The week before Christmas I went on a Royal Caribbean Cruise, actually a vacation course with Landmark Education (Part of the Wisdom Division is your familiar with Landmark). The course, led by Landmark Forum Leader and Wisdom Designer Brian Regnier was called HOW TO GET UNSTUCK. The course featured over 150 participants from the US, Canada, the Netherlands, and more. Most were from the US. The ship carried 6000 passengers. It was quite an adventure as we stopped in San Juan, PR; St. Thomas, USVI, and St. Maarten.
It's amazing to see how many people no matter their race, creed, religion, ethnicity or class share being stuck in areas of their lives that are important to them and when you share them together growth and development is available for all involved. During the week it became clear that many of the course participants were stuck with feeling FAULT, GUILT, BLAME, SHAME, or REGRET in the area where they were most stuck. Mine changed from day to day during the seven day cruise. First it seemed to be being lonely/single/not married. Then it was my body image and issues about how big my ass is that have plagued me since adolescence. Then is was my inability to finish writing assignments on time/missing deadlines around my scholarship.
We discussed how RESPONSIBILITY is not simply "being willing to experience being cause in the matter". That's important but first you must take a look at those areas that usually drives what we call being responsible but often leaves us not taking action. RESPONSIBILITY is not FAULT, GUILT, BLAME, SHAME, or REGRET. If you can say how it REALLY is for you about who's fault it is, where you feel guilt, blame, shame or regret then truly being responsible arises as a willingness to experience being cause in the matter.
From practicing these two steps, we are able to respond creatively to the matter, just as it is. Free to be and free to act.
WHAT I DISCOVERED FROM THE COURSE and ACTIONS THAT RESULTED:
I got that I really live life like my being overweight, lonely, not married is MY FAULT and that winning a book prize or saving my job this year is SOMEBODY ELSE'S FAULT. Somebody else liked what I did, helped me win the prize, my Dean made sure I won my appeal at work. Ultimately, I keep falling into a conversation of INVALIDATION. My number one stuckness I discovered is INVALIDATION.
When I look at my past relationships, invalidating myself (and the person who dares to like me in the face of that interpretation of myself) has driven me right out of most relationships and some friendships with women. SUCCESS with the OPPOSITE SEX (or same sex) is rarely possible with this going on in the background.
Just seeing that made a HUGE difference in my BEING WILLING TO EXPERIENCE being cause in the matter.
So the next thing I did was choose to create having a fun great date on New Year's Eve and I had no date as of Saturday morning before New Years. I posted an ad with a photo on Craig's List (WOMEN SEEKING MAN) for a NYE date. The ad header was
SEXY SBF ISO SBM or other for New Year's Eve Companion - 45.Yeah I advertised my age and photo! But y'all know I look 30-35!
I got some of the best results ever inside my online dating game and I've been getting random acknowledgments from men who didn't fit my bill but who just loved my ad and let me know.
I had a really fun and engaging date that didn't look anything like what I expected but it fulfilled my intention. I also have other men to date and my conversation about being lonely has all of sudden transformed and my concern about my body image doesn't have a hold on me and I actually gained a few cruise pounds. LOL
In 2008, I will continue to look for and create adventure from Craig's List to flying planes and more. I want folks out to create SUCCESS with the OPPOSITE SEX out there, those who really and truly want to GET RELATED not DATED to consider trying out the practice of being straight about where there is FAULT, BLAME, SHAME, GUILT or REGRET around what matters to you about dating or being in a relationship (or not).
Happy New Year!!