One key to freedom – Permission

Here are my insights from the time out that I took in Bali from September 2016 until July 2017. Contemplating on the way I was living my life. Sorting out old behavor patterns that weren´t any longer me. In a way an extention of the time when I let go of my material belongings.

Too often had I asked myself how a certain reaction or expression of a feeling inside myself would look like to others. And in that way resticted my natural way of behaving. Didn´t allow my talents to blossom. Suppressed joy and all those other feelings in order to feel safe or what I thought saftey feels like. Instead of living the moment – feeling, allowing and expressing myself I had kept quiet and benumbed.

The following questions were my start of becoming more ME, shedding an old skin and freeing myself from self-limiting thoughts and behaviors:

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How do I really wish to live? What is my dream? How can I use my gifts and talents in order to be of service?

If I had all the money, support and safety in the world, how would I show up in this world?

In which way do I limit myself? When do I feel, I am blocked in showing my feelings, telling my thruth and opinion or behaving in a way noone else does?

– Which thoughts, fears or beliefs make me change my natural, authentic way of being?

– What do I need to see and accept before letting go of these patterns?

– And which permissions do I need to give myself first?

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Over one month had gone by since I left Germany. I was back in Bali, where I had been before already two times. But this time found myself opening up to the infinite possibilities and the community that this island had to offer. Joining talks, trying different healing modalities, enjoying massages, coconuts and the weekly Kirtan sessions.

I slowly become part of the community of expats, yogis and other people, who knew how to enjoy life, who chose to make this little bubble of love and light their reality.

How come? – I guess because this time I allowed myself to do so! Sounds too simple to be true. But that was, what I did.

I made the decision to get rid of behavior patterns that didn’t serve me no longer, like holding back and not expressing myself properly, being shy in bigger crowds and not enjoying life to the fullest.

Easily said to ‘just’ decide to change something but OMG not so easy to do since this was what I knew for so many years. Hiding behind invisible walls. Building layers of protection and more layers in order to make sure I wouldn’t get hurt again. I must have started doing this since some time in my early teens. When I lost the lightness of being, the presence of joy and the trust that I was just as right and beautiful as everyone else.

And in times of change and trouble one has to try to cope with it. So no blame on these behaviors which were needed on some point in time. But most of the time we forget that these strategies were meant to be temporary. We keep on applying them without even noticing how destructive they might have become over time. And that the threat has most likely passed.

Same had happened to me. I kept on applying protective behavior patterns that I haven’t been needing for a long time already!

And the only result was that I felt lonely in my ‘safe’ castle. Somehow separated from the others, as well as separated from my true self. All the love and kind words that my family and friends were constantly sending towards me – they couldn’t reach me. And I felt also bad about that, that I could not feel the love that I was given.

So the first step for me to get out of this trap was, to recognize the present moment: This was and is what I’ve been doing, consciously or unconsciously. But there is no threat anymore. I can let go of that strategy – now!

In my experience this first step is most likely the hardest part and the biggest pill to swallow.

Accepting the truth of this moment. Acknowledging that yes, ´I have somehow taken a decision in the past to do so´. Or in some cases ´Yes, it was me restricting my behaviour and playing small. It was me and no one else. No one to blame for.´

I feel this is the key: I always choose the way I think and talk to myself. Indirectly this affects my words and actions. So it is not to blame myself and be stuck, but to empower myself so make changes – all in MY power.

So it is at the same time very good news: Everyone has the power him- or herself to make a change! Everyone can undo these decisions, rules, blockages etc.

Key to freedom is very simple: Give yourself permission to do so.

Allow yourself to open up to a different behavior. Don’t force it. Simply say to yourself ‘I allow myself to open up/ to do this or that…’ and observe what will happen in the next weeks. Really try it for yourself! Talk to yourself. Listening to the words you say. Do you trust those words? How does it feel to say and listen to that?

Initially, you could feel stupid talking to yourself. Or maybe, you won´t be able to bring these simple words over your lips.

Then also allow yourself to speak the truth to yourself and check if you can then say it. If it is still difficult, you could also try writing it down, just for yourself. No need to share it with others.

There are so many fears involved, when it comes to change, not being familiar with certain behaviors and not being able to foresee what will be the consequences. But that is where the magic can start to happen.

´May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears.´  – Nelson Mandela

For me Bali’s magic is happening. All these new opportunities, insights and chances to overcome my former fears, make me feel so alive and in my power. And all of this becomes so much easier with this nourishing surrounding – not only nature which is soo so beautiful here, also the positive and conscious mindset of people, as well as the Balinese people who live a life connected to everything arround them.

So don’t worry if you can’t make it to Bali and still want to experience what I just described. Help and guidance will come to you when you get stuck. Just ask for it!

And then open your eyes and senses to perceive it. No shame, no weakness in asking for help. It is so much nicer walking up the hill together with someone. Knowing you can hold on to someone when you get tired or the ground is full of gravel and stones so that you can’t even see the path. And then of course enjoying the view from the peak together, overseeing where you came from.

Questions for your own reflection:

Imagine you couldn’t fail, what would your dream life look like? Can you give yourself permission to strive for that, to make mistakes and learn from them, to change perspective and make it possible? What could happen worst case – do you really allow those fears to dictate your life? Who would you be and what would you do without those fears?

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