How to be assertive, without trying.

When we pursue what matters to us we become a more powerful version of ourselves.

Assertiveness is a powerful feeling, the confidence to pursue our personal desires and to direct our personal resources towards the attainment of our aspirations.

Too often we let judgements get in the way of our own power to assert, not wanting to be seen as ‘pushy’ or ‘arrogant’ we drop back, taking up the cause for another person’s dream, deeming that to be more important than our own.

Here’s the thing though, when we put our own energy into something that matters to us, that energy becomes the thing that drives us, it’s like a self filling fuel tank, pursuing our dreams becomes the driver to pursue our dreams.  Obstacles become the very platforms we climb up on to see further into the future.  The challenges we face, and overcome, build our resilience, testing our strength.  When we pursue what matters to us we become a more powerful version of ourselves.

There is a powerhouse within you responsible for continual growth, a part that constantly refreshes and redefines who we are, in the light of our own personal experiences.  That is the energy of the liver.

The liver is the only organ that can regenerate itself, you could donate some of your liver to another person and you’d both have a fully functioning liver.  And fully functioning is a colossal job, at any given time 10% of your blood is in your liver, filtering 1.4 litres of blood every minute.Untitled design (4)

The ultimate multi-tasker, the liver performs over 500 functions, simultaneously.  Helping blood clot, breaking down alcohol, chemicals, and other debris, making bile to break down fats and making and storing glucose for a quick burst of energy, on demand, it’s your own in-house laboratory, watching, identifying, removing, creating, storing, excreting and fueling everything you do, or want to do.

When we hook into the energy of this internal powerhouse we mainline right into our own confidence, ability and creativity.  No room for doubt or timidity, we are fuelled by the thrusting energy of personal renewal and regeneration, able to take the risk required to achieve the outcomes we value.

Consider the flower bulb beneath the soil.  The heat of the sun warms the earth and roots sprout, the bulb is doing 500 tasks simultaneously then, all at once, it thrusts up through the soil ‘here I am ready or not’; pushing through the barriers, making a decisive entrance into the daylight – that’s liver energy in action.

No compromise, no doubt, just confident assertiveness, in action.

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

So, what are you waiting for?

It’s time to claim your space, to assert yourself and achieve your aspirations.

If you’re struggling to hook into your internal powerhouse to motivate and fuel your own aspirations contact me to find out how I can help.

 

It’s never too late to re-hydrate

Your body is approximately 70% water, we are the most amazing pieces of organic engineering, creating power, strength, resilience and sustainability out of water.

Your brain and heart are approximately 73% water and your lungs are about 83% water.

If your car or your mobile phone ran on water you’d make sure they were fully recharged every day, to ensure you have all the power and functionality you need,  yet we still find it difficult to drink enough water to stay hydrated and function well.

it's never too late to rehydrate

Water is fundamental to our survival, not liquid, just water.

As soon as you add anything to water it becomes a food, then it must pass thorough the whole of your digestive system before the water can be extracted.

Think of it like legos.   A cup of coffee is constructed from some water bricks, some coffee bricks, some milk bricks and some sugar bricks all bonded together.  The blocks can be broken apart again but that department is in your small intestine.  So all the tissues that make up the oesophagus, stomach and duodenum don’t get any direct hydration from the liquid you drink, they have to wait a few hours and hope they get some from the water that is absorbed through the lining of the small intestine, and into the blood stream.  They have to join the queue only, now, they are at the other end.

Your hydration is important to us, you are held in a queue and may be answered ... eventually

Meanwhile your body is performing at much less than optimum, because everything that your body does uses water.  There is not one single bodily function that does not rely on hydration.

Think about that for a moment.  Every thought, action and breath.  Literally every thing your body does relies on water.

Signs of dehydration include

Fatigue, weight gain, reduced mobility, aches and pains, headaches, inability to concentrate, fuzzy head (like a hangover), irritability, dry skin, chapped lips,  wrinkles, flaky skin, halitosis, poor urination, urinary tract infections, constipation, acid reflux, indigestion, changes in blood pressure, nausea, dizziness, increased resting heart rate, poor memory, slower response times, reduced dexterity, depression, anxiety, tension, mood swings, confusion…… and the list goes on.

Understanding the bodies need for water and the impact that can have on our system it’s time to get real.

How much clear, pure water do you drink, every day, and how much do you need?

Using a baseline of average adult (I know you’re not average, I know you’re amazing) but let’s use average as a starting point.
The average adult needs about 4 pints of water a day.
This adult is having a fairly decent time of things, no stress, no caffeine, no bugs to fight off, sleeping and eating well and taking moderate exercise.

So if you have stress, stimulants, illness or take more exercise you will need more water to keep you hydrated.  How much is difficult to say but there are rules of thumb that we can use to help

  • For every cup of coffee drink twice as much water again – for 250 ml coffee drink 500 ml extra water
  • In times of stress drink more water, stress is very dehydrating.  Drinking more water reduces the anxieties around stress and also helps the body recover more quickly from the effects.
  • Working out – drink more water.  Yes, you’re sweating but did you know that water is responsible for the elasticity in muscles?  If you’re really interested in building resilience into your workout – drink more water.
  • Feeling ill, recovering from a bug or laid up with something – drink more water.  If the bug creates mucus, your body is using water to make that.  If your body is fighting something off, your immune system uses water to make and distribute the anti-bodies to the internal battlefield, and to clear away the debris to keep your system clear.

As you run through the calculations you may begin to wonder how you’re going to have time to drink all that water,  here’s the pay-off.

The better hydrated you are the better your system functions.

  • Stress reduces so extra water intake can too, drinking more water means you are naturally drinking less coffee because there are only so many hours in a day, right?
  • This reduces stress (again) so you will need less water.
  • Your sleep improves so, yes, you guessed it, you’re less stressed and so you need less water.
  • Your immune system functions better so you get less bugs so you need less water to be well hydrated.
  • You lose weight so your body requires less water to move you about.

In a fairly short period of time you reach that sweet spot where 4 pints of water a day is enough to keep you hydrated and you are more responsive to your bodies need for extra water as/when required.

It’d never too late to rehydrate and experience the benefits that decent hydration has on your physical, emotional and biochemical systems.

So, what are your waiting for?

Hydrate, sleep well, live better

Let’s talk about lymph

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When you’re feeling tired, rough, sick or even hungover, hydration alone may not quite cut it.

Here’s why.

When our bodies fight against anything, stress, fatigue, bugs, alcohol or any of the other stuff we chuck at them, they create toxins. Toxins are the waste materials from the fight, the shell casings if you like.

These toxins are mobilised out of the body via the lymphatic system, passing into
the blood stream and leaving the body through urination, perspiration and exhalation.

The lymphatic system relies on you moving about, to move it about.

Now, here’s the thing. The lymphatic system is pumped by movement.

Unlike the heart and lungs, which have their own integral pumping stations, the lymphatic system relies on you moving about, to move it about.

So, when you’re feeling sluggish, tired, sick or hungover, do yourself a favour, get up (if you can) take a full body stretch, fling your arms around, do some marching on the spot. If you can, wrap up and take a walk outside.

Keep drinking the water too.

Your body will thank you.

How many men does it take to dig a hole?

I was reminded of a profound lesson again recently.

I was discussing the impact of perspective with a group of my colleagues, it is the topic of many philosophical debates, that’s for certain.

Each person has a completely individual perspective, colouring their view of the world and making the same world appear totally different to anyone else’s.  Our perspective pre-programs us to select certain information from every situation,   information that reinforces our own personal world.  When we find ourselves in situations that are wholly contrary to our own perspective it creates some uncomfortable ‘culture shocks’, these can have a dramatic impact.

What we look for is what we see, even if what we look for isn’t even there.
This is known as a self fulfilling prophecy.
Try it yourself with this simple exercise:

Go to your sock drawer and say ‘I can’t find my favourite socks’ – Do you see them? Now go back to your sock drawer and say ‘I’m just finding my favourite socks’ – Do you see them now?

In my work and personal life I have witnessed people who are, seemingly surrounded by love, friendship and warmth, experience such profound ‘culture shocks’ that they are lead to question everything about the situation, unable to perceive a space where this happens.  It always saddens me when this happens because I realise anew, each time I see it, that love is not the universal currency I might think it is, sometimes I demonstrate love or friendship to people and they are suspicious, questioning what they are feeling because they do not recognise it.

In my long and varied career I have worked in situations where £1 can mean the world to one person and has no value at all to another, it all depends on perspective and I try to keep myself level by recalling this lovely quote ‘To the world you may be one person but, to one person, you are the world”

Perspective informs our world view, of course, so when we decide to broaden our perspective that can feel extremely uncomfortable.  We may start to witness behaviours in ourselves that do not gel with a broader world, or we may experience perspectives that we find difficult to accept.  This is where we can learn to accept other perspectives, we don’t have to agree with them, we can choose to acknowledge them as part of life’s rich tapestry and move on.

We each have the opportunity to create the reality we experience and that is a courageous choice, it can mean freeing ourselves of all the emotional baggage and pain we carry around with us.  It can mean looking at life and seeing what is, rather than what we expect to be.

When I embarked on my own therapeutic journey I didn’t feel brave; anything but.  I felt exhausted and desperate.  My perspective of the world was: whenever I took a step forward I would be pushed 2 steps back. My perspective of me was that I was broken. In many ways I was.

When I reflect on that time in my life now I realise that while I may have been shattered on the outside, inside me a small light still burned,  I think of it as my inner pilot light, because, in the worst of dark times, it kept me going.

When I began my therapeutic journey I remember feeling very scared. What if I couldn’t get beyond this state of broken, what if I couldn’t mend, what if my experience of life was all there was?

Then I would focus on that little light inside myself and ask softly ‘and what if it’s not?’

when you change the things you look at, the thinkgs you look at changeplaceholder (1)

When we change the things we look at, the things we look at change.  I started to look at wellness rather than illness. I began to value and acknowledge the small changes that occurred for me. Slowly I started to focus on being whole and, funnily enough, rather quickly, that is what I became.

I was reminded of a childhood riddle my Father asked me once

Q. If it takes 2 men 4 hours to dig a hole, how long does it take 1 man to dig half a hole?

I remember thinking, OK, it takes 2 men 4 hours so it would take 1 man 8 hours so if the hole is half then it would take one man 4 hours – rushing off to tell my Dad, full of pride at my working out and he replied ‘You can’t dig half a hole, a hole is a hole, is a hole’.

Don’t let your perspective dig you into a hole, allow yourself to open up to to a future that contains all the things you have previously desired but decided are ‘not for you’.

The only person who can make that choice is you, once you’ve made it get in touch and discuss how I can help you in your transformation.

💙