The Journey and my realisation that nothing will change until I change me....
I wanted to share with you my journey, my story. It will be raw, personal but I hope that it will assist you and help you so that you don't have to waste as much time as I did.
I am now 49 years old; I have served my country for 26 years in the Air Force serving all over the world. I have been married and divorced twice and I have a beautiful 20-year-old daughter who is currently in University in London.
My journey to my "centered self" started approximately 5 years ago, I had left the Air Force and emigrated to Australia.
Life was good, but something was missing and I just couldn't put my finger on it. I didn't feel whole or complete. A lot of things had happened in my life and I had done a lot of things that I was not proud of, there was regret and a lot of unresourceful comparison going on within me.
This discord started to become a rumble and gradually increased until it became a bone shaking earth quake.
I started to recognise by Cumulative PTSD was returning, I was becoming hyper vigilant, fearful, angry and inwardly focused.
I had experienced this 15 years before and it had led me down a very dark path where I had "danced" with trains a couple of times, almost dancing too long, if you understand what I am trying to say in a roundabout way (it is still raw inside for me) and I really did not want to go there again!
I remember talking to a friend about how I was feeling and how on the surface people thought everything was cool and groovy, but internally I was not coping. I remember describing how I felt a fraud and a fake. I felt I was having to wear a mask in front of others....even more, I was sometimes wearing multiple masks. This was exhausting and taking a lot of effort.
He mentioned to me about the 3 Universal Fears, and explained what they were. As soon as he explained the principle behind the Universal Fears I was able to reflect and see how they had been impacting me. Even more than this, how I had been choosing to allow them to impact me.
This was a lightbulb moment for me....I had been choosing this, I had been choosing to create this fear and that perspective...
What else had I been choosing? and if it was my choice, I could change that choice....couldn't I?
I had been studying and interested in Human Behaviour for many years before this moment, but I had never really thought about how it applied to me...
I mean after all, I am Ok, it is all the other lunatics in the asylum of life....It can't possibly be me....can it?
Oh yeah, it hit me like a steam train.....boom!
This moment was day 1 of my journey....
I started to become curious about everything and one of the first things I started to dig into was why I was feeling the way I was, what was I choosing to believe and feel that was creating this current reality for me.
As I leant into this even more, I explored that thought of "what was I choosing to believe".
As I dug deep into my thinking, I had a realisation that since leaving the RAF where I had clear Values & Beliefs, I currently was very unclear on my Values & Beliefs.
Again, with more curiosity than a crazy scientist, I wondered why I had not brought my Values & Beliefs with me from the RAF and it dawned on me that I was fearful of being seen as a fake or a fraud, of not being enough to have come up with my own Values & Beliefs, rather than using the RAF's.
I had been thinking I would have been seen as weak or too stupid to make my own Values & Beliefs.
So, I set about getting clear on what I did Value in Life and what Beliefs I had to support those Values. I did lots of studying and grew my understanding around Values & Beliefs and realised that when we are clear on our core Values & Beliefs, decisions are easily made, that there is clarity in our thinking and life becomes easier.
After doing this part of "Inner Work" life started to improve. I thought, wow, who would have thought that a little curiosity and not settling for mediocrity would create such a difference.
Then I got thinking, if that made such a difference, what else can I do?
I started to wonder if there was anything I could do about the guilt, regret, remorse and disgust of some of my behaviours from the past. Particularly around my two failed marriages.
I recognised that I had hurt a lot of people when these relationships had broken down and that was something that niggled away, subconsciously, within me for many many years.
I did what most people do and blamed all the other parties involved in the relationships and aspects of the relationships. I used their behaviours to justify my actions and behaviours. In reality I was taking zero responsibility and this is why my subconscious was eating away at me......in a nutshell it was Shame and it was Toxic Shame.
Eugh, this felt really uncomfortable and awkward as I raised my awareness to this, did I really want to open this can of worms? Was I strong enough, was I enough to really do this?
Then I thought back to the Values and Beliefs I had committed myself to, and I knew deep down that if I didn't live within those Values and Beliefs I would be back where I was....and I didn't want to go there again....
So, I started to dig deeper into the shame, I started to learn about shame, the difference between toxic shame and healthy shame. How I could choose between the two, how to recognise when I was in toxic shame and how to flip that to healthy shame.
This was another big moment, because even more I was able to start to take responsibility for my actions in the past. To recognise my poor behaviour and to identify where it had been repeatedly used in my life and how that behaviour had impacted my life, the lives of those around me and ultimately had created the environment (bubble) that had become my life.
Now I had this insight, perspective and understanding I was able to recognise the choice points that I had made. Even more, I could recognise where similar choice points had happened recently and how I was still making the same choices and still impacting myself and those around me. This had to stop, I had to start making better choices.
So I did, I started trying new ways of thinking, seeking further understanding and insights. By being able to do this I was created new choice points, new perspectives, new ways of seeing things. This meant I was able to make new choices and see if that positively impacted me, or not.
Now I was really being able to create a platform for resourceful comparison, I was able to compare where I currently was with where I had been. This was a big break through.
All the time I am learning these patterns of behaviour. Through my studying and research, I was discovering fact based models and structures that I was able to understand and use to calibrate not only my behaviour, but the people around me.
I then discovered the power of the mind, meditation, mindfulness and Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP). I was able to really start to take control of my mind, my thinking and what was happening in my life.
I even turned jam dougnuts into tripe! I would easily smash a full bag of doughnuts through comfort eating and that was becoming a habit. When I learnt about association and disassociation and other NLP techniques I was able to turn a doughnut into tripe.....I hate tripe, it disgusts me and just the thought of putting it anywhere near my mouth has me reaching and feeling sick. I have not had a jam doughnut since I did this Inner Work, and that is over 3 years ago now.
This powerful tool has enabled me to do time line therapy on myself and address the guilt, shame and hurt that I have been carrying around with me for over 20 years.
I now use this tool to help others unburden themselves from their past memories. One person who had suffered an horrific, abusive childhood and had been carrying with them the guilty and disgust internally from that childhood, has now been able to let go of it totally. The memory does not bother them anymore and they are now able to move forward with their life with confidence and grace. It is a beautiful thing to be part of.
Another massive realisation for me, something that has really helped me with my inner work is the understanding of my "inner child". I went to a training where we discovered that we all have an inner child. This inner child is a mini version of us as we currently are, but with the values and beliefs of a 5-year-old.
When we recognise our inner child, we are recognising our subconsciousness. Our subconscious is what drives us, keeps us alive, inspires us......it can also shut us down, create fear and dred, it can hold us back.
If we look after our 5 year old, nurture it, encourage it, validate it, love it, be present to it, hear and see it....our 5 year old will flourish and grow....just as you would any 5 year old.
I have done the inner work to connect me with my inner child, I am now fully connected and constantly checking in on how he is going. I was meditating the other day and he popped into my thoughts and I was so pleased to see him smiling, giving me a big hug and excitedly telling me how he was feeling. To be fully connected with my inner child has given me a sense of belonging and confidence that I have never experienced before.
Here we are now, 5 years on and I am well and truly engaged in my journey of personal development, growth and connection with my inner self.
I recognise that this truly is a journey and I will be on this journey for the rest of my life, slowly and constantly growing and becoming the very best version of myself.
It is a beautiful way to live and I am able to fully live my life on my own terms.
I often wonder what my life would be like if I had started my journey earlier?
If someone had shared with me that it was my choice that was creating the world, I was living in.
That I was in full control of my life though the choices I was making.....or not.
I wonder, not with regret, but with curiosity as to where I would be now....
I started this journey at 44, what if I had discovered this when I was 16, 25, 33....
This has become even more relevant as I have been working with a 16 year old, mentoring him and sharing with him all I know and the difference he has seen in his life have been phenomenal, his parents are amazed and excited about the changes they have seen as his awareness to his choices is increasing. He is doing the inner work and he is reaping the rewards....
The beautiful thing is that anyone can have these breakthroughs, anyone can learn this information. A lot of the things I have discovered have been things that I already knew, but had dismissed as a waste of time.....emotions is a great example of this.
Now I am able to be fully emotionally intimate with myself and others, I am having some of the most fulfilling, beautiful and meaningful relationships in my life. An example of this would be the relationship I am experiencing with my partner Shirley. I have never felt so connected, loved and fulfilled as I do now.
The journey, the inner work has been tough, it has been an emotional roller coaster, but I have the tools in my tool kit now to deal with most things in life and where I don't, I now have the courage, Self-Confidence, belief and ability to go and find the tools I need. I accept that things will go wrong, they do go wrong, but I have the curiosity to be able to dig deep and find out how I can learn and grow from them and not make the same mistake again.
The way I am now living my life is wonderful, and I now share this with others.
My passion and desire is to share what I know with others so that they too can have access to the same tools that I do, so that they too can start to make the great choices that will give them the life they want to experience on a consistent basis.
Currently I am trailing a new online program where I share 4 of the foundational elements of the "Inner Work" that will provide a very strong foundation for people to build from.
I am looking for some people who want to start their journey, just as I did 5 years ago, who recognise that there has to be more to life, that want to take their life and relationships to the next level...to assist me with some feedback and to partake in the online program.
If you want to be one of those people, I would welcome you with open arms. You will get full support, you will get all of the materials, including bonus material - all up I think there are 13 elements to this online program and all I am asking in return is a small investment from you.
If you break down the investment required, it works out at less than $16 per element, now if you have every looked at any personal development program....you will know the investment is massively higher. So, this is a great, affordable way to start your journey and you will get amazing content that I have used to create the life that I am currently living and the life that my one on one clients are now living.
If you are interested, you can learn more about it by clicking the link below....
Thank you for taking the time to read my story, I hope this has inspired you or perhaps it has created a new way of thinking for you.
My mission is to positively impact as many people as possible, because I know the power of this type of living, I am living it, It has changed my life, it has changed many of my clients life....and it can change yours, if you want it too....
Ultimately it is your choice.