An Experiment in Receiving

by [email protected]  Nov 13, 2013

I live in a community house in Southern California with seven people. Last night, all seven of us participated in a house meeting in which each of us received an "assignment" to grow. Something that would take us out of our comfort zone, help us release old patterning, and create leaps in our lives to a fuller expression of who we really are.

My assignment is to RECEIVE for 21 days.

Here are the guidelines for the assignment:

  • No housework for me including dishes.
  • Ask someone in the house to do my laundry.
  • Breakfast will be prepared by a housemate every morning.
  • Everyone in the house will take turns getting up at 5am to make my coffee and SERVE it to me, as I lead a morning meeting for my organization at 6am.
  • 5 OMs per day (OM is Orgasmic Meditation, a partnered practice that connects us by strengthening our limbic connection and opening each of us to the flow of orgasm—that pulsing passionate life force of flow—in every area of our lives.)
IMG_0640Now, I am sure that for some of you this would be a nice treat and I agree—a little bit. There were moments of joy and pleasure today, like when one housemate made me a breakfast of strawberries, blueberries and coconut cream from fresh coconut juice (so yummy!). And another did the dishes mid-morning. I felt supported, loved and cared for. I felt seen as being worth the investment of their time.

But I still have a major resistance to receiving.

I was raised with several messages:

  • It is better to give than receive.
  • It is selfish to receive without giving to someone else first.
  • Don’t ask anyone to do something that you can do for yourself.
  • And all of those messages gave me a deeper message: Giving is connected with worthiness, value and love.
21 days of receiving = no value, no worth and not lovable.

Ouch! There are so many feelings.

[caption id="attachment_901" align="alignright" width="225"]Andrea's Coffee Schedule Andrea's Coffee Schedule[/caption]

The biggest stretch in receiving today was when my house created a morning schedule and everyone signed up to make my coffee. I suggested they prepare the coffeepot the night before so I could press the ON switch when I woke up. The immediate response from my housemates: “Oh, no—that is not far enough out of your comfort zone. We have to get up early and SERVE it to YOU!” Arrgghhh! I am so uncomfortable with the idea of someone getting up 2 hours early to make my coffee and then serve it to me. But this is what is happening.

So far, Allegra, Laurel, Andreas (yes, we have an Andrea and an Andreas in the same house!) and Damian have signed up. Damian is even getting up on a Sunday! The only day he gets to sleep in.

All day I have been "doing" things like leaving my dishes in the sink, walking by the full recycling bag, letting go of the task of cleaning one of the bathrooms, a job I do every Thursday. I say that I have been "doing" things because I continue to go on autopilot and clean and then I stop myself and put everything down and walk away.

The new rhythm of the house is emerging with different people picking up my share of the work.

I have been feeling the discomfort all day wondering how I can allow a group of people who are practically strangers to me provide so much loving care for me. What value do I have in the house if I am not participating in cleaning and cooking? What do I have to offer?

As the day is coming to an end, I have consciously made a decision to open my heart and receive. To witness the commitment from each person in the house as they support me in receiving. To see that my value is more about who I am than about what I do. And to feel all of the feelings and sensations with each experience.

As I share my exploration of receiving, let me ask you:

  • When you read my assignment, which category brought the most sensation into your body either with discomfort or excitement?
  • What is your current relationship with giving and receiving?
  • With orgasm as an energetic passion that runs through each of us, what do you feel is the value of receiving?
Post your responses in the comments section below and stay tuned as I explore the edges of this incredible opportunity to receive.