si dawson

experiments in self-improvement

Shut Up And Heal

Historically I have, on occasion, been “a bit of a whinger”.

In my defence, this really only happens if I get stuck in a strongly negative head-space, which is  not common, thankfully. If something is bothering me heavily or strongly upsetting me, I can occasionally spiral, and then talk excessively about that subject.

On the rare occasions I’m really struggling with something, this outward vocalisation can get pretty overwhelming – and especially for whomever is being forced to listen to me. Ha ha, sorry my friends.

I think part of me hopes that by talking it out I can get it all clear in my head (ie, I’m trying to figure it out). Partly I’m looking for sympathy, compassion or support from whomever I’m talking to (ie wanting approval).

The other day though, I had a bit of a realisation.

If I’m complaining about something, it’s because there’s negative energy there. Pretty obviously, otherwise I wouldn’t be complaining, right?

So, since this energy has already come up, rather than expressing it through words, what I should be doing is just bloody well healing it. Surprise!

This is much faster, plus, when it’s done, the desire to complain will disappear along with all that negative energy. It also has the ever-so-slight benefit of making me less miserable to be around. So, another win!

Of course, the trick is catching myself before I start spiralling and talking too much. But that’s just practice. The advantage is, the energy coming up is what motivates me to talk, so really, I only have to watch for moments where I start feeling overwhelmingly shitty, or obsessive. With practice it’s also generally pretty trivial to dump stuff immediately, even if I’m in the middle of interacting with someone.

Now, this isn’t to say there isn’t real benefit in talking something out with a close friend, confidant, or therapist. Talk therapy is popular at least in part because it can be very helpful.

However, there is a point where really, we’re just going over the same old ground, or telling someone new an old problem. We’re merely expressing existing prejudices & emotions, not making any forward progress at all.

This is point where just shutting the hell up and healing whatever is coming up is much faster and better for all of us.


    Everything Is Perfect?

    The first time I heard someone say “see everything as perfect” my immediate response was:

    What nonsense.

    Except <cough> rather more bluntly, with four or five swear words and several exclamation points.

    Since then, I’ve given it a bit more thought though, and I’ve realised something.

    Every single reason our minds come up with why things aren’t perfect is something we should be letting go of. It’s a negative picture we’re holding in mind. Something that isn’t helping us.

    It’s typically:

    Of course, if we were truly enlightened, I suspect we’d realise the deep truth that everything is perfect, and interconnected. However, I’m not there yet, so, I can’t say this with any personal, experiential certainty.

    In the meantime, it’s certainly a very good way to bring to the surface anything we’re disapproving of in our lives, stuff we’re pushing against, stuff that is causing us pain.

    Just say (out loud or to yourself) “Everything is Perfect” with as much conviction as you can, and wait to see what disagreeable bile automatically spews forth from the deepest recesses of your mind.

    Once these things are identified (and boy, this approach is effective), then, as usual, it’s relatively straight forward to dig in and clear this junk out permanently.

    Just another handy tool to chuck in your toolkit.


      Ho’oponopono + EFT

      I’ve written about the Hawaiian art of Ho’oponopono before. And of course, I’ve written about EFT a LOT (understatement of the year).

      However, it wasn’t until a couple of weeks ago that I thought to use the two tools together.

      A typical problem with EFT is the “what the hell do I say?” problem. Now really, you’re only talking for two main reasons:

      1. To keep yourself focused on the specific feeling you’re trying to clear
      2. To talk around the subject (ie free associate), to help hit all the related details & feelings

      Talking out loud will also tend to make something feel more real, and thus pull up the emotion more powerfully than just talking in your head. But that’s really a secondary benefit.

      Now, when you’re tapping, often you’ll hit a specific point and feel a lot more tension there. Either you’ll feel more energy, or the emotional intensity will increase (eg it’ll upset you more while you’re tapping that point), or you’ll feel a physical clutching or tension in your body.

      Typically, the advice is to keep tapping at that point until the energy clears and you feel peaceful again.

      As I’ve mentioned, tapping while saying “I love you” can be quite powerful here.

      It turns out, when you do hit one of those “tension points”, saying the four Ho’oponopono phrases while still focusing on the feeling, is incredibly powerful. This can be done either out loud or in your mind.

      Those phrases being:

      • I’m sorry
      • Please forgive me
      • Thank you
      • I love you

      So. Tap as per usual (saying whatever the hell feels right at the time). When you hit a point of increased tension/energy/upset, then focus on that feeling, and say the four Ho’oponopono phrases (while continuing to tap on that point) until the energy clears and you feel peaceful. Then just continue tapping around your body as usual.

      Give it a shot, see if it works for you. When I get stuck, I’ve found it an insanely fast way to clear out those blockages. Certainly much MUCH faster than simply tapping by itself.


        Wasting Energy

        The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it – Henry David Thoreau

        We all have only so much time, so much life. Most other things can be expanded (more or less) – money, energy, effort. Only time itself can not be replaced.

        But then, what is our life?

        It’s partly the time spent (how many minutes, how many hours), but it’s also what we do with that time. How much thought we’ve dedicated to any given subject or person. How much energy. How much effort.

        In this context, relationships are the easiest place for some big wins.

        In any healthy relationship, both parties are putting in roughly the same amount of effort.

        Now, there are always exceptions. We all go through rough patches where we may be struggling to even get out of bed. People in chronic pain or with life long illnesses are necessarily limited in how much they can contribute. This isn’t through lack of desire on their part though, they just can’t. Kids, of course, are a huge mess.

        Those extremes aside though, when you find yourself endlessly making efforts to connect with someone (either physically or verbally) only to receive minimal reciprocation? If you’re the one always reaching out, or you’re fully engaged while they’re staring at their phone? Something is out of whack.

        Spending time thinking about people when there’s this level of imbalance is only adding to it. That’s your life, wasting away, when you could be thinking about, well, something better.

        You’re pouring your energy into a sinkhole. You’re pouring your life down a sinkhole.

        Now, with some people it’s obvious there’s a massive imbalance. You put tons of effort in; they put none (or near none).

        It’s like a firehose of energy from you to them, with the occasional drip in the other direction.

        Similarly, people may ask for help – which you willingly give, only to realise (after you’ve spent the time and effort) that really, they’re not interested in it at all.

        With some people it’s even more dire. You come away from them feeling actively worse.

        Why do we waste our energy on these people? Mostly because we don’t stop and think, reassess, and ask ourselves “Is this really good for me?” or just as importantly “Is this still good for me?”

        I had a brief email chat with someone the other day. I went back and looked at it, and of the two emails they sent me, every single sentence (that wasn’t about them) was some form of criticism or attack. I’m sure they’re capable of having healthy relationships with others, but for whatever reason, things between us? Toxic. We shouldn’t be wasting our energy on people like this.

        With another person, I’d say roughly 40% of the time we interact, I come away feeling significantly worse (of course, this is my responsibility to heal/manage, but still).

        Someone else I know, after months of “Yes, let’s hang out, but not right now, I’m busy”, when we finally got together, they spent the time subtly probing if I wouldn’t mind if they went and hung out with someone else instead.

        Why do we do this to ourselves?

        I think sometimes it’s just old relationships. People we attracted into our lives when we were in very different places. E.g. unconsciously much less self-loving, thus attracting people who would fulfil that belief and harm us.

        Sometimes, they’re familial obligations. To be fair, these can be much harder to manage – you can’t always cut family out of your life, although you can work wonders through healing.

        Workplace relationships can be similarly hard to manage – although really, if the whole company is that toxic (as is often the case if the boss is bad news), even no job can be a healthier choice. Trust me, I’ve been there.

        There are lots of other ways to waste energy, of course.

        A common one (for me) is watching TV (or movies) where really, I’m gaining nothing from it. They’re not inspiring me; I’m not learning anything; they’re not lifting my mood. It’s super important to chuck these things from our lives. Otherwise all we’re really doing is killing time until we die. “Five more seasons to go, and then I’ll be free!” Even having a nap would be more beneficial.

        Now, if your mood is lifted, you’re inspired, encouraged, supported – then sure, go ahead, watch that TV (usual caveats apply). But if you’re not? There are plenty of other activities out there.

        Ditto books you’re not enjoying, learning from or being stimulated by – why bother?

        See also the myriad of mundane little tasks we mindlessly fill our days with. How much of our life is spent doing things that don’t need to be done, or could be better done by others?

        Really though, our relationships are the key area where we can get unbelievably dragged down, pour untold time and effort into something with neutral or negative return, and potentially massively negatively impact our life.

        It’s worth taking a little time, just every so often, to keep a gentle eye and make sure things are in balance.

        Oh, and the most important part of the equation? Spend more time with those who lift our spirits. Those who make us feel better about ourselves. Who make our hearts sing. Who inspire us. Who make us believe anything is possible. Who make us believe in ourselves.

        I know a few people like that. You’re where I want to invest my life.


          Not Every Picture Needs A Title

          When people first start learning EFT, one of the biggest confusions is “What do I say?” Now, with EFT the primary reason you’re talking is simply to keep you focused on the issue at hand – although often stream-of-consciousness verbalisation does lead to unexpected break throughs.

          The commonest answer to this question is: “If your situation was a movie, what would the title be? Use that.”

          The more I’ve thought about this though, the more I’ve realised – I’ve seen this reaction before. It’s fairly typical if one of my young nephews is asked what they’re feeling for them to answer “I don’t knoooooow!” (typically accompanied by whining and a sad face, but I digress).

          Not being able to articulate what you’re feeling is a totally normal thing.

          As I’ve gone further on this healing journey, I’ve started to notice this more and more. Many of the things I’m healing are so nebulous they really can’t be explained. Even vague descriptions like “a grey cloud kinda over there” don’t adequately sum them up – as much as simple focusing clearly on the specific energy in question.

          If we have an upset stomach, that’s not really an emotion, is it? And yet, it’s still a form of energetic upset – manifesting strongly enough that we feel it physically.

          Emotions that we can easily put into words (fear, anger, hate etc) are only the grossest, most obvious forms of non-physical energy passing through us.

          That tingling we get when we sense someone looking at us – that’s energy passing through too.

          Everything is, after all, just energy.

          Once we’ve dealt with most of the big stuff, we’re left with only the small. The perturbations that really can’t be explained any more clearly than “that feeling”.

          And that’s ok.

          The good thing is, once the obvious stuff is mostly shifted and you’re not experiencing physical or emotion upset as regularly, it gets much, much easier to focus on the more subtle energetic misalignments.

          At this point, yes, you can simply draw your attention to whatever energy is clouding things and let it go (using whatever tools work best for you).

          Not everything needs a name, and the more quickly you’re able to focus your whole attention on an issue, the easier & faster it is to drop it completely.

          It can be easy. It can be fast. It doesn’t always need words.