I dance with my heart.
I connect to my soul.
I embrace my gifts.
I give away control.
I dance with my heart.
I connect to my soul.
I embrace my gifts.
I give away control.
“What’s harder? Accepting that you are happy and blessed or resonating with your trauma?”
This is a question that found its way into my notes at some point in 2021.
All of a sudden there was light at the end of the tunnel – after a dark period of loss and despair (Let’s call it “the year 2020”). I had a new job in sight and a relationship I was in (and still am) turned out to be a safe haven for…my chaos, my love and my growth….
Unwittingly I had arrived in a place where I am ‘allowed’ to flourish – in all shapes and colors.
“Yesterday it rained and today the sun is shining. One has to deal with that.”
This quote is written on the website of a coaching “agency” I had the chance to work with last year. I had the chance to get support by an art therapist within the framework of a ‘coaching & consultation for creatives and people who work in the media industry’.
The quote describes accurately the situation that I had found myself in last year. Even though things got significantly better, the self-doubt was lurking and fight-flight-freeze often the only response to stressful experiences.
The thing is: We humans tend to resonate with trauma and with worry more than we resonate with happiness.
It is incredibly hard to resonate with happiness if we have re-created and cultivated trauma-responses in our lives early on.
For example: If we are programmed to disregard our own needs or goals in order to protect or impress a parent and/or to harmonize the relationship dynamics within our family, most likely we will carry out self-destructive behaviours in our adult life. We might neglect our personal goals or our health.
Until we learn to prioritize ourselves…
We all have developed mechanisms that help us to be accepted within our tribe, but there is a possibility that we have buried parts of ourselves and a whole lot of potential beyond these survival tactics.
There are Psychologists like Gabor Maté or Neuroscientist Bessel van der Kolk who devoted their work to understanding the dynamics of trauma. And how we can train our brains to move “through” the trauma.
I’m taking a short-cut here: What trauma research has shown is that trauma affects our brain physically and as a result it changes our behaviour.
The great thing about that: We are able to transform our coping-mechanisms to some degree – thanks to neuroplasticity.
And I experienced it first hand – basically by starting this blog (which still astonishes me!!!).
At some point I asked myself:
How far did I get with displaying the same behaviours over and over again?
Not that far – so why not try something else? The opposite, for example!
And this brings me to the first insight that helped me to change my relationship with self-sabotage:
About two years ago I was in a state where I had no choice anymore. I had to ask for help.
The global crisis was incredibly aligned with my personal crisis: I reached rock bottom when the pandemic forced me to “go home”. Apart from travel life my whole idea about romantic love got smashed and my mom got cancer. I had no idea what to do next.
I knew one thing: I couldn’t trust myself, because I had been misleading myself very far off from my core… I did not know where I begin and where I end – boundaries still appeared to be a foreign concept to me.
How did this happen? Apparently I was constantly re-traumatizing myself! The more I learnt about trauma-responses, the subconscious and the biochemical processes in my body, the more I understood in which way I had created my own reality:
How do we create reality? We filter, segment and value the information that we receive – partly subconsciously.
I thought negatively about myself, because I never really learnt to prioritize my own needs. I always functioned as some sort of “emotional buffer”. Within my family and in friendships often times I found myself in the role of a rescuer – or mediator (best case scenario).
So, what did this do to my thinking? I filtered mainly the negative information out of every situation and every conversation that proved my self-image to be right. Subconsciously I programmed myself into thinking: “I am not worthy.”
This way my lack of self-confidence became a self-fulfilling prophecy… UNTIL: I had to ask for help, because I felt mentally and physically unprepared to deal with the changes that presented themselves in my life.
Slowly I opened up to coaches and therapists. I talked to my friends and other people who helped me to recover my own resources:
Finally I experienced a sense of self-worth.
It dawned on me: What if I trusted? What if I’d believe in the positive things people are seeing in me or telling me about myself? (Much, much earlier in my journey I had started to cultivate a diary of compliments, which helped me to collect positive things about myself. Maybe I should start this again.)
I had nothing to lose.
Looking back this sensation gave me a never felt freedom amidst a personal crisis. A freedom that gave me an opportunity to choose a different direction and at the end a whole other way of being!
Today, I made the choice:
“I’m going to press the publishing button – no matter what.”
This is what I owe myself – a commitment to my own writing journey, my own growth (even if it hurts).
And this is also what I did in the darkest moments of my life: I made the choice to think positive. To trust into the universe.
Sometimes we need to make a different choice – just for the sake of it!
Just for the sake of “trying something new”. As simple as that.
In my experience this is the way to go in order to live a different life.
Sometimes any action is better than no action – in order to get out of deep discomfort, the writer’s-block or in order to change anything in life…
It can be the tiniest step, but it will be a step in a new direction – towards a new life!
Retrospectively my willingness to open up to possibility led me onto the path of becoming a professional coach! (I will share more about that “right on time”.;) How? I had asked for feedback. I received feedback that helped me to start valueing my abilities. And now I am starting to implement the changes into my life.
All of a sudden my brain created the following questions: What if I had something to share? What if other people could benefit from my life experience? What if I’d drop the self-sabotage-agenda?
“You got to become your own person before you can do your job on this earth.“
I don’t remember the exact words of Maor, someone I met briefly at a goodbye party of a friend of mine in Hamburg in 2018.
Or something like that could have been my response. To be honest, I don’t remember if I countered anything. But I do remember that I was desperate. I was desperately searching and looking. I was desperate for adventure, for feeling feelings, for feeling something.
I was craving life. I was terrified of never finding what I was looking for – without knowing what I was looking for.
I was collecting memories and acquaintances – but did I know myself?
In the meantime I numbed myself. I filled the void inside of myself with all sorts of things. (substances, pleasure, party,….), but I had no clue what was really going on within myself…
This ‘unclarity’ crumbled away over time – like a crust of mud.
What I have learnt is that the mud has to dry first. The dust has to settle. And then the path clears eventually. The seeds can spring and the blossoms bloom…
I have been stirring up mud for quite a while. And I am pretty sure that I will keep stirring up mud. It is part of the journey (my journey) – to experience it all.
There is this big Why roaming around in the spheres around “personal development” – and yes knowing the why can be quite helpful.
Especially the “Why do I feel like shit most of the time?” over the “Why am I getting up in the morning?”
I did not want to question my feelings. Why? (Haha) Firstly: Because I didn’t even know this could be a good question to ask?! Secondly: I didn’t want to admit to myself in which areas of my life I had “lost it” or I supposedly “failed”.
“Find your why” – this has become an ever-lasting quest for a lot of people.
The realizations that I am sharing here with you stem solely from my personal experience. There is a huge probability that this self-development thing works different for you. Nevertheless I feel the urge to share this:
What I found out is that “the WHY” is not the holy grail… healing is!
What do I mean by that?
In 2015, when I was made redundant from my first work-contract, I was feeling the call too – the call that I translated into: “Find your why!”.
Over the years I have met a lot of people who put a mirror right in front of my face:
“You are lost.”
“You are the universe.”
“You have to prioritize yourself.”
“You need to find yourself first before you can make a difference in this world”
(Wo),man, I had no clue what this was all about.
Well, not no clue, but I was not able to deduce any action from all the mirroring I had (involuntarily) received from the outside-world.
Now I still don’t have a full picture, but I came to the understanding that I don’t need to have a full picture. I will never comprehend it all. This life is freakin’ unpredictable and I better embrace the unknown!
What is predictable is one universal truth: “Things WILL change” (I wrote about change many times in this blog. Actually every post is about change.)
And they did…. in my life over and over and over again. And I am more and more able to EMBRACE the unknown.
I was – and I still am lost – to some extent. But more and more this feeling of being lost transmutes into a state of floating (for some reason this is the word that emerged).
And I tell you: My mind is intervening – all the fucking time. Letting go is a permanent practice.
Thoughts, thinking patterns, limiting beliefs – they come back in circles, in arrays, in fractals, in seasons… (You choose which image works for you).
So. I faced a lot of (uncomfortable) truths about:
The list is long….
What I have learnt over the years is that “the WHY” is slowly sneaking in.
I am growing into my why….
First things ARE first: If I close my eyes from the areas where my body and my being demands healing, I will not find any useful “why”. The “why” will be a sugarcoated lie that I keep telling myself until I collapse.
Well, I do want to be radical here. First of all I have to define what I mean by healing.
Healing is the process of becoming whole again.
This is not really correct. We are already whole to be accurate. Healing is more a “fixing of the holes”, removing the dirt, dropping the unnecessary baggage, standing up on our own feet…
The healing process is sometimes a refurbishing, sometimes it is a surgery, sometimes it’s a sudden removal or a complete turn-over.
We are thrown into situations that tear us apart.
This is part of the human experience. These situations are here to teach us….
If we are torn apart the first step we need to take is to find the pieces that belong to us. The next step is to put them back together.
As long as I am putting myself together – this is my “why”. My healing is my “why”.
I don’t say you have to wait until you are fully healed until you are finally able to share your work.
The opposite is the case.
There is beauty in all of our messy healing procedures.
And there are people who benefit.
There are people who will embrace your experience.
There are people who will love to hear your story. This is what humanity always did – listening to stories and learning from them.
I am not cheesy here, this is what it is – and always used to be.
There are people out there whose healing depends on your healing.
The work that you put in matters.
Nothing you do is self-sufficient.
You will show-up in a way that is beneficial for others. Sometimes it’s only one person in the room. Sometimes it’s an audience of a million…..
So, you don’t know your why?
Don’t worry about it. Rest. Heal. Your time will come.
Healing is expansion.
Healing is the arrival in the present moment.
Healing is union with yourself.
Healing is completion.
Healing is meeting yourself where you are at.
Healing is doing one step at a time. Patiently.
“The why” can become a trap if you don’t take the time to really acknowledge where you are at right now.
And I tell you, I have been there. I am still rushing. I am still wondering very frequently: How do I set boundaries? How do I know what I want? How do I know that I am still on the path?
Then I remember to walk hand in hand with my heart.
This is what the hard times do to me.
There is this potential or let’s say a potential for potential stored within ourselves. This little seed that is resting there somewhere in our subconscious or in our brain.
When you heal you are able to reveal what wants to be revealed. And this is how you follow your purpose.
The hard times force us to walk hand in hand with our heart.
Let’s shed our old skin. Let’s forgive and heal.
Curiosity is rising inside of me. There is only clarity. There is nothing I can see. The appearances of life don’t matter beyond the realm of my mind.
I arrive in my body. And I do it with delight. I feel a sense of care for myself. There is a pure source of love within my heart and my breath is the key to that door that I had locked with distraction.
I feel compassion for my old self. I let the anger fade like the clouds in the sky on that stormy day. The wind is blowing away my resentment towards myself and the world. No doubt is blurring my sight as I allow time to pass. And this is what I do – sitting and waiting and entering that state of bliss with all of my being. That chamber of excitement – bright and colorful placed inside of me is bringing me to life.
At the bottom of my heart I can be at rest. There is only peace. There is nothing to run from and nothing to run for. Because everything is already achieved.
I am earth. No need to “earth” myself.
There is a common ground within myself. This is why I feel compassion for the entire planet and not only for the people who are close and dear to me.
Non-judgement is the true nature of my being if I allow my thoughts to drop like snowflakes on an icy winter-afternoon. Thoughts can be fun, but they can also cause a lot of turmoil.
All of a sudden I am able to tap into that powerful being that I am. And I knew it all along. I feel grateful that I am finally able to hold my own hand. I finally found my tools – within.
“Change doesn’t happen overnight.”
This truth revealed itself to me several times.
Sure, I can comprehend that intellectually.
But incorporating the patience to bear that truth – that’s a different story….
I AM IMPATIENT. With myself. With the world around me. With the people who are “waking up” right now in this world. I don’t want to be impatient. I want to have compassion.
How do I want to have patience with other people if I am my hardest judge?
“You should be more confident.”
“You should be somewhere else in your life.”
Yeah, I’m claiming myself to be empathetic. But when it comes to my own development I bounce my head against the walls of my own resistance. “Resistance to what?,” you might ask… My resistance to feel what really wants to be felt in the very moment.
Writing this down raises a smile on my face. Warmth is softening my chest. “Take it easy,” an internal voice whispers into my awareness.
“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I’ll try again tomorrow.”
Mary Anne Radmacher
Honestly, this quote moved me.
How much time do I give myself? To evolve, to learn, to remember, to integrate?
How many times do I rush into a decision?
How many times do I not listen to my exhaustion?
What this whole pandemic thing (call it whatever you please) teaches me is: PATIENCE. And I am so freakin’ grateful for this – even if it’s the hardest lesson I have yet to learn.
What I learnt over and over again from my past is that life does not follow a chronological timeline.
I can manifest. I can picture my brightest future. As soon as I take steps new challenges arise. New insecurities show up.
Surprise, surprise – the body is striking. The mind is rebelling.
And here you are: “Wait a minute? I have asked for this, why is it that hard?”
Because we grow in sections.
Friction is a companion on our journey.
Challenge will never leave us.
Challenge comes when we least expect it and, surely, when we most need it in order to make our own decisions.
They are here to test us.
When universe asks: “Are you serious?”
Do you go all in?
All in often times means not to push hard. It means to pull back. To take rest. To cry. To sleep. To recover. To re-cover what you have buried beneath new layers of life experience.
Something you considered as healed may re-inflames.
And then it is up to you to open your eyes to reality. Will you take the time to heal? Or will you distract yourself again and not move on?
The best advice I can give myself these days (as a fire sign) is: SLOW THE F*ck DOWN. Do you. Keep clear. Don’t overdo. Move along, but do it in your own pace (or slightly slower.)
Is there something you have overlooked in your enthusiasm?
Is your body asking for something else than your busy mind does deliver?
Is there anything at all that needs to be done right now?
Do you remember to breathe?
Breeeeeaaaathe through discomfort.
Move through hardships with grace.
Accept the challenge.
Don’t set rules, set intentions.
There is this voice inside of me that gives me commands every now and then (or if I am able to listen).
This morning I was able to listen.
I woke up happy. I woke up with a sense of excitement for the first time in a long time.
It was nearly 8 o’clock already. Way too late for the ‘ambitious’ Uli to start the day.
But my eyes were not burning. I felt a sense of gratitude. I was at ease – physically and mentally, with the world and with myself.
My window was open and I heard the rain dripping outside. The rain of an early January morning of the year 2022.
The past two days I was in a very dark mood. “The old” came creeping back up. “The new” was not yet to come. The fun fact is: the new does never come. Well, it does. But we can’t see it at first.
A friend of mine told me in a voice message yesterday: “You seem to be on your way. You seem to grow organically.”
And yes, maybe, only maybe, I am able to agree on this today.
So, what do I do?
In times of crisis. (And boy, I went through patches of crisis within the past over 24 months. Actually I found out that I was at my “lowest” in 2018. So it would be 48 months to be more precise. 😉 Ha!)
What do I do in these periods of crisis? Or the moments of anxiety?
I set intentions!
I did this so many times. During my lowest times I prayed every single day, every hour, sometimes I prayed every single minute of the day. I prayed for release. I prayed for a sign.
The thing with sings is: They never come when we (supposedly) need them the most. So, there is not really a point in asking for signs – every time we are in doubt.
What we do need to do is to take action.
What I learnt is that the voice of intuition is sometimes the faintest, the quietest in our blasting brain. What is blasting is: the self-doubt, the “shoulds”, the self-sabotage (an article on the topic of self-sabotage is in the pipeline).
We will always find hundreds of reasonable reasons to not do the step that we want to do, the step that is beneficial for our own growth.
What I got to learn throughout the past years of nomading and roaming around is: THERE IS NO WRONG STEP. There truly isn’t. I know it sounds pathetic. It is pathetic, but it is (for a change) a narrative that serves our personal development.
We can never predict the outcome. Who crosses our path is beyond our control. Who is going to help us is beyond our imagination. But guess what? THERE ARE PEOPLE OUT THERE WHO WILL UNDERSTAND AND SUPPORT YOU. If? (Yeah, right. What are the ifs here?) If you change your thinking? Yes… What else? If you KEEP MOVING.
And it does not matter in which direction you go. Because there will be new intersections. New decisions along this path – over and over and over again.
There is no point in overthinking the next step.
What we can do is: We can set intentions. And this is what I did in the past couple of days when I was so down, so discouraged. I did not know how exactly to get out of my “old ways” of being and thinking. I still have no Idea. I have no idea how to “not be too hard on myself”.
Nevertheless, even if my mind said ‘shut the fuck up and squeeze your butt’, I wrote an intention into my notebook: “Prioritize yourself.”
This morning I prioritized myself by sleeping in and going for a long morning walk (Of course this is not always possible, but every now and then… why not?)
Words truly become seeds, if we let them….
“How to develop self-compassion?”
This question in itself imposes pressure on my already beat-up brain. I carried it along for quite some time. This morning the answer revealed itself to me.
Today at 7:06 am I woke up slightly tense.
When I opened my eyes my first thought led me to my to-do-list: I have a video edit to finish, some udemy course about content marketing to work through and of course a huge pile of unfinished articles that demand my attention.
“It is Sunday… Relax!,” one (not me) could say.
I can see the azure blue sky outside of my window. I was planning on going hiking today, but I dropped this plan, because of my to-do-list mentioned above.
Eventually I get out of bed. Mechanically I’m rolling out my yoga-mat, but I realize how much I am craving fresh air. I have to say luckily going for walks and runs in the morning became my non-negotiable habit during the pandemic. Otherwise I would have gone insane. And certainly I still find pleasure in it…
It is 8 am when I step outside the door. The sun is beaming so bright that I can barely see. I sigh with awe when I pass the huge chestnut tree in front of the house. Its white blossoms glow in front of a light green background. The first shiver of gratitude unleashes my chest…
It is more silent than usual. I don’t see a single car until I reach the entrance to a little natural reserve next to the railways of the suburban train close-by.
What used to be a freight yard is now protected territory in the middle of the city, reserved for the rare “blauflügelige Ödlandschrecke”. It still amazes me (and gives me hope) that a huge building project for a residential area was discarded to preserve the habitat of a cricket.
As I walk along the path I find myself completely alone, which is very unusual at this time of the day. Usually I meet at least one dog and its owner.
For a couple of minutes there is no sound but the wind in the aspen and the beech trees that frame the concrete path. (Sidenote: They erected a bridge-like path across the whole protected area in order to preserve the natural floor which is inhabited by all sorts of animals, for example lizards and insects.)
I pause and for a moment I enjoy the silence. When I gaze towards the bushland around me I notice a small snail.
“What does her world look like?,” I think to myself and I feel my stress-levels dropping. I realize how blessed I am to be able to take in this beautiful morning – a golden hour.
…A few days back I thought to myself “What if I was there?”… “What if I was where I always wanted to be?”
“Your bar will always rise,” my boyfriend, who is a trained musician and definitely an artistic soul, reminds me on a regular basis witnessing my constant striving to be better.
I agree. I’m always waiting for the perfect thought. The final phrase that says it all. The sentence that makes every future word obsolete.
Hahaha, writing this down here makes me laugh. Just hypothetically: What if I found it? What would I do afterwards? Would I stop writing and finally go sailing around the world? Would I start building a house and start a proper garden? I don’t know. Maybe.
I remember the day when I decided to start writing in English. My whole ‘writing endeavour’ began at the common area of Tasman Bay Backpackers, a wonderful hostel on the South Island of New Zealand.
“You should write in English, so everybody you will meet along the way can read it.” – “Me? Writing in English?,” I countered with a sense of being ‘caught in the act’. It seemed impossible to me.
“Do you think you will learn it, if you don’t start?,” Vincenzo, the ‘Italian grumpy guy’, who generously shared his morning coffee with me, replied in his straight-forward manner…
Looking back at this moment in time in November 2015 gives me goosebumps. If somebody would have told me that I will have started another blog about personal development and have posted close to 200 articles by May 2021, I wouldn’t have believed it!
And what got me here? The first step. And a lot of patience…
Back to the walk: When I saw this tiny snail amidst these bushes crawling towards her next destination (a dandelion:), I realized that I am exactly where I need to be at this very moment…
The other day I got triggered because a friend said to me: “If I were you, I would go to Italy.” She referred to my previous travels.
I felt some resistance rising. Something inside of me always wants to travel, yes. But not right now. Right now I want to integrate everything that the past six years of nomad life had taught me. Only now, I understand how much my life had shifted and how the limitations of the past year had helped me to explore my needs…
I can’t deny it anymore. I grew. I learnt a ton. I planted seeds that keep growing – in my notebook and in my soul. They need time and compassion….
This morning the snail taught me that it is fine to have modest plans for the day. It is okay to not ‘make the most of it’. It is okay to do some work and chill in the park for the rest of the afternoon – or for the rest of my life, if this is what fills my cup.
I named the snail Patience.
Happy Sunday! 😉
By loving ourselves we unlock our potential.
By understanding our own gift and having the courage to put it out there we are truly making a difference.
It is not the time for false modesty now. It is the time to stand tall with everything we are.
It is the time to love ourselves more than we ever did.
Recently I found out HOW FAR I had crossed my boundaries in the past years – basically since my adolescence.
I don’t remember the day when I forgot where I start and where I end.
“Who did traumatize you?,” some ex-colleague asked me a couple of years ago.
I didn’t know how to reply.
I didn’t remember consciously.
Now I can see it more and more clearly.
There is trauma stored inside of my body and my genes – conditioned through former generations and lifetimes.
The trauma manifests in my belief patterns and my tendency to end up in unhealthy (I don’t like the term toxic anymore – even though it is an accurate description) relationships.
I re-traumatized myself by not knowing my boundaries….
I knew that there is such thing as ‘boundaries’. What I didn’t understand ultimately was that I’m the one who has to set them.
What feels good for me? Do I feel esteemed by my partner or my friends? Do I enjoy doing what I’m doing? Do I enjoy where I am? These were questions that never occurred to me….
Either I was busy meeting my own demands or fulfilling the needs of others. But I never asked myself if I feel good? If the relationship or the friendship gives me what I need? I never allowed myself to have any demands.
Now I know that this is called codependency and now I know that there is a cure for this and the cure is called ‘radical healing’.
Finally I understood that not every human wants my very best.
How could I be so naive?
Well, luckily I learnt to laugh about myself. A good portion of humor helps me to accept my former blindness and keeps me from becoming bitter.
Luckily the universe presented me with the necessary lessons – as usual.
Finally the pain forced me into self-love.
I reached a point where I HAVE to set boundaries – if I want to survive.
A crisis is the most radical learning experience you can ever have.
For a long time I was talking about pain and fear on this blog, but I have to admit that I never fully allowed my pain.
There was always this last resistance.
There was always this fear of the fear. The fear of feeling the pain completely. I thought I must be strong. I am not allowed to remain in pain…. But some pain is persistent… It might takes months. Or even years?
What did I think?
Probably I thought I wouldn’t be able to handle it. I thought I would break.
What I learnt now through emotional pain that manifested physically in my body is that the toxic thing is not the pain itself but the resistance…
The more I’m holding on to my feelings, the more I’m resisting to feel anger, grief or sadness fully the more painful it gets…
This is how anxiety attacks are able to drain my energy system.
This is how I become ‘unaware’.
This is how I get lost in ‘shortcuts’ (addictions).
What’s the cure?
The cure is radical honesty. It is that simple. Being able to be honest about my real feelings. I wish I would have known this when I was 16 years old.
The feelings won’t harm me. They will pass – no matter how long it takes. I have to allow them. What will harm me in the end is the disconnection from myself that is created by resisting negative feelings…
The good news is that there is a way back.
And the way back exists right in this moment.
To be more precise – the present moment IS the way back.
By allowing what is in this moment I reconnect with myself.
Ram Dass says: “Don’t be afraid of appearances”
Finally I get what he is talking about.
This is what I call ‘radical awareness’.
Radical awareness is the ability to be aware of what is going on internally and externally – without judging it, or counteracting.
Only now I understand HOW important the practice of awareness truly is for personal development – the personal path.
Awareness is the path to the path.
The more I become aware the more clearly I can see. The clearer I can see everything the more clears my path.
All of a sudden I can see the signs again.
All of a sudden my whole body relaxes into place.
Only by becoming aware of what is.
This is the way towards radical healing.
This is something I blared into my notebook many times recently…
I didn’t understand how ‘intuition’ and ‘investigation’ are interlinked.
intuitio – ‘the immediate insight’
How do you act intuitively?
By being aware and by looking – constantly!
I have the impression we are mistaken intuition for a spontaneous reaction or something like that.
But in reality it can be covered up and what we think is our intuition is just an emotional reaction to an external trigger…
Intuition is a response in alignment with our needs.
Nowadays these needs are most likely covered up with… with what?
I’d say expectations, pressure, distractions, addictions,…..
So, sometimes we have to investigate in order to find what our intuition is trying to say to us again.
I got caught up in concepts.
I got caught up in my own expectations.
I got caught up in ‘adding up’ instead of ‘letting go’.
Until I nearly exploded (or imploded). This is pretty much the only way I can put it.
I got so tense.
I had to open my heart and my heart moved me towards forgiveness.
I forgive myself for my mistakes.
I forgive my parents.
I forgive the system.
I forgive my abusers.
I forgive men.
I forgive me.
My heart bursts open and all of a sudden there is space…
It was always there, but I always locked the doors. Ooohh, I barricaded them! And I didn’t even realize it. I asked myself why does nobody want to enter my heart?
I locked my heart so tightly and I threw away the key.
Until my heart got so big that it exploded the chains.
My heart itself ruptured my resistance.
And what there is is love, more compassion than ever before, more beauty, more light….
This is healing. This is becoming whole. I can feel myself again, because I felt myself fully in my deepest pain.
I was left alone and what I found was that I am my best company, my best friend. I am my everything, so why would I need to be the everything of somebody else?
Radical forgiveness is possible through radical awareness.
If I wouldn’t look at everything I wouldn’t see cleary.
How can I heal if I don’t look at my wounds? How can I heal if I abstract? If I get lost in the process… I had lost myself in strategies. These were coping mechanisms to prevent me from seeing the truth.
I’m not sure yet if I need to know the origin of all these wounds.
I feel like I’ve overcomplicated this path tremendously with my intellectual understanding.
All I had to do was to become aware of my wounds. Fully aware.
The more clear I can see the more clear become the milestones of the path….
Don’t challenge reality.
Look at what you see.
Don’t be scared of your wounds.
Look right into it.
See things clear.
Yay, the threesome is back – ‘just in time’ in ‘these days’.
What is the secret to personal growth? More and more I come to the conclusion that it is all about consistency. The consistency of doing one step after another.
Self-discipline became a fundamental component of my life. Not only in order to circumvent procrastination or to regulate over-thinking, but in order to basically get anything done.
Of course – change doesn’t happen overnight. Sometimes there are these massive fall-backs.
At the beginning I didn’t get this straight. I couldn’t establish discipline. It frustrated me. In the end it even increased my anxiety – the thing I wanted to learn to manage.
Until I understood that this whole personal development thing is not a straight line. I had to learn to set my intention right. I had to learn to focus. And I had to learn to get up – again and again and again after every single fall-back.
Also I had to learn to household with my energies, because I pressured myself so much.
It’s like running a marathon. If you burn all your energy at the beginning of the race you won’t be able to finish.
There are these punchlines circulating in social media: ‘Change comes in an instance.’ Yes. It does – but only after a long training period. You might read these quotes by inspirational speakers (Is this still a term?) like Tony Robbins or Simon Sinek (just as an example). But did you ever study their whole story?
Every success story is a rocky road. No matter if it’s the story of a company, an artist or a thought leader.
It is the incremental change that paves the road to self-mastery.
For me personally everything in my life became an act of balance. I can cope with the adversities of life only (and just about), because I made the decision to practice self-discipline at the beginning of this blog in 2017.
Before that I was not able to make a living.
Okay, I’m exaggerating, but seriously my life was a mess. Slowly (!) the fog is lifting and there are things that I can share confidently with you now…
Let’s start very practical. I established meditation, yoga, writing and language learning in my life – step by step. On this path the timer became my best friend. For some time I used a method called ‘pomodoro method’ to keep me going. Check out this threesome to find some more inspiration.
Probably you read this already – maybe even on my blog. In my opinion cold showers are still highly underrated. I mentioned it earlier as a trick to reduce stress. It doesn’t only support the immune system, but it also helps to develop self-discipline.
If you manage to turn the tap on ‘cold’ in the morning every challenge of the day becomes easier. Additionally to that cold water can function as an antidepressant. How? Apparently a cold shower triggers our peripheral nerve ends. This trigger could drive forth a series of impulses that help to rewire the brain. My theory is that you receive such a shock moment that you forget about all your worries.
What do I mean by that? We are animals and as we can train our dog we can train ourselves.
This is indeed as easy said as done – if you are committed to change.
For example: If you don’t want to relinquish chocolate completely from your life, but you want to reduce sugar and at the same time you wish to exercise more – then set yourself some rules.
You are allowed to eat a piece (or a whole bar) of chocolate if you go running for 30 minutes.
My example now would be: I finish this article right here and then I will make my third coffee of the day and listen to music.
I don’t believe in super tough measurements anymore. This was one of my major lessons after my numerous self-imposed micro challenges. I can’t just apply the productivity tools of others. But what really helped me to integrate my own tools was the practice of self-discipline.
There is a thing that startles me a lot right now: Some people seem to expect ‘change’. Some people seem to wait for the moment when ‘things get better again’. But only very few individuals understand that it is about us – especially in ‘these days’. It is about us to take positive action towards a better world. And this requires some sort of discipline – especially in times of chaos.