To let go of control is to allow life to happen as we intend

“Get back control” seems to be a mantra for our times, except that it can seem frustratingly difficult to achieve, especially where it’s in the gift of others. Yet the more we try to assert control, the more we don’t ultimately get what we really want. I often used to hear business people tell me how important it was for them to have control, whether it was over others, a system or process, or the direction in which things were headed. To lack control was to be at the mercy of others or the system. and to be tossed about … Read more

My mind is always busy

Do you find that when you try to be still and quiet and hope to relax that your mind gets busy and won’t be quiet? It can be very frustrating. People often tell me that “it is hard for me to be quiet and ‘switch off’ when my mind is always busy”. If you are trying to develop the practice of meditation this can prove to be a deterrent, if you let it. What people don’t always realise until they try to relax is that they do in fact have a busy mind, like they are always thinking, always on … Read more

Self confidence can affect our state of being

In previous posts I have been referring to the way that self confidence can be in relation to particular tasks or to certain situations. However, we’ve also seen how self confidence can also relate to our sense of self. This can be about how we feel in ourselves, what we think of ourselves, what we believe about us, and even our perceived inner state of being. If we find we’re struggling over a particular issue, we might not necessarily see that it is just a matter of mastering a particular skill, lets say, or overcoming our reluctance, fear, embarrassment or … Read more

Speaking with the power of authenticity

I was running a training course in leadership for managers last week, about presentation skills, and what was so very clear for these people that what this course was really about was their ability to be authentic, to be who they are, to be true to themselves. When they came over most powerfully was when they spoke with passion, from the heart, like they meant every word, that what they said really mattered, as though in some subtle way it connected with something true inside them. And this connected us with them. We felt with them, right there in the … Read more

Breakthroughs aren’t just for the few

I’ve been reading an excellent book, “Out of the darkness” by Steve Taylor, in which he tells of people he interviewed for his research into awakening experiences. It is a wonderful catalogue of man’s triumph over adversity, since almost all the people in the book had been through some upheaval or crisis in their lives and had reached a crisis point where they “broke through” to another level of Awareness. If you want to get more of an idea of what is possible for people, this book is well worth a read. Taylor prefers the word “awakening” to “enlightenment because … Read more

Making being present a part of your everyday life

Have you found that when on holiday something to do with your work or your home has somehow intruded and you’ve found it hard to shift out of the “holiday mood” to focus on that other matter? It’s almost as though we can go into an altered state of awareness when on holiday. Well, for some of us no doubt that’s the real life, that it’s life, and that other world, the so-called “real world” is an inconvenience sent to try you. For two weeks let’s say, you get let out to play and there’s nothing that’s going to spoil … Read more

When you reach beyond yourself

What is it about stories of people overcoming adversity to achieve great things? Or at least what do they do for you? They certainly touch me emotionally and today I was asking what that was about. There’s been an inspiring TV programme recently called “Perspectives”, about a group of northern British miners who in 1934 came together to learn about art and to paint, and how they began to achieve a very high standard of art and to paint great pictures. They were miners at Ashington colliery in Northumberland. They left school at twelve, as people did, and started to … Read more

Notice the brilliant light

Brilliant light. It’s fabulous, bright spring sun here in Wiltshire, UK, with not a cloud in the sky. Might that be a metaphor for your life at the moment? Or not? How do we have more lightness of being in our lives? How do we let in the light? Or rather as I would say, connect with and let out your own light that dwells within you. We might be absorbed in our mind-stuff, where the mind runs off on its own, when suddenly we might become aware that it’s a beautiful sunny day. It’s as if someone has switched … Read more

For when it’s all too much

I’m heading out of London’s Paddington Station going westwards into glorious evening sunshine, at the end of another unseasonably warm day. After last year’s later spring, we seem to be back to the pattern of recent years, spring coming a month at least ahead of traditional times, with trees opening into leaf at a rush and everything blooming. Just looking at all this, global warming-deniers must surely have a lot of explaining to do. Is our climate really changing, and at a faster pace perhaps. Change comes fast in other ways too. There’s been a lot in the news recently … Read more

Being someone

Have you had people say something like, “Come on, be someone!” Like you need to stand out, or step up, or cut a figure, so to speak. Like there’s an expectation for you to come up to some external as opposed to internal standard. Or, that you should be making your “mark” in the world, or have some ambition, or carve out a niche for yourself. Continuing this week’s theme, being who you are, there might be a sense there’s external pressure on you, or that’s how it might feel, to make some external presentation of yourself. Many would agree … Read more