What we do here:

Work on our stuff. Dissolve stuck. Play. Experiment. Rewrite patterns. We take sometimes-heavy things* and we make them more fun, playful, manageable.

I also write about my conversations with walls and monsters, and what it's like to work on a pirate ship. Good times.

* Sometimes-heavy things include: mindfulness and presence, pain and trauma, business-growing, that problematic word which rhymes with flaweductivity

 

Wish 281: clues everywhere, may I see them and laugh

very personal adsPersonal ads. They’re … personal! Very.

I write a Very Personal Ad each week to practice wanting, and get clarity about my desires. The point isn’t getting my wish (though cool things have emerged from wishing), the point is learning about my relationship with what I want, and accessing the qualities. Wanting can be hard, it is easy to feel conflicted about it, and the reasons for that make this a surprisingly subversive practice…

The unraveling.

As soon as we got to LA, my body forgot how to sleep.

It wasn’t noisy, at least not on the physical plane. Haha, see, that is a very LA thing to say.

That is one nice thing about LA. I am not the the only weirdo.

Anyway, the environs were surprisingly quiet but I was not quiet.

I mean, I was in the sense that I am always quiet. My head was not quiet.

Without quiet, I can’t feel what I need anymore.

After three nights of being wide awake from 2am to 6am, staring into space, wondering what could possibly be useful about having a very expensive-to-run way-too-much-work chocolate shop when I don’t even eat chocolate or care about it at all, I lost all my senses.

My senses were still there of course, it was just that my connection to sensing was gone.

I was so tired I couldn’t tell if I was hungry or not, couldn’t feel my moods, couldn’t feel my body.

I was in that ptsd-like state where you really just need someone to tell you what happens next, someone to propel you into motion when motion is necessary by standing you up, pushing you gently and steadily in the right direction.

My traveling companion was able to step in and do this, to make executive decisions: Let’s get you food. Let’s find the sunscreen. Can you handle a ten minute walk? Let’s do that. Take my hand.

It was so disorienting walking down the street not being able to feel the street. I couldn’t feel the qualities that are usually all around me. I couldn’t feel the wisdom of my thank-you heart.

I felt lost and bewildered.

Except then there were clues.

For a panicked moment, I thought, how will I find my way without being able to feel the qualities, my compass of qualities all around me?

I couldn’t feel them anymore. It was an uncomfortable moment.

I tried naming what was around me:

Green bushes. White wall. Brown dog, pink leash, wagging tail. Clouds in the sky. I am here.

And then, suddenly, there were clues, everywhere. And qualities everywhere.

We turned onto Rose street, and I could feel a flash of my beloved Red Rose Ballroom, which is a very magical place even if it does keep me up at night.

A sign in the window of a shop said Comfort and Ease, and I breathed those in and whispered thank you in my heart.

A cafe was called Gratitude, and I breathed that in: thank you, yes, this is good, this is better.

There were more roses painted on walls, and this helped too, reminding me of my sweet hometown, the Rose City, and the gardens where I like to walk.

I can use clues.

There is something very reassuring about clues, also in remembering that anything can be a clue.

I called on all the superpowers of roses to help me:

Unapologetically Beautiful. Built-in Protection. Long-lasting Vitality. Secret Captivating Fragrance. Strong and Fearless. Notice Me!

It was still hard to feel, like through a cloud, but I began to perk up, knowing they were streaming in.

I looked down on the ground and right in front of my feet someone had sprayed graffiti that said LOVE IS ALL, because LA is the most LA place in the entire world, and I pointed at it, and my lover smiled and kissed my cheek, and I felt that, and sighed audibly with relief because ohmygod I can feel things again.

I focused on my feet until I could feel the sensation of them against the ground again, not just the sound of my falling-apart flip-flops but the actual ground itself.

Thank you, clues.

What do I know about this?

I want to see the clues, use the clues, let them guide me back to what I need.

All the time, not just when I’m so spaced out and worn down that I can hardly see straight.

I want to see just how much good is there for me, just how many sweet reminders there are to reconnect.

I mean, come on. Each tree is whispering love. Each flower is glowing beauty. Even street signs tell me to stop, literally, and god knows I need that. Each beautiful red light is saying breathe, breathe.

So if I’m not seeing clues then it’s because I’m busy, too busy with life to be present with life. Who wants that? How ridiculous is that?

Or it’s because I have forgotten to pay attention to what I need and want in the moment, and paying attention to that, as far as I’m concerned, is the entire point of being alive.

How else am I supposed to take exquisite care of myself, how else am I going to stay deeply connected to the vital joy of Aliveness? How else am I going to remember to glow boldly?

Not to mention: How am I going to be of service to the world if I’m not focused on staying intimately true to myself?

I want to see the clues.

I want to see clearly.

To delight in all the beautiful ways I am already cared for, I already have what I need.

To notice how I am held by life.

To be attentive when it comes to taking care of myself, to make changes in how I do this. For example, if I need internal quiet to sleep, and the physical place I am in does not support that, I need to run away to the mountains, which is what I am doing now.

Anyway, the point is, I want to be with the clues.

What’s next.

Here’s what happens when I don’t follow clues.

For example, my body is like, oh hey babe we need rest, and I say, lalala okay maybe later, and then I get sick.

Why would I want to teach my body — to train it to get my attention in loud dramatic ways?

Why would I not want to train myself to be the most loving listener ever.

I am thinking of all of this in the context of Operation Tranquility Recovery Magic, which I am currently on,

Last week I got some pretty big intel about what needs to happen next, and it scares me how much I want it. It scares me to say it out loud. I am terrified to act on it. I am equally terrified to not act on it.

The intel is here, so am I going to listen? That seems like the only reasonable choice, and yet here I am, wondering.

Now.

I am wearing toasty red socks that used to belong to my mother. They hold the qualities of Warmth and Comfort.

I am high up in the mountains with an outrageous sky full of stars.

The beautiful boy sang to me as we drove. He touched my cheek and I sighed contentedly, like a sleepy cat. We saw a spectacular falling star on our long winding way up the mountain road.

Here it is easier for me to feel qualities, access them, let them move through my body. Less interference, in all forms.

I need to learn how to be the person who can do this when I am not on a mountain (I mean that mostly metaphorically but also yes, mountains), and that will come whenever it comes.

For now it just feels good to feel again.

May I see clearly, breathe deeply, take exquisite care of myself, ask loving questions, choose peacefulness, smile at stars.

What do I really want?

Same as the past few weeks. To trust my instincts more. To trust my yes and trust my no, and act on that trust immediately.

Me: Hey, slightly-wiser me, what do you have for me?

She: Release with love, receive with love.
Me: That’s it?
She: That’s EVERYTHING, babe.

Clues?

Passed a sign on the road and my traveling companion said, Now that’s a good sign.

Yes, yes it is.

The superpower of wearing my crown.

November-2014-Sovereignty
We’re in the month of Sovereignty, with the superpower of I do not wait in line for my own swing.

Current sovereignty challenges: Standing in my strength, unapologetically glowing, trusting what I know, trusting that doing what is obviously good for me is also good for everyone else involved. Acting on this steady truth.

Oh, you know what? I got a clue for this one too actually!

Yesterday I was thinking about how I forget to advocate for myself, and then a truck pulled in front of us, a white truck with nothing on it except two freshly painted green crowns on the back. As if to say: YES, THIS IS WHAT IS NEEDED. EACH OF YOU WEARING YOUR CROWN.

Ongoing wishes.

Seeds planted without explanation, a mix of secret agent code and silent retreat. Things to play with someday.
  • Everything is easier than I thought, and look, miracles everywhere.
  • I have the best time dancing in my ballroom.
  • This doesn’t require my input!
  • My body gets the deciding vote.
  • Ha, it’s so perfect that it turned out like this. Past me is a GENIUS
  • I have what I need, and I appreciate it. There are resources to do this.
  • Trust and steadiness. I can see why this moment is good.
  • I am fearless and confident. I do the brave things, I state my preferences clearly, calmly and easily, and it is not even a big deal, yay.
  • I am ready to come into my superpowers, including the superpowers of knowing that it doesn’t matter what anyone thinks, receiving gifts that are winging their way to me, I Am Okay With Being Seen, Everything Enhances My Superpowers.

Taking care of these seeds.

The intentions have been planted, the sails are set. Whatever intel, fruits or flowers emerge will be just right, whatever they are. Thank you in advance.

Now to nap on it, dance it, write it, play with it, take notes, skip stones, walk the labyrinth. Deep breaths, purple pills, getting quieter and quieter until I hear what is true. And a good costume change never hurts. Also eight breaths in eight directions:

Trust. Release. Love. Receive. Anchor. Crown. Glow. Boldly.

Progress report on past Very Personal Ads.

So. Last week, aka Blessed…

This was a very good week for feeling my way into this.

Love more. Trust more. Release more. Receive more. Thank you, writing. Thank you, me who asked.

Attenzione! Attention, AGENTS.

I wish to whisper a whisper about the Monster Manual! It comes paired with the world’s best coloring book, which does so much monster-dissolving magic that even if you wait to try the techniques, you’ll still feel better about everything.

Self-fluency is hard enough, we need ways to to interact with the thoughts-fear-worry-criticism that shuts down creative exploring. And when people get the manual, I am able to me spend more time writing here. So if you don’t need help with monsters, get one for a friend. Or plant a wish that someone gets it for you! And bring people you like to hang out here. The more of us working on our stuff, the better for all of us. ♡

Keep me company?

Consider this an open invitation to deposit wishes, gwishes, personal ads. In any size/form you like, there’s no right way. Updates on past experiments are welcome too, as is anything sparked for you.

Commenting culture: This is safe space for creative exploration. We are on permanent vacation from care-taking and advice-giving. We are here to play and throw things in the pot! With amnesty. Leave a wish any time you want.

Here’s how we meet each other’s wishes: Oh, wow. What beautiful wishes.

xox

Chicken 330: taking care of elves

Friday chicken

A look at the good and the hard in my week, a ritual of reflecting.

It is Friday and we are here.

{a breath for Friday.}

What worked this week?

Trusting.

Every time I started to feel shaky and scared this week, I immediately said to myself: “My love, this is a completely normal part of taking time to figure out what you want!”

When I used to run retreats, invariably someone would have a total meltdown around day 4, and we’d always say, “It’s not a retreat until you fall the fuck apart!”. And then giggle hysterically.

So yeah. It’s just part of the voyage.

If you undertake something big, and ohmylord taking time for myself to be in a state of not-doing and not-producing is big, then things are going to move and shift.

You’re going to get new intel (or new insights into the intel you’ve been ignoring, in my case), and it’s going to shake things up a bit.

So falling apart is natural and normal.

Like when you do long, slow, extended yoga poses for the hips and spine. Your body will probably feel, in Paul’s words, fragile and vulnerable, and this is a good thing.

Remembering this, and trusting this. That was my salvation this week.

Next time I might…

Ask sooner.

I put off asking for something this week, and then it was so completely simple. Let’s be brave and ask!

If you feel drawn to leave comments on aspects of my week, I will take love, hearts, breaths, pebbles, I do not need advice or cheering up, though presence and sweetness are appreciated. Hearts or pebbles work great if you don’t know what to say, often I don’t know what to say either so we’re in the same boat.

Eight breaths for the hard, challenging and mysterious.

  1. Grief. The sadness about losing my mother takes different shapes and forms, like watching someone paint in watercolor. A breath for permission.
  2. I finally got quiet enough to hear what I really need. I’ve heard it many times this year but each time responded with “well, but that’s impossible though”. Now I am at the point where it doesn’t matter if it’s impossible. It is what needs to happen, so it’s going to have to happen. I imagine this will, at some point, feel incredibly liberating. Right now it’s just scary. A breath for sweetness.
  3. I have so many elements of the thing I want, and I can also see how I get myself into cycles where I forget to nourish myself, and how I pay the price for this. A breath for ease and for change.
  4. Insecurity. Sometimes I need to hear the same reassuring thing whispered in my ear, or in my heart, a hundred times a day before it even begins to break the hard built-up surface of disbelief. A breath for patience, sweetness and courage.
  5. Things that are unknown. Sitting with the void. A breath for trust-more love-more release-more receive-more.
  6. Forgetting truth-love, forgetting to take care of myself, forgetting that this is my job. A breath for remembering.
  7. And in the ongoing theme, the continued encounters with all the ways I relinquish my sovereignty, compromise my desires, neglect to state my preferences, avoid opportunities to treasure myself. It is fascinating to me just how easily I will pretend that what I want is not important, or act as if I don’t even know what that is. Yet again, a breath for trust and more trust and even more trust after that. And for practicing wearing my crown.
  8. Inhale, exhale. May all misunderstandings and distortions, internal and external, dissolve in love if not in laughter. Goodbye (and thank you), mysteries and hard moments of this week.

Eight breaths of good, reassuring, delight-filled.

  1. Operation Tranquility Recovery Magic: It is so much better than I was imagining. Mind: blown. All of my Ludicrous Fear Popcorn that it wouldn’t actually be magic, or that I wouldn’t feel tranquil or that I wouldn’t like the tranquility or that my adventuring companion and I wouldn’t really connect, it was all absurd, all concocted by well-meaning fuzzball monsters who want me to be safe. Every second of this trip has been luscious, sweet, healing, infused with warmth and shared delight. A breath for receiving.
  2. Holding hands and smiling the most sweetness-laced joy-filled smiles for fifteen days straight, doped up to the gills on happy. A breath for lalalalalalalala I like this.
  3. I am having a wild passionate affair with life right now, and this is so very healing. A breath for sea and sky and breath and quiet knowing.
  4. My body is getting so much gazelle time. Hours of walking by the water. Sun salutations, stretching, old turkish lady yoga, dance practice, dancing every night. A breath of thank you.
  5. I got the intel I have been waiting for. It wasn’t what I was expecting and that is okay. A breath for being held in love.
  6. Dirk and Annette, our alter-egos, killing it on the dance floor. And I went on a rollercoaster! Twice! If you know me, feel free to laugh hysterically about that one. I did it and it was fun. A breath for pure play.
  7. I asked for joy on Sunday and not only did I get a thousand tiny sweet moments of joy, on Wednesday we ended up at the joy-filled house of a woman whose last name is Joy, and there was even more joy to be had. And laughter. So much laughter. A breath for the gift of being able to see something beautiful and true while it is happening.
  8. Thankfulness. Heart full of love. Tiny miracles everywhere. So much sweetness in my life, so much kindness, so much generosity and permission. Nothing is wrong. Now is not then. All Timing Is Right Timing. A full breath of deep appreciation in my thank-you heart.

WHAM BOOM! Operations completed.

The phrase Whoosh Ha Mastodon Boom is secret agent code that means: this thing is done! It is often shortened to wham-boom. You may also shout (or whisper) other joyous words if you like.

I am away on Operation Tranquility Recovery Magic, which means that I’m writing, writing and writing and editing like crazy, while trusting the fractal flowers. And finished big chunk of the Internalship. Wham Boom.

Revisiting some wise important words of truth from past-me.

The surprising practice of asking what is more astonishing.

Superpowers…

Powers I had this week…

I had the power of Sleeping In Until Eleven — I usually have the power of automatically waking up at 6am so this was completely new for me and it was awesome.

And I had all the powers of Being Deliriously Enthralled And Enthralling At The Same Time, which was hot, and I will take more of that please.

Superpowers I want.

Same as last time. The superpower of Joyful Full-Hearted Adventuring While Treasuring Myself.

Other favorite superpowers: Permission slips everywhere. Calm Steady Trust Is Mine At All Times. I Take Care Of Myself Easily and Unapologetically. Acting on guidance in addition to listening it. Trusting That the Loving No Is The Door To True Yes! Delighting in Plenty. I am allowed to enjoy being adored. As much sweetness as I want. I see how beautiful everything is and I say thank you.Theatrical Spectaculars! I get a parade! Self-Ripening Wisdom. Everything…in style! And in grand fashion, because that’s how I do things, baby, like a fairground stripper! I Boldly Glow. Ablaze With Fearless Intentional Choice-Making. I Have Everything I Need. Wildly Confident, Outrageously Beautiful, Wonderfully Tranquil. I Do Not Dim My Spark For Anyone.

The Salve of Tranquility Recovery Magic

This salve contains many qualities, including:

Rest. Surrender. Love. Receiving. Anchoring. Softening. Glowing Boldly. Rejuvenation.

It is salve that softens everything, immediately. It is just the tiny bit tingly, though that part is mostly just that moment when you notice that you have suddenly become more receptive to moments of joy.

Judgment wafts away as you realize that actually there is nothing wrong with just going to bed, or with eating now instead of waiting until everyone else is hungry.

It’s a secret sovereignty salve, because as you begin to take care of yourself and your selves (and your elves), everything begins to make more sense. And then you no longer agree to giving up on what you need in a misguided attempt to make other people happy. Pretty subversive stuff, if you think about.

That’s the magic part of the tranquility recovery magic. Well, that’s where it starts. This salve is creamy, rich, nourishing. There is no name on the jar, just a faint imprint of a unicorn.

These salves can’t be seen, but the production factory delivers enough for distribution by way of the magic of the internet, so help yourself. There is enough.

If salve does not appeal, you can have this in tea form, as a bath, cocktail, whatever works for you. Not only is there enough salve, there are also enough ways to receive it.

Playing live at the meme beach house — the Fake Band of the Week!

My brother and I make up bands, which are all just one guy. The Meme Beach House is the venue.

This week’s band is from my obsession this week with redirecting myself to the question: does this take care of me, does this help us take care of ourselves? Autocorrect prefers elves to selves, so this week’s band is called Taking Care Of Elves, they are a ska funk sextet that is somehow still only just one guy.

Attenzione! Attention, AGENTS.

I am still recommending the Emergency Get Calm, Quiet And Steady techniques, since they are keeping things good around here for me.

So I want to seed a reminder that this is a thing, and it helps, a lot. Not just with calming down in the moment but with building the kind of habits that allow you to change your relationship with whatever is scary or uncomfortable.

I hardly ever recommend these because the page is already many years old and needs rewriting. However, copywriting aside, this is still one of the best things I have ever made, by a lot. I have two boxes in my office full of the sweetest thank you notes from people, and so many of them are for this.

Come play if you like…

Join me in the comments. Some of us share hard and good, some of us say hi, or maybe we’re feeling quiet. My ritual doesn’t have to be your ritual. Whatever works for you. We’ve been doing this every week for years now and there still isn’t a right way. Feel free to leave pebbles (or petals!), hearts, warmth, sweetness. Those always work.

Everyone belongs. We let people have their own experience. We’re supportive and welcoming. We don’t give advice.

Wishing you a glorrrrrrrrrrrrious day, a restful weekend and a happy week to come.

Shabbat shalom.

p.s. It’s fine if it’s not Friday anymore. There’s complete chicken amnesty — join in whenever you like, it’s no big deal. And I am blowing kisses to the Beloved Lurkers. I love that you are here too.