How are You?
Launching right in…
I was born into a Family who promoted "Good" and disapproved of "Bad". Conformists were "In" and Rule Breakers were "Out". I imagine you thinking; "sounds like a nice, decent Family to me…" I also imagine this sounds rather like your family too?
They wanted you to grow up 'Nicely', with good manners, know when to say Please and Thank You. You were taught how to say: "Lovely to see you, how are you?" expecting the other to politely reply as we would expect with how fine they were. All accompanied by big, bright, (usually false) smiles.
All very Nice… Everyone beautifully Conditioned, behaving as one 'should' in the world. Perfect! Everyone doing and saying what they had been programmed to do, and say, for Centuries.
So What's The Problem? I was loved, warm, clothed, fed. Had my hair plaited every morning without complaint. I attended school, had friends, made art, enjoyed writing stories, read hundreds of books, was passionate about horses, loved the popular musicians of that era, got a weekend job at the Stables. I was quiet, well behaved, polite, well mannered. Anyone looking in would think: 'what a perfect family'.
So Here's a question... If everything was Wonderfully Perfect, why was I so anxious and stressed? Why did I blush purply-pink if anyone looked at me or spoke to me? Why was I a People Pleaser, and so Accommodating, contorting my self in to all shapes to help everyone, even the most rude?
I always wore a very bright, smile that was actually painted on my wobbly-anxious pair of lips, whilst trying to do everything on 'The List'. A trained eye could easily see my nervously quivering smile whilst I did my best to behave as perfectly as I had been trained to. Always. 24/7 The Pressure...!
You know The List:
Stand Up Straight,
Speak When Spoken To,
Use your Manners ('even when I'm being bullied by Carina?' I'd enquire. Answer: 'don't be So Stupid!')
and Smile! Nobody wants to see a grumpy face
Don't Say 'this', ...or 'that' ....and don't tell anyone about 'Auntie so and so'.
In fact, don't say anything, to anyone, EVER!! Ok? Are you listening?!?!
"Don't answer back!"
How complicated could this list be? Surely it was very simple?
No! It was not simple at all. For example; 'speak when spoken to' sometimes clashed with 'don't say this, that or the other and don't tell anyone this, that or the other, EVER...'
You've heard that conversation...
Parent Figure: "Why did you tell her THAT?!"
Me: "I was speaking when spoken to..."
Parent Figure: "You Know very well we don't talk about THAT! Now go to your room and have a very good think about what you've done!"
Me: "but, that's not fair...!"
Parent figure: "Don't answer back!!!"
I'd (secretly and silently) stomp off to my bedroom, closing the door very quietly because I knew I would have to stay in my room all evening without supper if I actually slammed it - which I desperately wanted to do!
How about the strategy where we pretend we just don't know anything at all? I didn't get away with that either... I recall being berated for "acting stupid" when I clearly knew the answer to the question I'd just been asked. Why didn't any of the big people realise I was so anxious I'd say the wrong thing?
All of the above means we spend much of our childhood in a state of Fear, being disapproved of/berated, and taking ourselves off to solitary confinement of our bedroom all because we were unable to think quickly and sort through the Do's and Don't Ever's! No wonder so many of us experience Anxiety, Depression, Stress and Pain throughout our Lives.What I offer - and why...
Learning the Art of Self Expression. Honest, truthful, factual, vulnerable Self Expression... it is so empowering, freeing, releasing!
My job is to help free myself and others up from our Childhood Conditioning and find ways to be true to ourselves.
I appreciate much of the world is invested in behaving as 'one should' or 'ought'. Should, Must and Ought will drive your Anxiety and Stress levels through the roof because they originate from the Authority figure/ Parent/ Inner Critic.
I was trained/conditioned exactly as mentioned above throughout my childhood. I did my best to get it all right and keep the big people happy. I somehow knew they wanted the best for me, and for themselves too of course - nobody wants to deal with a defiant child after all...
Throughout my training and career as a Therapist and Expressive Artist I have learned more and more about the importance of being true to oneself. Even if we can't say it aloud to the person involved, to find ways to be true, open and honest with ourselves is VITAL for our Health and Well Being.
This is why I do what I do. It is why I have created all of the Courses here on my website that I have.
My aim is to help you find ways to be TRUE and expressive, with or without words, because when we are honest, open, real and vulnerable, we are Healthier. We are mentally stronger.
Our stress and anxiety eases, our depression lifts. Our aches and pains loosen off. We feel calmer, happier, even joyful.
We can smile to ourselves as we let ourselves know exactly what we truly feel and think, inside our mind, on paper through words, colour, texture or collage or by speaking in wonderful therapeutic sessions with me.
It really doesn't matter How you do it. You could put on your favourite song that 'says' it all for you and dance like Ally McBeal or you can sing in the car, loudly, badly, off key... as long as you Express your Truth, out of yourself, I promise you, You Will Feel So Much Better than by inhibiting yourself.
We were raised to be Inhibited. We were taught to withhold and stay silent. We knew what was Approved of ...and Disapproved of. We aimed for Approval because Disapproval was painful. It meant rejection, often brought ridicule, it meant to be excluded and be seen as wrong, bad or different.
Approval however brings with it anxiety, stress, depression and worse still we raise our children in the same way. How long is all of this Conditioning to go on for?
I believe in Self Expression. Honest, vulnerable, opening up, at least to ourselves if not witnessed by others, which brings with it great health benefits, stress reduction and especially Joy. There is a huge body of research proving why Self Expression and Opening Up so good for us.
I've created all of my Courses to encourage you to Let Go of inhibition and become more self expressive.
You don't have to become naked in every way and be seen inside and out, but you can begin to let go and start to tentatively hear and see yourself safely, through my Courses.
I have a group where you can join in and share what you create and we can connect and check in with our Feelings and how life is going. All of you is welcome here.
You can participate in a number of FREE Gifts from my website. They truly are FREE, complete and whole. You don't have to go on and buy more. You can learn to let go and reduce your stress and anxiety and lift your mood and feel Joy!
I have just added another FREE Gift of a downloadable TREE that you can print off and colour in with pencils, pens or paint. It is up to you... it is called Print Trace Colour my Tree and here is the link if you would like to participate along with my other FREE Gifts
Other free gifts: Letting Go, Wildflowers, Intuitive Neon Moon, Dear Emotional You
They are all about letting go and freeing yourself up from all the conditioning and constraints of your childhood and learning how Self Expression leads to Joy.
Releasing ourselves from these shackles is So Empowering and Freeing. It filled me with Joy when I began to make those first tentative steps towards speaking my truth and taking care of my self.
What do you have to lose? Truthfully!!
What do you have to Gain? Freedom, Joy, Inner Peace, Reduced Stress & Anxiety, Lifted Mood... greater Health...
Come on in... I am very gentle, loving, warm and empathic... and you are Very Welcome!
take good care of you