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Who Is Living Your Dream?

“And she said “Look at you! You’re living your dream, while the rest of us are disgruntled and trying to make a life out of the limitations that we have!””

I was on the phone with a very close friend of mine. A gypsetter like me, who had just returned back to her apartment in Nottingham from a summer travelling around Europe. Like myself, she has created a sustainable lifestyle for herself, where she is semi-nomadic, and doing what she loves: creating beautiful, sustainable gardens at festivals and managing the environmental aspects of eco-friendly events.

She was sharing her experience of having been at a wedding where an ex and several friends from her past life as a produce seller were at, divulging their unhappiness with their lives, and dreaming of greener pastures. She described them as unsatisfied, complaining and moaning about their partners and dreaming of a different life. A different life. One that they knew they wanted, but didn’t dare to dream of.

This is a conversation that comes up often when I spend time with people who are not living out their deepest yearnings – their dreams. When you repress what is calling you, when you don’t allow the creative spirit within you to rise up and be expressed through you, in whatever form, a small part of you dies. Quietly, softly turning into dust. When we don’t nurture our dreams, we don’t get to fully show up and experience life.

 

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DREAMS ARE BUILT ON PURPOSE

We all come into our lives wishing to feel some kind of sense of purpose. Something that we can tether ourselves to and identify with. Something that gives us meaning. Innately, having a sense of purpose is a physical and emotional need. It’s what we build our dreams on.

We begin to find ourselves when we notice how we are already found – already truly, entirely, wildly, messily, marvellously exactly who we are meant to be.

The only problem from recognising that is that there is this undercurrent of rejecting ourselves. We have been taught for years to live up to other people’s expectations, to societies ideas of who we should become, fixations on how other people perceive us, an external means of fulfilling ourselves  such as body image and having the latest everything.

To truly discover and embody your purpose, you have to step out of what is keeping you small and contained. Stop being a people pleaser. Listen to and trust your intuition. And start doing things your way.

This is quite a journey. You have to make mistakes to find out who you aren’t. You take risks, try new things, and the insight follows. You don’t think your way into becoming yourself. You experience you way into it!

 

WHO IS LIVING YOUR DREAM?

When you look around you, and see what other people are doing with their lives, who is living your dreams?

But really. I mean, if you look down deep within you, and asked your soul. What would your dream life look like?

 

Do you need to spend some time and get some guidance around how to work out what your dreams actually are?

And if you have a clear picture of it, isn’t it about time to start moving in the direction of your dreams? Isn’t it time to remove the shackles of compliancy and actually take a few risks, to get that heart racing and re-discover the fulfilment of being alive again?

Our aim now is to create a clear context, a clear projection and a clear dream for ourselves. Because clarity is magic! Clarity helps us define the processes, projects and steps we need to be able to fulfil our purpose and our dreams.

If we have no focus, no clarity, we can’t move forward. If we have nothing, we get nothing.

 

FOLLOWING YOUR DREAMS SETS YOU FREE

I recently created a new mentoring program that I am just so excited about, which launches in only 4 days: #10WeeksofFree. In it I am teaching and guiding you how to let go of all those preconceptions that are holding you back from living your dream. And then how to turn your dreams into reality by setting yourself free.

I will give you exercises and homework as well as weekly 1 to 1 coaching calls to help you identify your overall purpose and dreams in life. Which is then followed by the next step, which is to turn that purpose and those dreams into achievable goals, projects and actions. It’s about creating a life that is congruent with all aspects of you. It’s about living your dreams.

Spaces are filling up fast, and doors close on Friday at midnight so you better make your mind up to join us quick-smart! I can’t wait to meet you in #10WeeksofFree mentoring program in a just a few days.

xo

 

Image from Disney.com.

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Don’t Stop Before The Real Magic Happens. Your Emotions Set You Free.

I woke up this morning, from a quiet slumber in my van, somewhere halfway between Brisbane and Cairns, pondering the world and life, as I often do. I can hear the waves crashing in from the nearby beach, and am planning to slip on my bikini and run straight into that fresh, salty water. Right after I finish writing this.

Something really weird is going on. I feel a little bit excited, frazzled, on edge. I feel a huge jumble of emotions coursing through my body right now. Some of them are familiar. Some of them are uncomfortable. And I sit with those sensations and emotions, with the knowing that the only way to process them and move on is to stay with them. To feel them.

What is all this coming from? Shouldn’t I be feeling gleefully ecstatic now that I am officially on my road trip? Isn’t this exactly what I wanted?

Yes.

But I am also going through a great change.

 

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IT STARTS WITH CHANGE

Those of you who have been journeying side by side with me for some time now, would know that for me, this year began in the little seaside town of Brighton, followed by a short road trip with one of my favourite beings, my soul-sister Lily around the UK countryside. Then a 3-month stint in India and finally a strong pull that took me back to Australia after having been away for 2 years. Australia is the most grounding country I have ever lived in. It is here where I come to nurture my roots.

What I thought would be 3 months is now over 5 months, spent in this beautiful country. And I intend to stay for at least the summer. Which kind of leads me to where I am now.

With my move to Australia, I invited into my life great change. And with great change comes great growth. I knew that I was at the precipice of experiencing my life in a completely different and new way. And that I had some pretty hefty cleaning out to do. Which means taking a step back, and revisiting your thoughts, beliefs and ideas about yourself and the world. It means letting go of anything and anyone that no longer serves me.

 

THEN YOU HAVE TO LET GO

It began with taking all of my belongings out of storage, going through them, and getting rid of anything I didn’t want or need anymore.

It was followed by the end of a tumultuous on-again off-again relationship that, while having been bound by a powerful soul-contract, wasn’t healthy for either of us. Finally saying no, letting go using releasing rituals, and feeling freed from that stronghold was simultaneously heartbreaking and enlivening.

At the same time, my business morphed and transformed, becoming an entity of its own that started growing and building  momentum like never before. I had to let go of beliefs around what it meant to be successful, and how I am to show up and serve in the world. I started learning about money, investing, self sabotaging and how we attract wealth and success into our worlds.

When I arrived in Australia, I moved in with my mum. Which of course is the greatest push for growth of them all. I hadn’t seen her for 2 years, and quite little in general in the past 10 years, and in that time had romanticized the type of relationship that we might have. Now that we are both equals, and adults, and all. Within a few weeks, it was clear however that our relationship is not one of a conventional mother-daughter. We had too much history standing between us, some of which I shared with you yesterday.

And so I let go of any expectations of her, of myself, and of our relationship. I knew that for this change that I was calling into my life, to take place, I had to face myself, my past and my future all at the same time. And to stand still within the essence of my being, and allow all of those things to wash over me. It’s all part of the transformation. It’s the only way to set myself free.

I left her home a month ago, and then bought a van. Since the start of September, life has been one hell of a ride.

 

YOUR EMOTIONS SET YOU FREE

With all of this change, arise powerful emotions. Feelings around self-worth and self-doubt. Fears of the unknown. Feelings of not having my needs met, as a child, a daughter, a woman. Feelings of not belonging or being accepted. Lots of turbulent emotions, feelings and fears arise with great change.

And this is the part where people often falter. This is where they get scared, turn around, and go back to where they came. back to their old ways, old choices, old beliefs, old life. This is where they light that joint, turn to that bottle of wine, hit the gym that much harder, starve themselves that much longer, eat that many more cakes and go into a self-destructive mode. Anything, to just not feel.

They get scared by all the emotions. By the process that I am personally going through right now. Because it’s challenging, it doesn’t make logical sense, it’s powerful, and it’s scary.

 

DON’T STOP BEFORE THE REAL MAGIC HAPPENS

In life we always have two choices:

Accept what is, right now. Or resist it. And we all know, by now, that whatever you resist, persists. If we don’t work through those emotions. Through the feelings that arise in us, we can never get to the other side.

The process is easy. Just to feel. Allowing yourself to fully feel what you are feeling. Accepting what you feel without judgement. And sitting with it, without resistance until it passes. You emotions will set you free.

Don’t stop before the real magic happens.

Which is exactly what I teach and guide you with, in my #10WeeksofFree program. In our 1 to 1 sessions I give you the intimate support and handholding to help you work through the emotions that you are feeling, and take that leap into the unknown. The place where your dreams lie.

I am so incredible excited by this program which is starting in only a few days on Saturday 11 October. Find out more here and jump on board. I’d love to see your beautiful face in the #10WeeksofFree program and help you on your own path to freedom!

 

Image from FreePeople.com

4 Responses to Don’t Stop Before The Real Magic Happens. Your Emotions Set You Free.

  1. Wow. I am so looking forward to working through all of this and popping out the other side a changed person- I love your writing, and I love that our paths crossed! The universe works in some beautiful ways!

    • Doesn’t it darling Hannah! Emotions are so important and I love that we get to work on this together. You are such a beautiful, unique person. I can’t wait to be a admiring observer of your transformation. Love you! xo

  2. Beautiful post babe. I love it. Such a true message. I like to think that as soon as something seems scary, whether that be hitting publish or putting myself out there more – then that’s where I’m going to experience the most growth. Huge love to you x

    • Thank you my lovely. I completely agree. Those things that scare us the most are the things we often need the most – they are calling to step up and play our game in the great universe.

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From Abusive Childhood To Happy Adulthood. How I Set Myself Free. In 3 Simple Ways.

When I was a little girl, I couldn’t wait to grow up. I felt so confined, dominated and controlled by my mother and stepfather, who were responsible for making decisions for me. I never felt that they were making harmful, irresponsible decisions. I just wanted to be free from their limitations and restrictions.

I remember how my stepfather would call me names, make fun of me and emotionally abuse me, like the time he cut off all my hair into a rough boy cut, despite my tears and pleas not to. I remember the first time my mum spoke to me as if I was an adult, and burdened me with all her emotions. Over the years, she taught me that, for her to feel loved by me, I had to take responsibility for how she felt. I had to follow her rules without question. She taught me guilt, she taught me fear and she taught me what emotional manipulation was, by practicing these paradigms on me.

It wasn’t a joyous, peaceful or safe childhood. And I felt so trapped.

 

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Naturally, as my years added up and I became a teen, I started testing the boundaries of my confines and exploring what else the world might have in store for me. By 13, my mum and stepfather had divorced, and I spent the next few years of my life, carrying the weight of my mother’s sorrow and mourning for the past, always afraid that my words upset her. Concerned that I was never a “good girl” enough to make her happy.

At 17, in one of her emotional rages, because I hadn’t come home with her prune juice fast enough for her, she sent me out into the world on my own. I went to uni for 3 months, then got a job for another 3; sold my car, and went travelling around Europe for the first time. In between journeys, I worked in an ice-cream ship in Salzburg, as a nanny in Florence and as a PA at a Film Editing company in London.

For several years I floated around in an unconscious state of mind, simply reacting and responding to life in the best way I could. Exploring, trying new things, but living without any sense of direction, connection and intention. Essentially, I was free from the rigid and painful upbringing of my childhood. But I didn’t feel free. I felt just as trapped as before.

At 21, in the middle of a freezing cold winter in London, I decided I wanted to study psychology. In the hottest place I could find. And that place turned out to be in Australia: James Cook University in Cairns.

 

POWER OF THE MIND

During my second year of university, a shift began within me. I started to observe myself. To become more self-aware. I noticed that whatever attitude I had about something, whatever beliefs I held, would be matched by my experiences. When I expected a good outcome, that is what I got. When I feared for the worst outcome, things wouldn’t flow as smoothly. I recall a very specific time when I was getting a CD player installed into my car, and my friend told me that the place I was getting it done at would be busy, noisy and several hours late. I refused to believe him and adamantly chose to focus on the thought that when I would go there, the process would be perfectly smooth, fast and easy. Which is exactly what it was. By discovering the power that my thoughts have over me, I learnt to calm my mind, and choose thoughts that actually served me. When I acknowledged the power of my mind, I set myself free from the shackles of a turbulent mind and life.

 

FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE

In my third year of university, I understood the infinite potential of positive thought. I noticed that in every moment I had a choice. To find the positive in every situation, no matter how challenging, upsetting or shitty. Or to find the negative in every situation. The more I practiced finding the positive in everything, the more good experiences I was having. By focusing solely on what was good in my life, I created a life that I previously only dreamed of.  I felt so happy and grateful for everything in my life. I felt completely fulfilled and learnt to trust that everything is exactly as it should be. Focusing exclusively on what was good in my life set me free to experience the kind of life that I truly loved and wanted.

 

FORGIVENESS IS THE KEY

The biggest and most transformational lesson that I learnt through my  inquisitiveness into my inner workings, was learning how to forgive. I recall a very special moment in my life, one evening. I had just started meditation a few weeks earlier, and only had 6 months of my psychology degree left to complete. One evening, during my meditation, I became aware of how much pain I created for myself. A wisdom I had never known before came through me, and confided in me that the only pain we feel is the one we cause ourselves. I spent hours quietly crying for the pain, and forgiving myself for being the cause of it. When I finally felt that I released everything and fully forgiven myself. I mentally turned to my motherland stepfather. One by one and went through the same forgiveness process, allowing the tears to stream down my face, heart-fully forgiving them for their misactions and misbehaviours and letting them go . It was one of the most powerful experiences in my life. It set me free to no longer be the tethered to the past, or the pain I had felt as a child.

Since that experience, I use forgiveness in all situations when I feel a stronghold, or an unhealthy emotional response to the situation.

Prior to setting myself free in these 3 simple ways, I had always held some kind of resentment and anger for my childhood. Now, however, I am deeply grateful for those experiences. Not only have they given me the wisdom, understanding and empowerment to change my life, they have also made me a much more compassionate understanding person, and really, really good at the work that I do with my clients.

Which is why I created a very special new program starting this Saturday 11 October. #10WeeksofFree is an intimate 3 month coaching program, to help you set yourself free, in your life. Spaces are limited, so make sure you sign up now. You can find out more and get involved right here. I can’t wait to see you there soon!

 

Image from 5th Element.

6 Responses to From Abusive Childhood To Happy Adulthood. How I Set Myself Free. In 3 Simple Ways.

  1. Do you know what I have noticed? That people who faced difficult situations in their lifes and managed to overcome them are so much stronger, more successful and decisive people in comparison to the rest of us who didn’t have to struggle for anything in our lives and live a lukewarm life….

    • I love that “live a lukewarm life”… It’s so true – overcoming adversity helps us step into, and embody who we truly are in way we wouldn’t be able to if we never moved out of our comfort zones. Thank you for your beautiful insight Maria. I adore you.

  2. This is so deep, thank you so much for sharing! I too had an abusive childhood and have found forgiveness to be very helpful in healing the past.
    I’m so sorry for what you went through, but am glad that you were able to take something from it! Situations like these always define you, make you the person you are today.

    Much love xx

    • Thanks Felicia my love. I am glad you could resonate. It’s such funny feeling when, as a child you know that something is wrong and can’t pinpoint it. And so powerful as an adult to get to meet your past and transform it! xo

  3. Thank you sister for this raw truth !
    You are inspiring always!
    From the darkness , we sit in that void & can Re create our live as we move towards the light. I too came from an abusive child hood & sexual abuse .. And I agree FORGIVENESS is the key and most defining part of the healing. Thank you for sharing xx

    • Such a pleasure to be able to share these things with you, my lovely. And thank you for being open and compassionate in sight of your own experiences. I adore you and can’t wait till our paths cross again! xo

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You Are Invited to the #10WeeksofFree Mentoring Program. {Not To Be Missed!}

 

You know how sometimes something just completely captivates and captures your heart?

And you just know that you’re creating something straight from your soul, that will powerfully serve others?

 

Well, thats exactly how I feel about the #10WeeksofFree mentoring program I have been creating. It’s exhilarating! It’s beautiful! And most importantly, it’s so very transformational. Not to mention ridiculously affordable.

Say what!!!? Yes.

 

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I would like to personally invite you, to join me in ending 2014 with powerful, liberating, transformational intention.  I’d like to introduce you to my newest mentoring program: #10WeeksofFree.

 

Those of you who have been following my journey closely, would know that last week I bought a van, to travel around the East Coast of Australia in.

Alongside my decision to turn this summer into a road trip, came the inspiration to create an incredibly powerful and affordable mentoring program, where you could not only join me on my road trip, but also liberate yourself from what is holding you back.

 

 

What is #10WeeksofFree?

#10WeeksofFree is a 3 month mentoring program that helps you change the way you think and feel, and to free up all of your potential and bring the unexpected into your life.

 

It’s about growing, stretching, taking a leap of faith, adjusting, refining our natures, and expanding beyond our limitations in order to evolve.

 

Essentially, it’s about being free.

 

 

Starting on Saturday 11 October, we begin a 3 month journey together filled with weekly personal, 1 to 1 calls with me, practical steps, homework and accountability to self-exploration and growth.

 

Each week you will receive a support email and a PDF full of insights and the weekly topics and homework to focus on, which will take you on an exquisite journey where real change occurs with this dynamic boost, to make the most of the end of this year and prepare for a truly liberating 2015.And, most importantly, and fantastically, you get individual 1 to 1 coaching time with me every week, joining me intimately on my road trip, as well as getting professional support on your own journey toward a life with much more freedom. Freedom in possibilities, freedom in choices, freedom in life.

 

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What do I get from the #10WeeksofFree mentoring program?

  • 9 x personal 1 to 1 mentoring calls with me.
  • 10 x weekly support emails.
  • 10 x weekly PDF guides with prep work.
  • And a few surprises throughout…

 

 

The 10 week program is divided up into 3 parts:

  •  October: Build the Foundation.
  • November: Create the Dream.
  • December: Take Action.

 

There will be ample opportunities for clearing and resetting your direction to align yourself with your heart, soul and freedom, and to keep you on track. Ending on Wednesday the 17th of December, you will have transformed the way you live and look at life, preparing you for a magical new 2015, filled with more freedom, more courage and more fulfilment than ever before.

 

 

How much does it cost?

Such a good question! It’s all super easy and incredibly affordable:

  • 3 payments of $197.
  • Payable upon signing up for the 10 week program, and then again on the  29th of October and 19th of November.
  • Secure instant payment through PayPal.
  • Saving you over $1,700 from my usual coaching fees.
  • (In other words, this is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to work with me 1 to 1.)

 

(Pssst! You can sign up right HERE, right now.)

 

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What can I expect?

Every Saturday you will receive a support email from me with details on how to prepare for the next week, filled with lots of love and goodness.

Coaching calls will take place on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday of each week of the #10DaysofFree mentoring program, except for the final week, where you will have had all the hand-holding and support needed to take action and change your life, now.They will take place at the same time each and every week, for 30 minutes during which we can focus entirely on you and your personal journey towards more freedom. That’s a whole 2 hours of individualised 1 to 1 coaching per month!

Make sure you save up all your questions for the 1 to 1 session you have with me, so we can focus on what you’re stuck with.

 

 

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What will we be covering?

 

This:

Build the Foundations:

Week 1:

  1. What is freedom?
  2. What does freedom feel like?

 

Week 2:

  1. Freedom is being without judgement.
  2. Freedom is letting go of expectations.
  3. Freedom is not being bridled by fear.

 

Week 3:

  1. Freedom is letting go of limiting beliefs.
  2. Freedom is understanding resistance.
  3. Freedom is trusting yourself.

 

Week 4:

  1. Freedom is going with the flow.
  2. Freedom is having an abundance + gratitude mindset.
  3. Freedom is believing that the universe is a friendly place.

 

 

 

Create the Dream:

Week 5:

  1. Freedom is saying No. (Stop doing list.)
  2. Freedom is saying YES. (Start doing list.)
  3. Freedom is following your intuition. It comes from within.

 

Week 6:

  1. Freedom is following your heart. (How to follow your heart.)
  2. Financial freedom.
  3. Emotional freedom.

 

Week 7:

  1. Physical freedom.
  2. Freedom in choice.
  3. Freedom in self-expression.

 

Week 8:

  1. Freedom in creativity.
  2. Freedom in relationships. (Do you need a friendship/people purge?)
  3. Freedom in love. Knowing what love really is, and what you love, sets you free.

 

 

 

Take Action:

Week 9:

  1. Freedom is dreaming big.
  2. Let’s make a plan.
  3. Let’s take action.

 

Week 10:

  1. Break it down into steps.
  2. What can you do now?
  3. What holds you back from being free now?

 

 

What are the next steps?

Because of the nature of working 1 to 1 in private coaching sessions, spaces for this very unique #10WeeksofFree mentoring program are limited, and I’m offering the opportunity to  you first, to say thank you for always being there.

So, with now further ado: sign up for #10WeeksofFree HERE now!

 

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Can’t wait to see you in there!

Vienda xo

 

 

P.S. Feel free to email me if you have any questions!

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The Best of the Best: #10DaysofFree Instagram Challenge

You beautiful creatures absolutely blew me away with your enthusiasm, wisdom and heart-swelling immersion into the #10DaysofFree, that began, well, 10 days ago! To celebrate and commemorate I wanted to share with you, some of the highlights.

 

Here is The Best of the Best: #10DaysofFree Instagram Challenge:

 

DAY 1.

 

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Image from @ameliaharveyhealth

 

@stephaniecarlton Freedom is being liberated from the egoic mind. Not being bound by the tempting, addictive dangers of fearful thinking. A large part of the population is a danger to themselves and others. You are stuck in dysfunction, avoiding your own presence and never feeling liberated. We cannot go back to animalistic consciousness, we have to go forward if we want to survive. Forward to consciousness, enlightenment and truth.

 

DAY 2.

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 Image from @jenniferjwoodward

 

@carleemodra Where do I feel most free? When I am at beach, wind blowing through me, listening to the waves crashing, feet in the sand and the smell of the salt air. This is what fills me up + brings me back into my body.

 

DAY 3.

 

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Image from @feedmeblog

 

@feedmeblog Find freedom in the present moment… Right now I am finding freedom in the fact how feel, behave react and proceed, is my choice. We all have the freedom to choose how we want to feel at any given time, regardless of what hand might be dealt to us. And right now, I’m choosing to feel grateful. Grateful for love, family and all the freedom that swirls through my life.

 

DAY 4.

 

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Image from @monika_berry

 

@pocketyogini Day 4 of @viendam’s #10DaysofFree has us contemplating what are 3 words of freedom. On day one I described it as SPACE {in time, in mind, around you, simply to be}. On further reflection it’s also about PRESENCE. Being in the moment which space allows. And a big part of this is FORGIVENESS, being able to release the past and the future inch may prevent us from being totally present right now. That is freedom to me. What is freedom to you?

 

DAY 5.

 

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Image from @jenniferjwoodward

 

@shokuiku Break free! I Break free when I look within. We tend to look for gratification from external sources. Approval and love from others, more money, more things. There is nothing wrong with that. But I break free when I look within and discover what I truly desire. Are you free?

 

DAY 6.

 

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Image from @_clairebaker_

 

@_clairebaker_ LET GO. I am letting go of the belief that I need to work 5 days a week in order to have a successful business. My body is telling me I need (way) more rest, so for the remainder of 2014 I’m experimenting with a 4-day working week. Something I believe in (and have done for a while actually) and now I have the freedom to play with that. Woweeee.

 

DAY 7.

 

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Image from @paperplanesconnect

 

@paperplanesconnect Music for freedom. When I think of music that makes me feel free, I think of Jeff Buckley. His voice, the way he strums a guitar, his lyrics, which wrap you in a dreamy state…

 

DAY 8.

 

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Image by @pocketyogini

@viendam #10DaysofFree Day 8: Embrace What You Can’t Control.

In life, we often find ourselves struggling with the details – things may not always end up the way we expect. Accepting those changes will help you live a life of greater freedom. You may not always have control, the details may not play out as you imagined them in your head. That’s OK! By embracing what we can’t control, we are led one step closer to a life of deeper freedom. #10DaysofFree

I have always had a really challenging relationship with my family. For years I struggled under the weight of having such a broken, dispersed family, add it really tore me apart.

Until one day, I decided to let it go and embrace what I can’t control. They are who they are, & I am who I am, & that’s ok.

Since then, I’ve discovered my tribe, my soul brothers and sisters, the family of my heart! And now, I always feel like I belong. That I am held, supported, cherished, & that I have family.

Embracing what I couldn’t control actually freed me up to experience something so much better and more fulfilling.

 

DAY 9.

 

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Image from @courageandkale

@courageandkale Try something new. I have been brainstorming ways to let more positivity into my life, and my mind kept coming back to keeping a gratitude journal. I just ordered this pretty on in Amazon that has cool, prompts and practices to practise living with gratitude. Although I won’t receive my beautiful new book until Monday, I am going to start practicing tonight. Actually – how about now!?

 

DAY 10.

 New moon august 2014

Image from @viendam

@viendam Something that I really love about myself, is my tenacious optimism that very thing will work out just perfectly, no matter what. I know that every ending is followed by a beginning. That all doors that close for me actually mean there’s new doors and windows opening elsewhere.

This past year there have been so many endings. But as each door shuts, it is followed by something more spectacular, more enlivening, more fulfilling than I could ever hope for. I love that I stick things out long enough, and am willing to get uncomfortable enough to see the miracles unfold.

 

 

It’s been soooooo much fun sharing this journey of freedom with you. Thank you for participating, for sharing it with your friends and making it one of the most exciting and fun projects I’ve created to date. Now, as promised, I have a little surprise for you. If you’re signed up to my newsletter, you’ll be getting it in a few minutes. If not, you will have to wait until tomorrow… It’s a limited spaces kind of deal and I’ve poured all my heart and soul into it, not to mention years of psychology and human behaviour studies and observation. Woah! This baby is really something.

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Travel is like a truth serum. It is the best cure for being self-centred and close-minded.

I was recently interviewed by the Australian Natural Health Magazine for an article on the benefits of travel on self-development, and wanted to share these answers with you too, because, if you’re anything like me, you might not get a chance to read the magazine.

 

Please introduce yourself.

I am a lifestyle coach who helps creative professionals create a semi-nomadic, unconventional life that is both soulfully and financially fulfilling.

 

1) Can you briefly describe your professional background?

I have a background in psychology matched with an intense curiosity on how we create our lives through the beliefs we have, and therefore also the limitations we create for ourselves. I then started travelling around the world, and had first-hand experience in how transformational travel can be, in not only expanding your horizons, but also getting to know yourself, and your life purpose in the process.

 

2) And your travelling background? Where have you been? What have you seen? What inspired you to travel the first time? What inspires you to travel now?

I have essentially travelled for most of my life. I was born in Austria, my father is Italian, I lived in both those countries as well as Portugal and the Canary Islands as a small child. Then, when my mum married and immigrated to Australia, I was travelling between my parents in Europe and Australia. So to continue travelling as an adult was somewhat a natural progression. I originally went travelling on my own to discover the differences between people and cultures, but what I actually learnt, was about what truly unites us as a species. Its such a beautiful thing. Now, I travel to keep being reminded and inspired by the beauty of the world, and to fulfil my natural tendency to live a semi-nomadic lifestyle.

 

3) Is travelling beneficial and why (would be great to have a psychology-skewed answer here)?

The most powerful benefit of travel is that it helps open up your interpretation and understanding of the world, giving you a wider range of choices and pleasures in life. The experience of other cultures helps loosen the chains of cognition, making it easier to see things in a new light. Whether it’s your own life, or other experiences, we stop be so judgemental of ourselves or others and recognise that there is an unlimited wealth of possibilities and opportunities in each and every experience.

Because of this, we are able to organise our lives and what we want to do with them, with much more clarity and optimism. So essentially, travel is a really good way to get to know yourself and learn about how you do, and how you want to, show up in all areas of your life. You finally get to see what’s truly important because the constricted thought processes are gone. There is something intellectually liberating about travel.

 

4) Do you know of any studies that back this up?

There are quite a few, but the one that comes to mind is Lile Jia at Indiana University. He randomly divided a few dozen under-grads into two groups, both of which were asked to list as many different modes of transportation as possible.

Jia found a striking difference between the two groups: when students were told that the task was imported from Greece, they came up with significantly more transportation possibilities. They didn’t just list buses, trains, and planes; they cited horses, triremes, spaceships, bicycles, and even Segway scooters. Because the source of the problem was far away, the subjects felt less constrained by their local transport options; they didn’t just think about getting around in Indiana, they thought about getting around all over the world, and even in deep space.

In a second study, Jia found that people were much better at solving a series of insight puzzles when told that the puzzlescame all the way from California, and not from down the hall. These subjects considered a far wider range of alternatives, whichmade them more likely to solve the challenging brain teasers. There is something intellectually liberating about distance.

 

5) Would you recommend travelling alone, with a partner, as a group or do all of these travelling arrangements have different benefits?

I personally would recommend travelling on your own to really have that experience of self-discovery. Certainly, all travel arrangements have different benefits, but if you want to grow as an individual, you have to get comfortable with being by yourself. Learning to like yourself and even love yourself by spending time alone is invaluable. You see the world through your own personal filters without being influenced by others and get to see who and how you really are. It’s a truly beautiful life journey.

 

6) Travelling to a non-English country can be tough. Do you have any tips? What can one learn from such an experience?

I know that people say that travelling in non-English speaking countries can be challenging, but its really about being resourceful. In the end we all have the same needs, and communication is only 40% verbal. You’d be surprised at just how much you can communicate through body language, sign language and generally just smiling and connecting with one another. Human beings are naturally driven to help each other and share their world with one another, making being a traveller in a foreign, exotic place such a heart-warming, inspiring and fulfilling experience.

As long as you are willing to be friendly, open and curious, other cultures will welcome you with open arms and share a special kind of hospitality that is rare to encounter in your own town or city.

 

7) Is there anything we can do to approach travel as self-discovery or is simply travelling enough?

From my experience, and working with clients, the inclination to travel usually happens at an exquisite juncture of one’s life. Be it a break-up, a death or changing career, the impulse to travel often comes at a time when there’s already tremendous change. Because of this, the introspective self-discovery elements that occur with travel generally happen quite naturally. However, simply by setting an intention for one’s journey is enough. We always attract what we focus on, so if you have decided that you would like to travel to explore yourself, that’s exactly what you’re going to get.

 

8) Do you recommend people incorporate travel into their lifestyle for learning purposes? How can people make this a reality?

I think that learning is a naturally occurring side effect to travel. Unless of course, you lock yourself up in a private resort and don’t interact with the local culture! All it takes is a little bit of curiosity and willingness to be inspired and learn new things about the world. Human beings are predisposed to want to learn and understand about the world around them so it just becomes a part of travel.

 

9) What are your top cities to visit for a self-discovery experience and why?

1. Hampi in Karnataka, India: This city is purely magical! It’s the original capital of India 500 years ago, which now lies in ruins. It’s one of the most magical, resonant places I’ve ever been to. This place just does things to a person!

2. Prague in the Ceck Republick: A visual fairy-land, Prague is the perfect place for self-discovery and introspection. Doing all the spectacular walks, while rediscovering yourself is such a powerful soul journey. I particularly recommend going there in Autumn when all the leaves are turning golden. It’s a visual feast, and so enriching for every part of your being.

3. Tulum in Mexico: This part of the world is essentially setup for the self-discovering traveller. Yoga retreats, shamanic ceremonies and detoxes on every corner, plus the beauty of the Caribbean beach-side, its such a wonderful time for reflection, learning, healing and growing.

Having said that, your experience of every place is also dependant of where you’re at in that moment. Whatever you’re feeling, travel tends to amplify.

 

10) What are some of the lessons one might learn while travelling (acceptance of other cultures, religions etc)

Travel is like a truth serum. It is the best cure for being self-centred and close-minded. Through travel we step beyond those limitations created by living in your own bubble and experience the wealth of possibilities in the world. Our approach moves away from being culturally defined to being universal. It’s an opening of the heart. Non-travellers are more susceptible to being stuck in their monotonous patterns. Travelling jolts us awake. So we learn to see ourselves and others in such a different light, and thereby expand out mindsets and the possibilities available to us in life.

 

11) Do you remember a key experience that you had while travelling that you learnt something valuable from. Can you please tell me about it?

Having spent some time in Muslim cultures in both Morocco and Turkey, I always had the impression that a woman travelling on her own would be quite dangerous. Yet’ I was so beautifully surprised that many men would feel protective of you, and take you under their wing as a sister, because of their culture rather than in spite of it. I felt very safe and taken care which completely opposed the perception I had of Muslim culture up to that point. In that time I learnt that many of the views we are fed through the media are entirely untrue, and never to believe these stories. Have you own experiences, make up your own mind. The world will surprise you.

 

12) Anything else you want to add, particularly pulling from your psychology knowledge?

Travel not only invites us to see the world anew, it gives us a fresh look at ourselves. The greatest benefit of travelling is the unique view it give us of who we are a human being in this world. By placing us outside of ourselves, travel provides us an objective view of what we have been habitually doing, as well as the anonymity to risk new ways of being in the world.

We cannot travel to get away from ourselves. As the adage goes “Wherever you go, there you are.” Travel fails as an escape but it succeeds as confrontation. Confrontation with ourselves that is. Which challenges us to rise up and become someone far more in alignment with ones dreams and values.

5 Responses to Travel is like a truth serum. It is the best cure for being self-centred and close-minded.

  1. Ohhh this is gorgeous! I’ve got the travel bug badddd at the moment.. I can’t wait to take off on a solo adventure – it’s something I’ve never done before. Hopefully next year I’ll be able to swing it! Lovely interview darling. Hugs from a fellow blog heart. xox

  2. Beautiful, and so true! Making me excited and calming some of my nerves for my first solo journey coming up in just under a week :D

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Let’s Go Somewhere! Here Is The Start.

I am sitting in the passenger seat of my new van, with the intuition to write a letter to you, and tell you everything that’s been happening. And honestly, I have so many things I want to share with you, I barely know where to begin. Not to mention the 55 half-written posts sitting in my draft section, waiting to find a home on the blog one day.

I’ve been up since 5.00am, organising myself to get out of this city before rush hour traffic hits. Plus, just quietly, I am slightly terrified of driving in cities. I’m avoiding the full experience of it at all costs.

There’s so much I want to say. So I’m just going to begin and see what flows out. Let’s go somewhere with this. Here is the start of something new.

 

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  • 15 days ago I left my mum’s house on the Sunshine Coast, Australia. It was time to start moving again.
  • 13 days ago I flew to Sydney, to reconnect with friends, and work at the Festival of the Wind.
  • 3 days ago I purchased a van. A gorgeous deep red Toyota Tarago. Her name is Ruby Tuesday, like the song from the Rolling Stones. I can’t wait for you to meet her when I’ve decked her out. The first thing I bought for her were fairy lights. You know where this is going!
  • Yesterday, the fanatically fun #10DaysofFreedom Instagram challenge began, which you guys have given such a wonderful response to! I am so excited to share this adventure with you!
  • Today I left Sydney in my van, with a random backpacker called Heiko – to share the driving and fuel, for a race up the east coast to Brisbane. 12 hours of skipping past the beaches that line this part of the world.
  • Tomorrow, I go to a little music festival called Manifest, in a secret location.
  • 7 days until I announce 2 really exciting new things to inspire and ignite your own journeys. Here’s a clue:
  • 10 weeks of delving deep and creating your own brand of freedom. All while joining me in my gypset-van journey.
  • In between all of that, I will uncover some kind of route for my journey. Most likely north, north, north to the tropics until the wet season starts and then slowly back down. Cairns, Byron, Sydney, Melbourne are all in my sights.
  • 98 days today until the end of the year. It’s time to make sure really are living the life we dream of. Where are you at with that?

 

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Image Source 1 & 2.

7 Responses to Let’s Go Somewhere! Here Is The Start.

  1. I made the trip from Melbourne to the top of Queensland and back down in a beat up Kingswood. Slept under the stars, lived off fresh tropical fruits from farmers stands along the roadsides. Snuck into resorts to use their pool and shower facilities. I learnt how to enjoy the simple pleasures life has to offer. Enjoy your joirney! :)

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#10DaysofFree: A 10 Day Instagram Challenge!

Freedom is one of my highest values. Being such, my day-to-day decisions are often go like this: “Does this make me feel free?” If it does, then we are good to go. If it doesn’t, I seek out alternative options, choices and solutions.

Everybody has their own definition of freedom. For me freedom means:

  • LIVING AUTHENTICALLY: being intuitive, changing my mind, saying what I mean and honouring my feelings.
  • TRUSTING IN LIFE: knowing that every step of the way I am being supported and not being afraid to take risks.
  • HAVING SPACE + TIME: always having all the spaciousness in my life that I need to simply BE.
  • TRAVEL: enjoying a life full of new experiences, beauty, nature and culture.
  • SOULFUL CONNECTIONS: spending time with people who also follow their own brand of freedom.

 

To give us all an opportunity to explore our own definition of freedom, and because we all tend to grow the most in the face of challenge, I’ve put this really fun Instagram challenge together for us.

Starting on the New Moon on Wednesday the 24th of September, each day I am going to post a little something inspirational to get you thinking and dreaming about freedom.

I’d really love you to join me!

Here’s an outline of what you can expect over the 10 days:

 

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WEDS 24 SEPT: What Is Freedom.

Introduce yourself by sharing what your definition of freedom is.  I challenge you to reflect and dive deep into what your understanding of freedom is. Share it with us by using the tag #10DaysofFree.

 

THURS 25 SEPT: Where Do You Feel Most Free.

Today your challenge is to find the space you feel the most free. It can anywhere, be it wandering through the forest or laying in the fluffy white sheets of your bed. Share in the comments and post a photo of your own: #10DaysofFree.

 

FRI 26 SEPT: Find Freedom in the Present Moment.

Let’s get less physical and more internal. Today, I challenge you to take a deep breath. Give yourself the time and space to focus on your breathing, appreciate that breath and find your freedom in each precious surge of air. How do you find freedom here in this moment? Share your experience with a photo that symbolises your freedom: #10DaysofFree.

 

SAT 27 SEPT: 3 Words For Freedom.

Three words. I challenge you to use three words to describe your freedom – three words most embody your moments of freedom and complete ease within yourself. For me the three words that most align with my sense of freedom are WILD, COURAGE + POTENTIAL. What are your 3 words? #10DaysofFree.

 

SUN 28 SEPT: Break Free.

Today, give yourself the space to feel free – get up,  and break free from your usual routine. Take a walk, do some yoga and give your mind the time and space to embrace your freedom. Make a conscious choice to be completely in the mount, and let your intuition guide you. What did you experience that was new? How did you break free? #10DaysofFree

 

MON 29 SEPT: Music for Freedom.

There is something mystical about music that reaches us beyond any words. Music can take us places and ignite in us that sense of freedom we often dream of. Todays challenge is to find a track or a song that makes you feel totally free, and share it with us, so we can play it too, and feel what you feel. I can’t wait to see what music sets you free! #10DaysofFree

 

TUES 30 SEPT: Let Go. Release.

Often what holds us back from feeling free, are unresolved emotions and experiences that we are still holding on to  way past their use by date. Sometimes these entanglements are things like gifts from ex’s, furniture, books or clothes. Sometimes they are simply old memories or regrets.

Letting go is not always easy, but I know you can. Give yourself the permission to let go, to release. Be brave, embrace that freedom, and share with us what you let go of. #10DaysofFree

 

WEDS 1 OCT:  Embrace What You Can’t Control.

In life, we often find ourselves struggling with the details – things may not always end up the way we expect. Accepting those changes will help you live a life of greater freedom. You may not always have control, the details may not play out as you imagined them in your head. That’s OK! By embracing what we can’t control, we are led one step closer to a life of deeper freedom. #10DaysofFree

 

THUR 2 OCT:  Try Something New.

We’re nearing the end of our 10 day challenge. If you’ve been resisting starting something new or avoiding reaching out to someone, today is the day to do it. Fear is natural, and not letting it control you is freedom. Share that new thing you’ve done today, to move past your fears. #10DaysofFree.

 

FRI 3 OCT: Only In Love Will You Find Your Freedom.

Today marks the final day of our journey together, #10DaysofFree. I hope you’ve taken something wonderful away from this little project, and remember, it doesn’t have to stop here. Giving yourself a moment to take a deep breath or permission to let go of something is a discipline we can all embrace in order to live a life of freedom.

Today, as my the challenge, I want you to uncover something you love about yourself. For once you understand and love yourself – you can truly find your freedom. Share your love with us: #10DaysofFree.

 

I’m so excited to be able to share this adventure with you, and even more thrilled about the announcement I’m going to be doing at the end of it. Keep your eyes open, and make sure you join us for #10DaysofFree!

9 Responses to #10DaysofFree: A 10 Day Instagram Challenge!

    • Thank you beautiful Paula! I hope you will be joining us, I can’t wait to see the inspiring images you and everyone else who jumps on board with us comes up with. xo

    • Oooo YES! Nic, I am SO friggen delighted to have you on this adventure. We are going to have so much fun, and I can’t wait to see what you come up with! xo

    • Oh I am so glad you’ll be joining us Sophie! I can’t wait to see what freedom means to you and have a beautiful little insight into your life too! xo

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