Saturday, 21 December 2013

So Long 2013…

Wow, it's hard to believe that it's been over a year since I began writing this blog. What a journey it's been.

2013 has been a very interesting year for me: full of personal growth, new experiences and a lot of fun! As the year comes to a close I feel a real sense of excitement for what's to come. A new business opportunity recently landed in my path so I'm thrilled to begin 2014 with a list of goals and a steadfast austerity to making them happen.

Also on the cards is Love.

The guy I mentioned in my last blog Disappointment, Vulnerability and Victory actually contacted me the day after I posted the blog. (The Universe certainly has a sense of humour, non!) I've seen him a couple of times since then and things have gone well; the conversation flowed, we got each other's humour, and I find him incredibly attractive.

But alas, it seems my initial instincts were right. He's just not that into me. Yesterday I sent him a message asking if he wanted to catch up for breakfast today. I'm taking his lack of response as a no! But before you feel sorry for me at yet another failed attempt at finding a match, I'll spare you the distress.

Last night I had a breakthrough (love those!). Yes, I like this guy. He's funny, smart, charming, full of charisma and is a gentleman to boot. Well, on the surface anyway. I don't really know much about him other than what I have taken at face value. But last night as I sat plotting the new year I saw that for all his amazing qualities, we're just on different pages of the dating book. He's after casual fun and occasional company, I'm looking for The One.

And that, I realised, is totally OK.

So, I've decided to thank the Universe for sending me a wonderful example of how a man can be. He has so many qualities I want in a partner. All I need to do now is add "available for committed relationship" to my list! Ta-da!!!

You see, every person we meet and every experience that occurs on our path is an amazing opportunity to check in and see whether the life we're living is the life we want. In this instance, much of what I want in a man was put in front of me (thank you!!). I guess I just wasn't clear on whether I really wanted something long-term or not. But now that carrot has been dangled in front of me I can honestly say "I do!"

And boy does that feel good! I am finally clear on the fact that yes, I am ready for a committed, loving relationship, and most of all I have clarity on what kind of man I'm after; funny, a gentleman, inspiring and a creative thinker. Someone who provides loving hugs and can give me a look that says "I love you" without even saying a word. Sign me up!

So with the Love department taken care of (with a check list in tow I'm leaving it up to the Universe to go find someone while I remain open and ready to allow them into my life), there's also the business side of things. Which incase I haven't kept you up to speed, is just beginning to look very interesting as well!

As you may recall, this blog began with my following a set of principles laid out in Jacqueline Harrison's book, How To Create A Business From Nothing, which then became our co-authored book: Stress Free Business. The book is still in the pipeline. However, we have very recently taken over an exciting business project that will be launched in early 2014. I'm keeping the project under wraps for now, but suffice to say it's exciting and has enormous potential. It's just a matter of us getting our heads down, creating a watertight business plan and executing it successfully.

I am so excited about this project I cannot even tell you. 2014 is going to be a very interesting year!

Love, business success and wealth are definitely on the cards and I feel good about all the hard work I've put in to make that happen. This year has shown me that setting a goal (for me that was finding Love and becoming a millionaire) is important, and the steps to achieving that goal are generally to put one foot in front of the other (check). But the new thing I learned this year is that being flexible and allowing things to unfold organically has an altogether brightening effect on the Soul.

I set out to edit Jacqueline's book and to blog about the business principles she was writing about. Over the past 12 months, that journey has morphed into co-authoring a book, realising some of the failings that were blocking my own business success (e.g Beating Financial CancerGet RealIt's Time To Shine and The Egomaniac Strikes Back), and recognising that tied up in all of it is my desire to love and be loved! If I'd been adamant about following my original business-only plans I would never have uncovered the intricate web that makes up the emotional and spiritual side of me. And from what I can see, it's all sooo intricately linked. One thing cannot possibly exist without the other.

The business of life, and the business of business, is the business of love. It's all the same thing, delicately weaved into a gorgeous bejewelled web that sparkles with infinite possibilities.


And so ends my last blog of 2013: a positive reflection on one of the most amazing years of my life. Since beginning this journey (which involved having no idea of how to even start a blog) I've written 39 blogs and notched up over 4500 hits which is amazing! Which leads me to my final blog words of the year:

Thank You.

Thank you so much for reading this. Without you, this blog would be nothing more than a diary entry. Writing about my journey in such a transparent way has been really therapeutic for me and it feels very special to know that somewhere out there is a community of people who know me more intimately that I could have ever imagined. I love reading your comments and I am truly humbled by the fact that people from all corners of the globe, (that I have never met), have dedicated a few minutes of their time to reading my stories.

I am truly grateful to all of you. By being there with me, you have helped me to grow as a person. I hope I have done the same for you.

I hope that the next chapters continue to capture your attention and that you enter 2014 filled with Love, inspiration and a wealth of joy.

Until next year…

Love. This. Life.

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Disappointment, Vulnerability and Victory

Today I saw The Butler; the true story of a black house servant who served at The Whitehouse for almost 30 years. What an inspiring movie.

As the film opened I wasn't sure where it was going; was it about racial equality? Was it about family values? Was it about patience leading to virtue?

By my reckoning, it was about all of that. And more.

As the film came to a close, Forest Whittaker (The Butler) had a change of heart and saw life through new eyes. I won't give away what that was incase you watch the film, but suffice to say it touched and moved me. I thought about how often we remain trapped in our own views and opinions and don't realise we are pushing other people or higher experiences away.

Why would anyone do that? Why would any of us choose to push away another human being or the chance to be a better person?

Using examples from the film, the reason we push people away is often due to pride, stubbornness and ego. But what good does that serve? Why would we put our personal pride before the choice to love someone? It doesn't make any sense and yet we do it all the time. And, as with everything, there's the flip side; putting others first instead of giving ourselves love. It's the exact same thing in reverse. As far as I can see, neither option makes much sense.

Both lead to varying degrees of disappointment. And that's where I sat earlier this week when I recognised that for decades I have been pushing men away because I've been afraid to be vulnerable. A perfect example of that occurred this week, although this story has a rather nice twist…

From Tuesday through to Thursday this week I was feeling disappointed because a guy I was growing to like isn't into me. (Stop me if you've heard this one before…) Before I go into the details let me take you back to four weeks ago when I was on yoga retreat in Maui – where the story of my disappointment was born.

I don't remember exactly how it came about but I found myself on day two of Kelli Prieur's Heartglow yoga retreat curled up in child's pose feeling tears starting to well up in my eyes. As I lay there, with my forehead resting on the floor, I felt a huge burst of sadness wash over me. Hmm…

After class I went back to my room and felt compelled to write a letter To All The Men I've Ever Known. In the letter, I forgave all the men who've had an influence in my life. I forgave them for being anything from controlling and overbearing, to dishonest and mean, to being too nice, and even loving me when I wasn't able to receive it.

Yeah, I know, it doesn't necessarily make sense, it just felt right.

It was a letter with a spiritual rather than logical flavour and it made sense to me. I was essentially letting go of all the stories I'd made up and held onto about all the men in my life.

It wasn't them, it was me.

A few days later while the sun set on Maui's horizon, we were instructed to get into horse pose and told we would hold the pose for 4 minutes. Yikes. My mind instantly went into overdrive and 30 seconds into it as my shins burned like a volcano, my inner peace went from cool, calm and collected to can-you-stop-this-red-hot-pain-please.

In short: I didn't like it.

"Breathe into it," quipped Kelli, the instructor. F*ck you, said my inner yogi.

As I stretched my legs and came out of the pose I spotted a fellow yogi behind me squatting low, still as a statue of Buddha with a face like an angel. Yeah, f*ck her too. I could feel how strong my unwillingness to hold the pose for more than 10 seconds was as my mind went from tantric to tantrum. Regardless of the inner chatter I decided that I should just get back into the pose and try again. So I did. With at least 3 minutes left on the clock I spread my thighs and squatted low, shins still burning, mind still flaring. And that's when it hit me.


"F*CK THIS AND F*CK YOU!" I screamed. At the top of my lungs.

Oops, did I say that out loud…?


Somehow, my self-editing button had been switched to "off" and my mouth was actually saying (screaming at the top of her lungs actually) what my mind would usually keep to herself.

You probably don't need me to tell you that at this point, everyone in the room was looking at me. The quiet, petite, mantra singing yogi; i.e. me, was losing her shit. And it was loud.

As I stood up straight I started punching the air with my arms and legs in what looked like a bad case of kung fu fighting Gangnam-yogi style. I kicked and punched at thin air, (still screaming) until after a few seconds the fire that had been raging within me dissolved. My kung fu moves smoothed out and as suddenly as I had burst into flames, I got all Beyoncé, twisting and twirling to the beat of an inner drum that seemingly could be heard, or at least felt, by the yogis around me. As suddenly as the rage had taken me over, I felt a huge blast of joy bursting up from my feet to the crown of my head.

And then I noticed Kelli standing right in front of me.

Oh-oh, I'm in trouble.

Rather than reprimand me for disrupting her peaceful yin class, Kelli Prieur became my cheerleader. Apparently she (and the rest of the yogis as they told me later) felt as though they had just witnessed a transformation. A bit like a cosmetic surgery makeover only without the scalpels and botox. My makeover was an internal one. And boy did it feel good.

By yelling and screaming my way through my pain I somehow managed to release what felt like a lifetime of suppressed anger. How it happened I have no explanation, but I do know that it came on organically and once I'd screamed the roof off, I felt lighter, brighter and happier.*

Although it sounds ironic, this very release is what led me to feeling disappointed this week. How? Well, within an hour of landing back in Sydney, I got a text message from a guy I'd been chatting with before I left for the life-changing yoga trip. Being on a holiday high I was feeling bold and cheeky and so I suggested we meet for dinner. It went well and I've seen him a couple of times since then.

However, as my interest has slowly increased it seems his has waned; hence my disappointment. But the story doesn't end there. As I sat within the see-saw feeling of disappointment this week I felt my body telling me something else. I sat still and listened, just like I had during horse pose. The same up and down feeling of disappointment was there in my chest, but faintly below it I could feel a vague sense that the outer edges of my heart space were also being tugged open. Hmm, I thought, what's that? And then, it hit me (again). BOOM!

I was feeling Vulnerable.


Beneath my disappointment was vulnerability. I got a clear sense that my willingness to be open to the potential of giving love and receiving love had also left me wide open to disappointment. But I realised my being vulnerable was a good thing. A breakthrough. I hadn't truly been open to giving and receiving love in years (maybe ever) and here I was openly liking someone, not quite at the loving stage but really, what's the difference? Being open is being open. Hallelujah!

Incase you haven't joined the dots, the message here is threefold:

1) In order to find a new way of being, I had to let go of some old stuff. For me, that meant taking myself away from my daily routine to a yoga retreat and screaming.
2) Letting go of that old stuff allowed me to feel safe to be vulnerable with a stranger who could potentially hurt me. As it happens, I did feel hurt, but…
3) At the bottom of my disappointment was a globe of light that I would never have found had I not taken the first step of Opening Up and Letting Go.

Just like The Butler, I had to release my pride and my ego before I was ever going to find the incredible gift that was lying at the bottom of my least favourite poses – horse and dating. Little did I know that by sitting in the sting of my burning shins and allowing myself to like someone I would burst through a ring of fire that holds the key to feeling good even when I'm being vulnerable.

And, just like The Butler, if I continue to face any inner or outer turmoil and maintain an openness and willingness to choose love, then I'm pretty sure my dream of eventually getting married and living in a beautiful beach house in Queensland is merely a few hours, days, months or years away.

Until then, I'll keep on being vulnerable.

*Screaming is not the only route to happiness, but it may help.

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Dear Universe…

OK, it's been a long time between drinks but I'm slowly getting my blog back on.

Truth is, there's been so much going on in my daily life that my creative blog juices just haven't had time to make it from the blender into a glass.

However, this morning, it's a perfect Sydney Saturday and I can feel a new blend forming as I type.

The reason why I haven't been blogging is because I've been focusing on finding regular and satisfying work that allows me the time and headspace to write books and build my meditation group (The Love Circle) into a business.

You may remember from my blogs Beating Financial Cancer and It's Time To Shine how my finances have been down this year. I'd been holding out for work that made my heart sing and which yielded a regular income. I wasn't prepared to do work that didn't fill me with joy and as a result, my earnings were relatively low. Well, the great news is, I found a job that ticks both boxes!

About 3 months ago I got a call from Reader's Digest asking if I could fill in for someone who had to take unexpected leave. Lucky for me I was available. After a couple of months of filling in on a random basis, I am now doing ongoing freelance work for a magazine that I love. The people I'm working with are incredibly inspiring and lovely, there's not a fluorescent light in sight, and I find the content absolutely fascinating! Basically, I have scored a trifecta!

Had I not held out for a role that would fulfill all my requirements, I may not have been in a position to fill in for someone at such short notice, and therefore may have missed out on this opportunity altogether.

Of course, there are many ways to look at this. You could say that by throwing the dice you will eventually roll a double six. I could have found a happy and stimulating role without needing to put myself through the "turmoil" of holding out.

Whichever of the two trains of thought you hold, doesn't really matter. I feel absolutely certain that my sending a message to the Universe about the exact life I wanted to live has led to this incredible opening.

Which leads me to my next wish…


Yip, now that I have found a wholly satisfying 3-days-a-week work scenario where I get to experience regular work at a magazine I love, with people I admire and adore; I now have the luxury of at least 2 days a week that I can spend writing my books and working on other projects such as building my meditation practice and looking at starting to teach yoga.

But that's all work stuff and life isn't just about work. It's actually about love and happiness.

So here lies my next request, which I put to the Universe this morning. It went something like this:

Dear Universe,
Thank you so much for answering my prayers. I am so grateful for my wonderful life. Thank you for my amazing apartment, for the birds that wake me in the morning with their beautiful songs and for the incredible people I have in my life. I am blessed.
I would like to ask you to help me find someone to share this all with. (At this point, tears starting flowing…). 
Please can you help me to open my heart so that I can allow someone else in. I would really like to meet a soulmate; someone I can love.
Please help me to be open to finding someone to begin a new and loving relationship with. To give love and to receive love.
Thank you.
PS I would really like a dog too.

That last line even made me laugh as I said it, but it's the truth, and as you know, I intend to hold nothing back in these blogs.

And so there it is. I am ready to find love. My "light is on" as they say.

The fact that it's taken me 42 years to find the "on" switch doesn't matter. Yes, I've been in love before, but back then, I didn't love myself, so whether that was ever true love or not I don't know. It was what is was and that's totally OK.

However, I am now in the incredible position of loving myself wholly and completely. I can only guess that self-love will allow me to give love in an entirely different way. My cup is now full and constantly overflowing, as opposed to occasionally percolating and then being drained. I can honestly say there were many times when I was so busy scrambling around looking for paper filters that anyone wanting a drink was going to have a long wait.

But now I have all the ingredients laid out, chopped and ready to go, and I've gotten rid of the percolator, replacing it with a shiny new blender. The blender is constantly whizzing and whirring, serving up deliciously healthy and satisfying cups of love. Every day.

For the past 12 months or more I've been drinking it on a daily basis and sharing it with friends. But now I'm ready to open shop and find a brand new customer: namely a loving man who likes to try new things. A guy who is ready to meet his soulmate, to give and receive love like he's never known before. A man who is open to sharing his journey with me and who can give me a look that says "I love you" without having to say a word.

Yes, Love In A Cup is now open for business. I'm taking the idea out into the world. Our brand values are Love. Our mission statement is Love. Our vision statement is also Love. It's a simplistic plan and I really hope it will work. I have the backing of the Universe who is on board as an angel investor.

It's a great position to be in and if previous experience is anything to go by, I just hope in my heart I can roll another double six…

PS It would be really great if he likes dogs too.

: )

Thursday, 3 October 2013

A Fishy Tale

Well, it's been precisely 3 months since I last wrote a blog and it's been exactly the same length of time since Jacqueline Harrison and I added anything to our book Stress Free Business.

As it's been a while, I'll give you a brief recap:

1. Jacqueline Harrison came to me with a book idea and we spoke about me editing her book.
2. I started writing a blog (this blog!) about the processes in her book.
3. I approached Jacqueline about co-authoring the book.
4. Jacqueline agreed, the book took on a new life, changed its name and we began working together.
5. After about 3 months, life took us both in different directions for a while and it became 3 months before we had a chance to reconnect.
6. Today we had our first book meeting in 3 months.

Basically, the past 3 months has been a whirlwind. Fast forward to now and I can honestly say I am thrilled to be back on the book project albeit with a brand new motive.

The initial motive was to become a millionaire blogger.

Great, still loving that idea, but if I am to be completely honest, I also now have a far deeper intention for writing this blog (and the book), which may have always been there but was overshadowed by the millionaire price tag.

Wanna know what that new intention is?

Because. I. Want. To.

I know, sounds like a dumbed down version of life doesn't it. A bit like the sequel to Jaws. You already know someone's going to be eaten by the shark so what's the point in watching? The element of surprise has gone.

Will I become a millionaire or not was the whole point. The million bucks was the great white shark and it was lurking in the depths of the ocean somewhere. It was up to me to outsmart it and try to catch it before it came and bit me on the behind or swam away never to be seen again.

Trouble is, I've now gone and written the aquatic monster (i.e the lead character) out of the script which means I'm left with a plot that reads something like this…

1. Girl goes to beach at night and decides to go for a swim
2. People go to beach during the day and have a great time
3. Three men go on a fishing trip and catch nothing


If I was pitching that one to Steven Spielberg I doubt I'd get a bite (pun intended). Not much of a plot really. Unless I was to angle it slightly differently…

1. Girl wants to be a millionaire
2. Girl decides to do that through catching a great white (writing a book and a blog)
3. Girl realises she doesn't need to catch a great white to be rich
4. Girl decides she wants to write the book and blog anyway because it's so much fun and to heck with the shark!

And there it is. A very short blog to simply reintroduce myself back into the blogosphere and to ring the bell and announce that it's time to put my swimmers back on and get back in the water.

PS… [read: Spoiler Alert]
The shark still exists only now it's wearing the equivalent of frilly pyjamas and a pair of ugg boots (specially made fin-shaped ones). Steven Spielberg is still on the watch list and if my estimation is right, just like Jaws there will definitely be more than one sequel to this story.

PPS… Actually, you'd best keep your wits about you, because the scariest thing about any shark tale is the very moment after you've been lulled into a false sense of security and think that it's dead.

[cue the music…]

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Let Your Heart Sing

Manifesting your dreams is an interesting business.

Sometimes, the things we ask the Universe for will land in our lap long after we've forgotten we ever mentioned them.

That very thing happened to me just a couple weeks ago.

Back in December I wrote a blog called Becoming A Millionaire: Step 2. It was based on some advice in (what was then) Jacqueline Harrison's book How To Create A Business From Nothing. As you may know, Jacqueline and I are now co-authoring and the book is taking on a whole new life, but more about that another time…

One of the steps she advised was to build a picture of your end business goal and work back. My vision involved a beautiful 4-bedroom house in Queensland which I share with my husband (who I am yet to meet), and is a place from which I run yoga and meditation retreats. I also (flippantly) mentioned that I wanted to run workshops in Hawaii. Well, turns out I'm doing exactly that, and it's taken less than 12 months to manifest.


What's even more wow about this is the fact that when I agreed to help out on my friend's yoga retreat in Hawaii, the idea of it being part of my greater vision couldn't have been further from my mind. In the 6 months since I wrote that blog I have kept myself busy with putting one foot in front of the other. Generally speaking I have focused on earning some money while continuing to follow my heart: I figured running workshops in Hawaii was a long way down the track.

When I was introduced to Kelli Prieur, owner of Kelli's Heartglow Yoga, it was in the context of me editing her upcoming book. However, we hit it off so well that what began as a one-way editing street has now become an intertwined magical mystery tour that just happens to be stopping in Maui this October.

Shut. The. Front. Door.

My heart has some very firm ideas about what it will and won't accept, and one of its conditions is to only work with people who are kind, compassionate, authentic and fun. And who allow my heart to sing its own mantra.

Singing someone else's tune? Um, that's a big no-no for my heart – she has her own repertoire and far from being closed to new ideas (harmonising is perfectly acceptable) if a situation calls for a bum note, it's non-negotiable. She's outta there.

The consequence of this level of commitment is that I have turned down paid work that didn't resonate with my heart. Namely, sitting in an air-conditioned office under fluorescent lights for eight hours working for someone who doesn't even know I exist – is not going to happen. It also means that on occasion I have refused to work with certain people. If their song doesn't have a beat or rhythm that I can dance to, then it's a "thanks, but no thanks". Surprisingly I've even turned away existing clients if the relationship began to feel out of tune.

In simple terms, working from my heart space has meant turning away a lot of potential cash.

And d'you know what? In doing that, I have truly tested my commitment to doing what makes my heart sing, and in turn I seem to be moving closer to the vision I wrote about last year. I have pushed the boundaries of what is important to me and in doing so sent a very clear message to the Universe that I will only operate where there is integrity, love and joy. I will only work with people who appreciate me, and I will wholeheartedly maintain my devotion to filling my heart with joy and love no matter what other consequences arise from that.

One of the consequences – which would easily look like a down side – is that my earnings dropped to an all-time low during this period. In fact, my 2012/2013 tax return will come in at around $25k. Bear in mind, the rent on my apartment is over $14k per year, so it hasn't left a lot to spend on food, travel and necessities.

For many, it would have been a grim year, but because I kept my heart open, having such low funds really didn't matter. Even more amazing is the fact that holding out all that time and maintaining a commitment to go where the joy is I am now in a space where everything seems to be turning around. And it's happening fast.

In many respects, getting to this point has been a tough road, but in many more ways it's been the most natural thing in the world. By letting go of the idea that success is a 6-figure pay check, and a mortgage, and whatever else we generally concede to equal success, I have found a gigantic treasure chest that is more bejewelled than any pay check I've ever received.

By continually following my heart for the past 6-12 months (actually it's more like 4 years), I have learned that the Universe listens to what it is we are really saying. What I have been saying is that I believe in myself; I trust that I will be looked after; and if I set my heart on a dream that is in harmony with the greater good, then it's only a matter of time before it becomes my reality.

Had I continued to work as an employee with a regular salary, and continued listing my dreams wistfully while plugging away at someone else's song, I may still have happened upon this incredible Hawaiian experience. But I'm pretty certain I wouldn't have felt the golden threads that hold this picture in place.

If I hadn't given my heart the opportunity to be free, I'm not sure I'd be heading to Maui to sing mantra for a group of beautiful yogis. I would probably be there practicing asana as I've always done, and I would still be repeating my dream that one day I'd be sharing my voice instead of hiding it away.

The lesson I've really learned here is that if we have a dream or goal, no matter how huge it may seem and no matter how far down the track we think it is, if we simply open our hearts, the very thing we dream of could actually be just around the next corner.

Simply put; if we speak from the heart, listen with the heart, and work and play from the heart, there is surely only one outcome.


For me, that involves singing mantra at a yoga retreat in Maui. But what has also come from this experience is a slow but definite increase in work that I truly love, as well as a continually expanding network of authentic, joyful and creative people. Income wise, things are really beginning to pick up. I guess it's like any tipping point: when my soul, my thoughts and beliefs are back in alignment, the money was sure to come flowing back in. And flowing it is.

I wish we all had the opportunity to open our hearts and take a risk. Maybe we all do, but more often I hear reasons not to be free.

Either way, there's got to be at least 7 billion ways to live your dream so what is your heart saying right now? What's the dream your heart is holding onto?

Maybe it's time to let it out so you can sing, dance and love just as we are all meant to…

Sunday, 23 June 2013

The Power Of Not Knowing

This morning I had a 2-hour writing workshop planned with my co-author Jacqueline Harrison. We've got a book to finish and as we'd both had a busy week, today (Sunday) was the only day we were able to catch up.

I almost didn't go.

I've worked the last 14 days straight and yesterday I ran a mantra healing workshop, which pretty much took up my entire Saturday, so by the time I awoke this morning I was spent. It's cold and rainy in Sydney and I could easily have snuggled up under the covers and stayed in bed.

But I didn't.

I got up, rubbed my tired eyes, showered and dressed, and walked to Jacqueline's house for our weekly writing session. I was committed to our schedule and boy, was it worth it.

Being tired can be a physical and emotional state. Sleepiness (physical) and fatigue (emotional) can be difficult to overcome. An extra hour or two in bed, or an afternoon nap can help, but when we are committed to doing something with love, our emotional self livens up. The light that illuminates our heart flicks on and we gather energy that wasn't there before. The spark that makes us feel happy has the ability to override tiredness. Ask any new mum: the love for their child enables them to get out of bed in the middle of the night for a fifth, sixth and seventh time to tend to their crying baby, even when they can barely open their eyes.

My work is my baby. And I have a willingness and commitment to ensure its welfare, hence getting to Jacqueline's house this morning even though it meant arriving tired and soaked to the skin.

As adults we become accustomed to knowing things. By the time we reach 30, 40 and beyond we have a certain amount of life experience, which means anything new is filtered through a deep and vast memory bank. This vault of memories enables us to apply a new idea or task to a similar situation or lesson from our past. It's a useful tool. But there is a down side. Becoming complacent about having "wisdom" can mean we continually apply old patterns to new opportunities and as a result we cease to evolve.

Until recognising the above, I was definitely guilty of running new challenges through my old tape player and predominantly coming up with the same thing. For example: I would start a business, get it off the ground, get stuck, give up and start again with a new business idea.

By not not fully acknowledging my areas of naivety, I was blocking my own progress. Suffice to say, I wasn't necessarily stuck because I didn't have the skills to reach my goals: I was stuck because I didn't understand that I thought I knew everything I needed to know as opposed to recognising that maybe it's not about what I know, but how I apply that knowledge. I.e. being able to accept that although I am an intelligent and capable adult, maybe there is something about this situation that I don't understand.

As adults, we are programmed to believe that we are competent and capable – which is largely true. But by believing we "know stuff" we close ourselves off to the idea that we "don't know stuff", which ultimately leads to us missing the incredible lessons that life serves. We remain busy figuring out what we know about this or that, rather than approaching life with the wide eyes of a child.

Children lack foresight; they have limited experience which means new situations are figured out using their creative mind. As adults, we mostly call upon our logical brain to decode and analyse situations based on what has gone before.

By peeling away the need to be "right" and "knowledgeable", we actually open ourselves up to an incredible array of new experiences that propel us into a whole new world. This actually feeds the very thing we were unconsciously trying to protect – namely our intelligence!

Being open to not knowing is one of the greatest tools of expansion I have ever used. And it can be applied to seemingly ordinary tasks such as meeting a friend for coffee, visiting your in-laws when you don't feel like it, or walking in the rain to a writing workshop on a Sunday morning.

When we choose the notion of "I know nothing" we become open to new possibilities. In practical terms it means choosing a new path. If we do what we have always done, then our lives stay the same. If we cancel the coffee because we're tired, or call off the visit to the in-laws because we are too busy we miss out on having a new experience. We're coming at it from the place of "knowing". It's OK to cancel but ask yourself "Why?" Why are you not doing that thing? Had I chosen not to attend the workshop this morning because I was tired I would really have been saying "I know what is going to come from this session". But how can we possibly ever know?

I believe that coming from a place of "knowing" is sometimes an escape or coping mechanism that allows us to sit in our comfort zone. We can dress it up as a headache or exhaustion, but ask yourself: if that experience you are saying no to involved your favourite person in the world, the man or woman who makes your heart sing, or the celebrity you would do anything to meet, would you still cancel?

I doubt it.

Somewhere in you, you'd find the energy and the willingness to be open, and with that would naturally dawn an incredible sense of excitement. It sounds counter-intuitive, but I believe it is our "knowing" that can dull our experience. If we can relearn to apply a childlike openness to our life, then doors will open that we didn't even know existed.

And that's what happened today.

As I sat with Jacqueline, tired and shivering from the cold, my commitment to writing took precedence over my basic needs. In the past I would have probably rescheduled the session, stayed in bed an extra hour and considered that I was honouring my need to sleep. That previous attitude set a great precept for honouring my basic needs and I adhere to that as a principle.

But by stepping out of my comfort zone and allowing something that hadn't yet been created to evolve, Jacqueline and I experienced an exceptional 2-hour writing session that produced some incredible work and put a spring in both our steps.

Had I maintained my old habit of putting my physical health first – my "knowing what's best", I would have missed out on the golden nuggets that I experienced today. But by allowing myself 2 hours to "not know" and be open to whatever that delivered, both Jacqueline and myself have grown as authors and as human beings.

So the next time you hear yourself saying "no" or "I know", I invite you to consider something.

Maybe you don't.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Love You Too

An amazing thing just happened that I want to share.

My sister just told me to get off out of her life. To "leave her alone" to basically just f*ck off.

I'm actually still digesting this, and being as she has asked me not to contact her I'm respecting her wishes. But I also feel the need to express myself.

So, here's how it went. I sent my sister an email asking how she was. I mentioned how the last few times we've communicated she hasn't seemed to want to engage with me. To be fair, we are hardly close: she's my sister but we are about as similar as an iPad and a shoe.

She's been unwell for some time and my intuition was nudging me to ask if she was OK. Her answer? She's fine. Great! But I have to say, the remainder of the email made me question if that was really the truth, because she followed up by saying how she can't stand my "self-help speak" and if I'm going to talk about wanting to "engage" with her then she's not interested.

Call me psychic but I'm guessing "fine" might not be the whole story.

I'm not going to write about a lifetime's communication (or lack of) with my sister, but suffice to say I am amazed that someone would react to a caring email from a sibling by saying "please leave me alone".

Actually, I'm not amazed at all. I'm not even surprised.

I could write fifty million blogs about my family and how screwed up I think we all are, but what would that achieve? It would only serve as a way for me to get a whole bunch of sh*t off my chest and I'd have to name and shame in the process. Even if I didn't, it wouldn't take much to work out who I'm talking about, right? And there's always three sides to every story: yours, mine and the truth.

So what else can I do in this situation?

Well, I'm sticking with my latest theme which is Shifting Perspective. Previously, I would have responded to my sister's behaviour with anger, venom and a Supersized "F*ck You" right back. I would have released my inner dragon from its cave and sent it charging at her with forked tongue and fire. I actually used to be proud of the fact that I was the queen of F*ck You. I had the ability to take a man down with one look, and would practically behead people if they were foolish enough to cross me.

But that's not the case any more. And in fact, I'm not even having to curb those feelings right now because they're just not there.

Now that's amazing.

But this isn't about me sitting on a sanctimonious ivory tower, this is about recognising that someone is struggling to feel good and that deserves compassion. Even if they are saying they'd rather pretend I didn't exist.

We all have our demons and some people's are bigger than others. I'm lucky in the sense that I don't have a predominance for depression. Sure, I feel sad and blue, and struggle at times but even when life sucks I usually manage to see flickers of light. It's a gift that I am very grateful to have. The only down side to this is when I'm in communication with someone who is feeling depressed or glum, because they tend to see me as the most irritating human being on planet Earth.

It's not great seeing someone smiling when you feel like throwing yourself off the Harbour Bridge. And there is nothing worse than someone shining a light of happiness on your world when you're in a funk and believe that the world is sh*t and you just want to be left alone.

Depression is a very real thing that affects a lot of people. And when you're depressed, you're depressed. Nothing's gonna fix it, and that's a fact, right?

But what if that's not the whole truth? What if within the layers of depression there is a spiritual veil that masks our ability to see the truth? What if hiding our sadness is part of the problem? If being depressed wasn't seen as "imperfect" then would it be as debilitating?

I don't know the answer to that.

But what I do know is that last year when I went into therapy for the first time in my life (not a moment too soon), I experienced a black, sludgy cloak that soaked through to my bones and practically prevented me from getting out of bed for almost 4 months. My usual squeaky clean optimism was muddy and heavy. I struggled to work. In fact I made so many mistakes at work during that time that I was left almost jobless and I'm still recovering from that a year later.

When I was in the thick of it I could feel my optimistic self wanting to clamp down over the problem and take me off to the beach for a walk: It'll make you happy it said.

But I didn't go for a walk.

I sat in my bed, still and quiet. I allowed the feelings I'd obviously been suppressing my entire life to be felt. Feelings of rejection from men, feelings of abandonment and lack of support from my parents, feelings of pain from sexual abuse as a child, feelings of rage from a horrific car crash that left my friend dead and my boyfriend in a coma, feelings of f*cking up my last relationship, of hating myself for always running away, feeling the guilt of leaving my beautiful dog behind for a life of freedom. Feelings of being worthless and hopeless.

I felt them all.

I sat in their gloom, their self-pity and their filth and I ate them for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I had no idea how long they would last but I knew I had never allowed them to be really felt before. So I gave them a chance to be expressed, to come out of their dark corners and into the light. I was terrified that I would feel like this for the rest of my life.

As it happens, for me, the blackness only lasted 24 hours before the fog started to lift. I wouldn't say I sprang out of bed the next day, (in fact it has taken around 12 months for the healing to come full circle), but that sick and disgusting feeling dissolved after a full day of Allowing It To Be.

I came to understand that for years I had stuffed those ugly feelings down into the pit of my Being because I didn't think it was OK to feel like that. Having finally allowed them to be felt is now giving me the ability to have compassion for my sister where I wouldn't have had it before.

By allowing myself to express the "negative" and shadow parts of myself, I have found a brand new space that allows me to hear my sister shut me out, and know that there is still hope. And love. Interestingly, it is through experiencing my own pain that I am able to have more love for someone, who from what I can gather isn't able to love herself right now. And who would rather not have me in her life.

I have come to understand that it's OK to feel like sh*t. In fact, it's part of being human. And if my sister wants to tell me to get lost, then instead of throwing mud back at her, I will shine love on her instead. I'll respect her wish for distance and will use the power of positive thought to help us mend the fence between us.

I don't know if all my angry birds have gone just because I wallowed in my own crap for a year, but I do know that loving other people when they cannot love themself (or you) is a gift. And so I shall continue sending loving thoughts to my sister and maybe one day we'll both be free to tell each other "I love you" and really mean it.

And if not, then at least I have learnt to love myself enough to allow my fears and hurt to be accepted and felt by Me.

It would be the icing on the cake if my sister got the chance to experience that too.

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Shift Happens

On Saturday morning at 5.30am I queued up with around 160 other people to embark on a new journey.

A Shift In Perspective.

The reason over hundred people were gathered at such a crazy time on a Saturday was to celebrate the reopening of the Lululemon store in Bondi Junction. At the start of the walk we were each invited to write something we wanted to release onto a strip of paper and burn it in a lantern before setting off on a short hike from Bondi to Bronte.

Wanna know what I wrote? "I release my need to be single."

When we reached our destination, we were handed another piece of paper and invited to write a goal or dream. I wrote the following: I am ready to step into the fear and stop avoiding the things I've been avoiding.

Finding Love would be a good start.

I recently posted two blogs Gone Fishing and Butterflies, Intimacy and A White Picket Fence about a guy I met online. I was excited to have met someone who had pep, and our communication certainly put a smile on my face. Until the contact from his end stopped – which made me stop – and question what was going on.

Well, it turns out, Mr RSVP hadn't received my email after all. Basically, due to a technology/human hiccup Mr RSVP hadn't activated his private email onto his smartphone until after I had already sent him a message. So that message never reached his inbox. Not on his phone anyway, which is what he was checking.

Once our techno faux pas was fixed, the communication was back on like it had been before. He sent lovely long emails full of wisdom and clarity. This guy's a catch I thought to myself. But then a funny thing happened. Well, not so funny, more warped really. Basically, I got creeped out by the whole thing and pulled the plug. I told Mr R that it was No Can Do.

The reason why I bailed on what could have been an amazing relationship is due to a couple of things:

1) As soon as it became clear that he actually hadn't seen my email and our connection was real, I got scared. What if This Is It? What if he is The One?

I didn't realise having an actual relationship was such a frightening concept to me. I honestly freaked out at the idea that someone had stolen my heart, and that I had met someone who could potentially lead to being someone I really care for.

2) The thought that if I met this guy in person and we don't click also reared its head. We had emailed each other a couple of "Selfies" just to show that the pics on the website matched the current real life picture. Now, let's remember these were Selfies, which anyone over the age of 30 knows are not going to show your best side. And second, I'm not exactly Gisele Bundchen, especially first thing in the morning when I look more like a smashed crab.

As soon as I opened the pics, I changed my mind about the whole deal. My unconscious mind suddenly had a reason to run. (I'll admit, the pics did change my view slightly, but I don't think that's really all that was going on for me.)

How does that relate to making a shift? I'm getting there…

When we make a shift in one area of our lives it can change everything. For me that shift has been the way I communicate with people. Jacqueline Harrison, who I am co-authoring How To Create A Business From Nothing with, has taught me a lot about business. One thing that has stood out from the moment she said it was about getting used to having awkward conversations.

That single note of advice has absolutely changed my world. And I'll tell you how.

For one, I no longer let things that make me cross get to the point where I resent the other person for not realising they are "doing me wrong" until my lid blows off and I get angry. What I'm finding these days is that even when there's tension and snippiness between myself and another person, I'm able to address the situation in a calm and comfortable manner. Most of the time, anyway.

And when it comes to telling someone that I'm just not that into them (even if I might be but am actually too scared to invest what it takes), I can at least express my fears in a civil and honest fashion. And that's really new for me.

For years, (despite having a reputation for being blunt and telling it like it is), I used to bottle some things up until resentment was overflowing and I'd lash out. It was usually over small things, but I didn't have the tools or resources to express myself very well. So I'd be blunt and angry and charge at the offender using my tongue as a sword.

At least now I feel comfortable that I can let people know if they have upset me, and that equally I can be clear about not wanting to take a relationship any further if that's how I feel. Intimate relationships are where I have struggled the most with the idea of free expression, because there seems to be so much at stake.

But it seems with one seemingly small shift in perspective, even the toughest conversations are possible. And not only are they possible, but they can be spoken with love and grace, even when you know they will hurt.

And that for me is a huge breakthrough.

I just hope that if the next guy I meet really is The One that I will have shifted enough of my sh*t to be able to actually embrace and accept him with open arms, rather than be pleased that I am now able to say "No Thanks."

All I can say is watch this space…

All Mouth And No Trousers

Last week, Jacqueline Harrison and I sat down to start co-writing our book How To Create A Business From Nothing.

As you'll recall from my blog You're On, the book was originally Jacqueline's idea, but after reading the first few chapters I approached her about writing this blog alongside her writing the book. And then after a few months of blogging I took another courageous step (for me) and asked her about us co-authoring the title (which I wrote about in Shooting For Gold). Last Friday, we had our first writing day.

Although, it very nearly didn't turn out that way.

Jacqueline and I had already brainstormed the idea where we fleshed out the book and gave ourselves a week to think about our individual input. When we met up last Friday I had spent the morning strategising and working through some of my ideas. I wanted to discuss them with Jacqueline so that we could determine our collective vision for the book, form a clear picture of who the reader is, and plot the chapters. I wanted to line up all the ducks so that we could get started.

Jacqueline on the other hand, just wanted to start writing.

"Well," I said, "Before we start writing we need to know who the reader is and what our purpose is so we can refer to that and stay on track." (You see, I know a lot about publishing; I've been doing it a long time…)

"Yes," said Jacqueline, "So let's start writing."

(Oh dear, she obviously doesn't realise how important all this stuff is in creating a bestseller…) 

"But before we get the words down I think we need to be clear about the angle and what we hope to achieve."

"Absolutely," agreed Jacquleine. "So let's start writing."

It was at this point (with maybe a few more buts from me) that I realised Jacqueline was less interested in dotting all the 'i's' and crossing all the 'Ts' and more keen to get some words down. This was going against everything I "knew" and my resistance was strong. Every cell in my body was saying We Must Have A Clear Plan.

Luckily, at least a few other cells had the wisdom to stop and listen. I considered the situation. Both Jacqueline and I have started businesses before, and writing a book is like starting a business. It's basically a product. In this situation I am the "book expert" but Jacqueline is the business expert and has made millions of dollars from her ventures. Meantime, I seem to have made millions of "buts."

In that moment I recognised that listening to Jacqueline and just getting on with the writing process could help me move closer to my dream of becoming a millionaire. I mean, I am doing what I've always done: making sure I "know" what I'm doing before I start (because I don't want to make a fool of myself or fail, right). So the very idea of just doing it and letting it unfold seemed to go against everything I thought I knew. But really, all I know so far is that my methods aren't working as well as Jacqueline's.


My way of operating could definitely do with a shake up. Sitting down to write, brought to light the fact that I've always thought of myself as a do-er, but am beginning to realise that maybe I'm not as proactive as I like to tell myself. Because here I am, wanting to figure out everything about starting our book before we start, which leaves the actual act of writing nowhere near close to happening. In my mind, we have so much to sort out before we can get moving, it's ludicrous to begin. Surely we are setting ourselves up to fail if we don't have an exact map of what, how and why?

But what if there's another way? An even smarter way?

Surely not, said my ego…

Mmm, until that moment, the idea that I was avoiding taking action was unknown to me. The doing part of the plan was sitting beyond my peripheral vision because in my view, the very act of talking about writing the book and planning how and why, was doing it! What I had been telling myself was that the act of actually starting a business, (or in this case, writing a book) was my version of being proactive. But what I hadn't understood was the fact that I Could Be Doing More.

I have to say, part of me is cringing because I can recall numerous conversations with friends where I have haughtily declared that I am a risk taker and soooo proactive that I wouldn't even know what procrastinating feels like!

Once I removed the BS-tinted glasses (and listened to Jacqueline telling me about how she also used to avoid making phone calls and talking to potential business partners – before making any money), I felt as though someone had just shone a light into my eyes. Admittedly I also felt an inner dread that I would now have to be "less mouth and more trousers" and Change My Ways.


Or not…


But if I don't then I'm looking at a future that involves many more business start ups and no extra income. In a nutshell, what I need to do is avoid avoiding!

After a day of writing, Jacqueline and I are now 2000+ words closer to finishing our book. If it hadn't been for my co-author's insight and experience, we might still be plotting and planning the Hows, Wheres and Whys and not even have a page of content. But fortunately at least one of us has learned the benefit of Taking Action. Because as Jacqueline says "Taking action produces results."

And she's right.

Plotting and planning, and understanding your competitors is one thing, and I won't argue is useful information when starting a business. But what's the use of a reader profile if you don't have a book (or product) to sell to them! All the knowledge in the world is useless if we have nothing to apply it to, right?

So, with this breakthrough I have made a new pact with myself (which I am terrified of because it means stepping out of my Comfort Zone and into the Fear Zone), but, I am committed to achieving my dream, so, from this day forth I choose to Take Action and Create Results.

And with any luck, if I do it enough, that million bucks might actually have a chance to find its way into my back account.

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Gone Fishing…

So the dating game continues, only this time it involves a hook, a line, and a sinker.

Last week as I conversed back and forth with Mr RSVP I was so happy to have "met" someone who I found interesting. (If you missed my last blog you can catch up by reading Butterflies, Intimacy and a White Picket Fence).

That lovely feeling of receiving a ping in your inbox (so to speak) and a new message from someone you like is really uplifting. Even better, these weren't the standard emails I've received from previous cyber-suitors. These were colourful, engaging and lengthy messages. Amazing! A man who can communicate openly and freely and who by his own admission has "stars in his eyes." A romantic dreamer who likes to "talk".

Where do I sign…?

However, after a week of "love, life and butterflies" it has suddenly turned silent.

Yeah, in a "Gone Fishing" kinda way.

I should mention that Mr RSVP's last message to me did say that he was maybe planning a fishing trip this week, so it's possible that he actually has gone fishing. However, what I want to share in this blog is my reaction to his lack of communication.

When I didn't hear back from Mr R after two days, what became clear to me is that I had an attachment to the situation. Not to a specific outcome but an attachment to the idea that if I send someone I like an email, then I expect a reply. The hypocritical aspect to this is that I am sometimes guilty of not replying to people's emails for days (weeks even!). Usually because I've opened their message late at night on my iPhone and consider that I'll reply in the morning when I'm back at my Mac.

But what usually happens in those instances is that I answer their email or iMessage in my head and never actually send a physical follow up until it dawns on me that I totally forgot! So, just like Mr R I'm often the one that's Gone Fishing without leaving a sign on the door.

However, that never happens when I'm romantically interested in them…

It would be easy for me to feel rejected by Mr R's lack of communication, but surprisingly I don't. If this had happened a year or two ago I'm pretty sure my default setting would have been He Doesn't Like Me with one of those sad faces embedded at the end of the sentence.

I will admit that I was looking forward to reading his response (his emails are well written and are a joy to read). But the thing about this situation is that his "rejection" is allowing me to witness my own increased sense of Self Worth.

Yes, I am disappointed that he hasn't responded, and part of me wonders if I gave too much away (I did end up sending him the link to my last blog). Maybe my friend who I mentioned in If The Shoe Fits is right? Maybe I am a bit too much? Or maybe Mr R really did just go fishing?

Whatever the reason for his zero response, I still feel good about myself.

Ding Dong!

In fact every time I meditate at the moment, I hear the word "Trust". It's an incredible feeling to recognise that my happiness doesn't depend so much on the actions of other people any more. (Even if they are handsome and interesting). I have a far greater belief in the Universe and allowing whatever will be to just be.

Even more enriching is the fact that I have managed to stay true to my heart. Rather than feel rejected and deflated I simply followed up with a message to let Mr RSVP know that I had sent him a private email that may have ended up in his spam box. (Yes, I have seen He's Just Not That Into You…) Once I felt happy that I had fully expressed myself I Let It Go.

My purpose these days is to communicate from the heart, and if that's off-putting or too much for someone, then that's OK. I have no control over what someone else hears or understands, only what I say.

As I learned in India, the notion of attachment is one of the main things that leads to unhappiness. That and expectation: the two of which – in my mind – are closely linked. We become attached to an idea and expect a certain outcome. I liken it to an emotional A&E department. Attachment and Expectation or Accident and Emergency. Same, same.

Unconscious attachment is a difficult thing to let go of, (we're human, it's part and parcel), and from what I am coming to understand it has multiple layers. The top layer is the hope that you will receive what you wish for (an email reply). The middle layer is the idea that if you don't receive what you wish for that you are not worthy of that wish (He Doesn't Like Me). And right at the bottom lies the notion that your happiness is reliant upon how others respond in general to you (Nobody Wants Me), or how general situations turn out (Life Is Terrible).

I guess you could call these layers the hook, line and sinking feeling that we have when we are attached to people and things. But the great news is, that even when you still have a few hooks in your pocket (I will still be pleased if he sends me a message), it is possible to see that when you are hungry and would do anything to land a catch, it's also possible to be happy just sitting in the boat and watching the fish as they swim by.

And not that I'm an expert because this is ALL so new to me, but maybe by relaxing and focusing on the reflection of the sun on the water instead, it's possible that a fish might somehow find a way into your boat without your even casting a line. Or maybe I'm being ridiculously optimistic?

I guess what I'm saying is that as well as there being plenty of fish in the sea, and many ways to catch them, there is also a forest of fruits, nuts and berries to be eaten.

Only thing is, you can't pick fruit when you're hellbent on catching fish.

PS Wanna know the truth? I'm gutted : (

Like a fish! ; )

Friday, 24 May 2013

Butterflies, Intimacy and A White Picket Fence

So, let's talk about the law of attraction for a minute.

In my last blog If The Shoe Fits I mentioned in passing that it would be nice to meet someone who was 6ft, brown eyes, liked to surf and a total hunk. I passed it off as something I wasn't really bothered about and put it in the "would be nice" category.

Turns out, guys like that actually exist.

The very next day I was contacted by a guy on RSVP who pretty much fits that description (I hope he's not subscribed to this blog because I'm revealing some stuff here that he doesn't know yet…)

Anyway, that's not the main part of this blog. I'm getting to the point so stay with me… just had to paint the backdrop if you like. So, this dude contacts me and I am immediately attracted to him; both aesthetically and from what he's said in his profile. He sounds interesting. Hmm.

Ironically he doesn't live in Sydney (where I'm based), and he actually doesn't even live in NSW. Hmm again.

The fact he lives in a different time zone actually doesn't bother me, I'm more interested in finding a soul mate than a flatmate-with-benefits and if anything is meant to be then I'm of the thinking that the Universe will sort out all the finer details.

But let's not rush ahead, I haven't even spoken to this guy yet, we're only at the email stage. Which leads me to the point of this blog.

The last message I received from Mr RSVP stopped me in my tracks. So far we've exchanged emails roughly once a day (for less than a week) and already I know more about him than I do about some of the people I've shared flats with. He's an open book and has led a very interesting life. I won't lie: he intrigues me on many levels. He seems to have his sh*t together, knows how to hold a conversation and has got a way with words that so far, I like.

And then yesterday, he popped the question.

Not that question but one that sent me into a slow spin and left me lying on the couch asking myself if I could actually answer him honestly.

I'd mentioned in a carefree, passing remark kinda way (or so I thought) that I had left my last relationship because I wanted more freedom. Not surprisingly, he picked up on the fact that maybe there was more to this than I was letting on. I'd also (in a what's-the-weather-like type of deal) mentioned my dislike of white picket fences and being packaged into conventional boxes. From what I know of this guy I figured he'd be cool with that and we'd swiftly move on to other, equally lighthearted topics.

Seems not.

I'm not saying he wasn't cool about it, I'm saying I didn't realise what I was really saying. So when his return email included a question about what I do I really want for the future I was surprised. I felt like we had moved into serious territory too quickly and my inner child – who was putting her shoes on to go outside and chase butterflies – started crying.

Yes, really.

I felt like I'd been robbed of the chance to show this guy how funny and witty I can be because here he was delving into the real reason anyone is on RSVP, and all I could do was faint. He got me thinking. What the hell am I doing on RSVP? What do I really want from a relationship? Am I still hellbent on holding onto my freedom or am I serious about meeting someone and going for it, whatever that may look like?

Good lord, I didn't know where to turn, suddenly I had nowhere to run. Someone (a stranger!) had tapped into a part of me that I hadn't had the courage or foresight to delve into on my own. Mr RSVP had handed me a set of keys and one of them could potentially help to unlock my heart.


I pretty much spent all evening asking myself the question: What do I want? And here's what I came up with…

1. I want to reach a level of intimacy with someone that I have never reached before
2. I want to be free to Be Me
3. I want to feel safe to share my hopes and dreams and be supported and encouraged to express myself

And that's kind of it.

The question Mr RSVP posed was basically do I still want to be Free and what does that mean to me? When I broke it down, I realised that rather than me not wanting a conventional life where I get up, eat breakfast, go to work, come home and sleep, I'd happily live within the confines of a white picket fence just as long as I can talk openly with my partner, feel safe to express how I feel and know that the other person is as committed to me as I am to them. For me, intimacy follows vulnerability so feeling safe to be who I am will inevitably lead to greater intimacy. At least that's how I see it.

As for the white picket fence (that I often refer to when I think about what I don't want), it's not really the issue at all. I came to the conclusion that I would quite happily live a more mainstream existence (on the outside) as long as on the inside I felt safe and loved. And that will only come by me being completely open and honest with myself.

Part of that honesty would probably involve me needing to paint one or two fence posts with silver paint and glitter (just to feed my inner fairy), but I realise now that that's OK. For the past 3 or so years I have been less focused on what I want and more focused on what I don't want. (Law of attraction anyone…?). But now, thanks to a random online-dating-site stranger, I have gained some more clarity. Amazing!

All I have to do now is email Mr RSVP back with an answer…

I suppose I could just send him a link to this blog, but I don't think I'm game for that. But I will thank him for being open and honest and allowing me to find the keys to a door that has been closed and guarded for a very long time.

And who knows, maybe those keys will also open the door to a whole new beginning (not necessarily involving him, but who knows) that may one day lead to me having the things I truly want.

Which is essentially allowing myself the Freedom To Be Me.

Here's hoping…

Sunday, 19 May 2013

If The Shoe Fits

So, it's Sunday morning and I'm sitting in bed with my laptop on my knees because I have a work assignment that is due tomorrow. Perfect time for writing a blog then…

I recently realised (and subsequently revealed in my blog Little Miss Perfect) that I want to share my life with someone. To be in a relationship. After writing that blog I signed up to RSVP (an online dating site). I've been on there before and I've met some nice guys and others who bored me. (Mostly the latter). This time doesn't seem to be any different.

I guess this sounds like I'm dissing the calibre of Sydney men but actually I think it might be the opposite.

Yup. I think actually, it might Be Me…?

I would definitely say that I'm fussy when it comes to men. Not so much in a he-must-be-athletic-six-foot-brown-eyes-be-able-to-surf-and-be-a-total-hunk (although that would be nice), but more in a his-vibe-must-match-mind kinda way. And what I'm beginning to realise is that my vibe might be less matchable than most.

Don't judge me for stating the obvious, but doesn't that sound like a fantastic limiting belief that will keep me single!

Yup, you might already be hearing what I am realising. That perhaps I think I'm a bit more "special" than I really am. On one hand I'm the eternal philosopher and analyst, the one who refuses to follow a conventional path and pushes the personal development boundaries to a point where the notion of finding a man – that I am attracted to and who is willing to take me on – seems less likely than finding a Miss Universe with a degree.

(BTW I don't have a degree so that's less of a dig and more a line for comedy purposes).

But on the other hand, I'm just your average girl. Scared, afraid, OK at cooking (although I don't really do it any more), and hoping to marry one day. Pretty standard stuff, right?

I think I have tickets on myself that I have unconsciously added a disclaimer to that says "not redeemable by anyone in this lifetime". I mean, who do I think I am saying most of the guys I meet online are boring? Well, that exact question is my entire quandary, right there in a nutshell. Who do I think I am?

Last year a guy friend of mine told me I was intimidating to men. His reasons were because I'm confident, know what I want and I am reasonably attractive. Right… well that makes sense then. So all I have to do is punch myself in the face, pretend to be a loser and get lost crossing the road?


I'll be honest, he's not the first and only guy who's said that to me. But the joke is, as well as being confident I'm also terrified of being vulnerable. In fact, the very trait of confidence stemmed from my lacking the ability to show my weaknesses – it is a coping mechanism that I adopted as a child because I was told/shown/modelled that being vulnerable is not OK.

Let me just say that although I will concede that I have great resilience and a firm sense of self which might be intimidating (to some), I do (occasionally) click with guys and have met numerous amazing men whose company I've found scintillating. Problem was – they weren't into me! Ha! The irony huh.

(In fact, the guy I mentioned above is one such example.)

Yeah, I know…

What I'm deciphering from all this is that whether I'm ready to meet someone or not, the fact of chemistry and divine timing are always present. And they are two things that I have an unshaking belief in. I have absolute faith that a Source greater than me exists and whichever path my life takes, that Divine energy has my best interest at heart. A friend of mine has a great saying which I recite often: "Rejection is God's protection." Amen to that girlfriend!

The idea of chemistry is an extension of my faith in God. I believe that we are each part of a Soul Group – a collection of people with a similar vibe that is felt when two or more people of the same come together. I mean, don't we all have this experience? You meet someone for the first time and feel as though you've known them for a lifetime? I get that a lot. Just not with the guys I meet on RSVP…

So, after my sobbing and weeping at a business meeting where I realised that what I want in life is to have all these amazing business experiences and someone to share them with, I'm also not in any rush. I'm happy where I am, (even when I'm crying at a business meeting!). I'm truly grateful to have a desire to meet a lovely guy, but equally happy to walk this path alone until I meet someone who really sparks my pilot light. If he looks anything like Keith Urban then happy days, but even if he's got a funny nose and a bit of a tummy I don't really care. All I really want is that chemistry and a message from my Soul that this guy is as into me as I am to him.

Searching for love is easy. It's finding the shoe that fits that can be hard.

And I do have very small feet…

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Shooting For Gold

Today is exactly seven months since I began this blog. The purpose was to follow the processes in Jacqueline Harrison's book How To Create A Business From Nothing, and see if I could go from being $12k in debt to becoming a millionaire blogger.

The journey gets more interesting every day…

Whether you've read one, some, or all my blogs you'll probably have a sense that I go pretty deep. And that launching a business has actually been a path of immense self-discovery for me. In that process I have revealed sides of myself that had been hidden under a blanket of shame or a coat of grief and/or anger.

There's been more than one day when I've pondered as to why I'm putting myself through all this. Why wouldn't I just throw in the self-help towel and go and get a job like a normal person?

Um… maybe because I'm not 'a normal person'…?

I can totally understand why the majority of the population prefer not to delve into their psyche and instead, choose to carry on with day-to-day stuff and strife, and leave the idea of personal development to 'new age hippies' like me. Digging up this amount of dirt is painful and leaves you with a sore back. It's no bed of roses.

Until it is.

Someone said to me recently that they felt the self development movement was huge and that I'm not in such a minority as I believe. I have one response to that: Hay House (which is the largest self-help book publishing company in the world), regularly hold events at various global locations. They can draw crowds of three or so thousand in Sydney alone. But let's look at what else is going on. Such as the footy. AFL crowds are in the tens of thousands on a weekly basis, for months, in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide simultaneously.

That's tens of thousands weekly versus three thousand a few times a year. For me that sums it up. Generally speaking, we prefer watching men kick a ball around than learning techniques that can change our lives for the better.

I'm not saying going to the footy can't change your life in a good way; it's great fun and it's a wonderful environment for friends and families to come together and unite. But going deep into who we are and understanding what drives us is not on most people's agenda. And I'm not surprised, because rather than the tens of thousands who go the footy to watch; the 20 or so blokes who go through the gruelling physical training sessions know that the hard work is done on the pitch, not from a seat in the stadium.

It's the same with anything, we can spectate and speculate on the world around us, or we can take part. One is much easier than the other, but the level of reward generally relates to the effort we put in. It's a choice.

Having just kicked a few balls from my unconscious and landing them on the playing field of my conscious mind, I definitely understand the need for a post-match ice bath and a massage. I feel as though I have spent a lifetime chasing the pain from my past, and can totally relate to why these sport stars earn the money they do. It's not easy! The great thing is, having spent all this time training hard, I have created opportunities to kick some of the best shots I could have hoped for. In doing so, I reckon have scored the goal of a lifetime.

The golden cup I just won is self-love, self-esteem and a deep knowing that nobody can ever knock me over without my consent ever again.

In practical terms, when I began this blog I was a spectator in Jacqueline's book. I was touched and moved by what she had written and I chose to write this blog alongside her writing her book. I was a bit like a sports journo I guess. I was more involved than a regular spectator because I was 'interviewing' the celebrity so to speak. But I wasn't running a half marathon in 90 minutes on the pitch. I was still in the comfortable zone of interpreting what was going on albeit with a seat in the VIP box. It was pretty good.

But earlier this week, something shifted.

One of the goals I'd set with my business mentor was to find someone to co-author a book with by the end of June. As a book editor I know quite a few authors and there were a number of them who I could have approached. But the team I really wanted to be on was Jacqueline Harrison's.

Jacqueline has colours that I want to wear. That I've always wanted to wear. Her colours are the stripes that stand for Success, Integrity, Resilience and Absolute Self-Expression. In a word, she is a person I aspire to be like. Yes, I thought, if this was the FA Cup she's the team David Beckham's playing for.

And I want to learn how to kick the ball from an expert.

So, on Monday, I plucked up the courage and asked if she'd be open to talking about me coming on as a co-author of her book How To Create A Business From Nothing.

"Agreed," she said.

I don't even think a split second passed between my asking and her conceding.


I metaphorically just got a job playing for Man Utd with David Beckham as my coach and teammate. What will come of the book is in the hands of the Universe, but as with any team, there is a certain energy that comes with collaboration. And in my eyes, the very fact that I just got signed is as good as winning the medal itself.

I'm finally taking part.

Life has so many metaphors and sport is a good one because we can all relate to it. When we're born we are like a freshly laid cricket pitch. Lush and green, pure and perfect. But as the players (our life experience, thoughts and beliefs) run up and down, they churn up the soil allowing seeds that have been carried on the wind to implant themselves in the ground. Simultaneously the ball becomes worn down creating a spin that a new ball cannot achieve. The more usage (or life experience), the more the bowler can spin the results. But only if he can feel how the ball has changed, and knows the character of the player he's pitching against. All of this comes with practice and a commitment to being the best.

Some people, like Shane Warne have an innate ability to play their game well. But no matter what our genetic disposition, with hard work and tenacity any of us can score a win.

Just as with every sport, the game is not just about the players we see on the pitch (the conscious mind). There is the ground to tend to, there are the tools or equipment that we need to score the goal and in the background there is a coach. Winning takes a team. When it comes to the Self, the background players are all on the bench of the unconscious mind. It's up to us to call them out on the field.

If I have learned one thing it's that whatever form of playing field we choose to enjoy, the more time and effort we put into understanding the environment, the different types of soil and the weather conditions that affect our land, the more fantastic the results. So if it's a smooth run you're after or a healthy glowing inner self, just be sure to get up early, understand your game and tend to your weeds before they take over.

And if you're really up for it, stand back and stand tall and keep your eyes on the goal. And when you're ready, take a deep breath and shoot for the stars.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Little Miss Perfect

This morning as I prepared for a meeting with my business mentor Colin, I diligently went through the things I'd said I would have done since our last meeting. Send out flyers for Reiki workshops… tick… add Google ads to my blog… tick… commence writing my book… tick.

Oh yes, there were ticks all over the place. Little Miss Perfect had an answer for everything. Anything that I hadn't completed I had a very good reason for, and all the boxes were lined up for a pat on the back.

However, despite all the good news, I wasn't feeling it.

When I arrived at the meeting Colin asked me how I felt. "Like shit," I replied. "Time of the month." Looking back, I can see now how that was a big red flag that had nothing to do with my period. It was an excuse. You know, those things that we tell ourselves to justify not doing something because we don't feel great? "Oh, I'm on deadline I'm always frazzled for a week…" or "I'm short on cash till pay day, can we meet next Friday instead…" or "I don't feel well, can we postpone our catch up till another time."

I really didn't feel like being there. I knew the tick boxes were in place but I didn't even want to talk about them. My throat was restricted and my eyes were welling with tears. Not really what you'd expect considering I'd achieved pretty much everything I'd set out to do six weeks earlier.

So what was really going on?

I guess for me, the journey to becoming a millionaire blogger goes beyond earning money and following a set of business rules. Somewhere deeper inside I want personal breakthroughs that have less to do with business and more to do with Life. The further I travel down this path, the more I realise that if I can tap into whatever is blocking my personal growth, my business dreams will simply follow. For me, work and life are one and the same.

So, back to the meeting… Colin relayed that the very fact I didn't want to be at the meeting meant it was the perfect place for me at that moment. He said that if every cell in my body was resisting something then it indicated that I was on the verge of a breakthrough. I had been feeling like crap for a few weeks so I was desperate for a breakthrough that would get me back to my happy place. But I was even more desperate to hide the very thing that would get me there.

Turns out that was Vulnerability.

I hadn't even been seated for five minutes and this was no longer about business. This was going to be a D&M that could see me smash through to a whole new level, but in order to get there, I was required to be vulnerable in front of someone I wanted to appear to be highly capable in front of. (As I unconsciously want to do with everyone.)

Inside, I wanted to bolt.

Yup, I had Silver saddled up and I was ready to gallop off with "Sorry, Colin, can we do this another time," on the tip of my tongue. Fortunately, I could sense that sitting through this meeting would lead me to an oasis that I couldn't reach on my own. I explained to Colin that I was fed up with having limited cashflow. However, things had just turned a corner as I had recently secured two great new contracts. The work was good and I would be paid well, but for now I was emotional and didn't feel like talking about it.

"What do you want to talk about then?" nudged Colin.

I was at a loss for words because I really didn't feel like talking about anything. I just wanted to go home and curl up into a ball and cry. So, I did all of that – except the going home bit.

Every cell in my body was resisting the tears but they wanted to come and come they did. Had Moses been anywhere nearby he could have waved his staff and sent a thousand Israelites through the middle. The floodgates were open and there was only one thing to do: I had to sit there and drink in the fact that I'm not always capable and that I don't always have my sh*t together.

As my face screwed up and the tears came, Colin didn't seem to mind. "Hmm," said my inner voice. "What's going on here then? You're exposing the part of yourself you never let anyone see and yet you are still alive and the person opposite you is still there."


As my inner Self began to realise that being vulnerable didn't mean I would die or that my business mentor would run a mile, laughing at my inability to cope, I listened in to my heart and asked what was going on. In a very clear voice, it relayed to me that what it would like more than anything right now was a hug.

I pondered that for a moment while Colin and I sat awkwardly in silence. In a few seconds I realised that the awkward silence wasn't awkward at all. In fact, I felt completely safe to sit there and cry. And, I felt completely OK that we hadn't even mentioned work, and that instead, I had basically sat down at what had been planned as a mentoring session and started sobbing.

A tiny seed inside of me whooped with glee. The other part of me (that was still crying) plucked up the courage to ask Colin if I could have a hug. At first he didn't hear me (he probably couldn't understand what I was saying through all the sniffling). So I asked again.

"Can I please have a hug."

In less than a second, Colin was there, allowing me to be vulnerable in the open air, at a cafe – in broad daylight! OMG! My inner voice – that would have brayed at being such a wreck in public – was knocked into a coma while the part of me that had been seeking a breakthrough, was simultaneously set free.

Deep within me I recognised that this was something I had never done before. I have never publicly allowed myself to do what I did today, which was:

a) Cry in public without running to the bathroom to hide
b) Ask someone I don't know very well for a hug
c) Not care that people could see me crying and looking ugly
d) Be happy that I had allowed myself to publicly lose my sh*t
e) Feel OK about returning to that cafe without having to think about wearing a wig to disguise myself (Oh look, she's the one who cried…)

This really was a breakthrough. And it had nothing to do with me ticking boxes on a business plan.

Once I managed to compose myself, Colin and I sat back down and he very lovingly asked me were I was now at. After bumbling and fluffing a little, I told him that it had been a really long time since I'd had a hug. More tears ensued.

Having gone into vulnerability mode and realising it was safe, I felt ready to admit what I had concluded from our meeting. "You know what Colin," I said. "What I have come to realise is that through the process of starting up a set of business streams I firmly believe that I have the skills, the drive and the ambition to make a success of whatever I choose to do. But what I now understand is that what I would really like, is to have someone to share those experiences with."


"I want to be in a relationship."

And there it was – The Truth. The words I had been holding under water were suddenly set free and with them came another river of tears.

The very thing I had been resisting had forced its way to the surface and broken the banks. The emotion I had felt coming to the meeting was nothing to do with my menstrual cycle. My hormonal spin had simply been the trigger for something I'd been holding in for years. Probably since my last long-term relationship which ended more than three years ago.

Finally, I had allowed myself to admit that I am lonely. I finally recognised that I love what I do and I have the courage and tenacity to make my business a success, but deeper than that is a primal desire to share my life with someone on an intimate level. To have someone hold my hand through the hard times and give me a hug when I feel sad. And, equally, to have someone to high five the happy times with. With someone by my side, the hard times might not feel so hard and the good times might seem even better. Wow, that's definitely what I want and yet I hadn't been able to admit that even to myself!

For so long I've been coping with everything on my own, but now, thanks to setting up three new business streams and following the processes in Jacqueline Harrison's book How To Create A Business From Nothing, I seemingly have a much more intimate and emotional desire to fulfill.

For me, the business of setting up in business has not only led me to financial breakthroughs and new business behaviours, but ultimately it has helped me realise that life, be it brimming with gold, or as black as coal, means nothing if we don't have someone to share it with.

And so with that, I now set myself free to find love. I now give myself permission to be vulnerable on an intimate level with a kind and loving man who is looking for someone to share his life with. How I'll find or attract that man is anyone's guess. And until that happens I'll continue trucking along and ticking boxes.

But secretly, I now know that setting up in business isn't necessarily about business at all. Because deeper than my desire to succeed or be wealthy lies a far greater desire to Love and be Loved.

Just as The Beatles sang all those years ago, turns out: Love is all you need.