This Is What I Trained For

Tuesday 24 July, 2018

I once asked Karaj how he did what he did. I was so impressed with the way he was able to see through what people were saying and touch the core of their message, their humanity, and even their soul sometimes. He saw things clearly, and led people by the hand so that they could see it too. He made connections effortlessly, and clients would go quiet mid-sentence as realisations dawned on them. The power of that alone could be enough to change lives.

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TS 18 – Celebrate Your Uniqueness

Monday 14 November, 2016

Although I didn’t know it at the time, this turned out to be the last of these seminars. I thought I might do a few more, but the way this one ended was the perfect way to round off a series of talks, blogs, and videos which cover so much of what personal development work is all about. The topic itself is also a suitable way to finish: see yourself clearly, acknowledge your beauty and power, and celebrate your uniqueness; whilst all the time knowing that, paradoxically, you are also one with everyone and everything else in existence.

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TS 7 – Don’t Get Cocky

Friday 27 May, 2016

Whilst there are clear benefits of a certain level of self-confidence because it empowers us to take on things without fear of failure, or because it allows us to push ourselves further than we would otherwise go, we should avoid getting cocky (over-confident). Cockiness leads to a loss of focus and we relax too much, thinking we’ve made it. Alternatively, we push ourselves too much, thinking we can do it all. When I was 18 I was playing football and having the game of my life. I felt like I could do anything. Then, 20 minutes before the end, I tried to do too much, tore my cruciate ligament and never played again. That experience, and the constant reminders I received during my training, all help me to remain grounded and not get cocky.

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Journeys Within Journeys

Thursday 2 October, 2014

In the days before I set off to spend a month in the sunshine, there was reluctance. I had booked the trip primarily out of need, rather than desire. Desire alone would not have sufficed to make it happen, because I have come to value routine over adventure; repetition over novelty. These past weeks have re-awakened the adventurous side of my character in the most gentle way possible: within the secure friendship of good people, and in a beautiful, warm part of the world where everything was in place for me to create my normal routine, meet new people, indulge ever more effortlessly in new experiences, and see myself in sharper focus.

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What Do We Have For Each Other?

Monday 19 May, 2014

For years I had a thought: that people who find themselves sitting next to each other on trains, park benches or pavement cafés, might share something of themselves, find a connection and discover the gift each has for the other. I attended an event on Saturday whose goal was the same: to bring people together in order that they may share, connect and discover. All day people did exactly that in pockets of conversation fostered easily by the workshops and the organisers who, once again, did an excellent job.

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Enjoy Your Self

Thursday 10 April, 2014

In the pursuit of any goal, there are times when it is necessary to take a step back and reflect. Not just reflect, but assess and appreciate, before refocusing and continuing forward. Personal development is no different. Through observation we become aware of the areas which need attention, and we strive to be the best we can possibly be. We focus our efforts on the few areas of deficiency, paying them disproportional levels of attention in an attempt to correct or improve ourselves. But we must be careful not to ignore our greatness.

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This Is Our Celebration

Thursday 6 February, 2014

I told him what I had written yesterday: that I didn’t want to show off. He interrupted me, saying, ‘You should show off. This is our celebration.‘ He explained that leaving and returning are natural parts of the process; they make the celebration possible. I had left because I could take no more. I was being challenged every step of the way and it became increasingly difficult for me to be here. From the inquisitive, deferential person I had been at the beginning, I had become cocky, argumentative and confrontational. There had been no other option but for me to go.

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Stay Grounded

Thursday 21 November, 2013

Two things are likely to happen as we progress with our personal development (actually, as we progress with anything). First we get excited, then we stop doing what worked for us in the first place. This post is about the excitement of progress, how important it is to enjoy it and celebrate as much as we can, but also keep our feet on the ground. It is written primarily for a friend, so I don’t have to keep reminding him to do what he knows he needs to do. But it’s also for the rest of us because when our excitement gives rise to complacency we begin to undo all our good work.

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It All Comes Down To This

Monday 14 October, 2013

When we forget the simplicity of it all, or we’re convinced there must be another way; when we are stuck, or frustrated by the lack of novelty, this is the post to read. It’s a reminder of the value of repetition and practise. Every day, every minute, every breath. In the end, it all comes down to this:

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Earning The Right To Celebrate

Sunday 3 August, 2003

I met myself in the newsagents this morning. The owner started telling me that the world is overpopulated. I was backing away by the end of our brief conversation. It showed me how I used to be and how far I have come. What a relief.

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Learning How To Serve

Sunday 1 June, 2003

Michelle had invited her father to the house today to honour him. The morning began with preparations for the celebration. Karaj drew up a to-do list of over 40 items. Simran was put in charge and was responsible for ticking off the items as they were done. I received the guests. It was important for me to welcome people and be the first point of contact here. I kept my distance from the servers – Simran, Dev, Ishwar and Kuldip. Only Ishwar was in control of things and it was because of the ineptitude of the others that I stayed on the edge of the operation. I got sucked into their mêlée once for a brief period during the serving of the main course, but quickly got out again when I realised what was going on.

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Congruency, Conclusion & Celebration

Sunday 2 September, 2001

I woke up feeling a little negative. I did not give Karaj his wake up call and received a bollocking for it. I had brought it on myself. Ishwar had even reminded me but I had decided to allow Karaj a lie in. Who am I to believe I know what other people need?! All I need to do is do my job. The women were just finishing their early-morning session as we went in. We took a break – this served to reinforce the need for procedures – and then Dev went ahead with his assessment of the feedback from the success stories. This time there was no problem with hearing and understanding his words.

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Comprehensive Analysis

Monday 20 August, 2001

Whilst we waited for the gas man to arrive, the three of us made a start on our latest homework. We began with Calvin’s stories and it seemed like a monumental task. A task made easier, however, by the support of each other. We talked it through together until such a time when I suggested a 10-minute silence in order that we could all write down our own analyses. We had started with Calvin’s work, reasoning that this would at least be straight and easier to analyse than some of the others. It took us an hour each for the first two stories, after which we moved our operation to the house.

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Encourage Others to Blossom

Saturday 12 May, 2001

06.00 E&M 90 mins. Felt a bit tired this morning. Karaj and Robert had gone out for a walk in the early morning and they returned just as I went to pick up Calvin from his room. Great timing. After breakfast we all did our own thing. I went for a walk along the beach. Again the sun is shining and the weather is perfect.

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