I created this visual meditation using my artwork and words - watch it whenever you need to feel more inspired.
It's here to remind you that your creativity isn't limited to a talent in the arts.
Creativity is the very essence of you.
You are creativity in motion ...an artist in your soul, with the power to co-create yourself and your life.
Your creativity enables you to experience, explore, and express all the wonder, and potential, WITHIN you.
Don't let limiting ideas creativity hinder you ...let your creative spirit free.
Rest easy in yourself.
Find a way to honour your life. Don’t just settle for some nullifying existence.
Dare to do that which helps you feel alive.
Break free of the unconscious restrictions that chain you.
Unravel all the lies, and untruths, that you’ve adopted as your own. Let them go, they don't belong to you.
Behold the everyday miracles that too easily pass you by: the majesty of nature and the dynamic brilliance of your own true Self.
Get in touch with your heart. Without feeling, what is life?
Let go of the inner, and outer, drama for it only gives you a short-lived, ultimately futile, high.
Allow yourself to rest. Rest your exhausted body and mind. Sink into the knowing that all is well, with or without you out in the game.
Allow yourself to breathe. Allow yourself to be. You can do that, can't you? Or have you forgotten how?
Drop that mask of pretence, show-up naked, as you are. Dare to be undressed.
Let go of that cloak of expectation, which weights heavy upon your shoulders, and all those ideas that tell you that pushing through is the only way. What, or who, are you doing it all for, anyway?
The mask. The cloak. What do they mask and cloak?
What’s there, hidden beneath the surface? Do you dare to scratch?
Go on, unveil the magic within you, if only to yourself. Deep down, you know you want to.
Oh, but maybe you’re afraid.
You know it’s an itch you can’t scratch in an instant.
You know the itch will magnify, and grow, and you will be called to be different. Called to be more fully yourself.
It can feel scary but you’ll be okay.
In fact, you’ll be all the better for it, and you’ll wonder why you ever wore that mask, and cape, in the first place.
Relinquish that which does not belong to you and seize that which is yours to own.
Don that which befits your brilliance and humanity. Wear your uniqueness as a crown.
Don’t sacrifice who you are for fear of what they may think or say. Don’t belittle yourself to make them feel tall.
Don’t despise yourself for being a piece that just doesn’t seem to fit …too little, too much, too big, too small.
What is that? That incessant judgement about who you should be, and what you should do.
Really, question ‘what IS that?’. We often need to understand things, before we can let them go.
See into your own heart, your own potential, and soul. Who lives within? Do you know?
It is time. You know it. You feel yourself being pulled, called, irritated, and illuminated.
It might not make much sense, but it makes much more sense than you might yet know.
Do you dare to go into it? Explore it? Don’t ignore it. It's your call to grow.
All things grow (and decay), and rise (and fall), and blossom (and whither). Are you present for your own cycle of becoming?
Come, come out here to that place where all things fall away and new, more authentic things can grow.
Come to the places, and spaces, that want to know, nurture, and love you.
It's never too late. It's never too soon. Now is always the time. Now is the only time. It’s the only place you can fully dwell. So be here. Really, be here.
Do you yet know your Self? Do you know how powerful that is …both the question, and the knowing?
You know you’re a freaking miracle right?
Probably not, because no one ever told you. You're one amongst billions, but every one is distinctly different. Do you know what you taste like?
Do you know if you’re really living?
Do you want to live? It’s strange question, I know. But maybe you're content to exist? Endure? Get through?
Do you need permission to live? Do you need to discover what living even is?
No one has the answer.
That’s part of the riddle, you see. You must work it out yourself. Unravel the clues, explore the wonderland, and the wasteland, and get lost in the unknown. This is the place of discovery, where your answers live.
Shake yourself, and wake yourself up from the beguiling dream that keeps you sedated and numb. Half asleep to what’s really going on.
Don’t be intoxicated by cultural indoctrination. Don’t fall prey to their measly projections.
Wake up, slowly, wake up. Stretch. Pull yourself out of the slumber. Rise, rise, and stand-up. Stand up in your knowing, your being, your life.
Live who you are. Feel awake. Feel alive. Shake off the dormancy, the relentless conformity, the endless mind-numbing chatter that limits and restricts who you are.
Behold who lives inside.
Be bold and be who you are.
Hold yourself in an ever-present space of wonder, gratitude, praise, and love. Now is always your time.
Finding your life's purpose has compelled, challenged, and perplexed humans across time.
Philosophy, and religion, have long-offered their ideas about it and, now, there are plenty of books, and coaches, offering to help you find your life's purpose too.
When these modern day books, and coaches, talk about your purpose, they're typically referring to your work in the world. The work you really came here to do.
Usually, this is some kind of divinely inspired, or passionate, work where you get to use your gifts, help others, and make plenty of money. It's an attractive idea, and it can draw you in.
At some level there's nothing wrong with this idea, if it genuinely fits for you.
But, the premise on which this idea is based can be unhelpful, and even harmful.
It reinforces that deeply embedded western belief that says your purpose, and value, depend on what you do, including your work in the world.
This might be fine if you gain meaning, and value, from what you do but, if not, you can be left feeling lost, lacking, and confused.
What if you never find what you're really here to do?
Or you're unemployed, retired, or happy to have a job that just pays the bills?
Or you're ill, or disabled, and unable to do what you'd like?
Or you have to let go of your work, because of circumstances beyond your control?
Do you cease to have a purpose? Have you lost your reason for being?
Of course not.
But that's the risk, when you see your life's purpose through the limited lens of 'doing' and 'work'.
Your life's purpose is always far greater than that.
Your life's purpose is to be here, as YOU.
There’s over 7 billion humans on the planet, and there’s no-one quite like you.
There never has been, and there never will be.
The probability of you being here is almost zero. You're basically a miracle.
Your life is an opportunity to know, explore, and express the miracle that is you.
It's a precious chance to experience, and expand into, the fullness of who you really are.
It's a chance to experience life, and this world, through your own unique perspective.
When you search for your life's purpose outside of yourself, you'll be left forever wanting.
Your life's purpose doesn't just exist 'out there' in your doing and work.
It lives WITHIN you.
Ideally, we’d all be thriving in a life that fits, and reflects, who we really are. But few of us learnt how to do this.
Instead, we were taught to live in ways that help us materially survive and succeed.
We take on roles, jobs, and relationships by accident or chance; or because they seem logical; or help us to get by; or meet with external approval ...rather based on our own deep desires, values, and dreams.
In the process, we end-up pushing ourself to be, and do, things that don't really please, or fulfil, us.
We get used to putting on a brave face, and pretending everything's ok.
In time, this creates inner tension and struggle, as we end-up working against our true self.
We begin to sense that something's missing, wrong, or off.
A vague restlessness, dissatisfaction, and unease seeps into the background of our days.
Life begins to feel effortful, and dull, but we push on thinking it's the only way.
We can live like this for months, years, or even decades until, one day, the struggle begins to get to us.
We start to melt-down, burn-out, and wake-up.
When we're in this place, it can be hard to see a way through.
We don't want to make hasty decisions, but we want things to improve.
The following 6 steps offer you a way to move forwards, and give you a strong foundation from which to grow, without you having to do anything drastic (at least until you're ready to).
Step 1: Admit Where You're At
As a smart, capable women you've worked hard, achieved a lot, and kept it all together for a long time.
So, when you find yourself stuck, and struggling, it can be hard to admit, even to yourself.
It might feel like some kind of punishment, betrayal, or personal failure.
So, it's tempting to push-on, and ignore what's really happening.
But, usually, this approach doesn't make things better, and resisting your truth just creates more friction and pain.
Getting honest with yourself is the first step to any real change.
You can only address an issue when you acknowledge it's there.
This might take time to digest, and there's no need to rush it but, as soon as you admit that you're struggling, you begin to make progress.
Step 2: Allow Your Feelings
When you're stuck, and struggling, you go through all sorts of difficult feelings.
You can feel lost, stressed, trapped, bored, empty, frustrated, hopeless, helpless, miserable, unfulfilled, or all these things and more.
These difficult feelings are made all the harder, because society typically judges them as bad, weird, irrational, or wrong. You can then think you're bad, weird, irrational, or wrong for experiencing them.
The general lack of understanding, and tolerance, for such difficult feelings means you're often encouraged to dismiss, ignore, rationalise, or push them away.
But this is a mistake.
Your feelings are there for a reason. They're trying to tell you something about yourself and your life.
Ignored feelings rarely go away, they get squashed inside of yourself, which creates tension, dis-ease, and pain.
To live a more authentic, thriving life you have to allow, and express, your feelings.
You can start to do this in the most gentle of ways, and it will still initiate change.
You can write about how you feel in a private journal; make some expressive art about it; talk it through with a trusted friend; dance it out; or work with a therapist, guide, or coach.
How it looks isn't important. What matters is that you begin to let some of the stuck, and struggle, out in ways that feel freeing and safe as, ultimately, this will bring you more inner peace, clarity, and contentment.
❸ Reclaim Your Power
The longer you're stuck, struggling, pretending, and pushing your way through life, the more likely you've begun to, unintentionally, give your power away. Maybe you:
➣ hide, deny, and repress who you are in order to people-please and approval seek.
➣ avoid making decisions or speaking-up for yourself.
➣ feel helpless to act on your own behalf, and make a change.
You forget that you're a powerful co-creator, and that you're always helping to shape yourself, and your life.
Before you can thrive, you've got to take back some of your power, so you can strengthen and grow.
Start with the small things, and work your way up.
If you always seek a second opinion, practice deciding for yourself.
If you always say yes, when you want to say no, practice saying no.
If you find it hard to make everyday choices, like choosing what to eat, practice making a choice for yourself.
What you do for and give to others, begin to do for and give to yourself.
Step 4: Dream Big, Start Small
When you're stuck, and struggling, it's tempting to look for quick fixes, logical solutions, and a clear path to help you quickly improve your situation.
But, at a time like this, you need to let yourself dream, otherwise you can end-up stuck in the same old s**t, further down the line.
Society sometimes sees dreams as naive, selfish, unrealistic, grandiose, impractical, impossible, and the like.
But your dreams hold important clues about who you really are, what you really want, and what might be possible for you, and your life.
Your dreams aren't just about arriving at some ultimate destination. They guide you towards a more thriving, and fulfilling, life.
Let yourself dream big. Who would you love to be? What would you love to do? How would you love to live?
Then, begin to move towards these things in small, manageable steps.
If you only focus on what's realistic, logical, or seemingly possible you'll chop the legs off your dreams before you begin.
Your dreams need you on their side, and magical things happen all of the time.
Step 5: Get Out Of Your Head
One thing that keeps you stuck, and struggling, in life is spending too much time in your head.
You were taught to think, judge, plan, problem-solve, critique, compare, predict, and to do what's logical, sensible, and rational.
These things help you to get-by, and survive, which is a good thing but, alone, they rarely help you thrive.
When you spend all your time lost in these mental dynamics, you forget to really inhabit your life.
Your mind's an amazing instrument, but it's not your only intelligence.
There's also the intelligence of your heart, creative spirit, and deeper Self.
These are the parts of you that help you to experience those things that make life worth living, like wonder, beauty, possibility, knowing, connection, peace, and love.
Typically, you're taught to tame your heart, creative spirit, and deeper Self and unleash the power of your mind.
But, this can leave you feeling empty, and at the mercy of your thoughts.
In order to thrive, you need to redress the balance. You need to begin to tame your mind, and unleash the power of your heart, creative spirit, and deeper Self.
Step 6: Take Positive Action
When you're stuck, and struggling, in your outer life, you can bet you're stuck, and struggling, inside.
You've given away your power (step 3); got stuck in your head (step 5); or stopped taking positive action on your own behalf.
You might've stopped taking positive action because:
➣ you're frightened to take responsibility for your life.
➣ you second-guess yourself and procrastinate.
➢ a fear of failure, and rejection, keeps you stalling.
➢ you want more, but feel greedy, selfish, or unworthy.
➢ you try to think, wish, or whine your way out of your situation.
These inner blocks can make you feel powerless, hopeless, and drained, and stop you from acting to make a change, which keeps you stuck in the same old struggle.
If you want to get unstuck, and thrive more, you have to begin taking some kind of action, no matter how small, because no-one's going to come and do it for you.
A great place to start is with those 5 steps outlined above, as they will help you to move forwards.
So, there you have it, my 6 steps to help you go from struggling to thriving in your life, without having to take drastic action.
I can vouch for the value of each, and every one, of them because they've all helped me along my own path to thriving.
If you've got questions about this then do get in touch or, if you want to take the conversation deeper, share your thoughts with us over in our free online community.
You likely know how to clear, and cultivate, the outer spaces of your life so that they feel clean, organised, and comfortable (whether you do it, or not, is another story).
But you probably know little, or nothing, about how to clear, and cultivate, your inner space because, let's face it, it's not something you tend to get taught as you grow up.
It's odd, really, because you inhabit your inner space day in, day out, no matter what. Ultimately, it's the most important space you've got.
You'd probably like your inner space to feel something like your ideal outer space; safe, clear, calm, comfortable and maybe even uplifting, spacious, and light.
But, just like the outer spaces of your life, this doesn't happen by chance. It takes a bit of care and attention because, left to its own devices, your inner space is also prone to fill-up with clutter, mess, and junk.
In this case, the mental clutter created by constant thinking, planning, judging, and worrying.
The emotional mess of painful memories, wounding, regret, and shame.
The psychological junk of negative thinking, limiting beliefs, and unhelpful stories.
All this psychic stuff can leave your inner space feel messy, and crowded, with less room for the good things to come in, like peace, clarity, creativity, vitality, and joy.
If you want more of these good things in your life, you need to do a bit of inner maintenance.
Here's 6 ways you can begin to clear, and cultivate, your inner space:
❶ Release Emotional Baggage
Emotional baggage takes up a LOT of internal space, and carrying around those pent-up emotions can leave you feeling stuck, heavy, and stagnant.
One of the best things you can do to clear, and cultivate, your inner space is to find a safe way to begin to express, organise, and release any old emotions that are hanging around.
You can do this by yourself through things like journaling, art-making, dancing, or in trusted conversation.
You don't need to push yourself, or do a huge purge. Just give yourself a bit of time, and see what's ready to be expressed.
If things get confusing, or heavy, or you want to really dive into this process more deeply, then it can help to work through this with a therapist or experienced guide.
Every bit of old emotion you release creates a little more space inside.
❷ Tell Better Stories
The stories you tell about yourself and your life (to yourself and others) helps to shape your reality.
These stories form around the beliefs, and ideas, you've developed over time and they impact on your sense of self and your behaviour.
If the stories you tell are largely authentic, and affirming, then that's all well and good.
But, often, you'll replay some limiting, critical, or negative stories (that aren't even that true), which leave you feeling mad, sad, or bad about yourself, others, and life.
This consumes a lot of head, and heart, space and influences what you do, and don't do, in life.
So, another great way to clear, and cultivate, your inner space is to get clear on the stories you tell.
You can start right now.
Grab yourself a piece of paper, and a pen, and write down 3 stories you tell about yourself or your life.
Maybe you always tell the story of how uncreative you are; or how you always have to be there for everybody; or how life never works out for you; or how you never have time for yourself.
When you've written down your 3 stories ask yourself:
➣ Is this story true (like, really?)
➣ Does this story help or hurt me?
➣ What story could I tell instead, which would make me feel more affirmed and positive?
So, let's say you always tell the story about how life never works out for you.
➣ Is that true?
If you look back, I'm sure there are plenty of times when life's worked out for you.
Can you breathe easily? Walk? Talk? Have you got a home? Qualifications? Food? Family? Friends? A Job?
List down all the ways in which life has worked out for you, even if it's a small way.
➣ Does this story help or hurt you?
How do you feel when you tell this story that life never works out for you?
Do you feel positive, successful, and loved? Do you feel negative, a failure, and rejected?
Imagine telling that story right now, and write down how it makes you feel.
➣ New Story?
If this story hurts you, and is based on untruths, then it's time to get yourself a better story.
Write down a new story that you can begin to tell instead. In this case you might say:
"Sometimes life works out for me and sometimes it doesn't. When it doesn't I can always learn, and grow, from those situations."
When you tell more authentic, accurate, and affirmative stories about yourself, and life, you'll begin to feel more freedom, confidence, and peace inside.
❸ Clear Stuck Energies
Ultimately, you're an energetic being with mental, emotional, physical, creative, sexual, and spiritual energies within you.
These dynamic energies need to be used, channelled, and expressed to ensure their free movement, otherwise they can get blocked, stuck, and unbalanced.
Much of modern day life tends to keep you stuck in the mental energy of your head.
So, you need to find ways to manage, and express, all those other energies within you to keep your inner space feeling fluid, clear, and vital.
Grab that piece of paper, and pen, and write down all the ways you could, or already do, express your mental
emotional, physical, creative, sexual, and spiritual energies.
Are there any gaps? If so, how could you tend to these to energies in your everyday life?
Maybe you could infuse a bit more of your creativity into your outfits, work life, cooking, or home decor.
Maybe you could walk to work, do some morning stretches, or play with your kids or dog.
Maybe you could open up more to your loved ones, have a cry when you need to, or regularly write about how you feel in a journal.
There's no way around it: these energies have to be tended to if you really want to feel good, do well, and thrive in your life.
❹ Reduce Mental Loops
Mental loops (where you think about the same things over and over) can take up a LOT of inner space.
You might continually: replay the same memory; rehearse a future scenario; beat yourself up about a past event; worry about a certain person, situation, or incident.
Usually, these mental loops are barely even conscious, but they still take up a LOT of mental, and emotional, energy. Two ways you can help to limit your mental loops are:
1) Say it and stop it ....say it out loud, write it down, tell someone about it to help get this loop conscious. Once you know it's there, it's easier (but not necessarily easy) to notice when you're being sucked in again.
When you notice you're stuck in a loop, literally say, "stop" to yourself and switch your focus to something else instead (focus on your breath; repeat affirming thoughts; make a cup of tea).
2) meditation ....there, I said it. It was bound to come up in a conversation about clearing, and cultivating, your inner space but, for good reason, because it helps.
If you're new to this, start small. Sit in your chair (no fancy pose or yoga pants needed), close your eyes, take a slow breath, and for 1 minute just be aware.
If your thoughts won't stop, just notice. If you feel something, just notice.
Don't worry about trying to 'empty' yourself of any thoughts and feelings. Just try to be fully present with what's happening for one minute.
Practice whenever you remember, and when it gets easier, increase your time to 2 minutes.
Mental loops serve no real purpose, They just take-up a lot of energy, and focus, and have a knack of leaving you feeling mad, sad, bad, or anxious. Practice letting them go.
❺ Go Into Nature
Getting out into nature can be a great way to slow down, get present, and give yourself some time just to be.
It doesn't have to involve a huge hike, or magnificent scenery. A short walk in the park, or sitting in your garden, can work all the same.
Set an intention that you'll use this time to clear, and cultivate, your inner space.
This is about the experience of simply being with yourself in nature, rather than also trying to get fit, walk your dog, catch up on social media, or call friend.
As you walk, or sit, try to be mentally still in that space (instead of getting lost in an internal commentary about what's happening, or about what you could, or should, be doing instead).
Even for a moment, try to let your worries, to-do list, and problems fall away and let the outer spaciousness infuse you with a sense of inner spaciousness and peace.
❻ Tidy An Outer Space
Your inner and outer world impact each other.
So, when your outer space is untidy, or disorganised, it can make you feel stressed and chaotic inside.
If this is the case, choose one small space that's bugging you, and get it sorted, even if it's just your bag or a drawer. You'll feel better for getting on top of it, and your life will run a little more smoothly because of it.
The reverse can also be true.
If you're feeling stressed, or chaotic, it can be therapeutic to clean, or tidy, an outer space because it helps to take your mind off things, and channel some of that nervous energy.
So, there you have it, my 6 steps to help you clear, and cultivate, your inner space and why it matters.
Of course, you need to take some action on these steps, if you're to benefit from them.
So, to help keep yourself accountable, feel free to post your intention, or evidence of any action you've taken, over in our free flourish community and we'll all cheer you on!
Your dreams can help to inspire, and motivate, towards your ideal future, which is a good thing.
But 'someday' dreams are different.
They're a type of wishful thinking, where 'someday' the perfect person, situation, or thing is going to come along and completely transform your life for the better.
Maybe, for you, it's that amazing job, ideal soul-mate, perfect body, financial success, beautiful baby, or gorgeous home.
Whatever it is, this 'someday' dream is going to be the answer to all that ails you. When the dream arrives, everything will magically get better, and you'll be forever happy and fulfilled.
I spent years waiting for my own special 'someday', and here’s what I know.
'Someday' dreams are risky, and can harm, rather than help, you in life. Here's why:
❶ You Live for the Future
You can have your eyes, and energy, so firmly fixed on a better horizon that your present life becomes little more than something you've got to get through.
But you only ever live in the present moment, not 'someday' in the future.
The risk: you fail to see all the blessings, and opportunities, in your life right now.
❷ You Stay Passive
The dream of a fairytale ending can make you hold-out, like a damsel-in-distress, for that perfect person, situation, or thing to come and save you.
In the meantime, you take minimal responsibility, or direct action, for improving your life today.
The risk: you spend a lifetime waiting for a saviour that never comes.
❸ You Get Stuck in A Mental Trap
Your 'someday' dreams can keep you stuck in an addictive mental trap.
There are exciting highs (when you taste the possibility of your dream coming true); painful lows (when your dream is thwarted); and a constant craving for the ultimate fix (where you'll be forever happy).
The risk: you cycle through drama, and pain, which impacts your life in negative ways.
❹ Nothing Really Changes
'Someday' you might get the dream job, soul-mate, opportunity, money, body, baby, or home only to realise that nothing’s really changed, inside of yourself.
Your 'someday' dream didn't fix all your troubles, and woes, like you'd imagined.
The risk: you find another 'someday' dream, and start the process all over again.
Here's the thing.
As hard as it can be to accept, it's highly unlikely that any person, situation, or thing is going to come along and transform your life into some perfect utopia.
Once you let go of your 'someday' fantasy, you're actually freed to take real responsibility for improving your life yourself.
So, if you're stuck, or struggling, don't waste any more of your precious time on this kind of wishful thinking.
Instead, dig deep, and choose to go after your dreams, one small step at a time.
Every flower in the garden’s different and each blooms true to itself, without comparison or shame.
Every tree stands tall and proud, without being diminished by the majesty of the others that surround it.
Every creature has its unique way of being that suits its path in life, with no expectation that it should change.
Every star shines brightly, without ever compromising its own light.
So what is it, in human nature, that makes it hard for us to claim our unique essence, beauty, majesty, light and strength?
What has us comparing our very existence? Or compels us to hide, or snuff-out, our light? Or the light of others?
Where is the path that teaches us how to stand rooted in our own wild and essential nature …fully, and without apology, like other creatures?
After all, what are we apologising for?
For not being as expected, or needed? For making the other feel something they dislike? For fearing we’re not good enough? For fearing we're too much?
Who is it that holds all these expectations about how we should be?
Do we ever question why that rose is red, rather than yellow?
Do we ever question why the bee can fly, but the lion can’t?
Do we ever compare any other planetary species, and judge that one should be more like the other? No.
But when it comes to our own, we have all these ideas about how we should be, and who is better, and who is right, and who should change.
Too often we’re met with judgement when we present our self bare, in the truth of our own essential skin.
It seems many would prefer us wrapped-up in the fur of pretence, and have us morph ourself to suit their personal desires and whims.
The ant and elephant are both respected as mighty in their unique form.
The cactus and porcupine are both allowed to be spiky.
Birds can fly in different ways, in different directions, and are all accepted.
Judgment, comparison, expectation, and critique seems to be reserved for us humans.
Perhaps it’s fear that makes us believe we need to be better, or at least alike, in order to survive.
Maybe it's our own psychic mirror, which reflects back our wounds when we see another shine.
Maybe our neglected soul hunger feeds off making the other wrong and small.
In the face of this how do we honour, and trust, the rightness of our unique being?
How do we dare to declare, “Look at me, here I am, standing tall”?
How do we shake-off the collective pretence that has us afraid of our truth?
How do we foster a balanced human ecosystem, where each person is seen as integral to the delicate web of life?
Can those who are strategic, bright, and adaptable be accepted like fox?
Can those who are timid, graceful, and watchful be embraced like deer?
Can those who are powerful, unpredictable, and courageous be respected like tiger?
Can we accept, embrace, and respect these same qualities in our self, first of all?
This is the real work of our species …to realise, protect, and cultivate the intricate diversity that lives within our own self, and between us all.
To not seek to modify, or homogenise, our humanity to suit our own, or other's, preferences, insecurities, or needs.
But to allow it to flourish knowing that each, and every, one of us is essential, as we are.