I don’t coach individually any more: reached a point where I had to charge too much, which put me beyond the range of the people who needed re-integration most. Stepped back, and asked: “What is 20% of what I’m doing that provides 80% of the results? What is the 20% that can be shared without one-on-one interaction?” Where I teach now is where these two circles overlap.
But so long as they are willing to discuss their concerns publicly so that others can benefit from the conversation, I will go “deep” with a student with a sufficiently interesting issue. And just this morning, one of these “semi-private” folks woke up a little bit from his nightmare.
There’s a guy named Dan who had a girlfriend who blew his mind sexually. The only problem: she talked a LOT about her previous relationships, and this triggered massive insecurity as well as an inner critic that raked her over the coals for being a sexual being. I had to point out to him that she had done NOTHING wrong in having an active history. That she probably spoke about it as much as she did because she knew he was judging her. That it was a defense against opening her heart too widely: “if you can’t accept me, don’t ask me to fall in love with you.”
Tracing back his attitudes, the Madonna-Whore stuff connected (of course) to his father, a powerful, domineering man with…issues.
I worked with Dan for over a year, and made little progress. I didn’t take it personally, as little progress had been made with therapist after therapist before me. Well, I ain’t no damned therapist. I’m a coach. I can point out a path, but YOU have to do the running. Doctors heal the sick. I find the part of you that is already healthy, and help you nurture it. BIG DIFFERENCE. I don’t set broken bones.
So I changed the game.
- He was forbidden from mentioning her. ALL of his problem was his own. 100%. Own it, dammit. ADULTHOOD IS TAKING RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR EMOTIONS AND ACTIONS. As long as he was focused on HER he was a bleeding mess.
- Every time he mentioned her, he had to Paypal me 5 bucks. That worked for a few weeks, then he tried to sneak her back into the conversation. Raised it to ten bucks. Problem solved. Heh heh. Oh, he’ll mention her again at some point, and I’ll double it to 20 bucks. It’s gonna get expensive, real #$%% fast.
- His focus had to be healing his own heart, and the Ancient Child. From my point of view, the problem is that he allowed his sense of worth to flow from someone else, rather than giving himself the love he was looking for. That left his “wounded child” screaming “Mommy doesn’t love me! I’m not special!”
- Look, as far as I’m concerned the lady in question is something of an adventuress. I have no reason to consider her behavior anything but healthy. BUT…even if it wasn’t…what would it mean? It means that a damaged person was the BEST he could do. We attract our level and below. We are attracted to our level and above. If he wants a more integrated, healthy lady, HE has to be a more integrated, healthier man. Brutally simple.
- Alone isn’t the same as “lonely.” The night before I met Tananarive, I finally got “clear” that I could have all the women I wanted. Knew exactly how to do it, with a fairly high level of integrity. And…I didn’t want it any more. I saw something: that on some level, conscious or unconscious, every one of them was asking: “are you the one?” Those four words, usually unspoken, relate to the REALITY of human life, our existence. We are born alone. We die alone. We seek someone, something, to help give meaning and purpose to our lives. Love is one of those things, whether you seek to create a family or not. The energy of orgasm, of sexuality is the result of ego fusion–the energy released is in direct proportion to the degree you “let go.” You abandon your illusion of a separate existence. “The beast with two backs” is a rather earthy way to look at a spiritual reality. We seek companionship. If we find our soulmate, some glance, some touch, some kiss, some sexual encounter will be the first step on a lifetime path. “Are you the one? Is this my beginning? Are you what I’ve been waiting for?” Unless you are willing to say and MEAN “perhaps. I’m seeking too” you don’t get started. I certainly couldn’t. Not any more. Not if I wanted to claim I was treating women the way I would want my daughter, my sister, my mother treated. And I decided that night that if I had to wait the rest of my life for my perfect partner…I would. And the next morning I met Tananarive. Now…am I claiming a causal relationship? Yes, I am. Not direct. That is the mistake people make with magic. It was indirect. I had become the kind of person worthy of a woman like T.
- When the student is ready, the master will appear. And…when the lover is ready, the beloved will appear.
So Dan has to take responsibility, love and nurture himself, and focus on what HE can do, rather than what others did or didn’t do. If I was him, I would refrain from all sex while I healed. Turn that energy and attention inward. How long would it take? A year is average. What matters is that you have to stop counting days. Be your own “mother” and “father”. Nurture that child inside you.
Then, one day when you actually love yourself, accept yourself, you will meet a soul walking the same path, at the same rate, heading to a destination similar enough that you can hold hands as you climb the mountain. And if they have the right plumbing…Yowsah! Out of 4 billion people on the planet, trust me, you can find someone. In fact, when you talk to people who have had long and happy relationships, few of them dated more than twenty people before finding their Soul Mate. What that means to me is that I’d be willing to bet that one out of every thousand or so people could be the one you’re looking for. Maybe 10k for the really picky people.
That’s not so much if you are actually out in the world, meeting people, broadcasting clearly who you are. In other words, if you know 100 people, and each of THEM know 100 people…
Someone you know already knows a person you could love, and be loved by, and spend your life with.
But you have to stop bleeding, stop the desperation, be happy with your life so that you are radiating your positive vibes, and get out into the world, be who you are, meet people, and proudly declare that you are an active, healthy human animal. That you love yourself. Frankly, that if you weren’t you, you’d WANT you. And mean it. This will horrify the insecure, and you’ll be accused of being an ego-maniac.
That’s fine. That’s their problem. You’re looking for someone healthy enough to say…”I can believe that. I feel the same.”
Because you two…? The two of YOU can build a nest together.
This morning “Dan” said that he was wrong to try to turn his ex into his mother. NOT UNLESS HE WAS WILLING TO BE A LOVING FATHER TO HER. Not a judgemental asshole.
THAT was a real “spark.” A glimpse of a larger world for him. A few more of those and he might be able to make a fire. And light a torch.
And then…if he completes this cycle of the HERO’S JOURNEY…he will be able to lead others out of the darkness.
I’m happy for Dan. THIS is one of the moments that matter. Real teachers love good students.