Refuelling Your Soul

“The soul always knows what to do to heal itself. The challenge is to silence the mind.” ~ Caroline Myss

Feeling tired, flat or a bit lost? That’s okay – I have some tips to help you manage that.

Or perhaps it’s worse than a little fatigue. Maybe you feel utterly smashed by life right now. My advice is still going to be the same. There are three steps to follow.

  1. Find some quiet time. Here are some of my favourite ways to do that:
  • Take a long country drive somewhere, or sit on your commute with some headphones on.
  • Go for a walk or a run or a bike ride or a swim
  • Try some yoga or stretching
  • Make a cup of tea and sit on the balcony, or on a comfy sofa
  • Find a quiet cafe and grab your favourite brew and sit in a quiet corner.
  • Hang out in a library
  • Close the bedroom door and light some incense or diffuse some essential oils
  • Take a long shower or bath
  • Get up early, while everyone is asleep and you can have the house to yourself
  • Water the garden
  • Sit on a swing and then… swing!
  • Take an early mark from work
  • Go find a lookout with a view – views help put everything in perspective

2. Allow yourself to relax. Slow your breathing or, if you are exercising, get it into a steady rhythm. Let the tension unwind from your muscles and consciously relax yourself. Really feel yourself soften and calm. This might take a while if you’re stressed. That’s okay. Take as long as you need.

3. Feel into what you need most right now in order to refill your empty tanks and boost your energy levels, resilience and inner peace. Trust that you already hold that wisdom inside you. Ask yourself the question, ‘What do I most need to come back into balance know right now?’ Explore it via your imagination, in meditation or through journalling or writing. Let clarity come to you in the form of ideas, thoughts, images and feelings. You may also want to pull an oracle or tarot card to give you further inspiration.

Commit to using this wisdom to gently transform your life.

Thinking of you and sending much love, Nicole ❤️ xx

Crazy, Beautiful, Sustainable Madness

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“There is no such thing as work-life balance. Everything worth fighting for unbalances your life.”
~ Alain de Botton

 

It’s a crazy time of year for me. As the end of year/beginning of the new year always is, in my line of work.

I have a retreat coming up in less than two weeks. Followed by workshops in Brisbane, my Christmas Pop-Up Shop, and the launch of my brilliant new secret project.

I have a calendar filled with client appointments for psychic readings.

My inboxes are groaning with messages and requests from people in crisis. I have family members ill, and friends.

I’ve been up in the middle of the night skyping and facebooking with international clients who have been affected by recent world events. Or by big life things. There are a lot of big life things going on just now, haven’t you noticed?

My desk (ahem, kitchen table at farm…) looks like this. (See photo above of crystals and mugs of tea, and oracle cards and magnesium powder and diarised magic into the next year.) That’s the tidiest side. The other is filled with groaning paper and book towers as I research and finish my project.

And Christmas is just around the corner.

Sounds insane, huh?

But I don’t do insane anymore. I do sustainable madness.

Sustainable madness looks like this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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It means that in the middle of the crazy I have acupuncture treatments and farmers markets and nutritious meals and cafe mornings and walks on the beach and stupidly early nights where I am in bed by 7pm.

I burn incense and aromatherapy essential oils. I play mood music. I drink good tea, and have lots of stretch breaks. I eat tasty healthy snacks. I let myself enjoy the buzz of crazy, and this push to get all the things done. It’s exciting. It makes me feel alive.

When you live a life doing what you love, when you’re following your passions, sometimes that means you’ll need to put extra hours in. Or you’ll need to say no to some stuff, momentarily, while you meet a crazy deadline, or chew madly on that impossibly big mouthful of life you bit off.

But that’s okay. If you also leave a little room for the important things that fill you up. The things that stop you burning out. The things that nurture and support you.

I am taking nearly a month off early next year, so there’s that big delicious rest to look forward to as well.

How about you? Are you doing crazy now too? And is your crazy sustainable, and even kind of fun?

I’m really looking forward to sharing my formula for crazy, beautiful, sustainable madness, and helping you to find your own recipe for this inspirational, get-things-done space. Don’t let people tell you that you need work-life balance and for every day to look the same. Sometimes our balance is chunks of happy madness, followed by chunks of rest. That works just fine for me and I bet it will help you too!

Lots of love, Nicole <3 xoxo

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Monday Morning Pledge

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“The beginning is always today.” 
~ Mary Shelley

There’s a great energy in the air for positive change and growth right now. And momentum can be created from the humblest of starts. This week I encourage you to take a pledge with me, to enable that change, and to get your life back on track. You don’t need to do anything major – just a few small consistent acts of self care. Feel free to omit or add in any points to customise the pledge for yourself. Don’t put pressure on yourself.  Just think about including some of these points daily and some of these points just once during the week.

Here we go…

Today is a new day, and the start of a new week. Everything can change for me this week. This can be the start of something wonderful.

Just for this week, starting today, I pledge the following:

To nourish my body with wholesome food.

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To nourish my mind with some time for learning or culture.

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To drink enough water.

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To stretch and move my body.

YOGA GROUP PHOTO

To get at least one early night.

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To take one small step toward something important to me.

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To spend some time in nature.

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To connect with a friend.

Friends enjoy a hot cup of coffee in the kitchen

To speak kindly to myself.

5436220125_d81036bbfe_zTo believe that my dreams are possible.

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Wishing you movement forward, magic, and miracles.

Much love to you, Nicole xx

EmbracingNewBeginnings

Remembering to take care of YOU!

“Right in the difficult we must have our joys, our happiness, our dreams: there against the depth of this background, they stand out, there for the first time we see how beautiful they are.”
~ Rainer Maria Rilke

 

Recently I received a message from a lovely lady, asking about balance:

I thought of you as I was reflecting on my past week & trying to set goals for the months ahead and wondered how you ‘balance’ yourself, between giving yourself all the appropriate time you need & still helping others. I struggle with giving me some time to myself. Any tips or ideas would be gratefully appreciated.

It’s always a tricky thing – this balancing act, and truth be told, there is no magic formula to create a perfect life where you can neatly tick all of the boxes.  Sometimes you need to go all out for other people.  Most of us are good at that bit.  Where we suck is in going all out for ourselves.

But do you know what? It’s YOUR life – this ain’t no dress rehearsal, and your goals and dreams deserve as much air play as all of those people you are supporting to achieve theirs!

Keith Urban performing on stage - he owul dnever have achieved his dreams without practice, and being brave enough to take a chance on himself. Photo: Daniela Rodriguez

Keith Urban performing on stage – he would never have achieved his dreams without practice, and being brave enough to take a chance on himself. Photo: Daniela Rodriguez

Find some time each day that’s just for you.  Even ten minutes is a help. Not to be productive, but to replenish! It could be a morning run, a meditation, a first cup of coffee with the crossword from the back of the paper, a picnic lunch and time with a book in the park in your lunch hour, a long hot soak at day’s end. It’s worth it to get up that little earlier to find a quiet moment.  Those quiet moments are what fill us up and help us get through the day.

Goals – identify them.  Go ahead and allow yourself some dreaming time. If you need help these try these posts:

Writing as a Manifestation Tool

Writing Yourself into a Brighter Future

Gifts to give yourself this Christmas (Valid all year round!)

When you’ve written your goals and dreams, pick three. Now pick one of the three and break it into do-able chunks.  Schedule a little time each day, or a bigger chunk of time one or two days a week, or one insane period of a few days and work on your goal chunk by chunk until it is done.  Give up on perfection and embrace action!!!

Carve out some time in your Schedule. Only you know how much effort you’ll need to get something done. If all you want is a few moments to yourself then find a way to squeeze some time in by starting later or finishing your day a little earlier. Maybe you’ll need to give yourself Monday nights, or Sunday afternoons.  Maybe you’l need to get bold and block out whole swathes of time in your diary.  It all depends on how big your dream is and how much you want to make your dream a reality.

Sleep! People who are juggling caring for others, paying the bills and a myriad other responsibilities usually cut corners trying to squeeze more into their day. It’s a false economy that leads to burn out.  Give yourself the gift of sleep.  Nothing will get you back on your feet and making good decisions faster than a solid night’s sleep. Say yes to some pillow time, and put everything else on hold. If possible take a whole weekend and devote it to rest. Can’t rest at home?  Check into a hotel or take your tent and vanish for a few days of sleep and soul restoration. You and your sanity are worth it!

Set clear boundaries.  When your dance card is already full, saying yes to more offers of dancing is insane. Know your limits.  Let go of things, or take a night off and let someone else be responsible. If you’re drowning, put your hand up and ask for help. When you need to say no, say no.

Eat well.  When you’re struggling to find space for yourself in a busy life, believe me that is the WORST TIME to skip meals, live on crappy take-aways or cupboard food (yeah, you know what I mean: instant noodles, corn chips, sweet biscuits etc) When we are under stress we need to fuel ourselves up with plenty of healthy, nutritious food and lots of good clean water.

Image from www.wilstop.info

Image from www.wilstop.info

Take proper time out to nurture and maintain yourself.  Get your hair done, visit the dentist, see a movie, go to the library and stock up on your favourite movies and books, enjoy a massage or something else relaxing and meaningful for you.

Get your support crew together. We can’t do this journey alone.  My support crew includes my husband, the Sisters of the Pen – my writing cadre who are also the dearest of friends and secret keepers, my online community, a few close friends (and yes some of these people live on the other side of the world and we skype, text and call each other!), my acupuncturist, herbalist, dentist, doctors, my accountant, my Guides, and a host of books, motivational videos, courses and websites. I will also add in a few good coffee shops, cafes and farmers’ markets for good measure.

Carrots – you need some so work them out and then dangle them enticingly in front of you.  We call them rewards for a reason.  What is hard work without some well-earned pleasure at the end of the road?  Have a range of small treats and bigger ticket items.  Never put yourself into financial hardship to reward yourself – sometimes my best reward is a coffee at a favourite cafe, a walk on the beach, or a new book and a whole Sunday to myself.

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I’ve done burn out. And nursed that deep resentment from putting everyone else first and me last.  Trust me, it isn’t worth it. It isn’t useful. All it does is break your spirit and your body and leave you floundering and exhausted.

It’s your responsibility to take care of yourself and to honour your dreams.  If you don’t, who will?  Your life is yours to live, so be an active participant and make the days count.

Much love to you, Nicole ♥ xx

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Useful extra reading:

The Broken Robot Repair Shop

Simple Pleasures

Doing Nothing is Productive!

Simplicity is a choice