It's a funny thing, being a human. I mean, I believe that we're more than just our human form, but that doesn't always help me when I'm lost in the woods. Even though I know that there is an infinite energy for good at the helm, my human mind doesn't always use that resource very well. Lately I've felt a little lost, which is a funny thing for a life coach and licensed Spiritual Practitioner to admit. Me? Human? What?!
What I have found is that expanding out beyond my old limitations is pretty darn scary. It takes an inordinate amount of courage to stretch out past what is familiar into uncharted ground. I'd say my greatest challenge came because of two of the most awesome gifts from my Hendricks Institute training: essence pace and breathing. It was an incredible blessing to learn how to move at the pace that feels real and true for me, and how to breathe properly, which has completely rewired my system. Now when I move at my old pace, I feel rushed and stressed, which is a big NO for me since my transformation. But moving fast was all that I knew for such a long time and this new way of living is so foreign that I sometimes don't know who I am. I can feel like I’m not doing enough, not moving forward. And this makes me vulnerable to my self-critic.
The old me moved through life quickly and got a lot done. I mean A LOT! The old me filled my days with as much as she could, making sure I was "working" and "moving forward" all the time. Think New-Jersey-East-Coast style: go go go go go goooooooo! This new me, she refuses to move at that pace and knows that there is enough time for whatever needs to happen. She knows that she is the creator of time in her world. But the old me still lives within, and she's quite the little rascal. She's a critic in my head saying I am not doing enough, or that I'm not focusing on the right things, and sometimes she's yelling "fire-fire!" or at least that's what it feels like. I think I'll call her Lil' Rascal from now on.
A fantastic tool of the Hendricks is the concept of ‘personas.’ Lil' Rascal is an excellent example of one. Personas are aspects of our personality that we developed to deal with fear and they are often linked to how we got attention when we were young. The thing about personas is that they are really an essence quality of ours that is coming out sideways. Lil' Rascal is a messy expression of an essence quality of mine: I’m a creative thinker who can find unique ways to accomplish goals. Lil' Rascal developed when I was small, because my creative nature made me seem flaky or weird to adults around me, so she showed up to help me prove myself. The sentence I hear most in my head is "Oh that Michele" which pretty much tells the story of why Lil' Rascal is trying so hard. She never felt like she was seen as capable or reliable.
I'd like to learn more about Lil' Rascal so I can understand her better. I'll use a fabulous Hendricks tool called the Persona Interview.
So, Lil’ Rascal...
What's the most important thing to you? "to prove myself."
And what are you most proud of? "well, I get a lot done."
And when did you make your first appearance? hmmmm. I'm not sure...
And who did you learn your style from? "Oh, I think that would be my grandma, she never stopped and did so many amazing things for people."
And what are you most afraid of? "being seen as a failure."
And what do you most want? "to be seen... to succeed."
After pondering this a bit, I see that I may have learned my style more from my Dad, who probably learned it from his mom. I feel more clear about how Lil' Rascal is deeply rooted in my essence - my passion for life, my creative way of seeing the world. I see that how somehow I got the idea that something was wrong with me and my way of doing things and have spent most of my life trying to prove myself. Wow.
I'd like to put Lil' Rascal into retirement and that is going to take a serious commitment. She has been my constant companion for my whole life. She is so damn good at shaming me for not getting the latest post on instagram, or lagging on a commitment. "Oh that Michele" And then, there I am, feeling lost in the woods not knowing how I got there. Keeping myself out of the woods is really about recognizing Lil' Rascal's critical voice in my head and gracefully tuning it out. Maybe I'll send Lil' Rascal to the woods to keep her busy while my true essence leads me out, because feeling lost in the woods goes against my very nature. It's one thing to feel unclear and another to be lost in self-criticism. At my core is an unrelenting optimist, who sees possibility and solutions everywhere, and dang, my inner critic is like the weeds in my backyard, persistent and strong. Freeing myself from Lil' Rascal sounds like quite a fantastic idea.
When my essence is leading, I feel light and free. I may walk through the woods but I'm not afraid; rather, I am looking for ways to enjoy the journey knowing that I am always in the right place at the right time. Lil' Rascal, your evil reign is over. This is my life, my journey through the woods, and if I feel like frolicking for awhile, I'm damn well going to enjoy it.
Sassy Visionary of Wholeness
Certified Big Leap Coach
Agape Licensed Spiritual Practitioner
Co-Owner, Michele and Dean, LLC
Saying Yes to Life...