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Reflecting on Denying Me

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At the weekend, whilst sitting outside the house where my grandparents spent their entire marriage of over seventy years together, I spent a few minutes reflecting on my life. As I sat there quietly, paused, remembering so many good times, a lump came to my throat. But not for the loss of, or indeed gratitude for my grandparents, but the loss of something much deeper within me.
Looking at that house and recalling so many wonderful times there as a child, I remembered the innocence of a childhood uninhibited and uncontaminated by broken marriages, broken relationships, broken or failed businesses, uncontaminated by broken dreams. The innocence of a dreamy childhood uncontaminated by so many experiences of life as an adult.
That lump in my throat was for all those years I was lost, spent in relationships I didn’t want to be in, that were not good for me, that had me be the subject of abuse, where there was a lack of self-love, kindness and connection. A lump in my throat for so many adult years doing work I didn’t want to do, just to survive, just to get through each day and each week, through to each months pay check and all the pay checks between each Christmas, each year.
I felt a mixture of appreciation and sadness at so many years of this life already lived. Like many of us, so many of those years I would, of course, have lived differently with the wisdom those experiences brought, such is the paradox of life, and of course, life simply doesn’t work that way.
I rarely feel regret, I have already lived a very full life, one for which I’m enormously grateful, and have been privileged to have participated in bringing up a family, and travelled to many beautiful parts of this world.
But the lump in my throat, reflecting outside that house at the weekend, brought a message that choked me inside.
‘Don’t settle!’
Don’t settle for less than what you want, irrespective of whether you believe you can have it. So many times in my life I thought ‘well this is as good as it gets.’ And it never was. In fact, mostly it was never even as good as I was trying to tell myself it was.
‘Don’t settle!’ - Such a clear message from the last thirty years of my life.
It’s taken me two marriages and a few relationships that didn’t ‘work out’ to see very clearly what kind of relationship I want and all that I bring. Similarly, whilst I was very successful in my twenty-six year corporate career, it’s only in the last six to seven years or so that I have felt I am very much in my zone of genius and living into the purpose of my life.
It’s taken me this long to get real honest about what I want, and this long to say ‘fuck it!’ to any thoughts around it not being possible.
For many years I dared not even look deeply into what I wanted, in my relationships or my vocation. I settled for what I thought was possible and allowed my inner desires for freedom, love, exploration, creation, affection and kindness, to be quelled by those illusionary edges of ‘this is as good as it gets.’
Fuck that!
I have clarity about what I want in life and how I want my life to be like never before. Many things have become crystal clear to me over the past few years, and few months, and I see that what I want IS possible because of who I am!
I am part of the infinite creative potential of the universe. And damn dishy with it too!
So instead of settling, what if we opened our hearts to what we really want and allowed those desires out into the world, without the illusionary limits of what we believe is possible?
My grandparents lived an incredibly simple life, loved each other and cared about each other dearly, and were so devoted to each other. It’s a very different world now to what it was for them seventy, fifty, even twenty years ago.
Yet it’s not that less is possible now; more is possible. We live in a world where travel is easier than it’s ever been, where it’s easier to connect with people than it’s ever been, it’s easier to meet people all over the world than it’s ever been. Maybe there is a downside in that it does, at times to me at least, seem it is more difficult to connect with people local to us, in our own towns and cities, without resorting to virtual connections in the online world. People seem to be at home on their computers or, when out and about, on their smartphones.
But overall I believe the world today brings potential to our fingertips in ways that my Grandparents couldn’t even conceive. So much is possible now. So much help and support is also available to us now. We have a coaching profession, truly one of the most beautiful professions in the world.
I have a renewed determination to make this next phase of my life the best it’s ever been. For the first time in my life I am feeling, with depth, that I am deserving of the love I want, and know it is me that has to give that to me. And it is me that can bring love into everything I do, my relationships and my work. I see time and time again, with my clients and in my own life, that anything really is possible. I’m done with settling for less.
All of us use our fears to keep us safe, yet for many of us that also means keeping ourselves from what we really want and what is here for us. None of us has to settle for a dead relationship or dead-end job. We have the creative potential of the universe flowing through us. We have the creative power and wisdom of love available to us, always.
We must listen to love, and start by listening to what it is we would love to do, and how we would truly love our life to be. Just as my Grandparents did.
Not to listen to fears and false beliefs of limitation, but to get real honest about our desires and to listen to love. This is what I am here to help people see and do. This is what it is to truly love ourselves.
Thank you, dear Grandma & Pop.
Love always.