Tuesday, March 4, 2014

How to Not Communicate Like a D*ck

Just because you don’t want to talk about it doesn’t mean that the “it” goes away.

Telling someone “it’ll be okay,” without working through their emotions with them doesn’t make them FEEL like it’s going to be okay. It feels like a dismissal.

Just because you don’t understand it doesn’t make the other person’s feelings any less valid. Just because you don’t believe it doesn’t mean it isn’t true for them. By belittling their truth, you create a fissure when you have the opportunity to create a connection. You create disconnection, when you could be building trust.

Silencing yourself doesn’t make the inner chatter any less loud. This is where resentment comes to fester. Don't be a festering pool. Gross.

Life isn't always about what you want. People's emotions aren't always going to align with yours. Stop being a baby. Find a better way of cooperating.

Just fucking listen. If you don’t understand it’s probably because you aren’t hearing.

Communication is work. It takes accessibility and practice. It doesn’t happen magically. Stop acting inconvenienced by this being a fact. It’s a fact. Do work.

Disengaging is only helpful when; the other person is hurting you, you have a wretched sore throat, or you need time to process & articulate your feelings. All other times; dick move. If you need time, TELL THE PERSON YOU NEED TIME.

You're not always right. I know, it's a jagged little pill to swallow, Alanis said it first.

Try, with ALL YOUR MIGHT to keep your ego out of the picture. When someone is arguing with you it’s likely because they want to be heard, seen, and understood.  Above all, they’re fighting for something they care about- likely, that something is you. At the very least it’s something you both care deeply about, or there wouldn’t be an argument. Start there. Common ground is where you build from.

Communication has to be “solution based,” if you’re talking in circles you’re being a narcissist. Identify the issue and come up with solutions. If you’re not ready to solve it, stop talking about it.

You’re not perfect. Take responsibility. It takes two stones rubbing together to create friction. You’re a stone.

Consider the conversation ratio. How much have I been talking about myself and how much do I know about the person in front of me? If you feel like you just had a therapy session, you probably need to work on meeting in the middle.

For when you're already in the ring, essential Rules for Boxing: No hitting below the belt. Give time for the other person to get back on their feet when you make a jab. Make it a fair fight. "You cannot spit out your mouthpiece on purpose to get a rest." In other words; you don't get to bow out cause "you're tired." When you're in it, you're in it. Win. Lose. Truce. Go home.

Raising your voice isn’t necessary. But fuck, it happens and it usually happens when you feel like you’re talking to a brick wall. Whether you’re the Wall, or the Scream NOTICE your contribution to that reaction. Every action has a reaction, screaming is often one of those.

Suppressing emotion is like drinking poison. If you can’t tell someone how you feel, you probably need to find someone who you can.

...on the flip side, if you aren’t allowing someone to feel how they feel, where is your block coming from? Sticking your head in the sand, ignoring reality, or clamming up are detrimental to your health, happiness and overall emotional growth and intelligence.

SHOW EMOTION. Stoicism isn't always the remedy. Undeniably in life there are times when you have to bite your lip, power-through, and put your head to the wind....but in many cases stoicism is the opposite of strength.

Digest your anger before verbalizing it. Sweat it out, let is simmer, scream in the car... do not direct it towards a human. We are not made to be verbal punching bags. Once the anger has cooled THEN talk about where/why/how/solution.

Name the thing. Communicating shouldn’t be a sneak attack. If there’s something that needs to be laid out, call a time, find a table, lay it out. No side-swiping or shanking. Have the courage to deal with it head on.

Apologizing is gold. It is brave and it is golden. It doesn't make you foolish or weak for admitting your mistakes.

Covering everything with a  positive affirmation isn’t sure-fire alchemy. Validating the wound, the ache, the struggle is a part of the transformation towards goodness.

You can’t ignore the root truth with a cover-up. It always comes out. Cover-ups make people feel like you think they’re an asshole. Just get to it, be transparent, don’t play people for a fool.

Do everything with kindness in your heart. With pure love. With hope for a positive outcome. Where there’s aggression, or aversion the chances to find a peaceful solution is slim. Want for the best, for the happiness and wholeness of both parties, communicate with a pure heart, drama-free intent, and willingness to take responsibility. You will feel so. much. better.

How DO YOU communicate best?

Sunday, February 23, 2014

On habit breaking, tough love, and hard sh*t that looks like easy sh*t.

Breaking habits is scary.

I say scary, because; difficult, hard, challenging, aren’t the words. They are layers below the word, but the word itself that defines habit-breaking is SCARY. Think four-headed, hissing, oozing, spitting monster. The kind that towers above you, chases you down and then multiplies itself in dark alleyways, giving you no way out and running at you with a hatchet. Because that kind of monster would use a hatchet, it’s clunky and brutal and totally gratuitous. It’s that kind of scary. That kind of scary is how it feels to willfully, I choose “willfully,” because it takes serious WILL, a purposeful desire and intent; the sweaty, gritty, pushing through the discomfort kind of will, to take everything you know to be true and question it. The way you drive to work, your 6pm cocktail, your social circle, throwing on your trash reality show (hi, guilty, all the time- only sometimes sorry) when you have downtime because that’s just what you do and then to say, “Actually Self, you don’t do that anymore.” Self is like, but why I like that…

Self always has one million reasons why the habit/pattern they’re trying to break doesn’t want to be broken. Self says, but that’s how I relax. Then it goes on with a tirade, “I like that ::thing:: it upholds all of the other “things” I know about myself. It’s an essential part of the supporting cast in my story. That thing is what I do on Wednesday’s! What would Wednesday BE WITHOUT THAT THING?! Or, (personal favorite) that “thing” doesn’t go with this other “thing” that I really love, so I just cannottttt with that new “thing” you’re trying to push on me, mmkay? Put it away.

For example, I did this with the green juice movement a couple years ago. I was like get your juice and your blender and your Kale out of my face. It brought up a real charge in me, which through self-diagnosis, likely sprouted from roots of disordered eating and food obsession from my own past. It scared me to consider walking down a path of healthy juicing, out of fear of my own fragile issues surrounding food resurfacing. Resistance usually wields great wisdom and is most often, a spot that needs healing. Don’t run away from it and don’t keep pushing. Examine it. Find where your edges are, smooth if necessary...or, simply just know where you’re sharp so you don’t hurt yourself.

After dealing with the root of my judgement, “go fuck your kale,”  I recognized, hey, I like juice. Throw Kale into my smoothie any damn day and I’m into it.  How “extreme,” I take that into my life is up to me. In other words, drinking the juice doesn’t mean I can’t have a milkshake from In-N-Out, ya feel me? It doesn’t shake the core of other things I love, it just assists in my wellbeing and happiness.

Self has excuses galore on hand when it’s questioned. It is a well rehearsed monologue. The truth is, Self has already considered what would happen if it was stripped of its “truths,” and what would be left at the core. Self knows it uses “Things” 1-5 as pillars to support a way of being that is currently comfortable. Comfortable, unfortunately doesn’t always win you the gold medal you’re striving for. Comfortable doesn’t always feel good at first until it’s in your body. What may seem uncomfortable now, will be your favorite worn in pair of jeans three or four months from now.

Like. I’m not a morning person. I struggle to wake up before 9am. Yet, I am wildly ambitious and adore juicing the shit out of my day. I say I’m not a morning person….but am I not a morning person? I don’t fucking know. I just SAY that because I’ve formed a habit of being a night person. The habit didn’t come out of nowhere, it came out of working in the entertainment industry and enjoying night life; late shows, late calls, long days and so on. A habit or pattern absolutely develops from someplace and to stay up until 3am isn’t an insane reality, to me. Except, when I DO wake up by 6am… I really like the way I feel.

I enjoy feeling like I have more time than I even know what to do with.  To someone who, “juices the shit out of life,” that’s a pretty exhilarating new reality.

So, you don’t know what to do with the next 4 hours? Time to do one of the multitude of things you say you want to do but never have time for, ya bish. You have a whole goddamn Pinterest board of shit to bake! You have movies to make! You have friends to see. You have places to visit. You have workshops to attend, self-expansion, shiny new experiences and bonds to build.  You can watch your 11th episode of that one Bravo show, or you can get to bed a little earlier, have one less glass of wine and watch the sunrise, because that’s pretty fucking beautiful.

When you recognize places where habit-changing gives you more than you were getting with an old habit, it’s hard not to, with your best judgement at hand, consider other options. That doesn’t mean these changes are easy to make. It just means that there are options.  The Universe is a your personal buffet, take as much as you’d like and come back for more. You are not wedded to your habits, your circumstance or your rhythms.

Life, with consistent subtle alterations, shows you major transformation is an option. Again, to each their own, optional if desired.

It’s easy to get rid of or identify external toxicity and much harder to claim, own and purge internal toxicity. Breaking patterns, revising and editing. This is painful work, it takes claiming responsibility, being really fucking honest with yourself and slowly but surely shifting your steps.

For me; I want to feel more energized, have a consistent willingness to work on crazy inversions that look impossible, but I know would make me feel strong. I want to know what the morning sounds like before my brain starts demanding things of me. I want to consistently create great work and challenge myself to cross of those "Big Goals," by making mini-goals accessible. I want to actively nurture the new versions of myself that I’ve desired but didn’t know how to facilitate in the past; the one who is empowered, spiritually tuned in, master of her home, bad ass in the kitchen, solid hostess…. fulfilled adventuress. Vulnerable artist, willing to share work with the world, because she’s put the time and heart into making it. Consistently brave. Listening inwardly before validating herself outwardly. 

These things take change, new patterns, new realities. If you want something; to be seen a certain way, to be acknowledged for a specific type of work, or attribute… do it. make it. be it. If you aren’t there yet, as my dear friend Nicole said, “Are your habits supporting your goals?”

Take credit for the life that you’ve shaped and if you’re not comfortable signing your name on it, do some reshaping.

I love you, babes. I’m in your corner. I hope you’ll be in mine.



**If you haven't seen my newest project, here it is