Nature’s capacity to heal is a reminder of what’s possible for every one of us. It’s a reminder that no matter what external events occur in our lives, we have the capacity to create change and even reinvent ourselves to suit our new reality. Never before have we been individually and collectively been given permission to question the status quo and actively create a whole new normal.
As humanity reels from the ravages of a tiny microscopic virus, Nature is breathing a sigh of relief and our beautiful planet has a chance to heal. It is ironic, what Sir David Attenborough, Greta Thunberg and Extinction Rebellion could not achieve, the Coronavirus has done by bringing economic giants to their knees. Whether you’re in full lockdown, self-isolating, or are one of our heroes on the frontline, this is a moment in human history that we will remember for a long time.It would be a shame to allow a crisis of such proportions to go to waste. What lessons can we learn and how do we want to look back on this extraordinary time in our lives? This is a unique opportunity to do a few things differently that in years to come we can look back on with pride and satisfaction.
In a time when we are digitally more connected than ever, at least on an illusory level, social isolation is probably at an all time high. “Friends” and “followers” on social media are no replacement for real conversations and human interactions. Our social media avatars have become yet another mask we wear to selectively portray a certain persona. Today I want to share a few things I do to make it work for me to stay open to new connections, some of which go on to deepen into real friendship.
Relationships fascinate me. How new people come into our lives. How some people help us to grow by being supportive whilst others appear to teach us life lessons in the most unexpected and hurtful ways. How someone you were once best friends with is now on a completely different wavelength. How in your hour of need exactly the right person shows up, as if by magic, helps you and then disappears before you’ve had a chance to even say thank you. Or how you can no longer bear to be around people you once so loved and admired.
I recently listened to Dr Gabor Maté’s audiobook When The Body Says No. I don’t exaggerate when I tell you that it has shaken me to the core and changed so much of what I thought I knew. I’m not alone in my belief that staying positive is one of the simplest things in our control that can lead to better emotional and physical wellbeing. I now know I was wrong.
Today I’m sharing with you something I put together for my children, to help them deal with the curve balls life will inevitably lob their way.
No matter how grown up or responsible you are, there will be moments when you feel like a helpless bystander in an out-of-control world.
My last post was about the greatest gift you can give yourself. Today I want to talk about gifts you can give others that will cost you nothing but will mean the world to those receiving it. And as with all heartfelt gifts, they will leave you feeling happier, healthier and more fulfilled.
The greatest gift you can give yourself if to become self-centred.
“What?” I hear you say. “Isn’t that the same as selfish? How’s that a good thing?”
Being self centred is about going deep within yourself & taking ownership of all your choices & actions. It’s about understanding that everything you need & want can be found within you. It means that even change around you begins with you.
I’m not a fan of labels. Literally and metaphorically speaking. I’d be hard pushed to tell you what brand of trainers I wear, or what make my kettle or iron is. To me they serve a purpose, and so long as they do it well, I don’t care what names they goes by. The same logic applies to individuals.
Over time we attribute labels to ourselves based on what we do for a living, our current abilities and the perception we and others have of who we are. These labels can colour our self-esteem and become our limitations.
Over the recent school half term break, my son and I travelled to India to spend time with close family and friends. An unexpected benefit was a whole week spent with hardly a mention of Brexit in the news. Bliss. I had many memorable experiences but I want to share just one with you today.
It’s that time of year when mental health is in the spotlight. We are reminded of how anxious we have become as a society. Age appears to be no barrier with young people just as badly afflicted. The feelings of anxiety might have complex roots but can be triggered by small day to day interactions. Anything ranging from a flippant comment on social media, to a non-committal reply to an important email, to stony silence from a significant other or romantic interest can push us into varying depths of anguish, rage or despair.
On Sunday afternoon on 14th July 2019, just as the Wimbledon Men’s Final was about to begin, our neighbour rang the doorbell to tell us they had our missing cat Bubbles. She’d spent 19 days wandering and lost within a mile’s radius of our home.
The ordeal of our beloved pet going missing taught us many lessons. Here are some of the other things we did and learnt along the way:
In mid August I spent three nights last week at a Cooking and Walking retreat in the the Scottish Highlands. It was tonic for the soul.
We stayed in a house that overlooked the majestic, shimmering stillness of the Loch Ness.
We chanced upon joyful brooks of gushing rivers and streams.
We marvelled at the waterfall in the middle of the woods.
We walked along the man made canals that were dug by hand more than a 100 years ago.
I was reminded why I love being around water so much. There is something magical, mystical about water and the way it portrays so many emotions.