The Gift of Contrast


A number of weeks ago on my life coaching course we had lesson about contrast. I was reminded that when something happens that we do not like, it evokes an intention to create what we want instead.  Everything in life is either ‘It’ or ‘Not It’.

‘It’ experiences are in alignment with our joy, passion, intention and purpose.

‘Not It’ experiences are those that make us feel depleted, exhausted, not joyful, depressed or anxious. They can be beneficial in that they help us realise what is ‘It’ and help us move in that direction.

What I loved about this lesson is that it reminded me that everything in my life that could be perceived as a negative or painful experience can actually be thought of as a blessing. When I look at my life and see all of my experiences make a sum whole of my life, I realise I’ve been blessed to have both positive and negative experiences as even the negative experiences have taught me and helped me move closer to ‘It’ in my life.

This past Easter weekend I took part in a four day Inner Child retreat. I was excited about the opportunity before the weekend started, not really knowing what I was in for but excited to explore something new and have a new perspective on an area of psychology and human behaviour. I thought it was going to be fun learning more about my inner child and getting a chance to do some child-like things. It ended up not being fun at all.

Without going into huge detail, the weekend was ‘Not It’ for me.

It ended up being one of the most challenging weekends of my life and I did manage to garner some new information about myself. But for the most part, the weekend just felt wrong to me. I was glad to leave on Monday evening and return home to Reg and my life.

I spent Tuesday quietly recovering from the retreat. I took long walks with Reg, spent time reading and resting and just generally looked after myself with love and compassion. In this contemplation time, I came to see that I had been given three gifts from the weekend to take away.

Firstly, I quickly remembered that I don’t hate my parents and don’t hate my childhood. This seemed to be a pre-requisite for others on the course but it wasn’t for me. I’m grateful for the parents I have and am grateful for the childhood I had. My childhood was fun, loving and yes, sometimes challenging.  But now as an adult, I can see why I thought many of the things I did as a child. And why I reacted to things the way I did. I retreated into books as a child as they provided a window to the world that I still enjoy today.

Secondly, the style of the workshop didn’t agree with me. There was no mention of connecting with the Universe or really believing in ourselves. And there was no compassion offered by either the retreat facilitator or the other participants. Missing those things this weekend made me see how important both of these elements are when I run retreats or workshops or coach others. And I will ensure these elements are there in any events or coaching sessions I run in the future.

Finally, I remembered that I am enough. I believe in myself and who I am. I love what I do and who I am and don’t need to put myself through more psychotherapy to figure out what’s going on with me at this time. I have more than enough knowledge and experience and compassion to be a great life coach and to really hold space for others. I will continue to write in hopes of inspiring others to believe in themselves. I trust in the Universe, I trust in myself and I trust in Divine Timing.

I needed this workshop this past weekend to show me many ‘Not It’s for me. And love that in doing so, have remembered a few ‘It’s along the way.

3 thoughts on “The Gift of Contrast

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  1. Thank you for the vivid reminder of “It” and “Not It”! The simplicity of those two expressions are more effective than pages and pages of precise exposition. They say it all, leaving no need for further explanation. And thank you too, Lisa, for reminding me of the unconditionally GOOD value I will always experience when in appreciation….even when it is appreciation for a new and improved version of the “not it”. How cool of all the Petty Tyrants in the world to stand up and remind me that I have loftier preferences to focus on!


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