It takes courage to honour yourself first

Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness. Brene Brown

There is something incredibly expansive that follows making a decision to end something.

You feel a flutter in your chest over your heartspace and in your gut.
A knowing in your heart it was the right thing simultaneous with a fear in your abdomen of, what now?

Over the years I’ve let go of serious relationships, businesses, friendships, jobs and with them identities.

Each time it has come with a struggle, a knowing deep down it was meant to be but just not being ready, too afraid of letting go, saying goodbye and walking into the unknown.

Every time I’ve made that final choice to end and move on magic is created in the space that remains.
A new opportunity I would never have noticed or considered before has come my way. Richer friendships or relationships have begun that would have been missed.

I watched the Brené Brown talk on Netflix yesterday, and found myself with tears throughout. Because I’ve dared greatly at times when it would have been easier to stay where I was.

I believe it takes courage to honour yourself first, to wear the consequence of your choice – both good and not so good.

What I have always known to be true is you have one life, and if you are drowning and miserable, and you’ve given it all of you’ve got with no improvement, it could be time to walk away.

Life is too precious and fleeting to feel that way, even at the expense sometimes of hurting someone else.

In the midst of the turmoil before the end I ask myself, when I’m 80 how will I view this situation? And with my answer I’m guided.

Dare greatly friends, jump if you must. Trust that your leap of faith will be supported. Initially it may hurt. But the beauty that will unfold for you in time will be more than worth it.

Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway

When you have a goal in mind, when you want more for yourself, you make the decision to create change. There will always be a voice that tries to stop you.

It might say,

What will people say?

What will people think?

No one will support me.

My friends/family will think I’m an idiot.

I haven’t got time.

I don’t know where to start.

I feel uncomfortable.

A lot of things will come up that will try to stop you changing.

You might decide to go along and start anyway.

You gain momentum, make a decision and go for it.

And something doesn’t go to plan.

You get sick.

Your kids get sick.

Your day job gets busy.

You didn’t sleep well last night.

You have a wedding/party/event to go to.

Your routine, momentum slows down or halts.

Then you’re stuck.

The voice starts again.

You’re a failure.

You said you would do that and you didn’t.

Everyone else is now further ahead of me.

If I start now they’ll know I didn’t show up and think I’m a failure.

I can’t do this.

I’m scared.

I’m embarrassed. I don’t deserve a new life. I don’t deserve success.

My mother always told me…,

Blah blah blah

And then it’s a year later.

Two years later. Five.

And you are still in the same place.

But you’re feeling worse because you started something, it didn’t work out so now you’re really stuck and afraid.

It doesn’t have to be like that.

The way to start again is just decide you want it.

Recognise the fear, the voice telling you not to for what it is – a bully.

A bully who is scared to let you shine. Who is jealous of your light.

Make small changes.

Get out of bed a little earlier.

Have one less coffee.

Make one phone call.

Spend 30 minutes planning the assignment, and do one thing of action.

Be more present today.

Recognise the negative thought and flip it to a positive one.

What would your best friend say?

Be your best friend.

Be your own cheering squad.

Light your path and each day take a step further.

There will be days you take a few steps back. That’s ok.

As long as the next day you pick yourself up and continue to move forward.

You can do this.

If you feel like you would like assistance to move past the place you are currently stuck at, please consider life coaching.

I have 1:1 coaching packages with two options. A 1 session mentor session, and a 3 month coaching package (currently on sale for 30% off). Contact me for more details.

Do you journal?

When I was young I had a diary. Each entry always started with “Dear Diary…”

You know it wasn’t until recently this memory from my childhood resurfaced and as I thought more about it I realised the power that diary had.

As an adult I journal, not every day, sometimes not for weeks. But when I’m out of sorts, lost, losing touch with myself and my path the first thing I do is grab out my journal.

By the time I’m finished writing I’m clearer and lighter.

It’s the first tool I recommend to all my coaching clients.

The power of a diary or journal is to allow us space.
Space from our thoughts.
A safe space that no other person needs to be privy to.
Space in our minds and hearts created by getting the words that are circling around causing anxiety to be released.

Truly so powerful. And so when I think back to when I was 8 when I was gifted my first diary (with a key and all!) and the ritual I had of writing in it and those that followed over my teen years and beyond, I am grateful.

Grateful I had that space, that tool to fall on, without even knowing I was being guided back to me.

Trusting myself to sort out my own thoughts and feelings. The power of that, right?

We are our own best support system.
We must trust that, and allow the space for our own intuition and guidance to be heard.

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Expansion

It all started with a vision in Shavasana at my local Yoga class.

This guy appeared in my mind, the clearest image I’ve ever seen, as though I had seen him before and the name Tom came to me.

 

It all started with a vision in Shavasana at my local Yoga class.

This guy appeared in my mind, the clearest image I’ve ever seen, as though I had seen him before and the name Tom came to me.

My shavasanas, meditations rarely give me images, or signs, usually there is just calm and back then it was usually creating a to-do list, reminiscing about stupid crap, ready to move onto to the next thing.

The class ended, I walked out and grabbed the latest copy of Holistic Bliss magazine. When I got home I looked at the cover, there looking back at me was Tom Cronin, founder of the Stillness Project and the man hanging out in my vision. This moment was when life as I’d been floating along with changed. I knew I had to, that I would, meet him.

6 months later I saw him speak at an event, another 6 months later I was on his retreat.

In fact exactly 12 months since I had the vision, I was on the retreat.

By that stage I had enrolled with the Beautiful You Coaching Academy, completed my first year at University, change was happening fairly unconsciously.

So many things changed within me on that retreat, at the end of 2016. These things began the catalyst for my 2017 – a year of Expansion.

“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us”

– Joseph Campbell

This year I completed my training with Beautiful You Coaching Academy (Read more about that here), continued my university studies for a Bachelor of Counselling and began my business with doTERRA. I felt deep hurt when one of my closest friends crossed a line very important to me, I felt the uncomfortable growing pains that comes with being in a network marketing business, and I put myself in situations that are way outside of the comfort zone of this little introverted empath.

I discovered how important boundaries are for survival. I learnt how much beauty there is in a desire to serve. I learnt that flicking your mindset has the power to change your trajectory in an instant.

I learnt I am not alone, I am loved and supported and when you think you are alone and no one gets you, all it takes is a leap of faith and the universe will throw you head first into a crowd of souls that are YOUR people.

2017 hasn’t been all roses, but being able to see the beauty in the pains, the stretching and having the ability to look behind and be grateful is priceless.

I am no longer the same person I was on 30th December, 2016. And I am just so so excited to see who I am on 30th December 2018.

Much love,

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The Value of Saying THANK YOU

 

How often we get caught up in life, the duties of day to day and forget to stop and take notice of what is going on around us. Or should I say WHO is around us.

I’m a big advocate for Gratitude, which is likely to be a common theme in my writing. Lately though I’ve been thinking a lot more about people, and how we can take our loved ones for granted so easily.

This could be our partner, our children, our parents, or our dearest friends… everyone in our life.

Our partner is always there. We both have responsibilities to keep the house running, work, cleaning, looking after kids and/or pets; that so often we forget to stop and SEE each other, connect to each other, appreciate and value each other.

We can get tired from all the “Have To Do’s”, pissed off with him for not picking up his goddamn undies off the floor and putting them in the basket, or her leaving makeup in the bathroom sink.

In my experience this is where resentment builds. It takes over and before long more of the little things they do that annoy you become your focus and they can’t do anything right.

But what if we took the focus off those things and redirected our energy towards things they do that support you?

Or better still, what if we asked ourselves –

How am I showing up for them?

What can I do to celebrate them that would make them feel loved and appreciated?

When we change our focus and turn the spotlight

on a person’s positive traits and good intentions,

and let go of the fact they do things differently to us,

things start to change.

You SEE them.

And when you acknowledge them, show gratitude and say thank you,

They begin to SEE you.

It’s the same with our children. We have so much responsibility for them, feeding them, ensuring they are clean, healthy, taken to school & extra activities, entertained- the list is never ending, but how often do we stop and thank them?

What would our life be like if we didn’t have them?

Ok, so we could be on a beach with a margarita in hand, but all jokes aside,

When was the last time you thanked your child for being them?

I know I surely don’t do it often enough. In fact my son (13.5) went through such an enormous growth spurt in the last 2 years, hormones were crazy- off the charts, I often joked at least one of us- if not both- may not come out of his teenage years alive!

This wasn’t good enough,something had to give. I changed my focus.

I started to pay attention to him, really tune in.

He is funny and smart, he tries hard to do the right thing, he has a fierceness that stands true to his beliefs, and he’s pretty fricken cool.

Once I stopped and really began paying attention to him and made more effort to thank him for the things he did for me – despite I may have had to ask 10 times initially {insert eye-roll}… When I drew attention to his positive qualities, praised him more – he calmed down, he began to be more appreciative of me, he started to TALK and SHARE and engage with me. He started to LISTEN. He started to say thank you to me.

And it did not cost a cent. There were no expensive bribes. It was just a matter of truly acknowledging him, showing him appreciation, paying attention, and revealing to him – “I see YOU”.

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The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman is a great resource if you don’t know how your partner or child best require love to be given to them. Each of us have our own love language, our own way we like to be loved, and if you are aware of your loved ones primary love language you have the opportunity to enhance your relationships ten-fold. Follow this link to do a quick quiz to discover your love language and have your loved one do the same.

I’ve put together a loved-ones-gratitude-worksheet that I hope you find useful for creating awareness for how you can best show gratitude to your loved ones.

Much love,

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If you would like to chat with me about this post, please connect with me by leaving a comment below or saying hello at hello@casandrasmith.com.au

Choosing to Focus on the Good

There have been so many posts on social media the last few days about what a terrible year 2016 was and how 2017 is going to be THE year for new beginnings.

Numerology tells us yes, 2017 is the first year of a 9 year cycle & therefore we have the cosmos cheering us on to start fresh.

However this gripe about ‘the worst year ever’ is something I’ve read or heard almost every year at the end of the year for many years now!

“When you make a choice, you change your future.” Deepak Chopra

It’s had me pondering… Why do we remember and/or focus on the bad and not savour, celebrate & remember our highs, our achievements, our good times?

Without the yin there is no yang,

Without the light there is no shade,

Without the hard times we wouldn’t be pushed to try harder to succeed, to make things better, to be better, and to want more.

One of my favourite authors Paulo Coelho shared this story on Facebook today…

My wife and I were reflecting on the past year, whilst dining at a restaurant.

I started to complain about something that hadn’t happened the way I wanted it to.

My wife focused her attention on a Christmas tree that someone put there. I thought that she wasn’t interested in the conversation, so I changed the subject:

“This tree has a beautiful illumination”, I said.                              

“Yes, but if you look carefully you can see one burnt light among dozens. It seems to me that instead of thinking of this year as dozens of enlightened blessings, you chose to look at the one light that did not glow”.

How often we do that without realising…

Being on the rollercoaster of life and trusting the ebb & flow- the journey- isn’t always easy. Trust me I’ve been on that ride many times!

Over the years though I’ve collected a little group of tools I’ve put in my go-to box to help lift me back up.

When I’m going through a rough time or I’m in a bit of a rut one of the tools I go to is my Gratitude Journal. I like to keep a daily journal of 5-10 things I’m grateful for, & as woo woo as it sounds… it really does work!

Having a regular gratitude ritual is a scientifically proven method of enhancing a person’s wellbeing & frame of mind. Making the good things in our life our focus allows & attracts more of the good to enter our life.

No matter how small: clean running water, a bright sunny day, food to eat, rain to nourish & replenish nature, a stranger smiling at you in the street.

This great video by Kristina Kuzmic goes into this a little more….

I try to remind myself when I become aware that I’m slipping into a ‘poor me’ state that there is always someone going through worse than me.

In a world where we are constantly shown real life stories through the media, I am forever in awe of those who suffer hard, really have been dealt the rough card, & despite (or in spite of) foster a positive, inspiring attitude to life & go on to achieve incredible things.

We all have that potential… it’s just about choosing your mindset.

Much love,

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“Where the mind goes, the man follows.” Joyce Meyer

If you would like to chat with me about this post, please connect with me by leaving a comment below or saying hello at hello@casandrasmith.com.au

More about Gratitude Journals: