Love Is My Community

21 02 2013

DSC00852Thought I’d share a poem I recently wrote after a week of seeing, hearing, feeling, and knowing love.  I interact with so many people who, whether spoken or unspoken, question love.  I help some to see that “love gets in” when we begin to show that love to ourselves.  But love is a community, it comes from within, it comes from above, it comes from the arms, neighbors, family, friends, and strangers around us and so this poem:

Love Is A Community

Love is a community

A heavy blanket becomes

A playful hideaway with the lift of a friend’s arms

Scary monsters shadowed on the walls become

Characters in a tale when a friend sees them with you

Sounds of voices – noises become

A lullaby in the protection of a caring embrace

Love is a community

The scatter of papers, clothes, boxes, clutter become

A possibility with the hands of friends

A can of soup, a box of crackers become

Gourmet when not eaten alone

A lament becomes

Poetry when read by another

Love is a community

Love is not a battlefield,

A torture chamber,

An asylum

Love doesn’t profess lies,

Judgment,

Superiority

Love doesn’t promise to stop,

Then forget

Love doesn’t promise to give,

Then change the rules

Love says, I am sorry,

I am sad,

I was wrong

Love takes the first step

In making amends

Love waits,

Stays present, sits quietly,

And trusts

That there will be a time

When words will come

Love is a community

My community

Love





Ego-Honored Creativity

22 01 2013

DSC01927Are you feeling alive to new creativity?  Enthused with the new year of new beginnings, opportunities?  Are you gracing yourself with time and opportunity to dabble, create, have fun, try new things?  We are a few weeks into renewed enthusiasm; how is it working for you?

I am hearing from some that they are experiencing a block, their interest is there, their desire is there, and when they sit down to write, draw, create – everything goes blank.  Someone else recently shared that she has this dangling desire but she doesn’t know what to do – she doesn’t know where to begin.  One other person said, (like I deal with so often, as well) that she battles the perfection issue and therefore does nothing.

Oh, blessed ego.  I have no intentions to exposit on ego, to dis it, or to tell you to thwart it, or rid of it.  In fact, I think the opposite is true.  Let me explain.

We know the ego is not the innovator in our lives.  It governs the safe aspects of us.  It needs validation, approval, rightness.  Our ego dares not to be ok, just ok, it wants brilliancy.  So many veins of thought lead us into the practice of getting rid of ego’s power for the good of the commonality of humanity, for the practice of oneness, for the betterment of our souls.  Do you ever find though, that when you move in to “work” on things, or attempt to override the ego, there is more failure sometimes, and a greater ego-battle?

Instead of trying to lessen or get rid of the ego’s influence or domination, maybe we should embrace it.  Move into it, acknowledge its purpose, appreciate how it has helped, protected, kept us safe throughout the years.  In fact, perhaps we should take a different approach with our own self care in acknowledging the ego as brilliant.  Hmmm.  Brilliant.  Yes, brilliant to help with resiliency, management of experiences, (t)raumas in our lives, (T)raumas (if there were those), and relationships.  Our egos protect us from hurtful words, interactions, and patterns.  Our esteem is our management of our self in this world protected by our ego.  Our view of our self-worth or value is not just based on external influences, it is based on our egos protection of our self in relationship.  Protectively we position ourselves better than in some situations, worse than, in others, over powering at times, victim-like at times, but we don’t do that because it is fun, or we have time on our hands.  Our ego brilliantly protects us in relationship to the world.

Homeostasis.  Balance.  Acceptance.  Validation.  Normalization.  No matter what we are experiencing in our lives, these words are the intentions, as is true with creativity, our ego, and its role in protecting us.  So when we look at being free and balanced in our energies, and when we desire to allow our creativity to flow, it is good to bring acceptance and appreciation for the role of protectiveness of the ego so that homeostasis frees up our creativity.

I recently have been working through Julia Cameron’s, Sound of Paper, and in one of her contemplations, she spoke about an “ego-free art” experience.  I dabbled with that in the context of living with acceptance, and thought the way we can move towards an ego-free art experience is to accept the brilliancy of the ego.  When we are able to be ok being ok, then we are able to open up and stand in the power of our creative nature, giving that freedom as well – freedom from judgment, externally or internally, freedom from perfection, freedom from should’s.

I continue to be blessed, mightily by those who live in these freedoms in their writing, creativity, art, journaling, and who model these freedoms by sharing with the world.  If you are being strangled by the need for perfection or the feelings of “I am not an artist”, or “I can’t write”, perhaps you can take something from these thoughts and integrate them into your life . . . and then perhaps you will bless the world with your creativity.  So too, I dabbled in my ego free art zone where I acknowledged the brilliancy of my ego so that I could dare to create . . . and when I dared to create, yes, the ego took some pleasure in the creation when she was invited in – smile.)

(Special thanks to an artist lesson on YouTube of which I integrated their ideas into a project for the sake of learning.)





Go In

20 12 2012

 

Go In

 

look beyond the knowings of your mind

go in

look at the ancient, timeless truths

drawn on the walls of your soul

don’t let darkness shroud your knowing

go in

it is there that the eyes of your soul will adjust

sit, listen, wait

for the walls will speak

of stories, truths that transcend

man’s need, attempt to control truth

feel

the energies of endless time

generations, lives, civilizations before you

ripples of knowing

as endless as the drops in the ocean

don’t move

let the vibrations of knowing move in you

let it pulse that you may become one

with every reverberation

now move

touch, taste, feel, see

explore the remnants

the artifacts, the truths

touch the stones of sacredness

the voluptuous beauty of her power

left for your knowing

stories inscribed in stains

uncorrupted by the feebleness of man’s tainting

now bathe

bathe in truth

cleansing the lies, beliefs

and crustings of pain

yours, of the times, and lifetimes

adorn, now

the fragrance of all that you are

clothe yourself in the power and majesty

of grace, light, love

but don’t stop there

take the hand of the person next to you

dance for them

celebrate you that they may see

the eternal being that you are

take them to the entrance of their soul

hold the door, invite them to go in

embrace them with hope and courage

invite them to learn the sacredness of who they are

that they too might dance

lastly, resume

delight in you, eternal you

yes, you

dance

© Kristin Kennedy, 2012

 





Enter The Sanctuary

3 12 2012

English: Narthex of the church Notre-Dame de l...

Are you familiar with the term narthex? When I was growing up I went to a church and they called the place outside the place you worshiped the narthex. It was the place where everyone talked before and after church. Out of curiosity, I looked up the word in the dictionary and learned that the word narthex was Latin from Medieval Greek, and meant “porch at the end of the early church which was used by penitents not admitted to the body of the church.” I knew it as the place where all the talking happened.

To me, it looked like the narthex was the place to hang out and catch up on the gossip of the community.  It was the place to be. Unlike being in the narthex, going into the sanctuary was hard because you had to be quiet there, you were supposed to sit still, and you were supposed to focus (often on things you really didn’t understand). Sometimes it seems like people would talk in the narthex, interrupt there talking to go into the sanctuary to worship, and then resume their talking in the narthex. Isn’t that how it is in our lives, so often?

Many of us are on a journey of self.  That journey takes many forms spiritually, and to each of us, that journey is different, and yet the same.  We all need to enter the sanctuary of our hearts – that place of quiet, solitude, seeking, grappling, wrestling, rebelling, learning to know, and knowing.  That sanctuary can be anywhere, walking in the woods, driving, in your bedroom, in a formal building, your sacred place, your favorite cozy chair – anywhere, because the sanctuary is in you.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes the hardest place to go is into the sanctuary.  It is so much easier to stand in the narthex and pour out your heart, get the advice of this person, because you know she has gone through something similar to you.  Then you run to catch another person (in the narthex) to chat, then pour out your heart, and get her input.  Need I go on?

Let me tell you about people in the narthex.

  • First of all, they are in the narthex, so that should give you a hint.
  • Secondly, most people in the narthex like to hear your story because it in a way is gossip, a little juice about you and      your adequacies/inadequacies.
  • Thirdly, once they hear, the tendency of many is to start the comparison process inside while you are speaking.  It may go something like this, [Isn’t that something!  Well at least my son didn’t do that.  What kind of mother would let her son do that?]  Then it might go on to this, [Wait until I tell Myrtle, I have to call her and tell her what is going on.]  Then this, [I have to say something supportive. I have to try to help her see it the right way.  Won’t it feel good if my advice works.  That will      make me feel good.  At least saying      it makes me feel like I am better than her because my son didn’t do that, and I am giving her advice.]   Then her words might follow, “I am so sorry.  I will pray for you.  Maybe you should…  Your son, how can he be so ungrateful?  You need to…”  So much goes on in our heads before words of “care” come forth when we are the listener in the narthex.

Somehow, so often the narthex interaction “feels” better.  It feels good to be heard.  It feels good to compare.  It feels good to get advice.  But the truth is we meet our knowing in the sanctuary.  We have all truth and knowing and it is there in the sanctuary of our own knowing, our own heart.  Go in, enter, be present with yourself; meet God there.  Return to simplicity, to rest, to your feelings.  Be present with your emotions: grief, sadness, bitterness, jealousy, delights, joys.  Sit quietly in the confusion, the uncertainties, the fears.  Keep it simple.  Cry out.  Marvel.  Be present.  Observe.  Going into the sanctuary takes time, purpose, seeking, being present.  It is not an intellectual task (I certainly would like to make it that at times).  It does take willingness to go and to be present.

Note about the narthex:  It is certainly ok to find one another in the narthex, but as we all grow to be more comfortable in the sanctuary, the narthex experience changes, becomes more grand, rich, genuine – because when we can be present with ourselves then we are so much more easily present with others.  Just saying…





Intuition – Part 2

14 11 2012

I used to think of intuition as that ah-ha moment, that gut feeling, that moment when I get a “supernatural” knowing, but I don’t think of intuition only in that context anymore.  When I talk now about intuition I’m not talking about that occasional “hit” or ah-ha moment, or that occasional gut feeling of knowing, I am talking about living moment by moment, or life-living-knowing. I’m talking about the flow of energy, knowing.  From an energy perspective, intuition is that flow of vibrational frequencies that are coming to us all the time, coming in, sourcing us with knowing.  We are connected through energy, frequencies, in a greater, universal way.  It is this continual connectedness to knowing, that we don’t trust or have cut off and have learned to not trust – feeling more in control or safer staying in our intellect.  Intuition, I think, is living, trusting, and believing that knowing – that constant knowing.

The concept of intuition has such varying perspectives and beliefs, some of which perhaps are so limiting at times, that I wanted to think-out-loud with you about them in this post.  One of those beliefs is that, intuition is an occasional thing, a hit, as I mentioned before.  I think intuition is more than that moment, I see it more as a flow. A second thing is that it comes to us, and I think it is always there for us, it is in us, we are always connected to a greater, more powerful knowing. I think we block it.

Recently, I talked to a cable/internet service electrician about my internet being so weak up in my bedroom.  He said the reason it is weak is that it is the farthest distance away from the modem, but more so, the cause is that I have recessed lighting in my kitchen (which is below my bedroom).  I thought that was kind of funny.  He continued to explain that the frequencies from the lighting in the ceiling and the types of lights that they are, are confounding the signals and frequencies from the modem/internet getting to my bedroom.  Hmmm.  We talked about the possibilities that a booster or an extender (evidently they are two different things) might strengthen the signals and help to intercede with the problem.

In thinking about his explanation of the frequency issues with the lights, I thought in a way, that really is what happens with intuition as well. Intuition is that universal frequency, God frequency, Holy Spirit, Divine energy coming in and always being there and always having connection, source, knowledge at our avail – and yet so many things have gotten in the way of that connection.

Recess lighting, in the analogy, might be our attachment styles.  How we learn to trust people.  How we learn to trust ourselves with people.  How we learn to trust our environment.  How we learn to trust God. Furthering the complexity of frequencies, are our defense mechanisms, coping styles, ego states – all ways we learned/developed through relationships, attachments or lack of, (t)raumas [i.e. a child skinning his knee], (T)raumas [i.e. auto accident].  All of these carry different frequencies of energy (protective, combative, based in emotions, etc.) and they stand in the way of our connectedness to our intuition, our soul knowing – that connectedness to our higher Frequency.

Additionally I think as I mentioned before, perhaps our belief systems become other recessed lights; our culture; the times; the circumstances of our times; the things we listen to, the things we buy into, our dogma, all of those things…the cultural perception of us;  our weight and height, our race, gender, beliefs, all of those things are the recessed lights that get in the way of our being receptive, not even being receptive, but having that frequency come in and be strong in us and through us, and in our being.

So when we start to realize there are all of these recessed lights; some we can change, some we can disconnect their power, some we can move or relocate, others we can put filters on so that they don’t directly affect the frequencies/flows that are coming in to us and through us.  The connectedness we have to knowing is our intuition.  It is not that intuition is a hit, but that given all of the interference, it comes to us as that ah-ha moment, like it is unique or supernatural, like it is something we have to wait for and capture with the chance of missing it.  I think it is always there, at our avail. Our beings have learned to block it or disregard it out of protection or learned management in the world, but it is there.

I agree at times we get surges, those blatant knowing experiences.  They are there, they, I think will always protectively be there for our good.  More so than the surges is our coming to honor or soul – honor our intuition.  How do we continue to recognize, normalize, validate, and learn to work with the recessed lights that are blocking us from the frequencies that are there for us?

Another way I described this concept of the avail of our intuition to someone one time was to say, we have all of these filters and we have to take and move as many filters as we can so that the frequencies can stay strong and pure.  Perhaps the filters would be better understood as shields.  And all of the things I talked about attachment styles, dogmas, emotions, relationships, experiences, trauma, all of those things are the shields that we use…and use is a good word, that we use to keep us from the purity of the frequency coming through.  Because if we all really tapped into that frequency that is there for us, that is scary, unknown, powerful.

I think we do have those capabilities of being powerful, not in an authoritative way, not in a powerful way we know, but in a knowing way, powerful in our intuition in combination with our intellect, powerful in our energetic being, powerful in our really comprehending the circumstances of our universe, our community, our relationships, knowing what it feels like when I have judgment on others, knowing what that judgment feels like as the recipient, knowing what it feels like when I have anger or war feelings, knowing – knowing from a heart knowing, an intuitive knowing, that what  I do unto others, I know what it feels like.  That is the intuition about which I am talking.

That is the analogy perhaps that I wanted to share.  I know that there are some who really say “yes” that is intuition, and there are some others that are in that wonderment stage.  I think we can all grapple with this.  I love the dialogue that has come forth in the comments from my previous blog and I continue to invite those comments, thoughts, contemplations, and grapplings, because it is in that, that we are all moving towards either moving the shields or relocating the recessed lights or taking the power out of them so that we don’t have the confounding frequencies.  We have the avail of the Highest Frequencies all of the time, it is that which I think is intuition.  Thought to integrate: perhaps if you are experiencing low signals, you might want to check your recessed lighting – smile.





Enjoy = In-Joy

17 07 2012

Are you enjoying you?  Are you enjoying what you are doing?  Are you enjoying life?  The word enjoy means to give joy to; to find pleasure in, and to have use or benefit from/of.  So many of us do things because we think it is expected of us, because “we have to”, because we think it is “all that we know to do” rather than because of enjoyment.

If we are energetic beings, and all our physical, emotional, mental, and interactive energies are always about seeking homeostasis or balance, then when we are doing things out of habit, obligation, duty, fear of change, or because we think it is going to make others happy, than we throw our energies out of balance – causing our system to create counter-balances.  Let me explain with an example.

We get up every day and go to a job that we are burned out in and we dread.  We feel trapped in our circumstances.  We don’t like our boss or we have a co-worker who bothers us.  Our circumstances set off many different “systems” inside: stress increases – hormones imbalance; adrenals, liver, and thyroid overload or shut down; acidity/alkalinity levels imbalance affecting digestion, absorption of nutrients, and elimination; quality nourishment changes because we grab on-the-go foods with little nutritional value; sleep habits get interrupted, emotions vacillate between depression, anger, jealousy, shame, despair; mentally we dull because our efforts are put towards balancing stress through “survival”.  Because we seek homeostasis, we will ourselves to over-ride all of the just-mentioned, adding to the stress, and self-deprecation trying to re-balance the system, but stress doesn’t balance stress, so eventually our body responds with dis-ease.  Disease is a way of our body saying “it is too much”, it is a forced attempt at homeostasis, a wake-up call – a shout out to your system to restore enjoyment.

Thank goodness for us being homeostatic beings.  One of my mentors always says enjoyment means being in joy, and if we are not in joy, then we need to stop what we are doing and get back to being in-joy.  Joy is balance.  Joy is what creates an environment of healthier homeostasis in our beings.

One last integrative thought: when we are interacting, serving, giving, or ministering to others through efforts, obligation, duty, than what we are giving them is more stress and our efforts – efforts which are usually tainted with either strong or subtle imposing emotions (shame guilt, frustration, disappointment, resentment), and negative energy.  We know when others feel those emotions or energies from us being imposed on them, than their “homeostatic desiring systems” usually respond with defensiveness, walled-off-boundaries, lack of appreciation, and hurt . . . and we think we are acting in love and we are hiding our feelings from others (fooling them).  We aren’t fooled, why would we think others are.  Bottom line: if we are not enjoying life than others around us are not going to find joy either.





Love: Let It Begin In Me

16 05 2012

Yesterday I shared a post titled Three Covenants by Mark Nepo on an excerpt from his forthcoming book noting that I would post today my integration of thoughts (my rabbit trail)…

Mark’s first covenant, regarding the work of love with others, states that we cannot desire to change or force others to grow in our direction, and we can in love create conditions for truth and beauty to grow for them, is true for ourselves as well.  You may remember from reading other posts that I view each of us as a system of modes of operandi, or management skills, ego states, or coping skills.  In our systems we develop ways of handling patterns of interactions with others, as well as ways of handling patterns of interactions between feelings inside us.  For instance, we feel lonely or scared, and in order to deal, many of us develop skills to shame ourselves out of the feeling of being lonely or scared.  Then, perhaps, we handle that shame with getting mad at others and lashing out with our feelings.  Then we feel more shame and shove the (original) lonely or scared feeling deeper, we fight outwardly more, and we shame ourselves and others more.  In a way we have our own little management community inside and most people don’t have a clue that is going on in us (because part of the shame is telling ourselves we are unique and no one else struggles with this issue [smile]).  I describe the above as being in a hamster wheel, and going around and around.  Some of us experience this conundrum 24/7 while others perhaps only periodically.

The way to find healing and growth in this cycle for ourselves is the same that Mark speaks about with others – love and acceptance, validation, and creating an environment of ok-ness (not “reactionary cover-up for the outside world behaviors”).  If we can see in ourselves that we are sad, or afraid, or lonely, and honor that, validate, and accept that, then we are creating a condition by which that which is true, can be ok.  When it is ok, we can meet that need – change the energy, call someone, write about it, etc.  When we are able to honor the feeling, we can grow and blossom.  These deep, real feelings that we try to: repress, avoid, deny, compartmentalize, project, or shame are as honorable as those feelings that we want others to see, or the world to approve, or which we want to hide behind.  When we hide them then we never can get to our deepest nature.  (And,) when we don’t allow ourselves to live in our own beauty and deepest nature, we can never really see others (or let others see us) through the covenants of love about which Mark speaks.

So, in many ways, the work of love that we desire to grow in having with others begins with that same care for ourselves.  May it be said, “Let there be peace on earth and let it begin (in) me.”…smile.

If you need a reminder of his post, it is included here:

Three Covenants

Our love needs to be bigger than our insanity.
—Henk Brandt

There are three covenants that keep us engaged in the work of love. To begin with, when we see something true and beautiful in someone, it is not the work of love to change them or force their growth in our direction. It is the work of love to create conditions by which what is true and beautiful in all we behold can grow and blossom, bringing forth its deepest nature. At the same time, the work of love depends on giving others, especially young people, a sense of safety in the world, nurturing their confidence to lean into life and the unknown—not away from these eternal resources. Still, being human, we constantly slip from integrating our experience to being consumed by our experience. We move, almost daily, from having our fear, pain, and worry live in us to living within our fear, pain, and worry. So the third covenant of love is to keep each other company when we’re drowning in our experience and awash in our feelings, until it all can right-size, until our experience and feelings can once again live in us. These covenants exercise the muscle of compassion we call the heart.

—excerpt from Seven Thousand Ways to Listen, forthcoming from Simon & Schuster, October 2012





The Work of Love

15 05 2012

I receive the weekly e-mail from Mark Nepo and his peers at Three Intentions (www.threeintention.com) and find his writing  inspirational and challenging. It integrates well into my way of seeing the world. I am including his weekly intention here, because it is a good thought to integrate. Tomorrow I will post a “rabbit trail” of my thoughts about his three covenants. Until then, I hope you take time to read and ponder.

Three Covenants

Our love needs to be bigger than our insanity. —Henk Brandt

There are three covenants that keep us engaged in the work of love. To begin with, when we see something true and beautiful in someone, it is not the work of love to change them or force their growth in our direction. It is the work of love to create conditions by which what is true and beautiful in all we behold can grow and blossom, bringing forth its deepest nature.  At the same time, the work of love depends on giving others, especially young people, a sense of safety in the world, nurturing their confidence to lean into life and the unknown—not away from these eternal resources. Still, being human, we constantly slip from integrating our experience to being consumed by our experience. We move, almost daily, from having our fear, pain, and worry live in us to living within our fear, pain, and worry. So the third covenant of love is to keep each other company when we’re drowning in our experience and awash in our feelings, until it all can right-size, until our experience and feelings can once again live in us. These covenants exercise the muscle of compassion we call the heart.

—excerpt from Seven Thousand Ways to Listen, forthcoming from Simon & Schuster, October 2012





Balancing Emotions

19 03 2012

Emotions.  Gifts of the heart.  The heart’s full expression.  All emotions are gifts.  Is this how you view emotions?  I know in myself and in working with others, so often we view the “negative emotions” as bad or wrong, and the “positive emotions” as things to strive towards.  “Stop your anger.”  “Jealousy is wrong.”  “I’ll give you something to cry about.”  “Don’t be afraid.”  Did you ever receive these words?  Or say them?  Or, “Why aren’t you happy?” (As if sad is not ok.)  Emotions, the truth is, are ours to behold; everyone one of them.  We could not be conscious thinking human beings without the spectrum of emotions in our lives.  Emotions are our heart.  It is our mind and the recording of experiences that has deemed emotions as wrong.

What might be wrong is how we try to avoid them, deny them, or circumvent them, instead of trying to embrace them.  What might be wrong is how we learn to manage them because of our perception that they themselves are wrong.  Our way of managing them may be wrong, but denying them and seeing them as wrong, is like trying to shut off a part of our hearts, locking the door, throwing away the key, and saying, “There is not even a room there; what room?”

I was speaking with someone the other day, and we were along in this discussion about all emotions are God-given, gifts, and a part of our heart.  The discussion led to:  1. The reality that once we accept our emotions, so often, we then continue in the flip-flopping reactivity in ourselves with the emotions, and 2.  How do we manage this reality.  What came forth was this illustration and I thought I would share it with you.

We react in our beings and then we counter-react, and then counter-react, on and on.  For example, we might have a fear of not being good enough, then inside us, as a response to that fear, we work extra hard trying to boost our own pride, then when we think we have over achieved and are better than, or when someone “knocks us down” or competes, we then become more aggressive.  So we flip-flop, back and forth, inside ourselves, with these emotions, in order to try to “look ok” to the rest of the world, while we are in a constant state of flux and stress inside trying to maintain the image and some sense of balance.  There are much better ways of professionally or technically presenting this concept, however, bringing it into such rawness, may make a little more connection.

Our beings do want balance.  Unfortunately though, often times balance comes with extreme, counter-balancing extreme.  Our desire would be to best acknowledge all of the feelings/emotions and ways of expression without judgment minimizing the extreme fluctuations.  If you are familiar with tri-corner hats, or tricornes as they are known, they have three corners.  (I learned in researching them that the purpose of wearing a three-cornered hat was to channel rain-water away from the body.)  To make the illustration now, the tricorne was to be worn balanced flatly on top of the head so that all three corners were balanced.  Our emotions are like the three corners, if they can be in balance, with respect, acknowledgement, and without judgment, then the hat will sit flatly on the top of the head.  The hat was not meant to be worn tilted or lopsided because then it’s purpose would not be effective; as is true with our emotions.  When one emotion becomes too much out of balance or is perceived that way inside, then the drastic counter-balancing occurs.

The moral of the story is that when you find your emotions flip-flopping and reactionary to each other, then remember the tricorne and its purposes for being balanced – so that the rainwater is channeled away from the body (much like our emotions – accepted, acknowledged, and without radical judgment.)

In honor of my German teacher in high school, let me leave you with this song I remember and can actually sing:

Mein Hut, der hat drei Ecken,
Drei Ecken hat mein Hut.
Und hätt’ er nicht drei Ecken,
So wär’s auch nicht mein Hut.

My hat, it has three corners,
Three corners has my hat,
And had it not three corners,
It would not be my hat.





Move In To Move Out

8 03 2012

Human nature is human nature.  We are no different from anyone else with whom we interact.  I was talking with someone the other day and he noted that he knows what he is doing is wrong, but he can’t stop doing it.  On top of that after he does the “not-desired” behavior, he hates himself all the more.  I told him as much as he didn’t like his behaviors and saw himself with shame, he was not unique in the “do-hate-shame” pattern, and that acknowledging/exposing the pattern was a first step.

I so appreciate that much understanding of human behavior is being seen, more and more, through an attachment lens.  I worked for some years with children who did not experience healthy attachments, and who learned to “survive” with their own means to manage life.  Briefly, let me explain.  If mice don’t experience nurture or care, they die.  Humans have greater self care.  Instead of “dying physically” our psyches are brilliant, and learn to adapt rather quickly with much resiliency.  Simply said, the psyche takes on ownership/responsibility of the lack of care/neglect so that there is some sense of control.  It (the psyche) becomes self-reliant as best as possible, and needs to do so in order to manage the reality that “love” is absent or chaotically confusing.   Control becomes a survival – their “gift” to themselves.  However, the truth/belief behind the “gift” is this:  “It has to be my fault/responsibility that I am not loved because if it is the responsibility of those who were supposed to love me, and they didn’t, then I don’t think I could survive.”

The concept in parenting or creating attachment, then, is not to move in and “shower love and gifts”, and “makeup” for the absences of trust and love, because that is threatening to their trust in their own (brilliant) system they instinctively created.  If you understand the upstream/downstream concept, then trying to force your agenda and love will send the person upstream becoming more protective of his system, less trusting, and more defensive.  It does the opposite of our “good intentions”.  Instead, we need to: move towards slowly with validation, acknowledge his “brilliancy”, support/come alongside in his “doing life”‘, and wait for him to “grow” or expand his trust circle.  We teach parents to have time-ins instead of time-outs, in order to demonstrate that they are going to be there, they are not going anywhere, and that they are able to be trusted when the child is ready.  (Time-out reinforces the über-protective self-reliance and increases a chasm in trust because it justifies the “fault” and consequences.  The child knows fault/responsibility and “safely” stays in that control of “it is my fault,” “see I’m bad” way of managing life.)

So, how does all of this discussion relate to the original issue of our “do-hate-shame” pattern?  Our behaviors are “protective” of our homeostasis.  We learn patterns, habits, behaviors because they meet some need in us.  Our being is always seeking homeostasis and balance, so when we “meet a need” with a behavior and it unbalances the system, then we counteract with another behavior, a belief, an emotion, to regain some sense of balance in the system.  If we move into the system and judge the behavior as “bad/wrong/not good”, then like the child above, our system is going to respond defensively, paddle harder upstream, become secretive in both the action and the shame.  In a sense the same needs with attachment with others, is what we experience internally with our own ego states or management styles.  Homeostasis is best when the different management styles in us (reactionary behaviors) know, trust, and feel safe in the system called self, and trust our heart/soul/true self.

Like the parenting style suggested, we need to “move into the behavior, validate the “why’s”, normalize, eliminate the judgment, and minimize the flip-flop reactions in the system we brilliantly created.  When we do so, there is greater homeostasis and less reactionary behaviors, which in turn, in a way, dis-empowers the negative behavior and therefore, then also, minimizes the “do-hate-shame” cycle.  Hope that makes sense.

Integrative thought:  We need to move in to the behavior in order to move it out.








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