September 25, 2022. New Moon in Libra.
This Sunday morning, I took a walk in my neighborhood once the sun rose high enough to cross the mighty Ko’olau mountains. The air was warm, but the trade winds provided a cool contrary breeze. I reminded myself to expand my diaphragm slowly to fill my lungs with life supporting air. As I put one foot in front of the other, I reflected on why this week had been particularly difficult for me. My initial conclusion? This week, I spent more time attending to the behaviors, upsets, demands, poor planning, and whims of others more than I considered my own capacity. And I did this, when I was already unsteady.
People will always have needs, emotions and behaviors that enter our worlds. Many don’t know how to regulate their emotional, mental, or physical state when they are not present. This can cause others to be equally disrupted around them creating piles of confusion, blame and challenge. That is exactly what happened and instead of blaming others, I took responsibility but, in the process, realized I had not grounded or considered myself. I did not stay within as easily due to some shaky foundational thoughts, which I will share later. So, most of my negative emotion was in focusing more on external stimuli or my painful thoughts about them, than to my internal conditions and needs.
Whenever I have a challenging moment, my habit is to understand what happened more clearly. In my professional work, I discuss that there is often a core wound or collection of damaging core beliefs, that lie beneath our emotional and behavioral responses. If we are attending to our emotions and processing, then we can cope when old wounds are triggered. For me, this means that I must be aware of what is occurring in my current experience (fully present and curious) and grounded enough to be able to look forward a bit. I know that I am traversing on dangerous ground when I am not able to be present and think clearly. When I am operating on a day to day, reactionary basis, I am not operating at full capacity and awareness. The danger, since I’m already carrying a large share of responsibilities, is that I will overwhelm my capacity to cope and dissolve into negative mind space. Which did happen this week. Fair enough.
However challenging, scarcity-based thinking is a magnificent contrasting experience. As an emotional alchemist, I now gain energy from transmuting the old fabric of negative beliefs, conditioned responses, and internalized oppression. I, like all of us, are free to upgrade my internal programming. Learning the root of what is bothering me only serves as fuel on my overall mission of constant expansion. If I can just get to the core of the mis-alignment, I can release the coiled up/stuck energy. This dive into negative thought and emotion, provided some nuggets that I felt compelled to share with anyone who is willing to listen, for I hope these can be supportive of you considering yourself.
Gold nuggets and bars from the dive down…
The core wound was an oldie but goodie. Ever since I was a little girl, I have loved big! I delight in loving people. Usually, I demonstrate love towards people in a specific way. I give my full attention, I care, I’m kind, I respond, I give grace, I take responsibility, I consider, I give time and I connect. I also try to provide harbors of safety for people so that they feel seen, heard, and acknowledged. This week, I realized, not everyone I love so fiercely is willing to love me in the same way. That initial thought, settled calmly in my mind and did not rouse me into upset. What I choose to give up to me. I am not giving love to receive love in return…for that is unloving. That was one of the first parts of the core wound that was healed previously. The old belief of giving love to avoid being abandoned. Since that old belief contained no emotional charge, I went deeper into my mind, diving into the wound to find the gold. There on the sandy floor of my salt filled tears, I came upon the first gold bar of clarity. “You’ve got to consider the energy you are giving out and manage it for YOU. Your energy is your responsibility. AND, dear, Ellen, you are seeking balance. It is time to learn how to fully receive, so act like it and practice.” This singular block of thought immediately helped me to navigate my way back to peace.
First, considering myself means taking responsibility for my energetic capacity and determining much I want to give. Usually when I am calm and in a curious headspace, I can easily gauge my remaining energy to plan activities and actions. Over the past few weeks, I have been in less present and overcommitted to others without consideration of my time and energy. Ultimately, I am responsible for my energy levels and capacity and when I do not pay attention, no one else is going to either. We are each responsible for managing where we put my energy and why.
Second, considering myself means offering myself grace and clarity. Part of this process is diving deep to determine the nature of the current wound. I know that I am wounded when I am not able to rebound and refocus easily. Once triggered, it is helpful to know which wound was activated. Once I understand why I was triggered and what belief is running the show, I’m able to forgive myself for any behaviors that come. If I am running on empty capacity (because I have already not considered myself) then I will make more mis-takes and if not checked negative momentum builds. I care for myself by restoring the ease and not piling onto my already upset self with additional harmful thoughts.
Thirdly, considering myself means healing the core wound through new action and acceptance. As a perpetual giver, I am also a person who tends to not experience receiving very often. For most of my life, I’ve been afraid to stop giving. I was terrified that if I stopped giving, THEY would stop receiving, and everything would stop. I would be alone and unable to flow love at all. The feeling of desperately wanting to give love or yearning to receive love came up again. This core wound is called abandonment.
This time, I was able to get clarity on receptivity and dive farther into my consciousness to heal the wound. The trigger: I have been expecting people in my day-to-day life to respond, connect or give love in the way I give it. That is not the way it works. Shock face! That errant belief seeded my disappointment, sadness, and challenge this week and once again caused me to question my “worthiness.” Now, whenever the message is about “worthiness” I know I have been activated because I am already inherently worthy. I know this deeply, so I recognize it immediately as a false thought. Luckily, all false thoughts that arise receive the beautiful light of love and clarity. I woke up one morning, after a tempest of sadness with this stunning ancient clarity,
“The Universe is working through you and constantly giving to you, Ellen. We are all connected, and the Universe will always respond, connect, and give love to you. Sometimes the people who are close to you are able to love and flow attention your way and sometimes they are not. Be not dependent on specific external sources. Be open to receiving from within. You have a direct connection to the Universe, stay open to all the ways love can come.”– E. Wright, 9/2022
In that moment, I had a new awareness and instantly felt better. I’ll never get over the healing balm of understanding. My human self has an endemic and conditioned personality, that reacts and forgets the truth but my Soul/Higher Self is always loving me. I am always connected to an endless stream of care, attention and compassion. With that, I let go of expectations for others and realize the Universe/Source/God is always sending love and my job is to allow it to flow to me in unexpected and glorious ways.
Ultimately, considering oneself is paying attention to self. As Mary Oliver so scribed, attention is initiation of all devotion. Honor your inner being, your higher self and your personality by paying attention to the nature of your energy and manage it with care. For you are a child of the Universe, no less than the trees and the stars and you have a right to be here.
I hope that this piece illuminates something for you. Here is a short list of ways you can determine if you are considering yourself.
- When tired or at emotional capacity, do you ask yourself if you desire to do X, Y or Z task and honor your response?
- Do you respond with curiosity and openness?
- When faced with challenging decisions, do you give yourself the space and grace to effectively triage or problem solve?
- Do you consider your needs before committing to tasks or actions?
- Do you feel comfortable saying “no” or “not right now.”
- Do you manage your energy well and give yourself enough space to complete assignments?
- Do you center yourself at the beginning of the day by spending a few minutes or more meditating, giving thanks and/or setting intentions/desires for the day?
- When the world pulls and demands, do you feel centered and confident within?
If you answered yes to any or all of these questions, you are doing a great job considering yourself. If you answered no to 3 or more of these questions, you may explore ways you can support your energetic capacity.