The Path To Your Real Self

Nature-WallpaperAt first the search for your Real Self can be imbued with an ambition to be more than you think you are. Not content with being a mere mortal but wanting to project yourself as a super person. I have a friend whose verbal tag line is ‘I don’t do ordinary – I do excellent’ which, would be seen in the world of commerce as commendable. But authentic self is about the simple act of being, living what you love, without the constraints of trying to achieve. The egotistical ways of wanting more, being more will need to slough away for you to live the authentic you.   Simply by being you become a beacon to others. I prefer to embrace ‘I DO DO ordinary, but I live it extraordinarily well.’

The intention of seeking your Real Self causes the ego to go into defence mode to keep you safe in your status quo; it only knows the well-worn path of your trampling belief system and its hunger to be recognised. And like any good defender of its perceived realm it will create strategies to slow you and stop you from reclaiming your authentic sovereignty of your Real Self.

 

Asking yourself ‘what do I love?’ is the key to finding your Real Self. For some this question will easy, they have always known from childhood where the direction of their true gifts lies. But for others whose truth has been in hiding it will need more persistence. Whether the initial answer comes easily or with a dedicated effort the repeated practise of asking ‘what do I love?’ intuitively rather than intellectually will get you there.

Why intuitively? Any intellectual deliberation will always be permeated with our default thinking. By setting our intention to receive intuitively we are tapping into our own reliable source of truth.

Before you dismiss receiving an ‘intuitive’ answer as something new age, bordering on flaky, consider the following. Leading scientific and philosophical thinkers of our time valued intuition above intellect. Evidence of this may be found in telling quotes from Albert Einstein (‘The only real valuable thing is intuition) Henri Poincare, Frank Capra, Jonas Salk, Immanuel Kant, Lao Tzu, Steve Jobs and many others. But Robert Graves, poet, novelist and critic put it most succinctly – Intuition is the supra-logic that cuts out all the routine processes of thought and leaps straight from the problem to the answer.

 We have all heard about the fireman whose insistent inner voice commanded him to get out of the burning house moments before the flaming beams crashed to the spot where he had been standing. A powerful  illustration of intuitive guidance that is available to us if only we will listen. We can tap into our intuition any time but most of us dismiss that patient quiet voice of guidance or action.

Purposeful intuition is accessed best in a quiet, still environment – meditation or a time spent communing with nature. I like to put myself in an imaginary circle. I see the circle as a sacred space. Silently voice your intention to serve yourself and to receive. At first the mind likes to throw up all kinds of dross – simply observe and acknowledge, as you would clouds moving slowly across a sky.

You will find Intuition delivers answers in different ways; you may get a symbol, a song, a feeling, a written word or a clearly spoken message in your head. Occasionally the answer might not come at that time but will come later in a synchronistic manner that defies ignoring. If the answer is obtuse look at what is obvious about this, what it might mean to you, if you’re unsure ask for more clarity. But the more you practice, answers are more easily read.

The question ‘what do I love?’ seems simple but we are multi dimensional beings who delight in many things from a hug from a loved one, a picture of a baby, coffee with a friend, a favourite book, good movie or a walk on the beach. Some characteristics of things that you are good at may give you direction but you will need to sift through these to elicit the most powerful connection. But frequently asking the question ‘what do I love?’ will plumb the depths and breadths of the real you.

There was nothing original in the title Finding Your Voice my self-help guide to public speaking book . Variations of ‘finding your voice,’ ‘having a voice’ or simply ‘a voice,’ are well known metaphors and cliché for living your truth. But my unwitting and decisive choice of naming it Finding Your Voice proved to be the open door and ongoing breadcrumb trail to who I am. At first the answer was generic – ‘a writer’ but as I kept asking the question I saw that it was leading me down paths that I had never considered. Giving me temerity to write a novel, speak up for what my heart and muse perceives as social injustice or  simply a desire to share a travel adventure. And wait,  I know there is more ….. I just need to keep asking ‘what do I love?’

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Follow the Crumbs ……

Follow the crumbs....
Follow the crumbs….

Since 9.11 there has been a spate of reported incidents of people randomly seeing the number 11.11. You know the type of thing –  11.11 jumps at you from a page, a scoreboard, bus time-table,petrol bowser or a mystical grab of a digital clock at exactly 11.11. Chance maybe, coincidence definitely but for some it is happening beyond mere chance and coincidence.

A journey of self-discovery will nudge us with cryptic clues that are intended to guide us. Three words, Finding Your Voice, the title of my first book  had been flirting with my subconscious to no avail for several years. After all I had found my heart, writing was without doubt the imprimatur of my soul. I needed no goading no nudging into writing, my computer became my altar where running words in my head was given the breath of life from the keyboard. But during this past year or so the synchronistic crumbs of FYV have been unrelenting in getting me to see a bigger picture.

Sometimes things can be so blooming obvious that we are blind to them. But my muse was not – she was insistent that social injustices needed a commentary until words circled my head like vultures looking for a feed and only quietened when I found my voice through my Blog or a Face book posting.

Finding Your Voice, which I had chosen so decisively for my book of self-help guide to public speaking, was much more than a title; from the very start I could now see that it had been an intuitive directive for me to find my own voice. Yes I spoke in public but throughout my life I had always held back anything that might be regarded as contentious. But the paradox was any voice suppressed is under enormous pressure and when grievances reach danger levels we erupt. All of the stuff that I should have said in a reasonable balanced way blasted pugnaciously from me like a scene from The Exorcist. So for someone whose ego so desperately wanted to please and be liked it was a tough road to consciousness.

I understand now how each synchronistic piece of the puzzle fell into place knowing that finding my voice and speaking or writing it in a well-considered manner is inherent to writing with authority as well as being crucial to my well-being and sense of authenticity.

But of course the crumb trail of Finding Your Voice is still much more. Look out for my next Blog about how I can help you find your voice, your truth.

finding-your-voice1

Finding Your Voice was published by Lothian in 1985 and was promoted as the definitive self-help guide to public speaking. The first part of the book was the how to and the second half devoted to every type of presentation that may be undertaken by the reader – from eulogy to debating and workshop presentation to after dinner speaker. Now out of distribution it is available in public libraries and recently can be purchased as an E-Book on Kindle.

 

 

Why Are We Here?

Question Everything Clean_0You know those quiet moments that come from time to time when your pragmatic ego is off duty and the sub conscious unimpeded bubbles the profound question to the surface – ‘what is my purpose, why am I here?’

For some years now, like many others, I have been on a quest to find the answers that philosophers over the centuries have tried to answer. I am in a hurry for answers as my lifetime time has fleeted by but as George Eliot, pen name of the Victorian ‘Mill on the Floss’ novelist Mary Ann Evans, said ‘It is never too late to be what you might have been.’

So a few years back, with some determination and a pinch of courage,  I began some serious transformational work. The marrow of the work I chose, posed a question, ‘what do you love?’ The authentic answer to this will be intuitively, rather than egoically, received.   Of course the work is much, much more than that but scrape away all the fripperies  and that is the nub of it. The ego is complex and clever and develops strategies to queer your journey as you endeavor to answer this. The answer came for me all too neatly at first – love of family, theatre, reading, cooking, communicating to an audience  and writing. Yes I loved so many aspects of my life but writing/communicating connecting with others was my signature. But that was the starting point, the real journey of discovery came as I drilled down for gold. Always asking my intuition with each step of the way ‘what do I love?’

 We unconsciously allow life to drag us away from whom we are and our dreams. For me, the first glimpse of what I love and ultimately who I am, started well over seventy years ago in London when as an emotionally ragged child I grew up in the blitz and deprivations of World War 2. Frequently when the air raid warnings did not pierce the air but still a growl of planes could be heard overhead I would take refuge beneath the blackberry brambles at the bottom of the garden. It was here that I confided to my imaginary friend Sonny, who lived in my Father’s old attaché case, that one day I would write a book.

That childhood dream was mugged daily by an impoverished sense of worth and fused by a wartime loss of education. Living out decades of soul blackout, till in the end the dream disappeared from the horizon. Bereavement, single motherhood, new relationships, family growth and building a business with no experience and no capital became my world. But the constant thread was the short stories I scribbled, the odd bits of food and travel journalism, and the creative writing courses coupled with a twenty-year membership of a speaking club, all dimly fuelled the dream. My writing was a hobby. Communication to a wider audience through my public speaking performances was a hobby.

Hobbies – yes simply hobbies but somehow they stayed with me and the more I wrote and communicated the more I began to see the dream once again. In the last decade of my working life the intuitive nudges and reoccurring coincidences about writing a book were becoming more and more dogged. But while the real dream was to write a novel I still was looking to others for direction, most advice was to write about something that I knew inside out, upside down well.

Most authors will tell you that a title for a book can be most illusive in fact my first novel must have had a baker’s-dozen names before deciding on Losing You. But even before I had fleshed out an overview of a definitive book on public speaking, the title ‘Finding Your Voice’ came to me loud and clear. I even drew and colored an example of the cover and pinned it to my work board one wet weekend. My concept of a comprehensive self-help guide to public speaking had a dream run. The first publishers I approached loved it and celebrities willingly gave their speaking tips. When the book was in the final stages of proof reading the publishers emailed me their design for the cover. It was goose bump territory as I looked at the screen – theirs was identical in color and design to the one that was still pinned to the board that I had crafted twelve months earlier.

Coincidence – yes maybe but I believe the universe curves to meet us when we start to take action to live authentically. And somehow that title Finding Your Voice has been prodding me ever since it was published.

Next blog – find out how by following the crumbs – Finding Your Voice has created a new paradigm for me.