Love – Callum Wilson, Elaine Lajuenesse, and Miriam Gunn
Callum, Elaine, Miriam, Pt 2 – Love (and men and emotions)
[00:00:00] Hey friends. So if you are tuning into this for the first time i would encourage you to go back and start with last week’s episode because that’s the first part of this conversation
and you’ll get to know my friends Callum and Elaine from that conversation.
I split it -this is the second half last week we talked about being versus doing and this week the continuation of this conversation is talking about love I hope you enjoy
Elaine Lajuenesse: Should we talk about love because
Callum Wilson: Yeah. Okay.
Miriam Gunn: You know, because Sounds good to me. Yeah.
Elaine Lajuenesse: Yeah, since we’re talking about the real thing here, like how often do you say I love you to your client?
Miriam Gunn: Okay, so, you know, my training is in, I mean, my early training was theological and I said, I love you to the people I [00:01:00] was working with all the time. Then my midlife training was psychological and there were tons of boundaries around that, and people would say, yeah, I wasn’t allowed to touch anybody. People would say occasionally, and I just like you so much, or I love you, Miriam, or whatever.
And I’d say, I know, always felt very like I mean, I cared for them too. I, in my coaching clients, I’ve had several say, I love you and I’ve said I love you back. I, what’s, one of the reasons I moved into the coaching space is that the, the constriction of the medical model of therapy in the United States.
I mean, it’s there for good reasons. It is there for good reasons, but it was confining for me and I needed to be able to say, I genuinely love the person that you are. And when you see the real person, I mean, many times I love the [00:02:00] doing person too, but when you see the real being of someone, you always love them because the real being is, you know, it’s the good stuff.
Callum Wilson: Yeah, I’m, I’m quite glad you sort of went there because I had a sort of, you know, wondering how I was gonna approach that recently, just realizing that, like I said before, I think we’re all the same. I think we’re all just part of nature. And I also, I weirdly don’t feel that, I don’t feel that separation.
I used to. So I kind of see myself in everyone. And I also re understand that if I live this exactly the same life as someone else, I would be exactly the same as them. Even evil people. And I think even evil people, there might be evil acts, but I don’t think there’s a genuine evil intent. I think that in some way, even the worst people in the world are [00:03:00] thinking, their reasoning in some way, they see it as a positive. So there’s this part of me that goes, you know, what if I, if I, if I lived your life, I could be exactly the same as you. And then, and then when I look at people when I’m, and I might in the previous, you know, earlier in life, I’ve judged them. Now I look at them, I’m like, I get it like cruel human.
It only takes a few bad decisions or a few moments where you’re not, you don’t stand up for your true self and you end up in a, in a bad position. And I, I feel like. I don’t know if luck’s the right word, because we all make these choices, but like, I kind of feel lucky that in some ways to, I’m, I’m really grateful to my younger self for making several of those decisions that mean that I can now be in a position to talk about it like this.
But to answer the question, like, how often do I tell people, oh, my clients, I love them. Not that often actually. But I do love them because I kind of love, like I was trying to explain, I kind of love everyone now. I’ve never, I, in the last few months I’ve had this really [00:04:00] different feeling inside me.
It’s, it is bizarre. Like I’m kind of constantly feeling like looking at people and being like, oh, deep down, like, I really love you. I heard love being explained as like being able to kind of see. It’s like, see through someone else’s eyes and understand them from that position. And I was like, oh yeah, geez.
That’s actually what I’m experiencing a lot in life. I’m able to go, yeah, I get you. Like I, I understand. On some level. So interesting. And I’m actually taking that as kind of a challenge, Elaine. Maybe I’m gonna try it. Tell them that I love them because I do. And why hold back the truth? Yeah.
Elaine Lajuenesse: Yeah.
Because I come from a place where like, I, I grew up in a, an environment where my dad was telling us he loves us all the time. And in my life I went the other direction where I was not, I was kind of cheap with my, I love things. And [00:05:00] and my last assistant we had a really, really nice connection.
Her and I, and, and, you know, when I lost my job, still lost her job. That’s how it works. And she decided to go to the states and stuff and and I remember the first time I told her I loved her, it was like, we’ve worked together for a year and a half or maybe even more. It was six months after we both got got out of the job and, and she said, oh, I thought you were gonna say to me, but I just thought it was gonna be a year later.
Like, she, she kind of knew who I was and and then today morning I was, I was coaching a client and I just like, blurted like, I just, I love you. And it felt really good. And so, like, I really wanna bring this more cuz for so long I’ve been really cheap with I love you to people and, and I think people need to hear it more, not less.
Callum Wilson: Yeah. A hundred percent do, do you, are you guys [00:06:00] familiar with Byron Katie’s. Loving what is book? No, that’s a great book. She, she, she has something called
The Inquiry. So it’s four questions.
Is it true?
Absolutely true. The effect of, so it’s about belief. Sorry. You have a belief, a new question. Is it true?
Absolutely true effect of holding this belief and then life without the belief, and then you do a turnaround to make it it’s called Loving What is.
But yeah, it’s, it’s kind of like the basis of doing the work, I think is what you’d call it. But what I love about it is it always brings you back to reality.
The idea is you do this inquiry to find the truth behind the beliefs. And I was just thinking as you were saying what you, what you were just saying there, Elaine, is like, in some ways when you don’t. When you don’t tell someone that you love them, it’s not like you are lying, but you are also holding back the truth.
And probably the reason it feels so great to [00:07:00] tell someone you love them is cuz you’re just living in reality. Cuz loving what is, is basically the ti the title is just to say like, loving reality. And the reality is if it’s, you know, if you love someone, you are, you are living in reality. And it, and it actually feels quite nice to be there.
Like it’s totally honest, basic, I think.
So in some ways I guess I’m holding back honesty by not telling more people that I love them. I, I only really recently started doing it to my mom and dad a bit more. And it feels so good. Yeah. Miriam, have you got any thoughts?
[00:07:36] Love and Society
Miriam Gunn: Yeah, I was thinking about what you’re talking about is true love, un unselfish love, and I feel like modern society, western society has sexualized everything to where it’s, it’s made it very difficult for people to say, I love you, and know what you mean and not question, and what, well, what are you saying?
And [00:08:00] whatever.
And this notion of unconditional regard, I a, a true heartfelt, “I love you” is an a simple way to say, I accept you. I want you in my presence. I see the value you bring on the planet just by the human that you are.
It’s like so many things wrapped up and you know our brains are full of mirror neurons and if you’re, I can even have this happen through the Zoom screen, but when you’re present with someone and you say something like that, it reaches deep in them and their brain responds.
It’s why, you know, when you say, I love you, most of the time people say, I love you back in a genuine way.
Their brain is responding in their heart and their soul. It’s such a huge package. And what I, what I hear you doing both of you, [00:09:00] and it’s encouraging me to do this more, is you’re sort of like, I don’t like these crappy rules that we’ve been handed by society that we’ve grown up in.
And I’m gonna change ’em and I’m gonna choose to be maybe vulnerable or this is in air quotes, but like soft.
I’m gonna choose to extend to the other person the fact that they have meaning to me.
Saying “I Love You”
Those are some of the things that I’ve been thinking about as you guys have been talking and how healthy and healing it is for them and for you, like Cal, I’m thinking about your parents and going, what are they thinking when you’re saying this semi out of the blue?
I bet they get a teeny bit uncomfortable also. They love it.
Callum Wilson: they didn’t, yeah. I, I, I, I think I just used to say bye. Like, I see you soon and, and probably in the last couple of like the year, last year or so, I’ve said I love you a lot more int it. [00:10:00] And I, I feel I’m like, oh, you know, saying that to my dad, like, I would say it previously, but not every single time that Yeah, I, I expect that they do feel something.
I think it’s important as well because, you know, every time we say bye to someone, it really could be the last time, so, You know, so many people regret not having let you know the thing, the thing that I think if I, if I was to die tomorrow, what would I need to do to feel fulfilled today? And it probably would be to let people know that I love them.
That would be it. If I had to do one thing, let people know that I love them. So why am I not doing that? Yeah. Okay.
Miriam Gunn: That’s so good. I had an experience about 15 years ago where I really thought I was gonna die. Like really, honestly. And I went through the huge, like, okay, if I die, do I, is there anything on left?
And there were actually two people I needed to have conversations with and I didn’t die, obviously. And I did have [00:11:00] those conversations and it really put into me this space of live every moment as though it might be your last. I’m grateful to that moment in my life because it changed the way I live.
And my kids and other people who I. Care about. We, we always end conversations with, I love you.
But there was this funny influencer that my kids were watching and exposed me to, and he would always say, love you so much, bye. And they started doing it. And after a while, and I did it too, we all were doing it. And after a while I said, Hey, I actually wanna stop doing that because I actually do love you.
And the way we’re saying it sounds sarcastic and it doesn’t reach into me the same way.
They’re like, you’re right. So now we just say, love you. I so important.
Elaine Lajuenesse: Hmm.
Yeah. Because that’s the risk, huh? So, so the risk is to go on auto automatic [00:12:00] pilot. Mm-hmm. Just a force of habit. I’m gonna say I love you because that’s what I do.
So the intention is critical.
[00:12:13] Intentional Love
Callum Wilson: Mm-hmm. Yeah, it probably doesn’t and as you said that Elaine, I was thinking like quite often those moments of feeling, that deep connection of love actually isn’t at the end. It’s during like a, a meeting with someone. So potentially like the most authentic time, you could say it might be halfway through, you know?
Mm-hmm. Maybe, yeah, maybe, maybe it is a bit a piloty to leave it to the end.
Elaine Lajuenesse: But I’m wondering something Callum, because you know, I, I have lots of, I grew up surrounded by men or boys at a time when now is it true that it’s harder for men to have real conversation?[00:13:00]
Callum Wilson: What than, than women? Yeah. I think that’d probably be, Like generally probably quite right. Like if I was, I mean, I haven’t been a female in a female conversation, so to speak, but like listening into my girlfriend and, and my mom, and although women who talk to other women, they bare themselves more vulnerably more often it seems.
And there is this, this feeling of like wanting to look strong. I’ve always been quite
as long as physically I felt strong, like I was always okay with like opening up and being vulnerable. I think we’ve all got. We all, I dunno. I guess within my social groups, a lot of people would come to me with big, like this type of thing. So, but there is, yeah, I definitely think men really struggle. I a hundred percent.
And it’s, it’s just that wanting to look strong.
Elaine Lajuenesse: Really. [00:14:00] Yeah. I’m asking because I have lots of male friends who would come and tell me and, and, and I will talk, I’ll take my brothers. I have three brothers. Yeah. And they come to me with certain stuff, with, you know, women and stuff, and I’m thinking, why are you talking to me and why are you not talking to your brothers?
Like, yeah. What’s my lived experience to help you here?
Callum Wilson: Oh, yeah. Yeah. I’ve got, I’ve got friends that I’ve been, you know, I, I, I’ve known them for 20 years and like a few of them we’re in our late twenties and I’m like, I don’t, I don’t really know you like I do and I don’t. There’s this part of you that you don’t show me.
And then recently I’ve been seeing more and more of it, and I’m like, oh, wow. Because there’s some people in my, in males in my life and I was like, they’re just kind of robots, but I know they’re not, but they’re only showing me that side. So but I think that, you know, men, male [00:15:00] suicide rates are, are higher.
Well, I actually, let’s, that could be for other reasons, but I think men do struggle, you know, with, you know, one of our biggest threats to ourselves in the western world, especially as men is ourselves. And that has to be something to do with deep sadness and my experience of opening up as it lets a lot of sadness out.
Mm-hmm. I, I still really struggle to cry, but I’d love to cry. Sometimes I’m like, come on, let yourself cry. But it’s so hard,
Elaine Lajuenesse: like, have you seen the movie The Holidays?
Callum Wilson: Yeah. I’m like, sometimes I’m sitting there and I’m like, right, yeah. There’s something, there’s something sad in there. There’s something that needs to come out and I’ll be like, nah, it’s not happening.
Yeah. So yeah, it’s, it’s tough because obviously like, you know, I’m just talking really generally I’m, and, and I suppose it is just a tiny bit of average difference that makes a big difference on the edges. Mm-hmm. So from what I can tell, I do know a [00:16:00] lot of men that open up to women more than other men.
That’s probably something that, that resonates with your experience, I suppose.
Elaine Lajuenesse: Yeah.
You know what, the more you talk, the more I realize the real assign. Like you’re a little bit of I never cry either. Yeah. I almost wear it as a badge of honor. Yeah. Which was really sad. Uhhuh, I’m working on it. What about you here, Miriam?
Miriam Gunn: Wow. I think all sorts of things. All sorts of things. I, I wish I knew men from quite a few other cultures. I wish we had some other people in our group on this call for this particular question, because I don’t think it’s the same everywhere. But I do really resonate with what you’re talking about.
Both of you and I, I wonder, I know, I know two men who think their ability to weep is a strength. Like, they see that [00:17:00] as “I’m strong enough and secure enough that I can cry” and they have access to that place in them. Which is remarkable in a, in a place where, you know, I think a lot of young boys are told, don’t be a crybaby, be a man.
Tough, be tough. You know, stuff like that where little girls who fall are scooped up and, oh, are you okay? And what happened? And let me kiss it better. And, you know, there’s an acculturation that happens.
But I think I, I think Latin cultures might be more open with that space, you know, whether it’s South American or Spanish
[00:17:39] Love in Cultures
Callum Wilson: Yeah. When I lived in France which is sort of got its parts of Latin There’s, there’s threads of it anyhow, especially in, in the South. And the guys were more, way, way more emotional than British guys, like British cultures mm-hmm.
Were pretty held back, I think. Mm-hmm. But [00:18:00] the guys would cry at training and stuff. I’m like, what is going on here?
Partly because I was just like, why are they so emotional about it? But I think as well, I mean, I consider like it de, you know, a lot, I, I suppose men and, and Miriam, you, you’d probably know that potentially the most about this, but like the, the anger is often a secondary emotion.
There’s something that precedes that. And when I consider how many angry men that I know, including myself at times, but you know, I see it all, I see a lot of angry men that there must be. There must be that’s come after a sadness or, or, and a negative emotion, let’s say. So there is that emotion there.
It’s just that it gets built up and then expressed instead of in tears, it gets expressed in anger. Mm. I think anger probably doesn’t, it doesn’t often my experience of crying and I, I have cried a hundred percent, [00:19:00] but is like, it is really like, lets everything out. Whereas anger tends to just stay in me until I make a big mistake with the anger, and then I’m like, that was, that was stupid.
So yeah, it’s, it’s interesting. There’s some experiences I found that, that being someone that doesn’t cry much I ki I’ve, I’ve stood up to do speeches at funerals and cannot do it. I’ll weep. I’ll weep a weep. My brother who’s probably like, He’s very, very strong guy, but like in a kind, much, much kinder way than me.
Like he’s very soft and calm. He, he can, he can handle those situations in ways that I can’t. So it’s almost like my lack of ability to be soft in other areas at previously in life, I think I’m probably a bit better now, but I mean, I think his ability to express himself more allows him to actually do really tough emotional stuff better than me occasion.
Miriam Gunn: I, I think that these [00:20:00] are skillsets we never think of- oh, your ability to feel emotion or express, express emotion is a skillset, but it is. And I used to, this was years and years ago. I used to lead court- ordered domestic violence therapy groups. And those guys, I, I grew to just care for each of them so much.
You could see the hurt little boy in them. And it was exactly as you mentioned, Cal, you know, the anger was a secondary emotion, and underneath it was sadness or fear or regret. Embarrassment. All, I mean, all sorts of emotions. Like there was this kaleidoscope or rainbow of emotions that got turned into only one thing.
Talk About Emotions
It was like, you know, if the only thing you’ve got is a hammer, all your world looks like a nail. And that’s how it played out. And what you’re describing with your brother, you know, he just, he [00:21:00] a, he’s a different person, but b, he acquired a different set of tools and he handles them differently.
I have the flip problem where I was raised in a household that was full of anger and so I don’t express anger ever. And people are like, oh my gosh, what makes you really angry? I’m like, I don’t know. I don’t get angry. I just, I mean the, the, if I get super, super angry- years ago, it might make me cry.
I just get silent. It’s like, you know, those like anenomes in the ocean, you touch ’em and they just go, that’s like my response to that sort of thing.
So this is a fun and interesting discussion about these emotions. Obviously if you were to say, I mean, my family knows well enough, the quieter I am, the angrier I am, and they’ll just go, whoa, she is losing it.
Because I’m just,
Elaine Lajuenesse: yeah. [00:22:00]
Callum Wilson: Elaine, how about, how about you? Any thoughts going on?
[00:22:05] Other Emotions
Elaine Lajuenesse: Yeah, I think there’s, there’s so much common le live experience here. Mm-hmm. Because I’m like Miriam. When I am really angry, I totally clammed out. At the same time, I have lots of energy. And so I will go and walk very fast or do something like just to get the energy out of me.
I also know that any decision I’ve made in under the anger is, was a really bad decision. So, so I’ve learned to kind of try to take a distance. Yeah. It’s a, it’s interesting, eh, because you, you, you don’t, you meet stranger, like we are strangers I’ve met maybe four months ago, and then just when you scratch a surface, there’s so much [00:23:00] commonality between all of us.
Hmm. It’s fascinating to me.
Callum Wilson: Yeah. So this is something happened for me. I realize, so I keep referring to like an old version myself, but before I got the truth is I don’t think I really knew who I was. I was talking about having the courage to be myself, but I didn’t have the kind of knowledge around what is the survivor like, the egoic part of me that is, is fueling the frustration, the sadness, the anger, and what is the real version of me.
And so for years it was just like this really reactive state. When I refer back to, I didn’t used to, it’s because I was just constantly in an egoic reactive state with everything. And, and that was anger. But quite often manifested as anger.
But actually like [00:24:00] now when I feel anger, and we talked about it on our last call, like, you know, that framework that I said, I go,
oh, have I not accepted myself?
Better Version of You
Have I not believed in others? Have I not contributed? Have I just not had the courage to say what I think?
And I can suddenly find the real, well, the, the, the higher, the better version of myself and detach from the little, the little boy who acts out of fear and all those things. But now I can, now I kind of understand that I’m this, I’m the secondary voice, the responder.
It all feels a lot easier than it did, but I didn’t understand what was going on in my head before. It was just that first voice that’s like react, react, react, react, whatever that means. Whether that means like people please, or whether it means be angry, whatever it was, I didn’t, I don’t really understand why and like who it was coming from, whether it was coming from my head or from my heart.
And now I know that my heart is abundant [00:25:00] and all the decisions that come from the best version of me are basically with like love and understanding probably right? But all of the versions that come from here, They’re, they’re very reactive and sometimes they’re really nice, but it’s quite often they’re, they’re angry and stuff like that.
So think in the last few years, like I’ve got emotionally, like you talking about Miriam, my brother, having different skillset set now that I can find myself, like the best, the real of me, in my essence, I, I feel like way less angry and I don’t even need to have to handle the anger in some ways cuz I’m like, oh, that’s, that’s just that little boy.
Do you know what I mean?
Elaine Lajuenesse: Feel like I, it feels like you’re starting to love yourself Callum.
[00:25:46] Love Yourself
Callum Wilson: Yeah. Well, yeah, I guess so because yeah, I guess so. A few months ago I was like, I accept myself. I dunno if I love myself, but now, because the way I look at it is like, I love you guys. I love [00:26:00] Lucy, my partner.
I love my mom and dad. I kind of love everyone. So, and I think I am part of everyone, so I ki I kind of have to love myself.
I also understand like the versions of me that once were, and I understand they’re just doing their best. I feel like a massive compassion to the angry guy or the, yeah, the defensive guy or the guy that didn’t quite, wasn’t quite himself in his rugby career.
It’s not like I don’t regret it. I, it got me here to be able to have this great conversation mm-hmm. With you guys. It got me to be on the program that we’re all on. It got me to coaching, so I love all of it. Yeah. Yeah. The answer is, Yes, I do.
Miriam Gunn: Oh, that’s so good.
This is so good. And I’m really glad you bounced back and said it’s not so much that I didn’t have the courage, I didn’t have the knowledge because when you were talking about this, you know, 40 minutes ago, [00:27:00] I was like, you have more courage than anybody I know.
You’re facing stuff head on. It had nothing to do with courage. You didn’t know any better. And I also appreciate your compassion for that earlier version of you. He was just doing the best he could. And sometimes I look at decisions in my life and I go, Ugh. And then I have to wait, say, hang on a second.
Doing Your Best
You were doing the best you could with what you had, with the resources you had and the knowledge you had, and. You know, I was doing the best I could with what I had at the time.
And Elaine, I assumed the same of you as well.
Each of us as people, you know, nobody. If one of my professors in my therapy space, I was arguing with her about somebody doing something and why were they doing this and this didn’t make any sense and blah blah.
And she really stopped [00:28:00] me and said, Miriam, people’s actions, if you understood their internal context, they always make sense. You know, which even goes back to what you said earlier, Cal, about, you know, people doing evil things.
I also did some work with juvenile sex offenders, and when you understood their context, Hmm.
It made sense. Didn’t mean it was the right thing to do. It didn’t mean there wasn’t a wake of destruction that came from it, but you could see how their brain got from here to here to here, you know?
And this business of Elaine, what you said, Cal, it seems like you love yourself. And then Call, you say, well, I accept myself.
I’m beginning to love myself. Yeah. Actually, I guess I love myself.
Goodness and Joy
Look at the goodness that ripples out from that and the joy,
Callum Wilson: my thought when I got asked the question, but I was like, am I about, I’ll tell you what, because if you [00:29:00] asked me and this wasn’t recorded, I’d be like, yeah, I love myself. But I thought about people.
I thought this was recorded. And it was only as I caught myself realizing I was holding myself back cuz people would hear this, I was like, I’ve just gotta say it cause it’s true. So yeah, I, I, I think that actually I kind of do, but I just, I yeah, sort of, and this is actually to the point where I agree with you that I did my best and, and we all probably did.
And we can be compassionate.
Callum Wilson: But I, and when I speak about courage, the courage is framed through the courage to be disliked by the people and the courage to fail by being myself as well. I, I see. Yeah. That’s, that’s why I lack courage. I, I lack the courage for someone to tell me they didn’t like me. I let the courage to throw a pass or do something in a game of rugby that might result in bad things.
And I, I know how naturally human that is, because if you’re not like social death leads to biological death. Failure could [00:30:00] lead to people starving.
I, I understand it, but I do know deep down that there was a voice in me that was like, no, this isn’t right. Say what you think. And I, and I, I do. So yeah. I, whilst I understand why I do, I do, I do really think that there was, like, there was still choices going on is, and I, I did make those choices.
Elaine Lajuenesse: And yet you made the courageous one once again.
Callum Wilson: Yeah. Oh, just now I was saying I love myself. Yeah, yeah,
Miriam Gunn: yeah.
You know, this is such a good phrase. There were still choices going on. I, I appreciate the tension between giving your previous self not a pass, but grace, you know? Mm-hmm. I, my previous self was doing the best that he could.
In my case, my previous self was doing the best that she could, and yet there were a series of choices I made. That led to a series of sadnesses, [00:31:00] and I could have made different choices, and I didn’t.
Making Different Choices
And you know, Elaine, you were saying, could my 24 year old self have done that? I don’t know if my 24 year old self could have, I’m standing and saying, could my 24 or 30 year old self have made those different choices?
And it’s sort of like, yes and no. I don’t know. It’s that, that’s one of those spaces where do I believe in myself to know if I could have, I would’ve, I would like to believe that I would’ve. So how do we hold ourselves accountable for those things and give ourselves compassion and grace, because Yeah, Cal, you didn’t have the courage for those various things you mentioned, but.
Had you had the courage, had it been within you, the skillset you would have, you just hadn’t learned it yet.
Elaine Lajuenesse: Okay. I wanna bring another [00:32:00] dimension here because, you know, we talk about this, but I, 16 year old was really brave. My 16 year old was really bold and, and, and that person made a, a lot of really good decision.
So at that time, for that period of time and, and based on the information they had, so like, I don’t think the, that per, that 16 year olds could have made the decision to be a coach at that time. Hmm.
But they made, they still made a lot of really, really good decision. Mm-hmm. They made the decision or carrier that I was, sorry, I thought I was gonna take, made the decision to save money.
They like all of these things. They made different type of decision and I’m, I’m a true believer that you do the things when the timing is right for you. Mm-hmm. And, and to ask like the version of 16 or [00:33:00] 24 to make this decision. It was not the right time.
Callum Wilson: Yeah. A lot of what I’m experiencing in my life now wouldn’t have made sense to me at, at that time I was just gonna, I brought my phone up not to, I, I wanted to read something that I, I wrote that I sometimes share with people that probably explains how I feel about that younger version of myself.
So it’s about like whether we actually make mistakes or whether we just get information. Basically
Callum Wilson: I said we’re, we’re able to make the decisions we currently can because of the information we got from the past. Failure gave us the information to be who we are. Today. When I critique, critique my mistakes, number one, I’m looking at the, in, at the situation with information and clarity that I didn’t have before, but I’ve got new information that I didn’t have then number two, I’m assuming that person back then is me. It’s not. I’m me now, not today, a week, month, a year ago. I’m not a 16 year old that made mistakes. I’m not the 20 year old that made mistakes. I’m not the 30 year old that didn’t have the courage. I’m me right now. Number three, the actions from previous versions of me mean I now have the information to make better decisions.
That’s a massive one for me. Number four, the mistakes I make now are going to give me the information. So in my current state, the mistakes that I make today are gonna give me the information to make even better decisions in the future. It allows me to relax into difficult times, especially knowing I can handle the worst outcome.
And number five given I always did my best and I’m in a good place now, I can’t critique form a versions of myself, Ned negatively actually. I feel compassionate and love. I’ve since added a six, which is that [00:35:00] like I couldn’t look at all of that and then apply that to other people and just go, you are just getting the information that you need to get to where you need to be.
You are exactly where you need to be. Those mistakes are exactly the mistakes you need to make.
Da dunno if that I, I sometimes copy and paste that to clients just as a like little checklist so that you’re not, so that you can find that compassionate self compassionate.
Elaine Lajuenesse: I love this and it reminds me what my, my husband says about his children.
Like, you know, your raise children to have the same value that you have, but they don’t have the same experience, so how can they be? Yeah.
Miriam Gunn: Yeah. Exactly. Yeah. Well that sounds like something that needs to be on a poster. Yeah. That’s a good, that’s a good and wise saying, Cal, what you just read feels to me like such a kindness to your younger self.
You know? Mm-hmm.
Callum Wilson: Yeah. Have you guys had much of that [00:36:00] coaching where you are like, talk to your younger self? Not
Elaine Lajuenesse: much.
Miriam Gunn: I’m, I’m really trained in something called Internal family Systems, and so I, I do it with people all the time and it’s so powerful. Mm. So, so powerful and all of my work with other people in that way I think taught me how to do it for younger Miriam.
Mm. Because she really was just doing the best she could.
Listen to Yourself
Callum Wilson: Oh yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I had a really weird one. I was like talking to my younger self in my classroom and I was like young and he was like really angry and misunderstanding and then he turned into like me, but before I had a beard and he’s kind of like, we are facing each other.
And I was like, I’m gonna win the fight, mate, but if we both hit each other, we’re both gonna hurt. I’m, you are gonna lose, but I’m, it’s not. And [00:37:00] we’re gonna have to keep doing that for the rest of our lives. And eventually sort of came to the agreement with him. I was like, look, I fucking really love that you stood up for me, but like, I’ve got this.
And he’s just like, thanks so much for like, recognizing that. And I said to him, what, what do you advise me to do now? And he goes, you know that you’ve got the right answers. Like, just listen to yourself. Don’t listen to me, but I’ll, I’ll be here, but like, you can, he basically, my younger self gave me permission to trust my intuition.
And then he turned into like, little, little boy again. It was, it was bizarre. I was lying on this sofa, like, what is going on as this coach took me forever, but it was like the best thing, the best, probably the best thing I’ve ever done really in terms of coaching because I, I just totally like, Yeah, that self-compassion just allowed, he, my ego kind of released me in some ways.
[00:38:00] Past Experience
Miriam Gunn: Ah, I love that so much. I have an example that’s radically different, but similar in form. So I have a lot of medical trauma in my background and I went into the ear, nose and throat person to just have them look in my throat and tell me something. And she said, yeah, okay, we’re gonna inject you with this and then we’re gonna spray this, and then we’re gonna do this scope.
And I was like, hang on, hang on, hang on, hang on. I just came in to have a conversation and I just want you to look in my throat. She said, no, I can’t see your vocal cords without this, that, or the other. And my younger self, who is the one who went through the medical trauma, was freaking out. And I knew my present day self could muscle her into it.
I mean, I’m paying who knows how much for this appointment, and this is the thing that needs to happen. And an earlier version of myself would’ve said, suck it up Miriam, and just do it. You can do it. It’s fine. But I’ve learned to be kind to [00:39:00] that earlier version of myself who was traumatized in all the medical things.
And I said to the doctor, Hey, I’m willing to come back and do this test, but there’s a piece of me that’s traumatized by medical things. And while I could make myself do it, I’m not going to, because that’s not kind to that version of myself. What I told her is, we were coming in and having a conversation, so that’s what I’ll do today.
And she was like, okay. And then she charged me, I think $257 for, for that like five minute thing. But it didn’t matter. I walked out of there triumphant because I didn’t let somebody else’s expectation of what needed to happen. I didn’t let that force me into bullying me. You know? Mm-hmm. I honored the me who went through that other stuff, and boy, I’ll tell you, I’m super glad I did because then two weeks later I had to do a whole bunch [00:40:00] of medical tests and I was like, you got this.
You’re fine. Just breathe. Mm-hmm. No, I wasn’t like anxious, like I wasn’t anxious. I was present with that other part of me that needed me to be present, which is Cal, what I heard you doing is you had this conversation with this younger version of you who like showed up and you had a conversation and you showed up and you were kind, but firm didn’t let him take over.
And you had I don’t know, it was a good parental conversation. You were a good parent to him and you gave him what he needed and he responded.
Elaine Lajuenesse: Yeah. Yeah. So, so it sounds like it, it’s a triumphant notes to finish this conversation.
Callum Wilson: Yeah, I, I just, okay. I just want last one, last bit cuz I think this wrap up quite nice.
Love is the Answer
Like what I figured when I gave myself, like in the world, if I look at the [00:41:00] world, I don’t think war and hate and fighting is probably the answer to happiness. I think that love is probably the answer externally. We’re like, if I’m just part of nature and nature’s answer should is love, then how could I not treat myself the same so I could even be at war with myself, which is not what I think’s best for everyone else.
Or I can like be in love with myself and that be the, you know, do you understand what I mean? It’s kind of like the same answer for everyone else, has to be the same answer for me, cuz I am one with everyone else. So love is the answer.
Elaine Lajuenesse: That sounds like a great way. That’s a good way to end.
Callum Wilson: Oh, guys, I really, really appreciate you coming on.
Miriam Gunn: This was a really uplifting conversation. That’s great. I appreciate both of you guys are so amazing.
Elaine Lajuenesse: I have to say. I’m,
Callum Wilson: that was awesome. Thank you so much.
Elaine Lajuenesse: Okay. I’ll have good rest of the day guys.
Miriam Gunn: [00:42:00] Bye. Absolutely. Bye-bye.
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