"Working with Mike has been incredibly helpful throughout my personal journey in healing and self-discovery. My first experience with breathwork rocked my world and truly gave me profound insight into the core of what was going on with me. I wept for the first time in years and felt the sadness I had been pushing down my whole life around my childhood as well as self-hatred I had been wrestling with for some time. He has also gently, consistently, and firmly when needed, guided me towards new thoughts, actions, and beliefs about myself. I have learned that there is no benefit in getting lost in the downward spiral of guilt and shame, and that self-love and compassion is the true state that we need to relearn to heal. He also has taught me that healthy behavior can be integrated with simple shifts in action and perspective instead of following the impulse to create crisis and drama. I owe the wisdom, peace, and joy I have cultivated working with Mike has so generously passed on to me. We can all learn this way of life, and what a blessing it is to have access to the support, education, and example to help us do so!
Asking for help
I’ve never been good at this. The circumstances of my youth made me insular and private (and a lot of other things). I tend to deal with things on my own and I am utterly terrible at reaching out to others for help when I should. Cut to this past weekend. Roz was up in LA looking at wedding dresses, I was home alone. I decided to spend some time in quiet meditation doing some internal work. This new chapter of my life is unfolding in an amazing way and I want to make sure I’m continuing to do my own work so I don’t fuck it up. So, I decided to do a deep dive into some dark places and shine a light into some dark corners.
I might have been a little over zealous, because I got in a little deeper than I intended. I was struggling, hard. I started off doing what I always do, and steeled myself against the struggle. I can handle this, I thought. But it was too much. I held on for a long time, but ultimately called Roz and interrupted her appointment at a dress shop. It must have been quite the call because I was in tears.
She couldn’t do much to help me being so far away, so she suggested I call a friend of ours, Mike Callahan.The call I made to Mike was one of the most transformative of my life. I never do this, I never reach out to someone in need. I’m as stubborn as chewing gum stuck to the arse of a mule. I’m really glad I did though. Mike was also far away, in Mexico in fact, so he couldn’t come over but he did talk me through what I was going through. I felt like I was interrupting him, but he assured me it was ok to talk. He was there for me, he created a container for me, he gave me permission to express myself and share my struggle.
I don’t know how long we talked for, but we got a lot done. I realized a lot about what I hold on to and how it affects me. I realized what my stubbornness costs me and how much better I am when I share. The interesting thing is, if Mike had called me in the same situation I would have done the same thing for him in a heartbeat, but I struggled to ask him to do it for me. It all came down to my sense of self worth, and Mike said some pretty amazing things to help me realize that I’m so much more worthy then I could ever have believed. His act of kindness and open generosity showed me that I was worth his time.
We’ve agreed to work together more to understand the bigger picture at play and I’m really excited about what we can achieve together, the freedom I can find with his help. Mike’s been through it all, he just celebrated 31 years of sobriety and now works with men (and women) to help them find freedom from shit that happened to them when they were kids, specifically through ACA (Adult Children of Alcoholics). He’s started a group called Inner Child Tribe and I really hope I get to help others in the way he’s been helping me.
The lesson I want to get across here is us men tend to be pretty fucking useless when it comes to asking for help. We’re almost bred to feel like we have to handle things alone. Problem is that when we do we tend to bottle things up and then they express themselves in other, more unexpected and more harmful ways. I discovered through that conversation with Mike, as uncomfortable as it was at first, that we are so much better when we share. That it’s ok to share. That there are people out there willing to help. That we are worthy of that help.
I’m starting to truly understand the need for community and how much modern life is stripping us of it. How technology is isolating us. We need to come together now more than ever.
If you feel anything similar to what I described above, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I will always do my best to be here for you.
We can do this