Unfixing for the long haul

Posted by Jeanne Barrett on July 19, 2020 in Uncategorized

As demands rise and needs for endurance increase, our habits of fixing into positions, reactions and patterns may amplify. This is our opportunity to notice our own individual bracing styles, and to request a more curious condition of self, not because our bracing style is “wrong”, but because habitual fixing may limit new experience, new solutions and new skills. Our best means may be un-fixing, de-positioning and active welcoming.

We can bring our best response to the increasingly complex demands of living if we brace less and allow overall elasticity and enlivening more. All of our instrument of self responds to everything. Collecting data and making decisions from data gives us a means to proceed most effectively. We can notice and decide, yet remain unfixed.

What happens to all of me when I request a more curious, connected and elastic self? If I notice data in a welcoming, non-critical manner, I can also decide not to change any of the data directly. I want a condition of self that is curious, connected and elastic, not a condition of self that narrows my attention to a specific outcome, even with what I notice. I get out of the way as best I can. A new experience is what interests me, given that conditions have changed, and only a new experience is possible.

We learn how to learn by actually learning, not by fixing into solutions from past experience. Everything is new now. Everything is pretty much always new. We can bring our fully lit up elastic selves to the party of ongoing newness.

Entire expression

Posted by Jeanne Barrett on July 5, 2020 in Uncategorized

If we view the instrument of self as an inseparable and integrated whole, then a change in any aspect changes the entire self. We unfix overall to allow new solutions, means and experiences instead of directly addressing a part.

The entirety of our selves is shifted by face masks and coverings. We wear masks to care for our communities, and yet now we are partially hidden from one another. Perception and response modes change. We are in new social territory, with new cues, stresses and uncertainties.

Conditions have dramatically changed, and our dynamic response is essential so that we can remain calm, effective and creative. We gather data, relinquish being right, and allow the dynamic pause to notice how we do what we do.

If I smile or scowl, with or without a mask, all of me changes. When I smile, I widen and connect to the ground. I am typically seeing the world outside myself when I am smiling. When I scowl, I narrow and pull myself up from my neck/shoulders. My own chatter is primary while scowling. I can notice what happens when I smile or scowl and decide which experience I prefer. No judgement, no criticism, no moral compass. There is nothing inherently wrong about scowling or right about smiling, but both change the entirety of self.

Humans, crows, dogs may not be able to read my facial expression when I wear a mask, but I trust they can read an entire expression. I hope to learn to read everyone’s entire expression as these masked times continue. In times of tremendous change, we learn new skills, rise to increased demands, and continue to refine the instrument of self.