Just imagine how much more successful we all would feel and be, if we could unapologetically self-express, feel safe and secure enough to present our most authentic selves, and communicate to each other honestly and openly.
I’m unsure if you feel it too, but there is a lot of positive energy in the air and I hope all of you are taking a moment to soak it all in. Perhaps it’s because we’re all happy to see the back of 2016, (I don’t think we need another recap of last years events), and that this year represents a fresh new start. However, I can't help but be aware of the fact that we’ve done this before. We start a new year eager and hungry for change, only to settle into old habits and complacent behaviours when it gets too hard.
If 2016 has taught us anything, it’s that we can no longer sit and wait for positive change to come knocking on our doors, we actually have to invest the effort and energy to drive our lives forward, in the direction we want them to go. Fortunately, we can kick start positive change by investing time in personal development, and it doesn't have to be a daunting task either, for personal development works as a cycle that functions in both directions, and we can start wherever we feel most comfortable:
Develop an awareness before committing to an investment.
First off, let’s change our attitude to the way we see the world, because realistically it isn't all that bad. It may seem that way because of our access to information, but that's the force behind change, awareness. For example, we have less racial inequality now than we did 5 years ago, although there is still a ways to go, we’re closer to equal rights for all than we ever have been before #blacklivesmatter. We’re also becoming aware of global elitism, and how a small group of people seem to impact the wellbeing of our everyday lives, both home and away. We’ve become so aware of our ignorance, because we’ve made ignorant decisions fueled by anger and frustration; #brexit #trump2016. Yet still, that’s the beauty of awareness, it makes us curious about things that were once not so clear, and feeding that curiosity inspires us to become even more aware.
As an additional note, even though my personal opinions were so against certain political directions, we must never forget that we’re in this together. We all desire the same emotional experiences in life and unfortunately, these desires can be manipulated and used against us if we’re not aware. If we’re shown something that we truly desire, associated alongside something that seems to get it for us, a lack of awareness can really fool us into believing the association to be true #propaganda #advertising. Therefore, it’s important that we develop an awareness and increase our knowledge and understanding of something before committing to it. We have access to the world's knowledge at our fingertips, it’s time we all realise how lucky we are and make use of it. Let’s collectively become aware of the world that surrounds us, by first becoming more self-aware. Let’s look for, access and accept the truth wherever it resides, and then drive change.
Learn to face and embrace your truth.
The best advice I’ve ever given, can ever give and I believe I will ever give, is to be true to yourself and live honestly. Until we face our inner truth, life will not move in the direction of our truest desires. As mentioned earlier, we are all striving for the same emotional experiences in life and these experiences will not be felt earnestly, unless we’re living true to who we are and how we feel.
Furthermore, our purpose in life becomes ever more apparent when we live by this philosophy. Distractions also become less of a bother and emotional restrictions, like anxiety and depression, start declining. I wrote a personal post not too long ago titled ‘Live Life with Integrity’ and mentioned how I was liberated from a lot of fear and anxiety, just by accepting my truth and sharing it with the world. It set me free to explore life in order to uncover my purpose, to trust it and then stand by it. Living true to ourselves enables us to get on with, and pursue the lives we want to build, and encourages us to make life the best experience possible.
Becoming more aware really does help us connect to and enter this stage of truth, because we soon realize what truly matters in life; we soon become aware of the benefits of living more honestly, not only for ourselves, but for our relationships too. Becoming aware of poverty and war for example, like our brothers and sisters from Syria fleeing their homes for their lives, should make us appreciate the opportunities we have available to us, and inspire us to drop the insecurities that restrict us from pursuing them.
On the other hand, as we start accepting truth we slowly start becoming aware of the things that we’re not so clear before. I personally realized that I was choosing to hold onto fear and that I could’ve let go a lot sooner, had I sooner accepted my truth. It really opened up my mind and made me aware of a world full of opportunity, it made me feel confident to explore curiosity, because I became curious about the things I had once feared and avoided.
Get comfortable exploring curiosity.
Exploring curiosity is one thing that can really propel personal growth and development. Just as children grow and learn by being curious, we must hold onto this quality for the entire duration of our lives. Life is meant to be explored and being curious is the best way, perhaps the only way to explore it completely.
Our awareness increases as we’re curious, becuase we learn more about ourselves, about our capabilities and also about the world around us. Curiosity is life’s teacher and can really help us answer so many unanswered questions, and it helps us to develop confidence and strengthens self-belief. For example, I had a client who was unemployed and believed she was uninteresting and that no one would ever be inspired by her, a belief based purely off of perception. So, I signed her up for a volunteer program she had always been curious about, but never pursued because of her belief. I only encouraged her to feed her curiosity and the rest she developed naturally, today you should see how her identity shines. She never realized how much she actually had to offer people. She was able redefine her personality traits from what she dubbed as “passive” and “timid”, to comforting, supportive, open-minded and kind. Now she’s putting herself through school and carving out a career as a Nutritionist.
We develop confidence whenever we push the boundaries of comfort, and as we expand our comfort zones, we hold onto the confidence we develop. Confidence is all about ownership so as you can imagine, the more confident we become the more sense it makes to live life more openly and honestly, and really take ownership of our own lives. Lastly, we realize that life is much more fruitful and exciting when we’re constantly engaging with something that’s fresh and new.
That old saying ‘live each day like it’s your last’ seems so limiting to life experience to me, so I say, live each day like it’s your first! Make each day a brand new day to get excited about, be aware, be true and be curious, and don’t live another day in vain.
Happy New Year!
We don’t honor ourselves enough. You and I are designed to accomplish great things, we’re built to withstand tough challenges and we each have a unique purpose for being here. We do ourselves a great dishonor whenever we allow anything, or anyone for that matter, convince us that we’re not worthy enough or that it’s not possible for us to follow our true calling in life.
We often talk of purpose as if it’s some cosmic gift from above or some declaration that society hands us and because of this thinking, we never feel like we’re quite good enough unless someone else affirms it. We’re constantly doubting ourselves and we’re seeking validation through notifications to which hold no real value. We diminish our self-belief because we’re not seeing purpose as a natural birthright; we’re to own who we are and to be free to explore life, so that we can grow into our purpose and courageously stand by it.
What I’ve written already may sound a little cryptic, but I’ve recently experienced a shift in perspective and discovered why so many of us struggle in our daily lives. A lot of us don’t feel supported enough to share how we truly feel and therefore we burden ourselves with our truths rather than opening up about them. We then learn to cope with our burdens instead of overcoming them and we hide away our truths under a guise of denial; resentment; anger; sadness; frustration; silence; avoidance and so on, always a disguise nonetheless. I’d bet that many of you feel misunderstood, but that feeling isn’t going to shift until you drop the veil, set free your truth and allow the healing to begin.
Too many of us are good people working hard and trying even harder to build happy and fulfilled lives. Even at our lowest of lows, we muster whatever energy we have left and rise out of bed in the morning to live through another day. I’ve coached enough people to understand that this statement resonates within a lot of us, as it did with me for a very long time. I’ll even admit that I’ve thought about ending all this despair too, because if I can’t live openly then for me there’s no reason to live at all.
I grew up in a Sikh household and the very first words that appear in the Guru Granth Sahib (the Sikh holy text) are “Ik Onkar, Sat Naam” which roughly translates to: There is one “God”, Truth is its name. From what I understand of this, is that the only thing we should live our lives by and the very thing we should actually honour, seek out, and respect, is the truth. The discovery of truth has guided Scientists, Mathematicians, Philosophers and Scholars alike, so where will your truth guide you?
It’s said that the truth will set us free. Think about it, the reason why many of us feel isolated or alone, outcast or trapped, or even misunderstood and lacking purpose is because we’re not living truthfully. We lock up how we truly feel; who we truly are; what we truly desire from life, because we’re too attached to mass produced ideologies that misrepresent us. Our attachment to these ideologies cause us to judge one another, because we’re conditioned to follow each other like sheep and respond negatively toward those who stand out.
The day I realized myself, was the day I embraced myself, shared my ideas and started exploring the truth. I may make it sound like this grand occasion, but it really was just a simple realization. Obvious, even. So I’ve decided to write this post today to encourage you all to start freeing yourself from any burden you feel buried under, because you areway too valuable to live your life in vain.
You all know me as Terry but not many know that my real name Is Talwinder Singh Sidhu, a name that I’ve only recently learnt to be proud of and respect. I believe we are all born equal in an unequal society and the only way we’re going to make positive change, is if we stand up and continue to fight for equality on all platforms. On that note, I’ve also recently learned that gender isn’t and shouldn’t be a factor when it comes to forming relationships. Lastly, I believe that every single one of us on this planet is destined for greatness, but only those who live truthfully will achieve it and find fulfillment within it.
Living with integrity will help you uncover your purpose and give you the courage to pursue it, because you’ll no longer feel bound to the same life design everyone else is following. Your relationships will improve because you’ll only support ones that are mutually supportive and as a bonus, your patience for ignorance to fade will increase too. Finally, when you do step out from underneath your disguise, you’ll finally give people the opportunity to understand you fully. Although it can seem incredibly terrifying at first and there may be some consequences to face, but in time, you will realize that you’ll have nothing left to fear and that your freedom guide you to where need to be.
All the best,
You may notice that I tend to disappear for a while and I hope that the message in this post will help you understand why.
I grew up feeling segregated because I didn’t feel connected to the world the same way my peers did. I remember my insecurities developing because of an eagerness to fit in and become like everyone else. I would find myself trying to adopt trends I didn’t agree with and personas I didn’t I identify with, just to associate myself with what felt like a herd heading towards their own slaughter. Each day I denied myself the opportunity to be me and do the things I wanted to do, I restricted my potential and kept my aspirations at bay.
Although I found success through traditional pursuits, the success never felt genuine. It felt more manufactured and less actualized because it lacked authenticity; it lacked me and my presence. As I followed the rules and marched on like a good corporate soldier, I could feel my identity slipping away.
Living a life I was unhappy with, I began feeling the negative burden of isolation quite quickly. Mentally, my thoughts would always wander into a depressive abyss. Always reasoning with negative thought, I would convince myself that I was alone in feeling this way and that I should feel more grateful and fortunate for my situation, even though I felt like crap.
Physically, I’d become incredibly aware of my isolation. When we’re physically alone it’s hard not to face the emotions we shy away from, so naturally I filled my time with as many distractions as possible: going out and connecting with the wrong type of people, binging on alcohol, fueling my body on the worst kinds of food and indulging on unimaginative TV and media. These were the vices I funneled my misery into.
Needless to say I was becoming increasingly frustrated with the way I was living my life and decided to neglect many aspects of it. From my health through to my relationships, I felt like there wasn’t a reason to take care of any of it. When we face struggles like this in life, awareness and acceptance of the truth is what we must face.
I remember being offered a promotion, or at least the option was on the table and I thought to myself “This is it. This is what my life is going to represent.” There was no excitement, just expectation. There was no passion, just resistance and I’d never felt more disconnected from the aspirations I once held for myself. I’ve always wanted my life to mean something, I believe we all do, and I just felt like I couldn't dishonor my own existence anymore.
What turned my life around and helped me nurture the confidence to make the bold decisions that drastically altered my destiny, was my relationship with isolation. I figured, if the world I’m living in doesn’t understand the way I’m feeling, and I’m feeling like I don’t fit in, then my isolation will be the safe haven to exercise my identity.
Rather than reason with my negative thoughts I embraced them, I lifted up the rug and faced the emotions I had swept under it. At first, trying to cope with them internally felt crippling so I started to externalize my thoughts by writing them down. I would end up writing thousands of words about how I felt and without really noticing, I was developing and facing an awareness I had long spent avoiding. Upon reflection it was like writing a tragic novel and it was about my life! Seeing my misery displayed back to me was incredibly awakening, and I could foresee where my life would end up if I continued to perpetuate a life I was unhappy with. Whenever I would return to my life and exit moments of, what I started to call 'therapeutic isolation', I’d feel uplifted.
Slowly I started feeling like myself again and although I wasn't ready, rather unsure about the next step I should take, I knew I wanted to continue down this path I had embarked on. I started to make use of my isolation to research and construct my next move and change the course of my story. The first step was quite simple and it was to stop fueling my own misery, first thing to really change were the people I surrounded myself with.
In my isolation I felt empowered and excited. I was always exercising my own identity and connecting with stimulus that encouraged me to think freely and openly. I felt my isolation also acted as a form of measurement, of who I am against the reality of who I was becoming. Eventually I began falling in love with the freedom I felt when alone, so I began gravitating towards a life that felt the same way.
I felt encouraged to connect with people who allowed me to think and live as freely as I could on my own. Anything less than acceptance and understanding wasn’t enough for me. I eventually started to move into places I connected with and in these places I seized opportunities that truly spoke to me. Through honest challenges, I eventually found success that did feel genuine.
Today my isolation is my sanctuary: a mental and physical space to explore the depths of my identity and engage a state of flow. Moments to set myself free and exercise my own potential. A time and space to explore and develop my ideas so that I fully understand them first, then prepare myself to confidently present them to the world.
You don't need to feel trapped when you feel isolated, nor do you have to view isolation as a negative aspect of your life. Use moments of isolation to refuel your identity and realize that you can develop a life worth living.
This post was written by Terry Sidhu.
Don't be shy:
post by, VanCityLifeCoach.com
Happiness isn’t exactly the easiest emotion to grasp; I used to believe that people were either happy or not, I used to think that happiness was as clear as night and day. However, I’m learning that happiness is a development just like every other emotion that we experience, we have to contribute to our own happiness and it lies within the choices we make.
I’ve found those that contribute more to their own well-being and work on developing a purpose, tend to be happier than those who work to accumulate things to define their value. When we start to free ourselves from conformity, we begin working with our own emotions rather than against them and as a result, we live life more truthfully and with less compromises.
When I gave up trying to conform and began following my own desires, I also realised that it was easier to communicate and understand others. I also began connecting with like-minded people who actually appreciated my identity and my own pursuits, and vice-versa. I had inadvertently created a positive environment for myself that stimulated the courage and confidence to pursue a life worth living.
When I think about the happiest moments in my life, I’m reminded of liberation and feelings of complete detachment, I feel like I can take on the world and there’s not much that can keep me from blissfully embracing the present moment. Contemplating these memories and feeling untethered to my everyday responsibilities, I began exploring ways to measure happiness in a world where responsibilities command our lives, impact our emotions and often cause us to overlook our own well-being.
Psychology and Spirituality teach us the importance of maintaining balance... Even the cosmos need to maintain a certain balance to ensure we continue to exist on this planet. Most of the problems we face in our lives can be a rooted back to some sort of imbalance: when we’re overworked, overindulged, lacking empathy, emotionally numb/sensitive, over thinking and even struggling to sleep, these problems and many others stem from an imbalance within our own psyches.
Measuring happiness is to assess our lives in terms of imbalance, to assess how much of our lives are being spent satisfying our responsibilities (super-ego) versus, how much of our lives are spent indulging our inner desires (id). Too much of one or the other will lead to and fuel misery, therefore sustaining happiness is to ensure both parts of our psyches are equally valued (ego), if not, then we must work to restore balance in order to feel happy.
Delving into this Freudian theory has made me realize why so many of us struggle with the lives we’re living, and why many often feel overworked and underappreciated. In a society where we schedule our lives around work and responsibilities, I started measuring happiness by asking my clients the following question?
“If you could make a decision for yourself, consequence free, what decision would you make?”
If answered honestly, I found this question allows us to gain insight into our own imbalances. It allows us to essentially measure and restore happiness by understanding how much of our inner desires are being fulfilled, or rather how much we restrict this significant part of who we are. It also helps us understand the difference between setting goals and mindful goal setting. If our inner desires aren’t expressed nor fulfilled, the less happier we’re likely to be.
For example, if you have a deep desire to travel someday, but your current responsibilities restrict this desire, then you’ll probably find that you’re not that happy with your current life, because your life lacks direction and purpose and a significant part of who you are is being suppressed. However, if you allow this desire to filter into your life, you’ll begin to navigate your life to fulfill this desire. Your responsibilities will have purpose as you'll set your goals accordingly. Furthermore, you’ll also find that you’ll gravitate towards connections that echo these desires, from obtaining the appropriate skills to meeting like-minded people. You’ll ultimately live a lot happier knowing that your life isn’t being lived in vain, and that you’re staying true to your identity and what you want from life.
Just imagine living life with a little angel (super-ego) and devil (id) on your shoulders, if you predominantly listen to the angel you’ll run the risk of losing sight-of-self. If you let the little devil have rule over your life, then you run the risk of losing touch with the life you’re trying to build.
Measuring happiness is understanding which one of these characters you’ve allowed to govern the majority of your decision-making. Let them both share equal amounts of control and you’ll live a much more balanced life, and a much happier one.
Post by, VanCityLifeCoach.com
Sometimes we find ourselves in a state of lasting bliss when all aspects of our lives, have reached a level of fulfillment we’re satisfied with. Although we may not be exactly where we want to be in life, health and happiness will seem to flow easily and we’ll begin feeling assertive and aligned with our aspirations.
When we arrive at these blissful moments in life, we’re prone to complacency and avoidance because moving forward may involve risk, which could disrupt this new equilibrium. Therefore it’s crucial to develop a healthy awareness of self, others and the world around us, in order to continue our pursuits to that dream life we’ve always envisioned.
Awareness is an extension of mindfulness and it teaches us to pay attention to how we impact our own lives. Whether or not we’ve reached a stage of fulfillment, our choices have dictated this destiny that’s currently being played out. Awareness helps us upkeep involvement and control over life; paying attention could be the difference in feeling like life is falling apart, and feeling like life's falling into place.
Awareness begins with honesty. The first step is to focus on emotion, because it’s the emotions we feel that highlight the truth. When we hurt ourselves physically, we’re often very quick to notice the imbalance and work to resolve the pain as effectively as possible. However, how many of us can honestly say we do the same with our own state of mind.
As a relationship and life coach, I come across many broken souls living life irritated and insecure as a result of avoidance and complacency. On the other hand, I have clients that feel great within themselves but struggle to pursue new opportunities, in fear of losing something deemed safe and secure. The next stage of awareness, after uncovering present emotion, is to look back on the journey up until this point in time.
Many of us may not realize it, but our pasts hold many of the answers we seek to find about ourselves and our lives. How did I end up here? Why do I put up with this? How can I move forward? Why am I…? However poignant the question, the answer could be lurking within a previous moment in time. Investigating the past will help develop an awareness of motivation, uncover the triggers to motivation and we’ll learn how to avoid or promote certain behaviours.
If you’re looking to maintain health and happiness in your life, or if you’re looking to secure it, assess your current level of awareness and you may just realise where your life is headed. Today choose to take control, choose to eliminate fear and choose to overcome the insecurity you live with; Pay attention to how you contribute to your own misery and bliss, and you’ll become aware that you own your life.
post by, VanCityLifeCoach.com
Happy New Year, folks! 2016 is officially here and before you run out and sign up for those gym memberships, before you start your detox and worry about the debt you’ve accumulated over the holidays, let’s talk about you for a moment.
The world is moving toward a new paradigm and the traditional way of living and earning seems to be changing. You may have noticed how little control you have over your own life, as you cling to the conventional methods of living. Perhaps the 9-5 model simply isn’t getting you where you want to be in life.
You may also find yourself molding and adapting to incompatible identities just to avoid being alone, while life seems to just pass by without purpose. The routine is getting old; Perhaps you find yourself lacking energy and living for those rare moments of happiness and joy as you exist within the bounds of procrastination and complacency.
Though this isn't the case for everyone, maybe you've noticed such tendencies in family or friends, or feel that the instances above resonate within your own life.
There’s a new energy that arrives each time you ring in a new year and it encourages you to seek opportunity. We make resolutions and promises within our lives just as easily as we upgrade our already perfectly functioning cell phones, only to realize that the fulfillment gained from these impulsive decisions was merely temporary.
To kick-start your life and navigate it into lasting fulfillment, you must first deal with the biggest problems that rule your life. You need to resolve the very problems that germinate the recurring, negative thoughts weighing heavy on your mind. It’s time to lift up that proverbial rug and clean out the problems brushed under it. If you're seeking purpose and value this year, then you must work on developing the courage to attain them; unresolved problems break down the courage you need to develop. Your problems restrict the energy required to propel your life towards a reason of being.
Your immediate goals this year should be focused on overcoming the troubles you're facing in life. This year, if you’re feeling numb and lacking satisfaction, you may want to reflect on your behavior in previous years, because clearly something isn’t working if you're feeling deflated and unmotivated.
The longer you hold onto or avoid a difficult situation, the easier it becomes to talk yourself out of an opportunity; your problems will keep you from moving forward. Liken it to being in school, where each problem you solve in a subject- take math for instance- leads to a feeling of genuine confidence and encouragement, inspiring you to move ahead.
The opportunities you seek in life are available to you. Granted, some of us have to work harder than others to secure them, and I agree that the world isn’t exactly perfect and equal. However, working on and overcoming your troubles will make room for the encouragement and determination you need to succeed. The self-esteem you need to build and the tenacity you require can only develop when they have room to grow. Hold onto or avoid your problems for another year, and you’re only contributing to a life you simply aren’t happy with.
So if you’re stuck in a relationship that brings you more misery than joy, repair it or end it. If you’re in a job you hate, don’t work towards the promotion, work your way out of the job. If you’re feeling lost and alone, then work on developing the courage to admit it and seek support, rather than suppressing your feelings in an attempt to appear fine. If you’re dealing with an insecurity, or insecurities that lead into negative behavior, then work to uncover the root cause of it, in order to stop them from ruling your life any longer.
Want 2016 and the rest of your life to mean something, then reform your relationship with opportunity. Make room in your life to seek and secure opportunities confidently by dealing with your immediate problems first. Deal with the troubles that restrict your identity and limit your potential, and fix the problems that keep you from moving closer towards your aspirations.
post by, VanCityLifeCoach.com
As a Relationship and Life Coach, guiding others is a job I find incredibly fulfilling and I’m always eager to support my clients. I coach passionately and as a result, what I do has sewn itself into my identity and has become a part of who I am. As this becomes more evident, I’ve noticed more people within my personal network are coming to me for advice, albeit their intention or not.
It’s difficult for me to ‘switch off’ from what I call “Coaching Mode”. I’m often like a child who has discovered something new about themselves and I’m eager to share it with everyone I run into. Therefore it can get difficult leaving “The Coach” behind, when connecting/reconnecting with people within my personal network.
Think about the number of times friends and family have come to you seeking your advice or opinion. Now, for instance, think about the number of times you’ve had to lie or bend the truth in order to protect their feelings.
Before stumbling onto this path, I never had an issue with saying and doing the appropriate thing in order to protect the people I care for from getting hurt. However, what I’ve learnt about myself and other people through my work and professional experiences, the appropriate thing to say and do, isn’t necessarily the right thing to say and do. It’s a fine line that I’ve become weary of in recent years, as I continue to connect with people in my personal network both past and present.
As a coach, I’m hired to give my honest and professional opinion. I’ve been hired for a specific reason and to achieve results, complete, and sometimes brutal honesty is required at all times. As a neutral party, my only concern is the well-being of my client and his/her actual responsibilities. However, in my personal network, whereby I’m emotionally tethered, maintaining neutrality is very difficult. In some circumstances where I’m asked for advice, support, guidance or even just an opinion, I find myself facing the following dilemmas:
Do I, a. Compromise my work and what I know and do well, just to keep those nearby happy and content? Or, b. Advise with complete integrity and run the risk of stirring up conflict within my personal network?
I’ve learnt that the answer to either question often depends on how I’m regarded among those close to me. For instance, to my parents, as their youngest child, I’m still very much the “baby” in their eyes. Fortunately my clients don’t see me that way, otherwise I’d make a terrible coach, however this entire adjustment has made me aware of two prominent biases that arise when advising friends and family. Biases we should all be aware of when seeking or giving advice.
Bias #1: Personal Gain.
Most of us probably won’t admit it, but we run the risk of advising friends and family based on personal gain. Or, to avoid the perception of personal gain and potential blame and conflict, we also run the risk of sharing biased advice.
It’s often difficult to offer an unbiased perspective when we’re personally involved. For example, think about the people in your life today and how convenient it would be for you, if they changed certain aspects of their lives? Changes although convenient for you, could result it disastrous consequences for them.
Personal gain is something to be very aware of with advice you offer or receive, as there are a number of ‘sub-biases’ that can lead to erroneous advice. Biases such as: personal insecurity, strength of relationship, trust and access to multiple connections within the same personal network, are to name a few.
Bias #2: Nondisclosure.
Full disclosure is important when seeking or offering advice. It’s important for the advisor to develop a complete awareness of the problem or dilemma and it’s the responsibility of those being advised, to make the advisor fully aware. Therefore, complete honesty and openness is required in order to understand and to be fully understood.
If you feel restricted or reluctant in any way, then already you’re adding layers of bias to advice. For example, think about asking your parents about relationship advice, but leaving out all the intimate details of your desires, because it feels too inappropriate or awkward to discuss. Again many of the ‘sub-biases’ that arise with personal gain are also relevant here too, especially when sharing advice among an established peer group.
In conclusion, to avoid, or at least limit bias when exchanging advice with friends and family, both parties must learn how to emotionally detach in order to establish mutual understanding. However, keep in mind that you also run the risk of jeopardising the personal connection too, because once something is shared, it cannot be taken back, and you have to rely on and preserve trust in order to maintain the relationship.
Therefore in summary, establish authentic trust before seeking or giving advice and be aware of these prominent biases.
post written by, VanCityLifeCoach.com
Every single person is on the same page when it comes to life. The details of our individual lives probably differ drastically, but the emotional experiences in which we wish to encounter, they're exactly the same.
I’m happy. Perhaps not all the time, but nowadays I can say with confidence that I’m living blissfully most of the time. I’ve walked away from the dark places I had convinced myself I was safe in, and I’ve stepped outside of perception and sought out truth. Many people make the mistake of “searching for happiness” as if it’s some mystical treasure waiting to be found, but I’ve learned now that the key to happiness is much more internal, we just have to face it and let it out. It was the smartest thing I ever did.
To be happy, I needed to...
…accept and be proud of who I am.
This was the most effective contribution to my happiness. I grew up in an environment of expectation, everything from how I was expected to act and what I was expected to achieve in my life. To follow tradition and fulfill a role I simply wasn’t born to play. As my own identity did not fit the criteria of such expectation, it caused conflict within my mind which led to anxiety and depression...and up until a few years ago, it ruled my life. Today however, I feel free and unburdened, I can confidently explore life to seek answers; I am free to do what I want and be who I am. As a result I’ve found purpose and passion, I’ve learned about myself and what it is I love to do. It all began when I decided to live life by the traits of my own identity, it allowed me to define my own aspirations and as I progressed down my own path, I began uncovering a sense of pride and self-respect.
…find joy in not knowing and embrace the freedom of discovery.
If you look at how kids explore life, you realize the fun and joy it is to discover and seek answers. When I went traveling, I would freely ask questions in order to understand what I didn’t know. Each and every time I learned something new, it added a new layer of awareness to my identity. A sensation that made me feel empowered to explore life further, to immerse myself in the unknown so that I could understand and connect with the world a lot better. I’m not saying travel changed me, but it encouraged me to raise questions at home and in my everyday life whenever I had any feelings of doubt and uncertainty.
…place emphasis on mindset and its key role in success.
I reflect back on moments I first shared this blog with my friends on Facebook, and how much I feared judgement and ridicule from those who thought they knew me. Today I share it with the world and also coach individuals into fulfillment. I realized that if I want to be happy, I should stick with what I love to do. Although coaching is an avenue towards bigger aspirations in my life, I love the process. Everyday, at this current moment in time, I feel I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to be doing with my life. Rarely do I fear how life will end up, because however long it may take, at least I'm on the right path. Happiness isn’t something you can earn or accumulate, it’s something you contribute to and on this path, I'm contributing to my own happiness.
…submit to fact and adapt my behavior accordingly.
Living blissfully in ignorance is not happiness and personally I think we choose to be ignorant. They say misery needs company, however ignorance actually has it and plenty of it, and it's easy to join a herd to feel like you belong and fit in. However happiness is personal, you won't find it following trends or chasing myths.
I started my own journey for my own peace-of-mind and happiness, for nobody else. The proof is in my own well-being and if whatever I pursue turns out to be wrong, I've learned to move on until I discover what's right. If corporate gigs made me miserable, then I had to accept that to move forward. I did, and I ventured onto something far more valuable. It took me about 5 years to figure it out, but that time is experience, it signifies growth, it means something, it doesn't feel wasted and I already have so many lessons to share from them and I continue to learn.
Perception can be and often is blurred, waking up to reality and adapting my behavior towards the truth, definitely led me to a happier life. If something is factual and proven, and there’s no logical reason to challenge it, accept it and move on.
…take the time to better understand others.
Understanding other people better and getting to know them for who they really are, allowed me to better understand their actions, their perception of others and of me. For example, I realized that malicious intent was more about an internal conflict than it was about causing harm. We all desire happiness and fulfillment, but sometimes our own insecurities and troubles can make us act out in unintended ways. If you work to understand how much a person isn’t happy and fulfilled, you’ll be able to connect with them and reason with their actions.
If you take the time to learn about someone, you can learn to accept and communicate to them. In many cases, you could probably help them. There’s an empowerment that comes from this, because you begin realizing that we’re all more alike than we’re actually led to believe. It helps you ease the pressure of living with what other people think of you and it makes you feel less alone and more connected.
…overcome fear and make it a priority.
I don’t have many fears today and now I’m currently learning to overcome my fear of snakes. However other fears, like the fear of what people think of you, the fear of not succeeding or even the fear of not fitting in, will soon eradicate if you nurture the “law of awareness.” Put simply, you only need focus on being present and in the moment, for it’s the choices and actions of today that impact your future and control your past.
I’ve spoken to enough senior members of society to conceptualize regret, so get your head out of non-existent moments in time, wake up to now and allow your emotions to guide you through your reality. Which is how I made overcoming fear a priority, because overcoming it helped me regain control. Now I feel there isn't much that can stop me from chasing down my aspirations, especially no-one.
…directly challenge those that threatened my vulnerability.
There are a lot of prejudices in the world and a reason why a lot of it still exists, is because many people feel powerless to direct change. However, if you’re unhappy, perhaps change is what you actually need. I personally grew tired of people trying to understand me through the connotations that came with my skin color. I grew tired of keeping my emotions at bay, because of the connotations that came with my gender. I grew tired of having to accept everyone’s definition of success because I had my own ideas. With tiredness came frustration and frustration led to self-doubt. So I decided the only way out of this endless torment, was to face those that made me feel inferior in any way.
We’re all equals, that’s what I grew up learning and that’s what I ended up exploring and accepting. Any opportunity someone had to put me down, I simply asked them why? I’d respond in an attempt to understand rather than with a negative emotion like anger. When you give people the response they want, they win. Don’t give them the response they want, they’ll provoke. Challenge their motivation and intent and in my experience, they’ll back off.
In situations around the workplace, among your social circles and even at home, attempt to understand, educate and hopefully inspire. I don’t have time anymore for circumstances that make me feel worse about myself. I’ve learned to pay attention to how I feel, my emotions are the most honest thing I can rely on, so I’m going to protect them.
As I navigate my way through life, I may come across a more concise way to discuss how to be happy. However, what I realized as I put this blog post together, to be happy, I never really had to ask for or do much, I just had to allow myself the opportunity to be me, to be happy.
Our imagination can take our minds to places we never thought possible. We all have this beautifully engineered component which gives us the capability to, safely and securely, explore alternate realities and ideate to our hearts content.
It’s through exercising this ability we’ve been able to progress and evolve as a civilization. Many of the things we take for granted today, are the result of someone courageous enough to pluck an idea from an obscure reality and make it real.
One of my favorite pieces of advice to share with people who lack courage - is to create. Creativity is the key to unlocking our minds and understanding our own identities. It’s the opportunity and freedom to be ourselves as we explore the world within.
Being creative; that first brush stroke or note, that first idea or theory, that first movement or moment…it’s like switching on an engine, shifting into first gear and beginning that journey towards courage.
Engaging in our creative abilities allows us to confidently explore the truth within and explore the depth of our potential. As we shift into higher gears and really begin to indulge our identities, as we navigate through the limitless multiverse that is our imagination, we’ll begin to see sense in our creations and stimulate a unique purpose for our own lives.
We all start our lives living on instinct and raw emotion. As children we have that confidence and courage to explore and be open and expressive. As children we yearn to be understood and accepted, yet as we grow older, the paradigm shifts as we climb into a box and try to fit in; in fear of being different.
As we nestle into these boxes, a dilemma soon arises when we become increasingly aware, of how lonely it is living life boxed in by perception and the classification of normality. They limit creativity and curb our opportunities to innovate and express ourselves, because we continue to play within a space which we naively consider to be harmless. Yet it weakens courage and dwindles confidence.
They also limit our connection to others. They restrict how much we are willing to share and how much others have available to explore. Eventually, stepping outside of our proverbial boxes becomes a nonsensical notion, as we deem those living blissfully free from these restraints: brave, inspiring and/or foolish.
So if you’re sitting there reading this with hopeful desires, wishing and waiting for that one day, that one opportunity to lead your life into greatness. Then let your imagination soar and express your creativity and as you continue to create, you’ll find the courage to step outside of your box and showcase your identity.
If you want to live passionately with purpose and reason, then you need to access the traits of your very own being. You need to listen to and respond to your emotions, as you navigate your way through different experiences in life.
The journey into fulfilment begins with mindful experiences. You must be and feel fully engaged, in each and every experience you encounter. You must be completely invested and emotionally present through every experience, to determine what speaks to your identity and what doesn’t.
I’ve come across too many irritated individuals living life on auto-pilot, complacent in routine and living numbly. I know this feeling because I used to live this way; a life not worth living, lacking fulfilment and wasted potential.
We’re all beings with untapped potential and within us is the determination and drive to become all that we aspire to be. If you’re noticing that life seems to be passing you by, then you just need to regain control and pay attention to what your emotions are telling you.
Throughout my life, the one lesson I’ve relied upon to stay on track with my aspirations, is to listen and pay attention to emotion. Emotions indicate your truest intent and genuine desires, therefore ignoring how you feel will only lead you into an unfulfilled life and further away from discovering your passion and purpose. A deception that will blur your identity and cause you to drift away from what you truly desire.
Thought vs. Emotion
You can change and manipulate thought, even if a negative thought enters your mind you can counteract it with a positive one almost instantaneously. To demonstrate: if I ask you to think of a Lemon, you can do that without effort. Now if I ask you to think of a Red Lemon, you can also do so instantaneously and change the perception of reality within your own mind.
As thoughts can be manipulated, altered and misdirected so easily, what you think you want, may not necessarily be what you truly want. This is why it’s incredibly important to pay close attention to emotion in order to maintain control over your life. Your emotions are like truth-tellers, they can help you navigate your life towards the bliss you’re in search of, and into the fulfillment you desire. I can’t tell you to be happy because we’re not really capable of altering emotion like we can thought. If you want to change your emotions, then you may have to change your reality.
To discover your passion and to find your purpose in life, you must pay attention to emotion. Your thoughts may rationalize a negative experience, however we cannot fully trust thought as our thoughts can easily be manipulated and influenced. However we cannot deceive emotion, therefore as you navigate through life’s experiences, pay attention to what you're feeling. If you find that an experience contains no emotional fulfillment, then move on and keep experiencing until you discover the fulfillment you seek. Until you uncover your passion and define your purpose.
I grew up in a culture surrounded by sexual repression. A subject too taboo to discuss openly in an environment where dating wasn't even a topic of consideration. Which I found bizarre considering my ancestors nurtured a land of spiritual liberation and sexual expression and exploration, India.
Sex is an act we should discuss more openly and practice more freely, because confidence in the bedroom can help strengthen our vulnerabilities and affirm our identities. It can help us reach an esteemed level of self-assurance, and can uplift our intimate relationships to a level of complete acceptance and assurance. And if we're feeling secure and confident within ourselves, we're more likely to succeed in many other aspects of our lives.
To maintain happy and healthy lives, we must always monitor and maintain balance. If you're an individual that strives for meaningful sexual experiences, sex or rather bad sex, can be an indication of imbalance. Basically if you're not enjoying your sexual experiences and you're left feeling unfulfilled, it could be a sign that there's a problem in some other area of your life.
It is often said that our minds are the most powerful sexual organs we possess, therefore to understand sex and its impact on success, we must first connect to the moments that lead us to meaningful sexual experiences. Therefore we cannot talk about sex without establishing the roles of attraction and love first:
- Attraction = the recognition of a compatible energy, as your identity seeks Balance.
Shed the shallow ideologies presented in the media, and you'll find that attraction is a very personal pursuit. What we find attractive is as individual as our own identities. Who we find attractive isn't just based on just looks, everyone knows that personality plays a large role.
The more open and honest you are about what you find attractive, the securer you'll feel approaching who you find attractive, ultimately feeling secure within your own self. You'll significantly improve your chances of finding a sexual partner that you're compatible with, increasing your chances of finding someone that will help you strive for and maintain balance within your life. You'll learn very quickly, that knowing what you want will help you achieve exactly the success you desire, much faster.
- Love = the recognition of acceptance, as two compatible identities become Balanced.
As you become accustomed to knowing what you're attracted to, you significantly increase your chances of finding love. Love is to be completely accepting and to feel accepted. Two identities forming a connection unbound by convention, but bound by acceptance. Love will significantly improve your self-assurance, because being loved is knowing that who you are is valuable. That small four lettered emotion positively impacts your identity and your personal pursuits, because you've found your ultimate supporter and your biggest fan. That encouragement will guide you to success, by navigating you through the challenges that will most likely arise.
- Sex = the recognition of truth, as two identities performing the Balancing Act.
Good sex, the best sex, is when both/all parties involved can be completely vulnerable, open and honest with each other. Attraction can take you so far but sex will uncover a lot of truths. I think back to random one-night encounters, often they lack fulfillment, because it's difficult to be completely vulnerable, honest and open with someone you've just met. Also the initial attraction may have been a deception, because the sex never measured up against the identity you perceived.
Sex uncovers a lot of truths about an individual, and when both parties do measure up to that initial attraction, sex becomes this awe-inspiring, self-assuring experience you expect it to be, and you begin to trust your own judgment and instinct. You begin to unleash your inner genius and tap into your potential, the very fibers of fulfilling success.
Encourage yourself to become more open and confident around the topic of sex, sexuality and what you find sexy, and begin your journey into liberation. The impact of living a liberated life, will feed the energy of unlimited success.
Today, I led a discussion and met with people living very different lives, about life and relationships. Although there were so many differences, we stripped back experiences until we hit raw, genuine, emotion. Some cried, some got angry, but we all laughed, and as we explored everyone's identities, we discovered what we all truly wanted from our lives, from others and within ourselves.
Since, coaching and connecting with people from all around the world, it's never been more evident that we all strive for the same thing. To just live our lives, as ourselves without compromises.
I'll admit, people's perception about what I do got to me. Even I began to think this whole coaching gig was going to be about helping people set a few of goals and motivate them to achieve it. However, today I was reminded of why I got into this in the first place and I can't even put into words, how it feels to see someone leave a session, with more confidence and excitement about their own lives moving forward.
Over the last few weeks, a mother understood the influence she has on her child, a son understood the pedestal he was placed upon and someone who had lost their identity to their career, learned that they had much more to offer than what was expected in exchange for a paycheck. Someone dealing with loss faced their guilt and finally felt ready to accept what they could not change. Another was awoken to the negative influences impacting his life...
After achieving what I had today and over the last few weeks, I’m more than happy and confident to end this note with:
Terry Sidhu – Relationship and Life Coach.
“I’d like to see our species come together and use our amazing potential to live in harmony with all life on this planet. If I had to leave an impression, I’d like it to be a smile.”
– Markus Pukonen, Founder of Routes of Change
On 3rd Ave. and Main St. Vancouver B.C. is where I last saw Markus Pukonen; a man on a mission to “circumnavigate the planet without a motor.”
Founder of Routes of Change; a registered non-profit organization, with the intention of raising support for organizations that are creating a healthier planet, Markus began his adventure around the world on foot. Since then, he has already hiked, skipped and danced his way through the first few kilometres and according to his live, online GPS, he currently appears to be canoeing down Lake Ontario towards Prince Edward, ON.
I first got introduced to Markus when I gate-crashed his fundraiser during my recent visit to Tofino, BC. An intimate event, I spoke to several people who knew Markus personally and from what I had learnt, I was eager to understand the mindset of this man with an ambitious goal, derived from noble motives.
Markus loves our planet and “all of the beings on it.” He found himself burdened by the unfortunate state of our planet six years ago, when he lost his beloved father to Leukemia. Around the same time, his sister was pregnant with his niece. This cycle of death and new life caused Markus to wonder what type of future his niece would have, if we continue to pollute and ruin our planet. It also caused him to question the legacy he'd leave behind, if he were to face the same fate as his father. “It was time for change” and it was during this poignant time in Markus’ life, which jolted him to act upon one of his ultimate aspirations.
Over the last six years, Markus has been carefully planning, fundraising and generating awareness and support for his organization. Now that ‘Routes of Change’ has officially launched, he's beginning to feel both the positive and negative impacts of this mission. The pressure is definitely on and as deadlines loom, the reality of his aspiration is settling in.
To keep himself motivated and focused, Markus doesn’t overlook his emotions. He realizes that they are a key component towards navigating himself towards success. He also practises communicating openly for others to understand him better, especially during moments of high stress and anxiety.
“I’m planning on dancing every day to make things happy and positive and keep the silliness of everything in focus. I practice belly breathing, moving meditation, and yoga as well.”
Also, Markus occasionally finds himself “nervous and stressed.” On top of raising funds to support himself throughout this 5 year mission, he’s set himself a “huge goal” of raising 10 million dollars towards supporting positive change. So naturally, he's finding himself questioning how it’ll all “come together.” Furthermore, Markus has been pretty independent his entire life and for the first time, he’s asked for support from his community in a “big way,” causing further thoughts of concern and uncertainty as he doesn't want to let anyone down.
“I overcome these concerns and doubts by focusing on the positive, on the fact that I am doing exactly what I want to be doing. I know that things have a way of working themselves out if you move confidently in the direction of your dreams.”
Markus has also become mindful of the fact that not everyone understands his mission, nor can everyone empathise with his passion. He’s learnt that staying true to himself and standing by his own identity, will guide him towards the success and fulfillment he desires. He adds:
“I also remind myself that I was willing to do this trip without any money.”
His strength and encouragement also comes from gratitude, he genuinely values community, oneness and family. Even though he'll be without his nearest and dearest for some time, he only has to think about them to trigger motivation.
“I think about the love they have for me. I think about doing my best in order to make them proud. I don’t focus on the fact that they aren’t with me, I focus on the fact that they ARE with me. I feel their love and support and I gain inspiration and strength from it. I focus on that overwhelming feeling of gratitude.”
Markus sets a great example of how to use your identity towards bigger aspirations. He’s combined what he loves to do (his passion), with what he has to do (his purpose) and as a result, he’s well on his way towards reaching levels of self-actualization.
There are many lessons to be learnt from Markus and I’m thankful to have had the opportunity to meet with him. He’s confirmed that staying true to our own identities, engaging in what we’re passionate about and maintaining gratitude for the very things many of us take for granted, will steer us towards a life of bliss and fulfillment.
Have a great time Markus and thank you for raising awareness to make our home a better place to live.
To learn more about Markus Pukonen and ‘Routes of Change’ check-out Routesofchange.org. You can also support Markus along the way, by sponsoring a ‘penny per kilometer’, joining him during a leg of his trip or simply by offering him words of encouragement, advice and support.
I have very cool parents. A father with the ability to dream big, despite life’s knock backs, the man still has some big aspirations. His encouragement is limitless and he has every confidence that, no matter what I do, I’ll be okay.
My mother on the other hand, she lives by one philosophy which she insists on passing down through generations. A guru in her own right, my mother never ever gave a "damn sh*t!” We, we being myself and my siblings, all used to laugh at her funny sayings, this one in particular.
My parents grew up in a generation surrounded by very strict Indian traditions and extremely outdated cultural practices. Also, one of the first generations to genuinely experience the struggles of integrating into a western society, from racial prejudice through to raising children who had adopted very different values to those she and my father were raised with.
An avid reader, my mum grew up reading books on philosophy, psychology, and spirituality. She generally read anything that allowed her mind to explore, to escape the realities she was forced to surrender to. All our lives, during the troubles that came with financial turmoil, crooked family politics and the bullsh*t that came with living an arranged life, she never let her spirit die.
We all grew up hearing “I don’t give a damn Sh*t!” around the house, as she belted it out during stressful moments. In her charming in-glish accent (an Indian accent with an English undertone), followed by a delightful laugh that made any unfortunate situation seem small and insignificant. It’s only during the last few years, having figured out my own path in life, I connected with what mum actually meant by the words she uttered.
My mum has practised mindfulness her entire life, before the world began trending it, mum was living it. In every difficult situation, she would never let negativity infiltrate her mind. It was like this mantra shielded her from turning into a bitter old lady; resenting the world and everyone in it.
I always thought she held onto a hope that things would get better one day, as many do in unfortunate circumstances. I thought that was where she drew her strength. In actuality, that one-day was always her present day, the here and now was the time to laugh off her troubles and focus on whatever bliss currently existed, however big or small. Be it the fact that we had a day with a full healthy meal on our plates or, at the very least, love and closeness in our family.
Today, at 64, mum continues to share lessons of mindfulness to any person she meets. It makes complete sense why people warm up to her very quickly. She lives life as if life is literally the only thing she owns, and so long as she maintains control over her own mind, the force that drives her life, she’s the most fortunate person she knows.
So no matter what situation you’re faced with, no matter what your current circumstances are, practise having full control over your mind and be aware of your thoughts. That’s what mindfulness is. Mum taught us to focus on everyday bliss, however big or small, it exists, we just have to start paying attention to it.
Negativity can only affect us if we allow it to and what mum actually means by ‘not giving a sh*t’, isn’t that she doesn’t care, it’s that she’ll continue to fight for the one thing that can’t ever be taken from her; she will never surrender her mind to negativity, no matter how hard life tries.
This post was written by Terry Sidhu.
Are you ready to reach your true potential?
When was the last time your identity was pushed to its limits? When did you last overcome an intimidating challenge?
How you deal with and overcome challenges is a skill you develop. If you're pretty good at it, chances are you've come across many challenges in your life. You've probably developed your skill well enough to withstand an array of pressures that life can throw at you.
One thing I advise people who pursue their own success, is to avoid complacency. The world and how it operates continues to evolve and change and our nature is to adapt to these changes. If you’re not nurturing your ability to overcome challenges, the more difficult it’ll be to adapt, more so when challenges are unavoidably presented.
As you become adapted to a life you've built, you may have learnt to avoid challenges as you nestle into comfort and ease. If you’re settled into routine and are comfortable in the everyday motions of life, it’s important to set yourself and see through goals/challenges regularly. They help you to strengthen your mindset, thus allowing you to tap into your identity; the stronger your will, the more confident and determined you’ll be to succeed in the passions YOU want to pursue.
Challenges present several learning opportunities that teach you more about yourself than you once thought. Challenges are a constant reminder, proof even, that personal potential is truly uncapped. If you're constantly nurturing this mindset, you build up a tolerance against negative infiltrations like procrastination, doubt, insecurity and anything else that keeps you from reaching your self-actualized state.
Your mind as well as your body can be pushed to surprising limits and in order for you to continue your journey towards self-actualization, you should seek to challenge yourself whenever an opportunity arises. You should always keep your mind and your body engaged in a constant state of improvement and progression.
Regularly engaging in challenges also helps you build up a tolerance of what you can handle at any given time. Remember, the more success you accumulate in your life, the more challenges you’ll come across to maintain and grow it.
Always continue to push yourself further today, so that you’ll sail through the challenges of tomorrow.
Image Credit: Nikko
Resentment is an internal pressure. It’s easy to forget that as you direct your emotions towards the cause of this bitter feeling.
I think back to moments in my life, where I’ve resented people and situations in my past and often enough, my own difficulties moving forward stemmed from an internal battle.
When you resent, your emotions clash with rationality. You find yourself in a state of bitterness because your identity has become compromised. Things like putting your life on hold for another and repeatedly leaving your vulnerabilities exposed, can cause you to repeat negative behavioral patterns that go against what you truly desire from life. As you begin to find it difficult to break through negative emotions, resentment makes you act in ways that truly aren’t in your nature.
The way to move on from resentment lies within your will to change.
When you’re steered away from your own pursuits and desires in life, your identity becomes confused. From my own experiences, resentment tends to arise when this realization occurs.
Rather than face and process the internal battle, you’ll often find it’s easier to cope by emotionally projecting your issues onto others and/or certain situations, like getting angry.
Remember, this is your life and if you’re facing any resentment, it’s up to you to take charge and direct change. Although it may ease the pressure by getting angry and attempting to have others feel your dismay, take it as an indication that your identity has risen to the surface and that you’re ready to take back control over your life.
This is a crucial time to be pro-active, rise above the cause and reconnect with who you truly are.
Take this awakening to re-establish your self-worth. Your feeling this because you’ve discovered that there is something better for you to find. Be it a better life, partner, career, lifestyle…whatever the circumstance, a little shift in perspective can turn resentment into a motivational trigger.
Whatever the case maybe, if you are facing resentment, take time away from the cause and thrust yourself towards things that make you feel like you. Connect with your passions, engage in activities that motivate you, do something that you want to do (I personally enjoy a short trip away). As you engage in blissful activities that spark your spirit, you’ll begin to take back control over your life piece by piece, until your identity is fully restored and you’re prepared to move on from resentment.
Your life up until this point; the identity you live with today, is a collection of your experiences, everything you have learned and traits that you may have inherited. Part of being in a relationship is sharing your life with another, therefore it’s important to share your past with your partner.
For one, knowing that you’ve truly bared all is extremely liberating. Knowing that you have nothing to hide makes for an uncomplicated relationship that’s not only built on trust, but built on honesty too.
These two values are crucial, if you desire the components that make up a powerful partnership that carries on throughout the rest of your life.
Furthermore, knowing that there’s nothing left to uncover, allows you to be easily understood.
When I coach couples, I ask very tough questions in order to expose an honesty that someone perhaps lives with, but has not yet shared. I ask difficult questions because it indicates how well a couple communicate and how well people actually understand each other.
When you share your past with your significant other, you’re sharing information that is essential towards keeping your relationship alive. First of all, your partner won’t be spending their lifetime trying to figure you out, that alone can cause complications and insecurities.
Your past reveals your motivations and it reveals your emotional triggers, so just think about how this information can elevate bliss and happiness within your relationship. Teach your partner about the person you are, educate them on your past so that together you can have a mindful future.
The beautiful thing about letting your past out, is that you let it go. If there is a part of you that you haven’t shared with your significant other, then already you’ve begun to diminish core values. And if there are problems at the very core, the effect is felt at the surface (i.e. you’ll find yourself disagreeing and placing significance over smaller, less important issues, more frequently).
Revealing your past also allows you to remain present.
People always argue that if you reveal too much you leave nothing left to uncover, that there’s an excitement to the mystery. I agree, and that’s great at the very beginning of a relationship…a lot of the excitement when starting something new, comes from discovering new things. However, as you begin to understand each other and connect, excitement generates from exploring life as you move your relationship forward. From the mystery of exploring each other’s potential and embarking on parallel journeys towards self-actualization.
You may fear judgment and loss as a result of the information you share, but the whole point of sharing your life with someone, is that you have someone that accepts your identity completely and vice versa.
Society put’s on a lot of pressure and expects you to live up to certain ideologies: to get married at a certain age, start a family, fill a home with memories and beautiful things that elevate their image of perfection and bliss. This motivation is corrosive to your identity and this pressure may force you down avenues you’re not ready for.
A relationship is about the elevation of spirit; to experience nirvana and to engage you in fulfilling your purpose. You won’t get that until you give yourself completely. All the other things that you progress into (i.e. the home, the family etc.) merely become extensions of a growing relationship, not the definition of one.
Lastly and most importantly, sharing your past allows you to communicate confidently. It lessens the impact of misinterpretation and allows you to remain honest and maintain trust.