On Sunday I ran my first workshop from home and it was truly a blessing, of unicorns! A blessing is the collective noun for a group of unicorns. I am in awe at how perfect a description that is for what I have experienced in this work and yesterday in particular.
I’ve worked for years as a facilitator, coach and trainer and mostly in a corporate setting, with teams or individual leaders. Running personal transformation workshops, Find Your Inner Unicorn, is a new venture for me.
Since finding and clarifying my purpose during my transformational adventure, I have wanted to integrate my love of “home” into my work.
Home for me means a safe place in which I can be myself, a space that is both beautiful and functional, relaxing and energising. Sharing my home is something that I have realised I wish to do more of, through the workshops and making my guest bedrooms available through Airbnb.
My unicorn sisters came from afar, Scotland, and not so far, Heaton Moor in Stockport, and a variety of places in between. I wanted them to have a lovely day, to feel nurtured, cared for and pampered, so we started with proper coffee and warm pastries, followed by some energy medicine practice in the garden, underneath the 100 year old poplar tree and clear blue skies.
I used my dining room as our main workshop space. The amazingly talented Heather Linnett from www.eclectic-chair.com recovered my original 50’s dining chairs just in time for them to provide comfy seats for the day in gorgeous velvet and retro fabrics.
Lunch was next door with food by Eddie Shepherd, have a look at www.walledgardensfood.com to see what he does. His purpose, passion and talents to create modern vegetarian food that is both delicious and aesthetically delightful deserves it’s own post as it was a magical experience.
We used my newly built living room for reflective conversations and guided visualisations. Thanks to Mark Roberts and the team for your months of hard labour in the rain, snow, sleet and occasional sunshine, to create this beautiful space that I still can’t quite believe is mine to enjoy on a daily basis. Mark is so busy that the last thing he needs is a website to promote his business!
During the excavation for the foundations, he unearthed a memorial stone for a little girl, Praxedes Hailwood, who died in 1927. Feeling the need to establish whether or not there were graves in my garden, I got my mum on the case with her skills in researching family history. We followed an extraordinary tale that I will share in another blog which culminated in discovering my house is built on the site of a spiritual retreat for women. This had been running for about 100 years until the plot was sold off for development.
Hundreds of women from around the world had come here to find their inner unicorns seeking rest, solace, peace and prayer in my garden .
The alignment I feel around this is so powerful. My purpose is to illuminate the way for those who seek their path to freedom and my work in running the Unicorn courses allows me to live that in every moment.
I have had an strengthening desire to run transformation workshops from home right about the time that little Praxedes came to light. Her name is Greek in origin and means “she who has firm intentions”. That feels like a description of me and I believe I am coming to deeply understand the power of intention-setting achat viagra 10. The blessing of unicorns on Sunday was a manifestation of this.
It was born from a legacy created by women in this place in the last century, which I can feel in the energy and peace of my home. It is my legacy to continue to evolve and develop it, from this home and as my intentions grow , in beautiful and functional spaces around the world. That is what I would love to do, run transformational retreats on a global basis for all those who are seeking their path to freedom.
So these days, when I count my blessings as part of my gratitude practice, I realise I am counting unicorns and that in itself is a blessing.
Thank you to each and every being who has supported me to do this and enabled me to experience the blessing of unicorns. Especially Sarah, Lynn, Val, Wendy, Lesley, Debbie and Vicki who were with me yesterday. I feel truly blessed and as a symbol of the magic, power and beauty that is in each one of us, I feel like a unicorn too.
Yesterday my wise and wonderful friend Val Garrett came to a Find Your Inner Unicorn workshop here at my home in Whalley Range, in which we focused on our purpose and legacy. Val’s poem captures her experience of the day and expresses her purpose of sharing wise, and magical, words that have value for others.
I want to mention our extraordinary chef too, Eddie Shepherd, who made the most exquisite food materialise out of thin air and literally in a puff of smoke! Have a look at www.walledgardensfood.com to understand what he does and how to book onto his supper clubs.
Here is Val’s poem . . .
The Unicorn and Food Magicians
A blessing of Unicorns met in a special place
To share their purpose and relax in the space
They gathered in a haven where many women had met before
Unknowing the wonder behind each door
The goddess of Unicorns inspired us to believe
In all of our gifts and what we can achieve
Using wizardly wisdom beyond her years
We revealed our greatest challenges, and some of our fears
Not content with the programme full of joy and light
We were led round a path to further delight
Within the walled gardens through an ordinary door
No one could have guessed what was next in store
The food magician welcomed us into his culinary lair
With coloured tofu delights that hung in mid air
We drank from the cauldron that smoked with pink infusion
And the sweet sticky rainbow whistle draped in illusion
He worked magic with the mushrooms but not as you might think!
They’d been lovingly prepared, 4 times – not just washed in the sink
Served as a spoonful, ‘I want more’ they all begged
Then the potato arrived disguised as a nest egg
The divine chunks of bread came with butter – handmade of course
Leaving little room for the Haloumi in dill sauce
And just when you thought you could eat not another snaffle
Fizz bang, rich chocolate – the bergamot truffle
There was simply no room to sample the Unicorn cup cakes
Or the crunchy chocolates – for our tummies sake
We all took them home to wonder at our own pace
The wonderful experience that these magicians can create
You may have picked up from Facebook or Twitter that I have an extraordinary house guest this week. You can find out more about Steve Carr at www.mindcanyon.org or join Steve’s Facebook page, Mental Health and Homeless Resource or follow him on Twitter @mindcanyon. I am honoured to have made a new friend in him.
Steve asked me this morning “what am I here for?” and that prompted a really interesting conversation about exactly that, what is he here for . . . and we both agreed we know some of that already and much of that has yet to be fully revealed.
We then got to talking about what the one key message is from his extraordinary journey and commitment, not just to himself, but for everyone and anyone that he meets along the way.
And I think it’s this . . . one person CAN make a difference. One person DOES make a difference. One person IS the difference.
I am a transformational trainer, coach and facilitator. I get to do work I love at a deep level of connection and commitment with businesses, teams and individuals to help them transform themselves in order to transform their leadership, organisation or life. That is what I do, how I choose to spend my time and energy.
My life purpose, the reason I am on this planet as me, my unique self is to illuminate the way for those who seek their path to freedom. This is who I am and I seek to bring this purpose to life every day as in doing this, I experience my freedom.
My amazing new friend Steve is also doing just that – he is literally seeking his path to freedom with every step he takes as he travels through towns, cities, villages and rural areas. Each step takes him closer to his unique being and further way from the lifestyle he came to recognise was killing him.
It’s not my journey, it’s not my path, I have and am still taking a different route, but I have been fortunate enough to illuminate some of the way for him, at least the way to a comfy bed, a hot bath and a home cooked meal for a few nights. I have loved being able to provide a safe, relaxing and comfortable place for him to rest, regenerate, reflect. I hope he comes back. He will always be welcome.
With every person he meets on this incredible journey, I can see he finds a reflection of himself in some way that is helping him piece together who he is and who he wants to be, what he is here to do, his purpose on earth in the form of the unique being he is. He is finding his freedom and it seems to me he was compelled to do, or die. He chose to live, he chose to explore, he chose to be free. In his freedom, he finds both peace and a burning desire to be a person who makes a difference.
In offering Steve a room on Wednesday night, I did so instinctively, the tweet got sent before I had even realised I had typed it. I know that I did so intuitively because in offering to help, I would be living my life purpose and so here he is, now staying with me for a few days as I have been encouraging him to rest, relax a little, make the most of the connections and opportunities Manchester has. And we have many in the arena of homelessness and mental health issues. We have so many people sleeping rough in this city, let alone the hidden homelessness issue. He is in the perfect place to make a difference.
And so I reflect, and this is something Steve knows now from the inside out and from every blister he has, every step he has taken in cold, wet weather, every night he has slept out alone and entirely unsure about what the next day would bring: one person can make a difference, one person does make a difference, one person is the difference.
We made a difference to each other with our earlier conversation. Here I am now, an hour or so later, writing a new blog because of the stimulus that chat provided for me. And the direct request from him of course – he’s so polite when he asks, impossible to refuse!
He has made a difference to every single person he has met on his journey. And each person he has met will have made a difference to someone else that day, in some way or other.
What I have come to believe is that Steve is creating a movement that embodies the power of individual action becoming collective action. He walks and talks, literally, the power of being connected to a cause, to a purpose, that matters and so his walking and talking makes a difference commander viagra internet.
Steve is making a difference. Steve is the difference. And as Steve is, so can we all be. So do we all. Make your difference in a direction that has meaning and purpose for you. Find your purpose, find our cause, find what lights you up from the inside out, find your inner unicorn.
In doing so, we will all come together. We all then have and share and transmit the same message . We become united in love and compassion for ourselves and others equally. Love and compassion is the both the message and the difference.
It strikes me that either you’re a blogger or a blogger 20 pilule viagra.
Bloggers seem to be able to effortlessly create rafts of content and get it out there on a frequent if not daily basis. If seems to flow as part of their work and business strategy and almost be part of their DNA.
By blagger, I mean someone who intends to blog, says they’ll blog, starts and does a bit, but then stops . . .
I know I’m a blogger, or at least, I have strong blogger tendencies, although I did write create and maintain a blog site for about six months, I didn’t sustain it. And having set a clear intention and with a strategic approach to blogging for my business, Find Your Inner Unicorn, I find myself 10 days after the first one with notes on my desk saying “WRITE BLOG!” In capital letters and on day-glo coloured post its. There are three of them on my Mac. I am clearly trying to get my own attention. I have managed to ignore myself since last Friday.
I am curious about this, as actually I enjoy writing, I find it easy once I get going and when I’m in the right space and moment, it flows. I trust myself to write from the heart, with integrity and get my thoughts and ideas across.
Yet I know I can blag myself and that I can easily let days go by with a lurking awareness at the back of my mind that I ought to write another blog. I spent all weekend doing other things and if I’m honest, I had plenty of time and space to myself to write a blog. I guess I didn’t want to!
In that last sentence I believe is one of the keys to differentiating myself as a blogger or a blagger.
When I tell myself I ought to do something, need to, must or should, I notice that my motivation levels drop away and it starts to feel like a chore, a push energy, rather than a pull energy and I defer it, procrastinate.
I tell myself I don’t have the clear head space I need to write, I tell myself I’ll fit it in later, I tell myself that other things are more important and here I am 10 days later, having blagged to myself all last week about blogging.
In NLP, this use of language (I need to, I must, I should) is identified as “modal operators of necessity” and is often markedly different in emotional impact than “modal operators of possibility”, which are words like “I could, I might, I want to, I will”.
At a deeper level, what I know to be true is that I have some beliefs, which are both enabling and limiting, and I can convince myself that a mindset of “I need to be in the right frame of mind to write” is one that mostly limits me.
What I noticed this morning is that I said to myself “I want to write that blog now” and in that straightforward affirmation, without any language of must, should or ought to, I didn’t feel any unwilling sense of obligation. I just made the decision that now was the time. Here I am, one side of A4 written and I’m enjoying myself, it’s easy, I feel in flow. I didn’t decide I was in the right frame of mind, or that I had enough space or time to think about writing, I just wanted to so I did.
I looked at my list of ideas I have for blogs (writing the list was very enjoyable for me, that bit came easily) and thought, “ok, I’ll start with why I find it hard to start as I think that’s common for lots of people and maybe I can help someone with that topic”.
Straightaway, the blogger / blagger angle appeared, as if by magic, and I was off, writing away, nothing getting in my way. I have ignored two phone calls emails during the time I’ve been writing this and that tells me I am focused, on purpose, engaged and stimulated by what I’m doing.
So my question to myself, and therefore to anyone else who chooses to read this, is what kind of language do you use to yourself about blogging? Or anything else that you find it hard to get started with or get around to? There are all sorts of bloggers – blogger-blaggers, gym-blaggers, writing-that-novel-blaggers, finishing-a-project-blaggers, mowing-the-lawn-blaggers . . . you get my gist I’m sure and can write your own blogger list.
The point is this . . . if you think you’re more of a blagger, how perhaps have you set yourself up with your own self-talk, limiting mindsets or beliefs, and brilliant variety of reasons /excuses as to why now isn’t the time to do it? Are you using words like “should” and “must” and switching off your own motivation before you’ve even had a chance to get going?
I’m not remotely judgemental about this, I know it’s a part of how I function and I have a level of awareness about it that enables me to remain curious about myself rather than critical. I do know that many people beat themselves up about this sort of stuff though and that rarely helps us, short or longer term.
So I’d gently suggest you become mindful of your own language and decide if you could, would like to or want to be more of a blogger / gym bunny / novelist / cupcake baker/ candlestick maker, than a blogger. Give yourself a head start by switching on the energy and motivation of possibility, rather than necessity. Examine your beliefs and mindsets and choose one that is most empowering for you.
I believe the choice is ours to make.
Today I’m a blogger. Woohoo! I’m going to bin those post-its now.