You are not your behaviours

One of the most important principles I work with is: “A person is not their behaviours”

What do I mean with that?

You know, how I always break everything down into a behaviour? You don’t have anxiety. Instead we agree that sometimes you are doing anxiety…
And there are certain circumstances, situations that trigger that software program to start running. Hence anxiety (or whatever else) is not something that you have but something you do.

The value of a person

In my line of work we hold the value of a person constant. We don’t judge. We accept that everybody makes mistakes. 

Which means that we are not our mistakes…  You are you! And your mistake, are your mistakes. Likewise you are not your faults. And you are not faulty.

When you associate yourself too closely with the negative stuff it’s easy to get stuck with it. When you realise you are not your mistakes or faults or dodgy behaviours, then it is so much easier to take responsibility and do whatever it takes to rectify the behaviour. 

The hardware is fine. The software is dodgy…

That’s the analogy I often use.

It’s important to keep in mind that this is not an excuse. Neither is it a reason to play the blame game. Of course we could blame our circumstances, the upbringing, other people, our health, our living conditions, the boss or whatever else but that has never changed anything. 

Taking responsibility changes everything.  

Boundaries and worth

Now, let’s not confuse all the above with weak boundaries. With always being forgiving and allowing our integrity, our values, what is dear to us and our boundaries to be trampled on. No. Not at all!

Boundaries are super important. 

(More about boundaries another time) So what do we do when we are faced with people, who’s behaviours go against our values? 

You hold the worth of the person constant. You seperate the behaviour from the person. But do you necessarily let the person stick around or do you spend time with them? Well, that’s up to you to make that decision…

Think about this way: They don’t respect your boundaries. It’s okay to make your boundaries clear. If they receptively overstep your boundaries they clearly don’t respect your boundaries or share the same values. And relationships work to the degree that the values are aligned. (More about that another time)

Now it’s your turn to to forgive the person and separate their actions from them. And still choose to make sure that behaviour is never repeated around you. 

As a very wise client of mine once said: “I still love the person. I will just need to love from afar…”

So here is the deal: People are not their behaviours AND you don’t need to have the behaviour following you around.

Identity vs Behaviour

Here is a further distinction

When you don’t achieve something you set out to do there is huge difference between “I failed” and “I am a failure”. Or between “That was a bit of a useless move” or “I am useless”. 

With the first you are giving yourself the opportunity to check it out and go “Okay I failed at that / it was not a great move, so what do I need to learn? what do I need to change? What do I need to get better at? How am I going to make it happen next time…?” You’d know you still have worth. Worth doesn’t even enter the equation. Hence there really is no room for shame or self-loathing. Winning! 

I always have huge respect for anyone coming to see me. Because a lot of people don’t know any of the above until they come to see me. Sometimes they even think they are broken and need to be fixed. Which couldn’t be any further from the truth! You are not broken. You just need to get rid of old buggy programs. 

The simple fact that people are not their behaviours means you can change your behaviour. It also means you can be the person you want to be! (How exciting is that…?) So you can empower yourself by breaking free from the chains that bound you to your previous behaviour and be the person you want to be. 

We are all so much more than our current behaviours. We are capable of so much more if we choose to be.

The choice is yours!

Totally I am grateful for all the wonderful people I have in my life. I am truly blessed.

Yours in happiness and wellbeing

silke

"What if - thinking " or "The nature of anxiety"

Do you ever find yourself thinking “what if…?”

It can either be future orientated “what if X happens…” or “what if I don’t pass the test / get the promotion / deliver that speech calmly, etc…”. It can also take the form of “I must pass that test / deliver that speech perfectly” (Because what would happen if you didn’t…?). 

And this kind of thinking can also be past - orientated “what if things had been different…” or “He / She / I should’ve…” (I’ll get into that in a bit more detail another time)

If you were to be totally honest with yourself, you’d probably admit to yourself that you do “what ifs” in one form or another. It’s normal. It’s part of what the brain wants to do. 

Future orientated “What ifs…” 

The idea behind all “What if” thinking is that it is trying to help. The key word here is “trying”.  It wants to think about all possible scenarios and tick off all the possible “what ifs…”.  “What if that happens….???” “Oh, okay, got it, then I can do that.” 

But what happens when you tick off one “what if”…? Do you have peace and quiet in your head as soon as you tick that one “what if” off your list?  

Nooooo, it’s not because as soon as you tick off one “what if…” your creative brain instantly comes up with the next one. And when you’re having a really good day you get three or five new ones for every single one you tick off. 

Very quickly your brain realises that there is an infinite amount of possible “what ifs”. You can’t possibly tick them all off your list. Because there is no end to that list. There will always be another “what if” around the corner. Your creative brain is designed to be a problem solving mechanism. So that’s what it does… 

But tell me, Firstname, what would you rather be thinking about…? What could you be doing with all that valuable time and energy? 

The secret to dealing wth anxiety

The reality is: you are reading this today because no matter what happened in your life, you have come out the other end. So obviously you have all the resources you need to deal with whatever may come your way. 

Your mind has been led to think you could prevent certain things from happening by worrying about them. But of course that is not true at all!  

Plus you are always evolving, learning and growing. Should that imagined thing happen, by then you will have different resources to the ones you have now anyway. 

And the truth is that (like it or not) you will work it out. So you might as well not spend your days worrying about it. And instead relax into that deep inner knowing that you have all the resources you need. Even if that is the resource to find the resources you need at that moment in time. 

You can’t control life. You can only ever control your response to life!

Anxiety

One degree of change

Years and years ago I had it my head that I wanted to sail a passage…
Not that I could sail, but I was determined not to let that get in my way… Anyhow, long story short I ended up being ‘the crew’ on a 39 foot yacht and sailed from Tonga to Fiji.
I’ll always remember those endless night watches, staring at the amazing starlit sky and the dark ocean, fighting off sleep… Being more exhausted than I ever was… Watching for ships or drifting containers and making sure we stayed on course.
I aways remembered the “just one degree - rule”: “When you set out from a harbour and you change course by just one degree it is barely noticeable at first. But in the long run it makes a HUGE difference of where you end up…” One night I woke up the skipper because I noticed some strange lights… Needless to say it was the shoreline and clearly not were we wanted to be. Even though according to the compass I kept us spot on, Iad not factored in the ocean currents. Sigh.

The one degree rule is true for any change and also for bad habits. If you change by just one degree, it’ll make a huge difference to where you end up. Change habits by one degree. For example: I help a lot of people lose weight or quit smoking. People don’t need to be Non Smokers by the time they leave my office. They can reduce, regard that as a success, then reduce again give oneself credit and reduce again and before they know it, they’ve done it… Same with weight loss. It doesn’t need to be perfect. It just needs to be sustainable! No perfect diets… Just fix one meal… Or get rid of dead carbs or…. Just one degree at a time. And next week another degree, and the week after another degree…

Learning something new is the same thing. It is so easy to get overwhelmed because there is so much to learn. And then people want to learn it all at the same time. But what ends up happening is that they stall. So they end up not doing anything. Not moving forward at all. A lot of my Supervisees do that, they stall. Because there is so much to learn: all the different language patterns, the questions, picking up on all the different subconscious patterns, just to mention a very few… And I get it, they love it and they just want to be good at it. So my recommendation always is: Pick one category. And then out of that pick one subcategory and out of that: pick one thing and focus on that for a week. Next week pick a new one… Before you know it, you’ll be outstanding at 52 different things that are all part of the whole… Follow this and you will get pretty good, pretty quickly.

The reticular activating system RAS or why do you all of a sudden notice certain things...?

You know this weird thing… You may have never noticed a certain car… If someone talks about that specific car, you don’t even have a clue what it looks like… Then your friend buys that car and all of a sudden you notice it everywhere….

The reason is simple: it is now important for your brain to notice… Because hey, I might see my friend…

The reticular activating system (RAS) is the part of your brain that is in charge of prioritising, noticing and delivering information… The RAS is in charge of deciding what to notice, what to pay attention to and what to ignore. There are millions of bits of data available to you every second but you only notice a tiny selection of those. What you notice and what goes unnoticed is up to your RAS. 

Simply out your RAS notices what is of value to you. Which is nothing more than what is in alignment with your unconscious values and beliefs. 

You can massively influence what your RAS notices. A few years ago I was in the US and I needed to mail something, hence I needed to find a postbox. My brain was looking for something red… Needless to say it didn’t work. I mean, I noticed a heck of a lot of people wearing red t-shirt, jumpers or shoes. I noticed red cars and posters. But no mailbox to be seen. Until I was reminded that those things are actually blue in the US….

Duh! As soon as I told my brain to start looking for blue… bing I found what I needed.  

You’re probably thinking, common Silke, how often do I need that…? Well, I agree you probably don’t… 

RAS for better relationships

But let’s say you want to improve a relationship with yourself, your boss, coworker, dog, child, friend or significant other. It is a common tendency to not notice all the amazing stuff about them, the stuff they rock at… In which case you want to give yourself a mission: Every morning ask you RAS to notice everything that person does well today, every time they make you smile or laugh, every nice thing they do. And every night write down at least 7 positive things you noticed… 

Then observe your relationship transform! 

This is also why gratitude journals work… You are giving importance to noticing things to be grateful for. And the more you notice that, the happier you get. Fact. 

Let’s say you want to improve your golf tee-off swing. (I know nothing about golf, so this will be fun…) Ask your RAS to notice everything you do well. It might be how you place your feet or how you hold your hips or how you naturally grip that club… 

Let’s say you have a problem with your follow through. Ask your RAS to notice all the people who do that part of the swing particularly well… And how they do that part of the swing. 

We are so good at paying way too much attention to our problems. Ask your RAS to pay attention to what is working for a change.

Got it?
Have fun influencing your RAS!

Today I am grateful for our fireplace… I so enjoy putting the fireplace on in the late afternoon. It is a true mindfulness exercise. I am just in the moment, watching the flames… So I’ll go and do just that now. 

Conscious & Unconscious processes

When you are aware of what you're doing... That's your conscious processes at work. Like logic and rational thinking

Your unconscious processes are the things that mostly happen outside your conscious awareness, you know the stuff that happens automatically whether you think about it or not. Like when you let go of a hot frying pan. Or your head just moved out of the way of a ball flying past. You didn't decide that, it just happened. Well it didn't just happen, your unconscious processes, who's job is to keep you safe, made you move. You just weren't consciously aware of it...

Your unconscious is always at work in the best way it has learned up till now... Which is not necessarily the very best way, it’s just the best way it has learned. So it might simply be time to upgrade your software…
Your unconscious loves learning, especially in a fun and memorable way. Which is why hypnosis works so well!

Water-jugs, stress, overwhelm..

Overwhelm, anxiety, stress are all in the same ballpark and one of the main issues I help clients with on a daily basis.

When stressed the body is tipping out way too much adrenaline and cortisol. That was really useful when we were running away from a saber-toothed tiger. Back then we really wanted our brains to direct all our energy into running and through running we used up all the stress hormones.

These days we just end up with a lot of useless hormones running around in our body creating havoc… Plus many people engage in overeating, smoking, drinking and other not so resourceful habits in an attempt to cope with stress. Needless to say that prolonged stress can have serious implications for our health.

So learning to deal with it can only be useful. 

People often say: “But you can’t change my situation!” That’s right. I can’t! However there is a lot I can help you with… So read on.

So what is stress?

It’s like when you have a jug of water and a number of glasses you need to fill. This water jug represents all your coping mechanisms, understanding, skills and resources… 

Normally you are filling the glasses just fine. Let’s say the glasses represent job, finances, health, fitness, kids, partner, family etc… 

And then more and more glasses keep popping up. These glasses could be things like low self esteem, lack of confidence, a promotion with new responsibilities or a sick loved one, loss of a job or a loved one, an unforeseen big bill, an injury or illness, grief etc… 

And all of a sudden you just have nothing left in the jug. No matter how much you shake the jug, it’s simply just empty. 

You really only have three options: 

  1. Check if you may be able to get rid of some of the glasses ( => Values) 

  2. Determine which glasses are actually your job to fill, often some glasses can be handed over ( => Boundaries)

  3. Get a bigger jug (Hence more resources, skills and coping mechanisms => Resilience) 

Values, boundaries and resilience are all unconscious behaviours which can be learned. Experience shows that learning happens easily when done subconsciously. 

More on self-worth

Thanks to everyone who sent in some questions, feedback or shared their own struggles with self worth. Let me answer it in the best way I know how.

Some feedback / questions from you:
1) But doesn’t our self-worth go up when we get a promotion at work? Earn more money? Win a race? Our kids do well at school? We are liked? 

2) I really don’t feel that I have any worth when I stuff up at work, my kids go off the rails, lose my job or health, don’t qualify in a race I was expected to win, (the list goes on)… 

3) But we have been taught form early age that your better when you win the race / coming 2nd is the first loser, have to be in the top x% of the class, get the “with honours”, the ‘better’ title on the business card… (again, the list goes on) 

Okay, here is my first question: if your best friend lost her job would she be worthless to you? What if she had no money? What if his kids went of the rails? What if your best friend never graduated from anything other than Kindy? Worthless, right? 

No! of course not! Your friend still has worth… 

Second question: Ready?
How come those same rules don’t apply to you…? 

Ponder that…

Yes, I agree, those things above, it’s what we grew up with, it’s what we learned, which is why we believe it… Repeat: “we believe it”… 

More often than not people attach their sense of self worth to how well they are doing in life… 

In that model of thinking: When we are doing well our self-worth goes up and when we are not doing well our self-worth goes down.
Wow, what a constant rollercoaster… 

Okay, first of all: “doing well”… According to whom…? Compared to what? 

I’m sure we all have a different definition of what “doing well’ means: Earning X dollars, being liked, having a certain title on the business card, having a book published, being a good mum (good luck measuring that or waiting for your kids to thank you), behaving to a certain standard, being healthy or fit, the kids doing well… And on and on the list goes…

You do not have any control over many of the contributing factors, which make it possible for to reach your goal or not. 

You can’t control who the kids meet, what other people think, whether the supplier delivers on time, whether the boss has already decided on someone else, nor a global financial crisis, the weather and most certainly not what other people think… 

Of course, there is a lot you can do, to stack the cards in your favour. You help the kids learn great values, you do great work, you apply yourself, you put good systems in place, install the firewall, use common sense, you eat healthy and work out, you take time out for yourself and still… 

No matter how much you try to control life there will always be things you have no influence over whatsoever. Sorry to be so blunt.

The only thing you can control is how you respond to whatever life throws at you. (Which is a learned skill and we can get better at it.)

So would you agree that it’s not a great idea to attach your self worth to something that is largely outside of their own control…? 

Would you want your kids to live like that? Can you imagine how much pressure that would put on them? 

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not about being under achievers… Not at all! Quite the contrary.

Of course you want to do well! Of course you want your kids to do well! Heck yeah! 

But do it for no other reason than because you want to! You want to see just how fast you can run… How far you can push the envelope… How well you can treat people… How you get to the point where your kids thank you for being a great parent once they’re in the thirties… See if you can get that promotion because it’ll make you grow and learn and contribute… If you can win that gold medal… 

Yessss! And yes!! Go for all of that!!! And more!
And do it because you want to! 

Can you imagine what a relief it is to go for it just because you want to? Knowing your self worth is a given no matter what. How much more fun it’ll be going for it only because you want to?

Don’t ever fall into the trap of believing, your self-worth depends on reaching that goal. It doesn’t!

Never hang your self-worth on that hook. It’s a trap. 

Of course I want you to read my emails and think about them, talk to friends about the ideas I put out in this world. And I am stoked when you forward one of my emails to someone you care about! Or hit reply and share your thoughts on the matter with me. Of course I am!

But do I attach my self worth to that? 

I make sure I don’t (and when I catch myself doing it, I have a stern talking to myself.) 

Then I use any and all feedback I get, to learn and improve. Which is why your feedback is so valuable to me! It’s the fastest way to improve. 

So, if you have any comments or questions, just let me know! 

Today I am grateful for every single person reading this. And for everyone who has given me feedback. Any feedback. 

And I am eternally grateful for my old girl sleeping under my table, making sure she’ll wake up should I move… So contented, so in the moment… I bet she doesn’t apply her self-worth to anything. She just knows she’s got it!
And now I’m off to take her for a swim…

Yours in happiness and wellbeing

Silke

PdogFeet2.jpg

The often elusive Self-worth

Are you ready for this?

Your worth is a given! 

You can’t earn your worth and you can’t lose your worth.

That’s all! Your worth is a given. 

Thank you for reading. 

Write it on a card and carry it with you everywhere. Write it on your mirror.

Your worth is a given, you can’t earn any. And you can’t lose any!

Today I am grateful for constantly being reminded of this, often times through the work I do with my clients. It’s the single most simple lesson to understand and one of the more complicated lessons to feel, live and breathe. Do it anyway!

I am grateful for being me, warts and all…

Stage hypnosis vs professional hypnotherapy

Often people contact me after they have seen some stage hypnosis or hypnosis performed on TV.
Some years ago lots of had seen the TV show 'You're back in the room'... So let’s clear up the great misconceptions of stage hypnosis vs professional hypnotherapy.

Here is the short version:

The question is not about what you saw on TV... The far more interesting question is what you didn’t see on TV...!

The application process people went through to become one of the lucky contestants, the auditions, the selection of the final candidates, the vast amount of applicants who didn’t get to perform on TV, the hypnotic inductions, the setting of post-hypnotic suggestions, the seven hours of recording it took to create approximately 45 minutes of net viewing time (translates to the six and half hours you didn’t see) and much more... 

Here is the longer version:

In order to become a contestant people needed to apply and audition. As with all auditions and applications there is a screening process in place to find the most suitable candidates.   Once a person has applied, they have given consent, once they are chosen they will have signed a model release form and an agreement has been reached. An agreement is not mind control... 

I don’t know how channel 9 selected their candidates but here is what I would do: 

Before I even get the applicants in the room I’d check for their motivation and I’d only invite the ones who really really really want to be on TV... 

Then I’d have the applicants in the room and I’d run them through a few tests, how well are they using their imagination, who is already very good at going into hypnosis since only a small percentage are naturally very good at it. Everybody else can learn how to go into hypnosis... In the same way that some people are naturally very athletic, others are naturally academic and yet others are naturally good at something else... That’s normal. 

I’d then select the best candidates and have them go in and out of hypnosis a few times, give them suggestions and see how they do. If they are having a great time and they are loving it, they’re a one step closer to getting on camera. Then I’d also give them the suggestion that every time I say ‘sleep’ they go into a deep hypnotic trance and make it look like they are falling off their chair in a spectacular but safe way... Because after all we’d be doing it for TV so it needs to look spectacular. Who’d want to watch people just sitting there going into a trance...? Boring! 

After a few people were selected out of all the applicants we’re good to go into the recording studio. Daryl Somers said it took 7 hours to record the show... I don’t know about you but maybe there is a reason why this show wasn’t live?

So, here is the drift: 

“You’re Back In The Room” has one purpose and that is TV entertainment. As such it may or may not have anything to do with reality. It certainly doesn’t have much in common with professional client focussed and solution based work.

Even if you are not one of the absolute naturals you can learn how to go into hypnosis, also you don’t need to go that deeply to make changes and you too can learn how to engage your unconscious processes in a way that works for you. 

Also keep in mind in every session you will learn how to use your brain for yourself, you will learn Mind Training tools and go into naturally occurring hypnotic states whether that is with NLP or hypnotic processes...

If you are after a quick fix or some form of TV magic, this is not for you. If you are interested in learning how to make your brain and mind work for yourself and are committed to making lasting changes then please call 5471 2201 to book your first appointment. 

What do you want?

Have you ever thought that sometimes your mind plays tricks on you?

You know when you tell yourself to not think of something… Or you’re trying hard not to be nervous? Then you find you can’t stop thinking about it or you get even more nervous…? Even though you really, really, really don’t want to…?

Don’t think about a cute little squirrel, now… Please, no matter what, just don’t think about a squirrel with its button eyes and bushy tail!

Well, you can’t do it, can you? It’s actually called the 'Law of Reversed Effect'. Which means that whenever you use the word “Don’t” you get the exact opposite of what you wanted.

Why am I telling you all this? Because it’s useful!

Understanding the ‘Law of Reversed Effect’ is your first step to running your own mind more successfully.

So, bear with me. This is why it is not easy to not think of cute squirrels (especially while I keep reminding you, what they look like with their sweet eyes and bushy tails… Bahahaha).

This applies to different contexts too: The more you tell yourself “Don’t be nervous”, the more you automatically think about being nervous. You can’t help it. It’s the way your mind works…

Aaaand before you know it, you start to remember the last time you were nervous…

And if that wasn’t enough, you then proceed to tell yourself “Oh I don’t want that to happen again!” … And because your mind still can’t process the negation, you imagine exactly the same thing happening again… and you really don’t want that.

Whether you are consciously aware of all these unconscious processes or not, the effect is the same!

The first step to running your own mind even more successfully is understanding it. And now you are one step closer to that goal! The second step is using this for your own good!

So here is your 5-step mission, should you choose to accept it:

1) Stand guard at the gates of your own mind

2) Every time you notice thinking "don’t" instantly think about what the opposite of that for you is.

3) Always think about what you DO want! Start every day by writing down how you DO WANT yourself to be in certain situations. The more specific you are, the better!

4) Pay attention to how you are communicating with others. Make a habit of describing what you do want them to do, instead of what you don’t want them to do.

5) Have fun with it all!

Failure

Fear of failure is one of the big things I keep working with. Whether that is with a professional preparing for a speech or presentation, an athlete preparing for a race or game, someone training there dog or a mum raising a child. Heck, I even had people who so far didn’t quit smoking for the fear they might fail at it…

Fear of failure can paralyse you, throw you into overwhelm and stop you from doing anything. So let’s take it apart a little:

And then you had to learn to walk on different surfaces… Soft sand, phew!

And then you had to learn to walk on different surfaces… Soft sand, phew!

Failure is natural. It is the way we learn. Did you tell your child the first few times it couldn’t say mum or dad properly to stop trying cause it rather obviously failed? What about when after three weeks of trying it still couldn’t walk by itself?
Obvious failure that kid! Probably something wrong with it! Maybe not good enough…

No of course not!! You encourage. You celebrate every little win. You have a party with every progress. You know your child is learning. And you want your child to keep trying and falling over so that it keeps learning.

What would happen if for the next three days you stood guard at the gates of your own mind? And you reframed every ‘failure thought' into feedback. That’s all it is, just feedback. You always win either way. You win by learning and upgrading your software and you win by getting closer to your goal.

It’s just feedback!

Today I am grateful for all the feedback life has given me so far. It’s not always comfortable, it’s not always the feedback I want, but that’s the whole point! There is no growth in the comfort zone and as a life long learner I will continue to fall over and learn. I am grateful for getting up and doing it again! And this incredibly cute picture of my amazing big sister.

Confidence

People often say to me that they want to be more confident... But technically I know that it is to entirely true. It is a good thing not to be confident about certain things. I prefer not to be confident about flying a plane. I simply don't have the skill, the knowledge and the training for it. 

FOund this little guy hiding in my basil many years ago...

FOund this little guy hiding in my basil many years ago...

So what people actually mean is that they are not confident in a situation were they would like to be confident. 
Of course everybody has confidence. You might be very confident talking to the kids or doing a sport you love. Or you are very confident talking to a friend about something you know well or very confidently using public transport or driving a car.  

So you actually know how to do this thing called confidence. And this now becomes a resource. Because if you copied exactly the mindsets, behaviours, attitude, beliefs and so on from how you do this thing called "confidence" and applied it to another area of your life... Well, wouldn't that be awesome? 

Of course you can't do that consciously and by thinking about it! You need to do this unconsciously and if you could have worked it out by think about if, I bet you would have done that by now. Hand it over to your unconscious and become naturally confident!  

Yours in happiness, confidence and wellbeing

There is always more to learn

It is what you learn after you know it all, that counts - Coach John Wooden

I remember that crystal clear sunny morning, about 10 years ago, as if it was yesterday. I hopped on my Vespa to attend my first ever Master course in Hypnosis and NLP. I was so excited because 'I knew' over the next days and weeks I was finally going to get the keys, the last missing pieces of the puzzle, and then I'd be ready.
Funny enough I never asked myself what I'd be ready for... Or what ready meant...

There were some new and some familiar faces amongst the intentionally small group. The room was buzzing with a cocktail of ten mental states, ranging from 'almost well hidden slightly terrified' to 'slightly over the top excited'. 

Without any introduction we were told a story:  
A few weeks after the young apprentice received his certificate he started pestering his Master to start his own Master training. "You're not ready yet, go back to work"
Over the following months the former apprentice applied himself to his work, observed and learned. The next year he asked his Master again, only to receive the same response: "You're not ready yet, go back to work" 
Again the former apprentice did as he was told and a year later he realised how much he yet again had learned. He had learned so much and now he knew he was ready. Surely the Master would now agree to start his training! 
This time he received a different answer: "You're not ready. Take your tools, travel, go and offer your services to the world." 

Begrudgingly the former apprentice did as he was told. He travelled. He met people. He used his tools and trade in unforeseen circumstances and often he didn't have what he needed so he improvised. When got stuck he though of his old master and wondered "what would the Master do now...?" Often he found an answer that way and sometimes it even worked. When it didn't, he asked the question again and did it in a different way.

After many years on the road he returned to his village to celebrate his sister wedding.
There he apologised to his old Master: "I am sorry for all the times I asked you to start making me a Master, for pestering you and thinking I knew it all. I now know that I have so much more to learn, there will always be more to learn for me and I don't think I will ever be ready to become a true Master"
The Master smiled and said: "That's right. True Mastery is knowing that there is always more to learn. Welcome to the start of your Mastery training."

Struggle & Progress

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. - Frederick Douglass

Mr Douglas, I disagree. It may have very much seemed so in the specific situation and in the times your quote comes from. But is it far to take it out of context and make it a universal truth? 

Action, yes action is needed for progress. But struggle...?
See struggle is a subjective label, isn't it? 

Have you ever met two people who go through a similar experience and one is upbeat, radiant and has a zest for life despite all that and the other one (who might objectively even be in the better position) is morose, desperate and glum? 

An athlete training for a dream... A mother... An Executive dashing in and out of meetings and planes... A landscape gardener... A fisherman... A surgeon in theatre for 9 hours straight... 
They all seem to have very different ideas what they consider routine, fun or a struggle... 

Occasionally things that used to be fun and exciting have turned into a struggle. Beware... Pay attention... 

The secret lies in the state of mind, the perception, the beliefs, values and in the resources the person can bring to the situation. 

How you perceive taking action, the breakthroughs and set backs is up to you. Let it be easy or let it be hard. That is just a state of mind and states of mind can change. Easily.
In actual fact easier and faster than you may have thought or given yourself credit for.

Sometimes you can even change your mind yourself. And if not, then it might just be a signal to let you know it's time to ask for assistance, so you can move forward with ease again. 

Forgiveness

Recently I have seen many clients who had a very hard time letting go of things from the past. They could remember every single negative detail and ever injustice they ever experienced. Words along the lines of "I never forget" and "I never forgive" or "I tried but I just couldn't do it" where said... 

When someone hasn't truly forgiven there is so much energy and emotion attached to it... It's just exhausting. How bad do you have to feel for you to know the other person has been adequately punished through your feeling bad...???? 

It just doesn't work that way, does it? But still people try and try and try in vain.... 
You have a different option! Once you have truly forgiven you're actually free from it. No, you will not do a happy dance with the person you have forgiven... Because it has nothing to to with the other person! 
Some people believe that when they forgive that would result in almost agreeing with what the other person did... But that's not the case at all. When you forgive, you're the one who becomes free. It has nothing at all to do with the other person! 
You forgive not because they deserve your forgiveness. You forgive because you deserve peace and because you deserve to be from it and from them...

And yes, true forgiveness is a lot easier than you may have thought. Let me show you how to do that for yourself.