About two years ago I had what some people would describe as an 'awakening' and what others would say 'yeah that's life, in fact welcome to mid life.' I had dramatically falling out of love with my job and as it turned out, I didn't in fact know what I wanted to be when I grew up. You might say this was bad timing, I'd spent 10 years teaching and had just completed the second year of a Masters in Education at Exeter University. With my youngest daughter getting ready to start school, I was in the perfect position to get my career 'on track', 'push through the 'glass ceiling' (sounds painful) and possibly if I keep working harder and harder even get a promotion.
Well, at the time all I knew was that it was getting harder and harder to go to work and with a chunk of 'are you crazy', handed in my notice, no plans, no job to go to....... nothing..........
It was around this time that I had started a journey of self discovery, accept I didn't know it was that! On reflection it was perfectly timed (everything is and I mean everything) as it turned out I had a lot in common with my 4 year old daughter and as she was the person I hung out with the most, I started to want what she was having. "When I grow up I want to be a mermaid. I will eat what I want and go whenever I want." Sounds good where do I sign?
So with her off to school and the days of mermaid talk behind me, it was time to 'sort' myself out. During this time I became fanatical about self care - accept I didn't really know it was called that, I just knew I wanted to feel good. I discovered meditation and like the gurus I read about, wanted to practice early in the morning. It became a battle of wills, me pitted against my early rising daughters (I'm talking 5am!) they would never fail to get up with me. With the blaring of cartoons and frequent interruptions for essentials like toilet paper and assistance with IPAD malfunctions, I had to admit defeat. I had to wait until after the school run before I could meditate.
LESSON No. 1 - PATIENCE - I surrendered and waited until the house was quiet, else it was like a scene for Absolutely Fabulous "Darling Mummy's just trying to discover her life purpose, so if you could just wait an additional 30 minutes for your Weetabix that would be marvellous, sweetie, darling?"
LESSON 2 - LISTEN TO YOUR GUT Looking for help on improving any aspect of your life, get to know your gut. What do you feel? Getting to know your range of feelings and emotions is part of understanding how you can be happy now (not when you grow up or any other point in the future). We're not told to listen to our gut, in fact we're taught the complete opposite. We're told to look for the evidence, does it stack up, figure out a strategy, blah, blah. If you feel uncomfortable right now and would consider yourself in the 'science' camp of life, then let me ask you this "How's it working out for you over there?" Feeling blissfully happy, at ease with yourself and in a state of balance is your birth right and it is possible. It does however take fearless and relentless commitment and practice, but you can become the conscious creator of your life.
LESSON 3 - SELF RESPONSIBILITY Don't give your power away to anything or anyone outside of you. I know because I have, many many times. Being Little Miss/Mr Perfect is hard work, but you already know that. You have ticked all the boxes and done what everyone has always told you and now they are telling you 'well that's what life is like.' This is not a viable guarantee, don't sign it or bother to file it away for future reference, chances are you'll only realise how worthless it is when it's too late.
I see so many people accepting that life is hard and that things have to be done in such a way because of x, y or z. People create prisons for themselves with their minds. So here's some cud for you to chew. Life is about experiencing a range of emotions and lessons, it's not always fairy dust and rainbows. Yes sometimes it is about trips to the supermarket, negotiating the wheelie bin timetable (anyone figured that one out yet!) and hiding the 'good' coffee from the builders. BUT what Life is massively about is sharing your gorgeous sparkly self with the world.
What it is that makes you unique, makes your hair stand up on end and your heart go BOOM! It's not about a label outside of yourself and it's not about being perfect. You are already perfect. You are hear to take up space, to be listened to, to be valued and to serve others. Your happiness does not hinge on a destination, it hinges on loving and accepting all aspects of yourself, in this very moment, just as you are. Once you master this you will SHINE. I love you.