What we want in life often shows up without looking anything like we thought it would, and might show up after a series of clues that we’ve refused to embrace. Then, the nudges from the universe get stronger, sometimes kicking our butts big time until we really see what’s on offer, even putting us in places we’d never thought to go until we see what already is here.
You’re walking downtown, earphones in, podcast or music in full swing, and you’re running a little late. Across the other side of the street you see someone you know. But it’s not someone you particularly like or enjoy spending time with. You’re just too different in how you see the world, you just don’t have any kind of deep connection with them. So you pretend you’ve not seen them, keep your eyes straight ahead and carry on walking.
Whenever anyone tells you “You need to be more this way…” they are always directing you away from your own wisdom and your true self. Be it in a mastermind, a sisterhood circle, a one-on-one coaching relationship, prescription only ever takes you away from your own inner guidance, wisdom and love.
Do you remember Pacman? That little creature that you directed around the screen to collect pills? Of course, those pills weren't real, they were just coloured dots on the screen. And then, of course, (spoiler alert!) Pacman wasn’t real either.
I wake this morning wondering what it might be like to really live an honest life. That’s not to say I deliberately lie, but in noticing discrepancies in stories others tell I also notice my own often unconscious fiction.
Sometimes I want to feel the summer breeze on my cheeks and ears, taste the jasmine in the air, feel fresh cool grass under the soles of my feet, and meditate under a tree with the warm sun on my face.
I'm realising the more I understand and am in touch with love, the less I like complexities. I'm tempted to say the less well I deal with complexities, but that's not true. A big part of coaching is exploring through perceived complexities to discover simple truths. Often the truth of love. I’m pretty good at that.
Most of us interested in human behaviour or psychology will have come across the concept that we create our own reality. Delving a little deeper into this we can see that whatever is going on in the physical world around us, it is indeed us that is creating our experience of that world through the principle of thought.
When my Dad said those words that would play on my mind for many years, “You are no son of mine,” click, hang up… those words and the subsequent multiple refusals to talk to me, I used those to feel so damn abandoned and so angry. Not just with him. With my wife-to-be for being part of the petty argument that led to him making that stand.
I speak to a lot of people that are not ready. Very few of us ever are. It can take some people an inordinate amount of time to ‘get ready’, a realisation I’ve had many times whilst living with a partner.
So much of what we see in the personal development arena concentrates solely at the level of behaviour, and in some quarters scripting that behaviour to give a measured response in a given situation. One area where this is rife is in relationship work, where scripts are often offered on how you should talk to your partner to help him or her understand what you want or help you connect deeply.
Me: “Have you ever felt I wanted you to change?" Client: “Nopes, not in any way, shape or form. No, no, absolutely not! Not ever!" Me: “And yet you have…" Client: “Yes! But you haven’t been concerned about any outcome." Me: “I love you irrespective of anything that happens in our conversations. Irrespective of any outcome. Irrespective of anything."
In 2014, at my first Robert Holden coaching workshop in San Diego, Robert invited us all to rewrite a new version of our business card, and to really consider what it was we did, outside of all the usual labels and ways of describing jobs, roles and careers. We were handed blank business cards onto which to write our new job title, and these were then all put into his infamous hat.
I talk with many people who understand the thought-feeling nature of the human experience, many of whom are very quick to dismiss much of their feelings because they see the transient nature of thought and therefore understand that whatever they may be feeling now will pass, just as all thoughts pass when we allow them. They get it! They see that we always return to our natural state of love and wellbeing if we allow it.
Personally I’m not drawn to coaches and other people who never look like they are actually happy. I’m not drawn to what looks like a constant struggle, a constant battle, a constant challenge for improvement. Video after video talking about overcoming, pushing through, do, do do. I’m not drawn to the straight faces and the seriousness of it all. I often feel exhausted just watching them.
Being bold, just like having confidence, is a red herring! There’s a plethora of stories that proliferate the illusion that these are necessary attributes for success, and many of these stories are extremely compelling. Almost every day I see something from a fellow coach or someone in the personal development profession suggesting ways we should and could become more bold, more courageous, more confident.