They say you teach what you most need to learn. In the last eight months I have been collaborating with my good friend Laurent Labourmene and he is currently working with my on my branding. Last week he asked me to put together a stream of thinking about what I do, what I hold for myself for the future….and it was during that process of self assessment and inquiry, that a few things came to light.
My life from the beginning has been about truth, integrity and speaking up. My first words were not platitudes of endearment. No..not me. My first words were “bugger, bugger, bugger!” Something about my very young life was making me unhappy, and rather than cry, I vocalised the young warriors call. Now to complete this picture, I was born in Fiji, so my attire at a very young age was a cloth nappy (no such thing as disposables in those days), and that was it. I had white hair that stood up on my head, as if I was permanently in a field of electrical energy. Which I probably was. So if you can picture this very cute mostly naked baby with shocking white hair and expletives coming out of her mouth. The light and the shadow in shocking cuteness!
The inability to stay still or silent when there is work to be done and people and places to fight for has been with me since day one. A lot of my work involves supporting people to find their own voice when they are feeling small and marginalised. To be assertive, and to speak with clarity and truth. Thankfully my vocabulary and skill set around communication has evolved beyond bugger bugger bugger, although occasionally this really is the best response.
So…if integrity is a large part of what I teach, where is it that I continue to learn Integrity? For surely, as the sun goes below the horizon every day, finding the places in me that are out of integrity is where the work is for me. And will be until the day I draw my last breath. The beauty of this is that the quest for my own fault lines in integrity get ever more subtle. I have to pay ever more attention. And every now and then a bolder size lesson falls on my head, and like humpty dumpty, I sit in my own brokenness, and mostly fall in love with the whole perfection of life and its messiness all over again. Pick myself up, get the lesson, be incredibly grateful, and move to the next one….
We are going through a collective humpty dumpty moment around our integrity with money. Each and every one of us is being asked to look at our relationship with money and the places we are out of integrity with our money, investments, work, expectations of entitlement…
My relationship with money has been under serious review for many years now. My belief system and experience has been that money is hard, I do not seem to be smart with money, and that I am not being supported.
Well it hit me the other day that the last statement, the “I am not being supported” statement, is a victim statement. And in my work one of the core principles of our teaching at Syzergy is that victims are not taking responsibility for their lives, and that within the word victim lives the word blame. And..even worse…that there is some whiny entitlement gig going one here. Oh please…I hate that in others…so of course, it was to be found somewhere in me. And there it was..this ugly little part to my character.
Of course the next question is “where am I not supporting others?”…because support needs to live in me before it can come from the outside in. Hmm… well, I have not been supportive in my communication with my daughters father. Not at all. I have played the hero…and denied him genuine communication of situations to aid his ability to support. Not nice.
Around the money is hard bit…well that is a deep seated belief I am not far from uprooting for good. The truth is I have always had the ability to make as much money as I really wanted. I have simply not been prepared to make it in the global casino by investing it in etherial stocks, or off the backs of other peoples ignorance. This is a complex conversation that involves ethics and my understanding of the principle of exchange. Needless to say, I am really OK with the choices I have made to this point around how I have made money.
**through my own endeavors and by supporting others in theirs
**by doing work that adds real value
**for the major part of my life, by doing work that aligned with my values, skills and joy
In reference to my not being smart around money…well there is definitely a part of this that has been true. But not any more. I have spent beyond my means, built debt, and not been responsible. I have created a past by living in a future avoiding the present.
Being smart around money is really quite simple.
*spend less than you earn
*in the process contribute value to all living things and the environment and do this in ever increasing ways (ephemeralisation)
*invest time, love, energy, effort and money in places/people/businesses that match your integrity
*live in the deep knowledge of the abundance of life
*surround yourself with people who are complimentary to your skills and abilities and operate from the same level of integrity as you
*be mindful of the shadow elements…greed wants money for nothing, vanity wants money for appearance, lust wants money to fill an eternal void, scarcity is an insatiable monster that will never be satisfied and always cries for more
*have a reserve because life ebbs and flows..its just the way it is
*borrow only when you are making an investment in an idea that will add even more value to even more people/places
This morning the final flash in this sequence of thought was that I can be healed around money now. I do not need to wait until all my debts are paid before this happens. I am able to forgive myself for my past transgressions, knowing the lesson is learnt and I am done with it. My beliefs, behaviours and actions are changed. Now!
Next lesson…bring it on…