Working with The Sedona Method – 1

After a month of releasing using The Sedona Method, I’m still not Enlightened. I do, however, feel lighter. At first it seemed really easy. I was recognizing emotion and resistance. I was finding it in my body sensations and mental images. I was letting it go. I had begun to feel a sense of ease in my body and in my day-to-day interactions that was refreshing. I felt as if my internal space was expanding in a way I hadn’t felt before. “This is a cakewalk!” I thought, “I’ll be rid of all this stuff in no time!”

There are sections of the method where you practice just allowing your emotions to be, without trying to change them. I did those too, but those releases felt a little like the moving bridge on the playground where my kids play. As you’re walking on the bridge, it is swaying underneath and you know you’re not on solid ground. I wondered, “Am I doing this right?” Even so, Hale (the instructor on the CDs) insisted that any amount of releasing you could do was enough. And so I continued

About 3 weeks into the process things changed. I suddenly couldn’t feel where the emotions were living in my body anymore. It seemed like everything that came up was insisting on existing only in my head. Now, for someone who teaches that emotions live in the body, that was very disconcerting. This was supposed to be moving me into more awareness, but instead I felt as if I had suddenly dialed down my whole internal process. What to do? Maybe I should just welcome this stuck-ness? As I did, I began to notice that whenever emotions would begin to arise, I’d instantly react to shut them down. It was like in cartoons where the little cartoon animal is coming out of the sewer hole in the street and a big truck comes rolling by and it quickly drops the manhole cover as it ducks back down. Well that was a fascinating recognition. But, if this thing was supposed to be teaching me to be more open to my emotions, how come I was insisting on shutting them down?

I kept listening to the tapes and going through the processes (in my head). At one point in the tape series a woman mentioned that when she welcomed in her emotions, they seemed to start to release right away. Aha! That was what I needed to hear! Thirteen years of Catholic School and a top liberal arts education have left me with the determination to do things “right.” I was insisting on doing this Sedona Method the “right way.” At the beginning I had noticed that when I welcomed my emotions they seemed to lose their charge. I decided I must not be doing it right because there was nothing really left to release when I got to that part of the process. Instead I decided to really feeeel those emotions. I decided that the phrase “welcome them in”, didn’t apply to me, but instead latched on to “allow them to be there.” And boy oh boy was I going to be good at allowing. I “allowed” those emotions to get as intense as I could and searched the deepest corners of my insides for corresponding sensations. And then I let them go. I also noticed the even while I was “allowing” I was also rejecting and judging – and then dropping the manhole cover on the rejection and judgment. Was it surprising that with all this manipulation and coersion that the emotions would eventually go into hiding? “Oh, no, here comes the big bad truck!”

Realizing my resistance, because after all that is what it was, I began to actually welcome the emotions, starting with the rejecting and judgment. Lo and behold, the flow started again, and this time it was actually a flow… well, mostly – after all this is a process and I’ve had 40 years practice in trying to do things “right” (at least in this lifetime). This time the emotions and sensations often lasted for only a short time, since they sometimes released right away upon welcoming them. I also began to allow the pictures and thoughts, all of which I gleefully let go… until something came up recently that wouldn’t let go. But more about that later.

The most fun part of all this has been the noticing of how much my reactions are choices, how small an action it is to make the choice to let go, even if it is just a little bit, and what amazing tricks my mind can come up with when it feels “controlled.” Also fun is how the answers I need come just when I’m stuck.