Do you feel like you’re going nowhere?

If someone asked you where are you heading, what would your reply be? Might it be going nowhere? That’s not intended as a frivolous question, though many right now might feel tempted to reply with variations around “get lost!”. It could be something around, “don’t ask me questions I can’t answer”. Because such is the state of the world right now that there don’t seem to be answers and many people feel incredibly uncertain and anxious about the future, and even focusing on the immediate can be really hard work and tiring. What’s your state of the world? In the … Read more

Acceptance gives you true freedom

Acceptance of your situation can feel like the opposite of what you want but its power lies in it being a paradox We can encounter situations in life where our customary response is to dig our heels in, fight like mad for what we want and think we can by our efforts triumph in the end – and yet frustratingly get nowhere. Acceptance of the situation can feel like surrender, giving up, “giving in”, and somehow losing in another of life’s struggles. Nobody wants to be a “loser”: feel the shame of that! Yet true acceptance is not about this. … Read more

Desire and want can be barriers to happiness

Desire and want are riven through so much of our thought, speech and action. Listen to someone speak and you will hear quite quickly an expression of need, sometimes negatively and sometimes positively. It’s ingrained in our consciousness but perhaps unsurprisingly it also flags up an aspect of our way of being that doesn’t necessarily always serve us. In fact they can make us miserable. In coaching, for example, it is often a very effective question to ask, “What do you want?” It can invite someone who is feeling unclear to explore their desires and can bring out what is … Read more

Letting go can be the hardest thing to do

Do you find you get so caught up in something that you don’t see that what you really need to do is let go? We can get so attached to something that hanging on to the direction we’re taking seems the only option and we thus lack choices about alternatives. Letting go of “it” can seem a weakness, giving up. It can seem obvious to an outsider but to us in the middle of “it”, whatever that is, “it” is all that matters. You want something to happen but “it” won’t oblige! The frustration builds up and we work all … Read more

Meditate even when you don’t feel like it

If your mind is off on some trip somewhere and you aren’t feeling so good, it’s a good time to meditate. Yet this can seem a hard one if you don’t feel like that either. Yet many seasoned meditators will say that this is exactly where meditation can be so beneficial. Let’s take the example of feeling dissatisfied or discontented about something. Somehow the problem keeps hanging around in your mind and you don’t seem able to let it go or change how you feel. The fear might be that if you go and meditate with this going on, you’ll … Read more

What do you regret?

It’s a useful question to ask, and many of us hit occasions when we do just that – on the last day of your life, what do you regret? A palliative care nurse recently compiled a list of the top 5 things the dying stated they regretted. These might not surprise you: 1.    I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me 2.    I wish I hadn’t worked so hard 3.    I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings 4.    I wish I had stayed in touch … Read more

Persistent negative thoughts are beliefs you need to let go of

What are the things you keep saying to yourself when you’re annoyed or frustrated with yourself? Or those things you keep telling yourself that are negative about you? If you can catch yourself thinking or saying these things, it can potentially be very useful if you want to make changes. For example you might say something like “I’m useless at…” or “I’m no good at…” when describing an inability to do something, especially when comparing yourself with others. Or you might say “I’ve got it wrong…” or “I’m wrong…”. These phrases we use to describe ourselves negatively can be highly … Read more

If only thinking keeps us chained to the past

If something has gone wrong or we think we’ve failed at something there’s the “if only” game: “if only I had gone that way rather than this”, “if only I had listened”, “if only I hadn’t done that deal”, and so on. There’s always some scenario that we can think of that was better than what we actually did that we can mull over as we rue the results of our actions or inactions. Living in “if” is another way of not being in the present moment. Like worry, we imagine some alternative to what’s occuring but this time it … Read more

Is it hard to let go of not having what you want?

Success is a big thing for many people in our society and a source of major frustration. It’s a word that gets plastered all over the place in various people development and personal life change literature. Yet it trips so many of us up. What does the word “success” mean for you? Career success, making loads of money, something aspirational, a certain expensive life style you can afford because you’re “successful”? How do you feel about that? Is there a part of you that wishes it was like that for you, but that you feel frustrated if you were being … Read more

Forgiveness can mean you need to let go of something

Forgiving another can be the really hard bit in dealing with a problem in relationships. Yet that’s so often what we’re told to do, forgive. Part of the problem lies in the term itself. People associate forgiveness with “letting people off”, as though what we are supposed to do is go and say, “You’ve done this but I forgive you.” This can be really difficult, especially as there’s things like hurt pride and a lingering sense that the other person was really at fault. So we have blame involved and we also don’t want to be seen to back down. … Read more