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Happy Valentine’s Day: A Relationship Advice Episode with Charna Cassell

Hello! Happy Valentine’s Day. Today I am going to do something a little bit different. I’ll be doing this episode all by myself where I answer the questions you’ve sent in looking for advice. I love being able to connect with my listeners, especially on a day like today, Valentine’s Day, which can often put a lot of societally based pressure on people to feel like they should be coupled up, or simply feel like their relationship should be at a certain place. 

Love is really tricky and trying to find it by dating in modern times isn’t easy, trust me, I know, I’m single. However, don’t give up hope. One thing I want you to focus on today is loving yourself and the people already in your life, even if they’re not your romantic partner. That said, we’re going to do a deep dive into questions like “How do I communicate to someone on a dating app that I want to feel safe” and “How to slide into someone’s DMs and not seem like a creep” and even “How to be single and date casually when you love intimacy.” As always, I am merely a resource to help you along your path of finding love, joy, vibrancy, and intimacy. So Happy Valentine’s or Palentine’s Day to you, I hope you love this episode. 

If you’re new here, don’t worry if you have something you want me to answer, I plan to do more of these episodes. Just head to my website and click on the link in the header that says “Ask Charna” to submit your question. 

You can find this episode and more, wherever you listen to podcasts, just search LaidOPEN.

Show Notes Welcome back to lead up and podcast. I'm your host Charna caselle. Today is the notorious Valentine's Day or as I like to call it Palatines day, I've always really enjoyed giving friends, cookies and cards and love notes. And, you know, it's a way I think to appropriate it to take it on as something that means something to me rather than use it to smack myself in the face with or abuse myself with as I think so many people do, like managing their own expectations about what where they should be, what they should have, how they should, what they should be doing for their partner if they have a partner, like there's all this pressure and yucky stuff often for people around Valentine's Day. And so let's see if we can change that. What do you need to do to change that for yourself? I'm going to be answering two questions on here. So encourage you to write in via Charna backslash ask dash Charna backslash today's topic is dating. So this is my solo date with myself. I just took a bath and gave myself a foot massage. I'm in cozy clothes until she is on my lap. I'm sitting down with your questions so let's stick in together life is about to start trauma extension is a great honor deciders calm bla, so this first question is, I don't know how to be alone. I'm out of a 15 year marriage and I'm so used to being with someone and being a full time mom. And now the kids are with my ex half the time and the house is so quiet. How do I get used to this and start over? So there's actually a lot to this question. It's covering things like loss, grieving transitions change, being alone, fear, discomfort, and potentially being in a new practice. Being alone is a paradox. We're never alone and we're always alone. And being alone is a skill that some of us are more conditioned to be okay with. So mindfulness meditations can help you develop a more focused sense of what's happening inside you and around you. And it can build your capacity to be with what arises when you are alone. So if you were neglected as a kid or didn't have siblings, or are avoidant Lee attached, being alone might be easier for you. We naturally are pack animals. So wanting connection and community makes sense. If you were abused as a kid, you might find more safety and being alone. But literally being home alone can feel hard because there are no distractions from big feelings or a dysregulated nervous system. So here's a practice for you. You can try this as a journaling practice, or you can do it as a meditation. If you're going to do it as a meditation, set an alarm for five to 20 minutes, right, you can breeze through this or you can extend it and make it a longer practice. If you're a more experienced meditator, go ahead and go for even 40 minutes. When you close your eyes, and you turn inward, and you listen to the absence of noise created by your kids, what do you hear? The buzz of the fridge? Traffic outside. What thoughts show up? What stories come up for you around being alone? What cultural or familial beliefs are you managing as a single woman? Whose voice is that? If it's your voice, what age is it? When did this belief form? What would you call this voice that speaks louder ugly when you're alone? And what does it say? What action? does it encourage you to take? What is its pace? What emotions do associate with it? In Where do you feel this part of you in your body? What are the sensations there? Is it hot, more cold, tight or loose? Does it feel like it's made of a certain substance? How much are you breathing? And do you have an awareness of a different part of you that believes something else? Can this part speak to that other part that may be critical or catastrophic? When someone is either contemplating a breakup, or has gone through one, some common fears that arise are I failed, or I'll be alone for the rest of my life. Maybe I made the wrong decision. Maybe I should have stayed. Or maybe I should have done something different. I think of these regretful voices as negotiating with powerlessness. They have you play out history in a variety of different ways. If all only I'd done it this way, then maybe all of this is actually distraction from being with the feeling of loss. Can you let that part that is scared to be alone, know that you are here with her? Maybe you'd like to put your hand on this part of your body. Feel the temperature and the weight of your hand? What emotion is there? beyond fear they may there may be great. You need to give yourself time to grieve and we all move at a different pace. Your ex may have moved on or numbed out his feelings buy immediately dating. You can think you're over it and then a new wave hits. I really want to acknowledge that change is hard. Being with another person becomes a habit and even an addiction and uncoupling you go through withdrawal. It can feel like someone has died. All the stages of grieving that relate to bereavement also apply to breakups, Russel Friedman and John W. James, have some simple books on Greece, that I recommend checking out. One is called moving on and it brings you through a process of being with rather than pushing away the grades. It helps you take an inventory of the highs and lows and then a guide to through writing a letter that is just for you. What do you forgive them for? What do you apologize for? What are you grateful for? I know I said this is an episode about dating. And here I started with a question about how to be alone. But it is so essential to know how to do this. Otherwise, you're much more vulnerable to ignoring red flags, and settling for people that are not a right fit for you. Especially as a woman, there's always someone who will want to fuck you or sleep with you. But what's the quality of sex safety and respect you'll receive. Taking time to get closer on what you want before you put yourself out there will save you a lot of time a lot of hurt and potentially avoid dangerous or unpleasant situations. It's important to know how to be alone and enjoy your own company. And there's nothing wrong with wanting to be in partnership. Most of us are sold on the idea of romantic love as the penultimate and the most important kind of love. I don't buy into that. But I do want to find a partner whom I laugh with doing daily errands and whom I share a mutual interest in supporting each other's healing and service to the world. There's a lot of value in men learning to date themselves. Tyson Adams is a good resource and learning to do this, you can check out my episode with him. It was episode 55. If men were treating themselves kindly and warmly they would understand how much work it takes their partners to support them and and they would value what their partners offer them more. Of course, there are plenty woman who could also learn to express appreciation as well. So let's go on to our second question. I'm a woman in my 30s and something I keep running into on dating apps is men who want to meet quickly. I want to do more investigation into who they are. It's scary to meet a random guy without having a sense of him, I don't need to wait a month to meet. But I do want to get on the phone first, I find that when I say I want to talk more, they get irritated and unmatch me pretty instantly. How do I say this without setting them off. So, you know, you really get to simply say, my time and your time are precious. I'd like to see if we can enjoy a little banter or each other's perspectives on the world enough over a call, before we meet and expend a bunch of extra time together, I'd feel more comfortable getting a better sense of you before we meet in person. Or you can say as a woman meeting strangers for the first time can be unnerving. And I like to get a better sense of our compatibility before we do that. So you can name safety explicitly, but you don't have to. If someone is defensive from the get go, that gives you a lot of information. If they don't care if you feel safe or not, and can't respect your pace from the beginning, this is a red flag. They're more if they're, you know, they're clearly more interested in getting off and caring about the needs of someone on the other end. Even if you're solely wanting to be fucked, or tied up periodically, that takes trust. Understand that in order to even have a periodically intimate relationship, there needs to be safety, communication, Honesty and trust. When they're bolting right away, as soon as a need is named, they're clearly showing themselves. We never actually know what's going on for someone on the other side. They may not be responsive out of genuine disinterest. Or it could be that they're overwhelmed because of ambivalence, or because of a work deadline. And dating is just on the backburner this week. The problem is whatever your last negative experience was, while dating may create a filter, and even a level of reactivity in your nervous system, that you're then seeing the next person who writes to you through and you might start making assumptions about who they are, or what's motivating them. And it's important to look out for that to really be able to suss out, like what's yours and what is genuinely the other person. Question number three, I found out my partner has been DMing with their ex while it's not overtly sexual, it is about our relationship. It feels vulnerable and exposing they're spending a lot of time chatting. And I feel like it's inappropriate. They have not told me they're chatting, which is what is upsetting? I know it's a boundary violation to be looking at their DM. But now I can't stop. How do I address this with her? Hmm, this is a bit of a tricky one. Decades ago, the concept of emotional affairs came out. And I know that this is actually controversial. People in monogamous relationships that depend heavily, primarily on their romantic relationships for support may expect a different degree of emotional monogamy than poly people or people who have very intimate friendships. Right? Like I know that I'm personally been mostly in monogamous relationships, but I have very intimate and close friendships, and we share a lot with each other. And some people would feel like that's a boundary crossing or betrayal to their primary partner. But if your partner is talking with their ex about your relationship and what's not working, it makes sense that this feels vulnerable to you. How is your partner's boundaries? How are they otherwise? In you know, everyday life? Are they able to say no? Have there been issues around trust in the past? How do you trust her beyond this situation? Well understand that your feelings are hurt. What specifically is your concern? Are you afraid things will cross a line and that they're going to be building more intimacy. That is not totally clear. I think it's important for you to be honest, even though it is a boundary crossing, but for you to be honest, and to share your you know, whatever's coming up for you, your feelings, your concerns. And if you're having a particularly hard time, I know that it's extra vulnerable when your partner is sharing what's not necessarily working in your relationship. But this could also be just like cheating often is it's an opportunity to address what's not working in your partnership. Often people will will cheat because they don't have the courage to directly address what's going on and not totally functional. So it's it's almost like a good catch. That it's not fully going off. The ledge, and that you can, you know, talk to it. And, you know, I think it's an opportunity to reestablish honesty, transparency, and trust. And apologize, acknowledge you were in the wrong for reading the DMS and give them the opportunity. And you know, I would say like, what were the feelings? What caused you to go into their DMS to begin with? Right, like what was happening? We are very psychic beings, whether we call it that or not. We have strong intuitions we sense things. Is your partner being more distant? Are you having less sex? Is there? Is there an energetic withdrawal happening? Are you getting in bed and they're on their phones? So they're actually spending more time and energy in their phone in that relationship than with you all, you know, really think about these things? And answer it from I mean, speak to it from a vulnerable place versus an accusatory place that is going to go much farther. Remember, you know, the the key components of reflective listening? And nonviolent communication nonviolent communication? Well, it's not a perfect formula, it's pretty useful when you identify what's the need you're having? What feelings come up when that doesn't get met? And what are you asking for? Right? So in this case, maybe this is me making something up, but maybe you're feeling neglected, you're feeling insecure. What you're really wanting is you're wanting connection, you're wanting transparency, or wanting honesty, and when you don't feel that what emotions arise in you. So I hope that feels helpful. Let's move on. here's question number four. I consider myself a guy with integrity. And I don't want to give women the wrong idea. I'm pretty fresh out of a 10 year marriage, and I'm an intimacy junkie. I like workshops, self growth, deep conversations and connection. So I don't want to just have casual sex, but I'm not in a rush for a big commitment either. If you really love intimacy, how do you date casually? I love this question. I feel like it's really resonant. I've, you know, I get it. So we're not one dimensional, completely congruent beings, we often have multiple parts of us that want conflicting things. What part is running the show, and who is making the decisions for you in any given moment, this is something to really think about, especially when you're turned on and you're like, all this, these hormones are running through you and a certain part of your body or your pelvis, you know, whatever's in your pants might be throbbing and wanting to make a certain choice, while if you pause and breathe and ground, you might make a different one, a minute later. So as a therapist, I do help people's parts communicate and bridge the gaps between them. They don't feel so paralyzed or polarized internally, that's part of the work that I do. And you know, you may need to get some external support. And that often having a neutral person versus a friend can be more helpful, because, you know, your friend is going to have their own filters and their own projections because of your past relationships and what you've shared with them. So, just personally, I've been on both sides of this question. I'm someone who's had a high tolerance, you know, who I'm someone who has a high tolerance for intimacy and playfulness I really need and like to have both. So while at times in my life, I've been able to have casual sex, it's only really satisfying if I feel appreciated, attended to and that the person is present with me. And only works when you're both on the same page. Because if one person's longing for a deeper, long term commitment, and the other person is just wanting to get off, there's a real disconnect there. I've also had someone insist on monogamy right away and say all the right words that had me fall in love that made me feel seen that shared intimate details of their life and their heart. And they told me, they love me and we plan for a future and then it was a one ad and it was really painful. And so, you know, I just I really appreciated this guy's question because he's recognizing the possible pitfalls. He's thinking about what he wants, but also considering what these people he encounter what they'll feel. So thanks, thanks, guy. So a few things. You know, there are certain things that build intimacy and attachment. And if you're trying to pace yourself, and you want to keep it lighter, and you don't want to end up in a committed relationship right away, these are some things to consider. And I don't think it's not an exhaustive list. But these were some things that just, you know, came off the top of my head. So, a few things to avoid sleeping in the same bed overnight together. What happens when you do this is there is an energetic bond that gets formed. And so if you're not wanting to create a deeper energetic connection, and of course, this is the tricky part, right? There's that part of you that does want that you're like, I want her to think about me all the times, I want her to want me. And, you know, if there's a more thoughtful part, use some restraint. Don't sleep there. Even if she pulls for it, you know what your bigger agenda is. I've encountered a number of men who've taken offense of being kicked out of my bed, but unless you're interested in a deeper commitment, this may be a boundary that you really need to hold. Number two. If you're monogamous, STI free, outside of childbearing age or your partner's had a vasectomy, you may make a pragmatic argument for letting your partner ejaculate inside of you or for you to ejaculate inside of them. But this does create more emotional attachment. There is a primal thing that occurs when someone comes inside of you. They call it fluid bonding for a reason. Take note. Number three. Are your actions and words congruent? Do you find yourself saying I love you? What does that mean to you? What does it mean to the person you said it to this really could be different? Are you caught up in romance? Are you addicted to romance? Are you addicted to the idea that you're a romantic guy, and you want this identity? So you take these actions or pursue these ways of being, but then don't have what it takes to actually follow it up? If you tend to be effusive with your words, and know what is your superpower, that you're really charming with your words, refrain from doing so refrain from building illusions and the fantasy that comes with all of those words. It may not be as fun or as free, but it's realistic and responsible. Fun and free has consequences. Think of babies, right? Number four? Does the person you're dating think they're the only one in your bed? Is there anyone else who would feel hurt if they knew what you were seeing and doing? What do you need to be upfront about? Omission of truth is a lie. Be a man of integrity versus just being invested in this identity without the actions to back it up. Number five. Are you dreaming and fantasizing out loud about all the future things you'll do together? Watch your impulsive future plan or at least don't do it out loud. It can be a setup for expectations. And if she's looking for signs of your growing commitment level, holidays together, travel trips, etc. All of those things are signs. The reality is when someone is into you, they will edit reality, they will make excuses they will override red flags. So even if you explicitly say at some point early on once or twice, I don't know if I want a relationship but then the next day or week you're talking future and introducing her to your loved ones. When you have two conflicting parts speaking out loud, it can feel like whiplash to the listener. Recently, a guy on a dating app came out swoonworthy guns blazing, wanting to share his poetry with me. But I set a boundary a gentle boundary. I told them I've been known to fall in love with someone because of their way with words. And because they were a good writer. And at this point, I'm more interested in action versus words. He respected it he refrained from sharing his poetry. And it also caused him to reflect and ask this question, which I totally appreciate. Right? That's That in itself is a good sign. It's one of those things of like, oh, he could respect boundaries. So at some point, if our paths ever cross in the future, it bodes well. With the realities we all want to be seen and heard, especially when we haven't had that in a past relationship. My ex told me he'd never felt so supported, comforted and heard. But ultimately, he did not have the capacity or desire to return that beyond the initial trial period. I don't need to hear your art or poetry, if it will cloud my judgment or create a false and premature sense of intimacy. That means more to me than it does to you. I'm not interested in being physical with someone I don't feel appreciated and cherished by and I'm not forming an emotional attachment to or connection with. So those are some things that, you know, if you're looking for something of more substance, to consider, if you're looking for something more casual, but you tend to be a human, that likes deep enrich connections, you also have a certain responsibility as you navigate this pool of single people in your world. Okay, number five. I'm a gay man. And I've been monogamously. Seeing a guy for six months, things have escalated to discussing living together part time. I've even met his family, yet he won't post photos of us on social media. public acknowledgement of his commitment to me is important. I want to feel chosen and claims. In the past, this has been a sign that someone is married or ashamed to be with me. What does this mean? What should I do? Oh, okay, social media and dating. Boy, I hear. First of all, I just want you to know, I hear how his lack of willingness to claim you strikes an old chord of betrayal and hurt. And I'm really sorry that that happened. It sounds like it's created some fear. And a level of distrust. And past hurts, it's important to remember often amplifies smaller present day ones, and make them feel bigger. Right? So it's not just the hurt from present time, it's the past and they're kind of layered on top of one another or reactivated. Have you shared why it's important to you and what it means for him to post those photos. Does he know that? And have you asked him where his lack of willingness or interest is coming from? You know, some people are stubborn, while others if they know how you're impacted, they may have a change of heart. You know, it really just depends on what's behind it. And I think it's important for you both to understand where the other is coming from social media is not for everyone, right? Some people even once they're married still don't want their details of how they spend their private time publicly shared in may not be personal. I'm also curious how old he is. Younger generations tend to share more easily on social media. Second, is he a Luddite? Meaning how into technology as he like if he's a birder and a naturalist and spends most of his time off his phone, expecting him to, you know, be into posting photos on social media is not realistic. Although, of course, you're the one posting for him to object is a whole other thing versus to have him learn how to push buttons and like post stuff? And does he post other stuff on social? Or does he even have an Instagram or Facebook account? You know, while it can mean that your boyfriend, despite moving towards partnership has one foot out or doesn't want to be seen as publicly attached to a new person? That's possible. I'm also curious when he came out, is being out a newer thing for him? Or are there parts of his community that he wants to keep his private life private? Right. I mean, this is this is kind of stating the obvious, but in case you haven't considered this, you know, as you likely know, if someone is freshly out, they may not have the same level of ease or skill, navigating that level of visibility. Even hetero guys new to dating, after a long marriage may have trouble being publicly associated with a new person. You know, I dated someone or that was the case. And it can be about managing their kids feelings, their ex wife's feelings, or even their own conflicted feelings about fully stepping into a new commitment and outside of an identity that they were in for 25 years. Right? Like that's, it's a big deal. I know for me, even just like making reels on Instagram, being visible, I've have conflicted feelings about it. And I've also even done a one woman show so people might be surprised that like making a one minute video is kind of scary for me. But there's lots of layers to being visible and being seen and fears that can show up for people and what does that mean? And someone has to be able to self reflect and be even able to see why something might be hard for them. Number seven, I follow someone with a mid level following on social media, we talk and have good conversations, they actually respond to my DMs, which I feel like is a green flag. I don't know if they're single, or if they're interested or even how to ask them out. What do you think I should do? So this, you know, that there's not one answer to this question. I think, for some people, as someone who gets messages in my DMs, and I think, obviously, I'm not alone. It really depends on context. me share a story with you something that happened recently. A man I would say is probably 15 years, my senior that I do not know, wrote to me. And initially, he wrote me an innocuous question about something that I had posted about my house flooding. And asked me something about that. And I offered him a resource about, you know, a contractor's information. And then the next message was asking me out, and I very easily or just like, was like, Okay, what do I want to say to this? And I, I knew I wasn't interested. I'm not attracted to him. There was no context. And this is not the first time something like this has occurred for me. I told him, I'm not interested in engaging with you romantically. Take care. And his response initially was, thank you for being direct. And then he wrote a long, somewhat condescending victime message in response, where he was like, why were you harsh? There was no warmth, you didn't express feeling flattered. You know, I got thank you for the opportunity to practice a centering and grounding exercise, because I was really thrown off by your answer. It's like, okay, guy. So, you know, we're not on a dating site. He'd said in his previous message, I've seen you on dating sites. And so and it's like, yeah, so a dating site, there is the context for dating. And if I haven't responded to you on a dating site, that means I'm not interested. Right. And so to write to me, feigning you know, you know, either a need for some kind of support around his own house flooding, or feigning interest in my work, or feigning interest in something else, and then doing a 180 and asking me out, it's just not honest. Right, it's like, let's try this. Let's try this. And there was a tick tock video that I posted on my Facebook page that that I thought was, demonstrated something that so many young women deal with all the time, which is, you know, this this young girl, she's 17 vintage clothing shopping, and this guy starts hitting on her starts with your beautiful then starts with being super weird, and showing her his knee and his tick bite and, and being like, Hey, I live in the woods all by myself, and I need to hire someone to help pick my tomatoes. Maybe that's you, you know, it's like offering her a job. He'd wanted to go out with her when she said, No, thank you. I'm 17. He's like that. So great age to be, you know, and so there's just there's a lack of attunement. And the thing to be aware of is, you don't know when you're when you're messaging someone, you don't know what their day is, like, you don't know what they're going through. You know, there are times when I have the capacity to answer, repeat random people's needs around, you know, conversations about becoming a psychotherapist, or conversations about trauma, or, you know, all those things, and I have more bandwidth. And this last four months has not been a period where I've had extra bandwidth, right? So my boundaries are tighter and clearer. And, and so when you're you don't know when you're suddenly like stepping in to someone's life and sending them a message, what they are going through, their mother could have just died. They're going through a breakup, like whatever is going on, they're exhausted, they're sleep deprived, they're hungry, and so to have any expectation or entitlement to how they I respond to you, that's your stuff. Right? Like, I didn't know this guy anything. And he was so absurd. And then he then he had the gall to write on my Facebook page, as if he's like, a really good guy responding to this video of the teenage girl. And then he wrote to me again, saying, you know, he apologized, he ran the whole thing by a friend. And he realized he was out of line. And then he wrote, again, on the Facebook page saying, um, you know, asking me to tell him what he should do as a newly single man, how we should navigate this. And you know what? Like, I do this for free. Like, right now I'm answering these questions, I produce a podcast that I don't make any money from. Right. That's my time. And I'm willing to do that, because I want to be at service, but I want to be of service when I want to be of service, you know what I'm saying? Like, these are my boundaries. And otherwise, guys, you're asking me to do your emotional labor, you need to figure it out, go talk to other men, and get this advice. Join a men's group, talk to another female friend, perhaps. But really, it's out of line to be asking me for that. And I got a little frothy, because the reality is the last person I gave a very explicit, you know, who wrote to me asking me out, through a DM my friend had just had a stroke. My dad was in the hospital, like all these things. And when I told him, those, he got defensive, it's like silence, you get, you know, it's just an invitation for message after message after message. It's like, sometimes women will people in general, but women cannot win. Right, that often men feel a level of entitlement to our time into our bodies. And yeah, it was, it struck a chord with me this week. And then I've had a number of clients, where they've had their male partners touch their bodies in ways that just don't feel good. Right? Where, you know, I have, where like, one client I had years ago, a partner would honk her breasts, like literally go honk. And in some way, maybe you could go like, Oh, this is kind of endearing. Like this is, this is a teenage part of him that is still so excited about movies, right? But the reality is that for him, there were together for eight years, and somehow she had managed to not talk to him about it, which is like, bless her heart. That's not me, man, you would know that on the first time. That it's just, it didn't feel good, it doesn't feel good. It's not sexy. If you're wanting to create turn on, if you're wanting to create intimacy, you really want to be attuned to your person's, what they're saying, like, I have this I have a client who tells her partner, I don't want you to touch me that way. Don't touch that body part do not do that. It's sensitive. And he he's like, Oh, come on, you know, you like it. You too. And it's like gaslight much. You know, boys will be boys. Right? It's like, no, no, no, no, no, no, that's not consent. If someone says, I don't like that, I don't want that. You're crossing a line, and you need to respect their body. And, you know, of course, if someone has tried to say to you, I want to, I want to connect with you. I like intimacy with you. But when you do this particular thing, I brace around bracing for it all the time, because you do it and you don't stop. That's not what you're wanting to create with your person. So I completely digressed. But really, there's this thing of and I appreciate that this question because someone is asking, How do I assess out and really remember to give context, ask like, hey, you know, I've really enjoyed connecting with you. And I don't want to be inappropriate here. I don't know if you're single. And if you are, are you looking to date right now? And I don't know how you're assessing our connection because sometimes, you know, if you're following someone and you're responding to them, there could they could be being polite, they're trying they're being of service, but they're not interested in luck in your deck, you know, there's a difference there, right? I've even been on dates where someone wants to do therapy with me, and I'm like, you get BJs. Or you get therapy, you don't get both. Right? I, I dry in my personal, it's like, I'm still really supportive of my partners, but there's lions, I really try to manage and not rescue them and not be their mommy. So if you're following somebody, and you have a crush on them, feed your you can be direct, you know, you can say, I have a brain crush on you, or horrible body crush, whatever, you know, I have a crush on you. And I want to be respectful of your time, even if you just acknowledged that's a big thing, right? It's like, oh, oh, you're actually considering me, you're showing me that you're thinking about the impact of this request. Right. And, you know, there was a post I saw lately, and it was like, poor guys, they're having such a hard time talking to, you know, to women. Now, they don't know how to do it. And then it was like, women have been walking to their cars with keys between their fingers for decades. You know, like, we're all these sensitive beings that don't necessarily always feel safe. And we want to feel safe, and we want to feel connected with other humans. And the thing that we can do best is like, be aware of your impact. Be conscious of timing. You know, let someone know try to put yourself in their shoes before you act or say something. And yeah, be respectful. Okay, I think I'm gonna get off my little soapbox now. Okay, my love's. I have more questions here. But that's all we have time for today. I encourage you to write me more really on any topic. I'm happy to talk to you one here that was really interesting that we'll have to get to another day is about karma and dating, a topic that I particularly enjoy. Thank you for joining me on Valentine's Day. I hope some of these questions and answers resonated with you that some of it feels useful to you as season three is coming to a close only a few episodes left. Please feel free to just send more questions for me to answer in season four. In order to support the podcast, I've started a Patreon. If you're like me and new to Patreon, it is an opportunity to give back to a person or show that you feel has contributed to your life, wellness and growing wisdom. Today, I'm asking you if you feel my existence and the work I do in the world makes a difference. Please show me a tangible offer of your support back. The more people that join the more exclusive content I'll be adding for members only. You can find my T ar e o backslash la IDOPNPO de cast. To learn more about how you can support our community. If you found this podcast helpful, share it with anyone you can anyway you can please rate review and share it with friends so others can find our community of healing. You can also follow me at late open podcast on Instagram and Facebook and read more about my work at passionate Until next time, may this podcast connect you to new resources and empower you to heal yourself

Show Notes Aline Ra M Episode
[00:00:00] Charna Cassell: Welcome back to Late Open Podcast. During my hiatus from recording , I’ve been building an online course on how to live the passionate, pleasure filled, peaceful life you want, reduce self sabotaging behavior, and gain control over your nervous system. [00:00:14] Charna Cassell: Creating courses for people around the world to understand the impact of trauma on their nervous system and relationships, and how they can heal is something I’ve wanted to do for over a decade. I’m thrilled it’s finally happening. I’ll keep you posted as to when it’s launching. For now, you can also sign up for my newsletter, read my blog, or send questions to be answered at charnacassell.[00:00:38] Charna Cassell: com. Today’s guest is Aileen Rah Em. She’s a spiritual guide, energy healer, teacher, and writer, and her mission is to establish solid foundations for spiritual growth and soul fulfillment. Welcome, Aileen.[00:00:53] [00:01:38] Aline Ra M: Thank you so much for having me, China. Happy to talk to you today.[00:01:43] Charna Cassell: Yeah, I’ve been looking forward to this conversation. And I feel like it’s a important one regarding people understanding what You know, like, I don’t want to, I don’t want to take anything for granted, right? Like, I may know what a spiritual guide is, but I want people who’ve never heard of that or don’t necessarily comprehend what that could be to get it.[00:02:07] Charna Cassell: And so if we could even just start with that, like a basic description of when you call yourself a spiritual guide, what that means to you, because there’s so many flavors out there.[00:02:20] Aline Ra M: Yes, there’s so many different sides of it. It’s as I see it, the main role of the spiritual guide is to help release people from suffering. Now, when we actually go through what that means, we have so many different angles that we could approach that through. I could also say that my job is to help people stay on their path.[00:02:40] Aline Ra M: Or my job is to inspire and motivate people to keep going because it can be a hard path spiritual growth. I could also say that my job is to give people the right practices, the right things for their challenges. For their blockages, because the spiritual guide can assess people’s energy feud and see exactly what they need.[00:03:02] Aline Ra M: So they don’t do random practices that they just read in a book or saw in a YouTube channel that can actually harm them instead of helping them. So I could say all those things, but the core is really to help release people from suffering.[00:03:15] Aline Ra M: This is what all those things, all these different angles. Are doing and it even brings the question of where does suffering come from and we can talk about ego and delusions and desires that are so tied with spiritual growth, which is what I love, but I understand that for some people that can be so abstract.[00:03:37] Aline Ra M: And so far away.
[00:03:38] Aline Ra M: We can talk about helping people stay in their path because it is so easy to get distracted, to have shiny objects, to be afraid and to get out of our path. If we look around us, most people around us are not living in joy. They’re not living their purpose. It is easier to stay out of our path than to stay in our path.[00:04:01] Aline Ra M: The spiritual guide is a person who will help you to stay in your path.[00:04:06] Charna Cassell: And so somebody could ask, well, what does that mean? How would you even know if you were on your path or off your path? So,[00:04:15] Aline Ra M: We know energetically by feeling and by seeing what is happening in a person’s energy field, if the energy field is aligned, if it’s harmonized, what kind of blockages are presenting themselves there. When we have too many blockages, it’s almost impossible to leave our purpose and we need to clear them in order to simply be able to walk our path. [00:04:39] Charna Cassell: I hear what you’re saying but that it may not be as concrete for people. And so an example of here, you know, could be something like, that you’re really attached to staying with this particular person because you don’t want to get a divorce and the stigma that goes along with divorce.[00:04:55] Charna Cassell: And, but then there’s crisis after crisis. You could even be having physical healing crises when you stay in this particular relationship and that may not be part of what you’re aligned with and be on your path. And so to release that and to step away from a certain thing that you’ve been so attached to could actually mean you’re stepping onto your path.[00:05:18] Charna Cassell: Is that an example?[00:05:19] Aline Ra M: could be one thing. And it’s linked to the idea of suffering or simply struggling. Normally when we struggle, we are not in our path. We are struggling against. Our path, because we are not allowing ourselves to accept something. So every time we’re struggling with life, we are out of alignment. And I like to say the life is challenging. We need challenges to grow. So it’s not like sunflowers and rainbows not supposed to be because growth requires us to get out of our comfort zone, but challenge and struggle is. Very different things. We’re not here to hustle, [00:05:57] Aline Ra M: We’re here to thrive by overcoming our challenges. So we can see the energy of struggling, like struggling with our work, struggling with stress, struggling with frustration. All of those signs is that we are fighting with ourselves, we’re struggling with ourselves.00:06:15] Charna Cassell: Right.[00:06:16] Aline Ra M: Yeah.[00:06:16] Charna Cassell: And can you share some about how you came to this path, like some about, concretely about the challenges that you encountered that you overcame that helped you be clear about your path?[00:06:29] Aline Ra M: So I had two main moments in my life that brought me to this path in very different ways. The first one was when I was just a teenager, I was 12, I started being able to hear voices. I started being able to hear things that were not there. And that just was a natural opening. And it was scary.[00:06:49] Aline Ra M: And at the same time, it took me to have curiosity. So that’s how it started. I had a natural opening that Asked me to be able to protect myself because it was not that easy to manage. And it was a not nice things that was happening. It’s not like I was seeing an angel, quite the opposite. So I was like, okay, I need to be able to take care of myself. And the second side is because I had this opening, I had this awareness that was something more. I knew I was not crazy. And then came the question, what the hell is this place? What the hell is this that I’m going through that nobody can see. And they know it’s very real. And that took me to a path of spirituality based on mysticism and occultism of understanding energy, understanding what kinds of energy were there.[00:07:38] Aline Ra M: And it was purely from this point of view. What are these different layers of existence? What is this place? How do I work with energy? How do I do rituals? How do I protect myself? It had nothing to do with personal development. Absolutely zero. So when I was a teenager, what happened is that I joined my first mystery school.[00:07:58] Aline Ra M: So I joined back then the Rosicrucian order. And a few years later I joined Gnosis. So I’ve been on a path, mystery schools, initiation based for a long time, but I never cared about it in terms of personal development and my joy. I was just fascinated by the magical aspect of it.[00:08:17] Aline Ra M: And it was in my late thirties.[00:08:19] Aline Ra M: That I started having a series of breakdowns of seriously hating my life and that took me first to Buddhism. And that started clicking so many things inside of me. Because in a way I already had all the energy from my previous experiences. I just had never put it in such an angle. So when came like this personal development part that I just needed to fix my life.[00:08:47] Aline Ra M: Then it all clicked together and all made sense.[00:08:50] Charna Cassell: You got to apply all the tools that you had been developing.[00:08:54] Aline Ra M: Yeah,[00:08:55] Charna Cassell: Can I ask, so when you were 12 and you were starting to have these experiences that felt scary and new did you have other adults or resources in your life that you could turn to?[00:09:08] Aline Ra M: not directly not in my own place. My, my parents are both scientists. They don’t believe in anything like that. So they don’t know up until now, they don’t really know what happened. I, it was always so clear in me that I couldn’t tell them that it wouldn’t be safe [00:09:25] Charna Cassell: Yeah. Mm hmm. [00:09:27] Aline Ra M: not saying that my parents are bad people.[00:09:29] Aline Ra M: It’s just, they would do what they could in the best reasoning in their loving way is just that would be mostly taking me to medication, which is not what I needed. And they knew even then, back then, my intuition was always very clear on that. At the same time, I was lucky to born and raised in an island in Brazil, where there are many mystery schools.[00:09:53] Aline Ra M: They are hidden. Most of my friends, if I talk to them even up to today, they don’t know about it, but they exist. And so what happened I knew I was supposed to be in a school. I always knew that. I just didn’t know which one. The one back then that I saw everywhere was like Freemasons.[00:10:11] Aline Ra M: I had so many friends being initiated as Freemasons back then, but then it’s only for boys. And I was like, I know there’s something for me. I know it exists, but I don’t know when. And I was having this conversation with like a group of friends. And one of the girls that I barely knew up to then, she looked at me and said, you know, my mom is seeing one of them.[00:10:30] Aline Ra M: I can just ask her and you can join her. And so that is how it happened.[00:10:35] Charna Cassell: Oh, how amazing.[00:10:36] Aline Ra M: I ended up having that support because when I joined then many things started changing.[00:10:41] Charna Cassell: Yeah, it’s so important that piece of having, you know, first of all, like getting to be seen[00:10:48] Aline Ra M: Yeah.[00:10:49] Charna Cassell: and having that mutual understanding and having somebody guide you and then you’re now serving as that guide for people who may not understand what’s happening for them. also really curious, I see.[00:11:00] Charna Cassell: trauma often as a gateway to spiritual awakening and opening and that people who’ve experienced different kinds of trauma there can be this I see it as you Don’t have the direct resource in your family system to be protected or safe, and that often there, it opens this other realm or access to non consensual reality.[00:11:25] Charna Cassell: And I’m curious if that if you relate to that, and if that is part of your story at all in terms of what you think if you look back and go. What contributed to the development or the capacity that I had to see things that other people couldn’t see. Do you have an understanding of that?[00:11:44] Aline Ra M: Well, at the same time, I think some of us actually came for that and that something had to happen for that to open. I don’t see like necessarily that there was a setting that allowed that opening as much as I was supposed to have that opening. And at the same time, the listening to the voices were extremely traumatic for me, caused me to have a lot of insomnia early in my life, even after that was healed, my nervous system took forever to be able to sleep well.[00:12:13] Aline Ra M: So that was very strong in me. So for a long time, I could curse that. I hated those voices. I hated insomnia. But at the same time, it led me to see there was something there. It did its purpose of taking me to my path. So that is more what I see, that those events, especially early in age, have a role.[00:12:35] Aline Ra M: Of taking us to our path because we can always ignore them and it often happens that children when they’re very young. They have this opening and they shut it down in my case. I was lucky to have that in an age that I couldn’t really shut it down. It’s like you’re already 12 to 3. There’s nothing you can do.[00:12:55] Aline Ra M: You’re going to remember this. [00:12:57] Charna Cassell: Right. Yeah, that kids at certain ages may have experiences that they then just don’t even have recollection of [00:13:05] Charna Cassell: that opening. [00:13:06] Aline Ra M: At the same time, it’s like it’s a realm that we don’t fully understand even if we studied so much, even if we’re fully in it, it is full of mysteries. And then for me, I don’t even understand up to now if there was something palpable and concrete that triggered that event, or was that event supposed to happen to be able to open me to my path?[00:13:30] Aline Ra M: I don’t [00:13:31] Aline Ra M: know. I don’t know. Like it’s chicken and eggs. I really don’t know.
[00:13:34] Charna Cassell: Yeah. Yeah. That’s what I was asking. It’s just the sense of like, there are things that make the veil thinner for some people. And often I see that trauma is that. And that what I’m hearing from you is that the actual opening was traumatic and it was hard to integrate and you, your nervous system had to recover from not understanding and being so afraid.[00:13:54] Charna Cassell: And lack of sleep alone is a huge upheaval in people’s lives. And you know, can be so dysregulating, but that there, it wasn’t something specific. There was no precipitating event that, that, you know, led up to this moment.[00:14:11] Aline Ra M: And it is true that some people can go through some trauma that cause openings, like for instance astral traveling that many people report having near death experiences. But sometimes we also have to understand this certain spiritual events when caused by accidents. actually are accidents. They don’t necessarily happen in a good way, that keeps the integrity of the etheric body.[00:14:39] Aline Ra M: Sometimes having those random openings that were caused by accidents and are forceful actually creates trauma in the energetic field as well, and that person will need energy healing. Because that was not the natural connection. That was not a sustainable path. It was a blitz in the matrix, so to say.[00:15:03] Aline Ra M: And that creates fractures that need to be repaired.[00:15:07] Charna Cassell: And is that something that you help people with?[00:15:10] Aline Ra M: Yes, as well, yeah.[00:15:11] Aline Ra M: So it’s very different as well. If we talk about activations and Kundalini activations and things like that, it’s very different. A person who has been on the path of yoga and purification and releasing formigo and creating a container that is sustainable, that can sustain the energy. Who has a strong nervous system to deal with that with somebody who has like one specific event that has an activation, you know, goes to one specific ritual, it can break them apart, it can be too much for them because they don’t have what it takes to sustain that.[00:15:45] Aline Ra M: So I’m more as a spiritual guide, I prefer working with things that are self sustained than direct connections. Which requires us to prepare ourselves to hold that. So it can be a lot of work, but it’s a work that we can sustain throughout our lives.[00:16:03] Charna Cassell: Right. Right. What that brings up for me is thinking about the difference between. Slow regular practice and listening to your own pace, because even Kundalini awakenings can just shatter people. I mean, it’s very disruptive if your system can’t hold the amount of energy that you’ve suddenly conjured.[00:16:21] Charna Cassell: And then it has me think about you know, medicine work is so popular now. Right. It’s at least in the Bay Area. It’s everywhere. And That there are these very intense experiences that, you know, some people in order to create a crack in the ego, they may need a more intense experience, but to assume that everyone needs the same thing.[00:16:43] Charna Cassell: And then what’s the integration process afterwards? And also like the sustained change, right? You’re talking about sustainable change.
[00:16:53] Aline Ra M: Yes, a sustainable change that we can hold ourselves because we are divine. We don’t need intermediaries. We can have people’s help to show certain keys to activate things in us, but we need to be able to hold that we are the container. We are the vessel. So in my way of seeing it, it’s not exactly spiritual growth if we are having like just outsourcing the channel, you know, we are the channel.[00:17:21] Aline Ra M: And I understand as well that many spiritual. Experiences that are extremely powerful in extremely high vibration are not necessarily a drama in terms of excessive energy. And some people are so desensitized that they need an experience that throws them off.[00:17:43] Charna Cassell: right.[00:17:44] Aline Ra M: You know, I mean, the more sensitive you are, like spirit is everywhere, energy is moving all the time. I don’t know how it is for you, but like, get me to sleep in bed, and I’m going to have all kinds of energy flowing with me, like, in one second, I don’t need to do anything. And I’m not saying this to brag, I’m just saying, this is what happens when we are channels, we all can do that, but we need to cultivate that, we need to clear ourselves for that.[00:18:08] Aline Ra M: And looking for shortcuts, of course, if you have never had any contact with this spirituality before, it could be good just to show you it exists, you know? Just to motivate you, inspire you to walk on the path. But that in itself is not a self sustainable path. It is not the connection creating your channel.[00:18:31] Aline Ra M: It is quite the opposite. It can actually burn your channel, making it even harder to create a self sustained connection, because it’s a crazy amount of fire inside of a person who cannot sustain that. So it can actually burn your fuses, making it much harder to create a self sustained connection with the divine.[00:18:53] Charna Cassell: Yeah, and I think one of the things that you said that’s really important is the desensitization that can happen in so many circumstances, right? So whether it’s that you live in a culture where there’s sugar in everything you eat, and then your, taste buds get desensitized to sweetness, or, you know, I worked at a a co op, a worker owned sex toy store and we did a lot of sex education and there’d be porn playing in the back room while we’re eating sandwiches at lunch.[00:19:22] Charna Cassell: And so it’s like these things that you just like, you just get really desensitized to talking about certain things or seeing certain things or and then in terms of, you know, drugs. Or, you know, other sources taking something in, like what you’re referring to is, you know, you can nature in itself, you don’t need to even be on something, but like nature in itself can be the magic can be.[00:19:45] Charna Cassell: There, you can see the energy and have a spiritual experience using your own body, like cleaning your system out very, you know, historically speaking, like fasting and depriving yourself of like, you know, media so that you’re just creating an open space for what is to actually speak to you and communicate with you rather than filling your mind and filling your belly and filling everything so that spirit can’t get in [00:20:14] Aline Ra M: Absolutely. You’re absolutely right. I mean, we’re in a society that is so addicted to busyness, to doing things. And then when people want to connect with the divine, they just add stuff to their list. Go to the ceremony, do this, do that. But in reality, we are all naturally connected. It is more about stop doing the things that are disconnecting us.[00:20:36] Aline Ra M: So it is more about letting go. Letting go of the news. Letting go of foods. Like foods drastically disconnect us if we don’t eat well. So just eating well makes a huge difference in this work. Because your vessel is going to be clean for the connection. So treating our bodies as our temples, doing less, paying more attention, listening more.[00:21:02] Aline Ra M: Everything is relationships. The spirit is constantly communicating with us and so are the elements. So our ability to listen is crucial, but we cannot listen if we’re always busy, doesn’t work.[00:21:16] Charna Cassell: And the people that find you, do you feel like the people that end up finding you, they’re already on a path or they’re at the beginning? Like who are the people that you tend to work with most?[00:21:27] Aline Ra M: I work with different types of people. Some people were really on the path. They just never had like a guide with somebody giving the practices, but they being very serious about their practices in their own way. But I also work a lot with people. They’re just beginning in their path. And I do have clients.[00:21:43] Aline Ra M: For instance, I have exactly the setting that we were just talking about that. Try it out a few different, went to ayahuasca or mushroom ceremonies a few times and got curious and think that they already know quite a bit So I have one program focusing on people who haven’t had a consistent spiritual practice yet For they to create the first blocks of foundations for their practice.[00:22:09] Charna Cassell: And you’re tuning in and specifically creating practices for their system and them because, you know, one person needs to learn how to root down and connect into the earth. Another person needs to learn how to connect up and so on. [00:22:24] Aline Ra M: In one of the programs. Yes. One of my programs would do exactly that in my other program for people who are just beginning. I have a more standard practices that I give all of them. So they understand how certain energetic mechanisms work. and have a toolbox to help them. So when they are panicking, they know what to do, when they need to relax, they know what to do, they understand what purification is, and they can see the ego, which is the most important part for me, to make sure that people who are just beginning can understand what the hell ego even means in practice, because they can see How they are fighting with themselves all the time.[00:23:05] Aline Ra M: And I know that for some people that doesn’t sound interesting at all when they say, but and that’s not how I market the program as well. It is about connection, likeness, and clarity a hundred percent. But it has an effect as well of allowing the person to understand what is out of place. naturally by doing the practices.[00:23:25] Aline Ra M: And from that moment onwards, when they can see what the ego is, then we can do the real stuff.[00:23:32] Charna Cassell: Can you give an example of some of the things that are in your program that help guide someone to be able to be separate enough to be able to see ego and conceive of that?[00:23:46] Aline Ra M: This program is about setting solid foundations for spiritual development and bringing your likeness connection and clarity because this, it absolutely does. So you will be feeling lighter, more connected and clear. So in a way you will get clarity of like, normally people start because they want to have more clarity of what they want, their purpose, their direction, and they will definitely get that.[00:24:16] Aline Ra M: It gets those tangible aspects that people are looking for. It is just that the way it does it, it’s just by showing what is not okay. And so, for instance, many people on this program actually start realizing how much control issues they have. We all think we understand our control issues, but they are so much, like, like, bigger than we think.[00:24:38] Aline Ra M: They hide in so many small things all the time, and control is based on fear. The moment that we can see how we are so scared, everything changes because we just want to get rid of that fear. We don’t want to keep going with that fear, but it’s something that I can talk to people about it. but It doesn’t sound as strong as when you actually feel it, the program allows people to feel it.[00:25:01] Aline Ra M: And that’s when the key turns of what the, like, we always talk about authenticity, like to live our lives fully to be our authentic selves. We all want that. But not necessarily understand what it means there are certain things that we have to be put on the spot ourselves to see how we actually don’t feel safe being ourselves. [00:25:24] Charna Cassell: I mean, I feel like what a spiritual journey is about full self acceptance. know, to be able to move through all the, I’m too much, I’m not enough, I’m not worthy, et cetera and all the ways those stories play out in your family or response to culture or response to religion [00:25:43] Aline Ra M: yeah. That’s a beautiful place to begin if we can. Accept ourselves and acknowledge what we want that we have a beautiful path ahead of us to walk without shame with self love because at the end of the day, self love is the core of every type of growth, be it spiritual growth, be it personal development, be it empowerment.[00:26:08] Aline Ra M: It comes from this place of loving ourselves so much that how could we possibly shut ourselves down. [00:26:13] Charna Cassell: Right, right. And so much of the shutting down and that’s what a lot of my work is about with people is is helping them not shut those places down, not kink the hoses to allow everything to flow through them. But yes, people do shut those things down in order to be acceptable, in order to be palatable, in order to be safe, you know, in, in the process of trying to get love, right?[00:26:36] Charna Cassell: And not get kicked out of the herd.[00:26:39] Aline Ra M: Yeah. And if we can realize that, then it’s great. If we can see that’s what we’re doing, that’s a huge step.[00:26:46] Charna Cassell: And you pointed to this, which is, you know, we can talk about it but to be in the practice is a different thing because until you have that visceral experience, it’s really hard to trust or believe. And then once you have those visceral experiences, which come from practice, then it’s replicable, right?[00:27:07] Charna Cassell: And then it becomes self sustaining versus like some one off mystical. experience or something you’ve read and you conceptually agree with but don’t know how to actually apply.[00:27:20] Aline Ra M: Yeah. Absolutely. Spirituality is so much about liberation as Liberating ourselves from ourselves so that we can be releasing from anything that is not allowing us to accept, to embrace who we are.[00:27:34] Charna Cassell: Right. Right. That’s , also another big piece of the work that I do with people it’s a microcosm. I always, people come to me to work around sexuality a lot, but Your sexual self expression is a microcosm for other parts of your life. And so if you’re shutting a certain thing down, how can it not impact your sexual self expression?[00:27:52] Charna Cassell: And so like, what do you see with people around when they’ve liberated certain things in your program? gIven that sexual trauma is actually so frequent and it’s so common, what have you seen with people you’ve worked with around that?[00:28:09] Aline Ra M: About sexual trauma or[00:28:10] Charna Cassell: Around liberation from, right? In the process Of healing spiritually, how that then can impact your sexual self expression and freedom in that area.[00:28:23] Aline Ra M: I Mean, sexual energy is. completely necessary for any kind of energy work, but sometimes we just don’t realize that. What I see most with my clients is to switch to calmness, to acceptance in terms of patience.[00:28:37] Aline Ra M: That it’s okay. Everything is okay. And focus on what I would like, not focus on what is not okay, on, on the worries and on the problems and on repeating the same self talk that is based on hate and judgment. It’s fine. I see things for what they are.[00:28:58] Aline Ra M: There is no drama,[00:29:00] Aline Ra M: We live in a society that is always Like the emotional reaction like it’s endless reactive emotionally, you know, and people think that this is like being alive and normal. They sometimes people think that people that are a bit impartial and like are kind of distanced and cold. But for me, that is like the purest expression of love. Love that is consciousness. Love that has a big picture and sees the whole thing,[00:29:29] Aline Ra M: Reacting to a small event all the time. [00:29:33] Aline Ra M: Well, it’s coming to this place of awareness.[00:29:36] Charna Cassell: And having more neutrality or equanimity and not personalizing things so much, right? Like that[00:29:45] Charna Cassell: piece. [00:29:46] Aline Ra M: And I’m not overreacting on things. Not as like, this happens, this is good. That happens. This is bad. You know, it’s it is what it is.[00:29:55] Aline Ra M: Then if I can see reality for what it is without judgments, then I can decide how to act on it, to go towards the direction that I want it to go. Not in a manipulative way, but in a neutral way, because we all have powers over all the energies that are around us.[00:30:13] Aline Ra M: And so it’s just understanding our powers and the comparison of our powers with the powers of the universe. We are God. And so we can start acting as such instead of victimizing ourselves or losing our temper or any of other things that happens so easily.[00:30:31] Charna Cassell: When you’re working with someone who’s had a lot of trauma, do you, do, first of all, I guess that’s the first question, do those clients come to you? And if so Shifting out of a victim’s story into being able to, you know, unwind that and see that as an archetype that they’re learning from is its own process.[00:30:56] Charna Cassell: And so I’m curious about your approach[00:30:58] Charna Cassell: there. [00:31:00] Aline Ra M: So, I mean, we all have trauma, not big traumas, of course, they’re big traumas, there’s no traumas, but we all have traumas. I Wouldn’t say that people necessarily come to me for trauma. I’m not like a trauma specialist. That is not what I focus on, but at the same time, what is blocking us?[00:31:18] Aline Ra M: from connection is trauma. So we are always, that is what we’re purifying at the end of the day. The way that I work with people, it’s not like I’m not a therapist, I’m not a psychologist, so I’m not going to talk to people about their trauma. Of course they’re open to share. I’ll be more scanning their energy to understand where it is for what it needs, what is influencing, what kind of practice he needs.[00:31:42] Aline Ra M: My work is. A lot based on practices. I give the people the practices that they need to do to shift the energy so I don’t go through the mind. The mind is not my path. I explain things. I talk to people about things so they understand how energy works because I don’t also don’t want them just to do the practice but not understand what is it that we’re doing.[00:32:04] Aline Ra M: It’s important for me that they have like an understanding even to have a good understanding because there’s so much naivety about how energy works. So to help them create that awareness of what this planet really is. But that’s sad. I don’t stay on the mental level. I don’t try to fix trauma.[00:32:24] Aline Ra M: talking. And most of my clients are actually online. I have some clients in person, some online, a healing sessions online and in person. So even with my online clients, I won’t be just talking. I will be transferring energy. I will be explaining to them their practices. And of course we will talk, but not as a therapist, not to try to solve the problem, just to understand energetically.[00:32:54] Aline Ra M: What is happening?[00:32:58] Charna Cassell: And is there a particular practice that you’d like to lead our listeners through?[00:33:06] Aline Ra M: Oh, I didn’t think about that. I love, there’s a very simple practice that I love and for some people they will say this is not spirituality, but it is in so many different levels, which is [00:33:19] Charna Cassell: Right. [00:33:20] Aline Ra M: So if you close your eyes and just put yourself very lightly with your fingertips around your body.[00:33:27] Aline Ra M: When I’m saying this, that this has so many different benefits. It’s. Suffering to your nervous system, which is so necessary for spiritual growth. The more we grow on this path, the more energy starts going through us. And we need to be able to handle that energy. So, self touch, very light touch with your fingertips. Going through any part of your body. You can go through your face, chest, your legs. Handling with you as you’re listening to my voice. xploring your body for any sensation. Calming yourself. This is beautiful to do in bed. If you’re having trouble falling asleep, just calming. A good five minutes of this at night before you go to bed is and it can also be used in the morning as you come out of bed for self connection, for greeting yourself before beginning the day, coming to yourself. One other reason that I love this practice is that touch is the sense of the heart. Each chakra is connected to a sense. And by stimulating your skin, you also get to clear your heart and bring more lightness into your heart. So for me, this is a practice. Yeah, it works with the heart. It works with the nervous system.[00:35:11] Aline Ra M: It is soothing. It will allow more energy to flow through you because it is soothing to the nervous system. So it has so many benefits. The spiritual practices can be a seat for one hour. Doing a specific thing in meditation, but they can also be light and playful and joyful and exploratory.[00:35:32] Charna Cassell: That’s super important, Swede, and I know you have a book, Bullshit Free Mindfulness, and that you have a bunch of different kinds of practices in there that can be done rather quickly, and that it doesn’t have to be that people go, Oh, in order to meditate, I have to put off, like, Oh, I have to be available for an hour, or, Oh, I have to have the right cushion, or all those excuses that we can make.[00:35:59] Aline Ra M: No, I mean, we are here to live. You’re right. We’re here to live. We’re here to enjoy. And life presents so many opportunities for us to do just that. It’s just that we’re so busy, so caught up somewhere else that we lose these opportunities.[00:36:16] Charna Cassell: Yeah.[00:36:16] Aline Ra M: So for me, a big part is to come back to the small pleasures of life, to appreciating the food we’re eating, our teacup, listening to our favorite song fully and singing along instead of just being a background, [00:36:32] Charna Cassell: hmm. Mm hmm. [00:36:32] Aline Ra M: like paying attention to those things, how we are actually a part of it.[00:36:37] Aline Ra M: Living our lives, the how is as important as the what.[00:36:41] Charna Cassell: Right. It’s one of the things about that practice that I appreciate is that as a child, and I think a lot of people could probably relate to this, you know, there’s a certain age, especially for girls, where we would do that, we would tickle each other’s arms, you know, and even this week in a session, I had a client who was having a lot of anxiety and she was just not conscious that she was doing it, but she was, I brought it to her attention that she was tickling and stroking and it was like, she just knew there’s an innate wisdom in her as there are.[00:37:13] Charna Cassell: Bye. Bye. There isn’t everyone that we know ways to soothe ourselves. We know ways to ground or open our own hearts. And we just may not even realize what we’re engaging in that process. So,[00:37:27] Aline Ra M: Exactly. If we just stop to listen to ourselves and observe what is happening, we’re gonna find great treasures there for sure. [00:37:34] Charna Cassell: Anything else? I know that you also have an eight week program for spiritual development. Is there anything else that you want to share and how people can reach you?[00:37:44] Aline Ra M: I mean, I have quite a few different types of programs, depending on where people are on their path. Regardless, the best way to work with me is to book a breakthrough call. So this is a first call without commitment where I assess your field and give you direction. Even if you’re not working with me after, you still get direction.[00:38:05] Aline Ra M: And if you consider working with me, I’ll see exactly where you fit in the things that I offer. Okay. I give healing sessions. I have online courses, so my website is a full plate, like a full buffet there. So if you go to Elin sorry, elin do com, I think you have it on the show notes as well. So it’s I don’t need to spell here.[00:38:25] Aline Ra M: I have a guide, a free guide called What is Spiritual Growth. which I think it’s a great beginning on this path. It is extremely practical and hands on in its example. So if you go to elindram. com spiritual growth, you can find that. [00:38:43] Aline Ra M: You will also find on my website, a free masterclass to how to connect with the divine. So these are a few of the offers that I have to support you on your path.[00:38:54] Charna Cassell: Beautiful.[00:38:54] Aline Ra M: yeah, the best place to find me is on my website and on YouTube is Alinram as well. All mysteries there.[00:39:02] Aline Ra M: Thank you so much for having me today, Sharon It was fun talking to you.[00:39:05] Charna Cassell: well thank you again. It was good to meet you.

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© 2022 By Charna Cassell, LMFT. Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. MFC 51238.

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