Talking with monsters (read: internal parts of me in resistance or rebellion mode) has become something of a favourite past-time. Huge amounts of stuck and old emotional wounds have been healed by the awesomeness that is Monster Conversations.
So, I thought I might post some of my monster conversations up here, in the hope they might be useful fodder for other intrepid explorers.
Today: Exploring my block around doing yogasanas in the morning.
(Key: normal font is me talking, italicized font is monster talk. You know, unless otherwise specified.)
Is this on my list of ‘Stuff to Do in the Morning’ because I want to do it, or because I think I should do it?
Well, there’s a part of me that wants to do it, and a part of me that thinks I should do it.
Hmm, interesting. Can I talk to the part of you who does want to do yogasanas?
Hey there. In helping meditate this conversation, I want for everyone to have clarity on what needs are behind their particular strategies, so that we can eventually find a strategy that meets everyone’s needs. Would you be up for exploring what needs you imagine meeting by doing yogasanas?
Sure. Something about stretching and movement. Something about grounding and peace. Something about health. Something about connection.
So – MOVEMENT. GROUNDING. PEACE. HEALTH. CONNECTION.
Awesome, thank you. Can I speak to the part of you who doesn’t want to do yogasanas?
Because you’re just going to try to get me to do it, and I don’t want to.
You want to know that I’m not going to pressure you into doing anything you don’t want? That your needs are equally important here?
Yes. And you’ve already decided that doing yogasanas = good, and not doing yogasanas = bad, so how can I trust that?
You want to be able to trust that I have truly let go of the strategy in order to connect with you? That I’m open to other possibilities, other than doing yogasanas, for meeting my needs?
Yes. But that’s not going to happen because you’ve already decided that you’re a yogasanas person. So you keep trying to make me do yogasanas to fit in with your yogasanas person identity.
Oh. That’s really interesting. I hadn’t realised I was doing that, but now that you say it I can really see how much of me is invested in the yogasanas person identity. I really want to be seen as a yogasanas person. So many of my friends and people I mix with on the internets are into yogasanas, and there’s a part of me that is seeking ACCEPTANCE and BELONGING by trying to get myself to do yogasanas.
So, what doesn’t work for you about it?
No. I am not falling into that trap.
Which trap is that?
The one where you get me to say what needs aren’t being met, all the while secretly figuring out how you can get the particular outcome you want.
You’re still really wanting trust that I am asking from an intention of connection, and that I come into that space equally vulnerable, with everything out on the table and no hidden motives?
Is there anything I could do or say now that would help meet that need for trust?
I don’t know. I don’t want to be the one who has to come up with the idea. You’re the one who wants to talk about this.
Are you saying that because you want ACCEPTANCE?
Yes. That I can feel what I feel and I don’t have to apologise for it, or come up with the idea just because I feel the way I do.
You’re wanting to avoid any ‘should’s or ‘have to’s creeping in?
Is that about CHOICE? RESPONSIBILITY?
Don’t know. Don’t think so. It’s more like, this is how I feel, and it’s okay to feel that way, and it doesn’t mean I have to do anything in particular because of how I feel. I don’t mind doing things if you ask me to, when they meet my needs as well, but I don’t want to do things because you tell me I should.
Is it about protecting SOVEREIGNTY?
In a way. And maybe CHOICE, like you said. FREEDOM. Not going into rebel-or-submit mode. And when I hear a ‘should’ or a ‘have to’, it’s very hard to remember that I have choice, that the ‘should’ isn’t real and that it’s just a way of you saying, “I really want this, this is really important to me.”
You’re wanting to stay really connected to that sense of CHOICE? And also something about really caring about being able to stay connected, to yourself and to me. Is that right?
Yes. CONNECTION. CONNECTION and CHOICE.
Can I check-in how you’re feeling at the moment?
Much more connected. A sense of relaxedness that wasn’t there before. But still a little bit of tension and fear. I’m still worried you’re going to try and manipulate me into dong it your way, that you won’t care about how it is for me.
Oh! So it’s also about CARE?
Yes. I feel sad now.
(Pause for mourning of not having had need for care met in the past)
How are you feeling now?
Still sad, but with lots of space around it. And soft in my heart.
Do you think you’d be open to hearing the needs I hope to meet by doing yogasanas, and connecting to those?
I’m not sure if I’m ready for that. Still feels a little triggery.
How about if I start, and if it doesn’t work than we stop straight away?
So – I’m really wanting…
Need to stop! This is still super-triggery for me. All I can hear in my head is, ‘This is going to end up with us doing yogasanas, regardless of whether I want to or not.”
Stuff about CARE?
Wanting to know your needs are respected?
Yes. Oh, I feel so sad again. Mourning.
(Pause for mourning of need for respect not being met in the past.)
How are you going?
Just feeling weary and overwhelmed. Can we talk more about this later? I’m needing SPACE and REST and COMFORT and EASE.
Sure thing. I’m happy to leave this here for now and come back to it later, so that you can have space and rest and comfort and ease. Shall we reconvene same time tomorrow morning?
Great. And I just wanted to say I appreciate you talking to me about this so much.
Going to go away and cry now. Bye.