You CAN do it!
Love yourself first.
It is vital, no imperative, that you take care of your own needs; emotional, spiritual, physical, and mental. We get caught in a trap of being “nice”, so others will like us. Your body is an ecosystem in itself that needs balanced love and attention. When you do this, you contribute in a meaningful and loving way to others that have their own ecosystem to take care of. It’s okay to say no when a part of you needs quiet time. It’s okay to ask for a hug when needed. Reciprocity is key to a sustainable relationship. It allows others to just be, without taking it personally, and powerfully, they will do the same for you. Be courage: ask for what you want. Be clear and specific. When you honour your needs, you model behaviour that allows your friends and partners to foster theirs. We each have our own work. Know where the boundaries begin and end.
Protect your boundaries.
When cultivating meaningful relationships, develop strong boundaries. Your friends are there to support you through all of life’s challenges and successes. Tap into your intuition. If you catch someone lying, they are a liar. If you catch them cheating, they are a cheater. You want to surround yourself with people that ameliorate your energy, that lift your vibration, and that bring support, constructive criticism (to help you grow) and healthy guidance to your world. Some people will try to use, bully, manipulate, coerce and offer 1000 reasons why it’s okay to cheat, fool, and gossip about others. If you are doing these behaviours, it’s time to take a hard look at the why of it. These boundary violations will suck the life force out of you. Do not waste time or energy on those battles. Go to the light. Every present moment is a gift to make a decision that leads you on a path of your choosing. Choose wisely. Learn to say yes and no equally in a context that brings you joy, peace and true fulfillment. Anything less is wasting precious energy.
Learn true empathy.
Empathy is connection. Learn to use it at the right time, in the right context, and for the right reasons. It requires keen listening skills and a genuine heartfelt knowledge of others' needs. When a partner tells you their mother just passed away, a sincere hug means the world. Tuning in will provide the framework for trust, compassion, and an understanding that a million words could not replace. You are not required to fix it, offer advice, or change the subject. Just listen – respond with “That must be really hard for you.” “If you need me, I am always here for you.” Brene Brown is THE guru on empathy and it’s true value.
Feel all your feelings.
I am not an advocate of those “just think happy thoughts” attitudes. We are blessed with a wide range of emotions, thoughts and feelings. Anger, sadness, grief, joy, pain, and every describable mood are indicators of the ecosystem being either in or out of alignment. They are gifts to help us navigate and recognize that something in our energy needs addressing. The point is to express each one with positive direction so emotions don’t get trapped in the body and create dis-ease. If you were abused in childhood, anger is a natural and positive expression of the abuse. It will cause illness spiritually, emotionally, physically or mentally when that anger is unresolved or unrecognized. Feelings become trapped and stay with us for weeks, months or decades and wreak havoc with our bodies. The point is to embrace and express all of it so that we can let go and heal the wounded bits.
Tell the truth – always.
Honesty with self is as important as honesty with others. When you fool yourself into thinking you are sparing others by lying, you create an intention that while invisible to the eyes and deaf to the ears, creates an intuitive resonance that will undermine any hope of meaningful connection. Intentions have an energy that permeates all deeds, thoughts, and words. You must be impeccable and set a foundation that is unshakable with its integrity. I am not talking about commenting gratuitously on an awful haircut or a bad choice in attire. That is just subjective trivia. I am referring to a fundamental lie that creates abuse, power struggles, emotional vampirism, and robbing another (or you) of the dignity of facing a truth to make wise, sincere decisions in how to move forward. Lying is a way to avoid responsibility, feelings, and pain. Honesty builds connection and trust. It is powerful and it is essential for healthy relationships.
I am looking forward to new beginnings in 2017. It is with peace in my heart and blessings to each and every one of you, I offer up these five superpowers. Go forward with grace, gratitude and love – for you and for others. This life is short. Make it count by surrounding yourself with the change-makers, doers, lovers. Do not be fooled by charlatans. Use your intuition, tune in, and take the leap. When in doubt – trust it!
© Susan Lee Woodward - This article in its entirety is protected by Canadian and International copyright laws. Reproduction of this written content without written permission of the author is prohibited.