The UK has just gone into their second lockdown and it moved me to want to share something that I know about reality and illusion. You might not live in the UK however what I am going to share with you is applicable for anyone who wants to change their mindset in challenging times.
I will be speaking directly into the experience of lockdown however as I have said if you find that there are circumstances in your life that you are at odds with, unhappy about, cross, or upset with you can apply what I am going to share with you. I am only focusing on lockdown because the same cause will be effecting a huge group of people.
People will be worried about their work and income. They might have uncomfortable living arrangements or have flat mates or neighbours that upset them. And obviously people will be worried about their health and about catching the virus. These are just some of the things that could be stressing you and what is stressing you might not be on this list but it still counts.
I imagine that whatever is upsetting you will be triggering a lot of negative thoughts, emotions and a lot of resistance within you. You might find the need to share your thoughts with others and you might find when you do this that your feelings what ever they are (upset, angry, resistant) increase even more.
However I would like to share the concept of reality and illusion with you. You might find that what I am going to share with you might trigger you as well but please read to the end and take some times to really hear it.
Reality - This is what is. It is the irrefutable truth of a situation. Such as the UK has gone into it’s second lockdown, pine trees are not deciduous, the UK is smaller than the USA. Reality is the facts.
Illusion - Is what you think about the reality. In regards to the UK lockdown you might be upset about it, you might think that the government are incompetent, you might be quite happy about it, but none of this changes what is - the UK has gone into it’s 2nd lockdown. In regards to the pine tree you might love that they always look green or you might hate the resin that they drop and again none of this stops them for being exactly what they are.
Anything that comes after - Should, shouldn’t, must, mustn’t, but because and why all leads you into your illusion that your opinion can change reality.
As humans we tend to think that how we feel about a situation matters but in reality it does not. What I mean by this is that how you feel about a situation does not change that situation. That is not to say that you shouldn't be allowed an opinion. However quite often we get so attached to our opinions and we work them over and over in our heads becoming really agitated by the overthinking of a situation.
For instance the lockdown in the UK is a reality it is happening. How you feel about it does not change that it is happening. You might think that how you think and feel about something is incredibly important and you might be very attached and involved with how you feel but ask yourself something do you feel good when you think and feel this thing or do you feel anxious and unhappy? And has how you feel changed the reality? I am pretty certain it hasn’t.
I have got something completely abstract to share with you which I normally share with my clients in regard to this topic.The reality is that the moon is a creamy yellowish colour (this might not be the exact colour for any astronomers out there but for the sake of this blog that is the colour). Now let's pretend that you are not happy with the colour of the moon. You think it should be bright pink with purple spots or something like that. And every time you look at the moon you get really upset and agitated that it's not the colour you think it should be. Your thinking it should be different does not change what the moon is. The moon will not change it’s colour due to your thoughts about it just like the government of the UK will not open up the UK just because you are unhappy with the lockdown. The more you fight either of these realities there is only one outcome you will feel more unhappy, anxious, hurt and angry. As Byron Katie say - “When you argue with reality you lose only 100% of the time.”
However if what I have said has made you very uncomfortable there is some relief. There is a process to be able to deal with reality when it sits at odds with what you want;
I hope that you've enjoyed this little blog and I hope that if you are in lockdown in the UK and you've been upset about this that this might help you during that time. I also hope that if you're not necessarily going into lockdown but you have something in life that you've been agitating over it gives you some clarity on how to address the problem and how to start asking yourself - “what can I do about it?”
Have a fabulous week and so much love from me to you
I am going to be writing about consistency and inconsistency and the reason I am writing about this is because this is something that has plagued me for quite a long time. I have been thinking about it recently and I am going to share what I have learned in the hopes that maybe something of what I am sharing will help you in your life too.
I tend to be a fairly inconsistent person. I have lots and lots of ideas which make me excited and energised. I then tend to expend lots of energy and if I am not carful I can then become overwhelmed and depleted. This means that my life has generally gone up and down in a of wave like fashion. I tend to feel very energised and am very active and creative and then I go through periods of reflection and relative calm. One of the things that made me aware of this rhythm was creating these blogs/podcasts and YouTube videos. Originally I tried to do them on a weekly basis but as I do them from the heart I found that I was not always in the right space and in the right energy. I found this very frustrating because I knew that there were advantages of being consistent - being consistent builds trust and dependability. It allows people to believe in you if you show up consistently. When I first started doing this about 4 to 5 years ago I knew that I wasn't doing this. I was quite hard on myself about this for a while until I realised that these were the positive things about consistency but that there were also downsides. Being too consistent can be boring, it can feel slightly stagnant and predictability can turn people off because nothing interesting happening. After pondering this I started to think about inconsistency differently. Inconsistency is where I tend to lean towards. The positives of inconsistency is that it is exciting, vibrant and interesting. The down sides are that it gives the impression of being flaky, unreliable and uncertain.
What I have realised through pondering all of this over the last few weeks is that it's not about being consistent or being inconsistent it is about learning to balance the two. For me in doing this and through doing these blogs for you I have realised that when I am full of energy and I am feeling creative I can make multiple blogs/podcasts and videos. Then when I am in a more reflective mood I do not feel pressured to perform and I can use my time for pondering, reading, connecting and allowing space for inspiration. If I work with my natural flow and allow myself to surf the waves of energy then I am able to be both consistent and inconsistent which allows me to honour myself and to honour you too.
If I was to force myself to be consistent and to do this every single week at a certain time I would feel very constrained and even writing about this makes me feel like my chest is tightening. I feel slightly suffocated and slightly hemmed in. I am sharing this with you because I think it is about balance. It is learning to be consistent but in a way that validates your natural rhythm as a person. As I was writing about all that I wanted to share with you it became very obvious that this talks directly into Tony Robbins’s human needs that I talked about in 1 Trick To Overcome Your Ego. The first two that he shares which are;
and the ability to balance these within our lives. Normally when Tony talks about these he is talking about our need to have these met by external circumstances. What I have realised in writing all of this is that it is not just our need to have our external circumstances meet our needs but it's actually what we need within ourselves. Let me explain - I have a need for certainty/consistency this means that I need to know that I am going to wake up tomorrow morning and be able to survive in this world. That I will have food and shelter and I will be able to survive in it, but I also have a need for variety. As I said before if there is too much certainty life becomes boring it becomes stagnant it loses its vibrancy it loses its aliveness. However if I have too much variety and too much uncertainty then I would most likely become incredibly stressed because I wouldn’t know how I would be able survive. What Tony Robbins was saying in regards to this is about external circumstances meeting our internal needs, but what I am sharing with you is that who we are is either consistent or inconsistent and we need to find balance within ourselves. We need to know our natural rhythm to know if we are more consistent and steadfast in which case we need to balance that with a bit of variety and a bit of excitement or whether like me you tend to towards inconsistency and this can cause life to be a little too exciting in which case there needs to be a little bit more consistency. The trick is to balance it so that you feel alive and not controlled or too out of control so that life is scary.
Have a fabulous week with so much love from me to you
In my life I have made quite a few leaps of faith. Looking back on my life when I was thinking about writing this blog I realised I have made lots and lots of leaps of faith through my life. All of the times when I made one my life took a different direction and a massive leap forwards. I do not regret even one of these decisions even though at times the going was not always easy. I hope in this blog to share what I have learnt so that you need not have as bumpy landing as I did from time to time.
The first time I can remember taking a leap of faith was when I was 20. I decided to move to Cape Town for a year to study stable management. I left the guy I had been in a relationship with for 2 years packed my bags and set off. Although I had lived there from the age of 6-12 I no longer knew anyone. I lived in a little cottage on the Cape Flats with very little money. I was advised to get a dog as otherwise I might get raped on the way to work. My cat and dog ate better than I did, I had to hand wash all my clothes, and I could only afford to go out once a month. I started work at 6am and finished at 7pm. I came home ate and then studied till 10pm every night. I had no TV and only had an old tape recorder with 1 tape. Yet in spite of all of this I was blissfully happy. I got to do what I loved all day long. My dog came to work with me and was my best friend. And it has been an experience that has helped me through many tough times. It taught me that I could be happy anywhere and that my happiness did not depend on my external circumstances but rather on who I was being and what I was doing.
Since then I have made quite massive leaps of faith every few years or so. I did it when I met my future husband. He was in Botswana on holiday when we met (I was living there at the time). We spent a 2 weeks together before he had to go back. He then came back 6 weeks later for Valentines Day to surprise me and we spent another week together. In March I packed up everything I owned and moved to the UK to love with him. Although it did finally end in divorce we were together for 9 years and had 2 kids and I now call him my dark angel because if it hadn’t been for the experiences I had with him I would not be doing what I do now.
I took another leap of faith when I left him (my then husband). I was a stay at home mum looking after our two very young kids and I realised I needed to earn money. I had never run a business before, I had worked in businesses but I had never run my own, but I didn’t let that stop me. Through some synchronistic events I was asked by a wine agency in Cape Town if I would like to import their wines and distribute them around Botswana. I told them that I would be working from home (one of the non negotiable’s I had decided on regarding the type of work I wanted to do) and that I would store the wine in my double garage. What I find hard to believe now is that they accepted. For those of you living in South Africa or even Botswana the wines were well known brands - Alto Rouge, Durbanville Hills, Allesverloren Port, and Hill & Dale to name a few. What I learnt from this is incalculable but I think my proudest moment was when my accountant (a very dry critical man) looked over my books and said this is a proper business Britt.
I did it again when I left the wine business I had created and became a Consciousness Coach. I remember when I started to train it was as if there was no decision to make. I knew that coaching was what I was meant to be doing with my life and anything else would require me to die a little.
All of these about turn changes have meant that I have a vast experience of taking leaps of faith. Sometimes they have been smooth and everything has fallen magically into place and other times it has been incredibly bumpy and quite scary. Even when the transitions were easy there was still a very steep learning curve and this in itself was always challenging. As I have said I don't regret any of my leaps of faith because they have shifted my life in ways that would never have happened if I had carried on the path that I had been going along. And I love my life and what I do and where I am. I think these leaps of faith have added a richness to my life and ensured that I stretched myself and grew more than I thought I could.
If you are contemplating a leap of faith, a major change, or there is something that is bubbling that you are scared of and you don't know whether you should do something about it or not. I am going to share four things that you should keep in mind while you are contemplating it that will hopefully help you transition more smoothly than I have done in some of my leaps of faith.
Wishing you every success with any changes you are thinking of making. So much love from me to you BrittTanya
I am going to give you a couple of tools to help you make better and clearer and more aligned decisions in your life and it's really simple.
When making aligned decisions you will need to introspect just a little bit as the purpose of the decision will be to ensure you are living in alignment with your truth.
To start make a list of all the things that you want and all the things that you don't want from the outcome of the decision you are making. It is really important to remember that YOU get to choose. There is no right thing to want or wrong thing. Try not to listen to the internal echoes of your parents voices or your peers, society or teachers. Connect with yourself and see what you really want from the situation. We all have different values and this will direct our choices. Your values are not more right than my values they are just different. If you ask someone else to give you their opinion they will share what is important to them according to their set of values and they might no match yours so do not take other peoples input as the right answer. By all means listen to other people but then make your choices in alignment with what is important to you and only you (or your immediate family).
Example - I have chosen to share how I used this method when I moved to the UK as we all want different things from where we live. I will share what I was looking for and as I do look within yourself to see if you would choose similar things or it you have different values and priorities. There is no wrong or right just different preferences. When I moved to the UK I had a very clear list of what I wanted and what I didn’t want.
Knowing what I did want and what I didn’t made finding the perfect place fairly easy. And when I found it I knew it was right. Bath is very cosmopolitan and although it is not the most dynamic of places it is close to Bristol which is full of entrepreneurs and has a very dynamic energy. We actually live just outside Bath in a beautiful place at the top of a hill with lots of trees and not too many people. I can step out of my door and go for the most amazing walks and also be in the city of Bath within a few minuets. It takes us about 1.5 hours to get to London so an easy day trip. As a family we have been incredibly happy here and would not want to live anywhere else in the UK at the moment. Remember that your list is not finite. Just as I added the population density to mine you can add or take things away as you find things that work or do not work for you.
I have also used this technique in relationships and later I will share tweak to this technique that is even more specific. You might not realise this but we all want different things out of our relationships. I have recently started online dating and it is fascinating. Firstly there are so many people that say “I like … but then doesn’t everyone?” And not everyone does. We see life through our own lenses and we assume everyone else is seeing the same as us but they aren’t. What you want out of a relationship will be different to what I want out of one. For some people it might be status and money, or connection and authenticity, or for some people it's about sharing passions and activities. We all want different things from a relationship so it is important to know what you want and don’t want and in what priority. I have done this 3 times with relationships and each time the lists evolve until now it is quite basic but specific. Below are examples of how my lists have changed over time.
I actually can’t even remember what else I had on my list it was quite long. Anyway the relationship did not last as he was not able to take care of himself and needed me to support him. He was also very awkward socially and so meeting up with friends was very uncomfortable. I felt like I had another child to look after rather than a partner. And he was not emotionally intelligent so when I was stressed he thought it was about him and would act up even when I told him that I was stressed because of work.
This man again met all of my criteria and yet the relationship still didn’t work. Although when I started the relationship I think I already knew this but just didn’t listen to myself. He was also very persuasive and would not accept my no. This turned out to be a common thread throughout our relationship and was actually why it ended.
So not my list is different again what I am looking for is
I am sharing this with you because we don’t always know what we want or don’t want until we have tired it. Life is full of contrast to help us experience different things so that we can know what we truly want and what we don’t.
One thing that I learnt through my relationship process is about non-negotiable’s and they do not only need to apply to relationships they can apply to any decision you are making. They are the things that you are not willing to compromise on. It is great to have a list of what you want and what you do not want but some of the things on your list will be more important to you than others and then there will be your non-negotiable’s. When I first learnt about non-negotiable’s I was in a relationship and was rather taken aback. I used to be a people pleaser so having such firm boundaries was not something I was used to. However after I got used to the idea I found it quite liberating. It meant that I was allowed to decide on what I would not accept in my life and I had not done this up until then. It makes decision making much easier because if any of my non-negotiable’s are not met I don’t even have to think about it. I have found that 2-3 non-negotiable’s is about the right number. Any more than this and you might become quite rigid or limited. If you are too prescriptive there is no space to discover things that you didn’t know you would love.
To sum up, when you're making big decisions in life
- be very clear about what you want and what you don't want.
- Don’t let other people's opinions and limitations sway what you want and what you don't want.
- Notice if your limitations of what you believe is possible are also hindering your decision making. When you include things that you don't think could be a possibility your options can open up and you might realise you can have more than you ever thought you could.
- Finally - non-negotiable’s, make sure that you know what it is that you will not compromise on in your life. The example I gave was in regard to relationships but you can have non-negotiable’s about where you live, the work that you do, or your ethics and your morals and anything else.
So much love from me to you
I am going to share a trick with you to overcome your ego / identity, but before I do I want to share a little bit about ego and identity so I know we are on the same page.
In my understanding your ego and identity are one and the same thing. It is a construct that we create to protect us from life, to ensure that we survive, and to get our human needs met.
In case you don’t know what your human needs are let me quickly run through them (these were developed by Tony Robbins)
Spiritual needs (not religious but needs that our soul/sprit has) you will not be truly fulfilled and happy unless you meet these two needs and not everyone has balanced the first 4 so does not have the ability to give attention the these last 2.
5. Growth - If you do not feel like you are growing you will feel like you are dying inside.
6. Contribution - Have a life that has meaning and an ability to give back to know that you have value.
I believe that your identity / ego is constructed to get those first four needs met. How you go about that will be vary from person to person and will mostly be learnt from the people around you. Your parents, your siblings, your grandparents, your key caregivers growing up. You will have watched and learnt how they got those needs met and you will most likely do the same. Do they use manipulation? Are they people pleasers? Do they get angry and use force? They will have developed personality traits to ensure that they get those needs met.
You created your personality to get your needs met and to ensure that you survive in the physical world. There for your identity the thing that you think of as who you are is not really the truth of who we are. It is an adaptation that you have learned and created to ensure that you survive in the world.
One of the other things about the identity which is really quite interesting is that if this idea of who you are is threatened, challenged, or if something is learnt that contradicts it’s view of itself or the world you become very defensive, hurt or aggressive. All sorts of things get evoked in you to protect your identity/personality/ego that you have created that you believe is who you are.
However there is a part of you, something much, much deeper which I call your truth (also called the soul). It is a spark of source of god whatever it is you want to call it that resides within you. When I look back over my life I have changed and adapted my personality to get more of my needs met in a way that uplifts me more and brings me more happiness. I can’t even associate the me I am now with who I was in my 20’s, but there is a part of me that as far back as I can remember has always been and still is the truth of me. It was there when I was a very small child, it was there when I was in my early teens, it was there in my late teens and in my 20s and 30s and is still here now that I am into my 40s. It is the truth of who I really am. And when you connect with that part of you, you realise that it is eternal. It can never be destroyed. It can never be rejected and it cannot be hurt, damaged or broken in any way shape or form. Even though we think it can be. Part of the identity/personality/ego that we've developed is there to protect this truth deep within us. The strange thing is that when you truly connect to your truth you realise that it doesn't need protecting at all.
I am aware that at the beginning of this blog I promised you a trick. And I have been sharing all of this because I am building up to giving it to you. It is a very simple trick and it is
The less seriously you take your identity/ego/personality that you have created the less it has a hold over you and the freer you become to be the truth of who you really are. Allowing your self to judge and feel ashamed about who you are and what you have done will keep you trapped in a prison of ego compounding the problems to try to get out of them. Developing the ability to laugh at yourself to laugh, at the mistakes you make, the things you have done that you consider embarrassing and to realise you are only human and that, that is not who you truly are gives you the freedom to live more fully. To live more expansively and to live more joyfully.
I hope that in time you will get to know the real truth of who you are and if you want to do that with me it's something I do with my clients you are welcome to connect with me.
So much love from me to you