si dawson

experiments in self-improvement

Month: June, 2012

The Fastest I Have Ever Been Rejected

The other night we started drinking at about 9:30pm after a very long day at work. We didn’t finish until ridiculously late (well, early).

Now, get enough beers in me & I get a bit crazy. A bit “everyone deserves to feel good, so why not compliment them?” crazy.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, in a bar situation this typically goes down like a lead balloon.

Bro & I were in a bar called Strawberry Moons (best name ever) when I saw a girl with the most fantastic empire waisted dress, dancing like a wild thing. So, when I went to the bar and she was standing right there I tapped her on the shoulder to tell her how awesome she was.

This gorgeous creature turned, took one look at me & immediately turned back without saying a word – or even wasting the effort of a facial expression.

Total time? About a third of a second.


Now, there are several conclusions you could draw from such an interaction:

  • women get approached so often in bars that it’s normal to expect ulterior motives.
  • first impressions have a huge effect
  • in a big city you get used to only being approached when someone wants something
  • I’m crap at talking to chicks in these environments

Really though, that’s all brain stuff. All the rationalisation in the world isn’t going to deeply change how you feel – particularly the next time a similar situation arises.

We’re talking about rejection here – which comes back to wanting approval (from her), wanting control (of how she reacts), wanting safety (from emotional pain).

The only thing for it is to welcome all those feelings up and let them go.

In this case Not so bad definitely helped me equalise.

Also useful has been allowing myself to feel the feelings (particularly as I remember the situation), repeating “Yes”, welcoming those feelings up and letting them go until I felt loving, calm and peaceful about it all.

Perhaps the best news though is this: In truth, there really wasn’t much internal reaction at all.

… which means most of it has already gone.

… which means as crazy as I might be when drunk, I’m still present enough to let these non-loving feelings go as they arise.

… which is ho ho, so different from how I’ve been in the past.

… and really rather cool.

Drunken meditation, the next big thing?


    Confidence Is Not So Bad

    Yesterday I bumped into an ex-girlfriend’s mum. She’s a lovely woman who I have an enormous amount of respect for. However, their family has a very traditional view of success/failure. So, in terms of what I’ve been through recently, a lot of stuff came up for me. By the end of our conversation, despite the fact that she’s the epitome of grace, I was more or less a gibbering mess.

    I’ve gotta say, this surprised me.

    For a start, some of it was new, which doesn’t often happen – particularly around subjects I’ve worked diligently on clearing out (eg ex-relationships).

    I also had a flash of realisation. Either this ex, or the breakup with her utterly shattered my confidence.

    All this came pouring out while talking to her mother. Needless to say, it was one of the more awkward conversations I’ve had in a while.

    Now, the longer I’ve been doing this work, the more I’ve seen – simpler is better.

    You can take the most complicated techniques in the world, and generally there’s a kernel of truth at the heart of it which is where the magic is really happening.

    Also, when you’re feeling emotionally messed up, something simple is so much easier to find the motivation & clarity to do.

    So what helped me the most in this situation?

    Saying “Not so bad.

    Every negative thought I had that came up, both while we were talking and as I thought about it afterwards, I just said “not so bad” to it, and released all energy that came up with it.

    One of the key aspects of confidence is having the very simple visual attitude that we are bigger than our problems.

    When our problems seem bigger than us, that’s when we get overwhelmed. That’s when we feel we can’t cope. That’s when we lose confidence in ourselves, lose belief in ourselves.

    Saying “not so bad” brings problems down to size. Even better, it brings them down to well below our size.

    In other words, it gives us our confidence back.

    When you feel as big as the world, kicking every trivial obstacle out of the way with your giant boots (or giant toupee)? Well, that’s a state of confidence.

    So, I just continued through everything I could think of, bringing up the thoughts & feelings, saying “Not so bad” to it all. I let the energy go, and I felt all of the crap that had come up just fading away.

    Better yet, I felt that shattered confidence rebuilding as I watched.

    What also helped was simply saying “not so bad” to “having no confidence” (why make it more complicated than it needs to be, right?)

    It’s such a simple thing, but it helped me like crazy, so I wanted to share it with you.