OUT today – Weathering the Storm

weathering the storm cover

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Proud to have contributed to this project along with other wonderful Moon Books Authors. A valuable resource, beautifully written.

Written in three parts, psychological, spiritual and practical, Weathering the Storm is an anthology offering support to those of us who are isolated or vulnerable. The book has a primary Pagan focus but will be of interested to all those interested in Mind Body Spirit matters and in alternative lifestyles and spiritualities. Covering areas from loneliness and anxiety, self-care and gardening, to cooking and crystals, Weathering the Storm is a book designed to help everyone through uneasy, unprecedented times. A complementary compendium of hope, from the writers and publishers behind Moon Books.

On writing

silhouette of person holding glass mason jar
Photo by Rakicevic Nenad on Pexels.com

We have lived in a construct, label-based, boxed-in reality, which is based on dualities, contrasts, limited choices based on ‘either this or that’, needing and having to influence others to agree with what we believe is the truth. Let me tell you something. None of it matters, it is just a story that had been created, told and designed to enslave and control, since the creation of ‘humanity’. We all fell for it, we all were born into it whether we had a choice or not. By the age of five most of us would have lost, rejected, supressed or moved away from what we intrinsically knew was true and unique for us. The price of conditioning into a programme has been high for us all with no fail, generation after generation. This has been applied to every aspect of human life. Writing is no exception.

You would have seen, heard, read and experienced the idea of writing needing to be an act of suffering, sacrifice, deep emotional pain. People approached it from that point for a long time with many deciding to check out through ending their lives, as the belief of ‘unless you do it this way, it is no good and you are not worth anything’. You all read things like, which are still circulating everywhere today ‘the first draft is shit’, ‘unless you go through the bad stage of struggle, you will never produce anything worthwhile and good’. Nonsense! Have you ever written poetry or anything just using your intuition, or experienced something that writes itself through you effortlessly and in a state of flow. That feels easy, soft, beautiful and very true to our hearts. Forms that come out perfectly on the paper with no need to word count, time watching or anything else. It is true creative flow. The way one writes cannot be separated from the way one lives. If that is so ask yourself a question ‘How do I live my life?’ How do I value myself, my time, what gives me meaning, etc. The list of questions is endless and can be attended to consciously and continuously if things are called for change.

One thing that we must understand is this. There is absolutely nothing bad in an expression, nothing. We cannot continue labelling our writing as good or bad. It is not this or that. It just IS. Whatever is being expressed by an individual cannot simply be labelled bad. We do it to ourselves fearing that if we don’t others will. Detach from what is a label, construct that one must struggle to create something good. It is just an illusion. All that matters is an experience of writing, an experience of a creative expression and, therefore, life itself. When you create you tap into life literary, therefore it can never be bad. How can it be bad? Labels are an intrinsic part of the programme that somehow values and focuses lack, unworthiness, suffering on purpose almost and so on. Sounds like we all have a choice, the thing is we always had a choice even though we didn’t think we did and, perhaps, as children we don’t have depending on the family we came into, but as adults we certainly do have a choice and a right to change things to what feels good to us. Writing is a unique expression, just like paining, playing music, crafting or anything that requires a different type of flow to how we are told the flow should be. There are no should or musts. All you have to do is recognise that this way of writing is what prevents the flow in the first place, what stops from your own voice being heard and blocks enjoyment of the whole process. Drop it all, create an anomaly in life and in your writing and go with that with deep belief that anything is possible when expressed without having to attach to labels, external opinions or anything else that creates a friction within us when we do it. We all felt that often.

A tool for raising self-awareness

In 2018 I have gone on a journey of tuning into myself, the world around me with nature continuing to be my sacred, supportive and grounding space on a month by month basis and it has been an incredible way of getting to know myself. I have not just been surprised but amazed at various things that I didn’t even know existed.

I took an approach of keeping a journal taking one month at a time, January, February, March, etc. Focusing my awareness of what happens within me at any given moment, things that arise when engaging with people and partaking in events or when being silent or walking in nature. Feelings that come up for me spontaneously and consciously, when in here and now, when asleep, dream observations, etc.

The main aim of the exercise was sharpening my awareness of myself in terms of qualities, strengths, weaker points, triggers, ways of relating, preferences in being, how well-balanced or unbalanced something was within and tuning into needs that were either always met or never met. These are just some examples of this practice.

Here’s a list of qualities I have discovered and zoomed in for each month as I became aware of those energies in me. Just to give you an example and yes, a lot of it surprised me and offered and opportunity for change.

Once we become aware of something we then are offered a choice automatically. We can choose what we do with that newly found information. That’s a beauty of making unconscious conscious. You can go as deep as you wish into what you discover, or observe it simply as it is or both.

January:

I have truly experienced myself as ‘nice’. This might sound strange, but I saw just how divorced I have been from myself in that sense. This time I felt it, really felt it and knew that to be true. I enjoyed that one. Beautiful sensation.

February:

I spent most of the month in a state of light and loving kindness. It was all about love, the pure kind, the transcendent kind. Another beautiful state. I was made aware that I am

able to go to that place a lot easier than I have given myself credit for in the past.

March:

I was able to transform my relationship with the physical pain and learnt to listen to it.

And so it goes… each month there will be a theme or a feeling that would centre around me and ask tor attention and I would journal around what came up. I have had an incredible year and partly that was due to my conscious choosing of being aware at all times and in tune with what arose without trying to fight it or change it. I observed myself and wrote about it.

At the end of the calendar year I was full of lessons and knowing more than I did last year. My experiment in active personal evolving has been very rewarding and highly interesting. I would recommend this self-awareness tool to everyone looking to dive deeper into finding out more about themselves including a much subtler layers of psyche, not just things that might be familiar or obvious. Super fun. Writing as a tool is generally transformative and healing. If you enjoy writing this one won’t disappoint.

This is something I think I will always continue doing in one form or another. It is now January and I find myself in a very different place to where I was this time last year and it grabs my attention and spikes curiosity. I am excited to enter into any new space that opens up in front of me. Remaining in wonder is an essential part of life to me and for as long as awareness, enchantment and tapping into potential is there, life is full of all things interesting.

Happy 2019, everyone!

Potential is there…

As a new dawn rises over the horizon every morning and root tunnels under a tree in winter begin to stir in anticipation of a new beginning we know of our own potential to start again, to achieve and to grow. As in nature so is in our soul. There is no difference in processes that are within us and out in the natural world.

‘Don’t have time’ is a myth. Time is time and we are in control of what we do with it. When we say we don’t have time it might just mean we are using it on things non-essential or overwhelming ourselves with things that can either be delegated, postponed or even stopped all together.

‘When I have more time’ is an excuse. More time may mean you will do anything but what you say you want to do. More time can also mean less focus and discipline, less structure. Heard of deadlines? I like those as they provide containment for tasks and endeavours and focus efforts and mind on a task therefore often less time or the perception of it can be beneficial to show you how good you can be in consolidating efforts and focusing.

If we want something badly enough we will find the time, always, one way or another. That’s my experience and I am sure many would join me in that. It might take some time to get to that point but mostly it is all in our minds and how we look at it rather than actual time available to us.

Human cognitive constructs keep us back and away from achieving things we are sure capable of if it wasn’t for our mind’s constant talk and us believing its every word. We trap ourselves without realising. What about if we change our perception of our thoughts, we evaluate them as and when they come up. Do we really believe what it’s saying to us on a regular basis. Do we realise that not only we don’t have to listen we can also disagree, ignore and redefine a few beliefs to benefit our moving forward. Here’s an idea. It is all possible.

Realising that whatever is desired within reach is a truly liberating feeling that resides between a heart and a stomach in the body. It has a vibrant, warming sensation with it that can ignite a self-belief and in turn fire up the mind in a way that is focused and purposeful. Our potential is boundless and as we travel we find it out in one way or another. Yes, it requires work and determination, but sometimes things just flow in and out of our experience with ease and comfort. It is in allowing for anything and everything to come in so we can make decisions in which direction we go. Choices are provided and if we are brave enough to take them up we can grow and complete things we want.