We began this session with my share. I spoke of all the big steps I’ve made. I was so pleased to tell Ursula of my practice setting boundaries with people. Family, friends and even an authority figure. All big stuff.
Ursula was thrilled. She celebrated my achievements. She was pleased I was activating my curiosity, my awareness which she calls love. She said she could see I’m aware and awake of what is going on around me connecting and moving forward to begin to understand others.
I put up a boundary with a family member. And even though it was rocky and uncomfortable at first, because I hurt her feelings when I set my boundary, which I have learned does happen, I got through it. Ursula’s says all of this is OK. The boundary was about me trying to be honest when I became uncomfortable in the conversation we were having. My boundary was to change the tone of the conversation and the topic's direction and turn it all into growth and connection. My boundary was to stay in the moment instead allowing the discussion to turn into- “well you do that to me.” I was clear I wasn’t referring to past stuff - but the exact moment we were in at the moment. I rooted myself. I stayed firmly rooted in the present - but willing to circle back to anything she needed to discuss or deal with at another time. Lots of deep breaths. I stayed away from name calling, insults or old habits. It worked. A short time later, after processing, I was told this family member that she respected and admired me for it.
I put up a boundary with a neighbor who for some reason I choose not to get too close with. I feel at times manipulated or coerced to accept toxic energy in exchange for me doing what she wants me to do. I set a boundary. I set a clear and concise - I’m kind, and compassionate and I wish her well...but I won’t put myself in situations where I feel taken advantage of. I feel strongly what I offer her is what I am able to and willing to offer her. No more or less. Instead of falling for that “should” and guilt - I turned to - the truth - my truth - that yes, I am willing to be there for someone - using my limits and boundaries. And...with her - I feel strongly she isn’t the type to go into a dialogue about this. I knew I had to put the boundary up. No excuses. No reasons. It just is what it is. With this neighbor - she is someone I tried to get close with before. But her energy and mine just don’t match. There is something I feel is a bit toxic. She means well. I know that. But getting too close requires me to give myself and my time - and the result is me leaving not really feel good after spending too much time with her. I learned I can still be loving. I do send her a lot of love.
I put up a boundary with my husband. That was hard. He was snappish. I got hurt. However, I firmly rooted myself, once again, spoke up for myself, and with self respect communicated my feelings. It took some time - but my husband came back apologizing and admitting he was feeling some shame and instead of being honest - he snapped at me. That was pretty cool. There was one more time - I felt dismissed when we were talking. He was talking - he was letting his feelings and thoughts out - and when I spoke - he cut me off. I felt hurt. So….with calm and loving and aware communication - I told him. I would like to be heard too. When we listen to each other - I feel closer.
I put a huge boundary up with an authority figure - one of my doctors. I felt very vulnerable. And she...well...crossed a line. I didn’t like it. I was hurt. When I tried to call back - she didn’t return my call for a week. I was really upset. I left messages. I left clear, concise, calm and strong messages about how I felt. It wasn’t easy. After a week, she called back. And apologized. It felt really to have that resolved.
Now - one thing I told Ursula - I love sharing everything - all the ups and downs and sideways - so I shared with her that I am very aware that I cannot (it’s not my responsibility) to do the work for other people. And it hurts. It's frustrating. I want to yell at people sometimes. I wish they could be self aware. I get angry. The little girl comes out and wants to yell.
“Hey, I want credit! I want to be heard too! I want you to realize what you’re doing wrong and stop your behavior so I don’t have to do all this work!”
She laughed. And I do love her laugh. Her laugh - is a - with me laugh - not at me laugh. Her laugh is acknowledging that yep - that’s human stuff. She gets it. She knows I get it. And the fact that I'm so self aware - but admitting my vulnerability - her laugh will grow - and then I'll start laughing too - because it’s OK.
Ursula reminded me to check my controlling parts. They like to control when I get nervous. I told her I was - that I did hear them coming up a lot. Wooosh. Again, I admitted it is not easy quieting this voices down. Again, she laughed...because that response - that yes I see them - and yes I’m trying to talk to them - is part of the work. She says these things take time. They don’t have to be rushed. The lessons, the growth, it all takes time. She says the progress I’ve made is wonderful.
I told her about this t-shirt I got that just really felt right to me - but I worried - it might be mean. But I did buy it. It says “I’m all peace, light and love with a little go fuck yourself”. She laughed. Again - I knew - oh she gets it! She said - that’s great. She approved. She said, it reminded her of an old quote. “Speak softly and carry a big stick”. I love that! She said, it’s the same thing - it’s the same concept (just without the curse word). She says, you walk with awareness, respect and compassion - but if you need to tell someone to fuck off (hopefully in a clear, calm way and without the curse words) - it’s OK. Most of the time I can do that without saying the curse words. Although I do curse at inanimate objects a lot!
I actually feel I don’t need to say the words out loud to someone. But I can certainly say them to myself.
It was time to work with my subconscious. As I relaxed I could feel different energies stirring. Some were my inner child feelings. They were worried. They were chattering. “Well, what’s going to come up?” They were impatient. They wanted me to just move on and finish the session. I instantly told them to relax. I saw an image of giggly silly kids running off. They honored my request and settled down. My inner child trusts me now so when I gently ask the chatter to quiet down, for this moment, to do some healing work, that doesn’t mean I’m rejecting them. It just means I need time to clear my head and center myself. I wanted to focus on what my subconscious would like to tell me.
A beautiful image came up. The image of a woman, me, under a waterfall. All dressed in white. It felt so good. Standing under the waterfall just taking a moment to cleanse and release the dirt and grime. The dirt and grime felt like it was all good and healing work. I just felt a need to rinse off. Ursula told me to take a solid minute of peace and quiet to just feel and embrace all the sensations. She said the image I described was beautiful. I asked any voices who came up wanting my attention to just stand aside. Not go away. Just stand aside. I was taking a minute for myself to just let it all flow. So we stopped talking and I took that minute to be in the moment. It was a beautiful minute. I could feel the water drops through my hair. The white was iridescent. I could see the water run down and even tickle the toes of my feelings and thoughts from my inner child - and there was giggling.
I felt good about all the sensations. All the different aspects that make up - ME. We are all in this together.
A message I’ve been getting lately has been it’s OK to be alone with my thoughts. I can handle them. I can nurture them, sort through them, and come up with solutions. I would like to continue to feel this inner power, without still needing validation from others. But...I do believe and honor that the healing work takes time and practice to build new strengths. I am building strength.
We were so thankful for our connection to do this work together. Ursula and I were brought together because of mutual friends. And it’s just beautiful.
She praised me for my healing work. I really loved hearing that praise. It felt so good and so sincere and was a beautiful and loving compliment. She saw me. It didn’t take from her to watch me soar. There’s no competition when a compliment is given like that. No comparison. She takes pure delight in watching the growth and strength and healing that she sees in me. Beautiful..
And here....is a picture of my shirt. It's all about balance.
And from Ursula:
When some people think about spirituality, setting boundaries is not the first thing that comes to mind.
Many of us have been so co-dependent and saturated in following what our parents have told us, things like, "be a good girl" or "Mommy doesn't like it when you behave that way." We've been so conditioned to behave in a way that makes other people happy, even if we feel horrible.
When we do our inner healing work we get to be in touch with those parts of us that never got to speak, whose feelings didn't matter, and got shut down when they wanted to share. We go on for years and years behaving in that similar manner. We could have successful careers, become great parents, but we still are programmed to live for others regardless of how we feel inside.
When we do this inner healing work we realize that we do count. Sometimes when people are not doing gentle healing work they become aggressive and obnoxious in their boundary setting, but Rebecca has done these things gracefully. She really can be so proud of herself.
Vulnerability is a strength. When we are transforming ourselves, becoming more real, true to our values and in touch with our feelings, we become more whole. Vulnerability is basically being honest and open, not knowing how others will respond, but willing to speak our truth and see how it lands on others. Only brave people can be vulnerable on purpose. Vulnerability is the sign of a spiritual warrior. To me, it's one of the most humanly beautiful things that we can express on the spiritual path. It's about being human and spiritual; hand in hand. This is the union between human and God, it's the Union within our heart, within our soul.
When we have enough "Self" in our internal system, then we can be bolder. All the parts become aligned in a better efficient order. There is a time and a place for each part. For instance, we don't have to go to a party and have one part run straight for the bar or the food table because another part feels afraid. Instead, the social butterfly can lead the way because she likes meeting new people and can talk to one person at a time. The tracker part can observe other people and decide who feels good and safe and respectful. The friendly part can come and play too. The emotional part can come to the surface just enough to put their toe in the water and be present for the joy of celebrations, gatherings and touching moments. The boundary keeper part can be standing by, a few feet behind, like a body guard for a princess or a queen. Any fowl play, a sense of cringing or if our breathing changes, it knows to step up. I have two magical words instead of curse words. I pregnant pause the conversation, lock eyes, and in a ninja body posture of sure footedness and arms crossed, I say, "excuse me?" With the tone of a teacher, and the eyebrow raise of a confident, strong and self assured person, the under tone is, "I heard clearly what you just said, and it wasn't cool. If you continue in that vein, we will be having a new conversation that you will not like one bit, but it will be needed, it will help to make you a better person, I will call you out, holding back nothing....or you can self-correct right now with an apology for even trying that on me."
That's what a big stick looks like.
It works every time.
Some people think kindness is a weakness. If they only knew how much work it takes... which is why we are perfectly entitled to let people know when they are being disrespectful. Most of the time it's just ignorance, but that's no excuse either.
Confidence comes from the experiences that Rebecca is having. The more successful conversations she has, the more courage she has access to. The safer she feels speaking up, the kinder her words will come out.
I love the example she gave with her husband. She told him that it makes her feel closer when they communicate. When we share "why" we are asking for something, the other person will understand the depth of it and not misinterpret it for a power play and go into auto- defense.
The sneaky thing is our ego could have a field day with this new way of being. Oh boy, just when we think we have climbed Mount Everest to speak up for ourselves, then there is another part that we have to hold up by the shirt so they don't take the ball and run with it called the controller! Yuck. It could sabotage the whole conversation and end up in a lose-lose situation with an after taste of mistrust towards you from the other person. Ugh.
Little by little, experience by experience, we learn to navigate the inner terrain of our humanness and find out heart center to speak from. The rewards are outstanding and life changing, heaven on Earth becomes a reality.
Rebecca is living the work, actively and intentionally changing her life, by making conscious decisions, designing her life to be her best self. Suffering is becoming a thing of the past.