It has been said that human beings are the only creatures privileged with the ability to refuse to bloom and open up. Why is that? Why are we privileged in this sense and why do we resist?

We are privileged because as conscious beings we have the power of choice. You can say yes to things or you can say no. You can say yes to Divine Guidance and Wisdom or you can resist and say no. It’s your choice. Consider this quote by Rumi: “Who says the eternal being does not exist? Who says the sun has gone out? Someone who climbs up on the roof, and closes his eyes tight, and says I don’t see anything.” You see, you CAN go to the rooftop and close your eyes tightly – it’s your choice. Buy why would you do that? Well, there are a lot of reasons, but a big one may be having been hurt by past experiences of trusting and opening up.

And why do we resist? Because we’ve been hurt in the past, or experienced other “flavors” of hurt like disappointment and failure. We close down and resist blooming and opening. This is a normal human mechanism for safety and protection that can of course be helpful. We’ve been hurt before and we don’t want it to happen again so we create strategies to prevent it. However, things are always changing, and these automatic mechanisms and strategies can become outdated over time and become more hurtful than helpful.

At some point the resistance to blooming can become so painful that we must choose to bloom! However, before reaching that point, we can help the blooming process by proactively looking at those things that are keeping us closed and resistant. We can look for the outdated strategies that are no longer helpful, and begin to dismantle them and their grip on our life. Doing this important work is step seven of my coaching system, “Let Go of Old, Negative Stuff – Beliefs, Habits, and Patterns.”

As soon as someone steps onto their new path toward their new life, what they typically run into are all their old beliefs and habits that have been holding them back. It is vital to understand this and be able to address it. If you are not able to see, work with, release and transform old beliefs and habits that hold you in place, you will very quickly return to your old life and be even more resigned. You may say to yourself that you “tried” and it just didn’t work out. You will resist your blooming.

I have dealt with this a lot in my own life and, frankly, I still do. Often I would go to an amazing and inspiring seminar or workshop, come out ready to take on the world, only to find my old habits and ways of being creeping back in over the next few weeks. A month or more out from the workshop it was as if my brain was asking, “what workshop?”

Getting insights and inspiration is important, but is only the beginning. One of the down-side problems relating to weekend workshops and seminars is the lack of long-term support. There is often no process in place to work out the old ways of being that participants took with them into that workshop. There’s typically not even an acknowledgement that these things even exist! I’m sure you’ve experienced this in your own life and know it to be true. Lots of people are offering fascinating and inspiring programs, but what is missing is the follow up. Old beliefs and habits have far more momentum and are far more ingrained than any new idea or inspiration. Without the follow up, most of the new ideas will die on the vine.

Learning how to let go of old negative beliefs, habits, and patterns is THE difference between success and failure. In my opinion this is why people became frustrated with the movie “The Secret.” They went out and asked for and believed they could have something. But what they were not told is that there is a huge part of them that does not believe they can have it, or should have it, or deserve it, or that it’s even possible. That’s what a friend of mine has called “The Dirty Little Secret.” The dirty little secret is that when you truly desire something and commit to having it, what comes up for you are all the beliefs or constructs that kept you from having it in the first place. These must be released for true fulfillment to take place.

I know how hard it is to let go of negative beliefs and habits. That is why I created an audio program called “Shift It.” This is an easy and powerful tool specifically designed to address negative beliefs and blocks.

I have experienced and worked with MANY different tools and processes for releasing and transforming beliefs and habits we no longer prefer to uphold. The tools and processes that really work have these three things in common:

1) They make you stop and notice what is happening; you become a conscious witness to the FACTS about the situation(s),

2) They invite you to embrace all aspects of your experience of the situation: physical, mental, emotional. You must embrace and allow the truth of your experience – the only way out is through.

3) Once you’ve gone into the uncomfortable aspects and felt and allowed them, you then open up to new insights and possibilities for your life.

You can think of this generalized process as a bridge between two lands: your current, limited reality/experience, and your desired, expanded reality/experience. The bridge between these two lands is courageously built by embracing and allowing your truth and the full-body experience of the issue, situation, or challenge. Basically, you are consciously embracing all your “fears of what might happen.” Once you’ve done this, it is like magic! New insights and possibilities automatically begin arising.

Try this:

Where are you “tightly closing your eyes” and afraid of seeing the rising sun? Where are you resisting your blooming?

Think of an uncomfortable or frustrating situation in your life right now. Write down one or two sentences that simply describe the facts of that situation. Then, write down how you feel about it; what are all the thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations you experience when you think about this situation? Do you feel angry, mad, tired, resigned, or perhaps sad? Where in your body do you feel these feelings? Point to and describe the physical feelings you are having. It might be tension or tightness, a “sick to the stomach” feeling, a numbness, or perhaps heat or hotness.

Allow yourself to notice and experience these feelings. Fully go into them with an open curiosity, with an attitude of “Wow, look how irritated I am” or “Wow, look how much tension I have around this situation.” Just notice and allow whatever is there for you as you think about the situation. This should only take two or three minutes, but take as much time as you need.

Then, once you have embraced and allowed your experience, begin opening up to new insights, ideas, or thoughts that may be arising. Just turn your attention toward “new ways of holding or moving through the situation.” You can even ask, “In what new ways might I hold this situation.” Then listen quietly for your intuition and insights to arise. In the beginning, a process like this is best engaged with a skilled facilitator. However, with some courage, compassion, and gentleness, you can certainly make some headway on your own.

Congratulations – you are choosing to bloom and are building bridges to new lands of major mojo in your life!

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