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DON’T BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU THINK


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

I have been hearing these wonderful terms lately that totally resonate with me. “Fierce Accountability” and “Radical Responsibility” and I just feel their meaning deeply so wanted to talk about what they really mean and have started a new series called RADICAL RESPONSIBILITY which will delve more deeply into the principles and qualities one needs to be a great communicator and how to become radically responsible or fiercely accountable. I want to explore more deeply what it takes to actually action the principles for great communication, how to develop the qualities and make the changes you need to create positive relationships going forward. These steps are what will change your life towards a direction you want, towards more harmonious relationships, more professional success and ultimately a more fulfilling and happy life.

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So far we have nibbled at 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.
Let’s now start learning what each of those qualities needs to grow your skill in that area.
So when we talked about Consciousness I suggested that great relationships start with knowing yourself first and this is a fundamental truth. If you don’t know yourself, aren’t aware of what drives your feelings, don’t know what your needs and values are you will struggle to express to others what is important to you and this goes for any relationship in your life.

One of my most favourite lines is “Don’t Believe Everything you Think” only because it is such a simple truth. Don’t believe everything you think because what you think is not always true. Can you think of things you think that aren’t true? How about I am not good enough, I can’t do that, I am fat, I am too old, they don’t like me and I am sure you can come up with a whole lot more. We know through neural science that how we think directly impacts how we feel.
You may have heard that great line;
WHETHER YOU BELIEVE YOU CAN, OR YOU BELIEVE YOU CAN’T, IT’S TRUE !
Your neural network is the wiring system in the brain that stores automatic responses to ones memories, experiences, learning, social conditioning etc. It is your MIND MAP or your BLUEPRINT so to speak.
Now I imagine that is not a new idea for many of you as it has been all over social media and the news lately but it brings me back to the one line that I really believe is important-THE TRUTH IS SIMPLE
Some of our truths are negative and some are positive and are influenced by the meaning we give to an event, which in turn will determine whether we feel positive or negative feelings. It is true that you can’t have a feeling without a thought first, so if you are feeling less than happy, feeling negative and fearful or are hosting a myriad of negative emotions, you may want to take a look at what you are thinking, what perspectives you are stuck in, what judgments you are having, what you are resisting or what outcome you are attached to. We cause ourselves an endless amount of pain by not digging deep to uncover what the simple truths are in our thinking especially when we are gifted with the ability to change our thinking so we can feel more positive feelings and create happier lives for ourselves.
Understanding our negative feelings as they happen will help us immensely in the long run as we learn to gain clarity about our thoughts, so we can shift our thinking, see new perspectives, find a different truth, refute the old thoughts which in turn will create more positive feelings.
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I have always been interested in NEURO-POSITIVE INTEGRATIVE COACHING which is where neuro-science and positive psychology intercept which put simply means “positive thinking creates positive feelings”  Positive thoughts, interpretations, beliefs, perspectives and ideas EQUALS feelings of happiness, peace, joy, pleasure, acceptance, appreciation………..it is really that simple.

The question is how does one gain the ability to change one’s thoughts, integrate them into a consistent new pattern that will create new positive feelings. The first task is to unpack what you are thinking by listening to your feelings, using them as a barometer for what is true for you in any given moment.
Your feelings are never wrong but your thinking might be less than optimal. Use your feelings like a clue to find the truth. You are 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 what I am thinking is really accurate and true.
I love this quote “DON’T BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU THINK” because truthfully “we think” based on our previous experiences, learning, social values, upbringing and to be honest most of the time those ingrained neural networks are hardwired with outmoded ideas that aren’t true in the moment. It is not as difficult as it sounds and learning to assess our feeling is where the important information about what we think can be found.

think

So lets get rid of that “stinkin thinkin” and trust me I have been stuck many times in a story I tell myself. Usually none of what I am thinking is even relevant or true and has NOTHING to do with me at all. In many cases it behooves us not to question what we believe and ask others if what we are thinking has any basis in truth or not. We could really change our lives if we change our thinking and the stories we tell ourselves about what events mean. It is typically most difficult when experiencing some BIG FEELINGS and we can’t see any other perspectives or a way forward, staying STUCK in our negative feelings. That is where the proverbial TIME OUT can come in handy while you take time to process what is at the heart of the matter or with the support from a coach or counsellor to help you figure out what your mind is really thinking.  Along with many other colleagues I can help you create a new MIND MAP, a new BLUEPRINT so you will feel more peace, joy and happiness, create more success and build positive loving relationships.
MindMapping

NEURO-POSITIVE INTEGRATIVE COACHING says that patterns of positive emotion, once set in motion, are stronger in the long run than negative ones. Simply stated, positive thoughts and emotion over time and practice will overtake negative emotional patterns creating new neural networks. The interplay of positive consciousness, thinking, feeling and awareness over time, with the initial smallest intent, can change the course of one’s whole life.

Challenge what you think, let your feelings inform you about what you are thinking, think 10 minutes everyday of what you appreciate and you will create happiness (The Happiness Advantage) learn to meditate, see a trusted coach or counsellor who can support you with clarity and moving forward, use guided programs to set new positive MIND MAPS & BLUEPRINTS to help you rewire your brain for success and happiness.

TO CREATE A NEW WAY OF THINKING & TO LEARN MORE ABOUT MIND MAPPING OR BLUEPRINTING CLICK HERE

NEURO POSITIVE INTEGRATIVE COACHING believes in the power of the neuroplastic brain to lead clients to a sense of vision and meaning, ultimately guiding them to a sense of personal significance and purpose, which is the centre for happiness and fulfillment in life”

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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Big New Discovery-INTENTION is everything when it comes to successful conversations


Intention is Key to all Successful Communication by Mheyah Bailey
Also published on Metro LivingZine

I have noticed that a lot of communication systems are missing, what I believe is the KEY COMPONENT to having any successful conversation.
I am going to assume, which we all know can be a dangerous thing, that if you are interested in communication and reading this article, that your overall desire is to have less conflict, be more successful, have more positive connections with others, feel happier, be heard and understood, have more loving connections with your friends & family, create win win conversations that are a respectful dialogue in any areas of your life personally or professionally.

With that assumption, I want to share with you that the most important part of any conversation is the INTENTION.

imagesMy INTENTION in sharing this with you, is with the HOPE that I can help you avoid some of the communication errors I have made and the costs associated with not knowing how to communicate effectively. My hope in all my life has always been to create more connection, love and happiness in my relationships, but because no one had taught me the simple steps it took to really be successful at communication sadly I have not always done such a good job. I have learned the hard way, and my biggest hope is that you won’t have to go through a similar long journey I have been on and possibly incur some of the losses I have had.  If I can in some way shorten that path and support you to create more HAPPINESS & SUCCESS in LIFE & LOVE, I will feel I have fulfilled a very important life mission for myself, which is to minimize pain and suffering personally, professionally & globally.

I have discovered after years of conversations not ending with the positive outcomes I had hoped for, I now see that the 
INTENTION is a step not to be missed and is one of the most important steps in any conversation.

We need to go beyond the usual ways of communicating with people and actually state what is important to us about having a particular conversation, especially if you have some feelings you are trying to express, or you are sharing something that you are afraid may cause conflict, upset or pain, or you are hoping for a collaborative response. This is the same whether we are speaking with a loved one, colleague or employee.
Stating an intention at the beginning is where you take responsibility for the reason you need to have the conversation, what you HOPE will happen and being clear about your GOAL by having the conversation. If the other person on the receiving end knows what your intentions are at the outset, then it can help them not react negatively to what you are saying. Stating your intention can build positivity, collaboration and trust. All leaders and good communicators know that to connect and influence one needs to be honest about the reason, goal and hope in having the dialogue.
It sets a positive and collaborative tone.
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NOTHING CAN BE DONE IN THE WORLD WITHOUT HOPE
M.L. KING jr

 

If you are unaware of what you are trying to accomplish before you start a conversation it could end up going sideways.
Asking yourself these questions may help you get clarity on your intention………….
What is important about what you want to say?
Why is it important to you?
What do you need from this person?
What do you HOPE to get by having this conversation? more love, understanding, collaboration, cooperation, connection, knowledge, appreciation, change, success, help or support in some way……………

Stating your HOPE or GOAL is vital because it is reassuring and sets a positive tone. It can be helpful to state that it is your intention to share what you need and how you feel, not to hurt, judge or wound the other person. This is where it is vital to be clear and take responsibility for yourself, your FEELINGS and NEEDS so you don’t inadvertently sound like you are blaming or criticising the other person, and you are being honest & authentic about your feelings, needs and what you are hoping will happen by having the conversation.
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It can be helpful to ask yourself, am I going to create more connection or disconnection, before you speak. I have found that leading a conversation with an INTENTION can make a 100% difference in the outcome. It is vital for you to understand that by stating your intention you are taking responsibility and owning your your part in the relationship.
To learn more about NEEDS CLICK HERE and for a FEELINGS list CLICK HERE

I have discovered that truly successful conversations are made up of
5 SIMPLE PRINCIPLES

Only 5 SIMPLE PRINCIPLES to create SUCCESSFUL CONVERSATIONS and you can change your life creating a life rich in HAPPINESS, LOVE & SUCCESS.
So if 85 % of our happiness and success can be attributed to our communication skills then WOW how easy will it be to change your life with only 5 SIMPLE COMMUNICATION TOOLS

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

 

more about Mheyah

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Have you got Courage?


Courage is the Foundation for Radical Relationships by Mheyah Bailey
Also published on Metro LivingZine

We have talked about 5 Principles that are the foundation for Successful Relationships and what it takes to be a great communicator whether we are talking personally or professionally and we know that being able to positively and effectively communicate with others will determine the quality and success of our lives, relationships, overall well being, happiness and fulfillment.
“According to numerous surveys, approximately 85% percent of our success in life is directly attributable to our communication and relationship building skills. That means that no matter how ambitious someone is or how much they overcome their fears or how high their level of education, they’ll still have a low probability of going far in life without effective communication skills that are needed to really connect with people” Jonathan-Advanced Life Skills

So far we have looked at the value and importance of CONSCIOUSNESS, COMPASSION, CURIOUSITY, COMMITMENT and now we are going to look at how you need COURAGE  to create successful relationships.

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The latin root of the word courage is “cor” meaning heart and it is true
COURAGE TAKES HEART


 COURAGE- COUR-AGE /KUR-IJ/
Noun: The ability to do something that frightens one.
Strength in the face of pain or grief.
Synonyms: bravery – valour – valor – pluck – gallantry – nerve.

COURAGE TO SPEAK-THE COST OF NOT SPEAKING
At this point we must talk a little about codependence and what that means.

Codependency, by definition, means making the relationship more important to you than you are to yourself. It means you’re trying to make the relationship work with someone who’s not. People with codependent tendencies give more value to others than to themselves and compromise their own needs for the sake of others.
The term codependency has been around for almost four decades. Although it originally applied to spouses of alcoholics, first called co-alcoholics, researchers revealed that the characteristics of codependents were much more prevalent in the general population than had been imagined and we all can have some of the characteristics of being co-dependent.

Living this way creates stress and leads to painful emotions such as shame and low self-esteem which creates anxiety and fear about being judged, rejected or abandoned; making mistakes; being a failure; feeling trapped by being close or being alone. The other symptoms then lead to feelings of anger and resentment, depression, hopelessness, and despair. When the feelings get to be too much, people can feel numb by dissociating from the feelings.
Learning to speak up in the face of the fear of the consequences takes a lot of COURAGE to get passed, but it is possible with some effort and commitment on your part to be aware of what and where your fears stem from.

Codependents and lets be truthful, a lot of people not just codependents, have trouble when it comes to communicating their thoughts, feelings and needs.
None of us can communicate anything if you don’t know what you think, feel or need and you can’t speak your truth if you are afraid of what reaction you will get. The other person ends up with a lot of power in the relationship when you are afraid to speak up for yourself and creates a power imbalance. If you are afraid to be truthful because you don’t want to upset someone else, you might pretend that everything is okay which compromises yourself and communication becomes dishonest, confusing and can carry resentment which is exceedingly harmful to any relationship.

Dr. Phil McGraw says “A relationship is only as good as both people getting their needs met” It doesn’t mean that one does and the other is afraid of the consequences of speaking their truth.
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2. VULNERABILITY
Suffice to say that relationships need a lot of courage because 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. In fact more so than a lot of other opportunities to be courageous. 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 my own feeling 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, she says. “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” Brene Brown Article on VULNERABILITY and her famous TED TALK It takes courage to be vulnerable professionally as well as  personally, and again is about living committed to authenticity.

3. BOUNDARY SETTING
People-pleasing is a strategy to meet a need and can go two ways: pleasing others out of fear of rejection if you don’t or pleasing others to feel important.
It’s a lovely quality to want to please someone you care about, 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 are sort of an imaginary line between you and others and divides up 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, especially codependents 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.
It takes COURAGE to learn to be flexible, vulnerable and let people in, however it is one of the essential 5 principles that will support you to create a life full of love, happiness and success

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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We are all Committed to Something


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

So this week we have the wonderful C- Word COMMITMENT.
When I started thinking of writing this weeks blog and after getting some great feedback from lots of people,  I realized that really what we have been talking about so far are qualities and principles. I have been calling them steps, which they aren’t really. Total AHA moment.
What I have now created is a SUPER SIMPLE STEP X STEP SYSTEM that has evolved out of all our conversations about the PRINCIPLES and QUALITIES it takes to be a STELLAR COMMUNICATOR.

It is one thing to talk about the principles one needs to positively communicate but entirely another to see what those steps actually look like and have a guide to learn from.
I realized that a Step by Step System could be really helpful for most people.

I know for myself it would be and thought you might appreciate one as well.

For now, I am going to continue with the 5 PRINCIPLES and QUALITIES.  We have already talked about the importance of CONSCIOUSNESS (fancy word for awareness of oneself) COMPASSION (fancy word for caring) and CURIOUSITY (fancy word for seeking to understand) and for today we are going to look at COMMITMENT
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So what does it really mean to be COMMITTED
COM-MIT-MENT [kuh-mit-muhnt] noun
1. the act of committing: dedicating, pledging, or engaging oneself.

2. a pledge or promise; obligation
3. engagement; involvement; allegiance; dedicated;
4. an act of committing to a charge or trust
5. the state or an instance of being obligated or emotionally impelled
6. being honour bound

There are 3 really important foundational parts to commitment: RESPONSIBILITY, TRUST and super important FOLLOW THROUGH. The really important value about commitment is for the very simple fact as humans one of our core needs is for security and safety, and in our significant LOVE relationships we need safety and security most of all. They have discovered that the relationship we have with our partner is as important a relationship as between a parent and child. Feeling insecure or in doubt about the stability of the connection can leave most people in a fragile state indeed, and this is when communication becomes vital to create the safety that is required for a collaborative loving relationship.

Dr. Sue Johnson creator of Emotional Focused Therapy and the author of a brilliant book Hold Me Tight about attachment theory and emotional connection says:
“We have a wired-in need for emotional contact and responsiveness from significant others. It’s a survival response, the driving force of the bond of security a baby seeks with its mother. This observation is at the heart of attachment theory. A great deal of evidence indicates that the need for secure attachment never disappears; it evolves into the adult need for a secure emotional bond with a partner. Think of how a mother lovingly gazes at her baby, just as two lovers stare into each other’s eyes. 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 he 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 consistant, that you can depend on one another……………this all builds TRUST.
trustThere is a lot more to say on the TRUST topic but suffice to say if you aren’t committed in the ways I have mentioned then TRUST is challenging to earn. I will get into more trust later however the essence is that being committed is essential to building strong relationships , which leads me to RESPONSIBILITY  (great article on Personal Responsibility) which is really the foundation of COMMITMENT and I do have to admit is one of my favourite topics because Personal Responsibility can be the one thing that is the hardest concept to grasp.

We are all 100% responsible for the choices we make everyday, for how we act and behave in any relationship personally or professionally. Being responsible for oneself is a commitment in itself. Hold up your right hand and say “I am 100% responsible for myself, how I act and behave, what I say and do and how I say and do it”
To be reliable and trustworthy takes commitment and what you are committed to shows in your life. Another way to say that, is your life and your relationships are a direct reflection of what you are committed to. We all live in a place of choice and our lives reflect our choices.
If you have a lot of drama in your life then you are committed to drama, if you are committed to love you have loving relationships, I am imagine you get the idea.
I am saying this with the caveat that there are lots of events in our lives we aren’t in control of and that “stuff happens” to all of us that is out of our realm of influence and power.
It can be a challenge to accept a 100% level of responsibility for ourselves, as it is human nature to look outside ourselves for the causes of our challenges, but when we learn to take responsibility and really choose who we want to be, then we have found an important piece to happiness and success.

FOLLOW THROUGH means you will do as you say you will: that is COMMITMENT, and when you follow through consistently you build TRUST, whether it is your special LOVE, KIDS, FRIENDS, PARENTS or CO-WORKERS. So COMMITMENT and RESPONSIBILITY are actions towards improving communication and connection with others.
It may sound like we are only talking about significant LOVE relationships but at the heart of the matter we all need COMMITMENT, TRUST and RESPONSIBILITY in all our relationships personally and professionally.

PLEASE SHARE IF YOU WISH AND TELL ME :  

Change

WHAT ARE YOU CHOOSING TO BE COMMITTED TO?

DO YOU NEED TO TAKE MORE RESPONSIBILITY SOMEWHERE IN YOUR LIFE?

Or please just add your comments and feedback as I am always happy to connect with you

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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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
www.connectionpointcentre.com
or by email at mheyah@gmail.com

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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
facebook@connectionpointcentre
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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

facebook@connectionpointcentre
twitter@mheyahbailey
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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.

Love Mheyah 
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The Act of Compassion

What does it take to be Compassionate?
Also published on Metro LivingZine

Over the past months we have been learning about the 5 Principles for Successful Communication and are delving deeper into what it takes and who we need to be to develop the qualities it takes to embody the 5 Principles which are:
ConsciousnessCompassionCuriousityCourage and Commitment

We are now going to look more deeply at what it means to be Compassionate and how to actually embody Compassion

Firstly what is the definition of Compassion? What does it mean?

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.

Compassion is a Verb

We 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 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 even when it is sometimes directed at you. This can often times 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 even. 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”
It is usually in a moment of conflict or upset that our ability to be compassionate flies out the window, which is entirely human, however is where we need to grow as individuals.

There are a few qualities we need to embrace and embody to be able to be compassionate for others in times of stress.

  1. Don’t take anything personally.
    I imagine you may have heard that expression before as it has been widely publicized in the Toltec book; The 4 Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz, but how do you manage to not take anything personally? Don Miguel says:
    “Nothing others do is because of you.       What others say and do is a projection of their own story. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering. We take things personally when we agree with what others have said. If we didn’t agree, the things that others say would not affect us emotionally. If we did not care about what others think about us, their words or behavior could not affect us. Even if someone yells at you, gossips about you, harms you or yours, it still is not about you! Their actions and words are based on what they believe in their personal story”
    To not take what others say personally is a skill for sure, one that takes time to cultivate but can be managed, and is about really integrating deep down this idea that anyone’s reaction has nothing to do with you and is only about them, what they are thinking, the story they have made up about what an event means, that their response is through the lens and perspective they see the world, from all their experiences, upbringing and education. We are shaped from the moment we are born until the day we die. We have the ability to change our perspectives at any given time, however we can only respond and react with the information we have accumulated at any given moment.
    It is a radical gift to allow someone the space to be in his or her own reality and not take responsibility for their experience or by trying to fix them. When we take things personally we are in essence taking responsibility away from someone and it is a true gift of growth to allow someone to take responsibility for their own experience, feelings and needs.
    It isn’t about you, it is about them, it is never about you and only ever about the other person.
    For me being able to have that perspective helps me not take anything personally. I have come to understand that it is never about me and that there is a lovely freedom in not feeling responsible for others reactions, feelings and responses. This allows us to be open in our hearts and offer compassion and curiousity instead of being caught up in the story, which I believe is foundational for loving connection.

    Compassion is the antidote to upset, pain, hurt and conflict. It may sound easy but can be a real challenge. If you also start to react or if you find yourself taking something personally and making it about you, STOP, LOOK & LISTEN which leads us to # 2.
    It is not you
  2. Listening: Manage your reactivity and listen with heart.
    Listening to understand is one of the most important skills to cultivate if you want to have compassion and excel at communication. Authentically listening means you are in your heart and not in your head rebutting, defending, arguing, stonewalling etc or any other myriad of negative reactions that cuts off connection. When you listen, are curious, reflective and responsive then you are able to have compassion. Listening is ultimately respect in one of its highest forms.
    There is no room for compassion if you are not listening with your heart and I believe that the pursuit of love, appreciation and acknowledgement is probably one of our most fundamental human needs and motivators. To authentically listen, it is important to suspend judgment, don’t assume you know, resist fixing, telling, scolding, sharing your advice or opinions. Just LOOK and HEAR with compassion. I can’t say enough about COMPASSION as it is my belief that it is the foundation for all positive human interactions and is what really connects us all heart to heart.
  1. Being in our heart which to me means, just standing in front of someone BEING THERE with no judgment, our body language open and soft, our brains devoid of chatter but full of love and empathy. Encompassing this quality reminds me of a coaching program I attend and support. One of the first things we are told our only job for the week is “just love the people when they walk in the room” which meant so much to me as a concept and went straight to my heart. An AHA moment one might say.Heart in Hand

Just love people where they are; It is the essence of compassion
Our leader from Choices, Thelma Box is a wise woman, and what she meant was no matter what anyone is bringing to the table, your relationship, your workplace, just love them when they come in the room. That is compassion at work.

So as you learn to cultivate compassion, I would like to ask you, what do you need to do, or NOT do, to be more compassionate?

What do you need to say No to? In my case I needed to learn to say NO to fixing people. What do you need to say YES to? I needed to say YES to embracing vulnerability.
What about you, what do you need to say NO to and what do you need to say YES to?

I also would like to suggest that who you choose to be in any given moment will either give you more of what you want or less, so ask yourself:

Are you choosing more connection or disconnection? Am I creating more connection or disconnection? We are all responsible for our reactions and responses and the outcome is up to us.

Who do you need to be today to get more of what you want in your life?
Love Mheyah

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Email: mheyah@gmail.com

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