“It did not happen overnight
and it was not
given to me by another.
I am the maker
of the happiness and love
growing within me.”
– Diego Perez
Being bombarded with messages on how we could be better, do better, eat better, live better feels like just a day in the life of a human in 2017. All this striving. Always wanting to be somewhere, anywhere.. not here.
But what if we were happy with here right now? What if we are happy in our jobs and relationship, happy with our bodies and wealth? What if right here is perfect and exactly where we need to be to get where we’re going? What if we really and truly felt this to the pits of our stomachs? What if we feel this satisfaction, this perfection of the present, not just as a concept in our heads but down to the blood in our bones?
Back in November, a few months after the breast cancer brain sac tumour removal operation, I was definitely not! feeling this. Sitting in bed one Sunday, my mind was going round and round with all the mistakes I’d ever made and all the decisions I hadn’t thought through properly, but which I now knew the consequences of. What an idiot. Here I was with.. no job, no income, a passport that was expiring, no credit card (I’d closed the account) and only a quarter of my hair. I couldn’t date! I couldn’t renew my passport! I didn’t have money to go overseas anyway. I couldn’t escape!
Damn. All these wrong decisions. Such a joke. But seriously not a funny one. For the first time in my life, pyjamas on and journal open, I was totally and utterly grounded.
My mum had tried to ground me once when I was a teenager. It didn’t go very well. But now, through my own choices and bad luck, here I was at my parents’ house, so completely GROUND-ed.
Oh my God!
How did this happen?
Had every decision been a mistake?! Did I always choose wrong? My head was spinning with regret. Oh! If only I could crawl back into my old life.. I’d do it better! Yes, I’d be so satisfied! I’d be happy there, here. I could be happy anywhere.. But no I couldn’t go back. I couldn’t live it over. And make amends.. No, I was stuck here. Spinning, spinning, spinning.
How to make it stop?
I clung to the bed. But then, somewhere between the pages of my furious, desperate notes, there came a space. And two thoughts :
1. I had been striving since I was 24.
2. I was done with striving.
And I was actually not that stuck. I actually had quite a lot.
But I’d been striving so hard, especially since I was 24!! Geez and I was tired. I’d been striving since that break-up prompted me to want to (need to) learn about the power of the mind and how to rule it. My ego had been going CRAY-Z. And I wanted peace! I wanted it to shut the F up. All I wanted was peace! But then, applying the techniques to get over the ex and create calm, I also learnt how to intentionally co-create with the cosmos (no less). I learnt how to manifest.
Sometimes I did it well (unintentionally) and other times not so well when I tried too hard. All that striving. So much striving. I worked hard to work and live in New York for 6 months and then in Montpellier, France. Well, I didn’t work hard to get there. I worked consistently and the manifesting technique did the rest. What I didn’t do though, was be desperate about either. Would have made it easier if I’d known the difference then but hey, we live and we learn.
While writing Wonderlust, my novel, I also worked consistently. Two hours a day, four days a week for seven years. And I enjoyed it. But haha, there was always a part of me believing that my interesting life would really begin once I’d finished and published it. Now, sitting in bed that Sunday, I really really understood that I already had the interesting life when I started striving for it.I only had to see it.
.A blog, breast cancer, the Coaching Academy, business, workshops, the Healthy + Powerfully Feminine interview series and course, social media, marketing… I seemed to be in a constant state of putting myself out there.
And after all that here I was, back where I’d started.
Craving what I had to begin with.
The desire to travel.
And just be me.
I saw that I’d gotten nowhere wanting to be elsewhere.
So it was time to just be here, trusting in the simplicity of this known place.
At some point I got up from that bed and step by step, bit by bit, with a mind that felt muddled, and feeling at first like I no longer knew myself, rebuilt my life from the ground up.
From the GROUND.
This is not a fantastical story with stupendous results or a headline grabbing month. But it’s a good story. It’s a story of simplicity. I got a job, then another one. I waited. And trusted. Step by step. Until again it flowed.
What freedom. Only looking back can I see how far I’ve come. Since that day.. when I decided to put all my books away and be guided by my own life. I went from feeling no joy to feeling a whole lot of joy every day.
I felt to start high-impact exercise to help with mental clarity and to combat osteoporosis from the estrogen suppression. So I got into aerobics, continued walking and did yoga. As well as that I did these 5 other things and in four months went from no income/job to 3 jobs and from living at my parents’ to being back in my home with the perfect housemate for me and most of all, from being down to happier than I’ve ever been.
Lastly, I found out I was actually using the Law of Attraction. See if it works for you too and in the next post I’ll explain where I went wrong for so long. I feel called to share this because people are ‘efforting’ too much and getting nowhere great. I hear it all the time. In the café, online.. So if you desire to work a little less and live a little more while moving towards your future with ease, this is what I did :
1. Be Here Now
At first this was all I was focused on since wanting to be elsewhere or further along, seemed to have caused this mess. But then, as I made progress and could see how easily things could come together, if I could just get that teaching job, for example. I would start to feel a little dissatisfied with the present moment. Then I’d remind myself ; Just be here now. Focus on what’s so great about now ; turn the music up and enjoy the drive to my admin job, enjoy how good it felt to stretch and move in different positions as I did the filing, for example, enjoying the sensations of being present in my body, dressing up and really appreciating the interactions and stories. Once again I soon felt so joyful. I enjoyed it so much that I really didn’t want to leave, but it was time to take my next step and so I had to.
2. Focus on Feeling Good
For this reason I quit social media for 3 weeks. We can have significant realizations while perusing social media and seeing a timely post, but it can also be the thing that pulls us out of our presence, in too many directions or adds to the dissatisfaction with what we have, especially when we’re not feeling our best. So I tuned out and when I could again connect and share with joy again, I did that. I also found some resources that focused on simplicity and started enjoying myself decluttering, budgeting and living simply. Then, while waiting for my working life to begin, I started to write a memoir because writing, especially without the angst of getting it published, is fun for me and helped me to stick to a routine and feel that glorious sense of accom-plish-ment.
3. Believe Things are Working Out for the Best
I asked my mum how she handled life so well despite the challenges, being rational but also positive, and this is what she said. So I did. I was also greatly inspired by this quote,
“Heaven is a place on earth; it’s an orderly, disciplined, constrictive way of thinking.”
So no matter if it was true that I’d made every mistake I could make, it just wasn’t very helpful to think so. Instead I believed that whatever had happened was meant to and I just couldn’t see the bigger picture yet. Rejections, when they came, bounced off with this thought. “Something better is on its way.” Yes, you can become quite the ninja!
4. Take the Next Step
Trying to make too many changes or do everything at once had lead to overwhelm and angst, but with patience and persistence, things would work out over time. Becoming good with a schedule helped me realize that two things cannot exist in the same place at the same time. But over time.. I worked out what my top 3 priorities were and found a way to fit them in and leave what wasn’t important yet. Little by little and slowly but surely, with ease, one by one, and then faster, life flowed again.
5. EnJOY yourself
“I was not waiting, I was just standing there, enjoying myself. In-joy-in myself.”
Along with Love and Gratitude, Joy is the most powerful emotion. It is the reason we want what we want. We desire to feel love, joy and gratitude. As in the law of attraction , like attracts like. When we feel joyful, grateful, loving and abundant, we attract this. We are a vibrational match to our desires. But you can’t fake joy! What we can do at least is enjoy ourselves. Focus on what is good, focus on what is going right, feel our feelings of course, yes, and then get back to realizing how lucky we actually are. And that our lives are working out for the best.
Gratitude practice and journalling ; Do it every day, rewiring the neural patterning in the brain until it comes easily and suddenly one day you’ll truly get just how much has changed, how strong you are, how far you’ve come, now singing at 7am and dancing round the house.
In the next post I will explain why our fanciful desires often manifest more easily than the ones we really want and how life is actually always working out perfectly. To read on, click here.