Happiness and Authenticity

by Helen Williams

Did you know that happiness and authenticity join hands in our lives? Happiness is a by-product of the other ingredients that are necessary to feel at ease with ourselves, our choices and our daily lives. Authenticity is one of the most important!

It’s hard to be truly authentic because fear often prevents this. We grow up needing approval, validation and comfort in order to feel secure and loved and so the fear of not receiving approval can mean we create an inauthentic self as a way of protecting ourselves. Learning to be true, real and vulnerable takes courage, practice and support from those around us. Especially the notion that we must be who we’re not in order to be loved. This is the most open secret shared by everyone – that we do not and cannot honour our true selves for fear of rejection.

Vulnerability means taking a risk to really put ourselves out there – to embrace ourselves as we are and risk being uncomfortable, seen, experienced and still stay open to ourselves and to others.

Ask yourself some questions!
Who am I really? What am I afraid will happen if I show you who I really am? What does being authentic really mean and why do I struggle with who I am?

Everything is about love and approval – about being wanted, feeling special, being visible, and feeling safe in the context of a relationship.

Come and join our Authentic Living workshop for the month of February as we explore questions like these and while finding self-acceptance with a group of like-minded people.

Contact us to book

Authentic Living February_Social Media Art 1

You Need Only Water, Light and a New Pot

By Isabel Galiardo
I have a plant in the living room that I rescued from the garbage several years ago. It is giving flowers and full of life. It oozes beauty and joy. For me, it is a metaphor for what happens when we accept and take care of ourselves.
To throw the plant away because it has dead leaves and is growing crooked may seem the most logical thing to do. We think that if it is no longer useful, it is better to buy a new one.
We often do that with ourselves. We want to get rid of our faults and imperfections because they cause shame, pain and fear and make us “look bad”. But the difficulty and pain show us aspects of ourselves that need to be taken care of and accepted.
When you deny your fear, your anger, your shame or your guilt, you are mutilating yourself. It is not about wallowing in pain, nor about living as a victim of the past, but looking at it from a broader and more comprehensive, more compassionate and conscious perspective.
Do not try to get rid of the dry leaves or the parts that have grown uneven or deformed, on the contrary, welcome them and give them water and light (love and consciousness).
Bring light to the aspects that are in the shade. Orient yourself towards the light -remembering your true essence and elevating your vibratory frequency through spiritual practices will give you a greater awareness of yourself.
If you need a new pot, move to a larger space that allows you to continue growing and give flowers. Dare to consider life in broader and more expansive terms.
The most important task facing humanity is learning to love. Love starts with oneself and has nothing to do with a narcissistic or egocentric attitude, but with the ability to accept what I am at each moment without resistance or attachment. Letting life flow through me, letting LOVE speak through me.
Self-love and love for others are two sides of the same coin. What I do not tolerate of myself will be a source of conflict when I see it in the outside world. My own personal war immediately moves to a war with the world.
Let us make peace with what we are and we will begin to give flowers of hope, creativity, joy and unity.
“The goal of this work is not ‘get rid of your story’ but to have a more flexible relationship with it.”
– Matt Licata
Isabel

Fear or Intuition?

By Isabel Galiardo 
How can we distinguish between our inner voice, which we call intuition, from the voice of fear?
Fear helps us recognize and prevent dangers. It is there to protect us, without it we would behave recklessly and ignore our own limits. When it takes excessive prominence it makes us defensive, aggressive, isolates us and makes us perceive the world as hostile.
The voice of fear is linked to the past and is part of our conditioning. Our biographical experiences and those accumulated by our predecessors allow us to manage the world in a more predictable and safe way. But when our old childhood fears take hold of us we go back emotionally in time and perceive reality through the lens of our inner child, who feels helpless, terrified, incapable, … it measures our capacity based on past experiences, moments in which we had fewer resources.
Our inner voice is connected with the present and with the future, it guides us in the most appropriate direction for our growth and evolution. It shows us creative and original ways of being ourselves, freed from our conditioning and our old wounds, inviting us to express our potential and contribute to the totality of existence.
Our inner voice expresses our essence and is connected with our deepest truth, which is timeless and universal, but which is expressed in a unique and personal way in each one of us.
To listen to it, it is necessary to create a minimum of silence and quietness. This voice speaks subtly, almost in whispers, while fear is more reactive and speaks loudly.
Give yourself time to connect with yourself and to listen to yourself, to create a dialogue with this voice that speaks from certainty and knowledge, from a place of inner knowing. Then, take some time to assimilate the information and to understand it and finally, gather your courage and strength to put it into practice.
Our inner voice asks us for coherence and courage to reach our full potential and therefore challenges and mobilizes us to leave our comfort zone and explore new possibilities. This is not always easy but it is certainly immensely rewarding.

Anger & Fear

By Helen Williams

We are often asked to teach workshops on anger management for people who struggle with the explosiveness and impulsivity of their angry reactions to daily events in their lives. For many people, anger is their “go to” emotion, the emotion that arises first, has the loudest voice and is their default reaction, and people are desperate to learn ways to manage, modify, control, change and redirect their rage.  In the heat of the moment, flipping into anger can destroy relationships, jobs, opportunities and even lives as some of you well know.

It may surprise you to know that I have never run an anger management workshop in all the years I’ve been teaching courses, classes and workshops on aspects of Personal and Self Development, Mindfulness and Authentic Living! Interestingly, I’m not going to run one now either because rather than learning to manage anger, the focus of our upcoming Mindful Living Workshop will be on understanding why anger has become our default setting, what lies beneath this noisy emotion, and how fear plays a pivotal role in anger’s explosions.   We’ll also look at how anger can go underground for some people and become a deep ice-cold sense of repressed feelings.

Come along prepared to share some of your anger experiences, hear from others about theirs, and participate together in new and different ways of tackling anger and fear in your daily life.

We look forward to welcoming you to this thought-provoking, stimulating and informative evening which is run as part of our fortnightly series of Mindful Living. Contact us to register and join us!

Facing Fear By Hiding Behind Masks

On some level we are all facing fear – afraid of being seen for who we truly are. Afraid of seeing ourselves for who we really are. Afraid of confronting our limiting beliefs, we avoid facing fear by hiding.

In order to prevent our true inner self from being seen, we wear a symbolic or metaphorical mask over our authentic personality in the hope that we will remain hidden.

Why do we do this?
facing fear

It is fear which creates the mask, and fear which keeps it in place. The mask is hiding our true and most beautiful self from both ourselves and from the world. In its place is a mask of un-beauty.

In order to find our authentic self we must align ourselves with facing fear by digging down to the deepest, most hidden part of ourselves, that fearful place where we dread what we think is hidden.

When we dig deeply enough into our hidden nature we find not darkness but light and the realisation that our safety lies in actually letting down the mask and being seen
in being our true authentic self.

Join me on our Authentic Living workshops on Thursday mornings from 9am – 11am (get in touch to register or ask any questions).