Tag Archives: self help

Tender loving care and frustrating thoughts…

There was one day last year when I felt a little bit embarrassed and all I wanted to do was go hide in my best friend’s kitchen. Only she was in Greece. And I was frustrated.

I wanted my best friend. I wanted to cook with her and laugh with her and host dinner parties with her. Like it’s supposed to be. Only it hasn’t been like that for years because we live in different countries. We don’t share a house anymore and our friends no longer come marching over saying we’re “the hostesses that are the mostestes”. And it sucks.

That particular day it sucked even more because I felt humiliated as something had happened that touched upon an old wound. So I wanted to be with someone who made me feel loved for who I am and who would laugh together with me at the ridiculous thoughts we have surrounding old wounds. I wanted someone who made me forget my pain, in short. Because I really didn’t want to face it.

Today I woke up exhausted – my boy is scared of ghosts and he won’t sleep unless he sleeps next to me, or his sister. He was raised in a township and he never had a bed of his own till he came to stay with me and he still hates it. We’re working through this issue, but in the meantime to save myself from horrid tantrums at bedtime he either falls asleep in the couch in my bedroom and then wakes up and sleeps in my bed, or he sleeps next to me or his sister all night. Last night he slept next to me, so I couldn’t sleep properly and woke up exhausted with a headache.

I was irritable and I felt horrible. All I could think was that I wanted someone to hug me and look after me so I could relax. I didn’t want to clean up the mess after the kids, work and attend meetings. I wanted to be pampered. And given I’d never sink so low as to admit to wanting a man that’s like not cool. According to my ego, it’s so not cool.

What’s more, I was irritated with myself because I’ve been so happy lately and I wasn’t prepared to face a day of being a grumpy old fart. After three years of battling problems the size of Mount Everest I’ve finally turned a leaf and then…I’m grumpy? As someone with a history of depression I do not like gray days. I do not like them one bit.

So I clearly wanted TLC, which I didn’t want to admit to, but it would be a quick fix for my intolerable mood. And I wasn’t going to get it. Which was frustrating as hell. It was like wanting to go to see my best friend and knowing that it would take months before it happened (though now it’s just TWO weeks!!!!!!). I might be decent at magicking up men, but the same day? Besides, I’ve promised myself not to do it like that anymore because like The mousetrap… will clarify, when I magick up men…

With no snuggle party in sight and me wanting to hit myself in the head with an iron skillet for wanting one in the first place, I decided to do the next best thing: use my intuition (OK so that’s like the first thing to do, not the second, but hey…).

Intuition fucking rocks. Whilst it might not immediately relieve you of your headache or sexual frustration (take your pick) it does help you see the obvious solutions you couldn’t see when focusing on all the illogical logic brought to you by an overwhelming stream of thoughts and emotions.

Today I realized I can still create magic, even when I’m tired and have a headache. I’m not “bad” because I run out of energy. I’m still a magic pixie who can throw about my fairy dust when I look upon the world like poetry. I can choose my focus and instead of focusing on my frustration at being tired, I can look upon the same mountain I looked upon yesterday feeling inspired. I can still write poetry and marvel at the beauty of life. There are also ways to recharge that will truly recharge me – I realized that I need to relax in nature, which I fully intend to do this weekend.

I want my best friend to spend more time with me, even when I’m in the best of all possible moods. I genuinely miss her like crazy and I know we have to take responsibility for spending more time together instead of bitching about being apart. She’s one of the people who make me feel free because she allows me to be me, as described in Painting the sky with stars… However, she’s not an excuse to hide from my pain and thereby avoid dealing with it.

And whilst I need to face up to the fact that we all need TLC and open myself up to that, no matter how humiliating I think it feels, I can’t run myself to the ground and then expect someone else to pick up the pieces.

We all need to take responsibility for our own lives and emotions, whilst simultaneously accept that no matter where we are along the way, we’re worthy hugs. Big juicy hugs. And I would really love some.

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Wounds…

Did you ever get so angry you wanted to punch someone in the face? Yet looking back at it you know that all they did was spill a tiny, tiny amount of salt in your wound, which hurt so bad that your first impulse was to hit them in self-defense. You thought you were under attack, when in fact you were defending yourself against, erm, salt.

That’s the illusion of our emotions.

Sometimes the way we see things completely alters a situation. At times we think it’s obvious someone should just walk over and hug us (or whatever else it is we want in the situation) because x, y, z has happened and we feel like shit. All we want is a hug and we think it’s so obvious. Instead, because they don’t realize x, y, z happened, they only see x and they only see it from their perspective, they just shrug their shoulders and carry on talking about whatever. So you think they don’t care. Or you have a eureka moment and realize that you suck at communication.

Other times, it’s us who do the interpretation. Someone says something, or does something, and we interpret it to mean something really bad, when in fact they had no intention to harm us. It’s our own assumption that harm was their intention.

Yet other times it’s like the introduction of this blog – someone throws about some salt, it hits your wound and you feel like you’re in extreme pain, when in truth they did nothing to harm you, or what they did should only have caused a fraction of the pain it did.

The other day I got furious with myself because I realized I have a big bleeding wound regarding one matter. And I felt if that’s the case then I will never ever achieve this one thing. I’ve been so hurt in one area it’s enough someone looks at me funny in situations relating to it, to make me want to punch them. I was despairing because I thought if that’s how raw my wound still is, then how can I ever sort this out. Will I continue to be drawn to bad situations related to this?

Then came the eureka moment: all I need is a good experience. All I need is for people in this area to help me heal. I don’t have to be perfect in everything, no one is.

If you have been told you are worthless in one area for the most part of your life, what you need is someone who believes in you in that one area. Of course, you still need to take responsibility for your own healing, but just because you are still healing doesn’t mean you will attract bad things in that area. All it means is that you need twice the love you do in other areas. You need someone kind hearted enough to understand and work with you.

It’s fascinating how our minds work – how they are programmed to make certain assumptions due to past experiences, as well as the information you have. To remember that the other people you interact with have different experiences and therefore behave differently, as well as the fact that they don’t have the same information available you do (your point of view), is important. Sometimes when I sit back and watch what conclusions my brain comes up with when I try to untangle the seemingly inexplicable emotional reaction I have to something, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

On the one hand, it’s fascinating and ridiculous to see how you ended up feeling the way you did, on the other hand I despair thinking I’m a hopeless case if I have those emotional reactions. Imagine one day if I don’t manage to control them and sit down and analyze them before I react? Normally I’m pretty switched on and I go for that metaphorical walk before I do anything, by the end of which I’ve come to my senses, but what if I don’t? I know for me it’s usually that I feel worthless/not good enough/unlovable (it’s my master wound if you so like, hidden under layers of “everything needs to be perfect” and “I need to be super woman in everything” which of course fuels the wound as you are never perfect enough, especially as you take on more than you can handle so as to ensure you are just below what you could be in any one area), so I would do something to get rejected to prove it true and that’s just no good.

The solution, of course, is to take responsibility and always do an emotional cleanse before you react and surround yourself with people who understand and support you. We all have one area or another that is our achilles heel and to heal it, we need both our own support and that of others, if our wound is in any way related to other people.

I think sometimes we want to give up when we are the closest to a solution as well, because all our emotions are triggered. This year I’ve been trying to clean up my wound related to men and whenever there’s a mouse on my doorstep (that’s to say: someone poured salt in my wound which I’ve sort of exposed to air to let it heal) I’m like “OMG, there’s an elephant in my room and I’m being trampled, someone help me please. I’m gonna die. Like right now. The elephant is really big and those hooves are just gonna crush me.” Five minutes later I’m like…well, that mouse is, uhm, tiny. But if you happen to meet me when I think there’s an elephant in the room which I’m fighting for dear life as I think it’s about to kill me…

Thankfully I’ve not exercised my wound healing on a man, because we’d surely both be dead by now if that was the case. Accidental trampling by elephant and sword throwing by angry woman. And I love elephants, both metaphorically speaking, and in real life. It’s one of my favorite animals. I just happened to get a bit trampled when I was younger so I defend myself against peaceful elephants too and if you defend yourself against a peaceful animal, well, they might get angry. So I’ve been avoiding elephants I care about for a while and this year I decided to face my fear of elephants because end of last year I bumped into one I quite liked the look of and I haven’t done that for years. If I ever get to know this elephant, or someone else like it, I don’t want to provoke it to trample me.

And I’m now starting to think elephants was a bad metaphor. For a variety of different reasons. Not least the trunk… Besides, having confessed to my ultimate wound of worthlessness, I now need to finish this piece asap (no more time for elephants) as I have to go and be perfect at something which I slightly fail at, because I’m doing something else at the same time. You now understand how emotional wounds run our lives subconsciously? Great. You’ve been enlightened and I mortally humiliated. As one always is when one confesses to wounds and exactly how ridiculous they make one act.

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Believe…

When you believe in someone you give them power. You give them power, because they will believe in themselves. And that belief will fuel them to create whatever it is they seek to create. More than anything it may help them realize that they are OK as they are in this very moment.

Believing in someone does not mean that you agree with everything they say. It does not mean you can’t tell them that they may have to rethink a thing or two. It simply means you believe they have the power to blossom. They have the power to be who they truly wish to be. They have the power to be great.

The truth is we all have that power. Often we become so blinded early on by what others label as our imperfections though that we don’t see our own power. We don’t feel it. As a result we are drained of energy and achieve very little, which proves to us we have no power.

Believing in ourselves is not thinking we will win every fight. We won’t. At least not immediately. But we know we will always be OK. Because we have ourselves. And we are OK. As we are. And we have an unlimited amount of power within ourselves that we can use to get resourceful.

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The attitude of gratitude can kiss my ass…and that’s a great ass to kiss…

Ever heard someone you date say to you: “You have a nice ass, I should feel thankful for that”? I haven’t, but if I did I believe I might just dump them then and there. Why? Because if they “should” feel grateful they aren’t already feeling grateful, meaning they aren’t truly happy about, well, my ass. Gratitude comes naturally if you love something.

Now, I’m not saying that a condition for dating me is that you feel happy about my ass. I have dated many men whose asses weren’t great. The thing is: if I was in love with them, I was still thankful for their ass because it was their ass.

In London I used to wake up every morning in a state of panic as usually I had just awoken from a dream about my home in the Hollywood Hills and the sense of panic stemmed from the fact that I was not there. The life I woke up to looked very different from what used to awaken me with a smile. In Hollywood I jumped out of bed to make myself a smoothie or almond milk latte, watching the sunrise over the city. I felt bliss. I felt happiness. I felt excitement about life. I was so happy it was radiating from me, because my surroundings fueled me. I didn’t have my business, most of my friends, or a structured life there though, so I thought I should go back to London to obtain that.

In London I woke up to a gorgeous Victorian mansion in a bustling city and to a great job. I woke up in a house I didn’t love, in a city that filled me with dread and to a job that drained me as it used none of my greatness and all of my weaknesses. I used to think I should be thankful for my pretty house in the great city and my amazing job. I should. And sometimes I could pump up my adrenaline, make myself excited about selling another Hirst, or looking at the architecture of my house, or having a great coffee. I could get happy about a detail of beauty in a sea of gray.

I tried being thankful for my toothbrush, my food, my easy journey to work, my job, my house…I was scrutinizing London for beauty, I was trying to find inner peace…and all I felt was gray despair amongst a few sunbeams.

I cleaned up my room this weekend and added a few details. I finally got it just the way I wanted it, apart from a few paintings I still have to make. I put candles everywhere and last night I decided to light them all, snuggle up in bed and smell the fresh herbs I picked in my garden, whilst drinking the fresh mint tea, also courtesy of our garden. I felt at peace because I knew I was in paradise and my room was a representation of my heart. I had created my own love, my own heart.

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This morning I woke up to gorgeous African sunshine, blue skies and sunbeams playing with the wooden beams in my room. I was surrounded by nature in my natural home in the hills of Cape Town. I heard one of our gorgeous dogs knock on my door, frustrated that I wasn’t yet up to let him in. I was looking forward to seeing my foster kiddos, having breakfast, and talking to my best friend. I felt happy. I did not have to give thanks for my toothbrush – I naturally praised God for the miracle creation called my life. I was radiant.

I knew inside when I woke up today as well the areas of my life I’m not happy with. There are work assignments I do that I don’t enjoy. How my day looks like a color palette where some dots stand out as distasteful. I can argue that this work pays me and that it is better than any work I have ever had and I honestly feel thankful for that, but I still know the difference between that feeling and the feeling of looking out over the Hollywood Hills, surrendering to the feeling of living my dreams and feeling as if life is rising inside of me with the sun, playing in my heart, and making me long for the new day to dawn.

Likewise, I made a distinction this weekend when it comes to people – some people do great things for you, make you feel amazing as they are great in bed, or they shower you in love. They have a nice ass and treat you like the Queen of the world. Then there are those that may not have a perfect ass, or do all those things you’d dream a person would do for you, but you feel thankful just to be in their presence. Like with anyone you would have to create a great relationship with them to make your connection sustainable, you may have to kick their ass if they are being lazy, but you will never find yourself saying “I should feel thankful because they bought me flowers.” “I should be thankful because they are a nice person.” The reason you aren’t thankful is because you wish someone else would have bought you those flowers.

What I’m tying to say is that you will probably never be happy having bad relationships with anyone, but you won’t be happy having great relationships with people who won’t stir your soul either. You can enjoy them as a lover, as a friend, as a partner in crime for something, but if you are looking for a soul mate, their flowers will just never seem enough.

Life is an interesting journey and it will continue to throw us screwballs – nothing is ever a status quo of perfection, that’s the adventure, the path of life. If you are on the right path, the path excites you. You go out there every day to fight the dragons in search of your gold, your own heart as manifested in life. If the path doesn’t excite you, you change your path, or you give up and say your thanks to your toothbrush, to the people, situations and events you “should feel thankful for, because at least you are better off than the kids in Africa.” Or “at least you are squeezing a super model’s ass,” even if you feel no connection to their soul. It can be a nice ass squeezing experience, but if you want more, you have to search for more.

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Through making love, we experience love…

People are people through other people, so an Ubuntu saying goes. I find this an absolutely beautiful take on life and have many times blogged about how we experience ourselves through others. Through others we get to laugh, feel their touch on our skin, see our own beauty and marvel in friendship. In one way you could say that you learn through others who you are. Yet, who we are is not always experienced by others, or even ourselves.

It’s so easy to believe what others say about us, how they react to us and so on, but really, they are part of that reaction. If they are looking at us through their ego, rather than their heart, what they will see is rather different from what their heart would see. And if they are looking at our ego rather than our heart they will also form a very different opinion of us than if they were looking at our heart. Of course they can look at us with their heart, see our heart, but also acknowledg that we are acting out our ego.

We choose every day how we view ourselves – whether from the ego, or the heart. We also choose if we act out our ego, or our heart. When we look at others we choose to see their ego, or their heart and react to them with our ego, or our heart. Sometimes we look at people’s heart, but as they keep responding to life with their ego it can be frustrating watching them, even though of course how they live is up to them and truly, if you are only viewing them from the heart probably all you do is love and let go.

I have had a few ego reactions lately and I started laughing at myself this morning when I realized it doesn’t matter what other people do, or say, so long as I stay true to my heart, the right people will connect with me and form the right kind of relationships with me. For example, let’s use my favourite love and sex metaphors…say you are dating someone and sometimes they live their ego, sometimes their heart. One night this friend of theirs, whom you know likes them, keeps flirting with them. Now, you can either try to control the situation by getting your partner out-of-the-way, or start flirting with them yourself so that their ego recognizes the wonderful qualities of yours as you shake your butt very impressively on the dance floor. You could also walk away whimpering thinking whoever got your partner’s attention is superior to you and you are completely unloveable. Or you can just be a living expression of your heart, connecting with theirs if it is open and leaving it if it is not. If one of your hearts is not open the relationship, in a sense, is dead. There might still be a foundation for it, you might have had your hearts open at various points, but as it stands that’s it. You can keep a relationship together for a lifetime with your egos, but in my mind that’s still a dead relationship.

As I see it, if you live with an open heart and the person you are dating is living mainly from their ego, making ego choices, you won’t wish to be with them anyway. If on the other hand they live from the heart and they choose to flirt with someone else, then they are not for you, as their heart is not resonating with yours. Of course, some people choose to have their hearts open to everybody, not just socially but also sexually. That’s a choice each individual needs to make and be honest with their partner about.

Now that’s just a metaphor, but I believe it applies to many, many situations in life and in the relationships with all those around us work wise and socially as well. We often hold onto things that don’t ring true because of our ego and let go of others for the same reason. When the ego starts choosing our dates, our work and how we live our day-to-day life, even our family life, things start to jar, we feel fear and the need to control ourselves and others. Our self-confidence may very well drop, because we are going after things that don’t truly resonate with us and hence we create havoc along the way and get rejected, or live successfully but without fulfilment. And when you aren’t fulfilled you feel jealousy towards those who seem to be, sometimes wishing to be like them, whereas truly fulfilment comes from living your heart.

My wish to control situations slowly evaporated as I became aware that the only control I need to exercise is to constantly stay tuned with my heart. That’s something I have to remind myself of daily though.

It has long since been my belief that if I live my bare heart, the right people will connect to it and magic will happen. In other words: be a living expression of your heart and your life will become one too.

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A lot of things happen below the surface, especially if your heart is not worn on the sleeve…

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Showing skin…

I was once standing naked in a room, when a whole bunch of guys stormed in. Luckily I had read a lot of criminal novels, so I knew exactly what to do – run to the door they were entering from, press myself against the wall and sit down. I.e. be in the spot they were the least likely to look at. My stunt succeeded and they never saw me, as a bunch of angry (and dressed) girls chased them out of the room before they got a chance. I was ten to twelve years old and the idea of having a shower in the girls changing room never became the same.

When I was around eight or so I was at daycare one day, sitting with my friends drawing, or something in the hobby room. A boy walked in. A certain boy walked in. The boy every girl fancied. (Including my now best friend, but we didn’t know each other at that stage.) One of my friends burst out “Maria likes you.” He stopped in the doorway, turned to me and went: “Is that true?” The thought “It’s close to Christmas, you shouldn’t lie,” went through my mind. “Yes.” He looked at me a little longer, turned around and left the room.

When I was fifteen there was this guy who I had a lot of classes with. He was an arrogant bastard, but over summer he had turned…soft. He was really popular and had straight As in just about everything. So we used to compete on every test who could score the best. Or rather: he was competing with me and it infuriated me, so of course I started competing with him. He was rather nice sometimes. I remember him trying to explain to his best friend (who was in love with my step-sister for a while…that was a close call to getting an idiot in the house) why one shouldn’t bully people. His best friend did not understand his argument.

So having a competitive nature and all that, and probably thinking this dude was the only one with enough brain cells in a ten-mile radius, I fell in love with him. At first I didn’t really care that much, but then I told a friend of his who went to my class, to try to gauge if he liked anyone. Well, his friend obviously walked straight up to him and said I liked him, having sworn not to do so. And then a couple of interesting weeks of this guy staring at me and doing weird shit to talk to me ensued. So then a rumour started that he liked me. And one day I walked into a classroom when his friend asked him if this was the case, in front of the whole class and just as I walked in he went: “No one could ever fall in love with someone like her.” That was the day I died.

At sixteen I had left the village where I grew up, doing the International Baccalaureate program in another town, so I got rid of most people who considered me a geek and started a new life, where I was absolutely obsessed with covering up my past, especially my non-existing romantic history. Besides, most people at the IB were geeks as they had decided to choose the most difficult high school program that existed. We had to do tests to get accepted. That’s when I wrote about saving the kids in Africa. I did not see myself as the heroine of a romantic adventure, straight from my bookshelf, or anything like that.

Anyway, obsessed with the idea that no one should find out about my non-existing romantic history, I was still quite…me. I loved crazy ideas and stuff, so come Valentine’s I thought it a splendid idea to send a rose to a guy I thought was cute. And I didn’t even like him, he was just cute. But apparently people in Sweden are bit behind and thought this was the news of the century – a girl who joined us in the third year still got to hear this story. I think the poor bloke had never received roses in his life and I felt utterly humiliated.

Age seventeen and on the loose in Vancouver I was starting to feel like the biggest idiot in the world – who has never been with a guy age seventeen? Me. So I made out with some random American soldier who I found repulsive, and who proceeded to tell me about killing people during the war. I then ended up feeling even more ashamed because who is such a low life they decide to make out with a random loser just to make out with somebody?

My love life did perk up after this, but I had sworn on my mother’s grave, or something to that effect, that I would not have sex until I loved someone. And I had to wait until the night I turned twenty-one for this, at which time I had almost succumbed to the idea that no one would ever love me.

I then ended up in a very long relationship with someone, who, in the end decided, the last week, to cheat on me. Which is when I decided that if someone I used to trust with my life can cheat on me…then I’m properly fucked for life. I mean I knew he was cheating, because vivid scenarios played up in my head when he told me what he had been doing for a day – scenarios he was not talking about. I knew whom he had really been with and what he had been doing, but instead of thinking I was psychic, I thought I was going mad.

I felt really good after the break-up, realizing I had been in a relationship that was never quite right beyond the first few months, but I still had nightmares for about six months. And what left me the most scarred was the idea that I had allowed a relationship like that. How I could have accepted that into my life. Not like parts of it, but the end of it. And bless the man, he loved me and I can still happily say I love him, but we were young and we were both idiots in some aspects, including the fact that we stayed with each other for so long.

Fast forward two, or three years and I was just about to move to Los Angeles. Online I met this guy from LA that was just…amazing…and for the first time I felt like someone actually liked me . Truly liked me. A guy that actually turned me on in every way, as opposed to my ex, who never felt quite right. We would talk on the phone and on chat, for like eight hours straight. I let all my guards down. I was certain that was it – it was the first and actually still only time I had felt anything like that. He was simply so right in every way possible. And to his defense he really was looking for love, but I think he is the most emotionally retarded person and cheater I’ve ever met. And by lord I felt humiliated having believed in him. His bed though, was fucking amazing. There’s always a plus side…right? That bed and triple orgasms. Thank you God.

My self-confidence in the last, almost six years, since I was in a steady relationship, has soared. I have realized men chase me. A lot. I have realized I am beautiful and wonderful and amazing. I have more friends and love in my life than I have ever had. I feel so blessed finally setting off for my dream of Africa and working with film, theatre and people. And still, there is a tiny part of me that says I need high heels and an armour of steel to pretend I’m not vulnerable, I have no emotions and I most certainly am fine all by myself. And I need to be just a little bit more perfect.

When I feel hurt, or humiliated in public, just as I did as a kid, I want to shut everyone out and escape to Antarctica. Then I realize I can’t direct Leo Di Caprio in Antarctica and it all goes to hell…but, but…this whole vulnerable thing…I feel I have been doing a good job with it until yesterday. That’s when I wanted to pack my bags for Antartica. And that’s why I’m writing this now. Because it feels so, so cringy. And so real. And I want to be able to be that open. I want for others to have a space to be that real and open. And I really want to attract real and open people into my life.

The only way to attract and be with real and open people, is to be real and open. All this shit in my past means nothing. I still fear people will judge me for it, especially writing it on an open forum like this, but that’s why I want to do it. Because there are millions of people out there who have suffered much worse than me, who think because of their past they can’t be/have/do things. And it’s all utter poppycock, because all you have is this moment. And in this moment, I’m real and open. And the past? It’s gone. I’m a playful, open and honest person. I believe those nude shots proved it (if you missed the latest news, someone published some nude shots of me on Facebook yesterday as they misunderstood the term “only showing certain parts of my body” Well…there was a guitar covering my front… And that’s the day I discovered the difference of being naked in reality – no biggie – and online – biggie. I felt so vulnerable, knowing people could see me in a vulnerable state. “Miss Au Neutral I love being naked and celebrating the body” had a freak show.). Had this not been coupled by someone accusing me of having emotions, I’m sure it would have been fine, but rumour had it I had emotions. And this scenario of all those men went through my head as I saw the shots online. There is still an album on Facebook with a headline saying something like “I loved doing nude shots with Maria, such a natural and happy model, dream come true to capture the female body” and I still catch my breath, even if there are no real nudes in the album…and panic thinking I’m publicly humiliated…but I was just being vulnerable, real and open. Just as I would love.

Showing skin is cool. In every sense of the word.

Flash dancing…

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When the wind is blowing in the opposite direction…

Nothing’s ever perfect. I keep being reminded of the part in The Alchemist where the boy arrives in Africa and loses his money on the first night. He’s on a quest to get to Egypt and he has just lost all his savings, he can’t even return to Spain. He realizes he has a choice – he can either see it as a complete failure, or as the beginning of an even more daring adventure than he could ever have dreamed of. The boy chooses to see it as an adventure. He then proceeds to get a job polishing glass and he helps the shop owner by introducing serving tea to the customers. He spends years polishing glass. I’m sure it wasn’t easy, but we all have a choice: greet the sun with a smile in the morning, or proceed to look at the sun with envy as we ourselves hide in the shadows.

You can shift your mind about almost anything and you can choose to accept that your adventure is now. That doesn’t stop some things from being difficult to the point where you’re almost completely depleted. The point is, if you keep looking to the sun as part of you, sooner, rather than later, it will return.

Last fall was not a happy time for me. I had left what I felt were some of the most joyous, secure parts of my life – my two best friends, the city I loved and the first home I’d ever had that felt like a home – our gorgeous chalet in the Hollywood Hills. I no longer fell asleep watching the stars and the twinkling lights of Los Angeles. I no longer drove to Malibu in the weekends to jump through the waves. The sun that I so adored, seemed far, far away. There was one point when I was struggling at work (and given I work for my business partner, who is also the investor for my dream company, that was not easy), I had a rash from the cold and felt about as sexy as a burnt toast (I’m not made for winter, pointe blanc), I had found out some friends were potentially ill (and I don’t mean with the flu), I had absolutely no desire to date anyone, my social life was a mess as I was still new in town, my back was as my back is – aching and causing headaches, I felt drained, tired…I lost weight (not for lack of eating, but because my body was just drained), I looked like hell. I knew though, I knew that in LA I had been on top of my game, so there was a place inside where everything was well. It was just a matter of transforming that to the outside.

It took all my strength to turn things around, because let’s face it: when shit hits the fan it’s not like your energy levels are on top and you are ready to play the game of your life, but that’s exactly when you have to play the game of your life. That’s part of the adventure; the trials of the hero.

For me the most difficult part was probably worrying about a friend, but what completely drained me was work, because every day I’d make a new mistake, fret about my future and be completely exhausted by the end of it. It’s easy to say let go of your worries, but when nothing seems to be going your way and you feel like each day you get a new bucket of ice water thrown in your face and you’re not sure how to reach any of your goals, it doesn’t come across as all that easy. I was lucky. I had a fucking strong spiritual core that I kept returning to – a place of love – but whereas in LA that would take me five minutes to get to, here it could take me five hours and last for five seconds (great sex right there…).

Today when I look at my life I look at a smiling boss and business partner who has finally agreed the go-ahead of our company (I mean it was already incorporated, but that means very little without the dough) – once they find a replacement for me in his other company it’s go (well, part-time go…my salary from my company isn’t exactly erm, high). I look at my social life and I feel joy and peace. I look at working with a project that supports kids in London and South Africa and I feel like walking on clouds…a twelve year dream finally starting to materialize. I look at potential dates and I smile. I look at someone in the mirror who’s dancing and twirling forwards with dimples in her cheeks.

Today, you see at a woman who is living her dream, feeling sexier, sassier and happier than ever…but she was living her dream a couple of months ago too. It just wasn’t the pretty stuff…but it was the stuff that makes for a good story, a good adventure. And maybe it could have been different, maybe it could have been easier if I had been on a higher level of spirituality, or higher up the mountain, what have you, but we all start from somewhere and then we climb. I got furious at myself at times thinking I was making the same mistakes all over again, but clearly I hadn’t yet learnt how not to make them. You have to be nice to yourself.

What turns things around in life? In stories of great adventure it’s usually a dashing Prince, or Princess (or Jester, I stick by that one, LOL) isn’t it? Or it’s the ticket that flies in through the window and you realize that you are soon to be jetting off to Africa… Or it’s winning the lottery…or getting the dream job as if by magic.

In life I think the real turning point is love. It’s a place of love in your heart, where you allow for the magic to happen. It’s the desire to change things around, coming from that place and acting from that place. If you live in that space of free flow, of intuition and love…life does change bit, by bit, by bit. Sometimes over night, but often after many small steps of love. That doesn’t fool-proof you from storms, it just teaches you how to fly a bit better and a bit higher than before on a day-to-day basis.

So once again: love peeps. May it flow in abundance and may you have the strength to find it when life is rough and the dream of tomorrow seems far away. Even when you cry, may you love so that gates are opened for more love to enter, to heal you and move you to safe harbours.

You are always a heartbeat from anywhere: open your heart and be ready to fly when the right wind sweeps by…and it always will, you just have to have patience for it to come round and make the wind chimes chime…

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