There have been so many moments lately when I wished there was a friend, or coach, that I could turn to to get some clarity.
While I do have a beautiful system of support around me – I think at all times we feel like we don’t want to use our friends or family as ‘emotional tampons’ & dump all our chaotic, messy, crap on them. Especially when the challenging times keep going for days, months or even years.
As self-responsible it’s important to ask for support & help when needed.
And it’s equally as important to know how to love & support ourselves.
So how can we hold ourselves in these messy moments?
How can we coach ourselves back to clarity?
STEP 1: SPECIFIC CONTAINER
Part of the magic of a ‘real’ coaching session is that it offers a specific, focused time of dedication.
I’d love to promise you that you can coach yourself on the bus & in the 2mins you have between meetings…
But honestly, the quality of time you put in is going to be equivalent to the quality of insight you receive.
When I need to sort myself out & do some self-coaching I like to:
+ Find a quiet space
+ Plan to not be interrupted for 15+mins
+ Break out my most beautiful journal
+ Make a cup of tea
By ritualizing-it-up we bring a special flavor of intention, creating a specific container that feels subtly different to our regular life.
STEP 2: AMPLIFY THE AWARENESS
Another part of the magic of a ‘real’ coaching session is the amplification of consciousness.
When 2 people’s awareness (you & the coach) are focused solely on YOU the potency of the space is amplified.
Why is this?
On a practical level having another person there to listen & witness you is invaluable. But on a subtle level, the other person (the coach) is ideally holding a compassionate resonance that brings all their power & life force to the equation.
This helps us, as the ‘client’, to drop into ourselves, our answers & our bodies more readily.
When we’re self-coaching, we still have the opportunity to amplify the awareness – it just has to happen in other ways.
There are 2 options (do one or both)…
A) Get Embodied
The first is to make sure that YOUR full self & awareness is present. Put another way, for you to be as embodied & full within yourself as you can before beginning self-coaching. I like to take a few moments to drop into my body using the Drop In Process which is available here as free audio.
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B) Invoke any other Supportive Awareness
Who or what else could lend you their awareness, presence & love for this inquiry?
Perhaps your belief systems would have you call on ancestors, animals or the land. Invoke any other supportive awareness to lend you witnessing power & strength.
STEP 3: DUMP
Next step is simple. Now that you have a specific container & deepened awareness just dump everything onto the page.
Get writing & write everything that’s in your head, your heart, your confusion.
This section is NOT about:
+ Understanding WHY you feel the way you do
+ Making suggestions for CHANGE
+ Writing TO DO LISTS
Rather this section is the space to get your uncensored expression on the page. It doesn’t make to make sense. You’re allowed to jump from one topic to the other.
During the ‘DUMP’ step we’re want to just get it out of our mind, body & onto the page. This is why it’s essential we have a specific container & some dedicated time (even if it is just 15minutes).
The contents of this DUMP have been building up in your mind/body/being because you haven’t wanted to look at them until now.
Likely the contents of this dump are uncomfortable, painful, or not easily ‘solved’ & so as modern humans we learn to push aside the painful & difficult things – rather than embrace them.
The DUMP step is about embracing & expressing onto the page. Admitting & writing down what’s really going on for you. As chaotic, or unflattering as it gets it out.
If you need a prompt to get started then ask yourself:
> What’s weighing heavy on your heart?
> What am I having trouble admitting to myself?
Distractions will likely arise at this time. You’ll start thinking of things for your ‘to do list’ or remember that washing that needs to be folded….
Create a special column for ‘to do’s’ or reminders that crop up, but don’t stop dumping. These “distractions” & urgent laundry are really just sophisticated diversion strategies created by your survival mind to AVOID feeling & entering these painful or confusing situations.
STEP 4: QUESTION
Once you’ve dumped everything on the page, consider…
What question could you ask yourself to go deeper?
Questions are one of my favorite things on the face of the firkin planet. Questions open new doors of awareness & allow us to expand into new inquiries of thought & feeling.
In a coaching session, the job of a great coach is to ask powerful questions.
Coaches don’t have the answers (YOU are the only one with the right answers for YOU) but their questions act as keys, opening new doors of awareness & insight.
In the model of Feminine Embodiment Coaching, we use questions to invite our clients deeper into their own vulnerability & awareness so they can ultimately realize their own answers. The types of questions we used are questions that center the feminine & the body. These might include questions like:
> How do I feel about that?
> What am I afraid will happen?
> What do I notice happens in my body when I express this?
Pause to consider what question you might want to ask yourself, then journal the response.
STEP 5: FEEL (DON’T FIX)
In many head-based types of therapy after telling the story (that is dumping what’s stressing us out), we get into fix-it mode.
Most of us are good fix-ers.
We can think of some solutions, conversations or steps we can take to ‘fix’ the problem.
But we can’t fix what we haven’t freed.
And we can’t free what we haven’t felt.
Instead of jumping into fixing mode, I’d suggest the next key step is to step into FEEL IT MODE.
In the model of Feminine Embodiment Coaching, pausing to feel & experience is how we liberate old tensions from the body & clear the way for more flow, pleasure & clarity.
Many of us keep our heart distant, not wanting to feel the chaos, confusion, pain or uncomfortable feelings and sensations. And in doing so we take that life force energy & trap it, binding it up as unwelcome, unexpressed & thus unintegrated fuel that we’ve put into storage.
And then we wonder why we can’t find our way forward. Why we feel less powerful or confident…
When half our life force energy is stored outback, frozen & bound up in all the things we don’t want our heart to feel, we are naturally diminished in our capacity.
Recently a loved one of mine was feeling confused & scattered.
They had been feeling this way for weeks.
We’d had a few conversations & discussed a few solutions (‘fixes’).
But yet again they circled back to ask me “why do I feel this way?”.
Feeling confused & scattered is often a sign that there is something deeper going on.
Feeling angry & upset over things you’re not REALLY angry or upset over is a sign there is something deeper going on.
That something deeper requires your heart to be intimate with it.
To feel it. Acknowledge it. Let it move through you.
I invited my confused beloved to just sit with me. I gave them a heart. And said – how about you just feel what your heart wants to feel for a moment.
No fixing. Just feeling.
What NEVER ceases to amaze me is that the vulnerability of opening our hearts to feel all that wants to be acknowledged instantly brings us back to flow.
My loved person didn’t need any more cognitive discussions or ‘fixes’ after that moment of FEELING. When their life force – including the uncomfortable sensations – was free to flow.
As I was preparing this episode I also went through the five steps suggested here. And when I came to the feel it steps, as if on cue the tears started welling up, the sobs and sadness started breaking my heart open, my body desperate wanted this special space to feel & release.
And all of a sudden… the issues that seemed so confusing & challenging were no longer captivating. There was nothing to fix, nothing to solve, no strategies needed.
This is the power of STEP 5: FEEL.
If you desire guidance in this step one of my all-time favorite practices is the Primal Feminine Flow movement practice. It’s a practice of feeling & dropping deeper into the body and is a beautiful way to cultivate greater body sensitivity & emotional vulnerability. You can download the at-home practice bundle at www.jennaward.co/flow
The other important quality a great coach holds for you is CODES.
Codes, possibilities, reminders of who you TRULY are.
It’s easy for forget to bring these CODES when looking at/feeling into your own stuff, so let me offer you three reminders & codes that all our Feminine Embodiment Coaches hold for their clients right now…
- You are a powerful woman
- You are loved, cherished & desired exactly how you are
- It’s safe to expect good things happen & to open wider to love & success
So now that you’ve got the steps – I’m curious, is this a practice you’re going to try? Or perhaps something you’re already doing? Let me know in the comments section below!
Finally, if you’re interested in studying Feminine Embodiment Coaching & holding this kind of powerful, deep-felt space for others check out our 6mth professional training at www.feminineembodimentcoaching.com