Connecting to my Call to Help Others ~ Episode 56 ~ My Conversation with Pauline Butler

Connecting to My Call to Help Others

Mark [0:00] I’d like to introduce Pauline Butler to the Heart of Connection Podcast. Pauline runs CHI Connection Healing and Insight.   Through lived experience, she said she had an invisible sign over her head, which was telling her that she needed to help people. From this help, she was then able to through workshops and combined her adult education profession and merged the two practices into the  CHI connections, I really like to welcome Pauline to have a conversation about connection to self, others and ‘All That Is.’

Pauline [0:44] Thank you, Mark, it’s really nice to be here. Really excited and a little bit nervous.

Mark [0:49] The nerves, they do get us, don’t they? In terms of the Heart of Connection to self, how do you?  What’s your process for connection to you?  So how do you do it?  What does it mean, connection to self?

Connections were lost

Pauline [1:06] So I lost my connection to self quite a while ago.  Through counselling as a client of counselling, I learned techniques in terms of meditation and sitting really just with myself and in stillness.  Learning not to be afraid of the connection.  So for me, one of the main techniques or strategies is allowing myself the time and space just to sit and be, and whatever comes up comes up and learning how to notice what’s the true authentic feelings, and what’s my ego, feeling and fearing.  So that’s how I connect with self.

Mark [1:57] When we connect to self, it’s not always easy connect self as sort of nice parts of self that we connect to but then there are sort of parts of us that may not necessarily be so nice and uncomfortable?

Pauline [2:11] Absolutely.

Connections to All Aspects of our Self ~ Good, Not so Good, Indifferent

Mark [2:12] It’s learning how do we have a relationship, a connection to all those different aspects of self?

Pauline [2:22] For me, I found that learning not to fear the not so nice feelings really changed how I approached lots of things in life.  Probably the biggest change was how I approach social events and social functions.  I found that if I really sat in stillness and tuned in and connected with myself and what I wanted, often I didn’t want to go to the party.  Often I didn’t want to be the social butterfly and often I didn’t want to sit in a room full of people I didn’t really know drinking myself into a stupor.  So connecting with myself, and my true feelings and my true wants and needs have really helped me turn my life around, which sounds a bit dramatic but that’s how it feels.

Mark [3:14] How have you noticed that turning your life around?  What do you notice is different now for you as you’ve made that connection to yourself?

Connecting to Myself I choose how I spend my time

Pauline [3:24] I’m a lot more discerning when it comes to how I choose to spend my time.  I’m a lot more honest with myself and honest with others.  My ego was always worried that I would lose friends.  But in fact, the true friends stayed.  Some of the people that I thought I might lose along the way have said, comments such as how brave I am, to actually be my true self and that they liked me with or without the alcohol.

Mark [4:04] As you have connected to that true self, have you noticed a difference in your energy levels?

Connecting to My Energy

Pauline [4:11] Oh, absolutely. I have a history of being known as not a morning person.  And now getting up in the morning to be able to go for a walk or run or getting into nature.  Seeing the sunrise is really important to me. Whereas many years ago, I would have slept through that every single day and missed all those wonderful things.

Mark [4:41] We’re in your body does that energy manifest from?

Connecting to my Heart’s Energy

Pauline [4:45] Definitely my heart. Yeah, definitely.  There’s a little bit of gut in there and that’s usually when my guts telling me that something’s not quite right.   In my heart space, when I can see sunrise or I can just sit and notice a bird or a flower. It’s pretty amazing.

Mark [5:10] As you’re in that space, what happens to the disconnection to self when you’re in that space?

Connecting to my Heart ~ there is no Disconnection

Pauline [5:18] That’s a good question. I think the – or the disconnection to self when I’m in my heart space doesn’t exist.  There is no disconnection.  It’s almost as if the concept of disconnection has ever been invented. It doesn’t exist at all. If that makes sense.

Mark [5:40] That makes sense.  It’s like it dissolves.  When you hit that space, there is the disconnection dissolves. How do you describe your emotional and mental health at that point in time?

Pauline [5:57] Ah, incredibly healthy.  That’s not a very good descriptive word but it feels good and it feels good all over if that makes sense. So it’s my heart feels good. My head feels good. It’s almost as if anything is possible in a good way.

Connecting to my Heart ~ what Mental Health

Mark [6:24] A lot of people have said that, in response to that question that their emotional health – it doesn’t exist. They’re just in that space. Its like, what mental health?

Pauline [6:36] Yeah, absolutely.

Mark [6:38] It’s really quite powerful, what mental health.  We, unfortunately, can’t live there all the time.  Things are going to bring us out and nine times out ten – there are triggers, some of those can be disconnections.  When you notice the disconnection, how do you then reconnect back to yourself when you’re aware that you’re in that zone of disconnecting?  How do you work it?

Re-connecting my Disconnection

Pauline [7:06] It depends on the situation.  So if I’m working sort of corporate world, if I can feel that disconnect, I’ll just sit and watch it with curiosity and make a note to come back to that.  It might be in the middle of a meeting, and I’m feeling really disconnected from the energy of the other people or their agenda.  So I’ll just notice that this isn’t sitting very well with me, I’m feeling disconnected from either my truth or my true feelings and passion about a particular situation.  So I’ll make a mental note and go back to it.   If I’m sitting in meditation, I’ve learned and it hasn’t been easy, and it’s still tempting to run away from it.  However, I’ll sit and just let the feelings be there.   Then if I can sit long enough in stillness, whatever is causing the disconnect will come to the surface, and then I know what I’m dealing with.   It could be sadness, it could be grief, it could be fear.  If I sit long enough, and let that come to the surface, and not judge it and not judge myself for feeling that way, then I can do something with it.

Healing the Wounds of Disconnection

Mark [8:29] As you’re letting it surface without judgment, is letting it come to the surface, enabling it to be healed?

Pauline [8:39] Absolutely.  I had a situation was only last week, and I was meditating.  I was just a meditation to basically sit and relax and all of a sudden, I had this overwhelming sense of sadness.  It felt so strong that I think thought, I’m not sure I can handle this right now.  I gave it a go and I let the sadness come up and I just sat and the tears fell.   As the tears fell, the sadness seems to dissolve away and it ended up not being as bad as I thought it would be.

Mark [9:19] A beautiful connection?

Pauline [9:20] Yeah, it was amazing.   I then had to have a little chat with my fear-based ego, and just let my ego know, it’s okay, we’ve got this.  I can handle this.  So if it happens, again, we’ll be okay.   Just letting those emotions be there and be seen and be heard.  So that they have a place because you can’t and I don’t believe you can be happy 100% of the time.  As we are more than that we have so many more emotions that work for us and need to exist and need to be seen.

Connecting to our Emotional Hurts

Mark [10:02] Yes, some of those emotions need our connection, from a loving-kindness and compassionate aspect of self to give back to it.  Once we start connecting to the not so nice ones, that it’s a part of us that’s in there.

Pauline [10:17] Exactly. And if we ignore them, I don’t think what’s really connecting to our whole self.

Mark [10:25] As you have processed the connections, and you really centred, what do you notice, happens to connection to others?

Pauline [10:40] It certainly grows and it’s certainly different from how it used to be many, many years ago. It feels truer, if true, is an actual word.  It feels more real and it definitely feels deeper.  So I’ve noticed that, as my connections deepen with other people, there seems to be this reciprocal energy that their connection with me seems to deepen.  They might open up more about something because they feel safer around me, or they feel safer with themselves as well. They don’t feel as if they’ll be judged if that makes sense. It’s as if somehow energetically, there and my connection and my deeper connection with myself and with them has a bit of a spin-off effect.

Connection creates a deeper Flow-State

Mark [11:40] Does that then change the flow-state in that relationship?  Is there a more heartfelt connection?

Pauline [11:49] Absolutely, definitely.  I think the conversations and love flow a lot more easily.  The difficult conversations are a lot easier to have but still difficult, but they come from a different place.  The best example I can give is of myself and my husband.  When years ago before I did all the work on myself and connected to me.  I was very angry, I didn’t realize at the time how angry I was.  Now when we have to have a conversation about something that maybe we’re disagreeing about, it comes from a very different place.

 

Connection to Responding rather than Reacting

Mark [12:38] Is that a of space of responding rather than reacting?

Pauline [12:41] Yes, definitely.  One of the things I learned many years ago was learning to observe the play or the stage of your life, rather than being the actor on the stage.  Observed from the side, and you can say a lot more and can connect with what’s actually happening rather than react.

Mark [13:04] That’s the state of mindfulness?  Yes.  To be the observer, step back, be connected to that.  How much energy does that save Pauline, when she’s able to stand in that space?

Pauline [13:23] It creates the space for energy to help find a solution.  So rather than have run out of energy, from being angry, or frustrated, the saved energy can be used to help, look, observe, connect and find a solution that works.

Connecting mindfully saves Energy for Loving-Kindness & Compassion

Mark [13:49] That’s saved energy.  As you’re sharing that, the word that was jumping into my consciousness with that saved energy, how much of that energy can be loving-kindness and compassion to self?

Pauline [14:04] I’m not sure I can put a number on it I think, all of it (laughter).  It’s in so many different aspects.  It’s being proud of yourself for not reacting in a negative way.  It’s loving yourself enough to be brave and to – I’m trying to find the right words. I’m not sure there’s a number it can be, it can be done.  Yeah, that’s it can be infinite.

Mark [14:42] I jokingly say on the whiteboard, I’ll put between 83 and 95% of energy, I’m in the flow, and I’m sitting in that space.   When I’m in that energy, there is much more energy to give loving-kindness and compassion to self.  When I’m down about 35% I’m not traveling too well.  There ain’t much – I can maybe give 10% of loving-kindness but yeah, that’s that flow, the different flow-states.

Connecting to Flow finds ways around our Road Blocks

Pauline [15:17] It says if, when it’s not flowing, it’s as if there’s a massive roadblock.  We have to find a way to navigate around it.  We can’t always move the roadblocks, but we can figure out a way to move around them and get the flow back.  You’re right, there seems to be – when things and we’re not in that flow-state all our energy seems to be taken up getting frustrated or being angry, or anxious.  It’s almost as if once that flow is back – it creates more energy all by itself.  Somehow, it’s like magic.

Mark [16:02] What’s it like in your body?  When it does create that energy?  What do you notice happens in your body?

Pauline [16:10] I certainly don’t have the churning butterflies that I sometimes get in my tummy.  That’s the obvious one.  There’s a wonderful and almost magical sense of simply being and feeling physically feeling right.

Connecting to my Empowered Loving-Kindness

Mark [16:34] Empowered?

Pauline [16:35] Empowered, yes that’s a good word to describe it.   Things in the world and things within me are right.  I’m not sure there is a word that exists in the English language to describe how wonderful it feels.  It’s almost like a – there’s no feeling of – there’s no negativity, there are no feelings of negativity, so it’s almost not a vacuum, but it’s like there’s nothing to worry about.

Mark [17:10] I call it the “Aha alignment,” where physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, with everything’s lined up. ‘Aha’ we’re there – we’re in it?

Pauline [17:21] And it just feels right.

Mark [17:24] Amazing connection.

Pauline [17:25] Yes.  When it’s there, it’s wonderful.

Steps to reconnect to Empowered Loving-Kindness

Mark [17:32] How do we then reconnect back to it when we stepped out of it?

Pauline [17:42] I think one thing that we need to do, and it’s almost a conscious practice so that it becomes a habit is having ways to remind ourselves that we’ve been there before we can get back there again.  For me, in terms of connecting with myself, I one of my counselors, many years ago, I had posted notes everywhere that are in the fridge on the mirror, in the car, I needed it until it became a habit to remind myself.  I needed physical things and great big fluorescent signs to remind me, you’ve done this before, you’ll be okay, you can do this again.

Mark [18:26] Those signs enabling the rational mind to think like that?  And then you’re inner mind, your inner heart is always there, it just knows?

Pauline [18:37] Yeah, that’s a good point.

Heart & Soul Connection Knows

Mark [18:39] It’s like the heart knows.  I’m wondering whether our intellectual brain is going on a minute, I wanted to have control of this.  Those words, when those words line up – those light bulb moments, “Aha” Got it?

Pauline [18:58] I think the body and the always know well in advance well before the head and the mind know.  Sometimes getting into that habit of reminding your intellectual mind that you’ve got this, that you – it’s almost – yeah, your heart and your body know, what it’s capable of.  It’s letting the rational mind know, you’re actually not in charge, because you sometimes take over and makeup stories.

I think it’s almost like building a new ski run.  It’s letting your mind know that this is safe and doing it often enough that you’ve created those new neural pathways so that your brain knows, this is how we do things now.  It’s good to go the – hearts, the hearts got this.

Mark [19:57] When you’re allowing that heart to just be in its presence.  Would that also be similar to connecting to and an “All That Is”?

My Hearts Connection to the “All That Is”

Pauline [20:15] Yes, definitely. It’s a feeling of being whole within yourself, but also being one with everything.  I’m not sure I know, a great way to describe it – other than.  If you’re going for a walk, for example, it says if you can hear the trees, not just see them, but you can actually feel them and hear them. Or you realize that you are connected to everything and everything is connected to you.   Whether that is other people, or the planet, the trees, the flowers, the animals, everything.  We’re all connected, and we everything we do, whether it’s on a physical or emotional level, everything we do has an impact because we are connected.

Mark [21:18] What happens this sense of self, when you’re in that connection?

My Connection & Oneness to ‘All That Is’

Pauline [21:26} Sense of ego certainly doesn’t exist.  For me, it’s a weird combination of realizing how small I am in the bigger state of things.  But how big I am because I’m connected to all of it.  So, it’s this almost contradictory thing that is happening at the same time as realizing.  Yeah, I’m one tiny little human, in this massive universe and yet I’m connected to this massive universe.  So it’s, it feels bigger than life if that’s even how to put it.

Mark [22:18] The energy, when you touch on that, how exhilarating, can you experience that energy? You’re aliveness?

Connecting to “All That Is” is full of Energy

Pauline [22:30] For me, it’s a – if I tap into the physical sensations, it’s like an electric current running through my whole body.  Almost as if my heart grew a little bit bigger.  It’s like it’s created some more space for some more good stuff to go in there.   This sort of buzzy, tingly electric sensation. It’s pretty nice.

Mark [23:00] Pity we can’t bottle it? (Laughter)

Pauline [23:02] We’d be millionaires.

Mark [23:07] When you lose it.  How do you remind yourself to come back to it?  What are your strategies, your techniques when you (we can’t live in at 24/7)?  How does Pauline remind herself to check in to come back to that, that “Aha” space?

Sitting Silently to Reconnect

Pauline [23:26] If I catch it quickly enough, simply meditating and that could be just might not be sitting in stillness for an hour, it could be a five minute.  Let’s just regroup here and let’s just take some time and let’s do some breathing.   Just tap into where it’s gone and, and get it back.  If I’m in a situation where I need some support, it’s recognizing that and I like to call in the cavalry.  There are a couple of key friends that I can call on and say, “Hey, I need a little bit bit of help” here and we might meditate together or they might pick up the phone.  Or they might just simply sit and listen and figure out where I’m at. And then just by giving whatever emotion it is, or whatever the situation is some space to be heard and seen, helps heal it.  Then from that – reconnecting.

Connections to Friendships make it Safe

Pauline [24:35] So connecting with those friends who – I’ve really that their particular group of very special friends who I’ve really connected with on a, I guess, a Soul level.   We’ve supported each other through some pretty dark times.  So I know that it is safe for me, and it’s safe for them to just sit and hold the space for me and allow me the time to reconnect.  They have a certain skill set I guess – in that they can help me navigate and reconnect.

Mark [25:18] It sounds really beautiful, the connection, that holding connection that these friends provide.  What happens to you in that safety, just like just being beautifully held, to then to traverse whatever it is?

Pauline [25:39] At the time it can – part of me will often feel a little bit scared to look sometimes at where this – why this disconnection has happened.  But feeling safe enough with these particular friends, who are very skilled counsellors in their own right I probably should add.  They hold the space beautifully and so well that it’s safe enough for me to completely let go and go right to the depths of where I need to go. So that I can see what I need to see and then reconnect with that hurt part of myself or that abandoned part of myself and reconnect with her and let her know that everything’s okay.  Until we go there, you can’t reconnect until you know where the disconnect has occurred.

Healing the wounds down our old ‘Rabbit Holes’

Mark [26:36] Then to heal the wound of the disconnect and that wounds sitting in our rabbit holes.  Life will notoriously keep re-triggering it and up its surfaces. And yeah, that connection.  How does the wound respond to your connection with loving-kindness to it?

Pauline [27:02] There is a part of me that doesn’t want to let the wound to be seen.  But once that part of me is dealt with sounds awful, but once that part of me is dealt with the wound is extremely relieved.

Pauline [27:26] Because the wound doesn’t want to be there.  It wants to heal.  And yet, there’s that part of us that thinks that going there or looking there is going to be painful and tries to protect us.  The wound, it’s certainly a sense of relief and whatever the wound is.  It wants to be seen – it wants to be healed and making that connection between the wound – how it got there and what it needs or what I need for it to heal is beautiful.

Our Wounds want & need our Healing

Mark [28:05] Wow, sounds so loving?

Pauline [28:10] Yeah, lots of lots of love.  I don’t think years ago, I realized – I thought it was a pretty loving person. I thought I was pretty kind to myself.  Looking back now knowing what I know and allowing myself to feel what I feel.  Yeah, there was – I had no idea there was so much more room for so much more love.

Mark [28:34] What a gift?

Connection to our Gift of Self-Love

Pauline [28:35] Yeah, it’s pretty special.

Mark [28:36] A really beautiful gift to give to Pauline.  By giving it to Pauline then Pauline gives it to others?

Pauline [28:43] It’s got a beautiful flow on effect.  I truly believe the more connected I am with myself, the nicer I am to myself, the kinder I am to myself, the nicer and kinder I am to others, and the world I live in.

Mark [29:03] What advice would you have for a younger person growing up in this world from your lived experience?

Pauline [29:12] Advice to a young person, I actually have a couple of younger people in my life.  One of the things I’ve noticed that they do beautifully is they seem to be a lot more comfortable in connecting with how they’re feeling and then verbalising that and asking for support when they need it.  So, my advice to young people would be or a younger person is to figure out what resources you need to feel safe enough to connect with the things that need healing.

Connection to being kinder & more Loving to Self

Mark [29:57] Pauline anything further that this conversation that needs to be shared to the audience, is there something missing that we’ve…?

Pauline [30:09] I don’t think there’s anything missing. I wanted to say big thank you for allowing me this opportunity. It’s been wonderful and I think one of the things I’ve truly learned – I’ve mentioned it a couple of times is the flow on effect of being kinder to yourself.  Loving yourself really does have a flow-on effect to the world around you and the people within that world.

Mark [30:36] Great. Thank you so much for the opportunity to sit here in connection with you. Listening to your inner wisdom, the gifts you’ve shared to yourself, others and “All That Is” and thank you for being a part of the World Heart of Connection.

Pauline [30:53] My pleasure. Thank you

 

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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