When I was younger, we were always at the beach, that’s one of the great things about the place in which I live, ten minutes into the city and twenty minutes to the sea. The best of both worlds. Memories of climbing and jumping from sand dunes that seemed massive at the time, almost like mountains, which, upon reflection as my adult self are small and easily surmountable. Laughter, sea splashing, and adventures were plentiful even when the weather was dull and the icy wind blowing in our faces.
As I grew up I forgot all about my happy place, I got into work, lots of work. Climbing the corporate ladder meant that life got busy, and over the years, I pretty much stopped listening to my body. In hindsight, I realise now it was screaming for attention.
For as long as I can remember, my brain has always worked at a speed of around 400mph. Long hours, little sleep and a poor diet became the norm to me. If I’m honest I barely gave it any thought, I was always pushing forward, never content to stand still or wait. If I wasn’t progressing within my work I felt like I was failing, the corporate world became me and I, it. Of course, you can see where this is going, can’t you?
I became burned out. My get up and go had gotten up and gone, and I was knackered. Looking back, I’m surprised my body went on for as long as it did, but that’s the thing, we’re pretty resilient creatures. It’s relatively easy to push your luck and carry on regardless. Well, that is until it’s not. Suffice to say my body eventually got through to me when I could do no more, I was burned out and bedridden. You can read more about that here.
At that point, I took the hint. Clearly, I’m not a fast learner. I rested, ate better and started tuning into myself every day. I even took up meditation (one of my all-time favourite pastimes now) I struggled so hard at first, my mind chatter is ridiculous but through gentle practise and a bit of reading I learned that it was ok for my mind to wander, I wasn’t weird or wrong, I was pretty standard! Going back to basics and hitting the re-set sounds simple, but as we all know, simple doesn’t equal easy!
I was used to pushing myself, hard. A slower, more gentle pace was super tough for me to get my head around. It actually felt way more complicated than the years of pressure I put myself under. Go figure.
With a slightly clearer mind, and with each week that passed, I began to regain control of my mind and my body. I remembered how much I used to love the beach, and as soon as I was able, I went there. It was wild and windy, and the beach deserted, but I sat there until my fingers were numb. It was cathartic, and I knew, on a soul level, that it was the place my body had been crying out for. Something about it felt right.
I promised myself on that day that I would put my soul back on the agenda. Now, I regularly visit the sea, the weather doesn’t even matter, it’s just about plugging myself in to charge so to speak. I shared this picture in The Community last week of my go-to place to work when I want to be away from the house for the day. This is just one of many spaces I’ve found where I can charge myself and my laptop at the same time!
When I get out of my busy head and into my body in my happy place, I always feel like I’ve had a power nap. It’s wonderful. Sometimes I work, write and record ideas, and sometimes I journal. My creativity literally goes through the roof when I simplify and allow my brain to receive whatever messages the universe has to deliver.
Do you have a happy place? It doesn’t have to be a space in nature, it could be as simple as your own bed with a large cup of your favourite tea. Are you listening to your body and the messages it’s giving you every day? As entrepreneurs and women in businesses, I’d take a guess that you’re used to pushing and less so to receiving.
If this message is hitting home with you, then please, take some time and explore it. I promise, its so worth it.
Do I still work a lot of hours? Yes, I do, but I’m far more mindful when my body needs to rest, and I honour it with that time. If I have to, I’ll go to bed earlier, or I’ll cancel a weekend engagement to curl up in my bed and read or write. I value those messages so much that I’m prepared to prioritise my health and sanity over everything else.
Can you say the same?
Until next time CEO’s and with loads of love,