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Reflections for 2023

18 months ago, back in June 2022, I hit the big 6-0. Oh yes, I did!!

Whoops, it’s that time of year again, folks: panto season! YAY! Sorry, I really can’t help myself at times!


We know age is just a number: I’m actually only 7 years young, rising 8 next June – all you have to do is add the two digits of how old you think you are, and then you get your true chronological age! So, even when we make it to 99 years young, we’re still only 18! WOW! How FAB is that?! It works for me!!

Having said all that, I can also say that the last two calendar years have proved to be the most testing, challenging and difficult of times that I’ve had to encounter in my life so far – and on occasion, it’s still proving to be tougher than I’d like. Being sucked into vortex after vortex, it felt as though this was now becoming the norm. As soon as I had picked myself up off the floor, I was back down again, having to face yet another setback.

I had always thought of myself as a strong person – just looking at my life experiences, there was enough evidence of my strength to sink a ship. At some unconscious level, however, during the spring of 2022, something was now starting to get in the way of my ability to bounce back as readily as I had always done before.

As a coach and psychotherapist, it can come across to clients that we are almost immune to life’s horrors – how far from the truth this is. It’s down to the attitude control we deploy during these times that lies at the heart of our professionalism. We can all be strong when times are good, but the true test of strength is how we handle life when faced with setbacks and traumas. This is what I believe reveals our authentic character. If we can be strong when the going gets tough, then (as the song goes) the tough get rough in order to come out the other side – scarred, battered and bruised, undoubtedly, but so much stronger for it!

Mental discipline and high spirits are the components of the rocket fuel required to maintain our strength. If, however, our minds and energy levels choose to go awol, as a result of the pressure cooker finally exploding for whatever reason, how on earth do we manage our lives now, never mind put a halt to the total derailment that potentially could follow?

Who you truly are as a person is best revealed by who you are during times of conflict and crisis – this I know, for sure. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger – as long as you have the capacity to reflect and learn from everything that is sent to you. If the universe lands something horrendous in your lap, as the benevolent universe it is, I know 100% that even if I don’t like or understand what or why this is happening, it has been sent to me because the universe knows I can handle it. Not always easy for us to see at the time – but that’s what makes us human – why we need to make mistakes in order to grow, why we need to be still and reflect regularly, and why crying, screaming and shouting at the universe are all absolutely allowed. Our almighty universe, with its infinite power running everything in perfect, divine order, is more than big enough to handle all your tantrums!

Allow yourself to be weak at first, take as long as you need to lick your wounds – time is just an illusion anyway. Healing takes as long as nature wants it to – you can’t rush a plant to grow – what makes you think you’re any different? Life unfolds exactly as it’s meant to, just so long as we don’t interfere with the natural order of things. We need to discipline the mind, to keep our over-thinking out of the way so that we heal and grow as nature intended. Then soon, we find we are in a position to be strong again.

Impatience and the need for certainty in our lives both get in the way of all of the above. Life will keep testing us until we finally learn to stop repeating the same old negative patterns. We’ve got to stop in our tracks when we feel things have gone wrong and look inside ourselves for the answers. In fact, nothing has actually gone wrong: the circumstances in our outer world will only change when we change what’s going on in our inner world first – not by DOING anything different, but by BEING different instead. Seeing this in action means swapping fear for forgiveness, love, kindness and compassion.

Are we running away from something bad or running towards something good? If we keep running away, it may seem as though we’re growing from the experience, but we’ll only find our old self still with us, replaying our old unhelpful habits. It’s only when we decide to run towards something good that we really start to grow, discovering that true change is finally happening.

For as long as I can remember, I have always been driven by a VISION, i.e. a crystal-clear picture of what I wanted, and when I wanted it. This FOCUS provided me with the rocket fuel to achieve every one of my life’s objectives. Be it personal or professional, I always knew I had a choice, following both my head and heart, my internal sat-nav guiding me like a moral compass. These last two years, however, in hindsight, it seems as though I was starting to lose my way, leaving me feeling rudderless, with no clear life mission – more than likely as a result of having to cope with too many losses all at the same time. I know that you can’t fight the inevitable. Learning to go with the flow is something I thought I was pretty adept at ……clearly, I have much more to learn……


  1. What you’re going through now is to be expected.
  2. There is no such thing as normal.
  3. Feeling your feelings means you’re HEALING.
  4. It’s not what happens, but how we explain the event to ourselves that impacts our well-being.
  5. Happiness is a choice – it really is – it’s not just a matter of genes or good luck.
  6. Our thinking affects what happens to our bodies, so make sure you think PURE thoughts.
  7. Ask depressing questions? Don’t be surprised by the answers you get!
  8. Reframe everything you say or think with only positive words.
  9. The only true observer of your world and your “issues” is YOU.
  10. If you can drive yourself crazy, you must be able to drive yourself happy.
  11. Have a kip, any time of the day – this is how we really learn to sleep like a baby.
  12. See it as it is – then see it better than it is.
  13. Don’t just write a “what to DO” list – write yourself a “how to BE” list as well.
  14. LAUGHTER is instantly contagious – stay well with a good dose of it every day.
  15. Give yourself a break to avoid a breakdown.
  16. Know your weak times in the week.
  17. TIME not only heals – it reveals.
  18. Hire a higher POWER and put your absolute FAITH in its WISDOM.
  19. Real spiritual growth comes from our biggest so-called misfortunes.
  20. True discovery comes from seeking out new landscapes with a new pair of eyes.
  21. What goes down bounces back even further – TRUST that you’re already on your way up.
  22. Crises can deplete your HEALTH – remember to take your vitamins.
  23. Sing your heartache out of your system and pay no attention to who’s listening.
  24. Your BRAIN stops you from being rational when you’re emotional – don’t fight it, go with it.
  25. Don’t be a cold fish that’s stuck in its head – we are warm-blooded mammals with a HEART.
  26. Meditation was always there, well before medication arrived on the scene – CHOOSE wisely.
  27. Step outside yourself and learn to WITNESS your life – watch what’s going on impartially.
  28. See awful things as things simply being full of awe.
  29. Everyone we encounter in our lives has been sent for a reason – see them all as teachers.
  30. Do your own research on the meaning of LIFE so you find a way to walk your OWN PATH.


As we head into 2024, I hope my recent reflections provide you with the same hope they give me.

May your future be bright and, as the old song goes, may all your Christmases be white!

With LOVE, light and blessings, wishing everyone a peaceful time over the holidays. God bless.

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