“To know what you prefer, instead of humbly saying “Amen” to what you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive.” Robert Louis Stevenson
“Human order is made of rules. The wizard’s order has no rules – it flows with the nature of life.” Dr. Deepak Chopra
Many of us grew up “walking on eggshells” in order to avoid family arguments. This tendency often continues into adulthood and we then tiptoe through relationships and our lives as though we are walking through a minefield. It is our attempt to avoid conflict – because we are terrified that someone might be disappointed or angry with us. This is often because we are focused on everyone’s feelings except our own. This external focus, the ability to sense and pick up on other’s moods, is essentially a survival skill. Dr. Peter Levine says that humans pick up on the moods of others instinctively, avoiding angry people, because they could be attackers. Levine says that we also unconsciously notice the body language of others because if we sense that they are afraid then we interpret their fear as a signal that we should run away from danger ourselves. He employs the example of how gazelles are alerted to danger. If a single member of the herd is startled and runs then the entire herd follows. Levine feels that humans are the same way. (In an Unspoken Voice: How the Body Releases Trauma and Restores Goodness) Although noticing the moods of those around us keeps us secure, we know that it also can dull or disconnect us from noticing our own thoughts and feelings. For those of us who became disconnected to our own feelings we became in a sense, trapped, into an external focus that Dr. Doreen Virtue says can result in succumbing to “learned helplessness.” The trap of people-pleasing and co-dependency.
Tip 59: DON’T TRY TO PLEASE ANYONE BUT YOURSELF
Let go of needing to please others and living as a servant. Live your true colours, don’t be a chameleon that changes for everyone else. Give because it feels good and stop when it doesn’t. Do what pleases you and your joy will give pleasure to others.
Tip 60: SAY NO
Be clear about what you don’t want in your life, and be willing to say no so that so you can create space for what you truly desire. “No” is one of the most powerful words, because it sets clear boundaries and parameters for what is true for you and what isn’t.
Many of us have difficulty saying no. Learning to do it gracefully can be a journey for some of us, because in the past we said yes when we really wanted to say no! So, it takes some practice and we also need to be patient with others who will see a change in us and, naturally, be confused. We need not be unkind in order to begin honouring ourselves. Most of us find that we no longer need the long excuses that came from our own guilt about no longer being a people-pleaser. If you are the type of person who is on every committee and helps everyone no matter how little time you have for your own self-nurturing, barely having time to pull a comb through your own hair, then chances are good you are also female! Cheryl Richardson, author of the best-selling book, THE ART OF EXTREME SELF-CARE, says that “one of the ways women sit on their power is by not taking care of their body.” I have taken a course, in the past, from Cheryl and she is an excellent coach for anyone who needs help saying no. While this is an issue for women, there are also men who can benefit from learning to take time for themselves. What to say? “No, I am sorry I can’t help you today but best of luck.” Sometimes you have to say no to another in order to say yes to yourself. “I’ll get back to you” is helpful as it gives you time to look at your schedule and see if you actually do have the time and space for participating. Setting boundaries is an important part of self-love. Maybe we should take a tip from Katherine Hepburn who is known to have said, “never explain, never complain.” It is enough that you do or don’t wish to do something. However, please do not swing into the opposite pole one woman did who told me that “all people are just my stepping stools.” When you use others, you will be used , says the Law of Attraction.
This week I have been listening to lectures on-line from the “Tapping” teachers, including Nick Ortner and his sister, Jessica. They have been talking about boundaries, among other subjects, and after years of assisting others to learn the simple techniques of Tapping ( on acupressure points) they have learned that the mantra of some over-worked people is, “I’m not valuable when I am not nurturing others.” Of course, most lightworkers can relate to this! We find that when we do not create boundaries, we impact our immune system which makes us more susceptible to dis-ease. Jessica gave us a verbal case study of a woman she had worked with using Tapping. This particular woman, let’s call her Helen, was a schoolteacher. Her family, friends, acquaintances, everybody in her community knew that she had the summers off from work, and so they would call her all summer long with expectations that she could ‘help’ because she was not working! Helen was barraged with requests and kept saying yes. She eventually began having severe migraine headaches and had to say no. Jessica helped her make the link between her migraines and her inability to disappoint and she is migraine-free to this day! If we don’t make time to stay well, we will need to make time to be ill. Taking time for yourself is not selfish. It is wise. If you need any more advice talk to the faeries, as they know about boundaries!
Our need for approval puts other people in control of our happiness. No one deserves that power over us. While many of us have been raised and encouraged to be people-pleasers it is ultimately dysfunctional and part of our ‘old world’ paradigm. Be honest with yourself and others and be a teacher of how it is to live an authentic life as we move further into 4th dimensional living from the heart. In old 3D living, the average “nice” person was passive and silent. However, in the New Age, “nice” people speak up and to the issues that are close to their hearts. Speaking up is not about aggression. In our New Age speaking up means owning our feelings and stating them clearly without blaming and judging others and without the sarcasm that the Universe itself does not understand. It sometimes helps when we remind ourselves that nobody is liked by everyone! Be yourself and the Law of Attraction will bring you like-minded people. Protect your aura and keep it clear. Respect yourself at all times.
It takes courage and vulnerability to be yourself, but, how to love and be ourselves is one of the most important things that we are here to learn. When we let go of our addictive thoughts, beliefs, foods, and our physical and mental clutter, and our unhealthy relationships – we begin to make space for the new to enter our lives. Live in the space of uncertainty for awhile and you learn to live into the moment and that serves you beautifully.
For those of you ready for an exercise that will help you open up further to your divinity, for we are divine as well as human, I recommend an exercise sometimes suggested at workshops. It is this. (Do this in your journal if you feel like it &/or are guided to) You write your own ‘great’ story mythically. First you write out your autobiographical story in the usual way and then you translate it into mythic language. Here is an example Jean Houston gives us of an existential story and then it is written as a myth.
“Well, I was born into an average family. My mother was a schoolteacher and my father worked as a conductor on the railroad. As the youngest child, nobody paid much attention to me. My mom was away all day and my dad was away for days at a time.”
“Once upon a time, there was a very special child, born with a promise and a light that was so bright that it blinded all others and they did not dare to look at him. Even his mother, who knew of the Ways Things Work, and his father, who officiated on Caravans to Distant Realms, could not see him.” (THE SEARCH FOR THE BELOVED: JOURNEYS IN SACRED PSYCHOLOGY)
I personally, think of the autobiographical story as the story my ego tells me and I think of the mythical story as the one my divine self tells. But, that’s just me. And, that’s also just me in this moment, but, this moment is all I ever really have.
Love and Light, Monica