Wu Wei Wisdom

david james leesI wish I could have captured the atmosphere last night, when ordained Taoist Master David James Lees spoke to The Oxford YES Group. For me it was the second time to listen to him and receive jewels of wisdom, and – just like last time – I was mesmerised by the power of his words, the way he brings it across and his leadership. Yes, if you weren’t there, you did miss something very, very special. But because you’re here and you’re reading this, I’m going to give you the essence of his talk. Because I believe we should all listen to him and be reminded of the beautiful souls that we are, each one of us 7 Billion individuals on this planet.

He calls his message ‘wu wei wisdom’; and he speaks about yin and yang, as well as – and most importantly – the line between the two, which is the ‘Wu Wei’ – the path of balancing yin and yang within us.

I really hope I’m getting this right 😉

Anyway – So, here are some good tips for your well-being and mental hygiene:

First of all: Drop your shoulders!

Yes. That’s what he told us last night, and the whole room adjusted itself – haha! Drop your shoulders and …. RELAX! Take the tension out of your body, balance your head effortlessly on your neck! And then remind yourself that you are spirit. Spirit that has a physical experience. Everyone has their own journey. Our essence is spirit (‘Shen’ is the Taoist word for ‘Spirit’ or ‘Higher Self’). Spirit could also be translated with Love. We are Love, we came from Love and we’ll go back to Love.

And then there are those sensations in us that we call feelings. You say you ‘feel tired’, you ‘feel anxious’, you ‘feel let down’ etc. David teaches us to avoid the ‘f’ word and replace it with “choose to be”, “I think I am…”. Otherwise you identify with the feeling instead of taking responsibility for your responses to challenges. If you say to yourself “I feel tired”, you are enforcing this state of being, and if you say this all the time, you are creating this reality by reaffirming it constantly. Instead you could say “I choose to be tired”. Somehow the energy of this changes now, and you take responsibility for your response to whatever is happening.

Basically, David suggests to only have 2 states of being: “Green” or “Red”. Does it feel good (green) or not good (red). If you experience ‘Red’, you can now sit with this sensation and ask yourself ‘why’. Go deeper and deeper by always asking ‘why’, until you get to the root of the issue, which is the point in time when you first experienced this sensation (trauma). Find the belief behind the pain/feeling. When you’ve arrived at this point, offer yourself at least 3 choices on how to deal with it. It’s like being your own loving parent guiding you through this process. Once you have chosen how you would like to perceive what happened, you have freed yourself from its grip and can move on. While going through this process, confront the mind lovingly.

The things we tell ourselves all the time – “I’m not good enough”, “I can’t cope”, “I don’t deserve”. Would you tell these things to your child? Basically, if you wouldn’t tell your child, don’t tell them to yourself!

You are disconnected? You can’t be disconnected! You are the source, you are Love! You are weak? How can you be weak? How can the source be weak?

And one last jewel:

Please! Please, love yourself! Yes! You ARE loveable! How? How can you not be loveable? You ARE Love.

Don’t let the mind tell you any different! The mind has only one job: To keep you safe. It’s doing a brilliant job at that. It’s keeping you in your comfort zone. It is spirit (which is what we really are) that expands, grows, is adventurous, creates magic.

Yes, sometimes we get ourselves into a state in which we can’t be our own caring, loving parent. Just know that then you can be gently supported by someone else.

David James Lees – Thank you! Thank you for reminding me that I am worth it, capable, loveable, and that I will always be able to cope.

Please! Come! Back!

If you want more, please go to www.davidjameslees.com There is lots more available for us to learn.

Leap of faith

Talk on 19th January 2016 at the Oxford YES Group meeting

Chris Walton sadly had to cancel last minute due to being taken to hospital. So my good friend Richard texted me and asked me if I was happy to give a talk. I had 2 hours! And I said ‘YES’. I did it without much preparation, trusting I was able to speak from the heart and connect with the audience, also knowing that I am competent in Mindfulness and Family (Systemic) Constellations. I had a fantastic experience of being in my power and received very positive feedback. Feeling grateful and blessed to have such a wonderful friend, community and lovely audience.

I talked about Mindfulness (some how-to’s below) and I facilitated a Family Constellation with a courageous volunteer, who wanted to have a closer/deeper look into an issue of hers. What we witnessed was very touching and moving, and I know that this has helped the lady see what the underlying issue was, as well as a possible solution. We did not have time to go all the way, but she got some valuable insight into her situation. It struck me how the audience engaged in the process, fully committed to support the ‘issue holder’.

So, here are some reminders to get through your day more mindfully and therefore be 100% available at all times:

  • When you open your eyes in the morning, think a positive thought, e.g. what you are grateful for in your life and tell yourself that this day will be a good one because you decide so. Get up in a different way you normally do.
  • When you wash, brush your teeth and do your hair, drink your tea/coffee, eat your breakfast, make everything a sensual experience, using smell, taste, touch, vision and hearing. Stay in the moment and push away any thoughts that are distracting; usually thoughts of the past or the future.
  • On your way to work, take another route, if possible and/or drive more slowly and attentively, give way to pedestrians, cyclists and drivers now and then. Smile at people, look at them. Maybe even say something like “what a lovely day!” to someone. Arrive at work with a smile, infect others with your positivity.
  • At work, allow yourself to breathe consciously at first and then several times during the day. Take breaks! Speak to colleagues! Avoid gossiping at any cost. Engage fully with your job, break it down to small steps rather than getting overwhelmed with the work load.
  • When you take your lunch break (which you definitely should do), either engage with other colleagues (have fun) or walk and find a spot that gives you tranquillity to recharge your batteries. Breaks are not there to engage your eyes and brain even more by looking into your emails/FB etc. They are for you to relax!
  • When you’re back home, take care of yourself. Make sure you’re aware how you are and what you need. Ask for things/help/support/chat/quality time!
  • The most important thing in order to be aware of your own and others’ needs is to be fully available. Mindfulness helps to balance your life in all aspects.

I facilitate a weekly group in Abingdon. You can join here: Abingdon-Meditation-and-Mindfulness-Meetup

Facilitation of a Constellation

Facilitation of a Constellation

Family Constellations are a way of uncovering and changing dynamics that are not helpful, either in your family or at work/in relationships. In a constellation old family trauma can be carefully addressed and healed, in order that more love flows freely through the family system and opens up freedom for your life. It’s about cutting strings that are holding you back and getting greater awareness and understanding of why things are the way they are.

In my ‘Growth Space’ I once monthly facilitate small constellations (amongst other techniques) in order to find out how it works as well as to address issues and find solutions. This space is also creating community, support and friendship. You can sign up here: The Growth Space

Who is Silvia Siret?

Who is Silvia Siret?

I am Silvia and I offer clarity coaching, free talks on Emotional Well-being and Moving away from Pain and facilitate Systemic Constellation Workshops, as well giving as guidance and hosting sessions on Mindfulness and Meditation.

I was born in 1966 as the first of two children in Germany. I am a happy and content individual today with harmonious family, friend and business relationships. That was not always so. Here’s a little bit of my history:

Childhood

My mother was quite young when she had me: 20 years old only. My only sibling, a brother, was born two years after me.

My mum is a dominant character and my father could suddenly be quite threatening and, being nagged enough, even become violent. I grew up with a lot of tension within my family and generally felt pressed into a mould. Often, I was not allowed to be myself and certainly missed being appreciated and loved unconditionally (I know I’m not an exception). Fear of punishment drove me to being a ‘good girl’ most of the time. I was often beaten and not allowed my own opinion. It was not all horrible, though. All in all, it was probably a good childhood. There were times when I was my mother’s best friend and we had a good laugh together, and I always loved my parents and brother to bits (and still do).

My outward relationship with my dad was ruled by my mum. She would always try to pull me onto her side in a conflict situation and tell me things about him that I didn’t want to know. If I took sides with my dad she would become hysterical. I always tried to be a mediator but not sure I ever succeeded.

I am a very sensitive, emotional and empathic, touchy-feely kind of person, which is all my parents and brother are not (on the outside). At the same time I have a strong will and am quite passionate, which got me into trouble loads of times.

Breaking free from childhood

From the age of 16 – becoming an opinionated teenager with some more guts – my relationship with my mother became more and more difficult. I wanted to break free as soon as I possibly could, which is why I finished school after what was called O-levels in the UK (or GCSEs these days), in order to learn a profession and be able to support myself. At that age I started smoking and missing college and surrounded myself with the more naughty kind of youngsters.

First love

At 19 I passionately fell in love and shortly after left home to live in my first own appartment. I was in an apprenticeship as a legal secretary. My relationship with my mum relaxed a bit but ever so often we would clash and I would storm out and have no contact for a while.

Trauma / meeting father of 1st child

At 21 my first big love finished with me, and my world totally crashed. I lost every self confidence and started dating men. Very quickly I moved in with a man, but moved out after only half a year. Shortly after I fell for a man who later would become my worst enemy. I remember seeing all the signs right from the first date, but I closed my eyes to them. I just wanted to be loved.

1st daughter / separation from parents / re-connection with parents / separation from father of 1st child

At 24 I had a daughter with this man (we did not get married). At the time I had no contact with my parents, the father of my child wouldn’t allow it. My parents got to know their first grandchild when it was 8 months old. I re-connected with them after having had some counselling. When my first child was 1.5 years old its father reported me as a neglecting mother, which made me pack my bags and my child and move back in with my parents, who at that point owned a house with enough room for us.

Back at home, the old family patterns kicked in, and it was hell for me. After a very short time I found an appartment – and another relationship – both advertised in the same paper. I moved into that apartment for only half a year before I moved in with the new partner, being pregnant again.

First marriage, 2nd child

At 27 we married and had my second daughter, and for a little while I thought everything was good.

At 29, though, I separated from the father of my second child and in the same year let my first child move in with its dad. My self-confidence was non-existant at that point, and I did the only right thing: I went to a GP and had myself transfered to a mother-and-child psychological residential resort for three weeks (we call it ‘cure’ in Germany).

Self development

I think that was the beginning of reflection and self development for me, and – maybe for the first time in my life – I felt nourished, accepted, respected, cared for and listened to.

Shortly after that I got to know a body worker, who suggested to attend a self development seminar with Klaus Frey (New Ways Seminars, Baden-Baden, Germany, see: www.neuewege.de). After that first seminar, called ‘Initiative’, I quite quickly attended the second, which is called ‘Charisma’ and the third, called ‘Excellence’. Klaus Frey became my guide – I guess I saw a father figure in him. I started then a 1.5 year training called ‘Leadership and personal competence’ and became his assistant in the next training.

Separation from my first daughter

When my first daughter was nearly 8, she decided she didn’t want any contact with me anymore, and I eventually – under pressure – voluntarily gave up custody for her. She was brain-washed from an early age on by her father. She was not allowed to love me. I was the enemy.

Second marriage / separation / another new start

Around that time, at 32 I got to know my second husband through an online dating page and moved in with him quite quickly. We separated when I was about 36, and I moved into an apartment with my second daughter. At that point I had learnt a lot about myself, who I was and who I wanted to be, and I was becoming a therapist alongside working in admin.

Training

During my training with Klaus Frey, I also trained with Regina Heckert, a tantra teacher and family constellation work facilitator, and with Joergen Moerck from Denmark, who tought me my special and unique body work, called ‘BE – The healing continuum of nature’, which derived from ‘Body Harmony‘ (founder: Don McFarland).

My life-changing visit to England

In 2013, when I was 37, I visited my old English friend, whom I got to know in Germany when our children went to Kindergarten together (that was in 1994). At the time, she was spending a lot of time with her brother, as they were both single and had three children each. We were introduced, fell in love; and a year later, in February 2005, I moved in with him in a village in Oxfordshire.

I came here as a Life Coach, wanting to establish Family Constellation Work in Oxfordshire. But life circumstances didn’t allow me to start this venture before late 2010.

I worked as an administrator, administrative assistant and PA, sourcing co-ordinator, sales-assistant and receptionist. Alongside my working in admin, I trained as a counsellor at the Oxford & Cherwell Valley College (OCVC).

Re-connection with my first child

In 2005 I re-connected with my daughter, fortunately she was ready to talk to me again – she was nearing 15. Since, we have re-established a strong bond between us, although she still has problems to let me be close to her. She studies at University in Germany.

3rd marriage / new life

In August 2008 I married my wonderful English man. I finally broke the pattern of being with a partner for only up to three years.

I now help individuals and couples to reach their highest potential.

I was attuned to Reiki, Level 2, in 2014.

I am now also a trained co-counsellor with CCI (Co-Counselling International) and am doing my counselling diploma.

My vision is supporting young people at a school or college as a school counsellor.

Nowhere Land

It’s not long ago that I changed my work patterns to three full days a week, instead 5 half days, mornings. But it didn’t work out. The intention had been to concentrate on my therapeutic career on Thursdays and Fridays. Not only did that lead to my department having to cope without my presence on those days, but I did not really feel I was doing more in terms of therapeutic work and networking. I felt rather lonesome and lost, but most of all: useless. It was not all bad, as I used those days to meet friends I could normally not easily meet and other things. But basically, it didn’t work. I found it very difficult to be in my admin job whole days. Anyway – from 25th Nov I’ll go back to 5 half days, mornings, with 2 additional hours weekly, which I got when I changed to 3 full days. It was good to give it a go, and it brought me a little more income, as well as awareness of where I want to go.

I’ve also been applying for full-time jobs in admin, because I felt I needed more income, and because I thought I could make better use of my people skills and have them earn money for me, rather than keeping trying to earn more with my therapy. There is this training called “Springboard” at the University of Oxford, which is only for women. It made me realise that I might be up a blind alley thinking my therapeutic work will pay the bills soon. The situation is: We’re struggling, my husband and I, financially. I’m not able to support my 1st daughter enough, financially, although, legally I’m obligated to give her six times as much as I do now, which gives me a constant sense of owing her.

Anyway – I am not successful with my applications. What’s going on?

Handing in my applications, I also put a request in with the Universe to not give me a full-time job, if it wants me to keep having time for my therapeutic work. So, I should not be taking this personally (the rejections), but I should be grateful for the hint.

So, basically, what I’m trying to say, is that I’m trying to find the right path, doing this and that to figure it all out. I feel like being in Nowhere Land, or floating in open space, not knowing which direction to take.

When I wrote the title of this post, I realised, that No-where Land could also be read as Now-here Land.  That actually amazes me. I immediately felt more positive about being in that place. Both might be the same anyway. It just means I’m here now but not quite sure where. It is sometimes really difficult to stay in that place and hold still. The universe might just be preparing everything for me to move on.

Last weekend my husband and I put a conscious request to the Universe, asking for financial abundance. We did this in a group workshop in a lovely ritual in the woods, using a home made talisman with ingredients from the forest, burning it in the fire and sending it off into the sky, wishing it well.

So, watch this space, people. Energy follows intention. I might be ‘ending up’ quitting my admin job altogether and being really busy supporting others to find their place on this beautiful planet (and being paid for my work).

Bless all beings.

My work life

I’m at home with a sniffy nose, a lot of coughing, a painful stomach and a headache. I chose not to go to work this morning. I always think I should not call in sick – feeling guilty and full of shame for being not well. Anybody else feeling like that? Also, when I’m ill, I feel so very ill and so very upset and low.

Anyway, I wanted to write about my work life.

2 years I’ve been with this department now. The time for change has come, ….. I thought. I’ve just had a radical haircut, which is usually an indicator for change in my life. Two years is enough. Isn’t it? No, don’t get me wrong. I love (most of) my colleagues, and (most of) my job. It doesn’t pay very well, but – compared to other reception/admin jobs – it pays pretty well. There is no obvious reason why I should leave. Well – that’s not quite true. It’s the city I’ve got to commute to and from; it’s loud and full of tourists and students – overcrowded, I’d call it. At least I’ve changed to three full days from five half days. But still, a minimum of 2 hours commute on a work day? Okay, it gives me time to read (on the bus). And – really – an hour to work is not that bad. Is it? It’s like I’m looking for a good enough reason to change jobs. My husband calls me a job junky. I think he’s right. Maybe I’m just addicted to changing jobs after it has become routine. Maybe I’m just addicted to change anyway???

I’ve been looking, locally, but nothing compares to my current position, neither the pay rates nor the stuff I’d have to do to earn my wages. And – will I ever find such a lovely team of colleagues again? I’d be taking quite a risk.

There’s something else bugging me, if I’m honest. When I came to this country, in the beginning of 2005, I did not intend to work in admin much longer. I’d had enough of it when I left Germany. I actually hated being a PA/secretary/admin assistant. The whole admin crap – I didn’t want it anymore. And here I am – still doing admin. I wanted to be a full-time therapist. That’s what I wanted. In eight years I have not managed to earn a living from being a therapist. I am now not earning a living from anything I do. The part-time job in admin doesn’t pay enough to live – at least not in an independent way. I’m contributing to the bills, that’s it. The other days I’m spending hours and hours trying to get my name out there and trying to convince the public that constellations are fantastic and that I am a great therapist.

Drawing a balance: I failed.

Is that the deeper reason I’m at home, feeling pretty grim? I think I feel sorry for myself. Yes. I feel sorry for myself. “Poor little Silvia! You are a loser! Let’s face it. But I do feel sorry for you, I really do.” Is that what I need?

Wuh, – – – wait!

No, no, no, no, no, no, no. I am not a loser. And I have not failed. Let’s face THAT, shall we?

I have changed jobs a lot, because I was never happy in them. I finally found a job, in which I am feeling happy enough to stay. I may only contribute to the bills and not earn enough to make a living, but I could if I wanted to. I don’t need to earn more than I currently do, because my husband and I have an arrangement. More than the income I need the time to build my therapeutic practice. And that is what the 2 other workdays are dedicated to.

I learned a lot on my way, and I learned that it is important to give energy into the things I’d like to grow. I also learned that I have most of my energy in the mornings. I know I haven’t made a rocket start; I’ve taken – I had to take – the little side roads, and I still am. On the way, I got to know exciting, supportive people, and slowly but surely I’ve been getting my name out there and still am. Don’t forget: I had to adapt to a new country. I left all my friends and family behind and had to start all over again. I’ve built friendships, strengthened my relationship, was a mother and bonus-mother to five children. I fostered two young people and I looked after dogs. I simply had no time to make a rocket start.

I know what it is: I’m sitting in this space that is empty. My kids are no longer here, the dogs are gone, too. I caught a bug. I’m feeling crap. That’s why I get this sense of emptiness. I misinterpreted it as failure.

I’m not failing. I never failed. I only ever did as best as I knew at the time.

There is so much to learn, still. But I’m on my way. I may not be the rocket therapist, but I may be the one who has been there, done that. And – once this bug has left my body – I’ll be my old sparkling self, inspiring and full of kindness and love.

Watch this space!

My Oxford YES Group talk and Demonstration

Talking to my friend and business coach Joanna Byrne yesterday over a lovely cup of tea at Rosie’s Tea Room, I had to realise that I haven’t reflected on this very exciting and moving experience in my life, that happened a few weeks ago. She said “It’s never too late!”, which convinced me I could still tell you all about it.

Weeks and days before the Oxford Yes Group talk, I was unexpectedly calm and wondered about that, thinking “I should be nervous”. Now I think, I pushed my feelings away, even the thought about it. The nervousness came full-on on the morning of the day I should give my talk and had the roller-coaster feeling in my tummy all day and most of the evening. I hadn’t prepared myself at all, as I had given a talk before and I knew I could do it – somehow. I hate preparing a talk. I’ve done it last time, and in the end my notes were really just in the way. I prefer to talk from my experience and my heart.

When I arrived, I felt a warm welcome from the Oxford YES Group members. I had my daughter and my friend with me, which made me feel safer. At first only a few people entered the space, but closer to the beginning of the event, the room was nearly full – my heart was bouncing with joy and excitement. I was also pleased to see my friend Jo Woodcock from Fe-line Women, who has been a great supporter through the past years and really is the person who helped me push myself to speaking publicly and gave me the first opportunity to do this at one of her great Word of Mouth events.

Even though I was nervous and not very well prepared at all, I think I did a fairly good job at explaining the work by starting on my personal experience as a child and youngster (although I should have told them why I was talking about that part of my life – I saw some puzzled faces). I went on bringing light into constellation work and how it relates to my own experience as a young person and how it helped me healing my issues and becoming the captain of my boat. It was great that questions were asked in order to clarify things. This made me aware of the difficulty of explaining constellation work, as it is very experiential and intuitive stuff.

The audience seemed really engaged and interested, and they didn’t run away screeming when the break started, even though I threatened to offer a demonstration of a constellation for the 2nd part of my presentation.

For the demonstration the room was kindly changed by the YES crew, the chairs were put into a big circle. When everybody was back on their seats, I guided them all into a very short grounding meditation in order to get them into a collected, supportive state of being. I then asked for a volunteer, and soon somebody raised their hand. That was indeed very exciting, as I had not expected that anyone would come forward to do such deep and intimate work in front of so many ‘strangers’.

And then something happened that is still bringing a smile to my face: A family constellation formed that was giving such deep insight and turned out to be so powerful that all our minds were blown away. I received amazing feedback and made lovely connections as a result, and I think that the person who did their constellation on that evening, got a great deal out of it. I would love to go into more detail, but of course this is sensitive stuff and what happened will always stay only with the people involved. But I would like to say that I was truly touched and moved by the sincere, supportive involvement of all participants and the fantastic Oxford YES team. I’d also like to mention that my daughter, who for the first time saw me perform in the role of the facilitator and speaker was amazed by both my professionalism and the power of constellation work. She observed it all and gave me such valuable feedback, also on the way I could improve my talk. She felt really proud of her mum, which makes my heart swell and pour over with love and gratitude.

I feel, my talk and demonstration were a huge success, and I can’t wait to give further presentations of this unique, powerful, fantastic work called Systemic Constellations (or Family Constellations).

Bless all Beings x*X*x

Dog business

I know, it’s been a long time since I sat down and wrote a blog. Not sure why I won’t take time for blogging, usually. I’ve got a kind of blockage with writing. In my head there is so much going on all the time, and in my mind I’m expressing lots of things, but when I sit down, it’s all gone, and my mind goes blank.

So many things happened in the past few months.

The most devastating experience was the death of my wonderful bitch Jo, only 7 years old, on the 28th of June 2013. She ran full speed into a closed glass door, wanting to help me chase a chicken off the flower pot (I had banged on the door, she understood ‘go’). I had forgotten that she would want to help me with this task. It was in our new house, and she probably was not familiar with it yet. First we kind of laughed, but it didn’t take long that she showed signs of concussion. She went downhill from there. After three weeks of ups and downs (mostly downs), the vet suggested we should put her down. Lacking pet insurance and a sufficient budget, we could not afford to pay for diagnostics or an operation. We decided to end her suffering, and she died from an injection, her little cute head in my hands, me talking to her calmingly, looking into her eyes, my husband’s hand on her back. Life left her body within seconds. I lost my best friend, my baby, my comfort and joy.

It is true that writing brings one in contact with one’s emotions. I realise I’m not over it. I miss this great little dog, that had such a huge personality, so much.

We still had Charlie, her son. That was in a way comforting, but also reminding us of Jo all the time. He had to get used to being alone now, when we were at work. I don’t think he was happy; he was not as happy as he used to be. I hated his expression when I left him every morning, as if he was asking: “Why are you leaving me alone?”

We hardly got a break. Only a week later Charlie was bitten by a Husky, while he was with his “Every-other-weekend”-family, and he was badly wounded in his left back leg.

The whole dog experience was devastating and draining. It was also not good for our finances. We struggled a lot and still do.

Charlie recovered within the next 4 weeks and is now fine again, fortunately.

But more happened with regard to dog business.

While we were on holiday, we received a text from Charlie’s “Every-other-weekend”-family, asking whether they could adopt him. Boom! Even though it didn’t come unexpected, it hit us more than we thought. Charlie would get the opportunity to become a therapeutic school dog with the mother of that family. He would gain a family with four children still living in the household who all adore him. We talked a lot, we slept over it. And in the end, after about two weeks, we felt we would enjoy the new freedom this would give us, knowing that our dog would have it even better at his new place. We agreed; and he is gone now.

And here I am, grieving again. This time self-inflicted. But at the same time I feel the joy of this new chapter in our lives, my husband’s and mine. Charlie left a hole. And I’m not quite filling it yet. But I get spells of happiness that I now can do whatever I want with my free time. When I get that feeling of guilt, I remind myself that our dog is young and adaptable. He loves that other family and he is loved to bits and to pieces. And he might bring a lot of joy and happiness into young people’s lives at school – if he passes his exams. We’ve done the right thing. I know it.

The other thing I/we had to deal with is the criticism from our grown-up children (five of them). Some accepted our decision quite easily, some took it quite hard. I became very aware that we took a decision that hurt our children, and that we will have to live with the feeling of having caused them grief, especially so quickly after Jo’s death. I am very proud to say that they all decided to let Charlie go and support us. We are blessed with wonderful children.

I leave it here for now. All of a sudden I could write and write and write.

For next time: I’d like to share what happened job-wise and how my talk at the YES group went.

Bless you all! xXx

Letting go

It is one month ago that my second daughter flew the nest. It is only now that I can write about my emotions around letting her go. The process started a good year before, when I had a strong sense of having to let her take her own decisions and not being the first person she would go to when she wanted to share something, happy or sad. I could feel how she was maturing into an adult. At that time I was attending a psychodrama group with the wonderful Philip Halmarack, so I took the opportunity and worked on letting go of my daughter. It was very painful, but also insightful and transforming. I realised how very important it was to set her free and that I actually wanted her to move on and live her own life. When it came to the day one month ago, it was still painful, although also joyful, because I am so happy for her, moving in with her boyfriend, whom I really love. She received my full blessing and she knows I’m always here if she needs me.

She has left a big hole in my life. I miss her presence, even though we hadn’t had much time together anymore. I miss her hugs, the chats with her, the fun we had at the dinner table, I miss her coming home from work and sharing her day.

What am I filling this hole with?

At first, I just felt sad and sorry for myself and therefore filled this hole with negative emotions. Then I felt trapped (left) with my husband and the dogs and was quite vile at times, feeling I had no sense of duty anymore. Having a great support network, I worked through those phases quite quickly, though. Slowly but surely I stopped ‘pestering’ my daughter with texts and chats. Instead, I now consciously focus my attention on the things I have to do or I always wanted to do, e.g. writing another post on this blog. I am filling that hole with new projects: Our new house, which we move in soon; new ideas for workshops and how to use our ‘Magic Room’ – a nice little workshop space – in the new home.

I want to find dog sharers, so my husband and I can go away at weekends to explore new things together.

One door closes, another 10 open.

On Mother’s Day I received such a lovely card from my second-born: She appreciated that I struggled to relax into the new situation and she said she would never let go of me and that I’d done a good job, being a mother. Quote: “Well – Look at me!” 🙂

I am very proud of her, being so independent and grown up at the young age of 18 and experiencing a great love that has huge potential. I have my share in her being able to be happy. That I am proud of, too (tapping my own shoulder).

She has been a shining light in my life, and somehow I know she always will be. It’s wonderful to have a close and loving relationship like that. I never had that myself, although I feel it has changed over the years. My relationship with my mother is now so much better than when I was young.

I want to mention my first-born daughter here, too. I had to let her go when she was only 5 years old. At the time, I wouldn’t feel the real pain, I simply couldn’t. I was only ready to feel it when I worked on it a year ago in another psychodrama session, which brought up the relation to letting go of my second-born. Before that I never felt complete; and I experienced a lot of sadness, but never allowed myself to feel the real trauma the early separation caused. It takes a good supportive network to carry one through such re-lived traumatic experience, and I am so grateful that it was there and I was ready. Having her back in my life is a great blessing.

I like the song line from Sting, which says: “If you love somebody, set them free!” That’s what love is all about. But, like everything in this life on Earth, it’s a process, it can’t be done just like that. It involves grieving. Without mourning, there is no letting go.

Right now, I’m going through the process of letting go of my old life. I feel like growing. Sometimes I feel the growing pains, but I know that it is only temporary, and that I will come out the other side like a butterfly; and I will spread my wings…

…and – finally – fly.

Bless you all!

Healing

Hello Fellow-Healers and Supporters,

I signed up for and have now started a co-counselling training with the wonderful Celia Wilson, teacher at Co-Counselling International, and the lovely co-teacher James Nichol. Having been through coaching and counselling trainings before, I was a bit uncertain that this was the right step, as I thought I might be bored or ‘underchallenged’, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. It was the right time to do this course. I am learning different techniques and – being part of a group – experiencing new challenges and touching undiscovered emotional places. I already get a sense of also being part of a wider community, that is there to support me and to be supported by myself. This platform gives me the opportunity to not only reflect myself on a regular basis (without paying ridiculous sums of money) but also to get to know amazing, interesting people and share their and my knowledge and wisdom, and – of course – make new friends.

Last weekend was very intense; we worked from 9 am to 6 pm on Saturday and Sunday. I felt emotionally drained but at the same time totally enriched and blessed to be part of such an amazing bunch of people.

Co-counselling is for everybody. You don’t need to have a background of counselling or coaching at all. You just need to bring the need or desire for self-development. There are naturally more experienced co-counsellors (or teachers) and less experienced ones. But really – it doesn’t matter. The idea is to empty your mind and give ‘free attention’ for a set amount of time and then receive the same for the same amount of time. Intervention tools can and will be learned, but really, what you need is a listener, who gives you their unconditional regard, in order to encourage exploring hidden or covered up places in you.

You basically learn to become a wonderful listener and you learn that there is a network of people who listen to you whenever you feel the need to off-load or just talk.

I had such deep insights last weekend, that I already feel changed and transformed.

Feeling much more self-confident and having created a very powerful constellation session with friends on Monday, I have now decided to run a healing support group (see tab “What’s on?“).

I had been waiting for an impulse and the idea, what kind of group to run, and I’m glad I gave it the time it needed to show itself to me.

Good night and bless all beings!
xxxx

Heart connection

My husband and I spent a wonderful evening amongst like-minded people, connecting with our own and each other’s hearts. It was the first of a one-monthly series of ‘Heart Support Circles‘ in Oxford, hosted by Oxford Tantra Wave; well – really hosted by Rowan Parkes. Please, don’t be put off by the word ‘Tantra’. I know that some people would not even consider taking part in an event that had even in the slightest anything to do with Tantra. The Heart Support Circle is Rowan’s “baby”, she hosts it, and the event is not tantric. It is about growing, exploring, connecting – self development really. We got to know Oxford Tantra Wave through a friend who had participated in one of their “Diving for Pearls” Workshops and recommended it to us. Because my husband and I wanted to do something as a couple, that helped us step out of the everyday life stress and connect with each other on a heart level, we participated in their workshop ‘Pink‘, which is – you guessed it – about the heart; and it was an absolutely amazing weekend full of lovely people, experiences and connection. It did not only bring more awareness and tenderness into our relationship, but we also made new friends. So, when Rowan invited us to this Heart Support Circle, we were absolutely delighted and totally up for it.

Again and again we get so carried away by our every day lives, that from time to time we like to do something as a couple that helps us re-connect on a deeper level. Tonight, we met a few people we knew from the Pink workshop and lots of new faces. They were all such interesting, lovely individuals, and we enjoyed every minute of the 4 hours we spent together. Rowan guides people so sensitively and gently into a safe place where one can open up and be vulnerable. As a result, real connection can happen and does happen. I watched so many stressed and tired faces soften and brighten up during the evening, it was just bliss.

I would like to share one exercise of the evening:

At one point we were asked to find a partner and have them mirror our expression of our own heart. We were asked to feel into our heart and-  in a body posture – express how we treat it or what it feels like. Our partner would then copy this posture and we would have the chance to look at it (our heart) and ‘do’ something with it or speak to it in order to make it feel better, or (if it was looking good) even better.
I found myself expressing and then – even more powerful – seeing my heart as a young girl staring into the sky, kind of lost or as if it was searching for something up there. Tears filled my eyes, I felt so touched by this picture, and all I wanted was to get it to look at me and show it the world and to have it connect with Mother Earth and tell it to open up it’s senses to what was there in front of it. My ‘mirror’ responded so beautifully to my attempt to make it feel safe and happy and open up to the world around it. We ended up poking and tickling each other and having a giggle. I felt so much love for ‘my heart’, it was overwhelming. And ‘my heart’ (embodied by my partner) was in awe about the life out there and the connection with Mother Earth and the answers being right in front of its eyes.

So that’s what I’m doing. What an eye-opener! I was actually gutted. I thought I was in such a great place, really grounded. And there I see myself with the head in the clouds and looking for the answers up there.

I am so grateful for this (open) monthly Sunday evening group, which I can recommend to anybody who is interested in connecting with people on a deeper level, but also to them who want to re-connect with their heart on a more or less regular basis. We also brought along vegetarian food to share, and found ourselves enjoying the most beautiful, delicious food.

By the way, Oxford Tantra Wave’s next workshop on the heart is ‘Pink’, coming weekend (6/7 October) in Chorleywood, between Oxford and London, and there are still places available. If you’re interested, contact info@oxfordtantrawave.com or find the details on their webpage.

Good night, World. I’m going to bed now, feeling very tired but enriched and still full of love.

Huge hug!