WEEK 4: THE HARD WEEK

This week calls for bluntness. It’s historically the hard week. When delivering this course face to face, if people were going to miss a week, it would always be week 4.

The concept of messengers has come up each week. The practices have encouraged you to recognise messengers, sit with them and start to understand them with the help of their opposites.

When sitting with messengers becomes too difficult or we choose not to or we forget how to, there’s a few common things we do instead. This requires a frank conversation, not just between you and I but also between you and yourself.

You might recognise some or all of these. They might pop up at different times, in different intensities. You might even hit the big time and do it all at once.

  1. DISASSOCIATION
    This can show up as; avoiding, ignoring, pretending, getting busy with something else, constantly visiting friends, uncomfortable being alone. It shows up as humour, excessive sleeping, over eating. Substance abuse fits here as well; booze, drugs, smoking. Addictions make the list; shopping, technology consumption, binge watching.
  2. FUSE
    This can show up as; feeling overwhelmed, identifying strongly with emotions, being attached to emotions, believing what you’re currently experiencing will last forever and that you are your emotions. Not being able to separate from a sh*tty situation, becoming enmeshed with it. A traumatic/stressful aspect of your life stops you from being able to relax into other ‘ok’ aspects of your life.

Think of these tendencies as sitting over the top of the messengers. They are loud and attention grabbing but they aren’t the messengers.

Recall the overarching premise of this practice is that it doesn’t attempt to fix people. It doesn’t focus on the drinking, the drugs, the eating, the anxiety, the overwhelm, the flashbacks.

It believes you’re already ok. Buried underneath the tendencies are the messengers. Buried under the messengers is your very ok centre. The tendencies, however destructive, don’t influence the centre.

More conventional “therapies” and even we tend to focus on the tendencies. This practice leaves them alone and goes deeper to the messengers.

Sit with them.
Welcome them.
Wait patiently alongside them.
Be curious about them.
Understand them from a different perspective.

Before you can spend more time operating from your already ok centre, you need to know it’s there.

The practice this week is longer not shorter. The reason is that motivation tends to fade at this point, the hard week. The ability to show up everyday to practice feels for many people like too big an ask. The practice is 30 minutes. Aim to listen twice but more often if you can.

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