Category Archives for Self Love

What does it take to stay in a relationship? What makes it really work?

What does it take to stay in a relationship? What makes it really work?

Here’s my thoughts on the short version:
1. A strong initial spark,
2. a willingness from both people to explore and see if you respect and care for eachother
3. The desire to consciously work on it and be completely honest and vulnerable in the process of healing the subconscious,
4. Do that, and become new people together.
5. Dedication to nurturing your love,
6. A strong shared vision to keep your paths aligned and moving forward together towards a shared future.

Beyond that… I’ve never been in a conscious romantic relationship long enough to know… lol

But I would guess that it involves repeating 3-6 over and over again and continuing to choose each other.

I’d like to say that as a conscious being, with conscious communication tools everything is peachy and pollyanna in relationships. But in reality, it can be hard. Especially when you’re dealing with romance, travel and social survivability.

Of course, all relationships have challenges, ups and downs, joys and sorrows. The relationship experts tell us that the more “in love” we fall at the beginning, the more resonance of our deep subconscious pain/trauma there is underneath it all. They call it Imago Love.

When I work with couples, you can sense this Imago love immediately. Even if they are experiencing challenge, you can feel the connection deep underneath it all, the underlying love. In some couples, it’s obvious it’s not there, and probably never was. Although learning conscious communication tools can be helpful to any couple, and there are hacks to ease communication and rekindle passion, to be totally honest, for those couples who don’t have that Imago love, it’s really hard to rekindle that spark, when it wasn’t there in the first place.

I had a real-life experience of how important it is to have ALL of those things in place when Max and I were in the process of dating and splitting up. Looking back on it, we had 2, 3, and 4 down pat, and both became much more awesome people from the process but by the time we hit Spain around this time last fall, things were on the decline…

*************

Here’s a story from the soon to be released JoyGasm Book (Go to JoyGasm.me/book to get the first 15 chapters, and updates on when it’s being printed)

*************

“Traveling together had been difficult for a few months, and it was seeming like our desires and dreams for where we wanted to be were very different. He wanted to be in a big city, dancing, going to chic cafes and fancy restaurants, adventuring to a new city every month. I wanted to see more of the world for sure, but I also wanted to hang out in small beach towns, preferably speak Spanish, and explore local culture in a deep way, getting in with the locals, eating cheap and dirty, and exploring what life was like in that place. I wanted to be able to get to know people, and after a few months of a new place every month, I had realized that more than anything I wanted to stay someplace for 6 months or more.

Obviously, we had a massive clash in future/present vision going on.

So with that challenge hitting the fan, what do we do? Well, as two people fluent in non-violent communication, and committed to working on our relationship we both look at each other and try and state our needs, find a compromise, work it out. Easier said than done.

Using the statement “I feel” is meant to turn the communication back towards you, your feelings your needs, and keep that projection in check. But with my sense of freedom being curtailed by our shared travel plans, my emotions were flying high. Both of our basic needs and desires are not being met for how we wanted to live, and more often than not we find ourselves slipping into “I feel like YOU…” insert subconscious pain based accusation here.

After a few weeks of this, we realize this is bigger than we could handle ourselves and seek help from a friend and facilitator of communication. He calls us both out on the improper use of the NVC format and we move deeper into being as conscious with our communication and projections as we can. We commit, again, to owning our crap, and moving through it together. Both of us have been feeling stuck, and frustrated, but we are willing to work it through, together.

Newly committed we drive back into the work, a few weeks of this go back and forth, and I’m exasperated.

It’s so challenging to speak with him. I get SO angry. We’re working together, and we spend days and days (it seems) trying to find peace in our interpersonal/romantic so that we can actually have a working conversation in our work lives. On top of that, the work isn’t working either (aka providing revenue) so it seems pointless… deep to the core of my pain.

One day after a particularly frustrating conversation, I sit down with myself to figure out why this all so challenging, and why the heck this is happening.

As my thoughts wander around, I realize that I’ve been trying to leave the relationship for a month or so now, and every time I start to have the conversation he says “But you can’t threaten the relationship, we have to work on it together.” I hear you Max, and if I wanted to work on it…fine. If I don’t then fuck it. Well.. okay. Not fuck it.

Because I’ve been through this “relationships transition with a boyfriend” a half dozen times or so in the last few years, and I know what it takes to get closure and release someone in a loving and healthy way now. I’ve had lots of practice. There’s no need to be as uncomfortable in this as we are, if we just get clear on what’s happening and be honest with each other about what’s next.

I had thought when we started this thing that since Max was a spitting image of my “list of things I want in a partner” that I might not have to go through this whole relationship transition thing again… But now it looks like it’s staring me in the face. Fuck…

So I start to ponder. What does it really take to stay in a relationship, if this isn’t it?

Here’s my thoughts:
1. A strong initial spark, (nope)
2. a willingness from both people to explore and see if you respect and care for each other (yes, except I don’t respect him sometimes)
3. The desire to consciously work on it and be completely honest and vulnerable in the process of healing the subconscious, (got that one)
4. Do that, and become new people together. (Been doing that)
5. Dedication to nurturing your love, (sort of)
6. A strong shared vision to keep your paths aligned and moving forward together towards a shared future. (I don’t want to live like he wants to live)

I think back to when we met. Co-Boat in Thailand. I remember meeting him and feeling he was interesting. Well… “at least, more interesting than everyone else in that small boat.” We’ve laughed our way through telling that story a dozen times to people, and I remember what he said about me.. “I saw her and thought, who is this crazy woman with a kid, she’s weird.”

Not much of a spark there… in fact, if it wasn’t for the wild adventure of capsizing, bailing out a dingy and almost dying on a day trip, I’m not sure that we would have ended up in a relationship. If we hadn’t “happened” to be going to the same island and co-working space afterwards, he would have disappeared from my life without a look back, and I from his.

Not much of a spark then.

I think back to the times that I’ve fallen madly in love…. That Imago Love the Guy and Katie Hendrix speak of. The sparkling fire within our bodies, the certainty that this was something special. The feeling of being drawn, and inescapably desiring that person. I remember feeling that with Derek, Rafiq and Daniel… I know from the memory of the feeling with the other men, that this time, that spark just wasn’t there…

In fact, after the whirlwind drama and pain, I’d just had with Daniel in Bali, I’d specifically asked the universe for something calmer next boyfriend around. Got it!

So the core of our relationship is “happenstance, similar visions, mutual support, and a willingness to give it a go” and having run with that for a while, we now had “entanglement of emotions, logistics and ‘cuz we said we would” added into the mix.

I think wistfully of falling in love with Daniel, the kind of love that swept me off my feet, how I couldn’t help but walk over to his house, the poetry that had spewed forth from my heart, and the magic and love permeated the field of our moments together. The start of this relationship had none of that.

If I am completely honest with myself, it is a relationship of social survivability. Having moved from Bali to Thailand, and new to a place, Max was the most willing and interested person there, he wanted to hang out with me. When Alex called him Dad 3 weeks in (something he’d never done with any of my other boyfriends), and we’d both blushed and hoped for love that ended in like that, it had anchored it in, and made it more real than it maybe was at that point. On top of that, Max was willing to be loving and kind to me when many of the other Digital Nomads around me looked at the fact that I had a kid and excluded me.

Not really the foundation of a long-term love relationship.

In that moment I know we are over, and I know that moving forward I will make better decisions for relationships. No more dating men I’m lukewarm about.

I know from him and other lovers, that by 6 to 8 to 9 months in, the love and connection, the novelties of getting laid regularly most often have worn thin and the challenge begins in earnest. The challenges are all there to be seen, right from the get go, but the love and oxytocin high blinds you for a few months. Max and I had even named this from the start of our relationship, we knew exactly what we were getting into, and here we are in the middle of the challenges.

I realize deeply that I have been contemptuous of him from the start, I’ve been learning to accept and love the aspects I find challenging about him, but the contempt lingers and underlays everything that we do together. No wonder it doesn’t work.”

*************

I can’t take back or change the time Max and I spent together, nor would I want to. The love we shared, though not Imago love, was a deep and committed friendship and romance that we supported through strength and determination. I became a much clearer and more loving person through the dedication we had to working out our stuff together. It’s beautiful to see now that Max and I were able to transition our relationship, still maintain a friendship, and co-support each other in understanding our challenges as we work towards moving closer to our vision for what our dream lives look like, even though we aren’t romantically together anymore.

I decided that in the future to merge my life on that level with someone, I would really need to care at the core about who they were, what they wanted, and how we could be together.

When Dan and I met up again this spring and sparked like crazy, again. I thought. “This is what is needed at the core of it, this is the feeling to come back to, to try and find again if shit hits the fan.” A part of me relaxed and loved deeper. We still are. I could tell you stories for days, and…. Dan and I are still navigating how much and what I share about our life with the world through FB. I’ll share more when we get clearer.

What I didn’t realize at the time of the insight with Max was that I needed to apply this to my friends too. To all the people in my world, the ones I was dreaming and creating and visioning with as well. To be meticulous about the quality of the connection. This is strange for a woman who is used to figuring out who to hang out with by “social survivability standards”

1. do they look/feel dangerous, no.
2. Do they look/feel reasonably like-minded. Yes.
3. Are they leaving the country tomorrow or in the next week? No.
4.Do we like each other enough to spend time together for a couple of hours because we have nothing better to do as travelers. Yes.
Okay now we are friends!!!

It’s a new ball game for me to figure out what long term friendships can look like.

When I arrived back in Calgary, I connected with the people around me. I reached out to the people I remembered being helpful, kind and supportive in my life. The people I really liked last time I was here. Some of them replied, some of them had moved on. Great. Got support network. Whew. Social Survivability is taken care of.

As the new year comes closer, there’s a feeling of checking in, how is this whole “having longer-term friends thing going Elena?” Add in some recent relationship challenges, and it seems more important than ever to ask the question…. is the core, the spark, the feeling of it all strong enough to maintain the love through the times of challenge?

Questions I’m asking myself about my relationships…

Is the spark there at the core?
Even if our shared vision never happened, would I still want to be around this person?
Do they demonstrate the skills needed to work on the challenges that may arise?
Do our dreams for the future align?

Six months later, the community has expanded, At the potlucks I see others connecting together, friends forming, connections moving deeper. It’s beautiful, heartwarming, and loving. I notice that I feel the spark with some people, it’s got that Imago feeling, that feeling that it’s amazing just to lay in their arms and be warm and silent, or talkative, or whatever together. The feeling that my heart sparks when they walk into the room. I’ve noticed that I don’t have that with others. Some are interesting to me even without the spark, and some are in between, and some people I’m happy to see, but may never really get to know. Only time will tell. I’m learning that’s okay.

I see people I spark with connecting deeply with others. I watch them go super deep into conversation or cuddles, and that’s great. My heart is warm for their love, whatever brings them joy. I want them to follow their hearts and explore where seems most interesting. I see new faces, and I’m curious about them, wondering who they are and what they be. Some of them spark with me more than others. I’m learning that’s okay.

Maybe we see each other once a month, once a week, never outside of potlucks. Each relationship is different… With a new awareness for some of the projections I’ve been putting on others, and some of the ones I’m finding have been put on me, I find it more and more important to get clear what are the expectations around the friendships I have. Do we want to get together more? Do we have the time? Is it enough to see each other in passing once a month, share some cuddle puddle, and food, and know that we’re still around and still showing up to the same places? I also want to check in, are there places/people with whom I may have miscommunicated, or have I been unclear on what I could give, or needed to receive?

I’m committing to sitting down and checking in on who and how I want to nurture in friendship, love, and collaboration. I’d encourage you to do it too.

Your thoughts, questions, comments, clarifications are always welcome.

<3 E

Suicidal Ideation is normal.

“Suicidal ideation, the act of thinking about committing suicide. Is normal. A normal healthy response to an overwhelming, unrelenting, inescapable emotional pain.”

The words drop into my mind like a hammer. I’m normal. It’s okay.  “I wish someone had told me that 5 years ago.”  I laugh a little bit, but it’s not funny.  I think of the years I’ve spent hiding this part of me, the hours I’ve spent ruminating and pondering what makes me so fucked up that my first thought when something goes wrong is “I want to die.”

The pain I’ve felt at the voice that said,

“I want to die,
I want to die,
I want to die.”

All of this is normal.

 

“When you get a chance, go with a friend to the place where you wanted to drive off the bridge, be the passenger, and talk to them, share with them what you felt, what you experienced, what your world was like then.”

 

“I can do that.”  I think immediately of the bridge as it crosses Fish Creek park on 22x. How many days of driving that cursed yellow school bus did I think about turning the wheel just enough?  Hundreds of times.  Today, a question I had never thought to ask rises to my mind.

How much shame did I internalize from feeling there was something really wrong with me for thinking about it?

A few hours later I’m a passenger in the car, on route south to a family dinner.  I’m dressed up and excited to be going towards my beloved’s families house to spend time with them.  The traffic slows, but it’s the wrong time of day for rush hour.  It must be an accident.  We wait in traffic for a while, and as we pull slowly past the scene, I see clearly, the side of a car smashed in, the back passenger seat, where Alex would sit. It fills my stomach and my heart with dread, I hope dearly there were no children in the back seat.  I feel deeply “I would be so sad if my son died.” This in itself is a relief to the cold hearted “It would be a relief to be free.” a few years back that was my internal response to moments like this.

As we pass by the accident, we both get quiet.  The car is filled with a clear sense of the frailty of our mortality, the real possibility of losing the people we love on short notice, and it brings it all back to reality really fast.   I squeeze his hand, and we sit in silence for a while.

A few KM later, as we exit onto 22x, I realize that this is the moment of speaking my thoughts to die on that bridge.

That moment is happening today.
That opportunity to be listened to
is happening today.

I quickly check in with Dan. “Are you able to hold space for me while I share about this place that I have been suicidal?” He says yes, and I am so greatful.

As we drive forward my voice starts speaking, and it feels not quite like my voice, but the silent repressed voice of all the times I have driven here. I speak in the present tense like it’s happening now. Like I’m walking through my thoughts.

“This is where I start thinking about running off the road.  Before the bridge, so the bus would land in the water, and we’d drown.  Less chance of survival.  But the angle is tricky. Some days I speed down that off-ramp, feeing into the speed build, I’d need to be going fast to break the median.  I remember feeling the courage it would take to take the plunge.  Somedays it was exciting to feel the excitement of getting close to that moment.”

I can feel my body tingling all over, there is a visceral sense of relief, of being seen, heard and felt.  I understand why I was invited to do this.  I know I will do it again in other moments of pain.

“I feel I am useless. I feel I am helpless to change it. The kids I am driving are so far gone off the autistic spectrum, they are incapable of living normal human lives, I would be doing their parents a favor to end their lives and the suffering of parenting a child like that.  But Alex was on the bus most days, I didn’t do it because I thought out of all of us, he might have a future.  I couldn’t take that away from him.  I couldn’t take him away from his grandparents like that. ”

My body starts shaking, and deep tears flow to my eyes. I wonder at the pain I must have been in all those years ago. I see my pain through a new lens.

“Suicidal ideation is normal.”  I think to myself.  Time to REALLY let it go.

“I hated that job, I hated the kids I drove, I was filled with contempt every day. I hated waking up early every morning and slogging through the cold weather to pick them up. So they could sit like lumps on the bus, and sit like lumps at school.  They had no future.  The bus never really got warm, even with three pairs of pants, and a big jacket and scarf and hat, and big mitts and the heat cranked.  I was always still cold.”

I remember the strictness of my playlist.  Only happy tunes, happy words, happy themes to the songs I listened to.  No sadness allowed.  I clung to joy like it was a life preserver in the middle of a choppy sea.  I forced myself into it all winter, being the most upbeat person on the team, I stuffed my pain.  I remember the joy in my heart when spring started to come that year, and I finally felt the sun on my skin again. I remember thinking “I thought I would die, I thought the winter, and the cold would kill me. ”

We pass the bottom of the bridge and head up towards the next offramp.  We are passed the point of no return. I whisper. “This is where I was always silently relieved that I had decided not to do it.”

He says nothing, but I can feel him there.  Listening to my pain, heart open.

I get quiet again, and sit with my feelings, with the tingling sensation in my scalp, hands, and spine.  I know I’ve just healed that time of my life, and that desire to die on a deep level today.

It’s time to return to the lovely conversation we were having before this moment started.  I shake my whole body and make a silly noise.  I take a deep breath in.

“I’m complete. Thank you.”

He squeezes my hand, and we sit together in silence for a while before returning to our conversation.  I hold his hand, watching the city lights sweep past us, and into the night, as we enter the countryside.  It’s beautiful to be here, alive and enjoying the drive.

 

**** If you or someone you know struggles with suicidal thoughts. I wrote this today to let you know that you’re normal.  It took me a lot longer to ask for help than I’d like to admit, and I know that it’s hard.  But asking to be heard is one of the crucial steps in recovery, along with learning to love yourself.  I feel I did it backwards, I feel it might have been easier if I’d know how to ask for help but it might also be a chicken/egg type thing.

If you need support in learning to love yourself, check out the 60-second depression recovery/self love hack I created in the darkest of days to help myself find the courage to keep going.  JoyGasm.me/LOVE

Loneliness, Alone-ness

Do you ever feel lonely, when surrounded by people? Or while being with your children? I know I have.

I feel like I’ve had these experiences, as well as hiding from them more than most. Or maybe just as much as you have. I can’t know unless we bring it to the air and talk about it.
I’ve hidden from friendship, from companionship, from love. I’ve run away from intimacy since before I can remember that I knew I was running.
Yet I am also free and able to show up when it’s time to connect deeply, especially with strangers. Years of workshops during a difficult home life taught me that strangers are safer to be vulnerable with.

I’m still learning to trust those closest to me.

I feel vulnerable and held in my sharing today. I feel scared, and yet brave. It is a daily journey to choose to love myself in the fear, and to transform the fear or numbness into fullness, to open into it.

Why do I do it? As a truth speaker, one who shares their truth, and opens the ways for others to do the same, I am here sharing the story of alone-ness, knowing some of you will resonate, and hoping you will share, so that we all don’t feel so alone.
Today I painted in the morning, and then all afternoon I wanted to paint more, to be lost in the flow of brushes and paint and cutting and collage. But instead I was in funk, mucking about, trying to leave the house, and getting a sullen boy in return, feeling crappy, and not feeling the goodness of the time freedom I have at all. The boredom, the low level funk, creeped in. Knowing it would help, I dragged my ass to the beach, and even catching a ride 80% of the way, and running into friends wasn’t enough to crack open the feeling blah..
It wasn’t till we got to the beach and Alex wandered off to chat with some kids that I realized that what I needed was some alone time so that I could feel the feeling inside of me.
When I found a quiet patch of sand, and sat myself down, what I found behind the veil of boredom and frustration was…

Utter self pitied loneliness.

It’s the craziest thing to feel lonely when you’ve got a 6 year old boy who won’t leave your side.

He is literally ALWAYS there.

 

And yet the journey of always accompanied, never connected is a slow torture that I’ve inflicted on myself many times over the years. Now with 6+ weeks of solo parenting and no babysitter or co-parent around, the wear and tear of it is starting to show and has me realizing it’s about time to get help, and what I’ve been doing hasn’t been working.

And then there is the Guru, who reminds me softly, that “There is no suffering in being alone, only the suffering comes from the mind, which believes aloneness into loneliness.” Shove it guru, you’ve not been through what I went through. But where did all this pain come from?

As I find time to sit alone on the beach, I drop in and I feel the depth of the pain, it goes back 2, 3, 5, 7 years ago in this town, feeling abandoned again and again in the process of leaving Alex’s dad. It goes back further to moving when I was 10, leaving all my friends behind when we moved cities. “I have no friends” the wounded child inside of my screams. I have no choice but to hold her as my body shakes and cries. As I do, some strangers walk by and see my tears, they ask if I’m okay, and I give them a thumbs up and thank them for asking if I was okay. See, there’s always “someone”.

So now, my existential past pain is stopping me from seeing a gorgeous sunset happening all around me.

I am reminded that it is equally silly to feel lonely in a town teeming with new people to meet, and also with people who have known me for years.
Or all of you on the interweb, only a “please send me love” away.
Yet there’s a companionship of house and years and days that is still missing from my life. Not only from my traveling life, but also from my life before in Calgary, when 30km and 1.5 hrs of traffic separated me from my best friends, and getting together was an occasional and much organized thing. My heart yearns for the simplicity of my time in small town Morocco with Caroline and Anthony, and Christopher when we simply organized by saying “hey, let’s meet at this end of the beach” almost every day.
Or for the constant companionship that Maxim and I shared as we traveled, loved, parented and worked together.
I also realize the ridiculousness of pining over moments from the past, and the added ridiculousness continuing to winge about it all when after leaving the beach, we bumped into people we knew and then needed to “rush forwards” from them to meet up with friends. All while still winging about feeling lonely.

 

Guru pipes up from the back bench. “Seems pretty silly doesn’t it Elena? Remember this too shall pass.”  It’s a calming thought for my mind, but the feeling pulses through me none the less.

I am not such a master yet, that it doesn’t just seem simpler to cry, let some steam off, and see what I can do about arranging adult company, and kid care for tomorrow.
#DreamLife #SelfLove #Friendship #AloneNotLonely #ItStartsWithMe #TruthSpeaker

Suzie de Jonge on Self Love

JoyGasm is asking Conscious Leaders to share their practices of Self Love​ that help them stay strong, focused and powerful as they champion their mission to change the world. 

If you only had 10 minutes a day for Self Care, what would you DO?

profile-pic
Suzie de Jonge

Something that makes me happy...

I make sure that I do something every day that is just for me, whether that be meditation when I wake up, spending cuddle time with my dogs, having a conversation with my daughter - just something that makes me happy.

What is your take on self-love? Why is it important, and what's the most powerful way you've found to do it?

Self-love is not selfish, it is actually unselfish. As a woman if you don’t take care of yourself, which includes doing things for yourself which bring you joy, it can end up making you feel resentful, stuck, unable to get excited about the future and also cause burnout and anxiety by all the everyday responsibilities that come with relationships, family and career.


How did you start your journey of self love? What started you on your path?

I started on my journey of self-love after experiencing a nervous breakdown while working in my own business 7 days a week, trying to juggle being wife, mother, daughter, friend and constant rescuer and also the loss of a parent. Something just broke inside me. It was after being told by my doctor that antidepressant medications would only get me part way back to my old self and the rest was up to me that I stopped and really looked at how I had been showing up in the world, and started to take care of myself instead of ignoring my needs.

What is your biggest challenge or temptation when it comes to caring for yourself?

Still trying to address the voice in my head that says taking care of myself is selfish. I think that comes from the role of women in my particular generation. We are meant to take care of everyone first and then ourselves while trying to appear as if we have it all together.

What has been the biggest unexpected obstacle you've had in following your passion or creating your great work in the world?

Not an unexpected obstacle so much but I guess being able to stand out amongst so many other coaches, although I think my message is different from the traditional life/business coach and at the same time so vital for many women I come into contact with. Actually it can be life saving for those suffering with severe anxiety/stress/depression.

How has your relationship to challenges changed since you started your journey?

I don’t instantly go into worst case scenarios like I used to. I feel more in control of situations as they arise and take the time to think through things.

Where can people find out more about you?

Full Name: Suzie de Jonge
Business Name: Beautifully Selfish
Website: www.beautifullyselfish.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/beautifullyselfish/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/beautifully_selfish/

Valerie Greene on Self Love

JoyGasm is asking Conscious Leaders to share their practices of Self Love​ that help them stay strong, focused and powerful as they champion their mission to change the world. 

If you only had 10 minutes a day for Self Care, what would you DO?

profile-pic
Valerie Greene Relationship Coach

Feel the feelings that go along with that magical experience...

It's important that I move my body with some kind of yoga, pilates, or dance. Being in my head might get things done, but love is an emotional experience that can only be felt in my body, so if I'm not exercising, I don't feel any positive emotion as strongly as when I am.

After that, it's important that I do even one minute of visualization around who I really want to be. For example, I say "I am a clear channel for love, wisdom, and empowerment." [those are my top values] And I visualize how my day will go when I'm embodying those values. How will I hold myself? Who will I meet with and what will I say and do with them? How will that feel? What would be the best, most magical and inspiring thing that can happen today? And I really see the colors, hear the sounds, and feel the feelings that go along with that magical experience. That shifts my energy and gets me connected to feeling the excitement of love and possibility.

What is your take on self love? Why is it important?

My experience of love is the realization that all life is connected, deserving of compassion, acceptance, empathy, and care. When I experience this I feel a surge of pleasurable energy, warmth, and joy in my heart. This feels like the truth of who I am, and it's what makes life worth living. When I am busy, I get disconnected from this feeling and I lose sight of who I really am and why I'm doing what I'm doing. That's why it is so important that I connect to this feeling and this experience every day, because otherwise I feel depleted instead of energized.

How did you start your journey of self love? What started you on your path?

I was lucky to have parents who modeled love for me, which is how we learn to love ourselves. My mom taught me that there are no "bad" people, just "bad" things that people do when they are in pain. Even though I learned this at a young age, I of course experienced a lot of pain when relationships failed in my 20's or when I got my heart broken; especially when I got divorced in my early 30's. This is when I sought out the most effective teachers of self love, and spent years practicing yoga, meditation, self-compassion, NLP, coaching, hypnosis, and other emotional healing modalities.

I found what worked best for me and created my own self-love practices that allowed my coaching clients to have breakthroughs in their own ability to experience self-love and profound romantic love with others, so I'm grateful for the pain I've experienced in my life because it lead me to learn how to heal it and help others heal, to experience more love, intimacy, and passion in their lives.

What is your biggest challenge or temptation when it comes to caring for yourself?

As an entrepreneur I sometimes experience that I don't have enough time to meditate or do as much self care as I like to do to feel balanced and energized. Also when my partner and I have an argument and I feel hurt or angry, part of me doesn't want to feel love. But I've learned how to tap into the source of love and give love to the part of me that's hurt or angry, and give myself compassion and soothing, and then transform that emotion into deeper needs or desires that didn't get met. Maybe I wanted my partner to be more collaborative, or give me more support, or see my side.

So I've learned how to transform the emotion and communicate those desires to him in an inspiring way so that whatever I was upset about winds up bringing us to a deeper place of emotional intimacy. That's what I teach to my clients: how to transform conflict into deeper intimacy.

What has been the biggest unexpected obstacle you've had in following your passion or creating your great work in the world?

I've had challenges in reaching the amount of people I want to reach with my work. I'd like more support in that

How has your relationship to challenges changed since you started your journey? 

I've learned that challenges are an opportunity to grow. In the beginning of my coaching practice, when clients were resistant to change and would be blaming themselves or the people in their life, I would get discouraged. But that forced me to develop patience, self-compassion, empathy for them, and faith in my own skills and the clients' path. Since then, I've developed all those things and now most of my clients have such profound, inspiring, deeply touching experiences. But if I wasn't challenged in the beginning, I wouldn't have had the chance to develop my own skills and virtues, and I wouldn't be able to appreciate the profound experiences I and my clients have now. So I welcome challenges now, as another way I can grow.

How can people learn more about you? 

Full Name: Valerie Greene
Website: http://www.coachvaleriegreene.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/coachvaleriegreene
Twitter: @CoachValGreene
Instagram: val_greene
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCV5fnakewbzMZ2yGU-eChqQ

Man-ifest Your Lasting Love 

Learn how to activate the ONE simple secret that will draw a man closer and inspire his love, adoration, and devotion, no matter where your relationship is now!

Rhinda Piche on Self Love

JoyGasm is asking Conscious Leaders to share their practices of Self Love​ that help them stay strong, focused and powerful as they champion their mission to change the world. 

If you only had 10 minutes a day for Self Care, what would you DO?

profile-pic
Rhinda Piche

It's called the Breathe of Life for a reason!

If you have 10 minutes a day for self care ~ give yourself the gift of conscious, connected breathing. All my findings helped me decided to become a Breathwork Facilitator, because I see how we DO NOT breath, we are supposed to be taking advantage of this gift, using it to our fullest potential. The Breathe of Life is called the Breathe of Life for a reason.

What is your take on self-love?

Self - Love obviously means something different to everyone, and through my journey of working with people, I searched for the common denominator, and my journey unfolded from there. Once I knew that I could depend on “myself” for anything and everything, was the day I knew that i truly loved myself unconditionally, as the mistakes, the goof ups, the tragedies became less and less of a focus, that love grew stronger and stronger, Im not sure that it ends.. When I say self, what do I mean? That connection to self can be seen in many ways, some see it as a connection to God, to the inner universe, to eternal energy, the source. What you call it doesn’t matter, what matters is that your feeling it.

Why is it important, and what's the most powerful way you've found to do it?

Quieting the mind is one discipline we must all practice, whether we believe in it or not. Our world has become overloaded with criticism, judgement and gossip, filling the mind with useless information, doubting our own capabilities as we compare ourselves.

As a therapist, I have seen miracles happen when they begin to take themselves seriously again and make self-love a mission. Owning your life and then beginning to reshape can be as easy as breathing, and focusing on what you love. These 2 things could change anyone's life if they chose to.

What is your biggest struggle in your relationships right now? How has that changed since you started learning about self-love?

Tricky question because I tend to be happier than ever, being single, not sure if Im avoiding or if it serves a grander purpose, I tend to love all people equally, and have a hard time putting one person in front of the rest. I would imagine this is because I haven’t yet found “theOne” . Being a single mom comes with its own challenges, however my biggest struggle is my automatic response to HELP. My helping role needs to stay out of intimate relationships. I think. Haha


What's the most important skill you've learned to help you deal with the challenges of being in relationships?

I am single gal, with 4 boys, and very grateful for that, the more okay I become, I realize that most of my past relationships were geared towards me helping my partner, become “better”. I see now, when I put that focus on me instead, everything else falls into place. And all I had to do was learn to breathe properly and only focus on the things that I love. How easy is that?. It becoming effortless over time.

What has been the biggest unexpected challenge you've had in creating your great work in the world?

My work can be challenging because people are still wakingup to the idea that there is more for them, and I have learnt that I can’t convince anyone of anything, so I just keep breathing.

Independence is just that, “Inner Dependence” depending on the inner world. notice how the word “Dance” is in there too. Get to know that inner dance that lies inside you, treat him/her like you would treat your newborn baby,or your best friend, with absolute tenderness and love, only then will your outer world reflect tenderness and love, it will make you want to dance.

“You don’t have to like me, thats my job” ~ Byron Katie