Change can be wonderful, challenging, tough, and inspiring, for better or for worse.
I have been leaning into the realm of change for so long, I find myself this year longing for some solid grounding. Something tangible and reinforced. But even as I dream of this thing.
I know it will change, life will shift and it's the one true thing that will always happen.
I've had significant moments of change in my life, some wonderful and some truly awful. I calle
d on different things at different times. I've made a little list that might help you if you're facing change or hoping to inspire a transformation of sorts.
I recall being 25, I had been living in London since I was 19. I felt stuck, low, lonely
and at a drift. I had worked so many odd little jobs trying to make ends meet as I was auditioning for shows every week or so. The grind and tough reality of the theatre world. I had been told by my professors in school where I should be heading,
what I should be doing. I came so close to my dream job, only to be cut in the 7th round of auditions. My heart had been broken so many times, a rather embarrassing tearful tube journey became the norm. I knew I needed change but I had no idea how to go about it. Stuck between what I 'should' be doing and what I longed for.
The artist way came into my life, through a series of helping hands. and it freed me, it lifted the depression, worry and stuck-ness I had been feeling. It created a gap where I let go of control for a bit and allowed my creative self to be free.
I bought a second-hand Canon camera and I'd sit on the rattling train out of London, to nature reserves where I'd walk for hours and take photos. This activity had no aim, I wasn't good at working the camera, I'd take some pretty terrible photos, but it felt free. When I returned home to my little flat in Walthamstow, I'd paint from the pictures.
The reason I share this story, is because it was one of my most calm and grounded times in my 20's, and I was doing something that had nothing to do with my dreams, goals, etc. But I knew I was changing.
2 months after doing the book, I decided to broaden my horizon, I started auditioning for Crusie ships, and I got the first audition I went for! While packing my bags I looked back on the lists I had made during the artist's way, I dreamt of travel, earning more, being free of London, of learning new languages and meeting new people. All these things came true.
Working on ships wasn't always perfect, it was hard, long and tough at times... homesickness is a real thing! But it was my change, the change I had to push through to create and find.
In my 30's I've experienced different kinds of change, huge loss, which has led to huge
growth and healing. I found sound healing because I had to. To help me manage the changes that were sudden and unexpected. I reached for the tools I already had and added in a few more!
So, sometimes we ARE the change, we just need help being carried forward and other times, we need a tool kit of support to keep us able to step forwards each day.
Things will always change.
So, how can we gather tools that help us weather the shifts and seasons of life?
I'll share here some of the tools I've used over the years.
Breathing. We do it every day, but without much focus, depth and awareness. When we are facing big challenges, taking a few quiet minutes to catch our breath can be a game changer. Helping oxygenate our blood, power up our parasympathetic nervous system and find a sense of grounding. In yogic philosophy, prana is our breath, the essence of energy we take in and expel while we live and breathe. It moves through the body through energetic channels called Nadis. Breath can be transformational. When we are going through good or bad changes, the breath can help facilitate the journey forwards. check out this video I made on Nadi Shodhana breathing(a rather old but decent video!) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yUJkwNlOWH4
Journalling. Feeling stuck? Not sure how to move forwards? Awake at 4 am with 100 ideas that just won't land or come to fruition? Try journaling. I started this in my mid-20s, through the artist way, a book I am currently revisiting. (https://juliacameronlive.com/the-artists-way/) I found the magic way in which writing down all out thoughts can provide space. You don't have to be writing a novel, often the pages are boring, repetitive and mundane. But some wonderful insight can come through and helps us step forwards with more clarity and encourage our creativity to prosper.
Movement. The number 1 way to feel good, is to move. don't overthink it, don't buy loads of fitness gear. Possibly start by going for a long walk, yoga class or put on some 90's tunes in your kitchen and bop around. Your body wants to move, a stagnant body, is a stagnant mind and a life resistant to change.
Support. Learn who your team are, I often don't think we need 100 friends, but a few folks who love you, see you clearly and we catch you when you need them. I'm not saying rely solely on friends, but the community helps us, it reduces anxiety, depression and grief. It makes us feel safe when the ground is shifting beneath us.
Therapy. I know it might not be possible for us all, who are having to watch our budgets and also the fact that post-pandemic there are rarely any spaces. But talk therapy can be the most wonderful way to facilitate change. We can dive into habits, family patterns, limiting beliefs and our emotional state. I'm anadvocate for therapy I had a Gestalt therapist for 3 years and she has been an integral part of my journey.
Space to dream. If we are always doing, going, and actioning, we can't sit back. We actually need to get bored and daydream for our brain to recharge and problem-solve. I've had 'AHA' moments when I walk by the beach with no music, phone, podcast... the problem rolling around in my brain. Or sometimes mid-meditation. Where a gap has created a vacuum for an idea to form.
yes, I had to add it! a Soundbath. Wonder can occur when we rest. Physically, emotionally, and spiritually. If we truly release ourselves into the realms of sound healing, we are free from our journey, narrative and story. Our subconscious has space to light up, images dreams, lights and full-body sensations take you to another realm. Sound can catch you at your very lowest ebb when you are in acute pain or possibly at a wonderful time, when the change feels exciting and wonderful but perhaps also tiring and all-consuming.
Reset or Recharge and find joy. This is so personal. Maybe a recharge means sleeping 10 hours. Or reading a book or dancing to rave music for 10 hours. It's really hard to get a full reset. But do things that make you feel nurtured. Joyful, Heart open and bright.
This summer, I'm loving doing a stronger yoga practice on Goring Green Outside, followed by a sea swim. I adore a good book that I get really hooked into and lastly, time with my new nephew.
Be kind to yourself, as change seems even more frequent and challenging than before. Stay with your heart, your needs and love.
I'd love to see you soon, either at an event, retreat or sound healing.
Here are some links: