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Let’s talk about SEX


How many times a week do you think couples should be having sex?

Well the real answer is, as many times as suits the couple. Everyone is different and as long as both partners are happy with the frequency then all is good.

Here is the thing. Sex is the highest form of communication and all that ‘conversation stuff’ is all foreplay. So let’s talk about how communication, conversations and connection ties in with having great sex.

The truth is, sex is all about communication and is our most intimate form of communicating with our partners.
"love and heart"How we connect with others comes naturally to some and not so naturally to others but is essential for building awesome relationships. We communicate and transmit information all day long; I am available or not, I am open or not, I am relaxed or not, I like you or not, I love you or not. I want to have sex or not. The absence of good communication between couples can cause many problems, pain, misunderstandings, conflict, disconnection, lack of harmony and love, and yes when this happens can mean less sex too. This is how we end up in the proverbial catch-22 of disconnection. We feel upset with our partners or they are upset with us and we disconnect emotionally and then disengage physically and we end up in the relationship spiral of doom. We need physical intimacy to feel happy and connected emotionally and we need emotional connection to have great physical intimacy.

A lot of couples don’t want to have sexual contact when they are upset and feel emotional disconnected so they go round and round getting more emotionally and physically distant and the great relationship divide has happened. It can be so discouraging and disheartening.
4855659-3d-rendering-of-a-heart-with-barbed-wire-around-itI would like to suggest that our relationships don’t need to go through this painful process. We communicate with our actions, what we say or don’t say, and we can certainly learn to communicate more effectively to increase positive connection with our partners. Love after all is an action word.

To have more love, quality connection, passion and intimacy in your life you must be more loving and this is where being able to communicate in more loving ways will elevate your relationship to levels of AWESOME-ness.
No relationship can be truly happy, fulfilling & successful without knowing how to express yourself to the important people in your life. We all want to feel valued, loved, respected, to feel special and important and I can guarantee you learning new ways to communicate will bring you more of what you want.

Relationships need safety and healthy attachment to thrive. The one question we all need to know from our partners is, “are you there for me” and when we trust that someone is there for us it builds an awesome level of intimacy and connection and yes this is the space for great sex.

If you relationship is not thriving in the way you would like and you don’t understand why not, ask yourself what you could do to improve connection with your love.
"love held in our hands"

Here is a list of ideas to get you started with reconnecting. Think of the whole day as foreplay. Love is in the Details.
I am sure you can come up with a few of your own as well.

  1. positively engage, listen, be curious
  2. be calm and non-reactive, explain what you need and want clearly
  3. be appreciative and grateful for what your partner brings to the relationship, thank them for the things they do 
  4. share common interests, time together
  5. laugh with each other
  6. be openly affectionate, look at her/him directly
  7. be transparent and trustworthy
  8. do not criticize, blame or judge
  9. put your phone away
  10. check in for 20 minutes everyday
  11. smile at each other
  12. text little things during the day ????
  13. gifts for no special reason are nice????
  14. look after yourself which means you take care of yourself, body, mind and soul
  15. grow, learn, create, be inspired
  16. be happy
  17. kiss????
  18. celebrate
  19. offer to help, support, be of value
  20. be loving, caring, kind, compassionate

As Rumi says; Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.

Need relationship help-you can book me directly

loveLove Mheyah 
Please connect with me at
www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com

facebook@connectionpointcentre
twitter@mheyahbailey
instagram@mheyahbailey
pinterest@mheyahbailey

Find out more about Mheyah

 

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How to deal with other people’s Big Feelings

 

6 Ways to deal with other people’s “Big Feelings” by Mheyah Bailey

I ran out of compassion, curiousity and courage the other day. All the important relationship principles were here in my heart and head, and then in a flash they were gone and I mean gone.
I am again reminded of how hard it is to stay grounded when someone else is yelling, upset and angry. I think I should qualify that. Anyone can yell and it doesn’t affect me, however if someone I love and care about yells and is upset, that is a completely different story.

I have a tendency to fall into complete trauma when anyone yells at me and appears to be angry with me. I interpret angry loud communication, which in our family we call Big Feelings, as very threatening to the relationship, could possible mean the relationship is over, I have been bad in some way and I am not loved. It hits me in my most vulnerable place of fear of losing love, not being good enough or not being loveable.
That is my old story and sometimes my history really jumps up and bites me, as my brain seems to have a mind of it’s own and just goes off into this weird place of threat and fear. I felt blindsided by my vulnerable self and couldn’t hang onto my adult, mature self. Counselors are human after all.
kid-tantrum-stubborn-brat

Well the truth is that our brains actually do that. If anyone has been the recipient of trauma or abuse then the trauma is most likely hardwired into the brain. That is essentially what PTSD is and sometimes when I am surprised by what I perceive as an attack I melt down just like I would have as a child in the face of abandonment and rejection.
I know in my logical brain that isn’t true but in the heat of the moment I have to talk my way into a calmer more rational place. So how does one self soothe during relationship conflict, stress, trauma or drama? I believe it is much the same for a lot of people and is how arguments start because both parties feel they must defend themselves from attack. The trick is to self soothe so you don’t fall into defensiveness and attack back.

It is particularly damaging to live with negative emotions such as contempt, judgment and anger and is up to both parties to learn to be responsible for their reactions and responses.

This article however is for you, while dealing with an upset person. 

Here are 6 actions you can do to help yourself when someone else is really upset.

  1. Cry and run away. Just kidding, that was my 6 year old talking
  1. Set a Boundary and take a time out- hold up the hand and say I need time out and I will talk to you when you stop raising your voice and I feel calm.
    No one deserves to be yelled at and you don’t need to take responsibility for someone else’s feelings. It is their responsibility to learn to share their feelings in a positive and healthy way. Your part is to set a boundary about what kind of treatment you will accept. The person with the Big Feelings is most likely not able to soothe themselves yet, so it is up to you to create the space for everyone to return to calm. It doesn’t mean the issue has gone away, it just means both parties can return to the conversation and find resolution. A time out is essential so that you have the time to self soothe, calm down, become conscious of your own feelings, needs and values and return to a place of commitment, curiousity, compassion and courage. Remind yourself ‘I am not responsible for anyone else’s feelings’
    boundaries-1
  2. Don’t take it personally As you are taking your time out remember and repeat ‘this isn’t about me’ ‘this isn’t about me’  ‘this isn’t about me’
    Someone who is upset, angry and expressing themselves loudly is most likely feeling hurt, in pain and feeling threatened in some way themselves, so it is vital to not make up any stories about what it all means and remember that it says more about them than it does about you and repeat ‘I am not responsible for anyone else’s feelings’

    nothing anyone says or does means anything about you

  3. Breathe deeply, concentrate on breathing from your stomach and as the old saying goes count to 10 or maybe even 100. We forget to breath and when we are faced with conflict, stress or trauma we start to breath very shallow which deprives the brain and organs of much need oxygen. If you notice you are breathing in your upper chest, stand against a wall and breath through your lower abdomen. It will increase oxygen and automatically relieve stress and repeat ‘I am not responsible for someone else’s feelings’Keep Calm
  4. See a counselor or coach to work through your brain wiring, communication skills, boundary setting and other roadblocks to contentment and successful relationships.
    Some counselors and coaches including myself offer crisis management if you need to connect with someone for support either through email or phone calls. I have found it can be very beneficial to support my clients through conflict in the moment rather than wait until the event is over. It can help uncover those hidden core tapes that are usually the cause of our reactions.
    There are many techniques to achieve calm in the face of stress through meditation, EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitizing Reprocessing) hypnosis, EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) just to name a few and repeat ‘ I am not responsible for some else’s feelings’DSC_2976
  5. Meditate for 10 to 30 minutes. There are many options out there for meditating and is probably the most valuable tool for soothing oneself and changing the state of your brain from stress to calm. There are abundant resources for guided meditations or meditating on your own. Either way meditating is the best solution for taking a step back, self soothe and reminding yourself ‘you are not responsible for anyone else’s feelings’
    TimeOut
  6. Remind yourself what you are responsible for. You are only responsible to stay responsibly connected. What does that mean? Well I can tell you what it doesn’t mean first. It doesn’t mean, that you accept abuse, disrespect, contempt, judgment, accusations, blame, criticism, name calling etc.
    What it does mean is that you recognize and can discern that someone is just upset and lost their ‘stuff’ You know that you trust them and yourself to remain in the relationship until it is resolved, that you are responsible for your own reactions, responses and feelings and have learned communication skills that creates connection rather than disconnection and that you really, really get, that your are not responsible for some else’s feelings but you are responsible for responding with awareness of yourself, compassion, curiousity, love, courage and are committed to collaborating to resolve the issue.
    Screen Shot 2015-02-27 at 9.04.29 AM

 

loveLove Mheyah 
Please connect with me at
www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com

facebook@connectionpointcentre
twitter@mheyahbailey
instagram@mheyahbailey
pinterest@mheyahbailey

Find out more about Mheyah

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The Power of APPRECIATION

Relationship Revolution- The Power of Appreciation by Mheyah Bailey

I have recently been re-inspired by witnessing the power of APPRECIATION
and reminded in a big way by an amazing couple I have met, the value and importance of APPRECIATION and how much LOVE really is an action word.

I have been living in the UK for the last 2 years and I have noticed the subtleties in the differences between Canadian and English communication styles, which has nothing to do with the differences in our accents, but more to do with the differences in our culture. It is so interesting that we can be so different considering we speak the same language.  I have found myself being acutely aware of what I say and how I say it and listening to people here with a new level of awareness. I will however leave this rather large topic for another newsletter, but instead focus today on a universal human commonality that is just as important here in the UK or Canada or Anywhere.
I was beautifully reminded by this young couple of how very, very, VERY important APPRECIATION is to the well being of ourselves individually, and how much expressing APPRECIATION positively impacts the happiness, fulfillment and security of relationships.
Everyday I am privileged to witness love and honoured to support people in their fears around the perceived loss of love, and all the complications that being in relationship brings to us. I teach couples how to get to the heart of the matter so they can create more connection, work collaboratively and remember why they chose each other in the first place. I welcome the challenges so people can learn more about themselves, each other, what they need and value and how to improve their communication so they can learn to celebrate differences, help them learn not to take things personally and make their relationships more positive, connected and full of love.

I will showAt the heart of this is that we all need to feel APPRECIATED, HEARD, ACKNOWLEDGED , RECOGNIZED and WITNESSED for all that makes us SPECIAL & UNIQUE, for the things we do everyday and the contributions we make in large and small ways personally, professionally or globally. It doesn’t matter how you contribute or what you do or what motivates you, whether it is cooking a meal so your family can eat, getting up that one extra time at night with the baby so your partner can have some valuable sleep, going out everyday to work to support the family, speaking at the UN on some new important policy that will impact the safety of the world, running the government, building houses, setting broken bones, creating art, designing technology……………………….. We are all motivated to do the things we do, by many diverse personal needs and values whether it is love, commitment, responsibility, money, creativity or intellect and so many other motivators, some positive and some not so much.
I imagine that you understand to some degree that we all get a sense of personal fulfillment in one way or another from making those choices to do what we do, as we all have hopes, values, needs and dreams and our actions are in service of fulfilling those, however, what I witnessed the other day was how important it is to be APPRECIATED by those around us and especially from those we love and care about.

“Nothing is done in this world without hope” MLK jr

In my experience in life, personally and professionally, it seems to be such an important ingredient to feel APPRECIATED and to have HOPE of that eventuality, which to most of us equates to feeling LOVED.
I witnessed a couple I am privileged to be coaching, such a compelling understanding of the importance of feeling APPRECIATED, that I am convinced that one of the main reasons relationships break down is because of this lack of feeling APPRECIATED, whether it is a couple, family, friend or professional relationship.
Our level of satisfaction and fulfillment will undoubtedly suffer because of a lack of appreciation. The majority of people who look outside their relationships, look for new jobs or a change in circumstances, generally are looking for appreciation, understanding and a connection for which they feel is lacking in their current relationships or situations.
love-and-appreciation
Dr. John Gottman from his Love Lab research, says that our interactions with others needs to be a ratio of 6 positive engagements to one negative, and if the balance is off there will be a definite decline in the quality and satisfaction in the relationship.

It really doesn’t take a lot to show APPRECIATION which is a close cousin to good old fashioned manners. Psychology teaches us that people are motivated to contribute to the greater good and feeling appreciated and valued for what we contribute is the currency for feeling fulfillment and happiness. It doesn’t mean that we need to have appreciation to contribute, it just means that it can be more fulfilling and meaningful and ensure our continued interest in contributing if we do. OK I admit it, I am not Mother Theresa and I really value knowing I made a difference in someone’s life. I am far more motivated by APPRECIATION than money 🙂
So judge me if you will but I think APPRECIATION is a very important human need and I think we can all forget to show our appreciation for others and fall into the trap of taking our relationships for granted. So if LOVE is an ACTION word, APPRECIATION is the currency for fulfillment, and we need to keep the balance of a 6 to 1 ratio of positive to negative, then how are you going to show your appreciation to others today.

appreciation-dayHere are some suggestions.
1. Notice and acknowledge a job completed
2. Say thank you to someone for the difference they make in your life, even the little things, because the little things are really important. (I think I may not have thanked my husband for bringing me tea in bed every morning)
3. Doing the APPRECIATION exercise. Three things I really appreciate about you today is……….and this works great with your children (or employees) and helps build their confidence, self esteem and their trust in their value to their community or family in the case of ones children
4. Do something for someone without expectation of anything in return
5. Give positive feedback ie: Wow the dinner is amazing. Thank you for making it for us or thank you for ensuring those emails got out or….
6. Send a card to thank someone for something you really value they do or did for you
7. Hug people you care about, hug people just because…..
8. Say I love you and WHY you love them, not just the 3 words but add what it is about them that you value, admire and respect.
9. Call, text or email just because you want to positively connect
10. Notice all the jobs that get done and mention that you noticed
11. Leave a note of appreciation for someone to find. It’s called A NICE NOTE!
12. Use reflective listening so others know you really heard them

Try this process for acknowledgement. When you do……….I really feel………because it meets my needs and values for……..In your own words of course 🙂

I hope you have enjoyed this newsletter and would love to hear back how showing APPRECIATION impacted your day?

I deeply appreciate your time and letting me share some thoughts with you and thank you to the couple that inspired this article. You know who you are.
love Mheyah 

Please connect with me at
 www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com

facebook@connectionpointcentre
twitter@mheyahbailey
instagram@mheyahbailey
pinterest@mheyahbailey

Find out more about Mheyah 

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8 Steps to Happier Relationships


Relationship Revolution-
8 Steps to Happier Relationships by Mheyah Bailey
Also published on Metro LivingZine 

I am reminded everyday of the importance of what we choose to say, who we choose to be and how we choose to share what we think, how we feel and what is important to us.
Everything is a message to the world, the people we care about and how we share that message determines the quality of our relationships and the quality of our relationships determines the quality of our lives.
I can guarantee you that if you are experiencing conflict, feeling upset with people and the world around you, your relationships are rocky, you feel alone, disrespected and misunderstood. The opposite can be worse, if you feel apathy, numb and disconnected.

There is a solution and the solution is Radical Responsibility.
The good news: there is no other solution and the bad news: there is no other solution.

The only solution is to look within and discover yourself. Relationships are an open invitation to learn and grow, an opportunity to unearth the truth and find the deeper meaning of what you think and how you feel so you can share the real you.
I believe it is a privileged opportunity to be in relationships that struggle, because those challenges give you the opportunity to look at your part in it and teach you how to be responsible for what you are contributing to the way the relationship is at the moment.

I believe initially we all look outside of ourselves to find the cause of our unhappiness, but the best and worst news is, happiness isn’t outside ourselves; it is all to be found inside. The majority of my clients arrive for a first session complaining about their partners and what they are doing wrong to make them unhappy. It can be a hard concept to grasp that relationships are really individual inside work and to create truly happy successful relationships each person in the partnership will have to be radically responsible for themselves.

8 Steps you can take today to create a Happier Relationship:

Show Up
Although our culture has framed dependency as a bad thing, a weakness, it is not. Being attached to someone provides our greatest sense of security and safety. It means depending on a partner to respond when you call, to know that you matter to him or her, that you are cherished, and that they will respond to your emotional needs” And of course this is where being COMMITTED is of the utmost importance as other people need to know that you aren’t going anywhere, that you will do what you say you will do, that you are committed to the process, even through the challenging conversations that aren’t easy to have, that you won’t go far when you need space and that you can be relied on to come back, that you are reliable to follow through, that you are committed to the values that are important to you both, like honesty or integrity, that you have an agreement of acceptable behaviour between you, are loyal, collaborative, caring, compassionate, are on the same team, that you show up like you say you will, that you accept responsibility for yourself, that you are consistent, that you can depend on one another……………this all builds TRUST. Partners need to know that you choose them everyday over everyone else.
This is showing up.
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Take Time Out
Just like a wayward child we all need a time out sometimes and we all need to take responsibility for when we need that time out. If we are tired, stressed, upset, not emotionally available, physically drained, on overload or flooded it is our responsibility to look after ourselves. Take a time out and do what you need to do to regroup. It is important to manage stress and process what we are stressed or upset about. Some people watch TV, listen to music, read, meditate, exercise, walk in nature, get away for the weekend or spend time with friends etc. I am sure you have your own list. There are two caveats to taking a timeout that are most important.

1. Let your partner, friend or colleague know that you need to regroup and assure them that you will be back and state when you will be able to that. This builds trust and safety.
2. We all have our exits in life and I would like to suggest that there are positive ways to manage stress and negative ones. Some activities will damage your relationships and cause harm to you and everyone around you, so choose wisely what you do to manage stress and upset. Everyday you get to choose what you want more of in your life.
So ask yourself “ Will this bring me more connection, love and success or less connection, love and success” Your choice 

TimeOut

Have Compassion
For any successful healthy relationship both parties need to feel heard, understood, appreciated and accepted. To achieve that we all need to have an endless well of compassion. If we are to improve our connections with others we need to suspend judgment, our own self-talk and reactivity. Empathy and compassion are the underlying premise of all positive connections and conversations and is the cord between hearts. Compassion is different than sympathy and is simply the ability to remain in an open loving heart and be with someone else’s pain and upset even when it is sometimes directed at you. This often is difficult to actually achieve, however it is vitally important to any relationship personally or professionally.

Compassion is a Verb

Be Vulnerable- Have Courage
Suffice to say that relationships need a lot of courage. To be in a healthy relationship one needs to be vulnerable, which of course is the proverbial double edged sword or catch 22, because to be vulnerable means to be open to hurt and pain. So if you have to be vulnerable to have a healthy working relationship it will definitely take a lot of courage to come from that open vulnerable place. When our hearts or reputation or ego’s are involved it takes monumental courage to face ones fear of potential abandonment, criticism, feeling rejected or unlovable.

BRENE BROWN says: “Vulnerability is scary, but it’s also a powerful and authentic way to live. Vulnerability is the core, the heart, the center, of meaningful human experiences. She defines vulnerability as “uncertainty, risk and emotional exposure”
Think about the vulnerability it takes to love someone – whether it’s your parents, siblings, spouse or close friends. Love is filled with uncertainties and risks.
As Brown notes, the person you love might or might not love you back. They might be in your life for a long time or they might not. They might be terrifically loyal or they might stab you in the back. Think about the vulnerability it takes to share your ideas with the world, not knowing how your work will be perceived. You might be appreciated, laughed at or downright skewered. Vulnerability is hard. But what can make it even harder — needlessly so — are the inaccurate assumptions we hold about it, like vulnerability is being weak, some of us don’t experience vulnerability or that to be vulnerable you must spill all your secrets. Vulnerability embraces boundaries and trust. Vulnerability is about sharing our feelings and our experiences with people who have earned the right to hear them. Being vulnerable takes courage. But it’s worth it. It’s worth it to be ourselves, to connect to others”
1063995_10151771447896264_2140838735_o

Be Creative-Learn-Imagine-Play
Pick a hobby or recreation that you enjoy as it will balance out daily stress. This is one of the most important aspects to happiness in my mind and is also one of the most important aspects for healthy relationships. It is vitally important to continue or find your creative centre for your relationships to thrive. When you feel fulfilled and expressing yourself creatively it will keep your relationship sparkling with enthusiasm and inspiration too.
Learn something new every day-Whenever we learn something new, including new attitudes, perspectives, or behaviors, we are changing the physical structure of the brain. Educate yourself, your mind and your spirit and you will feel happier and your relationships more fun and fulfilling.

 

"respond to every call"

Be Curious
We are all born curious, it is a natural quality we all possess. Curiousity is what makes us humans learn to crawl, seek, taste, see, experience, create, philosophize, dream, explore, change. Curiousity is foundational to all creativity and is an essential principle to creating successful relationships.
Why you might ask? Well if you aren’t curious in life and love then you limit yourself to only what you know already. That will be the limit of your experience and understanding. To seek to understand more is an exceedingly important quality in your relationships because we can never truly understand another persons experience without delving deeper. It is important to not believe we actually know what anyone else is experiencing and to be ever so gently open and non-judgmentally curious.

I believe it is invaluable to be deeply interested in what another person is trying to express with no agenda other than to understand, and in turn being deeply curious about yourself, what you are feeling and what you need to express as well.

Being curious shows that you care, that you are interested; that how the other person feels is important to you and that they are important to you.

While being curious you need to be able to listen without judgment or interrupting. Listening means to be silent and that your brain is entirely engaged with the other person’s experience and how they are feeling as they struggle to express what is going on for them, while also being mindful of your own feelings and responses. Being curious means you ask questions that show your interest in learning more such as:
What is that like? What happened? How do you feel about that? What happened? How do you feel? What is important about that to you? What do you need? Can you help me understand? How can I help?

curious

Be Truthful
As Don Miguel Ruiz says “be impeccable with your word” Tell the truth, don’t tell people what they want to hear or what you think you should say, be honest about what you think, how you feel and what you need however choose your words carefully and follow the golden rules of Connection Point communication.
1. Choose your intention (what you hope will happen)
2. State what happened without criticism or judgment
3. Share how you feel (anger is not a feeling)
4. Explain what you need and value
5. Ask for what you would like to see happen

truth

Be Appreciative
In my experience in life, personally and professionally, it seems to be such an important ingredient to feel APPRECIATED and to have HOPE of that eventuality, which to most of us equates to feeling LOVED.

I am convinced that one of the main reasons relationships break down is because of this lack of feeling APPRECIATED, whether it is a couple, family, friend or professional relationship.

Our level of satisfaction and fulfillment will undoubtedly suffer because of a lack of appreciation. The majority of people who look outside their relationships, look for new jobs or a change in circumstances, generally are looking for appreciation, wanting to feel valued, understood and a connection for which they feel is lacking in their current relationships or situations.
It really doesn’t take a lot to show APPRECIATION, which is a close cousin to good old-fashioned manners. Psychology teaches us that people are motivated to contribute to the greater good and feeling appreciated and valued for what we contribute is the currency for feeling fulfillment and happiness. It doesn’t mean that we need to have appreciation to contribute; it just means that it can be more fulfilling, meaningful and ensure our continued interest in contributing if we do.
I really value knowing I made a difference in someone’s life and am far more motivated by APPRECIATION than money 🙂
I believe APPRECIATION is a very important human need and I think we can all forget to show our appreciation for others and fall into the trap of taking our relationships for granted.
So if LOVE is an ACTION word and APPRECIATION is the currency for fulfillment, how are you going to show your appreciation to others today.
I will show

Let have an appreciation-day
Here are some suggestions.

  1. Notice and acknowledge a job completed
  2. Say thank you to someone for the difference they make in your life, even the little things, because the little things are really important. (I think I may not have thanked my husband for bringing me tea in bed every morning)
  3. Doing the APPRECIATION exercise. Three things I really appreciate about you today is……….and this works great with your children (or employees) and helps build their confidence, self esteem and their trust in their value to their community or family in the case of ones children
  4. Do something for someone without expectation of anything in return
  5. Give positive feedback ie: Wow the dinner is amazing. Thank you for making it for us or thank you for ensuring those emails got out or….
  6. Send a card to thank someone for something you really value they do or did for you
  7. Hug people you care about, hug people just because…..
  8. Say I love you and WHY you love them, not just the 3 words but add what it is about them that you value, admire and respect.
  9. Call, text or email just because you want to positively connect
  10. Notice all the jobs that get done and mention that you noticed
  11. Leave a note of appreciation for someone to find. It’s called A NICE NOTE!
  12. Use reflective listening so others know you really heard them

Go be happy and create positive connections and change your relationships one conversation at a time.

loveLove Mheyah ♥
Please connect with me at
www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com

facebook@connectionpointcentre
twitter@mheyahbailey
instagram@mheyahbailey
pinterest@mheyahbailey

Find out more about Mheyah

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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BOUNDARIES & THE CHAMPAGNE DILEMMA

Successful Communication Made Simple Series by Mheyah Bailey
also published on Metro LivingZine

The last couple of months we have been discussing what it means to be “Fiercely Accountable” This topic fits under the principle of Consciousness in the 5 Simple Steps for Successful Communication. Consciousness or awareness if you would rather is one of the fundamental qualities one needs to be a Stellar Communicator. When we talk about Consciousness I suggested that all healthy and successful relationships personally or professionally start with knowing yourself first and this is an important truth.
This week we will be discussing; to be Fiercely Accountable one must be able to tell others what you need and value and that means setting clear boundaries honestly and compassionately.
In our series so far we have discussed the principles and qualities one needs to be a great communicator and are learning what it takes to actually action these principles. We have chatted about the 5 principles that are necessary for stellar communication, Consciousness, Compassion, Curiousity, Courage and Commitment and we have also briefly touched on the 5 Simple Steps for Successful Communication: Intentions, Observations, Feelings, Values, Requests.

So we are moving on to setting boundaries and what that really means. Simply put, it means drawing a line in the sand and saying: this is me, this is who I am and this what I need and value.
Draw a Line

Boundaries are limits that you establish within yourself and express to others what’s acceptable to you, what’s not acceptable, what you’ll tolerate, what you’ll put up with and what the consequences are if your boundaries are crossed.
Boundaries have to do with your own self-respect, your self-esteem, your beliefs, your preferences, what you need and value and is truly being your most authentic and honest self.
Someone with healthy, established boundaries, for example, can and will say ‘NO’
So, if you have healthy established boundaries, you are comfortable saying ‘NO’ 
You don’t become stressed, or anxious or worry about it. If something’s not right for you, you can say ‘NO’ compassionately and collaboratively. If you can’t say “NO it can be a challenge to learn but is an important principle in any successful relationship.
A person with healthy, established boundaries can take responsibility for their own feelings and behavior. They don’t blame others for how they feel and don’t take on the role of victim. This is being Fiercely Accountable or even I would go so far as to say “Radically Responsible”

Fences

It is essential for any successful relationship that both individuals are able to clearly and compassionately communicate their boundaries to get their own needs met.  The ability to do this creates a healthy strong foundation for both people where they can trust each other to speak honestly and truthfully taking any guess work out of the equation.
It seems whenever I am inspired to write something it inevitably shows up in my life right in that very moment and I am reminded to live life through my principles and not compromise myself which can be the danger if I lose sight of my commitment to being Radically Responsible.

So not only did something completely personal show up about setting boundaries but also people started sharing their own stories where they need to set boundaries and show up with their truth, which I will share with you to illustrate what I mean.

This is a brief example of how relationships can be impacted by years of not sharing what you need and want and being clear with someone.
I am calling it the “Champagne Dilemma” 

Champagne

A friend of mine was sharing with me how he does not get on with his sister and as usual my curiosity compels me to enquire “in what way does he not get on with his sister” He started to explain that she doesn’t adhere to certain standards and when he arrives for some celebration or another, the champagne will be warm and in his opinion the food is less than optimal for a classy occasion. He believes certain standards are important when entertaining and this level of inattention to what is important to him has caused a rift in his relationship with his sister and he is unwilling to even visit anymore. Now when I heard this story I asked him, as one does, if he had considered mentioning how he feels about this to his sister. Of course the answer was a big NO, he would never want to upset his sister by telling her how he feels, but instead he has let it impact his relationship with her and they are not close as they once were. Now to be fair my friend is a foodie and owns 3 restaurants so you can see why this would be important to him and you can imagine my wonderings all the way home about this situation. Hope you can see where this is leading.

This is more about sharing ones preferences than needing to draw a line in the sand but it does illustrate how not sharing can be a doomsday for any relationship.
If my friend was compassionately clear about his preferences for chilled champagne with his sister imagine all the possibilities for better understanding of each other, which creates friendship and intimacy and hopefully a good laugh at our humanity at the end of the day.
He could suggest he bring the champagne and food to support his sister in creating the occasion. He could gently say, oh I see we have champagne again, I love champagne, would you mind if I throw it in the freezer to chill for a bit. I love my champagne a wee bit chilly LOL
The possibilities are endless as to how this could be resolved so my friend gets his needs met for what he values, and also preserve and possibly improve the connection between him and his sister (who I am sure is a lovely lady who just doesn’t think about the champagne in the same way her brother does) Can you think of any solutions that you would use?

To be Radically Responsible means my friend would own that this is his issue not his sisters and it is up to him to resolve it and to really look at his own response to the issue. I have this great formula I use when I have an issue come up. It really helps me identify what is going on for me and helps me see what I need or value and if I need to share how I feel or I need to work on my own ‘stuff’. Going through this exercise helps me discern what is my responsibility and what is someone else’s.
I look at the situation and ask myself three questions:

  1. What am I judging? Really don’t want to judge others.
  2. What am I resisting? Yup, that means I am resisting what is real and not accepting what is the truth in that moment.
  3. What am I attached to? Have to say life is way better when I am not attached to ‘stuff’ and ‘outcomes’ This is when I need to remind myself to TRUST. Trust in whatever is important to you.

boundaries-1 I think we all can sometimes fear that we may be rejected or cause upset if we express an opinion or ask for something we need and want. It’s a lovely quality to want to please someone you care about or work with, but some people don’t think they have a choice and saying “no” causes them anxiety and fear.. This can be called co-dependent behaviour however is not a behaviour that only co-dependent people engage in. Some people, co-dependent or not have a hard time saying “No” to anyone. They go out of their way and sacrifice their own needs to accommodate other people.

Boundaries make a divider between what is your responsibility and what is someone else’s responsibility, and that applies not only to your body, money, and belongings, but also to your feelings, thoughts and needs. That’s where a lot of people get into trouble by having blurry or weak boundaries. They feel responsible for other people’s feelings and problems or blame their own feelings on others. It takes a lot of courage to set a clear boundary and then follow through in the face of the fear of potential consequences and equally some people have rigid boundaries, are closed off and withdrawn, making it hard for other people to get close to them.

So if you are unable to speak up and set healthy boundaries from a loving place, I would recommend you learn how. Speaking your truth is a loving courageous act to oneself and another and could save your partnerships in your life and create more authentic and honest connections with everyone. I believe it is our purpose in life to become our most authentic selves so we can better share our gifts with each other personally, professionally, globally, changing the world one conversation at a time.

loveLove Mheyah ♥ 
Please connect with me at www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com
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Life & Love is all in the Details


Successful Communication Made Simple Series by Mheyah Bailey
How Curiousity is one of the 5 Important Principles for Creating Amazing Relationships

How can we make everything in life truly amazing? How can we create Radical Relationships with intensity and passion that are truly an authentic expression of our individuality and our togetherness? It is all in the details.

I just spent a fabulous week in France taking in and enjoying all the sensorial delights and ambiance of the beautiful countryside, villages, history and all of details that make up a truly inspiring French lifestyle, from the simple salutations in every shop, to expressing oneself with hand gestures, kissing on both sides of the cheek, dining al fresco with the silverware and good china, the je ne sais quoi of the fashionista, food grown in the garden or shopped for in the market, music and fragrances of walnut oil and honeysuckle in the air, the curiosity and gratitude for the joie de vivre. Sigh…….DSC_3040
As I was planning this article about the importance and benefits of curiousity in our relationships and lives, it dawned on me this week that life and love is all in the details and a curious mind is a necessity for finding the details, the nuances, the deeper meaning and enjoyment of anything. Curiousity creates an intimate connection with people and life.

I love writing and coaching about love, life and happiness and hope that you will use all the information I share with you to make your life more fulfilling and purposeful and that it helps you create amazing relationships full of connectedness and passion with your partners and in life. It really is all in the details.
If we are to Create truly Successful Relationships and a fulfilling life we need to understand that curiousity is one of those important principles that will help us define the details, so we can uncover the meaning and importance of deeper understanding through authentic discovery. Without using the gift of curiousity we will live a life of mediocrity and miss out on a deeper and more meaningful understanding of oneself and true intimacy with others.

Socrates said “an unexamined life is not worth living”

In the series for Creating Successful Communication we have been discussing what it means to actually integrate the 5 Principles for Successful Communication. We have discussed what it means to be Conscious and how we can become more aware of our responsibility in our lives and the impact we have personally, professionally and globally.
I believe that Compassion is an essential principle for any healthy relationship, which you can read about HERE.
truth

Going forward we are going to delve more into the principles Curiousity, Courage and Commitment, so hopefully you will see the positive benefits those qualities can bring to your life and relationships.

So what does it mean to be CURIOUS?

CURIOUS:[kyoor-ee-uhs] ADJECTIVE: eager to learn, understand or know; to be inquisitive, arousing or exciting speculation, interest, or attention through being different or unknown; an inquiring open mind interested & seeking to know and understand; to wonder.

We are all born curious, it is a natural quality we all possess. Curiousity is what makes us humans learn to crawl, seek, taste, see, experience, create, philosophize, dream, explore, change. Curiousity is foundational to all creativity and is an essential principle to creating successful relationships.

Why you might ask? Well if you aren’t curious in life and love then you limit yourself to only what you know already. That will be the limit of your experience and understanding. To seek to understand more is an exceedingly important quality in your relationships because we can never truly understand another persons experience without delving deeper. It is important to not believe we actually know what anyone else is experiencing and to be ever so gently open and non-judgmentally curious.

In a previous article I wrote how curiousity will benefit your relationships:

“I believe it is invaluable to be deeply interested in what another person is trying to express with no agenda other than to understand, and in turn being deeply curious about yourself, what you are feeling and what you need to express as well.
Being curious shows that you care, that you are interested; that how the other person feels is important to you and that they are important to you.
While being curious you need to be able to listen without judgment or interrupting. Listening means to be silent and that your brain is entirely engaged with the other person’s experience and how they are feeling as they struggle to express what is going on for them, while also being mindful of your own feelings and responses.

It is helpful to stop yourself from knowing or assuming anything. It means that you remain an open blank slate without making assumptions that you already know and understand what others are trying to express.
Curiousity means that you are remembering that none of what is being said is personal and means you are LISTENING INTENTLY to what is being said, what is happening, what has caused the happy feelings or upset, what the other persons values are, what is important to them and how they want or need something to be different so they will be happier and your relationship will improve, personally or professionally.
This is an important detail about curious conversations; ask questions that help define what is needed, what is important to the other person and why.
Nothing in the world is done without meeting a need and defining what others need is what builds connection and compatibility. A need could be as simple as desiring more tidiness, help with dinner or as fundamental as wanting to feel more respected, but all worthy of our time, curiousity, compassion, cooperation and collaboration to resolve.
It is so important to check out what is going on for another person, make sure what you heard is what was intended, and do your best to understand what is important, what they need and are asking for.  Curiousity builds trust if you are truly seeking to understand someone else with an open compassionate heart.

If you can stay curious even in times of stress, you are on the road to positive healthy relationships. Curiousity helps you stay present to what is happening, what is trying to happen and collaboratively decide what needs to happen going forward. Being curious about the people we are in relationships with, how they experience life, understanding and appreciating their perspective is the key to love in personal relationships and builds collaborative professional relationships creating an unbreakable bond of positive connection and mutual respect”

It is important to reflect our understanding back to people so they know we have understood their answers. It is simple to repeat back what you think you have heard which lets the other person hear you were really listening and understood the details and nuances of what was being said. If we inadvertently missed out any important parts then our “curious minds” can remain open to further information that clarifies what the other person is trying to convey.
Questions can often times sound judgmental or like a criticism so it can be helpful to not use the word “why” but instead to use open questions that start with “what” and “how”:

What happened?
What is that like?Speaking
How do you feel?
What is important about that to you?
What do you need?
Can you help me understand?
How can I help?

There is a caveat to curiousity that I believe is important to mention as your curiousity must be connected with your awareness of yourself and is not meant to be an interrogation from fear or judgment. That is why authentic curiousity takes practice and an attitude of “open hearted wanting to understand” rather than fearful interrogation. I hope you can understand the difference and realize that sometimes we all need to monitor ourselves and that curiousity must have no other agenda than seeking to know more or to understand better with the intention to create positive connection.
With every connection we make it can be so useful to ask if you are creating positive connection or disconnection.

When I say that happiness in life and love is in the details I really mean it is in the details. We mustn’t just accept a superficial limited perspective if we want to feel happier and have more intimate connections to our partners, our friends and colleagues. Humans are complex individuals and attending with non-judgmental open hearted curiousity we can strive to understand people in a more authentic meaningful way.
Curiousity can help you achieve more connection by inviting more detailed information. As humans we present ourselves, our conversations and concerns about 6 layers above where the more meaningful truth is, which means the majority of the time we are not necessarily attuned to what is really driving our complaint or concern.
It is a gift of our time and presence to be curious, whether someone is experiencing a happy moment or a trauma. The impact is priceless as your simple presence and curiousity makes others feel appreciated and important and is that not after all what we all need in life; to love and feel loved. Curiousity is a loving act and love is in the details.
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It isn’t only important to be curious about others but equally as important to be curious about yourself. According to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs it is one of our main human needs to grow and evolve, and how could we achieve that if we did not use our curiousity. To be curious about oneself is one of the most important qualities we need to create a purposeful and fulfilling life. It is in seeking and clarifying the details of our own needs and values that compels us to live a more authentic expression of ourselves creating more purpose and fulfillment and happy peaceful relationships. How could we discover what is important to ourselves without curiousity? We couldn’t.
It is the act of asking ourselves the important questions that wakes us up and gives us choice to create the life we really want. Curiousity is about defining your dreams and goals and then making a conscious choice to pursue your life with gusto and passion. This is a big conversation best left for the next time but in the meantime I hope you can see the value of curiousity for your life and all your relationships.

Try it out and see what happens. I look forward to hearing what impact curiousity has in your life.

Love Mheyah 
Please connect with me at
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“5 Simple Steps to Successful Communication”

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The Biggest C-Word-COMPASSION


Successful Communication Made Simple Series by Mheyah Bailey
Also published on Metro LivingZine

COMPASSION IS ESSENTIAL FOR QUALITY RELATIONSHIPS
This is lesson #2 of a series I am sharing with you over the next few days and weeks on the key elements that are the foundation for excellent communication. I am hoping that you will be able to use the tools in some way that benefits you and makes a difference in your life.
The reason I believe communication to be so important and valuable is it the most relevant way we have to truly connect with others. Communication is made up of many parts, our words, how we say them, our body language and tone. If we all truly learn the Art of Positive Communication we will experience less conflict & misunderstandings in our lives and a lot more cooperation, appreciation and loving harmony, personally, professionally and globally. Communication is an equal opportunity skill that will improve our intimate relationships, create healthier families, communities will be more collaborative, corporate values will shift and nations more united.
I do like to say that being a stellar Communicator is really all about lots of “C” words, Curiousity, Consciousness, Compassion, Connection, Collaboration, Control, Consideration, Care.

So what is COMPASSION?
COMPASSION: (kuhm-pash-uhn) NOUN: a feeling of deep empathy, care and understanding for another who is upset, hurting, in pain or stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to care for and alleviate the suffering. It means to have heart.

Heart in HandWe all need to learn to have an endless well of compassion if we are to improve our connections with others, which in a lot of cases means we need to suspend judgement, our own self talk and reactivity. Empathy and compassion are the underlying premise of all positive connections and conversations and is the cord between hearts. Compassion is different than sympathy and is simply the ability to remain in an open loving heart and be with someone else’s pain even when it is sometimes directed at you. This can sometimes be difficult to actually achieve, however it is vitally important to any relationship.
For any successful healthy relationship both parties need to feel heard, understood, appreciated and accepted, however resolution when there are differences or conflict is a process that sometimes cannot happen immediately, but happens over some time, hours, days or weeks. We sometimes have to be patient with the process. When someone is experiencing upset they may not have the capacity for compassion in that moment and that is why it is so important for any of us to have an endless well of compassion for the person who is experiencing some strong feelings, whatever the cause, even if you are the cause. In our family we call our upsets “big feelings” and we all know when there are some “big feelings” happening that it is our time to bring on the compassion, attentive listening and care for the person having the ‘big feelings”
To have compassion and remain compassionate can be difficult sometimes if those “big feelings” are directed at you, however this is where it is vital not to take anything personally, stay calm and remember that any upset is more about the other person than it is about you. I am also not advocating that you stay in any abusive situation but I am saying that compassion is the antidote to upset, pain, hurt and conflict.
"love and heart connection"

It is a natural human response to feel defensive or on guard when someone’s pain, hurt, upset or a complaint is directed at us, however this is where the rubber meets the road so to speak in any conflictual interaction, and where we all must learn NOT to take someone else’s pain on, don’t take anything personally no matter what, and to remain in our compassionate heart, because that compassion is the glue in the relationship, whether it is a personal or professional relationship.
I often used to say to my husband when I was upset that the only action required was for him to have compassion for me in those difficult moments. Nothing else, just compassion. Trust is built on compassion because it makes others feel important and valuable and that you care about their well being.
Another point that is important to remember about being compassionate is it allows the other person to take responsibility for their own feelings and work through to the deeper issues. It allows all of us the opportunity to let others be responsible for themselves, not try to fix them or the situation, or be codependent ourselves. The beauty in this is it allows for you to be an integral part of someone else’s personal growth. What you are creating in that moment is a strong connection, an intimate bond in our common humanity to heal and grown in our aspiration for acceptance and love.

You will also need to learn to reflect back what is being expressed and how it makes sense to you knowing the other person (more on that in later issues) Compassionate Reflection is the action required after someone has shared with you, so the other person knows you have heard and understood what they have communicated. It is a simple summary of what you believe you heard the other person saying which gives them the opportunity to agree or adjust the message or to continue in more depth.
I believe that the pursuit of love, appreciation and acknowledgement is probably one of our most fundamental human needs and motivators. I can’t say enough about COMPASSION as it is my belief that it is the foundation for all positive human interactions and what really connects us all heart to heart.
So I would like to invite you this week to notice opportunities to engage in some Compassionate Listening & Reflecting and to remember to give yourself some compassion, love and caring too. Let me know how you did. I would love to hear your experience.

Listen HERE to The Buddhist Monk, Thich Nhat Hanh on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday short sharing on Compassionate Listening or read Dr. Marshall Rosenberg’s books on NVC-Compassionate Communication

loveLove Mheyah ♥ 
Please connect with me at 

www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com
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SUCCESSFUL RELATIONSHIPS START WITH YOU


Successful Communication Made Simple Series by Mheyah Bailey
Also published on Metro LivingZine

Over the next few weeks I want to share with you the importance of improving our communication. It all starts with learning more about ourselves rather than anything else, and I want to look at that in more detail with you so you can get a better idea of the steps it takes to be a stellar communicator.
Now the reason I believe this to be so important is that if we can all learn to express ourselves from a deeper understanding of what we want and need, and why we want and need it, then truly we will all experience less conflict & misunderstandings in our lives and a lot more cooperation, appreciation and loving harmony.
I believe that communication is an equal opportunity skill for all areas of our lives, whether personal or professional and is a skill that will improve our intimate relationships, families will be healthier, communities more collaborative and nations more united.
I do like to say that being a stellar Communicator is really all about lots of “C” words, Curiousity, Consciousness, Compassion, Connection, Collaboration, Control, Consideration, Care………..no I wasn’t thinking Chocolate, but having said that isn’t everyone more agreeable when eating chocolate? LOL
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So for today we are going to start with the “C” word Consciousness which really is only a trendy new age word for personal awareness so don’t let the word scare you off the good information.

So what does being CONSCIOUS mean?
CONSCIOUSNESS: (kon-shuhs-nis) NOUN: to understand the deeper meaning of what you think and feel
It is about really noticing and becoming aware of your own feelings, reactions and responses. Relationships are inside work and the people around us are only triggers for us to notice how we are feeling, what has made us feel that way, what values are being prodded, what needs are being compromised, what story are we telling ourselves about an event, comment or conversation.

Our reactions and feelings are entirely made up from what we think and the perspective we have told ourselves about it. I do love to say “don’t believe everything you think” and the reason is that what we think is shaped by our past experiences good and bad. If we don’t have a thought then we won’t have a feeling or reaction, and that feeling is most likely based on thoughts that are probably not unbiased thoughts, but a collection of conclusions we learned since childhood and through past hurts where we have learned to deny our needs, values and primary emotions.
For instance one person can hear a comment or view an event completely differently than you, based on your different experiences with the words, what happened, where they were said, how they were said, the context etc and both of you could easily draw up completely different conclusions, neither right or wrong, just different.
Your job is to notice what story, or tape you have running in the background that filters all the messages you get from others. Once you notice your thoughts and the FEELINGS that come up from the interaction you can get clearer on what those FEELINGS mean to you. I know I am using the “F” word but seriously our FEELINGS are our barometer for what we really need and value and when we are able to tune into them we have done the first part to learning how to communicate better with the purpose of living more authentically & truthfully with ourselves and others. The impact of being able to do this is you will be able to live your life more in line with your real needs and values not from the unconscious drivers from the past.

The intention of the consciousness exercise is to then be able to express how you feel to another person in a calm and clear way, which in turn builds connection, trust and a greater understanding between you, BUT that is for another lesson, so for now as we explore all aspects of communication I would like to invite you to NOTICE what you FEEL when something or someone is “triggering” you and what thoughts or story came up before you had a reaction. Work backwords. Do your best to just be aware of yourself and we will talk about how to share it with others later on in the series.

To learn more about emotions and feelings here is an excellent article to help you CLICK HERE

loveLove Mheyah ♥ 
Please connect with me at 

www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com
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Creating Successful Relationships


Successful Communication Made Simple- A Series of Conversations

by Mheyah Bailey

“the quality of our relationships determines the quality of our lives”

This is the beginning of a series about how we can all Create more Successful Relationships. At Connection Point Centre we believe that excellent communication can be learned and is the key to living happy, loving and successful lives. This is where I believe we can change the world, positively connecting, personally, professionally and globally, one conversation at a time.


"connect"

Studies show that 85% of our happiness & success in life can be directly attributed to our communication skills

The atmosphere of all our relationships is determined entirely on our ability to communicate and how we exchange ideas, thoughts and feelings, how we manage our own reactivity, appreciate others’ perspectives, listen, solve conflict and express our own needs and values. How we communicate controls what our lives are like and whether we feel happy, fulfilled, have loving relationships and are successful personally and professionally, or whether we experience conflict, disharmony, disconnection, unhappiness and feel misunderstood, unfulfilled, alone and unappreciated.

Every day we live and work with other people who have different opinions, values, beliefs, and needs than our own, so having the ability to communicate effectively with others is what will create more love, happiness and success in all areas of our lives.

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I believe that as human beings one of our most basic needs is to be heard, understood, appreciated, feel loved and bond with others, and that learning how to express our beliefs, thoughts, feelings and needs is as important as water and breathing. Learning the fine art of communication earlier in life would mean that many of us would have been able to avoid a lot of pain in our lives from the lack of understanding ourselves and each other.

The act of communicating not only involves the words we choose, but how we say the words, our tone and body language. Our use of language and being mindful of a desired outcome has tremendous power in the type of atmosphere that is created during moments of emotional conflict. Words that are critical, blaming, judgmental or accusatory tend to create resistance and defensiveness that is not conducive to productive problem solving or loving respectful connection. On the other hand, we can choose words that are softer, more positive and compassionate and have an element of personal responsibility that will lead to clearer understanding and positive loving connection.

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The truth is relatively simple and successful communication requires that we state our point of view, our feelings, values and needs as succinctly and as clearly as possible with a foundation of copious quantities of heartfelt authenticity and compassion.

Are you experiencing conflict with your partner, your children and your colleagues at work?
Are you feeling misunderstood and not appreciated?
Do you want to feel more loved?
Do you not feel happy and don’t even know why?
Do you feel blamed and criticized?
Are you not enjoying life?
Is your partner distant and unresponsive?
Are you not where you want to be in your career?
Are you feeling unfulfilled and purposeless?
Do you not know how to ask for what you want?
Are you afraid to speak up for yourself? 

“If you do what you have always done you will get what you have always got”

Speaking

I believe there are 5 principles that are necessary for stellar communication, Consciousness, Compassion, Curiousity, Courage and Commitment which we will discuss in greater detail in the series and I will also share with you
the 5 Simple Steps for Creating Successful Communication: Intentions, Observations, Feelings, Values, Requests.
The place to start learning how to become more successful in your relationships is by getting to know yourself better, becoming conscious of the impact you have on others and becoming personally responsible for your part in any interaction, learning to manage your emotions, anxiety and reactivity. Combine all that with stellar communication skills and you can create the life you have always dreamed of personally, professionally and globally.
10 Reason to Improve Communication

Connection Point Centre specializes in teaching communication skills that create connection and harmony, resolves conflict, improves relationships through heart to heart conversations, team building through authentic expression and collaboration, coaching dynamic cultures and creating more love, happiness and success in all areas of your life.

“What I want in my life is compassion, a flow between myself and others based on a mutual giving from the heart” – Dr. Marshall Rosenberg NVC

loveLove Mheyah ♥ 
Please connect with me at www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com

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Compassion, Conflict & Courage


Compassion is the antidote to all suffering
Also published on MetroLivingZine

Well this article has taken me a lifetime to write. It really amazes me as I said in an earlier article that as soon as I have an idea of what I am going to share with you it shows up in my life, and this time I don’t mean it showed up lightly, but showed up more like a bull in a china shop, so to speak.

I have used every skill in my toolbox to manage myself in hopes of influencing the situation towards a positive outcome and not create a train wreck.
In fact you might even say I really learned what it means to be “Fiercely Accountable”

It is one thing to learn cognitively what one values, believes and understands about the principles that are important to achieve success, or create happy relationships and a harmonious balanced life, but to actually apply those principles when faced with adversity or conflict is the real test, and does require some real ‘Radical Responsibility” At least it did on my part and also required some integrity to stay in the fire when I actually wanted to run away and hide.

I learned a lot in the past few weeks about myself and feel very humbled and full of gratitude. I don’t feel I would have any right to coach anyone if I had not experienced real human challenges and experienced first hand the huge benefits that can be achieved in life by integrating the 5 Communication Principles that come from connecting with ones own heart, integrity and authenticity. As humans our prime motivator is to love and be loved, and when that is threatened in any way it can seriously test our resolve to remain compassionate, curious and conscious and not dissolve into emotional chaos and fear.
We have been discussing over the past months the 5 Principles for Effective Communication that create successful relationships and we have been delving deeper into each principle and how to develop those abilities and the actions it takes to use them in ones life.
So far we have whittled away at Consciousness and are still learning about Compassion. This week I learned how to use every possible skill I have been taught and integrated into my life over the years and really understood one of the most important aspects of CompassionCompassion really is the antidote to all suffering
Compassion is a Verb

How so, you might ask? Well let me share how so………………
We all want to feel loved, liked, appreciated, valued by our partners, families, colleagues, however as humans we also experience conflict and upset at times.
It is part of the human condition after all, but it is how we manage those challenges that define us to ourselves and to others. My idea of being Radically Responsible means that for me, I show up with heart, authenticity, honesty, integrity, humility, grace and dignity. I do my best, fall down a lot and pick myself up to do my best another day.

This is a story about the process of reaching a compassionate place in the face of conflict. I think it is fair to say that most of our suffering can be linked to our:

  1. THINKING-We shouldn’t believe everything we think because our minds create stories about the meaning of events based on our own histories, learning, judgments, social values, assessments, upbringing, attachments and pre-conceived ideas that have become ingrained neural networks that are hardwired in our brains and are what causes our automatic responses. The interesting part about that is; what you believe is true, is not necessarily true. We create stories by filtering external events through our own experiences and we come up with a conclusion we believe to be true. If we believe that conclusion, whether it is positive or negative, that becomes our truth and is where a lot of our joy comes from, but also a lot of our suffering. We only create feelings based on what we think. Hear that again if you will
    “we only create feelings based on what we think”
    Your feelings are never wrong but your thinking might be less than optimal. Use your feelings like clues to discover what you are thinking. Pretend you are a detective on a hunt to solve the mystery of what you really think. I have learned over many years to let my feelings guide me to clarity about what I am really thinking and then I can assess if it is really accurate or if I am misguided in some way. The other part of our thinking that can get us in deep ‘do-do’ is believing that anything means anything about us, or in other words taking it personally. Nothing anyone says or does really means anything about you and is only their interpretation, through their own filters and life experiences.
    I love this quote “don’t believe everything you think” so am learning to really look at what I think so I can decide for myself if there is any truth in what is happening around me.
  1. FEAR. Fear shows up in conflict by upsetting our emotional balance, disturbing our peace of mind, causing us to go into fight or flight mode, our hearts to race, insecurities to show up, childhood wounds to activate, hearts to hurt, defenses and walls to go up. When this happens it is nearly impossible to respond rationally because our brains are telling us there is danger to our wellbeing and safety. Ultimately safety is one of nine of our most primal needs in life.
    When we feel hurt and upset, wounded and defensive, and are suffering, we are usually afraid of one thing. We are afraid of not being loveable, liked or accepted.
    Conflict usually shows up as criticism, blame, rejection, accusations, name-calling, projections and the FEAR that shows up is that we aren’t safe and that some of it might be true. This again comes down again to what we are thinking and what we believe.
    “If you have a sincere and open heart, you naturally feel self- worth and confidence, and there is no need to be fearful of others-Dalai Lama”

This is where my story starts, and it is important to know that usually, I am a happy, “wear my heart on my sleeve” kind of gal, however occasionally when faced with someone else’s upset randomly projected my way I can became quite unhinged, feel hurt, compassion flies out the door and it can be a while before I get around to some rational thinking and feel more grounded again. I can be “so not” Dalai Lama-ish and am human after all.

I sometimes still filter events through my own challenging experiences from childhood, can become easily shocked, wounded and scared out of my mind.
When I feel accused, judged or criticized I can usually remain grounded and not pulled off centre but sometimes, only sometimes, I am vulnerable to emotional invaders and from my childhood self I wonder if what they say is true and I almost believe it as the universal truth, and on and on my mind goes pulling all the evidence through the lens of all my life experiences from childhood with an abusive alcoholic parent, through my challenging teen years and my experiences with critical parents and partners and I can become completely unhinged me, take it personally and feel hurt. Our brains become hardwired to respond in the way we did when trauma first happens and is why it is so hard to manage ourselves once we are re-triggered. It is essentially the same neuro-wiring as PTSD.

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Luckily the unhinging only lasted for a day or so, because I did one really important thing, something I have never done before, something even after all the years of counseling training I still did not understand, after years of thinking about others first, always trying to resolve things immediately because I was afraid if I didn’t work things out my world would not be safe, I would lose love and connection with those that were important to me and that includes people personally and professionally.
I care about those in my life, I want people to like me and there in is where I sometimes get myself into trouble by being over-responsible and driven to have peace and harmony.
This time I knew I needed to do something radically different than I have done in the past, because this was some serious shit going on. This is not a story about what happened but is about how I managed in the midst of trauma and hope that you too will see the wisdom and benefit I am sharing with you when you feel triggered and upset. This is about the principles one needs to action for more peaceful loving relationships.

So instead of how I would normally manage things, for the first time I gave “myself the gift of compassion” and with giving myself compassion first I gave myself time to work it out for me and not try to fix. I think in that moment I realized that the words Radical Responsibility and Fierce Accountability (still really loving those phrases) really mean honouring ones own truth and experience, owning what is, being deeply honest with oneself and others, rather than denying what is real and compromising oneself in the misguided need to be liked and approved by anyone.

I also realized that not everyone is going to like me and when I gave myself compassion for being human I allowed myself some room to process, how I felt, what I was thinking and what was true for me. I didn’t rush from my ‘fear to fix’ which would not have helped the situation.
Compassion is something I always give away to others. I am a Coach, Counsellor and Consultant after all and compassion is the foundation for my connection with everyone, personally and professionally. Compassion is my religion but what I never understood, never integrated, was I needed to have compassion for myself as much as I do for others. I needed to liberally bathe myself in compassion so I could heal my wounds, create some rational thinking and be able to be my best most authentic heart centered self, so I am ‘able and willing’ to resolve differences in the future.

When I had time to sit with how I was feeling and discern what I was thinking I could then ask myself some good questions:

truth

  1. Was it true?
    I realized what others believe is what is true for them, based on their own perceptions and experiences, and their reaction or beliefs have nothing to do with me. I am only a catalyst for someone’s experience as they are for me, and so on that note I chose not to take anything personally or project my history on that moment.
    Really understanding that anyone’s opinion actually says more about them than me caused me be able to move slowly back into rational thought rather than emotional reactivity.
    I do sometimes wish I had the ability to process faster LOL but that is where some more compassion came in and I told myself I am only human and can only do the best I can at any given time. I can’t fight the truth and pretend I am not upset, I have to “be with” being upset. So hard but I do believe that is why counselors and coaches are so invaluable as support. Most people have a real challenge with ‘being with’ how they feel and it can be invaluable to have someone to support you in some of those challenging processes.
  1. Did I believe their version of me?
    I know cognitively that someone only has the power to hurt me if I believe what they say, and I came to the conclusion that I didn’t believe their version of me. They might, but I didn’t. When I realized that I could really only feel hurt and upset if I believed their version of me, and that I unequivocally did not agree with those assessments, I felt completely different and I returned to balance and contentment almost immediately.

Returning to our normal state of balance allows us to then be able to move into resolution with someone more effectively. For me it meant as I moved through a new level of Consciousness, I started again to feel Compassion, Curiousity, Courage and Commitment in the hope and intention of creating a more successful relationship going forward. It does take two people with the same intention and hope but that is my intention anyway.
“True compassion is not just an emotional response but a firm commitment founded on reason. Therefore, a truly compassionate attitude towards others does not change even if they behave negatively-Dalai Lama”

I am learning to trust myself more and hope that some of what I have written over the past months will support you  to trust yourself, learn more about what it takes to Create Amazing Wonderful Relationships and help you in creating more Love, Happiness & Success in your life. Please read the other articles in the series from the links below if you are interested and do let me know what you think about my ideas, if you have tried implementing any of the principles or if you ever want to connect, ask questions or ask for support.
Next time we are going to look at how to be curious. Hint: it does NOT include the word Why.

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