The first few years of my life, parents were predominantly absent. My sister became both my “mother” and my taskmaster. To achieve anything then, I had to make a lot of effort. Everything I did involved obeying and keeping up with someone two years older. When talking ages two and four, that’s a big, challenging difference.
Later, living with my father, there was a great emphasis on achievement. Did your parent use this one? “You got a 98, why didn’t you get 100?” He made my sister take high school chemistry over because she earned a “C.” We were just trying to live up to the demands of our world and our father. Achievement was demanded from outside.
I didn’t realize the cost of this on me and my body until I was in my 40’s. I got a weekly massage from a very sensitive masseuse, who would ask me to move a hand or a foot to improve healing. I responded so forcefully she had to devise other ways to achieve her healing! I would stop at nothing to achieve what was asked of me.
I had learned to achieve:
- Based on what someone else wanted
- Driven by fear of not doing it right or meeting demands
- Being willing to try, but seldom convinced I could achieve
- Based on “hard work,” always fearful I wasn’t doing it “right”
Growing older, I came to understand more about my spiritual nature. I came to understand we humans are part of an experiment that involves love. Like a Mars Rover, we get sent out to the earth, participate in our particular way in this experiment about “love” and “not love,” then “send” the information back to home base. Lives here on earth are supposed to have some challenges, but overall, we’ve been sent to a gorgeous planet and achieve experimental outcomes best when we’re happy, flowing, and following our heart.
Blockages and Resistance
When I began to get in charge of emotions, to master them, I realized that most of the issues we have in not living happy, flowing and heart-directed lives have to do with us being in almost constant resistance!
Emotions are energy. They follow the “rules” that govern energy. Emotions can’t be created nor destroyed, we can’t get rid of them, though they can be directed. If we block their movement they will build up behind the blockage, gaining in volume and strength. Even as they gain volume and strength, they constantly seek to escape from the blockage, sometimes causing problems through their need to move.
Usually, the blockages people erect to impede the movement of emotions are not complete, enabling leaks. We block emotions we don’t want others to know we’re experiencing, working to hide emotions like hurt, fear, jealousy, guilt, or anger. We don’t realize that we hurt ourselves by doing this. Anger, held onto long enough, can actually kill us. Anger poisons the vessel in which it is held, us.
When the blockage isn’t complete, we’re in resistance. We’ve slowed the movement of emotional energy but haven’t totally blocked it. Resistance created in an electrical circuit causes overload and can blow the system or start a fire. Resistance developed with emotions, causes “blowing the system” and “starting a fire” to occur inside of us. Anger plays a part in every human illness. Our daily news shows us the “fires” that have been occurring in our society resulting from long-held-in anger.
How do we get anything done, how do we achieve when we’re in resistance? We can achieve, but at a huge price!
State of Flow
I’ve recently been attending two intense courses. Each requires participants to create, take risks, do things they likely have not previously done, and, successfully achieve! I’ve listened to instructors say, “We all feel fear when we stretch ourselves,” and “here are some ways to push past procrastination.” Instead of fear or procrastination, I’ve experienced gratitude for all I’ve learned about emotions. Aiming to achieve through a state of FLOW, we believe we must struggle, crawl over fear (repeatedly), and achieve by “feeling the fear and doing it anyway!”
Something different has been happening to me. I’m stretching. I’m doing new things. But I’m in the state of FLOW easily and without difficulty. I’m on my way to achieving powerful new goals much more easily than ever before! Examining my observations, here’s what I’ve discovered: As I have learned to work with emotions, to partner with them, acknowledge them, and use them as they’re intended to be used, their energy has been freed, and FLOW has become my near-constant state!
FLOW is about energy, allowing all the energy of life to flow, and keep flowing, through all the minutes of our existence! Resistance doesn’t occur when I accept or allow fear, face it, ask myself what I would do if I knew I won’t fail, and then do that, freeing its energy. I won’t achieve as much by pushing against fear. But letting myself be buoyed by the energy that was fear propels me into happily exploring the unknown. If I’m procrastinating, I can exercise Respectful Compassion. I’ll identify what I really want to do, and allow myself to do that, rather than pushing through the blockage. As soon as I stop resisting what I don’t want to do, I can identify what I do want to do, and let myself do it. Energy begins to flow. I’m carried to my achievement easily and joyfully.
When the energy of emotions is not blocked in us, we are not resisting. That energy then starts flowing. Every task becomes easier. All our desired accomplishments can FLOW easily. We can achieve many things, easily and at whatever pace we choose. We are naturally creative when emotional energy is flowing. Then, we’re living life in ways that are joyful, steady, exhilarating, and simple. Achieving anything becomes a total joy not just when the thing is achieved, but all the way through the process.
Connect with Ilene Dillon and be sure to read Chapter 15 in The Wellness Universe Guide to Complete Self-Care, 25 Tools to Achieve Anything available on Amazon June 22nd.
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