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My greatest fears

My greatest fears

November 17, 2016
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Have joined up for the 30 days of being fearless-Facebook group started by Billie Allen. *And yes, it’s another numbered time-constrained challenge. You know I’m a sucker for these by now!*

One post in the Facebook-group read:

If you could overcome your greatest fears, how would your life be different? How would you be different?

Here’s my reply:

“Greatest fears”. It sounds so grand, so large. 

I believe my “greatest fears” are in reality fairly small… not daring to speak up, to make the most of the gifts I have to bring to the world, to stand up for someone in need for fear of being harassed myself, or ridiculed, etc.

FearsI am on a journey to walk thru my fears, not to “overcome” them as such, but to live life, and pass thru them, not having them be a hindrance, but rather, a possible bump in the road onwards, that gives the journey it’s texture. 

As I bump thru my fears, I become more me. Less restrictive, less mindful of what other people might or might not think about me, more in tune with my thoughts and emotions, daring to show my feelings, laugh out loud when I feel like laughing, sing to a great song when I hear it, regardless if I’m on a plane or alone at home. Less worried, less concerned with expecting stuff from myself and/or others, more exuberant, living life more fully, with up’s and down, more interested in people. Being less afraid, I’ve gotten to be a much better listener, no longer afraid of what might arise within myself from the stories I’m told. 

It’s an ongoing journey and I enjoy every twist and turn of the road, being less concerned about what I would have deemed right or wrong, good or bad, in the past.

Namaste!

If you could overcome your greatest fears, how would your life be different? How would you be different?

Since 2012 I have blogged over at herothecoach.com in a jumble of Swedish and English and this post is a sample of what I’ve been writing there over the years. As of 2016 I only write in Swedish there, and in English here. I hope you enjoy this #ThrowbackThursday, originally published here, and if you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts.
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Doing gentle – 25 – Fear brings an invite

July 3, 2016
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I used to run away from fear. Fear scared me. I thought it was something to avoid, at all costs, that which fear was warning me about. Then I got into a different relationship with fear. I learned to ask myself a verifying question to see if the fear was real, as it were, or just a figment of my imagination.

Should I send out an SOS?

(Dial 112, or 911, call the police, the fire department, an ambulance, however this is done where you live.)

Most often. (Almost always… or actually, always.) The answer would be no. The police wouldn’t come, there was no fire to put out, and none was in harm’s way. Most often, (almost always… or actually, always), it was imagined. Fear of speaking my mind. Of showing up. Of making myself visible.jump

Then it shifted again. My relationship with fear took on a third form. And this time, fear has a totally different energy to it. There’s bubbles in it. Excitement. An edge, telling me, here’s something you might want to try, my friend. An invitation, that’s what fear brings today, to me. An invitation, to step up, to level up, to become that which is within my grasp, that which I can choose to do, to be, to become. Speak my mind. Show up. Be visible.

No longer hide in the shadows of my imagined fear, but rather step into being all that I can be.

An invitation to dance. Dance in the light. Dance with the world. Dance with that which knocks at the door. Once it comes a-knocking, it’s up to me to accept the invite, or not. My choice.

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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Lame Deer, Seeker of Visions (book 9 of 12)

September 29, 2019
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in Tip
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“The way to power is by giving, not by taking.”

I got it from Sara. She read it, marking the pages where she found little gems of wisdom and insight, and then mailed it to me.  And I, in turn, made it one of my twelve English books of the year: Lame Deer, Seeker of Visions by John (Fire) Lame Deer and Richard Erdoes. The book was first published the year I was born, 1972, and the copy I was gifted is an enriched classic published 1994.

“A fascinating story” is a blurb by Library Journal included in the preface. And yes. It is. Spanning high and low, delving into Lame Deers personal life as well as ancient stories such as that of White Buffalo Woman, dipping a toe into the use of herbs as medicine and components of rituals, and much more.

There are several passages I found of great interest, here are two providing me with great amounts of tankespjärn:
“A medicine man shouldn’t be a saint. He should experience and feel all the ups and downs, the despair and joy, the magic and the reality, the courage and the fear, of his people. He should be able to sink as low as a bug, or soar as high as an eagle. Unless he can experience both, he is no good as a medicine man. Sickness, jail, poverty, getting drunk – I had to experience all that myself. Sinning makes the world go round. You can’t be so stuck up, so inhuman that you want to be pure, your soul wrapped up in a plastic bag, all the time. You have to be God and the devil, both of them. Being a good medicine man means being right in the midst of the turmoil, not shielding yourself from it. It means experiencing life in all its phases. It means not being afraid of cutting up and playing the fool now and then. That’s sacred too.
Nature, the Great Spirit – they are not perfect. The world couldn’t stand that perfection. The spirit has a good side and a bad side. Sometimes the bad side gives me more knowledge than the good side.”

“This kind of medicine man is neither good nor bad. He lives – and that’s it, that’s enough. White people pay a preacher to be ‘good’, to behave himself in public, to wear a collar, to keep away from a certain kind of woman. But nobody pays an Indian medicine man to be good, to behave himself and be respectable. The wicasa wakan just acts like himself. He has been given the freedom – the freedom of a tree or a bird. That freedom can be beautiful or ugly; it doesn’t matter much.”

How different this is to the way the culture of the world I perceive myself a part look at it. We strive for goodness, for the perfect gurus, damning each and everyone forever if there were ever a speck of dust marring their perfect image. We do it for politicians and business leaders, for holy men and women and artists, for anyone we want to put on a pedestal.

Being put on a pedestal, never be allowed to slip up, make a mistake, falter. Neither here and now, in the future nor for that matter, in times gone by.  Could there ever be a position I’d want less than that one?


The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2019, to read and blog about 12 Swedish and 12 English books, one every other week, books that I already own.

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Given freely. Received deeply.

June 16, 2019
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That’s the best type of feedback (be it a compliment, appreciation, praise…). The one that is given freely and received deeply. Those words – given freely, received deeply – are words my word savvy and wise friend Mayke wrote in response to something I shared with her and the other Campfire Sisters.

My last blog post (in Swedish) was about seeing and being. How I have to be open in order to be a part of both these aspects, as I can neither be seen nor see, otherwise. How seeing, and being seen, is such an integral part of being human, and what a gift it is, when we add to the seeing/being seen part some type of feedback on what we see.

The post intertwined perfectly with Mayke’s words which made me take special notice.
Synchronicity. There’s something here for me to dive deeper into. To explore. Taste. Play with.

And as I talked to a friend I got another piece of the puzzle. I told her how I am greatly helped to see myself when I share with others. Share what is. Within and without. Feelings. Experiences. Fears and longings. Life. All of it. It helps, as what I get in return (the feedback. Of being seen, in what I am, where I am, how I am.) gives me perspective. Opens new vistas, which in turn might (or not) grant me insights. So I share a lot. Might it be a type of insurance? Ensuring I get seen? (By myself, as well as others.) Same reason why I blog the way I do? 

Follow aegirdottr on Instagram.

Anyway.
I got a gift today. Or rather, I got two.

The actual gift was a wonderful piece of art. The added bonus was the feedback. Given freely. And oh so deeply received. Warms the soul. Makes my eyes well up in tears, my heart overfilled with gratitude and my face light up with a huge smile.

Given freely. Spontaneously. From the heart.
Received deeply. Wholeheartedly. Straight into the heart.

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Do what it takes.

May 17, 2019
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Stop, he said. Don’t come dragging that old story again, just do what it takes. We can spend our time together talking about petty things, things you know full well how to get done, or… we can spend it on that which would really provide value for you. It’s your choice. What do you choose?

Once again, coach Dave gave me the mental slap in the face I needed to shake out of a limiting belief I’d been holding on to for a couple of months. Like a mantra I’d been telling myself, over and over again, only a mantra that kept me small. Kept me a victim. Kept me in a passive state of mind, which definitely did not help me make either of the two choices.

It didn’t help me do what I needed to get done, and it didn’t open me up for working on the other stuff either, the dream, the enticing and alluring idea I’d cracked a few weeks earlier in another conversation with him.

He’s good at it.
Keeping me large, that’s what he does.
Holds me to my inner Goddess, to the fierce and powerful Amazon warrior within.

Mirroring for me what that Helena is all about, what I am capable of, when I own It. When I own Me. Owning that powerful-beyond-measure that is the light within, and letting it shine, shine, shine! Doing what it takes. 

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.” – Marianne Williamson

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How to relate to limits?

April 20, 2019
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How to relate to limits? My limits.
The boundaries that serve me versus the ones that stop my personal expansion as a human being.

A recent meeting that blew me out of the water, making me shatter my self-made box of limiting stories and beliefs. Writing about it. In that way that I write. Zoomed out and in at the same time, strangely impersonal yet enormously naked. I think? That’s how it feels to me. And that’s what matters, because, honestly, I have no idea what you pick up on, or not, how you react, or not. My style of writing is my style of writing.

So. Writing about it. Because that’s how I make sense of the world, of my world, how I learn and explore within myself. And yet. As I write, about this recent encounter, that has opened a new door to my universe, I cannot help but wonder… dare I? Dare I not dare?

To share or not to share, that is the question.

I’ve quite a few texts written that I’ve yet to share. Perhaps I will, perhaps I won’t.

Will these texts I am currently writing move in with these unpublished texts, or join the world in full view, with the rest of my 2000+ blog posts?

And no. I am not one to believe that I have to share everything. With everyone. Not anymore… I did. For a period around the turn of the millennia, that’s just what I did.

And at the same time, I find vulnerability in sharing what it’s like to be a human being in this day and age, is something I am drawn to. Regardless if I’m the one doing the sharing, or you.

What I’ve come to know is that when I share something completely raw to me, it’s not a good idea to share publicly. With close friends absolutely, friends whom I know will not sympathize but empathize. Once healing is underway and I’ve got a healthy distance to whatever caused my wound, my sharing might be of great help for others, besides for me. Because when my wounds are not open, raw and causing me acute pain, others do not have to manage me and my current state, but rather, can focus on what my sharing opened within themselves.

Yet. It’s as if I’ve yet to arrive, at whatever/where ever I am approaching. So I pause my writing and check my Facebook feed. Stumble across a post, on leaky boundaries vs clear ones. Baaam! Scroll at bit more, and come across yet another post, on baring ones’ soul while being a vessel for creativity. Putting oneself out there, to public display, not giving a hoot about the expectations of others. Swop tabs to LinkedIn, and slam dunk, post number three on being honest with what I feel and need, as opposed to interpretations and judgments, is right there in front of me.

Synchronicity in the making.
But what’s the message? Really, what am I being told here?

To share? To not share?

Somewhere… there’s still a nagging doubt within.
If I pick at it just a little, pick at the doubt, what I find behind it, is fear.
Fear of what a few select people might say or think.

So I pick at that just a little, pick at the fear, and what I find behind it… is…?

Me.
Belittling myself as well as those few select ones.

Now… how or who is that serving?

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Share your pain

March 30, 2019
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Share your pain, he said.

I nodded, saying Yeah. I know. I do.

His turn to nod, agreeing.

Because that is what I do. I share my pain. Or rather. I share what I am. Where I am. The feeling of the moment. Right here. Right now. Be it pain, bliss, fear or subtle joy. I share, what I am. Where I am.
And I have, for many years now.

This is one of the results of me blogging daily since 2013. Have gotten used to writing about what I see. What I feel. What I am. What I observe. What I struggle with. What I rejoice in. What I feel ashamed of. What I dread.

Photo by Anders Roos: http://www.andersroos.nu/

 

Life, as it is.
Is.

Not how I would like it to be.
What norms say I should want it to be.
What convention has me fobbing it off as.

As. It. Is.

So yeah.
There’s pain.
Bliss.
Grief. Fear. Joy.
Excitement. Thrill.
Sadness and anger.

All of it.

In one great big mess… just like life.
As. It. Is.

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In pain.

February 10, 2019
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Friday morning it started. Again. My lower back pulsating, sending small hints that soon, in a few hours or at most a day, there will be massive pain, making me so weak that getting out of bed, putting socks on, or sitting down is a major hassle. A painful hassle.

Lying on heated wheat bags, with hips/legs in a 90 degree angle to alleviate the pain.

I know to be in motion when this happens. To not freeze on account of the pain, but rather the opposite. To move as much as I can, to stand, dance, wiggle my body, apply heat (or cold, but heat is so much nicer…) and whatever other ways to try to get through the pain incident as quickly as I can. 

It used to be my neck. Freezing up every now and then… and I finally got the message: speak out, because you’re holding something vital back, that needs to be communicated. Once I got the message, I picked up on the cues, and as I often (always?) knew what it was I was holding back, and to whom, this problem has all but disappeared.

Now it’s my lower back. And it has been for a few years. And I haven’t gotten the message. I’ve gotten a strengthening program for my core, and that’s helped, but out of the blue (or so I thought until today), this back pain would flare up, making life really painful for a few days.

Invited to lunch at D’s place, I knocked, stepped in and exclaimed: my back is killing me! He continued cooking, we talked, we ate (oh my, delicious doesn’t even begin to describe D’s cooking!), had tea, and then he asked if I wanted to work with him on my back. An offer too good to decline.

I showed him, the difficulty I had in leaning down to touch the floor, and with a sense of disgust told him about the sensation of being totally weak, lacking strength and control of my lower back, effectively stopping me from functioning in the world in the way I normally do.

So we got to work.
Him asking. Me responding.
Him paying very close attention to the energies, where they took me, what they had me do.
Scratch my forehead.
Peck on his knee with my finger.
He had me describing the pain; the location of it; the size of it; the shape of it; the sensation of it.

For an hour (or so?! I don’t know…) we continued, with me sensing into the pain, discovering the connection to old Helena (the one I was, before… The one that started to transform into new Helena, i.e. me, a few weeks before the birth of my first child) as well as Warrior Helena, my longings, needs, fears. Delving into my relationship to these two archetypes of Me, as well as noticing the shifting sensation in my back. Melancholy, tears, disgust, disappointment, the disembodied feeling of being a Brain and a Body rather than an integrated Being. Coming to understand the need to make allies with both old Helena and Warrior Helena.

That’s the message.
With the neck, my body told me to communicate with others.
With the lower back, my body is telling me to communicate with me. All of me. All aspects of me. To make all parts of me my allies, and not enemies, or parts to be ignored, taken for granted or be ashamed of. 

It’s hard to put into words, but in a gentle way a lot of ground was covered, a lot of work done. When done, D asked: How’s the back now? I smiled at him, wiggled about on the sofa a bit, afraid to show him what I believed to be true: that the pain was gone. So after stalling for a while – wanting to live in the hope that what I sensed from my lower back was true, rather than the fear of trying it out only to discover it wasn’t – I stood up, bent over, touched the floor without the least bit of problem or pain, danced around a bit, grinning from ear to ear: The pain is gone. Gone!

Oh!
The relief – the constant background pain, similar to the low-murmuring noise of ventilation. The relief when the pain disappears equal to that which occurs when the ventilation suddenly shuts down.
Amazement – how is this possible? Talking, sensing, doing the work, and all of a sudden, the pain is just gone?
Gratitude – how lucky am I, to have a friend like D. Someone who can help me find out more about myself, the messages my body is desperately trying to tell me, guiding me in the process of discovery. He’s done it before, he’ll do it again.
Wonderment!

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Automate it!

February 6, 2019
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in Tip
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Automate it, I said, and she frowned. That sounds like robots and stuff, she responded and had me off on a rant about the marvel of automating things, and how it can be robots and stuff, certainly, but also what I make automatic in my life. Like the question Does this serve me? which I’ve asked myself thousands of times since… 2012?

In fact, I’ve asked myself this question so many times, that I no longer have to ask it to answer it. It’s now something I do automatically, whenever (or at least most of the times) I experience a really strong sensation, be it anger, irritation, frustration, fear, sadness, anxiety, worry. Or for that matter extreme elation, joy, curiosity, bubbling eagerness. The script of does this serve me runs automatically, and my response has me make a more conscious decision. It gives me just enough of a pause, or a distance if you will, to be able to observe what I am experiencing and respond to the question.

If the answer is yes I keep on going. If the answer is no sometimes I keep going anyway, taking full responsibility for it, and sometimes (most of the times, I would like to think) I stop, since the pause I’ve given myself gives me a way out somehow.

Insights are amazing. They are one of, if not the best superpowers of human beings. One of the most impactful insights I’ve gotten was that I don’t have to be so hard on myself. Sounds silly almost, but I was actually about… let’s see… 35 years old when I fully got this. So for 35 years, I lived with an extremely harsh inner dialogue. But – and this is important – just because I got the insight, didn’t mean that I automatically stopped being hard on myself. You see, for 35 years, I’d very efficiently built a whole system of neural pathways on how to be hard on myself. And just because I got that insight, those pathways didn’t disintegrate. They didn’t, because neural pathways don’t. (Unless you have a neural degenerative disease of some sort. Luckily, most of us don’t.) So what I had to do, once I got that insight, was learn new ways of interacting with myself.

I was helped along by my willingness to change my inner dialogue (which definitely also affected the way I interacted with everyone else. As above, so below and all that stuff!) and my observatory powers. I started to observe myself being hard on me. At first… it could take me hours (if not days) to spot it, after the fact, that is. After a stint of that, my revelatory observations crept closer and closer to the actual situation, and before I knew it, I was picking up on my soon-to-be-harsh inner dialogue. Before it happened. When that happened, I had a choice. Harsh. Or gentle. And I could pick which route to go down. And once I started picking gentle I started to build new neural pathways, training myself into new patterns of being with me.

Now 10-11 years after that first initial insight of not having to treat myself so harshly, I’ve gotten sooo good at being gentle with me. Not soft. Not weak. Not letting myself off the hook, and never challenging me. No, not even close to that! I challenge myself so much more now that I no longer fear my internal judge! So in a sense, I’ve not just automated does this serve me, but also being gentle with myself.

Both of these are ”automated scripts” that I find truly serve me as well as those around me.

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Advent Calendar 19 – Boost!

December 19, 2018
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In my Mastermind-group every second or third meeting we round off with a boost session, and I love it. Each person has their moment in the spotlight, with the rest of us taking turns appreciating the person in the hot seat. We’ve been going at Masterminding for 6 full years by now, and I’ve gotten good at both aspects – the giving as well as the receiving.

I know giving boost to someone is an act that might scare people. Others might be scared at receiving it.

But scary?
Well. I would challenge that, and say that it’s really about not being used to it. Because there’s nothing to fear. There’s no danger in it. And the more I practice, the better I get. With that, comes the lessened sense of feeling scared…

The gift of a boost can also be lessened by trying to reciprocate in the moment. If I am told Oh Helena, I love the way your mind works, it gives me new perspectives, and say, wholeheartedly, Thank you, really letting the boost land, sink in, reverberate within, the gift of the boost has been fully acknowledged. If, instead, perhaps I say Oh, well, thanks, but you give me new perspectives too, it’s almost as if I belittle the gift. As if I cannot receive without reciprocating in kind – which has the negative side-effect of people not really knowing if I truly mean what I say, or not.

Giving. Receiving.
Acts of kindness, both, whether or not it concerns boosts, or other things.
If one or the other makes you feel a but uncomfortable – practice. Give if you don’t really know how to. Receive if that makes you cringe. Because… when I give, someone else gets to receive. And when I receive, someone else gets to give.


Advent Calendar 2018 – number 19 of 24 – on the theme of being gentle.

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