Releasing so as to embrace

2011-09 Moonrise2

I’m typing from my dining table, watching the golden moon rise over the hills to the east…

My son is asleep in my studio, where I usually write. His father is renovating his bedroom as I type.

I have dragged myself away from Pinterest, where I was hiding, as this is not a comfortable post to write.

<3 <3 <3

As I work through this process of releasing and embracing, and deciding which to do where, I have come to the uncomfortable realisation that one thing that needs to change is this blog.

It is uncomfortable because I have found myself a comfy rut with wonderful readers, so I am reluctant to change.

But in truth that comfy rut is getting uncomfortable, as I can feel words within me pushing to be written. I don’t know yet exactly what form they want to take, but I do know I want to find out…

Blogging helps ease my discomfort temporarily: having written something I can feel a pleasant glow of achievement and ignore those stirrings a little longer. But in truth my blogging has become a form of procrastination itself!

So, I have decided to release this blog a little. Do not fear – this is only a temporary release!

I need some time and space to breathe in without the strict rhythm of regular posting.

I crave time and space to explore my writing further, and to push the boundaries of what my blogging is.

I anticipate I will be away for at least a month, possibly longer. I fully intend to embrace blogging again well before the next Solstice (aka Christmas), but it may not be quite the same as before…

I ask your patience with this process, and hope that you will enjoy the end result as much as I intend to.

I will still be around on Twitter and Facebook, if you fancy a chat.

While you wait for me:

<3 you can find visual inspiration here,

<3 you can be encouraged in your quest for a simpler life here,

<3 you can explore words about creativity here, and

<3 you can find things to ponder here.

<3 <3 <3

I will see you again soon, my friends. Thank you for your reading :)

Social media – release or embrace?!

Much has been written on the ills and/or necessity of social media in this internet age.

Depending on who you read, social media can be a contributor to social dislocation or an essential part of your personal brand. Personally, I think the truth lies somewhere in the middle (as it usually does).

Social media is, in my view, neither the devil incarnate nor the answer to your everything. It is a tool which can support, and even enhance, our lives, but it also contains hazards. Not just the obvious noisy trolls, but quieter dangers like discontent, jealousy and time-wasting.

I don’t worry so much about avoiding trolls: they will trample wherever they will, and there ain’t much anyone can do about that except wait for them to move on.

I have found a way to managing the quieter dangers. It is simple, but effective:

consciously choose what goes into your feeds

I’m a Tweep, a Facebooker and a Pinner. All these media have feeds.

Over recent weeks, I’ve been making conscious decisions about what I do and don’t want in my feeds, and who I want to hear from: I’ve cleaned out my Twitter follows and started work on my Facebook newsfeed. Pinterest is yet to come.

More important to me than clearing out is choosing what to embrace in my feeds. I want to be encouraged and inspired, so I can spread that joy wider.

Interestingly, I’ve found that I enjoy Twitter more than I do Facebook. I think it’s partly because there is no requirement to be friends with people to share their wisdom and humour. And the character limit makes for quicker scrolling and less ranting. Facebook does help me stay connected to people I care about, but Twitter leaves me smiling!

Anyway, here’s a couple of tips for releasing and embracing your social media feeds:

  1. Think about what you actually want to see:  what do you want to be feeding your soul? If you do this right at the beginning, it will make choosing who to release and who to keep around much easier.
    • My Twitter feed had ended up full of cynical political commentary which was dragging me down. Cynical is one thing I really don’t need encouragement for – I can do it quite well by myself! So, I’ve deliberately chosen to follow people whose tweets encourage me and make me smile (especially if they feature cat pics).
  2. It is okay to release people from your feeds. Chances are they’ll never know…
    • I find Twitter is less emotionally charged than Facebook for this – but I have discovered you can unfollow individual Facebook friends without having to take that fraught step of unfriending. This takes them out of your newsfeed, but leaves the friendship in place. Pinterest is dead easy – just unfollow boards you don’t enjoy any more.
  3. Build a feed that feeds you
    • It really doesn’t take much effort to fill your feed with images and words that feed your soul. Just search for what you actually like and want to see (see #1) – and do remember it is okay to release and unfollow what no longer works for you.

We are allowed to grow and change, and we are allowed to take our social media with us as we do!

How do you manage your social media? Do you have any tips for de-cluttering this part of life? Please share :)

Releasing the inner clutter

As I work through my physical clutter, I’m also working through my inner emotional and mental clutter – much of which goes back to childhood memories.

When I was growing up, the phrase “waste not, want not” was a familiar family refrain. We had enough, but not lots, and my parents were careful stewards of the family resources.

I know that phrase is meant to be a simple reminder for good stewardship, but for some reason it’s never sat quite comfortably with me. Despite my efforts over the years to be a ‘good steward’, my inner rebel got all too good at wasting and wanting plenty!

It is hard to overcome that ingrained inner voice – but I’m working on it. And I’ve found a new phrase that helps me move through my guilt at past unwise decisions:

release or embrace

This simple phrase works as both a statement and a question. It makes me acknowledge that there really are only two options for the things in my life: if I don’t want to embrace them, then I need to release them. And if I don’t want to release them, I need to be willing to embrace them. There is no space for half-heartedness, nor wriggle space to cop-out of the hard stuff.

I’m only beginning this part of my journey, but I am already feeling the power of these words.

I know I’m in for some big changes ahead, as there’s plenty in my life I no longer want to embrace. But there’s also plenty that I want to embrace and cherish more and more strongly.

So here’s a quick sampling of some of the things I’m ready to release or embrace:


  • My true self
  • Hanging with my peeps (both family and friends)
  • Creating a vibrant, friendly home and garden
  • Dancing with my tribe
  • Writing
  • ‘Yarning’


  • Stuff I haven’t really used for twenty years!
  • Old habits that don’t support my current life and loves
  • Books that belong to former selves (newsflash: I’m not a 20-year-old history student any more!)
  • Social media feeds that drag me down (more on this soon)

How about you?

What can you release from your life?

And what are you ready to embrace wholeheartedly?


Some ideas for your weekend

If you need a break from working on #25, here’s some other ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

My thanks to the fabulous Rachel Brice for sharing this on Facebook...:

Do you choose fear or joy?

Today I have a deceptively simple question for you:

Are you holding onto your stuff from fear, guilt and/or grief

or from love and joy?

I’ve asked this of myself, and found the answers to be incredibly powerful and healing. I hope it works the same for you.

I know what I want my answer to be!

Now to clear the fear and guilt-ridden stuff out of the house…