Holding Space

Photo Credit: Ulrike Mai
A moment in time to catch your breath

People often ask me what do I for a living; I have such a hard time putting it into words. Holding space comes to mind. We have all heard this phrase from time to time, but what does it really mean?

People come to me and they are holding it all together with sticky tape, or should I rather say glue. It is not that the person is broken, or do not know what to do. They are aware of where they come from and where they are heading. They have done the hard work and deconstructed themselves. All they need is a little time and kindness to let it all sink in; let the glue dry.

Where does the holding of space come in? I create a space where the person can just be, no judgments, no fixing or trying to tell them how to do things. A space where they can run ideas by me. It is not for me to pull them to pieces or go digging. Sometimes the person will ask me if I could help them find a missing piece and we work together to find it. It is always a mutual agreement of what the outcome should be.

The person may appear fragile, but in reality, they are going to be stronger than before the rebuild. The person has already put themself back together. It is just that they need time for the glue to set.

The purpose of holding space is to encourage personal growth. When a person feels safe, while the glue slowly sets and they get use to the new configuration of self; it builds confidence to keep on evolving. As we evolve and reconfigure, we help create a better world.



Photo credit: Daniel Reche
The difference between Yum or Yuck and Yum/ Yuck

In my previous post I pointed out that you always have a choice; you get to pick if you are feeling Yum or feeling Yuck. That is a great way to start getting to know how you are feeling and what your basic needs are. As you start picking feeling better in each situation, you will notice that negative emotions and feelings are needed and play a part. As they say, “No rainbow without the storm.” clichés are great to illustrate a point, but not how to cope with things.

Yum or Yuck is not an easy way out or denounce bad feelings or negative thoughts. It is about picking an option that makes you feel better and bringing you closer to your true nature.  What is the difference between Yum or Yuck and Yum over Yuck?

Yum or Yuck
What feels better right now? This or that? Sit or stand? You have clarity and you can pick without hesitation and you can implement it without asking more questions.

Yum over Yuck
Going forward try and pick Yum over Yuck. You do this in baby steps and ease into unpacking a situation. Ask yourself what is causing me discomfort? Can I do anything about it right now? Will it do more good than harm if I make a move now? Do I have clarity on my next move?

Good example you dislike your work.

What is causing me discomfort?
I don’t know, I just hate it.
Can I do anything about it right now?
No, I don’t know what to do next in life.
Will it do more good than harm if I make a move now?
I have bills to pay.
Do I have clarity on my next move?
Is there anything good about my work?
Pays my bills.

The next day you go to work. You are smiling, because going to a crappy job is better than unemployment. You start doing a task and you realise you really really hate it. It gets you thinking about why you picked this job and what you’d like to do instead. Before you know it, you have clarity and can plan your next move.

Sometimes you can unpack a situation and find a solution to feeling Yum, sometimes you have to sit in the muck a little longer until you have clarity. You will feel better knowing you are aware of the situation and you planning to do something about it. Yuck is your roadmap to feeling better, it shows you where to look and what questions to ask to understand your situation and get clarity. Soon you will be able to make new choices which will lead you back to Yum.


Yum or Yuck

Photo credit: @great_photo_passion
Mantra for 2020: Stay home & Wash your hands

I wonder what Louise Hay would say about our global mantra?  It is a very weird time to be alive. The world has been turned on its head. Like a wish list is being ticked off.

Less pollution
More family time
Respect for the low-income worker
Learning to cook
Countries helping each other
New ideas & solutions
And so forth…

The list can go on and on about all the good that did come out of this. It doesn’t make the adjustment any easier; it is just my coping mechanism finding all the upsides to this crisis.

Let’s get real, there are a lot of emotions to deal with. For the first time in along time people have time to ponder, get in touch with their feelings. We are brilliant in avoiding discomfort. Instead of facing our feelings, we bake, watch Netflix, play online games, read online articles trying to figure out hoax or real. Anything to stay busy and seem important.

I’m guilty of it. I have no clue, how to just BE in the moment. Yes, I’ve read every book and can recite every cliché. Now in lockdown it is time to put it all into practice ready or not.  I found the only thing that works for me is brutal honesty with myself. What do I really feel like, what do I really want to do? I call it Yum or Yuck. No fancy words needed, no soul searching needed. Just know you always have a choice. What will feel Yum or Yuck? Sit or stand? Coffee or tea? Window open or closed? Nap or read? Slowly you get in touch with yourself and your needs again.  Take this time to get to know yourself again, what your real needs are and how you can meet them.

End of the day we are responsible for ourselves, what we feel and think. That will determine the outcome of our future. What does your future look like Yum or Yuck?