Monday, June 28, 2010

The Shift That Makes A Difference.....

Enlightened society happens one by one...You shift. I shift. My neighbour shifts. Someone in Angola shifts. A person in Russia shifts, someone in the Philippines shifts. A gang member shifts. A Parliament member shifts. A mother shifts. A child shifts. A news commentator shifts. A prisoner shifts. A warden shifts. A homeless person shifts. Once you realise this, peacefulness and a deep respect for human beings are natural. The help that's needed is to help each person shift, and as they shift, they help the rest of us shift, too. There is no real recipe, except working with what the world presents from the point of view of basic goodness, compassion, and courage. The key is never to make a separation between your practice and your everyday life. - Cynthia Kneen (Author of the book "Awake Mind, Open Heart").

I like to think that my blog is one of those things that will help everyone shift. I hope you do too.

A House With Four Rooms....

Susannah Conway had a quote on her blog recently that really grabbed my attention:

'There is an Indian proverb or maxim that says everyone is a house with four rooms, a physical, a mental, an emotional and a spiritual. Most of us tend to live in one room most of the time, but unless we go into every room every day, even if only to keep it aired, we are not a complete person'. - Rumer Godden.

This quote has really captured my imagination this week as I am feeling very much like my whole being needs to be spring cleaned and aired (even though we are currently in winter!). This need is linked to my desire to create space for the next phase of my life. Right now I can't seem to create that space though. I feel like I'm running on the spot and not getting anywhere. I know what I want to do but I don't know where to start. Perhaps creating a vision for each of my 'four rooms' would be a good place to start......

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Letting the Kindness In....

I've been struggling of late with the need for some 'space of my own' and time to myself. So on Sunday night I decided to go to a Yin yoga class so that I could still my mind and have some time to myself. Often on Sunday night I would end up putting whatever needed to be done at home first but I committed to going and I'm glad I did. I had what you might call a 'breakdown' of sorts. Not a huge noticeable thing to anyone else but definitely something noticeable to me. While we were doing a certain pose the instructor (a lovely man who has taught some classes for me at lululemon) walked around the room and assisted people where it was needed. I'm not the most flexible of people so needless to say, when it came to frog pose I needed a little help. Anyway, he put his hand on my back to help me and next thing I knew I felt tears rolling down my face. This simple act of kindness and assistance may not have really registered for me much at all in the past. But on Sunday night it had such a huge impact on me. My husband and I are separating (this has been one of the huge changes I have been alluding to over the past weeks/months but I haven't really been able to write directly about it up until now). Its something that I know is the best thing for us and our little man but that doesn't make it any less hard. I've been trying to be really strong about it all and to keep myself together but this week I'm really feeling the weight of it all. I've been trying so hard to hold myself up but this really reminded me that I need to just be kind and compassionate with myself and it's ok to acknowledge that its hard.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A Great Day.....

Despite a very early start to the day, it was such a great one for me. Productive and motivating staff meetings with my team, Australia wide lululemon conference calls, a lovely interview with a potential employee, a quick visit to Manly beach, my first Power Yoga class at Power Living Manly (which I really enjoyed). All followed by dinner, ice-cream and laughs with my buddy Chels. Can't ask for anything more really.....

Monday, June 14, 2010

Life is like an Avocado......

Tonight I came across the following post by Julie Lee Yoga

So often, we aren’t yet ready to fulfill our fate. What is it that renders us unable to reach out, to open up, to let go? What is it that holds us back from being all that we are meant to be? It is in each and every one of us to be great. When we try to force things - in ourselves, in others, in our lives - that aren’t ready to manifest themselves, all we do is create a lose-lose situation. Sometimes, we have to accept the fact that we just aren’t ripe enough.

So, what do we do? For ourselves, we take on the practice of yoga, so that we can learn how to soften and ripen within our respective situations. We can begin to open our eyes to the lessons that arise in our everyday lives. And perhaps most importantly, we can begin to nurture our souls and allow ourselves time to grow, naturally - because sometimes, that’s all we need.

Sometimes I am completely blown away by how I manage to stumble across random writings that are so relevant to issues that I am pondering in my own life. I would agree that right now I am not ready to fulfil my own fate. I get terribly frustrated when I think about this because it makes me feel as though I am lacking in some way or don't measure up. (I know deep down that this is an utterly ridiculous response or feeling to have, and one that will not do me any good, but thats just how it is, so I'm being honest). I have been dwelling on this alot lately because I want to discover what my fate is and to work out what is holding me back so that I can uncover all my greatness.

After reading Julie Lee's words, however, it struck me that it's time to change my course. Why am I so hell bent on 'fulfilling my fate?'. Why am I in such a hurry to get 'there', wherever 'there' is? I don't know the answers to these questions but what I do know is that I'm not ripe enough, but thats ok. Being so focused on the end result will prevent me from being present to the process of ripening, which is ultimately where our greatness manifests itself or becomes apparent. So I'm letting go of my need to know and to move forward. I'm surrendering to the here and now and trusting that my path will lead where I am meant to go, in due time and course.

And on that note, I'm off to practice yoga.......

Sunday, June 13, 2010

kikki k.......

I have been lusting after the following items from kikki k, which is one of my faves. kikki k is an award winning retailer offering unique gifts, gorgeous stationery and organising tools in Scandinavian designs. If you haven't come across this shop you must visit asap (stores are in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore but there is also an online store).

Cirkus Collection:
Resa Collection:

(Resa means 'travel' or 'journey' in Swedish).

Saturday, June 12, 2010


Tonight I've become a 21.5.800 member. What's that you ask? Well, Bindu Wiles has created an online space called 21.5.800. The idea behind it is that for the next 21 days we commit to doing yoga on 5 days each week and write 800 words per day. What a great idea! The writing can be anything from a letter, to an essay, a blog post, anything you like. What's great is that Bindu offers a topic for us to focus on each day on her website, so if you feel stuck for ideas (as I sometimes do), you can look to her for inspiration. She even prompts you with questions which is great. (I found out about this group via the ever-amazing Susannah Conway btw. She never ceases to amaze me with all the phenomenal women she is connected to).

Today is actually day 4 of the program (I'm a late starter) so I will attempt to catch up on the earlier topics as I go along. The topic for day 4 is "FEAR".

The role of fear in my life is something that I have uncovered a lot about in recent years. I can completely and utterly see that fear has governed much of my decision making and life choices and, in turn, has really inhibited my ability to live life to the full. I'm not entirely sure how I came to be that way, although I'm fairly sure it was a behaviour that I observed growing up. It is something many of us become so conditioned to that we don't even realise we do it and we are actually blind to any other way of being.

As Bindu Wiles says, our feelings about a situation can often feel so intense that we think they might kill us. So in order to avoid these scary feelings or fear, we act out in ways that we think will make us feel better. We might threaten people, tell them how and when to do things, pull a power trip on someone, etc etc. This may make us feel better for a short while but in the end it never truly works. In acting this way we are not dealing with our fears but are in fact just projecting them onto someone else and then they feel afraid. And the cycle continues.....

What we ultimately need to do is to get to the heart of the fear and confront what it is trying to teach us. Fear is an emotion that does not just come from nowhere. It is a signal to us that something isn't right, or that we need to take care of ourselves in a certain situation. When you look at it from this perspective, fear is not something we should avoid but rather something we should confront and deal with.

I would say that the single greatest fear that I have carried around with me for most of my life is the fear of failure. I have always been super conscious of failing at something. The effect of this has been that I always look for the 'safest' option or weigh everything up to the nth degree before making a decision. Sure, in some areas of life this has been the smartest approach. But at the same time it has prevented me from stretching myself and growing as much as I could, and from simply enjoying myself. The pressure that you place on yourself when trying to prevent failure is enormous and really is a burden.

Anyway, lucky for me I have been able to confront this and work on changing my way of thinking. As I have mentioned before, my experience with post natal depression was the catalyst for this change in thinking. I realised that I didn't want to look back on my life and regret playing it safe all the time. I needed to start following my heart as much as my head so that I could feel as though I was truly 'living' my life. So instead of asking myself 'what is my safest option?' in certain situations, I would ask myself 'What would I attempt to do if I knew I couldn't fail?'. This had such a positive impact on my life and its one of the single greatest changes I have made in the way that I live my life. I asked myself this question before changing my career (a move which I have never had second thoughts about) and ended up working for a company whose manifesto reads "Do one thing a day that scares you". Too cool.

The power behind confronting our fears and dealing with them is the fact that we step outside our comfort zones. We find out what we are truly capable of and this is how we achieve growth and come to truly know ourselves. Confronting our fears actually makes them smaller or eliminates them altogether. And it isn't about whether we succeed or fail in whatever we attempt. It is about what we do with that success or failure that matters and either way we learn valuable lessons.

Friday, June 4, 2010

9 Things I Have Learnt The Hard Way...

I was tagged by Katiegirl over at The Life and Times of an Ordinary Girl. So here's my list of 9 Things I Have Had to Learn The Hard Way:

Everything I need in order to have an amazing life already exists within me: Its taken me about 31 years to truly believe this one. I've always believed in myself to a certain extent but for the most part I was always looking for fulfillment and validation from other people and outside of myself. So many years of living in a torturous world of self-consciousness and doubt....... such a waste!

Everything is as it is meant to be, right now: I spent most of my life carrying around this feeling and thought in my head that 'something is wrong here'. Its how most of us are conditioned to think in our society. The problem is your view of life becomes one where you are always needing to fix or change something, rather than just 'being'. I've really tried to change my way of thinking over the past few years and I am now nowhere near as hell bent on trying to create this 'ideal' life (which of course doesn't exist!).

Life is now: Life is not some thing that will start when we get around to it, or when some circumstance changes, or when we get that certain job or buy that certain house etc. My head has been in the future (which is a place which doesn't really exist) and I have always been so concerned with getting to the next place that I didn't realise my life was actually passing me by. As soon as I learned to be present and to find joy in the simple things and to live each moment, my life completely changed (for the better).

I have the strength and courage to be able to handle whatever comes my way: It as taken some long periods and a battle with post natal depression to help me accept this one but its the greatest lesson I have learnt to date in my life. No matter how bad things may seem I will be able to get through it - such an empowering lesson!

You always have a choice: I am not locked in to any one way of being or thinking. At any moment I can be whoever I choose to be and do whatever I choose to do with my life. The only limiting factor is my own mind. My life has been great, don't get me wrong. But I feel I spent much of my 20's blindly going along without really stopping to find out or think about what I really want to do with this one precious life I have been given (or maybe I thought I knew who I was but really I didn't). As soon as I gave myself the space to work out who I really am and what I really want, my life really started.

I will never be tanned: My skin + sun = redness/sunburn and then thats pretty much it. Not worth the pain.

A Little one, plus Mummy's nice things don't mix: I've faced facts that I should not expect to have anything 'nice' in my house for at least the next 20 years. Every now and then I foolishly think I can leave something out and it will be ok - but it never is! Lucky he is so cute.....

So thats 7. I know I'm supposed to do 9 but its quite challenging. I will add the next 2 that I come up with as soon as they come to me!

Now its my turn to tag 3 people. I tagged Marisa over at Creative Thursday, Susannah at Susannah Conway and Lisa at Doorways Traveler. These are 3 amazingly inspiring women whose blogs I read religiously. If you haven't visited them yet I highly recommend you do!