I’m in a myth-busting mood, so here are my thoughts about a few of them…
The ‘Talent’ Myth
We tend to think that some people are naturally more talented than others, but (as I teach in my Writing Mastery course) talent is a very misunderstood word!
Have you ever put other people on a pedestal, discounting your own intuition and following their advice rather than your own feelings?
Have you ever assumed that others know more than you about your own business, family, health, life? It’s easily done, isn’t it? Especially when they come with white coats and clipboards and awards and letters after their names and big numbers in their bank accounts.
- Extract the gold from your pesky inner voices!
You’ve probably had the ‘should’ thought plenty of times – 'I should be more positive/ call my mum/ eat more vegies/ be more patient/ get more exercise/ be nicer to so-and-so', etc. If you’ve been playing in the personal development arena, you know that ‘should’ is a dirty word. You might even have been told, ‘Don’t should on yourself’. Great advice.
If you haven't yet seen the movie, Philomena, starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, you might not want to read this blog, but if you have, and you found your heart strings tugged by the young mother's pain in having her toddler ripped away from her and adopted out against her will, then you might find this blog useful.
I've just had an eye-opening conversation with Emotional Mastery Expert and Demartini practitioner, Bruce Conrad Williams, who managed to get me to see something that was hiding away in my blind spot.
The world of publishing is quite transformed these days as so many self-publish rather than waiting for the external stamp of approval of a traditional mainstream publisher. There are obviously pros and cons to this scenario: on the 'pro' side, the barriers to publication are fewer than ever and writers are able to claim the profit from their book sales rather than just a ten percent royalty; on the 'con' side, more and more publishers are opting to not pay for contributions (one publication that used to pay me one and a half times the going rate now pays nothing at all because they are flooded with material) and many traditional publishers are redirecting applicants into their own self-publishing companies (establishments that used to be known as vanity presses, where the writer pays a fee to have their book published). The traditional publisher will watch the author's stats and if the results are good, pick up their work and publish it themselves. No risk to the traditional publisher, all risk to the author… It’s a brave new world.
If you've been following my writing and journey, you know that I'm pretty interested in the Law of Polarity – the fact that our universe is an expression of complementary opposites. Years ago, in my early 20s, I started to teach Creative Writing workshops, and without having a very deep understanding of polarity at that time, I was teaching it!
In the process, I coined an expression – 'Self-As-Team' – that fits in with everything I'm doing today. Here's a quick overview:
or – 'From Desperation to Inspiration'
Our first week in Bali was divine - sunshine, villa right on the beach, friendly people, fascinating customs, tropical landscape, delicious food… and then the diarrhoea hit. Okay, I won't go into much more detail! Suffice to say I spent the second week feeling increasingly ordinary, lacking in appetite or downright nauseous. By the last few days I was really ready to return home but even that didn't set things right. I was constantly exhausted. By midday I was usually in bed for a two or three hour deep sleep, and I seemed to only manage to achieve one or two simple tasks per day. My legs were leaden and it was an effort to just move around. By the second week I had a little more energy but was constantly bloated. No matter what I ate or didn't, I would blow up like a whale. I was feeling physically revolting, and that was making me feel depressed and negative.
Having so little energy I did the only thing I could do: I read.
My twin daughters turned 18 last week and eagerly headed off for their driver's license test. One passed and one failed.
This is a much more confronting experience than when a single child fails – aside from the obvious comparison issues, there is the difficulty of celebrating for the one who passes (because she doesn't want to make her twin feel bad), and the inner conflict for the one who fails: part of her wants to congratulate her twin and the other part is feeling envy, misery, embarrassment...
My daughter has been recovering from a very unpleasant biking accident that left her with some pretty severe tyre burn. Naturally we both turned our minds to the question, 'Why? Where is the hidden order?'
To help us find a meaningful answer, I read her a segment out of Way of the Wealthy - 7 Financial Laws & Universal Principles That Will Transform Your Life by Tim Marlowe and Jim Hanna.
A businessman is feeling suicidal after his business is hijacked by his manager, leaving him literally locked out of the premises and robbing him of some $250,000.00 of assets, as well as his employees and clients.
A rather wonderful new family 'tradition' was instigated a few months ago among the women in my family. In fact, we stumbled upon it during a birthday conversation. It began when I shared a personal story, a story that unleashed similar stories from my sisters and nieces, and we found ourselves sharing some of the 'skeletons in our closets'...
Listening to each other's secrets is a very bonding process but I feel its power goes beyond that. Our secrets often carry shame and guilt, and by sharing them we invariably discover that others have experienced something similar, and some of the shame and guilt is dissolved. We discover that we are all human beings facing challenges, feeling confused, making choices, sometimes regretting them... By revealing our inner selves, we validate each other's journeys in ways that can't happen when we hold those secrets close to our chests.
I've been experiencing a little rash of minor health issues in the last few months. Looking back on the year, I notice that it's been pretty full on. You know how they measure stress and reckon that separation and moving house are high on the Stress Richter Scale? Well, here's my list (so far!) ...
I'm so proud of my son, Jeremy. A few weeks ago he moved out of home for the first time, bursting with the excitement of being truly independent. (The rest of the household quickly reorganised the house so that our daughters now have their own rooms – they're rapt! – and we have more efficient office space, and so we were hoping he wouldn't find that he couldn't manage and had to come back home, as there isn't any room for him anymore... A bit like that ad on TV where the 'young adult-child' returns home only to find his old bedroom is now a new bathroom.)
In Jeremy's case, I'm pretty sure that, no matter how tough it gets, he won't be back. He is determined to live independently. And he is certainly stepping up to the challenge.
I recently came upon some information that suggests that the earthquake in Japan was man-made by an American organisation called HAARP, which is able to vibrationally affect the earth and thus trigger off earthquakes.
This sort of thing is very shocking, not just physically (for Japan), but emotionally and mentally for all of us when we consider the implications of either climate change or human bullying (if the 'man-made' claim is true). I know that I reacted emotionally to the clip I posted when I first watched it, and I'm grateful to my Demartini-trained coach and friend Rowan Burn for a conversation that rebalanced my perspective on it.