Everyone wants to feel harmony in their lives. To experience more ease and flow, presence and connection, love and joy.
This often goes hand-in-hand with having to make changes at some level.
When we say yes to change, working through what challenges us, seeking growth, we have to be able to hear the things that most don’t want to hear, or have said, or have to say.
This can become a major roadblock as we are somewhat ill-equipped to welcome the ‘call outs’ that are required to know what’s in the way.
Even those who say they want to know, often do sincerely want to know, but when delivered they haven’t learned how to receive it and hold it, so they too can go into reaction.
So you can imagine how this can get in the way of true lasting change, as often it is to have someone name what is in the way that gives us the awareness and access to all the feel-goods we seek.
Without doubt this is one of the greatest barriers to change - not wanting to hear what needs to be said because of how it makes you feel.
You’d know it by the sting you feel, the unavoidable ouch, your body contracts, your mind races, you feel to defend, or justify, or avoid and shut down. Or perhaps you feel overwhelmed with emotion, and you would rather not be seen in this ‘ugliness’, and ‘keep it together’.
Maybe it’s all of the above, maybe one or maybe something else is the indicator to you that you are in reaction - the point is you know when you are in reaction, simply because it doesn’t feel good. Almost everyone feels this to varying degrees.
We have built strategies around not wanting to hear the truth. For some they use aggression, some hide, others blame and complain (only to go around in circles or receive the wrong advice), and some simply feel beaten and powerless and get down on themselves and life.
The reality is, often the reactions keep circulating and eventually they may feel like they have loosened their grip, however the damage may well have been done. As a result we can actually harden to defend against what's been named. Rather than allowing what can be a gift of required healing.
This goes for those who welcome truth too, in fact a lot of the times the people who say ‘yes always call out what is needed…’ find it the hardest to hear. Not because they don't want to hear it, more-so what do we do when we hear it, how do we process it?
We need to get really honest with ourselves… with where we are both giving and receiving pull ups. If we aren't comfortable with receiving, we won't be comfortable with giving, and visa-versa.
What often happens is it falls short, in that we invite it in, or agree to what's being presented (or not) and decide it's too much too late. Imagine you are invited to a restaurant which advertises ‘all you can eat’ to then say after the meal has been consumed, ‘sorry you only get one dish'. You'd feel tricked. This is not dissimilar.
I always say, if you are triggered, reactive, hurt by what someone says, it’s yours (to own), not theirs. And if you are able to hear what someone calls out and hold steady, chances are it’s their stuff, their projection.
And then there are those who can hold steady when the truth is delivered regardless of the response. Those who can feel the sting on delivery and know that is theirs, take responsibility and work with the knowing that the reaction is theirs to own - and not strike out at the other person.
Imagine a world with this level of maturity.
I’ve learned over the many years of seeing therapists and working with mentors how to hold steady, as well how to welcome the pull up, own the stings and then go deeper to heal the wound that is underlying, until it is no longer true.
In fact, if I wasn’t able to deal with pull-ups myself, then I would be a terrible counsellor/mentor.
What most perhaps don’t fully understand, as I know I didn’t for the longest time, is a pull up or what you could call being ‘called out’, is actually an act of love.
Of course, it could well be an act of cruelty, albeit in these occasions it shines the light on where we need to heal.
Why - as the day we no longer react, we are free.
Dare I say those who trigger us teach us where in ourselves we are not fully claimed?!
I can hear the argument that certain behaviours need a reaction - and I don’t disagree, well to a point. As often, when we read the situation and discern the willingness of the person we are pulling up, they may not be able to hear it. Therefore, if we have any form of attachment to a certain outcome, or changing the behaviour, we are only going to add fuel to the fire.
A non-reactive pull-up is so much more powerful. A response that is from a solid place that simply holds true that the behaviour is not ok. With no attachment to the outcome.
This is where we create healthy boundaries, set from the tone of love, as love wouldn’t let someone abuse you. Love wouldn’t allow certain behaviours, but not from a fighting position, from a place that simply is no longer impacted by absorbing the reaction.
So in this way, it’s not necessarily that we have to literally pull someone up by addressing the behaviour, we can simply not react, which diminishes the intended impact of the words and actions.
The quote that always sums this up brilliantly:
It’s 10% of what happens to us, and 90% of how we choose to respond.
Our responses are everything.
I often say, if there was one goal in life that would guarantee your growth game is strong it’s this - to learn not to react.
As when we are non-reactive we bring forth an unwavering presence of truth, bound by love. And not a fluffy kind of love, a powerful force that says no to what is not ok - spoken or unspoken.
If we don’t learn to be pulled up or called out, if we protect, dodge and hide - nothing will change.
If it is a loving call out, it may well still sting, if it is in fact true. That’s the power of love, to stamp out what doesn’t belong.
If it is a call out from intending harm, it’s an opportunity to see how the force of harm triggers us, to see where we let it in, and to heal and reclaim our unshakeable foundation.
So you see, call outs teach us. And if we are courageous enough they illuminate the path of what’s next for our own evolution to continue to learn, grow, and evolve. To bring our all.
This isn’t about toughening up - far from it!
This is about melting the armour, choosing our healing, and reclaiming our personal power. It’s about being willing to be seen in our vulnerability, our rawness and knowing what’s in the way so we can move it out of the way.
As when we do, not only are our lives enriched, we are also illuminating the way for others. That’s how true lasting change happens, by being the change.
If only this was taught in school...
Know it's never too late to learn.
(aka Miss Behaviour)