energy

With or against the natural flow of things?

With or against the natural flow of things?

May 22, 2020
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Thinking about the difference between working hard versus efforting, I am reminded of a story about surfing that I first heard Michael Neill share at Supercoach Academy in 2014.

Doing hard work, going deep within, giving it ones all and showing up, is similar to what a skilled surfer does. She paddles out to sea, spots a wave coming in, positions the board and starts to paddle like craaaaazy, in order to be at the right spot at the right time, ready to go with the flow, be lifted by the wave, using all the energy the universe is throwing at her to move forward.

Paddling out to sea requires a lot of energy, paddling to be in position for the wave does too, and even riding that wave and keeping her balance requires energy. But it’s all in the flow of what is already and always there, underneath, above, below, in front…

Now. Imagine this surfer trying to work a g a i n s t the flow of the water. Paddling in the opposite direction when the wave is coming. Now that would be efforting, or trying too hard, or, phrasing it differently, not working with what is already there. Working against it, rather than using it to be lifted high on top of that wave crest.

Trying too hard – efforting – has me working against nature, against that which wants to help me, to assist me, to have me spot the flow of things.

That’s one way to spot the difference between working hard versus efforting. There is, always and already, a natural flow of energy in everything. And life can be hard enough, without me going against the natural flow of things. So I try not to.


#tankespjärn, for those who wish to discover. More. Other. New.
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100 days later…

May 21, 2020
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A celebratory hour in lieu of 100 dailies in The Creative’s Workshop. An hour in honor of the letter S, in the form of:
Sensational (work, engagement, cohort!)
Shift (what has been the shift?)
Stranger (who was your unexpected stranger and what did they give you?)
Shipping (What have you shipped and what has it meant to you/those you serve?)
Step (Next step? How to continue doing your work?)
Salute (100 dailies later!)

What was it like for you 100 days ago?
Less energy. More lethargy. Ready to step into the land of ”don’t know what”.

What has changed in 100 days?
Me!
Energized. Awed and wowed!
A tankespjärn-community launched. Friendships forged.
INSIGHTS & CLARITY!

Who was your unexpected stranger and what did they give you?
Mary Ellen Bratu and our Reading Retreats, a gift I will carry with me for life!

What have you shipped and what has it meant to you (and those you serve)?
My tankespjärn-community on Patreon. Taking baby-steps.
I’ve truly seen the generosity inherent to shipping.

What’s the next step? How will you continue doing the work?
One day at a time, generously sharing and shipping.

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It Is.

March 30, 2020
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It is!

I did press Launch (but not today, I actually launched it last night, thanks to two fellow TCW:ers kicking me very lovingly in the butt. 💚), and all of a sudden… there’s the feeling of being slightly embarrassed. Feeling a bit awkward. As if I am already second-guessing myself. Shouldn’t I have put more effort into it after all? Perhaps I shouldn’t promote it until I can get a better introductory video made, and have gotten a bit more material up on the site, and…

But, once again, I have a choice.
A choice of whether or not to put my focus on these thoughts and their corresponding feelings, or not.

And I choose not to. I feel it –heck, I’m even letting these thoughts step up and get their moment in the spotlight right here, right now– but that’s enough. I have better use for my energy than to waste it beating myself up over any imagined faux pas of mine. 

Because the truth is this: It Is. 

The #tankespjärn-community is now a reality.
I hold the space, and I opened the space.
But everyone is invited to dance.

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The edges of my capacity

March 8, 2020
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I have high capacity.
A lot of energy.
A well-exercised ability to focus and give it (whatever it is) my all.
But today… Today I bumped up against the edges of my capacity.

With two days of training this weekend, after a jam-packed week with just one evening off, otherwise busy busy busy – a fair description of the last two months as well – it seemed wise and caring to leave the rest of the evening unscheduled…

But no. Not me.
Thirty minutes after the training ended, I had tickets to see Frida – Viva la vida. It turned out to be a movie I enjoyed… and yet… I had a very hard time staying focused. I had a hard time to even stay awake. I was – I am – exhausted. And yet, coming home from the movies I had one more promise to live up to, with a group-call scheduled at 8:45 pm.

I would have been hard-pressed to cancel the movie plans, or try to give my ticket to someone else. And honestly, the thought never even crossed my mind. I don’t know what would have made me go down that route?

The group-call is one which I scheduled after I knew my schedule for the weekend. And it’s the same here. I don’t know what would have me postpone this call? (And having just had it, I am energized, and am happy I did not cancel on it.)

I do not see myself as a person who cancels, which even though I appreciate it as a general trait, is not necessarily a good thing if it’s a fundamental belief of mine, having me not-cancel at the expense of me.

The Upholder in me definitely plays a part here, a leading part even, and from the conversation in the group-call which I just finished, I wonder… how much of this is me being not-gentle towards myself? What does serve me? What would happen if I tried to be less ”follow-through at any cost”-ish?

Perhaps something worth playing around with?
Or.
Let me rephrase that:
Something worth playing around with.
To be continued.

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My real job?

February 21, 2020
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I tell my students, ’When you get these jobs that you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else. This is not just a grab-bag candy game.’
– Toni Morrison

Now and again I read, or hear, something that provides me with #tankespjärn. Like this quote from Toni Morrison. The thought that the real job is something other than that which I (we) have trained for is one. The question then arises as to what I am/have. Freedom? Yes. Power? Some. Energy? Yes. What else? Are those just the obvious choices? Are there other, more profound, hidden underneath layers of… what? Self-doubt? The Law of Jante?

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Three dailies and two prompts later…

February 12, 2020
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The Creative’s Workshop. 

Jumped in six days ago, the dailies started three days ago, and there have been two prompts so far (Mondays – Wednesdays – Fridays. It’s Wednesday today, so…), and I am already having a blast.

The dailies are about writing something, anything, daily, for 100 days in a row. Been there, done that. Not a problem at all for me.
But never have I done it in a community like this one. Never with so many people willing to share, to encourage, to question, to cheer and hook up with on this journey of ours for the next 150 days or so.

The prompts are a thrice-weekly prompt. Intended to get me thinking, writing, creating. Answering from instinct rather than figuring things out. Putting pen to paper (or finger to keyboard as it were) and letting what-ever-wants-to-come flow out of me.

My calendar is more full than I feel comfortable with. I have a huge capacity for Doing. No doubt. But in the past six-seven years, I’ve cultivated my capacity for Being as well, and with a full calendar, there’s less room for the latter, unfortunately. So I have been low on energy. I’ve been tired. Feeling drained. Putting pen to paper (fingers to keyboards, sure, yeah, of course, but it just doesn’t sound as poetic, does it?) have resulted in… naught. Nada. Zilch.

And now, three dailies and two prompts later… I am buzzing. Alive and kicking! Inspired, energized, On. And very curious to see what want’s to happen here!

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Fare-thee-well

April 12, 2019
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It’s as if I’ve awakened, after a long hibernation.
Or perhaps, I truly was born again, born anew, on the bus to Sjöbo, listening to Arvo Pärt giving a commencement speech?

Something has shifted.

There is more energy.
More drive. More guts.
Courage. Clarity.

More more more…
Yes.

But.
Not in a sense of needing more; that Sisyphus-like struggle to push the rock up the hill, only to have it roll down to the bottom again. Endlessly striving, struggling. A hopeless mission of trying to fill a void, impossible to fill.

Not that type of more.

Rather, the type where it is simply more because I’ve released yet another layer of limits. Of boundaries that no longer serve me. Of protective coverings, put in place at a time when I was served by them. Kept in place, year upon year, decade upon decade, if nothing else but for the fact that other layers of protection were added on top. Layer upon layer.

Slowly. Throughout these past twenty years, one by one, I’ve dismantled them. Torn at them. Ripping them apart. Tossing them to the side. Letting yet older layers be exposed to light, making me ask: How does this particular layer serve me?

And when the answer is It doesn’t. Not anymore, I’ve learned to thank it. Filled with reverence for what it has done for me. Because at one time or another, this particular layer has done me a service. But the time has come to shed yet another layer, and when time’s up, time’s up. 

With grace and gratitude, I bid that which is no longer needed to keep me safe, strong and sheltered, fare-thee-well.
With curiosity and care, I turn to the next layer, ready to ask that very same question, starting all over again.
All the while, I rejoice in letting my light shine just a tad brighter than before. 

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Time.

January 25, 2019
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The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago, the next best time is today, or so the saying goes. I reflected upon this this morning, as I did my 1622nd Seven exercise in a row. 1622 days. 4 years and 5 months, approximately. August 18th 2014 was my start date, and every day since I have done (at least) a Seven minute exercise. Every day.

But I could have done this so much longer – if I had started earlier. I didn’t though, and I see absolutely no point in beating myself up over that fact. Because what’s done is done. I cannot go back in time and start earlier. No matter how much I might want to, it’s just not to be done.

So I don’t go there. I spend zero time wishing that I’d stumbled upon the Seven app at an earlier point in my life. That way, I conserve my energy and use it in ways that serve me instead of wasting it. I have a higher regard for my own limited amount of daily energy, than to squander it away at thoughts like:

Oh, if only I had started exercising when I was a young kid… then I would be so fit today.

Oh, if only I had understood how to be gentle towards myself when I was younger… then my life would have been so much nicer.

Oh, if only I had realized that I don’t have to believe in all the thoughts I think… then I would have saved myself so much grief. 

I. Don’t. Go. There.
(Or rather, if I do – I certainly don’t stick around.)

Because – the best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago, for sure, but if I didn’t, the best time to do it is right now. And if I didn’t plant that tree back when… nothing I may say or do will change that fact. But I can change the fact of today – I can start now. I can act today. I can set something in motion today, that will give me great benefit tomorrow, and next year, and twenty years hence.

Today is a perfect day for a new beginning. If you take action today – in twenty years time, you will thank yourself, because you did plant that tree. So, what might you set in motion today?

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Loving living life!

January 23, 2019
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What gets me going is this: Seeing people use their energy wisely, making the most of it, loving the life they live, rather than beating themselves up for not being enough and/or for not doing enough.

When what I see, is people who simply misuse their energy. Burning fuel, getting nowhere. What a waste!

A waste of energy, yes, for sure, but more than that, it’s a waste of possibility, of playfulness, of experimentation and plain old having fun. And that’s not the point of living. The point of living is living. So live! Because when you live a life where your being and your doing are closely aligned, your energy is used efficiently, getting you where you want to go, and more importantly: getting there wholeheartedly, with a deep sense of knowing your own worth. And that’s what you are worth – honor yourself by making sure you live life from this viewpoint!

Helping someone get to that point, where life is lived, fully, oh… it’s just the best! I love it. So that’s what I will be up to in 2019, helping people start loving living life.
❤️💙💛💚💜

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Listening within

January 2, 2019
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Oh…

Sitting down.
On the sofa.
After a very productive day.

Did the daily rituals, and the preparations for a 3-week course I am holding starting next week, and took a bike ride, and spent time with the eldest (soon off to Australia for the better part of a year. Better make the most of the time that’s left!), and started a new knitting project (Delightful, the shawl), and filled in the forms for an insurance claim, and, and, and…

Only to stop. Suddenly.
Realizing I’ve hardly breathed all day. All year.
2019 started off with me high on energy, like a Duracell bunny, going, going, going, going, going…

And I love it. I enjoy being high on energy. But I also love to reset myself. When I let me just be. Listening within… I breathe in. Out. In. Out.

Close my eyes and let myself sink into Now. Here. The isness of life.

All the books I want to read this year (no less than 75), the blog posts I want to write (all 365 of them), the burpees I want to make (a burpee a day keeps the doctor away), the meditations I want to do (Headspace ftw), the runs I want to run (no less than 75, same as for the books), the Pokémons I want to catch, the bike rides I want to take, the dates I want to have, the laughs and the cries I want to have, the podcasts I want to listen to…

It’s all there. In the future.
As it should be.
But right now, I can let it all go, and just be. Right here. Right now.
(Because Now is all there really is.)
No musts. No wants even.
Only the soft inhalation making my body expand, followed by the equally soft exhalation, body contracting.
Like the waves of the ocean, gently lapping the pebbled beach.

Listening within I pick up on the message, spoken in a low and gentle whisper:
It’s time to go to bed. Rest. Recharge. Reset.

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