re gonna use the space. And if you put a child in a small room they’re gonna use the space that’s there. So it’s kind of like you’re just playing with the environments and the conditions. And that is kind of an ongoing process I must say, where you must constantly evaluate for yourself. Like I would have it where you know one week everything’s going fine, we’ve got a very good balance, our relationship is like just where it needs to be. Then he goes through some kind of growth spurt and developmental milestone thing and starts shouting all these new words out of nowhere and you can see there’s a change.

And suddenly what you were doing, you know equation wise, it’s like it doesn’t work anymore. And there’s friction and conflict. It’s because this part of the equation changed but now it’s not balanced anymore. Because you know if the one side changes, other side naturally it has to change as well. The thing is, it doesn’t happen automatically. We have to consciously be aware of the environment and the dynamics that are taking place. And we have to be that force that changes the balance.

So there a little bit of insight into why your child might possibly be abusing you or if you’re a babysitter….those are the things I looked at for myself. Who are we in our relationship towards our child and is there anything that we need to change, our balance, taking into consideration where we are at and where your child is at.

Thank you for watching

Competition, Jealousy and Insecurity between Mothers

In this video I share my experience in comparing myself to other mothers and getting stuck in bouncing up and down in lifting myself up and breaking down. I explore why jealousy and competition thrive when we are actually inherently insecure about ourselves and the responsibility we carry. What have your experiences been with dynamics among mothers?

Transcript:

Hi everyone, the topic I wanted to explore for today is that of competition jealousy and insecurity between mothers and on an individual level. One of the social situations I dreaded a lot initially and when I just became a mother was being with other mothers. For me it was so easy to slip into comparison look at what they are doing, look at what I am doing, what am I doing wrong, what am i doing right – what are they doing wrong, what are they doing the rights… and I find myself inthis constant like ping-pong ball game of feeling really good about myself — feeling really shitty about myself.  But then I’m being able to feel really shitty about another mother which in turn made me feel really good about myself.

And one day I was looking at this because you know I’d spend a couple of hours out with other where there was other mothers around and like I just got a headache of this constant analyzing going on in my head. And then that night I looked at okay why is it that I feel such a huge need to compare myself with other mothers? And when I opened it up for myself, I first of all saw that I was competing with my own mother. With the mothers that have come before me where you know a lot of people don’t particularly like their parents you know, everyone, most people have gone through experiences with their own parents where they very much disagree with how things were done. You know, everyone’s got their own emotional traumas scars  that you went through as a child where you said “I’m gonna do things differently” . But regardless of how much you like or don’t like your parents — in my case it was more coming from a dislike, a competition of wanting to prove my parents wrong especially my mother — it came from… it’s like you don’t like your mother or your parents or what they did to you but yet at the same time here you are you know. And whatever they did right or wrong — it did however got you to where you are now. Where you know assuming kind of standardized scenario where you are now an adult and you are financially stable because you have a child and you are able to take care of yourself and
your child. So in terms of having prepped you and primed you for a survival, from
that perspective, like they [your parents] achieved their goal — and so did all the mothers
behind your own mother because otherwise you know she wouldn’t have been there.

So that was like a very strange point in a way because you know I was always consciously aware of competing with other mothers around me but when I actually looked inside myself I saw competition with my own mother and my own say ‘ancestral lineage of mothers’ where on the one hand you want to prove them wrong but then also on the other hand I fascinatingly enough make them proud and show that you can really take care of a child properly and nurture and raise them to be a whole well-rounded individual. It’s kind of like this love-hate relationship of wanting to prove them wrong yet not wanting to disappoint them and … more disappointing in terms of that weird unconscious survival tendency of making sure that your blood lineage you know continues to procreate. And for that to be in place you need to have certain survival skills and conditions in place.

Sso that is one point I found, because you know being a mother and being responsible for a child, of the well-being of another person who when they are small they’re not capable to do that for themselves and they are wholly dependent on you and trust you completely to cater for them.

It’s a huge responsibility and with that huge responsibility also the huge fear comes up.  I think alot of us it’s like we have a love-hate relationship with ourselves as well as like on the one hand we like ourselves or certain attributes character skills sides of us that we really enjoy and we are proud of who we are in those regards, but then other aspects other levels we noticed some weaknesses and things we don’t like about ourselves and that we need to work on and then what happens when you’re you know when you put all these different mothers together who are all going through that on some level or another it’s like just this like room of friction as everyone is insecure inherently I would say. And then constantly trying to reassure themselves that they’re actually doing okay so you get this constant of like ‘oh my god I’m the worst mom’, ‘No look I’m such a good mom cause look at what I’m doing’ and then another tendency I found within myself was to not be happy for other mothers when they had certain successes and triumphs and when they would go through certain experiences that were you know, not so desirable — I would actually secretly feel happy because at least it’s not me . Like’ whatever is a negative score for them is kind of good for me because at least I’m not doing that’. I think it is weird like competition dynamics that start to unfold…

From my experience moms can be like the most supportive people you have ever known because they have gone through that depth of care and what is involved in raising another being or several beings, you know if you have lots of children or twins I mean it’s like, respect man. On the other hand mothers can also be the most destructive nasty bitches . I experienced that inside myself as well towards myself and towards other mothers I won’t necessarily say it but the experience was there and it’s like I think we should all just accept that yes what we are doing is a huge responsibility. Yes, no one has the answer because we’re not perfect and the world is not perfect… We are a product of the world as much as the world is a product of us and if you look at the state of the world it’s not great, it’s not optimal. We’re not great, we’re not optimal let’s not try and compete about that fact you know.

Let’s come together support each other, acknowledge your own triumphs, your own successes without gloating about it, without making it something more and putting other mothers down. When you go through your failures, your trials, your challenges: acknowledged what happened, that it didn’t go great, but don’t put yourself down for it or start putting other mothers down when they are going through their own struggles.

It’s like we add this emotional value to either a success or failure you know that makes it so much more than what it is and we we don’t look so much at how we can improve ourselves and our relationship with our children as just wanting to balance how we feel about ourselves and using other people to do that.

So that’s something I’ve personally been working on a lot since I became a mom is to always make it sure that this is about me my relationship with myself and my relationship with my son and if I can learn from other people great let me do that. Instead of you know judging myself or judging other parents or trying to find little mistakes to show that know I am the best parent I know what I’m doing “that is why I have the permission to carry out the procreation of my blood lineage” you know there’s like this weird unconscious programming.

So yeah if you have any comments or experiences in relation to that that’s just something I wanted to share for myself like I think moms could really be great support for another and I had already experienced this but we can also be so mean let’s support each other instead of breaking each other down to not minimize it when we make a mistake or someone else makes a mistake be honest about what you see don’t make it more or less.

Alright, thank you for watching – bye!

 

What Drives you: Conditioning or Awareness?

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When we come into this world, we assume all is as it should be. We have absolute trust in our parents and our environment. We enter this world, into the current that is our life. As the water flows, we are carried through different sceneries, different environments and different motions as experiences. Along the way, we experience things we’d rather not experience again and others we want to seek out again. By the time we’re about seven, we’ve gathered quite a bit of data about our world and how we relate to our world. How we look at things and the decisions we make onwards, are vastly influenced through this data as our past experiences. The main components driving our decision making being what we have connected our fears and desires to, that which we want to avoid, and that which we want to seek out. We could compare these two elements as being our base binary code from which we operate from. Zeros (0) representing all we want to avoid and Ones (1) representing that which we want to achieve or experience.

Coming into this world and absorbing all that is around and coming towards us unconditionally, is great when you live in an ideal world. You’re input becomes equal to your output. Your environment standing as the example of harmonious and effective living then easily and seamlessly integrates itself into your own consciousness and you learn to navigate your life and your world in reflection of that harmony. Our world however, is far from perfect or ideal. The nature of our environment, society and the individuals that make up the world is largely reactive and unconscious. One where we are tolerating survival over thriving, one where untethered competition runs amok. We integrate and copy the reactive behaviour or learn to rebel against it (which tends to mostly still be a reactive response from our side going into the other side of the polarity, and not one of understanding).

From our zero’s and one’s we develop our code of conduct. The One indicating true north, your desires and ambitions you are striving towards and the Zero indicating your fears you wish to avoid. (It gets a little bit more complicated than that, with our fears and desires which intermingle, but I’ll address this in a future post). Often, these desires are not even true creative desires, but just the best vehicle to absolutely get away from our fears. Think of getting rich to avoid being poor, seeking popularity out of fear of being rejected — our fear is still our starting point and what drives us to seek out the positive. Without much awareness, we develop our principles which guide us through life, our code of conduct. While we develop and establish our code of conduct during the first seven years of life, and then integrate and specify it over the next two seven year cycles, we aren’t really aware that that’s what we’re doing. As a 5, 6 7 year old, you don’t stop for a moment to think ‘Hey, what principles am I living by? What principles do I want to have as my guiding compass in life? What do I accept in my life? Who do I want to be as a human being?’ We don’t ask these questions, nor are we prompted to by our environment and so the answers kind of ‘happen’ to us, mostly by chance, depending on what environment we were born into and placed along the way.

Then suddenly, somewhere along the way of the current that’s your life, you become a parent. You got your own little tot that’s joining the current of your life and this presents a prime opportunity to ask yourself these questions. You’re bound to ask them, because you’re faced with rearing a tiny human being into adulthood. As much as you’re asking yourself questions about how to raise your child, you’re implicitly questioning and evaluating who you’ve grown into, and if you’re happy with where you’re at.

Parenting as such doesn’t exist. There’s only the appearance of different parenting styles and approach because our own principles be live by differ, and by extension how we treat and raise our children. When we re-align ourselves to who we want to be, a person that stands strong in their particular individuality yet always considers the whole – we naturally re-align and change our ‘parenting’.

Often in life’s goings, we ask ourselves the questions ‘Who am I? What am I doing here?’. As if who we are and what we are going to do with our life is preordained. In a way, yes it is. Not so much preordained, but conditioned, yes definitely. But we ask these questions as if we have no say in the matter. As if we don’t have any power to decide who we are and what we are going to do. While the truth is, you can be whoever you want to be. But you must decide who you want to be and what you want to live by. That’s not to say that we’re all the same and anyone can do anything. We’re all still unique and have different expressions, a different way of ‘shining’. But who we are as the principles we live by can be equal. We can all embody the principles we want to live, even if we live them through our unique expression.

When we don’t question our code of conduct as the conditioned principles we live by, we’re bound to repeat the past. The past of our parents, and the generations before them and the past of our environment. We may make some consciously aware decisions here and there about things we want to change in our life, but unless we pull the rug underneath ALL of our unconscious conditioned guiding principles, we’ll find ourselves back in the same spaces, the same experiences, over and over again – each time with greater disappointment. You’ve got the best intentions, but somehow you always end up in those awfully familiar experiences and relationship dynamics you’ve been trying to surpass.

Exercise

Take a moment to identify for yourself the main fears and desires you’ve accumulated throughout your childhood. Evaluate your teenage and young adult years. How many of your decisions were based on these unconscious codes of conduct? How many of your decisions today are still being driven by those same impulses?

Now take the time to write out your new code of conduct. Declare to yourself the principles you do want to embody and live in your life (and just double check they’re not just there because you want to avoid something or seek out a fear driven desire). Really take your time to make these decisions consciously and within awareness. What do you want to create in and with your life? Sign the paper with your name to solidify and strengthen your commitment and devotion to yourself and your potential, your own personal contract with yourself.

You have the opportunity to be in the driver’s seat of your life rather than a passenger with no say as to its destination. Put those hands on the steering wheel and reset your compass!

(Note: I’ll be writing out a more into depth, step by step guide on how to walk this exercise in the future)

Stepping into Freedom & Responsibility – A Toddler’s Brazen Rite of Passage

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For the past year or so, you’ve had great delight in really getting in touch with your soft spot. Having been shamed as a child for showing emotions, which were backfired by adults as being ‘weakness’ – you’ve had a tough time allowing yourself to just be. To be there for your baby, to take care of it’s every need. To not diminish your baby’s needs or paint them off as manipulation. To stretch out your comfort zones and breaking the limits of what you thought you were physically capable of. You got in touch with your gentle, nurturing side and bathe in its soothing embrace.

Then suddenly, your little one starts changing. You hear things like ‘NO!’. Where you were once able to place your baby wherever was convenient and they’d stayed in proximity, your little one’s mobility urges itself to go into all those precarious places, their sense of observation drives them to test the laws of gravity over and over again – throwing things around and off many times over. Food is just another creative art medium (and the whole house is a canvas, living things included) – your calls for law and order go unheeded or only put more fuel on the fire.

For the longest time you battled with the voices – both the voices from the past repeating in your head, how you were raised, the standards and values that were imposed to you – as well as the external voices of well-intentioned advice (but not quite what you’re looking at in raising your baby) and the many warnings with scorned looks as to how you treat your baby. You’re spoiling him, she’s going to know no boundaries, he’s going to rule the house, she’s going to manipulate you, he’s going to know no discipline. But despite the many voices prodding at the doubts you thought you stilled, you kept going back to your calm, your trust, your faithfulness to your own inner voice, that you will see this through, that you need to see this through if only to come to a sound conclusion for yourself.

It took great bravery to go against your conditioned impulses – but now all hell is loose.

What if they were right?

What if I totally @#!8%$-ed up my child?

When something happens that appears to be the realization of your fears, we tend to petrify immediately. Following your inner guidance was just too good to be true. You’re a @#!8%$–up after all. Nice try though. You can go back now to a desolate inner landscape that holds no future.

When we fear something so much, the moment we see something that resembles our fear in the slightest, we think ‘Oh my God, this is it’. We believe our reaction at face value without investigating what is really going on. A toddler’s brazen rite of passage into freedom and responsibility easily becomes one of such fixations.

When we remain fixed on our fixation and only look at what is happening on the surface (unruly behaviour, tantrums, defiance, opposition, etc), we forego the bigger picture and perspicacious insight.

So why did your cute mogwai baby turn into a downright gremlin?

One of our unique features of being human is that of Free Will.

Free Will poses some challenges, considering there over 7 billion of us, not even taking into account the other gazillion of life forms on the planet.

We have the power to do what we want, but none of our actions come without a subsequent reaction or consequence. While we are free to choose how to act and be, we don’t have the freedom in picking out and selecting our set of consequence for that very action. On a global level – this is exactly what we are facing and is becoming more prominent and pronounced in its manifestations day by day. War, conflict and poverty are the epitome of our conflictual relationship with free will in the quest of making our free will a reality while rivalling everyone else’s free will. We’re all so much focused on our individual, personal free will, our own desires, dreams and fears that everyone else comes second.

When your toddler (or even baby) shifts his or her behaviour and interaction with reality in the realization that there are no defined lines or boundaries as to what goes and what not – an exploration sets forth to thirst his or her curiosity into one’s own ability to create and shape your reality. Your child steps into its power with no direction other than to find out ‘what can be done’ with this power.

For us parents, the advent of the power phase can be quite startling and alarming. Over eons of time, we and our ancestors have subdued our own in free will and have settled for complacency. Surviving to a ‘good old age’, having had kids and having accumulated some wealth to call your own is all we aim for. We’re just trying to get through the day and having a good time here and there. We’ve long given up our hopes and dreams for ourselves and the world; which was painful at one time, only to later be conceited with our own sense of ‘realism’. We turn our losses into triumphs because the truth hurts too much. We’ve given up. We’re proper a-dull-ts now. A child or infant stepping into its power phase, reigning chaos and mayhem, we’re not interested as to why they are doing it. All we know, is that it is oh so terribly inconvenient for our lives which we’ve limited to a narrow range of conduct in order to survive. We’ve worked hard to fall in line and run with the cog out of fear of being spat out and rejected as being defective. Our children, being new to this world – have no idea about all the tacit and explicit agreements we’ve made collectively and are out to explore for themselves their creative abilities.

Our fearful response to a child’s wild nature then doesn’t stem from our desire to raise a well-developed and rounded individual, but from a desire to raise a person that fits the collective agreed upon framework of survival on this planet. Whether this framework is the most beneficial to both personal and global well-being and harmony is not part of our consideration. Just that they need to fit the framework. Or perhaps we do want to nurture and raise our child(ren) to their utmost potential, but still battle with our own fears and conditioning.

You find yourself in a situation with two opposing elements. You have the child who is still raw and boundless and the adult who is excessively defined. How to bring these two elements together in harmony? What seems like two opposing forces are in fact the keys to balance to one another. The young child needs direction – not through fear or morality but through understanding. The adult has too many directions, too many fears, beliefs and conditioning that need to be erased. As much as you will be working with guiding and navigating your child through this world and learning the responsibility that comes with freedom, you too, as an adult, will be guided (well, more like triggered and challenged…) to reconsider your own approach to life and drop belief systems which do not actually serve you and get in touch with your own inner child. You come together and you learn as one.

A Toddler’s Brazen Rite of Passage is not only a tumultuous time for him or her, you too go through you own tumultuous transformation and metamorphosis if you allow yourself to embrace what your child triggers and challenges in you and give yourself the opportunity to re-evaluate your points of view.

In terms of guiding your child, what I found most effective is to work with simple explanations of cause and effect and the implications of free will and ‘doing what I want’. I will show him that when he steps into a position of doing what he wants regardless of how it affects those around him, he implicitly gives license to everyone to do the same. I give him examples of how this would look like. If he decides he wants to throw the toy at me, I can decide to go away. I could also decide to throw it back at him. I can also decide to put the toy away, because of my physical size I am able to place it out of reach. How does he feel about someone abusing their power over another? If he had lesser abilities (like for instance a dog who can’t throw a toy back but can bite when it’s really fed up), how would he feel in their position? Would he like to be considered in that person or animals position and not be taken advantage of? What would happen if EVERYONE starts playing out this particular behaviour? Does that result in an outcome that’s pleasant? Mostly these situations end up in fight, conflict. He understands this. Sometimes he doesn’t understand (or he does but insists on playing it out for himself) and then natural consequence will show him what his behaviour creates. Other people don’t want to play with him, he’s not welcome somewhere or another child hits him back.

“Now I know” – is a phrase I hear very often, and a phrase others around me starting picking up from my son as well lol.

Sometimes the roles are reversed. My son really wants me to come play with him on a jungle gym and in the sand by a crowded restaurant. I’m resistant because I don’t want to make a fool of myself and get ‘dirty’. I’ll tell him ‘No, I can’t, I’m busy drinking right now’ as an excuse to get out of it. He’ll come grab me by the hand, tell me to put my glass down and just come play with him. That it will help me and make me feel better. In those moments he pushes me to drop the beliefs, the rules we impose on ourselves but don’t help us. Our social anxieties, our fears of being ridiculed, all the little rules where we hold ourselves back because ‘what if’. We remain stagnant because we don’t allow ourselves to embrace life and celebrate the many opportunities we have to shine in our self-expression.

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With Freedom comes great Responsibility. We can do what we want, but only certain actions will provide the outflows that support all that are involved. Our current society is not one of Freedom and Responsibility. We abdicate the responsibility of how life on Earth should be managed to our politicians (and then we complain about what an awful job they’re doing) – believing we gain the freedom to ‘not worry about such things’, while our actual freedom gets removed as we allow random laws and regulations to be imposed on our lives. We abdicate the Right to Life to money, a manifestation that took on a life of its own, with many being at the mercy of volatile markets. But at least, we don’t have to think about who gets what, we have some extra time to watch a soccer game. Money can decide. The more we imprison ourselves, the more our children will rebel against our mental bars.

Our conceptualization of Freedom invites the most limitations. Equally so, we carry many ideas of responsibilities which are futile and only burden us. We need to learn to balance both Freedom and Responsibility to get the best out of both.

So people have made a schizophrenic way of life. They talk about truth, they talk about freedom, and they live in lies, they live in slaveries – slaveries of many kinds, because each s

Different Types of Living Words | Balancing Male and Female

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Source: Unsplash

I was talking to a friend of mine about her experience of making physical exercise an integral part of her daily life, how she had moved so far and what her struggles were. In this case, she had set several words as Living Word intentions such as ‘discipline’ and ‘consistency’.

Over time, working with myself and others, these words have often been a tell-tale sign indicating an imbalance in one’s approach in Living Words. What I started seeing within my own process of Living Words, is that there are different types of Living Words. If you have a look at the words ‘discipline’ and ‘consistency’, they require a timeframe to manifest as Living Words. Meaning, a single moment of application does not result in us Living and embodying these words, manifested truly as ourselves. It takes many moments, many breaths for you to verify that yes, I am living discipline or yes, I am living consistency. They are typified by frequency and regularity.

In my friend’s case, she really wanted to manifest consistency and discipline in relation to exercising because she knew it would be good for her and her body.

For more context, this was coming more from an ‘I should be doing this’ – where on a knowledge and information level she knew that this is going to support her, but on a practical experience level, she had little to substantiate this. This was also coupled with her own self-judgments in relation to being disciplined and being consistent, where these two words or traits are known to be valuable, and then judging herself for ‘not being that’. The line that is formed between her starting point and her goal is one of avoidance, wanting to avoid her own self-judgment. If ‘not being disciplined’ and ‘not being consistent’ equals “being bad” – then I have to become ‘disciplined’ and ‘consistent’ so I can feel good about myself (and hopefully others will see more good of me too). It’s then not so much about really living those words, but rather finding comfort and solace in the knowledge of having shifted labels. The desire of living consistency and discipline are not an end on their own, but a means to an end: avoiding self-judgment.

So within the context of my friend what became apparent is that 1) she is not living the words consistency and discipline for herself. When we try to live something as a gateway to something else, we usually fail.  Because then it’s not about the gateway, it’s about the end result. In this case: feeling better about myself. And we all know, there are lots of ways to feel better about yourself. Binging on tv series, digging into that favourite pie or cake, going shopping, endlessly scrolling our Facebook feed (also note how these are all means of / gateways for self-avoidance)…

In this case, it’s imperative we clarify for ourselves why we want to live a certain word, and what we gain from it for real (It’s actually a good idea to also write down what fear we see we can avoid with this, as a sort of ‘subconscious motive’, because this will bring it to your awareness and so you will notice when you are shifting your starting point in living a word from expression-based to fear-based Eg. “I want to live discipline because I don’t want to be seen as ‘weak’).

And secondly (and this is kind of the point of this blog post), to define and substantiate how we are going to make these words real for ourselves, which often means we have to look at more than just one word.

Consistency and discipline are very structural, goal-oriented words. They are associated with male expression/yang.

It’s great to aim for structure and goals, for instance, getting a house built, aiming for a degree or profession. But we also have to ask ourselves who we are going to be within the structure or form. Once we have our house, how are we going to live in it? How are we going to take care of it? Who are we going to be while studying? How are we going to approach our studies? How do we substantiate ourselves within our profession? Consistency and discipline for the sake of consistency and discipline don’t do much for us. We’re consistent and disciplined – now what? What for?

In terms of exercising, we can end up saying we are consistent and disciplined, but the same resistance and resentment towards exercising remains. Perhaps it’s a little bit easier because at least we’re satisfied that ‘we’re doing it’.

Because we’re only focused on the goal, we miss substantiating every moment of exercise and what we express / who we are within exercising. We overlook things such as ‘which exercises do I want to do’, ‘which exercises work for my body’, ‘which exercise are putting too much pressure on my body’, ‘do I want to stick to a routine or switch things up according to where I feel my body needs focus’, ‘am I really aware of my body while exercising’, ‘do I exercise care in making sure I perform the exercises correctly, am I doing stretches, giving myself appropriate rest and checking if I need to make any dietary changes to support these new activities in my day to day life’. These questions don’t emerge because they are not part of your initial goal and intent of ‘just get disciplined and consistent with exercising’. The focus is on ‘get it done’ – not ‘who am I within it’. This may give rise to consequences such as overexertion, injury, building strength without flexibility, strain on the body due to dietary needs not being met etc. What was supposed to be a supportive endeavour for yourself, ends up creating damaging consequence.

Similarly, when we only focus on words that are expressive and creative in nature, associated with female expression/yin – we end up with substance without direction.

We may wish to support our bodies in gaining strength, become more aware of our body, really getting to know our body’s capacities, expanding it and nurturing it to the best of our ability – but if we don’t include structural points such as planning, a particular method or modality, consistency and discipline — we will miss out on the depth and direction in which we can develop and exercise these expressions for and as ourselves. We both want to draw the lines (structure/male) of the picture we want to manifest/create as well as colouring in (expression/female) to substantiate it.

Whenever you’re working on a particular point or working on a particular endeavour, it’s essential to identify for yourself both which structural and expressive words you want to live. When you know you’re more expression inclined and tend to overlook the structural, it’s easy to go overboard in only focusing on the structural and dismissing the point of expression. Yet when we include expression equally in the equation, you will find that mastering the structural expressions becomes a whole lot easier. Rather than contradicting one another, structural and expressive words complement each other in a symbiotic co-creation, taking each expression to a new height.

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