The stories we tell...

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I’ve spent the afternoon trying but failing to be effective. I’ve been trying to write a blog post, I’ve flitted from subject to subject trying to find inspiration and each time I’ve come up dry. I’ve written and deleted about 5 different paragraphs. Topics from body confidence, mum guilt, and expectations of ourselves have all come and gone from my brain to my fingers only to be erased. I’ve been for a walk to try and find inspiration, I've spoken a blog into my phone only to listen back to it on my return and decided it wasn't right. But each time I’ve not found it. I’ve been left still looking.

The result? In my frustration I started to tell myself a story. That I had not been effective today. That I hadn’t got anything done in my child free time. The panic started to rise. I’m busy tomorrow and the next day, when will I be child free again to write a post? It could be days. What a waste of those oh so holy of things, a day to myself.

I paused, took a breath and made a cup of tea. I chose some better thoughts. Not something that previously I would have even known I could do. And when I sat with my brain, when I observed my thoughts without being so bloody judgemental, I could see that today I got up with my kids early and gave my husband a “lie in” (until 6.30am, but in our world that counts!), I finished filming an online course I’ve been working on for months, I did a Skype call with my coach, I ate lunch, I replied to some messages I’ve been putting off and I did a live video in my group. I had got loads done!

Until I took that moment, until I was able to look at my thoughts more objectively I was focusing on the one thing that I hadn’t quite managed to do today. Letting that inform not only how my day had gone but how I see my achievements. I was choosing to let the one thing I struggled with define my entire day. So instead I’m writing this, celebrating what I DID do.

I'm pretty sure any of those 5 attempts could have been 'the one'. But my brain was not in the right space, my thoughts were stuck on "you can't do this, there's not enough time before the boys get home, you are no good at blogging, stick to live videos - they are so much easier". My thoughts were stuck in a rut and I needed some quiet for it all to slot into place.

And do you know what? Once I did that, once I eased up on myself, quieted my thoughts and appreciated what I had achieved today - this post came flooding out without any effort at all. This right here. A mini blog post of sorts can now be ticked off today’s to do list. It feels like a bit of a miracle!

Ray Dodd