Challenging your own views

Respecting other points of view

I have a tendency to be very headstrong, especially if it involves something that I feel passionate about. I’ve always convinced myself that I know instinctively what is right or wrong for me. As I have grown in maturity ( questionable!) I have had to rethink a lot of my hard held beliefs, Particularly about my attitude towards anyone who tries to alter my choices without justification.  This has been very strongly engrained into my psyche, even as a small child I have had to fight for my often unorthodox attitudes to be given any serious considerations.

I was always dressed in beautiful clothes as a young girl & wasn’t allowed to question it, even though I wanted to be like my friends- I hated being different!                                                       As the years passed, my personal choices became very important to me & it has to be said that I have been known to deliberately dress inappropriately just to prove my point!             I have also been know to stick my heels in over issues that were really non important, just because someone tried to force me to do something against my will.  Of course this is a very silly attitude to take albeit one that many people subscribe to.

Occasionaly however it is worth rocking the boat if you really believe it necessary.   One example of this was at school when I was about 13.  I have always enjoyed all thing creative, partly because it allows self expression.  My art teacher was always telling us how things ‘should’ look & had a nasty tendency to alter our pictures against our will.  The final straw came when she actually took my paintbrush from me, against my wishes & totally transformed my work of art from something that I was happy with, into her vision of what it should have looked like. To add insult to that humiliation she then told me to pin it on the wall,  ready to show parents that evening.   I was a very reserved, nervous child who did as she was told at school & rarely got into any trouble,   but this time I saw red!!!                           I  REFUSED!      Point blank   NO!                                                             It was no longer my picture, I wouldn’t put my name to it!     Even under threat of punishment I stood my ground.                     I got sent outside to reconsider my stance, but it actually strengthened it.     Defiance gave me a feeling that I hadn’t known & I have to admit that it felt good.                                      Yes I got into trouble, both with my teachers & parents but it was a lesson I’ve never forgotten.

Unfortunately standing up for yourself can often backfire if not kept under control.    We all need to chose our battles.    Being the winner loses it’s glory if you choose to go to fight over every issue that you disagree with.     Equally unsuccessful is the attitude of always  giving in just to keep the peace – this causes unexpressed frustration & anger.                                               Balance as always is the key !

Following a very turbulent marriage, during which I found myself losing control of my own thoughts & actions, I had to work very hard to rebuild my confidence.   I struggled for quite a while because I couldn’t get the balance right – I couldn’t find the right way of stand up for myself without being confrontational.    With time & practice  (and lots of failures)  I  have more or less learnt how to express myself,   but it hasn’t been easy!    I have grown very strong & now am no longer afraid to oppose something that I feel is unjust.   This however can backfire,   sometimes we can be so wrapped up in the injustice of something that we don’t stop to question whether we may have got it wrong.

Writing is a newly revived passion of mine & whenever I have created something that I feel pleased with,  I protect it,  mindful of the art teachers’ clumsy attempts at improving my artistic talents.  I treat my new creations as if they are really something precious!   Some might say that this is as it should be,  but is it really?

I attend a writing class which I thoroughly enjoy,  however I am not too keen on criticism or suggestions on how to improve my work.   I tolerate them,    after all I know that they are being said as part of the course- no one is above learning & to do that we have to accept that improvements could be made.     This happened to me again today & although I accepted the feedback,   I quietly told myself that it wouldn’t make a jot of difference – after all,   it was MY WORK   not theirs!   I noted the suggested alterations  but didn’t really believe it was necessary.   However I found myself rewriting my story,  following the alternative ideas,    Mainly to prove to myself that my idea was better.   But was it?    Now I am not sure.     That’s the point – I’m no longer certain.  Both methods have brought pleasing results,  but both very different.  This has made me stop & have a total rethink,    not just  about the writing,   that will find it’s form,   but about  re evaluating  our beliefs & views.

We all know people who are totally sure that their way is the only way.     We are usually in agreement that these people are very deluded,    no one can always be right.   But how many of us are happy to relook at ourselves & our stance over issues that we feel passionate about?

As we grow, we change,   our outlook changes,   our actions change,   but do our views change?     I know that I for one have radically changed my thoughts on things that I once would have fought tooth & nail for.    We all need to follow,  like  or  do things that work for us.   We are not sheep.   All of us have free will to think for ourselves,  yet so many still follow  their parents’ political views without questioning why.  Too many women ( especially older ) agree with their partners views on everything,   as if they aren’t entitled to think for themselves.

I’m not advocating anarchy.   I’m a peace lover.    What I am suggesting is that we all look at why we follow certain things.   If after reassessing  our reasoning  we come back to the original belief, all well & good,   at least those thoughts will   be current & viable  for us personally.    In so many cases there is no right or wrong way, just different.    As long as we are true to ourselves, then our opinions really are relevant.

I learnt a lot today at the writing class.    (Once the dreaded pride was pushed out of the way.)    I’m a learner, no more, no less.    I’m inexperienced, that’s why I am at the class.  I need to be taught.     I don’t need to hang onto things out of principal.    I can reassess,  rethink  & change what I’m doing  or stay as I am.   My choice.   As long as it is my decision & done for the correct reason,   then it really is ok.     I can go with the flow, or swim against the tide,    but I really should understand  why I am doing it!

whether you agree with what I’ve said, or totally disagree, as long as it is your own free thought, then I am happy, this blog has done it’s job.

written with sincerity & love

Rosie X

 

Advertisements

Time for a rethink?

I attend a writing course & am becoming more & more hooked on it.  I am writing mainly short stories & poetry but still it isn’t enough. I don’t feel that I am ready to tackle a novel yet, although am playing with ideas on a semi autobiographical book, time will tell.

As I have previously said,  I have set up as a motivational coach which is still in it’s formative stages.  I get huge satisfaction in helping other people & have an overwhelming desire to put my crap life experience to good use,  however a new idea has crept into my head  & refuses to go away!   This in itself is very typical of me,  I regularly chop & change things , I couldn’t bear to be stuck in a rut!  However my idea could entail hitting my new business on the head before it’s had time to get established  & I’m not sure whether that is very sensible – Hey but who wants to be sensible?

I really, really, really want to work in the field of journalism but don’t want to give up on ‘Fulfilling Life’ (my business) so here lies my dilemma………………….

I have been thinking about trying to get a regular magazine or newspaper column, where I could continue to act as a motivator, but  through a series of blog type articles,  maybe helping with readers problems as well. It would seem to have everything that I have ever wanted all rolled into one!   This brings up many insecurities.   First  & foremost I guess would be the obvious question of whether I am good enough?  Could I hold write interesting articles & keep readers interest on a regular basis?  Am I knowledgeable enough to put my views out there, for all the world to see & judge me?    Another question is that of pride – I have advertised my new venture extensively & had so many good wishes that I would feel a failure if I gave it all up now.   Of course the simple answer to that is that it shouldn’t make a jot of difference what people thought about my life choices,  I tell people this all the time!   It has taken me a long time to cultivate my confidence, something that has totally changed my life, so why am I having a bit of a wobble in case people think I’m taking the easy way out?   The saddest part is that I know the answers to these questions but I am procrastinating – something I rarely do.  I need to put my trust in the Universe, write my pitches & see what happens, so why isn’t it that easy?

I think if I’m honest with myself, the fact is that because I am so happy with my life, I’m worried about rocking the apple cart!   It’s not about getting rich, or about becoming well known,  or getting praise,  it’s just that I feel that I have so much to give & want to find the best forum to do it.   I have had many different ideas but my physical health limits me in what I can practically do. I have severe widespread pain, predominantly through Fibromyalgia, and  have other issues too, which prevents me walking very far or for very long. I also have eyesight difficulties & some cognitive & balance problems  but for far  too  long I allowed my disability to dictate what I could & couldn’t do. Now  I do the exact opposite,  I push myself far too far to prove that I won’t be stopped.  This of course is a stupid way of doing things as my bedridden days prove!

 So why am I unable to settle for what I already have?    EASY!    Because I am human!   Just like the people that I help, I feel uncertain at times, and don’t know what to do, but  as I would say to them,  

       ” trust yourself,   listen to your inner wisdom,   it will never lie to you or let you down”.  

 I believe in those words.    They have  just worked for me too.   I listened,  like an outsider,   to myself as I wrote it down  & then was hit across the head by a huge sledgehammer, or more likely a feather, of realisation.   I must stop doubting myself.   We get back what we put out to the Universe.  If I send out negative vibes, I can’t expect positive resolutions !    I will begin to research my markets,  I will  write my letters to pitch for work. I will put my faith &  trust that the right thing for me will come about.    Whatever the outcome, I will be grateful.    It seems so obvious now!

Thankyou for giving me space to waffle & work things out. I don’t know if any of this will resonate with you   but it has certainly been helpful to me.  So in gratitude I will say goodnight X

Keep on blogging,  keep on laughing,  keep on loving,

Rosie xx

Reason to re-evaluate

Recently my health has been a lot worse than usual & I have lost a tremendous amount of weight. This weight loss has been a double edged sword, although totally delighted by the new ‘slim line’ me, deep down I have been concerned because I was sure that there was something very wrong. Eventually I knew that I needed to visit the GP, only to hear what I had expected – that there was a very real chance that I have got cancer……..

Now anyone who knows me well would be able to tell you that death holds no fear for me. In past years I have tried so desperately to bring about my own demise, that I have faced any fears that I may have had. However since I have been able to turn my life around, my outlook has changed. I am still not in the slightest bit worried about dying, but – and it’s a very BIG BUT- I now feel that I have far too much that I want to do before I go, so the possibility of my life being cut short has caused me to re- evaluate how I am living my life, albeit in an unexpected way…….

I try to live my life to the full, still trying to make up for all of the years that I wasted, wallowing in depression and self imposed isolation. I am acutely aware that I cannot make up the 17 years that I  lost through agoraphobia – but I’m certainly trying!

My mind buzzes with ideas & inspirations, to such an extent that I find myself actually wasting my potential, trying to find ways of fitting in more challenges & attempting to  cram 30 hours into each & every day, 8 days a week!  This has the unfortunate effect of actually acheiving far less than I really am able to.  Also of course, due to my fibromyalgia, M.E & assorted other health issues, I push myself far too far, with the resulting physical energy crash.  It really is stupidity!  So in a way I have a lot to thank this possible ‘big C’ for.  Because I have no way of knowing if my time could be cut short, I realise that I need  to prioritise (& organise) my use of time.

One of the things that have hit home has been my lack of happy memories, of course there have been some, but most have been over shadowed by bad ones.     Simple things have been foremost in my mind, memories of taking my children blackberry picking, walking on the moor, making cakes & pies by the score!  Kite flying, bulding snowmen, rummaging at jumble sales,taking my goat for a walk and being dragged on my bottom down the hill when he decided he was heading for home! That memory in particular still makes me smile!   As  I said, simple pleasures. Life was hard in those days, there was no money,but there was lots of hope, tomorrow was always going to be a new day. Unfortunately the new day tended to be filled with problems, but I coped because I had my little brood – my 5 sons. As long as I had them, I felt safe, fulfilled.   But life moves on, as did my children, my dreams faded, the harshness of life cut like a knife.   For so many years I felt totally at odds with the world, but mostly with myself & my bad life choices.  Maybe there were happy memories, but they have become assigned to the trash can of my mind, some were probably deleted, maybe even unintentionally, but self protection causes us to do strange things!

Nowadays I try very hard to live in the here & now, no longer dwelling in the past recesses of my mind. My possible illness has made me  realise what is important to me -now.

I need fulfillment, I need happy memories to warm my heart if it feels chilly, I need to feel proud of my acheivements, but that will be impossible if I don’t actually do something positive & make steps toward my goals – so I have started.

For too long I have wasted time & money as a reaction to having been controlled previously. I have no real use for money, nor for possessions, but never the less I buy, just for the sake of it, then give it away through guilt at my wastefullness.  Well, no more!  Okay maybe that’s a bit idealistic – I have promised myself to try to change my ways.

I have a few challenges to myself – I want to write a book, or two, or more..  I want to lead others to find happiness,    I want to gain qualifications,  I want to be able to look at my life & be proud of what I’ve done but to do that, I have to start…………….

To gain new happy memories, I have booked a few short breaks away with a friend and have decided that lack of money, or confidence shouldn’t be a stumbling block.   I am going to book onto a short trip to Iceland next year, I’ve no idea who with, but it doesn’t matter. I’ve always wanted to look for the Northern lights, so I  am going to go & try. It doesn’t matter if I don’t see them – I’ll know I’ve looked! as far as affording it, well I have plenty of unneeded items that I can sell!

My dream of becoming an author has long bothered me. although writing is a passion, I lack a lot of know how, so yesterday booked onto a creative writing course & a publishing workshop. again I may not ever get published, but I am improving my chances by increasing my knowledge.

Helping lead others has taken an unexpected direction.  I always believed that I would earn my reputation through my Tarot card reading, or laterly through healing ( Reiki, Crystal & energy healing are incredibly important to me)  But I realise that although these things may happen, my path is through teaching, inspiring & generally making people happy. Because being with vulnerable people gives me a sense of purpose & exercise helps me cope, I have decided to combine both ideals & use my new found skills as a flexercise leader & become an older persons’ party organisor ( mad possibly, but exciting prospect!)

I have also decided to enrole in a Tai Chi tutor course – something I had to give up a while ago when lack of confidence got the better of me! This time I WILL complete it! Even if I never use the skills, I will have the qualification & the choice.     My choice!

Finally & maybe most importantly I have offered to help out at the local community college,volunteering with a group of people with learning difficulties, doing whatever I can to assist them. I need to help others & can’t think of a better way!

As for my diagnosis, I am going to Hospital in a couple of days for tests, but really it is not important.  Whatever the outcome, I intend to fill my time doing what I can to improve my life.  I don’t need to live my life filled with regrets. Of course there is a lot that I would have preferred not to have happened, but it did, I can’t change that.  I can’t even change the future, because it’s not yet here to be able to change, but I can change ME. I can live everyday fully, not punishing myself, being kind to myself, being mindful & aiming to fulfil my dreams & find contentment.

I will shoot my arrows of intent at the targets of my dreams  –   & if they fall short of the target?

At least I will have had the courage to try.

In search of happiness (Sharing a miracle).            

Happy being me!
Happy being me!

for more years than I care to remember I have felt sad, lonely & extremely depressed. Even during good times I felt more empty than I can describe. Unhappy childhood, insecurity, 3 broken marriages, 5 messed up children – it wasn’t a pretty picture. 

Something had to change

I chose to end my life on several occasions, figuring that this would bring about the change to my sorrow. It didn’t. All I succeeded in doing was make myself more physically unwell.

Just over a year ago the first miracle happened, I was referred to a clinical psychologist who spent an amazing 12 months patiently unpicking my fears & piecing together the reasons for my traumatic past, with a form of therapy called Cognitive Anylitical Therapy, or CAT for short. 

At first things got worse, another suicide attempt followed shortly after I had been diagnosed with emotional borderline personality disorder. I was horrified by the title, I had heard about anger issues & disassociation, surely that wasn’t me? Had my past problems all been down to me? Was I responsible for all the unhappiness that seemed to surround me?  I couldn’t live with myself if that was true. I already felt a total failure .  My family had all but deserted me, my 30year marriage to an alcoholic had folded. 

And it was ALL MY FAULT !         At least that’s what it felt like.         I was unlovable, unlikeable , uncaring – a waste of space!!!

Then miracle 2 happened, or maybe it was miracle one, part two?

I’m not sure how or when it happened, all I know is that I discovered an overwhelming desire to change my life. I had always felt ‘different’ from my friends but had discovered that if I wanted to be accepted, I had to be a sheep & follow the flock. Suddenly I found the strength to stand up and say – I AM ME , I DON’T NEED TO APOLOGISE FO IT.

I don’t know where my inner strength came from but I guess it had been hidden away in the mess that had been my life. Having a supportive network around me in the form of friends & the mental health team had acted like a safety net. I had hit rock bottom & like a drowning man I had found the will to survive. They held me safe until I found the way to take my first unsteady independent steps. I began to speak MY TRUTH. Began to learn all that I could about healthy living, both physical & psychological. I learnt about using positive affirmations. I began saying yes instead no. I stopped pretending. I stopped eating wheat & other grains, yeast, sugar & all dairy products. Being a strict vegetarian this made my diet very limiting but in a very bizarre way it also freed me!

Miracle 3.     The sun came out, not just in the sky but in my heart!  I was progressively losing weight & felt so, so good.  Instead of wallowing in my daily pain caused by severe fibromyalgia, I began to force myself to try to walk a little. It hurt like hell, still does but the pleasure that I get from being out in the fresh air & reclaiming a little of my independence makes is all worth while.

I began to be told how inspirational I was – WOW, me? At first I was embarrassed by it but then decided to accept the compliment. This got me thinking, what if there was something in what they said?  During meditation & prayers I kept feeling the need to write my feelings down, in case even one person could gain something from my story.

So here I am, writing this blog. There is so much inside of me bursting to get out. I need to write, to help me understand what has happened, as much as helping anyone else. It isn’t a short concise story, I haven’t really touched on the beginning & have no notion of if or where it may come to a conclusion, but today, Christmas Day 2014 I have begun.

Please follow my blogs if you are interested. I feel excited to be sharing my journey. Please join me, you will be very welcome  & a journey shared is so much better than a lone one

Blessings from the powers of the Universe

xxx

Rosie xxx