judge

#blogg100 – Observe yourself.

#blogg100 – Observe yourself.

April 12, 2017
/ / /

“Do not observe yourself too closely.
Do not draw too rapid conclusions from what happens to you;
let it simply happen to you.”

Yes.

But also – No! A strong and resounding No rising from within the depths of me, reverberating in my entire being.

Perhaps my fervent opposition to Rainer Maria Rilkes two sentences is his use of the words observation and drawing conclusions, without using also the word judgement. Because there is nothing that has helped me as much to Live life as it happens to me, as the ability to observe myself. But here’s the clou: To observe myself, without judgement. Rilkes “rapid conclusions” in my mind is to do with making judgements.

chainsOnce I learned to observe myself (which for me means the ability to bear witness to myself, to all that I am experiencing, while simultaneously seeing what I am experiencing – I am in it, but at the same time outside of it) and fully understood that whatever I am thinking isn’t Truth, but rather a filter which shapes the experience of the world I am in, life changed. Oh how it changed! It became possible for me to let life happen, without me having to fight it each and every inch of the way. No longer shackled to the harsh voices within.

Because simultaneously, my inner Judge and Dictator lost its power over me and my life. He could be shouting at me (I often liken him to a combination of Hitler/Mao/Stalin. Perhaps a bit dramatic, but hey, that’s what it felt like to be me), the same things he’d been shouting at me for years on end, relentlessly, and all of a sudden… I was able to let it be. To avoid engaging with it. To avoid the conclusions stemming from an internal dialogue telling me You are so dumb!, You should have known better! and Why on earth would you ever do something that stupid, haven’t you learnt anything?.

Once I stopped paying attention to the harsh inner dialogue of mine, the tone of it shape shifted, into something that gradually turned into the ability to be gentle towards myself. And from that place, whatever happens to me, as I am living my life, is easier to handle with grace, come what may.

#Blogg100 challenge in 2017 – post number 43 of 100.
The book “Letters to a Young Poet” by Rainer Maria Rilke.
English posts here, Swedish at
herothecoach.com.

Read More

Please be gentle, I’m still learning

January 7, 2016
/ / /

Please be gentle, I’m still learning” Robbie Williams sings in the song Advertising Space. Imagine living approximately forty years before getting that. Forty years before understanding that if I’m not gentle with myself, much less learning takes place. 

If I associate learning with pain, with being chastised, told off, “I should have known”:ed, do you think my system would be promoting and encouraging learning? 

No. It (I) will run the other way. Shut down, slowly, insights will be fewer and farther apart… or at least, they will be significantly more quiet, almost unaudible. The inner voice of wisdom, of universal mind, will be barricaded, by myself, by my self-preserving ego. The inner voice will be unwanted. Out of fear. Fear of the pain that comes with learning, which I’ve associated with pain and harshness. 

And that will only change once I begin to be gentle with myself. And I speak from personal experience when I say that being gentle with me, is a very strange and unfamiliar concept for one accustomed to being harsh. Realizing my internal harshness was one of the greatest aha-moments of my life, and what I saw was that it’s not mandatory to be my own harshest judge. Kindness, gentleness, is an option. Also for me. 

This insight has been with me since 2006 or 2007, and took place during a therapy session. Since then I’ve practiced being gentle with myself, och it’s something which comes more and more natural to me nowadays. And that’s me reverting back to being more fully me, because I think it is our natural state. We’re born and created to be gentle with ourselves, otherwise we wouldn’t be the learning creatures that we are, from the very get go.

Imagine a small child being harsh with herself for not immediately knowing how to walk, run, ride a bicycle. A child is naturally gentle with themselves, trying, failing, falling down, trying again, failing, falling down, trying again…. over and over until suddenly, one step is managed, then two, then all of a sudden, the child can walk, can run, can ride a bike. 

What happens to us? Why do we – or at least I – stop being gentle with ourselves, and rather start to be hard on ourselves? Is that why children are the greatest learners there is? Not because adults don’t have the capacity to learn, but because we’ve stopped being gentle with ourselves, we expect to get things right away, and we are afraid to try and fail.

Because we’ve put another meaning on what it means to fail, than the child trying to learn how to walk, run, rida a bike. We believe it means we are bad, not good enough. While the child simply knows it means that the learning process is still unfolding, there’s more to learn, more to master, before the learning process has manifested into yet another skill. And somehow, adults impose their faulty understanding upon children, creating yet another harsh un-learner. What if we adults instead would learn from children what it is we are born to be? Life long learners, where the only prerequisite is being gentle to ourselves.

Please be gentle, I’m still learning. Are you?

Welcome to my new website!
Since 2012 I have blogged over at herothecoach.com and this post is a sample of what I’ve been writing over the years. 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.

Read More