I can still feel the magic...
Henrike Schreer - a student of mine has written this blog about her experiences in the Passion and Purpose weekend. I have edited nothing. To do so would interfere with her telling of the experience. It is many years since I was a student in this weekend. I can still feel the magic...
Passion, Purpose and personal pointers…
“The true journey of discovery lies not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” – Marcel Proust
Oh the excitement of walking into a room of strangers, ready to go on a fascinating adventure of self-discovery and growth! So here we are: 13 of us, all of different ages and walks of life, a bit excited, checking each other out. With a wide, radiant smile, our facilitator Cat Valentine enters the room and makes even the shyest of participants feel welcome and relaxed. Let the show begin!
After sharing her own story of victories, trials and tribulations, Cat reveals the magic that unfolded for her when – after hitting breaking point in 2013 – she discovered Pip McKay and the wisdom of the Archetypes. From feeling defeated and lost after a slow and painful marriage breakdown to discovering her soul purpose and, with the help of her own Passion and Purpose Archetypes, building a successful coaching business. This vibrantly joyous, nurturing lady is walking her talk – so we are all ready and eager to go. What’s the secret sauce she has that can turn our lives around and take us to the next level?
Hitting the ground running, Cat introduces us to the first 8 Archetypes with their unique qualities and strengths. We learn where they stand in relation to each other, and how we need to tap into all of them to live a successful and truly fulfilling life. We learn that 4 of them can be identified as our individual Passion and Purpose Archetypes, and that we will discover them throughout the day. An exciting thought: Who wouldn’t want to know their key drivers that naturally allow them to thrive across all areas of our lives? But is it really possible to have such a level of clarity in just one day? I am intrigued. I’m well aware that at least one of my key drivers is in shadow at the moment, blocking me from making a few major decisions. So I hope this is real and Cat can lead me – quite literally – to the light.
A young lady bravely puts her hand up for the first coaching demonstration of the day. Cat shows us how easily we can elicit our main Archetypes by carefully listening to each others’ language and taking meticulous notes. The questions are based around what we used to love and who we wanted to be as children, teens and young adults. Watching Cat ask the questions, we begin to notice her client’s patterns – the code is starting to reveal itself. It’s quite magic: Once you know what you are looking for, you can’t un-see it, and the magic unfolds. Why don’t we learn this in school? I bet the others are just as baffled as I am by the simplicity of the process, and the fabulous results. It’s all code – and we are getting handed the key to decipher it…
The afternoon and evening are spent in pairs, eliciting each others’ stories. It’s a sunny day in Byron Bay, so we break off into cafes and parks to sit in the sun and revel in our childhood memories and dreams. My partner’s face lights up like a Christmas tree when he shares his early memories of farm life, driving machinery, riding his motorbike and going on adventures with his mates. I can immediately hear his Knight talk, along with a joyous, cheeky Innocent Adventurer. I’m the same: From childhood mischief to first jobs, from volunteer work to becoming a mum – the hours of recalling what makes my heart sing leave me joyous and buzzing.
Back in the room, we de-brief and learn how to decode the pages and pages of notes we have taken about each others’ stories. In markers of red, green, yellow and purple, with sprinkles of other colours, my new friend’s pattern emerges as clearly as daylight. When he shows me my own decoded words, my heart leaps and it’s a resounding ‘Yes’. That’s me, in my joy, at my best. How easy. How could I ever forget:
My Innocent Adventurer took me travelling and exploring around the world and had me learn a bunch of languages to communicate, always curious for new adventures. My Creative Nurturer loves people and needs hugs and a sense of belonging to a close-knit community. The Knight in me fights for what I believe in and wants to win, excel at challenges and conquer myself and my destiny. And then there’s the Ruler. That’s me managing a business, making sure things are organised and in place. I know he’s been in shadow lately, which has had me exhausted and defeated. I can’t wait to learn how to bring him back to light. I leave tired but excited for tomorrow…
So I’m a genius?
“Life is not about finding yourself. It’s about creating yourself!” – George Bernard Shaw
It’s day 2 and I’ve had an interesting night. On the drive back home I had this whole pain-and-self-pity program running in my head, grieving for my Ruler who I find so exhausting, and my Lovers, who have been on the back burner for too long. I didn’t think I’d get so emotional after such a joyous day. Apparently today we will clear some shadows – I honestly can’t wait.
After briefly checking in and recapping, we look closer at our Talent: The one Archetype in our top 4 that we are good at and usually being paid for, but would leave at home if we went on a holiday. Clearly, here’s my Ruler again. Cat explains that whilst this particular Archetype might not be our most joyous one, it’s the one that allows us to bring success to the others. Without it, the others can’t fully unfold. So I’m stuck with the Ruler and better figure out how to bring him from shadow to light.
With clarity on our Passion and Purpose Archetypes, we now learn how to figure out our Genius Flow – the way we do things intuitively when we are at our best and most successful. Turns out not everyone thrives on the ‘Goal setting – Planning – Taking action model’ we’ve been come to believe is the key to success. It certainly is for some – but what if our brain is wired differently? Genius has many faces…
Cat demonstrates a script around past experiences of success and her student/client tells two success stories from her career. Again, Cat takes meticulous notes and sure enough, the pattern springs to light. It’s unbelievably obvious what her client’s Flow is and in which order the Archetypes need to be activated to create her very own secret sauce for success.
We get to pick another buddy, and off we go to discover each others’ Genius Flow. My partner today has a clear, easily decipherable pattern. One that I would have never guessed even existed. That’s not in the school books and even in my previous coaching training I haven’t comes across anything like this. I go second and sure enough, my own pattern shows up, clear as daylight:
First, my Innocent Adventurer needs to dream and envision – often at random and with no idea that the dream could even be remotely possible. Just a bubble of desire, enthusiasm and a talent to dream up things before they materialise. Then I need to find a reason why, which for me is always caring: When my Creative Nurturer finds the people I want to bring the dream to life with or feels part of a team that inspires me, I spring into action. Next, I fight for it – often against all odds. Whether it’s the naysayers, a lack of funds or something else inhibiting the dream from manifesting – my Knight goes out and conquers it. And then comes my Ruler: systems, organisation, planning, delegating. He’s needed to tie things together and create sustainability. But boy oh boy, he’s so tired these days…
After a break, we come back together, debrief and learn the next big step: Releasing shadows. Finally! I’m as ready as I could possibly be. Cat’s demo this time goes deep, deep into the emotions of her client and I can see some of my fellow students shifting uncomfortably in their seats: ‘What? Will that be me in a few minutes? Can I do this? Can I access my own vulnerability and allow someone else to support me?’ I’m glad I’ve been to similar trainings before, so I know that there’s only one key: Trust. The. Process. It’s so simple and so true: Just do it. The scripts we learn have been developed over years and no matter how impossible it seems – they work. Just do the do.
Once the demonstration finishes I pounce: I know who I want to do this exercise with and ask her before anyone else can invite her to team up. I’m lucky and she’s keen to work with me. Turns out we are both coaches and have surprisingly similar shadows to clear. We find ourselves a quiet, cosy spot and let the magic unfold. This time, I go first, to clear the old pain and hurt that has paralysed me lately. A bunch of annoying events that were uncomfortable but shouldn’t have rocked me so deeply have left me struggling lately, so my Ruler needs an injection of light.
What to say… It’s an emotional mess of tears and sobs, but in the safe guiding hands of my beautiful coach, I can finally get to the core of this pain and release it. When she invites me to find the resources I struggle initially but then it comes to me like a lightning bolt: A fist. I need to put my fist down and say ‘enough is enough. ‘I’m done here – this is not okay’. Wow. I hadn’t realised how stuck I was in my victim mode – me, the coach and the leader. Ouch. But it feels good to have my ‘grrrrr’ back and feel the fire in my belly again. Hello Ruler, where have you been hiding?
As we switch roles after a small break, my partner’s journey unfolds just as powerfully and it is the biggest honour to support her with my guidance, script in hand. The mix of utter vulnerability and magnificent strength, so closely connected, is astounding to watch. This lady, a person I only met yesterday, touches my heart so profoundly, and in facing and overcoming her wounding moves me along another few steps on my journey as well. Gosh I love coaching, and I love seeing good people making big changes to serve with even more love and light. What a victorious ending to a magical day!
Archetypal downloads – it’s all in you!
In NLP (Neurolinguistic programming) there is a fundamental prerogative: Everything you need is within you right now. It means that we don’t ever lack resources, but only need to reconnect to them within ourselves. On my spiritual path I’ve come across a similar concept: The soul is to the Divine what the drop is to the ocean: We have all the Divine qualities within ourselves but are covered in all sorts of conditioning and forgetfulness. So coaching and related modalities aren’t ever giving us anything we don’t possess – they merely unearth what’s already dormant within and allow us to accessed it and shine it forth.
Day 3 starts off with a check in on how we are after yesterday’s intense evening sessions. It looks like we’ve all come out stronger, and I notice big shifts in some of the faces: Some of my fellow students have visibly softened and are glowing. Some are more relaxed in the group space and seem to have fully embraced the roller coaster ride that is coaching. Welcome to the world of self-development – buckle up mates!
After releasing old negative emotions yesterday and gaining some valuable resources in the process, today we are getting the chance to cement our outcomes and build on them. We will download two Archetypes each, meaning we will learn how to facilitate the experience of becoming our Archetypes. With that come insights, new levels of awareness and keys to hidden strengths. As a light hypnosis, this technique is highly effective and lots of fun, both for the client and the facilitator.
Again we break off into pairs. My partner is a lovely lady who is new to coaching but brave enough to volunteer to go first. I gladly agree, as experiencing the process will help her to know what it’s like when she coaches me. She chooses the Ruler and the Innocent Adventurer and we spend an hour tapping into their beautiful wisdom and resources. She comes out amazed and fulfilled, with teary eyes and gratitude for having met these two powerful Archetypes, whose strengthening presence she had been missing in recent years. I can’t wait to see her story unfold over the next weeks and training events!
When it’s my turn, I choose my Creative Nurturer and – again – my Ruler. Those two I need most in the coming months, and strengthening their presence in my life will be most beneficial. I delve in deep and my new friend does a great job at guiding me through the process – that’s the beauty of having scripts that have been tested and improved over decades! Pip McKay is known as one of Australia’s leading NLP experts for a reason, and her scripts hold powerful language patterns that lead us right where we need to go.
In the end, I have gained deeply meaningful insights into what I need to do next, and have literally given myself the backing of a powerful queen (my Creative Nurturer) and a strong king (my Ruler). They are anchored to my left and right, supporting me to back myself with a few major decisions I’ll be making in the near future. I feel strengthened and relieved to have come so far in just 3 days.
But it’s far from over. After a break we get back together and Cat presents to us a powerful technique of setting goals that are not just aligned with the outcomes we think we want, but with our Archetypal strengths. I’ve done much goal setting in my life, but I have never come across a technique like this! With our main Archetypes on the back of our minds, we delve into a beautiful meditation about our ideal work day and after experiencing it in full bliss in our mind’s eye, we are finally allowed to jot down notes. Afterwards, we break this vision down into more short term steps over different time frames and are left with a bunch of clear action steps that we can take to bring the dream into reality.
The beauty is that I know this stuff works. When I did my first coaching training 7 years ago I was in love with the idea but highly sceptical that any of my dreams could be achieved. Sure enough, I wrote down a lot of ‘supposed-to-be’ goals and none of them really manifested. But when one year later my marriage dissolved and I was forced into re-creating my life from scratch, I saw the magic unfold. With no more ideas of what I should want but a tremendous hunger to design a fulfilling life, I created a vision board and dream that was outrageously unrealistic but deeply meaningful. This became the starting point for exactly the life I’m living today. Of course lately that Ruler thing has thrown some spanners in the wheel. But now I’m supercharged again and ready to go: Hear me roar!