Connecting to My True Inner Knowing
Mark [0:00] I’d like to welcome Nick Washington to the World Heart of Connection Podcast. I’m your host, Mark Randall. Nick’s a local builder who was born and raised in Geelong but originally, technically from Colac once upon a time. Nick’s a local builder and has an interesting building career. He’ll talk about it and has become very interested in self-development all through his life. And I really like to welcome Nick to the World Heart of Connection today to talk about his connection to Self, Others and ‘All That Is.’ Welcome, Nick.
Nick [0:35] Good day Mark
Mark [0:37] Mate, have missed anything in the introduction?
Nick [0:41] No.
Mark [0:44] So, downtown Colac and then to Geelong born and bred.
Nick [0:47] Pretty much moved to Geelong when I was three months old. So, born in Colac from Colac parents who moved to Geelong for work back in the 70s
Mark [0:58] Growing up in Geelong through the ’70s and 80’s – what was the connection like to Geelong back in the days?
Nick [1:07] The connection to Geelong. Oh, an interesting place to grow up. I grew up in Rosewall in Corio when we first lived in Geelong. Which at the time, I think was a new commission area? I don’t have a lot of memory from, but I moved when I was about six years old, we moved to Bell Park in Geelong.
Mark [1:29] Geelong really had trouble during the Pyramid Society days, didn’t it? I can’t remember what years they were. The Pyramid collapse really sort of broke the back of Geelong for a while.
Nick [1:40] Yeah. 1988 I think around there, 1991 rings a bell. I don’t know.
Mark [1:49] Men and connection. How does Nick? What’s his process to connect to himself?
Nick [1:58] That’s a good question Mark.
Mark [1:59] How do you do it mate?
Connecting to be True to My Self
Nick [2:01] I just think I’m trying to learn how to be true to myself. To try and get that across to other people. How would you be true to yourself? Well, everyone likes to say they always who they are and being honest with themselves. I think a lot of the times, if you’re talking about men who struggle to talk about being or being spiritual or those sorts of things are negative on males, especially coming from the environment that I’ve grown up in.
Nick [2:35] We were taught to be tough. I played a lot of football in my time. So, football is not a place to be vulnerable. Got to toe the line. Not to be different. I think as the older I’ve got, the more I accepted that I am different, and I actually like the person I am. So, that’s one thing I’d say that brings me to self.
Mark [3:03] As you’ve gotten older, what have you noticed about the connection to yourself?
Connecting to Trusting myself
Nick [3:12] Just trusting, trusting myself. So, trusting that things that are different, and also probably the small things in life that we tend to miss – that are signs from our environment. Pretty much acknowledging them and being a part of our little signals from other people. When I say other people, just people that are in your circle to guide you and help you. And it’s sometimes the things that you do miss. I missed a lot of signs for many years, just through ignorance, and probably not trusting myself. And even when those signals were there, I went away from what – which is the true self. I went away for them and didn’t trust myself and it didn’t do me any good.
Mark [4:01] When you talk about you went away from that stuff ~ could that be the intuitive essence of yourself that intuitive knowing inside yourself that you just didn’t trust?
Nick [4:13] Yeah, I think I think we all have our own path to follow.
Nick [4:19] So, how do you say it. I think everything’s meant to be. So, I was meant to miss those opportunities. So that obviously, through tough times you learn. You learn a lot about yourself, you learn a lot about growth. And so is everything in life is going to rosy all the time. You’re not going to grow and you’re not going to learn. So, you must go through tough times.
Connecting to our Tough Times
Mark [4:46] As we journey through those tough times, we must connect to the tough times?
Nick [4:50] Yeah, but not dwell on them.
Mark [4:54] (Laughter) Not play in it so to speak.
Nick [4:55] That’s right.
Mark [4:57] Okay. Men in connection from your perspective, and your experiences, what is it? What is it about men and our connections to self and others?
Social Conditioning taught us not to be Vulnerable
Nick [5:11] Well, that’s pretty simple. Our society would not really teach or let us know that as men, we’re allowed to be vulnerable. Okay, so vulnerable as in believing in anything bigger than what you’re told at school. Or if you’re a Christian or religion will teach you. So, going back to self again, most of the answer that within yourself, you’re got to find them? And like I said before, sometimes the answers are right there. But we just missed them. So, yeah, that would be it.
Mark [5:52] Is that just the typical male social conditioning that facilitates us missing those answers that you’re talking about?
Connection to Toughness & Aggression
Nick [6:01] Yeah absolutely. Our society would teach us as males that we – going back to it, we have to be providers, and we have to be tough and aggressive and all those sorts of things. Sort of, it’s still a part of us. Like, every one of those emotions and feelings is a part of what we are as males. But there is a softer side of us that we must get in touch with as well. Like it’s not embarrassing to be, like I said, before, vulnerable or even, to think past what we are – are just men going about our life’s. Because there are bigger things out there. It’s very difficult for me to try and get into words now.
Mark [6:47] What happens when you connect to those bigger things that you’re talking about?
Connecting to the Bigger Out There
Nick [6:50] Things happen. Things change, your life will change. So, if you never take a risk in life, or never go down the path that we think well – there’s a lot of frightening things like for me, from personal experience I’ll talk about me. So, music I was always terrified to play music in front of other people. I can do it now, but I’m still not 100% confident with it. But as soon as you start to let go, it starts to get better. So, there’s always that fear of that. Years ago, with, with football, I played years of football. I was pushed into a captaincy role. I was frightened of that until I started to speak, and I realised well this is quite easy. Then I went from being a captain to be a coach of the entire club ~ Bell Park Football Club. The more and more I did it, the more and more comfortable I felt with it. It’s sort of like anything in life – I just think to myself just going to go with the flow. What’s there to be afraid of? You either go alright or you fail. What’s the worst thing that can happen if you fail, pick yourself up you do it again? Simple as that.
Connection to our Male Ego
Mark [7:59] How much of it is the male ego that’s blocking or holding us back from taking those risks?
Nick [8:10] See, I still struggle to deal with ego and what the ego represents to me. I think it’s one of those things that like – am I being full of myself if I’m confident in something. I don’t think so. I don’t think something deeper inner – it’s like knowing of oneself isn’t the ego sometimes. But you’ve got to be able to construct between what is – something that’s going to make you feel good, or something that’s a knowing. So, you know, you’re doing the right thing, it’s not for yourself.
Connecting to my Knowing
Mark [8:51] When you talk about that knowing ~ is the knowledge at a heart level.
Nick [8:58] Definitely. Definitely.
Men Connecting our Hearts
Mark [9:03] What’s it like for men to connect to their hearts?
Nick [9:08] It’s bloody good. That’s to let go and just accept things sometimes. Even looking through things in life that and I normally would have a different eye on. But if you can just allow yourself to let go, you’ll see things as a bigger picture and not just – as we see things that would trigger emotions. You can settle yourself and see things for what they are. It’s quite interesting.
Mark [9:36] It’s interesting. When you talk to me for about vulnerability. In my work I sometimes describe ~ I’ve got a head-heart model. Part of the heart is vulnerable. There’s also another part of the heart that’s not. It’s got that deep knowing in it. How do we learn to connect to that as men?
Path of my Heart’s Connection
Nick [10:02] I’m still learning. I’m not quite there yet. Like, I’ve only just really started to accept it now. I’m 44 years old. It’s taken me a long time just to get here. So, I think everyone’s journey is different. So, I think I’m starting to become more interested in all that now. So, I don’t have the answers now for what you need, Mark. I know I’m on the right path.
Mark [10:30] Hey mate, you’re doing pretty well, seriously. As we age as men, can we then let go of some of our shields perhaps that we might carry? The protective shields that we might carry.
Letting go of our Protective Shields
Nick [10:52] Oh, definitely. I mean, everyone, everybody’s different. Some people shields are there for protection from their past, and that’s their journey. So, for all of us as men, if we can start to look past, even have a look at what your past has taught you. What it’s made you become to this day and live with no regret. No matter what you’ve done or where you’ve come from, and then realise it’s a part of your path. That’s what I started to realise everything that’s happened to me, even the good, the bad, the whole lot. It all makes me up to be me and not be ashamed or have any, ill-feeling for yourself because it’s going to get you nowhere in the end. So, to move forward, in a positive frame of mind, you must be able to let go of that and just be yourself and then actually start to enjoy who you are. When I say enjoy, it’s everyone said the words, learn to love yourself. You can’t love yourself, then you can’t love anybody else. This is something I’m just starting to learn now.
Mark [12:06] It’s really interesting, isn’t it that, learning to love yourself is that self-love? I wonder you know, whether some of our old male social conditioning is to love yourself is up yourself – remember those days don’t up yourself and that type of stuff.
Connecting to our Self-Love
Nick [12:22] And that’s what I was saying before about the ego. Being confused about what – if you do or you become quite comfortable with who you are and when you sit. Does that make you arrogant? And that’s even as human beings we have to decide that that question in on minds. As it’s always going to be continuously going on and you don’t want to fall in the path of that.
Mark [12:47] The old fig jam (Fuck I’m Good Just Ask Me stuff?
Nick [12:48] Yeah.
Mark [12:49] Yeah, it’s a good one that one isn’t. You’d probably see a lot of the fig-jam stuff in football clubs being a captain and a coach, would you over the course of time.
Nick [13:01] No end. You see all in the old footy. I wouldn’t take any of that back. I loved every minute of it, the good the bad. I’ve walked away from it last year was my last year of coaching. I coached junior Under 19’s at Bell Park, which was my original club. So, it was good to go back there. I had a chance to develop young men. It’s a very strange age to try and coach, I’ll give you the tip. But it was good enough that actually made me want to finish up coaching (Laughter).
Men Connection in Football Communities
Mark [13:38] It’s really interesting though ~ for men, football clubs and sporting clubs, it’s like you know, we look back at the tribe stuff, there is a connection in those sporting clubs. What happens once men leave after about 30 or 35 years, they start to leave those sorts of communities. Do men then experience a disconnection to those communities and become more isolated?
Nick [14:10] Well I’ve only just left. It’s not my intention to disconnect from the football club environment. I still want to go down and watch. My son still plays at Bell Park. But I’d say everyone’s different again. My want to be involved in football was probably more of wanting to get away from my ex-wife. In saying that I’m taking the piss.
Mark [14:43] Yeah, and we all need our time apart.
Involvement is a Connection
Nick [14:47] Yeah. So, I still want to get down and be involved. I love footy. Its connection with people in the community, as a whole and they’re people that have known since I was a kid. They are still involved in the football club. They’re a good place for that of stuff. I wouldn’t say on the spiritual side, no not at all.
Mark [15:11] When someone’s taking a screamer, that’s spiritual. Now, men connecting to others what gets in the way of us connecting to others? If it’s not about football, if it’s not about – we connect when we work on cars together. Take the “doing” thing away, what happens to connection?
Men Connecting rather than “Doing”
Nick [15:40] Unless we’re forced to connect. It doesn’t really happen. So, I think for us to go forward. This gets it deep but as a race for us to evolve as human beings. This needs to happen. This needs to start happening.
Mark [16:01] These those sorts of conversation you and I are having?
Nick [16:03] Even what we are having now. We start to speak on a deeper level. It’s something that probably even get to government levels. Governments don’t want to talk about this sort of stuff. They don’t want you to. They want you to sort of being disconnected, not connected, the more connected we are, the more powerful you become. That’s a pretty simple thing. And if you take that away from people, then we’re vulnerable and they can do pretty much what with us?
Connections to our Hearts will Unite Us
Mark [16:33] Yes, it reminds of one of the Union’s quote: “united we stand – divided we fall”. If I can bring it back to ~ if men were able to accept the connection to their own hearts, would that then improve their connection to each other?
Nick [16:59] Absolutely, yeah. Look it’s scary. Look, when I say it’s scary, it’s not scary for me, because I will talk openly about it. But I know, being involved with football and so forth for years, if sat down and spoke about the way I really felt inside, you get people that would turn their back on you. Because they’re not ready, the right people will listen.
Mark [17:23] They’ll hear it.
Nick [17:24] They’ll hear it.
Mark [17:24] They’ll know it.
Nick [17:25] And they’ll know it.
Men Being Ready to Connect ~ They’ll Know It
Mark [17:26] They’ll to connect to it. They’ll resonate at that energetic level. And those that have turned their back, it’s too hard for them perhaps.
Nick [17:34] They’re just not ready.
Mark [17:35] Just not really. Yeah. They don’t want to connect to it.
Connecting to Alternative Healing
Nick [17:38] Yes. I guess, at times when I’ve been in positions to talk about this, and I haven’t – I’ve been very particular about how I’ve attacked it as well. It’d be more like, believing or self-belief on a sporting level more than a spiritual level, even though I do – that’s what I mean. I had a young boy he was suffering from depression at the football club. I talked to him about just about himself, and the methods what they were going through with him for treatment for depression. I asked him if he ever tried anything alternative, examples of a couple of different things. I asked him if he wanted to maybe carry on the track of spiritual healing. And I was bewildered because he said he’d love to try it. So, it was just even having those tools. Because I never knew about that until I was would have been in my early 20s where my ex-wife sort of was going to a yoga class here in Geelong. There was a spiritual healer there and she got me to go. It was the most amazing thing I’d ever experienced. So that’s probably another thing that set the ball rolling back then.
Mark [18:54] When you connected to that spiritual healing did that deepen the connection to yourself?
Spiritual Healing Woke Me
Nick [19:01] At the time, I think it just sort of woke me up a little bit. Again, because I was separated my self from anything to do with spiritualism back then. I was in the early 20s, I was probably finding the same spiritual connection with alcohol at the time. (Laughter).
Mark [19:19] Never. (Laughter)
Nick [19:21] So, no, it was something that really blew my mind at the time. And I remember coming out of that healing and just feeling absolutely elated and felt so good about the world. Funny enough, they closed the doors about two weeks later and I never got to go back again.
Nick [19:39] Yeah, it’s one experience I’ll never forget as long as I live and I haven’t had one since
Connecting to Men’s Sensitive Side
Mark [19:47] It’s interesting, isn’t it because it’s at a heart level, there is a real sensitive side to all of us men and women. We men do have that sensitive side. For some reason, yeah, our social conditioning is really shunned it. It’s like it’s not safe. It’s not macho, it’s not manly enough. And yes, unfortunately, some of the social conditioning here, we got to put food on the table again, the provider archetype. We’ve got to be out there, still being the warrior hunting. But deep down there is a very deep, powerful inner wisdom that we’re missing that connection too. You said, what was it? I think you said, I woke up or something?
Nick [20:43] At that time with the spiritual healing it was more a…
Mark [20:48] Awakening?
Connecting to Childhood Innocence
Nick [20:49] Not so much an awakening. It was just like another flashback from my childhood. I experienced a fair bit of stuff when I was a child. I’d probably ignored it through my teens and early 20’s, just wanting to ~ you do forget. You do forget when you have that innocence as a child. There are things or that are happening to you spiritually, or whatever you want to call them back then. But, once I went through that again, it was like – because what happened in the actual in the healing. She never touched me with her hand, but she was hovering a hand above me. I was sort of in like – a little bit of a meditative state. I felt my heart starting to move, and when I opened my eyes, she was above my heart with a circular motion and I panicked. And then she just said, calm down. And as soon as she said that, I was so relaxed. It was a beautiful experience. And like I said, I walked out of there just feeling – just couldn’t feel any better.
Was there a Flow-State Experience?
Mark [21:55] Were you in a flow-state when you walked out of there?
Nick [21:57] Good question. I can’t really remember but just remember feeling good. I remember calling someone straight after going that was so amazing. You’ve got to try this.
Mark [22:08] That experience that you’re just sharing ~ if that happened on a global level for a lot of other men, how would that make life different for men and our communities and our connections?
Nick [22:22] Not just for men but for any human being. Because as of men, we have that macho rubbish that we’ve got that we hang on to, which is still deep inside most of us. It would help all these sorts of things, any sort of softening of or outside thinking. When you – not just going by everything that television will tell you or what you read on newspapers or anything like that. Like, there’s this so many good things out there, within yourself. So, we’ve all got it. If we want to tap into it’s there, you just go to let yourself go.
Mark [23:03] How do you connect to it?
Nick [23:06] Me personally?
Mark [23:06] Yeah, just what you’re sharing just with me then ~ it’s like you let go. And the process of letting go ~ when you let go ~ do you then connect to that inner wisdom that inner knowing?
Inner Knowing Is Always with Me
Nick [23:20] I’d say with me it’s always there. I’ve just got, and I’d say with everybody it’s there. It’s just there’s always that voice that some people just switch off. Maybe, I mean, I don’t know if everyone’s got it.
Nick [23:35] I think we all do.
Mark [23:36] I think we all do.
Nick [23:37] I think we all do.
Mark [23:38] So which part of our brain do we need to switch off to listen to that inner voice?
Connecting through Alone Time
Nick [23:44] Well for me, it’s just like you can sometimes get it through music. You can sometimes get it through just like times – you need to be alone, let’s face it. Alone time is good for you mentally. To be able to and not been alone with negative thoughts. I’m talking about being positive. Being able to project and manifest a positive future and concentrating on the present. Not dwelling on the past all these things we’ve heard before. That’s one thing I’ve probably done the last few months is not taking for granted what’s happening right now. Because we can get a little bit carried away with what the future may hold for us. I’m really enjoying the now. And that’s been a big change in my life recently. So, and then a part of that is – connecting with that. So, going back to that – I can only speak for myself. Alone time maybe just sitting in my car, listening to music, and what I’m listening to, and the music that I listen to. So, I’m a big fan of a band called Tool, which are progressive metal band, American band been around for years. They speak very deep on a deep level in their lyrics and music’s amazing.
Connection to Inner Knowing via Music
Mark [25:10] Yeah, they’re sharing their lived experiences through music and that of others?
Nick [25:15] Yeah, on a really deep level yeah so, I mean you’d have to check them out.
Mark [25:21] Moving the conversation to connect to the ‘All That Is’ ~ when I use that term, ‘All That Is’ what does that ~ what comes up in your mind? How do you how does that resonate your body?
Nick [25:34] ‘All That Is’ God that’s a tough question. (Laughter).
Mark [25:40] We talked earlier about the universe is that?
Connecting to the ‘All That Is’
Nick [25:43] Yeah well, the universe is only as big as you are really. What you can imagine and what you can see within yourself. Because imagination could cap _ as soon as you cap your own imagination of you actually see or can understand for the future or whatever is what you’re living in. You’re creating that.
Mark [26:07] What happens when you connect to it?
Nick [26:09] It’s an amazing experience.
Nick [26:12] Yeah, I haven’t fully connected to it. As I said, I’m just learning. I’m still just learning now so but I know. I know how cool it is and actually the feelings when you hit when you get those messages. You know, you’re on the right path. And they may be small they might be just things that are flipped over one day and bang there’s a note there that says something you go wow.
Mark [26:38] As you’re sharing it with me now ~ you connecting to those moments?
Nick [26:42] Yeah, so I have a lot of that – which is really cool.
Anchoring to my ‘All That Is’ ~ Life Path
Mark [26:50] When you’re not connected to it, how did it come back to it? How could you anchor back there?
Nick [27:00] Life path will be. It will lead you back, there is no right or wrong here. You can’t force anything – it’s like trying to write a song. If you start trying to force a song – you’ll write a shit song, it won’t be right. But sometimes it will just bang – it’ll just come. And that’s what you don’t understand. That’s the connection. You can’t force anything like this. It’ll come when it’s ready. When you’re ready or and it’s ready for you.
Mark [27:26] Looks like a really beautiful space that you are sharing it?
Nick [27:31] Yeah.
Mark [27:33] How much creativity comes from there?
Nick [27:38] Everything you see.
Nick [27:41] You see like somebody that could be 11 years old, pick up a guitar or a piano and play it like they’ve been playing for 50 years. That’s only the tip of the iceberg of what we can do as human beings. Think about how far we’ve come as human beings in the last 50 years. Not just – it’s just amazing to look at some of the things that people can do.
Mark [28:06] I just want to throw out ~ is there interconnectedness to a deep DNA from aeons ago?
Nick [28:19] Have we lived more lives than one? I believe we have. Yeah, definitely. Whether the deeper knowing comes from that, I don’t know. I don’t have the answers there, Mark, but I believe that we do.
Connection Deep Knowing So Important
Mark [28:36] How important is it for us to connect to that deeper knowing?
Nick [28:42] For me, it’s very important. It’s extremely important. It’s actually taken like it’s been going to be a big part of my life going forward. Accepting that and being interested in it and learning more about it. Let’s look at – endless.
Mark [29:00] It’s really lovely to see men begin the journey. There a number of men have been doing it in the past. It just seems to become. I don’t know ~ again, I don’t know whether this coming from a deepening knowing. I just get this sense that there’s an energy and a shift that men are sort of starting to yearn for it. They want something different.
Nick [29:23] Yeah.
Mark [29:26] And there’s more permission around now to be having these sorts of conversations. It’s not poo-hooed who’d like it used to be?
Permission for Men to Open Up
Nick [29:33] Yeah. I would agree there totally. I mean, I pick and choose who I talk to about this. But over the years, I guess there have been people that would sit and listen, and you could talk like this for hours because you can. Like, that’s the thing and that’s what we should be doing.
Mark [29:52] Because very energising just watching you and your energy just as you’re sharing the story with me. It was like as you’re talking about it, it was like you were connecting to it. It was coming out as you were sharing that – well that’s my experience.
Nick [30:07] Well, it’s difficult to put into words. Like, for me to come in tonight and talk about this, like, I really didn’t know what I was walking into.
Mark [30:16] You set up mate.
Nick [30:18] Yeah, but by good people. I think even the fact that I’m here is just another thing of just go with the flow. Go with the flow what we got to lose.
Mark [30:31] And you’re right. It’s like when, as we have the conversations we move, you’re not the lone ranger. It’s very common ~ when we’re getting into the conversation about the ‘All That Is’ and even talking about connection. It’s very hard to put it into a cognitive language. Yeah. It’s got a lot of energy and a lot of its nonverbal. A lot of it’s, we just cannot describe it. Sometimes it’s a real felt ~ a felt connective sense. Even your term the ‘inner knowing’ just that. Yeah, how deep in you does that inner knowing and the connection to that. How powerful?
Connection to Knowing the Known
Nick [31:14] Well I had the saying of a while ago – “knowing the known.” Which was something that resonates with me? And I don’t know where it came from exactly. But I think I said at one day and I just went, that makes a bit of sense, actually.
Mark [31:31] What advice would you have for a younger version of yourself commencing his journey?
Nick [31:43] Yeah, that’s a difficult one for me. Because I mean, I’m a firm believer in that somebody being young may not be quite ready for this. But then, there’s no real age limit on when the right time is for somebody. I don’t think it makes any difference at what age you are. I think some people will be beyond their years in different levels of emotional level or spiritual level. So, if you’re a young guy out there that is probably struggling, that has these feelings or understands things bigger than they think, you know, let the people allow them to do.
Advice to a Younger Nick
Nick [32:24] Just trust yourself.
Nick [32:27] You don’t have to go out there and be a preacher. You don’t have to go and tell the world. Just accept yourself for who you are. Find the right people and surround yourself with those people. Because that’s where you’ll find. It doesn’t matter what anybody thinks of you. Because at the end of the day, you only have to be comfortable with yourself.
Mark [32:47] Nick, thank you for the opportunity to sit here and share this conversation with you. It’s been a real honour and a real privilege to be able to sit here and hear your story. To hear your connections to others and ‘All That Is. I really appreciate you taking the opportunity and to share and to have the courage and the flow and just come in and it just be you. I really appreciate that opportunity. Thank you, mate.
Nick [33:12] No problem Mark, thank you very much for having me.
Mark [33:15] Cheers.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai