I am preparing to facilitate a healing weekend retreat called The Letting Go Weekend. (See the flyer below - you are welcome to pay the reduced investment of $225!) As I have been inviting people to join me to begin making the changes they have only dreamt of, I have been thinking about that question: what do you want more of?
For a large part of my life I would have said, as a parent, more time to myself, healthy, happy children, more money, good relationships. You can fill in your own words.
However, now, in this moment in your life, what do you want more of? What do you want less of? Today my answer is different: I want more inner peace, a larger perspective of the world, less ego and more heart in my interactions with others...a knowledge that I am living as consciously as I can. AS CONSCIOUSLY AS I CAN. And yet, even having said that, and having studied for a number of years in a healing community that 'calls us all' to be more conscious, there are a number of ways I 'check out' during a day...moment to moment sometimes, having to 'call myself back' again and again.
BUT...I KNOW WHAT I WANT: to live consciously with heart and appreciation, with love and compassion for others and for myself. Because in living consciously, I want to die consciously. And as my teacher, David Hartmann said this last weekend: "I want to be used up" when I die. Wow. Now THAT is something to aspire to.
So...if this moves you at all, if you are curious about how a Letting Go Weekend might help you gain more of what you want NOW, how it would help you live more consciously...call me. Just call: 360-432-1236
This is a lovely, short piece of compassionate wisdom from Pema Chodron, Buddhist nun and wise elder:
"The Three Commitments are three levels of working with groundlessness.
Underlying them all is the basic instruction to make friends with yourself—to be honest with yourself and kind.
This begins with the willingness to stay present whenever you experience uneasiness. As these feelings arise, rather than running away, you lean into them. Instead of trying to get rid of thoughts and feelings, you become curious about them.
As you become accustomed to experiencing sensation free of interpretation, you will come to understand that contacting the fundamental ambiguity of being human provides a precious opportunity—the opportunity to be with life just as it is, the opportunity to experience the freedom of life without a story line."
This is great advice, and sometimes hard to do. I know. Right now in my life I am experiencing tremendous feelings of loss and groundlessness. And, I know some small things I can do to help myself in those moments:
* I try to be curious about the feelings and emotions that are arising
* I stay present with the sensations in my body as these feelings arise
* sometimes the sensations in my body signal the dis-ease I am only slightly
* I do something to ground myself: stand by a favorite tree, sit outside, walk
on the grass with bare feet
* breathe deeply
* sometimes I cry or feel the sadness arising and just let it be
What can you do for yourself the next time you want to run away from what you are experiencing? Make a list and try those things first and see if, over time, managing the feelings become easier. Less scary. More do-able. Kinder.
I was blessed on Friday, April 28th to REALLY learn - more deeply and again - my beliefs about 'not enough', no one will help me, and commitment.
The 28th is the day I was to travel to catch a ferry to Vancouver Island, BC. It was the start of the PTI weekend ( Personal Transformation Intensive ) that Lori Austein and I were co-facilitating. The first weekend of five.
I was ready. Up at 4:30 am to finish packing, I left at 5:30 to catch an 8:20 ferry, the Black Ball Ferry. All was well.
On the road, about half way there, I realized my car was overheating. So I pulled over and waited. Having an old car with lots of miles on it I was not overly concerned. This had happened before, just not in a long time.
As the car cooled and I kept pushing toward Port Angeles and the ferry...it was getting later and later. I began to panic: what to do? You can imagine the number of scenarios I came up with and none of them seemed workable. I was literally in the middle of nowhere. ( How many times in my life had I visited the same space, I thought? )
I HAD TO GET TO THE PTI. I had committed myself to Lori and five other people who were paying for me to be there and co-facilitate their healing.
At last, with white smoke billowing out the back and white smoke coming out under the hood of the car, I pulled over. The car would not start. No way. No way.
During the next hour I learned, again, about the kindness of strangers. Triple AAA listening kindly and helping me problem solve. The tow company that would pick me, and my car up, deliver us to a rental agency in Port Angeles, 30 miles away and then deliver my car to my super mechanic in Olympia - another 90 miles? The rental agency employee who was so kind after 3 calls, with her calm voice helping me to stay calm. Lori's solid commitment to the PTI participants and her truth about having me there as soon as possible.
I did get to the ferry. I was the last car on the ferry for the 2:00 pm sailing.
I did get to the PTI during dinner, having lovely people wave me into the most beautiful home and setting. Feeling their love and good energy and joy that I had arrived. Feeling welcomed!
Wow. The weekend was so amazing, the participants so brave to jump into their healing work, allowing Lori and I to assist them in resolving trauma that often began before birth.
Kindness. Abundance. Commitment. JOY!
Think today about the kindness of strangers. About true abundance. About commitment: what are you committed to?
The pictures below are of The Shire, where we stayed for the weekend, at Lake Cowichan, BC.