For When You're Feeling Like Crap
 

I recently stepped up in my business in a big way, taking on a new project that was intuitively inspired, but also a pretty big leap for me. I had been doing my inner work and when the idea arrived, I jumped on it – acting with more decisiveness and confidence than ever before.
 
And at first it went great. The project began, and I was rocking it. Then about two weeks in, my energy began to drop. I started to feel heavy and foggy brained. My self-doubt was creeping back in.
 
I can celebrate that it was far softer than it’s been in the past. My brain used to bully me and tell me I’m a loser and no one will like this and that this teaching isn’t valuable. And this time it was more of a subtle story, “Oh so and so doesn’t need your help on this, she could do it all herself.” A little easier to stomach, but then again a little harder to catch in the act!
 
Also present was that voice that always says, “Oh no, not again. Will I always fall back into this rabbit hole?” Though it was quieter too and came with heaps more compassion.
 
I share all this to say, it’s completely possible to heal how you speak to yourself and the struggle of doubting your value and your worth. AND within that, it’s totally normal to continue to experience the cycle of growth, and that’s beautiful too.
 
This is the cycle that I’ve noticed…
Feel good for awhile, maybe expand and grow
Cruise control, slack a little on the inner work practices
Slowly low mood creeps in
Denial and resistance of low mood
More discomfort from low mood
Denial/resistance and increasing discomfort keep going for a while…

Then, finally accepting that discomfort is there
Voice that’s sad/annoyed/angry I haven’t healed this yet !!!!
Surrendering into whatever feeling is present, letting it be felt and seen
Low mood evaporates from being held and witnessed
Clarity and space open up again
Flow and feeling good…
 
And the cycle begins anew…
 
Can you relate to this? I’ve watched myself and my clients go through this cycle many, many times.

I wrote out all the things I've been doing to navigate this cycle with ease and grace and it was practically a damn novel. Too long even by my long email standard. So I'm going to start with step 1 today and share the other steps with you over the next few weeks. 

Step 1 is Acceptance. 

Acceptance is so important (that's why I talk about it all the time)! It's really the foundation of everything. Because as I read in Eckhart Tolle's Power of Now last night, "What could be more futile, more insane, than to create inner resistance to something that already is?"

And yet we are doing that all the time when we fight and judge and criticize ourselves and our circumstances for being what they are. You are where you are right now, it's ok to soften and just be here. It's actually the only sane option! 

Here are 3 key areas to invite acceptance when moving through the cycle of growth.

1- Accepting that the cycle is how it works and that’s totally ok. Beautiful actually. It doesn’t mean I’m failing or I’m doing it wrong or the work isn’t working when I experience low mood or frustration. It's just how it works! 
 
2- Accepting that a low mood is coming in, rather than tightening against it, pushing past it, or ignoring that its there. The more I resist or attempt to press on despite what I’m feeling, the longer the cycle takes, and the longer the low mood sticks around.

3- Accepting that I will feel some amount of, "Oh no, not this again," sadness and frustration. In almost every session with my clients, I witness them growing aware of the ego's stories and the source of the heaviness and then immediately after feeling sad or frustrated that this is happening. But guess what? It's normal to feel this way! It's most likely going to happen! And if you pay close attention, its really just the ego playing more of its games. The art is to witness and accept the low mood AND the frustration/sadness about the low mood. (Check out my podcast Ripen Episode 11 for more on this idea).

You are where you are, you feel how you feel, and that's ok. Consider this your permission slip to take some deep breaths and soften into accepting wherever you are in the cycle right now. 

Lots of love,
Rachel

PS Yes I know this was still a damn novel even though it's only part one! And get excited, Ripen Season 2 is in the works, woot woot!

 
Rachel SizemoreComment
Why I decided to remove – “All races, ages, sexual preferences, and flavors of womanhood are welcome” – from the description of my podcast Ripen.
 

It’s not that I don’t want Ripen to be inclusive, but that the truth is, at this point, it’s not actually inclusive. That statement is just that – a statement.

And not only is that not enough, it’s actually part of the problem.

The problem that’s worsened when I add something like that to my website without doing the deep work internally and externally to back it up. I’m checking the “I’m diversity sensitive” box, but not challenging myself to create actual change in what I’m delivering or how I show up. And not shockingly, lip service to change does not actually create change!

More likely, me making this statement at this time actually perpetuates the whiteness / heterosexuality / cisgender cultural norm that blindly demands everyone should just fall in line and be happy with content and communities that aren’t actually created for and sensitive to their unique experience.


I starting to think critically about my attempts at being more inclusive after attending Andrea Ranae’s super impactful webinar, 5 Ways to Use Your Business as a Tool for Social Justice (I encourage you to check out her offering, Coaching as Activism if this is resonating with you). 

Andrea challenged us to think about where we are coming from in taking actions like claiming inclusivity or using stock photos with people of color (which I have not done but I’ll admit has crossed my mind). Are we grounded in truly being inclusive? Are we clear about what that means to us? Or are we trying to assuage our conscious or make sure we look good?

Andrea also challenged us to get honest about our capacities to actually hold and create safe space for the people we are trying to include.

Reflecting on this, my honest truth is that I haven’t done the work to get crystal clear on my values and what concrete steps I can take to reflect those in my business. And I haven’t done the work to make my podcast and my community a safe and supported space for people different to myself. I sincerely hope it’s not actively unsafe, of course, but I also acknowledge that it’s not yet intentionally supportive and inclusive. I have only shared my own (straight, white woman) perspective and only interviewed other straight, white women.

Also it is important for me to realize that though I may want to be inclusive, I will never be the best person to serve these communities different to me because I have not walked in their shoes and shouldn’t presume to know what they might need.


I firmly believe that sharing my personal challenges and growth vulnerably and doing my best to help people does ultimately help society and the world to be a better place. However, claiming inclusivity, trying to be more politically correct or sensitive to those different to me on a surface level only, does more harm than good.  


So what am I going to do instead? How can I do better?

First is commitment. The commitment to keep trying even though I’m uncomfortable, uncertain, and way out of my depth each time I wade more into these topics.

Second is learning more. Continuing to read books, attend webinars, take classes which challenge my limited view of the world and help me better understand the systemic and cultural forces which create hierarchies of privilege and power.  

Third is personal reflection and inner work. Looking at the ways in which my business and my life come from a privileged frame and how I participate in and perpetuate systems which do not reflect my true values. Exploring more specifically what my true values and intentions are and how I can better live those values in integrity, and truly be a more supportive and safe space for those who are marginalized by society.

Fourth is to keep having this conversation. Listening to perspectives which are different to my own. Sharing my process of exploring social justice and issues of race and discrimination even when I’m scared and uncomfortable. Featuring different voices and perspectives on my podcast and using my platform to highlight some of the many powerful, inspiring, and diverse teachers who are out there doing this work with far more experience, wisdom and grace.

That’s my commitment. I know I’ll be far from perfect, but all I can do is keep trying.

 
Rachel SizemoreComment
Are You Frustrated? Exhausted? Overwhelmed?
 

Often times along with the new year hullabaloo, there can also be a sense of frustration. Another year and I’m still working on this. Another year and this is still on my goal list. WTF.
 
Can you relate?
 
What I’ve found in myself and in my clients is that this frustrated piece of us is really good at taking over and running the show. Meaning when we feel frustrated with ourselves or where we are in our lives or both, it feels like that frustration is all there is. I should be further along by now, period.
 
So we let this frustrated piece set the intentions, set the daily habits, set the goals. We let the frustrated piece push us and make us feel behind. We let the frustrated piece drive us to exhaustion and overwhelm. 
 
Then we wonder why we feel so tired and unmotivated. Then we get more frustrated with ourselves. And the cycle continues. Am I right??
 
This frustration is indeed very good at taking over and causing quite a bit of mayhem while it’s at it.

So today I want to invite you to notice that the part of you that’s frustrated is actually just one part of you.
 
For instance, there’s also the part of you that feels scared – scared to do what you need to do or scared that you aren’t capable of doing it. And there’s the part of you that feels tired or overwhelmed. The part of you that just wants relief, to give it all up entirely.
 
Now I want you to notice the part of you that knows that everything is actually ok. The part that can hold all the frustration and fear and sadness and simply sit with it.
 
Maybe it’s in your heart or in your yoni or along your spine. Maybe it’s a shimmery energy around your whole body. Just open your mind and notice.
 
This might take some practice, especially if you’ve never tried to do this before. Close your eyes, take some slow deep breaths and ask yourself, where is the part of me that knows everything is ok? Whatever you experience, take a few more deep breaths and really soften into that.
 
See if you can feel a little relief. A little release. A softening.
 
Or if you can’t, check in and see if you need to create space for that release to happen. Get up and shake your whole body. Scream into a pillow. Fake laugh until you cry. Cry until you laugh. Move and sound however your body wants, regardless of how silly or weird it might seem. Go until your body is ready to stop.
 
And now try again. Close your eyes. Where is the part of me that knows everything is ok? That knows I am where I am and can simply soften and open into that?
 
What does this piece – this piece of you that can hold and accept all of your pieces – what does it know about your intentions and goals for 2018? What does this piece know about what your body and spirit truly need to thrive this year? What wisdom does it have for you?

 

Breathe. Listen and breathe.

 

Whether you are able to tap into this accepting of it all piece of you or not, it doesn’t matter. You can still notice how the frustrated piece is just one part of you.

And the more awareness you bring to that piece – maybe even giving it a name or a persona – the more you can notice when it’s running your show and question whether you want to buy into everything it says about where you “should” be by now and how much shit you “should” have on your to do list.
 
Because I promise, when you stop letting your frustrated piece blindly run the show, the new year feels a lot more simple, gentle, and potentially expansive.
 
My intention for this space in 2018 is to share practices which are helpful and transformational, ideas and invitations that bring you home to you. The truth of you. That means more awareness, more breathing, more expansion, more surrender, more exploration, more confidence, more trust. You have everything you need within you already, sweet one. Let's explore it together.

Thank you so much for being here.

Lots of love and self-compassion to you for wherever you are today –
Rachel

 
Rachel SizemoreComment
{ripen 014} The Pressure to Pick the "Best" with Rachel Sizemore
 
Ripen_014.jpg
 

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There's a lot of underlying pressure in our world to figure out "the best" of all of our options, the best foods to eat, the best restaurant to go to, the best partner to marry, the best school for your kids. We are both blessed and cursed to have so many options, and one way we cope is to focus on the elusive "best."

But searching for the best can be exhausting and overwhelming. And frankly, it can be limiting, too.

In this episode, I share a simple alternative framework for how to easily navigate decision making when you're flooded with options and feel pressure to figure out the best one.

 
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RESOURCES

+  Awaken Your Desire, live workshop with Rachel in Culver City on June 29, 2017

+  Episode 13 of Ripen with Connie Chapman for more on deepening your connection with yourself

+  Episode 9 of Ripen with Katarina Arneric for more on using the wisdom of your body to make decisions


CONNECT

+  Website: rachelsizemore.com

+  Facebook: /rksize

+  Instagram: @rksize


LOVE AND FEEDBACK

Thank you so much for being a part of the Ripen community. If you're a fan of the show, I'd love to have your feedback. Please head over to iTunes to leave a review and rating. Don't forget to subscribe while you're there!


SUBSCRIBE TO RIPEN

You can subscribe to Ripen so you never miss an episode.

+  Click here to subscribe on iTunes

+  Click here to subscribe on Stitcher


More ripen for your listening pleasure...

{ripen 013} What to Do When You're Stuck in a Rut with Connie Chapman
 
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Love this podcast? Subscribe to stay up to date with new episodes: iTunes or Stitcher

 

Tuning into your unique intuition and desires - sounds lovely in theory but can be a bit tricky in practice - particularly if we are in the habit of racing through life and filling any downtime scrolling on the phone.

But if we don't slow down to do the inner work of connecting with ourselves and clearing out old pain and resistance, we often find ourselves stuck in a rut, recreating the same crappy situations over and over again.

In this episode of Ripen, I chat with Connie Chapman about what it really looks like, step by step to go within, even when it feels incredibly uncomfortable.

Listen in as Connie and I discuss…

+  A step by step process to finally clear old recurring patterns and habits

+  The magic that comes from connecting with yourself and aligning to your truth

+  Anxiety and how Connie has been able to make peace with her life long struggle with it

+  Connie's daily practice that keeps her living in her truth while still achieving her goals

 
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LISTEN IN

Love this podcast? Subscribe to stay up to date with new episodes: iTunes or Stitcher


RESOURCES

+  Awaken Radio, Connie's amazing podcast *My faves include episodes #70, #68, #60

+  Gabby Bernstein

+  Free Yourself from the Pain of Negative Emotions, Episode 11 of Ripen      

 

ABOUT CONNIE CHAPMAN

Connie Chapman is a Life Coach, Speaker and Writer empowering big dreamers and soul seekers to create lives they love (from the inside out). Through her international 1:1 coaching practice she has personally guided hundreds of women and men to break free of their limitations and unlock their true potential.

Connie is the creator of The 90 Day Transformation Project, and host of the top ranking podcast Awaken Radio, which shares heart-felt conversations and inspiring interviews with experts and thought leaders from all over the world.

Known for her authentic, honest and soulful approach, Connie's transformative work is all about re-connecting with your heart and inner wisdom, embodying more love, peace and freedom, creating a mindset that empowers you, and learning to truly accept and value yourself. 

Connect with Connie:

+  Website: conniechapman.com

+  Facebook: /conniechapmanpage

+  Instagram: /connie_chapman *Connie's insta-stories are the best!

+  Twitter: /_conniechapman_

+  Pinterest: /conniechapman13


LOVE AND FEEDBACK

Thank you so much for being a part of the Ripen community. If you're a fan of the show, I'd love to have your feedback. Please head over to iTunes to leave a review and rating. Don't forget to subscribe while you're there!


SUBSCRIBE TO RIPEN

You can subscribe to Ripen so you never miss an episode.

+  Click here to subscribe on iTunes

+  Click here to subscribe on Stitcher


More ripen for your listening pleasure...