Tuesday, November 6, 2012

No but yeah but no but

Anyone familiar with the comedy series Little Britain will recognise Vicky Pollard's catchphrase 'No but yeah but no but'.  We all have an inner Vicky, a part of us that refuses to take responsibility for anything that happens to us and utterly unwilling to grow and mature.  This inner 'Vicky Pollard' is the voice of the Ego and will always look for someone to blame. The Ego is run by fear, running a loop of fight or flight.  It is a highly stressfed, incapable of building healthy relationships. 

But we have another voice, one that yearns to feel connected, and wants to live a more meaningful life.  This is the quiet voice of the Authentic Self.  It has a much greater intelligence,  it is committed to relationship and speaks the language of the Heart. 

The 'no but yeah but' argument of the Ego will keep the fights running forever.  The Ego thrives on conflict, always finding reasons why feelings are hurt, why it's version of the story is the right one.  But that voice will not help us process feelings and certainly doesn't want a situation resolved.  

The Authentic Self acknowledges the pain, understands hurt feelings, accepts vulnerability and wants to heal and resolve conflict.  Learning to forgive is a powerful tool necessary for any relationship to thrive and the Higher Mind will talk us through the process

Talking to Yourself

Do you ever rehearse an argument in your head?  Invisible conversations are a sign of vulnerability, that you are feeling hurt or misunderstood.  Your mind is trying to find a point of view to help you process it but, if the Ego has hold of it, the technique isn't effective.  The Ego will use it as a defence mechanism against change and as a result the feelings don't go away and the issue doesn't get resolved.

3 Steps to activating your Authentic Self
Here is an effective way to get to the heart of the problem when you find yourself rehearsing those little (or big) arguments in your head:
  • Acknowledge the vulnerable feelings you are trying to avoid.
  • Commit  to using the rant as a way of gaining new understanding and compassion about the situation. 
  • Write down the judgements and accusations so you are really clear about your grievances.  
Once you're list is finished put it somewhere safe for a while and go about your business.

Own your projections.
To resolve any kind of conflict you need to be willing see the situation differently.  Accepting it as an opportunity to grow and learn is a fast-track way to build your own emotional intelligence and find long-term solutions.  So, when you feel a little calmer and clearer, go back to your notes and start the difficult business of owning the judgments you have on the person or situation.   

This is an exercise in understanding projection - something one of my young clients describes as the  'You spot it, you've got it' game.  Yep, projection is when we judge something in another person that we have either been unaware of or unwilling to acknowledge in ourselves. Whatever we see in another can only be seen because it also exists in us.  

The good news is that it works for the positive stuff too.
The more we know, the better we forgive.  Those who feel deeply feel for all living beings.  Madame de Stael
The world is our mirror.
Self-knowledge and self-acceptance are the life-blood of relationships.  You are the common denominator in your life and your inner world has a powerful influence on your outer life.  Learning to see your projections as reflections of something unresolved within you shifts the focus and helps create a fresh, more solution-based perspective.

Owning projections is not always an easy process, and some projections can take years to work through, but it is a powerful way to burn through conflict and misunderstandings.  It enables you to reduce the Ego's hold on your thoughts, lowers your inner stress and gives your Authentic Self a chance to gain a stronger position in your life.  

Building emotional intelligence and learning to work more from our Authentic Self means we're able to communicate more effectively in challenging situations, are not so easily triggered by people and become more emotionally centred.  The beauty of this is that we are able feel closer and more connected to those we love and our inner and outer worlds become better places to live and love.

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