Thoughts on the world, homeopathy, mindfulness and food...
A collection of blog posts - feel free to respond with your thoughts and comments - I love to have feedback - thank you!
I've watched the hashtag campaign #metoo with a combination of horror, shame, guilt and pondering over the past.
While we're on shame - I've not found anything better than Brené Brown talking about shame - she's here on YouTube with her TED talk on it. Definitely worth a listen. There are several - do explore her work. And if you love it then her book The Gifts of Imperfection is well worth a read.
But were my experiences really all that bad? A tongue in your mouth when you'd already said no? An unwanted hand somewhere? Crying during sex because it hurt, you wanted it over but knew if said no then it cause an uncomfortable atmosphere and didn't feel worth it. Knowing you had to choose between putting up with a 2 day atmosphere or getting on with 'it'. Happy to say I chose the sulking - and then walked away from that one. Experiences when you were really too drunk to have made that decision. So yes, I guess they fit into the #metoo place.
So why the reluctance to be a part of it and post #metoo until now. Maybe because I don't like to join in? Nope that's not it. Because I let myself down? I could have said no stronger, louder, stuck to my convictions? I think that may be closer to the point. Maybe it also had to be thought over, chewed over to decide if it really fitted, and if it really was 'bad enough'.
Watching Beauty and the Beast last night, Gaston's behaviour (the hunter who is determined he'll marry Belle), which of course is supposed to be vile, made me really see how much our children get to see this is how things are, can be. Yes Belle walked away, but the other girls swooned and threw themselves at him after the displays of 'manly' behaviour'. I've been out with some lovely men who listen, care and respect, have lovely friends who listen, care and respect, so I'm not here to get on with some man-bashing. It's not how it has to be. I've also some wonderful friends who would walk away from situations such as mine where they'd felt uncomfortable instead of let them continue. I have a hope that my strong minded daughter will be one of those people.
So what I'm most intrigued by is what can we do to change, to improve? Is it 'just human, primal behaviour'? I think the outpouring of stories is important, the acknowledgement where people might have stayed silent, the knowing, the sharing. I think also the message of respect, kindness is huge. Kindness is my current obsessional musing and I think it's underrated. Success, drive, ambition, achievement are rewarded but kindness? And to ourselves - I don't feel that is talked about enough, demonstrated enough. Those teeny simple acts of kindness can make so much difference. On my 40 by 40 - my plan of a few missions to celebrate life in the run up to my 40th birthday, my friend Katie suggested I did 40 acts of self kindness. Random acts of kindness are something we've looked at lots (and are on my list) but self kindness?! So on it went on the list.
It's been huge for me, partly in the slowing down it's given. To stop and put Niki's balm (it's not vegan, I love it and was given as a sample so non-vegans, or organic beeswax users, it is remarkable stuff tbh) on my feet at the end of the day, to put a face mask on. We could be talking less than 40 seconds. To have breakfast outside, looking at the trees and not inside looking at the things to do. To read a novel for the 5 minutes before I go to sleep and not immerse myself in work - I've read my first novel in ages just recently - thanks Katie and the lovely folk in my village who are sharing their Jack Reacher novels! I've done yoga on mornings where I've been up early enough. Going to bed and not working til late are still issues that need to be confronted, I get a plan then don't stick with it. A mission still to conquer.
But in the kindness to self, then comes respect, gentleness and compassion I believe. Forgiveness too. Forgiveness for the 'mistakes' I made, and perhaps am yet to make. Kindness for not 'getting it right'. Because honestly? We do something wrong then how many times do we beat ourselves up over it? I know it's not just me - as see clients all the time that go over and over things. Childhood things, teenage things and there we are as adults still berating ourselves. Gentle forgiveness towards ourselves is underrated.
Kindness to others flows easier I believe when our hearts are open, and forcing us to do things we don't want to is less of an option then. I wonder if a withholding of affection and kindness may lead to a need for contact which may then become inappropriate. How many rapes were carried out where physical contact had been lacking on either upbringing or later formative years? I believe humans need contact, hugs, linked arms, close touch more, perhaps more than other more sexual contact - and I don't believe we're living in a world that sees that as OK. I know when I'm in a good place, I'm incredibly tactile. It's not a sexual thing, it just is how I am. I'll plait hair, massage, hug, stroke and be there without it being anything more.
So perhaps we can change the world one act of kindness at a time. To ourselves, to others. I don't know. But I guess it's worth a try.
With love and kindness,
I'm a Homeopath working in the Skipton (North Yorkshire) area. I am also able to offer food intolerance testing using Kinesiology and advice around diet and lifestyle.
Em Colley MARH, Practitioner of Classical Homeopathy
BSc(Hons) Psychology and Neuroscience
Laughter Yoga Leader
Focussed Mindfulness Practitioner
Dip (SNHS) Kinesiology
Dip (SNHS) Holistic Nutrition
Certificate in Whole Food, Plant Based Nutrition