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Episode 183 - How to Not Kill Anyone This Pesach

Updated: Mar 18

It's the perfect storm. Physical stress, financial stress, lots of people, late nights, high expectations, inadequate afikomen presents...

But you really don't have to kill even one person this Pesach. Really.

Keep this toolkit handy for reference. Some of you might even want to consider printing this out--- or sharing on the family chat (KIDDING!)

1. Supposed to Be - Move yourself out of resistance ("they shouldn't be like that!") by reminding yourself, "this is supposed to be." Even less of a stretch--"this is what is." Simple but powerful. Move your resistant energy (super draining) into proactive energy.

2. The Manual - Notice that you are banging your head against a rule book that you invented of how they are "supposed" to act. It doesn't matter if all your friends agree that this is "not normal." The rulebook doesn't ACTUALLY exist and it actually makes you LESS effective at dealing with the issue at hand.

3. Mindset - Lean into the ridiculousness. You know when things are just so beyond manageable that you finally throw up your hands and surrender? Do that sooner. You were never in control anyway ;)

4. What Genre? - Courtesy of Ilana Kendal from her book Choosing Up! Tap into humor by casting this into a genre. Is this a Looney Tunes cartoon in your living room or more of a horror movie? Try not to laugh.

5. Get Regulated - If your response feels very physical (heightened heart rate, sweating, fast heart beat), start with a physical solution. Your body needs to complete the stress cycle because it got confused and thought this was life or death. Take a walk, a nap, or a cold glass of water. When you're in fight or flight you aren't available to new thoughts, so take care of your body until you're back online.

If all else fails, there's always earplugs. 🙂

Ep 183 - How to Not Kill Anyone This Pesach ===

<00:00:00> Kayla Levin: Episode 183. How to Not Kill Anyone This פסח

<00:00:06> Kayla Levin: okay. Hello my friends. Um, you get what I mean by the title of this episode, right? Whoever that person is, that you might kill , you're not, obviously, no one's gonna be killing anyone, but whoever that person is that you struggle with, that you're gonna be spending all the extra time with, or.

<00:00:56> Kayla Levin: Maybe not that this ever comes up in coaching calls, but like you kind of expect your husband to be a little helpful or a little more this or a little more that. And the way he runs the Seder, he gets with the kids or the in-laws, or your parents or your siblings, your sister-in-law, whatever, whoever. My job here, my goal here is to help you not kill them.

<00:01:16> Kayla Levin: The whole Pesach. All right? So I'm gonna teach you and what, let's just say like with your eyes, internally, with your soul. Or actually literally, um, I'm gonna give you my four tools for the people that we struggle with the most in life.

<00:01:34> Some People are Harder than Others ---

<00:01:34> Kayla Levin: Look, let's just be really real. There are just some people that are easier for us, and there are some people that are just consistently hard.

<00:01:41> Kayla Levin: And I want you to know I've really, really done this work and I have found it to be some of the most important work I've probably ever done because those people don't change. . And the really crazy part is they're not supposed to change. Cuz if they were supposed to be different, they would be, and Hashem wouldn't have put them in your life.

<00:02:00> Kayla Levin: So that means if they're there and they're driving you nuts, this is your work. And the work that you do there will affect you everywhere. And even if it doesn't affect you anywhere else, it will be a huge source of negativity in your life eradicated. So let's do that together today. Okay, so I'm gonna give you my four tools.

<00:02:19> Kayla Levin: Supposed to be the manual. The mindset and one of my favorite, favorite tools from Ilana Kendal, who's been on the podcast before.

<00:02:28> This is What's Supposed to Be ---

<00:02:28> Kayla Levin: Okay, number one, this is a super simple tool and you might resist it at first, prob probably because it sounds so simple, but the tool is literally saying, this is what's supposed to be, or if that's even too much of a stretch for you, saying to yourself, this is what.

<00:02:49> Kayla Levin: So let's say someone comes to your table and you're trying to have a really spiritual Pesach seder and they just keep bringing up nasty gossip about people and you're just so grossed out by it. Okay, so what do we do initially is we like go into the space of like, this is not what you're supposed to be doing at a Seder.

<00:03:08> Kayla Levin: This is not what's supposed to be, we just take out our boxing gloves and we go to town on reality. Right? And I don't know if you've had this experience, but I remember one time catching myself, like energetically willing the person to change, right? Like I wasn't saying anything at the table. If you looked at me, I probably even looked pretty calm.

<00:03:25> Kayla Levin: I wasn't saying anything. But when I checked in with my body, there was so much tension as if, if I pushed hard enough internally, energetically, the person would stop doing what they're doing, which of course is ridiculous. But check yourself, you've probably done the same thing, just saying.

<00:03:44> Kayla Levin: You know what? This gossip at my table. I don't have to like it. I don't have to condone it, but it is happening. It. Is and to go level two is. And clearly this is what's supposed to be happening for me right now at this table because it is, um, my husband edits the podcast so he can delete this if he doesn't wanna share.

<00:04:08> Kayla Levin: His example would be the grape juice or the wine in the kid's hand, which is for sure gonna be all over his white shirt by the time the Seder is over. That's clearly what was supposed to be. So what does this do? Does this change the person? No. Does this enact or enforce boundaries? No. Does this tell you what to say? No. What it does is it takes out all that emotional resistance, which burns so much energy and doesn't actually produce anything.

<00:04:37> Kayla Levin: Am I saying that you have to suddenly start saying everyone can do whatever they want at my table? No. But as I've said to you before, and I will keep hammering at home because I think it's really, really hard for us to see this when we're. You don't find solutions when you're resisting the reality of what's happening right now.

<00:04:55> Kayla Levin: You will not have a good idea of how to deal with the person gossiping at your table if you're so busy thinking she shouldn't be doing that. Either you're gonna blow your top or you're gonna sit there silently, fuming, and then you're gonna go gossip about her later, right? You're gonna totally mimic the exact behavior you hate.

<00:05:12> Kayla Levin: That's what's gonna happen. When we cling to this idea of like, I need to hold on to my standards or my expectations for people, what we actually end up doing is putting ourselves into park. We put ourselves into a very stuck place. So that's the tool. It's counterintuitive, but go for it. It's amazing.

<00:05:33> Kayla Levin: Oh, my brain thinks this shouldn't be happening right now, but literally the fact that it's happening means it's supposed to be happening right now, and I don't have to love it, but this is the reality that I'm in right now. Okay. That's number one. Supposed to be.

<00:05:50> The Manual ---

<00:05:50> Kayla Levin: Number two is the manual. I've spoken about this a couple times on the podcast, but the idea of a manual, and we talk about this all the time, if you're not inside of how to glow, you're crazy.

<00:06:01> Kayla Levin: Get in there today, because you need to know how to use the manual and how to get rid of your manuals. The manual is this invisible and very heavy rule book we carry around about every relationship in our life, how your husband's supposed to be, how your kids are supposed to be, how your employees are supposed to be, how your boss is supposed to be, how your mother's supposed to be, how your mother-in-law, how you are supposed to be, and we just.

<00:06:21> Kayla Levin: Beat ourselves over the head with that manual all day long. Whenever people aren't behaving or complying according to our invisible set of rules, which we never actually picked, we just kind of gravitationally collected them as we went through our life. Catching yourself in a manual. Oh my manual for how a husband's supposed to run a Seder, my manual for how my husband's supposed to behave as its son-in-law at my parents' house, my manual for how my mother-in-law's supposed to welcome me or deal with my children.

<00:06:53> Kayla Levin: That's my manual. And the thing is, our manuals are all subjective. If they weren't, we would all follow them, all of us, all each other's, and there will never be any conflict. The reason there's conflict is that different people have different manuals cuz we all have different life experiences. So when I, it's very similar to number one, but it's really thinking of it in terms of the relationship and my ideas and expectations about a relationship.

<00:07:18> Kayla Levin: I like to teach the expectations. , even if we wanna call them healthy expectations, doesn't make them healthy. , just because we put the word there. It's like me saying like, I, this just came up in a coaching thought it was like cracking me up. She's like, what about healthy expectations of my husband? I'm like, well, look at what's happening with your healthy expectations.

<00:07:34> Kayla Levin: It's like me saying like, I'd like to have some healthy Oreos for breakfast. Like it doesn't make them healthy. All right, so expectations are for subordinates, expectations are for some of, you're gonna really cringe, and I'm using this in the same context for children. Expectations are for teaching someone how they can succeed with you.

<00:07:53> Kayla Levin: What you expect of them. They're not for your husband. How inappropriate expectations of your husband. I, I don't want my husband showing up to me being like, Kayla, here is my list of expectations for you. Gross. Right? For some reason, women think we could do that for our husbands. I don't get it. I don't know.

<00:08:09> Kayla Levin: And then we're like, oh, how come he is my third child? Like, yeah, cuz you treat him like one. Right? So expectations are our manual. and they're just so inappropriate. It's so inappropriate to have expectations of other people. They're human beings and they do not answer to you. They don't have to be according to your rule book.

<00:08:28> Kayla Levin: And we create so much drama for ourselves with these manuals. We create so much anger, agony, and anguish. And to me, the biggest tragedy of all is that when I'm so busy comparing my husband to my manual for him or my mother-in-law, to my manual for her or my child, to my manual for him. I don't get to experience that human being.

<00:08:50> Kayla Levin: I do not get to connect to that person. I am only seeing the discrepancy between my expectations. Yes, even for children and the human being in front of me. That's a tragedy. That's a huge, huge loss. There are ways to get your needs met. There are ways to take care of yourself. Nobody in my program ends up saying, , I've just sacrificed all my goals for myself or all my standards.

<00:09:16> Kayla Levin: That is not what we do. What we do is we learn how to do it effectively. Expectations, manuals and resistance are not effective ways to take care of yourself and to create the life that you want. They're just not, I'm not gonna like mince words about that. So you see yourself in a manual. I just imagine myself walking off to a very high rate pe, a very high porch, and dropping the manual.

<00:09:38> Kayla Levin: off the porch. That's it. I'm done with the manual. I quit. I'm not doing it. I'm not doing it. Catch myself in a manual again. Walk out to my imaginary porch, drop it again a hundred times a day if I need to. You know why? That's easier than what I will create for myself if I hang onto it, if I clinging to it like it's my little blankie.

<00:09:55> Kayla Levin: The manual has never been your friend. There's a whole other conversation about manuals for ourselves. It's super deep. Maybe we'll get to it one day. We talk about it inside the program all the time. So again, you should have FOMO if you don't already. I'm just brutal with you guys. But Manual, for ourselves, that's a whole other bag of tricks.

<00:10:13> Kayla Levin: So we're not gonna talk about that today cuz that's not so much about not killing people. This Pesach.

<00:10:17> Your Mindset: I'm Not in Control Anyway ---

<00:10:17> Kayla Levin: Okay, next one is your mindset and the mindset that I wanna encourage you to adopt when you're really, it's just like sometimes things just get so ridiculous and maybe it won't for Pesach. Who knows? Some of you are gonna have a nice calm time.

<00:10:31> Kayla Levin: Invite me to your hotel. Um, so this would be so. That like, it's almost like you can't be stressed anymore. You could just move the bar to that and like do that sooner. You know what I mean? It's like as long as we think we could create control over the situation, then we're stressed and then as soon as we realize like, oh, this is way beyond my ability to control, then we just get to laugh and relax.

<00:10:50> Kayla Levin: Move the bar down, go to that place earlier. Cuz the truth is you were never in control. We just have more of an illusion. . So what is that? That is sort of seeing the whole situation as the comedy of errors. Like, oh my gosh, at my table I have this type of person and this type of person, and they're totally gonna fight with each other.

<00:11:09> Kayla Levin: And one of them might be my husband and the other one might be my mother. And. Kind of hilarious. Like I'm not gonna be mean, I'm not gonna laugh in their face, but like internally, I could be like, oh, look at everyone having their little life journey. And it's so interesting and look at these personalities and they clash and they don't.

<00:11:26> Kayla Levin: And I just sort of remove myself from the ability, from the illusion of the ability to fix anything, to control anything. Because the truth is how other people interact with each other is completely out of my lane. Totally. And I can be there to empathize and I can be there to support and I can be there to say all the good things and to have so much עין טובה on everyone.

<00:11:50> Kayla Levin: And I also don't have to take it all so seriously. Another way of thinking about, it's like being sort of an anthropology student. I love this one. This one totally works for my like, you know, psychology brain that loves to geek out on this stuff is I'm like, oh, interesting. Let's see. Like this is sort of like a 60 year old you.

<00:12:08> Kayla Levin: Let's say I have like my aunt, they're like my 65 year old aunt interacting with this 12 year old Israeli girl. Like, like what's happening from her cultural experience and her lived experience and this child's like lived experience and cultural experience and like all the things, all the places where these will clash and let's just sort of see that play out, right?

<00:12:28> Kayla Levin: Like, and it might not even be with clashing, but it just allows me to get to the space where I am not trying to jump into the pit. I'm just sort of in this place of like, oh yeah. Why would that person think that having this conversation at my פסח סדר is appropriate? Like, what? What's going on for her?

<00:12:44> Kayla Levin: Not like, why does she think that? Which really means she's crazy. But I mean like, no really. What's, what's from her background, like what's different? She, let's say, was born two decades before me, so she has a completely different life experience, a completely different set of, you know, of, of experiences to draw upon in creating her values and her ideas and like what does she think gossip means?

<00:13:04> Kayla Levin: And obviously she doesn't think this is gossip. So like what's driving her, what's exciting to her about this? I don't understand. This is so interesting. Just like studying them from that place can also release some. Drive to control or kill , anyone. All right. And then the last one that I wanna offer you from Ilana Kendal, which I think I've referred back to this a couple times.

<00:13:28> Kayla Levin: Um, I'm gonna link her a book, Choosing Up in the show notes, which she gives this as one of, in one of her essays inside that book, which is, which genre are we in? This is so cute. Like, you know, watching My Seder or watching the cleaning Before or watching. חול המועד activity. That went completely nuts. Cuz Guy, by the way, in case anyone needs to hear this, it's supposed to go wrong at some point.

<00:13:50> Kayla Levin: If it doesn't go wrong, like daven, like I hope you're O like something. Something is supposed to go wrong. It's supposed to. That's like the plan, right? I guess don't resist the reality if it doesn't go wrong, like the reality is it's gonna go wrong. Something's not gonna go according to plan. That's just how these things happen, right?

<00:14:10> Kayla Levin: When that moment happens, or when you just catch yourself in a tizzy, asking yourself, which genre are we in? Like, would I cast this as like the, the, the plot thickens part of the romcom? Or is this like, you know, are we in like a Loony Tunes cartoon, or are we like in like some kind of, you know, outer space like sci-fi adventure?

<00:14:31> Kayla Levin: Like what is happening? Is this like a film noir? Like what genre are we in right now? Great way to kind of break that mental tension for.

<00:14:39> The Limitation to Mindset ---

<00:14:39> Kayla Levin: I'm gonna sneak in one last one because I think this is really important. There is a limitation to mindset. The limitation to mindset is when you are in your lower brain, you can't access these tools because you're, these tools all exist in your prefrontal cortex.

<00:14:51> Kayla Levin: I want you to kick in this, these tools earlier, okay? Making yourself laugh, coming up with something like that. They could cut maybe, maybe it'll pop into your mind and it'll sort of pull you back into prefrontal. But I, but if we can keep our. From getting so triggered that we're now in that fight or flight and the adrenaline is racing and we're like, or freeze or fawn or anything that they keep adding on, right?

<00:15:13> Kayla Levin: Um, we're not in that lower brain place. We can use any of these things to kind of keep us in prefrontal, lighten the mood and keep us from moving down. Cuz really what is so much create so much tension is when we sort of feel like we're, we, we have to prepare for battle and there's like literally no battle happening.

<00:15:29> Kayla Levin: It's just people behaving the way that they behave. . And so when you're in lower brain, when you feel activated or triggered, what I wanna offer you is to do something physical, okay? Don't try to access a new thought in that moment. Get outside, go for a walk, even if you just like, literally stick your head out the window for a minute.

<00:15:49> Kayla Levin: As long as you're not like on a high floor, right? You know, stick your head out the window and get some fresh air. Go for a walk. Um, run up and down the stairs two times. Go in your room into some jumping jacks. Take long, deep breaths. Do something physical. This is clearly researched that this will help you move out of lower brain back into your prefrontal cortex.

<00:16:08> Kayla Levin: Essentially, you're back online and then you're in a place where you can make really good decisions. Okay? So if you do get to a point where you really feel yourself feeling triggered, just know that the solution for that intense physical experience is a physical response. What can I do physically for myself?

<00:16:22> Kayla Levin: It will bring me back. . Okay. And just to understand that the reason that's happening is that your brain has misinterpreted what's going on as something that requires a survival response. And that happens all the time, right? As you, if you've ever, you know, let's say someone like calls you out in public, like most people would have a survival response, but that's not actually life threatening, right?

<00:16:44> Kayla Levin: And so again, physical reaction requires a physical response. So, Surprise five tools that I'm offering you today for how to not kill anyone this פסח. Please let me know, um, that you succeeded . I hope it goes well for you all. And if you know anyone or you hear someone over חול המועד or over פסח, I guess not over, like, don't send this over פסח, but if you, you know, you're having a conversation with someone or you've had a conversation with someone who's really, really struggling to just keep it together, send them this episode.

<00:17:11> Kayla Levin: Give them this break, you know, just send it to them over WhatsApp or, or email or call them and tell them the easiest way for them to access it is to go to Bitly It'll be linked here in the show notes and just help them out with some tools that they can use to just lower the emotional temperature and enjoy themselves, because since we're not in control anyway, we might as well enjoy the ride.

<00:17:35> Kayla Levin: Instead of our regular Thursday episode next week, because that's gonna be right in the middle of Pesach, I'm gonna be releasing you for you a little mini pep talk early next week. So I will catch you one more time over here before Pesach, and then I will see you on the other side. Okay, see you soon. Bye.

<00:17:51> Hey there, Kayla here. If you've been loving the podcast, I wanna invite you into my monthly coaching program, How to Glow. We take all the work here and go much deeper into our expectations of our husbands, our understanding of our husbands ourselves, by the way our intimate lives. We even extended out to anything else you want.

<00:18:07> Coaching on your parenting, your finances, your health. Get ongoing support. Live weekly coaching, and access to my best courses for only $49 a month. I would love to coach you inside. Registration is open now. Sign up at Isn't this the best time to start?

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