Archive for Highly Sensitive

On Being Noboby-but-Yourself

Posted by: | Comments (0)

I’m retiring . . . but don’t worry, it’s not from this wonderful work of helping people heal their heart issues and transform their lives. No, I love that work too much.

I’m retiring from the “job” of being a people pleaser. (You natural rebels can stop reading here.)

I’m done with living by internalized or expressed expectations that are based more on socialization than my own divinely-guided values.

I’m retiring from the “job” “Pharaoh” foisted on me while I wasn’t looking.

Pharaoh was the Egyptian king who enslaved the ancient Hebrews. When God raised Moses up to set God’s people free to be who God created them to be—his special people—Pharaoh said, “No way!” Further, the more Moses pressed, the more tyrannical Pharaoh become. “Now make bricks without straw—and see to it you keep up the same quota!’

I’ve written before about “Pharaoh.” “Pharaoh” can be anything that seeks to squeeze you into its own mold, or discourage you from being who you really are.

One of my favorite quotes is from the poet e.e. cummings (whose unconventional punctuation of his name in itself illustrates the point):

“To be nobody-but-yourself — in a world

which is doing its best, night and day, to

make you everybody else — means to fight

the hardest battle which any human being

can fight; and never stop fighting.”

And oh, is that world “doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else”!

Seems to me, this is the whole thrust of social media. (Apologies to those of you who are SM fans.)

This is why I just can’t bring myself to be on social media much. Business “gurus” do their best to convince me I have to do Facebook Lives and be on Instagram, but somehow, by the end of the day, I find I just never get around to even looking at Facebook.

(I’d love to hear your thoughts on SM. And if you would like to see more of me on SM, let me know!) 

Why is it so easy to be caught up in this trap of trying-to-be-everyone-else?

Because of the human need for validation.

We need to know we’re OK. We feel we need to have our experiences validated by other people having the same experience.

But, are they really having the same experience as us? Probably not. Each person has his or her own experience, and it’s unique, and ideally, needs no outside validation whatsoever. If you are truly “nobody-but-yourself,” you don’t need validation.

Yet we do crave validation, usually because we didn’t get it earlier in life. So we looked outside ourselves, and came to believe if we fit a certain mold (good wife, mother, community leader, volunteer, entrepreneur, etc.), then we’re OK.

However, we never quite feel we are OK, because we can’t get that Ok-ness from outward sources. We do need other people, yes. Ideally, other people are loving mirrors who reflect back who we truly are, and provide true validation.

(That, by the way, is one of the things a good coaching program does. It validates you AND moves you to be the “new you” that you are transforming into. I see my clients not as the “caterpillars” they may see themselves as, but as the beautiful “nobody-but-themselves” butterfly that is on the other side of their healing and transformation.)

But loving validation is not what many of us experienced. Many of us saw reflected back only distorted images of who we are, and/or received the message, “You are only OK if you do what I say, if you conform to what I want you to be.”

(Highly Sensitives, People of Color, and anyone who is “different” especially know what I’m talking about.)

So how do you become “nobody-but-yourself”? E.e. cummings says you need to learn how to feel.

Yes, learn how to feel.

Speaking to aspiring poets, cummings writes:

“A poet is somebody who feels, and who expresses his feelings through words.

“This may sound easy. It isn’t.

“A lot of people think or believe or know they feel — but that’s thinking or believing or knowing; not feeling. And poetry is feeling — not knowing or believing or thinking.

“Almost anybody can learn to think or believe or know, but not a single human being can be taught to feel. Why? Because whenever you think or you believe or you know, you’re a lot of other people: but the moment you feel, you’re nobody-but-yourself.

“. . . And so my advice to all young people who wish to become poets is: do something easy, like learning how to blow up the world — unless you’re not only willing, but glad, to feel and work and fight till you die.

“Does that sound dismal? It isn’t.

“It’s the most wonderful life on earth.

“Or so I feel.”*

You don’t have to be a poet to aspire to be “nobody-but-yourself.”

You just need to be honest. Authentic. Willing to feel.

And to “retire” from trying to be “everybody-else.”

YOU are enough.

And if you don’t believe this yet, or you are ready to “retire” from the role of being everybody-else, consider getting some coaching to heal the old patterns that block your being nobody-but-yourself. Experience the freedom of being aligned with your divine design, not anyone else’s pre-defined role.

 

Comments (0)

Have you ever had a day like this?

You start out with a plan, and high hopes of getting something important accomplished.

Then you get a notice of some kind. Let’s say it’s a low balance alert from your bank.

You go to fix that, and notice that there is a charge on your account that is way more than it always has been for like, the last 10 years. Like, more than 10x the amount. Of course, it’s an automatic charge.

You go to the vendor in question, to see if there’s any notification or explanation of when or why this suddenly exorbitant charge came about.

What you find: There’s no way to post a support ticket, no clue as to why suddenly this charge was made or was  more than 10x as much.

You open what looks to be a support chat. The bot says they’ll be with you, and the window will remain open for you to keep checking back. (Like, I have all day to keep going back to check.)

You get an email saying, “For the fastest response possible, please do not update this ticket until you hear from one of our advocates.”

The next thing you hear from them is an email saying that you left the chat.

Case closed, apparently.

As you can guess, this happened to me. It reminded me of one of my favorite children’s books.

The incident I described was the first of about 5 things that attempted to derail me from the task I meant to get to first thing in the morning (which was this blog post).

I started to deal with the low balance alert at 10:30am. I finally got back to it at 4:30pm. And by the way, I disputed the charge on my debit card, and stopped automatic payments with that vendor. I don’t want to do business with a company like that.

Seems like modern life is full of such frustrations, doesn’t it? At least, if you have to deal with technology of any kind. (And who doesn’t, nowadays?) Especially, they tell me, when mercury is in retrograde as it is now–whatever that means.

So what do you do when you have a day full of interruptions, frustrations, and technological glitches?

What I did today: I kept re-returning.

I know that seems like a redundant term. But it reminds me that I can come back, again and again and again, to where I want to be.

I can shake off the frustration and refocus on my initial goal. (My Release & Infuse Technique really helps here.)

So that’s what I did. I released “anger, frustration, derailment, lashing out, and giving up. “

I infused “productivity, patience, peace, joy, and focus.”

And I got this written.

If you’d like this tool that allows you to clear negative energy is less than 3 minutes, and re-return to the state of mind you want, just go here. It’s free.

This technique is especially helpful if you’re a Highly Sensitive Person and/or empath who tends to take on other people’s energy.

A client told me yesterday she had one of her headaches come on, and she used the Release & Infuse Technique, and the headache went away right afterward!

Side note: The good that came from this day, which seemed wasted in so many ways, was that I got to write this piece. Perhaps for YOU. I am learning that when I roll with the changes (accept and adapt) and trust God to bring good out of the seemingly bad, I do see good.

The other day my friend told me her whole family was sick with stomach flu or perhaps food poisoning, yet it turned out to be a sweet, peaceful day of being together, despite the yuck.

God can bring good out of any “yuck.” If we re-return to trust and surrender, that is. The Release & Infuse Technique shows you how. My gift to you.

And if you would like personalized help for healing your heart issues, releasing old beliefs and infusing new ones to transform your life, check out my coaching packages at HealingCodesCoaching.com

I always thought it was a good thing to be a nice person, and strove to be a nice person myself.

Until I read this article by Jason Henry.

Henry says that people who are are “nice” (as opposed to “good”) are people who don’t want to hurt others because they were so hurt and traumatized in the past and didn’t heal, that they make a vow (perhaps unconscious) to never make others feel the way they felt.

Perhaps those who possess the trait of high sensitivity are even more susceptible to this. I’ve often thought that HSPs were the nicest people in the world. Because we feel so deeply and take in so much, including our own suffering and that of others, we often bend over backwards to make sure we don’t cause suffering to other people.

Sounds noble, right? Even, perhaps, “Christian.” Do not do unto others as they have done unto you.

However, Henry says that when you dissect this vow for its ramifications, there are several big problems. Read More→

Heather Dominick, mentor to Highly Sensitive Leaders, is teaching “Weekly Activation calls” on A Course in Miracles, and I’d like to share something that spoke to me from a recent call.

(While I’m not sure what I think of A Course in Miracles itself, I do like the way Heather gleans very practical principles from it and applies it to being Highly Sensitive. I also like the Course’s definition of miracle: “a shift in perception.”)

The Miracle she taught on that so struck me was #30, about guilt. She talked about how so often, guilt is used as a means to control. How many times has someone tried to guilt you into doing what they wanted?

So I asked her: How do you handle it when someone does this—they try to guilt you into something that isn’t right for you? (A situation I was currently experiencing.)

Heather asked me, “What do you usually do?”

I admitted that I usually want to be gracious, so often I give in. (In my case, the person was using all kinds of things, from “we’re family after all” to “A good Christian would….” The latter especially tended to hook me.)

Heather then helped me to see that being gracious does not mean giving in. I could trust that I can handle conflict from a place of grace, which doesn’t mean saying yes out of obligation. It means that I can fully accept that other people have feelings and viewpoints of their own, and they may not like mine, but I can come from a place of “both/and”– which is grace.

“Grace in not an act, but a way of acting,” she said. With grace, I can consider “you and me,” rather than “you or me.”

Coming from a place of “you or me,” someone has to lose, someone has to give in. I was thinking that giving in was somehow grace, but it would be an act. Approaching the situation with grace means I can approach the other person from a “both/and” place. I can access the words that communicate what I need, acknowledge what the other person needs, and be OK with the differing needs being at odds. If I’m in alignment with my own deepest values, I can stand firm, and trust that the other person will be able to take care of themselves.

And if they can’t—if they try to draw me into the Dreaded Drama Triangle of Persecutor-Victim-Rescuer, I can refuse to be pulled into that triangle. So often when people use guilt tactics, they try to pull you into one of more of these roles.

Read More→

In a seminar for caregivers of people with dementia, I learned of a new (to me) technique that switches the nervous system to the parasympathetic (rest and digest) mode.

I’m thinking it would probably be especially helpful for those of us who are Highly Sensitive. (Take the quiz if you’re not sure you are.)

It’s called 5-4-3-2-1 and it only takes a couple of minutes.

When you feel yourself stressed or overwhelmed, stop, notice, and name (actually say the words out loud):

  • 5 things you can see.
  • 4 things you can feel.
  • 3 things you can hear.
  • 2 things you can smell.
  • 1 thing you can taste.

This will ground you in the present and send your nervous system the signal that you are safe. It will turn off stress and allow healing to happen.

You can also do this with children, or your partner, or a friend who is in distress.

And if you’d like more help in ways to alleviate stress so that you can heal, check out the free resources and coaching at HealingCodesCoaching.com.

On one of my routine checkups, my doctor reminded me of four pillars of health: sleep, nutrition, stress management, exercise.

When I googled “pillars of health” I came up with anywhere from 3-12 suggestions.

Most of them mentioned, in one way or another, “connections.” It is this that has taken the biggest hit with the pandemic, yet it’s so crucial to our emotional, spiritual, and even physical health.

So today I’d like to guide you to explore what your “crucial connections” are, if and how they’ve become disconnected during the pandemic, and how you can reconnect.

What are your “crucial connections”?

By this I mean, what kinds of connections do you absolutely need to be well in spirit, mind, soul and body?

CC BY-NC-ND by true2source

It’s not the same for everyone. For instance, Extroverts get their energy from connections to the external world, while Introverts gain energy from connections to their inner world.

Extroverts need connections to the outer world in terms of travel, social gatherings, visits to museums, volunteer work. All these took a big hit of course with the pandemic and the changes it wrought.

You may think Introverts fare better with the isolation of the pandemic, but that may not be true. Introverts still need people, they just need fewer and deeper connections. These too are harder to come by because of the pandemic.

Highly Sensitive People (HSP), whether Introverts or Extroverts, usually need connections with nature and a spiritual practice. Nature often soothes the Highly Sensitive soul like nothing else.

We all need connections to people we care about and who care about us. It takes time and effort to keep those relationships going. It’s all too easy to let friendships slide when you can’t get together in person. Yes, there is Zoom and Facetime, but connection through a screen is just not the same as a steady diet.

A crucial connection is a connection to God. You may have a block here—many of us do, from bad experiences with religion and/or parents who were not very godly.

This needs to be healed. A spiritual connection is crucial to a sense that our lives have meaning and purpose—proven to be a key ingredient to health and healing.

For instance, Dr. Ben Johnson credited a big part of his healing from ALS to his faith and his will to live. I believe these things are key to activating and amplifying the healing power of The Healing Codes. From working with thousands of clients, I have seen those with an active faith healing at a different pace and level than those with little or no spiritual connection.

What about connection to your body? How aware are you of what your body is telling you, in terms of its needs? If your body were to talk to you, what would it be saying? (Hint: it is talking to you.)

Then there are more personalized connections that are important. For instance, I need to feel connected to my books, to ideas. Some people need music to feel alive or fully themselves. Some need a beautiful, orderly environment.

Do a little self-assessment. What are your most important connections? Have any of them gotten neglected or torpedoed in the last year? What can you do about reconnecting?

For me, I realized some of my important relationships have been neglected. So I reached out. It was an effort, in some ways, because my life has become more complicated and there are more things to deal with now.

I’m finding myself more exhausted by “screens,” yet phone calls or Zoom get-togethers are often the only options, so I limit other exposure to screens. For instance, I don’t watch online video summits anymore. This way I can use the “screen time” to connect with the important people in my life.

When I reconnected with my body, it told me clearly that sleep has to be my #1 priority, and that I need more “breath breaks” throughout the day. (Click here for an audio “Voo breathing.”) Slowing down is not easy for me, but it’s a message my body keeps sending me.

After reassessing, what is the ONE THING you will commit to in the next week to make a change? It does not have to be a big thing. My motto: “A little is better than nothing.”

Once you decide on your One Thing, ask yourself what do you need to do differently to make your commitment happen?

For me, the commitment is to be to be IN BED before 11pm. What I need to do differently: set my alarm for when I will quit and start to wind down for the evening. And actually STOP when it goes off!

As I go through the week, if I find myself NOT doing what I need to do, I will stop to figure out why? Did I fall prey to doing “just one more thing,” did I get distracted by my phone, did I find I was just too tired and so went slower, did I not take into account the things that must be done before bedtime?

(Feel free to ask me whether I did it in a week!)

Assess your connections on a regular basis, and address any blocks with your healing practices. Keeping those crucial connections strong could be THE thing that will turn things around for you.

And if you need anyone to come alongside you in this endeavor—sometimes we can’t see it ourselves—or need someone to whom you are accountable, consider getting coaching at HealingCodesCoaching.com.

Why Healing Your Heart Matters

Posted by: | Comments (0)

You don’t need me to tell you that we live in very troubling times. It’s all around us, and we can’t escape it. Political polarization, uncertainty, job loss, the pandemic, social media nastiness (which I avoid totally), natural disasters, racial injustice, violence. Even if you limit your news intake, as I do, you still can’t avoid the negative energy all around.

For some of us, especially if we have the trait of High Sensitivity, the energy is palpable; we may even feel it physically.

Authors Dr. Lise Van Susteren and Stacey Colino wrote a book about it, calling it Emotional Inflammation. It’s a state “not unlike post-traumatic stress disorder, but one that stems from simply living in today’s tumultuous world.”

Some symptoms include sleep problems, hyperactivity, persistent grief, or inescapable worry about the future.

In such a climate as ours now, we need to be especially intentional about our own healing. Because healing the heart matters. Read More→

I’m Listening . . .

Posted by: | Comments (0)

I think I’ve cried at least once every single day for the past several weeks, if not months.

As someone who can’t help but feel and think deeply about everything, I have taken my time to respond to what is happening in the world, but especially in our country, about racism in particular.

I am and have always been about “healing heart issues.” I have worked with clients in 39 countries, and of all races and religions. Because I usually only use phone or Skype voice, I do not see my clients, and this gives me and them the freedom to relate at the heart level.

I have found that no matter the color of one’s skin, the same heart beats in all of us.

Having said that, I know that we are all affected by our culture and the surrounding culture. We have the same heart issues, but we don’t have the same experience. In our culture, there is wide disparity between socioeconomic and racial cultures. We can easily find many areas of injustice that need correcting.

I recently wrote a blog about distorted thinking, with the challenge to filter everything you hear or read—even what comes out of your own mouth—through this lens. Our culture’s polarization, for instance, is a perfect example of most of the thinking styles mentioned. And racism is built on ALL of them.

We need to first confront the distorted thinking, the heart wounds, that exist in our own hearts before we can clearly engage in any conversation about healing on a larger scale. As Jesus said, we need to remove the log in our own eye before we can see to take out the speck in our brother’s eye.

With that said, I am prayerfully asking God to show me any way in which my own heart and my own thinking need to be changed.

And I am listening. Deeply. With humility. Listening to my black brothers and sisters, to my friends and colleagues, to people who demonstrate that they are thinking clearly.

And I want to listen to YOU. If there is anything you have seen in what I have said that shows any kind of distorted thinking like that on my blog, or just plain ignorance, call me out, please. I promise to listen.

I believe that love is what is needed now more than ever. And love listens. Love allows space for another to be heard, without judgment. That is what I have always sought to do with my clients, friends and family.

After talking with thousands of clients the world over, I believe one of the greatest aches of the human heart is to be validated. To be heard.

I want you who read this to know that I believe you should be heard. That your experience matters. That YOU matter. Growing up in a home in which I felt like I didn’t matter because I was different (with the trait of high sensitivity), I get that deep need. “Black lives matter” is a very moving statement to me.

I am also listening to God, searching his word for his perspective. What I find is that to God, ALL lives matter, simply because he created every person. God himself loves diversity. You see this in the very first book of the Bible, Genesis, when he made an incredible variety of things, and you see it in the very last book (Revelation), where the vision is of “peoples from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands” (Revelation 7:9). From beginning to end in the Bible, God loves and values diversity.

And so should we, for that very reason.

God loves diversity!

Years ago in 2006, I wrote on my Abundant Gifts blog a post called “Room for All Kinds.” It moved me greatly to write it, and I offer it to you now: https://abundantgiftsblog.com/room-for-all-kinds/

This is the vision I hold to, and pray for. Before God we all stand equal . . . and beloved. When you know yourself—and every other person–as the Beloved of God, it changes everything.

My work is to help you see that you are the Beloved, and then I trust that God and your own aligned self will make clear the unique contribution you are to make to a world in which God’s celebration of diversity is meant to be made manifest.

The events rocking the world at this time, especially the U.S., are staggering.

I have felt deep pain in my heart space over all that is happening. So much pain, loss, heartbreak. Evil exposed (this is a good thing, but so difficult to witness). Injustice and violence.

The latter two especially make me feel physically ill. I learned recently that there’s a name for this stress that can affect us even physically, that feels almost like post-traumatic stress. It’s the pain that stems from taking in the energy of a tumultuous world (and, for people of color, the energy of passive and active discrimination and racism), and it now has a name: “emotional inflammation.” You can listen to a podcast about this here, or check out the book by Dr. Lise Van Susteren and Stacey Colino here. It helped me to understand how much we are all affected by what’s going on in the world.

(For the 20% with the trait of High Sensitivity, emotional inflammation is almost unavoidable; we take in so much more, and process it at such a deep level.)

The problem is, there are many narratives out there. So many nuances to an issue. So many people twisting the facts to fit their own narrative (or ignoring key facts). I feel mentally and emotionally exhausted just thinking about making my way through all of it to the truth.

But I am committed to doing so, through prayer, as God leads. I want to be part of the solution, not the problem.

One thing I notice, among the maelstrom of media, social and otherwise, is how rampant the dysfunctional thinking is behind so much of the narratives. When a friend sent me a link to a very helpful graphic on “unhelpful thinking styles,” I began to apply it not only to my life, but to what I was hearing and reading. Read More→

I am seeing an interesting phenomenon with my clients and friends, especially those with the trait of High Sensitivity: it seems like somehow we are all taking on a bit of the overall energetic “spillage” from all that’s going on in the world right now.

How this shows up in clients varies, but many of us are feeling things like “heartache, anxiety, grief” as well as the fear, loss of control, etc.

Some clients are finding that issues, including physical issues, that had been healed before are now showing up again. Others are finding it hard to pinpoint any memories of their own, but they nonetheless feel some sort of generalized and/or anticipatory negative feelings.

I believe what’s happening is we are experiencing what authors Dr. Elise Van Sustenan and Stacey Colino call “Emotional Inflammation.”

There may be a very positive side to this, though. I think that as we heal ourselves, we are also in some way contributing in a very real way to the healing of the collective. To the extent that we’re tapping into that, is the extent to which our own healing will help the world.

If all you feel you can do right now is focus on your own healing, that’s OK. Doing just that is making a contribution that may be much more than more “concrete” acts of service.

And if you would like some personalized coaching, check out HealingCodesCoaching.com. The Healing Codes and Immanuel Prayer are exactly what is needed for this issue.

Privacy Policy

View Privacy Policy. Your use of this site implies you agree with this policy.