Honesty

communication, Connect, Fear, fear of unknown, Growth, Honesty, Learning, Self development, writing

I wanted to write today about something so important to me and something that is really beginning to have a positive effect on my life. I want to write about being more open and honest. Honest with myself hence honest with others. If a friend or partner said something to me that upset me I would think and say a lot. Numerous thoughts and multiple conversations. The only problem was that these conversations were in my head.

I would never say this to the person involved. What was it that stopped me? Fear! What would they say? What would they do? What would they think of me? What would happen? How would it, could it be resolved? Fear of the unknown would hold me back yet again.

A few years ago I spoke to a friend about our relationship. A huge undertaking. Fear. Anxiety. Exposed. Vulnerability. These words were how I felt. Then I started to speak. As more words came out of my mouth I felt more relaxed. I was finally connecting to my truth, my innermost feelings. I felt more free, empowered and connected.

I began to realise that the only negative in the situation is in keeping your thoughts to yourself. How the other person responds in the communication is not your problem. Speaking calmly, without judgement, with honesty and respect is enough. I felt proud that I could do that.

Honest communication can be effective in growing a relationship and bringing a deeper connection. Sometimes it can reveal what you may already know deep inside, that a relationship has grown apart. I will write about this in more detail in another post. The outcome will show you what to do next, if anything. It will bring an issue to the table.

Being honest is learning a skill. Nerves, anxiety takes over at the start. You can be defensive, your protection to a perceived threat. Your survival instincts kick in. This is normal. For some, this is an extreme reaction. For all, there is a sense of needing protection. You can not be grounded and anxious at the same time as you can not be in two contradictory states at the same time.

If you are not grounded, you are unlikely to speak with assertion and integrity. Your basic need is protection, safety. If you are not self aware, you do not have a healthy sense of self and/or you have yet to practice honesty your response is likely to be defensive and often aggressive in nature. You put on your armour ready to fight. Fire! You let out a barrage of aargh. You blast your emotions everywhere. This is not a calm, honest expression of how you feel. It is a myriad of emotions rolled into one sticky flapjack.

For me, it was sadness, frustration and anger mixed with portions of isolation. Feeling unimportant and sometimes feeling invisible. It was fear mixed with a longing to just express how I was feeling as an open conversation.

A memory comes to mind. I was in a coffee shop last year (yes I know, I love my coffee shops). I had an incident with non other than a lady and a cup of soya milk. The simplest experiences often provide the biggest learning. The gist of the conversation was that the lady was blaming me for wasting coffee when quite simply the drink was just wrong, a few times. My chest was tight, I had uncomfortable feelings throughout my body. Despite this, I was aware there was a difference.

I was not taken over by my feelings. There was a change, a shift and quite a big one. I spoke. I did not react. I was assertive. I was not defensive. I showed confidence in myself and what I knew to be right. I simply explained how I felt. I did not feel bad. I did not raise my voice. I spoke calmly. I felt amazing. I felt empowered. I felt super proud.

I was exercising the ‘power of now’.

This was another pinnacle moment in my honesty with other people. Actually, it is really an honesty with myself. I am not hiding what I am feeling. I am not hiding what I am thinking. If something needs to be said I am more able to say it. This is an ongoing road for me, a relatively new road so I am sure I will not manage it every time. This is ok. I am aware.

The beauty of learning and growing

Sophie Marie

Deep faith in knowing great things are on the way

Connect, Connecting, Faith, feelings, Personal power, universe alignment, Writer, writing

I know. I can feel it. There is a power deep within me, a feeling that something important is just around the corner. I believe it. I have faith in myself, the universe and God. I have worked so hard to get to where I am today and I have the results to show for it. I know that if I focus and apply the same work ethic on the next chapter in my life and career, I will start living more fully in my new consciousness.

I have already written so much on my book and I am now ready to focus my time, energy and effort to reconnecting with it. I have a second book idea. This will be my way of collating all of my knowledge, skills, emotions and experience and assembling it into an easy to read, simple but effective book. I am ready to share what I know with the world. In a way, it is like counselling the world. I am working to utilize my counselling and life experience so that I can deliver this to a bigger audience.

I used to have a deep fear of connection. As I write that I am shocked. To practice what I preach I will stay with it. I used to be afraid that if I gave certain parts of myself to others and/or shared too much that I would get taken advantage of. I also feared that people would use what I say or do in a negative way, again to take something away from me. I was so protective of what I perceived to be ‘mine’ that I clung to it. I unconsciously believed that this was how I could keep that part, that knowledge, me safe. I am so in the moment now that I feel very deeply the beginning of a powerful force. I feel that I have awoken to another level of consciousness. This level no longer feels like catch up as the previous levels have. This feels different. I feel as though I am where I should be. This doesn’t feel quite right. I ponder on this for a moment until the feeling reveals itself. I feel as though I am where I am meant to be. This is big. I am taking some time to really feel this in my body. I will let it run through me, across me, all over me and penetrate me. This is not a moment to rush through. This is a moment to connect more deeply with myself, with God and with the universe. I feel a great stillness in me as I sit here typing. I will end this part here in order that I sit or probably lay down and allow myself the time to really feel, connect and love.

With faith

Sophie Marie

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

How my clothes help me embrace my personality

Clothes, Free, Freedom, Good enough, Growth, Helping others, Personality, Quietly confident, Say yes to rest, Soul, Spirituality, trauma, Uncategorized, Writer, writing

For me, like my home my clothes are a big part of who I am and is another way that I can embrace being me. I do not like to look like anyone else and I do not like to wear whatever is ‘in fashion’. This is just another way that people conform to the masses, look like robots and follow each other. Don’t get me wrong, I understand why people do this. I always say I do not like to look like anyone else but what that really means to me is that I just want to be me. I always knew that I thought about life and clothes in a different way to others and this at times has caused me to wonder what was wrong with me. Why did I think one way when a lot of people who I knew or were around seemed to view the world differently. I have written before about how I used to be when I was younger, in primary school. This was the true representation of who I was. Quietly confident in who I was and what I liked even though this was sometimes random or ununusual. I didn’t care. I did not even think about it. I just did. I just was and I was free.

When you experience trauma in your life, it changes you. Simple. Trauma changes life as you know it, trauma changes you, trauma changed me. It affects every single aspect of your life. The way you see the world, the way you view people, your own safety or lack of it, the way that you see yourself, the way that you present yourself. As I write this, hiding is the big word that keeps popping up. I do not want to write too much just now on this as I feel a poem will best help me to put this into words. When I write I like to feel. Sometimes, the words only feel surface and I feel that I want to go deeper and express more. It must be time, I must be ready and it feels safe. It feels special and important and something that I want to share. I remember when I kept everything to myself. All my struggles, all my pain. I am now in a place where I no longer want to hide, I just want to share. I want to share and inspire. I hope to inspire, just be being me. When we think we have to do more, be more. When I finally accepted that I am enough as I am, my life started changing for the better. When I stopped, I started. It is a big fear for lots of people that if they slow down, rest or stop then everything will crash down. You do have to experience it for yourself but I can tell you honestly from my own experience that the opposite is so true. The more you stop, the more you can keep going and growing. It feels magical. It is magical but not magic. It is real, it is you. You are not different, you have just gone deeper. You have touched a depth in your soul that turns on a light so powerful it can never extinguish. If you feel like the light has gone, dimmed down then don’t look outward, go deeper within. Deeper within you.

For now I will leave you with this as I want to walk and reflect before I write more.

Thank you for the pleasure of reading my thoughts, supporting me in my journey and enabling me to support and inspire others.

With love as always

Sophie Marie x

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