Tag Archives for " Braving the Wilderness "

2018 Mixtape – the year in review

2018 Mixtape.

The year in reflection and review

2018 was a year of contrasts. Swinging from highs to lows and everywhere in between. A year of re-evaluation, consideration and picking up the pieces from the aftermath of 2017. 2018 was a year of steep learning curves, learning (but not always mastering) the art of surrendering and embracing the practice of being gentle. In all its forms.

As the year evolved, many skins were shed, ideas considered and reincarnations attempted. A year for learning and remembering. Now, today, my birthday, I’m reflecting on the past twelve months, how far I’ve come and what the year (and Ganesha) have presented on the obstacle course of life. And it looks somewhat like this…

Braving the Wilderness, Dr Brené Brown

  • Books that blew me away: Braving the wilderness, I literally felt like I was reading about myself, and realised I was not alone in feeling the way I do. Revelatory.

Another book that made me sit up was Arianna Huffington’s Thrive. Redefining the idea of success and addressing the need to change our perceptions of what we actually need to focus on in 2018.

Our relentless pursuit of the two traditional metrics of success – money and power – has led to an epidemic of burnout and stress-related illnesses. An erosion in the quality of our relationships, family life, and, ironically, our careers. In being connected to the world 24/7, we’re losing our connection to what truly matters.

Sarah Blasko, Depth of Field, 2018

  • What’s on repeat: Sarah Blasko‘s new album Depth of Field. It makes me want to dance, every time. I saw her in Hobart, Tasmania and she was all of her amazingness on stage. It was a sight to behold her singing and dancing her heart out, and the crowd along with her.
  • Hanging out with a blanket on the couch with Harvey from Suits, his confidence, and the journey of self -realisation towards acceptance was a familiar one. That, along with his outrageous one-liners, and overall deliciousness.

 

 

On the subject of travel

  • Following the advice of the Dalai Lama. 

2018 saw me adventuring to a few destinations that were completely new to me. As the new year dawned I hopped over to New Zealand for a month of adventures. An epic road trip around the south island, exploring the wild west coast (my absolute favourite).

I soaked in an onsen on the Shotover river (beyond amazing). Camped under the stars. Watched the cosmos from my sleeping bag. Woke up at dawn to listen to the cracking and shifting of the glacier on Mt Cook whilst watching the morning sun creep over the mountains.

Uluru, Central Australia

Midway through 2018 saw me do something I didn’t think would happen. An epic road trip from Adelaide to Alice Springs via the Oodnadatta track and Uluru. This trip changed me. Things inside shifted, changed, broke open, healed. Uluru is considered to the spiritual heart of Australia, and if it’s not on your list.

Add. It. Now. Run, don’t walk.

  • Discovered the amazingness of…living in my home country after many years of not wanting to live or be here. I have been rejoicing the loveliness in being able to speak my local lingo. Meeting people organically as well as through the maze of networks and our hyperlinked world. Feeling grateful for my home country that has so much to offer, and so many good people.
  • Rediscovered the salty goodness of margaritas. Need I say more…
  • I have been inspired by the photos of Australian photographer, Kara Rosenlund. She made me fall in love with the Australian landscape all over again. Motivated me to pick up my camera (again) and get out into the wilderness to take photos, recharge my batteries and reconnect with one of my first passions. Taking photos.

On the topic of gratitude

  • Felt repeatedly grateful for the love and support of my friends, from all the corners of the world. There were moments I felt completely alone, and then suddenly someone would pop up and give me a virtual or physical reminder of how much they love, miss and think of me.
  • Learnt the lesson that losing people from your life, isn’t always a loss, but more of a liberation. A tough one and it caused many sleepless nights. Angry conversations. Copious amounts of tears. A vicious circle of questions. But finally and slowly resulting in exhausted surrender (which I still sometimes forget, and leap back on the roundabout before remembering and leaping straight the f*ck off). 2018 has been a tough one for the repetition of this lesson.

On what turned out to be our last holiday together, September 2016.

  • All of this has been happening whilst riding the waves of grief. In 2017 I lost my father after a very brief fight with a late diagnosed cancer, at stage 4, to be precise. In 2018 I’ve been trying to regroup and return to my state of being. Not an easy task, I’ve discovered. The road of grief is a long, winding one that has a tendency to blindside you when you least expect it. Or at least, when I least expected it.

What this has taught me though is that health is more valuable than anything. Especially money. There are many ways to approach the topic of health and wellness, none of them are absolute. Time is one of the key healers, but so are sleep, sunshine, gazing in the never-never (distance) and laughter. Oh, and margaritas with girlfriends. Not to mention outrageous stories, cups of tea and hugs. On top of tests, days in hospital, and seeing every specialist under the sun.

And so we begin a new chapter, 2019

Wishing you a super fantastic end to another year. I’m looking forward to seeing what 2019 holds in store for us all.

Cheers to us and our fabulousness, thanks for joining me on this journey.

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If you’re looking for more posts from 2018 check them out here – or if you’d like to say hi or get more information about my coaching, training and workshops drop me a line – info (@) wayfairer.net

The stories we tell ourselves, and what you can do about them

the stories we tell ourselves

The stories we tell ourselves,

and what you can do about them

There are a few themes that are set on repeat in the Wayfairer HQ and one of them is about the stories we tell ourselves. Have you ever listened to the stories, the voices in your head tell you? Whether they’re self-doubts, you can’ts to hell yes’s and what ifs.

That voice or those voices have quite a strong influence over most of us. These stories can quite quickly and easily be mistaken for truths. They often have the power and capacity to incapacitate us, to swell that lump of fear and ring in the naysayers at the back of our minds.

Stories we tell are often not true

But it’s not all doom and gloom, because it at these junctions that growth and awareness can develop, unfold and can change the trajectory of the stories being developed or told in our heads.

No one other than you can hear this story. Which means no one other than you can change the tune, the tone, the content and make that story ring truer than its original shitty first draft. The shitty first draft that many accept as being the final polished and buffed piece that the world sees.

Dr Brené Brown talks of her internal dialogue as one that can either cripple her or fire her up to get on with her intention to keep showing up for the world. To continue writing, researching, presenting her ideas. Rewriting that story where she is the imposter and her story is full of doubt, fear, and vulnerability.

Sound familiar?

Recently I was talking with a friend about my ability to upsell, wax lyrical and prioritise my work for others and the work they do. However, when it comes to my own work, skill set, experience and abilities I am completely paralysed. By not only a very strong sense of fear and vulnerability (oh my goodness I don’t know everything, what if someone finds out!) But also imposter syndrome. Despite my training and educational background, over 15 years of experience and a university degree. I still seem to believe the story in my head. It reads like this – I’m not enough to do this work. I’ve not got enough experience. I have to get more qualifications. I need to work for other people, use their skills, experience, and business as a buffer to hide behind. To shield myself from being exposed as an imposter. These are huge excuses for not letting my own innate skills loose, and actually being brave enough to be successful. Which is contrary to the fear I tell myself of being afraid of failing. Which, I am not. Funnily enough.

“If we deny our stories, they own us,” says Brené Brown. “When we own our stories, we get to write the ending. When we deny our stories and disengage from tough emotions, they don’t go away – they own us, then they define us. Our job is not to deny the story, but to defy the ending – to rise strong, reckon with our story and rumble with the truth until we get to a place where we think, yes. This is what happened. This is my truth. And I will choose how this story ends.”

The shitty first draft (sfd)

When I first read about this in Brené Brown’s book, Rising Strong, it took a bit of digesting. Probably because my fears realised they were about to be caught out. The biggest question that came up was, Why would writing our stories be of any use? Eventually, it dawned on me that if our stories are out of our heads and in the real world positioned next to other items for scale and perspective we’d see what shitty stories they really are. How irrelevant they actually are in relation to not only the truth but also reality.

Fellow fear facer and author Elizabeth Gilbert wrote an exceptional letter to fear in her book Big Magic.

 

The stories fear tells us

 

The sfd

Not everyone is a storyteller, a writer or inclined to put their innermost thoughts on paper (or on a computer). I know there are days where I can’t even sit still long enough to write a sentence, so my suggestions are these. Take out the medium that you feel most at ease with communicating these stories.

  • writing, stories, poems, lyrics, emails, notes, permission slips
  • painting, drawing, sculpting, carving
  • photographs or videos
  • speak the stories through songs, a vlog, podcast, voice recording on your phone, conversation with another person

The SFD doesn’t need to be public, it just needs to be out of your head and exposed for what it really is. Bullshit.

I always say to my students. Ask the question. Get the clarification. Make the statement. You are not the only one in the room feeling that way. By raising your hand and putting yourself in a space of vulnerability I can guarantee that at least one other will feel the same. They will be moved to either support you and contribute to the story or write/speak their own version.

Like all good stories, they need space and time to be told. So carve out a niche of time and get those words or images out of your head. Start that shitty first draft and see it for what it is. Fear. Vulnerability. Self-doubt. Acknowledge it, take responsibility for it. But don’t believe it. Please, don’t believe it.

Reigning in the stories

Brené, who has interviewed artists, CEOs, parents, teachers and military leaders as part of her mission to uncover what it takes to lean into vulnerability in the name of being courageous, suggests a few key points in order to ‘rise strong’ in the face of a roadblock, stumble (or sinkhole).

1.    Acknowledge when you’re getting caught in emotion

The physiological signs of this can be different for everyone but may involve sweaty palms, tingly insides, dizziness, racing heart, rushing thoughts.

2.    Own your story 

Acknowledge your fears and worries to yourself and identify what they are, exactly. You will probably recognise that they’re somewhat exaggerated versions of the actual truth.

3.    Go searching for the truth

Take it gently, this might involve, confessing to the person your SFD is about or involving and saying something along the lines of ‘In my head, the story I’m telling myself is…’

4.    Create a new story

In most situations, it’s possible to identify what the real issue is. Overwhelm, stress, tiredness, PMS, and more are all contributors to the story. The rest? Pure confabulation.

5.    Challenge your themes

If you’re serious about getting up and out of the SFD vicious circle, review your SFDs and pull out the recurring themes that you’re concocting on a regular basis about situations in your life, about people, about circumstances. Acknowledge the underlying false beliefs that may be plaguing you.

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If you need more help or coaching please get in touch here or info(@)wayfairer.net

Framing stories.