Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Art of Complacency

WARNING:  This post is not for the faint of heart!

There is no magic formula.  There is no 1, 2, 3 step program.  There is no book you can read.  And there is no therapist who can fix what is destroying your hope and stealing your future.  Any of those things are simply tools - they don't create the change and freedom you seek.  YOU DO!

We have become complacent. 

We think if we have read that book we have done something.
We think if we hold a heated conversation about a volatile topic we have done something.
We think if we attended the meeting, or sat through the conference we have done something.
We think if we enact that new law, we have done something.

And things remain the same.  Complacency.

It kills new ideas.
It repeats patterns that bring destruction.
It breeds hopelessness and despair.
It diverts us from our potential and power.

You have to come out of complacency!
You need to be discontent and unwilling to accept the status quo. 
No longer is it okay to only identify what is in your way of change, i.e. fear, rejection, insecurity.  If you want to change your life and thus change the world in which you live YOU will look at that obstacle and say, HELL NO!  

YOU have to USE the tools.  Don't just say the words. SHIFT from the inside.  That is where you connect to your power.

YOU must do the work of internalizing new truth, making internal exchanges and stop giving your power away.  

DO IT! - fire up your resolve - connect to your passion - DO IT!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Can we shift the story we live in?

The women gathered around the table were of varying generations and perspectives.  It was an eclectic looking group with one goal: create a follow-up event to a recent "Status of Women" expo.  Our first task was to select a focus for the event, i.e., around what topic would we build?

When the brainstorming session began I was struck with an understanding that each suggestion was framed around the individual stories that each woman carried.  Each brought to the table the "story" either assigned to her by culture or applied to her by experience. The suggestions focused on what had happened to women.  I could feel the room drain from hope to gloom. 

So I opened my mouth and spun a different story.  "Can't we create a different conversation?  What if we shift our stories to focus on the strengths of women, the core qualities and positive aspects of women rather than stay under the labels and barriers?"  They were stunned.  And the hope rose in the room.

The stories we tell, and the stories we invest in create the framework for how we conduct our lives.  They either confine us or create possibility.

It's the difference between fate and destiny.  Perhaps you've heard me talk about this before.  Fate is the path that we take when we allow circumstances to define us.  Destiny is the path we take when we shift the story by living out of the strengths of our identity.

Restoration is about identifying the restraints of story and shifting them.  It's about changing the relationship you have with "the story".  It's about fighting back, standing up and saying, "I will not be confined by your perspective or actions." 

You absolutely can shift the story in which you live!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Birthing Wisdom

"I am so excited about what you are experiencing."  I know it sounds funny when I say it. I even cringe sometimes, because I say that when I'm sitting with someone who has just understood a difficult truth about the life she has lived. 

She has paid a great cost to arrive at that truth.  It comes wrapped in pain and discomfort.  Its companion, denial, has worked hard to keep the truth from being revealed and explored. Your truth provides wisdom.  I don't know of any other way to unlock that truth than to unwrap the pain and labor through the obstacles to birth the wisdom that will set you free.

Obstacles such as denial, fear, the expectations of others and your own emotions can trick you into thinking you 'can't."  Each obstacle holds its own wisdom.
  • Denial - The stance that once "protected" you, is now the doorway to the answers to the questions that keep you wondering "why?"
  • Fear - A legitimate emotion that hovers over either truth of experience or unhealthy adaptations made to create a sense of safety or control.
  • Expectation of others - Wisdom here is gained in being able to identify safe or unsafe people as you unpack those experiences.
  • Your emotions - Provide an opportunity to explain what you are experiencing and explore deeper beliefs that drive emotional reactions.
Wisdom is found in self knowledge and self confrontation.  You hold the secrets to changing what you want to change. You can't fix what you don't know, and you can't shift what you're not willing to confront. 

Only you can decide if you are willing to do the labor of birthing your own wisdom.
I hope you do!