My Charming Coffee Companion

“Coffee is real good when you drink it. It gives you time to think. It’s a lot more than just a drink. It’s something happening. Not as in hip, but like an event, a place to be, but not like a location, but like somewhere within yourself. It gives you time, but not actual hours or minutes, but a chance to be, like be yourself, and have a second cup.” ~ Gertrude Stein

This week was one of those weeks.

In the midst of it a good friend accompanied me while I had some medical tests and then she took me for coffee when we were done.

This delightful fellow found his way to our table and hung out for a while with us. Well, he hung out with the hope that my toasted sandwich might find its way into his mouth.

He didn’t really have eyes for us at all.

I guess it’s always good to know what you want and to keep your eye on the prize.

My charming companion’s visualisation of the moment that food might reach his lips was so good he could taste it. (And yes, I did share some sandwich with him.)

How about you? What are you focusing on right now? Are you thinking more about what you want or don’t want?

Think about something you really want to do, be or have. Think about yourself as if you already have it. Think how that will make you feel. How your life will be different. Feel that gratitude in your heart.

Make it so real you can taste it.

That’s how you call something into your life.

Sending you all my love, and my hopes that you spend a little time visualising this weekend. Make room for some magical manifestation in your life! Nicole   xx

 

It’s The Weekend. I Have A Project For You!

“I live to enjoy life by the littlest things, feeling the grass between my toes, breathing fresh air, watching the wind sway the trees, enjoying the company of loved ones, a deep conversation, getting lost in a good book, going for a walk in nature, watching my kids grow up. Just the feeling itself of being alive, the absolute amazing fact that we are here right now, breathing, thinking, doing.” 
Marigold Wellington

2018 is a year that supports spending time on what matters – family, friendship, fun, and the priorities and projects dear to our hearts. It’s year to be creative, to kick back and enjoy ourselves, to slow down a little.

But all of this behaviour can be so very hard to embrace when we have been used to work, work, work, stress, stress, stress, busy, busy, busy.

So this weekend I have a project for you, even if you do have work scheduled! See how many of these you can tick off your list by Sunday night:

  1. Sitting with a cuppa or your favourite beverage and taking ten minutes to enjoy every sip and the peacefulness that comes with stopping for a while.
  2. Time in nature – a walk outside to look at the sky counts too!
  3. A relaxing shower or soak in the bath where you take time to enjoy the experience of the water and how it soothes you.
  4. Time with a beloved person or pet where you put everything else aside and just be there for them and with them. Phone calls and video calls count too!
  5. A fragrant treat – scent is a fast-track to happy memories, and to a place that is innovative and creative and upbeat within us. How can you connect to that? Maybe it’s a few drops of essential oil, or your favourite perfume or cologne, a fragrant soap or body lotion, a bunch of flowers, the scent of baking or a good coffee, the ocean or clean clothes fresh from the line still smelling of sunshine.
  6. A nourishing meal, eaten slowly and savoured, as you feel how it is doing you and your body good.
  7. A nap, a rest, or some quiet time to refresh you and recharge your batteries. I find books to be a wonderful downtime tool when I can’t get my mind quiet. Music is good for that too.
  8. Social time – this could be a drink or meal with friends or family, time at the movies or a shopping mall or anywhere you like to hang out with other people. Don’t know anyone? Smile or say hello to people anyway.
  9. Time on a project that is important to you. Even ten minutes counts. Just make them quality minutes by putting away your phone and other distractions.
  10. Some time where you do nothing at all, or anything you want and don’t feel guilty about that being wasted time.

Life is precious, sweet and over all too soon – especially if we have lived our entire lives busy and distracted. Slow down this weekend and make some little pockets of time for you and time for what truly matters.

Biggest love and hugs, Nicole xoxo

How to Check In with Yourself Each Morning

“Morning is wonderful. Its only drawback is that it comes at such an inconvenient time of day.” 
~  Glen Cook

After yesterday’s post where I talked about the importance of self-care and of knowing and honouring your priorities in life this year I had a flood of messages from people asking me how to actually do this. Fair call, so today’s post is designed to help you navigate a little closer to knowing yourself. Just follow the directions below:

  1. When you first wake up, lie quietly in bed with your eyes still closed. Feel into your body with your awareness. Are you ready to open your eyes and spring out of bed with a smile on your face and maximum energy levels? Are you wishing you could roll over and go back to sleep because your energy levels are so low?  Be aware of your energy, and of any aches or pains. Have you woken up with worries on your mind? Be honest with yourself. Score yourself on a level of 1 to 10 with 1 being completely wrecked and 10 being amazingly well and wonderful.
  2. Based on the score you just gave yourself spend a moment and think about the kind of physical and emotional support you’ll need today. Does your body need to eat better and have more hydration? Do you need an easier day? Or are you feeling ready to handle anything? On low-energy days don’t push yourself. On high-energy days look for areas where you can challenge yourself a little more or tackle a bigger project or task. (*Note: If you suffer from chronic illness, chronic fatigue, or other debilitating situations this is a super-critical step in self-awareness to make sure you don’t push yourself too hard – which always results in more setbacks, pain and distress!)
  3. Stretch, and count your blessings. Find at least three small things to be immediately grateful for in your life. Do your best to get yourself into a positive (or more positive than before) headspace.
  4. Think about what really matters to you – it might be your partner or family, your pets, your health, a project you are passionate about, something you want to experience or achieve in the world. These are the things that you’ll think about on your deathbed and wish you’d spent more time on. Muster some gratitude for these things in your life too.
  5. You can do this next bit while you’re still in bed, or over a cuppa at a place that’s  comfortable for you. What worries are in your head? What needs to get done today? Write it all down. Starting the day with a list instead of this all rattling round in your head helps you to stay clear and to better prioritize. 
  6. Take a deep breath and look back over your list. Are the people you love and the things that matter to you represented there? Tune in to your body again. On a scale of 1 to 10 how is your emotional battery? (At a 1 you are at your most fragile and are not coping – at 10 you could take on the world and you feel strong and unbreakable) Now tune in to your physical battery on a scale of 1 to 10 with a score of 1 being completely wrecked and 10 being amazingly well and wonderful. Has your score changed from when you first woke up, now that you’re upright and moving into the day ahead?
  7. Think about your true priorities first. How can you find time for them today, or schedule some in very soon? Include health and self-care in this.
  8. Now think about your worries and to-do list. Based on your assessment of yourself physically and emotionally, what can you really get done today? What are the tasks that will alleviate your stress if you get them done, what are your pressing priorities, what can be delegated and what can be left to roll into tomorrow if necessary? Where might you need help?
  9. Take a couple of calming breaths, and remind yourself that you’ve got this. All you need to do is honour your energy and your priorities. Self-awareness makes everything easier.
  10. Find a few quiet windows during the day, close your eyes and do a quick tune-in to your emotional and physical energy levels again. Use your breath to bring you back to a place of calm. Reconnect to or adjust your priorities and focus for the rest of the day. Practice kindness with yourself as you endeavour to live with more honesty and awareness of your own energy and needs.

Being able to check in with myself and then manage myself better has made a huge positive difference to how I cope in the world, and it has also helped me to put my focus on what really matters to me. I hope this simple technique helps you too.

Biggest love and hugs, Nicole  xx

In case of trauma, Melbourne Breakfast…

“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.” 
Douglas Adams

 

I’ve had a busy few days since Friday, the day of our anniversary Vomageddon. I worked all Saturday in Brisbane doing psychic readings and coaching, which was wonderful and then expected that on Sunday I would rest, write and have a quiet day.

Then on Saturday night I had a call from a long-time client. Her 42-year-old husband, injured in a motorbike accident two weeks before, had collapsed at home and been found unconscious on Thursday. He’d had a massive bleed in his brain and there was absolutely nothing that could be done for him. His medical team were going to turn off his life support system and she asked me if I come and sit at the hospital with her on Sunday morning before that was done. They have three young children together. What a gut-wrenching situation. So I held her hand and we meditated and prayed together, and I did what I could to provide her with comfort and guidance, and it was an emotionally shattering day for all of us.

The past two days I’ve been at another hospital supporting my own family while one of them has undergone major surgery followed by complications and more surgery.

I’ll be there again at the hospital today, and for the next few days too.

Everything else can wait. Everyone else can wait. What matters now is us, each other, and being together.

But right now on this early morning, I’m sitting at home in the city with Ben, the dogs at my feet, drinking Melbourne Breakfast tea by the mugful and soaking up the calm and quiet before another hectic day.

My Nana always said that a cup of tea made everything much better, and I do believe she was right.

2018 is a year of relationships and focusing on what matters. It’s a year for family, love, friendship, creativity, happiness and a slower pace of life. I’m really taking that to heart. How about you? Are you giving enough time to the people and activities that you love? Life is short and precious. Make sure that the choices you make help to minimise any regret over time wasted on the wrong priorities.

Biggest love and hugs to you, Nicole xx

Ah, the Romance… (sob)

“Romance is the glamour which turns the dust of everyday life into a golden haze. ” 
Elinor Glyn

Thank you so much for all of your anniversary wishes. Ben and I are very grateful for your love and support.

I’d like to tell you that yesterday was truly romantic – the stuff of dreams and novels…

But I can’t because it wasn’t. We’d planned an early walk on the beach and then breakfast at the Mullum Farmers’ Markets with friends, but it was raining and Ben is only just getting over the flu, so we cancelled that part of our day.

Then our internet went from bad to non-existent at the farm. A decision needed to be made. Ben would bring me back to the city so I’d be all set up to work with clients in the next few days, and he’d head back to the farm. We scrapped our lunch plans and decided that we’d have a romantic dinner in the city instead. It was raining heavily so we crammed our clothes bags, computers, work bags and groceries into the back seat with the dogs and off we set.

On the road trip home our youngest dog Rufous became ill. Think projectile vomit. Think total coverage of back of car. Twice. How could so much grossness come out of one medium-sized dog??? Then Harry, our other dog, started farting with the stress of it all.

So special.

When we finally arrived in Brisbane (after lengthy delays due to traffic jams and rain) it took the two of us 90 minutes just to clean the car. (God, it was even in my hair…) Then we had to clean everything that had been in the back of the car. And the dogs. Then ourselves. I almost needed to call the HAZMAT team.

That was our afternoon gone. By then we were too tired and grossed out to even contemplate a romantic dinner. So we ordered in some Thai and made plans to reschedule our anniversary for another day.

Rufous was feeling much better, so that was something good. And in the end we spent a day together anyway; Ben, me and the dogs. Weird circumstances and nothing like what we’d planned, but that’s how love rolls sometimes.

I wouldn’t trade a single one of them for anything! And gee we laughed. Certainly a memorable anniversary anyway. 😀

A Gentle Reminder to Make Room For Life This Week

“Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.”
~ Robert Breault

Hello, Lovelies!

Here we are staring down the final days of January, and the refreshing breeze that is February energy is already being felt. 2018 is a fabulous year for creativity, planning, learning and doing, but don’t forget to make time for some living too.


This year – above all else – is a year for fun, family, relationships, time out, creating things and enjoying yourself. Don’t let the year go by without making time for what matters. Let yourself live a little. Slow down. Smell the roses, or maybe even grow some of your own.

Biggest love and hugs, Nicole  xx

 

Soul Journeying OR You Are More Than Your Earthsuit

Image from tv3.lt

“Life’s journey doesn’t start on the highest mountain peak where a clear view of the trail ahead, obstacles and all, is laid out for us to observe before setting foot on the path. No. Life’s journey begins on a low road, in a valley, or even down inside a pit where the trail beyond can only be seen in short stretches, and any obstacles are met as they come. This makes life trying, even scary at times. Have faith that God gave you this life, and hence it is worth seeing through to the end of the trail.” 
Richelle E. GoodrichSlaying Dragons

 

Hello, lovely friends,

I’ve been thinking very deeply about the private responses you’ve sent me in the past few days. Messages about your secret shames and fears, your despair about not being able to overcome a health issue, or your limitations due to illness or living with a partner or child with an illness, or some other deep-seated issue or problem that has left you feeling unable to be all you hoped you could be.

There was a theme amidst your messages that deeply resonated with me, because it was my own theme for so very long: I am not worthy – I am not worthy and even worse I cannot follow my path…

I am not worthy because I am ill or disabled or afflicted or depressed or anxious or traumatised or unable to get out from under whatever is weighing me down. I can’t share my problems because they make me feel like a failure. They are shameful. I am shameful. I cannot follow my path because I am ill or afflicted or exhausted or broken or unable to do it the way that I wanted to. I have my life on hold and I am waiting for this thing to be fixed, even though I’ve been trying to fix it myself for so long. Or I’m broken from trying and I am ashamed that I have now given up. I am waiting to walk my path. I am waiting to be ready for my spiritual journey. I am waiting to find my gifts or share them.

Dear ones, if that in any way resonates, my words today are for you.

The soul journey happens despite what is going on in our lives. In fact, it’s often because life becomes difficult that a yearning awakens for a more spiritual path. It doesn’t matter  if you’re a little broken or a lot, if your time here on earth is short, or longer and not of the quality you had hoped. Let go of the idea that this is somehow all your fault, and that you must be fixed before you can journey.

This is the journey.

I’m reaching out to you today because I need you to hear this.

You can live broken. It can still be a good life. It can still fill you up and be beautiful despite illness, pain, despair and limitation. You can create and dream and make and connect and love and laugh and adventure and matter – to yourself and to others – even if your life is not perfect, or working out the way you had planned. I know, because I have lived with pain and brokenness and despair and frustration and so many other things. And I still do.

We are souls dressed up in Earthsuits. (Yep, I’m talking about your body here!) Sometimes those suits get awfully dinged up and damaged. Life is a risky business.

But inside that suit is your soul. And souls endure, remaining shiny and unaffected by the dust and damage that your Earthsuit might have accumulated.

In fact, I think that our souls deepen and shine brighter because of the hardships our Earthsuits go through.

Please, stop beating yourself up. Stop blaming. Stop the meanness and the endless stress and self-recrimination. Stop waiting for things to change. Stop needing things to be better. Surrender to where you are. Surrender to what is. This is your one beautiful chance at this life, and it goes by in the blink of an eye. Your Earthsuit might be damaged but you are still here, and life outside your Earthsuit still holds wonder and beauty and magic if only you can allow yourself to keep feeling and experiencing and allowing, in spite of whatever else is going on for you.

You can be a healer and still be broken yourself. You can be a teacher, and never leave your home. You can be an artist or a writer or an entrepreneur and never leave your bed. You don’t need to be perfect or beautiful or young or fit or healthy or able-bodied. You can limp through life and still live it well. If you are alive, even if only just, you can think and feel and dream and you can do soulwork. You can lift yourself out of pain and isolation and back into connection, just be deciding that you’ll live anyway, despite whatever circumstances you find yourself experiencing.

You are worthy just as you are. And there is a path for you in this life that only you can take. No matter how messed up or impossible things might seem to be for you right now. Just by being alive you matter.

Soul work – that space of meditation and reflection, of connection and communion, or asking the big questions and being okay with silence or answers unexpected, that great big process of opening up to yourself and the Universe? You, my friend, are born to it. In fact, because of all this shit you have endured or are enduring, you are primed for something deeper and more meaningful in the way that your soul will journey.

So, let me give you a hug. Your journey is my journey. I’m here for you. You matter to me, and your life matters.

That world of perfect bodies and healthy happy people doing amazing things and living a life you can never have? It doesn’t even exist. It’s all just marketing. Everyone in their lifetime will experience troubles, pain, hurt, frailty and diminishment. Everyone. Most people just don’t talk about it. It’s not very Facebook or Instagram worthy.

Take a deep breath. You are where you are. And it might totally suck. But somewhere inside you is a place untouched by that pain, and perhaps made more beautiful and wise because of it. You’re a soul, and you have every right to be here, and to follow your heart. It’s why you came to Earth, despite all the risks and dangers. Be yourself anyway. Live, anyway. Do, anyway. Be, anyway. Feel, anyway. It’s worth it. All it takes is a little shift in your thinking and your life can open up again.

I love you. I’m here for you. I’m cheering you on. Nicole  xx

PS – If you want help to walk this path you can join my Year of ME membership group – a supportive place where you can belong and fit right in, just as you are (details in my shop – look for the year long course or subscription option), or come along to my Awakening to Spirituality Retreat. You’d be so welcome!