Singing Bird Holistic Health Coaching

People Pleasing 101…Part 3!

ARE YOU A PLEASER? A RECOVERING GOOD GIRL?

In this 10-week video series I share some of the most common traits of pleasing so that you can identify this pattern in your own life!

In this week’s video we are talking about what can happen if you have pleasing as a chronic habit, a long-term way of being. Pleasing values what other people think and want, and over time negatively affects the relationship that you have with yourself, your desires, and your soul purpose.

This fall I am launching a program especially for women who suffer from chronic people pleasing. This is for you if you see yourself in these videos, but you don’t know what to do about it. In this program you will get to know your pleaser so you can identify where and when she shows up, find who you are and what lights you up BENEATH that learned behavior (yes, pleasing is learned, not ingrained), and learn to BE that person and SPEAK YOUR TRUTH where it matters most in your life.

Be the first to get more information on this program as it becomes available by registering your email here.

People Pleasing 101…Part 2!

Welcome to Part 2 of my 10-week video series on People Pleasing 101! (If you missed it, watch part 1 here.) In this video, I talk about the simple and altruistic desire to have everyone “just be happy” and how that easily flips into full-on pleasing. This is one of my FAVORITE perspective shifts when it comes to pleasing because it is so MIND-BLOWING and impactful!

If you are a woman and a chronic people pleaser, this fall I am launching a program just for you! If you are tired of trying to manage other people’s emotions and experiences, and ready to set yourself (and everyone else) free, click here to sign up and you will be the first to be notified when this powerful program opens for registration!

People Pleasing 101…Part 1

Welcome to Part 1 of my 10-week video series on People Pleasing 101. In this video, I cover one of the most common symptoms of people pleasing and how it manifests in your life. I also share WHY it is problematic to lump people pleasing and kindness into the same category!

If you want to be the first to know when my new program designed specifically for women who suffer from chronic people pleasing officially launches this fall, sign up here.

The Perils of Pleasing and Over Achieving

Photo by Jeana Marino

I can identify people pleasing fairly easily; it tends to leave certain telltale signs or symptoms in its wake.

I don’t want to rock the boat. I really didn’t want to say yes, but she would have been so disappointed. I don’t want to hurt his feelings. I just want the people around me to be happy.

But people pleasing can also be a bit of a shape-shifter and there is one type that is so sneaky and insidious that it often goes unnoticed or unnamed for what it truly is:

OVER-ACHIEVING.

Achievement is a hallmark of our culture. It is heralded as strength, something to consistently strive for. We are given accolades for it. Its pervasiveness makes it a whole lot harder to see, and its uniform acceptance makes it a whole lot harder to unhook from than straight up pleasing. On the surface it seems like such a good thing. It is what strong, independent women do.

We achieve.

We are driven. Motivated. Capable. Consistently proving ourselves, time and time again.

But proving ourselves to whom? And at what cost?

Because over-achievement is so embedded into the voice of our masculine culture, at some point we internalize that voice as our own. The line between us, as unique individuals, and the culture of which we are a part becomes awfully blurry.

Driven to succeed. Type A. Over-achiever. We believe that is just who we are. It becomes a part of our identity. We think it is in our DNA, when in reality it is this way of being that we learn.

If you identify as an over-achiever, and you believe that’s just the way you were made, think back. Was ever a time when you weren’t so concerned with achieving or doing or proving, whether to yourself or someone else?

Was there a time, and you may have to go a long while back, when you were more curious than driven? When life wasn’t solely about having a goal to strive for, but was something that you lived and enjoyed? When your self-worth wasn’t determined by your accomplishments?

When did that desire to achieve begin to bully aside the joy of spontaneous living? And where did that new voice come from?

I was pretty much a straight A student for all of high school and college. I still think of those couple of B’s as smudges on an otherwise perfect academic record.

But before high school was another story. I didn’t care much about grades. In elementary school, I preferred to stay home with my mom, play outside, and watch cartoons. In middle school, I was frequently in trouble for talking or goofing off in class.

Suddenly that changed and I took on the role of “the achiever”. It was as if a new voice came in and overrode my own essential voice. This new voice was much more serious, critical, black and white. It knew that there was a certain way that things had to be done. Right or wrong, good or bad became very clearly delineated, and I wanted to be firmly on the side of right and good. This meant tucking pieces of myself away and not letting them see the light of day.

I was good at being the achiever and I was rewarded for it. I got those straight A’s. I was art student of the year. I got into the college of my choice. I got a scholarship. The funny thing is, I never thought of myself as an over-achiever because many of my friends and classmates did so much more than I did. And that’s the thing with achievement; there is always room for improvement. There will be someone who is doing more or better than you are that you compare yourself to. Constant striving is built into the equation. You are never enough.

For years I pleased the patriarchy by achieving and I was externally rewarded for it.

But in the process I lost myself. And even more detrimental to my soul, I took on that patriarchal voice as my own. I was believed I was achieving for me.

But I wasn’t.

It was simply yet another form of culturally sanctioned pleasing, but one that felt stronger somehow. This wasn’t the pleasing of my mother’s generation! It led me to believe I was thwarting the system when in reality I had become the system.

The voice of my inner achiever, who constantly pushed me to do more and be more, was the voice of the patriarchy.

Until we realize this as women, we continue to solely fight an enemy “out there”, not realizing that he took up residence in our very own psyche long ago.

The last several years of my life have been about me finding my own voice. Reclaiming my truth and my experience. Stripping away the thoughts and the beliefs and the fears that stand in the way of me knowing myself at the root level. Exploring what actually belongs to me, to my essence as a being, instead of the garments of the culture that I cloaked myself in to belong, to be liked, and to succeed.

It is a journey that is by no means done. I am still visiting the places where I gave my worth to someone else to hold and judge, and pulling that locus of validation back within myself. Reclaiming me for me.

It is not an easy three-step process, but it is so worth it. For those moments, even if they are fleeting, where I can say, “This is me, this is really me,” and find pleasure and joy in that. Meeting myself as if for the first time. Welcoming all parts of me back home.

I work with women who have been people pleasers and over-achievers for pretty much their entire lives. The women I have the honor of working with are extremely intelligent and empathic; they care deeply and have so much to offer the world. But they are tired. Bone tired. Their over-giving, over-doing, and lack of boundaries are catching up with them. They struggle with standing fully in their truth and offering their authentic voice to the world for fear that people will see them differently or not like them. They have boxed themselves in to a cage of their own creation.

If this is you, and deep within you know if you are a people pleaser or an over-achiever, there is another way of living and being in the world. A way that is more rooted and authentic. My passion is helping women to uncover what that means and feels like to them. Schedule your 30-minute Discovery Call today. Let’s chat and see if the Wise Woman Mentorship would be a good fit for you.

 

 

 

 

 

Are You Sick and Tired of Trying So Hard?

Apparently I have been walking around espousing some Yoda wisdom for the last couple of months unbeknownst to myself.

After I attended a women’s empowerment retreat at the South Wind Equestrian Center last fall, I wrote myself a note to remember what I had felt and learned that day amongst the horses.

One line in particular stood out to me and left an imprint that didn’t begin to resonate more deeply until months later:

“Linda, you don’t have to try so damn hard all the time.”

You see for most of the day I had been trying really damn hard. Trying to be present. To feel my feet. To embody my queen. To be in my leadership energy.

Wanting to use all my tools. Wanting to do it right.

Nearing the end of the day, I was exhausted and at most felt like the horse had humored me by following me for a few seconds at a time. (In the energetic work that you do with the horses, you get them to follow you in the pen without touch or words.) I felt frustrated and disappointed; this was not what I had been expecting.

And in my frustration, my mask of “trying” finally fell off. I dropped needing to do it right or look a certain way. Instead, I snapped my fingers and stomped away (somewhat like a petulant child), and wouldn’t you be damned, that horse started trotting along behind me as if I had been doing this all my life.

That horse followed me because for the first time that day, I was being myself. I was honest.

My action stemmed from the truth of my feelings and my being in that moment.

There was no trying. It just…was.

I couldn’t fully grasp it in the moment. Something had shifted, but because it wasn’t in line with what my conscious mind was expecting of the day, I had a hard time embracing its meaning fully.

It wasn’t until months after this experience that I realized how much this energy of “trying” permeated my life. And how freaking exhausted I was because of it.

Those of us who tend to be pleasers and over-achievers are so accustomed to trying that we don’t even notice that we are doing it. That we are in that energy. I still have a hard time describing it in words, but am starting to sense how it feels different in my body.

Trying isn’t doing that is grounded in my feelings or in my being. It is this striving, externally motivated thing, as if pieces of myself are located outside of my body and I continually need to find and collect them.

It’s very tiring and I am over it.

So instead I am adopting the Yoda approach to life. “Do or do not, there is no try.”

The energy around that feels much cleaner, clearer, and more grounded.

I am conscious now of when that trying energy seeps in from time to time, as it invariably does. Or how often it pops up in my vocabulary, and that of other women.

After 20 years of living in this constant striving, it was a horse who helped me to see it fully for the first time, so that I could feel its weight fully for the first time. And now I can make a different choice.

And so can you.

On April 14th I am co-hosting Dancing with the Rhythm of Nature with South Wind Equestrian Center and Soulshine Rhythm Experience. Dancing with the Rhythm of Nature is a full-day retreat featuring Qoya movement, energetic work with horses, drumming, and time spent in nature to come back home to ourselves.

To experience the ground of our being and what it means to take action that is in alignment with what is true and authentic for us.

We have a handful of spots still available. If you are ready to experience the physical sensation of truth in your body (i.e. what it feels like when you drop the TRYING), we would love to have you.

Reserve your space via Eventbrite now.

It’s Time For Some Changes Around Here

It has been a few weeks since I posted a new blog. I have been taking a sacred pause on a few things, or rather more like a full stop.

I needed a hefty dose of my own medicine.

The women I work with are doers, pleasers, and achievers. The feminine realm of being and feeling can be a bit terrifying.

Who are you when you let go of all the doing?

A few weeks ago I began to notice my own cycle of endless doing. Much of last year my body and soul longed to slow down, to simply be, and I didn’t listen. I mean, I tried to listen, but I didn’t fully understand what that meant.

So I carried on, and rather than slowing down and doing less, in many ways I began doing more. I shared more of my experiences, stories, and wisdom via my blog, newsletter, and facebook group. I created more. Gave more of my energy (which is what led me to calling 2018 the year of the Sacred No).

This is a sticky area for me. I love to create, to write, and to teach, which makes boundaries in these areas tricky. Helping women unearth and embody their truth and their feminine power is my jam. It’s my passion, my calling.

But it’s also my work.

When I finally did come to a full stop, I saw the unsustainability of this pattern I was in. It is unsustainable both financially and energetically.

The over-giving heart eventually gives out.

And I cannot hold space for or guide other women to stand in their truth from a place of depletion. The way of the feminine is embodiment. It’s about walking your walk, not just talking your talk.

In consistently “putting myself out there”, I haven’t kept enough in here. For myself. I love writing that feels raw and intimate, and at the same time, not everything needs to be made public or turned into a story that creates meaning for others. It is okay to hold on to some things just for me.

I have started to feel the same way about social media and the constant need to document and share some of our most profound experiences with large audiences. I no longer want to go on a nature walk just so that I can have Instagram fodder for the week. I don’t want to make meaning of the moment that I am in and frame it in such a way that it will look and sound good to someone else.

I am over seeking external validation in all of its forms. It’s exhausting.

What I most long for is depth, to sink deeper into the pure experience of life, and it is time for me to take responsibility for how I rob myself of that desire.

I have sent out my weekly wisdom in the form of this blog/newsletter for the last 2+ years. It has been a pleasure to connect with you in this way, and I so appreciate that you have taken the time to open and read what I have to share. I hope and trust that it has served you.

And it is time for me to explore some other ways of showing up in the world. Ways that feel sustainable, nourishing, AND of service. Ways that are rooted in relatedness and energy exchange.

To be honest, I still don’t know what that looks like yet, but I know that it exists. That is why I need to stop and listen, so that I can hear my own inner wisdom. So that I can discern my next steps with clarity and confidence.

This doesn’t mean I will never send out another newsletter or post another blog. I am certain that I will. There will come times when I want to share from a place of fullness and pure desire, and to stifle that impulse would be no better than pushing myself to share when the true desire is lacking. This is all about the truth of feeling and creating systems that support that truth.

I want to be clear on one other thing as well. This is most definitely not the end of Singing Bird; it is the gestation phase before the rebirth. I am still working with my clients, whom I love. I have openings for a handful of new clients for my Wise Woman Mentorship this spring. I am still teaching my weekly Qoya class, hosting events, and holding space for other women to find and embody their truth.

I am just talking about it less. Sharing less of my own personal process and the process that I guide my clients through. That is my sacred work and only I can honor it as such.

Again, thank you for being here. Here is to our continual individual and collective evolution. Here is to the rise of the feminine on the planet and the Sovereign Queen within us all.

Much love,

Linda

The Road to Sovereignty Is Messy AF

The journey to embodying your Wise Woman, your Sovereign Feminine, is so empowering. It allows you to tap into your truth and the power that comes from living that truth into existence through your life. It’s seriously amazing.

And it’s seriously messy.

For some reason the phrase “it ain’t easy being cheesy” popped up into my mind, and though I am not certain it really applies here, I am gonna go with it.

Because it is not necessarily an easy road. And it’s definitely not a linear road. There are countless twists and turns and dead-ends.

If you have been in the habit of not speaking your truth for the better part of your lifetime, shirking your own truth in order to make others comfortable, honoring your own feelings and boundaries will be bumpy at first.

You will say the “wrong” thing. You will upset some people in the process or potentially hurt someone’s feelings without meaning to. You will feel super awkward. You will retreat from your truth into the comfort of old patterns. You will opt to stay silent because you just can’t deal with a potential confrontation.

Don’t expect your truth to pour forth as golden honey from your lips. It has spent years simmering beneath the surface. When it comes out it may be a bit goopy or tainted. Or it might erupt like a volcano. Or just seep out ever so quietly when you wished it sounded more powerful.

That’s okay!! It’s supposed to be messy!!

First off, there is the whole process of mining yourself for what is REALLY true for you. This may sound like a breeze. I assure you, it’s not. There are so many old, adaptive behaviors and thoughts that aren’t true that need to be sifted through. Limiting beliefs. Feelings that have been stuffed away and never felt or experienced. Often we try so hard to hide the truth from ourselves that we almost succeed.

This is the unearthing process where we peel back layer upon layer to get to your essence.

Then comes the part of beginning to live your truth. In your relationships. With other people that know you and matter to you. To learn how to say no. To respond instead of react. To honor the truth of your feelings in the moment without being an ass. To uphold your boundaries.

For recovering people pleasers, this is where it gets really messy and makes you want to squirm.

You may be wondering to yourself at this point, with all this mess and discomfort, why on earth would I want to do this? Why embark on this journey to begin with?

You walk this road to sovereignty because you cannot take another step that feels like a lie.

Because you feel the call. Because you are tired of hiding and pretending. Because you want to be a person that people can trust, who lives in integrity with her truth.

Because you know that you have more to offer the world, and yet you feel stuck. Your truth ends up sticking in your throat and you swallow it down again and again, and you just can’t do it anymore.

If this message resonates with you, and despite being terrified of the journey or of what is on the other side, you hear the call of your Sovereign Feminine, I would love to speak with you. It is my passion to hold space for, guide, and walk hand-in-hand with women reclaiming themselves, their feelings, and their truth.

To set up your free 30-minute Discovery Call, visit my online scheduler or send me an email at singingbirdhealth@gmail.com.

Why Controlling Your Way To Peace Doesn’t Work

There is a false belief that is pervasive, and debilitating, among women.

I know of its negative impact personally as I lived under its spell for many, many years of my life. And it still sneaks in there on occasion.

It is masked as a desire. A desire for agency. To have a say in one’s own life and destiny. It sounds great and empowering on the surface.

Or it is clothed in the concept of feminine independence. I don’t need anyone else; I will just do it myself.

Underneath it is a need for control.

To be the puppet master. To hold all the strings.

Rogue strings cannot be handled. Strings held by another, whether that person is your significant other or a parent or a friend, are deviations and sources of endless stress.

Because what if they do it wrong?!?

So you try to take hold of their strings as well. And as long as everyone and everything behaves precisely the way that you deem appropriate, all is okay.

But, when they don’t (which they inevitably won’t and shouldn’t as they have their own lives to live), it all comes crumbling down like a house of cards.

This whole fragile system is built around the belief that control mitigates anxiety.

We feel anxious when things are out of our control, so we try to grasp on to more and more, believing it will eventually lead us to a sense of peace and contentment and trust.

But that day just never seems to come! It’s always around the corner. There is always that one damn tiny little thing that wants to throw a wrench in the works.

That is because the whole shebang is a fallacy.

Needing to control everyone and everything, or believing that only you know how to do it right or best, doesn’t alleviate your anxiety; it increases it.

The more that is within your control, the more stress you feel. The more balls there are in the air for you to juggle, the more likely they all will come tumbling down eventually. Somewhere inside you already know this. And therefore you NEVER GET TO RELAX.

You can never take your eye off the prize.

It’s a self-perpetuating system that continues to build up greater and greater anxiety until you hit a breaking point. Which we all do at some point. Usually over the smallest of things. Or our bodies break down in illness. Or we get hurt.

And are thereby forced to let go. To realize our limitations. To allow others their own responsibility.

Ideally though, we don’t let it get to that point.

Instead we shift out of control and into trust (which actually DOES mitigate anxiety).

We move from insecure energy and concern into confidence.

In short, we begin to unearth and embody our inner Wise Woman. We have agency without the grasping. We know where we end and others begin. We integrate our insecure Little Girl into the more solid being of our Mature Woman.

Helping women to bridge this shift in energy is one of the cornerstones of my work. We must break through old patterns of control and pleasing in order to unearth our truth; and then we must create the courage and trust to embody this truth in our lives.

This is the source of grounded freedom that so many of us seek. But when we try to find it through control, we are looking in the wrong place.

I am currently accepting a handful of new clients in my intimate, one-on-one Wise Woman Mentorship. To see if this form of coaching would be a good fit for you, visit my online scheduler and set up your free 30-minute consultation call now.

Give Yourself This Gift.

This starts with a random story, but I swear it has a point, so keep reading!

A few nights ago I had this recollection from one of my first Qoya classes. Somehow the topics of consciousness and matter came into the conversation.

See, up until that point my research and dipping my toe into the world of masculine/feminine energy had taught me that masculine = consciousness while feminine = matter. I even remember there was a handy little checklist. Sun or moon. Mind or body. Consciousness or matter. One or the other.

And that resonated for a while. Until this Qoya class when my teacher spoke about the consciousness OF matter and the consciousness IN matter. What? I had no idea what that meant. Consciousness and matter were two entirely different and separated things.

Or weren’t they…?

Back then, a whopping three years ago, I was still pretty firmly ingrained in what I now I call black and white, either/or thinking. The masculine way. It was neat. Everything had its little box and as long as it stayed where it belonged, I was happy.

This one random, esoteric conversation was really heralding a new way of looking at the world. Now I know what is meant by consciousness in matter. That not only the human mind is conscious. The body has its own consciousness. So does that tree over there, and the entire planet we call home.

Why do I feel called to share this little personal musing with you?

Because there is something important here, and that is the continuous evolution and deepening of thought, understanding, and experience. And the ACCEPTANCE thereof.

Allowing yourself the space to develop and grow.

Allowing your understanding of what is true to shift and morph over time.

I read some of the articles that I wrote years ago and CRINGE, because I didn’t see then what I see now. I didn’t know then what I know now.

And I am certain the same will hold true a few years from now when I look back to what I am currently writing.

Sometimes I have to fight back the urge to delete things I wrote back then. But then I rob myself of the gift of evolution, and the grace of accepting my own growth.

When we rob ourselves of that, we also rob others of the ability to grow and change.

This is really why I wanted to share this story with you, because I feel like it is extremely important, especially now as people are beginning to see what for so long they remained blind to.

Sometimes this feels convenient or hypocritical or like it’s just jumping on the popular bandwagon. And maybe sometimes it is.

But it may also be that we all become more conscious in our own time. Our understanding and our empathy continue to shift and deepen. In the words of Maya Angelou:

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”

When you accept your growth and evolution, and all the missteps and fumbling for truth which that often entails, and choose to be compassionate and understanding with yourself regardless…that then becomes a gift of grace that you can offer others as well.

Do you have a space in your life where you can share how you feel and what is true for you in the moment, unfiltered, without fear or judgment? Where you can explore what is you and what is not within a gentle, sacred container?

The Wise Woman Mentorship is meant to hold you in your growth. In your evolution. In your death and rebirth. So that you can reclaim and re-member the missing parts of yourself and integrate them into your Wise Woman in a supportive and sacred environment.

I am currently taking on a handful of one-on-one clients for this intimate mentorship this winter. If you are tired of skimming the surface of life, and ready to live in a way that is rich, deep, and true, I would love to speak with you. To schedule your initial 30-minute consultation call, visit my online scheduler.

 

What Do You Not Want To See?

Are you living your life?

This may sound like a strange question.

“Of course I am living my life. What else would I be doing?”

But I know from personal experience that there have been times where I haven’t been living my life or truly living my life.

There was a time when I suddenly snapped to, as if I had been sleepwalking for a long time and just woken up. I looked around and wondered where I was and how I had gotten there. It was so far from the life that I had imagined when I was younger.

The thing is, while the awakening can happen quite suddenly, the way that things got to that place usually happens gradually, over time. Little concessions here. “Eh, it’s good enough” over there.

It happens so gradually in fact, that we don’t notice that we are moving further from our soul desires and purpose, rather than towards them. We normalize things. We chalk them up to being adult responsibilities. We say that we are realistic when really we are settling.

Things were never meant to turn out the way we dreamed anyway, were they?

So we stay in dead end relationships. Draining jobs. We spend our time and our energy on people and things that don’t nourish us, at least not on any deep level.

Then we numb ourselves by drinking or eating or watching TV or working or exercising.

We do anything to avoid facing the searing truth of our lives.

It would hurt too much, we say. There is too much to change, it’s overwhelming, I don’t know where to start, we say.

It’s too late anyway, we say.

We go on living our half-life, numb, and sleepwalking, trying to make the best of it.

I am here to tell you that we need to do better.

Individually and collectively.

For ourselves. For our families. For our entire culture.

It’s time that we wake up. Open our eyes to everything that we have been too afraid to look at. Feel the pain that comes along with that. And realize that it won’t kill us. It won’t be the end.

It’s the beginning.

That is when you can start to question what you have been taught life is. What it means to be “responsible”, what it means to be an adult, what it means to be a freaking human.

Look at all those beliefs with fresh perspective, with beginner’s eyes.

Are they empowering? Are they nourishing?

Are they even true?

The rise of the feminine energy is the rise of love and of life itself. Of tapping into the current of the divine that exists in this very moment and every moment. In the feeling of the sun on your face, and the sounds of the birds in the trees. In the pulse of your heartbeat and your blood as it moves through your body.

This is the awakening of the conscious feminine.

This is how we reclaim our lives. This is how we save our beautiful planet.

Consider this your kick in the ass. With love.

You are courageous enough to look at your life with honesty. To lift the rug and dare to see what lurks underneath, knowing that the courage to look and to see is a crucial part of healing. Of coming home to yourself. Of unearthing, embodying, and expressing your truth. Of exploring who you are and where you have made exceptions to that and why.

The Wise Woman Mentorship is your sacred container; the crucible which holds space for the transformation to occur. We go deep, we leave no stone unturned, but we tread gently. Unraveling ourselves to come face to face with our truth is serious business, but we allow it to be playful. We encourage tears and laughter, often simultaneously. To schedule your free 30-minute Discovery Call, visit my online scheduler or send me an email at singingbirdhealth@gmail.com.