A Morning Walk

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“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
~ Albert Einstein


I went for a walk early yesterday morning, and ventured down onto the road outside our retreat.

There was a sign there, which had been ‘Byronified’ – and it quietly amused me, so I shall share it with you below. It typifies the energy of Byron Bay.

It was a big day at retreat yesterday. Lots of breakthroughs, lots of shift. So, before the day starts properly I am going to sit quietly on my verandah with the birds and cicadas and distant roar of surf, early morning cuppa in hand, and enjoy a little ‘me’ time. Good morning. Sending much love to you xoxo

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After the Storm…

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“When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.”
~ Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore


One of the things I love about our retreats at Sangsurya is that we are always so supported by the natural environment.

We’ve been doing some really big work these past few days – wrapping up the old energies of 2015, and doing lots of shift and emotional clearing to make way for the delicious energies of the coming year.

Of course a huge storm came in right as we finished all of that work. It was crazily intense with driving rain, thunder, lightning and wild wind. Even during my evening channelling session, and then late into the night as I meditated for the group, the sky was alive with lightning and the distant roar of thunder out over the ocean.

This morning the dawning sun has burned away the last of the cloud. The air is cool and fresh and clean. Everything feels settled and grounded and clear as we get ready to work with all of the possibilities of 2016.

I’m so excited for what today will bring. You can feel the gift of it in the air!

Here are a few pics from yesterday. Sending so much love to you, Nicole <3 xoxo

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It’s Okay to Keep Changing – and How to Cope with People Who Don’t Recognise That

Image from timrettig.net

Image from timrettig.net

“If people refuse to look at you in a new light and they can only see you for what you were, only see you for the mistakes you’ve made, if they don’t realize that you are not your mistakes, then they have to go.”
~ Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free


I received another message this week that I thought was best answered on my blog.

Lilly writes:

“Hello beautiful. Just wanted to ask some advice. I’m feeling really flat and down and sad this past week. My issues are based in trust and loyalty around family. I am trying to take a holistic approach to life and health in general , have been trying as hard as I can to do and be my best. My ” family ” is still full of doubt , spite and criticism of me and my abilities as a mum and person. My heart is bruised and my soul is weary. Can you offer any advice at all please ? Crystals to work with, books to read, certain meditations, angels to pray to, advice on how to react or not reactionary. ? Anything ?? I know your very busy and have a lot on your own plate but I’m sitting here feeling so lost and down and I don’t know who else to ask. Any advice at all would be deeply appreciated.”


First of all, Lilly, here’s a big hug (((HUG))). It’s hard when we’re doing our best and consciously making better choices to lift ourselves up and to live by our own values, and then to get pulled down by the people we had hoped would support us. You can always call on your Angels and Guides. Just talk to them out loud, or in your head, and ask for their help and support. Loved ones who’ve passed over can also bring us comfort. Some people talk to God. GO with what feels right to you.

Lilly, this is a hard one, and I’m going to consider it from several angles. Please know that I am no longer writing just about you, but about so many people just like you, and some who are not.


When You Really Did Do Some Things To Harm Trust:

If there was a time when you made mistakes or poor choices, or were immature or had a bad attitude or an addiction, then it’s likely that you hurt the people closest to you. It’s painful for family and friends to watch someone they love be in that space, and it’s painful to be on the receiving end of their bad behaviour, lies, addiction or attitude. When you’ve been continually hurt by someone you become wary of being hurt again. It is hard to trust someone who has put you through that, especially if they have promised or pleaded that they have changed, only to then fall back into those behaviours, or to manipulate your sympathies to their own ends.

In that kind of situation where you’ve hurt others, you will have to earn that trust back. You may want to apologise and let those people speak their hurts to you, so that they too can feel heard. And then you need to let your changed life and your actions speak for themselves. I have seen many brave people work the AA Twelve Step program or similar, and go back to people they had harmed – to explain and to apologise and to offer restitution. Sometimes it helped heal the relationship. Sometimes it just enabled the person who’d broken the trust to make peace with themselves that they had done the best that they could to put things right. Family counselling can help. Or a good counsellor or support group can help you to forgive yourself, understand what happened and move on.

If you’re the one who has been on the receiving end of that harmed trust, it is perfectly fine to look for evidence of change through a person’s actions and day-to-day life, rather than simply accepting what they tell you. The old saying about talk being cheap is true when you have been let down many times before. I wrote a post about that here called Listen With Your Eyes



When A Loved One Did Things That Harmed Trust:

Sometimes people we love lie. Or cheat. Or take sides. Or play favourites. Or are insensitive or mean. Maybe they have an addiction issue. Perhaps they have experienced abuse or trauma themselves. Or maybe they just made bad choices. People make mistakes. Sometimes, if everyone is willing to work on it, we can put broken back together. It usually takes time,  commitment, and the facilitation of a good therapist. I’ve known people who have forged better, more honest relationships after times of great hardship.

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BUT sometimes our loved one is a bully, a violent addict, a narcissist, a sociopath. Sometimes they are so broken or their behaviours so entrenched that all you will get is more of the same abuse every time you front on up to that relationship. Wanting or needing a person to change doesn’t make them change, no matter how hard you make changes to yourself, or try to handle the relationship differently.

In that situation, hard as it may be, you might need to cut your losses or put a lot of space into the relationship. Don’t put yourself into abuse ‘because it’s Christmas’ or ‘because they’re still my family’. Find a good therapist or counsellor for yourself. Work on you. Get a support network. If you’re an adult you have choices. You don’t need to continue to suffer that kind of behaviour. As a parent you don’t need to expose your child to that kind of behaviour.


When You’ve Changed and People Can’t Understand That:

We all grow and change over time. Some of us slowly. Some of us fast. If you’ve travelled extensively, and your family and friends haven’t. If you went to war. If you lost your partner to cancer. If you experienced trauma or chronic illness or some kind of ecstatic spiritual transformation…

Shared experiences are one of the things that unite us. If our loved ones haven’t got that same frame of reference you lose ground and connection. It can be easy to become distant. It isn’t that they don’t love you. It’s just that they don’t understand.

So, don’t expect them to. There will be other people who know what you are going through. Find them, and use them for mutual support and sharing. Or hold your experience close and sacred.

Image from www.alz.org

Image from www.alz.org

Reconnect with family and friends by exploring the things you DO share in common. Old memories, family traditions, people and places that mean something that links you to each other.

We can still be loved, and be part of a family or group, and yet not be fully known or seen or understood. Truth is, sometimes we can even be a mystery to ourselves…


When You’ve Changed For The Better and People Can’t Accept That:

Sometimes we grow, and the people around us can’t cope with the fact that we are different. Sometimes we’ve done our best to fit in but we can’t keep pretending. Sometimes we reach a point where we can’t tolerate a situation or relationship because it doesn’t align with our ethics and values, or we will no longer tolerate victimisation, bullying, abuse or unhealthy behaviours. Sometimes we become better, wiser, stronger, more educated, or in other ways different to how we were. We outgrow lovers, friends, and even families.

In certain circumstances we can choose to hide or minimise that change for short periods of time in order to maintain relationships or family harmony. But if you are put down for your transformation, if you are rejected or victimised because of your choices, if you experience abuse – verbal, emotional or otherwise, then it’s time to leave that relationship behind, and to create relationships with people who value you. Value yourself first. Value yourself enough to walk away from those who belittle and diminish you.

Above all, Lilly, It’s important that you value and love yourself. That you make healthy choices for yourself and for your children. That you allow yourself to be valued by others and that you stand up for yourself, protect yourself, and keep yourself and your children out of situations that are abusive and toxic.

Create the life you want for yourself through mindful choices and actions. Grieve the loss of the way things could have been, but don’t dwell on it. Be the person and mum that is you evolving as your best self. Know that in doing that you’ll attract to you the sorts of people who will fit better with who you are and who you are becoming.

Sending so much love your way, Nicole xoxo

Extra Coping Tools

You might find these posts helpful too:

How to get through the hard stuff

How to deal with toxic people

Crystals for highly sensitive people

Free Guided Meditation for the Solar Plexus Chakra

Guided Meditation for Emotional Healing

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In My Happy Place!

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“The cure for anything is salt water — sweat, tears, or the sea.” ~ Isak Dinesen


My Soul Sanctuary Retreat begins today.

Before my work begins, before my week kicks off, I have this. The beach, the dawn, the rising sun, the smell of salt and the foam of waves. I have my husband’s hand in mine, and a crazy cafe dog running crazy circles.

Then, after walking and swimming, there will be coffee.

My day will be begun. I will soon find myself on Retreat, and it will be wonderful, as it always is. But first, time for me. Time for my loved ones. Time in my happy place.

I’ll keep you posted all week about our goings on and lots of other stuff besides, I promise. There will be much to share.

Until then, hugs and love, Nicole xx

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A Little Bit Of Chaos

“Floyd could imagine a dozen things that could go wrong; it was little consolation that it was always the thirteenth that actually happened.”
~ Arthur C. Clarke, 2010: Odyssey Two


I thought about writing a blog titled ‘Reasons for Screaming Yesterday – My Top Five’. They would have been:

  1. The microbat in my bath-towel that launched itself at me while I was dripping and defenceless after last night’s shower.
  2. The massive water dragon who snuck into the house, and whose fat tail under my desk made me think there was a brown snake (very poisonous and deadly) at my feet.
  3. Cafe Dog jumping onto our bed after his beach walk and shaking sand everywhere.
  4. Bert the dog burping a big cow poo burp in my face moments before I went to bed, and then needing to throw up said cow poo, resulting in him desperately waking me to take him outside just after I finally, finally, finally got to sleep.
  5. The gigantic spider that ran over my face while I was sleeping.

But actually, my main reason for screaming was three days of no power right in the middle of my busiest week of preparation in the entire year, resulting in every conceivable surface of our house looking like this:

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It’s all okay this morning. The madness is being packed away in boxes, I have a dear friend arriving from interstate, Cafe Dog and I have been promised a coffee outing after my next jobs are finished and my cleaning angels are coming to make order out of madness.

Wow. Somehow I made it through.

Retreat starts tomorrow. Our farm-house is all rewired and powered up. My Secret Project is in its final edit with my graphic designer. And I didn’t die when a gigantic spider RAN OVER MY SLEEPING FACE!!!

So, it’s all good.

See you tomorrow. I have to keep chugging along with my chores so I can earn that coffee outing for me and Harry!

Big love, Nicole <3 xoxo

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Crazy Wild Farm Life!

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“Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order than the one you have in mind.”
~ David G. Allen


Behold the beautiful flat space where my new vegetable gardens shall go. It seems so peaceful, doesn’t it?

Part of that peacefulness is derived from the fact that the excavator driver snagged the farm’s power cable two days ago. The excavator kept chugging along with the cable caught up. Our tiny old timber farmhouse shook and pitched in protest. After which the cable broke, plunging us into chaos.

It was a big job. The cable actually runs through the top of the roof from one side to the other, before exiting to go down to the spring where our pumphouse is – the one that supplies our entire farm with water. Old wiring that would never be done in the modern-day, but this is an old, old house.

It’s okay. No-one was hurt. But it has certainly made things a little more crazy than usual.

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For the past two days we’ve had a little intermittent power and a lot of no power at all. Lots of rewiring and checking and building new things has happened. Right as I am busy getting ready to launch my amazing secret thing… Right as I am finalising preparations for my Soul Sanctuary Retreat which begins on Saturday. Right as I was trying to do a website upgrade.

Right in the middle of a heatwave.

When there is no power, no computer, no internet, no fan, no phone.

Of course. These things always happen like that. :)

Today the electricians are coming to wire the final things and the problem will be sorted. The farm will have all new wiring. A vast improvement on the old.

In the meantime I shall be hard to reach, and not able to answer many emails or messages until we get the power back on properly and for good. At least it has given me time for resting and journalling and meditating in the lead-up to retreat and my Brisbane workshops and Christmas Party. So it’s not all bad.

And I think my new vegetable gardens will be smashing!

I’ll leave you with some tranquil farm scenes from earlier this morning. I’m off to make a pot of tea and catch up on some emails before the power goes off again.

Much love, Nicole xx

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Crystals To Soothe Anxiety

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“P.S. You’re not going to die. Here’s the white-hot truth: if you go bankrupt, you’ll still be okay. If you lose the gig, the lover, the house, you’ll still be okay. If you sing off-key, get beat by the competition, have your heart shattered, get fired… it’s not going to kill you. Ask anyone who’s been through it.” ~ Danielle LaPorte


I’ve had another excellent question come through on facebook that I thought I’d answer here:

Hey Nicole! A quick question for you… What is a good crystal to calm anxiety? I am feeling extremely anxious! In a week today we are flying to Europe for a long planned family holiday. Very exciting but I am feeling paralysed from anxiety. My son is having his last week at preschool, which marks the end of this early child rearing chapter so am feeling anxious about change too! I suffer from GAD! Anyway… I feel like I should meditate but I feel like I have so much to do!!! Perhaps a crystal in my pocket to hold, while I’m going about my business will give me some focus? Thanks for listening! Trishx

Hi Trish, and all who suffer from anxiety, here are my top recommendations.

  1. Celestite. Celestite is a beautiful blue crystal that is soothing to hold, and that powerfully connects you to the angelic realms. It’s enough just to hold it, for its calming energies. But if you feel drawn to angels there is more you can do. When you first choose a celestite, hold it in your hands and say out loud: Unnamed Angel – I call on you to help me manage and overcome my anxiety (or whatever your issue is). Please hold me safe and lift me up. Thank you. Trust that an Angel will come, specifically for you and your anxiety. Talk to your Angel often. Out loud. Softly is fine. Name specific things that are troubling you, where you require help. Know that they will hear you and help you. Please thank them as well. Just having the stone in your pocket will be a comfort. You could also choose one to wear. 2015-11-24 07.03.45
  2. Amethyst. Most people don’t think of amethyst in relation to anxiety, but holding this crystal helps slow beta brainwaves (the same ones that slow down with meditation) and brings feelings of peace and tranquility. When you hold it deliberately slow yourself down and focus on your breathing until calm returns. You can also use it to call on your Guides for help and support. 2014-11-16 05.24.43
  3. Black Tourmaline. For fear and major freak-outs, nothing beats the grounding, protective and earthy energies of Black Tourmaline. It works fast to settle fear and panic attacks. Not a stone for comfort – just a stone to break those unhelpful thought and emotion patterns and to normalise you back into yourself again. I use this crystal when I’m flying if the turbulence is bad… 2015-11-24 07.07.40
  4. Lepidolite. This delicious stone contains lithium and is wonderful as a brain rebalancer. Exceptionally soothing to hold, and combats overthinking (especially of the OCD kind). It induces a sense of calm and helps you to think and feel without being hypersensitive or easily triggered. A perfect stone in your pocket for everyday anxiety, or to hold in stressful situations. Great for students during exam time too. 2015-11-24 07.05.00


I still think there’s room for a quick meditation in there too, Trish. No matter how busy you are. Here are a few quick and easy ones I can recommend:

Taking Energy from Trees

A Simple Meditation For Stress, Anxiety and Fatigue

Three Minute Essential Oil Meditation   For anxiety I recommend Lavender, Young Living’s Peace and Calming or Stress Away, Cedarwood or Vetiver.

Big love and hugs, Nicole xx