Don’t Panic about turning 40 – 6 ways to keep your 40th birthday in perspective

Turning 40 imageOn August the 5th in a few weeks time I will have been here on planet Earth for 40 years.

Turning 40 for most women is a big crazy cue to have a complete breakdown and start questioning their lives and everything they have ever done. I’ve seen it many times which is why as I approach my own 40th I’m keeping things in perspective.

I’m treating it as a pretty amazing privilege that not all people get to experience, and I am choosing my language very carefully. and not 40. I have simply been here for 40 years. The ageing process of our bodies is not exclusively tied to the years you spend spinning around the sun, its just one factor.

Here’s 6 things that I am being mindful of as I approach my birthday to keep the crazy at bay.

 

1. Gratitude

Seriously when did we get all hung up about being past it and not express gratitude and amazement at the fact that we get to live a big long gloriously full life? Start a gratitude diary or before you go to sleep each night cast your mind over 3 things that your grateful for.

2. Don’t compare

Your unique life journey and your unique set of skills and experiences aren’t going to look like anyone else’s. Every book on the shelf of life is a TOTALLY different story. Own this and back the heroine in yours… she’s doing a great job! It has been helpful to remind myself of what I truly value and see how I am cultivating these things in my life. My commitment to Love is no exception.

3. Ignore the popular cultural stereotype we are often sold.

I went looking on pinterest last night and searched turning forty positive. Do you know how many pins I found. One. Thats right, in all of pinterest town there is ONE pin that puts a positive spin on turning 40. So I dug a bit deeper and found this little gem from Sheryl Crow and even she was struggling! Look away from all the memes telling you that its all over and find some inspirational women your age doing great things and keeping it real. They can be famous like Megan Gale and Angelina Jolie, both turning 40 this year or gorgeous women in your circle who are creating their own reality of the aging process.

4. So you didn’t have a baby.

Your worth as a woman and a human isn’t determined on this event. (Despite the social pressure of epic proportions) There will be many reasons that this wasn’t in your life path. There may be a great deal of grief over this for lots of different reasons. I know for myself that even though its been a conscious choice of mine not to have babies there is still a sense of grieving those alternate life possibilities that never eventuated. Let yourself have this process. Your unfolding into a new phase of your life, and its going to be delicious!

5. Check in with your limiting beliefs.

Yes there are different stages and phases in our lives where our priorities change and our bodies work differently. We need to take good care of our health for sure, but be gently and lovingly aware of what you may be telling yourself. Many of these beliefs may not even be yours. This interview with Dr Christine Northrup discusses just this.

I recall a conversation with a girlfriend of mine two years ago discussing the fact that bang on 40th her eyesight went. She proclaimed with such commitment that that is just what happens. Everyone she knew got glasses on their 40th birthday and that was that. With a big sigh she told me to wait and see. Well see I am and instead of checking my eyesight I’m checking in with my beliefs. (I’m not an affiliate of this book and yes its a 20 min video but the gems of wisdom from Dr Northrup are PRICELESS)

 


6. Take the pressure down.

Really.

So for anyone in this age bracket and especially us Aussies… this should really make you laugh. 1 for its oh so cheesy iconic 80’s references and 2 because its truth, sad, tacky, 80’s truth.

All the ‘by now I should haves’… or worse ‘at my age its all over’… enough!

Take. The. Pressure. DOWN.

huntress collective

The Huntress + The Dark Night of the Soul

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The dark night of the soul is something that many people have written about over centuries. The phrase itself has become synonymous with hardship and loss and quests to regain what was lost. I have written alot over the last few years about the experiences and heartache that have shaped who I now am and and most importantly the work that I now find myself devoted to.

I no longer want to tell the stories of ‘this or that’ happened.

I want to tell you how I came out the other side.

I want to tell you what worked and what didn’t.

I want you to know that there is a way through and you don’t have to go it alone.

I want to encourage you to let go of the stories that no longer serve and discover the strength that lies at the heart of your feminine darkness.

In those spaces between the knowing.

This is my story of the Huntress.

 


 

You see I’m fascinated with mythology, I always have been.

These myths date back to the beginning of time and form tapestries on the walls of our collective unconscious. The stories of Artemis and Diana in mythology show her as a moon goddess, governing the wild natures of women children and animals. She is depicted often with the crescent moon with a bow and arrow in her hand. The huntress governs the ebb and flow of our feminine cycle and it is with her by our side that we enter our dark night of the soul. Like a stroll into the woods without her guidance and fierce support do we make it out in one piece.

For this to happen we have to trust her, dance in our darkness and embrace the power and strength that quite frankly we have no clue exists until there is nothing else.

Ask a mother in child birth where she drew the strength from

Ask a wife how she knew that something just wasn’t right

Ask the artist that writes and writes where that first divine spark came from

So when I saw this archetype begin to show up in my life I new it was time. I knew that despite the exhaustion I still felt that I really was out of the woods. That somehow that part of my journey was over. That her strength and resourcefulness was somehow mine to access piece by piece.

This is what she wants me to tell you;

She wants you to listen.

She wants you to sit in the dirt in the darkness in the warm loving embrace of your fellow women.

And stop. And to put. down. your. weapons.

There is a time for fighting, for defending, for taking aim at the target in our sites, but there needs to be a time for taking refuge in safety and warmth and softness. Let us create a space for that now, before its too late. Before the heart ache of loss and let down, of disrespect and disillusionment tarnish our ability to love and trust forever.

Before we lose the learning and the magic inherent in the huntress.

Before all that is left of her magic is anger and armor and we lose the ability to be creative and spontaneous and tap into the endless wisdom of mother nature.

That is the wisdom of the huntress.

 

If this sings to you I would love to hear from you, comment below, or pop me an email

#huntresscollective will be an ongoing part of my coaching work and I’d love to see how she’s showing up in your world too, hashtag your courageous moments on Instagram I’d love to cheer you on!

x

K

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What to do when your Soul makes plans (and doesn’t tell you)

 

What happens when you make plans and your ‘Soul’ has other ideas?

The soul, in many religious, philosophical and mythological traditions, is the incorporeal and, in many conceptions, immortal essence of a living thing        (wikipedia)

I’m not sure about you but there seems to be much more emphasis on this sort of work in the personal growth spiritual world I inhabit from time to time. Less rules and more ‘your chosen path’ is how it seems to me, and about bloody time! I have often felt quite radical in my approach to health and spirituality and what is now called wellness.

For a very long time the options were often very black and white either you ate meat or you didn’t you either subscribed to one particular spiritual teaching or you didn’t. There was no chopping and choosing there was no blending. And from the very outset this felt incredibly disempowering.

But who was I? Some jumped up hippy chick wearing way too little clothing mouthing off at the ahem ‘spiritual’ establishment? Eating what she ‘felt’ was right, subscribing to a little bit of this and a little bit of that. Yup.

Flash forward so many years and one too many episodes of looking outside myself for answers that can only lie within. I found myself questioning my choices, questioning my place, wishing like hell that there was some sort of clan or tribe or tradition that I could cling too while every known thing in my life was washed away.

There wasn’t.

There was just me.

A disruptive woman on a mission

to come home to herself.

It has been quite the crash landing.

So when I read Red Hot and Holy by Sera Beak I didn’t so much read it, as inhale it, in two big juicy giant gulps. Like air I didn’t know I was in desperate lack of. The second segment of the book I read on a flight to Bali. I had three seats to myself. I opened at the page I was up to, turned to the new chapter and read ‘now go get yourself a glass of red wine’ I hit the attendant button. I usually make a fairly consistent rule of not drinking on flights. Those rule just went out the door. My soul needed some red wine. So I read and I drank red wine at 20000 feet or however many feet your meant to be at….. ‘Up High Somewhere’ (thats what it would say on my Instagram location )
The Back Story

My gorgeous friend Belinda had come back to Australia recently and told us (my wifey and I) about this amazing retreat she had just been to in Montana and this Woman and her book.
WE. JUST. HAD.TO. READ.
Sarah and I instantly planned to go to Montana in 2015. Together in the Red Freakin Tent! Oh. Yeah!

Fast forward to 2015. (Hey! Hi there! We’re in the future now! ) Sarah had already booked holiday time, contacted Sera Beak and got her shizzle well and truly sorted.

I had a few things to get my head around, moving house to name just one such thing. I eventually put fingers to keys and popped Sera an email, detailing my interest, my history a bit about my journey so far and the fact that Belinda and Sarah had been and were going, and good heavens I truly wished to be present at Feather Pipe Lodge stay in a Yurt for heavens sake, travel and swoon with the magic of it all. Please. Can I come?

BUT

There was this feeling. Not nameable. But a sensation that said. Hmmmmmmm . When I told the girls that I had emailed Sera there were whoops of joy and high fives (and a few fuck yeahs) ‘Oh your going to have such an amazing time Keri’

AND

then I said “Well loves, it doesn’t quite feel like its decided yet.” If I had to describe it, it feels like my higher self, my team in the sky so to speak are all sitting around having the cosmic equivalent of a board meeting and they cant quite agree how its all going to happen… We need her to be there then… but how are we going to get those people there at the same time? and really? I don’t know if ‘this’ can all happen in time for ‘that’ It was like a pantomime but with cosmic overtones.
Two days at the most later I received an email from Sera. One of the warmest emails I have ever received letting me know that soul to soul going to her retreat wasn’t in my best interest. It just wasn’t on my souls path and, its not personal you understand, its just the nature of what we do, to check in and be 100% sure that everyone there is meant to be there. She might have even said something to the effect of my soul gliding gracefully past on its way to its own destination.

I mean seriously! My first thought was amazement at the level of integrity you must have to turn people away from your retreat. That kind of care and respect at a soul level is the real deal. Not an easy path to tread I might imagine. But SUCH a delicious feeling to be held in that space I have to tell you. So I expected to feel a bit let down, or bummed out or perhaps even miffed ‘that I wasn’t good enough’ (or some such nonsense) But actually it felt completely fine. Oddly fine.

This is what trust in self feels like I thought to myself.

Remember this feeling.

So often we look outside of ourself for the answers. There is nothing wrong with asking for help and assistance and being educated. Not at all. When seeking answers to our life direction though; what might be the right path to take, do I do this or choose that? We need first to really educate ourselves in the tone of our souls voice.

Does it whisper?

Does it howl?

Does it tingle up your spine?
We must differentiate between our souls true voice and the many nagging voices that would lead us down the streets of should and must and no choice and I told you so.
Take some time out to cultivate this relationship with yourself, you will not be disappointed. It may lead you on some wild journeys, but they will be yours.

Since all this some opportunities have come up that I have been waiting years for actually, opportunities and events that weren’t meant to happen this year that I will be able to attend. The one thing that I have learnt is that if I listen and trust this voice it does make sense eventually … most of the time.
But you know, I am still a human woman and it would be nice if my soul could send me a post card from the future and at least tell me what I might want to pack for this amazing future I’m gliding toward.

You know. Just saying.

Is it just me, or has it all gone to sh*t lately?

 

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Today I went up to Springbrook National Park.

Its a short drive from where I live on the Gold Coast. Its been very wet and very warm for this time of year. I say that but to be honest I’m not really sure how wet or warm its meant to be. All I know is that its been summer for at least 6 months here, and I’m pretty happy with that.

One of the walks up on the Springbrook Plateau is called Purling Brook Falls. Its a stunning 4 km circuit trail down to the base of the water fall then back up.

Over 10 years ago now I lived up on Springbrook in the street that Purlingbrook Falls is on.

I walked literally 200 mtrs out my front door every morning and walked that 4 kms to start my day, I would come home meditate and journal then have my breakfast… always a giant mug of home perculated coffee and then start my day.

The year was 2002 there was no Facebook, there was certainly no instagram and the internet was dial up… Do you remember? .. ….weeeawww weeeawwww brrrrrrrr dip dip dip …… thats the sound the interwebs made literally as it was dialing up.

You knew your connection was going to be shit if after those first few dip dip dips, you went back to the weeeaws.

Back then I was an under 30 married hippy chick practicing acupuncture walking in pristine world heritage national forest, meditating, journalling and getting fits for fucks sake… and no one. knew. about it.

No-one. Cared. (and I mean that in a good way)

Not even my husband.

“How was your morning babe?” “Great, walked the Falls, chilled out went to work, it was great .. yours?”

There were no selfies, no proclamations of my feats of spiritual and physical greatness. Just me being me. This was the first time I started writing for real too.

I got the very first article I ever wrote and sent in published in Living Now magazine. I still have it. Somehow it felt too easy. Write an article. Get published. They even wanted to pay me?? Seriously???

I’ve been thinking about this a-lot lately, so I went back up there today to walk it out, feel it out and have a chat to my younger self (there’s another blog post in that one soon)

You see I’ve been asking a bunch of annoying questions of the people in my life recently. Lots of “whats the point?” I’m sure I’ve been like an annoying 4 year old on the cusp of working out their world.

What does this do? How does that work? Why would I want one of those? Specifically, what is the value of the work I do? What is the value of relationships I have and what kind of relationships do I want?

Do I want to seek out another long term partnership? What does that mean to me at this point in my life anyway?

Yup! Just another day in the over thoughtful life of Keri!! But, you know if you don’t ask the questions and live those questions, I don’t think the answers are ever going to present themselves. So I quest, and I live my splendid life and I wonder.

This wondering has taken a little while, a good 6 or 7 months have passed since I was blogging regularly. Lots has changed. There is so much I have to share with you. So much amazing work that I am now getting to do. I have this gorgeous new site, and I really want to do it justice. I want to fill it up with light and hope and have meaningful and fun conversations here.

I want to know that even though now I take selfies, and share my beach walks and invite effectively the whole bloody world in on my personal journey that there IS a point. That its helpful, that it adds value to someone somewhere. Even just one person. I want to make sure that I’m keeping true to my personal values and not falling prey to the technology we now have available.

Would I still be doing all that I am even if no-one knew anything about it. Like in the olden days? And after all this crazy deep thinking the answer is easy and hilarious.

Well YES… Der!

The changes though have not only been internal ones. I’m sure I’m not the only health practitioner/entrepreneur/ blogger to notice that the climate we’re operating in has gone to shit, lets be honest. And no I”m not talking about global warming.

I’m talking about the fear mongering, slander, and heartache that is going on within our industry online.

My heart is sore with it all. Very sore, and its making me question how I want to move forward with my work.

It’s sore for Jess Ainscough and the slander that has been perpetuated about her since her death. Its sore for my dear friends that knew her personally. In the 1500s powerful women with a voice were burnt at the stake as witches, excuse my melodrama but it feels like not much has changed.

My heart is sore for Belle Gibson. Dear God Girl what have you gone and done? We all will pay the price for this.

I was at an event last week listening to Clare Bowditch speak. Wowee what a flame of a women she is. She was talking about the artists ‘right of reply’ which exists now with the advent of social media. She was quite eloquent and heart felt in her desire for Belle to exercise her right of reply. Clare quite rightly spoke for many of us when she said ‘we want to know you care’ ‘we want to know what happened’.

All of us qualified, recognised registered or not are at risk of being tarnished with your brush.

And my heart is sore because I dearly wish to meet someone to share my splendid mad life with.

But you know, the desire to shine bright, to speak my truth and create work that is meaningful has felt awfully at odds with a lovely first date.

When I duck to the loo 20 mins in, my date is capable of googling me, reading about my divorce, abusive relationship, therapy, business goals and my last freakin holiday in Bali.

While. I’m. in. the. loo!

Pee quickly Keri he’s probably got distracted with your Face Book profile!

Hilarious really, and probably just a teeny bit OTT but honestly I know I’m not alone here?

Please don’t think I’m overrun with visions of fame and grandeur but you know what I’m talking about surely. This kind of vulnerability really makes it hard to press publish some days!

Its a funny ol time for a Gen X-er to be single……. and don’t even get me started on all these mega beards.

So for all my dear gorgeous friends who are really feeling it at the moment. Who are much more on the fore front of defending our way of life and our apparently alternative lifestyle choices.

I dedicate this post to you.

I’m back in the trenches and I’m going to all I can to be seen and shine and be the love I want to feel in the world. Thank for keeping my seat warm.

I’m back!

I’d love to hear how your doing. How do you cope in such situations? Are you doing ok?

With love

K x

Over scheduled + Underproductive.

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* So I first posted this in 2014 after an almost May to August work bender… I absolutely do not recommend anyone doing anything so bonkers but here’s how I mostly pulled it off and tips that now really do work to keep things sane with it gets crazy!

 

 

If you ask someone you bump into in the coffee shop or at the school drop off how their day is you’ll be quite used to hearing people say. Busy. Like busy covers everything somehow.

I caught myself saying it as I rushed from one thing to the next from one appointment to the next, even from fun enjoyable things like dinner with friends I was racing.

Now its likely that if this sounds like you, your what Dr Libby Weaver has coined a ‘rushing woman’ in her book Rushing Womens Syndrome. If you’ve had a treatment with me its at this point I would be talking to you about your Kidney energy and running on your adrenals.

What I did notice is that for me at this particular time I caught myself a good bit of the stress and the rush wasn’t just from the feeling that I had ‘so many things to do’ but from the feeling that I wasn’t actually getting the things I needed done…. and thats because I wasn’t.

I was over-scheduled and underproductive. So if this sounds like you I have a few tips that have really helped.

1. Step away from the coffee pot! I’m serious. Now I’m not going to tell you to stop drinking coffee…. although I may be suggesting that your relationship with it needs re-evaluation. Coffee is as Elmo says a ‘sometimes food’ and if you cant imagine your day being successful with out it (as I have been guilty of) then you may need some relationship counseling!

At the very least please don’t inhale that early morning cup on an empty stomach as its almost impossible to come back from the adrenalin blood sugar roller-coaster if you do. Hint …..its also almost impossible to think clearly and rationally if your brain is not getting an even stream of glucose.

 

2. If your were a triage nurse in a hospital how would you rate your to do list? The triage nurse is the person in charge of rating all the bleeding moaning and wounded that walk in the door so the most life threatening ailments get dealt with first. Apply this to your daily planner and the jobs that are at the bottom of this list that aren’t really that important you…

3. Delegate them Date them (for another day and time that is more spacious) or you Ditch them… seriously I have found old lists, usually in the bottom of a handbag somewhere with random stuff on the end of a list that has NEVER been done I often cant even remember why it would have warranted being put on the list in the first place. And for those times when you are truly very tightly scheduled and its just the way it is and you chose it that way (oh boy really!) Here’s three things that will get you through.

Mindfulness. You can only be where you are right now. So be there. Your breath will help with this.

So for example when your replying to emails thats all your doing. And breathing slow and steady into your belly to remind your body that there is no need to switch on adrenaline. You aren’t being chased by a saber tooth tiger your doing emails, or getting on board a plane, or treating clients. Thats it. (that thing that you do when your at you computer and you forget to breath, it has a name now, its called screen apnea, breath please people!)

And how do you stay so calm and mindful in that moment, without freaking out thinking fuck! I forgot to call xxxx.

Heres how: As far ahead as is possible and sensible set a day or a couple of days in a week depending on what sort work bender your going into and be Extremely Crazy Efficient. You sit yourself down look at the time frame of the work ahead and you brain storm every single last thing that you are going to need over that time frame for you to be organised on time well fed loved and happy. Everything. Are you going to need new warm socks, yes? well put them on the list right next to the flights and the hotel.

Heading these lists with dates or locations so you do them in order is a great way to start. So on my 30 day non-stop bender I had lists Headed Mudgee, Sydney, Melbourne, Sarah’s Party etc in order of when they were happening and on those list heart shaped post it notes with what I needed to do (I am rather visual!) I eventually sat each of these lists on top of piles of clothing or equipment that was needed for each event so as I got to it I could cross reference anything else I needed to grab as it happened. It’s much easier to sit down and do just the one type of thing and get it all done.

So go through and order everything that needs to be ordered, sourcing gifts booking hotels and flights. Then you know its all done and your not trying to multitask which we know that really doesn’t work. You might choose to have this all digitally organised (I am deeply attached to my post it notes) however you do it, having it all laid out really helps so when your tired and not possibly at your best you know its all waiting there for you. I’m a pretty small operation but this works even better in a bigger set up so you can send it out to your assistants to pick things up without having to hunt around.

Last but almost most importantly is Boundaries. Serious rock your socks boundaries. For this one we kinda need to bring back that triage nurse, where the triage nurse is now in charge of incoming phone calls and email requests for your time and energy. For a relatively short term work bender the answer will quite simply be no. Fullstop. No I’m completely fully booked ( or whatever your preferred term is) until the end of the month. Now the really important thing here is to NOT book yourself up the second your get back from the Bender (as I am affectionately calling it ) ……because then the bender isn’t really over, and truly you need to stop at some point. A good triage nurse will know if its really important eg that amazing meeting with that really fabulous contact you’ve been chasing and then a few other things might need to shuffle. Having said that timing really is everything and sometimes actually, quite often people will be prepared for you not to be available at the drop of a hat and it truly helps to cultivate this in your personal and business relationships. Next week I talk about how you recuperate from your little bender burn out. xx

 

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Women On Fire

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Its been tough.

Its been amazing .

Life has taken you to your edge more than you ever thought possible, the thoughts dreams hopes and fantasies of your youth got gritty and edgy and dirty and you thought and prayed on more than one occasion “Fuq I hope I get through this.”

Yet on the outside you looked for all the world like a woman coping with amazing adversity with grace poise and determination. The option of collapse just wasn’t on the cards there was too much riding on your success.

And even while people complemented you on your ability to get the job done, at home on your own you doubted your very ability to get up and do it all again the next morning.

You read books on self help Echart Toile and Brené Brown have been your bedtime companions, you bought yourself flowers, walked the dog fed your kids and kept the toilet paper stocked up. And Did. It all. Again. The next day.

You were hungry, you still are hungry, craving a desire for nourishment deep in your bones deep in your very soul that wakes you up every day, eyes on the horizon putting one foot in front of the other.

You gratitude prayer is your mantra, its your daily bread and butter whilst you put together that proposal and dream up the next step of your evolution.

Its been tough but the light is getting brighter, YOUR light is getting brighter.But hell it would be great to not have to do it all on your own.

A tribe, A team that has been there too. Has been there in the dark as you watched all that you knew and love vanish and yet you still drew breath.

You danced you swam, you made some very questionable decisions, repeatedly!

You learnt you experience you picked yourself up and fell down another rabbit hole!

Your not happy with the status quo, the mundane you can deal with but settling isn’t part of your vocabulary. Its not that you want lots of attention and ego stroking, just to give yourself the permission to fucking BE all that you are, permission to speak your truth and live your dharma, the role, the story, the magic that only you dear woman can sing into this world. I hear you!

The peak of your youth is just behind you, but you have never felt more at home in your body, more quietly confident, the fire in you is rising, the magic, the sex the power that is yours and only yours is simmering almost ready, you feel it yes?

 

I’m calling out to you women, high and low, good god I’d love to meet you how I’d love to have you on my team and share my story with you.

 

To sit around this virtual fireside and support each other and journey together that is my wish, is my heartfelt spiritual directive.

 

In ancient times we had a place, a collective and a space to weave and share and dream and birth our stories in this world.  To laugh and be deliciously wicked and wild. Dear one this is such a space. Come sit and play and laugh and heal.

Healing that will set your world on fire.

x

K

 

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