Doing gentle

Doing gentle – 37 – Experiment!

Doing gentle – 37 – Experiment!

September 25, 2016
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Do you experiment?
In life? At work? In relationships? With yourself? Alone, or together with others?

experimentI’ve not understood the importance of experimentation until just a few years ago. And I have areas where it’s easier to experiment, to play, to discover, and other areas in life, where there’s a resistance. A fear? Possibly. Probably, even. However. I do try. I experiment, more and more. I’ve let go of any lingering belief that I have to Know what will come, in order to even try something out. That I have to have the full plan in place, before I can even take one step. I don’t. And you don’t either.

We get to play around, dilly-dally, experiment. Try something out. If it didn’t work out as you thought, redesign and try again. Perhaps you got even farther from where you thought you’d get – redesign again. Reiterate. Over and over again.

And as Tay Lopez says, never run an experiment longer that eighteen months. After eighteen months, you either know that it works, and then you can decide on whether to keep on doing it. (But it’s no longer an experiment then, right!) If it doesn’t work. Call it quits. Regardless of sunk cost, let it go. It’s not worth it, any more.

Run a diet, try being a vegan for a month? Have fun with a new exercise plan. Sign up for a marathon, and get running! See how many books you can read in a year. Take a leave of absence from work and travel the world. Accept a challenge to blog daily for a hundred days in a row. See if you can grow enough vegetables to be self-sustained for the summer, for the fall, for nine months out of a year, or perhaps for a full year? See what happens if you don’t buy anything new (food excluded) for a full year. Say Yes to everyone who asks you something?

There is no end to the number of ways we can experiment in and with life.

Go for it. Experiment!

Welcome to my humble abode, where the underlying tone centers around being gentle to oneself. On Sundays I share thoughts on how I do gentle, and I hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts in this series.

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Doing gentle – 36 – What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

September 18, 2016
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I hold myself back. Out of fear. Out of fear, of the imaginary kind. Not the kind where it’s the appropriate response. The imaginary kind, the one that often stems from mind-reading, that is, from making up a story in my head, about what someone else will think or feel. Most often, something that isn’t so at all.

without abandonWhat would I do if I weren’t afraid?
I would love without abandon. Recklessly. Full on.
I would laugh. Out loud, often, joyfully!

I would ask. Boldly. Or sometimes… I would ask really small questions; ones that feel like they are huge. And then, I would get the Yes, or the No, and life moves on. It doesn’t stop, I don’t die of embarrassment or what-ever else I’ve portrayed would happen.

I would enjoy the moment. Not hold back. Go for it. Acknowledge that which I desire, that which I want to do, or taste, or have, or feel, and go for it.

Not hold back. Go for it.

What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

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Doing gentle – 35 – Know you can never be broken

September 11, 2016
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Deep within you, there is a light, a core, that is You. This light can only shine. And it always does. However, as we grow up, we put on layer upon layer on top of this light, sometimes to the extent that the light cannot pass through all the layers, and you forget about it. Forget about You, and your inner light. But it’s there. Always and already, it is there.

inner coreThis light is the reason why I know – to the best of my understanding at this moment of time – that you cannot be broken. People don’t break. Our layers might. They can crack, start to rust, crumble to pieces, get run over, knocked down, battered and bruised. And because these layers are so prevalent, both our own, and on those around us, we get fooled into thinking that it’s us who are cracked, knocked down, battered and bruised. That we, as individuals, are hopelessly broken. Torn to pieces. Impossible to mend.

And I say. No. This is a mistake. A misconception, a misbelief, that is far from the truth. The truth that You cannot ever be broken. Because You rest deep within, in that eternal light, the light that can only shine, and which cannot be broken. Cannot be bruised, battered, knocked down.

When I look at a person, who appears battered and bruised – and sometimes, that person is me – with all my knowing, with all my belief, in every cell of my body, I know this to be true:
You can never be broken. 

And hence , You don’t ever need to be fixed. There is nothing to fix, you see. You just need to see You, to find You, within, hidden beneath those layers. To start to get acquainted with yourself, and the shining light that you are, again.

Welcome to my humble abode, where the underlying tone centers around being gentle to oneself. On Sundays I share thoughts on how I do gentle, and I hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts in this series.

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Doing gentle – 34 – Love yourself. 

September 4, 2016
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Here’s an important one:

Love yourself.

Do you? Do you know how to?

I do. Today I do love myself. And I have for the past couple of years. But I am still experimenting with how to do love for me. What does that entail, really? what does it mean? What is it that I do, or avoid doing, because I come from a place of self-love? That’s something I am uncovering, step by step, moment by moment. A joyful yet somewhat awkward journey at times.

Now. If you don’t love yourself, I’m gonna suggest you fake it.
If you think it’s hard to love yourself, fake it.
If you don’t think you deserve it, fake it.

Pretend.

I did just that. I faked it for a long time, until finally, I saw I really did. And when I became aware that I truly love myself, that there’s no fixing necessary, I am loved, I am love, and I am worthy of it, the world exploded in a love bubble!

And as the realization sank in, I understood that my faking it was a help along the way. It prepared the ground, made me ready for the real deal. I had been talking for years on end about the importance of love. How love is the answer. That love is all there is, and that coming from a place of love makes such a difference to how I experience love. And then I got it. Really. Fully. One hundred percent. G o t  i t!

balance

And then I could sort of keep on doing and saying the things I’d already practiced for so long, but now being totally genuine in it. Talking about the importance of coming from a place of love, and coming from a place of love, makes a difference. For me. And for those I interact with. And I know we all have the innate capability to come from a place of love. That’s there from the moment we first draw breath.

So love yourself. You are worthy of nothing less than that!

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Doing gentle – 33 – Four crucial phrases

August 28, 2016
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There are four very important phrases, that I heard as I listened to Krista Tippett on On Being interviewing David Isay, founder of StoryCorps – phrases that hold enormous power. They point to conversations to have with those around you, those most dear to your heart. Preferably, have them before that important someone dies.

The phrases are the following:contour

Thank you.

I love you.

Forgive me.

I forgive you.

When these phrases are spoken with conviction – true – into the world, something shifts.

It grounds you, both of you, all of you, in the moment. In the now. Here. In life. In love. In understanding and connection.

When did you last say these four phrases to someone important in your life?

And is there perhaps a conversation you should have, before it’s too late?

Welcome to my humble abode, where the underlying tone centers around being gentle to oneself. On Sundays I share thoughts on how I do gentle, and I hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts in this series.

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Doing gentle – 32 – Set up a Mastermind-group

August 21, 2016
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For three years now I’ve been a part of an official Mastermind-group. And it’s been more impactful than I think I’ve given it credit for. There’s four of us in my Mastermind-group, and we meet up roughly every third week. When we started, we all lived in the same city, and our meetup’s were physical. For the past almost two years, we’ve mostly done SKYPE-sessions, with members calling in from all over the globe.

For us, a meeting normally runs for two and a half hour, so there’s plenty of time. We set them up daytime, most often in the morning. We try to schedule a full semester of sessions when we have our first meeting every term (August and January). In the summer, before going for vacation, we go on a Mastermind-retreat, doing a bit of work, but mostly relaxing, enjoying ourselves and having a blast together.

We know each other so well by now, both work-wise but also personally, that our topics can center on anything, and I literally mean anything! But that’s been a journey, in and of itself. We didn’t start there. We’ve grown together, learned to trust and love one another. These are three souls who know me inside and out, people I know are always there for me, ready to hold space for me, give me a hug in hard times and kick my behind when I’ve gotten stuck and needs a jolt.

Every meeting one of us acts as chairman, and we always rotate this position.
Our fall-back agenda reads something like this, with somewhat fluid time slots, depending on our mood and needs, with a bit of bio-breaks here and there as well:

1) Check in – 3-5 minutes each

2) Every one provides their question of the day, something they need help with, or input on, or if there’s just something on your mind you’d like to speak into the room and perhaps get some feedback/feed forward on – 3-5-7 minutes each

3) Reflection round on the individual questions/topics, where the others give their input – 7-10-15 minutes each

4) Take-away of the day – 1-3 minute each

5) Feedback for the chairman – 2 minutes total

6) Boost session where we go around the table and boost each other, one by one – 3 minutes each

perchedSometimes, we have a specific topic for the meeting, and we experiment more with the content of the agenda, than we did when we first started our meetings. The first semester we had a facilitator as well, who invited us all to the Mastermind-group. That was very helpful, and I for one am very grateful for that initiative.

The Mastermind-concept was coined by Napoleon Hill, but was, as I understand it, a reflection he made after interviewing many of the most successful people in the United States in the 1920s and 1930s. The way we run our Mastermind is an adaptation to suit us, and I strongly urge you to try it out yourself! Surrounding yourself with people who will hold your back, while always holding you to be the best possible You will impact your life in ways you never imagined.

Welcome to my humble abode, where the underlying tone centers around being gentle to oneself. On Sundays I share thoughts on how I do gentle, and I hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts in this series.

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Doing gentle – 31 – Acceptance.

August 14, 2016
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I think many people mistake Acceptance for Submission. Submitting to what ever is. For me, that’s not at all what I put into Acceptance. Submission is victimhood. Acceptance is taking ownership. Acceptance means to learn to be ok with what is.

The world is unfair.

My hair doesn’t seem to want to grow longer than slightly below my shoulders, however much I would love for even longer hair.

I can sing, but there are some people in my choir who can sing much better than me. 

My boss said some really shitty things about me at the last gathering at work.

Submission – would be to make yourself the victim here.

contrastThe world is unfair. I am just one person, there’s nothing I can do to make the world a better place.

My hair doesn’t seem to want to grow longer than slightly below my shoulders, however much I would love for even longer hair. Poor me, I will never have the kind of flowing waist-long hair that I see in commercials.

I can sing, but there are some people in my choir who can sing much better than me. I might as well give up singing in my choir, given that I will never be as good as these people.

My boss said some really shitty things about me at the last gathering at work. Its so unfair, he shouldn’t have said those things about me, especially not in front of all my colleagues. I feel so ashamed, what must everyone think of me?

Acceptance – means you see that this is what happened. You accept that this happened, because it did. You accept that the world is unfair, that my hair is the length it is, that I can sing the way I sing, and that my boss said what he said. I cannot make this not have happened. Because it did. The next step to Acceptance, for me, is that I can then work on what I want to happen here. I can make my energy go into making what I want to be, what I want to happen, rather than fight that which is.

The world is unfair. Yes. I get to engage in organizations or causes that work at changing this. I am but one person and I cannot do everything, but I can, and will, do what I can, to leave the world a better place when I am gone.

My hair doesn’t seem to want to grow longer than slightly below my shoulders, however much I would love for even longer hair. Yes. That means I get to be patient, to see if my hair will actually grow longer. I also get to enjoy the fact that my hair is much longer now than it’s ever been since I was a wee lass.

I can sing, but there are some people in my choir who can sing much better than me. Yes. Lucky me! I get to enjoy singing together with these wonderful singers, learn from them, and practice my own singing, so I can be the best singer I can be.

My boss said some really shitty things about me at the last gathering at work. Yes. He must have been in a really bad place within himself, to act that way. What ever that was about within him, it certainly didn’t have anything to do with me.

Acceptance. To accept that which is, in order to be in a better position, stronger, fully loaded, to put all my energy into that which I believe or know can be.

Welcome to my humble abode, where the underlying tone centers around being gentle to oneself. On Sundays I share thoughts on how I do gentle, and I hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts in this series.

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Doing gentle – 30 – Drop the to-do-list 

August 7, 2016
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Do you have a To-Do-list? I dare say you are in good company. But do you have a Don’t-Do-list? I am not sure many people have one of those. And sometimes, I think having the Don’t-Do-list is more beneficial than the To-Do-list. Often, that which we fret about doing takes up a whole bunch of time and energy, and it’s all (mostly at least) a total waste. Of time. Of energy. Especially if you’re a procrastinator, which perhaps most of us are? If so, it might be better to think about what you put on your Don’t-Do-list, rather than what you will be procrastinating about on your To-Do-list.

piratesMy Don’t-Do-list looks something like this:

1) Avoid procrastination

2) Don’t say Yes or No out of habit – think about it. Is it mine to do?

3) Don’t scratch the wound

4) Don’t be harsh towards myself

5) Don’t worry about the little things – or the larger ones for that matter. What happens happens. Deal with it when it happens.

6) Don’t hold myself to standards that are not sustainable in the long run

7) Don’t take myself too seriously – whatever happened it could be worse, so lighten up already!

What might your Don’t-Do-list look like?

Welcome to my humble abode, where the underlying tone centers around being gentle to oneself. On Sundays I share thoughts on how I do gentle, and I hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts in this series.

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Doing gentle – 29 – There are no Musts

July 31, 2016
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Sometimes I forget that Musts are a figment of our imagination. Must’s, should’s and would’s, have to’s. They are made up. Imagined.

I’ve heard someone say there are only two Musts: we must die (at least so far) and we must choose. And I guess that’s a fair estimate.

The rest of them, the Musts, the Should’s, Would’s and the Have to’s, are all made up. Make belief.

Oh, no, some people say when they hear me tell them that Must’s don’t exist, they do, they do exist! I must feed the kids a warm meal every night, and I definitely have to give the house a good cleaning every time my mother-in-law is coming to visit.

But no. Sorry. You don’t have to feed the kids a warm meal every night. You don’t even have to feed them actually. You probably want to feed your kids, and you might think it is a great idea for them to have a warm meal at night, but it’s not a Must. It’s a choice you make.

tablecatAnd you definitely don’t have to clean the house before your mother-in-law comes over. No way. There’s no rule that says this is a Must. Except, perhaps, within you. In your mind, there is that rule. And that rule might be yours. I mean, truly, something you’ve designed because you love your mother-in-law so much and know that she feels so much better in a clean house. It might be someone else’s rule and if that’s the case, I suggest you find out who’s voice is telling you to clean house? Regardless, it’s still not a Must. If you do it, it’s because you choose to do it. If you don’t well, then it’s because you chose not to do it. Either way, it’s not a Must. It is a choice.

So. What Must’s exist in your life, that you might as well start to name appropriately? I mean, why not say what is really going on.

I want to feed my kids a warm mean every night, because I think it’s important for their growth and development, and because I love sitting down the whole family at night, talking and sharing our daily experiences with each other. 

I want to clean our house now, since mother-in-law is coming, and I want it to look nice for her.

So. Ditch the Must’s. You don’t need them. Instead, do what you want to do, and call it for what it is. A Want To rather than a Must.

Welcome to my humble abode, where the underlying tone centers around being gentle to oneself. On Sundays I share thoughts on how I do gentle, and I hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts in this series.

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Doing gentle – 28 – Pause

July 24, 2016
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Allow yourself a pause, and let yourself really feel if the road ahead is the one for you. Sometimes, that’s what we need. A pause. When it’s not time to make a decision, either way. When it’s a time for pausing, and catching up with yourself. I have had times when I’ve been swaying back and fro between This or That. Never really been able to put my finger on which one it should be…. Thinking I made up my mind, only to regret it, and stay in indecisiveness for days, perhaps weeks on end. Until the time is suddenly there. When the decision is made, and you just know, that you’ve made the right decision. Or possibly, that the decision made you.

pauseI think, we forget to grant us this pause sometimes. We push and push and have loads of intellectual arguments about why we need to make the decision, and preferably yesterday. But it won’t be the right one, the one best serving you, if you push it into existence. Let it come. Because it will. When it’s time. And in order to let it come, you just might have to let go of something else. You just might have to let go of the logical reasons why you should make the decision, perhaps let go of the opportunity in front of you, because it’s not time. If the decision doesn’t sit in you, all of you, your true Self, it won’t be right. It’s not time.

So let yourself pause, when pause is what comes up for you. When the times comes to make a move, you’ll know. That inner, very quiet and gentle voice, guiding you, with a soft yet very firm hand, in the direction your life is supposed to take.

Allow yourself the pause!

Welcome to my humble abode, where the underlying tone centers around being gentle to oneself. On Sundays I share thoughts on how I do gentle, and I hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts in this series.

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