Trust Yourself – You Always Know What Is Best For You

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I came across this picture on the blog, I Didn’t Have My Glasses On… and it struck me how true it is. And how even when faced with difficult, agonising choices, deep down, underneath all the chatter and weighing up of options that goes on in our minds, we intuitively know what is best for us. We just need to learn to trust that feeling more.

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Image: Trevor Burke

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Don’t Say Mean Things To Yourself

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After so many long, drawn out years of chronic illness and being cocooned at home, unable to work or to socialise, my absolute favourite thing about healing is that I can now go out into the big, wide world again. It is exhilarating, liberating, joy-bringing, yet also pretty scary at the same time.

Over the past couple of months, I’ve come to realise that it’s one thing feeling good about who you are, feeling centred, grounded and secure in your sense of self and not letting everyday life give you the wobbles when you’re on your own, safely tucked away in the quietness and comfort of your own home. But, it’s quite another thing when you are suddenly released back into the wild and interacting with real, life people again.

And the biggest revelation I’ve had during this wonderful time of transition – and believe me, it is wonderful, despite all the wobbly, scary parts – is that I am so incredibly hard on myself.

I beat myself up all the time for feeling anxious or awkward in social situations, for saying something stupid, for acting a certain way or for making mistakes, for having my very own Dirty Dancing, “I carried a watermelon” moments! – see video clip in comments section. (I absolutely love Hollie Holden’s post about this.)

I posted a picture on The Pollyanna Plan Facebook Page the other day which contained the words “don’t say mean things to yourself” and it really struck home, because I noticed that I spend a lot of the time saying very mean things to myself, feeling embarrassed and ashamed and criticising myself.

Logically, I know that this is not good in any way. That this will not help me to heal. That I need to “cut that sh*t out”! But in those moments where I’ve messed up, or when I’m feeling painfully self-conscious and wishing I had the ability to time travel and redo the whole thing again, I forgot everything I’ve ever learnt. I forget about loving myself, about feeling good enough and all that lovely spiritual stuff that I really thought I’d started to get a handle on and my harsh inner voice starts up telling me how useless and rubbish I am and what a crappy person I must be.

But today I realised something. And that something is that I would never in a million years talk to anyone else like I talk to myself. I wouldn’t even think any of that stuff about anyone else. It just wouldn’t enter my head. When friends or family come to me with their problems, I listen compassionately. I don’t judge. I offer kindness, support and most importantly, love. I tell them how great I think they are, because I genuinely see them as the beautiful, awesome people they truly are.

And it occurred to me that maybe I need to start seeing myself, talking to myself and treating myself in the exact same way. I think now is the time to dump the overly harsh, critical and downright mean voice inside my head. It’s been great knowing you and all that. Instead, I’m going to start up a relationship with an inner voice who is my best friend and supporter. Who speaks kindly and lovingly to me, who is always there for me and who loves me no matter how many times I mess up, or make mistakes or say something silly.

That’s what we all need really. Someone who is always on our side. Someone who believes in us more than we believe in ourselves and someone who would never ever, under any circumstances, say mean things to us.

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* If this post has helped you in anyway, I’d be grateful if you share it. Maybe someone else needs to hear this too*

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What Pollyanna Did Next

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Hello there my friends!

It’s been a while. In fact, it’s been more than a while.

I’ve taken a little break-ette from blogging over the past few months, as I wanted to focus all my energy and time on healing. Having lived with an autoimmune disease and chronic illness for so many years, and having had a very limited life for so long, I am now over-the-moon delighted, pleased, beaming from ear to ear, jumping for joy and doing my happy dance to be able to tell you that I am getting so much healthier and stronger. Really! You heard me right! :)

I have more energy, I am more resilient, I have been able to enjoy the summer for the first time in a very long time. I have been going to the beach, I even have a tan, which is a huge deal seeing as I’ve spent the majority of the past few summers in bed feeling feverish and very ill.

I’m getting out of the house regularly (!!!!), I’m making new friends, I’m re-connecting with old friends and I can now make plans and know that I’ll be able to stick to them – this is huge!

I’m walking my dogs daily, I’m seriously considering joining the gym, I’ve even thought about buying a bike so I can cycle places rather than drive. Oh and I’m driving places too, instead of having to be driven.

I’m thinking about going away on holiday, I’m planning on going to a restaurant for the first time in years (food intolerances and all) and I’m making plans for the future.

I’m feeling braver, I’m feeling more confident about being myself, I’m learning to be kinder to myself and I’m getting better and better at letting go and going with the flow.

There is still plenty of work to be done, things to heal and general improvement to be made, but I am unbelievably grateful to be very much getting there.

I labelled 2013 and the 365 days of The Pollyanna Plan – finding (and blogging about) a reason to feel glad, happy, joyful every single day for one whole year – as being the year that changed my life.

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Image source: findyourhappy.ca

And I’m so, so happy (did I mention that I’m happy?!) to be able to share with you that 2014 is the year that I have begun to really live life again.

So, if anyone out there is wondering if something as seemingly simple as gratitude and focusing on happy, positive feelings can make any difference to your life, you can take my word for it that it is magical, that it transforms everything for the better and that if I can do it, then so can you.

Much love to you all,

Nina xx

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Feeling Down, Lost Or Unsure? Ask For A Sign From The Universe

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I logged into Pinterest today and was a little bit stunned to see these words shining out at me from the top of the page.


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Sometimes when I’m feeling a bit down, lost or unsure, I ask the Universe to send me a sign – something very obvious, without any uncertain “I guess that could be a sign” feeling attached to it. I always know it when I see it and the Universe ALWAYS delivers. You’ve got to love that!  :)

So, I’m sharing my sign here (see picture above) with you today, in case it is your sign too. And if it’s not, but you feel like you need some direction, clarification or support in some way, then why not give it a go? Put it out there to the Universe, ask for a sign, be open to how it may appear, trust that it WILL appear at exactly the right time, then get on with your day. And believe me, you’ll be surprised and delighted by what shows up for you.

Much love to you all. 

500 Followers – THANK YOU ALL!!!!

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500 followers

 

This morning, The Pollyanna Plan blog reached 500 followers- yipppppeeeeee! Thank you so much to you all. It really means the world to me to have your support and encouragement. You are my reason to feel glad/happy/joyful today.  :)

Sending you all a big, virtual hug and an invite to my virtual 500 followers party. Hope you’ve got your happy dancing shoes on! ;)

Fireflies

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I have just read the most beautiful blog post. I had tears streaming down my face when I finished reading it, as it touched my heart and soul and in many ways I feel as if it’s been written for me.

The post is called Children Who Shine From Within and is by Rachel from the fantastic blog Hands Free Mama. (I urge you to go and read it…and then come back and finish reading this!)

It’s a post about butterflies and fireflies, only it’s a lot more than that. It’s a post about feeling like you don’t fit in. About feeling as if you’re different in some way, like you’re not the obvious choice, as if somehow you are invisible and people don’t really see you for who you are.

There are people who are life’s butterflies – those bold, bright, colourful, out-there people whose talents and personalities will always be recognised, noticed and admired.

And then there are the fireflies. Those whose light shines from within. Those whose gifts may not be as visible as the butterflies’, for they are more subtle and yet they have so much to offer to the world.

fireflies jar field via Pinterest and Oh Hello You Pretty Things Tumblr - cinemascope glow 1960s effect

Image source: worldcartoontoons.blogspot.com

Reading Rachel’s post today made me realise something. Something I’ve always known, but have tried so hard to kept hidden.

I’ve always felt different. All my life I have felt this way. At school I was badly bullied for years for being “ugly” and “nerdy” and generally for not being like everybody else. I’ve spent my whole life trying to fit in, trying to be someone I’m not and I now realise that I’ve been trying so hard to be a butterfly, when all along I am, and always will be, a firefly.

It’s taken me 34 years to recognise this, but now I know that it’s ok. In fact, it’s more than ok. And rather than striving to grow beautiful, colourful wings, I am giving myself permission to let my bright light shine.

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Recovering Perfectionist In Progress – Day “I Have No Idea” Of The Pollyanna Plan 2

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“I think perfectionism is based on the obsessive belief that if you run carefully enough, hitting each stepping-stone just right, you won’t have to die. The truth is that you will die anyway and that a lot of people who aren’t even looking at their feet are going to do a whole lot better than you, and have a lot more fun while they’re doing it.”
Anne Lamott

I have a confession to make and it pains me to say this…

…I have no idea which day I’m up to on my second year of The Pollyanna Plan!

This isn’t because I haven’t been finding my daily reasons to feel glad/happy/joyful. I really, honestly have – ask any of the members of The Pollyanna Plan 30 Day Challenge Group on Facebook. It’s just that I’ve been busily posting my reasons in the group and haven’t been keeping up with the journal I began writing when I started The Pollyanna Plan 2 on 22nd February 2014.

I feel bad about this – I really do – and to begin with, I was posting in the group and then dutifully writing up my posts in my journal each day. But then I’d forget for a few days and have to spend time trying to find all my posts again to copy them up, which quite honestly was time consuming and not all that much fun.

I’m guessing this sounds ridiculous to many of you, but I’m a recovering perfectionist and trying to make things perfect is what I do and have always done. I remember as a child, wanting to re-do my homework if my handwriting wasn’t perfect or if I’d made the tiniest of mistakes, and even to this day I get a tense, knotty feeling in my stomach if I don’t do something perfectly and give it my absolute best.

So, catching up and writing out my glad/happy/joyful reasons for the past two weeks in my journal has been looming over me and has been pretty high on my mental to do list.

But today I made the decision not to do it and to abandon my journal for now. I’m posting my happy, grateful reasons daily and more importantly I’m FEELING the FEELINGS of happiness, appreciation and gratitude. And perhaps, most significantly…wait, in fact, it’s my reason for today…

Day “I have no idea” of The Pollyanna Plan 2:

Today I am very happy and grateful that I am giving myself permission to not have to do everything perfectly.

And I tell you what, I actually feel a huge sense of relief. :)

recovering perfectionist

*The Pollyanna Plan 2 began on February 22nd 2014. I am writing down my reason to feel glad/happy/joyful every single day for the next 365 days and I’ll be sharing my favourite reasons here with you on my blog.* 

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