Writing from the Heart

18 02 2011

Why do we blogand who exactly are we blogging for?

Do we write just to get something off our chestor do we write with our perceived audience in mind?

Are we looking to attract a large number of followersor do we just say whatever is on our mind – regardless of whether anyone wants to read what we have to say?

Does it matter if we stick to our original blog ‘theme’or is it an evolving process through which our ‘theme’ develops as our blog unfolds?

 Perhaps I should begin this post by answering some of the above questions with my own thoughts on this subject.

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I began writing this blog as a way of sharing my 50th birthday celebrations with my friends and family in the mistaken belief that they were possibly the only people who would take the time to read my posts.

After all, why would anyone else be interested in the random thoughts of an (almost) 50 year old!

 

As things have worked out, hardly any of my close friends and family have read more than a just few posts (apart from my loyal friend Liz – bless you) and until a few short weeks ago my current readers were strangers to me.

Now of course, they have become my lovely Blogging Buddies and these dear friends have brought so much unexpected joy, laughter and inspiration to the whole blogging experience.

So does this mean that I now write with my new friends in mind? I do try not to do this, but as I write I can’t help but wonder what my new friends will think of this latest post. So yes, in some ways, I suppose I am beginning to write with my ‘audience’ in mind.

I do write to get things off my chest, hence my constant references to my on-going battle of keeping up my blogging commitments and my dilemma over whether to switch to a weekly post instead of a daily one to lessen some of the pressure.

I have resisted this so far as I would feel that I had let myself down after promising to commit to doing this for the entire 365 days (which feels like a lifetime at this present moment in time!)

It wasn’t my original intention to create loads of followers; although I have to confess that I’ve loved watching the visitor stats slowly begin to climb and it was a truly amazing experience to see them shoot through the roof after being ‘Freshly Pressed’ a couple of weeks ago!

It was as a result of the positive feedback I had been receiving, combined with the numbers of visitors that I decided to add a page to my blog called ‘Dancing with Dystonia’ to help raise awareness of this little known and incurable condition that affects so many people throughout the world.

If by doing this, I can help one other person to recognise this condition…or to find the support they need…then this entire blogging process has been worth the commitment.

As for sticking to a ‘theme’, the only constant throughout my posts is my daily ‘reason for celebration’. Otherwise, I have used different formats with – or without – quotations or poems…and I have written about whatever is on my mind at the time.

Ultimately, we have to be true to ourselves and by…

 Writing from the heart…we will reach to the heart.

We have stopped for a moment to encounter each other, to meet, to love, to share. This is a precious moment, but it is transient. It is a little parenthesis in eternity. If we share with caring, lightheartedness, and love, we will create abundance and joy for each other. And then this moment will have been worthwhile.
Deepak Chopra

 

Day 49 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I am going to celebrate by taking a leaf out of Deepak’s book and enjoy every precious and transient moment.

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I Used to be Decisive – But Now I’m Not so Sure!

15 02 2011

“Procrastination usually results in sorrowful regret. Today’s duties put off tomorrow give us a double burden to bear; the best way is to do them in their proper time.” ~Ida Scott Taylor

I used to be decisive – but now I’m not so sure!

When I was younger, I was very impulsive. If something fired up my imagination I would just go for it…with no thought of any possible consequences of my actions.

I always had a great time and never regretted any of my decisions. With hindsight, they weren’t always the best decisions…but hey…at least I’d had a ball and learnt a few lessons along the way.

Now I’m rapidly heading towards my big 50, I just can’t seem to make the simplest of decisions without procrastinating for days…or weeks…before finally taking action.

What happened to the girl who always followed her heart wherever it may lead?

Now every choice is examined from every conceivable angle. Pros and cons are weighed up. Friends and family are consulted for their opinion and needless to say, their opinions vary hugely – resulting in more confusion than ever!

The incessant chatter inside my head goes round in circles until I am unable to think straight…let alone make any important decisions.

Eventually I will decide on a course of action – only to start worrying about whether this really was the right decision – before checking to see if there is a ‘get out clause’ in case I change my mind!

All this procrastination is very tiring…and so I usually end up doing nothing and putting off making decisions until tomorrow – always tomorrow – and one day there will be no tomorrow.

What happened to the trusting girl who had such faith in the universe that even if she made a mistake – it didn’t really matter – as she knew that everything would always work out for the best?

As I get older, I worry more about becoming the proverbial ‘bag lady’ – living on the streets if all my ventures fail and I can no longer afford to pay the rent.

This prospect scares me more now than it did in my younger days when all things seemed possible and I felt immortal.

Maybe it is because there is now more time behind me than there is in front of me – and less time for my mistakes to work themselves out…so I try to avoid making mistakes…by avoiding making decisions in the first place!

I recognise this pattern of procrastination in my mother who is the Queen of Worry. I used to listen to her talk herself into something one minute…and talk herself out of it the next. I understand her fear of failure and the frustration of not finding the courage to ‘feel the fear – and do it anyway’.

For many years I was determined not to be like my mother – so frozen with fear and worry that she chose to walk away from so many of life’s wonderful opportunities. I became the explorer of the family-  always chasing after the next exciting adventure.

I am a firm believer than we teach what we most need to learn. And when I started writing this blog at the beginning of the year, I talked about our DASH  (the line between our date of birth and date of passing from this world)…and how we owe it to ourselves to make our DASH count.

I have a neighbour whose mantra is…‘Yeah…whatever’…

ExactlyWhatever…! 

Life is a risky business and whatever our choices…we will all end up at the same destination!

So thank you dear neighbour – for reminding me to stop worrying about the future…to live in the ‘Now’…and focus on making every day a cause of celebration!

Day 46 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I am going to celebrate by making the decisions I keep putting off and trusting that there is no such thing as a ‘wrong decision’.





To Thy Own Self Be True

4 02 2011

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best – night and day – to make you somebody else; means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight. 
~ e.e. cummings 1955

When we are alone…it is easy to be true to our self.

But holding onto our sense of self within a relationship – without getting lost – is a different matter entirely.

It is so easy to say “just be yourself” – and yet it is one of life’s greatest challenges to actually be so.

For most of my life I’ve tried to fit other’s peoples expectations of who I thought they wanted me to be.

With a huge insecurity and a need to be ‘liked’…I would wear the appropriate mask to fit each occasion.

I courted other people’s good opinion in a vain attempt to validate my existence by suppressing my own needs to meet another’s.

I allowed myself to become a victim…so that I could blame the other…when one bullying relationship after another crashed and burned.

I learnt to dance to so many different tunes…I could have created my own solo dance troupe!

Deep down, I knew I was a long way from being true to myself.

I knew something had to change, but I didn’t know what…or how.

I had become an accomplished chameleon, changing colours with such frequency; I no longer knew who I was.

 

I understood that a certain amount of compromise in a relationship was to be expected; but there is a huge difference between compromise and selling one’s soul to please another.

Consciously – or subconsciously – many of us play games with each other in order to get what we want.

We are the victim…or the abuser – or we flit between the two.

We recognise the pattern in other people and fail to see it in ourselves.

We hide our true light in an attempt to be accepted…or to fit within someone else’s definition of who they think we are.

Living our personal truth is a real challenge as it often means having to let go of those on whom we’ve become co-dependant.

And the thought of letting go can be a scarier prospect than staying put…so we remain stuck in destructive relationships that rob us of who we truly are.

Stepping into our personal power takes a lot of courage as it requires a huge leap of faith to choose to walk our path alone.

And as I walk slowly back towards myself, I begin to stand straighter and walk tall as my old way of being fades to grey and I begin to see myself in glorious Technicolor.

Like a long lost friend…I am returning home to myself…where I belong.

Day 35 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I will celebrate by welcoming myself back home…I’ve missed you babe!





Freshly Pressed!!!

2 02 2011

I am just SO EXCITED about being featured in today’s Freshly Pressed! 

A couple of hours ago I noticed that my stats had suddenly taken off like a rocket.

I couldn’t work out what was going on until it occurred to me to check out Freshly Pressed

…and there was my ‘Blog Baby’

…featured on the front page of WordPress

…after only one month of Blogging!

AMAZING!!!

 Life doesn’t get much better than this!

What a wonderful reward for all the sleepless nights and the personal sacrifices that have been made in order to honour my commitment to the Postaday2011 Challenge.

I would like to say ‘WELCOME AND THANK YOU’ to everyone who has visited my blog for the first time today. I am delighted that you have taken the time to stop by to say ‘Hello’…I promise I will respond to all your comments very soon,

I’d also like to say a BIG THANKYOU to WordPress for choosing to feature me. It is such an honour and I am truly amazed to have made it to the front page. Thank you for making this a highlight of my ‘Special Year of Celebration’.

Most of all I want to say a very HEARTFELT THANKYOU to all my Blogging Buddies and my Loyal Supporters (you know who you are!) – for keeping me on track whenever my resolve has begun to crack.

Finally, I want to say a ‘SPECIAL THANK YOU’ to my beautiful daughter Abi, for introducing me to WordPress and the wonderful world of Blogging. You have no idea of what you’ve started here my darling. I LOVE YOU xxx

 A Special Celebration

Tonight I am going to celebrate by raising a glass (or two) to everyone who has supported me on my journey to date For your love, your encouragement and your belief in me – Thank You All xxx





Chasing Rainbows

28 01 2011

We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.

T.S.Eliot

I love this simple poem.

These few words encapsulate my life as a restless soul…always on the go…always restless…always in search of the next thrilling adventure waiting over the far horizon.

I’ve always been the dreamer – believing in a world full of exciting possibilities.

As a young child I possessed an unshakable belief that I could have…or be…anything I wanted  – if I wanted it enough.

And I did want it…all of it!

All my life I have been chasing rainbows in pursuit of the elusive pot of gold. And I have been very blessed to have experienced many riches along the ever changing road that has led me back home to myself.

I have enjoyed a wealth of experiences, wonderful enriching relationships, material possessions, and the greatest gift of all – a deep connection with the richness of spirit.

Like a spiritual butterfly…I have flitted from one job to the next; thrown myself wholeheartedly into one exciting business idea after another; moved from relationship to friendship; house to home; and country to continent.

Always moving…with an insatiable need to explore all that life has to offer.

I could never commit wholeheartedly to anyone – or anything – for more than a short time before my wings began to itch and I had to respond to the calling from spirit to fly towards my next appointment with destiny.

I’ve travelled the world and lived a life that many can only dream of. Life has been a kaleidoscope of colourful experiences; each one revealing another facet of my soul’s awakening.

My wanderlust has been calmed for a while as I find myself back in the UK, living in my little riverside home; immersed in this new journey of discovery…revealing my life and my thoughts to the world through the writing of this blog.

With each new post, I connect with another long buried part of myself. As I bring my soul gently towards the light through the writing process, I am beginning to recognise – and truly know myself – for the very first time.

And it feels so good!

Day 28 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I celebrate coming home – to myself!

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Supermarket Sleuth

16 01 2011

During my previous work as a House Doctor, I used to love snooping around other people’s homes looking for clues about the occupants.

It reminded me of the TV programme, ‘Who Lives in a House like This?’ which was very popular in the UK a few years back.

These days I enjoy taking a peek into people’s supermarket trolleys in an attempt to try and pick up clues about the person buying the goodies.

Skulking around the aisles in my quest for suitable subjects to observe, I often feel like an undercover detective for Who Lives in a Body like This?!

As a self-appointed Supermarket Sleuth I have been collecting circumstantial evidence to support my case that We Really Are What we Eat.

During a recent Supermarket Sweep, I made the following light hearted observations of my fellow shoppers …

…In the fruit and veg section I spotted the super fit looking lady fresh from her workout in the gym, clutching a basket filled with lots of healthy looking foods including green salad leaves, piles of fruit, fresh fish and packets of vitamins…plus a small can or two of gourmet cat food!

…In the breakfast section I observed the harassed looking mum dragging a couple of hyperactive kids in her wake; wheeling a trolley filled to the brim with sugar enhanced cereals, multi packs of fat laden crisps, packets of processed ham, cans of sugar laden fizzy drinks, three loaves of cheap white bread, two large tubs of margarine, a huge bag of sweets and what appeared to be most of the supermarket’s BOGOF offers of the week (which invariably are the foods most detrimental to our health).

…Loitering at the fresh fish counter was the professional looking single guy, (no wedding ring = huge assumption!)in possession of a basket containing a box of pizza, a packet of ready made salad, half a dozen oysters, a couple of bottles of beer, a bar of chocolate and a copy of GQ magazine!

…In the housewares section, young couple setting up thier first home together were lingering over the boxed sets of cutlery and pushing a trolley full of household appliances with enough ingredients to concoct a comforting Spaghetti Bolognese for their cosy supper.   

And as for my own basket…containing a packet of fresh prawns, a mango, some rocket leaves, a large bundle of asparagus, a packet of butter, a loaf of walnut bread and a large tube of toothpaste…I’ll leave you to make your own observations!

Day 16 – A Year of Celebration

Today I celebrate the abundance that surrounds us and the freedom we enjoy to make informed choices about what we put on…and in…our bodies.

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Angels Walk Amongst Us

13 01 2011

We are surrounded by angels…and not just the beautiful ethereal angels of our visions.

These are our Earth Angels; those wonderful people who walk amongst us and appear at just the right moment to bring us whatever we need in our lives at a given time.

Our Healing Earth Angels arrive when we are in ill health and we’ve all but given up hope of a cure. Then out of the blue someone introduces us to a therapist, or healer, who seems to know exactly what we need to bring about our healing by simply looking deep into our eyes, or by touching our hand.

The Art Of Bill Brouard

When we are feeling down or lonely, our Loving Earth Angels will arrive in the form of a neighbour with whom we’ve never really passed more than the time of day until they appear at our door to invite us to dinner. Or the phone will ring and a long lost friend is calling to make contact and to share some wonderful news that helps to lift our spirits.

Then there are our Kindness Earth Angels who appear when we need some moral support. They may be an acquaintance who offers a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on, or a comforting hug. We may receive a smile from a stranger who makes eye contact as they sense our need for comfort or reassurance. They offer us simple, everyday kindnesses.

And then there are my favourite, the Tough Love Earth Angels! These are the people who turn up in our lives to shake us up in order to teach us our greatest lessons. They are the ones who press all our buttons and test us to the limit.

They frustrate us, make us mad, leave us feeling drained of energy, and most importantly; they hold up a very large mirror to help us recognise the behaviors which are no longer serving us.

The Art Of Bill Brouard

They are here to teach us the most important and painful  of life’s lessons. If we continue missing the point and getting it wrong, they will keep on appearing in different forms until we finally get the message.

Chances are that there are one or two Tough Love Earth Angels in your life right now…there certainly are in mine…and I love you all for the lessons you continue to teach me!

Finally there are the Heavenly Angels of our dreams who whisper in our ear so softly that we have to listen carefully to hear their important message.

I remember on one occasion I was travelling alone on my way back to London after a visit to Cornwall. I had reached a junction where there was a choice to stay on the motorway, or take the most scenic route along a dual carriageway. I had decided to stay on the motorway when a voice whispered in my ear telling me to take the other route. I thought I was imagining things, but the voice kept repeating the message until I finally listened and took the alternative road.

As it was beginning to get dark; I switched on my headlights and they promptly switched off again. Then the panel warning lights came on and all the electrics stopped working. Realising that I was in trouble, I started to panic as I could be hit by another car if mine couldn’t be seen on the dark road. There was no hard shoulder and nowhere to pull the car over safely.

Suddenly it felt as though I was being washed in a sea of calm and the voice whispered in my ear again telling me to take the next exit. Following these instructions, I turned off the road only to find myself on yet another dual carriageway!

Just as the panic started to kick in again, I spotted a break in the safety barrier with a solitary house lit up in the distance on the opposite side of the road. Somehow we made it safely across and limped along a dirt track right up to the front of the house, whereby my car promptly gave up the ghost and ground to a shuddering halt.

Offering up grateful thanks to my Heavenly Angel for guiding me towards the light of the stranger’s house, I knocked on the door to ask for assistance and was amazed when I was informed by the owners that their the son was a car mechanic and was just on his way home from work!

These lovely – Kindness Earth Angels – invited me inside for a cup of tea to warm me up whilst we awaited their son’s return. Within an hour of his arrival my car had been fixed and I was back on the road to London.

When I look back on the experience I know that I was being guided by my Heavenly Angel who protected me on the dark roads until we reached a safe haven where the help I needed was waiting for me. Now I never argue when a voice whispers softly in my ear because I know that I am being offering angelic assistance.

Day 13 – 365 Days of Celebration

Today I celebrate the gifts given to me by all the Earth Angels I have met on my journey and for the loving guidance received from my Heavenly Angels. Thank you all!

Special thanks to Bill Brouard for the beautiful angel images from his collection at Visual Alchemy.