A couple of years ago I did TV interview that, unbeknown to me, was edited before airing, and I was introduced as “a victim of domestic violence”.
I had been taking part in an awareness walk which was covered by Channel 7. The reporter asked me for my insights and the reasons I attended the walk. They chose to ignore my angle, which was highlighting the strength and resourcefulness of women who had left abusive relationships, and they went with their own pre-planned agenda, depicting me and countless other women as something we are not. I was pissed off.
I think it’s fair to say that the general perception of a “victim” is that of a helpless, hopeless, unresourced individual at the mercy of circumstance, and is someone to be pitied or felt sorry for.
Well, I’m certainly no victim, and I think it’s important to recognise that labelling human beings who have had a particular experience adds to the challenges of their recovery. And not just the recovery of the individual, but the recovery of the collective consciousness, from this existing paradigm of violence and repression and the level of acceptance that society has of violence against women.
There is absolutely no doubt that anyone who has experienced abuse in any form has been victimised, possibly targeted and deliberately hurt, but particularly in the case of domestic abuse, and for those who have left abusive situations, we are ignoring one incredibly important common trait.
Anyone who has been able to lift themselves out of an abusive relationship, whether it’s their first try or their 20th try, has an extraordinary amount of strength, courage, sheer guts and determination. The neurological, psychological, physical, social and financial barriers facing someone in this position are likely way beyond the comprehension of those who have not been on this soul wrenching journey. Recognition, appreciation and respect need to be given, by the truck load, to the often emotionally ragged humans that keep pushing forward regardless, and this forms a big part of the change that needs to happen around this phenomenon that we currently refer to as domestic violence.
Domestic violence is an experience. It is a transition through many physical, mental and emotional states. It will reshape beliefs and perceptions, it colours your world, it can take you to a place so dark that you question whether light can ever exist again. Abuse can affect the most drastic of harm on a soul, but to label a human being as “victim” or “survivor” or any of those titles that put individuals into a convenient box, eventually turns a lived experience into a personality trait. A human being who’s had an experience becomes defined and assigned. They become the label, and there really is no point in trying to positivise the label, as “survivor” or “thriver”, because the words are yet another label tethering them to the post that is the victim perception.
Human beings are each unique, yet we are all the same. We are individuals yet connected. We are more the same than we are different, and yet we seek to create and enforce our differences and separateness. We have ALL had experiences, but they are not who we are. One third of women in the west have experienced some type of abuse, yet we avoid identifying with them or as one of the them, because of the perception of the "victim" and the shame that goes with it.
We are not our experiences
I want you to understand what labelling can do to an already undermined human spirit. It’s like the bonsai effect. Growth can only occur at a limited rate and to a fraction of potential because of the severe bounds placed in those words, these labels.
This is true not only for those who have experienced abuse, it applies to all human interactions where a label is placed and that label is taken on as a part of personal identity. Think about it. When someone asks you what you do for work, how do you reply? “I’m an admin officer” “I’m an accountant” “I’m a farmer” “I AM ...…” You may be in danger of being assigned certain personality traits and judgements according to someone else’s perception of your profession. But it’s what you do, not who you are. YOU are separate from your day job, and infinitely more complex and interesting than merely your activity as an accountant or a barista are you not? But we are conditioned to categorise and label.
And what about labels like depressed, disabled, unemployed, homeless? What are your perceptions of these unique humans? Nobody likes to think of themselves as being judgemental, but I ask you to scratch your own surface and look at your generalised beliefs and unconscious categorisations.
Our experiences ought to be a catalyst for exponential growth, for expansion, for us to fulfil a potential that may not have existed had we not had that particular experience. The ultimate is to transform what we previously saw as a “bad” experience into a force for good, for change, for awareness. Would that be possible if that victim label is taken on and embedded as a permanent personality trait? Probably not.
Perception is everything
How you perceive those around you and what you think you know about them, dictates how you behave toward them. It also creates energy that is strongly felt and transferred. Your perceptions colour your world. We are connected, we know this. Being aware and present to our beliefs and perceptions, the stories that we run about ourselves and others, takes effort, but brings massive reward in the beautiful and deep sense of connection, empathy and compassion that is born from making that effort.
We are all simply human beings, being and doing our utmost with the resources we currently have.
When you meet someone who has made it out the other side of abuse, and you learn about some of her story DO NOT say “wow, you are so brave” “That must have been terrible” “You’re a survivor”. YOU are different. BE different. You can say it like it is, bold and loud “LADY, YOU ARE A FUQING LEGEND!”, because your beliefs about her experience and your expression of those beliefs and perceptions are AS important to her recovery and growth as her own.
The side of me that is unloveable
The shadow I won't acknowledge, she waits
She comes in the dark, when the day has wained, when there are no bright distractions, no feeders of ego to keep her at bay
She speaks a truth, a version of it
She speaks and my soul is cut with her sharded words
Should I look, see finally, this wretch that hurts me?
This girl in the dark
#Shadow #MatrixReimprintingJSL #LoveHerAnyway
Massive isn't it?
Look at the car, then look at the driver of the car.
Imagine the sheer power of that massive beast of a vehicle coming up behind. Even the dust it churns up is significant to the image as it blurs the true magnitude of what is rumbling forward, seemingly unstoppable.
Of course this is a metaphore. A perfect visualisation I think, for how our thinking and feeling centres operate. Your conscious thinking (the driver in the car) wants to go a certain way. It's in control, or so it "thinks". It makes decisions to change and takes it's vehicle (conscious mind) in a certain direction.
The dump truck is the container for every thought, feeling, experience, belief and understanding that has ever existed for the car and it's driver (you). It follows the car, powering behind and influencing it's navigating system, it's engine, it's fuel and even the comfort of it's internal environment and seating.
Your sub-conscious mind (dump truck) is all powerful. You can't easily change it's couse if you are not in that drivers seat.
So how DO you get into the drivers seat of this massive power house of a vehicle?
Well, first, you stop, you unbuckle yourself from the car, take your focus off the road ahead and have a look in the rear vision mirror.
From this perspective there is more that you can't see than what you can, but you know there is a whole lot more there. It takes a willingness to acknowledge that mass behind you, and acceptance of where you are at, to even contemplate your future journey forward.
It feels overwheming doesn't it? The size of that thing? It's collected all of your stuff your whole lifetime, even some stuff that's not yours. Some long buried rubble that you don't want to look at, and you don't know what will happen if it's tipped out onto the road. It might bury you alive, or even roll right over the top of you and squash you flat!
Your instinct is to keep moving and stay one step ahead. it's exhausting, I know.
It's counter intuitive to stop and turn around.
But what if you did?
It's not as scary as you might think....
A few rounds of tapping may ease your fear and reticence around how you work with your sunconscious mind.
IMPORTANT: Notice where in your body you feel the most resistance when you choose to look at this huge truck that carries everything that you fear.
If you so choose, give this a try...
Tapping on the side of your hand (karate chop point) repeat:
Even though this truck is scary and holds a lot of fear and bad things for me, I'm safe, I love myself and I'm willing to take just one look at it.
Even though this truck is huge, and every bad thing that has happened is in there, I'm totally safe, I love and accept who I am and I'm willing to look at it.
Now starting to tap from the top of your head, and following the tapping point sequence as shown in the diagram, repeat the following phrases:
SE: What if I can't cope?
UE: It's too much to deal with
UN: I can just leave it alone
CH: It's worked so far
CB: But I feel stuck
UA: This thing is huge
You are now looking in the mirror and beginning to acknowledge what's there. Notice that the truck has also stopped. Let's continue with another few rounds:
TH: This massive truck
EB: I see it now
SE: Feels too big
UE: It's overwhelming
UN: Don't really want to look at it all
CH: But I can look at a small bit
CB: And that's a start
UA: This truck, it carries my past experiences and beliefs
TH: I'm safe
EB: It is safe to see the truck
SE: Just a little bit at a time
UE: What if the truck is there to serve me
UN: What if It holds what I need to heal
CH: Healing is good
CB: This huge truck
UA: Maybe I don't need to keep ahead of it
TH: Maybe It's not trying to run me down
EB: I could let it come along side
SE: I'm safe
UE: I might even be able to drive it some day
UN: But just for today, I can just acknowledge it and thank it
CH: For being there to help me
CB: I choose to let go of the fear of this huge truck, I'm in control
UA: It's time to see the truck and know I'm safe
This is a very simple exercise. Feel into your body now and think about looking at the truck. Is the feeling in the same spot? Is it as intense as it was? Have any images or memories come up for you? These are important as they are a key to where your beliefs began.
Of course not everyone will resonate with the image of the truck, it's just a metaphore. It's a striking image of how out of proportion and powerful our fears and beliefs can get. I'm a visual person and I LOVE metaphore as a way of communicating what sometimes is not able to be sufficiently portayed merely in words.
If this does resonate you have the option to follow your intuition and search online for the many free general resources, or contact me to get really specific. Tapping is the core technique used in Matrix Reimprinting, allowing you to access your unique beliefs and painful experiences, and gently make deeply impacting changes to your subconscious.
Your subconscious mind is not out to hurt you or sabotage you. It does not have ill intent, or any intent at all. It is a neutral mechanism that ultimately is an early warning system for danger, based on what you have experienced in the past. It takes your beliefs literally and creates a road map for you to avoid another crash. That roaring honking truck running up your rear end is trying to warn you of an impending pile up ahead, IF you keep going.
Unfortunately that percieved potential crash COULD be something that you are consciously trying to achieve, like perhaps making more money, getting your business out there or committing to a loving relationship.
However you've percieved an experience, that is the truth for you, it's in your truck and your subconscious will drive accordingly on auto pilot until you take the wheel.
Childhood experiences are especially potent as children accept things without question or reasoning.
It could be something as simple as feeling like an outsider because the other kids forgot to ask you to join them. This can then build into "Ï'm not wanted" or Ï'm not good enough", Ï'm not a good friend" or even Ï'm not loveable".
This then becomes your truth, and your evidence builds with every perceived rejection.
Change your beliefs, change your life. It's possible and it's easier than you think...
Hindsight, as we all know, is 20/20. I don’t know how many times I’ve said to myself “I should have seen that coming”....
I've made a decision and ended up being disappointed, derailed or hurt. Well, in actual fact, I often did see it coming, but chose to ignore the warning signs, and more importantly, I chose to ignore that nagging gut feeling that told me that something wasn’t quite right.
Why do we do that? Why do we ignore our most accurate and true compass, our INTUITION?
My intuition, when it fires up to warn me that something is wrong, feels like a swarm of bees in my belly that slowly rises. It starts with a gentle buzzing, but if I am caught up with rationalizing or excusing what I know deep down isn’t in my best interests, those bees take flight and the vibration intensifies and cannot be ignored. I have learned, by experience, to take heed.
We live our lives much of the time in fear of what others think of us, of upsetting others, making them feel bad and not wanting to appear selfish. I believe this is true for many women, and too often we self-sacrifice to put other’s needs and wants squarely first. We have been taught to do it and in doing it we deny our true spirit, we deny ourselves the experience of true meaning and pleasure and we silence our-oh so important intuitive alarm bells.
If we do not listen to ourselves then who else will?
If we do not back ourselves who-else-will?
What IS that feeling?
Say, for instance, you meet a new man and you start to get to know each other. You like him but there is a doubt that you just can’t put your finger on. It isn’t anything he’s specifically done, but something imperceptible is creeping in and creating a slight mistrust. It nags you and pulls at your shirt sleeve, trying to get your attention, like a little girl with something really really important to tell you. You want to give the benefit of the doubt because, after-all, he seems like a great guy, AND what if you are just being silly and getting cold feet. What IF he’s the one and you miss your chance? What if…? Also, you certainly would not want to offend him or hurt his feelings in any way. You wouldn’t want to come across as someone who is demanding and critical now would you? You wouldn’t want to seem like someone who values herself enough to recognize that what she sees in front of her does not serve her, now would you?
Another example may be in a sales environment, when a skilled sales person taps into our discomfort in saying no. How often have you been talked into buying something, all of your objections neatly dealt with, later to feel regret, sometimes even anger at having been manipulated into the purchase? Where is that anger directed? Is it the sales person you are angry with? Or is it pointed at your own heart like a poison dagger?
That FEELING you get in the pit of your stomach, in your heart of hearts, when you are in a moment of doubt, When you can see no logical reason for it, when you are debating in your head, making excuses, telling yourself to stop being ridiculous, that feeling in the pit of your stomach is your deep unconscious KNOWING drawn from the very centre of your soul. It is ancient, pure, timeless and universal. And we attempt to question and override this pure energy with our busy, rationalizing, conditioned thinking mind. Take a look at the image at the top, no wonder we're confused.
What if you just said no?
It is hard to say no because we are brought up being taught to please others and be polite, and often saying no is just not polite.
Can you say “No, I’m not going to do that, it does not serve my best interests.”?
Say it a few times over, does it feel wrong to say that? If so, where in your body is that feeling most intense?
That feeling is you bumping up against a core belief. Those suckers are powerful.
Is it better to agree to something that we know we do not want or need just to avoid displeasing others, and so causing ourselves the pain of feeling less worthy? Is it that we truly believe that we ARE less worthy on some level? If that’s the case we need to talk…
Listening to our intuition may help us to avoid some of the long term hurt and ultimately feel less compelled to give up on our own needs in favour of the needs or demands of others.
Our fear around being judged by others is most often what lands us in hot water. My own intuition has been ignored too many times and I have had to live with the consequences. Many of my experiences could have had a very different outcomes had I listened to my intuition more closely. Happily I can honestly say that is all in the past. I’m definitely still learning, probably always will be, but I know to pay attention when the bees wake up.
It really is OK to say no. It is absolutely essential to say no in those times when your soul speaks it. When we are really tuned in and have the courage to follow our intuition the reward is immeasurable. I have experienced profound peace and sense of satisfaction from decisions and actions based on my intuition. Natural boundaries have grown and others have grown to respect them. Those decisions were not necessarily the easiest, but they felt right.
It is absolutely necessary to nurture ourselves and care as much for ourselves as we do for others. This is particularly true for anyone within an intimate relationship, as the relationship you have with yourself is the foundation for any external relationship. A relationship that demands more of one person than it gives is out of balance and ultimately painful and destructive.
Matrix Reimprinting helps you gently locate core beliefs that drive your patterns of behaviour and thinking, and then change those beliefs and unhealthy perceptions so you can see with new eyes, hear with new ears and make decisions with insight, clarity and honour for yourself.
Book a session, join a workshop, attend a retreat.
Founder & Lead Facilitator, The Life 2 Project
Ho ho horrible... is that how it's feeling right now, in the lead up to this festive season? Are you getting anxious, stressed, feeling uneasy or you're not quite sure what it is that's going on?
Yep, it's that time of year again.
Celebrations are in the planning, families and friends look to gather, good will and joy are spread around, oh, and we get to feel so much good cheer and peace on earth...
When a particular time of year is all about connection, love, embracing one another, celebrating and giving, what if it's not that for you? What if the mass commercialization, gaudy decorations, advertising and the onslaught of the Christmas 'do's" leaves you cold, leaves you depressed, disillusioned, jaded or leaves you simply numb?
Christmas is not a time to celebrate for many many people. It can be an isolating experience, a time when a sense of loss is magnified. The loss of loved ones, whether that be through their passing or separation, the loss of the sense of community or family, of disconnection.
Then there's the end of year feelings of regret, failure or frustration for the unachieved, unattempted, unreached and unacknowledged.
It can be a time of grief, sadness, anger, loneliness and separation with no real way to avoid it. It's in your face. It's everywhere. And a great job has been done in bottling up, squashing down, denying, avoiding, evading and making excuses.
Or is all that just me...?
If it is, and none of this resonates, you must be looking forward to all the great things about Christmas. Enjoy!
But from the conversations I've had recently I know for a fact that it's not just me. I felt it for many years, deeply.
And I know for a fact that so many people put on the happy, festive mask and hold their breath till January.
Those of you who know me know that I'm deeply driven and passionate about my work, that I want to make a powerful difference in the lives of the human beings who know there is more to this life.
I've decided, from now till January 31st, I'm running special Pre Christmas workshops online because I know there is real need to not just find a way through it again this year, but to free yourself from it once and for all. And I know you have extra expenses that also bring stress, so they will be very affordable.
Work with me before Christmas and you won't have to deal with any of that usual slow build up that leads to the let down. We will gently get to those negative core beliefs and and release past trauma, pain and negative experiences brought on by this crazy season we are about to enter.
We can neutralize the negative thoughts, feelings and beliefs that make this time of year such a challenge for you. It's like taking the charge out of the taser that keeps touching your heart.
You don't have to share any events, this is not "talk therapy", it is gentle, non invasive and highly effective work that brings resolution to the deepest of hurts.
Peace and love and so much more ARE on the other side... but not just for Christmas.
If you prefer a private session Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on 0412 200515 to book one or a series of sessions, or to have a chat about whats going on for you, or simply click the button below.
Here's to looking forward to a relaxed and happy Christmas and New Year, and many more to come :)
Fear of change often stems from facing an unknown or unfamiliar situation and the possibility of not being up to the perceived challenge. Deep insecurities rise to the surface to prick at the soft underbelly of our self-confidence.
If a situation or experience is coming up that you have no familiarity with its highly likely that you will have a certain amount of anxiety around it. We love routine and knowing what to expect, so when we have to do something differently we have to engage another part of the brain, create new neural pathways and get present to that process. Uncertainty can be destabilizing and pushes you out of your comfort zone.
What is another word for change? If the word “change” holds a meaning for you that is negative and invokes fear and uncertainty then try the word “Growth” on for size. Both words can be used to describe the same process.
“To become different or undergo alteration. To undergo transformation or transition. To go from one phase to another, as the moon or the seasons. A transformation or transition from one state, condition, or phase to another.”
“The process of growing or developing. A gradual development toward maturity. Formation and development. Evolution, evolvement, progress.”
And let’s be clear here, change IS merely a process. The process of change is neutral; it is not bad or good, happy or sad. It is the meaning that we give it that causes our emotional reaction.
If you lose your job, a lover or a friendship, maybe even your home, you probably would react in a negative way, you’d assign the “bad” label to the experience. Negative emotions like fear, anger, rejection, resentment and grief would probably be invoked and chemical reactions occur in your body.
Similarly, getting a new job or a new lover can be equally as stressful if the focus is on what could go wrong.
It’s vitally important to keep the negative reactions to a minimum to safeguard you clarity of thought and your energy which are the very first things to disappear when under stress.
So, what if you chose to believe it to be a “good” experience, or at the very least neutral? Instead of zoning in on all the fear based possible scenarios make a flip, think about all the possible advantages there are to becoming free, at least for a while. Then write a list that is AT LEAST as long as the first one of all the disadvantages to you if you had stayed the same. Keep on adding to it and you will neutralize the negative spiral.
What I find really interesting is that so many people fear change when ironically, change is the only constant in life. Whether you attach a negative meaning to “change” or you embrace it, one thing is for sure, you can’t stop it. Change is happening all around us, within us and despite us. We are in a constant state of change. Our cells are regenerating, our hair and nails are growing, our skin is shedding, we lose weight, we gain weight, we grow a child within us, we grow older, we grow up; we change our mind, our attitude and our beliefs.
Allow yourself to accept, honour and embrace the changes in your life, flow with it and welcome it, for it will surely be the catalyst for your evolution.
“Nothing endures but change” ~ Heraclitus
From the ever constant regeneration of the cells in our bodies, to the ebb and flow of the tides to the far reaches of space where the stars are burning, change is occurring. It’s occurring every millisecond for without change there is stagnation. Without change there is no growth, no evolution, only death.
You didn’t see it coming…
When a sudden change takes you by surprise the after effects can be tough to deal with. Your present reality is pulled out from under you and what you saw as your future is now uncertain. Your attachment to how you pictured your path and assumption of how things “are” are powerful determinants of how you will handle the inevitable changes in life.
Our natural instinct is to control, as much as possible, what is happening around us and to us, and feeling that we are in control gives us a sense of security. We can become rigid and unyielding to the ups and downs and when something out of our power directly affects us it’s easy to spiral into fear and panic and exaggerate the negative impact.
Let’s look at the loss of a job for instance.
A range of emotions will likely surge through when the news comes, like a storm, all chaotic and frothy.
Probably first of all comes panic, then a sense of betrayal, feelings of not being good enough, I don’t deserve this, self-blame, anger, fear, resentment, loss and eventually grief. Allow yourself the time and space to feel and acknowledge each emotion because they are valid and deserve your loving attention.
Be aware though, sitting in the soup, simmering slowly over the low heat of self-pity is okay for a while, you are allowed, but hop out before the pot starts to boil.
What have you been asking for?
Things happen for a reason, isn’t that what all the gurus say? I happen to believe that’s true. What I don’t believe however is that things just happen randomly without our influence, with the exception of natural disasters and major accidents of course. We severely underestimate the power of our unconscious mind most of the time, and when I use the word “mind” I refer to the interconnected whole body consciousness, not just what we perceive from our head. It is operating to ensure that it guides us towards our most desired outcome, so…
Ask yourself some questions:
· How did I really feel about that job?
· Was I fulfilling my greatest needs?
· How do I want to feel in my work environment?
· What do I really want to do?
Could it be that this is the beginning of a new chapter for you? An opportunity to make some changes that will ultimately be for the better? Could this be what you secretly wanted but were too afraid to make the break from your nice cosy comfort zone?
That feeling you get when apprehension or fear spreads through your belly is the exact same feeling you get when you get excited. The same rush of adrenalin, the same rise of butterflies, the same breathlessness. The ONLY difference is the meaning you attach to the event that triggered it. So change the meaning.
Find all the reasons why this thing that “happened to you” is a good thing. Neutralize the negative self-talk with all the fabulous things you know to be true about you. Your skills, your talents, your experience and what now will this new freedom allow you to do and be? Allow the people close to you to join in. Turn that fear of the future into excitement and grab hold of it. Once you let go of the fear you will get creative and resourceful. Yes it may be uncomfortable, yes it’s causing some stress right now, but what new doors are opening for you? Think about it, write a list and keep on adding to it, fill a book, start a collection of effect-ion…
Change is a process. It is a process of allowing, trusting and then embracing our beautiful evolution. Change is constant, swirling and flowing; it is not finite. You either cruise with it or doggy-paddle against the tide.
Changing the way we think, feel and react to events, our surroundings and the people in our lives takes stamina, self-awareness and practice. It’s a discipline that needs constant attention. The reward though is the peace that can only come from unshakeable faith and trust. Trust in YOU.