Good morning 19.2.13

de clutter shoes

Good morning everyone!! Today I woke slowly, as the mists of sleep gently cleared and left me drifting on the pillow. I let my mind wander for a while, and found myself seeking paths to simplicity, trying again to let go of unanswerable questions. I stretched and breathed in deeply, hopeful for the day ahead. I have some projects I am keen to progress, so I threw back the duvet and headed downstairs in search of coffee.

It’s another sunny day in London, and it seems that more than warmth and light spill through the window to infuse the house with cheerful positivity. I’m inspired by the prospect of spring, and have a strong desire to clean the house, and clear out all the stuff that’s really just stuff, and make space for simplicity. I think that spring is a great time for cleansing our lives, it’s easier to discard the no longer useful when we are feeling hopeful and abundant, rather than clinging on to clutter, just in case we need it again. I think in the winter we cling to comforting possessions, like the layers we dress in, yet when the sun shines, the feeling of lightness and freedom is more tempting.

So today I’m armed with bin liners, one for the charity shop and one for rubbish, and a whole host of good intentions. It’s not just the material things that clutter up our lives, but sometimes it helps to start with the tangible, where we can appreciate that getting rid of the old makes room for the new. I think those things we keep that are no longer of use, are just our fears manifested through the insecurity that stops us releasing them. And fears, like the clothes at the back of the wardrobe, no longer fit or suit our current situation, so they just prevent space for growth and clarity. For once we remove all that ‘stuff’ that’s obscuring the view, we can focus on the important things and make an impact where it really matters.

So I am going to get busy, searching for simplicity amongst the ‘stuff’ and I’m letting go of the fears along with the memories. Where we have been (and what we wore) may have shaped our past, but we can redesign the future ahead of us, and I’m choosing an elegant style of simplicity, in much more than just my wardrobe! I hope you have a gorgeous day and I wonder what you will shed from your life to make room for new opportunities too? Blessings & love ♥ Hxx

{Photo sadly uncredited, via Pinterest}

Good morning 18.2.13

cable sweater

One simple, positive thought in the morning can make such a difference to the day ahead of you. Maybe gratitude for something small, or just shrinking your worries by choosing a different perspective. There is always a reason to smile, find it early and enjoy it all day long! Happy Monday everyone!! ♥ Hxx

{Photo sadly uncredited, via Pinterest}

Hope springs..

leggy am1

Good morning everyone!! Today I woke late as dreams of possibilities, that no longer seem tangible, slipped through my fingers like fine sand in a sea breeze. I lay on the pillow, lamenting the loss a little before focusing on the present to find that the reality I am left holding is not such a hard truth to swallow, and I decide to chase it down with a soya latte. The sunlight pushing at the curtains, burst into the room as I drew them, like a playful puppy that bounces around everything a little too enthusiastically. I stood for a while with my forehead against the cool glass of the window pane, and closed my eyes to feel the light on my skin, before smiling up at the baby blue sky that continues endlessly on this beautiful morning.

I made my latte and sat on the sunny end of the sofa, chatting to dear GH on the telephone, making plans for later, and moved my legs to catch the rays that stream through the window. I imagine for a moment that I’m planning a walk along the beach, rather than tea in Richmond; and right on cue, a cloud floats in to relocate my thoughts back to a February day in London. The daffodils on the mantelpiece remain cheerful, and promise that it might not be here yet, but spring is coming, and the clouds move to reveal the sun reassuringly. And I wonder where hope would flourish if we didn’t face disappointment, would spring’s beauty be appreciated without the winter it follows, and could we build new dreams if we didn’t let go of the old ones? ..and then my mind was back to wondering about which beach I would like to wander along..

I hope that the sun shines on your part of the world today too, but if it isn’t, know that it will come back again soon. Blessings & love ❤ Hxx

{Photo sadly uncredited, via kikisloane.tumblr}


heart break

Hearts break, that’s just what they do. Lungs breathe, livers detoxify, stomachs digest, brains think (from time to time), and hearts break, and ache, and bleed inside, they drive us insane with questions we can’t answer; oh yes, and they pump blood too! I think maybe our hearts break to teach us things that we’re too stubborn to take from the brain, whose teaching is logical, which our hearts aren’t at all. At least I like to think they break for a reason, that the pain we feel isn’t all for nothing, because wouldn’t that be an awful waste? I think my heart first broke to teach me humility, kindness and compassion, that relationships aren’t easy and shouldn’t be taken for granted, and that probably loving myself was a big part of the equation. Well I wish it was just the one, tough, terrible lesson; but it seems I had more to learn, because I somehow kept enrolling in that same class, and managed to flunk it again and again.

I believe our hearts are fragile for a reason, so that we know to handle with great care and respect, those of others that we are given. I suspect that hearts break to teach us resilience; so that we come to understand that once they’ve been busted and hurt and trodden in the dirt, that they will scrape themselves together eventually, dust themselves down, and hopefully be brave enough to risk it all again. Because the amazing thing about hearts is, that no matter how bruised and battle scarred they get, they have an amazing capacity to keep on working, and will love indefinitely if we let them.

I think hearts break to show us that no matter how bad it seems, that love is stronger than the worst we can imagine, and then we can truly appreciate what a wonderful gift we have been given. So please don’t hide your heart away, or protect it too tightly for fear of pain, because hearts are masters of recovery, and each time they show us a different reason for whatever they drag us through. Have a little faith, be brave, because yes, hearts break, but they keep on loving

{Photo sadly uncredited, via Pinterest}


kiss bench

Love isn’t practical or rational or sensible or convenient.. in fact it’s often rather disruptive and awkward and if you’re really lucky it turns your world upside down and inside out and gets you into all sorts of trouble, none of which really matters of course, when you’re in love. You know it’s love when it’s at least slightly insane, completely ridiculous, totally inappropriate. It often seems to happen when it’s least expected, when life really doesn’t need any more complications or extra stuff that needs figuring, especially all those feelings of fear and vulnerability that accompany the faster heartbeat and weakness at the knees. It can cause you to stumble and question all the other aspects of your life that you thought were important, and you may wonder why suddenly all that seemed so clear and gave you direction, starts to feel uncertain and full of elements requiring procrastination. Chances are you’ll fall for someone who’s not at all ‘your type’, who doesn’t come close to meeting the criteria you thought was important, and who fails to tick most of those boxes, even if you didn’t realize you had any. Someone who at first didn’t seem like a threat to your sanity, will find a way to your heart when you weren’t paying attention, simply because your defences were down and let you be yourself rather than the persona you think will be more attractive. They will be the reason you are distracted, lose your appetite, can’t wipe the dirty big grin off your face or sleep at night. When life throws you this particular curve ball and you’re feeling unsettled and unsure, I want you to know that nothing is certain, except that love is what we’re here for, whether we’re being knocked over by it, or we’re struggling to survive it, or our hearts are bleeding, or we’re hoping, somewhere we’re afraid to admit, that it will happen again. Love can grow and evolve, and as it develops it’s strength lies in its ability to shine in the dark, and brighten up the ordinary. Because love isn’t all roses, or easy, or even logical, but it is the most important thing. The most wonderful thing that will happen to you in your lifetime will be love, in one form or another, be brave, embrace it, take any chance you have for it! Here’s some love from me to send you in the right direction : )) Happy Valentines day ♥ Hxx

{Photo sadly uncredited, via Pinterest}

Happy Valentines Day xx

love birds

Happy Valentines day!! I’m wishing you lots of love, not necessarily the cards and flowers kind of love, but the love that you feel because someone believes in you, somebody supports your dreams and cares about the things that you do. I hope you have the love that has seen you at your worst, but keeps on loving you; and that the love that sees your best and bursts with pride for you. I hope that someone cares about the little things, and notices when you’re not 100%, and is there with support instead of criticism, and really listens to your problems, giving empathy and hugs rather than advice and solutions. I hope that you are loved so that you feel the strength of someone beside you, and the courage that facing things together can give you. I hope that your smile is someone’s favourite view and that your laughter is their favourite sound too. I hope someone makes you sparkle, even on the days it’s especially hard to do, but that someone knows the way to your heart even when you’re obscuring the view. I hope that you are loved for who you are; that somebody can see beyond your appearance and achievements to appreciate the soul that resides within. I hope that you are loved for your kindness, compassion and understanding, for your courage, integrity and generosity, rather than the way you look, the job you do, or the car you drive; I hope people can see beyond your achievements to appreciate the personal qualities that helped you reach them. I hope that you have a love that gives you a reason to smile every single day, and makes something in your heart sing. I hope that you love enough to let that love in too.. Happy Valentines day ♥ With love & kisses, Hxx

{Artwork sadly uncredited, via Pinterest}

Necks direction


Good morning everyone!! Today I struggled to wake, slowly shedding some dream that seemed to have all the answers to my waking questions, as I slipped from sleep into the day. I eventually succumbed to wakefulness, emerging from the nest of pillows and duvet to notice sharply a pain in the neck. It’s a familiar injury that reoccurs from time to time, and I like to joke that my brains are too heavy, but I know that it has a more emotional etiology. So I carefully slipped on my cosy robe, and made my way downstairs for coffee.

It’s another grey day in London, but it’s not raining or snowing; and there is a quietness that feels like a gap in time, though the clocks are still ticking. I sat quietly for a while, just listening to my heart, and noticed those feelings of being stuck in a situation. Of course we are rarely really stuck, we simply struggle with what we have to compromise to move on, sometimes this is just the recognition that things aren’t as they seemed, and sometimes it means letting go of things we must release to move forward. Sometimes it’s just admitting that we’re being stubborn Change can be difficult, that’s not to say that at the same time it’s not exciting and liberating, but when we focus on what we’re releasing rather than where it leads us, it’s tempting to cling to the familiar, hoping it will get better, because we’re unsure of what the future holds for us.

So today I am focusing on the possibilities, and imagining the wonderful adventures just waiting, I’m rubbing my neck and wondering, really, what’s the best that could happen? ..and then I realize that being patient with myself would be a good start, so I’m being careful with my neck, but I’m facing forward, and I’m smiling! I hope you have a wonderful day, whatever you’re up to, and that if you’re making changes, or even just decisions about changes, that you focus on what you’re gaining in opportunities for growth and relish the new directions opening up in front of you!

Blessings & love, Hxx

{Photo sadly uncredited, via Pinterest}

Spring inspiration

spring coffee

Good morning everyone!! Today I woke from a deep, sweet, sleep, finding myself curled up in the duvet amongst a plethora of pillows. I lay for a moment in my comfortable nest, as a hint of a dream evaporated rapidly, before stirring to start the day ahead with the thought of coffee. It’s a cold start here in London, and the chill in the air caught me as I threw back the covers, so I wrapped up quickly in something cosy, and made my way downstairs to find it’s snowing.

It’s a cold, wet snow that falls faster than it’s crispy counterpart, and although it sits prettily on the rooftops opposite, it seems too heavy for the trees, leaving their bare branches standing spiky and resilient. I lit a candle, and curled up with my latte as the fig fragrance filled the room, reminding me of places I would rather be. I smile at the cheerful daffodils on the coffee table, a promise that spring is coming, eventually. February finds me most impatient for summer’s return, and I find myself searching online for deals to far flung destinations, where the sun shines optimistically and beaches stretch further than my budget.

Still, it’s a good day to stay inside and be productive, so I remained on the sofa a while addressing emails and getting caught up in the start of the working week, as plans and ideas start to open like the buds of early spring flowers. I have some creative projects that have been on hold for a while, as I have been directing my energy down other avenues, but today I have a chance to resume that spark, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s snowing outside because in my mind it’s spring already! There is something consuming about the creative process that enables us to get lost in the moment. I find something keeps me anchored in the present as I work with my hands, absorbed in the flow, distracted from worries.. and the weather. So as the wind swirls the snow, which is now falling heavily, I’m wishing you a gorgeous day, whatever you’re up to, and hope some creativity inspires you!

Blessings & love, Hxx

{Picture sadly uncredited, via Pinterest}

Rainy days and opportunities


Good morning everyone! It has been a very busy week, and the opportunity to laze on the sofa and write this today feels like a luxury. It’s a damp, grey, rainy day in London, and as I sit on the sofa with my latte I watch the rain drops race down the window pane, snuggling under the cashmere throw dear ADS gave me. It feels like I’m fighting off a cold, which wouldn’t be surprising, stress depletes the body of immune fighting nutrients, and I’ve been stood in the less than clement weather on several occasions.

At the beginning of the week I gave a presentation on the detrimental effects stress can have on our bodies, sabotaging health, fitness, and waistlines too; since our hormones conduct our appetites and metabolism. I spoke to a larger audience than usual, in fact I’m more familiar with 1:1 consultations, which gave me an opportunity to observe my own stress response, particularly in the preparation. Stress is a largely unavoidable part of modern life, but much of it also depends on our choices, and sometimes it’s a worthy exercise to reflect on those elements. I often see patients who are neglecting their health and happiness as they strive to achieve in areas of work, or sport, or being the best at everything; as their health and happiness suffer tremendously. Sometimes it helps to take a step back and gain a little perspective.

This week I have observed lots of stress, my friend ADS had her laptop stolen on a short flight to Spain from Switzerland, it seems it was lifted from her hand luggage whilst in the overhead locker, something she failed to check before disembarkation, because who would think anyone would be so cheeky? Having endured the expense of a trip to Apple, she then discovered her time-machine back-up is defunct, so two years of her business development appear to be lost, and she’s devastated. My consolation attempts are limited to acknowledging her anger and frustration, as I try to focus on the things she CAN do, and the things she DOES have; whilst she laments her loss. There are some things we simply cannot change, and acceptance of such is a key step to moving forward. For ADS this feels like a bereavement, and she is going through the painful process.

I had another bereaved friend this week, I accompanied dear GH to a funeral as she said good bye to a man that seemed to have filled his short 50 years with an extraordinary amount of life, an action hero with a reputation for being jolly. As I sat and listened to his friends and family deliver his eulogy, it gave me cause to reflect on what I would want my own to be. I wondered about my life currently, and what my present concerns mean in the bigger picture, am I focusing on the things that really matter, or am I stressing about details unnecessarily?

So this morning, I am relishing the opportunity of just watching the rain, as I curl up on the sofa with my latte. I’m taking time out to assess what’s really important, and which aspects truly don’t deserve the energy expenditure I have been spending. And I know that some of life’s stress is unavoidable, but I’m going to try and monitor whether those levels of damage I inflict on my well-being, reflect the gravitas of the issues in the over-all picture. As I write the rain continues to fall, and the grey day beyond the window looks cold and uninviting, but I am grateful for the blessing. I’m privileged because I still have an opportunity to impact the meaning of my life, I have choices and the chance to make changes that may reflect in my eulogy, so I’m working on it! I hope that today you have a chance too, to choose a life with less stress about the little things. I’m off to meet dear LS for coffee and a dance in some puddles : )) Much love & blessings from a work in progress ♥ Hxx

Big blots & little blots

bath blot

Good Morning everyone!! Today I woke gently, drifting between here and there as I hung out in the shallows for a while, enjoying the waves of dreams that gently washed over me. Eventually the day seeped into my consciousness with all it’s plans and responsibilities, so I stretched my full length and grabbed a robe to make my way downstairs for coffee.

Another dull, grey, day greeted me as I smiled gratefully at my knight in shining armour, aka my coffee machine, and the rich, dark elixir hissed into the mug. As I sat on the sofa contemplating the clouds in my coffee, the sun emerged to bounce off geraniums on the window sill, and sparkle generously, a reminder that spring, like hope returns eventually. After breakfast I practiced my presentation, I’m still nervous but I think I’m improving. One of my biggest stumbling blocks is that when I make a mistake talking to myself, it’s too tempting to stop and start again, rather than talk my way through it. Of course we all make mistakes, and in normal conversation our thoughts seem to fit the speed of our speech, but as I practice my presentation I realize they race ahead and panic.

I took a break to run a hot bath and lay amidst oils of lavender, ylang ylang and petigrain, I thought about other mistakes I have made and how to carry on. We can’t always fix everything that gets broken, but we can admit our faults and change direction. Then there are times when the mistakes seem to dominate a situation, like a big blot of ink on a page of otherwise neat handwriting. Some blots we can live with, small errors that illustrate our authenticity; others seep too deeply into the paper and mar the work that we’re proud of. Sometimes we just have to recognise that the big blots are too distracting, and it’s worth screwing up that particular piece of paper and starting again. Of course this doesn’t apply to the presentation I’m practicing, but there are some mistakes I’ve made that are too big to ignore, and the lovely thing is, there’s a beautiful blank sheet of paper waiting, and I’m ready to begin!

I hope you have a gorgeous day, whatever you’re up to, and that you don’t let the little errors upset you, but also that you realize you don’t have to live with the big ones. Sometimes life has a funny way of letting us know when it’s time to move on, and maybe that dirty, great, ink blot happens to be one of them.

{Photo sadly uncredited, via Pinterest}