Highs and Lows and Highs

The day after my book launch—Amazon #1 bestseller thanks to you all!—I found out that I had an obscure form of skin cancer.  The good news is that it’s a very slow growing kind of cancer, but the bad news is that I’ve had it for over ten years!  In the immediate term it seems to be responding well to light therapy, and I’m looking forward to heading up to UCSF for more comprehensive testing after the first of the year–which I’m hopeful will indicate that I’m out of the woods and on my way to renewed health.

While getting the C-word diagnosis is always scary, the upside is that I finally have an answer to my long suffering itchiness, and also—ah, mortality!– a significant boost to my ability to savor the present and appreciate the preciousness of each moment. 

You all know that I’m passionate about living life all out, taking risks and going after my dreams (and sometimes falling on my face in the process).  But the auspicious timing of my book launch and the cancer diagnosis made me realize that one place where I had been playing it safe was in my business, particularly my basic speaker presentation. 

When speaking in the past, I had always been torn between what I wanted to share with my audiences (an experience of transformation) and what I felt I was supposed to do (focus on the sales I wanted to get by creating the need for the transformation that I had to offer).  If you just give the thing away, the experts say, there’s no need for people to invest in your services.

Well, just the other day I gave my first talk with my new all in/all out approach—and I played my guitar and got everyone in the room to sing with me! Most importantly, I felt great giving my gift and being in my power.

If you would like to give the gift of being in your power this holiday season, please considered gifting a copy or two of my book 7 Principles of Sex & Money & Power to someone you know!  I’m keeping the special intro pricing of $.99 for Kindle and $7.99 for paperback through the end of the year to make it easy.  Just click on the link below!

Happy Holidays!

Ta da! My Book Launch

After 35 years as a writer—short stories, children’s stories, a novel, a novella, 5 screenplays, 100s of songs and a rock musical—today I celebrate that I am finally a published author!  My new book 7 Principles of Sex & Money & Power is here!

When I began this writing journey as an undergraduate, I knew that most writers didn’t make it until their 40s or 50s.  This made sense to me, as how could one expect to have much wisdom to share without the necessary experiences of living?   And so, along with my big dreams, I had even bigger fears: how I was going to support myself while I collected those experiences…?

It’s been quite a ride from then to now, with many successes and failures, numerous re-inventions, and an ever deepening sense of humility and surrender. 

I’ve distilled some of what I’ve learned from those experiences into my first book. 

For only .99–launch day special!–I’ve made it easy for you to click below to buy your copy now, and share in my celebration.  Please buy it now to help me reach bestseller status.  Thank you so much!

Praise for 7 Principles of Sex & Money & Power and Lucas Roy Lehman
“Lucas’ wide range of experience as a sexuality educator, entrepreneur, artist, and neurotransformational coach provide deep source material for his wisdom and boldness. Don’t read this book unless you’re ready for more Sex and Money and Power!”

―Sage Lavine, #1 Best-Selling Author & CEO: Women Rocking Business

“An insightful and accessible manual that inspires us to become more conscious and alive. In 7 Principles of Sex & Money & Power, Lucas brings his wisdom, authenticity and experience, providing a guide for embracing practices that increase our curiosity and our capacity for authentic change.”

―Rabbi Paula Marcus Senior Rabbi, Temple Beth El



Hope and Change

Having voted in every election for the past 36 years, and having paid close attention to politics my whole life, I can honestly say it seems like more is at stake next week than ever before.  Never in my lifetime has the lust for power brought such levels of mendacity, hypocrisy, and disregard of accepted norms of civility.

Power is addicted to power, and those in power always commit increasing levels of atrocity to hold onto power long after their time has past.  But we’ve been here before, and humanity always perseveres, slowly moving forward.  After all, Marie Antoinette arrogantly said: “Let them eat cake!” not long before she lost her head. 
The vibration of the collective consciousness continues to rise over time, and social progress is an unstoppable force.  The fear and anger and violence on the right is an equal and opposite reaction to the unstoppable forces of social progress coming from the left.  And just as coastal communities in the hurricane belts double down on seawalls and denial as the oceans rise, so too do the old ways of thinking hunker down in resistance to what is and what will be. 
We need to reframe and rename ourselves because we’re not the resistance, they are.  But even as the oceans inevitably rise, the tide still goes in and out, and social progress is an ebb and flow process.  Likewise, destruction must come before renewal, and we’re in the process of exposing the rot at the core of our culture, a painful and necessary prelude to the inevitable rebirth.

The only truth in life is change, and the only guarantee is this too shall pass.  Unfortunately, the change we don’t want often seems to come too fast, and the change we do want comes too slowly.  The extent of our joy or suffering in this lifetime lies in our acceptance or resistance to our experience, and our relationship to change.

Our ability to change the external political power structure is limited, and cultural change takes a long time.  However, your ability to increase your Personal Power– the quality of your personal life and the quality of your personal connections–is only limited by the clarity of your intentions, and the commitment of your attention.
Speaking to the concepts of commitment and the slow pace of change, after 10 years of percolation, in two weeks I will transform into a published author!  I am excited to announce that my new book, 7 Principles of Sex & Money & Power  will be released on November 14th!

The book provides a clear guide to the simple and practical steps you can take to increase your personal power, regardless of external circumstances.  I will email you the link on 11/14 so you can get empowered at a super special release date price (as close to free as I am literally able).

In the meantime, remember to vote next Tuesday!

Lucas

What is Tantra?

What Is Tantra?

As you may or may not know, I’ve been a certified Tantra educator since 2006 through Source Tantra, and a certified Tantra educator through Ipsalu Tantra since 2008.

The word Tantra today is used quite loosely, and the word is sometimes associated with polyamory, swinging, and a variety of alternative sexual experiences and lifestyles. Without casting judgment, I would perhaps be inclined to call some of those experiences Neo-Tantra, or not even Tantra at all.

For me, Tantra is the practice of Tantra Yoga, which has been around for thousands of years. Dating back to ancient India, Tantra is one of the limbs of the tree of Hatha Yoga which includes Asana (physical poses), and Pranayama (breath practices). I would even be inclined to say that Tantra, by definition, includes Asana and Pranayama, as the preparation and training of the body and lungs is fundamental to the ability to hold and run increasing amounts of energy, which is the true essence of Tantra.

Tantra involves the conscious cultivation of presence, breath and intention, and from that foundation, includes the exploration and enjoyment of sexual energy, which is not the same as sex. Obviously, the conscious cultivation of sexual energy merges quite well with expanding your sexual/genital pleasure; however, it’s the expanded experience of divinity and aliveness and loving connection that is the “goal” of Tantra, not sexual pleasure or orgasm.

This distinction between sexual energy and sex can be difficult to understand. People often ask me what books to read to learn more, and to that I would answer, reading a book to learn about Tantra is like reading a Miles Davis biography to learn about jazz. If you haven’t already heard jazz, descriptions of syncopation and alternative chord progressions will be meaningless. Likewise, watching a video of actors “doing” Tantra can’t convey what’s really going on, because what’s really going on is the flow of energy which can’t be seen, only felt.

To be understood, Tantra must be experienced, but where do you start? With the word Tantra thrown around to describe just about any alternative sexual practices, who can you trust to provide a safe, and sacred introduction?

Allow me to introduce my dear friend, and long time colleague and collaborator, Lindy James. She offers monthly 3-hour evening intro classes, as well as intermediate and advanced experiences. For over twenty years she has been doing her magic work as a “sacred permissionary” creating a conscious, welcoming container to safely explore and play with energy. For a schedule of her offerings, please visit her website: www.LindyJames.com
Lindy James

For those of you with Tantra experience, Lindy and I will be leading a sacred sexuality retreat in Santa Cruz, October 5-7th. If you’re interested in attending, please contact me directly for more information. Email: lucas@lucasroylehman.com

In not completely unrelated news, my long forthcoming book “7 Principles of Sex & Money & Power” is finally done! Please watch this space for the launch date in mid-October. I will be offering a 99 cent launch date special, and would very much appreciate your support on that day to make it an Amazon bestseller! Thanks in advance!

Till next time…

Namaste!

Lucas

Money and the Fear of Death

I recently got re-certified as a Neurotransformational coach, which is all about the brain science of how you create the changes you want in your life. What has become increasingly clear is that “who” we are being is the key to bringing forth and sustaining positive results.

My brilliant mentors Ann Betz and Ursula Pottinger have identified seven levels of consciousness, a measure of “who” you are being from moment to moment, ranging from the lowest energy to the highest.  They are:

1. Hopelessness

2. Fear

3. Frustration

4. Courage

5. Engagement

6. Innovation

7. Synchronicity

When you are in a state of fear, for example, the part of your brain that is most active is the older, survival oriented, reptilian amygdala, and your nervous system is typically flooded with fight or flight hormones like adrenaline and cortisol.  The constant stress of modern lifestyles plus a 24/7 input of largely negative messages from media keeps you in what we call an amygdala hijack state, and makes it difficult to access the higher creative functioning of the pre-frontal cortex.  (Cavemen didn’t invent the bow and arrow while they were running away from lions.)

Although scary things do happen, for the most part, society functions well enough and 99.9% of us make it through the day just fine.  Though fear can be understood in the context of the acronym, False Expectations Appearing Real, it nevertheless feels real in our bodies.  Our brains, ever the problem solving machines, try to fix the problem.  Your brain reasons, if you are feeling afraid, then what you need is safety, right?  And in our capitalistic-based reality, more money theoretically equals more safety. 

If you are reading this, you surely have a roof over your head, food in the refrigerator, and your safety and survival is not in danger.  Which isn’t to say you wouldn’t enjoy having more money and what it can buy, but you certainly don’t need it, not in a way that would justify the level of anxiety most people (including myself) regularly feel around money. And getting more money only assuages the anxiety temporarily.  This regularly happens for me when I get a new client, and I relax for a day or two, only to feel the drumbeat of fear getting louder with each day that passes that I don’t get another new client.

I have come to believe that my fear around money is largely my reptile brain’s way of trying to make me safe, and solve the unsolvable problem of my fear of death, since more money equals more safety.  So we spend our lives on the hamster wheel running faster and faster and never getting any closer to solving the problem (which is in fact, unsolvable).  In fact, having more money often creates even more anxiety around what it takes to keep it—and stay safe! And we waste our lives living in fear, and making less effective decisions from our reptilian brain, rather than our creative brain.

What do we do about our fear of death, then?  That’s real, right?

My spiritual practice aside, which tells me that I am an eternal being that is part of the never dying “all that is,” what’s real is that my body is going to die, and my body is afraid to die.

What’s needed is to release the fear from my body so that I can access higher brain states and focus on other things besides trying to solve the unsolvable.  I do this by naming it, feeling it, and accepting it.

I accept that I am afraid to die.  When I honor that fear today in my mind, I can release it today, because my mind knows I’m not going to die today.   (Of course, tomorrow will bring a new today to accept my fear of death all over again).

And if I’m not going to die today, and I release the fear that I am going to die today, then, from that place, who do I want to be today?  How do I want to live my life today?  What do I want to create today?

Those are great questions to bring to coaching.

Intimacy, with myself?

I’ve been very fortunate in love.

Which isn’t to say that I got married and lived happily ever after, or that I haven’t had my share of betrayals and abandonments, heartbreaks and heartaches.  Over the last 30 years, I’ve lived and loved boldly, I’ve made mistakes, and I’ve had my share of all that love has to offer a human heart.  I’ve learned so much, and my life has been very rich.

I’m grateful to all the partners–long term and shorter term—that I’ve had the opportunity to give love fully and freely to, and so grateful for the abundance of love I have received in return.  With each relationship, or maybe through the conscious grieving after the end of each relationship, I have been able to heal a wounded part of myself, and today I find myself experiencing being single in a new way.

I notice that I like myself, that more and more I enjoy being with myself, and that I’m not looking for somebody else to distract me or rescue me from my feelings.  Most importantly, I find that I’m not needing somebody else to validate that I’m worthy of my own love.

I often tell my clients, we can only receive as much love from others as we give to ourselves.  And if we’re looking outside ourselves to get more love, we are not likely to attract it.  Or if we do connect with someone, it’s likely to have the same vibration as the last someone.

Through my lifetime doing this work on myself, and my dozen plus years doing this work with clients, I have come to think of intimacy as the music of love.  And just as I wouldn’t have gotten much better as a guitarist without my many teachers, so too has the quality of the music of love in my life grown through self-reflection, self-responsibility, and mentorship.

What about you?  What is the quality of the music of love playing in your life?  Do you have a mentor to improve your “musicianship?”

I have two openings left in my upcoming Intimacy Makeover 90-day on-line group program starting in mid-April.  It’s a very affordable and life changing program for you if you’re ready to improve the quality of the music of love you’re playing in your life—solo or with a partner.

This program is for you if:

  • You are eager to create new patterns and experience more love and joy
  • You want realistic tools to create more ease & connection in all your relationships
  • You are ready to break the cycle of attracting the same types of unsatisfying relationships

For more information, please check out IntimacyMakeover.com.

Please send me an email to learn more, or we can jump on a quick call to see if it’s the right thing for you at this time.

What is an Intimacy Makeover?

When you think about your past relationships, (or your current relationship if you’re frustrated with the quality of your intimacy), do you find yourself ruminating on what your partner should do, or should’ve done differently?  If only they’d been ________, or if only they would’ve done ______, then it would’ve “worked out.”

Perhaps there’s even been a pattern of behavior that’s shown up across multiple relationships, which has led you to believe that men in general are flawed in this way, or women are deficient in that way, and that’s why you can’t find a satisfactory partner.  Why couldn’t he just do this one simple thing?  Why couldn’t she show up the way you wanted?

Well, I have bad news and good news.

The bad news is, it’s not about “them” and what they’re doing or not doing.  It’s about you.

That’s also the good news, because it means that you are creating your own reality, and you have the power to create a different reality.  But how?

You’ve probably heard the old adage: “Keep doing what you’re doing and you’ll keep getting what you got.”  And you might say, well, what can I do differently?  I’m loving, and thoughtful, and generous…that should be enough to be loved!

It is…except it’s not about what you’re doing, it’s about who you’re being, and the power of your beliefs that inform who you’re being, creating a reality that confirms those beliefs.

“Keep being who you are being, and you’ll keep experiencing what you experienced.”

Who are you being?

Are you still being the victim of old wounds from past abandonments and betrayals?  Do you have trust issues?

Somebody else can’t fix that for you.  Even if they try!  In more than one relationship I tried to be the white knight to heal my partner’s deeply held abandonment story, but she just kept raising the stakes of her misery until it was unbearable and I was forced to leave her.  My love didn’t fix her, and ultimately I had to let go of the belief that my love could “fix” a woman.  More importantly, before I could stop attracting women that I needed to save, I needed to accept my arrogance that was underneath that belief, and the even greater challenge of letting that arrogance go.

Who are you being when it comes to love?  What is the quality of your inner dialog? Do those inner voices tell you that you can’t be trusted when it comes to picking partners, or you need to lose weight before you’re lovable?  Do you experience feelings of hopelessness, fear, and frustration when it comes to your relationship with yourself?

Of course we all experience bouts of hopelessness, fear, and frustration in life.  But usually we project those feelings onto something that’s not right “out there” as the reasons for those feelings, and if only we had that thing or that person, we’d be happy.

But when you accept the responsibility of creating your own reality, take responsibility for who you’re being, take responsibility for cultivating new thoughts and beliefs that create your reality, then you attract different people with different behaviors to create different relationships.

Keep doing what you’re doing, and you’ll keep getting what you’ve got.

And when you register for my Intimacy Makeover program you create the intention to get what you haven’t gotten.

Attract the kinds of relationships you truly desire!  Hit reply and we’ll set up a 15 minute call to see if this program is right for you.

The 90-Day Intimacy Makeover for women begins May 7th,so contact me today! Email lucas@intimacymakeover.com or call (831) 588 0840

Lucas

Valentine’s Day…Fake News?

I love flowers. I frequently buy them for myself, and often give them as gifts.

But not on Valentine’s Day.

I mean, what a phenomenal rip-off on a fake Hallmark holiday, right?

One Valentine’s Day I did submit to buying roses for a girlfriend (she had sent me an email link, a not so subtle hint that she wanted roses delivered to her at work so all her corporate co-workers could see she had a boyfriend) but that night at home she expressed disappointment at the meager arrangement my $75 investment provided.

Crash commercialism as a measure of devotion aside, I do love the potential of a day promoting the conscious cultivation and expression of love.

But Lucas, isn’t every day a day to cultivate and express love?

Absolutely. 

And we also benefit from a reminder to step it up and put some appreciative words on a card now and then.  Grow more love in our lives by fertilizing the love that’s already there. 

Now where I’m certain we would all benefit from a little more love fertilizer is in our expression of appreciation for ourselves. 

And if it sounds silly to even think of giving yourself a Valentine’s Day card written with at least three things you appreciate about yourself, I doubly challenge you to do it… and notice what you feel.

Here is an example to help you craft a love letter to yourself!

Dear Lucas,

One thing I appreciate about you is your sense of humor.

One thing I love about you is your commitment to eating well.

One thing I am proud of is your ability to surrender to the transformational power of vulnerability.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Love,

Lucas

Today, I invite you to take a few minutes and try this exercise of appreciation for yourself.  You can only receive as much love from others as you are able to receive from yourself, so love yourself up and expand your receiving capacity!

Lucas

PS: Check out my recent podcast interview {video} with Krista Inochovsky about love and relationships.

Harvard study discovers the #1 key to a fulfilling life

I was recently listening to a TED talk about a 75-year study by the Harvard psychology department, exploring the question of what brings the greatest happiness and satisfaction over a lifetime.  The study followed a group of undergraduate men, as well as a group of Boston area men who didn’t attend college.
At the start of the study in the 1940s, 75% of the participants said getting rich was very important, and some 50% said they wanted to be famous—a result similar to Millennials who were asked the same question today.
But over the course of the study, following up with the same participants every two years or so, what became clear was that the real key to life-long happiness and satisfaction, were close relationships, particularly the kind of reciprocal relationships that the participants knew they could lean into during life’s most challenging times.
In other words, what proved to be most important for happiness and satisfaction for both the financially successful participants, as well as the less financially successful participants in the study, were family, close friends, and particularly, long-term relationships (LTR).
Perhaps the conclusions of the study seem obvious.  All humans share a need for connection, safety, love, touch and intimacy; however, relationship dynamics have changed dramatically over the past few generations. Families are scattered across the globe. Friendship and even communities seem to come and go.  Many of the old assumptions about love itself have gone out the window in the modern world, and successful relationship doesn’t fall so clearly under the “live happily ever after with one partner for the rest of our lives” model anymore.  And finding satisfying love is more challenging, complex, and volatile than ever.
As an intimacy coach, empowering men and women to create more love in the world is my life’s purpose, and though I don’t claim to have all the answers, I’ve spent a lot of time asking questions that have led me to present my new webinar:
You will learn:
  • A new perspective that illuminates the complexities of the modern relationship dynamic
  • The 6 cornerstones of a successful relationship
  • How to navigate a world of differing needs, wants and desires
Do you want to know more about how to have a loving, long-term partnership?

Commitment or Surrender?

A couple of weeks ago, I committed to delivering a few paragraphs of copy to my assistant for my newsletter, and two whole weeks went by without me writing a word.
I didn’t have any good reasons, and not even any mediocre excuses.  I had the time.  I just didn’t do it.
Why not?
Now, as I often tell my clients, it’s usually not very useful to ask ourselves “why” questions, because underneath the answer to a “why” question is usually going to be a limiting belief like “There’s something wrong with me” or “I’m not good enough.”  (Particularly if the question is a big one like “Why can’t I find a romantic partner?”  Or, “Why can’t I make more money?”)
In this case, my limiting beliefs are that I’m lazy, and that nobody is interested in what I have to say.  And while those beliefs might be true, or partially true, the deeper exploration of them is not likely to result in the writing of a newsletter.
A better question is: What got in the way of writing the newsletter? Or, what small step can I take toward writing the newsletter?  Or, most powerfully, what core value is fulfilled by writing the newsletter?
Writing a newsletter because I’m “supposed to” is not a core value.  If anything, I have a core value of rebelling against things I’m supposed to do…so maybe I wasn’t sufficiently committed to begin with.
Newton’s 3rd law states that every action has an equal and opposite reaction.  And this has me looking at the opposite energies of commitment and surrender.  Therefore, increasing commitment would be a result of increasing surrender.  But surrendering what?
Ha! Surrendering my limiting beliefs around laziness and your lack of interest!
And now I’ve even fulfilled a core value here—to share vulnerably, and to begin the exploration of this rich topic of commitment/surrender—and I’m rolling!
When we try to bring something new into the world, we usually think commitment and effort are what’s necessary to reach our goal.  Yang energy, if you will.  But once we reach a certain level of success, what gets in the way of moving forward is often more complex, and attention to the yin energies of release, surrender, and opening to receiving can hold the key. 
Is there an area of your life where you’ve been wanting to move forward, but feeling stuck?
Continuing the thread from last month around autumn’s harvest/falling away, what part of you is ready to die as we head into the darkest days of the year?
What do you need to let go of, what old story does your ego need to surrender to allow for new growth and movement in the new year?