So, I have a confession to make. I really really reeeeaaaaally took my time with these two chapters. It took me almost a week to move on to these chapters, from the Character chapter in Lifebook Week 2.
I could tell you I was busy with other things (which is totally true). However, the reality is, I think that I hesitated. My spirituality and love relationships are two areas in my life that I am both deeply connected to, and yet also hold conflict with too. As such, it’s not surprising that there was some reluctance to move in and do the heavy emotional lifting, these areas were bound to provoke!
As per usual, this week’s format consisted of two videos with PVPS (Premise, Vision, Purpose and Strategy) exercises to complete.
There was an additional bonus added on for the Love Relationship chapter. This was “Sandra’s Relationship Strategy for Singles”. It’s a Lifebook strategy Jon and Missy created with one of their previous clients, who apparently found great results in this area because of it.
There was also a bonus recording by Jon on Unconditional Love vs Romantic Love. It was a recording he made for Missy’s 51st birthday, but really drove home the fact that romantic love actually is very conditional. I’m not going to try to explain this in this blog post. That’s a longer topic for another time. However, needless to say I found this little bonus very stimulating on the mind!
In terms of video length, the Spiritual Life and Love Relationship videos this week were 1 hour and 12 minutes, and 1 hour and 34 minutes respectively. The bonus Q&A recordings by Jon and Missy totalled 1 hour and 22 minutes. That being the case, this was one of the shorter weeks for minimum time requirements.
One mystery bonus, which seems to have disappeared since I first viewed it, was a special recording called ‘Category 13’ (aka ‘the chapter on sex’). I believe, it was previously located in the Q&A section of the Love Relationship Q&A section. When I went back to look for it recently though, it was no longer there.
In one of the Love Relationship Q&A videos, it was mentioned that Category 13 is usually a part of the Lifebook Mastery course. That is the follow on course to Lifebook. My theory, therefore, is that it possibly got moved back there. Nonetheless, I feel like it’s worth a mention here, as it was quite a teaser of a video. I recommended watching it if you find it!
It explored a trip Jon and Missy took together in Paris. Highlighting the decadent, seductive and specifically ‘Adults only’ nature of that trip, it encouraged viewers to play with their fantasies, sexuality and sensuality within their relationships.
Personally, I have never been in a 30+ year relationship like Jon and Missy. As such, I can’t say I’ve had much of an opportunity to get bored of my previous boyfriends sexually. However, I do believe that sex is an integral and very important part of maintaining a strong connection with your partner.
That being the case, I could only agree with their emphasis on continuously growing this area of a relationship, in addition to the other 12 Lifebook categories.
My experience with: Spiritual Life
It’s the big question isn’t it? What is our greater purpose for being on this earth?
When it came to the Spiritual Life chapter of Lifebook I had to ask myself this. Not that I haven’t done so before. It’s just that it had been a moment.
One of the things I really liked about this chapter, was the fact that Jon made a clear distinction between ‘Spirituality’ and ‘Religion’. I liked it, as it really clarified the conflicts I previously had between the two.
I have often struggled with religion. I’ve never been shy to admit this. I grew up straight Catholic. I was baptised, had my first communion and then intentionally chose not to take my second communion. As a teenager, I didn’t see myself following the rules as they were intended to be followed. Therefore, I couldn’t in good faith lie to god and promise him otherwise.
I have also consciously visited and tried to learn about other religions since then. Mainly as I have friends who represent a rich religious spectrum. Christians, Mormons, Muslims, Taoists, Buddhists etc. I know a lot of great people out there!
I believe, each religion has some great and not so great aspects to it. Nonetheless, I have often felt a rigidness and division in religious groups that has never sat well with me. For that reason, I do consider myself to be leaning more towards the spiritual than the religious side.
I believe in a greater power. A balance to the universe. Karma and human connectedness. I also believe in using star signs, angel numbers and intuition as my guides through life. The value I found in this chapter, therefore, really lay in the self-acceptance of my struggles.
I realised it’s ok to feel what I feel. Instead of painting a picture that I am in some way treading wrongly for following my spiritual side more closely than my religious side. I know everyone has their own spiritual path to follow – and now I feel clearer about my own.
My experience with: Love Relationship
The Love Relationships chapter was a chapter, I genuinely think I was avoiding. Mainly because this chapter of my life is arguably one of the most successful, and unsuccessful, areas of my life.
I consider this area to be successful for two reasons.
One – I have had the exceptionally great fortune to truly fall and grow in love twice in this lifetime
I’m not talking about the heady and lustful infatuation that leaves you breathless, but inevitably fades with time. No, I’m talking about the deep and soulful kind of love that touches your heart to the very core. That changes your entire worldview and remains with you until the day you die.
The kind of love that makes you smile tenderly at the memory. The love that includes ups and downs, but ultimately makes you realise that love is a choice. It’s the choice to choose respect, kindness, humour and compassion, over frustration, ill-timed circumstances and irritation.
It’s also the choice to love those people enough to let them go if needs be. To want and support what’s best for them and you, however, impossible such choices can seem.
Two – My interactions with men have been predominantly positive
Don’t get me wrong, I have my weak spots with men. I have consciously and unconsciously let men cross boundaries that should not have been crossed many times. I have let me them treat me in ways which were less than respectful and then wondered why they would do such a thing.
I’m no saint either. I know I’ve made some blunders, caused frustrations and probably crushed a number of egos along the way too. I was raised as a single child and without a father figure in my life. That being the case, I actually had to actively learn how to engage with men during my adult years.
Nevertheless, I like to think I’m pretty good at it. It probably helps that I’m pretty intuitive and also consistently open to learning how to improve my engagement and communications with humans in general. I’m also pretty sure none of my exes would have a bad word to say about me.
Still, taking the tradition view, each one of my relationships so far has quote unquote “failed”. After all, I’m not in a long-term relationship, have not been married, and my dating life, while fun, isn’t proving too fruitful in finding “the one”. That is a fact that sometimes feels like a sour pill to swallow.
Facing up to failure
That being the case, during this chapter I really had to get down and dirty with my actions and emotions. I dug deep and saw what I might be thinking and doing that could be hurting my results in this area.
I found out that the dirty truth is… that I may have some work ahead of me. Interestingly though, I also found out that the areas I see as needing work, may also be just perfect.
In fact, what is blocking me now, may actually be helping me towards a better future. It was the most intriguing discovery, I tell you.
That being the case, I decided that I will continue doing the emotional work I’ve already started, but focus more urgently on areas that may need that focus more right now. Like my finances and career.
Thank goodness those topics are coming up shortly in Week 5!
Explore the rest of the Lifebook journey!
- How I found Lifebook
- Lifebook Warm Up
- Lifebook 2020 – Week 1: Health and Fitness & Intellectual Life
- Lifebook 2020 – Week 2: Emotional Life & Character
- Lifebook 2020 – Week 3: Spiritual Life & Love Relationship
- Lifebook 2020 – Week 4: Parenting & Social Life
- Lifebook 2020 – Week 5: Financial Life & Career
- Lifebook 2020 – Week 6: Quality of Life & Life Vision