News from Jude Bijou and Attitude Reconstruction™
More Joy, Love, and Peace in 2014 please!
View facing south from Hollyhock, Cortes Island, Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada
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Jude Bijou MA MFT is a respected psychotherapist, professional educator, and workshop leader. Her multi award- winning book is a practical and spiritual handbook to help you create the life you desire.
Jude said: I found it so interesting that the David Letterman clip on taking responsibility for his affair got twice the hits as any other link in June's newsletter. It was amazing to hear Dave talk so clearly, openly, and personally.
Linda P said: "Loved your newsletter - the 'chalking' video was amazing - loved it and also the video of David Letterman and as my loving husband said - 'no wonder everyone loved the Andy Griffith Show'. Thank you for giving us something each month in which to improve our lives and how we live."
Tom C. said: "Loved the newsletter on personal responsibility. The
Opie clip was a tear jerker..."
Raves about the book:
"Good book that gives one some good reading with ideas and suggestions that are valid and very useful. Too bad these types of books aren't ones that are 'mandatory reading' from a very early age, to, at the very least maximize the possibility of understanding how important Attitudes are, and to be able to see the "problems" in life, quite often have to do with something other than what we think and or 'believe.'"
-- Rogelio C.
"Jude Bijou's wonderful book is a beautifully written guide to transforming your life from the inside out. Her playful spirit makes the journey exciting, thought provoking, and, most of all, highly useful and effective."
-- Robert Maurer, Ph.D.
Jude said: I couldn't resist including this off-the-wall cartoon about intuition!
I had the opportunity to go north to Cortes Island, about half way up Vancouver Island in British Columbia last month. For those of you who don't know, there is a sweet retreat center up there named Hollyhock. It's what is considered to be the Esalen of Canada. Fabulous land, ocean water, and panoramic views. Delicious food. Really nice folks. And workshops on about most any topic. The area really resonated for me since I grew up in Washington state and our family would explore the San Juan Islands every summer. That part of the world is still so pristine. The combo of green trees, clean water, clear skies, and sweet outdoorsy smells makes everything feel alright with the world.
This month's topic is intuition. Regardless of what you think, we've all got it! Whether we listen is another story.
We have two inner voices. One is a voice that comes from the rational brain, the temptress, the rebel who wants what she wants when she wants it, the voice that is governed by "shoulds." The other voice is that still quiet inner knowing, what is called our intuition.
What Blocks Your Intuition?
Carl was trying to get clarity about his long-term girlfriend, who was now planning to take a six-month job 500 miles away.
When I asked what he was feeling, he reeled off a list of complaints about being abandoned, angry, sad, upset, and usurped by her parents and sisters who were encouraging her to take the position.
It was obvious to me that as long as Carl was focused on other people and situations, he would feel confused about what was best to do. His outward focus was an indicator of his own unexpressed anger.
I pointed this out and asked him to make a 180 degree shift to what was true for him. I then repeated my question about what HE wanted today and where HE stood. After he paused, Carl sheepishly said he was actually relieved. He relished living alone with his dog. He wasn't ready for "the playing house thing" and feeling responsible for having dinner together each evening. His best-case scenario was that upon her return, they would live separately and remain friends.
In refocusing on himself, Carl was no longer in the grip of how terrible his girlfriend had been and how much he'd been wronged. With this simple switch, he felt clear and strong enough to speak his truth before she left town.
Just that simple reorienting from outside (she didn't take me into consideration) to within (what was true for him), brought him so much more peace, strength, and confidence that he knew he'd be fine no matter what.
It's a lesson we must all learn: getting absorbed with what's happening out there takes us to funky places; staying within our heart and listening to our intuition brings us back to our true domain, our Self, and the safety and confidence that resides there.
Neat interview with Apple's CEO Tim Cook on Intuition
Tapping Your Intuition is a Skill
You can tap into your inner knowledge any moment you want to. Whether you're debating revving up on a third cup of coffee, dating an unavailable man, or fudging your income taxes, if you chose to listen within you will get some really helpful information. You really do know the answer. Intuition is always at the ready.
Like any other skill, contacting your inner voice gets better and easier with practice. Consulting your intuition becomes second nature, and as your point of reference changes, you'll no longer waste time justifying your position to others. When your intuition illuminates what's true for you and you've learned to trust it, the need for validation from others lessens. Your life ceases to be driven by wouldas, couldas, or shouldas. As you give credence to what you hear, self-confidence grows. You slowly develop the faith that no matter what transpires or what emotions arise, you'll be all right if you stay true to what you know in your heart.
Learning to hear your intuition requires a one hundred and eighty degree turn from "out there" to "in here." The process is straightforward but takes practice. Here's how:
- Stop and be quiet. Your inner voice resides in silence so you have to slow yourself down. First, calm your body so your mind becomes more settled. Shivering vigorously for a minute will remove emotional static, as will shedding a few tears or pushing against a doorjamb. Taking several deep breaths also temporarily quiets your mind and body so you can be fully present. Accompany your soothing, centering activity by repeating truths: "Everything will be all right. One thing at a time. I know what I know."
- Ask your question. If you've never consciously called on your intuition, start with something small and immediate, such as whether you should call in sick at work. Pose your question. You might try one of these:
� What's true for me about this specific topic?
� What do I want?
� What do I need?
� What do I feel?
� What do I need to do?
Or try a more specific question, such as:
� Do I need to talk to my husband about what I'm feeling?
� What do I need to do about my bad knee?
� Should I work out after work tonight?
- Be open and listen for the answer. It doesn't have to be profound; it's simply what you know beneath the mental chatter and opinions of others. One of the biggest clues that you're hearing intuition is that it feels right in your body. Hearing your heart's truth brings a peaceful inner sensation, a relaxing, freeing, "yes" feeling. How does it sound to you when you say it out loud? The wisdom of your inner voice rings pure and truthful. There's no mind noise. It brings an expansive, tranquil feeling. Messages from your heart don't begin with "I guess..." or "I think I should..." or "I'd better..." That's your mind talking. If the answer is complicated, you can be sure you aren't hearing your intuition. Likewise, if what you hear sounds flat or empty, or has a negative edge or tone, you still haven't contacted your inner voice.
I love this short video of Justin Timberlake talking about how he stayed true to his intuition about releasing "Bringing sexy back."
"Please help me with this, Michael...
Something's bothering you, a woman can tell..."
What To Do If You Can't Hear Your Intuition
You might be trying too hard. Your intuition's messages are usually fairly obvious. But if you've asked a question repeatedly and still can't hear an answer, emote, power for a couple of minutes, or do both, and then ask again. Or pose your question in a different way. Trying on some different wording may be just the thing. If that's still a no-go, take a more rational, logical approach. Expand your perspective by browsing through books, crunching numbers, or seeking opinions from experts and people you respect. Put a reasonable time frame on your data collection. Then pose your question again. Your answer will emerge in due time.
If you're having trouble accessing your intuition, shiver some more, then gently ask your question again. More likely than not, you already do know the answer. Just stop telling yourself that you don't. Ask, "What's true for me about this specific topic?"If you doubt the answer, you can subject it to the scrutiny by asking again. If you've heard your intuition, you'll get the same answer. If not, you'll hear rationalizations or justifications.
Do the same if you aren't getting a clear communication: ask yourself after expressing your emotions. Or set a specific time in the future to ask again. Some people recommend asking once a day and then giving it a rest. Be diligent in your inner inquiry, and something will emerge even if it is that it's not time to know yet.
You can also rid yourself of emotional interference by using your thoughts. If, for example, you're bombarded by negative self-talk (e.g., "I can't decide," "It doesn't matter," or "I don't care"), power on truths such as:
� I know.
� This is important.
� I care.
As you repeat these statements, be sure to nod your head up and down, not side to side. Gently but persistently ask yourself:
� What do I know when I'm clear?
� What does the best of me say to do about this?
� What's true for me about this?
Once you get a clear intuitive hit, hold on to it, it's your anchor amidst the choppy seas of the mind that will try to blow you away from your heart.
Intuition isn't just for new age thinkers. Here's Selena Gomez having some deep thoughts about about it in a song. Check it out!
How to Make a Decision When You're Freaked Out
Fran came in on overload. She was anxious and paralyzed. Outwardly she was performing her job and going through the motions in her personal life, but inwardly she was close to the edge. Those darn emotions, the pain, the loss of control. They were so strong, so intense that she had started to cut herself, something she hadn't done in months and months. The cutting was an indisputable sign that things had gone too far out and Fran sent out a SOS.
Fran had given notice at her stressful accounting job and looked forward to crewing with her partner for the winter around the Caribbean. But now things were developing. She wasn't so sure she wanted to be so isolated and on a boat far away with her roller-coaster mate. And the boss (who hadn't found a replacement half as competent as she was) now was asking her to reconsider, having finally made some of the changes she'd been suggesting for months.
RX - Solution
Fran needed to honor her emotions before she could think clearly and decide what she wanted to do. She had been crying tons so she was expressing her sadness. At this moment she was feeling angry because things seemed like they'd been settled and had felt so right. But now the tides had turned with the boss and with her man. Fran was also feeling a lot of fear. She was afraid she would make the wrong decision. Afraid she couldn't decide. Afraid of her emotions.
During our therapy session, Fran stood up and shivered for a good minute, all through her body, like a dog at the vet's office. Then she pounded on a pile of old telephone books with a flexible plastic hose for about three or four minutes. When she was exhausted, Fran sat back down on the couch and talked for a couple of minutes. Then she got up and shivered again, followed by more pounding, using both arms and few words. Fran repeated this routine two more times, and then ended her emoting phase with a last dose of shivering.
As her body was recuperating from all the energy she had expended, Fran spontaneously said the following, which I wrote down: I'll figure this out in its time. It will all be okay. It's not the end of the world.
Pretty cool shift.
She was then ready to make a specific action plan. In this case, her plan was to wait until Monday and see what developed over the weekend. She was confident that she could and would make a solid decision. We made another appointment.
1. Sometimes I hear my intuition but instead of following it, I do what I think I should do?
Tapping into our intuition is one thing. Obeying it is another. Our habitual drive to control events or seize momentary pleasure makes listening a bit tough. Being true to our intuition may be inconvenient or uncomfortable. It may not jibe with other people's desires. That's why all too often the mind undermines faith in your inner voice. Moving out of your parents' house and getting an apartment or taking a job that pays considerably less could feel daunting but be intuitively correct.
When you ask within, "Is this relationship over?" and hear a resounding yes, the part of you that resists change and wants to avoid pain laments, "I don't want to break up. Not right before the holidays. I can't bear the thought of him becoming involved with someone else."
Your mind is seductive! It can convince you of almost anything, including settling for the status quo. You start doubting yourself. "Maybe my standards are too high. Maybe he'll change. At least he's not violent. Maybe I'll never find anyone any better." Six months later, there you are in the same unfulfilling relationship. Why? Because you ignored your intuition to avoid the temporary pain of breaking up.
2. My intuition has always been strong, but I routinely discount it because I want to please everybody.
Easily accessing your intuition is a special gift, so good work there. Feeling pressure to be logical and conform to what we think others want is fairly common. Pleasing others is a tough habit to break. Remind yourself that your inner knowing is your most trusted friend. Practice giving it the right of way, and you'll see your choices will yield a life of joy, love, and peace-now and over the long run.
That's all I have right now on intuition. Hopefully you've found some insight and instruction so you can start to honor rather than discount your inner GPS!
If you have any feedback, suggestions, or comments, I'd love to hear. Write me at: [email protected]