Monthly Archives: March 2016

ME AND MONEY…..DYSFUNCTION, AND AN A LEVEL IN GUILT!

I have had a dysfunctional relationship with money for much of my life…….our weird history goes back as far as primary school. I can clearly remember certain circumstances that caused me stress, even though I was only 8 or 9, an age at which one would think money would be meaningless. I still remember my mother asking to borrow the one shilling and three old pennies pocket money my father would give me, when he called round to make his weekly maintenence payment…….and my heart would sink, knowing I wouldn’t be seeing it again. I don’t remember ever being hungry, but I do remember being routinely humiliated in front of the whole school, most monday mornings, because I didn’t have my dinner money. We’d all have to gather and be called up, one by one, to hand over the week’s fee……and more often than not I’d be shaking with dread, knowing what was coming. “YOU again…..I’m going to report you to the council!” was one of the regular threats. Of course, that didn’t happen…..or maybe it did, but the council certainly didn’t show up to take me away or arrest me! Nevertheless, the feeling of being less worthy than others, and the feeling that money was ‘bad’ (because of all the pain it appeared to create), began to take root. And, as I was to discover as I grew older, those roots ran deep!

We had the electricity disconnected, through lack of payment, and eventually did a ‘runner’ from our council house, early one morning. I was 10 years old, and had become unconsciously but effectively programmed to relate to money in a particular way…..a way that led to many, many more painful and distressing experiences over the years. I went to live with my father and stepmother when I was 11, and their attitude towards money was at the opposite end of the spectrum to my mother’s. They were incredibly tight, and controlled money with a pair of iron fists. As a young teenager, I did not have a warm relationship with my stepmother, and I was too self conscious to ask for sanitary protection….and she didn’t go out of her way to make sure I was okay. So, I would need to purchase towels for myself, out of my meagre weekly pocket money….and often I couldn’t afford them. One more nail in the coffin of my incredibly ailing relationship with money and self worth.

But you see, this programming was personal to ME. Others, having faced similar or worse circumstances, processed the experience differently and vowed never to struggle with money again. We all make choices, based on our beliefs and perceptions, and our choices always lead to outcomes. The trick lies in recognising where our beliefs are hurting rather than helping us, and doing something about it!

My weird, uncomfortable relationship with money eventually led me to seek out a better way of being. I have had some amazing people in my life who have been more than willing to help me…..people with a healthier, happier attitude than my own toward money and abundance. But I had to learn to take responsibility for my own deep seated, irrational beliefs (such as: what right do I have to want more money when there are people on the planet who are starving to death?). I have always worked hard, and have always had enthusiasm, passion and a desire to learn……but I really struggled to get beyond that particular road block, time after time. I have read a zillion self help books, know all about the law of attraction, and have advised others……whilst still struggling to get one step ahead. I have watched endless ‘gurus’ on Youtube telling me I can have all the stuff I want…..I just have to believe it, and visualise it….and it will all show up.

But I recognised that I was uncomfortable with the idea of just having things, having more cash……without healing the inner damage. I wanted to make friends with money, to heal the old injuries, and be at peace with financial success and comfort. It was never about stuff…..it was about my own inner world, and my sense of personal worth. I researched lottery winners, and found that a large number of people who ‘strike it rich’ end up blowing the lot, finding themselves worse off  than they were before the win. People killed others over lottery wins, and spouses left partners, without revealing their new found wealth. However, some made their millions work for them, buying and developing properties, starting businesses…..investing in the future. And I understood that money is not about metal, paper or electronic figures….it is about mindset. A poor abundance mentality is probably the most crippling condition a human being can afflicted by. The world doesn’t need more poor people, and there is no glory in being skint, or just having enough to scrape by. It is NEVER going to be a spiritually, mentally or emotionally healthy way to live.

And here is a quote that put it all into perspective for me, and made it possible for me to begin the healing process. If you can relate to what I have expressed, you may find it useful. It kind of spoke to me in my own language, and to my desire to continually re – define and improve myself. In short, it gave me ‘permission’ to embrace abundance, without the need for guilt. And by the way, I went to a Catholic primary school. To quote Billy Connolly, I gained an A level in guilt! Anyway, here are the words that made a world of difference to my thinking:

The true meaning of prosperity doesn’t lie in having more things. It means that you begin to advance mentally, spiritually and intellectually, as well as socially and financially.

Dr. Joseph Murphy.

 

LIVING IN HOPE…….AND PROBABLY DYING THERE!

I have made messes in my own life more times than I can count. Finances, relationships, work…….you name it, I’ve cocked things up, accepted stuff I shouldn’t have accepted, made ridiculous decisions, reacted instead of responding……and yes, there are some things I would go back and change, if I could. I once heard someone say they never regret anything….well, that sounds great in theory, but to be honest, I didn’t believe them then, and I still don’t!

However, I must have done some good stuff as well. The evidence? Well, I have some great people in my life, and I have made it this far without losing that childlike optimism that my ex husband thought was such a waste of time (“You live in la la land…..I have to live in the REAL world”, to which I would respond “Well, maybe you should relocate……it seems so much nicer where I live)…..you know, the belief that everything will all turn out okay anyway…….if not sooner then later. And I now live in hope (next town along from la la land), and it isn’t too bad, on the whole. I sometimes climb the big hill that lies on the outskirts of the town called Hope, and try to catch glimpses of the next town several miles along, through the occasional gaps that appear in the swirling mist, and I gaze upon the smiling, satsified, happy faces of the residents of the place called Made It……..and I think “Someday…..someday…….just keep going……you’re bound to find the road that leads there…..THEY did, so it must be possible….”

But then I realise I am hooked on the journey, and that the town called Made It probably only exists in my mind. Living in Hope kind of messes with the brain, and shows each individual whatever he or she wishes to see. In my version of Made It, I don’t owe a single soul a single penny. I am calm, wise and responsive, rather than reactive. I ride my own gorgeous motorbike brilliantly, and it always starts first time, come rain or shine. My work leads me to help others to connect with their own amazing potential, and to develop their own personal relationship with the creative force of life. And in my version of Made It, my mind doesn’t wander off down doubtful, negative, gloomy pathways, at the drop of a hat: I work hard and play hard (and drink copious amounts of alcohol without becoming anything more than a little tipsy)……and….oh to hell with it….I am also a best selling author who entertains and inspires, I sing and play guitar almost as amazingly as Susan Tedeschi, and I get to drive a Formula 1 car (by now God is saying “Oh come onnnnnn…….even I can’t arrange THAT stuff!”).  But without that image of arriving, baggage and all, at the border of Made It, and without the belief in its existence, there couldn’t/wouldn’t be a journey. Well there would be……but it would be a journey of survival, heading towards a place called Nowhere In Particular.

You know, I reckon I may end my days, still living in Hope……but at least I’ll die with a smile on my face, silently mouthing “Someday…..someday…..” . Cheers.

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THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVOURITE THINGS…….

I spent a couple of hours trawling Youtube this week, rediscovering old forgotten songs, and it was blissful! The Small Faces, the Monkees, the Hollies, the Fortunes and the Searchers. I love music, especially rock and blues, but hey, I have everything on my phone from Doris Day to ACDC…….there is something for every mood.

I finished the last of the three Hunger Games books this week…..and I was devastated. I held it in my hands for ages after I turned the last page, wondering how Susanne Collins could have done it…….the characters, the constant forward movement, the rawness……..I couldn’t believe I had to say goodbye to Katniss Everdeen, but at least the ending was satisfying, and made sense.

I was mesmerised, watching Guy Martin, on his £250,000 motorbike, competing with David Coulthard, in a £500,000 Red Bull F1 car, on tv this week……and touched by the ‘bromance’ that developed between the two of them……two really nice, humble but very talented guys.

I went for a meal, in a very nice restaurant, with my three children and their partners, yesterday……something I don’t think has ever happened before……don’t think we’ve actually all been in the same place at the same time!

I gathered a number of my testimonials from satisfied customers together today, to add to my website…..and it was really nice to read and appreciate positive comments and feedback!

I spent two hours with my eldest daughter’s partner today, as he educated me on internet related stuff, and it was fascinating……..I still have so much to learn, but hey, I have already put some of it to good use! And he gave me a new touch screen phone……I am still hanging onto my beloved old Blackberry…..one step at a time!

Listened to Jason Donovan on Heart FM, in the car, this evening……80’s sounds……Wham, Jocelyn Brown, Level 42, Paul Simon……..didn’t want to finish the journey! What would we do without all these moments, all these precious pleasures? Still got problems, like everyone else, but I have had plenty to smile about this week……including the sound of thunder, and pounding hailstones clattering off the roof, today….scary, but kind of exciting too!

REJECTION…..AND A BETTER FUTURE!

Christine was hurting over a relationship that wasn’t a relationship, if you know what I mean.
She hadn’t seen Michael for months, though there had been sporadic text messages. He would say he loved her, but then ignore her texts for weeks……and then get in touch to tell her he still loved her…….and then ignore her again.
Christine wanted to know ‘when’ she and Michael would be together, ‘when’ he would commit to her……always when, not ‘if’.

Steve was weary……his wife had just filed for divorce, following a separation, and he had tried everything he could to patch things up. She would say one thing and then do another, give him hope and then snatch it away. He was emotionally drowning, and I suspect, had had several consultations with various other readers, hoping to hear something that would keep him going.

I have read for thousands of Christines and Steves, and they very often have one thing in common: THERE IS A BETTER, HAPPIER FUTURE, WITH A MORE COMPATIBLE PARTNER, somewhere further down the line! At the time they consult with me, they don’t believe that of course. In fact some of them become quite cross with me. And some of them refuse to let go, even allowing years to pass whilst they wait, and hope, and hurt. Eleanor told me that she ‘would NEVER give up’ on a man she hadn’t seen for two years. She considered it to be ‘real’ love, because it hurt, and because she was willing to sacrifice her own potential future happiness for someone who had made a life with someone else. You know how the old saying goes: if it hurts, it must be good for us! I really hope Eleanor doesn’t leave it too long, before opening her heart and mind to someone who will really value, appreciate and love her. He is out there, on the planet, as I type this……she just needs to turn her face to the sun, her back to the wind, spend a little time getting to know and enjoy herself again, and leave a space for a loving partner to step into.

One thing I often ask customers such as Christine, Steve and Eleanor is: “IS this LOVE?” True, even the best relationships have their ups and downs, but how does love actually behave….how does it feel? If there is more consistent pain, more uncertainty and more loneliness than there is comfort, emotional intimacy and shared fun…..IS it love?

I have a theory. Rejection is one of the hardest things to accept, to face, to grow beyond……and rejection is virtually always at the bottom of major relationship/love pain. To avoid the horrors of rejection, we can often find ourselves clinging on, even to people we don’t actually care that much for, if the truth be told! Sometimes we are genuinely shocked to be rejected….not expecting it, genuinely heartbroken. But more times it is the rejection itself that is hurting, rather than the loss of that person in our life. In many cases, there has been a history of struggle, of underlying resentment, of disappointment, before the relationship collapses into a messy pile. And if we experience rejection more than a couple of times, we can find ourselves attracting the same kinds of people and situations over and over….leading to more rejection. I have read for countless numbers of clients stuck in that trap, and they are always suffering.

But you know, nothing ever stays the same….every second and every minute passes by, life continuously rolls on, and we can, if we have faith, roll with it. The pain of rejection we feel today can be healed in a month or a year, and will eventually become a still frame on the face of time. Unless of course we use every ounce of our being to keep our mind and our emotions attached to what HAS to become part of the past. We can become mummified in our own mind and in our own life……and who likes the sound of that? There is always a new future, always new opportunities, new friends, new loves, beyond the horizon of the pain of rejection and the fear of change. We just have to hold our head high, keep our eyes forward, and embrace the pain…..and put one foot in front of the other. The journey may well be shorter and easier than we feared!