Sometimes the journey to the Self means saying goodbye

Purple-blue nebula_01_sometimes the journey to the self

Sometimes the journey to the Self means saying goodbye to people, behaviours, things and situations that no longer feel right to continue with us. It doesn’t necessarily mean those were ‘bad’ things, but that who we are now no longer resonates with them.

(c) Michelle Gilberthorpe, She Holds The Bowl, 2017


The Attitude of Gratitude – week 21

These are the things I’m grateful for from the last week:

Monday: Picking Dandelions with mum to make a tincture.

Tuesday: Doodling with metallic pens on black card. Very relaxing.
Wednesday: Salt scrubs and hot showers.
Thursday: Going to Lincoln and treating myself to some goodies – love Lush’s Each Peach & Two’s a Pair massage bar.
Friday: Being able to express myself through poetry.
Saturday: Spending time catching up on Sleepy Hollow with dad.
Sunday: Messages of encouragement.

Quote on dance and vulnerability by Brene Brown

…for many of us, there is no form of self-expression that makes us feel more vulnerable than dancing. It’s literally full-body vulnerability. The only other full-body vulnerability that I can think of is being naked, and I don’t have to tell you how vulnerable that makes most of us feel.

For many people, risking that kind of public vulnerability is too difficult, so they dance at home or only in front of people they care about. For others, the vulnerability is so crushing that they don’t dance at all.

Brene Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection

The Self-discovery process is not selfish

Purple-blue nebula_01_discovering the self

I was told by someone at the beginning of my journey that the Self-discovery process is a selfish one. To those outside of this very personal process (everyone!) it may well seem like a ‘selfish’ time. For once we’re starting to put our needs first, and maybe we’re not playing by the well-established rules and dynamics any more. It can be hard for some people in our lives to accept this, and so I can see why on some level the Self-discovery process may be seen as selfish.
BUT I would argue that, on a larger scale, it is probably the most responsible thing we can do. While it may cause problems in the short term, and with established relationships or situations, in the long term it means we will be showing up with far more honesty, integrity, responsibility for our own emotions, and inner Knowing. It means that we will be making better choices, taking more informed actions, showing up for what truly matters for us, and disengaging from that which is unhealthy, unhelpful and stifling our true Self.

It will always be a work in progress – there is no end date for this – but by concentrating on undoing conditioning and programming, by detaching from unhealthy patterns, behaviours, situations and relationships, we get to show up for ourselves. In doing so we stop looking outside of ourselves to apportion blame and we look within to the lessons we can learn, and how to heal and move forward. We take responsibility for what is ours and discard the rest. We learn, we grow, and we Become.

Discovering the Self is not selfish. It is the most responsible thing you can do, not only for yourself but for your relationships – past, present and future – and for all those who cross your path.

Something to ponder on: would we be called selfish for taking a gap year? How about if we went on a spiritual retreat? Or what if we were going on an open-ended foreign trip? Of course we wouldn’t. So why is it deemed selfish to devote time to Self-discovery? Perhaps because the people in our lives know we may ‘come back’ from this irrevocably changed. It is their fearful projections that turn the journey to the Self into a ‘selfish’ pursuit.
We may well have very real responsibilities (children, a job, a partner) that we must not forget in our quest, but we cannot allow the fears of others to hold us back or discourage us from walking as far as we can along our pathway. It is our right to walk our path, and no one else has the right to stop us or try to hinder our progress. If they cannot accept our growth then perhaps they are not meant to walk beside us any longer. The paths that once ran parallel may now diverge.
Sometimes the journey to the Self means saying goodbye to people, behaviours, things and situations that no longer feel right to continue with us. It doesn’t mean those were ‘bad’ things, necessarily, but that who we are no longer resonates with them.

To those who feel left behind it can feel like we’re making a selfish choice, but really it’s the only choice. If we’re to live a life of true self-worth and integrity we have to be true to our Selves. Dimming our Light and continuing old patterns cloaks the Self. It may make others more comfortable but ultimately we are chaining ourselves to the same old cycles, and this can breed resentment. Only by taking time to discover the Self can we break free, and sometimes this means being ‘selfish’ and moving on to other things.


The Attitude of Gratitude – week 20

These are the things I’m grateful for from the last week:

Monday: Reconnecting.
Tuesday: The support and love of friends and family.
Wednesday: An article that really helped.
Thursday: Full Moon, and burning a load of emotional processing work.
Friday: Won a free massage from a local therapy centre.
Saturday: Time alone in the house so I can sing.
Sunday: Painting – getting to experiment with my masking fluid pen and watercolours.

Reclaim Sacred Anger – leave behind the rage

With the events in Las Vegas fresh in the mind I believe now is an important time for us all to remember the difference between Anger and Rage, and how to work with Sacred Anger to bring about more effective change.

A lot of people mistake rage, outrage and aggression for anger. Anger itself isn’t explosive, it’s motivating. Sacred Anger shows you where something goes against your needs, values and integrity. It motivates you to make a change. Taking it out on other people is ignoring Sacred Anger’s lesson and is more about personal gratification or not wanting to see the truth of what might actually be triggering you.
Sacred Anger shows us boundaries crossed, where we’ve not showed up for ourselves, what is important to us, where we should be doing more to help ourselves, others and the planet. It is done with strength, not force. It is channelled into productive, not destructive, means. It can be used to focus us, to keep us aware of what needs to change, and on where we need to change.
Sacred Anger does not blame, it asks, “What do I need to do?” “Where have I possibly contributed to this?” “Where do I need to contribute more?” “Where do I need to clearly assert my needs better?” “What can I do to make things better?” “What have I been ignoring/ overlooking/ ‘accepting’ for too long?” “What can I do to prevent this from happening again?” “What can I do to help myself and others?” “What do I need to be addressing?”

The key is to be responsive, not reactive. Sacred Anger asks deep questions of us, it doesn’t play the blame-game and it doesn’t get involved in power-struggles. Sacred Anger recognises that we are the ones that have to change – whether it’s in our perspective, thoughts or actions – and that we are the only ones who can heal and truly help ourselves, and make changes that can help others. Sacred Anger allows us to show up with motivation for wider change.

(c) Michelle Gilberthorpe, She Holds The Bowl, 2017

The path to self-love involves taking responsibility…

Purple-blue nebula_01_the path to self-love

The path to self-love involves taking responsibility for our own emotions, because if we’re not showing up for ourselves we can feel like our self-worth depends on the whims of others. By taking the helm we can start to re-address the balance.
Emotional responsibility is a major factor in self-love, self-worth and self-care.

(c) Michelle Gilberthorpe, She Holds The Bowl, 2017

Shadow work: Fear as an ally

In terms of Shadow work Fear is the granddaddy of them all. All our Shadows boil down to Fear – fear of failure, of not feeling accepted or good enough, fear that we’ll be judged, fear of what’s different… fear of owning our greatness and shining our light out into the world.

Fear doesn’t want to be caught; it keeps on shifting and changing. It’s slippery, a quicksilver eel. You think you’ve healed and then it presents a new challenge. But maybe Fear doesn’t have to be the enemy.
Like any Shadow Fear has lessons and challenges for us. Becoming more aware of Fear and what it’s challenges are may help to quieten it’s voice.
There are genuinely things in this world to fear, and in that respect Fear seeks to protect us. Other things we fear are there to challenge us. Fear, at its heart, in its most loving aspect, wants us to grow. When a fear is faced it can lead to tremendous potential and growth, showing us we are capable of more than we ever believed possible.

Fear is our ally. Fear wants to help us. It is our own discomfort that makes it ‘bad’. Fear protects, and it also pushes us to grow. It is our choice as to whether we heed the genuine warnings or ignore them. It is our choice to let fear of the unknown hold us back and stop us in our tracks.

Heeding Fear’s genuine warnings protects us. Facing Fear’s challenges expands us. And yes, sometimes the things we’re afraid of and challenge ourselves to face don’t end well, but there is always something we can take away and learn from that situation. There are always lessons to learn from Fear.