Monthly Archives

September 2015

dream job
Blog Dreamsharing September 20, 2015

Would you change your life because of a dream? I always encourage dreamers to get the dream’s message and do something in waking life to honour the dream; to bring its message to conscious light for growth and for change. But would you do it? Do you really want to shift your life based on a dream? Most people love to get clarity about their dream and their life but don’t actually want anything to change, which can be very uncomfortable. People fear change, I’m told, more than they fear death! I am no different but I decided that I need to practice what I preach. Of course this puts me in a tight spot vis à vis the change or death choice!

 death

The Dream

I was walking with a rather tall man in robes- maybe 7′ tall- in a quadrangle, a large courtyard in what felt like a campus setting. He says, “Your job is death.” I ask, “Well how do you mean it? Symbolically or literally? As a psychotherapist my clients have mini-deaths, (symbolic endings and releases) all the time.” But before he can answer, I am awakened. End of dream. 

Since that dream, nine years ago, I have looked at it every which way possible and it never produced an “aha” of new insight. Maybe it was simply a confirmation that I’m on the right track but I follow the wisdom of Jeremy Taylor who says that dreams don’t come to tell us what we already know. I know all about the symbolic ways of death; the endings, letting go, new beginnings and the symbolic fires that scorch our souls so that something new can grow from the charred but enriched inner destruction. Nine years of working on that dream off and on simply produced “Ya, I know that” kind of reactions. So I decided to take the dream literally. The man in robes had the feel of a teacher or guide (perhaps from other realms) and since all the symbolic approaches got me no where, I thought I had nothing to lose by going literal.

The Action

Death

So I signed up for a series of courses at the University of Toronto on grief and bereavement. There’s another course I’m eyeing too. Will it change my life or the direction of my work? It’s too soon to say. However, I know I’ve run from this interpretation for a reason. Years ago, I helped start a charity whose goal was to create a hospice and when I left, I couldn’t get far enough away from the topic, though that wasn’t the reason I left. I just felt gun-shy and started avoiding the field, even though I passionately agree with everything about the hospice movement. Of course my “job is death” could be about the dying process or the grieving process. [On an interesting side note, a psychic once told me that I was a “rescuer”! Not an emotional rescuer but one who apparently helps people who don’t know they are dead, get to the other side. Supposedly I do this in my sleep and that’s why I wake up so tired! And I do wake up tired!] But again, why would the dream tell me what I already know? Dreams bring forth material from our subconscious that we are ready to look at. They may also carry precognitive and other psychic information. In either case, it won’t be old material.

A Dream Uninterpreted is Like a Letter Unopened~ The Talmud

death at psychiatrist

This quote from the Talmud is right! We are getting nightly letters from our unconscious mind, our higher mind and sources beyond that, so how long will we let the mail pile up? It’s time to open our letters. Spend some time with a dream and get someone to help you if you are stuck. Once you feel you know what it means, here are seven ideas to move the dream and its messages into your waking life.

  1. Post it! Write the message on a Post It note and stick it on your bathroom mirror, the dashboard of your car or on your computer monitor. You can even put it on your phone and see it every time you power on. It will help keep the dream’s message in your conscious awareness.
  2. Stick it! When was the last time you added a bumper sticker to your car? You can imagine (or even create an actual bumper sticker) that the message of your dream was put into a clever phrase and made into a bumper sticker. Every time you walk up to your car, you will be reminded of your message.
  3. Draw it! You don’t have to be an artist to draw your dream. Stick figures can show the dream action just as a crayon scribble can show emotion. Doodle your dream message and stick it on your fridge or draw your dream, photograph it and put it on your computer as a screen saver.
  4. Move it! Just as you don’t have to be an artist to draw a dream, you don’t have to be a dancer to move it! Put on some music and move the feeling of the dream through your body and out, or beat a drum and move your message using rhythm and movement.
  5. Create it! Creating the message of your dream isn’t just for drawing. You can make a Dream Stick by taking a walk and as you think about your dream, glance around for a stick and see what appears. Decorate it with string, yarn, beads, feather and whatever you have on hand, in a way that expresses the feel of your dream. If you like to write, create a poem, short story or blog about your dream.
  6. Learn it! As in my “your job is death” dream, see if there is a course you can take, or a new skill that the dream is encouraging your to learn. One of my daughters dreamt about riding a bike, then went out and taught herself to do it!
  7. Do it! Speaking of “do it”… Don’t wait nine years like I did. Experiment. Take action. Explore something new. In a quickly changing world, change is the only constant. We might as well embrace it…and do it!

So, at the end of the day, would you change your life because of a dream? I’m going to try and before I know it, I may be adding coaching for loss and bereavement. Who knows? But to leave my dream, to abandon it,  without taking action in the waking world would just be too sad. What a waste. Will you join me? Will you change your life because of a dream?  Let me know. I’d love to hear from you!

dreamwork with heart
Blog Heart-Centered Dreamwork September 10, 2015

How to do dreamwork with heart? I call the work I do “Heart-Centered Dreamwork” with good reason and I can teach you to do it too!

But first, the back-story! My training was in body-centered psychotherapy (though it is no longer referred to as such) called the Rubenfeld Synergy Method® back in the 90’s. (Yes I’ve been doing the work for a long time!)  The work is powerfully amazing as it combines talk and touch. The “talk” grew out of Gestalt therapy and focuses on the present; the “I am” rather than “I was” statements. After all, whatever happened to us in the past, we can still only process it in the present moment. And the “touch”, a light Reiki-like touch rather than the deeper touch of massage, grew out of the founder’s experience with Feldenkrais work and the Alexander Technique. But what happened when Ilana Rubenfeld combined the three methods, with a dash of Eriksonian trance work, was true “synergy” as it became more than either of the individual methods were on their own. I learned so much from doing this work for myself and, as a “Synergist”, I learned how to open up a dialogue between my client’s emotions, their physical stuck places and chronic pain or illnesses and eventually, even their soul. That lead me to Soul Coaching® because whatever door we enter through- body, mind or emotions-they all lead to our heart and soul.

Fast forward to now. Along the path, I discovered that my passion is dreams and I followed my passion and continue to use the tools I gathered along the way. I studied with Denise Linn and added Soul Coaching® to my tool kit and became one of her Mentors for her online courses for Hay House (I highly recommend them!), but I had also been trained by Robert Moss and became a dream teacher, I satisfied my intellect and got a Master’s degree studying dreams and their role in healing in ancient Greece and I studied with Caroline Myss for the pure pleasure of delving into the Mysteries… And my tool kit continued to grow as I studied energy healing, became a Reiki Master, and learned to do Past Life Regressions! When I paused to look back over the road I had travelled, I saw that the common thread wasn’t dreams or the body, psychotherapy or one particular technique, it was the heart and soul!  The path I took was a path following my curiosity but mainly, it was the path to heal my heart. I discovered that dreams were the technology of Soul- perhaps it’s the “hardware” giving us the structure or a framework for exploration-  but without the heart there was no “software” to operate the system!

As a Rubenfeld Synergist I learned to listen. I learned to hold my clients in a state of active listening, without judgement and with respect, while holding the space for them to “become” themselves. I learned to meet them where they are and not where I think they should be. Years later, Denise Linn said “The instant you judge someone, you lose the ability to influence them” and I understood the “why” of no judgement. How can I model self-respect, healing and growth if I don’t give my heart to my clients show them how I practice what I teach? Can you do dreamwork without the heart? Certainly, however it is a intellectual pursuit when the heart isn’t part of the process. You might think I learned this for myself then shared it with my clients, but it was the opposite! I learned to treat my clients from a heart-centered space of love and respect, then I started to treat myself like I treat my clients. Some of us learn arse-backwards but hey, at least we learn! At the end of the day, the Golden Rule rocks! Treat others in the same way you wish to be treated…Or my version, treat yourself with the same love and respect that you freely give to everyone else!

How To Do Dreamwork With Heart

  • Read through your dream and ask, “Where do I feel this in my body?” Don’t forget that we are spirit having an experience in the physical. Ignoring the vessel through which we experience our emotions and our life, is not the path of heart. Put one hand on the spot where you feel the dream’s emotions and your other hand on your heart.
  • Ask the body part to speak to you. What does it want you to know? Your knee might simply say, “I hurt”.
  • Now ask your heart to respond to that body part. What is the most loving response your heart can give? It might say, “I’m so very sorry! I’ve been putting so much weight (responsibility) on you without thinking how painful this is. I promise to treat you with more TLC!”
  • Next, imagine your closest friend was sharing this dream and conversation with you. By the way, you ARE your closest friend! With your hand still on the place where you felt the dream and the other hand over your heart, imagine it opening wide, encircling you with love. Do you notice a colour or any other sensations? The physical and energetic experience of your visualization may help you really feel it.
  • Now from that place of total self-acceptance, ask “If I knew what this dream’s message is, what would it be? You’ll be surprised how you really do know what your dream asks of you. If not, give some more love to yourself and practice patience.
  • Use oracle cards to help you find the dream’s meaning. (My own deck of The Abaton Keys® or any deck you love will be perfect. Denise Linn’s Gateway Oracle Cards are my second fav!)  When you feel stuck, picking a card can help you by-pass the rational mind to get to your intuitive answers.

Really, dreamwork and personal growth are an inside job. It is the job of the heart.