Your inner strength is rubbing off

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I see youCompassionate people ask for what they need.  They say no when they need to and when the say yes, they mean it.  They’re compassionate because their boundaries keep them out of resentment  – Brene Brown

 I volunteered to be on the team for the More to Life Weekend.  I can’t emphasise enough how life changing that weekend workshop can be.  It was amazing to be a part of it.  Not only did the participants grow exponentially and have huge transformation in their lives – walking in at the beginning of the weekend heads down, shoulders slouched, faces stretched taut – walking out at the end eyes shining, bodies standing tall, faces emanating joy….. but those on team also grew in leaps and bounds.  It was a privilege to behold.

Each person on team works on something in their own lives where they are wanting to grow and I chose boundaries because that is an area of challenge in my life.

The more to life community is unique in that it encourages each person to stick to their growth edge (mine being boundaries) so if I choose to say no to something, I am encouraged by them.  

Brene Brown describes boundaries as “what’s ok and what’s not ok”.  Since the weekend there have been many moments where I have been challenged by life to stick to my boundaries.  Since being back at home I am a much more peaceful, loving and accepting individual where little issues were just that …. little.  Instead of getting upset I used my new found growth to discuss them in a loving, firm, connecting way to inspire the kind of behaviour I want towards me and others. 

This last Friday night instead of quietly complimenting my family in whispers, I said out loud (just this once) what I loved about each person.  Then they in turn responded with what they have noticed or love about me.  One of my children looked at me and said “Mom what I have noticed about you this week is that you have an inner strength and it is rubbing off on all of us”.  Tears to my eyes.

When we let people get away with behaviours that are not okay we can become resentful and hateful.  I am choosing not to allow that to happen anymore.  I want to be peaceful, loving and connecting and I am important enough not to accept certain things that are not okay for me.  Boundaries are not walls or rifts they are respect.  

There may be brief sweating when setting boundaries because doing so could bring on other people’s disappointments and could make them angry.  Once they understand that this is not a once-off, things will change.  I used to think that setting boundaries was too strict and I should be doing things for everybody (or else maybe they won’t like me or our relationship will end).  What I have realised though is that setting boundaries is kind.  Not just to me but to them.  Lying about your true feelings and then holding resentment is not loving and caring and doesn’t keep relationships healthy.

I am deeply grateful for having experienced the More to Life weekend once again and I encourage you to look out for it next time (November).

Sending you much love, my precious reader.

Eve

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If You Were Them

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What is your partner doing to you that is bugging you or where do you feel a lack?***

Love PenguinsThere are two opinions in every relationship.  Whatever negative feelings you are having towards the other person, they are having some negative feelings towards you too.

According to a video I watched with Tony Robbins there are 6 basic human needs in relationships:

  1. Certainty – That we feel comfortable and secure in our relationship.
  2. Uncertainty – Variety and challenges to exercise our physical range.
  3. Significance – Every person needs to feel wanted, needed, important and worthy of love.
  4. Connection/Love – Everyone needs connection with other human beings and everyone strives for love.
  5. Growth – When we stop growing we die.  We need to constantly develop emotionally, intellectually and spiritually.
  6. Contribution – To go beyond our own needs and give to others.

Each person has two main needs from the above list (from numbers 1 – 4) that they need to thrive in a relationship.

When our needs are not being met we may have weapons that we use against the other person for example: hurtful words, sarcasm, shutting them out etc.

To put our weapons down we need to feel that our needs are being met.  At the same time, our partner’s needs are not being met by us because if we are feeling resentful, you can be sure you are holding back some love or whatever they need the most.

One of the things we need to do is to look at it from the other person’s point of view:  What am I doing in this relationship?  Is this person feeling secure, significant, loved, are we growing together, what am I contributing?

Yes obviously you need to have your needs met as well and that is something that can be discussed between the two of you but at the same time you are doing things that are not creating beauty in your relationship.  So ask yourself “What would my partner be saying about me?  What does he/she feel that I am doing or not doing?”

And then do it. 

We need to commit ourselves to our partner in order to create the relationship that we want or crave.  It does work better if you are both working towards it in the same way but if not then whatever efforts you put in, your partner will notice them and changes should happen.  It’s not enough to say I love you on the day you get married and then only say it at birthdays.  Relationships require constant commitment for both partners to feel that their basic human needs are being met.

This is just one aspect of building your relationship into something wonderful and it is a really GOOD start.

Wishing you love, connection and joy.

Eve

*** This can be applied to ANY relationship that you wish to improve.

When Right is Wrong

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I had an argument with someone close to me the other day and I’m telling you by 11 pm when it was time to go to sleep, I felt remorse and regret.  Not that I didn’t think I was right at the time of the argument (of course I was haha) but I just realized the futility of what had taken place and how it takes me further away from someone instead of closer to them.

right and wrongWhat is the point of relationships?  Why do we have the people that we have in our lives?  Why can’t we just live on our own and not interact with people, that way we won’t have conflict and we will be at peace?

I don’t have all the answers, obviously, but my view is that each relationship does have a point and a purpose.   When you know what that purpose is it can change the dynamics of your relationship.  At the end of the day you will keep coming back to the purpose and that will keep you on track for the next time.

Being right is not always right.  It may feel like it at the time but it creates a space between you and the other person that needs to be healed and that takes time and effort.  Try and pick your battles and decide if being right is going to serve you or not.

Go for a win-win situation where both of you come out feeling heard and respected.

I wish you lots of beautiful connections
With love
Eve

3 Important Things

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I sat working at the coffee shop and watched a father and two boys who I assumed were his sons walk in.  They sat together at a table, the father hunched over his phone, not looking up.  The two young boys had a phone between them and were playing a game on it.  Neither the boys nor the father acknowledged each other.  The manager came over to greet them.  The child holding the phone didn’t even look up.  They were there for about 15 or 20 minutes, collecting takeaways and then they left.  In all that time they didn’t interact.

Most of us are guilty of this to some extent.

If we keep in mind the things that are important to us, we will put our phones down, close our laptops early and switch off the tv.

What 3 things are most important to you?

When you identify what they are remember them when living your day to day life.  There’s a good chance it will feel satisfying and connecting.

With love

Eve

The Oxygen of Relationships

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communication-oxygen-to-lifeTwo people (no matter what their relationship is) can walk around holding resentments towards each other for all the wrong reasons.  Not that there’s a right reason to be resentful but what I mean is this…

Here’s a scenario:  Bob and Sam are friends.  Once Sam mentioned something judgemental to Bob about people who buy expensive cars.  Bob, who has an expensive car, thought that Sam was talking about him.  Bob has been walking around holding this resentment for about a year and Sam is oblivious to it.  Often when Bob gets into his car and thinks about Sam, part of his driving enjoyment is lost.  Whenever he sees Sam these days he looks down on him a little bit and makes snide remarks about things that Sam does.  They are drifting apart and both of them think that maybe their friendship is past it’s sell-by date.

What is missing here is communication.  If Bob had spoken to Sam about this, he would have realised that Sam wasn’t even talking about him.

communication-resentmentThis can happen in subtle and secret ways too.  I read about a person who found out that her husband resented her for becoming overweight during their marriage.  This had come as a total surprise to her as he had never said anything to her about it.  If they had spoken about this issue they could have found a solution together.  Not only that but they could have grown closer by communicating with and supporting each other.  He had been holding on to this resentment in secret and had been taking his revenge in subtle and silent ways.

If I could give you something important to take away with you it would be this.  When communicating….

Seek first to understand

Listen to what the other person has to say.  Don’t just wait quietly until he or she is finished speaking so that you can speak.  Listening is the key to communicating effectively.  We often forget this and think that speaking is the most important part.

Speak from your own point of view

Talk from your own experience and feelings (For example…  “I feel hurt by what you just said” – rather than “you are always hurting me”).

Listen and try not to interrupt.  Then have your say.

Here’s wishing you strength to create peace in your relationships.

Eve

Be brave mighty angel

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I was in hospital recovering from surgery about 11 years ago and I was having a particularly bad day (pain-wise).  My husband was with me but he had to leave to go home and be with the children.  I really didn’t want him to go because I thought I wouldn’t be able to cope with the pain on my own.  He looked me in the eyes and said “be brave mighty angel” and then left.

Those few encouraging words lifted me from despair to hope, from agony to being able to cope.  Suddenly I was not a helpless being lying in the hospital bed, I was a mighty angel.  A mighty angel would be able to be brave and get through this ordeal.

Often we don’t realise how what we say has such an impact on others.  Negatively or positively.

Here are some guidelines for encouraging words:

Be sincere
It’s not encouraging when someone says words that neither of you believe.

Say what you want to say with a loving heart
Sometimes we need to say things that may be difficult for the other person to receive.  If you say it with a loving heart it will come across in a gentle way.

Don’t add criticism to the mix
You are beautiful but……

Offer support
Do what you can within your power (while still keeping boundaries) to be supportive.  Perhaps the person just needs an ear to listen to now and then or a hug or maybe a gift showing you care delivered to their door.

Don’t find everything wrong with the situation
Dwelling on the negative will not be helpful or encouraging.  If you think the person has a terrible idea, try and find the positives in it and guide them in a direction that would work.

Have the other person’s interests in mind, not your own
We often think we know what’s best for the other person but maybe they are not in the same space as we are.  What another person needs right now is not necessarily what we think is good for them.  It’s their journey, let them travel it.

Sometimes silence is best
Silence and a listening ear could be the perfect way of encouraging or supporting someone who is going through a very challenging time.  Especially if they have lost someone.

* * * * *

Knowing that you have someone in your corner helps people find their inner strength and courage and it can be a huge relief.

If you are always the person who encourages others, don’t forget to ask someone you trust for some encouragement when you need it.

EN – COURAGE

With love
Eve

Only 90 times!

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purpose - 90 years and call it life When I saw this quote I had a moment of shock.  If we have the opportunity to live to 90 or above, let’s use 90 as an example… then we only have 90 times to do a year.  It may seem obvious to you but to me it was one of those aha moments that Oprah talks about.  Only 90 times to try it over.  Only 90 times to do whatever it is I’m trying to do. That’s so little!  If I only have 90 times I want to make those times count.  Keeping in mind we don’t all get 90 times.

This post is not meant to be morbid, it’s meant to wake us.

What do I want to be doing?

Some people have a bucket list, I prefer to call mine “exciting things to do in my life at some stage” list but those things might take years to achieve.  So I have a “meaningful priority list” which is for everyday use (it’s not necessarily written down).  I feel frustrated with myself if a day ends and I haven’t done at least one thing in my “meaningful priority” list.

What have I done today to be proud of?

I think the key for me is to look at what is important in my life and to make sure I do one or some of those. I learned some skills on the Power of Purpose in this regard (click for more info).

Yes, our days are often filled with seemingly meaningless or routine tasks like sitting in traffic, cleaning up, standing in queues.  That’s the way it is.  However, if we see them as meaningless they will be.  But if we can somehow figure how to put them into our “meaningful priorities” list we can change them and the way we feel about them.

purpose - elderly couple eating ice creamHow can we do this?

We can gripe and groan about standing in the queue or we can make conversation with a fellow queue member or use the time to text a friend who is in need of some love.  We can hate the traffic or we can use it as a time to listen to a really good podcast or some favourite music or greet the people along the way with a smile making their days – and by the way, making someone else’s day often makes yours.

We can sit watching movies or series to switch off from our restlessness (which is really our soul saying “hey, let’s do something”) or we can make watching a movie a real treat now and then.  We can include our children while cooking even though the cleaning up afterwards will take much longer.

Let’s make the most of each year we have because it’s not just a year, it’s an opportunity, a chance.

Let’s start with today…. We don’t have to wait until the 1st of January.

With love
Eve