Escapism

Sunset  over New York City 4, photo by Dee Fontenot, New York, United Sates, romantic cityLife can be so stressful that at times it does us good to see some movies that classify as codependent drivel. For women otherwise known as romantic comedies where ‘boy meets girl, they fight, then they end up together and live happily ever after’ and we leave the theatre smiling. This is often called a ‘chick flick’. For men the unbelievable action story where they dodge bullets and explosions and still live through, only to have sex with the perfect female star. As long as we remain aware that these movies are purely a form of escapism, then it is harmless codependent drivel.

my friend, Elizabeth, and I went to the movies
and as we considered which film to see
we spoke of our emotional state
I said I felt like watching something light
perhaps some codependent drivel
and we chuckled thinking about it
to this day I don’t remember what we saw
but I do remember us laughing
and leaving with uplifted spirits

sunset over New York city 4, photo by Dee Fontenot, New York, USA, romantic city

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Music, flowers and incense

Romantic, photo by Meliha Gojak, Sarajevo, Bosnia Herzegovina,  romantic symbolsWhen you want to lift your spirits then put on music and use some flowers to decorate the room. Then light some incense, there are different ones that please different people. These items will please three of your senses and whether you have a massage and a special something to eat of drink for the other senses depends on how much cheering you need. These are guaranteed to lift your spirits and make you feel special. Mind you, getting someone to share this with you is excellent but not essential, because on your own you prove that this experience has its merits.

It was Melbourne Cup Day and I had to
go to hydrotherapy instead of the usual
Fancy Hat Luncheon and Cup Sweep
my children phoned to say they had got me
Cup Sweep tickets at their workplaces
so I turned on the TV and for ambiance I
prepared the incense and some music
put on my huge black beach hat
and with half a glass of wine I sat
to enjoy my horses coming first
at that point my black cat Midnight flew out
obviously scared of my black hat but
returned immediately and spent the afternoon
poised opposite me on the lounge, staring
I thoroughly enjoyed myself and
one of my horses came third
that was a first for me
in more ways than one
and my spirits were lifted

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Resentments

That look, photo by Betty Miller, Colorado, United States, http://fireyes.deviantart.com, inner turmoilEvery day we have mixed feelings about different matters. Resentments are strong feelings which we can bury deep within, contaminating our wellbeing. What’s worse is being in denial about doing just that. Resentments are so cunning that we can ignore their existence until it’s too late and we have surprising explosive behaviours. That’s why it’s far better to be in touch with our feelings and own them as being naturally ours, and in doing so they settle down. Then we need to observe their origin and what can be done to resolve this turmoil. The expression ‘befriend our demons’ means finding those feelings which we have suppressed, that have subsequently turned into problematic behaviour, and processing them.

she had long ago ‘befriended her demons’
as a result of intense therapy and
personal and professional development
she took pride in being a guide for others
on similar journeys of enlightenment
but she didn’t notice resentments building up
deep within, in her inner world
on the outside she was busy and happy
but something was not as it should be
she’d gained weight and had an insatiable appetite
it took 3 OA meetings a week to get real
about her buried unwanted feelings of
resentment, self pity, boredom, loneliness
which she was busy avoiding with activities
and for which she had paid the price
fortunately it didn’t take long for her
to tweak her choices back into healthy living

That look, photo by Betty Miller, http://fireyes.deviantart.com

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Soulmate

Amor junto al río, photo by Hernan Herrero, Capital Federal, Argentina, http://www.sxc.hu/photo/364492, loving relationshipSuccessful relationships can take place between people who are not soulmates. This is because soulmates can sometimes be just good friends. Nevertheless, when a loving relationship involves a lover who is also a soulmate then it is considered by some to be ideal. So if you’re searching for the ideal partner make a list of all the pros and cons of such a person – it is important to show both what you want and what you don’t want in a relationship. In doing that you raise your awareness of the type of person that will suit you best. Everything in life needs a blueprint and likewise relationships do too. Make sure that you are meticulous in making your list and then affirm it by thinking positive about finding your soulmate and life partner.

he had been unlucky in his choice of partners
someone who had appeared to be a soulmate
turned out to be codependent hell
he wanted to stop repeating this mistake
his life coach suggested he make a written list
of the likes and dislikes he had about
a future loving relationship
she said it was a phenomenon that worked
but she stressed that he make sure he
does not leave anything out from the list
he laughed because he thought it stupid
but he did it because she’d been right before
about some important things
not long after he found his wife and soulmate
and ten years later they have a life
he wouldn’t have believed was possible
children, security, love, fun and
above all sanity and serenity

Amor junto al río, photo by Hernan Herrero, Capital Federal, Argentina

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Life Strategies Workshop

Smiley Orange, photo by Levi Szekeres, Cluj-Napoca, Romania, stress managementHave you ever reached a stage that you look around and see people around you relating in a superficial manner – plastic and meaningless, dragging you into the same empty space? There are enjoyable ways to bring you back in touch with your true self and your passion which otherwise can just die away. Today I facilitated another Life Strategies Workshop. This one took place in the boardroom at the Crest Hotel at Kings Cross. There were 9 participants and we had fun unwinding from the stresses of life.

Those present already have experience in using effective life strategies and are involved in providing person-to-person services in corporate life. Today was their turn to take the focus off others and put it on themselves. It was also great to have such a good ratio of men and women.

We looked at how to identify different personality types so as to improve communication in the workplace and in personal relationships. Also how to find your passion which is so important to keep you motivated to achieve your goals. Then how to move on after a relationship has ended, with the least possible suffering. All vital life strategies which need honing now and then, no matter how good you are at dealing with life’s ups and downs.

The participants also experienced developing their skills in dealing effectively with a rebellious, difficult person without losing their sanity. For some, such a person is an adolescent child with unrealistic expectations.

Feedback from some participants was along the lines of:

  • more productive than other workshops
  • confronting, yet light and enjoyable
  • very different from what I expected, good work
  • interesting workshop, good group of people
  • enjoyable afternoon, a good learning curve
  • good to be with like minded people and unwind
  • great to refine my negotiation skills in a pleasant way
  • will remember this day for a long while, stress free
  • I liked the lots of humour for change
  • it mapped a path to my goals, back on track
  • more beneficial than I expected, cause I dealt with something new

The venue, atmosphere and delicious food and beverages created a moment in time that busy successful people could really appreciate. This is a reliable method of ensuring that your life is kept on an even keel.

The next Life Strategies Workshop will take place 1-5pm on Sunday January 28th 2007 [changed to February 4th]. So book early as only 9 or 10 participants are accepted.

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Parents

Holding on tight, photo by Julie Elliott, Wichita Falls, United States, caring parentParents can improve or damage a child’s ability to relate healthily. It’s not easy to bring up children. First, our own self esteem needs to be well developed to cope with their phases of transition and testing the limits. Our own moods and behaviour are also mirrored by them and this is sometimes not a pleasant experience, especially when we are in denial about our own behaviour. On the positive side, when children grown up relatively well adjusted and happy, their parents can take the credit for a job well done.

yesterday, my father died 44 years ago
I was 18 years old and his nurturing but firm
parenting skills left me well prepared for Life
thank goodness because
my mother’s behaviour towards me
left me somewhat confused
when she walked out I was 8 years old
and from then on he was both my
father and mother for the next 10 years
creating a safe environment where I learnt much
from his way of thinking and used that method
in the childrearing practices for my own children
also in the way I relate with my grandchildren
this has rippled out to my work as a family therapist
all this from a gentle man with a sense of humour
who valued being a caring parent
I remember him well

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