On becoming 3D

26 02 2014

 

 

These last months I have posted articles that had a high scare factor. At least for me. Having been an extreme people pleaser for so long, showing my true face felt (and still feels) unsettling. I realize now that I have played small not to alienate friends, even potential friends, because I was afraid my friends would not relate to who I really am.  What if they decide that they don’t like who I am beneath my social mask. What if they decide that they don’t want to continue our friendship? For a long time I subconsciously believed that such a decision on their part would be proof that who I am isn’t good enough. I now know that some friendships evolve right along with us and others don’t. Yes, loss of alignment does hurt, but that is okay. Grief is a process in which we need to learn and find the added value of that specific alignment within ourselves. I can have peace with that, today, because for the first time in my life the loss of  a friend wouldn’t diminish my self-worth in any way.

What I learned this week is that showing all that I am is liberating. To lower my mask, show my true face and have people appreciate me for who I really am feels beyond awesome. Interestingly not because it makes me feel validated, although that will probably be part of it too, I am human, but because it is empowering to be good enough no matter what others think of me. Through the process of daring to be real, I made the transition from a reality in which friendships are scarce to a reality in which they are abundant and always available. By releasing the need for certain friendships and certain people in my life, I’m inviting a  new reality in. A reality in which here will always be people who will love the person I am, no matter who I choose to be. A reality in which the Universe will align friendships, old and new, that reflect authenticity, courage and compassion, because that is what it takes to reach out and really connect with others through showing our perfectly imperfect selves, our real selves, not some image of who we think we should be.

In these amazingly complex human bodies that don’t look anything like those in the commercials, with our wonderfully unique personalities that don’t live up to the high standards of our perfectionist societies, and our personal preferences and desires that won’t get everyone’s mark of approval, we need to grow courage and compassion to embrace our humanity, to know that we are good enough eventhough we make ‘mistakes’ continuously, to fall head over heals in love with all that we have to offer, even when others think we are wrong or even bad, because, honestly, what others think is none of our business.

 

Image by Benton Y





Allowing my self-worth to grow

19 02 2014

 

 

After publishing Owning my self-worth, last week, I’ve been pondering exactly that. Who am I when you strip me of all I that I perceive myself to be, all that I do and all that I have? Suppose I am ‘reduced’ to a vegetable, a breathing, heart-beating vegetable? Why not pull the plug?

Interestingly, there at the core, I have no problem seeing my self-worth. So instead of peeling back the onion, this time I am building my case from the core. I must say I feel a little squeamish, because to do so I have to introduce the G-word. In the Netherlands, you don’t mention God unless you are very religious. Everyone else kind of shuns it. The thing is that other words to describe God don’t resonate with me, and trust me when I tell you I tried a few. The time has come to stop sidetripping.

When I say God, I am clearly not talking about the big man in the sky. God to me is the organizing principle that creates worlds. It is the always moving, never-ending, conscious essence that is in everything. It is the primal energy that created me and breathed life into me. It is the energy that recreates me every day of my life and inspires me to live, literally. That which is inspiring me to breathe and the I that is being inspired to breathe, are essential to me being alive. We are a team. I am part of it as much as it is part of me, and so is everyone and everything around me. I cannot see myself apart from it because in essence we are one.
What I learned growing up is that I am a child of God. That resonated with me and it still does. What I am saying today, finally out loud, is that I am not only a child of God, I AM God. I say finally, because I have known it for a long time, but never dared to say it,  claim it, because where I come from it is the ultimate blasphemy and the society I live in does not take well to this idea either. Yet to own my self-worth, I can no longer not say it  out of fear to alienate those I love, because I am denying who I am.

When I say that I AM God, these words fill me with both awe and humility. I am celebrating the long-lost daughter who finally chose to come home, me. You see, however hard I tried, I can not see myself apart from God, I cannot see my life apart from God. God is the energy that both brings me to my knees and exalts me. I am happiest when I sing God’s praise, not so much in the traditional sense, but by acknowledging my every breath, by seeing every person as a reflection of God, everything in my life as an act of God, perfect and whole. A healthy sense of self-worth, a healthy sense of value to me is knowing that I AM God’s abundance flowing through and to me, because I can feel that in every cell of my being, in every bone. I can only truly value everything when I allow myself to see through the eyes of God. When I don’t enter God into the picture, I am this arrogant, small-minded and incredibly judging person. To me God is not only in the Gap, God is the Gap. She is the great paradigm-shifter. Only She can turn fear into love, and give me peace. I am worthy in a way that surpasses my own understanding. And I feel loved and worthy every time I allow my connection to All that is, to that which I lovingly call God, to shape my reality. This is the foundation on which I will build my self-worth, for it is the thing that is most real to me.

 

picture by Subhadip Mukherjee





Owning my self-worth

12 02 2014

 

 

Some things take time. Five months ago, I wrote an article called Shame won’t kill me. It was about walking through my deep-seated fear of failure, which was essentially a fear of not being worthy. In these past months, I have started living a more authentic life, doing the things that I love. Three weeks ago, I finally surrendered to Life, in the sense that I gave up my need to control and decided to let Life’s Flow determine where I go, trusting that things will work out for the best. As a result, I started to create opportunities for Life to flow through me. I set a time to write and a time to paint. What happened was miraculous, a kind of magic, where words just flowed out my hands on ‘paper’ with ease. It felt great.

Interestingly, after a week I started getting physically tired again. And at first I thought, “Okay, hitting a physical boundary, need to take better care of myself and maybe even take a step back.” Until my husband said, “Well, I don’t know, with you it’s always some limiting belief that is messing things up.” I mumbled something along the lines of ‘how did you get so wise?’, because of course he was spot on.

Next day, I took the sleep my body needed and after breakfast instead of sitting behind my desk I went straight to bed again, not to sleep, but to get still. And as always when I listen to that voice, Life helps me uncover what is holding me back. Still sitting in bed, I felt inspired to watch a seemingly unrelated video on youtube, a video from the goodlifeproject.com, an amazing series of interviews by Jonathan Fields in which he interviews all kinds of people about their life and asks them what living a good life means to them. In this video he talked to Kate Northrup, entrepreneur and author of the book Money, a love story. At a certain point in the interview she talks about considerable credit card debt and how she was able to turn that around after she realized that “my lack of financial consciousness and my unwillingness to take the necessary actions to pay attention to my money is in direct correlation to my lack of self-value, and it is a way that I am keeping myself  small and plain.” It was as if a light went on inside my head. Most of my life, I have been uncomfortable with money. Not anymore with money persé, but still very uncomfortable with me making money. Listening to Kate I realized that my discomfort to receive money for my work is because I believe I am not adding value. OUCH! That is a painful ‘truth’ to discover. While letting that pain emerge and sitting through it, I wondered if I was still feeling unworthy? The answer was “No, I don’t”. I have let go of that longheld belief, but, big but, I have not yet embraced my worthiness, my value. On an intellectual level I can see that I DO add value, but I do not feel it yet. The time has come to integrate that knowledge, to feel it, know it and be it. I now understand that a healthy sense of value is not a quality some people just have and others don’t. Like many other things it is a habit. You can train yourself to see you own worth. You can become habituated in recognizing the value you add, whether it is in a smile, a good-timed cuddle, a healthy meal, a wel-written article or a painting.

This definitely is another milestone on my journey. I am celebrating not only this particular occasion, but this journey of self-exploration and self-healing. I have come such a long, long way! As I am writing these words, I can feel the value my journey has added to not only my life, but to the lives of the people around me. It humbles me and at the same time it feels incredibly good. I am SOOOO ready to feel more of this. I feel blessed to be living this. I am loving the unfolding of my life and am eager to live more of ME. I must say that I am very excited about the road that lies ahead. Things are really getting better every step of the way, my way.

 

image by Christian Ferrari

 





It’s a kind of magic

5 02 2014

 

 

 

It is Wednesday, I have just done my two hours of writing. I have one and a half hour left to write my blog and I have no clue what to write about. So I let my fingers hover over the key board and trust that the words will come. It is what I have been doing this last week and it has been a miraculous proces. I feel a buzz at the top of my head and the story flows out of my hands. I am doing the formulating, the writing and yet I am not working alone. The story somehow develops itself. I will sit down, I will have an inkling of an idea and that’s it, what happens next comes as a surprise.
In eight days, I have written almost 13.000 words. Wow! And that in only two hours a day. I am learning to trust the proces. Interestingly, the effort is not in the writing, the effort is in allowing the magic to happen. There are moments when I feel stuck, but that is only when I don’t trust enough, when I don’t allow the flow to come through me, when I am forcing.
Where this all will lead, I don’t know, and I don’t need to know. I am at peace with that. I don’t even know if the writing is any good, and that’s okay too. I trust that somehow this all will work out. I trust that the Universe does not put a flame in my heart, provides oxygen for it to burn and then does not light a room with it.

 

picture by Marchecco