How can you make somebody change?

I work with  a LOT of people who are unhappy in interpersonal relationships. Be it mate, child, parent, friend, coworker, whomever, there are issues. People want to know how make somebody change, although it’s not necessarily verbalized as such. The wish is still there.

Here’s the thing: you don’t make somebody change. You can’t. It’s IMPOSSIBLE. You can pitch, persuade, threaten, manipulate, cajole, shame, pray, encourage, reward, ignore, deny, or do whatever else comes to mind. Your efforts may or may not have an impact, but even if they do, it’s often temporary and it’s never YOU making the changes happen. It’s always, always, always a choice. We call it “free will,” baby! Everybody’s got it, damn it.

But it’s NOT impossible to change a problematic relationship. In fact, it’s remarkably easy. There’s only one sure-fire way to do it, though.

Change yourself.

Now, hear me out.

It doesn’t matter who’s “right.” It doesn’t matter if you “get it” or not, although understanding can sometimes aid in the search for compassion and patience. (Be careful what you ask for. Compassion and patience sound great on paper, but they are advanced life courses!)

Here’s the thing: the stuff that makes you unbelievably angry, or hurt, or crazy, or confused…all those things are inescapably a byproduct of your thoughts, your beliefs and your choices. The feelings always come directly from YOUR energy. The behavior of others is not your choice, but your response to that behavior is exclusively under your control. So your subjective experience of a relationship is also firmly within your own control, like it or not.

I’m not saying it’s easy! I’m not saying it’s your job to stick to the bitter end in any situation. Sometimes, bailing is the best scenario. I’m saying no matter what actions you decide upon, take responsibility for yourself completely. It’s an incredibly empowering act.

Because the followup lesson here is vital: the stuff that makes you the craziest? It does for a reason! That crazy-making stuff one way or another reflects your own shadow self. And those relationships that constellate around us? They also do so for a reason. You can dump the relationship (and the next sixteen after), but you still have to wake up with yourself and your own state. That doesn’t just go away.

That Five of Wands from the Legacy of the Divine always reminds me of this particular lesson, because all the conflict stems from the same tree. Every time you want to go ballistic, look in the mirror and ask yourself, “How do I see myself in these triggers?” I can promise you, you’ll almost always be able to locate a self-reflection.

We attract people and situations who match our own energy, our vibration.  In a physical-world sense, we attract teachers of our own needed education. You can ditch the messenger but you cannot ditch the message. You can only do the homework or skip out, only to repeat the class until you graduate it.

This is how to break patterns. Once you shift your own energy, the relationship itself changes as a result. You’re always part of the energetic mix of any relationship involving you, eh? So when your energy shifts, so does the whole. It may shift to suit you, or it may fall away if it’s no longer required for your evolution. Maybe your shift causes improvements. Or maybe you don’t care any more, having dealt with your own stuff that brought you there. However it shakes out, though, you’re leaving stronger and wiser than how you started. At that point, it’s served it’s purpose and no longer has to be endured as-is.

The thing that keeps you chained to the pain is the lesson that’s lurking there.

Have you found this to be true?

Fishy Moon Magic and Insistent Tarot

wpid-20120221_175821I made up a new batch of my Psychic Oil under the recent Pisces moon. I use this oil before all my readings to help me connect. A bit of magic, you know? I like to mix up new batches under super watery moons, because, well, I want super watery energy.

I mix up whatever I’ve got out for it, add some gemstone chips or flower blooms, do some chants, say some prayers, burn appropriately inscribed candles and in general, channel the energy I’m going for. This is my idea of a good time, by the way. (My husband is a saint for not making fun of me.)

I generally get my carrier oil, set my intention, and then either add essential oils I’ve picked out beforehand, or (more often) fly by the seat of my pants. I’m of the opinion that my intuition will always serve more faithfully than my brain, so there you go.

This time around, instead of just using all my own oils, I added a number of selections from Cedar’s magic oils. A shortcut. Meditation and Spirit Summons (in case I run into any dead people in my meditation!) and Moldavite and, well, I don’t even remember what all else. I was a regular mad scientist here!

Now, when I mix this up, I usually draw a Tarot card to include from one of my Tiny Tarot decks–a small sacrifice, if you will, to the magical vibration. I always draw these blind, trusting Tarot to give me the right cards. This works very well. My last batch was graced by the intuitive Queen of Cups, for example. I couldn’t have been more pleased.

I reached in my little bag, to grab a Tarot card for this mix. And a card popped out before I was ready. I had a jumper! “Oh, this will be good,” I thought. The card can’t wait to get busy.

And the jumper was…the Three of Swords.

The Three of Swords? Really?? The Heartbreak card? Uh…this must be a mistake. Clumsiness! Yeah, that’s it. So I  popped it back in the bag, shook up the tiny cards, and drew again. After all, that MUST have just been my clumsiness. Had to have been…

You know where I’m going with this, right? If you work the cards, I’m sure you do.

Yes, this batch of psychic oil is now graced by the Three of Swords. I’ll say no once, but not twice. And to be fair, this is a watery card via illustration, even though it’s associated with Saturn in Libra. And okay, the irony is appropriate–a confusing card for Pisces moon. Understood.

Letting go, loss, separation. Release, release, release. Allow the void. Let go of preconceptions. To access the ethereal, one must separate from the physical. You cannot demand the answer be what you want–only open yourself to the answer that is. That’s how I’m reading it.

Because even if I don’t fully understand Tarot at first blush doesn’t mean Tarot’s wrong. We’ve been together long enough, I’ve seen Tarot in action well enough, that I know OF the two of us, I’m the one most likely to make mistakes. Been proven to me time and again, so I’m not arguing. (I’ll bet it was that Moldavite oil that did it!)

How would you read the Three of Swords (insistently) popping up to grace your psychic oil recipe?