Lighthouse Tuesday: Help

“Be someone else’s lighthouse.” ~ Patti Digh

Sometimes being another’s lighthouse means offering your help. Giving your time, energy, or resources to someone else is like shining a light on an area of their life that may feel heavy, foggy, painful, or unclear to them; your light clarifies, eases pain, creates lightness and space, and makes room for new opportunities.

I’ve been thinking about help a lot lately because I rarely ask for it and often do everything on my own. As a solopreneur, I complete almost every task related to my business — from scrubbing my hot stones clean to designing and updating my website to doing my own taxes to hosting my own events. Computer glitch? I handle it myself or suffer with my Mac’s “rainbow wheel.” Marketing needed? I’m my own girl for the job! Financial duties? I suffer through the messiness and make lots of mistakes.

The “Courtney-does-everything” realization came to the forefront when I was receiving an EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) session from my friend Sheri Goodwin. In the session it became clear that I need help if I am to remain sane AND do all that I wish to do. Whew!

What’s my job now? To relinquish some control.  One reason I run my own small business: I love being a one-woman show!  I love having creative control. There’s that word again: control. Hmmm…curious, isn’t it?

When you do everything yourself, how do you feel? Recharged and empowered? Or exhausted and disempowered? A combination?

Here’s the thing: in my experience offering to help is easy. For me it’s like drinking a glass or orange juice — it’s sweet and bright and easy to swallow. What’s hard is asking for help and then actually accepting the help. Regardless of monetary attachments. (Whoa, did I just write that?) Lack of money has been my excuse for years for why I must do everything myself. Does this sound familiar to you?

Offering and receiving help is a way for us to experience interconnection — a state we can forget exists when we get into an independent streak or when our identity somehow depends on our strength in doing it all ourselves.

When giving help, ask yourself: What can I do to be the lighthouse for this person, even in some small way?

When receiving help, ask yourself: How can I let go of some control and fully receive these offerings gracefully?

Try This:

Write down the ways in which you feel you can easily help others. It may be through action or words, money or presence. Now write down the ways in which you feel it is easy to receive help. Perhaps you can easily accept help with getting to-and-fro in the city by way of rides from friends, but you can’t even imagine asking someone for help with your financial woes.  Explore the nature of your giving and receiving through writing and see what emerges. What do you learn about yourself and what are you going to try now that you have some new insights?

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About Courtney Putnam

I first came to healing work through art and writing. Creating collage art and poetry in particular allowed me to deeply understand the benefit of self-expression in the healing process. But, I also began to see the benefit of bodywork (manual work in the form of massage and energywork in the form of Reiki) as keys to unlocking the emotional stresses we hold in our bodies. I became a Reiki practitioner in 2002, received an MFA in Creative Writing in 2003, received my massage license in the spring of 2006, and became a Reiki Master in 2010. In my practice I bring together these three areas -- the body, the mind, and the spirit (or energy body) -- so others may experience profound and positive change in their lives.
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2 Responses to Lighthouse Tuesday: Help

  1. inspire1life says:

    Hi Courtney, Great post! It is not always easy to ask for help, and like you said, giving up the control can be difficult. It can feel counterproductive when you have to pay for that help, but it would allow you to focus your energies on what you love and if you focus on abundance, and not lack, the money will continue to flow and grow.

  2. Thank you! Yes, focusing on abundance and possibility will allow for growth! When we focus on lack and worry about the financial piece of paying for help, we forget how liberating receiving help would be! And often the financial piece does figure itself out — whether suddenly I can afford the help, or a barter is in the works, or I get a great deal — and it’s all worth the money (and peace of mind).

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