RDD 17 | Self-Development


Out of all the facts we know about relationships, what stands out is this – the relationships we have with others mirror who we are as a person. For today’s topic, we go deep in the concept of mirroring and how it affects your judgment and personal development. Find out the value of understanding that the past does not equal the present nor the future and the importance of being aware of yourself to unlock your potentials fully.



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Relationship Is A Tool For Self-Development

There’s Always A Bigger Picture

This show is going to be about relationships as a tool for self-development. There’s always a bigger picture.

I’m excited about this particular show because it’s something that you’ve heard me say many times about relationship being your own personal self-development course. The things that we speak about here are different perceptual realities. It’s a different way of viewing life. It’s a different way of framing what it is that you do on a day-to-day basis. That’s why we call it Relationships Done Different because not only our relationship’s done different, but our lives are done different when you start to adopt a different way of perceiving everything in your life. The majority of people grow up thinking, feeling, responding and reacting to everything like a clone, like their parents did or like their siblings did. As the internet told them to, like the TV did or whatever your biggest input of information was. I’m going to give you an example here because it’s such a powerful demonstration for me.

As you know, we have little four-legged children. Some people call them fur babies. We call them our kids and one of them is KaJai-a. He’s a Lowchen. He’s a dog. They’re called little lion dogs. He has this big mane and his little booty is shaved. He’s got little pompoms on his back feet because his legs are shaved back there as well. He’s the most loving, gentle, sweet and snugly thing you’ve ever imagined and he is smart. I know I’ve talked about him before and I could do a whole show on him. The bottom line is that he is an intricate part of my heart and my life, both of us. We also acquired a Toy Poodle. His name is Karaja, sometimes I call him Karaji. He is black now, but he will be silver when he grows up because they are born black and then they lighten. He’s black and silver. Karaja came here when he was a little over nine weeks old and he has become steadfast with KaJai-a.

Here’s to the degree that he has, Karaja weighs about seven pounds, KaJai-a weighs about thirteen pounds. They have been together since Karaja has been here. What has happened is Karaja has become KaJai-a’s clone. In doing so, these are some of the things that he does. First of all, KaJai-a jumps up on his back legs a lot up to the counter he can see or he’ll jump up on my leg to try to get my attention. Karaja does the exact same thing. I had been hand feeding KaJai-a for several years now because he has worked a lot in performance. He does obedience, rally, scent work and all different things. Some of you may know what that means and some of you may not.

The bottom line is it creates a deeper bond with your dog. I’ve been feeding him that way. Karaja has seen me hand feed him and now he will not eat his breakfast or his dinner unless I hand feed him. He demands that he is treated exactly like KaJai-a. He will take his toys and hold the same toys that KaJai-a does. He follows him around. They sleep together in the same crate, which is open. They don’t even have to sleep in a crate, but he sleeps in there together. When KaJai-a lays down, he lays down. They’re mirrors of each other. He’s a chameleon.

The point of this story is the fact that this is what happens to us. We become what our environment shows us. As awareness for you, we are 50% DNA driven and we’re 50% environmentally-driven. The 50% environmental that you grew up with, with the influences that you had from your mother, father, caretaker, whomever it was and the rest of the people in your life are having a deep impact on you right here, right now. What’s interesting about that is we grow up with all these things, many of which we don’t like much.

[bctt tweet=”Relationships are your personal self-development gurus.” via=”no”]

We don’t find them to be as effective and supportive and they don’t seem to create success for us in any area of our life at the highest level that we could possibly have that. I take exception to those that are different. I know a couple of people that have had the most amazing childhoods and the most amazing parents and they are amazing kids themselves, which is not a guarantee. I also know lots of kids who have grown up in that way and they’re not awesome. What is important here is that you have been heavily influenced by your environment.

When you see that you do not have your life be the way that you would like it to be, maybe there’s an area of your life that you would like to be a little bit more successful. What about the area of your life that you’d like to be happier about? What about the part of you that would like to communicate more openly and more boldly and more forcefully? What about the area of your life where you would like to feel you had what it was that you wanted and you were at peace regardless of what was happening? There are lots of examples I could give you. What is going to happen as you move along in life and as you read this is you’re going to notice that these things are things that you would like to change. Most people come to me for coaching. They come to the retreats. They come to the Meetups, they go to the workshops and the online programs.

We have many online programs and people devour these because they are looking. They are seeking for some change. If you take a moment, are you seeking for some change? I’m sure you are or you wouldn’t be reading this. Here’s the great news. Relationships are your personal self-development gurus. That doesn’t mean you have to be in a significant “romantic relationship.” I mean a relationship with your children, relationship with your parents whether they’re here or not and relationship with your boss. All these different relationships are showing you how you can become the amazing person you would like to be because they are self-development activities in motion. Start to look at every relationship as a self-development course. When you do that, you will start to have an appreciation and completely different perception about the person that you’re interacting with.

I love to hear you talk about this. What I was thinking about is you’re in a relationship and maybe it’s not going the way you would like it. How in the world is that going to serve my personal development and what am I supposed to get out of it?

For some of you, this is old hat. For some of you, it might be a new concept. The question I would ask you as I always do is, “What if what she said had the possibility of being true? What if I adopted this and I saw what would happen if I lived this way?” I’ve worked with thousands and thousands of people and in working with them, they have decided whether or not they would like to adopt a different perspective of life.

Can you give me an example of what you were saying because I was not clear about how that was going?

RDD 17 | Self-Development

Self-Development: Relationships show you how you can become the amazing person you would like to be because they are self-development activities in motion.


Do you mean when I’m working with somebody and they’ve chosen to adopt a different way of being in their life?

Yes, that’s right.

I’ll give you a perfect example. I completed a coaching call with someone. This person, I’ve coached with them for six months. When this person first came to me, they were uncomfortable at work. They are well-trained and they have lots of degrees about a lot of things, but they still were not happy. The people that they were working with did not seem to accept this person. The things that this person was doing did not seem to be getting the accolades or the feedback that this person wanted. There was not the satisfaction that was going on anywhere in this person’s life. We have been working together for some time and throughout this time, this person has decided or I did decide that she would take on the principles that I speak about all the time.

This person said, “I don’t even know where my life would be had I not been working with you and being shown different ways of thinking.” I looked back at my past, my childhood and my culture. I look back at all of the things that have influenced me in my life. I see that I am in my 40s and I have lived a life that has not been the most joyful, secure and confident. Because of the things that have been presented to me and because I have taken the coaching and I’ve switched the way I look at things. I act differently in certain circumstances. I asked myself, “What’s my payoff for this?” I do the things that you have suggested.

This person took a moment and was going to leave the company that she was with. She tried working under different bosses within the same company and nothing was working. As she continued to do the things that were suggested, suddenly and seemingly out of nowhere, she is now on a specific project where she is in love. She is in love with her work. She’s in love with the people that she’s working with. She’s in love with herself. She’s feeling the happiness that she has never felt in her life. She had been in doubt that she did what she was doing as her career choice because her parents told her that she should. She was never happy and now she’s loving it. That’s one example out of about ten that I could give you to her.

How did she use relationships to get to that place?
[bctt tweet=”Self-development is when you look at everybody that you have a judgment with and look inside yourself.” via=”no”]

She was having difficulty with one of her bosses. The boss that was above her boss was somebody that she wanted to get to know because her direct boss was not listening to what she was wanting. She was terrified to talk to even her boss, let alone the boss’s boss. I said, “What’s your fear around this?” She said, “I’m afraid to talk to my boss’s boss because this person doesn’t know me. I’m afraid that they’re going to go back to my boss and say bad things or whatever. I don’t want to complain about my boss because that’s going to make me look bad. I don’t want to go there.” I said, “Let’s look at that fear.

What would happen if you walked through that? What if it turned out to be awesome?” She said, “That would be great, but I can’t imagine that it would.” This was many months ago when we were working on this particular issue. I said, “Your challenge for the week is between now and the next time we speak, I’d like you to find a way to talk to your boss’s boss, not about anything, but go into his boss’s boss’ office, introduce yourself and say, “I am blah-blah-blah and I work doing blah-blah-blah. I wanted to tell you that you have built and you manage an amazing company. I wanted you to know that I appreciate that.”

She said, “I can do that.” She texted me later, “I’m not sure I can do that. That’s scary. It’s going to look weird.” I said, “Be weird.” The bottom line is she walked through her fear. She went to his office and said something like that. He was touched by what she said that he stood up. He came around the other side of the desk and shook her hand. He said, “What you said has made a difference for me and I greatly appreciate that. I’m going to remember you.” She walked out of that room feeling empowered. She had walked through a big fear. She had been acknowledged for who she was and what she did. That changed everything for her.

How that relates to what we’re speaking about is that her relationship with the boss’s boss was one of self-development. She used that circumstance to conquer her fear, to speak her truth, to give acknowledgment and to do all the things that she was afraid to do and would have never ever even thought of doing until she did it. It kicked her up another notch. We had many circumstances like that where she confronted her fears. Every one of those enhanced her awareness that she was good at what she did and that her job factor deserved to be joyful and playful and all these other things. Out of that internal shift, she created this amazing project that she’s now working on with a whole new team. She’s walking on clouds and she’s been this way for several months now.

RDD 17 | Self-Development

Self-Development: Whenever you’re in judgment, you’re in fear. We judge because, on a deeper level, it’s what we’re afraid of.


That’s a beautiful story about how she conquered her fear. What I see here is that relationships, however they show up, her relationship with her boss, her relationship with the boss’s boss in this example, probably with her parents and a few others, all created a big rub. When she moved through that rub, stress and uncomfortableness, that’s when she had the greatest growth.

That’s accurate. Where it is that you can go when you are with somebody who is irritating and let’s say, they don’t take out the trash. That’s a trigger for you. I would ask you to look at why is that a trigger for you? When you look inside, you’re going to probably see that you want to be able to control people. When we want to control people, then we start to be judgmental. When we’re judgmental, judgment always comes with fear. Always remember that. Whenever you’re in judgment, you’re in fear. Your mind may be saying, “That is ridiculous. I’m judging this and I don’t get how that can be fear.”

Let’s say you’re judging the clothes that somebody is wearing. What’s that have to do with fear? Many times we’ll project ourselves onto that person. If we think something doesn’t look acceptable according to our own value system, then we project ourselves and we think that person looks insane or looks ridiculous or whatever. What comes up underneath that is, “If I look like that, people will shun me, people would reject me and people would judge me.” What does that mean? It means I’m not loved and lovable. I’m not accepted for who I am. All kinds of things going on. We judge because on a deeper level, it’s what we’re afraid of. We’re afraid of something underneath that.

What you’re saying and the whole concept is mirroring. How we feel about ourselves, we usually project that onto someone else and then it gets ugly.

It starts going downhill from there. The self-development is that you look at everybody that you have a judgment with and you look inside yourself. You come back to yourself because they are that mirror and you find out what’s going on inside of you. This is not easy especially when you get to deep things. I’ve worked with some people for years. They’re starting to see that their brother, sister, boss, parents or someone had something to do with showing them what’s going on. This is where we get the gift of being able to reframe what it is that we have been going on inside of our heads. When we notice that we’re judging and controlling them, it’s because we have some concern. When we have that concern/fear, then we can look at “What am I afraid of? What’s going to happen?” Your superficial mind is going to say, “I’m afraid the house is going to smell because somebody doesn’t take out the trash. I’m going to have to take out the trash because I can’t stand being like this.”

[bctt tweet=”Everything in your life is here to support you to become more aware of the things that you’re not aware of.” via=”no”]

It’s because my father used to make me take the trash out when I didn’t want to take the trash out.

In the example that you started to share in the last episode, do you want to share what came up with you? Do you remember what it was that we were talking about because you said it was about the payoff? You didn’t want it. What’s your payoff when you don’t want to do something? You didn’t want to take out the trash? Do you remember what that was?

I just used the trash as an example, but I’d like to defer that because we have a question that is going to be right on point with that. Let’s save that for the end.

When we are in a relationship with anyone, we have them in our lives because there’s something that we want to learn. They’re bringing us a gift. Are you looking for the gift or are you looking for a way to make them go away? Most of the time we’re looking for a way to make them go away.

It’s because it reduces our pain.

RDD 17 | Self-Development

The past does not equal the present. The past does not equal the future unless we let it.


That’s a good point because when we see somebody who is not the way we think they ought to be, then we become distressed instead of allowing them to be the way that they are. The minute we want them to be different, then we are again back to control and we’re trying to control, then we’re not going to be happy. In case you haven’t noticed, you can’t make people be what you think they ought to be. You can’t make people be what you want them to be. My intelligence would say, “Then what’s the point of continuing to try to get people to be what I’d like them to be?” It’s irrelevant what our intelligence says. We do it anyway. We continue to try to make people be what we want them to be until we reached that place where we go, “What am I going to do here? What’s my payoff here? Is my payoff to keep on beating my head against the wall or is it to let it go?” Some people have a line in the sand and if you have a line in the sand, that’s okay but look at that line in the sand and see where else in your life you are shutting down the ability to grow from that experience.

Of all of the examples that we’ve been through in the many years that we’ve been together, there have been times when Esateys said certain things to me, albeit lovingly, that pissed me off. When I could reflect on it and I could see it in a non-hurt and from an open, expansive, loving place and see that it was said with compassion, then everything opened up. Everything can open up if we’re willing to use the relationship as an opening to see what we otherwise are not aware of. That’s the big key. If we’re not aware of these things, then how can we change anything? It’s these relationships that allow us to become aware because that rub, that irritation or that trigger, it is right in your face.

I understand that sometimes what’s being activated is not a direct experience. I’ll give you an example of that. When I was younger and I saw my parents fighting over my dad’s cheating on my mother. What happened at that moment was I took on that I can’t trust men. As I went through relationship after relationship and I found that men kept cheating on me because I was drawing that towards me, but I couldn’t see that it had anything to do with me. It looked like them doing something to me. I felt like I was a victim. When I started investigating this within myself, what I learned was that I had a deep core pain that was consuming a lot of energy inside of my body.

I kept on bringing people to me I could move through that pain, I could work through that. In doing so, I could be relieved of it but I couldn’t be relieved of it as long as I was shutting it away and suppressing it. When I got to the relationship where I am with Rafael, I was straight forward about my insecurities and the things that I was working on. Many years ago, I was even more aware than probably a lot of people. I said, “This is my baggage. This is what’s I’m working on.” To be fully transparent, Rafael, in the days that I met him was a flirtatious guy. It used to trigger me and it made me feel uncomfortable and I would talk about it.

I finally reached a place where in that experience I was able to see that that was going on because of what’s going on inside of me. My own insecurity about being left, being abandoned and being hurt. I was projecting it out there and he was supporting me by helping me see how I was dealing with that energy. When I was willing to feel the feelings of pain, hurt, abandonment or whatever and I took it away from making it about him and I brought it back to myself, I was able to move through that. It’s taken a long time for that to occur, depending upon how long you’ve had it and how deep the pain is, it’s going to be completely dependent upon how quickly it evaporates or moves away. That’s one of the reasons why people do coaching is because it helps accelerate that. It’s a lot harder to do it on your own. If you are willing to start to look at each relationship, think about somebody you know that’s stressful for you. It irritates you for whatever reason. Take a minute and think about that.

As you think about that, I want you to think about where in your life that might be true for you. I’m thinking of somebody that I’ve coached in the past that has a real issue with one of her siblings. That sibling is always seemingly acting not all that loving to her and putting her off and acting like she’s insignificant. When I was working with her I ask her, “Have you ever acted like somebody else was not significant? Have you ever been mad at someone and looked down with them, judged them and shine them on.” This person had to stop. At first, you wanted to be defensive about it, then she decided that she would look a little deeper and she realized that she had done that.

[bctt tweet=”Everything in your life is here to support you to become more aware of the things that you’re not aware of.” via=”no”]

There were people in her life more than once that she had done that with. She didn’t feel good about it, although she thought she did at the time. What was happening, the sibling was showing her a piece of herself that she had not made peace with or had not resolved. It came up for her she could resolve it and let it go. These are the kinds of things that you start to have awareness about and you start to get into a place where every person you look at that you have any feeling and it can even be happy feelings. Look at where they are mirroring to you some part of your life and you will see that your self-development guru is always there to support you in being all that you’re capable of being.

When you were speaking about that whole experience with your parents and the cheating, you took on that men couldn’t be trusted because in your past you had that experience. The biggest piece for me and all the relationship work that we’ve done and the way we teach it is that the past does not equal the present. The past does not equal the future unless we let it. With relationships bringing that up with that rub, to see that we can break the bonds, the things that are tying us to the past if we’re aware of it. That’s what I would like to leave you with.

I hear what it is that you’re saying on another show. We can speak about the fact that we have a neural net of patterns, beliefs and feelings that are ingrained in our cellular memory. Intellectually, we know that the past does not equal the present. On the other hand, the body remembers and there is a neural net that was wrapped within due to our past history and that’s another whole layer, another whole level of letting go that we can talk about some time.

What you’re saying is not only the awareness, which is step number one, there’s then the energetics or that neural net thing that you’re talking about that encapsulates it and makes it harder to break free of. We’ve gone a little over our time, but we were having a good time. Here’s the question that we got from one of our audience, “I listened to your podcast about payoffs and I understood what you were saying. When I was thinking about how I am mean and sometimes even cruel to my partner, I can’t even fathom what my payoff could be. My question, how can I be sure or even understand what my payoff might be?”

This is something that most of the time, people don’t know the answer to. They don’t know how to find that inside themselves. You can start with realizing that if you are unkind to someone, maybe you haven’t felt like you’ve been cruel, but perhaps you haven’t extended the highest level of kindness or support or compassion to someone at some time in your life. Maybe you’ve screamed at somebody. Maybe you’ve yelled at them for whatever reason, including your children or your dog or whatever. Always know that when you are projecting outward with something that causes pain to wherever the projection mark is, a partner for example or an animal or whatever, it is because you have that inside of yourself. When you have that inside of yourself and it’s not being dealt with, when you don’t feel it through, when you don’t understand it and see it or know what’s even there, naturally, by nature, we want to bring that up and we want to get rid of it like a hot potato.

There’s a saying from A Course in Miracles, “We are never angry for the reason that we think.” When this anger, this frustration and this stuff comes out of you, it’s because there’s something else going on inside of you. Most of the time it will be because that person is mirroring something to you that is a tender spot for you and you have not allowed it to be free. In other words, you’re still judging yourself whether you’re conscious of it or not. The most important thing that you can do is ask yourself what is it that I’m angry about? Ask that question internally. What about this is distressing to me? Ask yourself and spend some time contemplating and notice that every time you’re even mildly irritated to ask yourself, “What’s underneath that?”

You can also ask rhetorically to the universe, “What am I angry about here? What’s going on?” Become inquisitive and become curious about what it is. Everyone is always coming from the best place that they know how, but that doesn’t mean that the best place can’t be up to a whole new level of awareness and response rather than reacting. What I would encourage you to do is to start to ask from an introspective place. What is going on that’s beyond what your mind knows? You will suddenly have awareness pop up for you.

I had this thought I had never thought about it before but when you were speaking, could it be that the payoff for being nasty is so that it gets you to your boiling point so that you can finally see what’s going on and then deal with it? The payoff itself is getting you to the flashpoint.

I could go into a lot of different reasons, but in addition to what you’re saying, it’s also possible that if we don’t feel loved and lovable, we will do whatever we can to push people away from us. Somebody is loving us, being kind to us, being gentle with us and compassionate on every level and it feels foreign and wrong to our belief systems and to the way that we grew up. We can’t accept it. We don’t deal well with it and therefore we will punish ourselves by punishing someone else so they will reject us. They will go away, which will fulfill that belief system that I’m not loved and lovable. That’s another reason that we do that thing.

My second awareness from this whole conversation is that it’s not important to understand exactly what your payoff is, but just go with the process of being with it, seeing it, seeing the trigger and then allowing that to come through. When we asked those rhetorical questions that we ask at the end of the show, we don’t necessarily get an answer at that moment, but we will get an answer at some point.

That’s when we send our mind, like the Google search engine. We send it out there and then you get universal wisdom that comes back.

I have to say one more thing, when you ask that question, watch out because it’s coming back at you.

Know that it will be in your best interest because the universe is always conspiring to make your life more awesome than you could ever dream or imagine. Here’s our question, “What would it take for me to see the gift in this?” When you are confronted with someone triggering you, rather than to yell back at them or react spontaneously with no rhyme or reason, what if you said to yourself, “What would it take for me to see the gift in this?” If you repeat that to yourself over and over again and you turn away from the fight at that moment that you could start, you will find that your life will continue to change. It will evolve past the pain and suffering to a place of open-hearted compassion and love. You truly will see your relationship as a gift of self-development because the bottom line is everything in your life is here to support you to become more aware of the things that you’re not aware of.

Thank you so much. It’s about that time to say goodbye. Esateys, when you were talking about the neural net with regard to how we process and bring up stuff from the past, I found that fascinating. I would like to do our next show on that. I don’t have a title yet because it came to me, but we will be talking about the neural net. How that serves as a further thing we have to deal with in order to get through to what’s holding us back.

Thank you, everyone, for being here with us. Thank you, Rafael, for being you. Thank you for telling your friends. Thank you for making comments. Thank you for sharing this link with others. Thanks for coming to our Meetups and to our workshops if you live close by. Thanks for coming to our retreats that we do here in the Northwest. We love having you in our lives. Feel a hug and until next time, know that you’re loved.

We’ll see you soon. It dawned on me that if anyone here would like to have us come to do a program or retreat or whatever in your neighborhood, please call us and we’ll see what we can do.

We have done that many times. We have a little checklist and those little things that will help you be more clear about what that looks like. I’d love to talk to you about it. Take care, everyone.

We love you guys.

Take care. Bye for now.

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