How to LOVE all of Your Self: Part 2 of 4

003Being able to LOVE yourself means having the courage to honor your Spirit’s choices while maintaining compassion for yourself as you embody new ways of being.

You are changing behavior that has been embedded in your ways of being for decades, so in truth, you need to have patience, discipline, practice and momentum (movement).

In my last blog, your attention was brought to the universal wisdom that CHOICE lies within the Spirit of who you are.

When fully connected to your Spirit you can make conscious choices for your body, mind and soul that are integrated with the healthy ego. When connected this deeply, your life’s joys and sorrows flow with the ease of True Will.

So what role does connecting with your soul, separate from your Spirit bring to this month’s topic of True Will?

In my previous blog we looked at how to get to a place of being able to live in True Will. (Click here for a reminder.) The biggest step to living in True Will requires us to move towards being in Response-Ability, while moving away from being in Reactivity.

What does Response-Ability mean?

It means being fully present in each moment of your life with conscious awareness, knowing that the situation you are in, can be witnessed by yourself from multiple dimensions. In this space of witnessing, you can stop to breathe, pause and proceed with a conscious Ability of Response, as opposed to being in the one-dimensional habit of reactivity.

Reactivity is closed, defensive, one-sided, limited and often unkind. Absolutism resides in reactivity. Response-Ability means being able in your responsiveness to a situation while remaining open, inclusive, curious and seeking to understand, while holding the qualities of courage and compassion, with grace and strength. With the attitude of absolutism gone, you no longer believe your beliefs are more important or real than that of any other. Response-Ability always allows space for the knowing of love / kindness in any given situation that we are in, for everyone and everything.

Let’s explore an example:

Think of a time when you were with a trusted friend and the two of you were gossiping about another friend / colleague / family member. Have you ever heard yourself be part of a conversation like this? “Can you believe what Mary did at the school the other day. She went and shouted at the teacher for giving her daughter such low grades. Who does she think she is trying to control the teacher. Her child just doesn’t meet the standards to receive an A.”

Being stuck in a negative narrative about another human being and their choices is a sign of reactivity. This negative narrative is a projection, morally judgmental, unkind, controlling and stuck in the hell of egotistical absolutism.

We want to shift to a position of making a possible assessment, based on value judgments while remaining curious, with no desire to control or be prescriptive, as well as allowing for kindness and love.

For example, when responding to the same information from a consciously able position it would sound more like this. “I heard that Mary appeared extremely upset the other day as the English teacher gave her daughter, Susan, a C grade. I heard that Mary shouted at the teacher, telling her that Susan should get an A. I wonder what’s happening for Mary right now? I wonder how Susan is doing? I wonder how the teacher must have experienced Mary shouting at her? I wonder what opening there is that will allow me to help, without being prescriptive?”

Each of these sentences ends with a question, as in truth, we simply don’t know. We have never walked a day in any of these individuals’ shoes, and we never will. We don’t know their pain or their fears. We don’t know their story and at best we’ll only ever have the broadest outside assessment of their story.

Absolutism and negative narrative are embedded in fear as we sit on the sideline of other people’s lives with all our projections and judgments, as we try to control our own thoughts in order to justify our beliefs. We are merely making assumptions while jumping to conclusions, believing we are right, without knowing and without kindness / love for the individuals involved, or their story. This is due to our own unconscious or suppressed fear.

cache_942188279When able to respond with Response-Ability we can access ways of being that show compassion, without fear of another’s truth or their beliefs. When connected to compassion we can courageously allow our response to any situation to remain curious, affording kindness / love that allows for new openings to present.

To date, you have been cultivating awareness of your thoughts, your feelings / emotions, and your felt senses through your Dare to Ask Journey exercises.

You might have wondered why. The main purpose was to allow you to identify and separate your mind from your soul and your Spirit.

Let’s now explore the difference between your Spirit and your soul.

Think of a time when you asked someone how they are, as you sensed through their energy and body language that they might be sad, angry or frustrated. They then answered that they were fine. Yet their Spirit was communicating quite another truth. Whether they were conscious of it or not, you could see and sense something different from what they were saying about themselves. This intuitive part of yourself is your Spirit communicating, because your Spirit communicates through your felt senses, to your body.

If their answer upsets or frustrates you, then you are having an emotional response, which is based on a projection. This emotion of yours is attached to your own stories and yet you are having these feelings based on their story. This is your soul communicating through your thoughts, feeling and emotions to your mind, by  acknowledging and owning your felt senses. All too often we deny and or suppress these communications from our Spirit. This communication from your soul is for you to look within yourself and not at another’s story with your projection.

Think of your soul as your inherent personality. The part of you that just is. In the same way your body has inherent skin, hair and eye color, height and shape, your mind has inherent characteristics such as being logical or creative. Likewise, your soul is not something you can choose after you are born into this life, it just it. Your soul came to the world in this life, in this form, with this essence being your soul nature.

What you can change is the attitude that your Spirit brings forth to the world on a daily basis through your soul, mind and body. The choice of attitude is simple; one either chooses love / kindness / harmony in every way of your being, or not.

Therefore, nourishing the soul separate from nourishing the Spirit is foundational to living a life of joy.

Your body encompasses your whole physical form, with your mind is centered in your head and your soul nestled in your heart. Your Spirit integrates all of this, with the ability to connect fully with everything beyond, Universal Spirit / God, Love etc.

For your heart to open, your soul needs to open to love / kindness.

The soul, mind and body do suffer in this life, but your Individual Spirit and Universal Spirit exist beyond your beliefs, physical boundaries, pain or fears. So when you are fully connected to your Individual Spirit, you can transcend suffering and find meaning in any of life’s joys or sorrows. From this centered space with Self you can live in True Will with ease. (For more understanding on True Will, read my previous blog).

What is very important to know is that soul is the glue that brings all that is physical (body and mind) and all that is spiritual (individual Spirit and God/ Universal Spirit etc.) together.

jacqui-burnett-230So how do we create practices that allow us to be centered enough to always bring forth kindness for ourselves and others? As you know it starts with your Individual Spirit’s intentional choice of love / kindness, that is communicated from your Spirit to your soul. You worked on this in exercise 13.

Your soul needs to practice having fun and bringing joy into your life so that it can BE the glue of Being that brings forth a mind and body of kindness / love.

So let’s start to explore fun practices that can connect you to your soul, bringing more joy into your life, as in my next two blogs you will be undertaking exercises on how to enable your mind and body to respond with love and kindness in every situation that you are faced with, be or joy or sorrow.

Exercise 14 – Practices to enliven your connection with your Soul

Intended outcome of this exercise:

  1. To open to your soul’s energy.
  2. To use your soul to bring forth your Spirit’s chosen intention.
  3. To remind yourself that the soul loves fun.

Over the next 2 weeks undertake the exercise below. Download your journal pages for exercise 14 here.

Important

The key differences between nurturing your soul and nurturing your Spirit is:

  • When nurturing your Spirit your aim is to still your body and your mind. During spiritual meditation, you are aiming to empty your mind of all thoughts that arise. During gratitude / prayer practice you are emptying your mind of thoughts that you want to express.
  • When nurturing your soul, your body and mind are actively involved in the practice as you allow your soul to witness and be present with your bodies felt senses and your minds feelings, emotions and thoughts. For example, a guided meditation is a soul practice and a silent breathing meditation is a spiritual practice.

It is vitally important that you chose your own practice. I will offer some suggestions below.

Your Soul’s Active Practice

During the remaining weeks of the Dare to Ask Journey take on an active soul practice 2 to 5 times a week, for no less than 20 minutes. Choose something that you enjoy and that allows you to bring love / kindness / joy to the experience.

These practices can be done with someone or on your own. Leave your phone and all other digital devices at home, or turn them off while you are engaged in the experience. Focus experiencing each moment with the fresh curiosity of a child encountering a butterfly for the first time. Giggle, laugh out loud or shriek with glee if you feel so inclined!

Suggestions for this practice:

  • Go to an art show with a friend.
  • Buy an adult coloring book and color in.
  • Dance and sing out loud to music that feeds your soul.
  • Volunteer at an animal shelter or feeding scheme.
  • Play a game of golf or any other sport with friends, or by yourself with the sole intention of being playful. For example: Don’t keep score, don’t judge your shots, don’t talk about work or life problems and take the time to notice the beauty around you.
  • Go to a new tea room or coffee shop with a friend, with the intention of avoiding any conversations, positive or negative, about family, friends, work colleagues, politicians etc. Focus on the new surroundings, the coffee, tea or cake, and on each other. Tell jokes, play cards, laugh. In other words, take a moment to escape all that consumes you. Be silly, have fun.
  • Do something fun with children (yours or someone else’s). Play hula-hoop or roll on the grass. Be present for the event for the joy and the felt experience. For example: How did the grass feel on your skin?

While undertaking the practice take time to note:

  1. How your body feels (felt senses), and;
  2. What thoughts. feeling or emotions come to your mind during your practice.
  3. Are you present for the practice of do you wish you were elsewhere? If so, bring back your focus to fully absorbing your choice to participate in this practice in the present moment.

Your key aim is to relax, have fun and think of nothing else other than the moment you are in:

  1. If you are tense in your body, breathe into the tension and relax.
  2. If you notice that your mind is wandering away from the activity to other pressing thoughts, practice coming back to the present moment of enjoyment and allow good feelings to arise as a result of the moment you have chosen to be involved in.

Once you have finished the practice, take the time to affirm the fun / joy that you consciously brought into your life. Either thank the person who shared the experience with you or acknowledge out loud how good it made you feel. If you did the practice on your own, take a minute to look at yourself in the mirror and thank yourself for taking the time to play. Acknowledge to yourself, out loud, what you enjoyed about the experience and how it made you feel.

Your Souls Gratitude Practice

During the remaining weeks of the Dare to Ask Journey take on a soul gratitude practice 2 to 5 times a week, for no less than 20 minutes. These practices are preferably done on your own. If you are present with another, as in a yoga class, refrain from all speaking.
Choose something that you enjoy and that allows you to bring love / kindness to the experience.

These practices must be done in silence. As with the previous practice, leave your phone and all other digital devices at home, or turn them off while you are engaged in the experience. These practices should be done in your own space, in silence where you can allow your thoughts, emotions and felt senses to flow uninterrupted, even if other people are present. Even though you are silent, focus on experiencing each moment with the fresh curiosity of a child encountering a butterfly for the first time.

Suggestions for this practice:

  • Go for a walk in nature, in silence. Make an effort to smell the air and note how you observe everything around you.
  • Practice Tai Chi, Taekwondo or restorative or gentle flow yoga, avoid heated classes.
  • Do a visualization or guided meditation.
  • Go for a walk in the rain. Get wet. Note how the rain feels on your skin, allow yourself to jump in puddles. Laugh.
  • Play with your family pet. Laugh and be silly.
  • Make yourself a cup of tea and sit in the garden, allowing yourself to be mesmerized by a flower. Feel the air on your skin, note how you observe everything around you.
  • Sit in the garden with your partner. Do not look at each other or touch each other. Stay silent and appreciate all that is around you as you simply breathe in each other’s presence. Feel the air on your skin, note how you observe everything around you.
  • Listen to music, that feeds your soul in silence. Note how it lifts your bodies senses and your soul’s mood.
  • Do some stretching exercises.

While undertaking the practice take time to note:

  1. How your body feels (felt senses), and;
  2. What thoughts, feelings, and emotions come to your mind during your practice.
  3. Are you present for the practice of do you wish you were elsewhere? If so, bring back your focus to fully absorbing your choice to participate in this practice in the present moment.

Your key aim is to relax, have fun and think of nothing else other than the moment you are in:

  1. If you are tense in your body, breathe into the tension and relax.
  2. If you notice that your mind is wandering away from the activity to other pressing thoughts, practice coming back to the present moment of enjoyment and allow good feelings to arise as a result of the moment you have chosen to be involved in.

After you have finished the practice, take the time to affirm the fun / joy that you consciously brought into your life. If you did the practice on your own, take a minute to look at yourself in the mirror and thank yourself for taking the time to play. Acknowledge out loud to yourself what you enjoyed about the experience and how it made you feel.

For those of you who are working with a friend or a group, this is a good time to catch up and share what you have learned about yourself. Click here for the link on how to go about this sharing with the group.

For those of you working on your own, this is a good time to share with yourself what you have learned about yourself, through external verbal expression. Click here for the link on how to go about this sharing with yourself.

Until we meet again in 2 weeks’ time, have fun with your practices, celebrate life, be grateful and continue to challenge yourself for further growth.

If you have questions about how to live in True Will, either submit your question in the comments section below or in a private note here (link). Share with all of us what you have learned about yourself or how you would like to expand and change your way of being. You can share through the same links above.

I love you all for your courage.

As always, warm love and regards
Jacqui

As a Spiritual Revolutionary, Jacqui Burnett Dares you to reboot your Spirit, to awaken your body, mind and soul, to Be Love in all that you Believe, Think, Say and Do.

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