It’s NOT a Breakdown

It’s NOT a Breakdown

I cried the other day.

Not for any particular reason other than I felt sad … so I took a deep breath and let the tears flow.

It was uncomfortable and not easy at first … I kept breathing and reminding myself “this is a feeling, let it move” and as I allowed myself to feel the feelings, to allow the energy-in-motion, emotion, to move through me, I felt the tears on my face and the ache in my heart.

I became aware of my thinking mind and how tempted I was to tell myself a story about WHY I was crying. I wanted to find a “good reason” to justify my tears and yet I knew, I didn’t need a reason because I was already feeling sad.

Once again I took a deep breath and I reminded myself “focus on the breath and keep letting go … keep letting go … keep letting go.”
After a while my breathing slowed, the tears stopped and I began to feel less constricted … more spacious.

When I reflected on this experience I realised that in the world today we tend to view someone shedding tears (particularly in the public domain) as a “breakdown”. Given the definition of the word means failure, malfunction, crash et al … categorising any public display of tears as a breakdown implies that there is something wrong with the person expressing sadness, pain, hurt, grief hence the oft used “sorry” which accompanies tearful displays of sadness.

Well guess what? I didn’t have “a breakdown”, I let myself feel and let the energy flow and although it was uncomfortable, it was also liberating,

There is nothing wrong (or right) about expressing your feelings. Every human being feels things and the key is to accept that when you feel something, it’s ok to feel it.

Feelings are not facts … they exist to be felt and they let us know what we are feeling about whatever is occurring so we can respond. This means we can change our mind and think something different, we can breathe and allow and let go, we can cry and laugh and sit and be still … and we can feel.

When we can feel, we can heal.

Love Lorna

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An Experience Over Which I Will Never Get …

An Experience Over Which I Will Never Get …

I first heard this after a particularly powerful personal development seminar I attended in 1983.

I didn’t get it.
I just thought it was bad grammar!

Since then I have had numerous experiences that have shown me time and time again what it means … to me.

And nothing I have ever experienced comes close to last weekend.

It was an experience so powerful, so deep and so profoundly loving that it blew my mind.

I had the great honour and privilege to facilitate a client Leadership Retreat over 3 days, with 40 people (mostly men) in the rainforest … in the pouring rain.

My client (coach, colleague and friend) gave me the space and permission to BE all that I am and to DO whatever I chose to DO in Love. Another client/coach (buddy and colleague) held the space in the room and assisted me with everything from tissues to hugs.

I chose to create a liminal space where everyone could make the choice to open up, let go and accept, allow and appreciate all of WHO THEY ARE … whatever happened.

I focussed on BEING rather than doing, a truly ontological space of remembering WHO I AM and WHO YOU ARE and it was wonderful.

I let go of having to do anything in particular or prove anything, or make anything happen and allowed myself to BE there fully … open hearted and willing to say what I saw, to share what I know without any attachment to being right.

The more I opened up and told my truth, the more each and every person there did the same. Old wounds were acknowledged, feelings felt and expressed and then….enormous relief and endless love filled the space time and time again.

I was humbled and moved by each and every beautiful, messy human in the room, myself included.

It took a willingness to feel uncomfortable, courage to sit in the discomfort and the choice to let the energy move and release … and boy oh boy … we did it wholeheartedly!

Blessed I am to BE who I am and DO what I do.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Love Lorna

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Resistance is Futile

Resistance is Futile

This year started with a bang for me … a big unexpected medical event that saw me admitted to hospital not once but twice for a total of 4 surgeries over 14 days. It was shocking and amazing and very, very challenging in many ways.

What I experienced was a roller coaster of feelings … both emotional and sensory yet all the while I KNEW I was ok.

I had a serious infection and yet I had no pain, no fever, no soreness.
I wasn’t sick … I was wounded.
And wounds heal … if I let them heal.
What was required was patience …
I know “infinite patience produces immediate results”.
Yet I felt anything but patient.

I recognised that when I felt angry, upset and/or scared it was because I expected things to be how I wanted them to be and not how they were. I was impatient for things to be different.

For example (and there are many!): At night I expected it to be quiet and dark and cosy so I could go to sleep. Now if you have ever stayed in hospital overnight, it’s not quiet or dark or peaceful. Maybe it would have been different if I was in a private room in a private hospital but I wasn’t. I spent time in Emergency and two different surgical wards, some time in an 8-bed ward and some time in a single room.

What I realised after many long days and nights was that resisting the way it was didn’t help.

First and foremost, it didn’t help my healing. In fact, it did the opposite … while I was spending energy being angry and resisting the way it was, the energy I needed to heal was being used to fuel my anger.

I remembered (again!) that whatever I resit, persists. That when I push against whatever is happening, it pushes back … harder. When I accept what is occurring and allow it to occur, I can then appreciate the purpose and the loving intention behind every single thing that I experience.

Coming home from hospital was a huge relief yet I also knew I had a way to go in my healing process. I have had several months of regular in-home nursing visits as well as follow-up appointments with various doctors and various tests and I have continued to ride the roller coaster … although not quite as often as before.

Now I am nearly at the end of this part of the process. “Only 1mm to go.” said my nurse this week! Being patient during this last little bit is very hard.
I feel well, I have more energy and I think “I should” be doing more …

Then I remember … resistance is futile.
So I choose … infinite patience.

Thank you to all the people at Royal North Shore Hospital who cared for me and were instrumental in my healing process. My surgeons were simply the best and the nurses, support staff and others were there for me all the way. I am so grateful to live in a country where excellent healthcare is available to all. Blessed I am.

Love Lorna

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Say What You Mean and Mean What You Say

Say What You Mean and Mean What You Say

Communication …. a simple word which literally means to share.

Add a few distinctions and things start to get interesting in terms of meaning and understanding and how we share what we share.

Take the current Covid-19 Pandemic in our country and in the world.

So far what I have observed and experienced is a lot of confusion when it comes to getting everyone on the same page with what’s actually happening and what will happen next.

One of the biggest issues is our leaders’ unwillingness to simply say what’s so without spin. And it’s the extra stuff of spin that causes a lot of confusion and often strong feelings rather than clarity and understanding.

I get it.
We are in a global pandemic and we don’t know what we don’t know.

No-one likes uncertainly so rather than say so, we fill up the space with lots of spin and half-truths and stuff that doesn’t help.

If you want people to get what you mean, you need to explicitly and distinctly say what you mean.

If you are afraid to say what you mean, you end up filling the space with a whole lot of words that don’t help to provide clarity or comprehension.

When you are concerned about how people will respond/react to your communication the most powerful thing you can say up front is exactly that … then say what you want to say and say what you mean.

When you attempt to hide your discomfort, when you are not willing to admit you are scared and you don’t know … things get very confused and confusing for everyone involved.

First say the purpose of your communication … give CONTEXT … then you can say all the content. This first crucial step is what many miss in an attempt to get all the content out. And when you fail to explicitly and clearly give CONTEXT then the receiver will simply make up what they think you mean in the gap. Misunderstandings are simply failure to give explicit context and clarity in the first place.

So when you want to be understood, when you want the other (or others) to get what you mean … just say so!

Love Lorna

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Accept Allow Appreciate … Again!

Accept Allow Appreciate … Again!

It’s been a while … and yet it seems like no time at all.
These past few months have felt a lot like groundhog day … and yet everything keeps changing.

And therein lies the challenge and the gift of this time in our history.

Now that we are once again experiencing lockdown in many parts of this country and the world it serves as a timely reminder: Go within or go without.

It is a time of going within, sitting in the discomfort of relentless uncertainty and change and allowing whatever happens to happen. To anchor yourself in love, knowing that who you are is powerful and loveable and valuable and able … able to be and do and respond.

And although it is simple … it certainly is not easy.

As soon as you stop relentlessly doing, doing, doing your thinking ego mind will go into overdrive and you will start to feel things more acutely …

Whatever is there to respond to will show up emotionally and energetically … and for most it is uncomfortable and often fraught with anxiousness and a desire to push away, get rid of those uncomfortable feelings or distract with more doing.

The temptation is to get busy future projecting … planning what to do next, how to create the next thing, how to manage/deal with/handle whatever might or might not occur … and on it goes.

Or attach to the past … replaying scenes and memories of what it used to be like, yearning for the way it was, wishing it would be like that again … and on it goes.

The challenge is to stop … and breathe … and be in your body … here … now.

Accept whatever you are thinking and feeling and experiencing right now …

Allow whatever is happening to occur … let the feelings come and move through you, let the energy rise and release … and it will if you let it.

Appreciate that everything you think and feel is ok and you get to choose whether you agree with the thoughts and feelings and go round and round the hamster wheel … or let them go …

And then … Accept, Allow, Appreciate

Here are two of my favourite poems that capture the essence of allowing … enjoy.

Love Lorna

You do not need to leave your room.
Remain sitting at your table and listen.
Do not even listen.
Simply wait.
Do not even wait, be quiet, still and solitary.
The world will freely
offer itself to you to be unmasked
it has no choice
it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.

– Franz Kafka

When I run after what I think I want, my days are a furnace of stress and anxiety; if I sit in my own place of patience, what I need flows to me, and without pain. From this I understand that what I want also wants me, is looking for me and attracting me. There is a great secret here for anyone who can grasp it.

– Rumi

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