Written by Lizzie Macaulay
Recently I managed to sneak away on holiday with my tiny tribe and it gave me a big opportunity to reflect – something I haven’t had the time or emotional energy to really tackle over the last couple of years with starting a new business and raising my teeny loves. Let me start by saying this isn’t the column I thought I’d be writing this month. I’d had this great idea for this month to complete a
deep dive into my soul while I was away and this amazing vision of how it was all going to come together. The lovely Michelle Robinson, our resident ‘agony aunt’ columnist, psychic, spiritualist and soul luminary had set me some tasks as a way of making it all happen, and it was going to be gooooooooooooooooood…
A revelation and a revolution all in one.
This quest was something that I’d been needing to invest time in for a while now, but the opportunity to get started just hadn’t presented itself (or at least, I hadn’t taken it on to this point).
Michelle provided seven fabulously insightful areas for me to do a deep dive on myself:
- Consult your inner compass
- Honour yourself
- Assess your values and beliefs
- Gratitude is the attitude
- What would love do?
- Spiritual gifts assessment
- Your life’s purpose and lessons
Going through the list, I was dead keen to get started and right all my perceived internal wrongs so I could be a better human, mum, wife, colleague – all the things. Asking yourself fundamental questions about your own happiness, direction and approach to this one life seems pretty important, but had I been doing it in recent years? Uhhh, nope.
I’d had grand ambitions of taking an hour or so out of each day to stop and ‘do the work’ so to speak. But of course things didn’t pan out quite as I’d hoped on that front – because what ever goes to plan when you have toddlers, right?! My intentions were good, but actions seem to be more of the point here. So, with many hiccups, interruptions and false starts, I did what I could when I could for myself, and other practices that could be applied to the entire family unit.
Gratitude is something we try to practice every day in the Mac Fam, so that was an ‘easier’ task in some respects, and could be worked in to conversation and my own thoughts throughout the day. ‘What would love do’ was another one that had practical applications (like when my 4yo decided it was a good idea to jump on my sleeping 2yo’s bed at 4am – I really did ask myself ‘what would love do?’ but in that moment my novice self was drawing a blank! Evolved future me will know what to do, though…)
Honestly, I’m not sure if I came up with all the answers. Most likely a bunch more questions, but the experience was invaluable for setting my up long term for checking in with myself as a daily practice. Just like my fitness has integrated to become normal, rather than the exception, so too can my introspection…
I have had some nagging doubts in my head lately about whether or not I’ve been honouring my true self. Such beautiful timing, then, that Michelle asked me to reflect on the key areas of my life and test them with the question: “Am I steering myself towards happiness and a contented life?” Realistically, I’m doing better on that front with each passing day, but with the new year ahead, there
are some areas that could do with improving. I’ve made note and just need to keep checking in with myself that I’m heading in the right direction as the year goes on.
I have been terrible at this over the last few years. Making sure I carve out time for myself, and ‘fill my cup’ is something that I’ve been missing. Missing this essential step has at times made me crabby, resentful and less than the best version of myself. I’m determined to do better here, and making time for quiet reflection, my health and fitness, and seeing the people that make me happy
more frequently is going to be a game changer.
Who am I, exactly?!
Well, isn’t this the greatest question in the universe… The truth is, I’m still figuring that out. Michelle’s instructions for this part were to “ensure that you have formed your own values and beliefs, and there are no automatic ‘programs’ or unhelpful beliefs that you may have picked up from others”. That’s actually harder than it sounds, but bringing awareness to the possibility of it is a great
I’d never thought about it before, but the heart of my work as a copywriter and journalist is to place myself in the shoes of my clients and write from their perspective. The basis for this work is empathy. Always. In her instructions, Michelle specifically said, “A sensitive nature, an empathic ability to ‘feel what others are feeling’, a sense of being guided in creative pursuits eg writing,
recognising moments of synchronicity and signs from the Universe, energy coming from your hands, vivid dreams… these are all signs of intuitive gifts.” I can tick ALL of these off the list. So making sense of how this all fits together is the next bit. I’m keeping my eye out for signs from the universe rather than keeping my head down and my blinkers on.
I’m feeling a bit shy about this one. I think I’ll keep it under my hat for now. I mulled it over a lot while I was away, looking for opportunities to enhance my contribution to my family, friends and broader community. I have a few ideas, and as I work through each of them, I’m getting over the sensation that I should be doing more for others and starting to put that into action. I finished 2020 on a high of giving back, and I thoroughly plan on keeping that up. But beyond that, I think this is a work in progress and something I’ll keep chipping away at.
I hope this isn’t as unsatisfying as it seems from the inside. The truth is, I can see quite clearly now how each of these focus areas slots into the everyday. This task of assessing your life and purpose isn’t something to just think about once upon a time on holiday then store in the back of the cupboard of emotional tools.
Becoming a ‘fully realised person’ is definitely an iterative process and takes time (possibly an entire lifetime!)
I’m so grateful for the chance to start and bring my awareness to the things that really matter to me. Staying true to myself is not something I’ve always done (knowingly or otherwise), nor staying open to my intuition. 2021 is feeling super hopeful as I apply my newfound skills in every aspect of my life. It’s not a new year’s resolution, simply a new way of looking at my life more deeply rather than
just coasting through on autopilot. So keep your fingers crossed for me, and if my journey has inspired you to take your own, head on over to Michelle’s business page, The Academy of Spiritual Practice for loads of insights on what to do next!
With the warmest of thanks to Michelle Robinson for taking the time to set me on this new path!