updates

create your own care package

create your own care package

in the world of social care, a ‘care package’ is a bundle of support put in place to help you to do things that you can’t quite manage by yourself.

i’ve kind of taken this concept and changed it a little bit to come up with my own package of care that i’ve put in place to help me, encourage me in the areas in which i feel i need some support to start working on and maintain.

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figuring out my own self-identified care needs?

an important part of the process for me is thinking carefully about where i need the extra support from ‘experts’ (in my case, my counsellor, ayurvedic practitioner etc.) in those areas.

it’s easy to jump in and do loads of things that are nice and self-indulgent but are they actually worth my time and money? am i just distracting myself from the challenges i actually need to work on? am i actually making progress in the areas i’m trying to work on?

i think of my care package as organic and iterative – i will adapt in accordance to my needs and continue to reflect on and make changes to it ongoingly.

here’s where i’m at with my needs in 2018:

 

  • having unresolved trauma, relationship and self-confidence struggles
  • being physically unfit
  • not having a diet that works for me (binge eating cadbury’s grab bags!)
  • spending too much energy thinking and not enough time being ‘in’ my  body

 

i put the above needs at the centre of my focus when selecting my support.

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choosing and implementing my care package

little by little over the past 10 months or so i’ve tweaked my care package to make sure it’s meeting my needs.

 

here’s what mine looks like right now:

  1. counselling
    need it meets? working through psychological struggles
    how much? £30/session
    when? fortnightly (work pays for one, i pay for one)
    —————-
  2. stretching & meditation classes
     need it meets? physical fitness, being in my body
    how much? £15/session
    when? fortnightly
    —————-
  3. organic veg box delivery
     – need it meets? diet (regular healthy goodness to my door!)
    how much? £15/box
    when? fortnightly (would love to do this weekly but can’t afford right now!)
    —————-
  4. ayurvedic massage
    need it meets? helping me be more present in my body, relieving stress, tension and healing trauma
    how much? £30/session
    when? once per month

 

as my care package currently stands it’s costing me around £120/month which isn’t cheap!

it’s really important for me to protect this budget. on pay day, i transfer the total into a separate account which i use to pay for all of the above!

whilst this might not seem like a small change, it’s certainly something you can build incrementally. you might need to budget for it, reallocate some of your current spending (maybe ditch spotify or that unused gym membership?) or perhaps spend some time to find that free thing that works better for you financially.

i’ve built it up slowly (from originally being just counselling sessions) into a larger package as i’ve had more income to do so (getting out of debt – a future blog post! – means i now have more money for me rather than to give to the banks in interest!)

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reaping the rewards

i’ve got so much out of my care package. everything i do as a part of it is so focused on my healing and development – it’s been a source of liberation in so many ways.

whilst i’ve been significantly challenged by some of the hiccups that have come up during my work with the experts – i know these are only leading me to be a stronger, more peaceful and more authentic version of myself.

some people might view creating your own care package as a relentless, infinitely self-indulgent exercise overly focused on self-improvement – but that’s because it is! and that’s ok.

in doing this i know that i will never be perfect, complete, or find my ‘true self’ and i fully accept this.

but i am more than happy to invest in the support to accompany me along for the ride.

with my care package, my life feels lighter yet deeper and i’m having more fun.

give it a go 🙂

 

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you focus on the sending, leave the receiving to them

this update is the first of the series ‘small but significant changes’

i have lost, wasted so much of my life’s energy to worrying about how others might receive me.

but thankfully this year, during a counselling session, something clicked. and – no exaggeration! – the result has transformed the way i live my life.

until that therapy session, i was very much under the influence of what i could describe as a mammoth, vampiric parasite that was sucking away my energy – energy that all along i could have been using to do other more exciting things.

here’s just some examples (some of many!) of ‘worrying about receiving’ that have drained, zapped hours of my energy away:

 

  • was i too loud just then? everyone seemed quite peaceful before i turned up… have i spoiled their moment? have i annoyed them?
  • i called a new female friend at 11pm on a thursday night hoping to chat but they didn’t answer – will they think i drunk called them?
  • thinking about it, i sounded quite assertive then, didn’t i? i wonder if they thought i was being rude – i really didn’t mean to sound rude!
  • agh, why did i look at my phone just then?! i did it without thinking! he’s totally going to think i’m not interested in his business idea!
  • should i have said that bit about how fairy liquid and non-organic cows’ milk are poisoning his child? that probably didn’t come out in the best way, thinking about it.

 

i don’t think these kinds of worried thoughts are at all unique to me however i do think they reflect my own neuroses, areas of confidence (or lack thereof) and aspects of my personality i’m not completely comfortable with. yours might be completely different! what do you worry about most in terms of how other people might receive you?

 

so, what do i try to do differently now?

what i’m now practising* is letting go of the responsibility of how people receive me.

(*practice is so important when it comes to making life changes – don’t overlook it – it takes work and you won’t get it right straight away!)

i can usually achieve this by checking in with myself, by asking myself a few questions around what i have just said or done:

  • was i intending to be kind?
  • was it coming from the right place?
  • did i consider their feelings & what i know they’re going through right now?

if i feel good about my answers to the above, i can be confident that i’ve done my part and that i don’t need to worry about maybe having caused upset. the rest is up to them.

it really isn’t up to you to worry about how people receive you – it’s their responsibility to receive you in a healthy way. for me, relinquishing this responsibility to others has been such a game changer! i think this is one of the most liberating parts of the process.

each and every one of us live in this world complete with our own filters, personal emotional triggers and are at times prone to very irrational emotional reasoning! unless the person is your nearest and dearest (and unfortunately that might not even make a difference!) it is highly unlikely that you will be able to guarantee somebody will receive what you say or do in the exact way you want them to receive it.

whilst we can’t control others, we can control ourselves to make this small but significant change.

and as i mentioned already – this change of approach really has transformed my life. i honestly feel like i have been gifted this additional ~25% energy from nowhere!

i feel like i have so much more energy and headspace to do things i actually want to spend time doing! like: this project, being more organised for my day job, reading more again before bed & just being a (little) bit more chilled out!

i think the change has also helped me be more comfortable being me and given me more trust in my relationships with others – quite incredible side effects from such a small change.

i know i won’t always get it right but with the motivation of having more energy, for me, there really is no going back. i want to continue practising putting the focus on the ‘sending not receiving’ from this moment on.

 

i’d be interested to know your thoughts – do you worry about how others receive you? do you have any good strategies for how you deal with this? post your reply to facebook, instagram or down below. thanks!

starting before i’m ready

i’m feeling excited  because the fact that you’re seeing my new project, small changes, online already represents quite a significant change to the way i approach and do my projects compared to how i have done (or not done) them before.

i’m now 29. over the last ten years or more i’ve had plenty of projects brewing in my mind (my space opera, video game, news site, short stories – to name a few!) most of which have never got off the ground (or even have a single word to the page) as i’ve always tried to start them perfectly.

previously i’d tell myself i wouldn’t start a project until something like:

  • the moment was right
  • the project infrastructure was all set up (spreadsheets, folder directories, emails – all nicely arranged)
  • the timeframe was perfectly calendared (with great precision!)
  • i’d bought the right synthesiser and sound card (you can’t record a space opera on an iPhone, right?)
  • my website had the most user friendly/cost effective hosting solution (the perfect balance)

now at 29, on other hand, i’m starting this project with:

  • this barebones website
  • no logo or branding (or none that’s ready yet)
  • potentially financially unsustainable wordpress & g suite premium plans
  • no examples of small changes (let alone examples illustrated with the bright ink blotted stickmen i’m imagining)
  • not particularly clear expectations of what i’m trying to achieve
  • no launch event planned
  • no qualifications in coaching or anything mildly relevant (why would people trust to sign up to this project with me?!)

but you know what?

it feels really refreshing to have this project up and online in a shareable form and in a state where although incomplete it at least has a state!

it feels a bit like i’m soft launching a product in beta. as such, i won’t be sharing small changes too much right now but i welcome and will value your initial feedback if you have any. please get in touch or comment below if you would like to share your thoughts.

before the official ‘start’ and launch (if there is one!) i’m planning to focus on the following bits over the next month:

  • getting the message right (what is small changes? why? how?)
  • arranging my first few meetings with changedoers
  • designing the branding

for now though, i feel content with what i have and i am grateful for the assets, resources, friends and support i have with me so far.

too often, i focus on what i am lacking. it feels fitting for this project that i am starting it with a small change of my own – one of recalibration, gratitude and the confidence to start something before i even feel ready to start.