Rewriting Your Relationships with Penny Tonkin

Season #3

Are you in a relationship that you don’t like? Or are you desiring to create a relationship with someone?

In this episode, your host, Rachael O’Brien, talks with Relationships Done Different Facilitator, Penny Tonkin, about  tools they have both used in their relationships to create more conscious relationships that allow you to have that sense of being alive and life being a gift to you.

What if you could move from judgement and separation with people, to allowance, gratitude, vulnerability, honour and trust?


Keys points from this episode’s conversation


  • Ask Questions Every Day
  • The Most Important Thing Is The Relationship With Yourself
  • What Does Relationship Mean To You?
  • POD & POC
  • Destroy and Uncreate Your Relationships Every Day
  • Trust What You Know
  • Write A List Of Everything You Desire In A Relationship
  • Is Your Relationship Fun For You?

Ask Questions Every Day

One of the tools Penny uses every day for relationships is to ask a question. We are taught to have the answer, and to go out and find the ‘right’ person and marry the ‘right’ person and get a house. What if that's not true for you? What if you can just have fun and ask a question, like, “What can I create today to have even more fun for me?" and follow the energy?

Penny's first relationship, she knew it would never be what she wanted, and she created it like that. It took her 20 years to finally say that it was not working for her, but at least she recognised it and did something about it.  We all know in our hearts what is true. Penny really learnt to follow the energy and ask questions. Questions are the key for Penny; every day!


The Most Important Thing Is The Relationship With Yourself

The thing that is most important is your relationship with yourself. Before you can have a relationship with anybody else, you have to have one with you.

The 5 Elements of Intimacy are: honour, trust, vulnerability, allowance and gratitude. What if you could have those with yourself?

When Penny grew up, she thought intimacy was about cuddling and sex etc. For Rahael it was kissing and hugging and bodies coming together. And it's not. That's copulation and touch.

To Rachael, honour, trust, vulnerability, allowance and gratitude are essential aspects of your relationship with yourself; which she says she is still working on. Rachael was severely abused as a young girl, and she says we've all been abused. We live in a world where we are told to communicate through judgement and ‘this is right, this is wrong, this is good, this is bad’. So, her primary relationships as a young girl were not based on honouring, respect, valuing, or trusting what you know. 


What Does Relationship Mean To You?

Rachael recreated the relationships that she grew up around. She grew up around a lot of trauma and drama and havoc, and there was absolutely no peace or consciousness - consciousness meaning receiving everything and judging nothing. So, she ended up with relationships that she would not like to have instead of things that she would like to have.

True relationship is about when people come together, they have a capacity and ability to have more abundance and thrive. That's actually the basis of relationships done different; that your relationships support you to thrive and have an abundance of living and the wealth of living, instead of havoc and fighting and getting into a boat where you don't know if the boat is secure and literally swimming in the middle of the sea blaming each other.

Rachael would just fall in love. She never looked at, "Is this what I would like to have? Does this have something that is going to support me to have a greater way of living?" Relationship was just about survival for Rachael. 

To change this, she started asking, "How did I create this?"

If you are in a relationship that you are not enjoying or you don't like what you have, or there always seem to be a problem, ask "How did I create this?" It allows you to receive the unconsciousness or lack of presence that you created the relationship from; the unconscious point of view. Because, we create our lives; everything that happens to us.

It’s not about, "What's wrong with me?" Penny was in a relationship for 20 years that didn't work for her, Rachael was in a relationship for 19 years. There's nothing wrong about it and there's nothing right about it. Rachael sees that she and her partner were just two children that came out of a lot of havoc and a lot of unconsciousness and they created the exact same relationships that their parents had. Her partner's dad was away working for his whole childhood, and Rachael grew up without a dad. So, when they came together, they weren't even present with each other. 

There was a lot of love for the other person but it's like they couldn't be in that space; there was so much shit about money and so much shit with having kids and there was so much lack of presence. They lacked presence and education with how to deal with daily living, how to deal with money, how to deal with the business of having a family and how to deal with things that would show up with their children on a daily basis. They were fighting the insanity of this reality instead of getting really present with what we would like to have.

Rachael didn't really want to get married, but she did want the 'fantasy' of the norm. And she thought that if she got married, everything was going to be beautiful and everything would work; and that wasn't the case. It also was really tough for Rachael's partner, as she acknowledges that she wasn't present and wasn't happy for 80% of the time. So, you had two people who didn't know how to generate a living that was peaceful and supported that expansion and thriving and abundance. As such, they were just living according to this reality's rules and regulations.



POD is the point of destruction and POC is the point of creation. When we say POD and POC, we are actually clearing all the points of views that you've created about whatever comes up for you.

For Rachael, the POD and POC is a huge tool. If you have a relationship that is drama, separation, confusion, no care of bodies and just fighting a war everyday, you can ask, "How did I create this?" and POC and POD all of the things that come up; all of the judgements, etc.  Then, and ask a new question, such as, "What can I create today?" Or, if you are not in a relationship, "What would it take for me to find a great partner?"


Destroy and Uncreate Your Relationships Every Day

Another tool Penny shared was destroying and uncreating your relationships everyday. Most people think that means you are ending your relationships. No. Destroying and uncreating the relationship is destroying your points of view, your emotions, everything that you have locked in place of your relationship previously, allowing something new to generate. 

For example, if you have a grudge and you destroy and uncreate your relationship with that person, it will destroy and uncreate all the points of views you have about it and everything you have decided, all the judgments about who you are and what this is, etc., and it creates a blank slate where you can start again.

So, every day, “I destroy and uncreate my relationship with [insert your partner’s name/your children's names/ etc.]” and use POC and POC to destroy and uncreate everything that comes up around that. Then you can ask a question, such as, "What can I create with this relationship? 

Penny does this every day with her relationships with her business, her son, her partner, her dog, her mum and father and just general people. She says it's a great tool to use. And, things do change.

You don't have to judge your past choices. Just choose something new today; "What can I create today?" "Universe, what would it take for me to create an even better relationship with me; totally trusting me?"  The relationship with you comes first.


Trust What You Know

The tool Penny uses when a relationship isn't going well, such as a judgmental boss or difficulties with her relationship with your son, etc., is trusting herself and really honouring her awareness and trusting what she knows. Trust is something that wasn't existent in past relationships and she really had to work on it. Now, she really acknowledges that she does trust herself and she does know. She just keeps asking questions and goes with her awareness.

When we say trust, we don't mean trust what the person says. We mean, if your mum was fighting for her point of view yesterday because she needs to be right, and she was fighting 10 years ago, and she loves to fight, you can trust that she is going to fight today.

Also, you can trust in the energy of each situation. If you walk into a room and there is an energy of anger or hatred, you can trust that you know someone has that energy. When you are functioning from awareness, you are not willing to cut that knowing off. The founder of Access Consciousness, Gary Douglas, says, “Some people will kill you, some people will hurt you, some people will help you and some people will contribute to you massively.” And it is possible to pick up on that energy as soon as you meet someone. That's one of the gifts Penny has. Be willing to receive all the information. And, receiving doesn't mean that you lock it into your body, but you are aware of all the information. 

We are not educated or invited to trust ourselves and our knowing. One of the big things Rachael learnt with Relationships Done Different was trust. She wasn't invited in anyway to trust the energetics of what she knows in relationships, so her evolution of trusting what she knows and trusting the energies has been a continuous reach for "What is true for me here? What do I know here?" And, she says she still has lots of work to do on this. If she has someone in her life who loves to fight and loves to be right and loves separation and judgement and drama, she can recognise their purpose with their words and their actions, and realise that it's not personal. 


Write A List Of Everything You Desire In A Relationship

One of the tools Gary Douglas, the founder of Access Consciousness, gave Rachael in 2019 was to write down the things she would like to have in a relationship and the things you would not like to have, and get really clear on that.  We say what would you like to have, or what do you desire rather than what do I want, because there are so many definitions that want means to lack.

Rachael wrote her list again yesterday, and it included: allowance, gratitude, independence, willingness for growth and change, peaceful, living, love bodies and two people increasing their capacity to thrive.

What Racael would not like to have is: judgement (because all judgement is a separation and an abuse), massive money problems (because they bring all of that drama into the relationship), family drama, trauma, confusion, and no presence with bodies

When Rachael went down her list, she asked if she was willing to be all those things for herself. She acknowledges that she is not fully willing and that she still has work to do.

What if you wrote your list right now?


Is Your Relationship Fun For You?

For Penny, the most important energies in a relationship are having fun and being happy. That's how she lives her life every day now. And also the energy of relaxation. Every day she asks, "How much fun can I have today? How happy can I be?" 

One of the top things that makes Penny happy is walking on the beach and just laying on the sand receiving the energy of the Earth. Also, just being around her friends that she laughs with. A lot of people can bring you down, so Penny chooses her friends to be fun.

Rachael says she still has work to do in her relationships. She will notice when she still wants to control someone or has a need of a reactive reaction. And that's okay too. We keep going. We are experts in what we don't like to have. Rachael gets up every day and really looks at what it is she would like to have and what it is that she would like to build and what is relevant for her. And what really brings laughter and joy and light into her life. 

What would it take for us all to create a conscious relationship; consciousness meaning, receiving everything and judging nothing?

What choice can you make today to create the relationship with you and others that would allow you to have that sense of being alive and life being a gift to you?

Relationships Done Different





Book: Relationship, Are You Sure You Want One?


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