More than enough

more than enough

I'm a numbers girl.

Numbers soothe my soul. Seriously, there's always been a funny something about the clarity and peace that numbers and logic can bring me. I like to find patterns. The order in the chaos. My son is the same... he loves his maths. 

When it comes to our messy minds though, it can make things a little more complicated. Over the years when I found myself getting overwhelmed, and anxious (anxiety is a big thing for me) my husband used to get understandably frustrated and ask me why I couldn't see things from another perspective. I won't lie, it was frustrating as hell. 

So I don't know if this now comes with years of gentle practice, or if it was one of those 'quick shifts', but these little symbols have become a lifesaver for me. Thinking of my thoughts as amorphous things that I could manipulate and look at differently I found incredibly difficult. Yet bring a bit of logic, clarity, order, and control ;) to the situation and I feel more at ease. Put my situation in relation to these little brackets, and it becomes clear. Same thing, #tinydifferent method. 

I know you guys know this, shifting our thoughts is one of the most important tools in our mental health toolbox, but there's a difference between knowing the theory and being able to put it into practice. This is my way. Whenever I feel myself getting drawn down (which let's be honest happens a hundred little ways every day) I actually visualise these tiny arrows. Visualisation is the key for me I think, and words for me are harder to get a clear 'sense' of in my mind. 

Listening to Byron Katie chatting to Oprah earlier she explained her way too... "and then you turn it around". Every little less than thought can become a more than, enough. If you can find a way that makes sense for you.

Do you have any #mindshifting tips you'd be happy to share? I think I may be a collector of these tiny thoughts ;)

*I’ve been thinking recently about sharing this mind of mine, and how it could be mis-interpreted, or believed to be in any way like I’m suggesting how you should live your life. I think I need to write more around that at some point, but to be clear for now, these are simply meanderings from my mind. I’m offering nothing more, or nothing less than my presence here…

Magic

Dragonfly

I believe in magic.
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The day before dad died I was visited by a huge blue dragonfly. It flew around our sunroom and I gently cupped it in my hands before releasing it into the garden... A few days after he passed, a similarly large, blue dragonfly was flying around my sister’s bedroom in London. Neither of us live near water or have ever had them in our homes.
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Have you heard about psychopomps before? They’re spiritual guides of a person’s soul. Amongst many cultures dragonflies symbolise transformation, renewal and resurrection. The dragonfly now carries so much meaning and magic for me. Another #tinygiant for sure.
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There’s also something about the strength of the body, and the grace in the wings that just gets me. Dad had four kids, I like to think of him as the strength, and each of us as a wing. Together we fly...
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This evening I’ve spent happily doodling potential tattoos whilst listening to music. Music is magic for my mind sometimes. When I choose to listen.
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“Our dreams will break the boundaries of our fear.” Brandon Flowers, ‘Crossfire’. Fitting I think 🖤

Help

help

I find asking for help really hard.⁣

Help, definition: to give someone support or information so that they can do something more easily.⁣

Resilience is one of those words that gets bandied about in the world of education a whole lot... like it's the holy grail. Raise resilient kids. Yet, here's the thing, I consider myself to be incredibly resilient and I'll knock any real-life curve ball you throw my way out the park. But ask me to be vulnerable, and admit my struggles and I'll feel my chest go into lock down and will disappear back down inside my rabbit hole. Accepting that I need help and that help involves other humans who know or can do more than me I find really hard. ⁣It always seemed to me a little like admitting defeat, like wanting something to be easier will make the outcome less rewarding. Like I am less than I should be.

Yet recently I've started to realise that I can't handle the messiness of my mind all alone. I don't understand it, and I can't seem to minimise my thoughts the way I can my worldly needs. For this work, I need help. I'm a type 5 on the Enneagram and I'm realising that this is a thing for us... information and knowledge is my clutter. It is my strength, and my weakness. So far I've not managed to find the #marikondomagic for my mind just yet, although @a_life_in_progress is definitely helping 😉

So I've decided that not only do I want to raise resilient kids, I want my kids to be confident in their not-knowing. Staying curious and open and vulnerable... and resilient... that's what I want to be, and to raise. ⁣

Asking for help, I think, is actually one of the most courageous things we can do for ourselves. We have to appraise our situation, admit our struggles, and reach out beyond our comfort zone into the wild but wise unknown.

What about you, do you have a healthy relationship with help?

Mixed Messages

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I’ve been thinking about mixed messages and trying to understand my introverted (and HSP) nature.

One of the most amazing (and challenging) things about becoming a mother is how it has forced me to go inside. Somewhere that I had always been too scared to go. The only way I can help them to navigate their worlds, is to try to get a better understanding of my own. Learning to understand the way I think has been the biggest gift my kids have given me, and I’m still unwrapping it daily. One important thing I’ve learnt along the way is how incredibly strong an introvert (and HSP) I am. Accepting, and not fighting this, and trying to find ways to work with this wiring of mine helps me see that there are other ways of being, that I don’t think I was aware of as a child, or even adult. There are many reasons that have influenced the way I show myself to the world, but almost all of them have included clever tricks to try to hide.

I am a master faker. Even to myself. I don’t know if this is an introvert thing, and HSP thing, a gemini thing, a big family thing, a nomadic thing, a strict school thing. But very few people get to peek at the real me. They see calm, kind, smily me… but I have a wild, electric, stubborn, sweary me too. This me, this tinygiant inside, feels more like the true me that I’m starting to embrace, and trust. These waves inside are not things to be scared of. They are a powerful force, indeed, but they too are a gift. Learning to sail these waves does indeed bring it’s challenges, but I truly believe we have to be careful when we think we can change the weather… it’s like trying to bottle a storm. It’s forcing the giant to stay tiny, when really the giant must shine, and step out from the shadows.

Finding ways to communicate my thoughts and feelings still is one of the biggest challenges of this brain of mine. I’m slowly starting so sit in my storm and can see that there is joy and peace in there too. My giant is nothing to be scared of. I want my kids to see this too, we all have our own weather systems inside, and seven days of still sunshine isn’t always as glorious as it sounds.

Show me your storm!



Caged Birds

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“A picture speaks a thousand words.”
I’ve been trying to understand how best to communicate recently. In trying to express what I think and feel, I have always felt that words have never worked well for me. I have never felt like I mastered the art of verbal, or indeed written, communication. I fumble with my words, and often feel like I’m speaking a foreign language. I get frustrated, and feel foolish, and shut down. Yet I do not think of myself as an artist either. Until recently, whenever I ‘play’ at drawing I find fear and comparison overwhelm me, and I retreat back into my mind. My own personal playground.
So how can I engage with the world if I find myself lacking in both arenas. I must stumble on regardless with my messy words and my imperfect images. As the thing I’m finding is that these images and words, slowly and gently are building a tiny picture of me. They are expressions of my self, and in doing that they are valuable.
The interesting thing that I’m only starting to recognise is when I’m trying to understand my thoughts and my feelings, I do it visually. I can’t ever really tell you how I feel, as I can’t express my senses using words. So maybe I am an artist after all. We are all artists, and we can smudge the lines between words and images, because these are only tools of self expression, they are not the experience itself, and we have to give ourselves permission to play with both, in order to share ourselves, and make connections with others.
This picture is how my experience yesterday looking around a school with my kids made me feel. I think this picture is worth a thousand words.
I’m still trying to find my song.

Heart-Wisdom

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Sas’ words always speak to me. In today’s letter she shared her journey through literal heartbreak and pain, and what treasures it is unearthing within. Her words around heart-wisdom were so in alignment with thoughts I’ve been having around my own felt sense, that I felt compelled to draw around it. Something is definitely emerging… Thank you Sas, for your ability to put into words so beautifully thoughts and feelings that I find hard to express :)