Category Archives: Relationships

Hopefully these posts will provide insight into your relations with the significant love In your life, but importantly offer tools to being successfully ‘in love’ with you

What I love about being a black woman

So…

Yesterday a man I am acquainted with sent me video. I have to say it was one I was somewhat surprised by as it was a vitriolic critique of the ‘Black Woman’.

The man who created the video, didn’t for one minute mince his words and proceeded to slate us for ‘bitchin,’ bringing up ‘thugs,’ being emotionally immature and demanding and for being the cause of the degeneration of the black family. He claimed we were always bragging about being ‘Queens’ and that everyone want us; but the reality is the black man is turning to the white woman, ANY woman but us because we’re driving them off with our ‘pissedosity’ and pouting.

He then went on to say that we’re all single because we are ‘egotistical children’ who do not take responsibility accept ‘thugs’ as partners and then have a slew of unwanted babies, choosing deliberate ‘single-motherhood’ in an attempt to get these men to stay with us. ..

As a result we abuse and neglect our children as they were not wanted in the first place and who are now a persistent reminder of the error we made in laying down, trying to get attention from the ‘good for nuthin’ thug’ in the first place!

Ay ay aaaaay!

‘Aaaaay caramba!’ and whole lotta words and phrases I tried to replace expletives for ran through my mind.

You can imagine my…well, all I can say is incredulity at the bile that spewed forth from this man, who’s ‘bass’ told me he was a black American male.

I came to the conclusion that…

‘Some sista, mussa do him Baaaad!’

It got me to thinking though it’s easy to get caught up in the negatives because yes it’s true… the Black experience is often one of struggle and persecution; of pain and racial discrimination and slurs even in 2019 (see: http://bit.ly/2Z0WPvX).

  • Yes, more often than not, our stories are made up of events, which serve to humiliate and denigrate us.
  • Yes, our narratives often articulate the challenge of rising despite massive social and institutionalised racism and injustice.
  • Yes, there are social and emotional challenges that we need to address.
  • Yes, our pain is acute and real. None of it is fabricated and it’s hard to live with and through.
  • And yes, in our attempts to get some relief from the pressure of our lives, from the ‘Just over broke,’ or downright ‘indebted and broke’ scenarios and the relationship drama, we (me included), can focus, disproportionately on the negatives of the black experience.

However, there are just as many wonderful things about my experience of being a black woman and it is these that keep me going despite it all… rising… forever finding ingenious ways around, up, over and around the pressures I encounter every day.

What I love about being a black woman

I love my (our) resilience: Despite times when I honestly feel I will simply break apart or break open. Somehow me and my sisters and mothers and aunts, and sistren and cousins and friends just keep bouncing back. Many of us without vitriol and somehow manage to find hope.

We will fall asleep broken and rise to the light of the sun and know that because it’s shining there must be a God and that there’s the possibility that things will change.

  • I love our spirituality: Even though many of us have rejected formal religious practices, there’s somehow a spiritual, gossamer thread, albeit in some of us, vague and barely discernable that reminds us that our ancestors DNA courses through us. Reminds us that we are connected. To the pouring of libation for the ‘homies in the big house’ to letting the ‘elders’ feed first at christenings and parties.
  • I love that we recognise our connection to one another – the irresistible magnetic pull to proffer a ‘nod’ of acknowledgement; the ‘I recognise the spirit in you and we are the same’ nod whenever you catch the eye of another black person for longer than a nanosecond.
Me: in all my Melanin-Cocoa Glory!
  • I love that my skin is coffee-choco-smooth. It’s ‘why haven’t you got any wrinkles?’ taut and when nourished by the sun and replenished by oils it shines bronze-reflecting, hailing the glory of the melanin that gives it it’s hue.
  • I love that I can flip my language from Standard English to broad Yorkshire and Jamaican Patois and now some Nigerian pidgin as easily as butter slides off a hot knife and that the myriad of phonetic and linguistic mélanges create a uniqueness of expression that cannot be matched or mimicked and all this despite having our languages taken from us.
  • I love that my people are linguistic governors! Non can compete with the numerous words and phrases our varying cultures ‘drop’ like social diamonds into the fabric of popular and musical culture. We’re constantly inventing… ‘fo’shizzle’ we are!
  • I love the richness of our history. That despite it being stolen, hidden and reconstituted in a blanket of lies we are reclaiming it; Pharonic brick by brick, Songhaian stone, by stone.
  • I love that when I come together with my ‘sistren’ there is a stripping away of the miasma of oppression and instead, (if there’s true sisterhood and not the ‘Jealousy’ I previously talked about); what you’ll find is us releasing the ‘bass’ in our voices, (as well as sometimes the bra straps!) and liberating the guttural, deep, raucous laughter that emanates from our bellies… as we ‘talk fi we talk’ and let go the tension of tip-toeing through a world which insists we hide parts of ourselves; in case we be deemed too ‘loud,’ or ‘aggressive,’ ‘too threatening!’

What I love about being a black woman is that I have an infinite number of options when it comes to what to do with my hair, which is both liberating and confining at the same time.

  • What I Love about being a black woman is that when I sashay out of a room I KNOW you can’t help but recognise that the place is a little duller because of it.
  • What I love about being a black woman is that I KNOW and recognise that the power and strength of my ancestors, the wisdom from their trials and suffering live within me and that I proudly carry their genetic code!

And I could go on…

The man who created the video denounced us as ‘Queens’ and said all the black woman has is ‘attitude’

What I told the man who shared the video with me was:

“If a man cannot tell the difference between a woman with standards and boundaries and one with ‘attitude,’ then he certainly ‘AINT’ no KING!

Blissings and much love

Pauline Tomlin

(Insightful Angel)

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

‘Black sheep’ and ‘crabs,’

Examining the ugly truth about Jealousy in the black family.

I went out last night…Whilst I was ‘shacking out’ and truly loving myself and the feeling of freedom I get from dancing, a woman came past me, invading my personal space (like literally inches away!) and shoved her miserable face into mine; threateningly. She then looked me up and down as if she’d stood in a dog turd and passed by looking over her shoulder as she went.

No words were exchanged, I didn’t even know her… the threat was obvious but why?

JEALOUSY!

She is an insidious and malicious mistress…

Two night’s before I was in the delightful company of four other black women. We chatted and discussed and all noted how wonderful it was to be amongst sisters and not have the tension and pique of resentment or petty insecurities peppering our commentary and tainting the energy.

Sad, though it is to admit, this is not often the case when ‘black folks’ get together and ‘two or more are gathered.’ The reality is, that oftentimes there is a thinly veiled covetousness and resentment amongst us. It’s a highly destructive and pervasive social malady.

Why does this happen? For if we are to change how we operate as a community on an equal footing with other groups in society creating opportunities for those that follow us, we need to undo the limitations and shackles we are still placing on ourselves.

Our great Leader and ancestor Marcus Garvey once said:

‘Do not remove the kinks from your hair, remove them from your brain.’

In my view one of the greatest and most insidious kinks prevalent within Black Culture, society and families is this Jealousy. Jealousy causes a huge wound ensuring we never come together as a collective to stem the tide of our collective destruction.

One reason jealousy manifests is the ‘Black Sheep’ scenario. This is when one member of the family is singled out for different (usually negative) treatment from the family’s caregivers. how they then treat the ‘Black Sheep,’ is noted subconsciously and can be replicated amongst the other siblings.

The emotional damage of this for the ‘odd one out,’ is incredibly painful to bear, but also, in my view, crippling too for the ‘jealous’ sibling, who spends their life focused on either the resenting their ‘black sheep’ siblings qualities, achievements or lifestyle or else trying to destroy their possessions, or reputation or both, when they should be focused on developing their own unique gifts to their fullest.

A Black Sheep is often created for the following reasons:

The Black Sheep

  • The have a particular gift or talent and without training ‘comes naturally and is executed to a high standard. This gift may bring external attention and validation to them.
  • Their personality is unusual and obviously different to that of the mother or father and they find it a challenge to relate to and parent them. Sometimes this is because the nature of the child triggers their insecurities. e.g. a particularly gifted child academically whose parent(s) struggled with school and harbour resentment or fear of the system; a child who is personable and friendly, yet has been born to parents or a parent who is insecure and nervous in social situations
  • The child could be very like the mother or father and the other parent resents them and the characteristics that remind them of the ex-partner.
  • Perhaps there is some secret or shame surrounding the child’s conception and the are a reminder to the parent of that poor decision or traumatic event.

Whatever the reason the persecuted child, the ‘Black sheep’ struggles for years with their decision-making & self worth and may reject the very ‘gifts’ they were born with.

  • They spend a lifetime wondering what is so horrid about who they are and insecurity a lack of self-trust and self-loathing follow them into adulthood.
  • If not that, then they make life decisions based on either pleasing others or in some cases in direct opposition to the advice of friends now around them in adulthood, as they find it impossible to believe these people have their best interests at heart .
  • An inability to trust follows and it becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy*

Invariably they blame themselves or become a people pleaser; wearing themselves out to make everything alright for everyone else, swallowing their own voices and shrinking in a vain attempt to gain approval.

The reality is that approval is never coming…

The worst of situations like this is that nothing is stated or discussed yet it permeates every interaction and every family decision.

It’s tough for an adult to recognise their parents are not perfect and are perhaps not as learned, emotional literate or experienced as they are, let alone a child who is dependent on these people for their view of the world and their care.

Crabs in a Barrel’

When one of us starts to ‘rise’ out of the constraining situation and circumstances of our birth or community, others members, become resentful.

They do several things to try and bring you down:

  • Other siblings, cousins or even the parents or caregivers take (usually without permission) use and destroy your property then negate your feelings of hurt, your protestations or upset, blaming you for overreacting or being ’emotional,’ disrespectful or miserable
  • Your physical attributes are often criticised
  • Family members cannot be pleased for you when you achieve triumphs and successes.
  • Family don’t pay attention to what you’re doing and show no interest
  • You’re not congratulated you on our achievements, or it is done with restraint and tension…the obligation being evident
  • Your school, college, work events & ceremonies are not attended, or they have excuses.
  • They separate others from you with whisper campaigns (or downright lies) or try and get them on their ‘side’ in situations. btw – their ‘side’ is always in opposition to whatever you think or feel.
  • They may go as far as trying to ‘live’ your life and cheat with your partner OR
  • Try stealing you own children’s affections and the affections of the wider family network in an attempt to isolate you. This isolation somehow ‘justifies’ their behaviour in their eyes. After all everyone else thinks you’re (insert your own negative label here)…’bossy,’ ‘too loud,’ ‘a know-it-all,’ ‘sneaky’ (if you’re shy) whatever it is they can find a way to persecute you for it
  • The wider community fail to support your attempts at entrepreneurship or comment on how you think you’re above them if your life decisions are different to theirs or you appear to be prospering materially.

Solutions

to move forward as individuals and communities we need to stem the ‘miseducation’ and warped socialisation that goes on within our lives.

Its imperative that we understand that the family is the fertiliser in which the ‘seed’ of the child is planted. For the seed to be properly nourished and grow into full potential that soil has to have the correct nutrients.

One of the most vital minerals in that soil is ‘support.’

I have taught many children for different cultural backgrounds and one thing they always tell me that we as a people do not do well, is support one another. They can be in the midst of a family feud, but if it comes to business or moving forward in society they will always support their own first…fraternise the shop within their own community and owned by a community member before running off to give their money, services to other social groups. Regardless!

Once we begin to support one another’s achievements we will see an exponential rise in our communities social, cultural and financial gains.

Family is the the foundation of society that community, if our communities are to move forward, but with proper understanding, we can come together and move and speak as one, create unity.

The family is the first place we learn to socialise and so it is here that that unity, the appreciation of and support for others and their gifts will first be taught.

It was through unity that our our ancestors fought tirelessly and secured their freedoms. It’s through unity that our countries gained independence and it was through unity that civil rights were won.

It’s not too late…

Come together within our communities and teach our children who they are and where they come from, teach them, their history and that they are unique; teach them that their gifts and those of the people around them are valuable. Teach them to respect themselves, their property and the community’s property as well as others.

Ensure they have collective and individual pride.

There’s no longer a place in the farmyard for a barrel full of crabs or black sheep!

Start the process of ‘de-kinking’ our minds!

Blissings and much love

Insightful Angel

*self-fulfiling prophesy: https://positivepsychology.com/self-fulfilling-prophecy/

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

Sick of the Hurt! – Sayeth the man

Sick of the Hurt!

You may remember last week’s blog? The one in which I dared to tell the world that black women have feelings too! You know, the post which exposed the fact that we’re not made of stone (shocker!) And the limited narratives society (and indeed our own communities) offer us as a means to articulate our experiences are not about anger or a martyred single-dom, but are about our collective and individual PAIN?

Well…

That very same theme has carried into this week for me. I was intrigued by a comment made whilst in discussion with a friend. She recalled a conversation with her partner as she attempted to have a heartfelt discussion with him.

For some time she had noticed that she was not getting the best of him and was feeling ignored and dismayed by this. His attention was perpetually divided and when he seemingly was ‘listening’ it was with an ear towards the next message; skipping between ‘other’ (in her heart and eyes) more important contact’s messages; business calls that needed responding to (even at night) and other ‘stuff’ that meant she was perpetually side-lined, ignored, dismissed and her feelings needs and desires negated.

Expressing self

He’d been unaware of her week’s movements, challenges and triumphs, due to either not hearing her… truly being present and listening or because they hadn’t properly conversed in quite some time. Yet she, was acutely aware of his successes and challenges, had been there to support him in a particularly challenging issue he needed advice on and his response ad been, shall we say, less than grateful.

She felt it reasonable to express her disappointment to him, he is after all her life partner and she was acutely aware that if the situation continued they would be in big trouble in their relationship. She confessed to me it was only after her abandonment was so acute that she summoned up the daring to broach the subject with him. Fearing the often-felt dismissal when the black woman’s ‘feelings’ are brought up and the immense wounding she may swallow yet again, if she couldn’t get through to him.

The expectation would be for her to stifle the aching, yet again, find some emotional balm from deep within and place the salve on the knawing gape of her woman’s desires herself and just ‘get on with it!’

‘Getting on with it’ is what has been the lot of the Black woman since we were kidnapped from the Motherland.

Superwoman
  1. The dark hued woman was designated the back-breaking field work, bred like donkeys, raped and tortured, saw their children sold of at intervals or die: The first trauma – *Vilomahed (see below)
  2. Or else the children they produced who were ‘closer to massa’ in looks were brought into the house and discouraged from fraternising with the woman who bore them; the first heart-breaking rejection: The second trauma – Rejection
  3. If their men loved them, protected them, admired and appreciated them or their family unit was becoming just ‘too tight’ He was sold off: The third trauma – Unprotected
  4. If their son’s were protective and loving towards their mothers, if they dared defend them they lived in the fear of them being tortured or killed and so she had to teach her darling boy to ‘bow his head’ just a ‘likkle’ so massa wasn’t too offended by his emerging manhood and she felt shame. Shame that in trying to save him she was forced to become complicit in the emasculation of her own men: The fourth trauma – Psychosis inducing Guilt

And all of this, she had to stuff down. Even though it was vomit-inducing and choking she went back into the fields day after day, pregnant and in mortal fear instead of able to embrace the joy of bringing new life,

Into the ‘big house,’ and wet-nursed the massa’s baby, her life-giving, rich, original-mother-of-the-Earth-mineral-rich-mother’s milk suckled by another woman’s children, whilst hers went hungry…

Imagine…

Where did all that pain go?

And so… the narrative of the black woman being able to bear anything and get up and get on with it is ‘hot-metal branded’ into our collective psyches. No other woman in any other cultural grouping be-it a Racial, Social or even Professional context is or has been exposed to such isolation, rejection abandonment and emotional molestation.

Where did all the pain go?

Another friend and I have sat up night after night examining the shared experiences in our lives and the uncanny synchronicities within them.

Even we, seemingly intelligent, well-educated, sophisticated, modern Black women have had to recognise, painful as it is, that the trauma has been passed on. Passed on in utero. Passed on as our fragile lives take shape, as we exit the birth canal; the trauma has already been tattooed into our psyches!**

And it is so that we enter the world to then layer the traumas experienced in our own lives on top of the of the ones we’ve been bequeathed at birth.

Traumas and hurts from abuse, abandonment by lovers, husbands, children; for some of us, emotionally flat, unfeeling, sometimes cruel mothers, mothers unhappy at their own life choices and without the emotional maturity to deal with their feelings or ‘babies’ as mothers who like deer in headlights, were nursing their own traumas with no damned idea how to soothe and support themselves let anyone anyone else!

The trauma is perpetuated and so the narrative embeds deeper and deeper within our psyche, our experiences and our society. We can deal with ANYTHING, we have no need of comfort or protection or consideration or care; we are fearless and strong.

We are impenetrable.

Impenetrable like rock

In order to survive, that is exactly what many of us have had to become…

impenetrable, stone: pushing it all down, calcifying our pain for fear that if we acknowledge it, shine the light of realisation on it and dare to heal, that we might, instead lacerate and annihilate our very souls!

My brave friend persevered. She KNOWs she deserves like any other woman a chance to experience the love and protection and companionship of a life partner. She longs to be an example to her children and especially her girl children of what they can and should expect from themselves and their partners.

His response was to negate her hurt, it was to outline how fed up he was of hearing of her needs and that if this is what being  ‘strong black woman’ meant then he was ‘tired’ of hearing it.

Strong?

What is the strong black woman?

Her response was that ‘being a strong black woman’ means:

Recovering from another instance of someone:

  • Happily sharing your gifts, being uplifted and promising equanimity, yet in reality being incapable of admitting that they do not want to fulfil that promise or equanimity when it comes to you.
  • That it’s giving and loving and caring and supporting and getting little or nothing like the same in return…
  • It’s having your needs and feelings dismissed and instead being blamed
  • It’s somehow after being crushed, abandoned or neglected (after all you’re a strong woman and so can do EVERYTHING alone, so get on with it and shut up!) finding the courage and the hope and the compassion for self and others and swallowing the massive FEAR that you might get it wrong again…

It’s after society and your own men shove you to the bottom of the pile every day…

  • It’s after THAT… you dare to try again, to believe things can be different and not become cynical, cruel, ugly, vicious, mean or hurtful.

It’s getting up though you’re bruised and terrified and giving it another go, believing in the spirit of humanity, believing in romance, believing in true partnership and love and believing, despite exhaustion that you too deserve all life has to offer and you’ll give it one last go; just ‘ONE MORE TIME”

That…

She said is what being a strong black woman is!

Blissings and much love

Insightful Angel

*Vilomah means “against a natural order.” As in, the grey-haired should not bury those with black hair. As in our children should not precede us in death. If they do, we are vilomahed. … A parent whose child has died is a vilomah:https://today.duke.edu/2009/05/holloway_oped.html

**The Telegraph, Sunday 27th October 21019The Genetic Scientists are now beginning to confirm that phobias can be inherited: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/10486479/Phobias-may-be-memories-passed-down-in-genes-from-ancestors.html

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

A lesson in Soul Vision and the surprising result

Happy Easter and a Happy Sunday all,

I’ve coined the phrase ‘Soul Vision’ after an event which happened recently. All to often we get all bent out of shape, feel insulted and upset by the actions or words of others, when if we simply looked ‘below’ the surface water and practised ‘soul vision,’ we might see the ‘truth’ to the clear waters below.

It feels good being back here

It’s been far too long since I put fingers to keyboard and I have to admit to many moments self admonition as I found myself unable, week in, week out to write. It’s not that I didn’t have thoughts and ideas to communicate you understand, but for some inexplicable reason I had no idea that I would find adjusting to a new life, in a new continent, to a new culture and way of being so all-consuming, that I would have little of me left to do anything but work, eat (sometimes) and sleep (not long enough!)

So,Today I’m determined

Despite doubt & nervousness, despite insecurity and apprehension, Its my intention to publish today and regain my previous habit. I hope you’ll bear with me as I find my bearings once more.

The Eyes are the window to the soul

Most of us take our vision for granted. As vital as the organs we call our ‘eyes’ are, we seldom think about their health or care until we have a need to; meaning something has usually gone awry before we consider what our eyes do for us. Practically they enable us to navigate through our physical world, metaphorically, they symbolise insight and wisdom.

without vision, we are blind…

Seven months ago I moved to Nigeria, to live and work. It’s been a challenging transition at times as I found myself bullied at work and within the culture of the country there is a spirit of avarice which is not only prevalent in the corrupt politicians the country is famous for. It’s a ‘gravaliciousness’ (the Jamaicans among you will know what I mean) that is so alien to who I am that I have had a challenging time negotiating who I am in response to it!

but one of the things I noticed almost immediately was that…

Lagos is peppered with blind people!

It’s a prevalent phenomenon which seems quite alarming! Something I couldn’t help but notice on my arrival. Yet… I’ve just come to a realisation whilst writing this. I have just ‘clicked!’

They are metaphorically the physical manifestation of Nigerian society & its relationships.

There is a focus on the ‘surface’ in Nigerian interactions.

How much money you have, who you know, what you do, the family or area, your were born into are what is important in Nigerian society. There is very little looking to the ‘soul’. Instead the focus on what a person has etc. Many people interact with you based on assumptions and stereotypes, ‘blind’ to who you truly are, they…

pay attention to the surface water-how things ‘appear’ and not to what lies beneath.

Seeing is Seeing…isn’t it? Or is it?

When I visited Oshun State last week I went to sit by the banks of the Ogun River. This river water looks brown and murky when viewed as a body of water, yet if you collect it into a clear vessel, surprisingly, the water itself becomes clear, you can see right through it.

No mud… no murkiness

So it would seem that seeing may no be ‘seeing’ after all! Metaphorically speaking, it’s the same scenario when one talks about our interactions with one another.

An example

We would do better if we practised ‘soul seeing’ and endeavoured to look beneath the surface when we interact with each other. My example goes like this:

Seeing a live show was a thrill… a young cameraman decided to interview me for a local TV station, perhaps as a Visitor/migrant/’Ex-Pat,’ he felt I would offer a viewpoint that was somewhat different. He agreed to get a copy of the interview to me. There was, at this point, no mention of payment. We exchanged numbers and agreed how he could get it to me. He dropped the disc in reception. Of course I was working (plus I never take money into work).

After returning his disc to him (via reception) he later called, and because he couldn’t be reimbursed straight away, became enraged and rather abusive! He refused to accept the disc back and left it there. His choice.

Now the point is this!

Over a week later I receive yet another message less abusive yet still complaining. My first response, the surface one was to react to the ‘surface’ of the words he was saying. I felt insulted and defensive and I fought back. I failed initially to practise ‘soul vision’ and like the Ogun river all I saw was the muddy brown top layer of his insults, the outer that he was showing me.

Mightily confused, I couldn’t understand his attitude nor his insistence on being so aggrieved. Then I asked myself…

What is this about really?

I stopped.

Soul vision seeing beyond the murky surface

There was another way to look at this to see through the ‘surface,’ the murky brown of aggression and insult and attempt to see through to the clear water beneath.

What my intuition told me was to consider that perhaps he was seriously struggling, that the reasonably paltry sum he was quibbling about with me, might, at this very moment mean the world to him? The difference between eating and not? And that perhaps he had taken a risk having the disc produced, in a desperate attempt to make a living that week. Nigeria is a POOR country, Life is very, very hard!

‘Perhaps he really is in need of the money?’

So based on my deeper looking, on my practising soul vision, I reached out and asked him if he was in need and re-assured him that it was OK to ask. His first reaction was still one of defiance and ridicule, sarcasm even, but then after some hours I awoke to another message from him. Asking this time for some humble support.

  • I complied and offered more than he’d asked for
  • Result: a conversation ensued of a wholly different nature and tone
  • Conversation based on mutual respect…
  • One which allowed us to lower our ‘surface’ guard and allow each other to see the clear water beneath.
  • A discourse of understanding
  • He then confessed I had confounded his usual view of human nature and our interaction had changed how he viewed the world. he would now be less cynical and had a renewed hope.

It takes a village…

They say it takes a village to raise a child, A child becomes an adult and adults create the physical world we live in.

So what does it take to change the world?

Change the adults within that world!

Perhaps, just perhaps, by practising ‘Soul Vision,’ one instance at a time, one day at a time, one month and one year at a time, we can indeed Create a more compassionate world. A world in which our ‘eyes’ are open and truly ‘SEE?’

Blissings and much love

Insightful Angel

 

 

 

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

Musing: Love in all it’s forms

Happy Monday all

Last week, I was musing on love all it’s forms and the following words spewed out.

It was a week when I was shown love in all it’s many wonderful and not so wonderful forms:

Sibling love, romantic love, parental love… the love of friends, children neighbours and pets. I saw it all. The expressions were sometimes beautiful, other times they were less so…

Sadly, I noticed too that sometimes, just sometimes when we say we love what we do is allow love to be expressed as long as it fits what WE decide is an acceptable expression of that love.

Sadly, sometimes we impose conditions…

Sometimes we threaten and it got me thinking…

What IS Love?

love-1153972_1280And though for me it was just a momentary thought, a whole stream of words spewed forth.

I shared my thoughts on my personal FB page. It wasn’t a big deal, but it seems to have gotten a powerful and positive response with one or two people mentioning that I should share it more widely, so I am here for you today.

I hope it inspires you at the start of your week’s journey:

Contemplating love…In all its forms

Love is open
Love is giving
Love does not deny…
the friend…child…parent…lover, those parted or the living
 
Love is never demanded!
 
Love is kind
Love is inclusive
Love is free from guilt
Love should never be denied
used as weapon its withdrawal a threat
 
Love-in-such-a-wayFor love should be…
Uncensored
Unconditional
Unlicensed
And fall where it may
 
Love is trust(ing)…NOT
insecure or blind subject to rules, conditions & moral confines.
 
Love respects the separate…the union & the whole
For Love is…All
Love is…

the seat of the Soul!

Blissings & Much Love

Insightful Angel

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

I am an alien

Happy Friday All

The day the Earth stood still is a film about an alien who lands on earth. It that captivated me as a girl. For over 50 years it has been one of my favourites. When I was younger I didn’t really get why, but  now, I get it!

Day-The-Earth-Stood-Still

The film’s message is one of love. Yes, L.O.V.E. Love. Unconditional acceptance and the freedom to be the way you were made to be.

The Plot: Basically An alien lands and tells the people of Earth that they must live peacefully in love or be destroyed as a danger to other planets. The ship is a Metal Giant, in it a ‘man’ like extra terrestrial delivers the warning insisting that they ‘come in peace’

Now these two beings do nothing wrong. They do not instigate anything; the man goes around interacting and being a wonderful example of how humans should behave. It illustrates how base and barbaric our way of being is.

BUT

Because we do not understand it…we decide to attack it and that’s when the trouble starts.

I don’t know about you but I’m fed up of being attacked because others fail to understand my actions as I express love. I am Mad, yes, Fuming at how often I have to bear witness (and received) the basest, most hurtful comments and despicable actions of others because they insist on judging others by their own insecure, base, greedy or evil standards.

We’re seeing it all around us…

Look at the world we’re living in!

So I’m getting it off my chest and declaring to the world ‘I am an alien!’

ufo-1448947_1280

There, I said it.

What I mean by this is that I believe that love is… that’s it.

Love is all; It’s all we have ever or will ever need. It would seem that thinking and being this way makes me an alien.

I am, it would appear an ‘other worldly’ being others sometimes assume has an ulterior motive or else they believe I am dealing in something unsavoury; that I and others like me are acting in a way that is strange. When all we aliens are doing is expressing what we feel is right and good showing love for our fellow citizens, our families, our friends and our neighbours

We say we believe in love and it’s a CROC!

Hypocrisy.

  • We cry and weep and wail for Paris and Turkey…. as we should.
  • In our millions, we share posts for ‘Black lives matter’ as we should
  • We get incensed when we hear of the genocide being committed and rightly so
  • We march to show how much we care and rightly so
  • We insist time and time again that we believe in love AND
  • Share profound videos on social media that remind us that L.O.V.E. is all the world needs and you know what

It’s a ‘Croc’ 

You see if we believed in LOVE, truly believed, we’d practise it – every day, in every situation, in every way, unconditionally.

But…

apple-570965_1280All too often love I see love showing up with conditions.

  • You can love me but not him/her/them/that
  • If you love me you won’t speak to…
  • I love MY people, but THEY are different
  • If you love me then you won’t be/do/say X, Y, Z
  • If you won’t do this and my way, you won’t see your children/family/mother/father/grandparents
  • Love is demanded
  • Love is withheld
  • Love is used to manipulate

Love has many forms.

The Greeks had at least four words for their interpretation of the different ways love can be expressed

  • Éros:means “love, mostly of the sexual passion.” Although éros is initially felt for a person, it becomes an appreciation of the beauty within that person, or an appreciation of beauty itself. Physical attraction as not necessarily a part of love, hence the use of the word platonic to mean, “without physical attraction.”
  • Agápe: means “love: esp. charity; the love of God for man and of man for God.” Agape is used in ancient texts to denote feelings for one’s children and the feelings for a spouseeros-352030_1280
  • Philia: “affectionate regard, friendship,” usually “between equals.” It is a dispassionate virtuous love, a concept developed by Aristotle In his best-known work on ethics. Philia is expressed as loyalty to friends; (specifically, “brotherly love”), family, and community and requires virtue, equality, and familiarity.
  • Storge : means “love, affection” and “especially of parents and children” It’s the common or natural empathy, like that felt by parents for offspring. It is almost always used to refer to relationships within the family. It is also known to express acceptance or putting up with situations, as in “loving” the tyrant. Storge is also used when referring to the love for one’s country or a favourite sports team.

On Being Alien

  • Being an alien means I know that love shows up as familial, as friendship, as care, as companionship.
  • It shows up deeply and casually, it shows up as sex and affection, it shows up in making a cup of tea or coffee
  • It shows up as staying up late to mark those last 10 papers
  • It shows up as telling someone they look lovely even if you don’t know them and will never see them again
  • It shows up as laughing at a friends joke, speaking kindly to a customer, rubbing your dog’s whiskers and every day…

It shows up perhaps 50-100 times a day

But, how many opportunities do YOU take to live in the Love you say you believe in?

Mantra

home-1132278_1280I am an alien

I make no apology for being an alien,

I will not stand down nor accept criticism & condemnation when I choose to love as compassion or affection.

I will not allow your sullied mind to make my expression of any connection to another seem seedy and unsavoury because you judge from within the dank walls of your own insecurity, hatred and fear

I will not abandon my sister or brother because their experience is not that of my own

I will not give up on LOVE whatever form it needs to take

So, why not join this alien?

Create a tribe of aliens who come to the world in love, who come in peace and take every opportunity, every moment of every day, to express it in all its wonder, its beauty and yes it’s LOVE.

Blissings and much love

Insightful Angel

 

 

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

The Shadow

Happy Sunday All

I discovered something about myself recently that I’m not sure I’m very proud of, But I felt the insight was worthy of sharing. I discovered the shadow in me. It peeked out of my bag and I, though fearful, allowed it out to play.

We all have one or two qualities that we know need some work, however to suddenly discover my shadow, let it out of my bag of ‘secrets’ and REALLY look at it was quite unnerving, but I was determined.

The Shadow

black-and-white-1282260_1280 (The Shadow – a trait or aspect of your personality that you repress or hide, for fear of criticism; a quality you are afraid to show & one which subconsciously prevents you living more expanded and joyfully).

Discovering this particular shadow, one I had suspected was there in moments when it peeked out of the bag, sent me off balance a little.

The term ‘Shadow’ was first used by Carl Jung to describe the repressed or denied part of the self. You see when we’re born, we use express with abandon and without censorship: All of our feelings and moods and quirks and foibles, without censorship or compunction, But we quickly come to learn that sometimes the way we express or parts of our personality are not valued or accepted by the people around us (and usually closest to us).

Recipe for creating The Shadow

Perhaps you were ridiculed and our opinion not taken seriously, or maybe you were shamed when upset and called names or your upset & pain ignored; perhaps you weren’t allowed to express your pride when you achieved something, perhaps you were criticised instead? There are may reactions to our words, deeds and behaviours that cause us to see them as ‘undesirable.’

Once we realise this part of us or this behaviour is not accepted, we decide to squirrel it away. We begin to repress it; hide those traits and qualities we see as shameful or undesirable, we learn to hide away the anything that caused us pain as a result of it being shown.

Hidden but not forgotten

hiding-1209131_1280Though we ‘squirrel’ these feelings away, somewhere in our psyche we still carry them with us. It’s as though we put a sack or our backs and continue to ‘lug’ these parts we are afraid to show, the denied parts, the parts we feel we need to repress around with us.

Every time you deny yourself their expression another is added to the bag, and another and another, until the bag becomes so heavy so burdensome we can become ill. Hopefully we become so angry or so tired of bending ourselves into a pretzel to suit whoever and whatever, your inner spirit finally shouts: ‘ENOUGH!’

woman-1043030_1280The shadow can be positive or negative.

  • Positive: You develop a positive habit in order to gain approval you may develop a habit which garners approval from those around you, but one which is not allowing you to be your ‘authentic self.’ Even though seen as positive, it is still a ‘shadow’ trait if it means you deny or repress what would be a natural response or behaviour for you. If you feel you’re somehow ‘holding back’ a natural part of yourself.
  • Negative: You are constantly straining to hide an undesirable ‘shadow’ trait that you’d prefer others didn’t see because you’re unconfident about it or feel others will see you negatively because of it.

Consequences

Developing another way of behaving to avoid slipping into the behaviours you know others around you do not approve of (more often than not the criticism comes from a place of insecurity or jealousy on their part), is exhausting and damaging to the psyche and the emotions. Constantly hiding or denying a part of yourself is eventually going to cause you pain, but as a child, when you were disapproved of or criticised you didn’t understand that, did you?

My Shadow Revealed

I Am a People Pleaser

…even as I write it I wince! I feel a bit of a fraud

affirmations-441457_1280

But, I know one thing, I want it exorcised and out of my bag!

This realisation didn’t come to me in a flash I had to dig for it.

It all started a few weeks ago ( I wrote this post several weeks ago, but was too afraid to post it – My shadow again!) when one of my blogs was selected to be the ‘Blog of the day’ for the ‘Wellness Universe; a forum and platform for Wellness Professionals and people like me who just want to do our bit to make the world a better place.

I was rightly proud, so I posted the link on Facebook, but three words I used in the intro to the post really seemed at odds and evoked an emotional response in me.

They were: ‘It’s no biggie’

I realised that I always DO that, but why?

sad-girl-236769_150

I downplay my achievements and ‘play small.’ I strive to always DO THE RIGHT THING’ that way I will always win approval.

Yet my vision for my life, my future & me is to be HUGE. I know I have so much to give the world and my mission is to help others discover and show their light; to help them blind you with their brilliance and learn how to shine without excuse and to know how to do so much sooner than I.

Not too loudly, Not too bright, Not too high,

light-1375158_1280It’s not people pleasing in an obsequious or arrogant way you understand, (well, I hope not!) but in a way that I fly just under the radar and do not shine too brightly; a way that means I don’t not sing too sweetly, so others criticise or chastise, so it draws too much attention. For those of you that know me, you may well be surprised, as I’m not exactly known to be a shrinking violet, but there IS MORE!

Yet, how can I hope to fully realise my ambition to be a fully realised and authentic hue-man, How will I meet my ambition to help others be the same, if I am still NOT truly open, still not truly Stepping into my light?

I pondered this for some days and discovered my ‘why’ and my ‘how.’

Starting again, and again and again

I became a people pleaser so I didn’t feel the hurt anymore; so I didn’t feel the pain of the criticism, the ridicule and the disapproval, but it also meant I didn’t ever meet my potential in anything. I did just enough for people to recognise I have talent and I was always promoted, but I never really Pushed through into the stratosphere of true success.

Just as I would grow wings and would really begin to fly, I would change direction or I’d be made redundant and make myself start again, from the bottom up.

Where did this come from:

As young children perhaps you were not allowed to celebrate your successes, I wasn’t…

shame-799095_1280

If we’re not given the chance to feel joy, not even the joy of just being ourselves as I was; or you’re expected to play the ‘big sister/brother’ role and always to:

  • Be sensible
  • Set the example
  • Know better
  • Do as you’re told
  • Not know too much
  • Speak when spoken to
  • Calm down (usually when we’re particularly happy)
  • Be quiet
  • Sit still
  • Don’t answer back
  • Respect your elders (which usually meant do what they say even if they’re wrong or are hurting you in some way)

Then somewhere in your subconscious you may have decided to play small.

I did…

  1. Because when I play small no-one gets hurt
  2. When I downplay my successes I don’t appear arrogant or ‘big-headed’
  3. When I play small I seem humble and self-effacing
  4. When I play small I’m less threatening
  5. When I play small I’m not criticised
  6. When I play small others approve of me (who doesn’t want their family and friends to look at them and be proud?)
  7. When I play small no-one has to explain my behaviour or make excuses for me
  8. When I play small society accepts me

I’m sure you get the picture

Enough, enough, enough, Enough!

cat-564202_1280I’d had ENOUGH I want to be fully realise, fully functioning, fully aware of & loving of myself; the whole 360’ of me.

By bringing our shadow into the light (that may simply be a share with one or two close friends or family or a wider more exposed announcement) we’re being the bravest version of ourselves we can be.

  • What qualities are you hiding?
  • What talents are you containing?
  • What feelings are you protecting out of fear?

When you expose your soft underbelly as well as hold yourself accountable for ALL that you are you are no longer afraid.

question-1301144_1280There is no criticism or that can hurt you, no ridicule or disapproval that causes you to wince, because they’re not revealing anything you don’t already know and recognise about you and guess what?

You’re working on it…

that’s the very best you can Do…

And that’s OK…

 Blissings & Much Love

Insightful Angel

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

For those who may be struggling with their truth

Sad-FaceToday…

Today I am sad and miserable and blue

Today I am hurt and don’t know what to do

Today I grieve, I lost my greatest hero

Today I’m lost, I’m weary and low.

Today, I have no idea who I am

Today I am shaking, a soon-slaughtered lamb

I don’t know why I’m here, nor how I should be

I want to free myself

from always trying to be…

The best, the perfect, version of me

And…

Though I know, I’ll swell like a blimp, I wanna eat biscuits and bread and chips and Ice-cream and stuff it ALL down, coz you see feelings like these are alien to me.

I don’t know what to do, to express and let go I just don’t now how and it’s killing me slow

Today I want to be open and real and raw and wide and honest and open and true

Today… Can I give myself permission to spew

My a.u.t.h.e.n.t.i.c.i.t.y?

The hurt and regret for the Me, still unknown

The me wringing hands, confused and undone,

for the life I still seek, for the seeds not yet sown?

Will I have time?

question-1301144_1280

Today I wonder; When will it feel right?

But surely by now I shouldn’t be so uptight?

Today I wonder why, who, when, what, where and how?

Do I truly have the power to manifest the glory I vowed?

And

Though I know the theory and I feel it in my bones…

We are pure essence, pure beauty, pure connection, pure love,

It’s just out of reach, out of sync

So Remote…

Today I don’t want pity or sympathy or comfort or speech

Today, just for one day

I just want to be free

Of every expectation I’ve ever placed on me.

I want to sit by a lake in my fear and be soothed, open up to the breeze and admit

I don’t KNOW!

For today, I want to love me, snuggle up to myself & find the key…

Unlock the door to MY my talents, my gifts, my inner, my peace

the me I am waiting…

No, yearning to see

hands-423794_1280

And today

just for one day

This is ME…

This is the best, the very best I can be…

And Today

(perhaps just for today)

This…

is A-OK

Blissings & Much Love

Insightful Angel

 

 

 

 

 

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

Compression

Happy Sunday all,

This post will be a brief one, but I just couldn’t, despite doctors orders, leave it too long before I communicated again. One thing to know about me is, that when the universe wants me to pay attention I will become ill in some way. Fortunately for me that hasn’t been too often, but when I need to attend to something or I need a ‘wake up call’ something happens to my physical body. I am then forced to slow down or stop and that’s when I start being really, really still.

macro-319237_1920In stillness, you know I’ve said it before, is when the ‘stuff’ comes up that we need to look at or work on. So, if you’re life feels ‘still’ or you’re ‘bored’ as my pupils are perpetually telling m they are, then be thankful, because you’re in a place of opportunity, a place where you can decide over again and choose differently if the ones you made to date haven’t served you.

You’re in a place where you can create your situation again and become NEW.

This is me: Feeling much like a pin-cushion and very sore!

IMAG1910You can’t do much without the use of your hands and fingers, so much of the last two weeks I have just been sitting or ‘doing’ at a very, v e r y s l o o o o o w pace.

I have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome…

The Median nerve, which runs from the shoulder down the forearm and into the middle fingers, is being compressed. The nerve travels though the carpal tunnel. This tunnel is like an elastic band across the wrist that holds all those little bones and nerves in place so they’re not just bouncing around. The compression (soreness and swelling due to overuse)

As there now less room in this small space due to the swelling, there is more pressure on the bones and especially the nerves; less room for all that stuff to fit under the band. This causes numbness and pain in the fingers and at the wrist and in worsening and severe cases up the forearm and into the shoulder. Left unchecked it leads to the loss of strength and eventually permanent damage to the nerves meaning you lose the ability to manipulate or use your fingers. Not good!

Numbness

2014-04-29 18.35.30Doing anything involving my hands means I immediately experience more pain and numbness. Night times are the worst. The pain is excruciating and wakes me several times a night, but less about my suffering and back to the lessons it’s teaching me (and I said I’d be brief!)

On the physical, logical level it’s about repetitive strain from doing the same actions over and over, for a long, long time. Too much marking and heavy bag carrying and typing (which is why I need to make this brief)

According to Louise Hay – Who asserts that every physical manifestation is the result of thoughts and emotions we have had continuously over time and these thoughts and emotions have created a physical manifestation of those thoughts, she says:

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Anger and frustration at life’s seeming injustices.

I guess she could be right!

cropped-girl-863340_1280.jpgI have been very saddened by some of the things I see happening in today’s society, especially when the weak or poor or disadvantaged are being even more poorly treated or kicked around, but what I’m being reminded of in my stillness, is that my focus should always be to deal with what’s in front of me in the here and now.

To Focus on the trajectory and direction of My life and mine alone.

There’s no point worrying about what’s ‘OUT THERE’ or what ‘OTHERS’ are doing to the point where I become emotional about it.

  1. Because this means I am not being the Captain of my ship, my hand is not on the tiller of MY LIFE, so I’m not, therefore, steering my life, on purpose
  2. Usually too, it means I’m criticising or judging (albeit unintentionally) I will be unhappy with the actions or policies of some system or government or organisation and that is judging.
  3. These thoughts are creating negative energy
  4. waves-circles-285359_1280If I am the pebble and the universe is the lake into which I have been dropped then this energy is the energy that is rippling out in front of me.
  5. Those concentric rings surround the pebble and resonate out far beyond the physical boundary of the pebble. So this: judgement, criticism, holding back, resentment is the energy the pebble, (me/you) moves forward into. (I know the pebble will simply sink), but you get the analogy!
  6. ‘I’ am the pebble and I move forwards into that energy, into the minutes, days, months and years of my life; into the energy I created perhaps months or years ago and if I continue to focus on this energy, I add to those ripples making them stronger ripples, ripples that makes the surface of the lake choppier, rougher and harder to navigate.

So in closing; deal with YOUR here and now. Even if you have a mission to change the world it starts with YOU.

Your example, what you do, how you speak, what you say influences not only the trajectory of your future, but others too as they adjust their tiller and make their choices anew. So perhaps you will, simply by being in control your own thoughts and actions, indeed Change the world!

Blissings & Much love

Insightful Angel

 

 

 

Be nice...Sharing is caring!

Letter to my younger self II

Happy Sunday all,

I ended up thinking of so many other things I could advise my younger self to do, say or be; that one post seemed wholly inadequate and so this week I’m sharing the second of my posts, advising the younger me on the surest pathway to authenticity, truth and happiness. As thoughts and insights whizzed and pinged in my brain, one insight kept re-winding and repeating over and over and that was:

“It’s about the people in our lives…choose wisely”

Dear Angel,

hands-1022028_1280In your early years you of course had no choice in the people in your life, but what I now realise is that good, bad or indifferent, they were our university. They were the mirrors that reflected back to us the qualities, habits and behaviours we could choose to adopt or ditch.

What we now realise we were doing was creating the woman we are today, sometimes as a reaction against the behaviours and habits in front of us, sometimes because of them. Either way they were valuable and helped us mould ourselves into whom we are today.

You did a good job, we’re not so bad really, I think we did OK!

It’s the people in our lives.. choose wisely

shadow-198682_1280As you grow into wisdom, choose carefully those people you have a round you. NEVER feel pressured to be with, follow or do the bidding of someone who is boosting their ego and lack of inner esteem by bullying others or putting them down.

The people around you should make you feel energised, light and supported. Not criticised, chastised or downright low after you’ve spent time with them. If you don’t feel like this, let them go if they’re friends, love them from a distance yourself if they’re family.

The Crowd

Don’t follow the crowd, unless the way their going is the one that’s right for you. In fact no…Just DON’T follow the crowd. EVER!

london-1018629_1280Firstly, it means you can’t see where you’re going and you have no control and secondly, you’ll waste years thinking you’re being ‘on trend’ or ‘with it’ only to find when the crown stops or the ‘trend’ dies out and you look around you’re not where you wanted to be.

Not only this, ‘trends’ have habit of constantly shifting and you’ll just get exhausted trying to keep up and who creates them anyway? Anyone who needs followers’ in order to feel good about themselves obviously feels lacking in some way, so what the hell do they have to offer you or anyone else if they don’t even have anything about themselves they believe in?

 

On Being ‘Sexy’

No amount of money or make-up or designer clothing will make you sexier, more loveable or more likeable…

Trust me on this one: THE absolute Sexiest thing in the world is someone who is confident in their abilities, likes who they are and is Comfortable in their own skin!

Now THAT is irresistible!

Elders

Spend time with them…

Your parents, your grandparents…

old-age-957492_1280

Our bodies may be ageing, but we still feel the same as we did when we were in our twenties. We now have a magical combination; the heart and sensibilities of a young person, coupled with the wisdom acquired from making mistakes, seeing others do the same and can advise you with insight. Not only that we love you more than you could ever know and hold nothing but your best in our hearts and minds for you. We would NEVER steer you wrong.

Health

I know it’s a cliché and everyone says it, but it’s a phrase becomes a cliché because it is consistently proven which is why people say them over an over again: But, Without your health, there is nothing.’

Health is the salt of life. It gives it flavour. Without it life is left tasteless and bland.

  • The first thing to do is Sleep. When we sleep we heal, when we get the sleep we need we are lighter, brighter, more creative.
  • Drink more Water, we’re still not the greatest at this, but we’re getting better. Dehydration ages you and causes you to feel lethargic and lacking in energy
  • Read more booksREAD, READ, READ there is SO much to know about life, people, love and everything.
  • I’d advise you to Stop drinking milk…Sorry but despite the culture and the norm it’s just no good for you.
  • Eat as much plant-based food as possible.
  • Be in nature whevever you can it’s soothing and calming and you’d be amazed the solutions that come to you when you’re surrounded by the lilting sounds of nature
  • De-clutter…It clears your mind and makes you feel lighter
  • Take care of your knees! No seriously, they’re so vital to the functioning of the rest of your physique.
  • Be Still… Find a way to turn your thoughts inward. Or just ‘Be’ in that space. By doing this you stay tuned to your inner navigation system, your intuition and learn to trust yourself and your decisions.
  • Be in the Sun…regularly and for extended periods of time, especially if you have Melanin. The sun makes everyone feel JOY.

And so in the end…

coast-631925_1280In closing Angel, my last words of advice to you would be to remember to open your heart. Remember no one ever died of a broken heart. You WILL recover and will be stronger, wiser and more grateful for the experience you have just been through.

So, for now, I think I’ve said all I need to.

Remember: You can’t control others, so don’t try to, don’t sweat the small stuff, really the little things don’t matter in the scheme of things and…

Look after your KNEES!

Blissings & Much love

Insightful Angel

 

 

 

 

 

Be nice...Sharing is caring!