Poem / Pondering: The Universe has got my back

Do you know what? The Universe has got my back.

So yes, it’s been a tough time in the life…

But I’m choosing… To see the good, to count my blessings, to celebrate and appreciate.

Yet still my damned ‘terrier’ brain wants to fret and snap, to gripe and growl…

But that’s not who I am. That’s not what I was put on the planet to be. And I declare now that it’s not my truth.

Life, if I let it be, is good. So I choose and there it is.

I shall sit with and accept the darkness – holding it in my heart with compassion, so to illuminate it and ponder what it is teaching me.

I also accept the thousands of miracles, sparks of friendship, hugs, gifts, love and listening I receive; with an immense, sustaining, heart lifting gratitude.

And above all, in the face of fear, anger and pain (whether yours or mine)…

I shall love fiercely, laugh endlessly and know always, that the Universe has got my back ❤

~ Sandra – lover, laugher & illuminator x

PS: To experience more of the magic of life, buy the book of blog, where my ‘Love Letters to Life’ explore then celebrate the tiny and titanic aspects of life:  ‘Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life’ is published in both paperback & kindle And for a Halloween special offer of a signed author copy – click here to go to my website now and buy the paperback for just £7.99…

Halloween Magic – a true life Fairy Tale

With my Christian upbringing, Halloween or All Hallows Eve is a time I was told of, where ghosts haunt and flaunt themselves one last time before Allhallowtide, a time to pray for and remember departed or demented souls.

But I have Celtic characteristics too and so Samhain is the Gaelic festival marking the end of the harvest season and the beginning of winter, winding into the long dark nights to come.  Yet, what ever the name or origin, the date is always the 31st of October.

There have been many All Hallows Eves in my life and on this one in 2019, I am suddenly minded of when, on another such night, I experienced some real Halloween magic…

Pink Wings

For over 5 years I was a Director at Damsels in Success – a personal development organisation for women; running groups and events across England and Scotland. On 30 October 2012, I had flown into Glasgow, powered by jet plane rather than fairy wings, to meet with my Scottish members.

Arriving at the meeting venue, I set about creating a gorgeous feminine ambience, by dressing it with candles, cushions and any other treasures I felt would suit the theme. Rather than carry all this with me on the flight from England, earlier on I had gone shopping in Glasgow town centre and bought some inexpensive ‘props’ as decoration, including golden candles and a pair of sparkly pink fairy wings.

I spent the night after the meeting at a friend’s house nearby in East Kilbride. It was Halloween and the neighbourhood children were out in their fancy dress costumes, tapping on doors and seeking treats. In Scotland ‘trick or treating’ is known as ‘guising’, sincechildren go out in disguise. In this particular household the children were invited indoors to ‘do a turn’ i.e. tell a joke, sing a song, etc., in order to earn their rewards.

And so it was that a succession of ghouls and monsters passed over the threshold and performed their Halloween magic. And in amongst a colourful group of ghosts, animals and witches, was a quiet little girl dressed in pink. “What are you?” we asked. “I’m a fairy” she said, “but I’ve lost my wings”.

Well, as luck or intuition would have it, I still happened to have the fairy wings I’d bought for the Damsels meeting. Normally – not having the room or luggage allowance to take such trinkets home, I would give or throw them away… but this time, as I was tidying the room up after everyone else had left, the voice in my head gave me the very clear instruction of: “Pack the wings”. So without question, I folded them up and into my suitcase they went.

Back in my friend’s living room, imagine the surprise of assorted children and adults as I flipped open my suitcase, pulled out my gift and said to the little girl “here are your wings!”. Everyone’s face was an absolute picture and the look on that fairy’s face was priceless, (and one I will always treasure…) shy, yet shining… I helped her on with her new appendages and she modelled them for us with the sweetest of smiles…

Right there was my own true fairy story and an adorable moment of Halloween magic. When I think back, I can interpret the instruction I received as happy serendipity or a sweet coercion of karma; maybe it was intuition, my higher self or whatever your spiritual deity of choice happens to be…

Listening to that thought and being ready to give a child her wings stuck in my psyche. As a result, wings and the flights they take us on have become a theme for me, in both a literal and figurative sense.

So how can I be in a position to continually create magic like this? When I meditate and concentrate, I can take flight and rise above the toils and heavy thoughts of life, to hover above and see them from a clearly over-arching perspective. From up there I see how things are and accept where I am.  It’s then that solutions and suggestions of an exquisite clarity start to flow, just as when I was ‘told’ to “pack the wings.”

For me, meditation takes many forms, be that conscious mindfulness – of trying to empty my head of thoughts with ‘oms’ and visualisation; taking a walk around the block to clear my mind; or being inspired by a luscious piece of music or prose.

From what I do for myself, to what I share as a coach, I can comfortably liken the tools of the trade to providing my clients with wings. I can too, support them with where those wings will take them. Yet I can’t dictate the route, draw the map and I certainly cannot fly for them, since they have their own journeys to embark upon, with their individual destinations.

My own flights have taken me into the territory of writing fiction.  The words I am currently working on are interwoven with the possibilities and complexities of where a glorious pair of wings can take the heroine of my very first novel. And one day, maybe even soon, I will give that book its own maiden flight.

But most of all, if ever I get a delectable instruction from an inscrutable voice telling me to “pack the wings,” or do anything else for that matter, I’ve learnt to listen and believe in the magic (or the logic or what ever else you like to label it)…

So I’m sending Samhain blessings to all faeries, daemons and anyone else navigating their way through the sunshine and clouds on this All Hallows Eve.

And to draw this passage to a cutely clichéd ending – it’s time to take flight then…

From Sandra x – A Flat Footed Faerie

PS: To experience more of the magic of life, buy the book of blog, where my ‘Love Letters to Life’ explore then celebrate the tiny and titanic aspects of life:  ‘Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life’ is published in both paperback & kindle And for a Halloween special offer of a signed author copy – click here to go to my website now and buy the paperback for just £7.99…

Fiction: The Sparrow Scarer

When a moment of irritation, is turned into a piece for one of my books.  So instead of being angry, I decided to get creative…

SAM_0243

The Sparrow Scarer

She woke to claps of thunder and torrential rain, comfortable and safe in her bed, where she relished the sound and stretched herself awake, sitting up and luxuriantly stretching out her wings, which spanned most of the width of the tiny room.

She folded them in again, then washed, dressed and made her way down to the breakfast buffet, which was divided from the street by a row of plant pots separating the dining area from the outside world and traffic constantly rumbling by.

Having eaten half a banana and a nectarine, she nursed a black coffee, charmed, as she was every morning, by a handful of sparrows, who hopped about opportunistically, seeking cheeky left overs and crumbs on the floor. She would watch their quiet antics, whilst most people there, barely even registered their existence.

Today the restaurant was almost empty and the torrential rain had driven in a small flock of them, hopping around the table legs. Suddenly, a group of them flew up and landed on the 2 chairs opposite her. She looked them over – mainly female, but as 2 flew off, alarmed as someone walked by, so two males came and landed in their place. One cheeped and wiped his beak on the top of the chair. “Is that a sparrow being macho then?” she mused, with the slightest of smiles.

She chopped up the remains of her nectarine and softly dropped it onto the plate she had deliberately slid to the other side of the table. They stayed put, constantly moving their heads, warily gauging their surroundings, but never taking their eyes off her and the food.

She looked at their markings – one male had a small collar of black feathers across his neck, whilst the other had a string of them intermingled with grey, almost like a native necklace.

The sparrow with the collar hopped down, edging his way towards the food.

Suddenly someone was clapping loudly and they rose and flew off. Assuming it was one of the waiting staff, Ariel was surprised to hear a female English voice say, very pointedly “Nuisance!”

“Not to me” Ariel said to the sparrow scarer – a be-trousered, tall, falsely blonde woman, somewhere in her 60s, who turned on her heels. “Bitch” Ariel intoned, just loudly enough that her nemesis would hear as she returned to her own table and husband, who was quietly ingesting a plate full of scrambled eggs and bacon. Ariel’s bile rose, as their table was at the far end of the restaurant, where no birds ever intruded.

Had this woman been watching her covertly trying to feed the birds and decided to ruin the moment? To what end? Was she scared of them? No – “nuisance” did not indicate that.

So what were the sparrows to her? A danger? A harbinger of dirt and danger? “Honestly,” thought Ariel, “what harm did a sparrow ever do to anyone?” As far as she was aware, a sparrow had never swooped down, cheeping ferociously and stolen a rasher of bacon off a breakfast plate. A sparrow had never viciously attacked anyone, for heaven’s sake. She had never heard of any one dying a slow and painful death from a virulent, sparrow originated disease. They were quiet brown creatures, simply taking advantage of left over human detritus – tiny feathered street urchins – opportunely cleaning up and then flying away. There was therefore, absolutely no need to bully and chase them away.

Neither was there a need to interrupt her breakfast or censure her, also a quiet, brown little creature, minding her own business, on the edges of existence. “How dare she!”

A few sparrows drifted back inside, keeping their distance and once again hopping round table legs close by.

Having finished her coffee, Ariel strode pass the couple as she made her way towards the Exit. She clapped out a loud ‘rat ta tat tat’ as she walked past their table. “Nuisance!” she barked out, hoping that they too would dissipate into the ether at her staccato command.

Instead of flying away however, the ignorant clay foots remained rooted to their chairs, suddenly frozen in mid-chew.

Ariel strode away, anger now dissipating into laughter.

~ Sandra Peachey – Bird Watcher

PS: My book – Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life has been featured in Psychologies Magazine and The Lady, it was also honoured as a Finalist in the 2015 International Book Awards.  

The book takes the best posts from this blog, adds new content and wraps it all together in a satisfying structure – that will make you feel the love, entertain and enlighten.  It’s an easy yet satisfying read, which sees love in everything we do in life – from the big themes to the tiny, trivial minutiae of it too.

Buy the paperback on my website – here for just £7.99 including P&P…

  • Or get it from Amazon for £11.99 and from all great book websites anywhere in the world.
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If you want to get in touch, you can contact me by clicking here…

Poem: Where are the Words?

Where are the words?
It’s as if my soul has gone to sleep…

The words I want should stem and stream from the heart,
the creative centre of me.
But that is somehow cold and still…
A void, instead of a magnificent vortex.

It’s not as if I have no words…
I can be mechanical – sucking up the sounds around me
then puking them back out,
in some sequential semblance of order.

But the words I seek should well from within,
whereas instead, the well is dry.
Or if not dry exactly,
then certainly stagnant, devoid of sensibility.

But in bemoaning my sterility,
ironically I am writing myself out of it.
I find the words flow –
connecting and colluding to form this entity of a poem.

Maybe my write self doesn’t need to feel the muse after all.
It’s all there,
beyond feeling,
and so my soul is speaking after all.

A Love Letter to Love

Love letters

This is a recycled blog that I first posted in February 2012.
It’s not a Valentine declaration for a significant other – instead it’s an exploration of how we can find love every where we look – whether we are single, double or otherwise…

Dear Love

So here we are – you and I – together, quietly, with everything in place. And because I’m sort of stubborn, this letter nearly didn’t happen – simply because some one said to me ‘and of course if you’re writing love letters, then you’ll write a letter to Love …’  Now see, these are MY love letters and I get to make up the rules… but any way, yes, here indeed it is

So… awkward pause again… here we are… And what to say / how to start? Well the starting is the thing with love isn’t it? It can crop up unexpectedly, unbidden – suddenly shaking your world; or then again it can creep up on you and slowly envelop you, falling softly on you and through you, like a feather floating down from the sky…

And it can start as a glance, a realisation, a declaration; something known, or on the tip of the tongue; it can be at the back of the brain or from the bottom of the heart … And love comes in many shapes and shades, then forms itself in solidarity or as shimmering waves.

So it’s not surprising then that we don’t always see it in our space.  However, spend a little time with love and you realise how much of it is around; despite the fact that so often we can be strangely pre-occupied with how little of it we have in our lives.  Yet love is an abundance when you consider it in its’ every kind.

Let’s begin with the old cliché of loving yourself – the very best place to embark on this journey, in my own writerly opinion.  For me that is a waxing and waning; and far from loving myself, sometimes I can be my own worst hated enemy.  Yet self is the starting place of all our loves, so we must take care of loving ourselves.  Pay that first love its due, treat it with affection, shine a light on it and show yourself that you are loved.  And the easiest way to do this is to be kind to yourself – do not silently chide or scold you and don’t listen to the dark voice that tells you that you cannot… be loved… Instead, love yourself.

And it reaches out, this love – to those around us, born to us, sent to us by fate as friends, chosen, gifted, sought.  So if we are not healed and solid in our own hearts, how can we reach out for more and give of our own best love?

For love moves and grows and can also stay unfettered in our being, unacknowledged for those around us, not named, when it should be praised and thanked and explored.  Well I’m biased in this of course, for these very letters are a gratitude of love, an exploration of, a voyage through it.  And to my surprise they were largely unchartered waters, so I simply trusted and sailed upon them – sometimes through choppy waters and sometimes through calm, turquoise bays.

Where to sail to next?  Love is in many ways is the simplest of things and then again it can get so obscured.  How strange that at times it can feel it’s way through our hearts as such a strong force, and then again be something that can wane away, grow pale and die. Does real love really die?  I say no: I say you may not feel its’ force in your daily world, but there it lies and shall shock you or sooth you when it rises out of the past and introduces itself to you again.

So to those friends and lovers who have titled me that way in the past, then moved on, please don’t think that you don’t live on in my heart, in some semblance; and never, ever imagine that you have left me for good (or ill).  Love doesn’t work that way – it is alive, even when dormant, and even when it’s object is on a distant unseeable horizon.  And I understand that you may say that you love that thing or that one, no more.  Yet I reply that love changes, transmutes, shifts and transforms.  It can hide, but is always there, around and in you.  Love has been your lesson – providing the research for the life that you life now.  Love is what makes you; love can guard you, buoy you; and when you think that you lack it – shrivel, shrive and waste you.

If then you appreciate love in all its’ forms and not only the romantic him / her version – your world expands; the frequency of love vibrates in you, it pulses and increases and comes to you often and more – so much more when you choose to see it, in all its every glory.  Quite simply like attracts love … and so this letter ends ….

    With love, love, love … from Me xxx

PS: Love in ALL its’ forms is explored and celebrated in the book of the blog – Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life published in paperback and kindle.  For a St Valentines’ Day special offer of a signed author copy – go to my website now and buy the paperback for just £7.99!

Writing about Writer’s Block

I’m part of a writer’s group that get together every month to debate themes around writing, critique work, share ideas, etc.  The following comes from this month’s theme which was “Writer’s Block.”

Writers BlockWriter’s Block
~ Or… When your imaginary friends won’t talk to you…

I put my hand up for this topic for very selfish reasons… It really was a case of ‘physician, heal thyself’…

To kick off the process, I researched the meaning of ‘Writer’s Block’ which, I discovered, was frequently described as a ‘condition’.

So if I’m going to tackle this condition, I first want to pin it down and define it – this then is what I came up with:

Writer’s Block is the condition of being unable to think of what to write and how to start, proceed with or complete your writing.

So tell me about when you have experienced penned procrastination or writer’s block?

So what can be creating such creative slowdowns or stops for us?

We’re all different with our own blocks and triggers, but let’s look at some of the more widely recognised common causes:

These include:

  • Time / Timing: It’s simply not the right time to write. You feel as if your ideas may need to percolate a little longer in your brain before writing them down.
    It could be that that voice in your head is telling that you have more important things to do with your time.  Writing is not a priority.
  • Fear: Many writers struggle with being afraid, with putting their ideas (and themselves) out there for everyone to see and criticise. Fear is a major reason that many people cite for never becoming writers.
  • Perfectionism: You want everything to be just right before you ever put pen to paper / touch a keyboard. You try to get it straight and perfect in your head, but never do, so you never even begin.

In our last session we explored creativity and writers block is the antithesis to this.  In his book The War of Art, Steven Pressfield defines this as resistance – that is, the things that prevent us from sitting down and doing our best work.

  • “It’s not the writing part that’s hard. What’s hard is sitting down to write.”

Pressfield describes resistance as a force that can’t be seen, touched, heard, or smelt.  Instead it is felt.  It’s a repelling force.  It’s negative.  Its aim is to shove us away, distract us, prevent us from doing our work.

  • “Most of us live a double life – the one we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands Resistance.”

This being The War of Art, he likens the writer (artist) to a warrior.

  • “The warrior and the artist live by the same code of necessity, which dictates that the battle must be fought anew every day.”

He cites the example of Hitler, who was a would-be artist, but found it easier to start World War II than face a blank square of canvas.”

“Resistance here is experienced as fear and the degree of fear felt equates to the strength of Resistance experienced.  Therefore the more fear we feel about a specific enterprise, the more certain we can be that that enterprise is important to us and to the growth of our soul.

That’s why we feel so much Resistance.  If writing meant nothing to us, there’d be no Resistance around it.

“If you didn’t love the project that is terrifying” you, Pressfield tells us, “you wouldn’t feel anything.  The opposite of love isn’t hate; it’s indifference.”

When we start to think about what has to be done to realise our artistic projects: “Rationalization is Resistance’s right-hand man.  Its job is to keep us from feeling the shame we would feel if we truly faced what cowards we are for not doing our art.”

In the war of art, like the warrior “The awakening artist must be ruthless, not only with themselves, but also with others.”

So when it comes to the trouble of resistance, “The working artist will not tolerate trouble in her life because she knows trouble prevents her from doing her work.  She harnesses the urge for trouble and transforms it in her work.”

So essentially “Resistance is fear.  But Resistance is too cunning to show itself naked in this form.  Because if it lets us see clearly that our own fear is preventing us from doing our work, we may feel shame.  And shame may drive us to act in the face of fear.”  Resistance doesn’t want us to do this.  So it brings in Rationalization.”

Pressfield then explores what it takes to be a professional – taking the principles we often apply to our first lived life and applying it to our artistic one.

“Those defeated by Resistance share one trait.  They think like amateurs.  They haven’t yet turned pro.  The moment an artist turns pro is as life changing as the birth of his first child.  With one stroke, everything changes.

“The amateur plays for fun.  The professional plays for keeps.  To the amateur, the game is a hobby.  To the pro it’s a vocation.  The amateur is a weekend warrior.  The professional is full time warrior.”

For me that is owning and defining myself as a writer.  This fact is fundamental to who I am.  I therefore describe myself as such.  It is part of my life, including my working life as a coach and Human Resources consultant.  Having applied for a job several years ago, I faced an interviewer who had clearly done their research.  If I wanted the job I was told, my public persona would have to be as their Personnel person.  This would include not linking my blog or describing myself on Linked in as a writer.  I politely explained that I was a writer and this, along with my HR experience is what I bring to the party of life.  My writing has never been about my HR work – the 2 would not necessarily marry well.  Yet to my mind the fact that I write makes me more rounded, interesting and observant.  So, it was their loss…

My writing is every much a profession to me as HR.  But “resistance hates it when we turn pro.”  But the path we follow is not necessarily an easy one: “The artist committing himself to his calling has volunteered for hell, whether he knows it or not.  He will be dining for the duration on a diet of isolation, rejection, self-doubt, despair, ridicule, contempt, and humiliation.”

So how do you turn ‘pro?  In one of the most oft used quotes on the subject “Someone once asked Somerset Maugham if he wrote on a schedule or only when struck by inspiration.  ‘I write only when inspiration strikes,’ he replied.  ‘Fortunately it strikes every morning at nine o’clock sharp.’”

What then are the qualities that define ‘professionals’?

  • We show up consistently (every day).
  • We show up no matter what.
  • We are committed over the long haul.
  • The stakes for us are high and real.
  • We accept remuneration for our labours.
  • We master the techniques.
  • We have a sense of humour about it
  • We receive praise or blame in the real world.

Yet still “The professional, though he accepts money, does his work out of love.”

“A professional acts in the face of fear.”  Whereas “The amateur believes he must first overcome his fear; then he can do his work.  The professional knows that there is no such thing as a fearless warrior or a dread-free artist.”

Did you know “Henry Fonda was still throwing up before each stage performance, even when he was seventy-five.”?

That then is the theory, so now how do we stop staring at a blank page and start writing, in practice? For this section I have turned to author Lisa Cherry and her book ‘How to stop staring at a blank page and start writing’ for some practical advise.

First of all I would invite you to think about what motivates you to write – what are your reasons and drivers?  Why do you (want to) write?  So what are your writing ‘whys’?

If we can understand why we write, then we can turn that understanding into action.  These ‘whys’ can now be translated into tangible steps towards achieving your goals.

When it comes to motivation, one of my major issues is around the solitariness of the process of writing.  It is something that I embrace, since it is something that I can claim is truly unique and individual to me.  Yet, my contradiction is that as well as being solitary, I am also social.  So social goals have been one of the best motivators that I have found.

What are your best motivators?

So what can stop you achieving these goals?  Often we are programmed with a number of ‘Self-limiting beliefs’ which are mental blocks, negative thoughts and excuses.  They tend to have a negative effect on you, on how you feel, on what you feel is the ‘right’ thing to do.  They are about keeping you safe and hence small – encouraging you not to break their dark boundaries.  They therefore get in the way of you striving for and ultimately achieving your goals.

Common ones for writers are:

  • I’m not good enough to write
  • No one will be interested in / want to read my writing
  • That writing is a luxury which I don’t deserve
  • That I will fail and be criticised

Does that strike a chord – what are your self-limiting beliefs? 

How does this translate into reasons why you can’t write?

Take each of these reasons and write a positive solution to each of them.  Even if you don’t believe the solution – decide to choose it!

For example “I can’t write because it’s indulgent” could be reframed as “I am creative and writing is part of who I am, which is worthy of expressing.

You can then use the answers that you come up with here as positive mantras / affirmations to repeat to yourself when resistance rears its ugly head.  Learn them by heart, repeat them – resistance is trumped by persistence!

Now it’s time to deal with the excuses that resistance is putting in your way.

First of all, of course, you need to list them out.

By analysing them you then get to understand your own usual suspects.  Then you can work your way through them.

Time is so often at the top of many people’s lists.

“Don’t say you don’t have enough time.  You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michaelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.”

— H. JACKSON BROWN JR.

We have so many distractions these days, which suck up the precious commodity of our time.  TV, phones, iPads.  They are your excuses for not doing what you want – writing!  Conversely it may be that now isn’t the right time to write, because you do have more pressing priorities.  That is OK – you can now plan for the time when you will be ready, rather than resistant.

Then work your way through your list of excuses and come up with the solutions.

By going through these processes, you take responsibility for your writing, you then have the where with all to change your approach to it.  Fundamentally you are changing the script.

Listen to the excuses your resistance puts in the way and prioritise them honestly – you can then decide if they are unnecessary concerns or genuine issues which you need to think through to a solution.  A simple example of that is the concept of finding time, vs that of making time.

In his Letters to a Young Poet – Rainer Maria Rilke wrote in 1903:

[Letter 7] “…it is clear that we must embrace struggle.  Every living thing conforms to it.  Everything in nature grows and struggles in its own way, establishing its own identity, insisting on it at all costs, against all resistance.  We can be sure of very little, but the need to court struggle is a surety that will not leave us.

Rilkes also tells us:

“Your doubt can become a good attribute if you discipline it.  It must become a knowing; it must become the critic.  Ask it, as often as it wishes to spoil something, why something is ugly.  Demand proof of it, test it, and you will find it perhaps perplexed and confused, perhaps also in protest. Don’t give in; demand arguments.  Act with alertness and responsibility, each and every time, and the day will come when doubt will change from the destroyer to become one of your best fellow-workers, perhaps the wisest of all that have a part in building your life.”

My fundamental piece of advice to anyone who asks me for advice about getting started with their writing – is just to sit down and begin!  Just write – don’t judge, don’t compete.

In fact I’m with Charles Bukowski, who states:  “Writing about writer’s block is better than not writing at all.”

On day 25 of my first ever blog challenge, I was definitely feeling the resistance, so decided to write it out:

25 February 2012

Letter 25: To Resistance

Dear Resistance

‘Love your enemy’ is the first phrase that comes into my head now.  Since I sat down and pondered who or what to write to next, as I am so tantalisingly near to finishing my cherished challenge of writing a love letter a day, every day, for the Valentine month of February.  That is twenty nine epistles … shooting out into the cosmos, reaching into the void … may be to over reach and be sent unseen; or may be to touch and to torch another creature’s flame.  Well so it should be, if indeed 29 there were in existence.  For I stared at a white page and racked a blank brain for an object of inspiration … and there was none … Just five letters to go … the end in sight, but now no sight, no sense of next.

So then suddenly, there it was – my enemy: resistance, procrastination, pfaffing, dawdling, dreaming, distracting or whatever name you are going by today. 

Now I want to have this out with you and I’m guessing this won’t be once and for all, this stalling, this staying, this stopping of my strived for success. 

Why can’t I move beyond this solid wall, this barrier, this self-created strange protectionism?  Why am I so static, so staid, so very stuck, so often?  What weight is this, what darkness, what blindness to my future?  What rocket, what change or what challenge will shift you out of my path and let me stride, rather than stress myself forward?  I am staggered that not even grief, tears or terrible fear motivates me on and over you. 

So I must consider this and think … well … could it be that now is not my time to move; or may be here is my lesson – my learning obstacle to be climbed up and over and scaled like any average mountain of life.  But then this mountain is unseen, and it feels so solid, so heavy, so truculent, so frustrating, so scream generating, if I let it stick and let it raise steam …  There I am pulled back to black – stale, pale and aged. 

So forward now … I see you and I raise you … I am aware of you and I name you.  Not to shame you, though shame is tempting, but to acknowledge you, to understand you, to know your role, to push your boundaries, then to blast through to freedom.

Someone told me there is no real cure.  “My name is Sandra and I am a procrastinator” … I wait for the acknowledged applause to die away …

Now I know you Resistance, I can start to step away from you, to walk around, climb over or sail in you.  I know how you tick, I see how you move, I hear your special solid voice.  That voice not to be a vice to me now.  For in the very act of stopping me, I learn to step around you, to dance away. 

For me the solution is to share.  Your weight is too much to bear alone.  Life is not meant to be for one.  I chose to connect to cherished colleagues, not fellow workers, not to sharing inmates.  I chose to commit to promises, rather than to (other’s) deadlines, I move to the light, to the way forward in ways that work for me, that work with my rhythms, my wants, my true skills, my loves.  I trace the naturalness of my form, my thoughts, of my heart and I replicate that out into the world.  Then I chose to share the un-natural, the unwanted tasks and transferences with those who have the gifts which are my strangers, my sloth and my burdens.

This is not one lesson learned and kept close.  So often I slip back, absorbed into alternate realities, distracted by your square solid form blocking out the sun.  I forget you are there, lulled into old life patterns, long learned forms of being and of seeing.  Now in my new life there is not the pattern of average days to give me reason and meaning, so I create my own way and my freedom.  And freedom is not resistance, it is grace and flow and ease and these I love.

    Farewell old fiend.

                 Not yours, Miss S E A Peachey

There is no one perfect answer to Writer’s Block, resistance or procrastination.  We all have our own scripts and sometimes the story in them changes.  That’s why working through our patterns is so important.  It isn’t just a one off exercise either.  On the journey of my life, with it’s ebbs and flows, I realised recently, that I wasn’t making writing a priority.

I’d been putting off editing my latest book, as my script had told me it was a chore that I would find impossible to fit in around the business of earning a living.

Then Caroline, a friend of mine died in September.  She was only 2 years older than me and had so many plans for living her life to the full.  But suddenly she was diagnosed with a brain tumour and died only a few days later.

Her passing unlocked something within me, made me want to make the most of every conscious moment.  She had always been a fan of my writing and now I turned to words to work my way through the stages of processing my grief and the plethora of emotions that accompanied it.  Out of this came a number of poems and a tribute, which I published as a blog.

What it did too, was spur me to return to my novel.  Far from being a chore, I found that editing my book was actually pure, motivational joy which uplifted me and gave me a deep well of contentment.

I have since made a conscious choice to put writing at the top of my list of priorities.  Not just as a one off decision, but as a continuous process.

To round this topic off, Steven Pressfield cites that:

  • Ultimately, “The more Resistance you experience, the more gratification you will feel when you finally overcome it.”
  • And that so many people put their lives off until their deathbed.”

I don’t intend to be one of those people.

And whilst I thank Mr Pressfield for his wisdom on the subject, I’m going to give the final word to Terry Pratchett:
There’s no such thing as writer’s block.  That was invented by people in California who couldn’t write.”

~ Sandra Peachey
With inspiration from Steven Pressfield, Lisa Cherry, Rainer Maria Rilke and Terry Pratchett

PS: My book – Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life has been featured in Psychologies  Magazine and The Lady, it was also honoured as a Finalist in the 2015 International Book Awards.  

The book takes the best posts from this blog, adds new content and wraps it all together in a satisfying structure. It’s an easy yet satisfying read, which has allowed its’ readers to laugh, cry and think – seeing the love in everything we do in life – from the big themes to the tiny, trivial minutiae of it too.

Buy the paperback on my website – here for just £7.99 including P&P…

  • Or get it from Amazon for £11.99 and from all great book websites anywhere in the world.
  • You can also buy it in Kindle format…

If you want to get in touch, you can contact me by clicking here…

I’m also variously known as:
* The Director of LifeWork Consultancy & Coaching;
* The Author of Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life and Co-Author of The F-Factor.
* A 2015 International Book Awards Finalist, in the Women’s Issues Category;
* The Winner of a Women Inspiring Women Award in 2013;
* As being shortlisted for Women’s Coach in the APCTC Awards 2014, also nominated in 2012 & 2013; and
* Being nominated for a Networking Mummies National Recognition Award in 2015.

Poem: Mermaid Dreams

Feet

I’ve rediscovered my inner child… Standing ankle deep in the sea, waiting for the waves to break over me – laughing like a loon.
Suddenly I remember being small again and playing tig with with the waves – letting them chase me and catch me – to tickle, caress or push me over.

Even though I’m older now, the sea still wants to play…
So I wade further and further in, feeling my way deeper – letting the waves reach higher and higher up my body;
feeling the velvet smoothness of soft, weed covered rock beneath my feet.

Suddenly I’m ready and so I dive right in.
Now pulled with the heartbeat of the waves –
alternately swimming against,
then riding them back to the shore.

My senses are dazzled – the sounds of the waves crash in my ears
and the tang of Ozone fills my nostrils as I inhale the ocean air.  I float and play like a dolphin’s daughter, then remember who I am – allowing the sea to run me aground with my gravity bound feet.

My evolution from child back to woman means I wade out of the water and return to leggéd land.
Time now to dry out with the smiling sun and
languidly forget my girlhood mermaid dreams…

PS: My book – Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life has been featured in PsychologiesMagazine and The Lady, it was also honoured as a Finalist in the 2015 International Book Awards.  

The book takes the best posts from this blog, adds new content and wraps it all together in a satisfying structure. It’s an easy yet satisfying read, which has allowed its’ readers to laugh, cry and think – seeing the love in everything we do in life – from the big themes to the tiny, trivial minutiae of it too.

Buy the paperback on my website – here for just £7.99 including P&P…

  • Or get it from Amazon for £11.99 and from all great book websites anywhere in the world.
  • You can also buy it in Kindle format…

If you want to get in touch, you can contact me by clicking here…

I’m also variously known as:
* The Director of LifeWork Consultancy & Coaching;
* The Author of Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life and Co-Author of The F-Factor.
* A 2015 International Book Awards Finalist, in the Women’s Issues Category;
* The Winner of a Women Inspiring Women Award in 2013;
* As being shortlisted for Women’s Coach in the APCTC Awards 2014, also nominated in 2012 & 2013; and
* Being nominated for a Networking Mummies National Recognition Award in 2015.