“Healing your relationship with yourself is the key to healing your life.”
— Jan Haldane
How do you mend a broken heart? A loving heart that’s been broken multiple times by the same person. What does it take to restore belief in yourself and confidence that you can find a healthy love again in the future?
These are some of the questions I asked myself when my relationship with the man I believed was my soul mate broke upfor the final time. My self-esteem was in my boots, and I struggled to believe in myself as a woman, mother and coach.
How could someone who had told me he would do anything to get me back just a few months before, and spoke positively about marriage, now have a multitude of petty reasons why our relationship would never work? It made no sense to me whatsoever. I spent weeks trying to understand his reasoning, until one day it dawned on me that it wasn’t about me making sense of anything. It was about him and his fears – most specifically, his fear of commitment. These fears had literally killed our relationship and there was nothing I could do to change that. No matter how many hoops I jumped through, and how much I twisted myself into a human pretzel, I couldn’t compete with the fears from his past. Fear is the opposite of love. No healthy relationship can grow from a place of fear. Fear is toxic, slowly poisoning the relationship as surely as weed-killer poisons plants.
Something had to change, that was certain. I couldn’t go on beating myself up for being myself. Was I really unlovable because I disliked loud, thumping rock music and went to bed before midnight? Did yelling at my 18-year-old daughter for getting me out of bed to pick up a dead mouse in the dining room while she had drinks with her friends make me the mother from hell? In his eyes, I couldn’t be trusted to live in the same house as him and his children. The really strange thing was, nothing had changed. I’d never liked loud rock music, late nights or disrespect from my children. I realised the only person I could change was me. In that instant I made a commitment to myself to use all my life experience, wisdom, professional coach training and spiritual knowledge to challenge the belief that I wasn’t enough.
Here’s the thing. You can leave any relationship you choose, but you can never leave yourself. Your relationship with yourself is the most important human relationship that you have. The quality of your relationship with yourself, or your self-esteem, underpins the functionality of all aspects of your life, because life is all about relationships, particularly for women. The belief that I wasn’t enough was beginning to impact my professional life too. Who was I to help others when I couldn’t help myself? How could I stop replaying the critical video and audio in my mind that reinforced daily that I was to blame, that I was somehow fatally flawed?
Now I look back and wonder how a successful 50-something professional woman could have become disempowered to this extent. Why had I given my power away? Why did I automatically feel I was to blame? Was it really to do with this relationship, or did this shame go back to my childhood? It’s truly amazing how emotional baggage follows us through life. It’s one of the first things I encourage my clients to work through, and I really believed I’d worked through my old stuff from an emotionally abusive childhood, but it seemed that I hadn’t after all.
To really begin the healing process, I needed to challenge the subconscious thoughts that I still carried from childhood, thoughts that nothing I did was enough and that I must be automatically to blame for anything that went wrong. Intellectually I knew this was untrue, but a little gremlin kept nagging at me that maybe there was something wrong with me, like my mother used to tell me. It’s interesting that despite a great education, numerous business and professional successes, friends and colleagues who love and respect me, and two amazing adult children, I still carried this old limiting belief.
From early childhood we are bombarded by messages that make us doubt ourselves and our abilities. It’s quite amazing how someone’s throwaway remark can impact our entire life. That is, if we let it, if we don’t challenge the validity of the original remark and the person who made it. Our still-developing child-minds internalise the messages we receive from authority figures in our life. In our innocence, we believe that parents, teachers, clergy, youth leaders and other adults must be right, by virtue of the fact that they’re adults. So whether or not these adults have the knowledge or expertise to be credible judges, we still believe them.
Soon the years pass and we shed our childish ways, but not the beliefs imprinted on our minds. However, now we look at life with an adult mind ourselves. We are now authority figures in our own right. If we don’t drill down to uncover and challenge our limiting beliefs ourselves, someone else will. And that someone will be in a relationship with you, because our relationships act as mirrors of what is actually embedded in our subconscious minds. Some relationships are positive mirrors and some are very dark mirrors. Whichever sort they are, they are reflecting your own thinking. Most importantly, they are reflecting how much, or how little, you love and approve of yourself.
Clearly, I had more work to do on releasing the childhood belief that I was not enough before it could affect any new relationship I went into. This kind of limiting belief has an impact not only on romantic relationships, but on everything that you do. Was I limiting business opportunities subconsciously? Was I somehow secretly sabotaging my professional life? It was time to take positive action. Calling on my training and the huge amount of professional reading I’ve done over the years, I created the Thought Release Tool, a series of powerful questions designed to identify and release negative and limiting beliefs.
What do you believe about men/women and relationships?
What do you believe about your worth in the world?
What experience/s prompted this?
Is this absolutely, 100 per cent true, with no exceptions?
How could you reframe this belief?
How has this thought served/protected you positively in the past?
How does this thought hold you back from finding love now?
How is this thought now limiting your success in other areas of your life?
Who would I be without the thought?
While it was very difficult to confront and list these beliefs and acknowledge, challenge and reframe them, it was also very liberating. I felt able to lay down my burdens for the first time in my adult life. I felt infinitely lighter and freer of spirit. It was almost as if I’d just taken an enormous pack filled with rocks from my back. I wanted to dance around the living room.
Working with this tool finally made me understand how I had created my thoughts, which in turn had created my intentions, which ultimately had created my reality. Essentially we are what we think. Our thoughts affect our body and our spirit. They can attract or repel love, success and abundance. Thoughts can heal us or make us ill.
There is no doubt that what you are thinking can affect your body in many ways. At that point in my life, not only was my mind in turmoil, my body had tightened up, especially on my left side. As the right side of my body began to compensate for this, I began to experience a lot of pain while walking. The combination of emotional and physical pain was now limiting my life by literally making each step I took painful. Simple things like walking around the supermarket were draining and tiring. Metaphysically speaking, I was manifesting this physical condition in response to my fear of moving forward on my own.
I’ve always been a very proactive and self-motivated person and I was very unhappy about the condition I was in. It was a very important part of my healing to understand how I’d ended up in this painful state. Dealing with the symptoms alone simply wasn’t enough. I hadn’t had a recent physical injury that had caused all this pain, so what was causing it? I knew the answers weren’t to be found in mainstream medicine, so I decided to approach my healing holistically. After all, I was experiencing pain in my mind, body and spirit.
I couldn’t leave working on my body until I’d worked on my thinking or my spiritual connection; it gave me daily reminders in the form of pain, that I needed to address what was going on. It was straight after the breakup that my body reacted to my emotional pain by locking up. In fact, I can pinpoint the time it happened. I was sitting at my desk at a charity that I work for, mulling over how someone could want to marry me and a few weeks later say he still loved me but couldn’t live with me for the petty reasons I mentioned earlier, when I felt I was literally being stabbed in the back by a knife. It was unbelievably painful.
Choosing to work with a chiropractor who specialised in Network Spinal Analysis (NSA) and Somato Respiratory Integration (SRI) was the best thing I could do for my body. Years before, I’d had an experience with a chiropractor who adjusted my back in a very rough manner, so when I met someone who could help me using a gentle touch, I was incredibly excited. Through gentle precise touch to the spine, NSA cues the brain to begin healing the body, while SRI reconnects a person’s breath, touch, focused movement and attention, allowing them to experience the body more fully and instantly shifting their state of consciousness to one that supports trust for the body-mind and their life experience.
Slowly I regained confidence in my own ability to heal. The pain was there less and I could gradually go back to doing the things I enjoyed, like walking the dog in the park or taking solitary walks on the beach to chill out from city life. At long last I began to feel like I was getting back to my old self. I had confidence that my body had the power to heal itself, and had a stronger understanding of how the power of the mind creates both our emotional and physical reality. If you are in physical pain or are unwell, stop and think about the body/mind link. Ask yourself:
What is happening or has happened in your life to cause your body to feel this way?
What can you do yourself to heal this condition?
Who can help you with this?
What is the cost of not seeking healing?
Where are you allowing limiting beliefs about your own self-worth to sabotage your health and wellbeing?
If you are in the habit of putting everyone else’s needs before your own, it can be hard to believe that you deserve to spend time and money on your own health. Let me tell you, you are awesome and you absolutely deserve to be healthy, happy and whole. And before you think, “I couldn’t be so selfish,” stop for a moment and consider how much your compromised health could negatively affect the people who love you and count on you to have their backs always. You are important, you matter and you are worth it. Your health and wellbeing are of paramount importance and you are capable of healing your heart, your emotions and your body. It’s a matter of trusting your body’s wisdom and believing that you deserve to be healed.
Perhaps the most powerful, and certainly the most comforting, part of my holistic healing practice was reconnecting with my spirituality, which I had neglected for many years. During a very difficult period of my marriage when my youngest child was a baby, I had developed my intuitive abilities to a professional level in the face of extreme disapproval from my ex-husband. On top of his negativity, I became scared of my own intuitive abilities. I had the gift, but wasn’t ready to step into my own power. It was far easier to conform to my husband’s wishes and devote my life to him and the children. While I put away my tarot cards and books for the meantime, I always knew it was something I would return to when the time was right.
They say when the student is ready, the teacher will appear. And so it was that I found myself on a plane bound for Brisbane, Australia, where I was meeting up with a colleague from coach school to attend Doreen Virtue’s Angel Intuitive course. At this course I found the missing link to reconnect me with my spirituality. I saw the potential of the gentle but powerful energy of the angels to heal my pain. Expanding on this, I saw how I could help others to heal their pain too. I felt incredibly blessed to be able to learn from Doreen, who has simplified the study of angels so we can all understand how to make the connection to the angelic realm, and how to work with angel oracle cards and angel tarot cards.
One of the simplest but most effective tools in my healing was listening to Doreen’s chakra-balancing meditations every morning and evening prior to going to Australia. From these meditations I came to believe that I was loved with a greater love than is found here on the planet. This was a huge step forward, to think that I didn’t need a partner to feel loved. It was given to me freely without any conditions attached. I felt extremely empowered and deeply nurtured. I could be myself, warts and all. I didn’t have to worry about not being enough, because I was loved and accepted by God.
Learning how to connect with the angels changed my life and changed the direction my business was heading in. I realised how much I’d suppressed my spiritual side because I needed to be seen as a serious coach. The truth was, I could pick up a lot of information that would be helpful for my clients, but there was no way that I could relay this to them without admitting that I was getting information from above. The old fears of being judged and considered ‘woo woo’ were holding me back again. I knew that this was the time to truly step into my power, both for my own healing and for the healing I could offer others.
I rebranded my business, started letting people know that I worked with Archangel Michael, and the clients began to appear. My fear of losing business and credibility proved to be unfounded as people sought me out to help them gain a new perspective on their lives with the help of divine direction. Gradually some clients who were initially sceptical also wanted to try out the spiritual side, and were amazed at how accurate and timely the information they received was.
Meanwhile, working with the gentle energy of the angels to heal myself and help others was making a huge difference in my life. I was feeling more peaceful than I had in many years, but there was still something that bothered me. Why did I still have this strong heart connection with this particular man above all others I had met in my life? I needed to understand this link. How could I make sense of this, and finally let go of his presence in my mind? To move forward I needed to give him notice on his long-term tenancy in my thoughts. Sure enough, when I asked the Universe, “What would it take to remove this guy from my day-to-day thinking?” I was given the tools.
When you ask the Universe for help, you will get it. But it may be in a different manner than expected. I happened to be on Twitter one day and saw that Hay House was running an “I Can Do It” weekend in Sydney, Australia. The lineup of speakers was truly inspirational, so without hesitation I booked my flights and accommodation. The final speaker of the weekend was Denise Linn. She was talking about past-life regression and she actually regressed the whole auditorium of the Sydney Convention Centre. In this regression I asked to be taken back into a past life with my former partner. In that lifetime I was his wife and he allowed me to be murdered. One of the things that bothered me in this lifetime was that he never had my back! Clearly in this lifetime we were trying to balance the karma from that lifetime, and that’s why the connection was so strong. This is so with karmic relationships, which are notoriously emotionally fraught.
On returning to New Zealand I completed Doreen Virtue’s Past Life Healer Course to learn more about how knowledge of our past lives can help us heal emotional pain, physical pain and phobias in the here and now. I regressed myself back into a life where my ex-partner was my son who I had very little time for. This made a lot of sense to me as I’d often felt like a mother to him rather than a partner. As I finally forgave myself for that lifetime, and him for the other lifetime, the karma was resolved. I woke up the next morning and the emotional pain and attachment were gone.
We are now the best of friends who will always look out for each other. Now that the karma is resolved, we are free to have a pain-free relationship. If I can heal my heart, you can too. If the pain is hanging on, try something else. I wish you all the happiness in the world.