In Lack of Control & The Miracles that Followed

One primary persona of mine is to walk with confidence and appear to be “calm and under control;” the emotions pour out later. In this “mode,” I can hear my father’s mantra to be “calm, cool and collected” reverberating in my cranium. Recently, that persona broke wide the eff open for me. While it’s been an ongoing process of chipping away at this persona, on this particular day I had a very significant breakthrough.

My son was having an escalating series of temper tantrums. My attempt to control the situation and de-escalate it was only causing further … escalation. Based on a recent read of the book, Dark Side of the Light Chasers, by Debbie Ford, I saw where my need to seem in control was a direct result of my feeling that I lacked control. Literally, a light went off in one of the deepest (and darkest?) recesses of my mind. Once I affirmed that I was, indeed, not in control, I surrendered to my higher power and asked for guidance. I spoke to this event in the post Learning to be Secure.

The M.O. from the Past

In trying to prove to myself and to the world that Tiffany had it under control, I hid where I was not under control. Or tried to. I have had an emotional eating addiction for … probably my whole life. This is one of the ways that I both punish myself for my feelings (eating ’til it hurts) and then hide my feelings by stuffing my emotions down, down, down…

In trying to prove to the world that I had it under control, I learned to smile and put on a good game face; well kinda. One practitioner poignantly described me as being “zippered up.” Yet the muscles of my body reveal my guarded and “under control” tendency. Even with regular massages, I have held onto a great deal of tension; more than most.

In trying to prove to the world that I had it under control, I would attempt to control myself, my environment and … even those in it. Wow! That last one is a challenge to admit. Yet, as a physical therapist I develop (and control) treatment plans everyday. What a great profession to be in for someone who secretly wants to control everything and everyone… understand, I believed it was an act of self-preservation, not mind-control.

Where & why the control most likely started

This control is not so much about power for the sake of power, it’s more about my feeling safe. As a child, I was in situations where I was abused by “trusting” adults who manipulated and controlled me. From this, I believed that my body was not safe, that I had to control others – and myself – to be safe. From this abuse, I also didn’t believe I could trust people; especially those who were meant to protect me. Further more, I felt effing powerless, and hence the cycle starts over, feeding into itself. So for me, being in control has meant that it was harder for someone else to harm me.

Back to the Breakthrough

Yet on this fateful day, I chose differently. In recognizing my lack of control and giving up control to my higher power, I received greater clarity in everyday things. This has helped me to make wiser choices. The irony! Instead of being ruled by my fear of loss of control, I’m seeing that I have little control outside of my own choices, and now my choices are more clear, thus giving me …. more control! Yet in a different way, in that the control factor is no longer based in fear.

It is my hope that in sharing, you will find a greater understanding about yourself or perhaps a “control freak” that is in your life. The more we can understand and have compassion, the less turbulence we each create in our world.

May we each find a greater sense of peace in better understanding ourselves and others. 

Namaste

Faith in Receiving

It is very easy for me to give, ’tis much harder to receive. I give of my time, patience, efforts and knowledge to others everyday. Sometimes I get paid for it and sometimes I don’t.

Religious dogma and society support giving more than receiving. “It’s better to give than to receive,” Acts 20:35 (KJV). Welfare recipients are shamed for being “needy.” Yet I wonder if there are deeper reasons…

Receptivity means having faith and surrendering. It also means being vulnerable and “accepting” what we receive. Receiving is also being, which is actively “doing nothing.” (that was triggering to state). Receiving is very much a divine feminine trait; where being feminine is often associated with being weak. Again, where religious dogma and society can play a role in how we perceive things. 

In sitting with my discomfort today around being receptive, I saw several “forces” at play. Being receptive means “getting what I deserve.” There is still part of me that wrestles with that aspect of my personality where I believe there is “an irredeemable deficiency” about myself. With that in mind, to get what I deserve could mean more discomfort for me. This belief also discounts Agape or unconditional love. 

Being receptive also means being vulnerable and feeling unprotected. In service to others, I have repeatedly “put myself out there” and have often felt used, abused, taken for granted and unappreciated. I see where I have done this to myself, to make up for my “irredeemable deficiency” where I feel I must “go above and beyond” to prove my worth… I call this trait “super size me,” where I must “give more,” to make up for my deficiencies. Which again, discounts Agape. 

Yet staying in this place of “keeping a lid” on who I am here to be, I feel as if I’m wearing a shirt several sizes too small. It restricts my movements, my breathing and keeps me from being the person I am here to be. There is great sadness in feeling my own suppression. So I’ve resolved to reach up to the stars and have faith in receiving the greatness that supports who I am here to be; this is vulnerability. 

May we each find new freedom and faith in receiving and in being vulnerable; it takes more strength to be vulnerable than it does to power through everything. May we find peace in our own vulnerability, receptivity and femininity. (sounds much like sea anemone, and with that in mind, may we also laugh at ourselves more!) 

Namaste

The Rise After The Fall: Having Fun While Overcoming Fears Part II

Last weekend, I went “surfing” again. This time I took along a friend who was inspired by my surfing story because she, too, had had a fear of “deep water.” She said that she would try surfing if she had a friend to go with her. So we gave it a go!

While the waves were somewhat small, we were having to fight rather hard to get past the “white water” to the surf line. There was a storm off the coast and the waves were fair to choppy and the sets were close together to where we were hit by another wave just after recovering from the wave before – it was as if we were treading water on surfboards!

The storm system was also creating “rogue” waves from time to time that would break much earlier than the others. Well, one grabbed hold of me and took me straight to the sandbar. Once I hit the bottom, the wave tumbled me much like a pebble.

What was amazing for me? Instead of feeling any sense of danger or fear for my life, I felt a sense of peace that everything was going to be alright. This is really, really huge for me. I feel I need to restate it: this is really, really huge for me. I had an inner knowing of peace, calm and that all would be okay. It was. When the Atlantic Ocean released her grip, I was literally on my feet without any real effort to get there.

The fighting to get past the whitewater had worn me out, especially since I was still recovering from feeling quiet worn out from my workweek. So I did not feel like fighting the waves anymore. Instead, I retrieved my board (via the leash) and caught a wave that safely took me all the way to the shoreline.

This surfing adventure was a new level to my understanding of Spirituality. Sometimes life takes us down to the bottom, yet by surrendering and being in trust, we can quickly rise back up. When we stop fighting the forces, we can easily get back to our peace. 

This analogy also works emotionally and physically. It was in fighting that I wore myself out. It was in allowing that I was set free of my fears. It was in faith that I knew all would be okay, and I’ve used that analogy of being the pebble when a “life wave” takes me under and threatens to overwhelm me. Then it is in allowing that I was given rest, reprieve and the greatest leap forward.

Namaste

Shift Happens: What do you do?

Just as the tides ebb and flow, life is meant to move so that we can grow. When the sands beneath your feet begin to shift, what do you do?

Do you tighten your grip?

Do you let go and trust?

If you’re like me, the first thing you want to do is to dig in, deep. However, with time, I’m learning to relax my grip sooner rather than later; allowing the tides to shift without getting all bent.

What I’m beginning to see, again and again, is that regardless of my fear and gripping that changes unfold accordingly. So what is the purpose of holding on to something I cannot truly influence, anyway?!

Being grounded and being present are helpful when sudden shifts hit. Feeling into the body, any physical sensations can help you to be more present.

Ongoing resilience can be built through meditation and allowing of emotions. While these strategies do not change the life circumstances per se, they can help us to be more flexible when the shifts occur. With greater resilience, we learn to gain trust and grip less.

Just as light, sound and water travel in waves, in life we have ups and downs as a natural ebb and flow of our energies. We will move or be moved. The sands beneath our feet will shift. How we choose to respond can affect how well we shift into the emerging energies. So will you fight it or allow it?

Namaste

Fading into Infinity

Under rocks

Hidden well

Sheltered from storms

Isolated in a shell

Finite existence

Personal hell.

~~

Budding desires

Something new

Building fires

Clearing out

Impaling spires

Dying to live.

~~

Breaching boundaries

Branching out

Building strength

Confidence renewed

Retreats bidden

From which she grew.

~~

Accepting it all;

What she had to do

Crescendo of momentum

Then blowback from changes made

Old remains laying decayed

Fuel the internal fires

No longer contained

External expression

No longer implosion

Touching upon golden threads

Waking up the living dead.

~~

Merging with The Myriad

The All

Imbued with bliss

Nothing can touch this

An open vessel

No longer lidded

Feels the infinite

Within it

A simple treasure

After clearing

Is given

Welcome it says,

You’re part of the

Infinite

~~

Namaste

The Epiphany of Allowing

 

It is on this day that I met the elegant, beautiful and delicately strong lotus flower named Epiphany. She was captivating to watch as she morphed into different shapes and colors as her awareness of herself grew. She was open, she was vulnerable and she knew who she was. She could be anything that she wanted; by allowing it to be. In her presence, I felt light and airy, even as I sat upon a large, solid rock. 

We each have a calling within our hearts, our DNA. Yet we allow the external circumstances of our lives to dictate which path we will take. This is not love, this is fear. Because I fear being seen as crazy, I have continually hidden behind my fears. At times, when the words of my heart want to burst forth I hold them back constricting the neck muscles around my throat; choking out my own words. This hurts me and, worse, it serves no one.

The path away from fear and towards love is found in giving ourselves permission to be our true selves. It does not require me to change you, nor for me to require change within myself. By forcing or resisting changes we are not in a state of allowing.  

The most important lesson is having faith in the unseen. Seeds sprout out of sight. Just as the farmer plants the seed in the soil, he does not later pull up the soil to see what is happening. Instead, he waters and he trusts the seed to do its job. Allowing is having faith in the unknown and not deserting a vision just because it has “taken too long” to bear fruit.

Allowing begins on the inside and is developed through our inner feminine and masculine. This strength is symbolized by the lotus and the rock. The lotus does not ask permission to be beautiful, she just is. Out of the muck she rises and reaches for the sun. Once in the sun, she blooms and opens her petals, revealing herself openly; transparently. She represents feminine strength. The rock also serves its duty by being who he is, being present, solid and still. He represents masculine strength. We need both types of strength to make our way to the pinnacle of our own life’s purpose.

It is within our heart spaces that we strengthen our intuition, which is a combination of trusting and listening. The time has come for us to trust ourselves and to truly listen to what is being said; to see the truth beyond the physical by looking and living from within. It is here that we experience our truth more fully. It is here that we no longer feel burdened by fears.

All that we need to accomplish our missions can be found within. Through stillness, meditation, faith and visualization, we can access everything we need through allowing instead of resisting or forcing. It is by allowing and going within that we have the strongest connection with The Creator and we can complete our missions. Now just to give ourselves that permission.

Namaste

Images: Google & Calm

 

 

Stuck in the Pain of a Story? Time to Rewrite it.

For several weeks now I have been stuck in the wrong story. There are some major shifts in my work schedule that have been gnawing at me. While I have worked through several aspects of my own anger and sadness, and am feeling more neutral now than I was when this all started, I still find myself resisting – and resentful of – the looming changes.

Negotiation and rationalization with management have not changed their decision; which was first presented to me as if it were an option. This change is going to happen whether I want it to or not. Right now it only affects me (stomps ground in protest). So now it’s up to me to decide how I want to see this situation. Fighting it is just wearing me out and frustrating me further. This is not an effective way to live and work.

After explaining the crux of my issues with this change the man I’m dating suggested that I rewrite the story to be one that is more acceptable to me and that includes how this change includes meeting the needs of the clinic to see more patients. So this is the first draft of my rewrite. Know that a few moments ago, hot tears flowed down my cheeks in protest of all of this; the toughest surrender in weeks. After several minutes of procrastination, breathing through my emotions and a blank page glaring back at me, I began to write the following words:

By moving from a 60/30-minute schedule to a 40-minute schedule, more clients will be able to be seen during my workday. This will shorten the wait list and the number of days or weeks that patients need to wait to be seen under my specialty. Also, it will be easier for patients to schedule for 40-minute sessions, as this will be the only option on my schedule. This will make it easier for the front desk as they will not have to try to find 60-minute sessions anymore. With these changes, I am receiving more support from the front-desk and clinical exercise specialists to enable me to focus more on my work of treating clients & documenting their visits; spending less time on administrative and cleaning tasks. This change will also challenge me to find innovative and more efficient ways to communicate with my clients, as well as to treat their conditions.  There will no longer be a push for me to move clients from 60-minute spots to 30-minute spots and my clinical judgment about the length of my visits will not be in question.

For each sentence I have here, there are 3-4 that I want to write to state my case, but this will only keep me stuck. As I want to get unstuck from my anger, resentment, bitterness and sadness, I need to find a way to look at this differently.  Draft one of my rewrite: complete. I’m sure there will be more drafts to come, as I am in the process of submitting.

Namaste


 

 

When you just don’t know what to do or think…

There are times in life where you just don’t or can’t know what is the right path to take nor the right things to think. You just don’t know what to do and sometimes you might find that this irks you. I seem to be in this place more often than I’d like to admit to even myself lately. 

When I find myself here, I write, meditate, and turn to books on “letting go” of attachments. I also have a “God box” where I place specific and sometimes general prayers to help me to allow the situation to move through. 

It can be a challenge at times to fully surrender. Yet, truly the situations are out of my hands. It is up to me to change my perception to one of trust that all things will work out as they should. In the end, they always do. 

It just can be a real challenge in the midst of awaiting a solution or a clear action to take to allow things (like a budding rose) to bloom and unfold. Patience is a virtue that I sometimes feel I missed. I must have been in the wrong line at the time it was being given out 🙂 

Namaste 

  • I am in the process of allowing things to unfold according to Divine Plan.
  • I am in the process of trusting that all will work out in the end.
  • I am in the process of awaiting a clear action to take. 
  • I am in the process of allowing a new perspective to this situation. 



Images: google 

The Allowance of Grace

Recently I read somewhere that people have set points for both their highs and lows. The author went on to explain that we have a happiness quotient that we live beneath. When the elation becomes too much, we become fearful. So we only allow so much Grace/love/happiness to fill our vessels before we stop the flow. 

I often block Grace by rationalizing my emotions, straight-up blocking them or turning to addictions and other distractions, including… helping others. 

Interestingly, we attract into our lives people with similar glass ceilings. If everyone around us has the same level of fear of happiness, then in some way we keep one another on the track of being limited and stuck.  It’s as if we have a container in which we live and avoid overfilling it. The Universe is abundant, yet we define ourselves – and our happiness – so narrowly. How can we break this pattern?


Same Tools, Different Problems Some tools are so effective that they can be used for different issues. Carpenters, plumbers, and orthopedic surgeons use some of the very same hardware tools, just in different conditions. Similarly, I find that I also use the same spiritual  tools repeatedly to solve varying problems of the mind. Surrendering or allowing is a common theme I’ve written about. It seems so simple that it can be overlooked. 

Increasing Our Allowance Grace is a gift with compounding interest.  The more Grace we allow along the path, the more flows to and through us. It’s the same process every time. Allow what emotions rise to the surface. Allow what needs to stay to stay and allow what needs to go to go. Clearing out the old emotions by allowing them, also allows for more room in our containers for Grace. 


Breaking Open Each time we allow ourselves to be fully present with ourselves and our emotions, the more fully we allow ourselves to be ourselves. In so doing, we break open the container that limits us and we increase our Allowance of Grace. 

The more senses you can feel and experience as you move through your emotions, the more fully you are present with yourself. Following the rise and the crest of emotions that occurs, you have taken steps to clear more aspects that were blocking the entrance of Grace into your life. 


Namaste 

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