Navigating Christmas Without A Loved One


“You will lose someone you can’t live without, and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp.” 
Anne Lamott

Christmas is not always an easy time. There are many of us for whom Christmas brings stark reminders of families broken, loved ones lost, and empty chairs at our tables.

If you are navigating Christmas this year while also grieving loss or going through great struggle I want to reach out to you. In the midst of the barrage of happy Christmas movies, fairytale endings and Hallmark Moments I want you to know that I am sorry for your pain, and the hardship this time of year can bring. Please also know you’re not alone. There are many of us whose hearts hurt at Christmas, even as we celebrate, because of loss. If your grief is raw and new it’s also okay to put things on hold, to do things differently, or to let the anniversary days like Christmas slide by unacknowledged until you are ready to face them again.

I’d like to share something I do at Christmas that may be useful for you too. I have found it helpful and healing to make a private little Christmas Altar each year. This way I remember the dead, the absent, the lost. An altar is simply a small dedicated spiritual space that is meaningful to you in some way.

On my altar I place fresh flowers, a candle and some favourite crystals. Things that bring me comfort, and a sense of sacred. Then I place photos or objects that represent a loved one who will not be at my table. That way I can still have them near me, and I can flow love to them and have them be part of my life over the festive season.

The beautiful big owl in the photo above was given to me one Christmas by my friend Angela. She passed away a few years ago. It will be central to my display.

I’ll place a tiny wooden boat for my brother, and a ceramic pelican for my dad. A sparkly stone for my sister and roses for my mum and all of the women in her family who have shaped and grown and loved me. My family all live far from me. But now they are here on my altar even if they cannot be here in person.

I’ll add a photo of Ben’s parents from when they were young, and pictures of my grandparents too. I have cupcake-shaped candles for my darling Kate, who passed away too soon in 2010 ( I went back to her facebook page last night and was lost in there for an hour reading her old posts and laughing at what a dag she was and crying cos sometimes I still miss her more than breathing), and Julie who passed away in 2014. My Grandparents, all now passed, are here in photographs too and I will place a glass of sherry, Christmas Cake and some gingernut biscuits out because these are all the things they would have loved to eat, and later I will eat some and think of them. On Christmas Day I will play The Twelve Days of Christmas by the Ray Conniff Singers, because my Pa used to play that for us every year, and shed a few happy-sad tears.

It’s not the same as having them at my table, but it’s the next best thing. People coming to my house will think that I have simply gathered flowers and candles and photographs and a few ornaments together, but for me it is something healing and emotionally significant that helps me to feel the reassuring weight of my loved ones around me.

Perhaps making your own Christmas Altar will help you this Christmas too.

Sending so much love your way, Nicole ❤ xx

Follow Your Longing – Monday Oracle 10 December 2018



“The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams.”
~  Oprah Winfrey

Hello, Lovelies!

December is a month for planning and dreaming, interspersed with fun, curiosity, friendship and celebration.  Keep that in mind as we look at the gifts of inspiration which the oracle card Seven of Swords brings us.

This week we’re reminded that our imagination exists for a reason and so do our longings. They create the sparks that make a trail of light through the darkened world, leading us to the things that will give us satisfaction, and for which our soul yearns.

Seven of Swords encourages us to stop wishing and start acting this week. If there is no time for action then at least we can create a plan, we can make decisions, we can choose to make space in the near future for more of what matters in our lives.

Feel into your envies, your frustrations, your jealousies and your hungers this week. Don’t be ashamed of them. Don’t turn away. Be brave enough to look into the face of what they are showing you. Let your soul come alive with desire again. Unchain yourself from the humdrum of duty, obligation and routine. Allow possibility to slip into your heart and illuminate you with hope once more. Vow to yourself that your future can be different, and then make room for that to happen.

Supportive crystals this week?

Petrified Wood (pictured) promotes compassion, wonder, curiosity and benevolence. It is a stone for healing old hurts and allowing hope back into your heart. Amazonite helps you to live bravely and from your heart, especially in regard to your creative projects. It will boost self-confidence and self-worth. Tree Agate heightens your intuition, connecting you to synchronicity, soul wisdom, guides and universal energy. It will help you to work out your priorities and where to best spend your precious energy. Snowflake Obsidian is a wonderful stone for any form of pattern-breaking, helping you to invite or invoke change.

Image from Celestial Earth Minerals

Helpful essential oils?

Coriander essential oil is a good choice for your diffuser this week. It helps you to know yourself, and to reconnect with your truth. To make an effective blend to boost confidence and optimism add Bergamot, Geranium and Cinnamon Bark in a ration of 4:3:2:1.

Cinnamon also gives that lovely spicy Christmassy feel to a blend, helping put you in the holiday mood.

I’m passionate about essential oils and their capacity to support our wellness journey and our spiritual and emotional wellbeing. If you’d like to know more or want to source the oils I recommend and trust visit this site or contact me at channelnc@gmail.com

A space to learn and grow

The next four years 2019 – 2022 are significant for our personal and spiritual evolution, as well as for the evolution of our planet. I thought long and hard about the best way to support your growth over that time and have decided that beefing up the content in my YOM membership area was the best way to help you grow, adapt and step more fully into your authenticity and the life-path you chose for yourself pre-birth. You’ll see this membership group evolve into an Academy of Learning over the next twelve months so that my team and I (human and energetic) can serve you the best way I know how.

My membership space is a place where I can walk you through the year, explain all the aspects of the month ahead and the crystals we’ve chosen, where I do special webinars with my tribe to teach you new skills and share important information, and where I channel with my guides in live webinars, and answer your questions and provide general support. I often jump into our private Facebook group to pull cards and bring through messages for our members too. And did I mention what an incredible, loving and supportive space our YOM Community is? There is real friendship and belonging there. It’s a safe space, a heart space, and a place for great personal transformation. I totally heart it!

The format of YOM is constantly evolving. In 2019 you will have access to the foundation YOM online course as well as twelve free additional mini-courses and live events over the next year as well as our wonderful private Facebook group.

There are yearly subscription and monthly subscription options. Our Planner and a range of physical support materials and packs and online courses are available too. Everything you need is available through our store.

Holding you, as always, in my thoughts, prayers and meditations, and intending for you a life of abundance and joy, where you are no longer limited by your doubts.

All my love,

Nicole ❤ xx

PS: Monday’s oracle card, ‘Seven of Swords’, is from the Inner Child Cards – A Fairy-Tale Tarot. I use any cards shown as a prompt for channelled messages and my own own intuitive wisdom, so my take is sometimes quite different to the meaning found in a book. 

When You Lose Track Of Time You Know It’s Love!

“How did it get so late so soon?” 
Dr. Seuss

At 8.30pm last night I told Ben I’d be in bed soon. I just had to do one little thing first…

A little after 2am this morning I looked up and to my surprise hours had suddenly flown by.

Has that ever happened to you? You got engrossed in something and lost all track of time?

The picture above is of my desk, at the end of my last big session of putting our pre-order Planner and Mala packs together. I was listening to music, channelling crystals for people and making special personalised essential oil blends and writing Christmas Cards and pouring love into everything and my night just vanished!

So I’m writing my blog now and scheduling it it post for me in a few hours and meanwhile, hopefully, I’ll be asleep.

Oh my goodness, I am so proud of our Planners and Malas and all our new online courses. I’ll tell you all about them tomorrow and they’ll all be up in our store for you tomorrow too. But first I need some sleep. After I do my 4am meditation (at 3am) because it seems dumb to go to sleep for an hour only to wake up and meditate. I’ll be sending you all lots of love and light and blessings to help you navigate the last of these current energetic shifts.

The pic below is me happy and loved-up and ready for my meditation. Yay for big nights of soul-calling work. (And yes, I still can’t see properly so I am not looking directly into the camera because I couldn’t see where to look!)

Love you! Nicole ❤ xoxo

Feeling Unexpectedly Cranky? You Need To Read This!

“But I am very poorly today & very stupid & I hate everybody & everything. One lives only to make blunders.” 
Charles Darwin, The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, Volume 9: 1861

 

Hello, Lovelies!
I’m checking in with you today. How are you feeling? Everything okay?

If the answer is that you’re fine and fabulous that’s great. Go make the most of the energies of this wonderful week. I didn’t write this post for you.

But if you’re not in that ‘super-happy rainbows and puppies and unicorns’ kind of place, read on.

Have you got the crankies, dear friends? Woken up in the past few days feeling crotchety and out-of-sorts and you don’t know why?

It’s not you. Honest.

Right now we are going through the end of a months-long energetic shift and realignment. Deep down on a cellular level, if you’ve been holding onto old unexpressed emotions from earlier in your timeline, they’ll be working their way to the surface as they leave your body. It might be a constant feeling, it might come in waves, and it will be worst just after you wake up and any time you push yourself into fatigue.

You don’t need to do anything, you don’t need to clear these old emotions – they’re already going. Don’t try to therapise or evaluate them. Just acknowledge them, be gentle with yourself, rest if you need to (big energetic shifts are exhausting) and know that you’ll be feeling lighter and brighter as these heavy old energies depart. I also recommend that you extend kindness and compassion to the people around you who may also be clearing energies and who are acting and feeling cranky too.

Some of you will already be out the other side of this shift. For the rest of us, it will all clear over the next few days.

ThinkstockPhotos.com Image Number:<br /> 475710000

If you feel like you want some practical steps to support yourself try any of the following:

  • Drink plenty of water and make sure you maintain your electrolyte levels.
  • Eat high vibration foods – lots of fruits and vegetables. Root vegetables are super if you are feeling ungrounded.
  • A combination of 3 drops of tea tree, 3 drops of geranium and three drops of frankincense in your diffuser will work wonders.
  • Any of these crystals worn or held will help so go with what you’re drawn to – smoky quartz, amethyst, bloodstone, red jasper, carnelian, citrine, fluorite, black obsidian or snowflake obsidian.
  • Spend some time in nature, and if you can stand barefoot on the ground then do so.
  • Paddle or swim in salt water.
  • Take an Epsom salts bath or foot soak.
  • Get some quiet time on your own.
  • Rest, relax and recharge.

Remember, this shift is a good thing! Who needs to lug around old, redundant energies and emotions? Let’s make room for better and bright possibilities and new experiences that will uplift and enrich us.

Biggest hugs and love to you, Nicole ❤ xoxo

PHOTO VIA FACEBOOK.COM/THEOFFICIALGRUMPYCAT

A Perfectly Wonderful Week For Adventures – Monday Oracle 3 December 2018

“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.
~  Roald Dahl

 

Hello, Lovelies!

December is a month for planning and dreaming, interspersed with fun, curiosity, friendship and celebration.  Keep that in mind as we look at the gifts of inspiration which the oracle card Child of Wands brings us.

This card heralds delightful energies for a week of adventure. For some people that means outings, unexpected invitations or a sudden strong yearning to break free and go do something different instead of being shackled to routine and boredom.

You’ll also find a note of optimism creeping in, and a newfound appreciation for the small details of your life and the world around you.

It’s a week of surprises, inspired thinking, emotional shifts and big breakthroughs. You’ll have an extra store of emotional courage and personal bravery this week, helping you to put yourself out into the world. Child of Wands reminds us that we can go beyond our current limits, and that we can choose to see ourselves and our lives differently – so that a new and brighter future becomes possible. Map those ideas out and begin making a plan. Ideas are no good if they have no action to back them up and turn them from thought into reality.

If you’re a creative soul you’ll find the ideas literally pouring into your brain and body this week, and you’ll feel itchy for some kind of outlet for the expression of all of this energy. Make sure you take the time to capture those ideas in a recording or on paper. Then make a start, no matter how small. It could end up being a life-changing project for you!

Supportive crystals this week?

Petrified Wood promotes compassion, wonder, curiosity and benevolence. It is a stone for healing old hurts and allowing hope back into your heart. Amazonite helps you to live bravely and from your heart, especially in regard to your creative projects. It will boost self-confidence and self-worth. Orange Calcite connects you to inspiration and is great for all forms of creativity. Green Aventurine (pictured) helps you to relax into the flow of life, tapping you into the joy of living and that wonderful feeling of gratitude.

Helpful essential oils?

Hands down it’s Geranium again this week. Geranium is such an underestimated essential oil. With its sweet floral scent it’s brilliant for helping you relax, unwind and get connected to your essence. It will uplift you and stimulate creativity, sensuality and emotional flow – all energies that are great for shifting us into a more creative space. If you’re an over-giver and your tank is dry, geranium oil will fill you back up again.

Apply it to your pulse points at wrist, neck and over heart like a perfume. Place a few drops in your bath water. Diffuse it. One of my favourite uses is as a centering and inspiring pick-me-up. Put a drop in the palm of your hand, rub hands together and then inhale the aroma. (Here’s a simple three-minute meditation you can do using geranium or any of your favourite essential oils – click here)

For relaxing, enjoying life and lifting your mood try any of these oils on their own or in combination – Wild Orange, Lavender, Geranium, Frankincense and Cinnamon Bark. Cinnamon gives that lovely spicy Christmassy feel to a blend, helping put your house in the holiday mood.

I’m passionate about essential oils and their capacity to support our wellness journey and our spiritual and emotional wellbeing. If you’d like to know more or want to source the oils I recommend and trust visit this site or contact me at channelnc@gmail.com

Holding you, as always, in my thoughts, prayers and meditations, and intending for you a life of abundance and joy, where you are no longer limited by your doubts.

All my love,

Nicole ❤ xx

PS: Monday’s oracle card, ‘Child of Wands’, is from the Inner Child Cards – A Fairy-Tale Tarot. I use any cards shown as a prompt for channelled messages and my own own intuitive wisdom, so my take is sometimes quite different to the meaning found in a book. 

Are You The One In Four? A Letter To A Judgemental Friend

“I suppose sooner or later in the life of everyone comes a moment of trial. We all of us have our particular devil who rides us and torments us, and we must give battle in the end.”  Daphne Du Maurier

*Long read ahead. Go grab a cuppa.

Someone, a friend (or maybe not), send me a long and well-meaning (or maybe not) message yesterday asking why I so publicly explained my current health situation in my latest blog post, including mentioning that I suffer from incontinence AND had posted less than flattering images of myself that made me look ‘sick and drained and old’. Apparently, you shouldn’t talk about ‘body failure’ so openly. They suggested that it was ‘harming my image and the potential for me to build my business.’ Finally, they added that my life was  ’embarrassing and overly drama-filled, and maybe I should keep those details to myself’. In the midst of all their advice, they neglected to ask me how I was.

I was going to write them a long message back but instead, I’m going to reply here by way of a recent experience:

Dear YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE BUT I WON’T PUBLICALLY NAME YOU!

The other morning Ben and I needed to visit an office supplies store, but when we arrived at our destination the store had moved. It was only a few blocks away, and to navigate to the new address was straightforward, but for some strange reason as we exited the carpark Ben ducked down a side street and suddenly we were travelling down a rabbit warren of narrow suburban lanes instead of using the main roads.

‘Why are we going this way?’ I asked. ‘This is a dumb way.’

‘I dunno. Felt like it I guess,’ said Ben.

Who was I to argue? I haven’t been able to drive for months. Ben could drive there any route he chose.

When we slowed to take a corner I glanced up a street that ran off the one we were on. My vision is limited right now but of my mouth tumbled the words ‘Stop the car’.

‘Why?’ asked Ben, pulling to a halt.

I pointed. ‘There’. And even though I couldn’t see more than a blur I knew it was someone in trouble. That’s one of the gifts of being psychic.

Ben reversed and we drove fifty metres down another street. There on the sloping front lawn a middle-aged woman was lying awkwardly, half across her driveway, with the bulk of her body angled down the slope and her legs bent uphill behind her. Her handbag and car keys were strewn across the ground.

Ben put the window down and asked calmly, ‘Are you okay?’

‘I’m a bit stuck,’ the lady responded as she waved one arm in a feeble attempt to right herself.

We jumped out of the car and hurried over. As I gathered her fallen things Ben helped her to a sitting position and then we both helped her to her feet. Since my fiftieth birthday in 2017 I now feel every single emotion other people are holding within them as viscerally as if those emotions were mine. This woman’s story unfolded within my own body – this was the first major fall the woman had experienced and she had been lying on the ground for some time, alone and unable to reach her phone or to get herself back up again. It was terrifying for her, and worse, it had suddenly made real the truth of her health situation and diminishing capacities. I could feel the shame and embarrassment in her, as well as the shock.

The woman told us she had Parkinson’s. She was dazed and shaking but kept insisting she was fine and asked to be helped to her car. It was only when Ben let go of her and I saw his hands were covered in blood that we managed to convince her to go back inside her home and look after herself. She’d taken off quite a bit of skin, and her scrapes and bumps looked like they would become painful bruises later. She wouldn’t let us call anyone, and she was embarrassed and upset. I totally understood. The thing she’d been dreading had happened. She’d fallen, and been left stuck and helpless. Once upon a time if that had been me I would have waved everyone off as fast as I could too!

Chronic and terminal illnesses eventually lead us down paths we may never have imagined taking. But as a species we are resilient. We adapt. Life is about making the best of what we’ve got.

Have you ever been in that place, Dear ____________? That place of wanting to hold on to something that is no longer true for you? That place of wanting to not draw attention to yourself, of not wanting to admit a situation or a problem or something else that you perceive would make you somehow diminished in the eyes of others? It’s so human. It just swells my heart with compassion and pricks tears in my eyes.

There is one thing chronic illness has taught me. We’re all fragile. Poor health, accidents, illness and misfortune can strike any of us, at any time, at any age. Statistics show that one in four adults has some form of disability, physical or mental illness or chronic pain that limits our ability to function and cope with the activities of daily life.

One in four.

One in four of us suffers from diabetes or cancer or anxiety or pain or depression or incontinence or irritable bowel or restricted movement or chronic fatigue or OCD or chronic insomnia or some weird genetic thing or bullying or abuse or an occupational injury or… the list is endless. If it’s not us it’s someone we know. Maybe you’re not the sufferer but you live with that person. Care for that person.

Right now I am that one in four. Why should I hide that? It’s not all of me but it is part of me. And I refuse to hide that because if I do it means I am endorsing a world that says we should only show ourselves if we are perfect or at least ‘unoffensive’ to others.

And what does it say about you if you think that people like me should only show the ‘better aspects’ of our lives? Are you saying that I am not worthy to be out in the world if I wear a diaper or need a cane or someone to cut up my food or drive me places?

One in four, Dear _________________. One in four.

One day, that could so easily be you. Or your partner. Or your child.

This is what I believe – we need to embrace the truth of where we are at, without shame, embarrassment or apology. The ‘Instagram Life’ is a lie, and it puts ridiculous pressure on us to be something that so few people are or are with any kind of consistency; young, rich, thin, shredded, beautiful, stylish, completely together, popular, loved by a wide and ‘normal’ circle of family and friends, well travelled, eating amazing meals at fabulous places and healthy and well-balanced inside and out – with never a hint of adversity.

As to the fact that my life is at times ‘overly drama-filled’, my darling friend Carly-Jay Metcalfe who lives with Cystic Fibrosis responded with her own hard-won insights on my Facebook page, and I’ll include her post here in full:

Can I just say that as a person with a terminal illness, I don’t think people who are unaffected by chronic or terminal conditions can understand that with each step forward, it’s usually four steps back. It’s unrelenting and just because you say you’re on the road to recovery, does not mean you’re necessarily ‘better’. I’m glad you’re being gentle on yourself, Nic. I just wish everyone’s expectations were a little more realistic.

When I think of Carly-Jay I don’t think Cystic Fibrosis. I think poet, writer, aunt to my dogs, hilarious, soulful friend. When I think of myself I don’t think illness, I think of all the dreams that reside in my heart. We are not our illnesses or our frailties. We can live and thrive despite any of that. And we never need be defined or diminished by them. Does illness impact our lives and sometimes the lives of others? Sure. It’s just how it is.

What matters is who a person is on a soul level. Bodies age, fade, fail. But our souls are an eternal brightness. So, who are you in your heart? Who are you in the way you act in the world? Who you are as you live by your values? What are your dreams? Your relationships? Your interests? Your knowledge? Where can your passion take you?

Dear ____________ , I guarantee you that our world is held up and held together by people who are limping along in life doing the best that they can, sharing their ideas and gifts and love and care even though they face their own personal adversities.

I’ve been sharing my vulnerabilities since I first started blogging, and that’s the way I shall continue.

I hope no hardship ever befalls you but statistically, things are not on your side. ‘Life is suffering’ is what the Buddha said, and from my experience that will be true for everyone at some stage. That won’t mean you have failed. It will mean that you are human. If your road gets hard I’ll hold your hand as we navigate the bumpy bits together. To think that we need to be alone in our adversity is a myth perpetrated by people like you. Let’s end that way of thinking. It serves no-one.

Much love, Nicole  xx

Things to be thankful for…

“Take time daily to reflect on how much you have. It may not be all that you want but remember someone somewhere is dreaming to have what you have.” ~Germany Kent

This morning I’m counting my Blessings. Such a simple thing to do, and it always makes me feel richer. I like to count them off on my fingers – a tangible act, and a way of really anchoring their truth in my life. Blessings to me are always the simple things in life, and often the things we take for granted.  Even on the worst of days we can find something to be grateful for.  Counting blessings gets my attention OFF the things I don’t want, and back on the things I do. It’s an instant mood lifter that keeps things in perspective for me. It never takes much to find something that’s a blessing.

Today I am grateful for:

1. The sound of wind in the trees as I go to sleep, and birdsong as I wake up.

2. The warmth of the fire, and the sweet smell of woodsmoke in the cold morning air. (I’m also grateful for my husband, who chops the wood and loads the wheelbarrow, and stokes the fire for me!)

3. Chai tea, enough for two, sipped from big bowls, with just a dusting of cinnamon.

4. My Meyer Lemon tree, and its abundance of luscious fruit. And the fresh Lemon Curd I can spread on my morning toast!

5. Farmers’ Markets, and the dedication of our local growers to grow or make the best seasonal fresh produce.

6. My Kindle, and being able to snuggle under the doona on a lazy morning, sipping chai and reading books.

7. My dogs, Rufous and Harry, for their love and companionship.

8. Writing. It is my greatest love, and the thing that wakes me up in the middle of the night, brimful of ideas.

9. Red Jasper which grounds and nurtures, and feels wonderful to have tucked up within my aura.

10. Trees. My little farmhouse is cradled by hundred-year-old trees who whisper their secrets, one to another, and add an incredible energy to this place and to me.

How about you? What do you have to be thankful for today? Go on – count them off on your fingers!

Wishing you many Blessings, Nicole  xx

How To Drink In Colour – A Walking Meditation Technique for Soul Healing

“Let me, O let me bathe my soul in colours; let me swallow the sunset and drink the rainbow.” 
Khalil Gibran

Have you ever had a rough day? Silly question. Of course you have. Like you, I have my occasional difficult patch, that place in my life where emotionally (and sometimes physically) I am stretched thin. Sometimes it’s from psychic work, sometimes the dramas of life – it never really matters how I get there, once I am there the only thing to do is nurture.

But what do you do when you feel that terrible gnawing emptiness, exhaustion, or deep emotional pain? When you are so drained that you are out of ideas for how to make yourself feel better…

I recommend a walk.

On this walk I want you to do three things:

Breathe.

Let the rhythm of your steps begin to calm your mind, just like a moving meditation.

Drink in colour.
How do you drink in colour? Let your eyes drift to the things around you. Your soul will guide you towards colours that are soothing, healing, restoring, harmonising. Your chakras and your aura will become more energised. The colours you bring into your awareness will bring gifts to soothe and uplift you.

You’ll arrive home feeling calmer. You’ll find that eventually, or much sooner, answers and ideas start to flow.

Walking and drinking in colour is free. But the rewards are high. Often the best healing tools are right at our doorstep.

I’ve included some photos from around my farm for anyone who can’t get out on a walk of their own. Let the energies and colour reach you and energise you as if you were walking with me.

Much love to you, Nicole ❤ xx

Why Kindness And Goodness Matters

“Attitude is a choice. Happiness is a choice. Optimism is a choice. Kindness is a choice. Giving is a choice. Respect is a choice. Whatever choice you make makes you. Choose wisely.” 
Roy T. Bennett

Life can be a difficult ride, and each of us at times will know pain, trouble, loneliness and struggle. That’s why it is so important for us to practice love and kindness.

But when we are going through our own difficulties, when we are tired or feeling taken for granted, we might wonder what’s the point? What’s the point of being kind? What’s the point of continuing to be caring, helpful, polite?

Have you noticed that emotional states are contagious? Hang around an angry person long enough and some of that will rub off on you. The same goes for depression. Uncaring acts beget more. Selfishness breeds isolation, disrespect, contempt and ugliness.

Just as negative emotions have a negative impact, choosing to stay focused on love, gratitude, positive values and caring will have a positive impact on our lives.

Our emotional state and our thoughts travel out from us like ripples on a pond. They radiate energy that affects everything and everyone around us. Eventually, some of that energy will be reflected back to us, perhaps weaker, perhaps greatly magnified…

What sort of world do you choose for yourself?

Loving others, living from your heart, choosing kindness, and performing acts of service and devotion that may well go unacknowledged or unappreciated are paths that can truly lead us to a better future, influencing and supporting the positive unfolding of history in ways we may not ever know or understand in our lifetime.

No matter what your emotional starting ground, when you uplift others, you also uplift yourself. When you share your heart, it doesn’t decrease your love – it expands your love, and your capacity to give and receive love.

Our Universe is built upon unseen acts of courage, goodness, faith, optimism, service and great love.

Whether you subscribe to a particular religion or not, whether you believe in God, karma, Universal Law or death and taxes – know that by your own actions, your choices, your values, sacrifices and personal character you contribute to the future unfolding of our planet.

Invisible acts of love and uplifting others might not provide us with an immediate reward – but through these acts we are gifted something far more precious – they give us the power to positively shape destiny, and to better shape ourselves in the process.

When in doubt about how to act, be guided by the wisdom of the Dalai Lama:

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.
Dalai Lama

Sending love your way, Nicole ❤ xx

The Lady And The Poet

“Once, poets were magicians. Poets were strong, stronger than warriors or kings — stronger than old hapless gods. And they will be strong once again.” 
Greg Bear

I’m in Adelaide for a conference this weekend. The event began with welcome drinks at our hotel last night, but I was feeling tired and poorly and wanted soup, so I snuck out the main doors thirty minutes before our event began, hoping to find something more comforting than alcohol and strangers. It was my birthday on Thursday, and I’ve spent the last few days reflecting on my life and sitting in meditation and prayer as I asked for clarity about my road ahead. I wanted to prolong this soulful space just a little longer, so I honoured that need and heeded my intuition by heading out into the night.

As I wandered up the city street a man called to me. He was sitting on a small ledge outside a closed shop, rugged up against the cold. In his hands was an upturned empty cap, immediately marking him as some kind of busker or beggar.

‘Can I offer you a poem?’ he said.

I apologised and explained that I was in need of soup. But I promised him I would stop on the way back. As I walked off I saw his look of resignation, and I knew he’d been told such things many times before by people who hadn’t come back.

A block further along I found an excellent soup and dumpling house, ate a bowl of steaming oily broth with wontons and bok choy floating in the silky liquid, and then made my way back out into the busy Friday night streets.

I stopped in front of the poet, who was stooped and huddled on his seat. ‘I’m ready for that poem,’ I told him.

He sat up straighter. ‘This one is about the drought,’ he said, ‘and a message of hope and rain for our farmers.’ After which he launched into his poem.

He spoke eloquently, dramatically. It was a performance filled with emotion and delivered with care. I have long been a lover of poetry, and this one moved me deeply. It took me to the heart of my country. Within the words I also felt a strong message of hope for my own life – the symbolism a gift threaded with a secret meaning I was sure was just for me.

When the poem ended I stood for a moment, still wrapped in the imagery and sentiment wrought by his words. Then I reached for some coins.

‘Did you write that yourself?’ I asked as I fumbled in my handbag.

‘Yes’.

As I zipped open my purse I saw smaller notes, a handful of coins and tucked away right at the back my ’emergency hundred’ – a green crisp $100 note that I carry in case I am ever in need of a larger sum of money at short notice.

I thought about my capacity to earn money, and how much my work is valued in the world. And I thought about the poet, sitting on a cold city street, hoping to trade his words for coins.

It seemed inequitable. The poet had shared something original and good. Something that had given me insights and meaning and unexpected value. I reached for my emergency hundred and handed it to the poet.

He gazed at the note in his hands, then up to me, and then back to the note.

A tear came to his eye.

He tried to give it back to me. ‘Haven’t you got something smaller?’ he said. “I don’t mind if you give me something smaller.’

‘It’s fine,’ I said. ‘Please. Take it. I want you to know that I value your work. I value the gift of the poem you gave me tonight. It would mean a lot to me for you to accept my gift in return.’

He nodded, his eyes downcast. Silent.

Finally, he looked up.

‘What’s your name?’ I asked.

‘Justin,’ he said. ‘And you, you’re a true lady. Thank you, my lady.’

I walked away with a full heart.

Rain Princess by Leonid Afremov