• Charli

Wellness Matters 30.04.2021

Becoming Your Best Self

I posted a picture of a bent tree on Instagram this week after light caught my eye, and I noticed that the buds on the leeward side were already opening while those on the windward side were tight shut. I made the analogy that when we ask for help as life throws its inevitable challenges in our direction, we are giving ourselves permission to share the load, to grow and become stronger.

Seek help where you can in times of difficulty, don’t go it alone.

Sometimes just a chance to talk and be heard can be enough, because although to a large extent we are leaders in our own lives: we make decisions on what we want to do, who we want to see, and how we show up, a sense of isolation can increase fear of self worth.

I watched a short, but captivating TedTalk by Sviatlanna Tsikhanouskaya who is the democratically elected leader of Belarus, but is unable to take up her post because of a dictatorship. She eloquently explains that ‘fear is the provenance of one, it feeds on isolation. Fearlessness takes two.’ She refers to the tens of thousands who continue with peaceful protests in Belarus swelling unity, connection and hope.

In the UK, as society begins to reopen and we face new challenges, old habits can creep in, some less helpful than others so maybe now is the time for you to set your path the way you want it to be. Perhaps your business is booming and you have taken on new staff, this is exciting but terrifying: you are an emerging business leader with new responsibility for a range of personalities and values coming to the table. Possibly you are in the situation where furlough is ending which brings a sense of relief but also slight consternation. Or you are feeling anxious and worried about exposure to larger numbers of people.

Changing circumstances can cause a shift in how we are affected by our emotions which can affect motivation to elicit change, but by being open, talking and sharing how life has changed, you will not have to carry the burden alone.

I felt a certain sense of relief last week after writing my blog, with renewed energy and belief that the courageous career choices I have made are the right ones for me.

Physically, however, I have been struggling with an arthritis flare up in my right knee. I've tried not to let it get me down and have been mostly successful, but one thing I have missed is sea swimming. In fact it was almost a week since I last went and I was definitely having withdrawal symptoms. I have been so motivated with reading, preparing coaching sessions, and joining some excellent webinars that time just disappeared. Thank you @Changing Conversations for a stimulating conversation with Michael Fullan on Wednesday.

For me there is physical and emotional healing when I am in sea water, so I decided to ‘just dae it’, wandered down to the harbour at 5pm last night as the tide was coming in, immersed myself in the cold, salty water, immediately feeling weightless, temporarily pain free and incredibly happy. I swam for 14 minutes in my swimsuit. I was cold from within but radiating relief, and so smiled broadly when a member of NBS group shared an image of a wetsuit label which read: “It’s always summer on the inside.”

Create your own summer on the inside and be the best version of yourself. Keep yourself flexible in mind and body, gently, with kindness and patience and by tuning in to your needs. And remember, you don’t have to go it alone, have a chat with a trusted other, or me, and you will soon realise that you hold the answers for change. You just need the right environment where you are listened to, have questions asked in the right way by the right person, and you, too, can find your path.

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