I’m learning Chi-Gong.
Now that my days, and energy, aren’t consumed with the routine and structure of training and competition, I have space in my life to learn new skills and to play around with new interests and passions.
And so I find myself learning Chi-Gong (and LOVING it! Who would have thought?!?)
Translated, Chi means air and Gong means power training. Through Chi-Gong we are taught to use our energy, our breath, to control our body, and our movements; in effect, to make our bodies a weapon. It is about using flow, rather than muscular control or effort. This idea, this way of being, is so different from how I have lived up until now. My whole life, my whole athletic and sporting career, as been founded on muscular control; on conscious, forced effort.
So, naturally, my teacher, my friend, has many corrections to make with me.
Some things I pick up easily; if I was taught a single posture, I could get in a relatively good position. However, as soon as it came time to link these postures together, to start to move, the cracks start to show.
He would patiently teach me what I needed to know, changing what needed to be changed, correcting me on the same things over and over. And as he did this, I found myself countering his teachings with my explanation of why I was doing it incorrectly;
“Oh, that’s cause I used to do Karate and that’s how we did it there”
“That’s what I always had to do in CrossFit”
“That’s because of this, or that’s because of that”
Blah, blah, blah. So many reasons, so many excuses
He wasn’t criticising me, yet I felt the need to explain myself instead of just doing what he was teaching me.
My reasons & excuses sound perfectly reasonable to me but really, they just keep me stuck; stuck in my excuses, stuck in the past, rather than allowing me to be present, to move forward.
I make it hard for myself to change, to learn, to grow because I tell myself it’s perfectly reasonable & understandable that I can’t, based on my previous experiences.
What if I just dropped my story? What if I just asked how I could do the new thing, rather than arguing why I can’t? How different would my experience be then?
I feel so vulnerable learning something new, especially in front of people, especially in front of people I know and love. I’ve built up this facade (SPOILER ALERT!) that I am perfect, and perfectly capable, so when I’m doing something for the first time & I don’t get it straight away, shame & embarrassment washes over me – “Oh my God, they’re going to see I can’t do this. I better give them a good reason why it’s so hard for me, so I don’t look so bad”
This thought process totally shuts down my learning ability & makes it even harder & longer for me to grasp that new skill.
Unconsciously, I’m telling myself how hard it is for me to learn a new skill, so I don’t fully embody the instruction. I’m capable of doing so, but I don’t. That underlying belief tells me it has to take a long time, so I don’t allow the instruction to become part of me.
There I am, totally, consciously, willing and wanting to learn this new art, and yet I’m sabotaging myself throughout the whole process. Insane. And you know what? You do it too. (Sound familiar?)
This is why I work with the subconscious (or unconscious) mind. It’s estimated the power of our subconscious mind is approximately 1million times greater than the conscious mind. Left untended, this guy becomes the BOSS, ruling us every moment of every day.
Those limiting beliefs will continue to sabotage us, even when, consciously, we really want something & are committed to it. This is why diets fail, why goals always seem to be just out of reach, why relationships struggle, why athletes lose, why businesses fail, & why health suffers.
You must bring your unconscious mind on board if you want success. It’s irrelevant how much information you have, how good your intentions are or how detailed your plan is; if there’s anything lurking deep in your unconscious, you are in for a bumpy ride.
“So how do I get this guy onside?” I hear you ask. Great question!
The quickest, easiest and most effective way is to work with someone who is trained in programming, or re-programming, the subconscious mind.
There are many of us out there who do this kind of work, and if I’m not the right fit for you, I can certainly recommend someone who will be
In the meantime, here are some things you can do for yourself:
Start by looking at the areas of your life that aren’t what you’d like them to be, & ask yourself the following questions:
- “What must I be believing in order for this to be my experience?”
- “Is this belief serving me or holding me back?”
- “What do I want instead?”
Then, look at ways to bring those new beliefs to reality.
You struggle with debt; therefore, your beliefs must be something along the lines of “I’m not good with money”. Instead, you’d rather hold the belief “I love managing my money well”, or “I love saving my money.”
This new belief would now become an affirmation; a daily mantra that you repeat to yourself regularly. Visualise yourself, often, managing your money well – what does that look like for you?
As you go about your day, make all your decisions as someone who manages their money well. This person probably wouldn’t live beyond their means, or make rash, emotional money decisions.
You would also start to look at ways to manage your money well; are there books you can read, courses you could attend, seminars you could go to, or just people (who are good with money) you could talk to and ask for advice? Learn as much as you can, and then put what you learn into action.
Good luck, and if you need help with this, reach out. As for me, I’m off to change some limiting beliefs.
Ok, so in the spirit of my Honesty Project, I’m starting out with this post I wrote a few weeks ago on my 34th birthday.
This was a HUGE birthday for me – as you’ll understand when you read it – and I’ve been toying with the idea of posting this being that it’s so personal. Seems like the perfect one to led with then! So here we go….
I did not think I’d make it here. For real. I honesty thought I’d be dead by now.
My mum died at 34. Over the years, I’ve often been told, “You’re so like your mum” and my innocent, naïve mind took this to mean that I too, would suffer the same fate. Logically, that makes no sense, right? I know that, and yet this unconscious belief has been my constant companion over the past 28 years.
Even though I longed for a committed, loving relationship and children of my own, I couldn’t make it happen.
Even though I have incredible passion, talent, ability and energy for success in anything I choose, I haven’t fully embraced that as my experience.
Even though I know what I need to do to have the financial freedom I want, the friendships I desire, the health I deserve and the peace I crave, I haven’t allowed it, because
“What’s the point? I’ll be dead soon anyway”
You can see what a head-fuck this has been.
And I wasn’t even consciously aware of this until very recently, after a few months of what seemed like everything around me, everything I’d built, started to crumble, and fall away, and I found myself in the grip of utter grief, unsure of what went so terribly wrong. Again. Feeling completely and utterly helpless. Feeling like a colossal failure, and of course “I am, because I don’t deserve to be happy, to be loved and to have success.”
Trauma does that to a child. With limited understanding of the world, when something emotionally gigantic happens, a child makes it to mean something about them. I did something wrong, that’s why mum left. There’s something so incredibly wrong with me, my mum didn’t even want to stay on this planet with me. It’s my fault mum left, I’m a bad girl. I deserve to be punished. I don’t deserve to be happy. I don’t deserve to live.
So, let’s recap the past 28 years: I’m going to die at 34. I don’t deserve to be happy. I’m unlovable. I don’t deserve success, joy or peace. Whoa.
And finally everything starts to make sense.
Of course I wouldn’t allow myself to have my own family and my own babies – I would die at 34 and leave them all alone, to face the life of grief, fear and pain that I had. No way would I inflict that on them.
Of course I haven’t experienced complete, utter, resounding success – what’s the point in stretching that far, when I won’t be around to enjoy the fruits of it? I just needed to keep myself busy enough to get through to 34, and then I get to tap out. No need to take full responsibility for anything, someone else will clean it up once I’m gone.
Of course I haven’t fully embraced the health I want, I’m going to be dead soon, so why bother? What’s the harm in another dessert? Another drink?
Ironically, in some weird twist of fate, very soon after uncovering this core belief, I also found out mum was actually 33 when she died.
Seriously, what the f*$k?!
This death sentence that had been looming over me my entire life just vanished. If she died at 33, and I’m just about to turn 34, then I’ve made it. I’m not the same as her. I came from her, but I’m not the same.
So I’m siting here, 34 years old today, and I realize, for the first time, I am not my mother. My life is not defined by her. My destiny is not defined by her destiny. I don’t have those shackles any longer.
I have an incredibly long life ahead of me, and I have to do something with it, I want to do something with it. I’ve never had the freedom of thinking about a life beyond 34. Now I do, and it’s exciting, but holy crap it’s scary! How can I make this count? Out of all the things that are possibilities and options for me, which ones do I chose? What will be the biggest expression of me? Who am I?
I know I have this passion, this energy, this light, within me that I want to bring to the world, I just never thought it would go beyond this date in time, so didn’t have a reason to sink into that fully. For the first time I get to think long term, I get to dream, and man, have I got some shit to do!
I want to live. I never thought I had a choice in that, so I just want it known that I really, really want to live. I want to get to know who I am, separate from my mother. I want to love completely and unconditionally. I want to laugh loudly and uncontrollably. I want to dance wildly and sing beautifully. I want to contribute. I want to learn and stretch and reach and grow. I want to feel fear, and know it doesn’t control me. I want to speak honestly, gently, and with love every time I open my mouth. I want to cry when I feel it, and not be ashamed or move to hide it. I want to feel my anger, and express it lovingly, knowing it doesn’t make me a bad person. I want to make mistakes and not beat myself up for them. I want to say “No” when I want to, and “Yes” only when I mean it. I want to tell you I love you, because I honestly do. I want to inspire everyone I come into contact with. I want you to feel my love for you, and use that feeling to go and start standing up for yourself, for your life. I want to see your beauty, even when you don’t see it. I want to feel your love, even if you can’t. I want to ask for everything I want and need, and allow you to give it to me, without feeling guilt or shame, or the need to pay you back. I want to make love passionately, wildly and unashamedly. I want to give myself completely to whoever is in front of me, for you are the most important person at that time.
And more than anything, I want to experience everything in this incredible, beautiful, wonderful life in its entirety, because that IS life. And I really, really want that.
I am so sick of not being honest.
Now, I don’t mean that I walk around lying to everyone all day long……but, well actually, I do. And I lie to myself, almost non-stop, about so many things.
And before you get all shocked and critical and start judging me, realize that you do it to. I mean it. You and I are liars. We are ALL just a pack of big, fat liars.
I’d like to think of myself as an honest, upfront person, but deep down, I know I’m not. I lie everyday by not accepting and acknowledging ALL of me. I lie to you by not telling you everything about me, about my past, my thoughts, my feelings, my doubts, my desires and my fears. By not setting boundaries, and speaking up for myself. I lie by not being honest, always.
This might seem obvious, but we think that if we don’t actually speak a lie, then we aren’t lying, when, actually, if we are keeping anything secret, if we hold back in any way, it’s a lie.
And I don’t want to do it anymore.
I think it’s making me sick, like, actually, physically sick. My stomach gets all messed up and my digestion is a shambles. The less honest I am, the smaller I get, and the more fear I feel around people “finding out” about me. It’s exhausting. It feels like I am torturing myself every single day. In not acknowledging and talking about all of me, all my truths, I disown myself. I become more and more disconnected. I’m telling myself I am flawed. Unlovable. That I’m not worthy of connection, of belonging, of being seen, and held and accepted.
I often think other people are lying to me, that they have a secret agenda, that they don’t really care about me, or love me, or want to spend time with me.
When someone says they need to speak with me, this feeling of panic and guilt rises up inside – “What have I done? What have they found out about me?” even though I’ve not actually done anything untoward.
Do you know how tiring this is??? Constantly watching myself and what I say, constantly guessing when you will find out my dirty little secrets, when you will see my shadow, and what the fallout will then be.
This might seem crazy to you, but I guarantee you have the same thing going on, you just aren’t aware of it yet. Or maybe you are, but you think, “That’s just the way it is. Everyone lies. It’s not that big a deal”
And maybe it’s not that big a deal for you, but I am done. Living like this is crushing me; it feels like a vice around my heart, around my spirit, and it just keeps getting tighter and tighter. It’s affecting my relationships and my business, and I can’t do it anymore.
I am busting out!
I am starting a Lifetime of Honesty right here, right now. I’m starting to own all of me; the shiny parts I’ve shown to you, and the rusty, dirty, ugly, smelly parts I’ve kept well hidden. Yep, they’re coming out too. I warn you, some of what you hear from now on may offend you. Please know that’s not my intention. You’ll probably judge me. You might lose respect for me. You might hate me. You could fire me. You might want to friend-divorce me. And that’s ok.
No matter how confronting it is for you, or how you choose to react, it’s totally ok. Perfect even. It won’t matter because I’ll respect me, I’ll love me, I’ll accept me.
I’ll still love you. I’ll just love me more.
So, enough about me, I’d love to hear from you! Leave me a note in the comments below and let me know;
- What are 3 specific situations in your life, right now, where you are not being completely honest?
- What is 1 thing you could do, for each of those situations, to change that?
- What’s the one thing you are most afraid of others finding out about you?
Take a deep breath. Exhale. It’s totally ok. You’re safe. And even with all your secrets, you’re perfect, and loved.
(Ps: I’m scared too!)