Nature as a mirror for our growth – the teachings of autumn

In you live in the world where it is autumn you cannot help but notice the beauty as nature shows us its full glory before the year darkens and hibernates. John Howard Bryant called autumn “the year’s last, loveliest smile.” For me it is a time when the world burst with it’s final boost of energy creating a masterpiece whilst gracefully surrendering to the winter. Autumn reminds me of a grandmother and child walking together through the piles of golden leaves. On the one side is the wisdom of a long life and on the other the playfull bursting energy of youth. Love it or hate it you cannot deny that the autumn is a striking time of year and one I find that has much to teach when we take time to listen.

This weekend I have been hosting two workshops about rerooting with and learning from nature and the wheel of the year (my heart project).Whenever I run these workshops I always learn and grow myself, which of course is a huge part of why I love to hold them. In the last two days I have had the opportunity to observe, reflect and connect with this beautiful time of year and as always in this time of reroot mother earth has given me some insights into my own and other’s life situations.  I would like to share these reflections with you.

The teachings of Autumn

In the last stages of life we are at our strongest and most beautiful. Autumn really shows us that the last stage of life, the last stage of growth is the most beautiful. The winds of change surround the trees but in that turbulence they stand strong and beautiful gracefully surrendering each leaf and the last seeds to the earth. The leaves are brittle as are we in old age however in their frailty they have a core strength which holds them on the trees until the moment when it is right to depart. In a way this can relate not only to the later stages of life but to our own struggles within life. During times of turbulence when we draw on our resources we can even when at our most fragile be strong and beautiful. When we surrender and let go we will fall to the forest floor however this fall is only the beginning of a new journey where the old feeds the new growth in the coming spring.

Letting go and Acceptance with dignity

It is in this process of shedding of leaves and turning to winter autumn is one of the most peaceful times of the year. Take a walk in a forest, park or even a graveyard and you will see that as our human world rushes by when we are with nature this time of year in particular has a special feeling of dignified peace. Autumn teaches us that change is inevitable and that it need not come with drama and struggle, that in fact natural change evolution happens in peace and dignity every year. For me it particularly reminds me that even within our time of dark (or the winter) that even in our shadow we are beautiful, graceful and dignified when we accept without judgement the process we are in.

Letting go does not mean we are weak and not effective

For some autumn represents a time of death and yes I agree with this as obviously all around us the non evergreen plants are dying. Yet I do not completely agree. If you take the time to look you will notice that there is still growth in autumn, it is slowed down, however in this time of peace it is there, the land is still fertile. I had the amazing opportunity to hear the inside of a tree gurgling (just like when you listen to a stomach). I had always thought that the sap within a tree retreats in the winter however what I learnt after (thanks google-fu) is that the sap within a tree slows down in the winter. It is still there hidden within nurturing the tree. Autumn shows that when we let go and slow down we can still be effective. We can still nurture and grow and achieve however it is at a slower pace. Slowing down can be just as beneficial and pushing towards a goal and by surrendering to the process as autumn does we are simply allowing ourselves to be efficient and productive in a different way.

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I believe that each season has a teaching for us if we take the time to look for it. One of the greatest things we can do for ourselves is to use nature as a mirror and learn how to observe what is happening to nature and compare it to where we are in our life at the moment.  Find some time to go out into the world this November and watch as the world turns from autumn to winter, give yourself the opportunity to reconnect and learn as well as simply enjoying this beautiful time of the year

Enjoy your journey <3

If you would like to find out more about working with nature as a mirror for your personalet growth then the Walking the Wheel of the Year personal development program could be for you – find out here

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#lifelessons101- Trusting the universe when following your dreams

Today is an epoch day for me. As I sit here on a train watching autumnal Denmark pass me by I am here right now because today I am on my way to a place where I will manifest one of my dreams. I have fought hard to get here and believe me it has not been easy. And even now when I am so close, I am still nervous, I am still afraid it won’t work and that something will go wrong. Inside me the *what are you thinking? You are mad to even try this’ voice is popping up in my head. It’s now I have to dig deep down in myself and pull on all of my powers of trusting the universe and surrender to what will be will be.

Honestly this whole journey (not the train journey but the two years up to this point) has been a life teaching in trusting the universe and surrendering my fears. Its been a huge lesson learning to hold the vision and trust that it will happen, no matter how bleak things look. I have had to learn to trust that I have done everything I can do and that I can trust the universe will do it’s part too. It’s been a ride, you know like the one which takes you high up, then you plummet to the earth with your stomach in your throat and just when you think you will explode you are shooting up again.  And here I am facing it again!

Do you have something or have ever had something that you want so badly that you dream of achieving ? Have you been there when despite everything you have tried and you cannot find the way to the result you dream of? I have, oh so many times in the last two years. You feel like giving up- right? Wrong. If I had given up at that point I would not be sitting here on this train. How I didn’t is the key to helping yourself if you are at this point in your life. You see if the last two years has taught me anything it is that at that point ,the point you feel as though you can only ever fail, it is then that you need to begin to trust the universe.

In a way trusting the universe is a form of surrendering.  Surrendering to que sera sera, whatever will be will be. If you like me are used to figthing for your dreams this can be the hardest concept to grasp. In a way it will feel like you are giving up. However trusting the universe is not about rolling over and giving up and hoping. Trusting the universe is actually huge part of manifesting your dreams, confirming to yourself that you can and will do whatever you want to do and at the same time releases and frees you from the ‘I’ll never do it’ fear.

If you are here now at the point where you cannot see the wood for the trees and are completely lost on how to create your dreams then here are the teachings I have learnt on this last journey to manifestation which I hope will guide you out of your fearfull abyss and back onto your path again.

Step 1= Assess your actions

Ok so everything looks like it is going wrong so what have you tried so far? Make a list of all the actions you have made to manifest your dream. Have you done everything you can do?

If so then tell yourself you have done your best. At this point in time you have done everything in your power to create your dream so be proud of that. I found that making a list of everything I have achieved in the last six months that brought me on step closer to my dream really helped me see how far I had come and how much I had to be proud of myself. In short I couldn’t feel as though I was failing me when the hard evidence showed me how much I had achieved.

Step 2 = Find a new angle

Look at what you have done, talk to people about it and brainstorm. By gaining perspective by writing down your actions and talking with people (or the universe) you become objective. And objectivity will give you a new angle which will inspire new actions you can take. Sometimes by simply stepping back you will find that the universe will throw you a new opportunity. Look for these. Look for the coincidences and opportunities around you. Remember life can not always follow your plan exactly so allow room in your manifestation process to allow the universe to guide you.

Step 3 = Surrender to trust

Oh this one is tough. However when you have exhausted all possible angles, actions and advice and you are still not getting there you have to simply surrender to trust. Here is where you have to have a conversation with the universe (or whatever power you believe in) and say “Hey. I am doing my best. I believe I can do this and I need your help. I trust that the universe will help me do this”. I know it sounds strange and we are in a technological and scientific age that does not advocate belief in basically praying. However saying out loud

to the universe is firstly a form of training and motivating your brain. We believe what we hear when we hear it often enough. Also this is using the law of vibration. What we send out we get back. So whenever you need to (as I do right now) say to yourself and the universe I trust you to make this happen, what will be will be.

Step 4= Do something else

You have now put your trust in the universe. If you helicopter parent it then you are only going to stress yourself out. Remember the old adage “ A watched kettle never boils” it’s true. Trust takes patience. Sometimes a lot of patience. Once you have surrendered to trusting the universe to help you manifest your dream then take a break. Plan a break and give yourself some tlc, family and friends time and simply you time. Whether its a sauna, a movie it doesn’t matter. Focus on having quality time in your life. If you want to manifest dreams you need to be working on all your batteries so recharge yourself.

Step 5 = Look for the teachings

Sometimes not getting what you want in the way you want it is the best thing that could happen to you. I know that sounds strange but hear me out. Everything in life good, bad and ugly is an opportunity to learn. More often than not we learn from our failures more than our successes. So if something is not going your way look at why? There will be a teaching.

Step 6 = Gratitude

Just as it is important to appreciate what we have achieved it is also important to be grateful. After all we are asking the universe to help us we need to be grateful for that help. Practising gratitude is always beneficial and even more so in the tougher times. Try writing 3 things you are grateful for each morning or evening. Being grateful keeps you present and will remind of what is good in life even when you can’t always feel it. If nothing else you can be grateful for your morning cup of tea- Sounds silly and I bet the idea of that made you smile! Feeling positive is part of the Battell of motivating your self to keep going and gratitude is a simple way to remain positive.

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Trusting the universe to help you manifest your dreams is a combination of taking action, surrendering to the process, learning from life’s teachings, practising patience and seeing and appreciating the now. All skills we all need no matter where we are in our life and even more when life looks bleak. As I write my train gets closer and closer to my final destination and soon I will be stepping into another chapter in my life. As I have been writing this I feel more and more confident, the fears are dimming and I know no matter what I can trust the universe to guide me on the way that is right for me. What will be will be

I hope this helps you find your way

Happy weekend <3

 

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Trusting and telling the truth about stress to your boss

In the last few weeks I have had the pleasure of seeing some of my friends from all over the world and although they are all in different professions and even different generations, it surprised me that they all have a life situation in common – work stress. What surprised me was that they all have the same coping mechanism- don’t tell the boss and work through it.

Now this of course is symptomatic of society’s work ethic and the working environment, which varies from land to land. However I found that even here in Denmark where we are fortunate enough to have a major focus on working environment and employees mental health, that people are afraid of telling their boss the truth. And because of this mental block people are left feeling isolated, alone and ultimately their situation worsens to breaking point. And at the same time whilst we are caught in this mental (and sometimes physical hell) we are not actually able to do our jobs properly, which is actually more irresponsible of us when you think about it.

It’s unhealthy to the extreme. And it made me wonder why is it we are so afraid to tell our bosses what is really going on with us?  I believe it all boils down to mistrust. We don’t trust our bosses to not judge us, we don’t trust that if (in the worse case scenario) we are dismissed from our job that the universe will help us find a new one. In short we are so busy clinging to other people’s opinions of us and our monetary survival that we make ourselves sick.

Now don’t get me wrong I know how important survival and money is. Having experienced true poverty, I know that sometimes you have to suck it up to survive. However we can “suck it up” as a victim or as a manifestor. What I mean by this is that we can allow the situation to get on top and surrender to it, or we can find ways to make life better for ourselves. And often this starts with being brave enough to ask for help. I know I know the last thing you want to do when stressed, focusing on survival and feeling hellishly alone is to reach out and trust someone to help you, however it does help.

I have always believed a quote I once heard from Nancy Astor “ I have always depended on the kindness of strangers” and I have found that time again and again it is true. When we reach out for help, honestly and bravely, help comes. And if it can come from strangers, it can come from people we know, friends, family and colleagues. I am not just speaking from a theoretical perspective. I have experienced this first hand.

In my last job before becoming self employed I suffered a full mental breakdown and recovery whist continuing to work. Following my blind trust in strangers and the universe I reached out to my boss. Explained what was going on with me. Explained that I would need some time to recover to be fully able to fulfill my position and basically cast my chips on the table. Did it change my relationship with him? Yes. Initially he did not have the respect for me he had once had. However he relaxed the pressure on me in my daily work and often asked me how it was going. Honestly I think in that first meeting he would have happily let me go if he could, yet overtime he respected me for it. During this period there were cutbacks and staff terminated, yet I was not one of them. Eventually as I recovered he increased my responsibilities and at the end of my time in the job he wrote me a personal letter saying how impressed he was that I overcame my challenges, impressed with the responsibility I took to myself and my job in coming to him and that he was sorry I had decided to leave as he valued me as an employee. I had put myself and my health first and in doing that gained more respect than if I had hidden my troubles away.

It is not easy to face the boss man and say you can’t cope and need help. However when you do do it, in a planned and careful way, your life and your working life will become much easier.  If you like my friends are feeling isolated, over stressed and clinging at straws pretending that everything is alright you are going to make yourself melt down at some point. If you are there you need help. By going to the boss and then afterwards your network you will give yourself the breather you need to recover and come back on top again. You just have to be brave and put you and your welfare first.

So if you can feel in your heart of hearts that you are starting to crack under the pressure here is my guide for reaching out to your boss and getting the help you need.

Identify the problem

Your boss is a logical person, they have to be to run whatever organisation it is you are working within. It will not help you (practically or emotionally) to go into a meeting with your boss and breakdown in floods of tears. Identify on paper the problems you are having and group them into work life and home life. Identify how these problems are effecting you.

Identify solutions

How do you believe these issues can be solved? What do you need to reduce the stress? Maybe a week or two off to sort out a deceased relatives home or sharing your workload with a colleague to ease off the pressure. Do you need a psychologist or therapist and need some funding help for that? Or do you need your boss to support you to talk with the colleague that is making your working life hell?

Choose who to contact

Now this is really important. Who do you need to contact to solve your issues? Is it your direct line manager, HR department, your union or your boss? If in doubt ask a colleague. You can always ask anonymously.

How to contact them

By email. When it comes to your job always, ALWAYS leave a paper trail. You need a record of your asking for help. In this mail explain that you are having some challenges in the workplace and would like a meeting to discuss them. Suggest a time and place and ask if it would be suitable for them. You may feel helpless inside however in this mail you need to appear proactive and take charge of the situation. If you would like someone else to be present say so, and choose that person yourself. By taking control of the issue you show that you are professional.
Plan your meeting

This is your battle plan and your anchor for this meeting. It will help you keep focused especially when discussing emotional issues. In your plan don’t just lay out the issues and solutions you have found remember to also ask what your boss thinks could be a solution. I have found it is always best to show that I have thought of a solution and then to ask what my boss thinks or suggests. Again this shows proactive, responsible and professional behaviour.

Watch your language

Bosses like positive language, which can be problematical when discussing stress. Instead of using the word “problem” say “challenge”. Instead of saying “I can’t do my job right now”, say that you are “concerned that due to the stress you know it would be irresponsible of you to expect that you can do your job at full capacity”.  Stress in the meeting that you want to “nip this challenge in the bud before it becomes a serious issue”. And lastly make sure that all agreements are crystal clear. Even if you have to repeat them back to your boss to make sure that you are both agreeing to the same thing. And if you can agree on dates for actioning your agreements

Email after the meeting

Once the meeting has been held make sure you send your boss an email that outlines the challenges you discussed and the solutions you both agreed upon. Also thanking them for their support. In this email I would recommend suggesting a new date for a follow up meeting to reassess the situation and your progress a few months in the future. Once again keep a paper trail. Keep your boss in the loop. There is nothing worse than an unexplained situation to a manager.

Arrange help on the homefront

Work is not the only place of stress. You have a network friends and family and also professionals. As you have already identified problems and solutions at home as well as work then start to use the resources you have to support you and give you the breathing space you need to recover.

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This is a challenging thing I am asking you to do for yourself and I implore you to do it. Your boss or workplace will react much more kindly to stress and sickness if you have communicated with them than if you are suddenly and inexplicably on sick leave without explanation. Having your workplace know what is going on with you is daunting however it also adds to your stress if you are afraid of communicating with them, and that is the last thing you need. Take care of you, respect your own boundaries and your boss will respect you. Remember what we send out we get back.

I hope this helps <3

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Healing your inner Mother – the first 3 steps

Most of us have Mommy issues. Whether through trauma or a completely “normal” childhood, we all have some work that needs to be done to shift some emotional baggage that is connected to our relationship with our mothers. Our bond with our mother is like no other we will ever had. She is our original creator, nurturer and protector. This relationship is the template from which all our future relationships form. It also inspires our own role as a parent. Our relationship with our real and physical mother becomes the diagram for our inner Mother (or parent respectively). And as adults it is this inner Mother is the one we look to throughout our lives as a guideline. If we have a damaged relationship with her we have a damaged relationship to ourselves.
Last weekend during a workshop I had a strong teaching, in the workshop we were connecting with our inner natural wild woman dancing in different  archetypal roles, the child, the lover and of course the the mother.  I felt completely at home within my child and my lover, like to old friends I could love and embrace unconditionally. But the Mother. My reaction to this role was so strong and powerful. Within moments I began to cry, to grieve. Now to give you a little back story I lost a child in early pregnancy at 18 and since I am now unable to create children. This is a part of me that was so deep and raw. As I danced my grief at the loss of my child, my step children, the grief of arguments with my own mother as a teenager,  I realised that it isn’t my inner child that needs healing. It’s my inner mother. Somewhere along the line in my life I have created an association with the role of Mother and pain. Now I don’t blame anyone for this, it is simply circumstances and my own reactions to them which have created a teaching,  a life lesson given to me so that I can understand and evolve.

But how do you go about healing your inner Mother? Now this is a journey I have been on for a long time and honestly before last weekend I thought that it was kinda sorted out. However what I have learnt is that this is an ongoing process that never really ends, it just gets easier. If you want to immerse yourself fully in this process I would highly recommend checking our Bethany Webster’s website and courses (http://www.womboflight.com).  I have found that this is a process that I return to, ebbing and flowing throughout my life. At each stage steps are taken, realisations are made and tears of healing are wept releasing me from deep pain and allowing me to grow from a deeper and richer place. Sometimes I will lightly scratch the surface of this issue, sometimes I will go deeply in. This healing (if to be done wholeheartedly) is not something you can do overnight or at a high pace, it has to be done slowly and without judgement of yourself.

Healing your inner mother is a process where you heal the mother you are to yourself. Through understanding, healing, releasing and learning that you become the stable foundation you need in your world. Healing this inner mother transforms our lives, understanding of yourself and empowers us. For some this is journey just for women but for me I see and understand it as something for both men and women for we both are created in a womb. Obviously that journey will be different however it is a journey of realigning the imbalances in our soul and that my friends is open for all.
If this article resonates with you then you may also be at the point where you are ready to heal your inner mother.  This is a topic I will be returning to again and again as I learn  I will share and hope that you will also share your stories with me. But for now I will leave you with the first 3 steps that I have taken on this path to healing my inner mother. Be brave. This is a journey of both dark and light from which you will emerge radiantly transformed.

Acceptance and compassion

At some point in time we have to accept that our mothers could and can only love ourselves as much as they can love themselves. As children we grow up thinking that the adults know it all. They are so sorted out. Then we become the adults and realise no-one has it all sorted out and everyone is doing the best they can. Think about how many people you know that have trouble loving themselves. Alot right? We all know that if you cannot love and accept yourself then you are limited in how much you can love someone else. Your Mother not being a fairy tale but a flesh and blood human being har her own stuff her own blockages that will have limited her love for you in some way.  You may enjoy finding out your Mother’s story. Or taking what you know about her past, her traumas and identifying the challenges    that she faced. Offer her empathy and compassion as you would want someone to treat you.

Freely grieve

As you understand and identify the scars that need healing of your inner mother allow yourself to grieve freely. Grieve for the compensations you had to make, the suffering. Allow yourself to cry, to weep, to dance it out, sing it out, draw or write it out.  Ans as you grieve acknowledge that this was not your fault. IT was not your fault that your relationship with your mother hurt you she was doing the best she could within her own challenges and burdens. Allow yourself to weep out the fear of having to be better to deserve love, comfort and support. You do not have to be better you are just right the way you are as is your Mother. Positive affirmations are a great help here. As are statements of understanding. Where you write a statement beginning with I understand for example” I understand that my Mother worked hard and was too tired when she came home to cuddle”, then read these out loud. Write your own affirmations and read these aloud to yourself everyday it will tell yourself that you are beautiful and lovable just as you are.

Grattitude

Whatever the circumstances of your relationship with your Mother she gave you one gift. The most important gift. The gift of life. Without that you wouldn’t be here to feel or even read this article. This gift is the greatest of all. And how often do we thank the person that gave us this gift. I try to make a point of doing it with both my parents. (My father finds it rather uncomfortable I think). With all its ups, downs and loop the loops I am so grateful to be alive and without my Mother I would not have this wonderful gift, for that I am grateful. You can write them a note, tell them or offer your gratitude in a prayer. It doesn’t matter what you believe in, regardless of whatever deity you believe gave you your life’s spark, it was your mother that carried you in her womb and birthed you into the world. Be grateful for that.

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The hurts and pains we feel from our relationships with our mothers are in fact gifts and opportunities to connect with ourselves and love ourselves on the deepest authentic level.

By accepting your mother’s faults, allowing your grief and offering gratitude for life to your Mother you  are offering these things to your inner mother. And so begin to accept and heal yourself. Be gentle with yourself on this journey.

Have a great week <3

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#lifelessons101 – I should have stayed in bed today! How to turn it around

Today has so far been a nightmare.It’s just one of those days when everything seems to be going wrong. I mixed up appointments, I seem  to be surrounded by idiots and everything, EVERYTHING is taking to long. Today I am not in flow, I guess you can relate. Today is a day when I should have stayed in bed! However I choose not to have a rubbish day. Granted on a day like this positive thinking is harder and the victim stance seems so much more comforting however if you can override that and change things around think how much happier you will feel.

So what can you do on a day like this to turn it around? My first thought is to head back home find my duvet and build a pillow fort. Unfortunately not possible. If I could I would and I recommend it to you if you can. If however you like me are have a downright rubbish day and there are many hours between you that glass of wine and your duvet there’s actually plenty of things you can do to take charge and make the day great again.

Downsize your to do list

The first thing to do is release some pressure on yourself. Look at your ‘Todo’ list. On on it there will be A tasks- things most needed to get done. B tasks things you can leave until tomorrow, D tasks things you can delegate and  X tasks things you can leave until next week. Resort that todo list and see where you can make the day easier for yourself. concentrate on your A tasks. Delegate the D tasks and leave the rest behind.

Count to 10

People are uber annoying on a rubbish day. It can be seriously hard not to bite their heads off. But remember you catch more flies with sugar so count to 10 before responding to someone who is irritating, pause before you send that curt email response to your boss or reprimand the kids. Are they really being annoying? Or is it because you are not feeling 100% that this bugs you too much. On a day like this try not to take everything personally.

Notice the good

No matter what kind of day you are having there will be something good in it. Something that went right or made you smile when you least expected it. Look for it and be thankful. Counting our blessings helps change your mood from positive to negative. This is great to do periodically during the day or just before you go to sleep.

Plan some relaxation for this evening.

No matter what you have to do take at least 30 mins for yourself. Read a book, watch a series, take a long bath. Do something that is going to relax you and allows you to wind down as much as possible.

Be kind to yourself.

You are having a bad day the last thing you need is someone on your back telling how crappy you are. And usually the person doing this is you. So stop it. If that negative judging voice pops up say NO and go back to thinking about what is working for you today.
Achieve something small

There will be some simple task you have that you can complete today. I clean when things are going wrong. No matter what is happening I can clean my kitchen and I have managed to achieve something. Go me! Try it, it really works.

Plan a treat for the evening

If you are stuck at work in this hard ass day then you maybe longing for clock off time. Plan a reward for yourself at the end of your day, a cupcake, pint, movie, sauna. Something that is easy to do and will reward you for getting through this mother of days.

Build a pillow fort or a duvet burrito

If it all goes completely wrong and by the time you go home you are as drained as a dishrag. Go for the pillow fort or the burrito duvet options. Being wrapped up in something squashy for 1 hour makes us feel safe and incontrol and cared for. So snuggle up and feel good for a while you have earnt it!

Laugh

Laughter is the best medicine for most down in the dumps days. Laughing yoga is not for everyone however it is a great cathartic healing experience. If you are not quite ready for laughing yoga grab a garfield comic, find a Jim Carey movie or choose my favourite go to giggle place Miranda. You tube is full of funny videos designed to make you chuckle. So have a laugh it will do you so much good.

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Some days are just awrful we know that but we can always choose to turn them around. Respond don’t react and you will find by the end of the day you are smiling again, achieved things in the face of adversity and given yourself a chance to relax. And hey tomorrow is fresh day with no mistakes in it.

Have a great weekend <3

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Fearless confrontation -how to have that awkward conversation

Fear of confrontation is pretty common, apparantly especially among women. The fear gets increased if the conversation is with someone who holds the power of consequence over you a boss, or teacher for example. In these cases we often bow our heads and expect the magical fix it gods to come and sort out the situation so we don’t have to do it. And guess what? It doesn’t. The situation often gets worse over time and you become more and more powerless by living in your victim role.

I recently coached a client who was scared of her teacher and yet in two years she had never explained her problem. Consequently she found excuses to not attend class, avoided studying the subject and was failing. Now faced with an important exam coming up where this teacher would be one of the examiners she was starting to break down. Luckily the school offered her coaching and together we addressed her fear, created a safe space for open communication and now she is back on track, the teacher got to learn something too.

This client in 24 hours went from victim to taking charge of the situation. It was amazing to be part of her process and support her in fearless confrontation of her teacher and her own emotional issues affecting her in this situation. The dialogue became a healthy productive environment and a blame free area with both parties accepting their responsibilities

Without confrontation we don’t grow. It’s as simple as that. Participating in and manifesting in healthy fearless confrontation allows us to find positive solutions, be empowered actors in our lives and challenge our own boundaries. Which is simply essential in life if we want to succeed. So if you are challenged by someone in your life at home, your social circle, work or school then here is a step by step guide to fearless confrontation- it maybe easier than you think it’s going to be.

Identify the issues

Often when we are talking about something challenging or fear inducing our emotions get the better of us, even more so in a confrontation situation. Here I recommend journaling. Write a letter (for your eyes only) to this person. Let each paragraph focus on a particular theme.

  1. Fear – why you are afraid of this person
  2. Situation – What the situation is that is causing this fear.
  3. Feelings – What does this make you feel (sadness, regret, embarrassment, worried, hurt).
  4. Why –  why does this situation provoke these emotions (is this something from your past resurfacing).
  5. Responses- How would you like the other person to respond (Start with I would like to hear you say…)
  6. Solutions- what solutions (if necessary) do you want to take this issue and turn it around.

This technique is loosely adapted from John Gray’s Love letter technique. It gives you a chance to both express your emotions and be objective to the situation.

Responsibility

Look for the areas of responsibility. Who is responsible for what? Pay particular attention to where is it your responsibility. Have you in fact been reacting to an old school bully trauma than the team leader you have today. Identifying your responsibility helps you out of the victim stance. Remember in every situation you have 50% responsibility on how that situation plays out.  

Create a safe space

How would you like to confront this person? Would you prefer to be in a room with an open door or another person there? If so who would you want to be there? Plan the location and support you need to make this confrontation.

Invite the other person to a meeting

Remember confrontations do not need to be negative. You want a healthy confrontation that will solve probelms not create them. Respectfully invite the other person to a meeting. Let them know what it is about in a neutral non emotional way.

For example “Peter, I would like to have the opportunity to discuss with you an issue that’s been on my mind about how we communicate with each other.  When would be a good time to talk?”

Prepare

Plan what you are going to say and how you are going to say it. Focus on the core issues. Keep the agenda short and simple. For example

  • Discuss what what is working well for you
  • Present issue
  • Explain consequences for you
  • Ask their opinion about this issue
  • Accept your own responsibility and ask them to accept theirs
  • Discuss solutions – state what you want to resolve this issue and allow them the same courtesy
  • Agree on how to move forward.

Focus on fact based statements and keep the emotions under control. Make sure you practise your conversation, if possible roleplay it.

After the meeting

After the meeting there are 3 golden rules to follow

It ends here- When you leave that meeting the issue is over. From that moment it is a fresh clean slate. You need to move forward so allow yourself to do that.

Keep the agreements made – Take responsibility for yourself and keep the agreements made. It shows the other person you respect them and yourself.

Look for the teaching- Every confrontation in life is there to help us grow so look for what it is life is trying to tell you.   


Of course, not every confrontation can or will end positively.  However by committing to taking responsibility and stepping out of a victim stance you are doing your best to create a positive resolution. Be brave and take your own life situation into your own hands. Remember you can’t change what you aren’t willing to confront.

Have a great week <3

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