I’m sure, like me, you’ve watched a friend, colleague or family member make the same mistake in life, over and over again. ‘Why do they keep doing that? They must know the outcome will be the same? Can’t they see they’ve made exactly the same mistake before?’ It is so easy to advise others and yet SO hard to change our own behaviour. Why? Our brains are the most wonderful creation but they become creatures of habit!
Once I understood how my behaviour was damaging my life, I tried to change it. It wasn’t easy though. It can still be challenging but now, my joy at seeing others change their lives around is what keeps me striving to deliver my message.
This part of my journey began a year after returning to the UK. I had a misdiagnosed, ruptured, gangrenous appendix which turned into peritonitis. It was about to enter my bloodstream and I was approximately 12 hours from death when the doctors performed an emergency procedure to find out what was going on. I had been working silly hours and then took more work home with me. The stress of trying to impress a boss for whom nothing was ever quite good enough had resulted in me literally almost working myself to death.
Surviving was the easy part. Learning to change my beliefs and behaviour so as not to repeat the situation was far more difficult. I studied acupuncture, to learn about healing. I then studied NLP and how the mind works. However the most enlightening part was learning how our thoughts and emotions affect us physically and how to change them so we can amend our behaviour. These discoveries have been the most exciting because they have changed the course of my life and that of my clients.
Learning to be patient and compassionate towards myself has been one of the biggest challenges I’ve had to deal with and I recognise this in so many people who come to me for help and support. You may have seen the words below before. They are an inspiration to thousands of people around the world and they illustrate perfectly the process by which we can bring about permanent change in our lives. They remind me daily that we are all always doing the very best we can, and when we know better we do better.
These words were written by Portia Nelson. You can read more about Portia Nelson by clicking HERE: Portia Nelson (May 27, 1920 – March 6, 2001) was an American popular singer, songwriter, actress, and author. She was best known for her appearances in the most prestigious 1950s cabarets, where she sang an elegant repertoire in a soprano noted for its silvery tone, perfect diction, intimacy, and meticulous attention to words. In 1965 she portrayed the cantankerous Sister Berthe in the film version of The Sound of Music; she also had a minor role as Sarah in the musical Doctor Dolittle; on TV’s All My Children Nelson played the long-running role of nanny Mrs. Gurney. Her book of poetic musings, There’s a Hole in My Sidewalk: The Romance of Self-Discovery, became a mainstay of twelve-step programs.