Presence 38: I am self-possessed


Emotion = Energy in motion.


We soothe each other. And/or we self-soothe. All is well.

This is such an hard time of year for me. It sends me off my normal rails.

And yet I can self-soothe.

But why can’t we soothe each other?

Not interested. Sees it as manipulation.

Caress, comfort, enquire, soothe. 

Harder to do when it feels like I am enclosed (locked down) with someone who won’t – I mean won’t – reach out. And is unmoved if I don’t either.

Sounds like it’s almost TTT. Time. To. Talk. Now that’s something fruitful you can apply your active thoughts to. 

Instead of ruminating and chuntering…

You have a veritable library of books. Yesterday you were proselytising on the virtues of NVC! 

Ok…. Let me put my thoughts and feelings in terms of NVC.

WHEN: I realised that I’d repeatedly requested you a) to touch my back and b) to use active listening with me, and you flat out… just wouldn’t… And I noticed that actually, you rarely reach out to touch me, and you really don’t know much about what’s in my head or heart not only because you don’t ask, but also because you visibly tense up and look anguished when I speak of stuff that is not aligned with what you are thinking/doing at that precise moment….

I FELT: suddenly like we weren’t on the same page. I felt that I’m constantly reaching out to you with words and touch, which soothe, reassure, encourage and bring intimacy. You seem to receive it and like it, but not want to reciprocate it. It seems, if I bring my needs or requests for what is effectively soothing or co-regulation or oxytocin production, you actually take it as sparring or manipulating you. You withdraw for a few days every time I ask you to do active listening – and this time, I just felt sickened and alarmed by the pattern. I feel disconcerted by your point blank refusal to reach out to me. And now, I realise, my neuroception has overridden my optimism that ‘if I just keep modelling co-regulation, you will eventually engage in it too’ – and as a result I feel a sense of danger, with my sympathetic nervous system finally calling the shots on my thoughts: ‘Does he not like or want me? The lack of any communication… is it because he’s putting defences up? Has he had enough of this? Did I press this rel on him, when actually he wants the bachelor life he had before. He certainly resists anything outside his own traditional pattern of daily living. Do I need to start thinking of finding my own place come the end of this tenancy?”


  • To know we have safe, healthy mechanisms for co-regulating together. I would like to feel our unsteady states are welcome and cared-for in our relationship, as unconditionally as our steady states. I have in my body the past experiences of traumatic rel breakdowns, so I need clear indicators of you being in to this rel, for me to feel assured and settled and in the parasympathetic state.  I would rather you told me things directly than leave them endlessly unsaid or unspoken.
  • I need you to accept my ‘language of love’ is different to yours, and I am asking you, as an act and demonstration of love, to learn and speak my language. I need you to articulate yours more explicitly too, and let me know when I’m hitting the spot, and when I am not – so that I’m not left in doubt, or shame, or confusion.
  • I need to know what my future looks like, even in little things (eg. getting bikes, or not). Extended ‘maybes’ and ‘private thoughts’ mean I can’t plan, or am left in limbo. I need to have some certainties in my life to feel safe and to have concrete things to look forward to. This comes from our making decisions, and then working towards them. This is soothing and settling to my system.


  1. Co-regulate with me: Caress, comfort, enquire, soothe. 
  2. Let me know now if you are actually not into this relationship, and/or what this relationship ‘is’ for you, now and in the future – no ‘private thoughts’
  3. Communicate with me more frequently and openly instead of running the house and relationship on psychic thoughts and ‘discovered’ moments – no people-pleasing or private thoughts or withholding ‘disappointment’.
  4. Make decisions with me. so we decide mutually: yes or no, and we set timeframes.
  5. Discuss our Love/Soothing Languages together, not just once, but repeatedly.


2 Days Later:

Woke up today feeling v heartbroken.

I hadn’t had the NVC conversation but we had obliquely got to ‘languages of love’ over breakfast. And immediately G named that his Languages of Love were ‘acts of service’ and ‘gifts’, and that mine were ‘words’ and ‘touch’. I think ‘time together’ is one we both share and get. That softened things briefly. Just the noting, v briefly, of our differences there… But later… still no conversation (other than ‘this week’s work’ (past) and ‘what do you want to do over the weekend?’ (future) – nothing about our internal landscapes or the present moment) or any touch.

I felt struck this morning that, as long as I have no energy for ‘showing affection’ there is no showing affection between us. The phrase ‘maybe he’s just not that into you’ had been doing the rounds in my head. And I’d literally woken up through dreaming that I had gamely followed a bunch of barefoot runners straight off a cliff edge… “Maybe… it’s over?” I looked around the room working out what was mine. Wondering if I should start reducing my stuff in the attic now…

Then two important insights arrived:

  1. I’m doing the Presence Process. It involves greeting emotions unconditionally. One of the promises we make to ourselves in undertaking the PP is: no drama. No massive changes. No dramatic upheaveals or changes of direction. Drama is just avoiding the integration of the charged emotion. (And I’ve even named the charged emotion: ‘doesn’t care about me’)
  2. I turned to Instagram for some gentle wisdom, and this video pitched up (by someone called Phil Good @philgoodlife who somehow I’ve missed so far) on how “POSSESSION” is a big theme for Nov 2020. He notes that when someone lunges at you emotionally this month, they will be acting under possession (by neg entities, thoughts or simply attachment to the old systems of belief) – and the possessing entity will be seeking louche. The person will have avoided doing their inner work, and gone along with the entities’ push to lunge at another. I realised immediately, I am building up to lunge at G, with my grief and sense of ‘doesn’t care’. Now, this may be because I have allowed some psychic shit in. V possible. I’ve been allowing myself to drink vodka at the weekends = spirit. And I’ve been dwelling on my ‘history’ with AK and also with MHFA folks. Also, I’m dealing with some clients dealing with v tough stuff. Or, who knows, maybe G is hosting something which is enjoying bating me with non-affection.  Or maybe both of us are just under the tazing hazing of these times. Idk. And it really doesn’t matter because….. I realised this….

There’s only one solution to possession – wherever it is occurring – and that is SELF-POSSESSION.

(Aka: SOVEREIGNTY. Funnily enough I’ve got the last of these unhinged Queens’ coaching sessions today. Hm. Good timing.)

Anyway: today I’d like to explore SELF-POSSESSION.

Go for it! 

I am self-possessed


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