1. Connecting to The Essence of Sexuality
2. The Excitement in the Moment!
3. Turning Passion into Lifestyle
4. The Healing Power of Anger

5. Cleaning Up Waste in the Workplace

 

Connecting to the Essence of Sexuality
by Selena Wright

It's not considered "appropriate" to talk about our sexuality, but there seems to be a secret a lot of women share. Most women wish they had a more vital & alive connection with themselves and a more loving connection with a partner.

Women are conditioned, especially if they are married, to shut down and keep the energy associated with sex hidden and contained. Sadly, women's aliveness, spirit and vitality are also a part of this energy. Those without partners may deny their sexual energy, because they haven't given themselves permission to feel sexual on their own. Most women look to others, rather than within themselves for the source of their excitement.

Oprah says, "Experts estimate that over 40 million women have lost their desire for sex." As a seminar leader and coach, I often hear things like, "I end up doing it, so he won't get mad". Women start to view sex as one more thing they have to do for someone else. Unexpressed anger or resentment often leads to shutting down as well as anxiety and guilt. Self-consciousness is another factor as well as just pure exhaustion from the pressures of day-to-day life.

Coursing through every living thing is a vibrant energy that by it's very nature is a sexual life force or the creative life force. As children, this normal and very powerful energetic life force gets redefined as something bad and we learn to suppress it. As adults, it often gets suppressed because of the fear of losing control, being punished, giving in, being too wild! This affects the aliveness, joy and pleasure we feel in our bodies, in our relationships, and in our lives.

Up until about twelve years ago, I was living a lie. I thought I had it all together sexually and sensually. Then came the day that I realized I was not even in my body. I was living totally in my head and denying the fact that I had numbed out to all the sensations and feelings in my body. After learning to breathe into my body and to challenge myself to go where I was uncomfortable, I started to feel more alive, and realized I had much more energy than I ever thought possible. I also feel more confident as a woman than ever before.

Women especially, you need to start seeing sexuality and sensuality as a way to connect with yourself first and then with your partners. You have been taught to disown your bodies. It's time to reclaim them! This means getting out of your head and into the feelings and sensations of your body. If you want to feel alive, you need to stay aware of the limiting beliefs & be willing to challenge them and try out something new. This takes a desire to learn and a willingness to experiment and go where you're uncomfortable. As you begin to make changes, it's normal to feel silly and awkward. As you start to get more comfortable with the energy and can embrace more and more of the sensations in your body, you start to feel more secure, self confident and empowered as a woman.

Until we acknowledge that we are sexual beings, we cannot experience a state of completeness, wholeness and balance. How can we expect to be fully alive if we ignore or deny this very essential part of ourselves? Even true celibacy is not a denial or suppression of the sexual energy. It is simply choosing to focus this energy in non-sexual ways, into life itself. This powerful energy starts in the pelvis area and when allowed, spreads and mixes with your senses. This makes everything in life more pleasurable; drinking lemonade, eating a peach, dancing, or going for a walk. This energy can be used to fuel your passion creatively, whether it is music, art, or dance and it can also be directed into your sexuality.

You say you want to feel more passionate, more powerful, more playful, more spontaneous, and more connected. Ask yourself, "What am I willing to do to open myself up to being more available and alive in my life?" "Can I stay present to my own physical sensations?" "How much pleasure do I deserve to feel?"

Every woman should take the chance to re-discover her sensuous/sexual self. If you do not feel sensuous, sexy, loving, alive and passionate you're cheating yourself. The very essence of your sexuality and sensuality is the gateway to your aliveness and passion for life.

For information on the Essence of Sexuality Workshops for Women, click here.

Rising Woman Magazine, Jan/Feb 2001 Issue

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The Excitement in the Moment
by Selena Wright

I feel a twinge of excitement in my gut as I look across the room and my eyes connect with those of a gorgeous man standing in the doorway. My breath catches for a moment............I turn back to talk with friends at the table.

Couple That familiar twinge, like the time at the airport when I looked up to meet the eyes of someone across the room where I sat waiting to board the plane, and then found myself looking away, back to the pages of my book. I imagined myself looking up again, wondering if I looked up whether he was going to look back. The possibility excited me and then, I felt the fear...

Fear? What could possibly happen that I would be afraid of? Then there is the time when I'm on the plane. A woman sits down next to me and I become aware of the woman softly crying to herself. I wonder what might be going on with her and if there is anything I can do. I feel the energy inside to say something to her, immediately followed by thoughts of "What would I say?" "I wonder if she would like to talk about it?" followed by "She probably would like to be left alone." I turn to look out the window.

In my discomfort, I make something up about her so that I don't feel the vulnerability of not knowing what to say. After all, "What if she did not like what I said and I only made things worse!" "What if she rejected my help?"

There is a tremendous amount of bullshit that goes on in my mind that prevents me from experiencing a deeper, more vulnerable level of myself. The thoughts and behaviors I learned as a child to avoid feeling the pain of rejection, and now as an adult have become automatic.

We all have many creative forms of protection from aggressive to passive. Some of my personal favorites are insecurity, feeling stupid, or judging the other person. Then there is being careful not to upset anybody. As I continue looking, there is competitiveness, illness, putting myself better than or less than, paralyzing myself, trying to control everyone around me including myself, and denial that I am feeling anything at all. Other ways are; neediness, manipulation, apologizing, lying, laughing, performing, arrogance, getting flippant or sarcastic, ...and on and on and on.

Unless we are willing to become conscious of these thoughts and behaviors, we feel isolated and alone and base who we are on what we imagine other people are thinking about us. I am starting to recognize that it is at these times it is up to me to be willing to take the risk to show who I really am in that moment.

I believe we all have a desire for deeper connections, of wanting to know ourselves more deeply and to experience life more fully. Taking the risk to share with other people honestly is one of the most valuable places I know, to gain insights and understanding and to experience deeper more fulfilling connections.

These days I regularly take the risk to jump into the unknown. I experience deeper connections, feel more excitement for life and experience more creativity and spontaneity than my mind could have imagined.

As I get up to clear my dishes and take them to the trays, I walk by him, still standing in the doorway. Once again his eyes meet mine, my breath catches, ...I walk on by. On my way out, I stop, consider for a brief moment, "Not this time!" and as I turn in excitement to go back in, I say to myself, "Don't think about what to do. Don't think at all. Just feel and then.........jump!"

Rising Woman Magazine

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Turning Passion Into LifeStyle
by Selena Wright

What am I passionate about? What do I really want to do with my life. Is this all there is..? There are a lot of women asking these kinds of questions as they look at making changes in their lives regarding work and home. They realize they have been so busy doing for others, (primary relationships, kids, bosses, friends), that they have forgotten themselves. Phrases like, "I don't even know what I want..." are very common.

Woman What to do? First is to make it a priority to find yourself. Start to spend time with yourself; journal, spend time alone. In essence, start to develop a relationship with yourself. What do you like? What things are important to you? Most of us are so focused outward. We need to turn our vision and focus inward.

Now, this is likely to rock the boat at home. People are used to you being a certain way and they may not like and even resist the changes you are making. You need to let your loved ones know that you need to do this for your self. Let them know you may be saying, "No", a lot more in order to say, "Yes", to things that will clearly forward your intention of creating a better life. If you feel guilt from spending this time with yourself, great! You are on the right track. If you are experiencing people around you feeling disturbed, that's great! This type of conflict means change is happening. Time to celebrate! This will enable you to give to others out of love, instead of guilt and obligation. When we give from guilt and obligation, we end up resentful and bitter.

Anything you do that honors your values and your spirit helps you to feel more connected and more centered. If you are used to feeling overwhelmed and trying to cope, the minute you do, make a promise to yourself that you will stop everything, sit down, breathe and check in with yourself. Set aside some time to do what nurtures you, and your spirit.

Focus on your strengths and start to eliminate those things you are tolerating and that are holding you back. Let go of the 'if only's' and take charge of creating your life now! 'If only's' are just the excuses we use that get in our way of moving forward.

Make a list of your values. Ask your friends and family when they see you most passionate and alive. What are you doing? What values are you honoring in that moment? Think of times when you are in conflict, or unhappy. What values are not being honored?

Watch out for the 'gremlins' that get in your way of fulfillment and success. These are the little creatures we all have in our minds that say things like, "You can't do that!" "Who do you think you are anyway"? There is a wonderful book available called, "Taming Your Gremlin", by Richard Carson that is a must read for anyone wanting to create a more fulfilled, balanced life. It truly simplifies how we get in our own way, and what we can do about it.

It is also important to set goals. They should be specific, realistic, measurable and yours. They should be in alignment with your values. When setting goals, include all areas of your life, both personally and professionally. Once the goal is set with a date, look at the action steps needed to accomplish the goal.

Networking is also a positive step. It is fun to do whether you are looking to grow your business or just meet new people. If you are like me, you will need to change your definition of networking. It is not about selling or exchanging business cards. It is about building relationships and enhancing your life. Hang out with people you see that are passionate about life. Put people before results and outcomes. By putting people first, the results take care of themselves and everyone feels great. You've heard the saying, "People don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care".

Give up thinking that you have to do it all on your own. Ask for help, and receive it even if things are not done perfectly the way you would do them. Often we don't ask for help because of fear of rejection, or not wanting to appear weak, needy or stupid. This is not the case.

Once you start becoming connected to yourself, who your are, your desires, values, beliefs and what you are passionate about, your life starts to become a magical journey of discovery and adventure. Now is the time to begin making positive and fulfilling changes in your life.

Rising Woman Magazine

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The Healing Power of Anger
  by Selena Wright

Anger... what comes up for you when I say the word... anger. Most people are afraid of anger because it is confused with the violent behaviours that often come with it. We often deny and minimize the existence of anger and yet our world is full of the violent expression of it... the trial of young boys who beat their father to death, students killing other students, September 11 and every kind of "rage" you can think of from road rage, to airline rage to waitress rage.

CoupleBecause anger is associated with negative and violent behaviour, most people have difficulty admitting their negative feelings and frustrations. We have learned that anger is not okay so we try to get rid of it as quickly as possible, either by dumping it or repressing it. Anger kept inside creates tension, and over time can contribute to a variety of illnesses from headaches and backaches to ulcers and arthritis to depression, cancer and heart attacks.

What to do? The first thing is to take responsibility for your anger. It's an easy concept to grasp, but not so easy to put into practice, especially when we are triggered. Anger itself is never dangerous or destructive, but how we react to it can be very destructive. To take responsibility for your anger is first to separate the feeling from the action, to take a moment and own that the feeling of anger is arising in you and that it is your anger. Take the time to learn constructive, effective methods of expressing of your own anger and being able to witness others anger without running away.

The second thing to do is to allow yourself to feel the anger and experience more clearly where it comes from. Anger is actually a secondary feeling which protects the more vulnerable feelings of hurt, pain and fear. Triggers for our anger have their roots in early childhood where the original wounding occurred. Imagine these wounds live inside your body and have developed little antennae with radar. Their sole purpose is to seek out experiences where healing can happen. Anger is a clear indication that you are in pain, and that the opportunity for healing is present. If you don't take the opportunity to heal, the pain doesn't go away. In fact the pain continues to grow, creating more pain and requiring more energy to cover it up. Only thing is, the signal from the antennae gets stronger and goes looking for yet another experience thinking, maybe this time… Haven't you ever wondered why you sometimes seem to get upset over the silliest things? You are never angry about what you think you're angry about! Learning to recognize and take your opportunities is the step towards healing and freeing yourself from the past. If you don't, you start to notice that similar opportunities come around again... and again.

It takes a lot of courage to go underneath anger. It's much easier to blame, stay angry or numb out and become depressed. But when you open yourself up to experience your pain at a deeper level, you begin to move underneath the anger and free up trapped energy. You become less rigid and less righteous and less likely to be triggered by those 'little things'. This means less tension in the body and less chance of experiencing dis-ease. You also experience yourself as more accepting and loving of yourself and others.

The alternative, letting anger use us keeping us imprisoned in jails of which we hold the key. Anger is not the enemy and we're not helpless in the face of it. Anger expressed responsibly creates healthy passion. It produces energy to support you to get on with your life in a positive manner and to free yourself from resentment and guilt. You become more awake and aware, more powerful and creative and more compassionate and caring.

The challenge of anger is at the heart of our struggle to achieve intimacy, self-esteem, health and joy. Learning how to deal with it is worth the journey. Anger is something we all feel. It exists for a reason & deserves our respect and attention.

Imagine feeling strong & energized, with increased clarity and wellness through responsibly expressing anger. Does this seem possible to you? I believe it's possible for all of us. Make a personal commitment to yourself right now that you will begin to dig beneath your experiences of anger and get to the root cause, and let the healing happen. You'll be glad you did!

The Healing Power of Anger - Part 2

Anger is the most intense feeling we experience. Once triggered in the body, we have a choice with what to do with it. The ability to separate the feeling from the action is so fundamental to our relationships and to our well-being. Because anger is so uncomfortable when we get triggered, we often try to get rid of it as quickly as possible, either by dumping it or repressing it. This is because most of us have learned that anger is not okay. Accepting anger and learning how to express it constructively is crucial to our growth and healing.

Most of us have learned to suppress, react or create obsessions and addictions as a way to distract from feeling anger. Since the triggers for our anger have their roots in early childhood, when we distract from feeling the anger we distract from healing the original wound. The distractions are temporary and our bodies continue to hold the original experiences related to anger that has been left unexpressed and unaccepted. Suppressed anger does not go away. We may trick ourselves into thinking that it has, however, over time, these frustrations leak out, often in inappropriate ways towards the people we care about.

What are ways in which you distract from feeling anger? Do you lash out, do you break things, or do you seethe quietly, swear to get even or do you blame yourself and suffer from stress, chronic pain, illness or addictions. Do you use sarcasm or threats or do you use your life force energy to make sure no one gets angry at you. What do you think have been the effects on your body, your health and your relationships?

Anger itself is never dangerous or destructive, but how we react to it can be very destructive. Taking the time to learn constructive, effective methods of expressing your anger and being able to witness others anger is crucial to living life in an open, loving, passionate way.

Creating safety is critical to the experience of expressing and receiving anger in a constructive way. One way to do this is to follow these guidelines and rules. Some of them may seem silly and awkward at first, but I guarantee you that if you follow these you'll feel a lot more passionate, connected and alive.

Rules for Safe Boundaried Expression of Anger

1. Permission asked and granted. This action by itself helps to slow the world down and take responsibility. Anger then becomes a vulnerable feeling instead of a destructive action.

2. Intention (i.e. to get clear, connect with you, practice safe expression of
energy, etc.)

3. Setting agreed upon boundaries that are defined & respected

    a) Physical space (including space between you and other).

    b) No hitting of self or other.

    c) No breaking/throwing of anything.

    d) Eye contact

    e) Time out signal

     f) Time limit (suggest starting with 1 or 2 minutes and ask for more if needed)

     g) Using full energy, breath & sound. Using full breath and sound helps to
         clear out the old messages and patterns that are carried in our body or
         cellular memory. The fuller the breath (through the mouth is a faster way
         to access the body) the deeper the sounds come from. Twisting a towel
         helps to release even more of the energy that has been contained in the body.

4. Intention to connect with the witness afterward. I suggest keeping this simple as you check in to see how each other feels, and not so much what you're thinking.

Over and over I've found that when these things are in place, the receiver of the anger expression usually feels some excitement and relief instead of fear or anger. The expresser usually feels more alive and relieved and sometimes for the expresser the relief is such that they allow themselves to let go into the deeper feeling and there is letting go of old pain and hurt.

There are many ways to move this energy safely and constructively. This is just one example of how to do this. Learning to express our anger constructively is essential to really defining ourselves. It's the same energy that has us stand up and say what we want and don't want. It's just a different intensity. When you're willing to embrace all of who you are including the most uncomfortable feelings, then you can really feel the connection and love with yourself and with others.

The Healing Power of Anger - Part 3

Anger and Honesty

One of the biggest lies that we all collude with is the lie that we are not honest because it will hurt someone's feelings. The real reason we don't tell the truth has nothing to do with the other and everything to do with how we don't want to feel what we feel, first with the anxiety about sharing and second how we project we'll feel in the presence of what we anticipate the other person will feel if we're honest. You make yourself responsible for them, and then realize you don't want that burden, and then get mad at them for your own dishonesty.

Next time you catch yourself withholding from someone, imagine sharing the truth with them. Feel what comes up in your body, and then watch the mind rationalize and justify not sharing it with them, so you can let yourself off the hook and calm those feelings of anxiety. Often when someone withholds sharing their truth, they get angry at the other to relieve themselves of the guilt and tension of not sharing their truth. Look at where you're not telling the truth. Do you feel some anger or resentment towards that person?

Many women have become immensely frustrated with getting men to see that their anger is fundamentally out of dishonesty. Any attempt to tell men that their anger is wrong or dishonest, ends up creating more anger on the man's part because he does not feel he is being accepted for who he is. A lot of women collapse and feel victimized by it. Instead of claiming their own power, power based on their own sensitivity to the truth of what they experience in their bodies, they discount what they know to be true in order to preserve the relationship. This collapse perpetuates their pain which leads to resentfulness that leads to anger.

Withheld anger and resentments destroy relationships. A lot of people think that if they withhold their anger that it's better for the relationship, however it's those relationships that eventually end due to the distance created by withholding. For a relationship to be alive and passionate, irritations, anger and resentments must be expressed. When it's expressed in a way that both people are fully present, the anger gets relieved and a new opening and connection happens. Breathing and staying in touch with the sensations of the body are key to staying present.

Most people quickly distract from the discomfort of the sensations and go to their minds and to the frantic thoughts, with a focus on who's right and who's wrong, instead of tuning into their experience.

When you deny anger, your perceptions of the world and the people in your life become distorted. The energy of anger does leak out if not allowed expression. It can show up in forgetting agreements you've made, being late, being critical or sarcastic, complaining, having accidents, saying things in humor loaded with a twist meant to hurt, fantasizing about getting even, self punishment, perfectionism, etc.

If you want to create an authentic relationship, than it's an absolute requirement that you are authentic yourself, which means showing up exactly as you are and sharing your truth. This takes a lot of courage, since most of us have been conditioned to try to be nice and accepted. Only thing is, when you withhold or lie, you're actually rejecting yourself. It's then easy to project the rejection as coming from the other person and then get angry at them for rejecting you. If you find yourself being edgy or critical, try asking yourself, "Where have I been dishonest?"

If you have a history in your relationship of not telling the truth and your relationship has gone into apathy or deadness, then to start sharing, things may seem to get worse before they get better. Most people have a tendency to share resentments ineffectively and when they see the outcome it has created, decide they were right in the first place not to share and then start withholding again. It's most effective at the start to have a third person present and to learn how to fight constructively, and clear the air between you. This starts a whole new way of relating and will start to enhance all your relationships, including the most important one... the one with yourself.

To break this circle that has so tortured humanity, the key is to tell the truth. If one person dares do this it will be contagious and change consciousness on the planet as we know it. Are you willing to be that person?

Rising Woman Magazine

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Cleaning Up Waste in the Workplace
  by Selena Wright

Have you ever stopped to consider how much time is wasted in the workplace? Time spent worrying about what others think of you and lots of time spent talking about others? It's not only time wasted; it's also money, energy, creativity, and people's spirit. I surveyed a number of people and asked, on a scale of 1-10, what is the level of clear direct communication in your workplace. The average number I received was 2. Think what we could save if we just learned how to communicate more directly and honestly.

People are not open to direct conversations mostly based on the fear of conflict. Bad-mouthing, bitching and complaining, getting into cliques and reacting with pettiness are the norm. The environment generated is fear based, insecure, and non co-operative, knowledge is tightly held because it's too threatening to share. People are smiling to someone's face and then making jokes behind their back. As one person stated, "It hurts to watch and then I start to wonder what goes on behind my back. There's no trust and lots of fear."

We often try to avoid irritation by finding others whose reality is similar to our own. Gossip is just one of the passive aggressive ways of expressing our own frustrations and irritations. When we deal with them in this way, they often have destructive consequences to our sense of self and our own feeling of well-being and integrity. Since our need for acceptance and approval is so high, we tend to group with people who come from a similar belief system and then collude with them about our judgments. Since we also have a need to be right, we can then have a moment of relief that we are accepted by others and are part of something. If we do this at the expense of others, we inherently feel lousy afterward. Since we feel lousy, we go looking to get a fix of the momentary relief and acceptance by others and start the cycle all over again. We are not naturally against other human beings. We are programmed and conditioned to behave in this way.

Unfortunately, those who dare to step forward and acknowledge what is really going on are often met with resistance. Some people operate on automatic from a familiar box and want to keep it that way. They are not willing to feel the discomfort of stepping out of the box and doing things in a different way, so they will often fight to get the other person back into their box.

If you are struggling with co-workers, jobs or organizations it's time to take responsibility and see what part you play in creating your experience. When you take responsibility for outcomes in your life, there are suddenly no villains and no victims, only people who are making choices based on their own beliefs and experiences. You are then freer to choose more empowering ways to behave and to create the life you want. You can choose to act more from your own integrity, instead of giving in to the fear and anxiety of the "what if" scenarios.

Everyone has the capacity to invent new experiences including new ways of seeing and hearing other people. Having the courage and taking the risk to change things helps you to develop a more confident sense of who you are. It also helps to stimulate you and those around you.

The more conscious someone is, the more they realize the impact of these negative conversations and the less they want to be a part of these conversations. They start to realize the waste and end up not wanting to be in this toxic environment. They know they'd rather use their energy in a more productive way, so they often leave to seek other more supportive life enhancing opportunities.

If people could learn to communicate directly and honestly, and learn constructive ways of dealing with conflict, not only would productivity go up, but so would moral, creativity, connection with people and the desire to be in the work environment to begin with. Learning to deal with conflict and differences is an investment for now and for the future and benefits all of us.

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