Shiny Unicorn Attack (Cos It Had To Happen…)

“Never laugh at live dragons.” ~ J R R Tolkien

So, I’m standing in a health food store yesterday, waiting while someone finds a product I’d ordered.

I’m miserable. My eyes are streaming and one is gummed closed. My face is blotchy and puffy. I have a UTI and a chest infection and I am herxing badly from Lyme die-off. I’m wearing an adult diaper under my jeans. I am wheezing and coughing. I’m in pain. I look like death. I feel like death. I’m sleep deprived. It’s not my best day. (see yesterday’s blog for the full update)

I’m so uncomfortable. To distract myself while they find my stuff I go for a wander through the aisles. I could use some new lip balm. A sales assistant sidles up beside me and asks me how I am. ‘Awesome,’ I respond.

She looks at me and I smile.

‘Ok,’ I add. ‘Not awesome, but I’m doing okay. Thanks for asking.’

And then she does it. She hits me with the big New Age Shiny Unicorn.

‘Your problem? It’s a mental thing,’ she says. ‘You created it and you’re in charge. Just use some positive affirmations and you can turn it all around. You’ll be feeling better in no time.’ She attempts to lead me towards a helpful display of positive thinking books and Louise Hay affirmation cards.

I had to seriously reign in my violent thoughts.

‘Actually,’ I say, ‘it’s not a mental thing. I’m in pain. A lot of pain. I’m quite unwell. I’m happy, and I have a great life and a lot of gratitude and a good attitude, but I also have pain. No amount of positive affirmations are going to fix that right now.’

She tries again, beaming at me. ‘Oh, come on. You won’t know if you don’t try! You’re a master manifestor who is just doing it wrong. What else is possible? How could you create a happier day?’

I’m sure I’ve wet my pants. I think I can feel urine trickling into my shoe. My skin feels like insects are biting me. I excuse myself and go back to the front counter.

After I’ve paid for my supplements I have a quiet word with the manager about her overly-cheerful staff member and explain the conversation I’ve just endured. The manager has the good grace to look horrified and we agree that some staff training might be appropriate.

Rant over. If you don’t know what the problem is here then refer to this blog post.

Hugs and love, cranky Nicole who is actually still mostly happy and with a good attitude xx

How to take a Blessings Bath

“The unthankful heart discovers no mercies; but the thankful heart will find, in every hour, some heavenly blessings.” 
~ Henry Ward Beecher

Today’s post is all about nurture. I want to share with you a process that I call a Blessings Bath.  I usually take a Blessings Bath when I am feeling anything but blessed; when I am truly exhausted, wretched, miserable and broken.  It has never failed to get me into a better space. And once you move into that better space you can sleep. You can heal.  You can go on…

This is a beautiful ritual – a mini-break you can treat yourself to whenever you need that extra love and care. It helps if you can gather your materials together beforehand and make the effort to create a space that is inviting and relaxing.

It’s best done at the end of the day, when you can move from your bathroom to the bedroom and enjoy a restful night’s sleep.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A bristle brush for dry skin brushing
  • A bath (if you don’t have a bath you can modify this by using a deep bucket or tub for a foot bath)
  • A shower
  • Your choice of bubble bath, bath salts, epsom salts and essential oils.  (An epsom salts bath is an excellent way to de-stress, get some magnesium into your frazzled system, and cleanse your aura as well as your body. If you’d like to lean more, click here).  At a minimum use the salts, but I must say that I love the comfort of some good bubbles too – invest in a good quality body wash or foam that is free of nasty chemicals. You’re worth it!
  • Your choice of crystals (optional, but good! – I’d recommend rose quartz, clear quartz, carnelian, hematite, howlite or blue quartz.  Use tumbled stones that you can place directly into the tub or bucket, and that are too big to get washed down the drain.)
  • Some soft fluffy towels
  • Candles, and something to light them with
  • Body oil or lotion (I use organic coconut oil ♥)
  • Relaxing music

Run your bath and add epsom salts, crystals, oils etc,  Make it tolerably hot if you are using epsom salts so that your pores open and you can detox from your lymph and uptake all that beneficial magnesium).  Turn on your music, softly, so that it is background music, and light your candles. (Please keep candles away from shower curtains and anything flammable.) Turn off the lights so that the room is dimly lit. If you live in a cold climate, make sure your room is warm!

Dry Skin Brushing:

Dry skin brushing stimulates our lymphatic system, helping us to detoxify and to improve our circulation.  It also removes dead skin cells and leaves our skin softer. Over time this beneficial practice can greatly aid your health and well-being, strengthening your immune system.  It’s also great for cellulite! As you brush, always direct your strokes from the extremities back towards your heart.

As you dry brush your body affirm to yourself I am ready to release. I am letting go.  Say it softly, over and over, as you brush.

Undress, then take your bristle brush and starting at the toes of your left foot use short smooth strokes to brush up to your knee.  Then work from your knee to your groin. Cover your whole leg using a soft but firm pressure.

Now work from your fingertips on the left arm up to the armpit. Swap and do your right arm. After this do your back, using long sweeping movements to go from your shoulders down to the middle of your back.  Then brush from your buttocks back up to the middle of your back.

Finally brush the front of your body – from your shoulders towards your heart and then your belly in a clockwise direction. Avoid your face, but do include the back of your neck.

Bath:

Step into the bath. (If you’re using a foot bath sit down and place your feet in the bucket.)

Settle in and get comfortable. Then place your hands so that they are resting on your heart. Gently repeat the words Thank You on every out breath. Do this for as long as you stay in the bath.

These two little words will powerfully shift those negative emotions and energetic blocks within your body, opening you back up to peace and flow.

Image from www.palo.gr

Image from www.palo.gr

Fee yourself soften and relax. Don’t struggle with your feelings. Allow any trapped or suppressed emotions come to the surface, stay focused with your hands on your heart and keep saying thank you. If you need to cry, do so. But keep saying Thank You.

When you feel calm and centered, step out of the bath. Turn on the shower (pull the plug if you have a combined shower/bath so you don’t flood the room) and rinse off the last of the bath water, feeling it running down the drain. Keep affirming the words Thank You, aloud or to yourself.

Finish with a short burst of cold water – about thirty seconds is fine.  This is fantastic for your circulation and immune system.

Towel yourself dry.

Oiling the Body:

Now that we have detoxed and cleansed our body we are going to nurture and love it some more. Take your oil or body lotion, and starting with your face, neck and ears gently rub the oil into your skin. As you do this say Thank You on every out breath. Really feel yourself connecting with and nurturing your body. Thank your body from your heart. Allow yourself to feel love and gratitude for your life.

Continue to apply oil, doing each arm and then your front, back and legs.  Pay attention to your fingers, toes and the soles of your feet.  Make sure every inch of your body is pampered and cared for.

Use a towel again to blot any excess oil, and then dress in something loose and comfortable.

Retire to your bedroom or somewhere else quiet and private.  Lie down or sit in a comfortable chair and rest or drift off to sleep.

I hope you find comfort and nurture in this ritual. Bless ♥ xx

**PS If you enjoyed this post please vote for my blog, Cauldrons and Cupcakes, in the  Best Australian Blogs 2013 Competition.  You can do that here.  Thank you.

The Value of Encouraging Other People

Image source unknown...

Image source unknown…

“The purpose of life is not to be happy – but to matter, to be productive, to be useful, to have it make some difference that you have lived at all.”  ~ Leo Rosten

Life can be so very trying at times. We can find ourselves alone, we might fall on hard times, lose our health, endure great physical or emotional pain, make decisions we regret, suffer loss or be faced with a mountain of other problems.

But today I don’t want to talk about your problems. I want to share with you a personal philosophy that has helped me through the darkest of days. It’s no fix for whatever you’re facing and yet it can often illuminate answers and bring light into your own darkness.  That philosophy is to practice kindness and to encourage others.

When we take our focus off our own hurt or emptiness, and find a way to serve others, something profound happens. Our life is vested with a deeper meaning.  Our suffering becomes less significant, or more tolerable. And we find something outside ourselves that helps us to understand that we matter, that in some way we can have a part in the wider world, even if it is not the role we had envisioned for ourselves. Our vibration is lifted. Our soul finds a way to free itself from this cage of pain.

Conversely, if we engage in bitterness, cruelty, criticism and tearing people down these actions seem to magnify our pain and unhappiness. Our vibration is lowered. We attract more suffering and become enmeshed with our problems.

There are many ways that we can encourage others; a kind word, a smile, a thoughtful comment, a hug or a pat on the arm, acknowledging someone’s efforts, being enthusiastic about their successes and kind about their failures.  You could try praise, gratitude, a short email, a card in the mail, a hug, a softly whispered ‘Don’t give up, I have faith in you,” a rowdy “Come on, you can do it!”

Give someone the gift of your interest.  Listen to them, and care about what they say and how they say it.  Encourage them to share and to open up to you.  Be someone they can trust and confide in.

Lend a hand. Offers of help can go a long way when someone is struggling with their own problems. Specific advice and ideas that are supported by your own wisdom and experience can be very useful when someone is just starting out.

Affirm positive actions and attitudes. It means so much when others notice and validate our efforts.

Speak well of people. Introduce and connect people to each other.  Build friendships, and help create communities.

To be productive, to lift up others, to practice kindness, to encourage – these things matter, and they are a magical balm to life’s greatest pains, and for the most weary of souls.

sunshine (1)

You might find these posts useful too:

Will you do something for me today?

The gift of small kindnesses

Today, choose kindness

How you can change the world

Helping-Others-Quotes-No-one-is-useless-in-this-world-who-lightens-the-burdens-of-another.