In Hiding

“Living your truth” is a big thing in the coaching field. Every coach I follow has said it at one time or another, and I definitely have used the phrase myself on more than one occasion.

The thing is, it’s easy to say, but less easy to do.

When you’ve been taught that you have to hide certain things about who you are, or who your family is, you learn that living your truth not only isn’t acceptable, it can be dangerous. If you say the wrong thing to the wrong person, someone might hurt you. At the very least, you might be shunned by the people around you.

Even though I advise others to live their truth, I’m not always out there showing everything about who I am. I am in hiding about some things, because I’m one of those people who was taught to hide. As a child, I talked about things like communicating with the wind and trees. I told my parents when I “just knew” something was going to happen, and I shared my writing and stories with anyone who would listen.

I wasn’t praised for those things. I was told not to talk about the wind and trees because people would think I was “crazy.” My parents said the same thing about my “just knowing,” and also ranted at me about how little good it did to know those things since I couldn’t do anything to change them. While my parents tried to be supportive of my writing, and so did some of my teachers, my peers and other teachers made fun of me or at least of the stories I wrote.

I learned to hide.

Even as I type this, there are some things about myself that not everyone in my life knows. There are things about which I don’t talk to some people, and other things I don’t talk about at all.

Living your truth and speaking your truth are important as you build the life you want to live, but sometimes you have to be more cautious than you would like about what you say and how you live around certain people. And that’s okay. If you’re just playing it safe because you don’t believe in yourself, that’s one thing; but sometimes it really is a matter not of *playing* safe but of *being* safe.

Emotions

Emotions can be tricky things. Sometimes they seem to just sneak up on us, suddenly and without warning, and we go from zero to sixty in a second flat. That happens to me sometimes, especially with emotions like fear and anger. I don’t know they’re on the way, but suddenly they’re there, complete with racing thoughts and a running mouth I can’t seem to stop.

But the thing is, I *can* stop the thoughts and the words. I can stop any actions I might be on the verge of.

What I can’t stop are the emotions themselves. Believe me, I’ve tried. And the harder I try to make that anger or fear go away, the more stubborn they become. It’s like the concept of not thinking about the pink elephant. Now that I’ve brought that up, just try to stop thinking about pink elephants. At all. No thoughts of them. None.

See how difficult that can be?

One of the more useful things I’ve learned about emotions is to stop identifying myself *as* the emotion, and instead identify the emotion as something I have. For example, instead of “I’m angry,” saying “I feel angry” helps to separate me from that emotion, which can help the emotion fade sooner. It also prevents me from condemning myself for feeling it at all, which brings me to the second point.

Many of us are taught that feeling certain emotions is just plain not acceptable. You can’t feel anger. You shouldn’t feel afraid. And so on. So we learn to fight those emotions, or suppress them, or pretend they don’t exist at all.

Instead, I believe we need to learn to accept them, and more importantly, accept ourselves for feeling them. I’m not a bad person because I sometimes feel angry, or jealous, or afraid. I’m a human being, and most human beings experience a huge range of emotions in their lives. And that’s perfectly okay.

Anything you feel is okay. It’s what you do in response to feeling that way that matters. So be kind to yourself when you feel a negative emotion. Accept it. Even thank the emotion for what it’s bringing you, or for trying to protect you. And then move on.

Listen…

A few weeks ago, I sat down with pen and paper, and this just kind of flowed through me. So I wanted to share.

Listen to your intuition. Trust that you know, and believe what you hear. You feel inside you when something’s right. If it is, follow it, even if the “how” isn’t obvious.

Everyone has something to offer, and everyone matters. Everyone deserves love, positivity, and good things.

The story other people tell about you is really about them. You are the only one who can truly tell your story. If the story you tell is based on what others say to you, it’s time to tell a new one. Let go of what others think and say about you. Look inside and know who you truly are.

Trust yourself. “I don’t know” is part of that story. You do know, if you look past the mental arguments.

You are infinite abundance. You’ve simply forgotten who you are. It’s time to remember. Hustling and bustling to make money doing things you despise doesn’t serve you. Find your heart, find your joy, find your love.

What holds you back? Break the bonds others have placed on you, and do what you feel called to do. If you want to speak, speak. If you want to sing, sing. Dance. Run. Write. Play. Whatever it is your heart tells you, do. You aren’t responsible for everyone and everything. You are responsible to and for yourself above all. Be kind to yourself. Take care of yourself. Feed your fire.

As a child, you had dreams. You believed in magic, power, and all possibilities. You took joy wherever you could find it. You defended yourself against the stories others tried to force on you. But you heard too much doubt. Those in “authority” told you the things you believed were wrong, and with no one contradicting those people, you weren’t able to sustain your beliefs. And yet part of you always continued to believe. Part of you continued to know who you are. Even when you felt defeated, part of you felt triumphant and knew you would succeed.

That is the part to which you need to listen now. That indomitable, persevering, strong part that never doubted. You deserve love and respect from yourself and others, and that inner you is demanding it now. It isn’t too late. Those dreams can still be fulfilled. That power and truth never left you; it has always been there, buried beneath the “have tos” and responsibilities and untrue stories. It holds out its hand to you, ready to pull you back into the light of your true self and your true story.

Speak your truth, and believe that truth is there to be spoken when you are ready. The fear and doubt is part of your old story. Look past those, even when it’s hard, even when it’s terrifying. You don’t realize how much darkness surrounds you, and it has become comfortable, familiar, and safe. But it isn’t who you are. It isn’t where you belong.

Allow your true self to pull you into the light of your true life. “Take chances, get messy.” What does safety gain you? You remain in the dark, your gifts obscured and submerged. You suffer in sadness and lack when happiness and abundance are within your reach, and that happiness and abundance are what you hold out to others. You are their light, and yet you continue to dwell in darkness. Be for yourself what you are for others; or, rather, accept what you offer yourself as others accept what you offer them.

You aren’t alone in this world. On the most fundamental level, everyone and everything is intertwined. Feel your connection with others. Let them reach you as you have reached them.

Do you hear and feel this wisdom? And yet you doubt that you know anything. This is you working in harmony with yourself. You ask where these words are coming from, but you know the answer, because *you* are the answer. You are the answer to everything you fear, and to everything you need and desire. Shine your light into the dark corner where you hide in misperceived safety. Safety and stagnation are not synonymous. You are safe wherever and whatever you are. Stagnation leads only to proving to yourself that you can do nothing, and it becomes a self-fulfilling cycle. This is how you let yourself down, when you choose not to try.

Put yourself out there. Take the risks. Accept the love and the pain. Accept the knowing and the not knowing. Accept who you are and the joy and abundance that are meant for you.

 

Drawing a Blank

I sat here getting ready to write this blog post and realized I had no idea what to say.

And that’s okay.

I spend a lot of time feeling like I have to know everything that’s going to happen. I have to plan out what I’m going to post on my blog or write in the novel I’m working on. I have to know what my commute will be like, and the weather, and what I’ll be doing that day at work.

Except I don’t really need to know any of that. Except maybe the weather, because if it’s going to rain, it would be good to have an umbrella. And if it’s going to snow, I might have to freak out a little bit, because it’s July. Even in New England, it doesn’t usually snow in July.

So this time, instead of getting anxious and worried because I didn’t know what to type for this blog post, I just started typing about not knowing what I was going to type. Because even if it seems silly, or I feel like I’m just blathering, there is a point to this. And the point is that I don’t actually need to know. Some of my best writing–and, admittedly, worst–has occurred when I just put my fingers on the keyboard and see what comes out.

There are some things in life that it’s probably a good idea to plan in advance. At least have a guideline for. But you don’t have to do that with everything. Some things work out just fine even if you start without knowing where you’re going to end.

Like blog posts.

Believing In Yourself

Every once in a while, I start to doubt myself. I wonder if I’m going to gain the clients I want, or be able to help people, or write anything people want to read. I wonder why things aren’t seeming to work out the way I’d like.

It’s human nature to have doubts and fears. Finding someone who doesn’t have those is rare, even among life coaches and motivational speakers. Every once in a while, almost everyone has questions go through their minds about the things they’re doing.

The key is to keep doing it anyway. To ignore the questions if they’re holding you back, or answer them if doing so seems like something that might be helpful. Sometimes trying to answer those doubts and questions can lead to a new way of looking at the situation, and that can lead to a new way of doing whatever it is you’re trying to do.

Deep down, I know that I’m an excellent healer and mentor. I know I have the knowledge and skills to help my clients, and I know those clients will find me when I’m ready to work with them. I believe in my skills and abilities, even if sometimes I forget for a little while that I believe in them. And so deep down is where I need to look when those doubts and questions arise.

The brain tells you things are going wrong, or you aren’t doing it right or aren’t going to succeed. But the heart knows the truth. Your energy system knows the truth; when you feel doubt, you might feel your entire energy system contract, but when you believe in yourself, you feel yourself opening up, and that brings more answers and more possibilities.

So when doubts arise, keep working. Keep believing. Even if those doubts seem louder than the belief, keep going anyway. You’ll get there.

Shine Your Light

I recently responded to a post on Facebook from someone close to me, who said they were considering changing a part of how they act because they were so tired of people judging them and putting them down. This is what I said, in part, in response to their post:

“Some people have nothing better to do than tear down others to make themselves feel better. Live YOUR life, not theirs. Smile if you want to smile. Wear what you want to wear. They’re trying to put out a light that scares the f*** out of them. You’ve worked your ass off to overcome things that have happened in your life, and that terrifies the people who aren’t brave enough to do the work. So they have to make you feel like you’re less than them…because the reality is, you’re far, far more. Ignore them as much as you can. Feel compassion for them. *They* are the ones with the problems.”

That can be a hard thing to learn. If you’re constantly bullied and insulted, whether it’s about your physical appearance or your personality or your clothes or whatever, it wears you down. Sometimes it does just seem easier to back down, because at least then maybe they’ll leave you alone.

But I’ve found through personal experience that a lot of times, what I said in that Facebook comment is true. People fear what they don’t understand, and get angry at what they fear. People who look down on themselves can’t understand how someone can choose not to be part of the crowd. They see someone strong, confident, and powerful, and sometimes that frightens them. Sometimes it infuriates them because they don’t believe they can be the same way.

I’ve been approached by people who bullied me in school, or stood by while others bullied me. They’ve told me they were jealous or envious of what they saw as my total lack of fear to be myself. They admired me, but didn’t want to admit it. They were intimidated by me.

I wish they hadn’t been. I’m not all that intimidating, and I would happily have been their friend. Instead, I hid my light under piles and piles of detritus, all the result of bullying and other things I experienced. I didn’t dare show that light at all, because obviously it was a bad thing to have.

Now I dare. Now I know that light is what makes me who I am, and helps me to help other people. I refuse to hide it anymore. The person whose post I commented on has been keeping their light very visible for a long while now, and I hope they don’t choose to start hiding it.

Welcome to the New Site!

My old site was awesome, in my somewhat biased opinion. But there were issues with it, partly with the hosting company and partly with the content. I made plans to revise the content, and I decided to go with a different hosting company. The problem: My old hosting company doesn’t allow websites to be migrated to new hosts.

So I chose to build a whole new site.

I’m pretty happy with it, and I hope visitors will find the site easy to navigate. If not, please use the Contact form on the home page to let me know! Unfortunately the blog posts I had on the old blog aren’t available on this one–yet. I do plan to repost some of them over the next few months.

The blogging schedule will be as it used to be: Wednesdays and Saturdays. This post is just to let you all know what’s going on, and to say I hope you like the new place.