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Living the Gift

At this time of year when many are heading off to the beach, it’s not surprising in some ways that turquoise is showing up.  A colour many associate with the ocean. And you will have noticed if you saw my LinkedIn post, this combination generated a lot of interest.  Here’s the interesting thing that you won’t know, the original set of bottles included a red and orange bottle!  As I have sat with the full set over the last few days I have received some great insights that I want to share with you.

When I first noticed this set of colours I was surprised.  I don’t often choose red these days and I rarely choose turquoise.  I realised it was important because I have noticed my clients also going for Turquoise bottles and another Colour Teacher has been observing a Turquoise pattern. As I sat with all that, the insights started dropping in. First off Turquoise often asks us to dive deep and release blocked emotions whilst Indigo promises an initiation out of which new structures will emerge.

What is the significance of red?

If you are playing out a strong red pattern then there are a number of things that you might notice.  More than most you are likely to be locked in the myth of needing to be independent and doing all you can to achieve financial independence.  That often leads to a busy pattern with the only real downtime being the weeks you go on holiday. I used to have a friend who spent most of her holiday sleeping on the beach as a way to recharge for the next marathon session as a Mum, wife, and employee!

This is all part of the money-based society we live in where the dominant narrative is about earning a living so that you are not dependent on anyone else. Probably underneath that is a degree of scarcity thinking and a belief that this is a competitive society so this justifies the need for control: controlling the outcome wherever possible so you get the best deal.

How does this affect society?

What that translates into is working long hours whether you are a single parent or part of a couple.  This tends to mean that kids go into daycare to allow you to work and that has a knock-on impact on the way children interact and play.  Gone are the days of outdoor play with those that live in your neighbourhood, it’s now all about playdates or manufactured play in the form of screens.  More than this it has moved from being in the public arena to being in the private one.

Consider for a moment: how many of your neighbours do you actually know? How many, if any, would you feel comfortable reaching out to if your washing machine broke or you needed a dog sitter? How much do you enjoy the work that you do or is it a necessity to ensure that you can maintain a particular lifestyle?

Awareness of our patterns is the first step to change.  If you have read this far you may be wondering what the alternative is. And here’s the rub there is no formula or 7 steps to change process.  Those sort of approaches are the tactics of marketeers who are appealing to the mind because it loves a set of techniques to follow!

Enter Turquoise stage left

This is where we need turquoise to make an appearance.  What we are being asked is to become more creative so that we find our flow and go deeper and explore other ways of being.  What Charles Eisenstein offers us is the gift.  He suggests it’s about making ourselves vulnerable and opening ourselves up to obligation by accepting the gifts of others.

This is very challenging because the invitation is to lean further into the messiness of dependency which allows the path to interdependence to be revealed.  It feels counterintuitive, especially in a world where so many are trying to limit their level of dependence on others.  And yet it was only a couple of generations back when neighbours got stuck in and helped each other fix a leaking roof.  Now people tend to call out a roofer and in part that may be because that is what’s expected by their insurance. The net result is that it makes us feel more isolated.

Why is community so important?

The reason for earning more money is to get a feeling of financial security and it seems to be important because it is a fundamental aspect of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.  However, even he repudiated his theories before he died. And that does not surprise me because having money doesn’t seem to make people feel happier or more fulfilled. In fact, there’s a clue in the following quotation from one of my favourite philosophers:

It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.

~Khalil Gibran

The reality is that what makes us feel good is small random acts of kindness.  If you are starting to feel sceptical then check out this article which actually summarises a lot of the recent research around the butterfly effect of kindness. It has a ripple effect and people are much more likely to pay it forward.

In giving even if you have very little to give you are carried by something much bigger than yourself and here’s the thing: you receive way more than you ever gave.  You could say that any act of generosity is actually self-interest.  And in these complex times, we are asked to hold such paradoxes so that we can experience the truth: that’s the mystery that lives within Indigo.

Living in the gift can become a way of life.  And yes it is very counter-cultural to the way that society currently operates. If any of this resonates with you and you wonder how to live that way, I invite you to take the first step. It was the Buddha that said more than any technique, method, or teaching it’s about having noble friends.  This can translate as community.  Community helps you build resilience and living this way is a practice that’s not always easy. It can help you be in service to others which creates an invisible bond that leads to an intricate web of bonds.  If you fall, these bonds enable you to bounce back higher.

In other words, to stay the course you need a community so you can practise seeing the gift and honouring that through acts of service.  Something will open up inside you when you can see that in serving another you are serving yourself. Your heart expands as you step into gratitude recognising all you have been given already that you never earned – your next breath, your health, the list is endless.  The trick with all this is not to grasp at gratitude or cultivate it; rather allow it to bubble up like a wellspring inside you.

If all that inspires you then I invite you to consider joining my community where we have a monthly conscious conversation; along with a monthly book club and many other goodies.  More than that it’s a way of living so that more consistently we find ourselves in the space of inter-being where we can acknowledge the interconnection of all: plants, minerals, animals, humans, and the Divine otherwise known as the great chain of being.

To conclude we need each other as we are both human and divine.  What that means is that we can be incredibly generous and petty all in the same breath. As we lean into the messiness of this human experiment and allow all of who we are to show up then little by little it becomes easier to let go of the need for control and any attachment to outcome.  From this place, it feels as if there’s more room for gratitude and generosity to flourish.  This is fertile ground for bringing about societal change.  If you look at the greats like Gandhi, Mother Teresa, and Mandela, they came from a place of love and compassion, not anger. Remember we are in this together and release is possible when we see the abundance that surrounds us.

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Kate Griffiths
Kate Griffithshttps://www.wholeselfleadership.com/
Some call me the coaches' coach. I work with visionary leaders doing world work who are really good at what they do but haven't found their sweet spot yet. I help them unlock their whole selves by learning to build their intuitive muscle and so create more meaning. Ultimately this enables them to move into expanded awareness and the realms of higher consciousness. This is deep work because it requires you to embrace your shadow so you can discover the gold that is hiding there. You have both masculine and feminine energies within you but somewhere along the way you learnt to rely more on one more than the other making you either more of a "prover" or a "pleaser" Working with me you learn to access both energies so you can increase your presence and enjoy greater influence and visibility. Since 2008 I have pioneered an approach that integrates spirituality and business using Colour by blending the esoteric and the practical. I have found that it can transform every aspect of your life and enable you to develop the tools you need to ride the waves of adversity, you will experience in life. If you want to understand how colour can help then why not read my book Colourful Boardrooms. At the very least it will help you discover what type of leader you are. In 2018 I realised that I wanted to help change the story for the leaders of tomorrow so I set up Colourful Classrooms, a social enterprise, and have gone into schools and communities with programmes to support teachers, parents, and students to have better emotional health and wellbeing by building their awareness around what makes them feel more resilient. In terms of where I hang out:I tend to hang out on LinkedIn, so do connect with me there if you want to continue the conversation. And at the moment I am trialling a new social media platform MeWe which has the feel of the "village green" and to show my support for the stop hate campaign. If you like videos then do subscribe to my YouTube channel.

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