Getting to the bones of my “Ask”

This started out as my weekly “ask” on Havi’s Sunday Post. Havi posts a personal add or two every Sunday and invites us to take part in the comments, sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t.

This time however, it threatened to start out as a bit of a rant, so I deleted it and changed it into a post, because one should never pass up the opportunity to rant.

It’s just too good for the soul.

My Rant

I keep reading about how things which I think are a load of poo for me right now are actually the things I need the most and will all turn out for the best eventually.

That kind of thing doesn’t help me one bit – I just get annoyed because I keep thinking – can’t I get these things in a pleasant way?

Hmmm Hmmmmm?

Because it seems to me that the universe is a bitch really. Or I should stop reading my horoscope.

Often when I’m desperately seeking reassurance that everything really will be alright I look to others for advice.

Then I get frustrated, disappointed or overwhelmed when that advice is not what I need or want to hear.

But only recently has it occurred to me that maybe this is because I need to meet those needs with reassurance to myself, rather than this being a case of needing external reassurance.

Where have I heard this before?

What springs to mind immediately when I think of this is Robyn Posen‘s Remembering and Celebration card on Others’ views.

It reads:

“When others are interpreting, analyzing, advising or directing you – they are really only communicating what they believe would be appropriate for themselves were they in your situation.

Remember this if you choose to hear their views…Remember too, that in the deep knowing place inside of you, you are the world’s best and only authority on you!

Practice listening inwardly instead of outwardly.”

Her story of this musing is profound and also deeply different to my current situation, but the words on this card are true regardless of the situation.

Robyn is a tireless advocate for self love and acceptance and I love her stories about her “Mommy Inside” and the “Hatchet Lady” and every month I look forward to her Monthly Musing.

But it’s not just her writing that I love; it’s the truth behind it that I recognize.

More and more these days I’m learning that the resources I need are always within.

Want a loving, supportive relationship – have one with yourself first.

Want reassurance that you’re wonderful and superb – give it to yourself rather than trying to get others to give it to you.

Want validation? It comes from you, not from external sources.

Your power is within you.

And only you. Not fate, not destiny, not stars, not angels, fairies or even God. You.

My true Ask:

Is for reassurance and knowledge and trust that everything will be okay, actually better than okay, it will be wonderful.

I would like to know that I am safe.

I would like to know that I am supported.

I would like to know that I have a direction.

I would like to know that, in spite of the happenings of this year that have dented my pride, my ego and yes, my heart, that the future for me, my destiny is still one that is positive, happy, successful and full of love and that
I deserve these things
.

Aye, this is the reassurance that I have been desperately seeking in my stars and wherever else I have chosen to look.

How this can come to me:

In the soft:

I can remind myself of these things.

I can choose to see things from a positive vantage rather than a negative one.

I can find the deep knowing place every day and access it, through meditation and journaling.

In the hard:

  • I can write my own horoscopes if I choose! And put it on my mirror.

It will say:

“This week will be wonderful. You are wonderful. Yes, yes… you really are. Your heart’s desire for happiness and love? Yes, you do deserve them and it is okay to want them. I know you are scared that they will not come or do not exist because of some dreadful flaw in yourself unknown to anyone other than God or the big I AM, but this is not true and you really are lovely as you are.

I know, this is hard to accept, but yes, as you are is lovely. And it is okay to be lovely, you won’t be punished for it, or for being arrogant for believing that you are lovely.

You are safe with me, I would not lie to you about this.

You are showing courage, determination and perseverance. These are not shallow surface qualities, these are attributes which come from depth within and this is commendable.

You are going on and that is just fine. It is, in fact, bloody marvelous.”

  • The job situation could sort itself out, as detailed in my “ask” that I did actually write in the comments.
  • My application for grant funding could be approved for my course.
  • I’m open to magic, including mystery benefactors, meeting millionaires, finding treasure, being given houses, offers of lump sums of money for no good reason other than my wonderfulness etc, etc as well as good old fashioned fairy dust and wand waving.

My commitment

Is obvious:

  • I shall continue to be open to job offers and opportunity.
  • I shall fill out paperwork necessary for grand funding
  • I shall be nice and gentle to myself and give myself permission to seek reassurance from myself.
  • I shall indeed put a pretty note on my mirror reminding myself of my general good fortune to follow. “This year Scorpio you will be on fiiiiiire. Sssss. I sees it is so cos I looks in my magic eight ball. Etc etc.”
  • If offered magic opportunities I shall be open to them as well as sensible so I will not end up stumbling on a dreadful un-magic opportunity having mistaken it for a magic opportunity. This way I shall stay safe.
  • I shall begin to put in place a contingency plan. I have no idea what this is yet, but I am willing to consider it.

Remembering a dream

A movie, a hotdog and more 7Up than one person should be able to drink…

Last night we watched Fame (2009) and oh yes, it was fabulous.

Obviously, don’t watch it if you’re after a deep and hard hitting story line because that’s just setting yourself up for disappointment. But if you’re after good dancing, singing and general entertainment then this is the movie for you.

After we’d watched these gorgeous, young people perform their hearts out at the end of year production and turned to each other saying, “Can’t wait for Construction Management on Friday can you?” all very tongue in cheek, I listened to them talking about dreams, success and fame and it struck a cord.

The meaning behind it all…

I realized that I used to believe in these things myself.

I realized that I used to have an incredible belief that I could do and succeed at anything I turned my hand to because I was me.

So I was a little sad at thinking that I’ve let that go, because I have – I question my ability now at pretty much everything, and I also thought that there’s no need for me to carry on as I am.

I can reclaim that belief in myself and reignite the dream I once had, which was to set the world alight by being myself.

Being alive, feeling alive.

Noticing the tiny moments and snippets of time which freeze in your memory as something significant and infinitely precious.

Knowing that it is these that make our lives.

Knowing now, with a little bit of life experience behind me, that these will too include pain and that too is okay.

My life and all its drama unfolding…

Right now in my life things are uncertain and I find myself craving stability and certainty, thinking that there is not much I wouldn’t give right now just to know where the next step will be.

This is so frightening for me to go through and I am finding it incredibly tough to maintain my resilience and get up to face another day.

Keep calm and carry on.

Only I’m inclined to fits of drama to spice things up.

But this realization that I’d like to reclaim the tiny moments reminds me that life is poignant and precious, even during this time that is so trying to me.

Within this all there is much to be grateful for and I most genuinely am.

I’m talking about my kitty’s face as she peers with curiosity into my jewelry drawer, looking round eyed and cute as anything.

Or hugs with my friends in comfort followed by laughter as we use some good ol’ fashioned humour to cope with things.

The kindness of my mum and my family as I panic about money and wonder where things are going with my job.

It is the people around me who make my life and I intend to hold onto this as my little life raft during a time of change and uncertainty for me.

A Most Terrible Word…

Loneliness.

I can’t even spell it properly.

Spell checker just corrected me. Ha!

Waking up this morning, I was aware of the heavy feeling I’ve had around my heart the past few weeks.

“What is this?” I asked myself, feeling confused and more than a little frustrated with not being able to identify what it is exactly that has been dogging me.

The answer fired straight back at me:

Loneliness

In a quest for transparency and modeling accepting the uncomfortable feelings along with welcoming and celebrating the super comfortable feelings, I decided to write about it.

My first thought is – what a god awful feeling it is too.

So uncomfortable and empty.

Leaving me looking for ways to fill the emptiness, with what feels like increasing desperation over the years, in a bid to avoid it.

Time to stop me thinks.

No more running and time to begin acceptance.

Actually… I am scared

There have been some times in my life when loneliness has absolutely engulfed me, so that I have to confess to being actively afraid of loneliness.

Or rather the feeling of total powerlessness I have when I feel lonely.

So to stop, just stop, is scary.

To turn around and look at this – it is scary.

To stop, turn, look, recognize, still not run and think about saying hello, is….Scary- With- a- Capital- S.

But I guess that over the past few years I’ve become a lot more accustomed to accepting myself, it no longer feels quite so daunting and un-do-able as it once used to.

I have methods for keeping myself safe during these processes that I didn’t used to have.

The methods are designed to avoid overwhelm, so it is a bit easier these days to look at the uncomfortable stuff that comes up than it once used to be.

I’m more inclined, on recognizing discomfort, to stop and think, “hmm, interesting” rather than run away in fear.

Not that there is anything wrong in running away in fear.

Unless you’re a kung foo expert or similar, there are many situations both physical and emotional where it is probably healthier to run away screaming for help.

Take, for instance, being faced with a ninja. Stopping and thinking, “Hmmmm, interesting” will probably result in KAPOW!

At least if you run away screaming you may make the ninja laugh (I would if I was a ninja) or you’d feel better letting all the noise out – loudly.

Oh c’mon! You get my point – surely!

Need

Is what loneliness feels like to me.

Sometimes a little niggle and sometimes a gaping, unquenchable, bottomless need.

Need to feel whole, to feel connected, to feel loved, to feel validated, to feel wanted.

I don’t know about you, but to me these are needs I feel ashamed to admit to.

It means that I’m vulnerable. I’m not perfect and I don’t have all my bases covered, and that means someone can hurt me.

Oh hell.

This is what stopping, turning and looking bring to me.

A recognition of what is, and the feelings associated with that.

The start of the conversation is getting to know one another before moving on to the next step.

What the next step will be will show itself in due course I imagine.

Inspired No Brainers

I read Victoria’s post about No Brainer decisions this morning and it made me think about my work situation.

Work is stressing me out BIG time.

To be fair, there is much going on inside me that is stressing me out BIG time too, but the work situation does not help.

In short, not a single one of us knows where our next project is going to be.

The road is finished, we have the final account to sort out and the official opening to attend and then…. we’re done.

The cabins are being off-hired at the end of October. We honestly don’t know where we’ll be setting up our lap tops on the 1st November.

We can speculate, but not one of us has had any communication that leads to any sort of confidence in the future.

So yeah, stressful.

Victoria’s post made me wonder what my No Brainer Job would be and I have this:

No Brainer Job

You are based in the South or South East. Close to my family, close to my friends.

There is countryside around for me to play in. Because countryside is important to me.

You will not take over my whole life, so that I have time to play with my family and friends and time to play in the countryside and to do other “me time” things like sewing and painting and writing and meditating etc.

You are well paid and an exciting project with ample opportunity for me to develop my contract interpreting and dispute resolving skills, and my QS skills.

You know I love the contract and I love getting into the nitty gritty of it. I love the mechanism of it and it find it interesting and stimulating to look at the contract and make it work like it’s supposed to. You’ll love that about me. It will be something that is so attractive to you about me.

You’ll have direction, you won’t be all wishy washy about where’s next. You’ll offer excitement and stimulation and you’ll stretch me just the right amount.

You also pay for my university course.

I can move there easily and there’s somewhere for me to stay that is affordable and likes my kitties.

Ideally, my housemate would be able to move with me to her next project. But if not – somewhere friendly and affordable and clean will do me perfectly.

You show yourself quite soon, because this not knowing – ugh, it’s driving me nutella. You don’t have to start soon; you just have to be visible as the next step.

So there you go. That’s what you are. If you showed up – boy oh boy I would be bloody over the moon.

In other news

If I’m perfectly honest I’ve been struggling.

Mostly things have felt very heavy on my heart and my shoulders are more than a little tense.

I realized the other day that this is because I’ve been unconsciously stressed out like hell, but the past few weeks/ months haven’t helped either and it feels a little like I’ve lost my spark.

I miss my spark.

I’m conscious also of sounding all doom and gloom when really, I’m not.

I’m just finding it hard.

Okay, just admitting that makes me want to cry.

I’m trying very hard to put a brave face on but really, I’m finding it hard to adjust to loosing a relationship that, truthfully, I really wanted. I thought my ad had been answered and it turns out it hasn’t and that is very, very hard (that is the only word for it) to adjust to.

On many levels.

There’s the “oh I miss you and I miss this relationship” level and there’s the “good god – this totally throws all my theories out of whack I think. Oh shit, what do I believe now?” level.

To be fair to myself – I’ve done a sterling job of being lovely to myself through all of this and I’ve sat with all the discomfort and that has been a huge comfort.

But really here’s what I want (in addition, of course, to the ad):

A companion. To be vulnerable with. To be myself unreservedly with because I am pretty damned fantastic when I am unreserved.

To share fun times with and hard times. To love and to know that he’s taking care of his shit whilst I take care of mine.

He does not expect me to “make him happy or make him feel loved.” He knows that this is only something that he can do, but he does know that being with me makes him happy and he knows that I love him hugely. He reminds me to be accountable for myself when I need reminding and visa versa.

For this to be something that lasts, because I’m tired of all the change and the uppy downiness of recent events and I’m tired of being scared that things just won’t last. So I’m ready to welcome in some stability to my life. (Gasp! This is me! Saying I welcome stability! You see – growth happens people.)

I have already made a commitment to stability by refusing to run from the discomfort of the past two months and all the stuck and hard that they have brought up.

Ordinarily by now I’d have packed my bags, grabbed my cats and moved to the Amazon or Japan.

Somewhere big, different and fully of things to cope with to hide the discomfort and hurts.

I am truly ready to share the wholeness of me with a suitable wonderful person who wants the same thing.

My commitment to myself is to be careful with my heart.

It’s a fragile thing and I won’t be throwing it into situations where it is at great risk or easy risk.

In other words I’m not going to go around blindly kissing loads of frogs, growing more and more despondent that they stay frogs.

My commitment is to continue learning to love myself and to be gentle with myself; learning to accept all parts of myself and to express them.

The more I love myself the more I can love others you see.

My commitment is to not hide my heart. As scary as being mindfully vulnerable can be, I also believe it is the way for me.

Being mindfully vulnerable is not hiding from the hurt, most especially from myself.

It is sitting with it, not trying to change it, move it, fade it or fix it.

Just letting it express, knowing that it is perfectly okay, perfectly acceptable for the feelings to be felt and expressed safely.

All the while, making sure I’m in a safe environment.

You could be someone new I meet or am introduced to, by accident, through work, through a friend.

You could be someone I know already and turn around and say “Wake up! I’m here already. Have been for a while silly.” Or something similar, like sending me a text or phoning me and saying – “let’s meet, no really let’s.”

You could happen by magic to be in the right place at the right time and I’ll remember to respond to friendly conversation.

I’m open to surprises. Especially good ones.

Here’s to loving Myself

A few days ago I wrote about enjoying the sparkly bits of me and biggifying myself so that others could enjoy the benefits of that!

Sounds a little strange no? No. Most definitely not. (You can read about it here)

You may be familiar with the concept from Marianne Williamson’s famous poem:

 

“Our Greatest Fear

 

It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us

 Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.

 Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

 It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.

We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?

You are a child of God.

Your playing small does not serve the world.

There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We were born to make manifest the glory of
God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.”

—Marianne Williamson
 

I’ve also been reading about it over at SARK’s website, where she’s written a journal entry entitled “Yes to more Self Love to you.”

I mean – how can you resist?

My question to myself today then has been: how can I show myself more love?

I have some ideas:

  • I can tell myself on a far more regular basis that I’m fantabulous (and leave off the “just as I am” because that seems to indicate that there’s still a lack somehow). I can stop and say, “Look! Just look at you! You’re lovely and just full of awesomesauce. It’s no wonder you have such fantastic people in your life, because birds of a feather and all that.)
  • Consideration. I give the people I love umpteen amounts of consideration. I can ask myself everyday, just once (because that’s an increase), if there’s anything I would like today.
  • When it’s someone I love’s birthday, if I have the opportunity, I love to spoil them rotten to show them I love them, think about them and enjoy having them in my life. Sometimes that’s something tiny that they could really appreciate, sometimes it’s a matter of paying close attention to stuff said and thinking Aha! I can provide that and sometimes it’s giving them a day of luxury and indulgence. I could pick a day once a year, where for that day, I get to do whatever I want and I’m happy to let myself.

I think there could be so many more ways to truly, deeply communicate self love to ourselves, but I haven’t thought of them just yet.

I have an inkling that demonstrating self love to ourselves is about meeting our needs and that means slowing down and really listening to what those needs are.

What are your ideas for/on self love? I would love to hear about them in the comments – the more the merrier I say!


Rejection Stuck/ Suck

Gah! So first off, my work server has now decided to block Twitter.

Boo! To my work server, although I can see the point.

It is a very good place to procrastinate and endlessly click refresh when one does not want to do any work.

But bloody hell! Some of my favourite people hang out there and now I can’t join in. *Stamps feet and pouts*

Secondly, some really serious stuck has showed up over the last few days and in an effort to welcome it and not push it away, I introduce my belief in rejection.

Introducing

Me, little at boarding school for the first time. Hopelessly confused and scared shitless with no way to deal with it – because I was six.

Personally, I deeply resent the way that school was run. It wasn’t child friendly. It was like military school, and I guess in a way it probably had to be to cope in the circumstances.

Still. It didn’t help with how I was feeling.

I also hold no anger over being sent there or why – I know why and I know that it was not because I wasn’t loved deeply, because I was and I am and I know this now.

Right, so caveats dealt with.

Being scared shitless and confused beyond all knowing I proceeded to have a great many temper tantrums and this lead to me feeling very isolated. Kids don’t want to hang out with shouty people no matter how tall or short they are.

Cutting a long story short, I ended up feeling very afraid of this shouty part of me and on leaving that school I decided to no longer let that shouty part out. I would find another way I thought.

Hey, it worked – I made friends.

Fast Forward

Meeting my ex, falling in love with my ex, discovering he hated the shouty part (actually scared shitless part) of me even more than I did.

Stuffing it down even further so that I would not be rejected again.

To be fair – it worked, again.

I’ll say this – as a survival/ coping mechanism this worked. I made myself “acceptable” to people and I was accepted.

But it was hard work, very hard work and I was always scared of being discovered for being this horrid shouty person that I really thought I was.

I was so scared of being rejected once this discovery was made that it didn’t matter much that I was slowly loosing all my sparkle and joie de vivre. I was becoming a shadow of myself.

Until I remembered slowly that I used to be a different person, a happier person, a sparklier person and I missed that person.

One thing lead to another and today you find me

Ta Da!

Quite a sparkly person to be fair.

Over the past year and a half I have reclaimed so much of myself and the difference in how I feel about myself is remarkable.

Mostly this is because I’ve given myself space to feel everything that has come up.

Boy have there been a lot of tears.

Holy cow, there have been so many precious, precious moments that seem to jump out in sharp colour, full of joy.

I’m becoming quite used to the idea of Self Acceptance. I have conversations with Dominatrix ladies in my shoulder blades, I give my fear a wendy house to play in. I have bizarre methods but they work for me.

In the spirit of this, an event has sparked a huge response in me and I’ve found myself puzzling over how out of proportion the response has been until last night when I realised that it has opened up a lifetime hurts and rejections and it is these that I face now and am trying to accept and sit with.

Because history…

Well, there is a lot of it but it starts with the little six year old girl learning about rejection and through circumstance and nothing else, not being able to deal with it in a healthy way. Well I was six.

Six years became twelve and I started to believe that the only way to be acceptable was to reject a massive part of me. The part that shouts when I get scared or unhappy.

Like I said, I’ve done a very good job of rejecting this part of me, telling it that it’s the reason I’m not loveable. If it shows up, I’m not loveable.

Realising that one of my core beliefs is that I get rejected. That’s my story. I get rejected. Full stop.

Funny then, (not so funny, just ironic and cynical really) that I seem to get rejected a lot or that I notice and hurt when I get rejected.

Yikes. Sometimes we’re so mean to ourselves.

I went through all the philosophical thinking stuff yesterday, recognising the patterns, thinking ‘hmm interesting’ about them and then guess who showed up?

Oh yes, the Shouty. Red in the face too.

Luckily, she showed up in my journal so there’s just a lot of effing and blinding in there and messy writing. But I let her out and once I had I burst into tears and sobbed my little heart out with hurt that was overflowing out of me for all the rejection I had done to myself.

Trying to welcome back the Shouty

She’s not shouty anymore but that’s how I know her. She is angry because she’s drawing boundaries because I’m hurting.

I see that now.

I see her as a little pink blobby thing sitting next to me at a bonfire. We’re just kinda gazing into the flames together and hopefully she’ll become a part of me soon. In the meantime I may offer her a marshmallow on a stick to toast.

I’m just practicing letting it be okay for her to be here.

Trying not to reject her by distracting myself from it or pushing it down or trying to figure it out, or fix it.

Just accepting that she’s here and a part of me.

It’s hard. I keep wanting to squirm away or reason away the feelings.

There’s a lot of hurt there and I’m worried it may overwhelm me and prevent me from getting on with my day to day.

I need my day to day. It pays my rent.

In the mean time my reasoning is thus:

I can’t prevent other people’s rejections of me. Most of the time those happen because of their shit.

I can prevent my own rejection of myself by being supremely, compassionately self accepting.

Shouty has a purpose and I no longer have temper tantrums. I am much more constructive with anger and far more accepting of it. As a grown up person I now see that it wasn’t the anger itself but how I expressed it that caused problems, and now c’mon, if this isn’t what Non Violent Communication is all about what is?

Some rules of life… (My life anyway)

1. It’s all about pace

As you are probably aware, I’m training for the Cardiff Half Marathon (you should sponsor me!)
I’m a runner. Have been since I was about 12 when something went *Pop* in my head on a cross country course at school and I thought, “I can do this!”

It doesn’t mean I’ve always run, but it means that I can and I do (now) and that it brings me peace of mind. Once I’ve set up my pace, providing I don’t get out of breath, I can plod along quite happily, with my legs feeling strong and capable and taking me along.

Ask me to run faster than ‘my’ pace, get me out of breath, and I’m beat in about 100m! It means that training with anyone else is tricky for me as I try and match their pace. I’m learning, pretty quickly, that the key to achieving this goal and my distances on my training plan are to simply stick to my pace.

I’m not that comfortable asking others to stick to my pace yet, so I mostly train alone or in situations where the others can do their own thing comfortably as well. But that is a whole other post.

Of course it’s occurred to me that this is a pretty strong metaphor for life.

In other words, you can do anything; go anywhere as long as you stick to the pace that’s right for you.

For me, I’m coming to realize (ever so slowly and in the tiniest baby steps) that my pace is slow and steady.

I feel deeply, I think an awful lot and this means that in order to not be totally overwhelmed by it all I need to take things slowly, making space to find out just what I think and feel about each thing that comes up.

Rushing and impatience, although tempting and almost second nature to me, get me no where other than three steps forward and two steps back. Frustrating and not all that constructive, or compassionate at that!

2. Attitude is everything
Oh how boring! How many times have you heard this old chestnut? Positive thinking, positive expectations, positive intentions – BLAH BLAH BLAH and if I may say so – eff off.
Not my point. At. All.

Again a running metaphor.

Signing up to this marathon scared the bejaysus out of me. I didn’t think I could do it.

I am not the type of person who gets all gung ho about a challenge and proving stuff to myself. Most of the time I think I cripple myself with self doubt.

The first time I set off to run five miles? I was worried the whole day before that I was asking too much of myself.

What if I ran out of steam? What if I set off an attack of the tireds? What if I injured myself? What if, what if, what if?

Turns out that by setting the right pace (see? Do you see how beautifully this all ties in?) I did it with absolutely no problems at all. I was not even out of breath by the end!

Tired, yes, exhausted and crippled, no.

Then yesterday as I plodded away on the treadmill (seven miles on a treadmill leaves you ample time to think about a LOT of things) I realized that my belief about myself is that I am a quitter.

That I don’t achieve anything because I quit, because I don’t believe I’m an achiever.

Can you believe?

Indeed.

You can imagine all the Whizz! Pop! Bings! that were going off in my mind after realizing that and where it all comes from, and oh boy do I know where it all comes from.

Needless to say, it’s something I want to bring attention to, because it’s luggage I don’t feel I need anymore.

3. Take it one step at a time

When you’ve only ever run three miles, imagining thirteen and a half feels unbelievably overwhelming.
Running four though – that seems do-able.

Then once you’ve done four, five seems quite possible too.

Once you’ve done five, you imagine that you will quite like to see if you can do seven. If you can only do six then fine, but maybe… just maybe… you have seven in your legs.

Once you’ve done seven you realize you are over halfway there.

You begin to believe.

So if you’re starting up a new business? Trying to work out how to make it work so that you can bring in one month’s rent may seem totally overwhelming. But perhaps just one sale and then two?

Or any other goal or decision for that matter.

Do I want to see this person? You don’t start asking your heart/ god/ whatever you ask if this person is the meaning to life, the universe and everything to you. You simply ask, “is this for me right now in this very moment?”

4. Trust your tools. Trust yourself.

Running shoes – I will and do spend good money on them.
Not vast amounts, because I am not made of money and besides I do not actually think you need to.

Comfort and support are absolutely vital for me in my shoes and that is all.

If I doubt my shoes, if they are unsuitable for the job, give me blisters, don’t support my knees properly etc then I do not feel confident going out for a run, let alone a testing run.

Make sure you have good support systems in place, both internal and external.

Good support in training, encouragement and help with niggles – absolutely vital.

Good support in business… you are getting the hang of it.

Good support through friends and family…. You see? You see?! It is all transferable to personal life.

Know yourself and trust yourself. Know your limits, your buttons and listen to them. Trust the feedback you get from your body.

Pain, like fear needs to be listened to, but not necessarily pandered too. Perhaps you need to stop and stretch rather than give up completely.

Learn this about yourself and then trust that you do actually know what you are doing.

Be prepared to work with yourself instead of against yourself. Your pace is your pace and that pace is totally acceptable.

Start slow, start gentle and take care of yourself each step of the way.

It is not guarantee for success, it is not always easy, but it makes things more comfortable.

5. Warm up and Cool Down!

Heh heh heh! That is probably only hilariously funny to me.
But seriously, I do not like attempting any run without a good warm up and stretch and if I don’t cool down – well I probably struggle to walk the next day.

Make sure you give yourself space to work up to the “Big Thing” and space to stretch and let yourself recover from the “Big Thing” before throwing yourself into the next “Big Thing”.

As you get fitter, your recovery time gets better. Your muscles can cope with more and remember how to recover. Oh you also have more scar tissue but you work with that through stretching and stuff.

So it is with my personal life. As I get more in touch with myself, as I trust myself and have more compassion with the hard, the more self accepting I am – the easier the Hard is to process.

I resist less.

Life continues to deliver its goods and I will inevitably get hurt from time to time. New wounds will open, old wounds will be prodded but I heal faster and support the healing process better as I come more familiar with what works for me.

Who’d have thunk huh? All this for a £1.70 gym session, a treadmill and a pair of shoes doing the same thing over and over!