Picture it. You’ve been working hard visioning, imagining, summoning the magic of the universe! Your whole soul is on fire as you take action at the right moment, surrender to the momentum and YES, you are rewarded with your dream coming true. You can’t believe it, it is all working out as you imagined. Of course, nothing is ever perfect, there are holes, but you’re gonna ride this train as far as you can. And then, like clockwork, the karmic hand strikes down and you start to face some miserable blows as the train comes to a screeching halt.
The expansion that lit up your soul quickly turns into stomach churning contraction and bitterly, you are forced to slow down and examine where the missing pieces might be on this ever-expanding, evolutionary journey. This is a critical time because it begs the deepest inquiry into the self and requires the most raw humility. This part is not pleasant, definitely unwanted and likely abounding with shame because you’ve probably splattered your expansion out into the world as your new permanent reality.
You can think of the contraction as your personal mercury in retrograde. It’s time to go through and get all parts of your being in alignment before you can truly integrate your expansion and move forward. Here are some helpful steps to get you back into the magic sooner rather than later.
1. EMBRACE YOUR INNER OPPOSITE:
With every gift that you naturally possess and have developed, you have an opposite gift that needs attention. OK maybe it’s more like a chore, because it doesn't come so naturally or bring as much pleasure, but it’s extremely important.
If you have a natural talent of intuition, visioning and creativity, then the place you need to develop is in the nitty gritty details of linear life.
If you have a personality of logic, reason and getting things done on time, then your balancing act is learning how to dream, intuit and be in the unknown.
The generous person must find boundaries, or she will get taken advantage of.
The stingy will need to soften boundaries and give, or he will be lonely and angry.
While this isn't good news for many people who are happy just how they are, this is usually what the contraction is about. Your inner opposite needs some attention or there is no foundation to truly grow and you will find yourself back where you started. This doesn’t mean doing everything yourself, but it does mean strengthening the places you’ve been avoiding.
2. EMBRACE YOUR INNER CHILD:
Did you know that almost your entire brain is wired to prevent you from change? That’s right, evolution has created a failsafe to keep you from harm. Most often, this system was created by past traumatic events, or perhaps just programming that was functional growing up, but not suited for growth as an adult. You’ve got well hidden blind spots, and your inner child might be running the show in your subconscious. Time to find her and hold her because she may be very very scared of getting hurt again. All this expansion could be stressful for mini-you, and he may be sabotaging you only because he needs attention, rest, love and the security of your consistent comfort. Your feelings will lead the way to him or her.
Learning the difference between your healthy, capable adult, and your wounded, inner child will make a big difference in your ability to move forward.
The healthy adult knows its limits, boundaries and abilities. The child is unconsciously trying to get unmet emotional needs from childhood and not capable of making the right decisions for adult life.
Some signals that your wounded inner child is running the show: overwhelm, blame, loss of confidence, egoistic behavior, sabotage, making excuses, etc. Working with a skilled healer, counselor or coach is essential at this stage.
3. EMBRACE A BIGGER SUPPORT SYSTEM
You’ve grown, the game has changed. You definitely need more support. Often times, people don't realize that growing your support network is fundamental to expansion. But you absolutely will need more support than you think, professionally and personally. You must carefully consider where you will spend your time, and who is really up to the task of meeting you in this vulnerable, yet critical place.
Friends that want to keep you in the old place are not up to the task. Friends that cant be with your vulnerability are not up to the task. Friends that are ahead or on track with you, and can be compassionate yet hold your highest vision, are up to the task. You may convince yourself you cant do it over and over again. Having people believe in you at this point cannot be overstated.
I once asked my students how much support they needed. They said a private session once a week, some yoga, etc. Then I asked them to double it. So they added more sessions and yoga. Then I asked them to triple it. At that point, the support went exponential. They felt like there was nothing they couldn't do. They were no longer getting a few needs met per week but the world itself became supportive in all ways to their particular, soul based contribution. It was a real eye opener: a threshold is crossed into a whole new level of abundance when you feel completely supported.
4. EMBRACE YOUR BRAIN AS A MACHINE
Training your brain for your success is the final step during the contraction. This takes consistency. While it may feel impossible to do when you are down and out, or grieving an unexpected loss, it is the MOST important time to do it so your brain doesn't revert back to its original pattern. You can use mantra, affirmations, NLP, EFT, martial arts, whatever helps your brain stay on track while your deeper emotions are rising. Enlist your support team to remind you of this. Have consistent support set up so your brain knows it can count on this routine. Don't get attached to the emotions or stories as they rise, just let them flow through and then return to the reprogramming for the new story. Keep your vision clear.
In the face of unexpected trials after your victorious expansion, these 4 main steps will have you integrating and expanding again in no time so you don't have to sabotage your dreams. This time you will be more prepared. And the next time after that. Life is built to surprise you, and as you master one area of life, you are given new tasks. Rising to your next level involves trial and error, success and failure, knowing and not knowing, and the ability to be uncomfortable more often than not. Keep going, your vision is worth it.
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