No Full Stops

Musings on life, learning and soul searching…

Choosing Sobriety 9 January 2012

Genre: Creative Non-fiction

In the past I used alcohol to escape my feelings, numb my mind and boost social confidence. The decision to release it as a coping mechanism was terrifying. Here is my story of making that decision.

Click here to read the story: Unsocially Sober

Now many months later, I actively choose to experience and feel life in the fullest way possible, meaning alcohol no longer plays a part.

 

Feasting on All That I Am 7 January 2012

Have you ever really embraced all that you are? And I mean all of it, no censoring, no compromise and without a thought to anything or anyone outside of you. I know this is something I had never done, or even really thought was possible, let alone something  I wanted or needed to do. Yet I have tasted this particular type of freedom very recently and I am now feasting from its abundant supply. The sad thing is that I never even knew how starved and emaciated  I was before.

All of my life I have played up or down different aspects of myself in order to just fit and be loved. And I have played with this formula many times without knowing it, changing and growing in different directions, with different people and circumstances gravitating around me. Don’t get me wrong… I have never faked anything… But I just worked with the ingredients of me instead of the entire recipe.

What I have come to understand now though, is that whatever I am… I get. So when I play small for others or even try to play up certain parts to be bigger than they are, all I get is a set of reflective people and events that are eventually and inevitably unsatisfying. This then enslaves me to what some people refer to as the human drama, where I feel things are happening to me, instead of created by me.

So why not be all that I am? I think it’s because this is the most frightening thing any of us face in the human experience, until of course you do it. Something finally broke inside of me and I could no longer contain any part of me, or even dilute it for popular consumption. I just didn’t care anymore. I was underfed and spent. But as all of me began to express, and just be… my spirit became nourished and began to re-energise.

As I regain my essential self, I feel full to bursting, with morsels of myself spilling out into the world. People seem to sense this and join me with appreciation at the table of myself. I don’t hang around waiting for invitations anymore, I’m the main event of my own life. Seems crazy that it was ever any other way.

In the words of Maryanne Williamson and used by Nelson Mandela in his inauguration speech:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us: it’s in everyone. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

 

My Divine Resolution 30 December 2011

Genre: Poetry

 

My Divine Resolution

I am love
I make choices and decisions from love, not fear
I honour myself
I honour all others
I love and accept all that I am
I give others the freedom to be all that they are
I do not impose myself, my needs or my expectations on others
Nor do I allow others to impose theirs upon me
I do not assume ownership of any other being
And I do not allow any other to possess any part of me
I commune peacefully and joyfully with all around me
I give love freely and without condition
I receive love openly and with gratitude
I listen, I learn and I grow
I know that at all times all is well
I live my truth
I know that I am a spiritual being having a human experience
I am a soul
I am one with God.

Please feel free to download this decorated and printable version for your own use:

Click here to open: My Divine Resolution

 

Stop Bringing Me Down 16 December 2011

I was reading a blog this morning titled “30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself”. It is a wonderful little list of insights that I have, for the most part, applied in my own life. Mostly. Have a read later via the link below and see how many you have got sorted and how many you should probably take a closer look at.

One that really stands out to me as a recurring lesson from my past is number 19:

“Stop letting others bring you down… Refuse to lower your standards to accommodate those who refuse to raise theirs.”

This particular habit of adapting and altering my expression of self has taken many forms over the years, all of them self destructive and ultimately ineffective.

Many times this has involved a complete compromise of being my best self. It has included a variety of dangerous behaviours, law breaking, unhealthy lifestyle habits, gossiping and basically just going with the flow of the group I was trying to fit into. And sure, I fit into those groups perfectly, at the expense of no longer fitting into myself. The reason this is so damaging to the self is that I stop liking myself and in particular because this has occurred largely at a subconscious level. Before I know it, I have become a stranger to myself, lost and wondering who I am and why I just never seem to be happy. I question the meaning of life, because I have lost my natural connection with it.

Ironically, during these times I often believe that the only happiness I feel occurs at the time that I am engaging in the very things that are taking me away from myself. I suppose this is because these are the times that I receive love and approval from the people I have surrounded myself with. They feel great that someone is accepting and reflecting who they are choosing to be, affirming that their expression of self is valid and right. Yet this all happens at the expense of my own expression of self and who I am choosing to be by default. This is exactly when I need to ask, ‘Do I love and approve of myself right now?’ This is how I can see that I am not honouring  my self and hopefully raise the strength to make a different choice.

Making a different choice, one that is true and authentic to my best self, often is an unpopular one. The people around me, assuming to know me better than I do, will often react unfavourably to a different me. They don’t seem to understand that the me they ‘know’ is a me that thought love and acceptance came from the outside. A lot of the time this is because they are also receiving their love and acceptance from the outside, in part through my friendship and compliance. If I can remember this, it allows me to move along my own path with strength and compassion towards any unfavourable reactions. And sometimes it means letting go of people or situations that just don’t fit with who I want to be.

I really don’t think that the changing tides of people and situations in my life is in any way a bad thing. In fact, I truly believe is a good and positive result of the changing nature of myself. It is one of life’s few guarantees… That as I change, the world around me changes, in both big and small ways. And when I think back to who I was being twenty years ago, ten years ago and even last year, I am grateful for all that has changed. It seems that as time goes by I get closer to my best self. And if I find I moving away from that, I just stop and observe, then make a different choice.

It is so easy to get caught up in the trillions of expressions of self in the world. But the only one worth losing and finding yourself in… is your own. Honour thyself.

 

Read 30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself here.

 

 

Losing Trust 2 December 2011

Filed under: Creating Love,Writing Life — Rachael @ 12:32 pm
Tags: , , , ,

There is a certain amount of irony to the notion of trust. I mean, if it were never broken, it’s very existence would be superfluous, it would be inherent in all of us. Yet it is not. Some of us trust easily and some of us never really trust. But is it really about other people? What if we only looked at trust within ourselves? I’m not entirely sure this is a valid idea, but stay with me while I chew on it for a bit.

If I think back to times when another person broke my trust, it is all too easy to rest in the belief that they lied, or cheated or did the wrong thing. And maybe they did from my perspective. But if I remember back to that relationship (whatever it was), I find that I had also broken trust in some way. It may have been that I had stopped authentically engaging with that person, or I was trying to control how the relationship existed or even that I was ignoring truths in myself.

Perhaps this is why trust is a given in some relationships and a tentative agreement in others. Because when it is naturally there, it requires no thought or intervention, it just feels right and safe. If I am making a conscious decision to trust, there is already something there that goes against this. Owing to the fact that this is within me, then surely the obligation rests upon me to interact with that person accordingly. Based on what is in me I can honour myself and the other by allowing the relationship to be what it is, rather than what I think it should be, or what I would like it to be.

I have found that I can’t just think a situation into being, whether that situation is an event, a relationship or the way I want to be myself. It requires me to just be it first. Simply put, you get what you are. If I want to share trust with another person, I must first have that trust in myself. And it is not a trust of the other, it is trust of myself. It is the knowledge that I will attract people into my life that resonate with what I am, and it is with these people that trust is a non-issue.

The issue of course may be that these people are not what I want, or don’t interact with me in the way I would like. This then is my signal that I am not being these things myself. Until my way of being matches my idea of what I want, I won’t find trust within myself or another. It will always be a constructed and manipulated mind game. How can I really expect trust to exist under these circumstances? The whole point being, I don’t need trust if I am trust.

I trust myself to feel the relationship’s truth and respond authentically. I trust that I will get what I am. I let the idea of trusting another go. I know that to trust another is to trust myself.

Just some ideas… How do you trust?

 

The Exhibition of Sex 1 December 2011

Filed under: The Things We Do,Writing Life — Rachael @ 10:25 am
Tags: , , , , ,

I worked a few shifts at Sexpo again this year and it never fails to amaze me at just how easily sex sells. I mean we are talking about an exhibition centre showcasing hundreds of stalls of sex related paraphernalia and dozens of live shows every day. It really is quite a spectacle. I must admit that every time I approach the great hall of sex, I feel a little sexier and my walk is a little wigglier. And then it is business as usual.

I remember going to Sexpo for the first time many years ago when I was a youthful and wide eyed eighteen year old. It was awe inspiring and confronting all at the same time. Back then, sex was all about just getting some, there was no art or creativity to it. My friends and I felt bad ass just because we were wandering around in public amongst the sights and delights that we really had only just begun to explore. I think my only sex accessory at the time was the obligatory packet of condoms.

The Sexpo mascots...

And as always this year there were many young punters, just old enough to secure entry, with the titillation of it all evident in their faces. As if you might even get a quick one behind a curtain just for turning up. Also in attendance were curious couples, sex industry peeps, fetish folks in full costume, the sexually beautiful (aided by the highest of heels and bronzest of tans). And then quite literally, the big, the bad and the ugly. Sex really is on everyones agenda.

With many years and a few lovers having passed between this year my first ever show, I still wander around in my break interested to see what’s new. Some of it is funny, some of it is gross, some of it is boring and some of it is delicious. Hardly surprising seeing as sex itself can be all of these things. And really, that’s what all of this is about… Sex. Without the sex, the accessories are useless. Not much sex is actually being sold here, just plenty of ideas. The sex of course is BYO.

I mean, there really is not much you can do in a crowd of hundreds even if you are watching a particularly erotic male dance troupe on your carefully timed break. Or viewing a threesome projected in silhouette onto a purple curtain. Or seeing a shirtless fellow being whipped by a large dominatrix, boobs bare and spilling down the front of her corset. Or perhaps just sitting in on one of the many talks about loving your vulva and toy box essentials. Just be sure to bring your credit card, or even a notepad and pen.

None of this colourful display of sex seems shocking or strange in itself. Only the fact that people are doing it in front of everyone is odd. And by doing it, I mean openly discussing and displaying their fantasies and preferences, along with plenty of skin. So the selling of sex seems to be a lot less about the physical reality of it and a lot more about the tantalising idea of it all. Come along expecting much more, and you’ll likely be disappointed. Important to note that sex and disappointment are never fun when paired together.

And lastly, a shout out to all the voyeurs in the crowd and evidence that sex will sell whether we like it or not: I was working on the alcohol stand doing samples and sales. Quite possibly the most popular all time lubricant for sex.

 

Armchair to Out There 30 November 2011

Genre: Creative Non Fiction

 

This is a story of the opening of duck shooting season in Victoria, March 2011. In support of the Coalition Against Duck Shooting (CADS), it was the first rescue action I experienced.

Click here to read the story: Armchair to Out There

Photo sources include: Herald Sun, Weekly Times Now, Coalition Against Duck Shooting.

 

 
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