Monthly Archives November 2017

Wholehearted – Reflection November ’17

Wholehearted – Reflection November ’17

November 29, 2017
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conflicting emotionsIn the last month I’ve had been in conversations with a few loved ones into topics less often broached (by me, at the very least), such as menopause and money, desire and divorce, sex and shame. All of them topics well worth a conversation or two. Or more, lots more than two.

I am, slowly and steadily, approaching these topics, and my oftentimes conflicting emotions around them. It sure helps to have people close to me whom I can discuss them with – voicing even that which I am ashamed of, in the knowledge that it will be received with grace and tenderness. I’ve chosen wisely. My loved ones are people I trust completely.

Mmm.
Just writing that last sentence brings a smile to my face, and a warmth that sweeps across my insides.

How sweet it is, to sit here, knowing deep within, that I am worthy of this.
Worthy of having people close to me, worthy of loving and being loved.

It’s not always been apparent to me, this inherent worthiness, that I share with each and every soul on earth. I know it’s not apparent to many of you either. I wish you will be converted, as I’ve been, into this words-are-unnecessary-and-couldn’t-describe-it-anyway type of knowledge – and perhaps, knowing it’s possible to go from one to the other can make a difference?

Wholeheartedly, I do my very best to embrace myself, the light and the darkness, the skills that are so easily perceived, as well as the hidden potential, yet to be uncovered. It’s there. I hide it. From me. From you. But I hide less and less. And spending time with people who do the same – show up, in their full glory of humanness – is such an inspiration. It helps me. You are my role models. From you I generate strength, passion and ideas and, most importantly, you are my invaluable sounding boards, allowing me to bounce my insecurities, fears and desires off.

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Team Underdog!

November 27, 2017
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in Tip
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The Center for Sustainable Change is a non-profit whose mission is to establish and support a collaborative world-wide network of individuals and groups who are introducing the understanding of MindConsciousness and Thought via locally-led community change initiatives. Since 2015, I’m on the Board of Directors of the Center, which has been quite the journey, I must say. I am the only non-American on the board at the moment, but I also believe I am the person with the least amount of experience into the world of US non-profit’s (and yes, the two are most definitely linked in my mind). Anyway, it’s time for the annual fundraiser and Terri Alamo, the new CEO formerly known to me and many others as one of the magic elf’s of Michael Neill, asked if I wanted to play Top Dog, where whoever raises the most funds for the Center will be awarded the designation of TOP DOG.

I said yes, and immediately realized I have an optimal team-name, as I truly feel like an Underdog in this contest! So, Team Underdog it is, and hey – I’d like to challenge you to help me – the underdog – become top dog! It’s simple and you can help me win this very prestigious award, support a good cause and have a bit of fun in the process in multiple ways. The first one is to donate which can be done here: https://centerforsustainablechange.org/donate. Be sure to put TEAM UNDERDOG in the comment box.

Team Underdog

I’d also be very happy if you’d help me share the message that the annual fundraiser is in full swing, and that all donations made before December 15th when the contest ends will be matched by a generous board member so even the smallest amount will make a difference, and every little bit counts a long way!

So please, help this underdog-Swede become TOP DOG in the Center for Sustainable Change Annual Fundraiser. Visit https://centerforsustainablechange.org/donate and make a donation. Put TEAM UNDERDOG in the comment box.
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Knock you upside the head with a shovel?

November 26, 2017
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in Tip
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I’ve written over and over again about the podcast of Julia Butterfly Hill interviewed by Chris Martenson on Peak Prosperity. Find it on iTunes or here: http://www.peakprosperity.com/podcast/85294/julia-butterfly-hill-living-meaning

I talked to you about how every so often, the way life works, sooner or later, life might pick up a shovel and knock you upside the head with it. When we get resentful, fearful, and anxious, it is like picking up the shovel and hitting ourselves back in the head with it. It does not actually pick up the shovel and use it for something constructive. It just knocks us back in the head with it. Whereas if we can shift our thoughts, we can maybe take that shovel and do something constructive with it.

Now. I know there is no way for me to control what thoughts come into my head. NO WAY! I cannot control this. However. If/When I get a “You silly twat, I’m gonna hit you over the head with a shovel“-thought into my head, what I can do is control how I react on it. When Julia say “shift your thoughts” this is how I interpret her. I don’t have to act on the thought, I don’t have to believe the thought, and I definitely don’t have to act in a way that doesn’t serve me. I can just as easily act in a way that does serve me.

It’s all thought, it’s not Truth.

I’ve become better and better at not hitting myself with said shovel. Because, you see, I used to be champion of the world in this field, for a long long time. But I realized that it’s not serving me AT ALL to hold this world championship title! So I’ve gradually learned not to go there, not to believe the “You silly twat, I’m gonna hit you over the head with a shovel“-thoughts, and more importantly, not to hang onto them. When they come, they come. Nothing I can do about that. But I have a choice in how I respond and relate to that thought.

There’s a quote by Wayne Dyer that goes like this:

You create your thoughts,
your thoughts create your intentions,
and your intensions create your reality.

Now. I agree with the two latter parts, but not the “I create my thoughts”-part. Because I don’t create them. So I’d like to rephrase:

image

So, what do you do when you get a “You silly twat, I’m gonna hit you over the head with a shovel“-thought? And does that response serve you?

In 2015 I ran a series on herothecoach.com with Sunday postings of podcasts to my liking. In 2017 I will be re-posting some of those blog posts, or posts with other podcast recommendations – and this is one of them, originally posted here – , mixing them up with new podcast recommendations. 

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One grain of salt

November 22, 2017
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dance walking down the street”I have tried to learn in my writing a monastic lesson I could probably not have heard otherwise: to let go of my idea of myself, to take myself with more than one grain of salt.”

Yes. The more grains of salt the better, in my experience. Learning, slowly, steadily, bit by bit, to not take myself so seriously, oh boy, what a difference that makes for the way I experience that which is my life. Allowing me to laugh at myself. Making it much easier to step up and own the responsibility of what I do – or omit to do. Asking for forgiveness, when I’ve failed someone. But also to feel, to rejoice, laugh, cry and dance my heart out, yeah, I’ll even gladly, with a smile upon my face, go dance walking down the streets of town! (That’s one link I’d love for you to check out – it will take you to YouTube, where you’ll see for yourself!)

Best of all? I know there’s so much more for me to experience as I learn to take myself with yet another grain of salt!

Inspired to continue blogging on the theme from the #blogg100-challenge in 2017 I give you:
The book ”Echoing silence: Thomas Merton on the vocation of writing” edited by Robert Inchausti.

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Where should we begin?

November 19, 2017
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in Tip
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I stumble upon the podcast “Where should we begin? with Esther Perel” and all of a sudden, Esther is everywhere. I read about her here and there, friends refer to her, and she’s even a guest on “Terrible, thanks for asking”. Her book Mating in captivity is mentioned as a possible future read at the latest GIFTED book club meet up, and I can only surrender to this onslaught of synchronicity:Message from the universe

Yes – I hear you, Universe.
I am listening to her podcast.
I will pick up her book.

I get the message!

Listening to “Where should we begin? with Esther Perel” is quite the special pod-experience, unlike most other podcasts I listen to on a regular basis. Most intriguing is the way Esther surprises me, over and over again – she provides a different perspective; focussing on things I would not have thought of; she picks up on small, subtle nuances and… somehow… now and again, magic happens. There’s insight, there’s laughter, there’s a release of tension that is palpable even through the airwaves. Well worth a listen!

In 2015 I ran a series on herothecoach.com with Sunday postings of podcasts to my liking. In 2017 I will be re-posting some of those blog posts, mixing them up with new podcast recommendations, such as this one.

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A languorous few hours

November 16, 2017
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languorous hours in bedHere I am, still in bed. It’s a quarter past eleven, I’ve been awake for three and a half hours, but have yet to leave bed for the day. I’ve done my daily Headspace meditation; have read a bit, written some more; all the while listening to Peaceful Piano on Spotify.

One of those days which is mine, with no planned activities, no urgent Musts to deal with, a lot of Wants though – but this, allowing myself a languorous few hours, of doing mostly nothing really, just chilling, hanging around, relaxed, probably even lazy.

Oh how wonderful life is! Giving myself this gift of a few languorous hours of Being, with no requirement of Doing. Whatever does get done, does so out of pleasure and curiosity; Doing:s just for the plain fun of it!

And in case you wonder – no, I really don’t hear the monkey mind chattering away inside, filled with impatience, highly annoyed at this self-indulgent waste of time that could be put to better use. It might be chattering away…. but if so, it’s white noice that goes by unnoticed. And honestly I don’t think it’s there. Even the life of my inner monkey mind has gotten to be a lot more relaxed as years have passed and my experience of life has shifted along with my growing skill of being gentle with myself.

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Outing: Copenhagen

November 14, 2017
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I took a trip to Copenhagen this weekend, to spend Saturday-Sunday with my dear sweet friend Eva-Britt, who borrowed an apartment in Nørrebro from a friend out travelling.I arrived just in time for lunch, and once we were full, we went out for a walk. First stop Jægersborggade – we ambled up and down, revelling in marvellous window displays, as well as visiting some of the odd shops along the street. Den Sidste Dråbe wasn’t one of them, but I couldn’t resist capturing their shop sign, because surely “The last drop” is a great name for a liquor store!

[jeg er ikke et Hunde Toilet… Tak Hellere ikke mig = I am no dog toilet… me neither, thanks]Then we walked to Assistens Kyrkogård (cemetary) – oh so beautiful! I was awestruck by these stunning Japanese maples – displaying the most vibrant of colours!

Eva-Britt managed to find her way back to the most magnificent of beech trees ever, that she had come upon at a previous visit to the cemetary – and wow. The energy, and power of this tree! If ever there was an ent, this is the one!

On route to the burial site of Søren Kierkegaard we came across the Russian cemetery, where the destiny of Nikolaj von Gersdorff moved our hearts:
Den sidste Gersdorff av Marselisborglinien. Rejst av venner
[The last of the Gersdorff’s of the Marselisborg line. Erected by friends]
We ambled on towards and along Blågårdsgade, before turning our noses in the direction of home.

[Vil du ikke være sød at parkere din flotte jernhest på den anden side af gaden? = Would you please park your grand iron horse on the other side of the street?]

After almost 10 kilometer we landed on the sofa, with some cheese, olives, red wine and intense conversation. In all manners possible – a tonic for the soul, especially the conversations. Having a friend who know’s me as well as Eva-Britt, who’s been my friend for a bit more than twenty years – that is truly a gift.

[Ingen er en god politiker = Nobody is a good politician
Ingen ved hvordan du har det = Nobody know’s what it’s like for you
Ingen vet hvad der skal til = Nobody know’s what it takes

STEM PÅ INGEN = VOTE FOR NOBODY]After waking up on Sunday morning, we took our time, ate breakfast, talked, laughed and finished off the left-overs from lunch the day before, before I walked to the main train station to get on the train home. We’ll be doing this again, count on it!

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Do you know who Glenn Beck is?

November 12, 2017
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in Tip
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I can honestly say, I had no clue who Glenn Beck is when I pressed PLAY on Podcaster. And honestly, I still don’t, really, as the only point of contact I’ve had with him is that On Being episode with him in conversation with Krista Tippett that I first listened to in May of 2017. On the other hand, it’s an episode I think I’ve listened to at least five times, possibly more, so the Glenn Beck he presents as there, is someone I’ve gotten to know quite a bit.

Under what rock have you been hiding?, you might be asking right now.
But as a Swede, living in Sweden, for me Glenn Beck is not a household name. So I figure I’m in pretty good company, in not knowing who this man is.

OppositesHowever. It is a truly remarkable podcast, this one. (And please, when you listen to it, choose the unedited version!) There’s a rapport between them that I really like, but more than that, I think it’s the fact that Krista and Glenn seem to “come from opposite points of view” in many ways, and yet, there’s respect, there’s humor and laughter, there’s agreements as well as points of disagreement, but in the most interesting way. Not at all confrontational (which I gather is something this man has been throughout much of his career), but rather, investigative with lots of curiosity and open-mindedness.

Krista starts the show by stating:
Glenn Beck is a complicated person. So, after all, are we all. Speaking with him brings home the reality that if we’re going to create the world we want our children to inhabit, we’re going to have to find ways to hold more complexity peaceably, and probably uncomfortably, just to soften what is possible between us. We need to be ready to let others surprise us, let them repent, offer forgiveness, and ask hard questions of our own place in this moment. This doesn’t happen often in politics, but it is essential in life and must be part of common life too. As part of our ongoing Civil Conversations Project, I draw out Glenn Beck in this generosity of spirit.

And that’s truly what this podcast exudes, a generosity of spirit; to such an extent that I’ve listened, and re-listened immediately thereafter, more than one time around. That’s high praise coming from such a podcast-buff as I!

In 2015 I ran a series on herothecoach.com with Sunday postings of podcasts to my liking. In 2017 I will be re-posting some of those blog posts, mixing them up with new podcast recommendations, such as this one. 

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The trainable cat

November 5, 2017
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in Tip
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Pop and me out walkingI’m a cat person. Love them, and have since I knew how. Have had cats most of my life, one or more, at most I’ve had three cats at the same time. Bilbo and Bombadil were joined by Pippin when Bilbo went on a walkabout for six weeks and Bombadil was desperate for a pal. So we got Pippin the kitten, and a few weeks later, Bilbo returned. Three cats is actually a lot more than two, somehow. But we made it work.

Have never been able to train my cats much. Walking on a leash is something none of my cats have ever learned. Bilbo would flop down on the floor as if he’d become instantly paralysed whenever I put the leash on him, totally unable to walk. Pop actually knows how…. but he moved in when he was three years old and already knew this skill. Besides that, he will gladly join us for walk around the neighborhood even without a leash, so he’s a special cat, that’s for sure.

Tummy to petSo when I saw the episode title “How to train your cat” on Fresh Air, I was intrigued and started to listen to it. Rapidly I understood, that in reality, I’m the one who’s been trained, by all my cats! They seem to know instinctively how to train their humans to do precisely what they want, whether it’s letting them out at four am, providing more food than planned, petting an upturned hairy tummy or, for that matter, immediately to stop petting that very same upturned hairy tummy. I’m a well-trained human I admit. But this is all about to change, as the podcast actually gave me a new perspective on this. Or perhaps it’s more just to say, I intend to even the odds a bit.

I will no longer let Pop the cat out at four am in the morning when he’s walking around screaming to be let out. Because every time I do, I am reinforcing his knowledge that this is how it works: If i miow loud enough and long enough, she’ll crawl groggily out of bed and let me out. And he did train me well! But no more.

Pop the catSo for a couple of early mornings, when Pop has let me know he want’s to go out (pressing needs perhaps? There is a litter box, he’s in no dire straits, I promise) somewhere around four five am, I’ve not let him out. I’ve invited him up onto the bed, but that’s the extent of my interaction with him in the wee hours of morning. And lo and behold, after a few frustrated minutes walking about, up and down the stairs, miowing, he relents. Sometimes he plonks down on my bed. The other day he chose Almas bed instead. Today he chose the sofa downstairs, so that when I got up around seven and went downstairs to pick up my phone and iPad (morning writing you know), me met me by the front door, and – without him making a sound – I let him out the door.

Same goes for food. Miowing in the past has meant that we relent, and give him some food, more than he actually should receive. If nothing else simply to shut him up. See – he’s trained us well, this cat! But no more. I am on to his training scheme and will refuse to play according to his rules anymore.

What I didn’t get from the podcast, which might be available in the book The trainable cat, is how to get Pop to indicate, with one (1) and only one miow, the desire to be let out and so on, but to stop after the one miow. Because I see him and hear him, and will – unless it’s five am in the morning – oblige. If we reach that point, I would be a very happy cat-owned human, that’s for sure. I’ll see if I can get a hold of that book – the story of me training Pop the cat and vise versa is to be continued…

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Being gentle – Reflection October ’17

November 1, 2017
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being gentle

B e i n g   g e n t l e

t o

me

˜

t r a n s f o r m e d

m y

l i f e.

˜

C o m p l e t e l y   a n d   a b s o l u t e l y.

˜

I   w i s h

˜

f o r

a l l

˜

t o   e x p e r i e n c e

w h a t    l i f e

i s    l i k e

˜

w h en

l i v e d

f r o m   t h a t   p l a c e.

˜

T h a t   p l a c e   o f

b e i n g   g e n t l e.

˜

T o

m e.

˜

A n d

t o

y o u!

 

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