Last year at HMAS Kuttabil I happened upon a fellow that I haven’t seen for 26 years since the shipyard at Carrington Slipways was shutdown.
We got talking about our careers since and what moments defined or steered the direction we took.
For me it was the day I saw the transom of the William IV being fitted by a shipwright craftsman and it sparked a desire to be able to do that. I mean BE THAT GOOD!
This led to Ken Wickner “taking a chance” on me to put me on as an apprentice in the 1980’s and my TAFE teacher, Ron Stewart, being enthusiastic about having a women in his ship and boatbuilding class even when I announced I was having a baby half way through my apprenticeship.
Each of these people were encouraging and I am in humble gratitude for their support. I can see the exact moments with clarity and the positive emotions associated with them came rushing back with joy as I chatted to my colleague.
Since then, in my career I have many positive defining moments and support from colleagues as I progressed and navigated through my career path.
Many of you will recall with joy those types of defining moments.
It got me thinking though…….
There are other defining moments that are not so joyful and which are also defining in terms of how you see and react to the world from that point forward.
Like the time I was 14, and for the first time in my life I got the message that I couldn’t do something because I was a girl! As a youngster my parents had allowed me to try whatever I wanted regardless of any perceived social acceptance. It took an external influence to define which direction I would go in for the next 30 years. Much to my irritation at the time the rules around girls attending Outward Bound where that girls of 14 where not accepted. So it was that I watched with a sulky look on my face as my brothers head off to the Pack and Paddle adventure round Canberra to have a great time doing outdoor stuff as the name suggests, leaving me stunned and hurt at home.
At the time, “I got over it”, consciously that is, until 30 years later when I was doing some work on my personal self it came up bubbling up from my subconscious again. The feelings of unfairness, rejection, anger and defiance surfaced and I realised that from that day forward I had set out unconsciously to prove that the world was wrong and that I was good enough as a girl to do anything the boys could do.
YOU may be able to recall a situation where you felt you had no control, or you were bullied or abused , or you witnessed something that left you feeling hurt, angry or upset. Many of these things happen when we are children, when we are learning how to live and react in the world. These moments can define the sorts of relationships we pursue, how we feel about ourselves, and our ability to live a happy and fruitful life.
At the time, you may have learned or been told to “suck it up”, or “stop crying”, “or just get over it”, or “children are seen and not heard”, so you stopped crying, buried your anger and hurt feelings around the situation and life seemingly went on.
Fast forward to adulthood.
You have a job, you are kicking goals in your career, you have accumulated “things” like a good car, you have friends and you are doing okay. Despite all of this you are wondering why you feel like there is something missing.
You might be making the same old mistake over and over again, your relationships are unfulfilling and you are just not as happy as you “should” be. On the inside you are not coping, your feel stressed, anxious and overwhelmed and you don’t know why.
In other words you may be a functioning emotional wreck.
Nothing has changed since you were a kid in that you are expected to hold it all together for everyone else’s sake and not express your emotions. You may be a leader at work or on a committee and normally you are so in control! Many of us have been conditioned not to appear emotional at all and to be ashamed or embarrassed when we are. Western culture expects us to put on the brave face and not show how we really feel at the time.
Trouble is you are feeling so full up that your emotions are starting to burst out at the most unexpected and inappropriate times, or they are seeping out through the cracks in your façade in other ways. How you are feeling today is an accumulation of all the suppressed negative emotional energy of the past.
Unreleased emotional negative energy follows you around in your life. Without the opportunity to clear your body system of this energy it will continue to block the flow of love, joy and peace in your life. You continue to swallow your pain until it manifests itself in poor health physically and/or mentally and/or emotionally.
I mentioned earlier that I was doing some work on myself in later life and had discovered an unconscious defining moment that came when I was a young girl of 14.
At the time I had sought help to find out why it was that despite my life being “successful” I was still not happy. I found Breathwork Therapy, which simply described is emotional release work which uses the power of your own breath to let go of stress and collections of unwanted emotional build-up. This release leaves you calmer, stress free and lighter so you can have deeper relationships and more energy to take care of the daily tasks at work and at home.
Enter another “Defining Moment” for me.
Now a fully trained in Breathwork Therapy I apply the principles daily and part of what I do is help other professionals to clear negative emotional energy so they can develop professionally and lead with clear heads and hearts to get better outcomes for their business and their lives.
If you are curious to know more I invite you to contact me.
My passions are nature, people, and building cultures of cooperation, harmony, sharing and reverence for life. I enjoy working with people to help them understand themselves and others so they can reach their full potential in life.