Your life long membership to the Masqueradee

Relationships are my favourite topic when it comes to facilitating people.

Relationships have a lot to do with how we construct our worlds. Our relationships with ourselves, our families, friends and partners. Relationships with colleagues and our communities, and so, I was thrilled when I got asked if “people can fall out of love with a person they claimed to be in love with once”.

I don’t believe we fall “in” love in the first place. I believe we grow in love.

Love is something nearly impossible to explain. It is easier to explain what love isn’t than to qualify what it is. So, to “fall into” something as indescribable as that, seems a hard concept.

People all wear masks. We behave in such a way that we think society has deemed “attractive”. We do this in order to come across as the “ideal” man or woman, we crave to be called “date-able” and then finally achieving “marriage material” as our status.

The problem here is that we can’t keep our masks on forever.

Girl meets boy. Girl and boy like how each other look. Boy gets girls number and then boy messages girl asking her if she is “keen for a drink on Friday night?”

Girl is thrilled and accepts. Boy doesn’t message again that week. Boy is very laid back, hardly plans anything in advance and goes with the flow. Girl is a planner, she enjoys planning ahead to juggle her busy schedule.

It’s now Thursday and boy hasn’t messaged girl to confirm drinks. Girl has heard that boy is the laid back, non-committal type so girl doesn’t want to seem obsessive and “plays it cool”. Girl, keen to get to know boy, waits to hear from boy, passing on plans with her friends for Friday night.

Boy messages girl at 17:00 on Friday asking, “what she is up to?”.

Girl sucks up her frustration and replies in a cool way that she isn’t doing much. A few hours later boy meets her out for drinks and they have a lovely time.

Two years go by as they embark on a lovely relationship, both acting accordingly. Boy does what he is supposed to, to keep girl happy, thinking she is as laid back as him. She is always on the same page as him when it comes to going with the flow.

Until one day…

Girl just cannot take it any longer and snaps at boy for never confirming plans. Girl complains that her life feels out of control as she always puts her plans aside for him to confirm his plans and just can’t do it any longer.

Boy says girl has changed, they battle to work it out. More and more, girl seems to be changing right before his eyes, resulting in boy changing too. Girl, having taken off her mask, is loving getting to her plans again and be herself. The relationship ends as she realises she has “fallen” out of love with boy.

Here we can see, too few people know how to be themselves, shaking off the mask and being happy with who is underneath. If more people hung up or better yet, threw away the mask, we would more easily attract another who truly suits us as we are, and be able to grow in love with them.

Mask or not, people enter our lives to challenge us, this results in growth. Growing with someone is the most beautiful thing and is only possible in the long term when there are no masks in the room. This doesn’t mean growing is easy or pleasant at times but those are the times you can be sure that growth is taking place.

Take off your mask.

Grow in love with yourself, and only then, grow in love with someone else.

Raise your anchor on Rage

Whether its directed at an ex-lover or the person chugging along, skipping left to right in front of you on the highway, rage is something we are all familiar with.

This week I came across someone who had asked “how can I let go of the rage I feel for someone?”. Having recently learnt the value of hoisting up a few anchors, I shared with him this…

The “rage” we choose to feel for a person is a conditioned reaction to something that occurred. For whatever reason, someone did something to you (action) and you responded to it negatively, through what you had learnt was appropriate (reaction).

When we react to anything, it comes from a conditioned space, the sub-conscious, and so is often emotionally charged. This creates an “anchor” effect which is why we are left feeling heavy and the emotion can repeat on us time and time again. The purpose of an anchor is to prevent the ship from moving, while the rest of the ocean continues moving as it naturally would, around it. This is what negatively charged emotions do to our experiences, they prevent us from moving away from them, while the rest of the world carries on as it naturally would, around us.

The sub-conscious is where we store all our programming, good and bad. When the experience sits in our sub-conscious, we use it to navigate through life, adding to it as we go, thus charging it. After falling for the avocado as wasabi trick once, the hesitation pops to mind every time someone says, “try this” holding up anything green in your direction. We do this as a way of learning whether we should seek that experience again and by means of recognising the experience when it is about to happen again.

Every time you see the person who evoked “rage” in you or they are even mentioned, because you’ve created an emotional anchor around that experience and therefore that person, you will feel the rage again.

Hoist your anchor.

Forgiving someone isn’t about condoning their actions or having to like them afterwards. It’s releasing that emotional charge that you have created within you, so you live a better life.

Just think about it, if I bring out a gun like object and you believe it to be a gun, you’ll react in a certain way, charge that and carry that experience. If you believe it to be a water pistol, you’ll react in a different way and carry that charge with you for next time (programming).

Your reaction towards the gun like object doesn’t change what the object is, and the object doesn’t even know what you are putting out there, for the rest of your life, it continues to function the same.

Similarly, when you create rage towards someone, that person remains that person, no matter what charge you create in response to their actions. Your rage will never change them, it will change you, and because you are being kept stuck by your anchor, your dwell time results in you thinking about the experience, charging it and carrying it.

Let it go.

Hoist your anchor, forgive and focus on the present.