One of the many things I love about the practice of Live Conscious is that it invites me to embrace all of me—the practice hinges on self-acceptance—not tolerance of poor behavior, but acceptance.
I begin exactly where I am—accepting my past, my present, my failures and successes and then honestly ask myself, “Am I pleased with how I conduct myself?” If I’m pleased with how I live in the world then I keep doing what I’m doing, but if I’m not content with myself, Live Conscious offers me practical ways to change and grow.
One of the tools offered in Live Conscious is to use my dreams to ascertain what’s going on beneath the surface of my conscious thoughts. I learned how to do this with guidance from Hannah and Jake Eagle at a Live Conscious Retreat. As a result, I have been healing myself with my dreams. And, no, I don’t have to lie on a couch and listen to them tell me what my dreams mean. Just like everything else in the Live Conscious orientation, no one tells me about me. The heart of Live Conscious revolves around me taking responsibility for me, owning and embracing all parts of me, and one of the ways I can help myself is to write down my dreams and then translate them into Perception Language.
Here’s a recent short dream that I worked with:
In my dream Obama is my dad. I am about 14 and my dad, Barack Obama, and my mom are busy doing a spring-cleaning and they enlist the help of my brother and me. We are really tearing the house apart and throwing everything out that needs replacing or isn’t useful. At one point I walk through the 1960’s gleaming white kitchen and look in a box and there is my broken laundry basket and I feel so excited that I won’t have to carry my dirty clothes downstairs in my broken basket anymore, I am getting a new one.
Around lunchtime we take a break from cleaning and go outside for a picnic lunch prepared harmoniously by our parents, but before we eat we fly a kite with our dad. It is a perfect April day—just enough wind to get the kite soaring and just warm enough to eat outside. We have a picnic table in the backyard and a huge tree that is ideal for climbing. We have a lawn, and there is a pitcher of lemonade on the table.
That’s my dream . . . in real life my dad was nothing like Obama and I didn’t grow up with a shiny white kitchen or a picnic table with homemade lemonade.
Changing my relationship with my past
When I use Perception Language to make sense of my dream, this dream represents a deep healing in me. I’m changing my relationship to my past. I’m spring-cleaning the old stories that I have limited myself with, throwing everything out that needs replacing or isn’t useful, and I’ll no longer have to carry myself in a broken container because I’m giving myself a new one. And I’m experiencing my life more and more like a perfect day.
If someone else helped me create this interpretation of my dream I might think it’s clever or somewhat interesting, but in Live Conscious the emphasis is on how I make meaning of everything in my life, including my dreams. There is no fixed meaning. There is no right interpretation. I find this to be incredibly liberating.
So this is my interpretation and that’s why it’s so empowering for me. I am the one changing my relationship to my past. I am the one who is cleaning out my old stories. I am discarding parts of my past that aren’t useful. I am giving myself a new container, a new identity. And I am deciding that my life is more and more like a perfect day.
The beauty of Live Conscious is that my dream is my dream, no one else tells me what it means. No one tells me about me when I live in this orientation. And I stop telling other people about them. I can use my dreams to see more deeply into myself and recognize that I am the one who is making meaning of everything that happens in my life. Sometimes I can change the meaning if it doesn’t serve me, sometimes I can’t. I’m still working on myself.
I delight myself with my progress in the Live Conscious orientation and I encourage anyone who reads this to explore the possibilities that life presents in sweet and unexpected ways. If you’ve been to conventional therapy and not had much success, if you’re tired of people telling you about you, or if you’re searching for a richer way to live I encourage you to reach out. Reach out to the Eagles, read other blogs on this site, get the book, come explore the richness of your inner possibilities at a retreat.