It’s served its purpose

For several weeks now I’ve been pondering as to whether my blog has run its course.  It’s served its purpose and maybe it’s time to let it rest.

I don’t know. 

I never expected it to be so therapeutic.  I never expected to get the readership it has.  Wonderful people who I have empathised with and who have supported, encouraged, cajoled and nurtured me.  It has been humbling and amazingly touching.  You have been the people I shared every twist and turn of emotion with.  To whom I’ve bared my soul as I’ve searched for answers, faced things that I didn’t know I needed to face,   as I hunted for my route back to happiness.

I owe all of you a massive debt of gratitude.  Without meeting most of you I’ve nonetheless come to feel I know you all so well.

We’ve had fun along the way. You’ve made me smile and laugh. You’ve cheered me on when all I could do is weep!   I look back on the great discussions that took place here.  The fact that although we’ve had differences of opinion we have respected those opinions and chosen the words we have written with great respect for each other.  Thank you.

I owe a massive debt of gratitude to Stephen my life coach who gave so much of his time freely, either here on this blog or in the copious number of emails, texts and telephone calls.  I believe knowing about this blog helped him coach me because he could watch my mood swings and was able to (and did) pick up when I wobbled.  His incredible dedication and support to his clients is amazing.

Without him and the type of coaching he provided I would never have found my new direction in life.  One I am increasingly excited about and one which I know will meet my values head-on.

Yes I am now flying – sometimes I soar.  I don’t want this blog to pull me back.  It is in danger of being an anchor still linking me to the ground!    I’m not sure why.  It is what it is.

I am not going to disappear into the ether. I shall continue to follow all your blogs.  Try stopping me!!  I shall continue to comment when I feel I have something constructive, funny or amusing to say.  Or I feel I can be a valuable support.  But for now I don’t see me posting here.  I could be wrong. 

As it stands right now it has mapped my route from near suicide to the place of happiness I’m now in.  One I would have reached a lot earlier had Alex not dithered about coming back and fed me confusing messages on how he felt. But it was the way it was.  For me my space here now has a feeling of completeness.  (Feel free to disagree dear reader!)

I have a sister blog to this one which I’m considering activating.  One which is free of the angst of my past.  One which could be there for fun, silly stories and the new me.  I’m thinking about it!!  I do like writing so maybe that will be my answer!

So, for now,  a massive number of hugs to you all.  My special blogland friends.  You have inspired me and been there for me and for that I can’t find words to express how touched I’ve been.

This is how I see it today.

Tomorrow everything could be different…………………………!!

Caroline
xxxx

Enjoyment

“Enjoyment appears at the boundary between boredom and anxiety, when the challenges are just balanced with the person’s capacity to act”  – Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi – Flow

So with that in mind I’ve been considering how often I get bored and why!

I am – mostly – bored with my job.  I haven’t been over the last month or so as I’ve been busy programming a system which has stretched my skills sufficiently within my capacity to act but not to the point where I couldn’t solve the problems – hence I experienced a fair amount of enjoyment!

I enjoy coaching. When I coach I experience Flow.  I become completely absorbed in what I’m doing and the client in front of me.  To see a client have a breakthrough moment – never mind how small – gives me great enjoyment in seeing their pleasure in achieving something for themselves which they didn’t feel was possible.  Even when they don’t always ‘get it’ right away I get pleasure in helping them consider possibilities which they’d never thought of.

Carrying out a task can cease to be enjoyable when my capacity to act is thwarted either by my own inability or skill – whatever.

I am experiencing this in no small degree over my website!   My inability to configure and customise the pages the way I want them has dumbfounded me and left me frustrated and – I will admit – rather cross.  And since the only person I can get cross with is me, this has not been an enjoyable experience!!  And has left me fairly anxious.  I don’t enjoy ‘half-measures’!

My inability to ‘market’ myself is also rather irritating!  Much to my surprise I don’t seem able to sell myself!   So clearly I must now retrace my steps, reconsider this aspect of my goal and find a route which achieves what I want to achieve.  There is no point in ‘banging my head against a brick wall’!

Then there is the house-hunting!  Initially I found this boring, then I became anxious!  A happy medium is what I required.  Friends are taking up my cause – wow it’s lovely to know they are there. So great not to be doing this on my own.  I am feeling valued and supported which is great.  And actually having their support has now made the activity far more enjoyable!

I am not alone, I don’t have to do deal with all the issues of life alone.  People are available and often want to help!

And all help is welcome and enjoyable.

It’s great letting them into one’s life!

Changing the Focus

For far too long I focused on how I felt, why I felt it and how if I ‘let go’ of how I felt I would lose my identity.  The me that I believed in and who Alex loved (or not!).  Focusing on me was painful. Very.  In fact Very Very.  But not focusing on me was so scary I couldn’t do it.

I have a high need for Love and Significance (though I have to say what I mean my Significance has changed over the last 12 months).

Focusing on what Alex and I had and being the me I thought was true to what I believed (without asking him) that he wanted was the safest place I could find.

It gave me Certainty. A strange feeling of comfort – I knew where I was.  But it wasn’t a comfortable certainty. So  it scored very low.  On a score of 1 – 10 where 1 is bad and 10 is wonderful.  I was scoring about a 2 or 3

It didn’t give me Uncertainty or Variety – so that scored about 1 out of 10.

I felt amazingly Significant but not in a good way.  I was significantly making Alex feel guilty.  It was low level significance

It didn’t give me Connection or Love.  I didn’t really love myself.  I wasn’t being loved.  I believed I was unlovable

There was no chance of any Growth.  In the place I was in I was doomed to repeat each day almost like Groundhog Day.

Contribution.  I wasn’t contributing to anything or anyone much.

Changing my focus was a battle but a battle I have now by and large won.  It can be fragile on some days.  Some days I feel I still have such a long way to go. But maybe that’s what Growth is all about.  After all there’s no fun without growth.

So on the days when I feel fragile and scared I read this blog – see how far I’ve come and focus on my goal with a determination that is almost scary!!

I thought taking action was going to be painful.  Actually staying where I was was far worse.

I just wish I hadn’t left it so long!!  I wasted so much time!

Doing nothing is still an action!

I think that’s a lot of the problem.  Being stuck and not knowing what to do, which way to ‘go’ or what action to take is still an action. A very passive action.  It is the action of hoping things will change. That some solution will appear and solve ‘everything’ for you – whatever ‘everything’ is.

But is such a strategy successful?

Strategies always achieve something – but do all our strategies actually give us what we want?

Taken to it’s logical conclusion a decision strategy to do nothing is going to give us nothing.

So a good strategy is to decide on what outcome you want and then build a strategy which gives you that outcome.

You need to base the outcome on something realistic.  No point in deciding on an outcome which is contingent on some other person behaving in a way you want them to – they might not. They might desire a different outcome.  They might be in turmoil too!  So then that’s both of you plodding about in the mud!

The outcome has to give something to you, for you and for those who maybe rely on you.

Yes there may be some issues with the outcome which others may not totally like. But the important thing is surely to ensure that by designing your outcome you live by your values and the rules you apply to those values.

It can take courage to choose an outcome. But what is the reverse?

Doing nothing!  Does doing nothing meet all your values as a human being?  Does doing nothing give you the life you want and which should be yours – not in a selfish way but in a giving and loving way?  Will doing nothing solve the problem?

So if you want life to be better than it is today.  Then having a strategy and acting upon it is really the only route out!

Doing nothing is highly likely just to give you more of the same – or worse!!  Doing nothing could be having a very deterimental long-term effect on others who maybe are relying on you.

And putting yourself back in charge of you will help you build a better you.

So that’s how I see it!

What do you think?  Do feel free to comment – you know I love discussions!!

BTW If you need help then see a good life coach!  And soon that will be me!!!

Good goal, good goal!!

A challenging post!

I’ve written before how finding a good goal was tough. I don’t think I’m alone in this quest. I think that many people who have been rejected find this part of the road to recovery difficult to grasp.

So this is my take on it.

A Good Goal:

A good goal focuses on the future. It puts you in charge of you and the entire process. It should make you buzz! It should and must give you happiness. After all ultimately that’s what we all want I imagine.

It could also include a sense of achievement! Overcoming the odds. Proving something to yourself. So a good goal has to be one where the only other people who have any input into it are those who have to supply a resource.

Taking my goal: To become a Life Coach. This ticks all the boxes as I am doing all the work!:

  • Studying – no one else can do this for me
  • Finding courses and going on them – ditto
  • Getting qualified where required – ditto again
  • Finding clients. This has to be down to me! I have to advertise, I may end up getting clients sent to me from other sources but I cannot be reliant on this. And if I do then that’s the ‘cherry on the cake’
  • Getting insurance sorted out. I may pay a broker to arrange but it’s down to me to enquire and get quotes
  • Finding premises to work from. Again down to me to hunt for somewhere.
  • Organising my finances!
  • Organising my life so I have time to coach
  • Finally doing something I totally believe in regardless of what some of my friends may think or say. I believe in this to the core of my being. I know I will be happy doing it. I will get an immense sense of achievement. And as a result I’ll be a fun person who people will want to meet. I won’t be or feel needy!!

A not-so-good Goal

A goal which relies on someone else providing the answers, support, emotional accolades etc.

So using my goal above and putting a different slant on it!

  • Relying on someone else to tell me which courses to go on.
  • Relying on someone else to tell me which books to read
  • Relying on someone else finding me all my clients, organising where I practice from, sorting out my insurances and basically taking over! It might make my life a great deal easier but it can’t be part of the goal.
  • Expecting someone else to tell me how good I am!! Nice I grant you. But, again, it can’t be part of the goal!

Yes the goal may be achieved but I’ve lost ownership of it and I won’t get the same sense of achievement when I succeed!  And succeed I will!!

So a good goal is one that makes you feel beautiful inside, happy and content and excited with who you are. Something that gives you faith in yourself. It can be scary – but that’s no bad thing. The emotional solution has to come from within. And if that seems impossible right now then perhaps that’s the goal you need right now: To find the you inside. Not a bad starting point.

If your goal to happiness is reliant on another human being supplying you with emotional support, gratification or needs then I believe the goal could well fail because you are reliant on the other person not failing you. Anyway the goal ceases to be yours. It becomes theirs – and why should they be responsible for your goal they’ve got theirs to be achieved so don’t really need the burden of achieving yours too!

Unless of course you pay them – and that becomes a whole different ball game!!!!

I’m sleeping with NLP

I’m NLP’d out.  I have read and read and read and I now have a list of questions which are mind bogglingly  irritating!!  I wake next to a mass of books strewn all over my bed next to me!

I’m in total danger of becoming nerdy about all this!  But at least it’s focusing me on the future – whatever that turns out to be!!  Mostly it’s stopping the looking back moments – except for last night which was one of my un-clever moments of wallowing in nostalgia, a moment of trawling the posts from this time last year when clearly I was so stressed out all I could do was weep – and, apparently, write copious amounts here, given I inflicted 64 posts on the world in that month alone for which I admire those who managed to comment on most of them!!  I’m surprised I found time to do any sorting out and packing at all!!

I think part of the problem is this time of year.  The festive season is a family time and right now family is what I have precious little of.  My brothers and I have an uneasy truce held together by the sale of the family home, 2/3rds of which should go through this week.  The last 1/3rd – the now wonderfully refurbished and extended flat originally owned by Alex and me remains unsold.  It looks wonderful.  I’ve been round twice and that’s enough.  I won’t inflict any more damage on myself!

My older brother is in the middle of the turmoil of breaking up his marriage – something which still baffles me and, I think, everyone else.  My younger brother is doing his usual trick of keeping as far away as possible and only communicating in a rather business like fashion on matters of property thus avoiding any form of emotional involvement!  Someone should give him a Phd in it!!

So  I’ve spent a rather solitary festive week in the company of wonderful words such as submodalities, epistemology (which as I’ve said before is sadly not the science of getting drunk), swishing and other terms which my little brain is feeling surprised at being introduced to!!  It makes the French homework seem easy in comparison.  Talking of which I’d better go and write my paragraph as I have a conversation lesson this morning!! (Why do I always leave this to the last moment to get done!!)

Anyway one of my ambitions this year is to wake up and find I’m not sleeping with the training manuals – but with a trainer who has decided to train me into enjoying all those things which I want to enjoy (thank you AJ for your particular ‘on the nail’ comment last year)