Kiss a cow!

What? Why?

Well, why not?  They are cute and look at those gorgeous eyes they look at you with!

What a lovely stress free life they live, (if they are looked after properly) walking around a field in beautiful countryside, munching on grass, “ruminating”!

Trishanne bullock with plastic cow in railway carriage

We can’t do that all day obviously, but perhaps we can take a leaf out their book (or a blade from their lawn) and take time out to ruminate sometimes.  Sit in a field, by the river, in a park, under a tree or just in your garden or on your balcony. Sit, take time to be in this present moment, be mindful of yourself, how and what you feel, what you hear.  Don’t think about what you have to do when you get to work or get home, what you have to do tomorrow or try to plan the future.  Just take those few minutes to live in the now.  After all, this is the only moment we can actually live in, by the time tomorrow comes, it’s today!

Take care of yourself

Hugs

Trish

How to cope in a difficult world.

How to cope in a difficult world.

Sometimes I love to watch children play, totally immersed in the moment enjoying themselves, fearing nothing, no inhibitions.

When we are children, the world is exciting, full of wondrous things.  We experiment and learn, not afraid of consequences or fearing what we may lose, we jump straight in!  If it doesn’t work out, we try again, fall down, we get up and toddle on.  Even when we are young adults we are able to view life with anticipation and optimism.  We have so much time ahead of us (hopefully) that we can afford to take the time to travel lots of different paths until we find the one for us.  We can always turn back and take a different route, if that’s not right, we can do it again or find a more positive way forward on the path we have already taken.

What happened to the child in all of us?  What happened to our wonder in everything, our confidence,  the simple pleasures we took delight in?  We grew up!  We realise that life isn’t all rosy.  Sometimes if feels the world is out to get us!  We go through many trials and tribulations, failed relationships, stressful jobs with long hours, being taken advantage of by partners and employers.  Opportunities are fewer, our age (in our heads) gets in the way of leaping into new adventures.

As we get older we get more entrenched in what we have, what we have to lose and fear change in case it’s not for the better. So, we get trapped, we run along the bottom of the trench instead of climbing up the sides to a new place. We get knocked down and we find it harder to get back up.  Not now do we roll with the punches but we reel from them!

So, how do we get by in this difficult world?

Firstly, remember to keep a little of the child within you………….

me and my fella smaller

trish on the bucking bronco sheep

Trishanne bullock with plastic cow in railway carriage

Heavy metal Trishanne Bullock

Of course we are all individuals and cope with things in our own ways.  But, i firmly believe that there is one thing that makes the difference as to whether someone copes well or doesn’t and that is a…….. POSITIVE OUTLOOK!

Cat with pot of gold under the rainbow

According to Duke: there is always a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

In my experience things always sort themselves out somehow and feeling optimistic in the meantime is so liberating.  Always believe that things will be better, this time next week, next month,  next year.  Visualise yourself in a better situation, mentally live in that situation as much as you can.  I know it sounds far too simple but honestly, maintaining optimism helps you to work out what it is you need to do and where you need to go next to resolve your issues.  IT GIVES YOU THE ENERGY TO DO IT!   If you wallow in self pity you will feel low, fatigued.  You will have a huge struggle to climb out over the side of your rut, you won’t have the energy let alone the motivation to do it.

So, how to cope in this difficult world:

  • Be optimistic, “live” in your better visualised situation, just “know” things will workout even if you don’t know how at the moment.
  • Be like a child, jump in and do it.  Don’t be afraid it won’t work, how will you know if you don’t try, how many great things could you be at risk of missing out on?  If things are really bad now, what do you have to lose?
  • Don’t be afraid to experiment, you will learn valuable things.
  • Be excited by the changes you are experiencing, the curtain closes but there are loads of other stages that could put on a much better show.
  • Take a path, there are lots of forks in it if you want a change of direction along the way.

Go on, try it!

Hug

Trish

 

New Year, New Growth, New Life, New Me!

snowdrop growing among leaves

 

Almost two months into 2015 already and Christmas seems a long way behind us.

So, what to do with the next 10 months of this year? Is anything going to change, is this year going to be a year of moving onwards and upwards? Well I am certainly planning for it to be!

I’ve had enough of burning my eyes out in front of a PC screen, perching on my aching coccyx and suffering mouse induced RSI. I have no tolerance left for moaning and whinging people, no time for the minutiae of their shallow lives and the lack of awareness of everything that is really important in this world. Things are set to change!

Now, I know I have said this before, and, I have quit the office drudgery before. I had a few months of doing something quite different; however upon discovering that standing up all day in a shop developing plantar fasciitis in both feet was not the cure for an office career, I headed straight on back to the office!

I have to say that I did enjoy my return to the office, great people around me and the role was interesting, not least when I was launched into Acting Management! “What a great opportunity” I thought. Unfortunately my delight and new found zealousness for the role was to be short lived. Crap from customers I can deal with, crap from others within the company (aren’t we all on the same side?) I am not prepared to take. Along with many other “wrong” factors, throw in the fact that I haven’t received any extra pay for the five months of extra responsibility and the inevitable stress…… it’s time to stop allowing myself to be taken advantage of!

Anyway, I have done it; I have left my office job behind! Having deciding (again) to quit the office scene for good (till next time?) I have taken up a position that is completely different. Different from anything I have ever done, a challenge, learning new skills, interacting with a whole new sector of society. I have made up my mind to “put something back”, I have taken a role as a care assistant, looking after the elderly, assisting them to stay independent and in their own homes. I have had my initial training, and all good so far. The real learning starts when I’m out there doing the job so I have a long way to go yet. But, I am looking forward to getting stuck in!

One day when I’m old and grey (oh, I already am grey!!) I shall be making jewellery and drawing on a beach (hmm, would be nice) but for now caring has got to give job satisfaction, surely, it has to be rewarding, it is active (great for keeping fit and mobile) and at least I can go home knowing that I have done some good for someone.

Fingers crossed.

Hugs

Trish

Tomorrow, I am going to write the first new page

New year!

Well here we are, we have reached the end of another year and are teetering on the edge of a brand new one, preparing for the plunge headlong into it!

Will the new year be a good one, will it be one of opportunities, new ideas, plans goals, ambitions? Or, will it be one full of what we already know, what we already do, the same routines? If the this last year has been full of what we love, then the new year will be great if everything stays the same, anything more will be a fabulous bonus! What a great way to start the new year!

But, what if this year hasn’t been great, what can we do to change our lives this year?

I saw a great quote today:Tomorrow is the first blank page of a 365 page book - write a good one! This really caught my eye, what a great metaphor for starting a new day in a new year in a productive way!

This has been a strange Christmas for me. I love the festive season, the preparation for Christmas,it can be a magical time. However I have not felt the thrill of the anticipation with my usual almost childish delight. It’s harder each year to really feel the buzz but I always get there before the big ho ho! But this year I spent Christmas and Boxing Days feeling so low that all I wanted to do was sleep. I have not been motivated to do anything or even enjoy being at home. Thank goodness for my wonderful husband who has learnt to understand me. Thanks you to my beloved son, who although still struggling to find his true calling, imparts such unfettered sensible advice with youthful optimisim and generally infuses energy into his poor old mother!

So, I actually like my job, have a great working “family”. My small but brillliant team, my girls, are my friends as well as my team mates. However, for some time now I have been in conflict with myself. My commute is an easy, scenic 10 minutes drive from home to the office, I love the people I work with, the day’s go quickly so I guess my mind is stimulated, I don’t even mind the admin but…….. I detest the shallowness of what I do, who and what I deal with!

People in this world are dying of ebola, children are starving, wars are ravaging people’s homes and lives, children are being abused, so many of the elderly are lonely, there are too many without homes, living out on the streets trying desperately to stay alive this winter. I just can’t shake off the contempt I feel for those who have so much that they have lost any sense of real priorities, and I doubt they care. It gets harder to hide my disgust at the lack of understanding of what is really important in this world.

So, a new year is upon us, the timing is appropriate albeit not planned to be. Today, after battling with myself for far too long coming up with all the reasons why I shouldn’t and can’t things, I made a decision. I am going to do it, I am going to make a change, a big one (for me anyway). What I want to do is not impossible, ridiculous or impractical, it’s not even particularly amazing! So if I want to make it happen, I can. I just need to stop wasting my life with procrastination, “procastination is the thief of time!” I am putting my plans in place; I am going to take a day at a time and work each of those days towards my goal until I get there. Bite size chunks, one day at a time.

I’m burning my old book tonight, tomorrow, I am going to write my first new page…….

Hugs

Trish

 

Even if the coating is bitter, there is always a chocolate filling!

Life ain’t all sweetness or sugar coated rose petals!  It isn’t scrummilicious honey waffles and strawberry ice cream!

Wouldn’t it be great?  But, hey, come back down from that silver cloud, life, whilst it can be brilliant, has its downsides.

Modern life is full of pressures; everyday, juggling family and work commitments, enduring the long arduous commute to work, long hours spent earning the money to live on, the stress we feel as we strive to perform to the expected standards and the targets we are compelled to meet.

Do you ever feel like your life is one never ending series of targets?  Your target is to catch your train, get to the office on time, make the sales, get the paperwork pile done, please your boss, catch your train home……..one big circular dart board with a number you have to aim for!

Are we living, or just existing?

Unless we are lucky enough to be earning our money doing something we love, working and therefore living our passions, it can be very hard to get your “living” in.

I don’t know the definitive answer, I don’t suppose there is one as we all have to do things our own way.  However, we can make what we have, what we do and what we like, work better for us.

Hate the job?  Change it, even if you can’t love it, do one you feel content in.  Work with great people, a good team can really make the difference between being happy or miserable.

Take regular time off, don’t work all year saving up all your holidays for one holiday a year even if it is a long one.  You’ll spend most of it just coming down from the rest of the year!  Take a long weekend at regular intervals, it will keep you refreshed throughout the year and give you more to look forward to.  Go places, see things, PARTY!

Have a passion.  Mine is art, craft and photography.  Whatever you like and want to do, make time to immerse yourself into it totally.

Be nice to others. A smile can make someone’s day.  Be proud to be the one who made it for them.  It’s a buzz!

Laugh at yourself.  Admit you did something embarrassing.  Laughing about it makes you feel better when the earth remains firmly underneath your feet instead of swallowing you up.

If something upsets you, say so. Don’t fester, pressure cookers are old hat.

Work hard, but play and love equally hard!

So, just grimace and let your eyes water as you suck that bitter outer coating.  Soon it will dissolve and burst into that glorious explosion of sweetness!  If you let it……..

Hugs

Trish

I am a very lucky girl!

I am by nature, an eternal optimist. The glass is always half full, things will always work themselves out (don’t know how) but I just always know that they will! And….they always have. I firmly believe that taking an optimistic attitude a. helps you cope during the bad patch, and b. actually makes it far more likely that whatever the issue is, it will be resolved.

I haven’t had it easy during my last 50 years on this earth, there have been bad times, hard times, sad times, downright miserable times and a hell of lot of hard work! I am not, at my age where I’d like to be necessarily, well off, semi-retired, secure for my old age, you know, taking life a bit easier. But, there has also been so much fun, laughter, joy, love and support along the way that it makes the bad stuff pale into insignificance.

I hear a sad story on the news, realise how much some people in this world are suffering, innocent people, children, animals, when you hear or read about the war wracked corners of this planet and wonder why, what is it all for in the end, how many will suffer or die before the craziness comes to an end? With all this madness going on all around us, who am I to complain about my life?

I have a dreams which I would love to fulfil, a way of living. Not an exotic dream by any means, but I would be in seventh heaven to be an artist and crafter in a little gallery in North Norfolk near to the sea! Not an impossible dream but I can’t see how I can achieve this now.

But, I don’t want to spend my life unhappy because I am not where my dream takes me, I don’t want to spend my time with my head in the clouds dreaming my life away and fretting about “what ifs”. I am thankful for what I have now, my health, a good job with great colleagues, (and only a 10 minute drive away!) wonderful friends and family, a lovely home in a pretty village surrounded by incredible countryside, a fantastic husband, two gorgeous black moggies and enough money to pay the bills with some disposal income left to treat ourselves occasionally. What is there not to be happy about?

Of course there is always going to be stressful times, times when nothing seems to be right, wondering if this is all there is! Like everyone else, I will bemoan the fact that life is hard, life is not what I want it to be etc. I am only human after all. But, in the whole scheme of things……

I am a very lucky girl!

Hugs

Trish

How To Stop Procrastinating

Or…..How to get things done when you are a mixed up, frustrated scanner!

I have so many interests, so many projects on the go or that I want to start, I never know where to start, what to do first!

I get frustrated sometimes because my mind wants to be logical and ordered, I write lists galore, but in reality, it’s a fragmented, scanning, scatty, jumble of allsorts!

I’d really like to finish something.  For example, I want to bring my photo album up to date.  I’ve been putting together montages of various events/holidays/days out etc. so that I can fit all the photos into a ring binder.  It’s much better than filling page after page of photo albums with individual photos and running out of space for the albums.  I like to document my life events in print, I find it’s so much better organised that to have them languishing on a hard drive that never gets looked at.  I think I’m up to 2010!

However, I am starting to accept that there are some things that will always be an ongoing project, no logical end.  

What I have found works for me is writing down 3 things that i’d like to achieve over a weekend.  Then I write down another 2 things that I’d like to get done but only if I get the time, after I’ve done my first 3 things.  I have found that this way, I actually do the 3 things and I feel like I’ve been productive and have a sense of achievement and satisfaction.  If I get done 1 or more from the “if I have time” list well that’s a bonus but it doesn’t bother me if I don’t.  I’m starting to take my cat’s attitude, “whatever”.

Image

So, I guess what I’m trying to say is, don’t try to do everything at once then beat yourself up about it when it doesn’t get done.  You are far more likely to end up doing nothing because you spent your whole weekend procrastinating about it!  Make life a little easier for yourself.  And, by the way, writing this blog post this weekend was on my “if I have time” list, woohoo, I feel good!

Drop a ball!

Cappucino Conversations

I found this the other day, it kind of sums up how crazy this modern world seems to be.  It highlights the futility of living the way so many of us appear to these days.

Quote from Mike George, Spiritual Teacher and Motivational Speaker.

Have you ever overheard a “boy it’s tough out there” conversation?  The first person starts with something like, “I tell you, I have so much to do, the deadlines are horrendous, my desk is piled high and everyone wants something from me yesterday.  I’m so stressed out”.  The other person says “You’re stressed out, you should see what I have to do”!

The next few minutes are a litany of ‘stuff’ with each person struggling to prove that they are more stressed than their companion. 

How crazy can we get, what kind of world have we created/are we creating when we compete with each other to be more stressed?  What kind of world measures success by levels of stress?

I don’t know about you but does seem to be this way.  Everyone has too much to do and so little time to do it and the more stress some people have, the more important they feel.  Perhaps because they feel they are more productive or useful than others might be, that others rely on them, they can’t be done without.

Being productive is great, useful, fine.  It’s also ok to have others rely on you to a certain extent.  But, who wants to feel constantly stressed because of it?  It’s not healthy and it certainly doesn’t  make anyone more important than anyone else.

We have more technology, communications and knowledge that should be making our lives easier but all it seems to do is put more demands on us.  We are always contactable, we feel anxious if we don’t have our mobile phones with us or have access to our emails.  We bring our work home with us. At the same time we have to go to work, deal with our home life, take the kids to school, do the chores, cook the dinner etc. etc.

juggler

All those balls we have to juggle, keeping them in the air is difficult enough without trying to make time for ourselves.

Perhaps we need to drop a ball occasionally!

Hugs

Trish

New Year, Same Tea

Stuck in a rut?

Christmas was a whole month back, January is almost over already and everyone is back to normal leaving the festive revelries far behind.

Roadworks are once again generating rush hour queues, the motorways are one long train of cars, pushing forward, bumper to bumper, resembling the long since faded paper chains that adorned the festive halls.

Back to the office, the factory, the shop, just starting to get over that feeling of anti-climax. We’ll all just be pleased to get January over with, rotten cold and wet weather that has been making so many people’s lives a misery with all the flooding we have experienced this month.

But as we wish away the first month of our life in the new year, we must be aware that however this year turns out, it up to us. It’s an opportunity to think afresh, make decisions that we put off last year. There is nothing worse than inertia, stuck in that rut that keeps getting deeper as you plough your way back and forth in the same old furrow. No, it’s not easy, but instead of turning around and reversing your footsteps, being in danger of burying yourself as the mud from the side of that rut slides down on top of you, be resolute to walk through and out the end of your particular furrow.

This is what I plan to do this year, I put the tunnel in place at the end of my furrow last year, this year I fully intend to break through the other side and walk out! A little bit at a time, putting steps in place that will lead to the next step and so on. I just love having a list and crossing things off it!

Do it slowly, but do it surely. Don’t set yourself the impossible goal, make each small step your goal as you go. If you have a list, you might not even have to do everything in order, as long as you cross something off each week, or even month you are moving forward.

I’ll let you know how I get on, let me know how you do.

Hugs

Trish

Diminishing Christmas Spirit

Diminishing Christmas Spirit

I don’t know what is happening, what’s going on? I didn’t “feel” Christmas this year!

I just couldn’t get into the swing of it, I put up my tree, made my rustic fireplace look wonderfully Christmassy, bought the presents, wrapped and placed them under the tree, filled my husband’s Christmas sock and waited.

Christmas fireplace

I waited for it to come, that festive excitement as you start hearing those songs that get an airing every year, seeing the ads on the TV, looking in decorated shop windows and walking up the high street under the town’s christmas lights.

The feeling has year by year, been fading. But, this year it didn’t come at all, it felt like I was trying to climb over a big fence to get to it and couldn’t get half way up it let alone get over it!

If you think about it, it’s TWO days! There is so much preparation for these. High streets filled with people so you can’t walk in a straight line, queues snaking down the aisles in the supermarket, everyone gathering as if there is to be a retail shut down for the next month (a lot of shops are open again on Boxing Day!) People spending money they don’t have, getting totally stressed at the thought of spending a day with the family, so much anticipation and excitement! Then, BOOM, before you have a chance to really immerse yourself in the festivities, it’s over!

No, the feeling definitely seems to have faded into obscurity for me finally. I love Christmas, I’m the most Christmassy person I know! I desperately wanted to “feel” it, maybe that’s the problem, I’m too busy trying to feel it to enjoy it. However, the feeling of Christmas is important for my enjoyment of it. I miss it, I want it.

Despite the lack of that feeling, I have enjoyed my Christmas, a mostly quiet one with my darling husband and Boxing day with family.

It’s now New Year’s Day and the festive season is all but over. My tree and the decorations will come down tomorrow and I’ll be back at work on Friday. All back to normal.

I hope next year I might recapture that warm fuzzy glow of the Christmases of my childhood but in the meantime, I hope it will be a productive and prosperous 2014.

Hugs

Trish