Friday, June 25, 2010

Do Your Emotions Ever Get Stuck About A Sticky Situation?

You're going along in your day-to-day, applying your self-empowerment tools and knowledge—then WHAM! You find yourself in the thick of a situation and it's as though part of you says, "What tools?"

If you've ever experienced what's described in the opening paragraph, you're likely familiar with the snowball effect it can have . . .

Something happens, and you feel pulled off course.

That full range of emotions you have, and feel pretty satisfied about how you manage them, pop up like Jack-in-the-Boxes, and it doesn't feel as easy as you'd like to get them back in the box.

You're probably dealing with extra tasks or responsibilities on top of your usual ones and you feel stretched or exhausted.

Depending on what the situation is you may feel like a rubber band pulled taut, or in too many directions, and that if you're pulled anymore, you'll snap or break.

When some of the initial surprise or shock of realizing "what is" wears off, you may hear your inner voice whispering reminders that you have inner-level tools you can use. Depending on the situation, you may feel too tired or weary, initially, to use even one technique—get some rest!

And, a moment may come when you feel compelled to criticize or judge yourself for being pulled off course emotionally, or that you feel you were slow to recall that inner-level tools work—and to use them.

This is fresh in my mind because of a recent experience, but I want to use an example from several years back. There was a situation with my boss, and no outer-level approach I tried seemed to create a desired shift. I remembered the tool of writing a letter to my Expanded Self (some like Higher Self, Spirit, God, Universe) to state what I wanted, why I wanted it, and to ask that any and every resource be used to assist me. (I used the letter-to-your-inner-CEO sample from Robert Scheinfeld's book, The 11th Element. However, these days I use the tools in his Busting Loose book.)

Five minutes after I finished re-reading what I'd written and put it away, my boss called me (at home around 9:30 p.m.) with a complete attitude shift.

So, what's that about?!

Dr. Christiane Northrup said, and I paraphrase, that affirmations don't make things happen; they open you to allow things to happen. This applies to the letter writing technique, meditation, prayer, and any other method that leads you to do something very important . . .

Release attachment to any emotion you hold about a situation and release attachment to beliefs blocking a shift.

Sometimes shifts take a while because a lot of details are being organized “behind the scenes." But sometimes your desired shift is leaning against the outside wall of an attachment (or several): anger, disappointment, frustration, fear, and everyone's favorite—a need to be right in the eyes of one or more individuals (but especially your own). A particular thought that acts as a barrier is "This shouldn't be happening" and its sibling "I can't believe this is happening." Both are an understandable reaction our egos may have.

Where we get stuck is when we relate to our lives or a sticky situation solely though the ego (our valuable, but limited in scope, SELF protecting aspect) and temporarily forget we are spiritual beings having a human experience. We forget that our spiritual aspect desires opportunities to explore, expand, and express within our human experience, and that we’ve demonstrated that applying what we know at the inner level does affect the outer, even if all we do is release and trust, which, alone, can create huge shifts.

This is a good question to keep handy: Do I trust my (Expanded Self/Spirit/God/the Universe) to know exactly what's going on—the deeper purpose; and to have my best interest in mind always?

This trust opens you to allow needed shifts, inner and outer, to come to you—whether it takes a while to organize or its just waiting for you to remove the barrier. But, while you wait, YOU feel a good deal better.

You are what you practice.
© 2010, Joyce Shafer

Friday, June 18, 2010

Do You Explain What Is Appropriate for You?

Dr. Judith Orloff said the word No is a complete sentence. Do you feel you have to explain or justify a No response? If you do this, it's a habit you can shift, even if it takes time to get comfortable doing it naturally.

A description from the "Medicine Cards" book and card set by Sams and Carson states you have the right to say, "That's not appropriate for me at this time." It also states there is no obligation to say more than that. If your tendency is to explain your best-interest choices, take a moment to feel how liberating this permission is.

Controlling types can be especially difficult people to say no to, but you can do this without a verbal battle, you just have to hold fast to your rights and boundaries, even if/when they choose to make personal criticisms. (Orloff advises not to take a controller’s personal comments personally.) Remember that any and every out-of-balance energy is caused by fear, usually a fear of losing something. This fear applies to any controller type in your life—and you.

Sometimes explaining a No response is justified. Other times it’s just plain tiresome, usually because there’s an energy attached of not feeling our right to our choice is being honored by the recipient. Then there are times we utter explanations because we feel we have to justify our choice to ourselves. We don’t, especially if we’re aligned with our choice. And, some people are Processors, which means they verbalize the thought-string of details and considerations going on in their minds (a habit worthy of considering release of).

Putting into practice your right to say “No” or “That’s not appropriate for me,” with no further explanation, assists you to boost self-esteem and self-confidence. Self-confidence comes from trusting that you can and do make best choices for yourself—and knowing your opinion about your choices is the only one that ultimately matters.

This practice will also help you reduce or stop "shoulding" on yourself, especially if you’ve been programmed with perfectionist tendencies (a fear-based behavior). As you reduce “shoulding” on yourself, you will also, eventually, reduce how often you "should" on others. If you do one, you definitely do the other. When you recognize that someone is “shoulding” on you, you’ll more easily address this in a way appropriate for you. No one appreciates being "should" on. Imagine it was required we first ask, “May I ‘should’ on you about this?” How many of us would answer Yes, and mean it?

The more comfortable we are in our own "skin"—flaws and all (and willingness to self-adjust as we go), the more comfortable we are about allowing others the same experience. We let go of needing them to be different than they are AND believing we need to be different than what is natural for us. This allows for a far more relaxed, harmonious (or collaborative) experience with our selves and others to happen. And, you have the right to not stay in (or, at least, choose to limit) relationships with anyone you feel too strong of an emotional-chemistry contrast. Often, such a contrast happens with an immediate family member, and it’s easy to lose sight of your boundaries (and theirs) for a period of time. When this happens, trust that you’ll get back on track, and don’t judge yourself when you slip. Know that you can use such times to expand awareness and personal power, no matter how challenging the experience feels while it’s happening. At such a time, it’s best not to “should” on yourself and best to “would” on yourself: How would I prefer to manage myself now?

Frustration happens when you say Yes, when you know No is right for you; or when you feel Yes, but know you need to modify what your Yes means—and you don’t do this. You may feel uncomfortable—even fearful—of saying No; but you "fragment" your psyche and spirit, and deplete your energy, every time you say Yes and your inner essence says or shouts, "No!"

If necessary, take baby-steps: Pick one small matter this applies to and practice. Pay attention to how you feel before, during, and after. Know that the more you do this, the more natural it feels. In fact, not doing it eventually becomes downright uncomfortable.

You are what you practice.
© 2010, Joyce Shafer

Friday, June 11, 2010

Does Self Appreciation Affect Your Experiences and Results?

Whatever you believe about how to achieve desired results, your outcomes ARE affected by how much self-appreciation you feel. It's the same for how you engage your experiences.

Let's imagine you agree that . . .
How your attention (emotionally-charged thoughts) is focused (exercised or applied) directly relates to what you give, receive, and experience more of; and that
How you experience others and events in your life, at the inner level, is a direct result of—how your attention (emotionally-charged thoughts) is focused (exercised or applied).

Your level of self-appreciation will cause you to create (or perceive) reflected experiences that support enjoyment, fulfillment, prosperity (according to your definition), and good relationships OR anxiety, challenges, lack (according to your definition), and discord.

Others sense, at a subconscious level, your level of self-appreciation, and this guides how they engage with you. They sense (and observe) whether you’re comfortable “in your own skin” or you’re not—and they act on this, consciously or not. This affects experiences and outcomes in your personal and professional life areas.

How often do you set out to create something (product, workshop, business, book, work of art, meal, date, relationship, etc.) that your primary desire is to enjoy engaging the experience—and, observing how you “dance” with the dynamics—without attaching any concern about how the outcome will demonstrate your worth or value?

If this IS your approach, yes, you'd enjoy or prefer a particular outcome; but you don't allow any NEED for it to happen—or to happen a specific way—to limit the outcome or how you experience the journey. When you engage fear, doubt, or any negativity about anything you choose to do, you create (feed) a reflected experience and outcome. Think of the computer term GIGO: Garbage In, Garbage Out. Self-appreciation is all about valuing and making the most of your inner and outer journey. Do this, and the treasure you seek is found—you’re it.

Other Aspects of Self-Appreciation

Self-appreciation means you know your value and worth are not dependent on outcomes or approval from others. It keeps you tuned in to what and who is and is not appropriate for you.

Self-appreciation opens you to practice beneficial self-assessment and adjustment rather than negative, harsh self-judgment, especially when you wish you’d managed yourself differently in a situation.

Self-appreciation enhances compassion and empathy for others—because it’s easier to see how the lack of this in another causes them to struggle in life more often than not. You allow yourself to engage in the ongoing process of expanding self-awareness. You appreciate your willingness to do this. You appreciate that the process is not always easy (or self-evident)—for you or for others.

Self-appreciation guides you to pick your “battles” and to engage these with integrity and willingness to co-create a productive resolution, particularly because it’s exhausting to keep fighting the same battles (often the same issue masked as something else) because you haven’t addressed them constructively—from the inner or outer level, as needed.

Self-appreciation allows you to choose and enjoy new projects or goals, without negative or needy money attachments, which leads appropriate others to want to engage with you. A monetary expression of appreciation from others is, in fact, a reflection of self-appreciation.

Self-appreciation allows you to engage new inner and outer “territories” with a greater sense of adventure than any concern about whether you’re “good enough.” You know “where you are” when you start anything is “good enough,” and you embrace and enjoy improving at anything you choose to do.

Self-appreciation lets you aim at and do what you know is right for you rather than what others try to impose on you. You trust your Self.

How can you expand self-appreciation?
*Appreciate that every day you "show up," even when feeling challenged.
*Appreciate that you are, in fact, more creative and innovative than you may currently practice.
*Appreciate that you've always been engaged in the process of expanding your awareness and unique self-expression; are in this process now and always will be—whether you choose to experience this as progression or regression.
*Appreciate the Truth is that your value and worth are not dependent on any monetary connection, outcomes, or opinions of others. Release of fearful, doubtful, or needy energy allows your "reflections" to be ones you appreciate more often than not.
*Start noticing what you do right and well.

Take a moment to feel true self-appreciation every day and especially when you feel inclined to doubt your Self in any way. You are here now. YOU will never happen again. How do you choose to play "my life" while here? Expand your self-appreciation to enhance your experience of this. Share the good feeling this gives you by expressing appreciation of and to others, especially if you tend to withhold this from them. Appreciation—in all its forms—feels remarkable. Whether from others or from ourselves, it acts as fuel for us.

Genuine self-appreciation changes your life. The desire to feel this is the all-important first step to shift it—if a shift is needed.

You are what you practice.
© 2010, Joyce Shafer