All good writers must read and write a lot

Inspirational cycle, Inspirational Music Inspiring music, Inspire, Learning, Self respect, Share yourself, Small steps, Write, Writer, writing

Hi all and happy new year. I hope your Christmas time was as relaxed and peaceful as it could be. It sort of saddens me to say that this is my first piece of writing in quite a long time. I am hopeful that will change this year. Although I am partial to a great quote, I do not tend to use other people’s quotes in my writing. This quote is particularly relevant to me and one which has carried me through the last six months or so. “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot”. Stephen King.

I came across this particular quote whilst researching how to write a book and how to become a good writer. It really stopped me in my tracks and shocked me, in a good way. It may sound strange that I had never really thought of the reading part. The only books I read as an adult were self development books, autobiographies, literature based on mental health. The only other things that I read were interior design magazines and still do. I can spend long periods of time immersed in a page with only images to entertain me. This for me, is where I can read the story without words and this excites me. I can see the passion, the art and the style within the confines of another’s living room. Carefully curated to show the inner workings of a stylists mind. A hot bath and numerous images of mid century furniture and I am away for hours.

Like everything else in my life,I don’t just want to be a writer I want to be a good writer. Writing itself for me is still quite new in terms of writing for others as well as myself. I want to learn how to grow in this area, grammar being one area that I need to focus on. Somehow I have forgotten a lot that I learnt in school and I would like to learn how best to set out my writing, ensuring that I keep my writing brief and relevant (I am known for going around the houses so may struggle here). I want to be myself. Raw in my writing, with a more professional edge.

My business has been going the same way this last year. I had reached the stage whereby I wanted to look at areas that I could tighten up, become more streamlined and all together be more professional. I know that my work as a counsellor in my own practice is work to a high standard however there are some areas of my business that I always try and improve upon each year. I can see from my previous year in business what I need to look at and how I can market myself in a more professional manner in order to grow personally, professionally and my client base itself. Reaching a level of maturity for my business naturally flows into other areas of my life and what I want to achieve. The last year I focused a lot more of my time on my counselling business and growing this. I put the work in and saw the results. This year I would like to invest more in myself personally, allowing myself lots of time to write. I know that in order for this to happen, knowing my personality as I do is to dedicate time to it. I need to allocate time and organise my time more effectively. I have unconsciously placed writing as less important. I want this to change. I know the benefits personally for me when I write. I am more open, my confidence increases, I am more alert and most important it allow me to share myself creatively.

I love my work, however because of this I tend to trick myself that it is not work. It is. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Being a counsellor is not something that you put a hat on for. It is someone that I am every day, a big part of my being. I am however not just a counsellor. I am multi faceted and like my art piece “Two headed beauty” (available through my website) says “why be one dimensional when you can be your true, multi dimensional self”. By neglecting this part of me, I have been neglecting myself. I am now aware and so I can change. Creativity releases me and makes me feel free and more alive. It brings me back to the now.

You can gauge when you are following a positive path when the feelings that arise within you feel ‘right’. It is that feeling which is hard to put into words. It is like a kind of magic. It just creates a feeling of peace (and many other feelings) deep inside. It is like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle. It just fits. I need to write more. I need to set myself a goal, a schedule that I can achieve. I want to write with progression as I have to be continuously learning and growing. I can not stagnate.

I always want to write raw and in the moment which I have. The difference today is that I have gone through the piece and edited it. I don’t know what if any difference this will make to how it is read. This is a learning curve for me and I am enjoying it. Please look out for my next piece where I will be talking more about how reading has become a big part of my life and how I hope this will enhance my writing.

Looking forward to sharing more with you

Sophie Marie

Manifesting what you want in life and trusting the universe

Belief, Connect, Connecting, Embrace true self, Faith, Free, Freedom, God, Growth, Helping others, Hope, Inspire, Learning, Life, Light, Living at depth, Meditation, Share the love, Share yourself, Soul, Spirituality, Trusting the universe, universe alignment

It has been way too long since I wrote. I am not going to beat myself up for it, it is what it is and I am here now. As I allow things to just be and embrace them for what they are and the timing of events I can keep faith that what I need will come to me when the time is ready. That said, on occasion I realise, as I did recently that if there are particular areas of my life that are not growing it is up to me to look into this. I have often wondered why I was only achieving a certain number of clients in my business and why this was. It was then that I realised I had a blockage.

Money for me has a negative connotation attached to it. My experience of money was that it was used to control and to buy my attention amongst other things. I lived a previous life of being ‘bought’. The presents all being a way of feeding anothers ego rather than coming from a place of love. I learnt the hard way, maybe the only way, that people who are genuinely being themselves do not have to ‘prove’ anything. They just are. Actions speak louder than words. I want people to show me they care and love me. Words are cheap.

Back to the money. Due to my negative experiences that I had attached in some ways to money, I was stuck in an unconscious cycle of money is bad. Money is greed. Money is control. The reality of this is that yes, sometimes it can be; however it is not a given. It is like saying all men/women are bad because we have had bad experiences with them. We get stuck in our own story that we tell ourselves and believe it to be fact. Anything that stems from a negative experience will never be fact or rational as we are coming from a place of high emotion. We are stuck in that experience, in that time. Only when we realise this can we start to question our own story, our own reality of a situation or in my case of a word. We can then free ourselves and make our own healthy narrative.

Since I became aware of my financial blockage I have been working on releasing this through meditation focusing on this area. I am reflecting why I have this block and the emotions connected to it. I can then work on manifesting financial freedom and abundance through meditation and unblocking my energy chakras. Since I have been putting my focus and positive energy into this I have five new clients.

I am aware that if you are reading this you may be thinking “what a load of rubbish”. I am not naive, I would have said the same thing years ago. What I want to point out is that I am not saying you can become unstuck and gain more financial freedom just by thinking about it and visualising it. This would be a very naive way of thinking. Life is not just going to hand you things on a silver platter whilst you sit on your backside wishing life to be different. I think this can sometimes be the misconception for people hearing and learning about working with the universe. Like anything in life, you can not just wish for a great job and get one without you having to do anything. It is about how you live your life. Life is about putting in the work, working on yourself, learning, learning from the mistakes. Life is not passive however life is twofold. If you are working on becoming a better version of yourself, being more aware, putting yourself out there, applying for jobs i.e. , improving in the meantime, growing your skill level that is the first step. The next step and probably the hardest for most people is faith. I don’t necessarily mean faith in god unless this is what you believe. I mean faith in whatever that means for you. Faith in yourself. Faith in others. Faith in the universe. Faith and patience. You may think and I often think the same, that you have put in all this work, done everything that you can think of to achieve what you want and nothing is happening. You don’t yet have this ‘job’ or ‘relationship’. The universe is not trying to torture you, it is teaching you. It is working for you even if you can not see it. I am experiencing this at the moment. I know how much I am doing everyday to work on myself and how I feel I am ‘ready’ for a relationship, I have to trust and have faith that if I do not have it yet the universe still has lessons for me to learn, other areas that I need to grow in, other things I need to achieve for ‘me’ before this happens. I have to be patient, well try at least with faith that what I ‘need’ will come when it is ready. It is not about what I want, it is about what I need.

Feels really good to be back writing. Tapping back into myself and what makes me me. It helps me open myself up more, to myself and in turn to others and to the universe. I will try and catch up with more writing that I want to talk about. Off to meditate now, feels like the natural progression to this blog. Thank you for letting me connect with you all and in turn to myself. I need this. I need to write. I feel more connected. I feel love. I feel all of you.

With much love and connection

Sophie Marie

When you are aligned with the universe

Belief, Connecting, Embrace true self, Faith, Freedom, God, Good karma, Happiness, Helping others, Hiding, Inner child, Inspire, Kindness, Peace, Self love, Share the love, Share yourself, Spirituality, trauma, universe alignment

Hi all, I hope everyone is well. If you are going through any challenges, don’t forget that you can do this. You are stronger than you know and you will come out the other side stronger after having learnt more lessons. Remember that the challenges are not being fired at you as a punishment but as a gift. The universe does not give you what you want, it gives you what you need. You are doing this.

It has been a while since I last wrote. I have been working on other things and have just returned from a brilliant week in Brighton for the holidays and to celebrate my birthday. There is so much that I want to write about however as usual I am just getting on with it. No filter, just going for it. What will come out will come out. I am just being free. I am just being me.

I wrote recently about good karma and as my daughter will tell you good karma is my new favourite saying. Probably getting a tad annoying for her but hey ho. Good things are still coming into my path, from a kind girl giving away her tickets to us at the pier so that we can choose some keepsake goodies to a free coffee on the train. With each new token of kindness I feel more and more blessed and the feelings flood through me that the universe is working with me. I am not alone, I have not felt alone for a very long time as I have a deep faith inside of me that I know everything will be ok and all the things that I have been working on, building in my life will take me to some big places. By big I mean big in the spiritual sense. It feels kind of weird when I reflect on it that I just believe however it is natural and organic. It just is and I just believe. It is a very comforting feeling, very safe. As I write the word safe I cry. I cry as I remember how at many times in my life I have felt anything but safe. How at many times in my life I didn’t know what safe was. At the worst point in my life I was even scared of my own shadow. I am not going deep into that part now however I know that my writing calls on me. It calls on me to connect. I know now that I not only need to connect but I have to. I know it is a part of me that I have to share, a part of me that I now want to share . I think back to all the times that I kept myself hidden away where I thought I was safe, where no one could hurt me or use me or abuse me. At times I guess I didn’t even know I was hiding but I must have been. It was my safe haven, my self protection, my armour. The only problem is that when you shut away a part of you to keep the bad out you also shut out other possibilities. When you are closed nothing and no one can enter.

I am very emotional writing this tonight but they are happy tears. Tears of sadness for my old self that hadn’t yet learnt to love herself. I thought there was something wrong with me, I never felt like I fit in or that I was good enough. I cry for the little girl,me. I was sweet and innocent and lost the spark that made me me. The part of me that made me free. The part that had no filter, I just did and I just said and I love her. I love all of her. I love all of me. I love the me now that is sat writing in my jeans and my new hoody that I have been looking for for a while. A big, mungy dark blue hoody with I heart Brighton on it. Its tacky and I bloody love it. I feel safe and cosy and warm and loved and at peace. I always go back to what my old counsellor told me years ago, words that will still with me forever. He said “you will do great things”. I believed him then even though I did not know in what capacity and I believe it now even more so. I started writing a book a couple of years ago then I didn’t write for a bit and went on to set up my website and blog where I have been writing ever since. I know I need and want to finish writing my book. I am not sure as yet how to carry on where I left off as I feel like I have done that just in a different writing space. I will look at it tomorrow and I am sure after a while I will know what to do. I truly believe that having an autobiography is great however for me I don’t want to read a celebrity (whatever that means) book. I want to read the real life, nitty gritty of a local working person. Someone that has been through trauma and a lot of different challenges and as lots of people say is”still smiling”. I want to read real and raw and I want to laugh and cry with someone. To connect with someone’s pain the way I connect with an artist singing. When I can hear and feel every bit of their pain and fight and strength and courage. This is what I want to write and I am sure there are other people like me that want to read the same. This is why it is so important to me to write my book and not only that, to get it published. I want to make people feel, connect people and inspire people. I really do believe now that I am not just good at my job, being a counsellor. I can say honestly, with depth that I believe supporting people in the way that I do is my gift from God. I also now believe that my gift is also supporting people in other ways, through my art and writing. For me I am still doing the same thing, I am just reaching out in different ways. I am using the whole of me and it feels amazing.

I have a week by myself whilst my daughter is with her dad and I am going to use this week to exercise (try at least) catch up with my beautiful friends for my belated birthday celebrations , write more and create. If the sun shines that will be a bonus however I am happy either way as the sun is always shining in my life. I am as ever truly blessed.

May you learn that the sun is always shining

With deep love and admiration

Sophie Marie

Good Karma

Be thankful, Belief, Faith, Freedom, Good karma, Growth, Helping, Helping others, Hope, Inspire, Kindness, Learning, Letting go, Pass it on, Self love, Share the love, Share yourself, Small steps, Spirituality, writing

Hi, how are you all. I have finally got my laptop fixed and so I am back writing after a while. Unfortunately I am not one of those people that can happily type away on a mobile. I am old school and I have to feel the touch of the keyboard, it is how I write and how I can maintain my flow. It feels good already. I always feel even closer to myself when I write and there is no better feeling. There is so much that I want to write about however rather than overwhelm myself I will practice what I preach and take it one step at a time, one blog at a time.

I want this first piece to be about karma however not the negative kind. Good karma and I would like to talk about how life and the universe is coming together with me and revealing itself. There is a lot to discuss so bear with me as I do like to go around the houses to tell a story. Hey, its what makes me me and I am good with it. There is a faith that I believe is missing with lots of people, I used to be one of them. Now when I say I used to be one of them, I mean I was always positive however at times of extreme difficulty I have not always possessed the ability to just simply have faith and believe that everything will turn out ok, turn out as it is supposed to. Until this year. Life really changed forever. I know I have experienced that many times, many different periods of growth, changes and increases of confidence and self esteem. This is different. This is real, genuine and certainly life changing and something so important that I want to share with you all.

I have written about this a couple of times however I know this will be something that will keep coming in to my blogs as it is so profound and so intrinsically part of my life now, part of me. This is spirituality, being at one with the world, with nature, with the universe rather than feeling like you are separate, alone and disconnected. Now I am no way a master on this, I know what I know based on my own experience of it and how I feel the world around me. I understand more now since I was drawn to reading and through my spiritual reading across different areas which also is an instrinsic part of who I am. Reading now also makes me feel more alive, more connected. I will keep doing what I am doing until I no longer enjoy it. I do not believe that you have to always keep at something just because you started it. Some things like some people are meant to come into your life for a period of time, everything does not and will not be forever and now I can happily say that I am at peace with this. I am sure in some areas this may not come as easy for me however I will take what I already know and feel and apply it to these other areas. I do not have to know everything and I do not need to know how things will turn out, if they will work out. I feel happy now to just do what I want, when I want with who I want. I don’t mean without a care in the world attitude, just having the freedom to be me in whatever way that is in the moment and being ok with that. I reiterate that I am no master of any of these and I do not have to be. Noone is a true master at anything, like no one is perfect. There will always be more to learn, more growth, more things to experience. You and I are ever evolving so we will never be a finished product. Why would we want to be? How boring would that be? To know everything already and have nothing left to learn. This is what I would equate to being a robot and I am not a robot.

I just realised that I have been writing away and I have not even mentioned good karma yet and that is ok. Writing, like life does not always go from one to 100 in a straight line, I may go up and down, to the side, high up then a few down or in whichever combination. It is what it is and I am what I am. I will get to it but for now I just want to write, to release, to speak and hopefully be heard. That is a new admission for me which I feel I need to stop at. This is where I would say (in my counselling work) “that sounds huge”. I feel it is. I am always listening. I like to talk when I feel comfortable to talk and with my friends this is easy however I still need to say outloud sometimes, anytime “I want to be heard”. “I want to be listened to and I want to be heard”. I have definitely got better in this area and will not just be quiet if a friend starts to talk when I am, I will assert myself and speak a bit louder. I used to get mad at conversations of this nature and with some people I have found it impossible. People are so wrapped up in themselves that they want to be listened to and they are however they do not then pass that back as mutual respect. I have started to think to myself after one of these conversations that I would love to say “it would be nice if you would now ask about me, what I am up to etc” This is really honest by me and in all of my years I have never said this outloud although I am accepting in myself that this is what I am feeling and thinking. If you have a conversation with someone in the street, at home, wherever and the other person gives you respect and time and space to talk a while and be listened to, please stop and think for a moment. Do not take advantage. Offer the same back. Ask them about themselves. They, I, may be a great listener but I would also like to be listened to. It is not about saying well Im not very good at listening, I think that’s a cop out. It is about the simple act of making someone else feel valid. We all want to feel validated by other people, it is innate.

If you feel like you have got something from someone, whether that be a simple but effective smile, a nice comment, a listening ear, someone asking you how you are or about your day please pass it on. If you feel like you received something, give something back. This is so valid across life in general. It is not our life, just for us as some people still think. We are all part of life. We are life and as such we need to look after it, to look after each other. Be there for one another. Now I guess I should talk about good karma or else I will have to change the title of this blog.

Since having the deep, inner belief that everything will work out and to let go and just allow life to be, the universe is really working with me. I went to Northumberland for half term and upon landing at Bardon Mill by train I realised that we were not in the right place I felt perhaps all my bus/train research had got a bit muddled. I needed to get to our YHA. There was a pub and nothing else. I went in to enquire and found out that to walk to the YHA would be a minimum of one hour, uphill and with a heavy rucksack, suitcase and my ten year old daughter in tow was a no no. After a lot of conversations with the lovely staff at the pub and another lady who said she would have driven us had she not been drinking already, one of the ladies working in the pub got her car and drove us to our hostel. From the moment I entered, I felt looked after and not alone. I had faith that we would get there and help came to hand. Whilst on the same trip, I was let off with money that I was short for the train and a free bus trip (the crazy AD122 bus journey,lets not go there). It was then that I felt more connected, not alone. I know for people it is really hard to believe that things will be ok, especially if they haven’t been for so long but trust me they will. Constantly hoping and praying it will be ok does not quite work the same. You have to learn to, as they say “let go and trust the process”. This is so true not just in counselling but in life. Once you surrender to what is and what will be, things seem to emerge in different ways. It is like the quote (sorry I don’t know the author of the quote) “when the student is ready, the teacher will appear”. So true. When you experience it for yourself you can say “I get it”. It all makes sense, it all slots together, naturally, organically the way it is supposed to.

I left my purse at home the other week and was stuck needing petrol to get me back home. No phone, no id, nothing. Whilst in the bank explaining my situation, hoping they would give me money without id, a lady came up to me and said “if they can’t give it to you, I will give you the money to get home”. I was really touched, she had heard my story. She heard me. Very powerful.

Thank you for all the people who think and feel that way and may they be a teacher to others who may not naturally be that way. We can all learn from each other. We just have to listen…..

With much love and hope

Sophie Marie xx

Helping others

Art, Belief, domestic abuse, Expressions of art, Faith, Growth, Helping, Helping others, Hope, Inspirational cycle, Inspire, Kindness, Nature, Reconnecting, Share yourself, support, writing

Hi all, it’s good to be here. I hope you are all keeping well and if you are currently being challenged as I am then I hope you have some support to keep you on your path.

I think I have a previous post about this however my desire to help people just keeps growing stronger. I support children, teenagers and adults in my work as a mental health counsellor which I love. This is a different kind of desire. This comes from deep down, deep within my soul. When I am going through challenges in my life, my opportunity for growth, this is when the desire burns stronger. I spoke to a lovely friend of mine the other day about my ideas for helping support more people. When I told her some of my ideas she said how kind and selfless they were. I know this was a compliment, however I actually disagree slightly in that on some level I feel that helping in these extra ways will help me also and so can not be purely selfless. I guess the difference now is that I am not trying to make myself ‘feel better’. I just empathise with people and their challenges, especially when those challenges leave you feeling isolated. This is a feeling I have had many times and I know how hard it is. I also now know that reaching out to others is a way of connecting. There is a deeper will to want people to know that by offering what you can, a simple message of encouragement or small token that ‘you are not alone’.

To feel this compassion from people is a feeling that can not be replicated. At Christmas time, my daughter and I were invited to an event held by Harv (domestic abuse charity) where we were shown all the donations that people had left for Christmas presents. It was very emotional for me as it was a very powerful message that people who had never met you wanted you to know that they care, you are in their thoughts and to remind you that you are not alone. There is no greater feeling.

The truth is, no one is alone. We are all connected to one another, to nature, to our universe. We either do not realise this yet or we have become detached, disconnected. The good news is that we can all connect again. Disconnection is temporary and in a way not even real. It is more of a perceived feeling as we can never truly be disconnected to who we are at our core and if we keep that with us always this will always keep us going. I feel the need to reiterate this as it is a very powerful statement. “We can never be disconnected from our core. If we keep that with us always, this will always keep us going”. I love this.

I can feel the flow more now in my words. Sometimes it takes time for the flow, sometimes it comes immediately. I just remember that it comes when it is ready, when I settle into myself and into my thoughts. When I am in the moment, in the here and now and being mindful. I can only be me now.

I just remembered what I started my post about and that was helping others. I am reading a book I got from a charity book shop in Hexham about compassion and it really is helping me cement my desire to help in a bigger way than I currently am. I know there is something a lot bigger in me and the ideas and thoughts are all coming to the forefront. I need to collect all of my ideas and put them together in the best way to showcase empathy, compassion and a willingness to support. I know I will use my art within this as art has got me to where I am now. Art was a huge influence for me. Art helped me to connect to my feelings and to reconnect with myself. Art helped save my life and I owe a lot to the arts.

I am going to put together an inspiration board to collate my ideas and thoughts and see how I can best put forward my plan. I want to show what can be done in your local community, how every little helps and how if we all share a bit of ourselves then we can all make this a better world for us all.

With hope and healing

Sophie Marie xx