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Archive for November, 2013

The following is the most liberating, practical and helpful thing I’ve ever realised.

Sometimes I wake up worrying about money. I wake up in the morning with this gluey, tense feeling in my guts or solar plexus and immediately my mind starts adding up numbers, working out everything I need to pay for that month and strategising how in the short term and long term I can make this all work out. It’s extremely stressful. Later that day someone might ask me how I’ve been and I might say “I woke up worrying about money again this morning…”

But wait! That’s actually wrong.

If I rewind that morning’s experience and take it atom by tiny atom, this is what is really going on:

I wake up with this gluey, tense feeling in my guts or solar plexus.

It feels really uncomfortable.

THEN my well meaning, yet misguided mind, in order to control and get rid of this yucky feeling in my body, throws up a story or a concept of something worrying that’s going on in my life because it believes, incorrectly, that if my mind can ‘solve’ that problem or situation then the discomfort will go away. The mind is totally well-meaning and due to it’s logical, problem-solving nature, it thinks that by matching this worried feeling to a story or a controllable outcome in my life, that I can get rid of the feeling by solving the life-problem that it has selected for me.

But THIS IS A TRAP. It is a decoy that, rather than making the feeling go away, actually makes the feeling get stronger and last longer. The idea of rejecting that feeling, solving it, getting rid of it in this thinky way ABSOLUTELY DOESN’T WORK. If anything, it perpetuates it and magnifies it by chewing it over and over.

So, back to me lying in bed. What is really going on?

My body, and yours, is the most GENIUS self-mending, self-cleaning organism that we know of in the Universe. It is constantly scanning for viruses and bacteria and harmful agents and then making its own drugs, amazingly secreting things, and administering them to us in the body all day and night while we go on with our lives, (rarely thinking about this miraculous self-mending process that’s constantly going on). The genius body system is also regenerating our cells with any energy or resources it can draw upon. Our skin mends if we cut it. Our bones knit and mend if we break them. It goes on and on, organs, glands, sophisticated mending and healing systems constantly working. BUT IT DOESN’T END THERE…

…our body is also self-mending and cleaning all our accumulated EMOTIONAL pain and stress in just as sophisticated a way. This is why we wake up, often, with a very uncomfortable tightness or stuckness down our front, somewhere from the throat to the belly. It’s NOT because we’ve woken up worrying about money, or our health, or any of the mind’s versions of what’s ‘wrong’ in our lives. NO! It’s simply because our genius mind/body system is doing a well-needed emotional poo. It is offloading some of the accumulation of emotional pain that we all carry and it cleverly waits until these moments, when we’re not so busy or thinky, to do it.

Please get this. It will radically change your life for the better. You’re not worrying about what you think you’re worrying about.

When we wake up and feel the feeling of that constipation being pushed through by our genius mind/body system, the mind, before we’ve even remembered who we are in the morning, gets busy in it’s well-meaning way, to give us ‘the reason’ for this discomfort imagining that if we can solve it then the feeling might go away. This is the most distracting, incorrect and useless strategy that sucks us in every time. We lie there in bed turning that problem over and over trying to solve it and this GETS IN THE WAY of the genius process our body is doing, which is cleverly shitting out some accumulated emotional pain and stress.

At these times if we are skillful, we will ignore the mind’s version COMPLETELY and only focus on the physical sensation. If we place our attention on the yucky, tight feeling in the body and gently breathe into it, allowing it, even encouraging it, staying with it in a soft and trusting way, knowing it’s part of our body’s genius process, not ‘something’s wrong today’ then miraculously it moves, it shifts, it transforms. We need to take the attitude that we are sitting with a child who is constipated and feeling insecure. All we need to do is hold it’s hand, and be there, fully present – nothing more.

Do not get tricked into the mind’s version of your morning emotional poo any longer!

And this doesn’t only apply to the morning wake-up tension. Exactly the same is true for every time we are triggered, upset, or reactive to something that has happened ‘to us’ during the day. I believe that our genius body/mind system, or Life itself, is daily sending us difficult and challenging situations and people DELIBERATELY to trigger the body into releasing that stuck emotion. That’s the very reason adversity exists in our lives. It’s part of the genius way Life itself is mending us and cleaning us. When someone upsets me, if I am skillful, I will feel the familiar volcanic eruption of pain, anger, fear, in my chest and instead of fighting that person, I will go straight to the physical place where my body has started shitting out accumulated tension and only deal with that person AFTER I have attended to and dissolved what just happened in my body.

What I’m saying is that difficult people are WALKING LAXATIVES! It may sound radical but it’s true. When someone upsets us we experience a totally disproportionate reaction. We feel the pain of everyone who ever treated us that way back to our childhood. This is the body’s genius finding ways to self-clean, self-mend all that accumulation. We attract and react to those people or events as a way to heal ourselves.

Could it be that ALL this adversity is actually a gift? A benevolent invitation for the skillful to poo out some harmful, stressful built up stuff in us?

When I treat these triggers this way I become POWERFUL. Suddenly, rather than be disempowered by the events I am now using them for their correct purpose which is Life’s genius, cleaning and unclogging me by finding ways to discharge accumulated emotional shit.

Don’t believe your mind in the morning when you wake up worrying! It’s just your genius doing it’s work. PARTICIPATE with it, don’t resist it. Don’t believe the mind’s victim story of what happened to you – on the human level it hurt, but on a deeper level it’s just part of Life’s genius giving you the opportunity to offload some toxic old pain. Breathe into it, let it dissolve and shift – above all DON’T THINK!

USE IT and empower yourself with all apparent adversity! This is the point of all challenging feelings and events.

All workshops and talks at www.jamiecatto.com

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I just created this facebook group SANCTUARY FOR TERROR because I sometimes suffer in extreme terror and lonely despair, sometimes at night, and sometimes it’s overwhelming. I’ve found that certain friends, some who I have added there, really help me root myself in reality, in good sense, in self love at these times. I often wish there was a place that for 24 hours a day I could go to and receive that love, along with my own self love, not instead of it. Maybe others would like a place like this too. Who knows? Maybe you or I might come here in the middle of losing it, maybe in the middle of the night and someone else might be here to help remind you or me to love myself. They might offer a hand, a branch, a reminder, a moment of stillness, or even just a friend to chat to or sit with while it transforms.

Today I opened myself to the idea, while I was being loved and helped by my friend Clare, that this could transform. These periods of overwhelming meltdown COULD be a route towards the usual terrified reactions lessening. I’ve never even allowed in the idea that this could be a path to transformation. I hear the words but am so so locked in ‘no no no no’ and gasping and shaking and imagining horrifying loops of some scenario that isn’t even happening in this moment. But even the IDEA of what might happen is killing me, terrifying me, suffocating me, making me puke sometimes. And the reaction in my body has been so overwhelming for so many years that I’ve believed it will ALWAYS be like this.

But maybe it won’t. Maybe I’m a different man who experiences this each time. And each time there are different possibilities. Clare says that for her, loving herself in it and reminding herself that nothing is actually happening right now, she’s still here, sitting in a chair, breathing – this can really be helpful.

Also, there’s something beautiful in making a pledge to myself that I will not abandon myself. I will be the one that loves myself, loves this terrified shaking boy even if there’s no one else around, even if everyone has left or is unavailable. I am available to love myself, talk soothingly to myself and know that it will pass. Even if it takes hours, it never goes on forever.

This is a new WILLINGNESS TO TRANSFORM and to believe it’s even a possibility – it might be slow, just tiny bit by tiny bit, but if I allow this new attitude of willingness and meet the terror when it comes in these ways, I have witnesses that have done this and reported back that they are freer, and that the agony and despair does get weaker. And sometimes it’s not slow, sometimes it’s instant. There are no rules.

So I’ve created this group SANCTUARY FOR TERROR to be with each other in this transformation, sometimes to discuss it when feeling fine, and sometimes to come and write and be supported when the clouds gather, or even in the middle of a melt down.

And here I am again, shaking slightly less as I write this, gasping slightly less, some loneliness in my solar plexus…shivering a little…something is moving…

…if this feels like something that could support you, please come to the Sanctuary any time you like.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/sanctuaryforterror/

www.jamiecatto.com

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It’s so radical to be authentic these days that it has an enigma all of it’s own.
It’s very powerful to be visible with your vulnerabilities, it shakes people up in the places where they are too scared to be so visible. Listen to their judgements. They give you the map of exactly where those folks are stuck. Feel your reactions in your body, it’s the map of where you believe them.
it’s powerful and disruptive to be generous and to not run your life and business with the usual scarcity-addicted model, but to be inclusive and open handed, that takes courage, cultivates trust and is progressive. Notice how hard some find it to receive your generosity, how uncomfortable receiving can be for them even when the gift is freely given. Notice who warns you to be less giving.
It is powerful to show your neediness some days, to show your unreasonable anger, your inappropriateness – it takes courage to be so visible and risk the approval vanishing. It is revolutionary to wear no masks, no hats and be the same ‘you’ in business as at home. Why do we exhaust ourselves wearing masks for people who need us to be other than our real selves? I recommend removing the masks and seeing who stays. The ones that do really get you and are the ones you want to hang out with and work with.
Authentic people are enigmatic because most people are so comfortable in their hiding, conforming, disempowered state that someone brave enough to be simply real is fascinating.
Where have you been hiding? What mask is it time to take off?

Come and laugh so tenderly and foolishly with me that all these outdated strategies effortlessly dissolve –
All workshops and talks at www.jamiecatto.com
https://twitter.com/JamieCatto

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There’s a scent of reunion in the air. The women want their men back, and I have a foolish and lyrical notion that we can be the Pied Pipers, leading the men back to the women. Our task as men is to re-awaken each other’s maleness and leadership again, but this time expressed through our compassion and service, not our control and dominion.

Over the last 100 or more years, women have understandably lost their trust in men in general. This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. Fragile-ego’d, self-seeking, solely cock-driven, permanently adolescent men have abused the planet on every level. The air, water, and soil are polluted, the animals violently killed, the children uneducated and the old people uncared for.

And it may sound radical to say this, but there has emerged a masculine edge in women, which has crept in during the past half a century. It is an edge that has, I believe, been born of a lack of trust in the males to deliver leadership and protection through service and wisdom. Women have been over-masculinising like mad to compensate for the essence of true maleness that’s so badly lacking in at least the last two generations of men, who have been addicted to profit and status.

Is it any wonder women have lost trust in men’s expression of their core male values?

But what excites me is that over the last 50 years, a radical shift in maleness has been emerging. There has been a whole new wave of softer men, relating to their wives and lovers more, connecting more presently with their kids, and actively trying to cultivate this by attending deepening workshops, for example.

This has awakened the vital feminine-in-the-male quality. But it has only brought us so far. It is a long way from the re-emergence of the powerful, unwavering male that the planet and the human species so badly needs today. Cultivating the feminine qualities in the modern man is just a stepping stone to a deeper re-awakening, and that’s the male-in-the-male.

My recent conversations and workshop sessions with numerous women have left me in no doubt that the women want their men back in their true maleness. This means being strong, steadfast and genuine; unswayed by the grasping, needy, untrustworthy and superficial values that have often been driving them in this last century.

In my experience, there seems to be a huge yearning among these women to relax more into their feminine selves, melt and soften and just be.

But to trust that when they melt, the man will be a clear and strong container for that melting, feels like too big an expectation for them to have these days. The kind of man I speak of can hold his woman in her all diverse and changeable forms. He is a heart mountain.

I’ve purposely experimented when spending time with women recently. My intention has been to hold the masculine core in how we relate, being strong and present for them, just for 20 focused minutes, to represent and embody that pure, steadfast maleness.

The visible permission that 20 minutes gives the women to feminise is vividly noticeable within moments. She softens. She opens, she glows, she sometimes sobs with relief and the uncomfortable maleness she was holding melts just a little.

Could it be that the women of the planet are hungry and eager for the men to step into this trustworthy, loyal, devoted, dependable space? Are the men ready for this? I say yes, we are.

So as men, it should be our mission to beckon and invite each other to step back into our strength and power, but this time renewed in constant, reliable, unfaltering attendance to the true principles of authentic support, leadership through service, and humble devotion to women.

If you are enjoying my writing please consider supporting me here: https://www.patreon.com/jamiecatto

The Order of the Sacred Woodsman is a facebook group established by Jamie Catto, where men can gather and uphold their male strengths and share their insights and vulnerabilities, AND NOW Woodsmen For Women which is for both men and women to share gifts, ideas, vulnerabilities…

For more info on workshops and events go to www.jamiecatto.com

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