An Open Letter to those in search of Spiritual Freedom Part #1

This is part one of my series on the principle that has guided my own journey and now underlies every element of my burgeoning coaching, teaching, and mentoring practice: Spiritual Freedom. (Learn more at http://www.annamariaback.com)

Ever since I embarked on the journey of stepping out there and doing what truly brings me joy, I have been battling with the formulaic suggestions of the standard marketing principles for identifying my divine audience. The principles make sense. And yet, they don’t.

Whenever I’m asked the question, “So, Maria, who do you work with, who’s your target audience?”, I feel the fire in me starting to dwindle as I verbalise some of the attributes and circumstances that I’ve come up with – “Ooh, she is between 35-55, she lives in a city, she is either in a corporate middle-management position or runs her own business, she doesn’t have children of her own, she feels bored, unfulfilled, and wonders if this is all there is.” Now, don’t get me wrong, this way to describe an audience works well – and – what I notice, is a feeling of the world having shrunk. The external labels are not who we are. Talking about my divine client this way I no longer feel fired up – far from it. Any excitement I had is gone and the whole thing lands like a dead fish by my feet.

I consider myself a free spirit. I live an uncomplicated life; I am liked, respected, and successful in my work; I can come and go as I please… And, as I have learned more about who I am, I have become aware of how important Freedom is to me. Freedom to choose, freedom to be who I am, freedom to take responsibility for who I am, freedom to be curious, freedom to operate beyond the constricting boundaries of expectations – both mine and others’.

So, I’ve been pondering what fundamental aspect of freedom motivates my work. Meaning, what fires me up, what makes me want to take action, to change, to grow, to evolve? The answer that leaps to mind is simply, “Spiritual Freedom”. For myself, my friends, my clients.

Now, I could dive into a story of how this fundamental desire for freedom can be a “limitation” or “problem” in our structured world, but I won’t. I’d rather focus on describing what Freedom means to me, and more precisely Spiritual Freedom – what it isn’t, and how one can recognise it. Continue reading An Open Letter to those in search of Spiritual Freedom Part #1

Does the idea of being a Graceful, Mindful & Soulful Leader stir something in you, but you’re not quite sure what?

Let’s face it…

…Graceful, Mindful & Soulful Leadership isn’t something we usually think about when we wake up in the morning. And, if we were being asked to describe it – we wouldn’t necessarily know how to, or what it might look like.

That said, when mentioned…you may feel something stir in you, which, in turn, hopefully awakens your curiosity. ​​If this is the case – read on!

My entire professional career – now spanning 30+ years – ​​I’ve been engaged in the corporate world. In the early 2000’s, I had arrived at a point where work and life no longer felt as fulfilling as it used to. It didn’t feel quite right. My work has always been very important to me and although a part of me still enjoyed it, I felt bored and disconnected from my own life, disempowered, and no longer vibrant and alive. I remember thinking, “Surely, this couldn’t be all there was…?”.

My brain tried to figure it out – where did the feeling come from? Why did I have it? It made no sense.

As a result, I felt ungrateful as I lived an uncomplicated life. I felt guilty as I had had the fortune of living and working in three different countries. I was valued, respected, and appreciated at work and in life. I had an active social life. ​I was a free spirit, I could come and go as I pleased. Come on, what was there not to like?!?

I couldn’t wrap my head around it. Something kept persisting. I couldn’t shake the feeling that something was amiss, that there was a part of ME missing somehow, that I didn’t show up fully, that I was stuck in story. It dawned on me that I had seemingly got most boxes ticked and I was a free spirit, but I didn’t have spiritual freedom… Continue reading Does the idea of being a Graceful, Mindful & Soulful Leader stir something in you, but you’re not quite sure what?

Sourcing Flow Beyond Yes and No with Resonance Mapping

This post is the first in a series about Resonance Mapping, one of Sourcing the Way’s foundational tools, and was co-authored by Jeff Vander Clute and Holly L. Thomas.

When we face important decisions, all the information in the world is useless if we can’t discern which options work toward our goal, which options don’t, and whether the goal itself is optimal. Fortunately, we all have access to radically powerful inner wisdom technologies that can help illuminate the essential decisions of our lives, and we can cultivate the capacity to listen to these parts of ourselves in ways that will lead us to a greater sense of ease, freedom, and empowerment.

Hunches, intuitions, gut feelings, and synchronicities can help us navigate the day-to-day world of opportunities and challenges, as well as the inner landscape of ideas and emotions. Everyday techniques for dialoguing with intuitive guidance, such as muscle testing and body sensing, can yield yes/no/maybe answers as well as quantitative information. For more nuanced inquiries, we might pray, meditate, dive into research, consult experts or intuitives, explore dreamwork, check energies, ask trusted friends, watch for synchronicities, and so on.

Sometimes these “messages” come through loud and clear, and our inner compass is strong enough to follow. Often, however, whatever sense we have of being guided isn’t persistent or consistent enough to count on. The good news is that with practice, that can change. 

Working with inner guidance or universal intelligence is like building up a muscle that needs to be strengthened and exercised to function well. As with learning to walk, we begin with the “muscles” and modest (yet miraculous) coordination gained from earlier stages, take awkward first steps, fall down, and keep trying…until freedom comes.

One wrinkle in the process is our tendency to seek information through yes-or-no questions. Such an approach highlights binary or absolute black-and-white distinctions, which are actually rare.

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass the world is too full to talk about.
– from Coleman Barks’ translation of Maulana Jalal Al-Din Rumi

Another wrinkle is that the linear approach of pursuing a series of questions toward a single conclusion ignores the nonlinear interdependencies among the myriad woven strands of our lives. Pulling on one strand, by making a decision to do or not do something, may strengthen some strands while unraveling others in a way that’s largely unpredictable.

That’s not to say we should never make choices. The key is to understand that single-minded linear sequences of questions can take us only so far. And, with a deeper understanding of Reality, we come to discover that they simply don’t work if we wish to live the dynamic fluidity of existence in a state of grace and awakeness.

If we look very, very closely, even “answers” that we call “yes” and “no” are almost always maybes – ever-so-slightly off-yes or off-no. Life exists in the creative space of “almost” and “maybe,” in other words, potential. The potential for our lives to flow gracefully exists between the extremes. The experience of flow is in many respects the opposite of our usual fixation on yes and no.

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Photo by geralt, Pixabay.com

The field of fluid dynamics shows us that flow, in nature, is also extremely nonlinear. If we look long and deeply enough, it becomes clear that the way in which we’ve trained ourselves to perceive the world and make decisions is why our lives tend to be filled with stops and starts, bumps and blocks in the road, and setbacks and disappointments. Taking into account how Reality actually works as a basis for much more empowered decision-making for living in flow, is where Resonance Mapping comes in.

Resonance Mapping zeroes in on subtle differences that can have profound effects, to help us find our flow and create what’s truly optimal. It engages with the full spectrum of vibrational consciousness (and beyond), by mapping the space of ‘maybes’ in a useful way. It unites the left brain with the right brain – analysis with intuition – so we show up more fully and bring all of our wisdom and ways of knowing to our decision-making. The rest of this series will focus on the what and how of Resonance Mapping.

Love says ‘I am everything.’ Wisdom says ‘I am nothing.’ Between the two, my life flows. – Nisargadatta Maharaj, I Am That

Identifying Our Soul’s Values – How Do We Actually Do It? (part 2)

4 Steps to defining and connecting with your Soul’s Values

© 2016 Anna Maria Bäck & Sourcing The Way

A quick re-cap from part 1 of this blogpost:

We’re all leaders, regardless of position, life style, or creed. For me, leadership is closely linked to my values and to questions like “Am I the best I can be? Am I taking responsibility for my actions and reactions?”

It’s difficult to answer such questions without knowing what our values or guiding principles are. For the most part, we seem to use values to distinguish between “us” and “them”, or what is considered “good” or “bad”. We’re also used to talking about “moral values” and “ethical values”, but how often are we encouraged to explore our soul’s values?

The cool thing about our soul’s values is that they connect us to something deeper, something bigger than ourselves, and they help us align with actions and expressions that bring meaning and fulfilment to our lives.

Sticking to your Soul’s Values promotes and supports your personal and professional growth. It increases your experience of clarity and sense of freedom and possibility in your work and life.

As a result you will:

  • Feel empowered to up-level your service and contribution in the world, leading you to new beginnings and empowered self-leadership.
  • Experience peace of mind, while being aware that we create our own realities with our thoughts, beliefs and actions.
  • Manifest inner balance and harmony.
  • Build confidence in your innate worth and abilities.
So, what are the steps – how do we actually do it?

Continue reading Identifying Our Soul’s Values – How Do We Actually Do It? (part 2)

Being of Service to Your Soul’s Values – A Tool for Inner Transformation (part 1)

 

Living Your Soul’s Values – A Novel Concept?
    – How to define, connect with, and live one’s values

© 2016 Anna Maria Bäck & Sourcing The Way

 

Leadership is a verb, not a job.

Chris Clark

 

We’re all leaders, regardless of position, life style, or creed. Thinking that we don’t matter, or that our actions or reactions don’t matter, is not only irresponsible, but also a testament to a deep feeling of separation. For me, leadership is closely linked to my values and to questions like “Am I the best I can be? Am I taking responsibility for my actions and reactions?”

It’s difficult to answer such questions without knowing what our values or guiding principles are. We usually enter the conversation about values through one of two doorways. For the most part, we seem to use values to distinguish between “us” and “them”, or what is considered “good” or “bad”. We’re also used to talking about “moral values” and “ethical values”. Both approaches speak to human behavior, but there’s a third doorway – to knowingly embody and consciously live our values. In other words, to ask “Am I “being” my values? Am I being true to them for myself?”

The true test of a man’s character is what he does when no one is watching.

John Wooden

To ground and integrate the values we aim to live by, the natural first step is to identify and define our soul’s values — our foundation. But identifying and defining values isn’t enough. For me, it has been equally crucial to connect with my soul’s values – by bringing them into my body and mind, and stay connected to them in my everyday life.

It’s easy to get lost in abstract thinking when talking about values. For a more practical approach I like Jaemin Frazer’s descriptions of the “Be-Do-Have” model and three common approaches to trying to get ahead in life, “The Victim”, “The Worker”, and “The Winner”, excerpted here:

Continue reading Being of Service to Your Soul’s Values – A Tool for Inner Transformation (part 1)