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HOW TO ELIMINATE A OO7 DOUBLE LIFE

When James* called upon me, he asked that we meet in an open restaurant downtown Vancouver. Asking him why there instead of my office, he laughed and said, ‘Because I need it this way.’ 
 
On the agreed upon date and time of rendez-vous, James sat down in front of me and immediately placed his hands under the table where I could Not see them. This gesture alone told me a lot about James, how easily he pretended to be emotionally open yet felt the want to hide once in front of me.
 
Through my talking with him, I found out James was one of nine children from a very large Catholic South American family. He grew up being an altar boy, going to Sunday school, and saying prayers. But something was Not working for him… In his teenage years, he realized he was gay and being gay is apparently something deemed unacceptable in his family and culture.
 
 

Have you ever been in a situation where you felt rejected for what you are?

 
 
James moved to Vancouver, found a job, and said he met the ‘love of his life’, whom he married a couple of years later. Though saying he is happily married, James had two Facebook accounts, one ‘straight’ and one gay, to ‘spare’ the family as he said. Looking down, he confessed few people (if any) where he came from knew he was even married.
 
 

Can you imagine what it feels like to hide things from the people you love? 

 
 
In tears, James said he needed to come out of the closet as a gay and this is why he was coming to see me. He felt he could Not do it alone, he said this was too much for him to face alone.
 

 
I asked…
 
 

In a perfect world, what would your life be like right now?

 
 
Jame’s face brightened. He shared how he would only have one Facebook account and one Instagram account. He laughed saying he would show pictures from the ‘crazy’ adventures he and his husband have been on, their food expeditions, their vacations together, even their honeymoon trip…
 
I asked James if he truly loved his husband. Without hesitation he answered choking up, “Are you kidding me? He is the best thing that has ever happened to me!”
 
I replied,
 
 

When we truly love someone, including ourselves, do we hide who we are?

 
 
James burst into tears. He did Not seem to care anymore whether the waiter or other patrons saw him crying; his shoulders were heaving up and down with heavy sobs. Then he took a deep breath, clenched his teeth, and said, “I deserve better! My husband deserves better! I am coming out!” I was impressed by this fiery determination.
 
That day, he went home with homework to do. Over the next seven days, he had to call every member of his family, his eight siblings and two parents, and tell each one of them he was gay. His framework looked something like ‘I am calling to share something important to me. I am gay. Being gay is a part of me, it is Not all of me. I love you.”
 
 

Have you ever had to stand up for what you believe in? How easy was it?

 
 
At our next coaching session, James sat down with his journal open. Where he had drawn ten little people with their name on top of each, three of them were still left unmarked by an ‘X’ signifying ‘the job is done’ and they knew he was gay.
 
I open directly,
 
 

What happened to you missing your goal?

 
James grabbed his journal with both hands. He mumbled how he was Not truly close to the only sibling left on the list as this person had once sexually assaulted him when he was a kid… He also said how many of his siblings were now sending him harassment messages telling him he was ‘wrong’, going to ‘hell, and ‘Don’t tell mom and dad! They’re too old and mom’s depression is too bad!’
 
Like so many, James was caught once more living a double life, living in the background of his own life while trying to get ‘approval’ from others, especially from members of his family.
 
 

Whose approval is most important to you to be happy?

 
I pointed to the top of the page where all his little people drawings were and I asked him to write down a story title expressing what his goal is. His pen almost pierced the paper as he wrote in capital letters at the top,
 

“I AM COMING OUT!”

 
 
Let me ask you…
 

Why do we become untruthful?

Why do we pursue lies?

 
 
I believe the answer is, because we think it will be better.
 
Is it though? How was James’ constant lying about being gay going to advance his goal of coming out of the closet?
 
Clearly, denying our truth does Not work.
 
With this in mind…
 

How do things become better?

 

I believe, things become better when we focus on 

  • becoming truthful. ‘What is my truth?’

  • becoming intentional. ‘What can I do right now to uphold my truth?’

  • becoming accountable. ‘What can I do to hold myself accountable so I live my truth?

 
I could certainly relate to James. When I got married, I did not tell my then husband about the way I grew up, the level of violence. I thought he would ‘love’ me more if I buried what had happened to me as a child. Can you relate? My life changed for the better when I became truthful, intentional, and accountable.
 
 

Here are some rock solid tips to assist you who may suffer from ‘007 Double Life  Syndrome’:

Once you have identified what your truth is, whether it is to come of the closet as gay or lesbian, leave an unhappy marriage, change jobs, or …
 

  • Make a list of who needs to know. When we make the decision to come out with our truth, often, we tend to believe everyone ‘must’ know all at once. Spare yourself feeling overwhelmed, work in stages.

  • Come up with an on point message telling your truth. Keep it short. Keep it sweet. Keep it to the point. Understand there is plenty of time later to go into the ‘Why did this happen?’ if you ever chose to.

  • Have an accountability system/person in place. Though many of us say we ‘know’ what we need to do in order to be happy, many of us end up losing our nerve when the stakes are deemed high.Therefore, having someone on your team who is Not emotionally attached to your situation allows for actions with a greater sense of clarity.

 
 
Now imagine somebody has just read these tips…
 

What do you believe will be their greatest challenge?

 
Before James came to see me, he had all the best intentions in the world, BUT he lacked a solid accountability system. This is why as soon as he went into ‘What will they think of me?’ he lost his nerve of telling his truth to his family.
 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach who holds her clients highly accountable so they get to live their truth openly, and like James, get to come out at the top of their story page.
 
For coaching inquiries, reach out to me at anne@walkinginside.com
 
Your Emotional Intelligence Coach,
Anne
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
 

Categories
Accountability Anxiety Assertiveness Authenticity Awareness Blind Spots Commitment Compassion Conscience Courage Curiosity Decency Depression Dreams Emotional Intelligence Empathy Enabling Equality Faith Forgiveness freedom Frustration Gratefulness Guilt Happiness Hope Ignorance Inner Child Inner Peace Insanity Instinct Intellect Intent Intentions Intuition Joy Leadership Life Purpose Love Magic Mindfullness Parenting Self Patience Peace procrastination Racism Reality Relationship Sadness Sanity Satisfaction Self-Confidence Self-empowerment Self-Worth Sensitivity Space Success Tolerance Trust WalkingInside

ROUND AND ROUND

ROUND AND ROUND
 
Round and round
We go again
On the merry-go-round of life.
Ups and downs,
We think that’s life
Until we get off our mount.
 
Round and round
We go again
On the merry-go-round of life.
Laughter and tears
We think we’re here
Until we go deep within.
 
In and in
We go again
On the merry-go-round of life,
Darkness and light
Fuse into one
Until we go round and round.
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
What makes any of us go round and round in circles?
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
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acceptance Accountability Assertiveness Authenticity Awareness Commitment Compassion Confidence Conscience Courage Curiosity Emotional Intelligence Empathy Equality Faith Forgiveness freedom Friendship Gratefulness Happiness Hope Imagination Inner Child Inner Peace Intentions Intuition Joy Leadership Life Purpose Love Magic Mindfullness Parenting Self Peace Reality Relationship Satisfaction Self-Confidence Self-empowerment Self-Worth Sensitivity Space Tolerance WalkingInside

HOW FAR AM I WILLING TO GO?

HOW FAR AM I WILLING TO GO?
 
Am I willing to go beyond the stars
Where you and I were born
Where the sun befriends the moon
Where rainbows bridge us all?
 
Am I willing to go further than the eye can see
Where trees plant their roots
Where flowers drop their seeds
Where leaves take in the colours of seasons?
 
Am I willing to go deeper than the ocean floor
Where all the river beds make one
Where the illusion of division is triumphed over
Where we all feel as one?
 
How far am I willing to go?
 
I am willing to go
At the centre of myself
Where I hear it all begins
The point of origin
That unites us all.
 
I am willing to go
Where ‘broken’ lines disappear
Where there is no you or me
Where there is only a we.
 
I am willing to go
Where love is no more a concept
Where love becomes fully being
Where love is visible in all.
 
If ever I think I have reached this place
Where I hear it all begins
Ask me again
‘How far am I willing to go?’
And I will come back to
Being in the here and now
Until we all feel that we belong.
 
With Compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
Categories
acceptance Accountability Assertiveness Authenticity Awareness Blind Spots Commitment Compassion Confidence Conscience Courage Curiosity Emotional Intelligence Empathy Enabling Equality Faith Forgiveness freedom Friendship Gratefulness Happiness Hope Ignorance Imagination Inner Child Inner Peace Insanity Intellect Intent Intentions Intuition Joy Leadership Life Purpose Love Magic Mindfullness Parenting Self Patience Peace Racism Reality Relationship Sadness Sanity Satisfaction Self-Confidence Self-empowerment Self-Worth Sensitivity Settling Shame Social Awareness Space Success Tolerance Trust WalkingInside

I — USED TO THINK

I — USED TO THINK
 
I used to think
A tree was just a tree
I saw it with my own mind
Roots, trunk, branches, leaves.
 
I used to think
You were different than me
I saw it with my own mind
Bodies, fences, judgement, fear.
 
Thanks to my mentor, I met me
For a moment, I stopped thinking,
In stillness, my mind cracked open
Discovering sunshine cooling breeze within.
 
How refreshing
To hear inside the giggles of a small child
Who never thought we were separate
Who’s always known we all belong.
 
Because of my love for this child and me
The lines in my mind are becoming blurry
If there is nothing separating you from me
Then, who am I? What are we?
 
Willing to know, I ask her to show me the way
How I may serve her from a place of integrity
Laughing, she is showing a world full of wonders
Where roots and bodies, you and me,
Are merging into, this or something greater,
Then… I used to think.
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
 
To know more about Soul Leadership: www.fullmontyleadership.com
 
P.S. With this post, I am including more forms and patterns I have seen when opening up pictures. This time, I am not showing the pictures they may have originated from because I want you to imagine what can possibly give rise to …
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acceptance Accountability Assertiveness Authenticity Awareness Blind Spots Commitment Compassion Confidence Conscience Courage Curiosity Dreams Emotional Intelligence Empathy Enabling Equality Faith Forgiveness freedom Friendship Gratefulness Happiness Hope Ignorance Inner Child Inner Peace Instinct Intellect Intent Intentions Intuition Joy Leadership Life Purpose Love Magic Mindfullness Parenting Self Patience Peace procrastination Reality Relationship Satisfaction Self-Confidence Self-empowerment Self-Worth Sensitivity Settling Social Awareness Space Speaking Success Tolerance Trust WalkingInside

AWAKENING

AWAKENING
 
I awoke in the middle of the night,
Frightened and scared,
Thinking I was alone.
I looked around the bedroom,
Stillness and shadows greeting me.
What an unfamiliar sight, I thought to myself,
To be alone with one’s thoughts,
To be shyly greeting one’s feelings.
 
Out of habit,
I called out a name,
Thinking you would come,
But the echo came back empty.
I did not yet understand,
Love is neither a name or a game,
It is a flowing feeling,
Like waves, rising and falling,
Amidst our own waters.
 
Thinking I knew better,
I turned my bed into a raft,
I paddled day and night,
Still hoping to find you,
Afloat on another raft nearby.
 
Feeling more lost than ever,
I finally stopped doing this crazy thing,
And started instead to
Listen to the wind
Who has always known my name.
 
It said,
“Dive,
Dive deep within,
For the one you are looking for,
The Beloved,
Is awaiting.”
 
I told the Wind,
“I am no Mermaid,
To flag my tale under water.”
And the Wind softly replied,
“Trust and Have Faith,
Within you is always the Way.”
 
So I took a majestic dive
Perhaps the way Dolphins do?
Feeling my own breathing
Echoing back to me
The beauty of universes within.
 
I now use my raft as a diving board,
In whatever room I find myself in,
I remember Ocean Waves belong
To the One
Awakened in the middle of the night.
 
With Deep Gratitude,
Anne
 
Dov Baron, thank you for being the Wind speaking softly to me, I am grateful
 
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
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Accountability Awareness Blind Spots Compassion Courage Curiosity Emotional Boundaries Emotional Intelligence Empathy Enabling Happiness Intent Intentions Intuition Leadership Love Mindfullness Parenting Self Reality Relationship Self-empowerment Self-Worth Sensitivity Social Awareness Space WalkingInside

EMPATHY OR ENABLING?

“Put yourself in my shoes!” yelled my 14 year old daughter to me before storming out of the kitchen crying. As I heard her bedroom door slam, I whispered softly, “I am trying, sweetie, more than you might possibly know.”
 
The sale offer for the house had been finalized and I had just announced to my daughter that we were moving downtown, be about one hour away from her school and friends.
 
She was adamant she was not moving. She was determined to finish high school where her two elder siblings had graduated from before her.
 
In the past, when I talked about the house being for sale, she usually became quiet, silent, withdrawn, as if the landscape outside the kitchen window was far more interesting than what I had to say.
 
If I asked her if she was listening to any I was sharing about the house, she often turned her head sharply to me, two “daggers” suddenly “piercing”, and with her lips pinched tightly together, continued being ‘silent’….
….
 
I gather many of us, parents, have had to make life decisions that may have been disliked by our children.
 
So, when a child or an adult says, “Put yourself in my shoes!”, what exactly are they asking us to do?
 
I believe
 

EMPATHY is primarily seeing another person’s 

feelings and perspectives

THROUGH THEIR LIFE FILTERS.

 
 
Therefore, when we are asked to show empathy, we might want to remember to:
 

  • Hold our self in check. If we cannot hold our self in check, if we let our emotions run high, how can we ever be able to tune in without distortion to someone else’s feelings and emotions?

  • Become attentive to what is verbally spoken. Take an active interest in the other person’s concerns. Ask, “What exactly is troubling you right now?” If we are unable to zero in on exact concerns, how is it possible to ever put our self in someone else’s shoes?

  • Listen actively for unspoken emotions. We all know underneath the blanket of anger is a hurt/wounded person. Focus on understanding where the other person’s potential hurt comes from.

  • Visualize and show sensitivity to another’s perspective. Empathy is felt by using someone else’s life filters to relate to their feelings and emotions. In this light, empathy is also known as the gateway to compassion.

 
 
In a situation requiring empathy:
 
⇒What happens if we cannot hold our self in check? We might most likely take on the other person’s feelings and emotions as our own, meaning: their drama becomes our drama.
 
⇒What happens if we are inattentive to what is verbally spoken? We might most likely make up shit about them, meaning: telling the other person what they are supposed to or should be feeling right now.  
 
⇒What happens if we address the anger instead of the underneath hurt? It is my belief we then waste precious time arguing for the shit one party or both people want(s) to be right about.
 
⇒What happens if we use our own filters to show empathy? Then it is not called empathy, my friend.
 
 

At what point does empathy become enabling?

 
It is my belief
 

Empathy becomes enabling when we consistently lack discernment.

 
Since judgment is always about others and discernment is always about the self (what works for us or not),
 
♠When we lack discernment, we are unable to hold our self in check. 
Think about it for a moment….
How can anyone possibly sort out what is ‘mine’ and ‘theirs’ when they are unclear about their own self, what they want, what they need, and/or how to uphold their own emotional boundaries? 
 
♠When we lack discernment, we are unable to pay close attention to what is being spoken.
The proof? How much healthy attention can we give another human being if our head is stuck into our own problems? In my case, very little if any at all.
 
 
♠When we lack discernment, we talk to the blanket of anger and ignore the real person underneath it….
Let me ask you, 
Where is the empathy in doing that?
 
 
♠When we lack discernment, we believe everyone sees our world through our own filters. 
I don’t know about you, but I can call this a whole bunch of names, except ‘empathy’.
 
 
Knowing that 

Enabling is allowing a self-destructive behaviour 

to passively continue taking place,

 
Do you now see now how
 
 

Empathy necessitates a high level of discernment, 

State clearly what works for the self,

 or watch empathy gradually disintegrate into enabling over time.

 
 
I trust you are finding value in this article. My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach who assists her clients in living their life from a place of true empathy. You can reach me at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With Love & Compassion,
Anne
 
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com

Categories
Accountability Anger Authenticity Awareness Blind Spots Compassion Confidence Courage Curiosity Depression Dreams Emotional Intelligence Empathy Equality freedom Gratefulness Intent Intentions Leadership Life Purpose Love Magic Mindfullness Parenting Self Peace Reality Relationship Self-Confidence Self-empowerment Self-Worth Settling Social Awareness Space WalkingInside Work Performance

WHAT IS SERVED BY BEING A BIG FISH IN A SMALL POND?

Three years ago, I was asked a similar version of this question by my future mentor Dov Baron. He phrased it as something like, “Who are you hurting by playing small?”
 
When I first heard his question, sitting in the audience among hundreds of others, I immediately told him to fuck off… in my head of course.
 
I started feeling agitated inside, angrily pondering, “Who is he to ask me such a question? After all I have been through in my life!”
 
Back then, I was very much a victim and, like all victims, I might not have noticed I was playing small out of fear.
 
Which brings me now to this incident yesterday…
 
I have been actively doing lane swimming for the last three weeks after almost a ten years absence from the pool. Jumping into the water, I had ‘forgotten’ how cold it is at first. I had also ‘forgotten’ how much effort it takes to kick, and how much air we need to keep a swimming rhythm going…
 
I felt out of breath… I swallowed a lot of bile… but I still keep swimming, having faith to become a better swimmer and change lane one day.
 
This week at the pool, I notice a ‘strange’ phenomenon. I am watching this guy, this middle-aged man…
 
When I get to the water, there are about 7 swimmers in the slow lane, including him and I.
 
I notice he waits a solid 15-20m before he starts swimming after the person in front of him. This is a 50m pool. I think to myself, “He is so generous! How compassionate of him to leave so much space between swimmers!”
 
My eyes grow bigger as I watch him then zoom across the water and  pass the swimmer in front of him in the last 10m or so. I think to myself, “WTF! What kind of person does this?”
 
I stand on the ledge watching him swim back towards me. As per his ‘usual’, he passes every swimmer along his path. He even seems to claim the middle black line in the lane as ‘his own’.
 
He touches the ledge and decides to just stand there. I watch every arriving swimmer do a turn around him.
 

“Really?”, I wondered, “is this person for real?”

 
 
As he seems to catch his breath, I seize the opportunity to quickly start swimming. Maybe this time will be different?
 
No, it is not. By the time I arrive at the flags (10m before finish line), he passes me and I choke on water from the wave he creates. I stop swimming and walk the rest of the way.
 
He looks at me, unfazed. He smiles, “Good morning!”
 
I seize him up. “Good morning.”
 
He smiles a bigger smile. “Please! Ladies first! I am not that good of a swimmer! I am quite slow actually!” He chuckles.
 
I look at him coldly, “Is that so? You could have fooled me!”
 
He pretends not to notice my anger. “I really do not want to go right now, I am catching my breath. Go! Please! Ladies First!”
 
I think to myself,

“Am I making all this shit up?”

 
I start swimming. In the last ten meters….
 
Now I am pissed off. All I want to say to him is “What the hell is wrong with you?” As soon as I think it, I stop. Why?
 
Because I now know that,
 

Every time I make someone their behaviour, 

I am triggered and becoming the Wound myself…

 
So I asked myself, “Who does he remind me of?”
 
The Wound howled back, “Meeee!”
 
I used to ‘love’ being a big fish in a small pond. This is why I was so triggered three years ago when Dov Baron asked the question, “Who are you hurting by playing small?”
 
Let me ask you,
 

If you are living into your potential,

would you be offended if questioned on it? 

 
For me, the answer is no, but back then it was…. 
 
Having said this,
 

What is served by being a big fish in a small pond?

 
I believe FALSE PRIDE is served.
 

  • I flaunted my skills in front of people who might be less skillful than me… just like this man overpowering every swimmer in our lane that day. What does flaunting skills without discernment say about us? 

  • I pretended to be nice while screwing people in the back…. just like this man who smiled at me and so politely told me, “Ladies first! I am not that good of a swimmer!” What does fake compassion say about us? 

  • I got to think I was ‘better’ than I truly was in reality…. just like this man who might actually get his ass kicked in the middle or fast lanes. What does being full of ourselves say about us?

 
Now, when you think about what I have just shared,
 

What is served by being a big fish in a small pond?

 
And
 

“Who are you hurting by playing small?”

 
You be the judge.
 
My name is Anne Beaulieu and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach who assists her clients in becoming expert swimmer in bigger ponds. I can be reached at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With love & compassion,
Anne
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
 

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THE FACE OF ANGER, WHOSE RESPONSIBILITY IS IT?

The next thing I know, I hear Lucky’s barking and snapping snarls in the driveway. I hear with him the soft whimpering of the little black and white Shih Tzu I am babysitting. Shit!!! I run outside. 
In the driveway is the next door neighbour’s German Shepard. He and Lucky are going at each other’s throat. The little Shih Tzu is laying on her side, her chest labouring to breathe. Patches of blood are staining the snow.
 
I start screaming, running over to separate them. Hearing me, the Shepard’s owner comes running down from his house. Bigger than me, he yanks his dog off Lucky. Sharp words are exchanged; I believe the word ‘police’ was mentioned. Both of us are furious! Both of us likely want to be right.
 

How does blind anger impart responsibility properly?

 
The little Shih Tzu has a couple of scratches. Lucky has bite marks on his neck; his fur is matted with blood. This event happened 8 Christmases ago. 
 
That day, I did not call the police. Why? Somehow I did not believe it was solely the Shepard’s doing.
 

When someone strikes in violence, whose responsibility is it?

I believe both I and the Shepard’s owner, the parents of our dogs, are each fundamentally responsible for our dog’s behaviours.
 
Why?
 
Let’s see… Back then, Lucky was kind of a renegade dog… As soon as my back was turned, he dug a hole under the fence and escaped… he chased rabbits and ran visits in the neighbourhood… One time, I chased him one hour through the forest before I managed to catch him. This is how much my dog wanted to be with me…
 
I can see why now. I was going through a gruelling divorce and had very little quality time to give him. I was consumed by anger and grief; I was barely eating and often cried myself to sleep. I believe this is a lot of emotions to process for a young dog or child…
 
I now also believe Lucky escaped to the places he thought he might get the love and attention he so desperately wanted from me. Sounds familiar?
 

Our children are our responsibility to consciously love and nurture

into adulthood. 

When a child feels ignored, neglected or abandoned, 

they might turn to the outside world for love and attention.

Over time, 

they might strike out in blind anger, also known as rage.

Think about it for a moment….

 
I treated my dog the same way I had been massively treated as a child. I mostly ignored his pleas to play or be loved; I gave him attention when I was ‘in the mood’ or ‘ready’. I have three children too… What did that say about me?
 
As for the German Shepard, his owner worked long hours. To ‘help’ his dog pass time, he had built him a chained-link playpen in his backyard. The Shepard spent most of his days alone, perhaps waiting, trapped in his ‘golden’ cage.
 

Maybe we act up in life because we want to feel loved, wanted, and validated.

Maybe we act up in reaction of long past events  

that may have nothing to do with the current situation at play.

 
I believe my dog somehow knew the Shepard was stuck, for he often peed all over the Shepard’s yard, marking ‘his’ territory as they say. Dogs will be dogs, right?
 

Now can you imagine…

how anyone feeling stuck… may react when they feel overpowered?

 
I believe they will most likely jump at each other’s throat, ‘just’ like dogs.
 
This is certainly what I did to my next door neighbour that day…
 
So let me ask you,
 

How many times have you lashed out in blind anger?

 
I don’t know about you, but I have found out that
 

Violence never imparts responsibility properly.

 
For Lucky, it has taken eight years to get over his blind anger towards German Shepards. Every time we saw one playing in the park or quietly sleeping at their master’s feet, Lucky blindly struck at them, ALL OF THEM!
 
Today, though, 8 Christmases later, a ‘miracle’ has happened!
 
On a park bench was sitting a young Asian woman holding the leash of a young German Shepard quietly sitting at her feet.
 
I noticed Lucky looking with curiosity at the dog. I noticed myself doing the same thing too. The ‘incredible’ happened, Lucky walked over, wagging his tail, and rubbed his face against the Shepard’s face. The Shepard, in response, pawed the ground wanting to play. I took this picture of them together.
 
It is my belief my dog is changing, not because he is older (he is 14 now), but because
 

I am changing:

I am no longer willing to blame others for my current situation in my life.

I am willing to examine each situation with the fresh eyes of compassion. 

 
I believe my dog is picking up this different vibe from me and is acting intuitively on it.
 
Now I agree it is easier said than done to become more compassionate, especially in the face of anger. In my case, this is why I have a mentor who assists me in learning how to take 100% responsibility for everything I do.
 
When it comes to you,
 
Who do you have to assist you in imparting responsibility properly?
 
My name is Anne and I am an Emotional Intelligence Coach. You can reach me at anne@walkinginside.com
 
With Compassion,
Anne
www.walkinginside.com
www.fullmontyleadership.com
 

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Accountability Curiosity Space

What Do We Do With Space?

WHAT DO WE D5O WITH SPACE?
I moved into my new apartment three months ago. I looked at the space. What was I going to put in there? Some stuff was easy. I put the bed in the bedroom and the couch in the living room. Some stuff was unclear. Which artwork on which walls? Which utensils in which drawers? Once these items were settled, I looked at the space again. There were ‘holes’, spaces that I thought needed to be filled. These empty ‘space-holes’ annoyed me. They triggered anxiety in me. I felt uneasy, like something was just not quite right. Looking at them, I chewed over and over ‘What am I going to put in there? Anything? Whaaaat?
Anxiety does this to me. It makes me feel like I am doing something wrong. Like I do not know what I am doing. Should I put a plant in that corner? Would a vase look good on that shelf? At a low level, anxiety makes me shake inside. At a high level, I usually burst into tears and fall into despair. ‘Why can’t I figure out this simple thing? I don’t know what to doooo!!!’ In those moments, the empty space is still looking back at me, as calm as ever, non-attached to my emotional tantrums inside.
Not surrendering yet, I moved into anger mode. ‘This is my place! I decide what goes on here, here, and here.’ It is then I picked up the rectangular coffee table and put it on the balcony. I bought a smaller, circle one instead. Ah, much better! Or so it seemed. I felt content for a while, then the space started nagging me again. ‘What, Anne, still don’t know what to put there, there, and there?’ Can a space smirk at me?
Until I started creating space within myself, I never understood my pressing need to fill space outside of me. I had something on every shelf. Who leaves a shelf empty? I had something in every drawer. Who leaves a drawer empty? Where else am I going to put that mixer, that coffee machine? I felt like I was not doing my job right if I was not filling space, every tiny nook and cranny. Now, what does that say about me?
I was uncomfortable with myself. I was uncomfortable in my own silence. I was uncomfortable with me looking at me without the distraction of books, TV, even light. My bedroom now has no light on the ceiling and no lamp. I love it! At night, I light a tea candle and I watch the soft shadows come to life around me. Space is peaceful. Space is welcoming. I now hear my own heartbeat, I feel my breath in and out, I rest my eyes, I open my heart
More and more, I am creating space. Yes, anxiety kicks in immediately. It is my default position. However, instead of getting angry, I now try to remember the peacefulness of the current space I have in my life. I ask myself ‘Do you want more space? Yes? What are you willing to do right now to have it, feel it, live it?’ I smile. Who knew creating space is becoming one of my greatest motivations to action in my life?
Look around you. Look at your working desk, your kitchen counter, your bedroom. How much room do you actually have to breathe? What are you willing to do right now to create more space in your life? Space does feels free to me.
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