Thursday, May 17, 2012

Vulnerability In Change Part II-Let's Get Naked!

by Pamela Chapman

In my last piece, I shared the true story of my recent transition to the Yucatan. I was completely transparent and honest. I know the power of transparency. I have experienced its transforming power firsthand. My initial experience was working for the Orange County Rescue Mission in Southern Cal as a case manager. I had been warned that I should never, ever share my personal story with clients. But, I had no other story. I told it and the chains and bondages fell away.

My second experience was through the mentorship of my business coach Maria Simone accompanied by her techie, genius husband Michael (aka Doc) Murdock. Several years ago, during an online coaching session with several on the call, I shared my anxieties, my feelings of helplessness (aka self-pity), and paralysis. The session took a different course becoming a spiritual healing session for not just me but for all.

I’ve come to the conclusion that the best way—the only way for me to assist others in their healing is to bear my soul; being naked before my audience; allowing them to realize I too have set backs, misfortunes, challenges as well as major successes and victories.

I believe there is not one of us still breathing on this living earth who has achieved expert level. When you get to the place where you believe you are, the next phase comes accompanied by growing pains, to launch you to the next plateau. When you ascend to where you are un-teachable or the master, you are allowed to cross over into the next realm. There are days I spend more time practicing what I teach than actually teaching. I am one who believes we all teach what we need to know. There are days when I ask, seek, knock and then ask some more.

What Went Wrong
What happens in your life course, in your stretching if you’re aware, is you become more and more enlightened. So what does that mean? It means you no longer need a building to fall on your head when the expanding life lesson appears. It means you respond to light: the light taps, the light study, the light path. You become in tune with light. When there is a lesson to learn, you grasp it openly and willingly. It means you no longer blame your present or your journey on someone or something. You take responsibility. Transparency is the path of the enlightened journey.

When I was attracting cheaters and twisted souls in my Yucatan transition I asked, “What is going on with me? Why am I attracting this? What’s up with all these adolescent, junior-high, teenage fears revisiting? More importantly I asked, “What did I subconsciously or consciously ask the Universe?” (I’ll provide these answers in upcoming episodes.)

I know the tools. I teach the tools. I have learned tools from others and refined them. I have the hidden knowledge or what some call the secret. I know who I am and I understand my calling. But, I am also wise enough to understand pride comes before the fall. So, I never attempt to pretend I’ve got it ALL together. Oh no! I don’t need any lessons in humility. Well so at least I believed. You’ll hear more about the Yucatan humility lesson soon enough.

“What I want you to understand, especially my beautiful sisters out there, it proves nothing and nothing is gained by pretending you have no problems, weaknesses or challenges. The mask conceals ones true identity and alienates those you could possibly assist.” It intimidates. It allows others to believe they will never, ever be able to accomplish what you are: perfection.  (I’m reminded here of a Scripture that speaks of one’s righteousness or self-righteousness being as a filthy rags. And ladies, this Scripture ain’t talking about a dust rag.) 

When you remove the mask and share your story or your mystery (my story) with others, when you are transparent, filled with light, you permit others to not only see your challenges but your victories and overcoming as well. It gives them hope in accomplishing the same. You allow them to join you on the enlightenment or the road to glory.

My Solution
Each morning, in spite of feeling vulnerable, I would take time to ground. I would do the work to reduce, calm, and eradicate the mind chatter. With all of the challenges my new and unfamiliar environment had brought me, each day I was determined to find balance, joy and peace. Each day, my goal was to become a little more familiar with my new surroundings.

Whether it was exploring the new coast with my lab pals; or learning how to say, “Stop here please” in Spanish so I could ride the bus; or shopping and having lunch with my gorgeous expat sisters in the magical city of Merida, there was always the choice: drown in my sorrows and helplessness or make the best out of the seemingly mess.  I could be the victim or be victorious.

A Reality Reminder
The vulnerability I have recently experienced reminded me of the women I talk to. It reminded me of the teenage girl leaving elementary school trying to fit and find her way in junior high. It reminded me of the woman going through a harrowing divorce or the woman who has lost her soul mate to death having to deal with urgent family affairs, adjust to being single, and no longer being accepted amongst her married friends.

It reminded me of the woman losing her job having worked for the same employer for fifteen or twenty years, having climbed the corporate ladder, now being snubbed by what were once her professional peers. It reminded me of the woman who’d been abused and battered finding a shelter not only being distanced from the foe she still somehow loves; but, being isolated from family and friends, as well.
Nothing stays the same but change. We can fight it, judge it, or roll with it. When major transition comes upon us bringing unfamiliar turf, Vulnerability with a capital V rears its ugly head. It will have you asking yourself, “Am I okay?” It will make you paranoid. It will render you fearful.  It can cause paralysis. It will make you crazy in your head, emotions, crippling your mind, body and soul.

There is never any shame for your feelings, even those of vulnerability. The shame is wearing it beneath a mask while it festers, rots and stinks. The shame is getting comfortable in it and making excuses for it. The shame is remaining in its grip being its lifeless slave and limp casualty.

—To be continued

Pamela Chapman is Founder of iAscend Programs, an author and certified life coach who has worked extensively with victim services organizations and advocated for many years.  She now spends her time writing and traveling, living each day as a new adventure!  Her latest blog is You Are Not A Victim

1 comment:

  1. 'Such a heartfelt narrative... Uprooting yourself and exposing your psyche to all kinds of vulnerabilities and challenges... quite a rough ride. However, it sounds like Pamela has the mindset and readiness for this transition!

    Transparency... being out there for the world to see... not being ashamed of your flaws has always been the best way for me too. When I am "that way," I have taught others lessons to take with them...and my heart feels good in doing so!

    Carry on, Pamela, Carry On!

    Donna R. Gore, M.A.


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