What’s the rush?

On Friday I got up at 6am and yet still somehow only scraped myself with seconds to spare for my 8.45am meeting. A few things happened – I lost my Bourjois blusher, a real disaster. I saw the line up for Festival No. 6 on Instagram and noticed KATE TEMPEST is going to be there which distracted me. I then couldn’t find the nail clippers. Plus there was my hair. This week I had decided to go au natural. I imagine it’ll dry into light glossy bouncy curls.  Despite spending an imaginary lottery win of money on non frizzy miraculous promising products, I still wake up as if I have been through a spin dryer.

Then there are my two favourite four legged friends Lolly and Lula. Neither like the car and today they were coming to work.  Lolly decided to make herself the weight of a boulder and refused to get off the bed as I made my exit and Lula ran 3/4 mile up the road. I ended up shouting at them and they then gave me those puppy dog eyes then I nearly cried because I felt mean…. and it was only 7.15am!!!!!

So, my point is we’re all in a rush most of the time for various reasons.  As I drive through the next village at 20mph I notice in the mirror a large vehicle almost on top of my poor Fiat 500. I can’t see the number plate. The driver is clearly frustrated with me for sticking to the speed limit. There are various reasons why I stick to the speed limit – firstly when you live basically an hour from a major supermarket and H&M you really don’t want to be losing your licence, secondly there are always kids around this particular road, thirdly it’s busy because of a large factory near by, fourthly my cousin was knocked over in this village many years ago and that sticks with me.

So the man in the big four wheel drive continues to try to edge me along, to go faster.  As we leave the 20mph area and it increases to a whopping 30mph he overtakes me. Of course at the next set of traffic lights I catch him up.

I’m no angel in the car and have been known and probably will still get cross at times and forget my speed occasionally. After I lost Tes though I became a much calmer driver, I guess big events make you see the smaller things in life like getting to the next set of lights a few seconds before isn’t that important.

I keep trying to learn from what I see and as I saw this agitated angry man desperate for me to go faster it reinforced my want to rush less and experience more.

Happy *unrushed* Sunday!!

Dwys X

Yes, I can!

It’s strange how life can be full of little coincidences.

 I was thinking this week about something mum used to say.  I believe it comes about for those of us that perhaps ‘achieved’ a bit  later in life.  Like my mum, I left school with barely any exams passed (I could sew a great skirt and jacket though!!) and later on went back to do A-levels, a degree etc.  There’s something about doing things that way around that can leave you feeling like…..a bit of a fraud.

 

Mum said to me when she was in one job that she thought one day she’d be ‘found out’.  What do you mean?  I said!  Well – that they might find out that I actually can’t do my job, she said.  I found this really bizarre.  Mum was amazing at her job. Brilliant in fact.  Yet she doubted herself.

 

Then weirdly this week I was listening to the radio and they played a theme tune, I tried hard to remember it, I knew it was something to do with animals! They confirmed it was Peter Davidson from All Creatures Great & Small!! Bizarrely as he was talking about his life (somehow I’d zoned into radio 2 this day!!) he was saying as an actor he always thought he’d be ‘found out’.  Despite being an actor for 40 years he was still waiting to be ‘found out’……That he wasn’t good enough.

 

I wondered whether perhaps a lot of us feel like that?  And why?

 

I always try to learn from those around me and I’ve tried hard not to feel like a fraud and have confidence in my work but there’s one or two areas that I do this.  Lately I’ve noticed that I’m always putting myself down about my running!  Even now I want to type… I’m not a good runner. 

I wouldn’t run with anyone for years because I thought I’d be too rubbish.  Consequently because I didn’t like running on my own I didn’t run for years.  Even now I’ll ask if anyone wants to come running with me but I’ll always say ‘I’m very slow so no need to wait for me’.  Or I’ll tell them I’m a bit old for running really or that I’m hopeless because I don’t run as much as I should or that I don’t run very far etc etc etc!!!  At the Llyn Alwen race a couple of weeks ago I was busily muttering to myself about all of this and I suddenly said – why do I keep putting myself down about this?!!  A woman shouted at me from behind and told me off – you’re here she said.  You’re doing it, you’re out of bed and you’re here.  That’s nothing to put yourself down about, she said.

 

And she’s right!

 

So from now on I’ll be making a conscious effort to stop telling myself and everyone else that I’m not that good at something.  It’s hard because being Welsh and being British we’re so used to being a little self damaging aren’t we! I’m a bit rubbish at that, I’m not good at this….. I’m not sure I’m going to start shouting how good I am at everything but I might just tell myself that I’m not doing a bad job… hang on let me try that again….. that I’m doing a good job in getting my trainers on in the first place, that my body isn’t too bad (argh done it again) – that my body is doing a great job as I’m here fit and healthy and basically….. I need  to be a lot less self critical!

 Do you put yourself down? 

Perhaps it’s about time you stopped!

Have confidence in the fabulous person you are!!

Happy happy Sunday everyone X 


The best things in life are….

free….. as the saying goes and there’s another…..money can’t buy you happiness.

I read an interview with an elderly woman the other day about how she had led a positive and happy life, she said it was important to remember the things that make us happy don’t generally cost money.

Like everyone else – money does indeed buy me happiness when the H&M catalogue has just landed through my door and I see those red shoes that I NEED!!!!  However…. it got me thinking about what we can do for free that makes us feel good about ourselves.

This is what I came up with this week as I took notice of those things that happened to me that make me feel happy and healthy but cost nothing….

Drinking water, lots of it

Saying hello and thank you

Walking miles in the mountains

Hugs

Picking blackberries

Running with friends at dusk

Lying down and watching the clouds

Telling the people you love that you …. love them

Kisses (with mutually agreed participants of course!)

Spending proper time with friends/family (putting your phone down!)

Getting up close to animals – dogs/cows/hedgehogs whatever….

Meditating.. when I remember to do this even for a few minutes a day I feel much less stressed

Looking.  Really looking at that beautiful view

Letting your mind wander  (harder than it sounds!)

Paddling in rivers on hot sticky days

Have you got any more?

You may think I’m over egging it but so many of us are skint and living to, or beyond our means….we think if we could only have that we’d be happy……..but there really is so much out there already, for free, making today a better today.

It comes from within and the only cost is a little imagination.

Happy Sunday everyone

X lots of love X

Dwys x 

 

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Are you OK? 

5 minutes from my week.

We know each other but not that well.  We can never meet for just five minutes. There’s always too much to say. I’ve had a niggle about you for a while although our contact has only been through email and one meeting,  something was missing.  No light in your eyes.  A smile that wasn’t true. I’d ask if everything was alright and you quickly reply yes, referring to how work is busy and with that deflection put an end to my concern. 

We met again this week by chance. As usual you were scurrying from one place to another.  We chat with your smile firmly in place. You laugh at the right time and nod in the required places. But you’re not here.

I know by now without doubt that something wasn’t ok. That you were drowning in worry. That you were only just hanging on to your act. 

I gently put my hand on your arm. I look straight into your troubled, tired eyes. 

Are you OK?

You’re about to lie. 

Are you really ok?

I ask again.

Tears balance on the tips of your lids. You shake your head ever so softly. You walk away.

I follow feeling a little guilty.  I hadn’t wanted to upset you. You stop and we hug. You tell me briefly what’s actually going on behind your forced smiles. With that we arrange a social meet up and you text later to thank me for seeing through your performance.  For asking if you were ok. Really.

It can be difficult to be direct.  It’s a risk. What is there to lose? To be told another lie or to mind your own business. To gain you can be an outlet to someone in need, to give a voice to pain, to listen. To give time. To provide hope.  

They’re only 3 words but they could change someone’s day.

Happy Sunday everyone x x x

PS  apologies for lateness of blog I’ve just moved and am currently hanging around a house with WiFi trying to send it!! 

Justifying yourself?

Hi it’s just me. I’m just writing my blog.

I’m on a mission.

To remove the word just from my vocabulary.  Read that first sentence again. I sound apologetic and a bit pathetic.  This time I’ll write the sentence again, without the offending word…..Hi it’s me, I’m writing my blog!

So different!!

Along with eliminating the word sorry  (unless it’s actually warranted of course), this has been quite a feat. 

I stopped saying sorry, for purely existing, about 10 years ago.  You’ll notice now how many times you say sorry.  For absolutely no reason, for example,  I used to say it when people knocked into me in the street! Sorry (that you weren’t looking where you were going!).

I was always saying sorry.  I’d walk in a room … Sorry, do you have a pen? Sorry, can I use the phone? Sorry, can you pass me the pepper? Sorry, have you finished with that?

Sound familiar?

I’ve almost stopped doing it. Now I  notice how often so many others are apologising. All the time.

Just has been a bit more of a challenge.  During my spell checking of work emails I also now have to go back and remove the words just. 

Generally and surprisingly  there are about four apologetic ‘just’ words in every email!! Shocking.  I was writing a very serious email the other day and when I reviewed it before sending I found…. Hello, I just wanted to…. I just feel…..I just thought …..argh!! Take the word just out and I’m appearing stronger and more confident.

I’m not sure where this apologetic nonsense began. I notice it far far more in women which is probably no surprise.  Most of us have been apologising since we (just) left the womb.

So. In an aim to take small steps in feeling more confident, assured and more importantly less apologetic for simply breathing, maybe try it.  It honestly make you feel more positive and less… well…. just sorry!

Stop apologising for being the brilliant person you are!

Happy Sunday everyone xx

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Ps. Upon reviewing this blog I had to delete the word just two times!!

Living the dream?

I’m writing this on Friday at 12.21. I have to write while I’m waiting.   I’m waiting to go to Trystans funeral at 1pm. I woke up thinking about it and inevitably about Tes. My mind wanders and worries about everything I possibly can and then I got up.

I open the dark brown curtains of my bedroom. I’m surprised by all the mist hiding the stone bridge and the tops of the cottages. It’s going to be a beautiful day I thought to myself. Of course it is.

I wanted to find a quote for some reason. To sum up these feelings inside. The feeling of love, life and loss. Also the feelings of hope.

There has to be hope.

I finally come across one.

Live your dream, don’t dream your life.

I thought it encapsulated what I knew of Trystans very well. He seemed to be living the life he had dreamed of.

I then left the house early and walked in what had now turned into beautiful sunshine. Lolly took our usual turn to the left as we got to the top of the hill but today I carried on. I wanted to be somewhere new. I wanted to feel.  To see.  To hear. New things.  I think I also wanted my mind filled with the enormous quiet empty peaceful space. There was no sound bar the quiet rumbling of a tractor in the distance. I stop to gaze at the beautiful view of the rural emerald countryside.  It’s magnificent.

As I keep walking I thought about the quote and gave myself a bit of a talking to. Are you living your dreams Dwysan? I asked myself! No. Not all of them. And with that I made a few decisions in my head. Some big. Some small. I’ll keep you posted!

I must leave now and say goodbye to a friend. A young man who lived his life.

Let’s all live our life.

Now.

X

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The stranger at the park

For this blog I just wanted to share with you 15 minutes from my week.

**

I left work hurriedly at lunch time on Tuesday at 12.30pm wanting to make the most of the Spring day, the sun was making an infrequent appearance and it wasn’t raining. High fives!

Keeping warm in a short black winter jacket and stripey woolen hat my skin glowed from the mix of heat from the sunhine and the chilly breeze. I walk along the familiar leafy river bank, me and my scruffy dog.  We took a different route and made a detour lifting ourselves over rough fallen branches making our way to the edge of the river.  Scruffy enjoyed sniffing around the new place and I watched the ducks being carried softly upstream.

I heard you talking and looked around.  I smiled and you smiled back, politely.  Sometimes there is something about someone that is so absolutely warm. It’s indescribable but it was there in that second. You say something again and I look again at you rather puzzled, wondering why you are talking to yourself.  Then I notice you too have a four-legged friend.

Of course as all dog owners do we immediately exchange stories about the breed of our pets and the age of our furry friends.  They both run off together bounding through the newly cut grass like old buddies and we are left with what could’ve been an awkward moment.  We seem to be heading towards the same circular route.  I slowed down a little so you had time to walk ahead in case you didn’t want to talk or walk with me. I was surprised as you waited.

Having both independently decided we’d walk together we chatted easily. The walk lasted about 15 minutes. For some unknown reason we discussed things that sometimes I find difficult to talk to anyone about.

I talked to you about getting my dog at a difficult time and that led me to talk briefly about Tes.  You took in a sharp breath as I told you what happened, however you didn’t falter at all.  You were fantastically honest and also remarkably supportive.  You then told me some very painful aspects of your own life that you were struggling with and your anxieties for the future.  I listened and tried to offer you some helpful words.  You smile and we both agree that although life throws fireworks we can try to dodge the sparks and enjoy the abundant flashes of brightness when they come.

We both walked on and discussed happier times.  You about your little girl, your partner and upcoming holiday, me about my impending time off work.

We kept walking and made our way back over the green heavy iron bridge and as we came to the crossroads in the path you made a right and I kept on going.  Bye, you said, hope to see you again.  Our dogs were not very happy to say goodbye and we giggled as they kissed and played, eventually with the persuasion of some treats they parted.  You waved.  I waved.

We both went back to work.

I walked back with a smile on my face and I felt that you did too.

**
I’m not suggesting that everyone should run up and start chatting to random strangers (be safe!). However in times where we’re ‘too busy’ and strangers become people to be wary of, this brief encounter was a reminder that kindness and openess can bring brightness and rewards in a world that increasingly promotes fear rather than friendliness. Smile, say hello. It could change your day too x

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