Putting Cod before God

by Vanessa Hawthorne, London, UK

I recently had the privilege of working in the kitchen to support the English retreat for Universal  Medicine. It was a lot of fun, and a wonderful learning experience. I remember reading Victoria Lister’s experience being very similar to mine in the same kitchen at the last year’s retreat, where around 250 participants were catered for 3 meals a day.

Many a time has a practitioner said to me that they put their connection to themselves first, always. I kind of got this ‘idea’ but I couldn’t explain what that meant as it wasn’t something I had lived.

Well, working in the kitchen helped me to finally feel it for myself – and what a life changing learning it was and will continue to be. Firstly, to work in an environment where the quality of your presence is what is required – not how much you do or how hard you work – was incredible. It supported me to see that every time I became distracted and stepped away from conscious presence – the second I thought about something other than what I was doing, something would occur to show me I had lost myself; an egg shell would break into the eggs, I would bump into someone, I would drop something and it would stand out like a sore thumb because the environment was harmonious. It is in stark contrast to my normal day-to-day interactions at work. WHAT A GIFT!

So, on one morning I was preparing Cod for lunch. All was well until I realised there was another box to be prepared and cooked within the hour. I went into reaction and a ‘must get this done’ mode. I instantly burnt my arm on the oven door! So I stopped and reflected what was going on, clocked myself and realised I had put Cod before my connection to me and therefore with God. This made me laugh as I had been talking to someone that morning about bumper stickers and figured there is one in the making ‘God before Cod’, ‘you before cod = god’. This was profound!

I finally felt what the practitioner had been talking to me about for YEARS, as I could feel it in my body – the push to do totally took me away from myself and feeling my delicious sweetness. It was a great stop so I have been playing with it since – ME FIRST and then what needs to be done; me before getting to bed by 9pm, me before getting out the door by xyz, me before finding that piece of paper for the lawyer…   This will be a lifelong practice, but wow! when you feel so good why would anything be before that?

Which led me onto my next learning. In the afternoon of the last day I didn’t have my usual  break for a swim and then listening to the retreat for an hour. I worked through my break because both teams were working all day, and I decided that’s what needed to be done. Well, that worked out ‘well’….. for the first time I had really sore feet, became VERY tired and I lost it, which felt awful because I had been feeling so fantastic, my whole body was moving in a new way and up until that point I had been feeling brand new. So why did I give that feeling away for a final feast?

Recognition, for being there, being a team player, reliable, hardworking, you name the ideal and belief that was at play, and I was in it. Another great learning – ME before others’ opinions of me, or indeed what I interpret others expect from me. This was important – if I had honored my need for a proper break it would not have been a problem at all, but I had decided it was the task at hand that was the priority, not me. It was a good reality check – the subtle ideas of how we should be to be a good person overrode what I knew was a truth to honour my body, and that there is enough time to get done what needed to be done.

In summary of the day, when I had completely committed to being fully present without holding back expressing what I felt, the dishwashing of the morning breakfast was gorgeous – there was not even one moment of stress, just harmony and we completed the task a half hour earlier than any other day – without the dishwasher! In contrast, at the end of the last day I was anxious, tired and not living the glory I know I am, all because I wanted to be seen to be hard working…  Now you can see why it is a privilege to work in the kitchen at the retreat – what I learned on that last day will support me for the rest of my life.

ME before Cod = living the full glory of my expression in and with GOD, which is just to be me, no great shakes, just me. Too long for a bumper sticker? But a great tag line for my life!       

228 thoughts on “Putting Cod before God

  1. “…the subtle ideas of how we should be to be a good person overrode what I knew was a truth to honour my body”. To be good or God, to be Love or liked, either side is on offer for us to access everyday through our own Will.

  2. ME before Cod = living the full glory of my expression in and with GOD, which is just to be me, no great shakes, just me. Too long for a bumper sticker? But a great tag line for my life!
    Considering the opportunity to have a bumper sticker it came to me “Live a DEEP-HUMBLE-APPRECIATIVE-NESS!”
    Live = our Livingness in all we are as an expression of God!
    Deep = expanding our multi dimensionality!
    Humble = Humble being a loving focus on divine essence or Soul!
    Appreciative = holding us between our glorious moments!
    Ness = Naturally Esoteric Soul-full Student!

  3. This is brilliant. I am very efficient, highly productive, and if people start saying it is not about how much you do but the quality, I actually feel a bit vulnerable and less comfortable, and I feel as though my cover has been blown off and worried that everyone might see me as a robot with no heart – which is my classic guilt/shame trip, when in fact I could just be as efficient and productive, with God.

  4. It makes me ponder why such a great revelation to have in the situation you were in compared to how it is in your workplace and, why can it not be the same where ever you are. . taking that connection with yourself and honouring also that connection in another. Sharing a purpose that is for the greater good of everyone by committing to sharing yourself in all that you know there is to bring to align another in that same shared greatness they are too. The idea is this can happen anywhere through the greater connection within with God and all around you.

  5. Connecting to, heeding and living from the wisdom which our body is consistently sharing with us, allows us to navigate through life with ease and in harmony with ourselves and with our surroundings.

  6. Expressing God in a way that is not holding any of the energy that we can carry about any word is expanding and deepening our innate awareness. So Loving the opportunity to express how much Love we all are and that God is simply another normal word that is shared with our deepening level of being Love through the way we Divinely share our True connection via words.

  7. Very timely for me to read right now ‘Many a time has a practitioner said to me that they put their connection to themselves first, always.’

    1. You had a great lesson Vanessa, in honouring your body, ‘if I had honored my need for a proper break it would not have been a problem at all, but I had decided it was the task at hand that was the priority, not me.’

  8. Wow Vanessa, I realised reading this today, that I understand the concept you speak of, feeling our connection first and then doing but in fact it’s so easy for me to slip into what needs to be done, or what is required out there; when you speak of ‘ME FIRST and then what needs to be done’ and then list off examples I stopped and realised that drive the comes in how for me, it’s me first but that needs to be done, or the thoughts enter of ‘how would that look’ or ‘what would others think if you did that’ – a little uncomfortable and perfect to feel and see this morning as I prepare myself for me day.

  9. We have such an incredible addiction by being recognized, rewarded or not told-off by our doing that it takes very much conscious presence to not step in this addiction. An addiction, though, that can be unsettled with the choice we make each moment.

  10. The opportunities to learn are constant and endless and will occur in even the most ordinary of experiences, such as cooking food or even cleaning.

  11. Thanks Vanessa. I especially appreciate the comment about ‘me before others opinions of me…’ This has been a big one to get in my life but worth it. The most powerful rejection there is, is our rejection of ourselves – and hence, we are the ones with all the power. If I choose to never reject myself again, I have made a truly wise choice.

  12. There is a lovely key to life in this article, when you talk about how great it feels to actually keep making that connection with yourself and therefore with God all throughout the day. Because in my experience, it is this constant feedback of appreciation that really does ignite the want to be more connected more of the time.

  13. The constant drive and strive to get things done is so depleting on our energy levels and really leaves no room for any quality or conscious presence, everyone gets affected when we live in this way.

  14. Vanessa thank you, this is so gorgeously written. I have read this before but today I really understood so much more clearly what placing ourselves and our quality first really means. I could relate so well to your experiences and how these same things play out in my life. I agree, it’s an amazing job description here “to work in an environment where the quality of your presence is what is required – not how much you do or how hard you work – was incredible.”

  15. Putting me before what I think is expected of me or of a situation is an on-going learning for me. And it’s just so amazing that we have this physical body that can tell us exactly what we have chosen for ourselves and no matter how long it may take for us to get it, we eventually come back to truth.

  16. We live in a world that is constantly goading us to keep up by pushing ourselves and soldiering on, but unfortunately this is often at the expense of our connection to ourselves and our innate qualities that bring that extra sparkle and love to all that we do.

  17. Thank you Vanessa, it’s very magical how we are daily placed in a kind of school room, we are given opportunities to become aware of and live a new level of truth and love. Sometimes the opportunity is so magical as the situation highlights (if not magnifies) that which is there to be felt and learned. It’s the Magic of God everyday.

  18. This article exposes just how many ideals and beliefs we allow to ‘control’ ourselves and our day. The greatest learning is that to live this way serves no one, not ourselves or those we are supporting.

    1. There can be an enormous simplicity to life what what Vanessa has shared, to simply put ourselves and our inner connection to our essence and God first. It’s a great foundation. There are a myriad of beliefs and ideals on offer everyday, each one a form of complication and disregard of the self. The truth is our choice everyday is either one or the other, connection to God or disconnection and the ideals and beliefs, there is really no in between.

  19. Gosh that really exposes the picture of what a good ‘team player’ is. Of course we need to be responsible and not just leaving whenever we have had enough out of a reaction or something but if we feel that having a good break does revitalise ourselves and that we do this so we are able to stay committed in full. How can we have made the word team player so narrow as in giving everything of self-care and self-love up for being in the team?

  20. Putting the connection with ME, before anything I do is a constant focus, as the things to do still take me away from that focus. Why? Because for a life time I valued myself, and society has values, recognized myself on the things I do and not who I am, which is God and determined by this connection.

  21. Great blog Vanessa, really hones in on getting caught in the recognition, self identification rather than staying with the body and honouring what it is feeling. Moving in a way to support you and in that you support others, as the quality is of true movement.

  22. I love reading this Vanessa. We all know when someone is ‘doing’ to gain recognition, there can be more complication, drama, running around and stress. I have done this a lot and it is depleting and exhausting. We are so much more available for others and what needs to be done when we put ourselves first.

  23. Bring on that bumper sticker, Vanessa, this is gold and the world needs to hear it!”I finally felt what the practitioner had been talking to me about for YEARS, as I could feel it in my body – the push to do totally took me away from myself and feeling my delicious sweetness. It was a great stop so I have been playing with it since – ME FIRST and then what needs to be done; me before getting to bed by 9pm, me before getting out the door by xyz, me before finding that piece of paper for the lawyer… This will be a lifelong practice, but wow! when you feel so good why would anything be before that?”

  24. Yes Vanessa, this is just awesome and so practical to feel and understand. Me first in everything and then all else … that is one to play with, the one that hit me between the eyes is me before what others think or expect of me … aaah how wedded I can still be to how I look and how much pressure I can put myself under to meet the target, please the other or whatever. So something for me to explore some more.

  25. Vanessa thank you for sharing your learning, something we can all recognise and learn from too, we get many little reminders when we start to lose our presence it’s like the body’s natural way of giving us a nudge as a reminder, and then when we work from our natural rhythm the more everything we do has its own natural rhythm and flow too.

    1. Our body is very intelligent it is constantly giving us reminders when we start to lose our presence. We can listen to them and a make a change or ignore them and get caught in the reaction and outcome.

  26. Great learning Vanessa, and when we deepening our commitment to moving with our ‘all’ we find that anything is possible. When we seek recognition we are instantly drained.

  27. Massive lesson that I’m sure we all have to go through at some point. Learning that to live and express all, God will always come before cod.

  28. The quality of connection and that harmony within is the ‘with out’ (what externalises). Life reflects all our moves and it is worth being responsible for it as Vanessa has.

  29. I have to continually remind myself of this, ‘the push to do totally took me away from myself and feeling my delicious sweetness. It was a great stop so I have been playing with it since – ME FIRST and then what needs to be done; me before getting to bed by 9pm, me before getting out the door by xyz, me before finding that piece of paper for the lawyer… This will be a lifelong practice’. Absolutely.

  30. This was awesome to experience this and have it as a marker, ‘to work in an environment where the quality of your presence is what is required – not how much you do or how hard you work – was incredible.’

  31. Where are the bumper stickers? It is anywhere, for me also with special focus while doing computer work, where I can lose the connection with me and “disappear” into my laptop.

  32. This is glorious Vanessa. Who would have known there was so much to be learnt preparing meals, working in a kitchen? I am getting better at putting my connection to me first before anything else but I can still get caught out with ‘the subtle ideas of how we should be to be a good person,’ and I’ll override what feels right because I’m worried about what others might think.

  33. I love how a simple thing like this cod preparation showed you something very profound. I too relate to the ‘I finally get it’ feeling, after years and years of being presented concepts by practitioners you were then able to see for yourself how a concept was playing out in your life, and take on board to adjust how we live. Simply beautiful.

  34. What an absolute classic line, you are fun, I can tell by this blog. Love it and what a great life lesson, people think retreat and they picture some villa and yoga but the true change comes in practical everyday movements, the fact that what you took out of the kitchen will stay with you is what makes these things stand out from everything else currently on offer. .

  35. Whatever we do can be totally Heavenly if we are connected to our inner selves and thus to God and the love we are from. In this space, we can feel and realise that nothing is more important than anything else as each movement can hold the power of our connection.

  36. Such a beautiful sharing Vanessa on conscious presence and how profound and powerful such a simple choice can make to the quality of our day, how we cook and eat, the connections we have with others, the energy levels in our bodies etc. – why would we not choose to live this everyday?

  37. I do love your tag-line Vanessa of ‘putting cod before God’… A gorgeous take on how ridiculous we can be – and also, to not take ourselves too seriously when we have such an opportunity to learn and unravel what hasn’t served us at all… 🙂

  38. My, the continual learning that is on offer for us, to recognise where we are essentially operating out of our need to gain approval and meet the expectations of others. As you’ve shared Vanessa, honouring ourselves doesn’t necessarily equate to not getting things done, but there is a great learning here for us in terms of our worth and how we value ourselves… If we truly value who we are, our responses indeed change – and we can address what needs to be done, or indeed the realities needing to be communicated about a situation with both clarity and commitment. When we negate ourselves under the pressure to be ‘more’, we effectively step out of the opportunity to synergistically work together with others also – we’ve made it all about us, and isolated ourselves in the process.

    1. Thank you Victoria for this your comment and this line “honouring ourselves doesn’t necessarily equate to not getting things done”. The consciousness of placing others before self can be very black and white, that to be a “good” worker, parent, family member, etc, we must leave ourselves behind and dedicate every ounce of ourselves to the idealised outcome – that it is ‘give our all or nothing’. As you have shared to honour ourselves doesn’t mean we don’t get things done, we don’t have to exclude ourselves, in fact the honouring of the self and our connection to our essence and to God gives more to others than anything we can do on the surface. The quality of energy we offer and the reflection we live of something true will always serve more than any productivity.

  39. Such a great sharing to appreciate ourselves in our fullness allowing what it is we need in the moment. I have moments when I feel the flow from the allowing and the magic of how what ever is before me is attended to and completed in the divine order. My thinking order creates disturbance which can be appreciated as messages from God to drop the ‘cod’ and re-connect first. Maybe ‘cod’ could stand for ‘come out of doubt’.

  40. I love this Vanessa, the one the jumps out for me is me before the opinion of others, and this is still a work in progress for me, and reading today reminds me that in fact if me isn’t there then what is?

  41. Making it all about ‘me’ can easily get misinterpreted and end up being about self, and when self is involved it does not include the all. What you share Vanessa is the true way to make ourselves first and that is by connected to God first so we can feel our true self and all that we are and from here make it about ‘me’.

  42. Great teaching Vanessa, and this shows us that we are students, we are sons of God that are learning and coming back to our connection to God again.. And we receive a little help to see, feel and learn things a little more wisely. Love it! As when we embrace that what is coming up for us to learn – life gets very easy and simple at the same time.

  43. We often hear words and ideas and embrace them ‘mentally’ at least, but in fact we don’t have them as a lived experience in our bodies, and when we do as shown here, it’s deeply profound and we cannot but know and feel the truth of the words, it’s no longer an idea it’s a lived way.

  44. The thing is when we are with ourselves first the tasks get done, and it seems in a record time, so should you have taken a break and looked after yourself the work would have flowed. This is a great example of how we override and go into the doing for recognition. Like you have stated Vanessa you have learned so much from one day, and now have been able to pass this on to others also.

  45. Everything in life we are being asked to put our presence and commitment to ourselves first, before everything and anything—which is to also put our presence and commitment equal to everything and anything, knowing how that feels first within us, the latter will also be true.

  46. It is quite profound what you share here Vanessa. The summary at the end especially – when you were with yourself, not holding back who you are and consciously present, there was little fatigue, but when you were putting ideas first about being hard-working, there was a tired and anxiousness. It reveals that we are much more responsible for how we feel than we think.

  47. What a great contribution, making it very clear that the connection to ourselves is the foundation for everything we do or don’t do; the difference between the two modes of working is very stark and beautifully exemplified by your experience in the retreat kitchen.

  48. I can really relate with what you have shared here in how I will do ‘tasks’ without being with me first, or how I put others first before checking in with myself. This is a great learning for me.. ‘the subtle ideas of how we should be to be a good person overrode what I knew was a truth to honour my body, and that there is enough time to get done what needed to be done.’

  49. Brilliant Vanessa, ‘ME FIRST and then what needs to be done’ what a brilliant way to capture it, pithy too! I love that you gave the example you did of how you got caught in being a good team player etc. as this is something I recognise where I’ve put me after others opinions of me and indeed me after their expectations of me, so this is one for me to observe and play with, thank you.

  50. How amazing Vanessa, imagine how many things we put before our connection with ourselves. So many times I catch myself thinking “OMG I need to get this done, and then I’ll worry about my conscious presence” what a trick…

  51. A beautiful tag line for life Vanessa and a wonderful reflection. Reading this is divine timing as this morning I have woken with that slight niggling of thoughts that there is a bit to get done. These days I know not to give heed to these thoughts, simply stay with me one breath at a time and let the thoughts keep passing through. Love the confirmation you have shared, thank you.

  52. an awesome reminder – this counts in every single thing that we do. Whether its unpacking the groceries, brushing our teeth, giving a presentation to 5000 people, it is one life. and every moment offers a gift of greater awareness and learning should we so choose.

  53. This is such a profound sharing. There are so many “reasons” to put a task before ourselves. Yet when we choose to be totally present whilst we are doing the task there is a flow, an ease that often finds us having “extra” time. It truly is life changing when we choose ourselves before we begin to live.

  54. Yesterday I was in the company of another doing some work for us in the house. When he arrived I clocked that I felt uncomfortable and it felt horrible. As I reflected afterwards I sensed I had gone into comparison feeling a lack of self worth because I was comparing myself to him and his work although my work is different to his. I could feel and sense that work meant everything to him and this was his way of getting recognition and self identification. In the reflection this was exactly how I used to be and live and at times I got flash backs which reminded me that I had gone into the exact same energy as how I was living back then showing me there was more to look at and heal. After he left I felt different as I gently let go of the judgemental and comparing thoughts that were creating a tension in my body but it was a wonderful insight into how I can lose myself so simply into situations that have been familiar instead of holding myself, not reacting and reading what was actually going on so that I could re-imprint movements that were loving and supportive to me and my body.

  55. If we bring all of ourselves, divinity included, into what we do then the world gets all that we are. If we forget that vital step then there is no substance to what is being served and the key ingredient is missing.

  56. ‘Putting me before others’ opinions of me.. or at least what I interpret they expect from me’ – reading this reminds me that we judge others by expecting them to act in a certain way – e.g. to judge us for our actions. Yet we pretend we’re doing something ‘for them’ and to appease them in some way. The more I actually listen to my body and honour what it feels, and in doing so start to let go of the ideas of how I think I need to be or what I think I need to do, the more I appreciate how amazingly life unfolds – there’s always enough time to do whatever is needed, and the energy to do it in leaves me feeling expanded and not depleted.

  57. When I find myself in a flap I will remind myself of your experience. So often when we take stock and connect back to ourselves things go much smoother and we become calm and connected again. Lovely sharing Vanessa thank you!

  58. Brilliant, ME before Cod, a great reminder to stay present wit ME all the time as that is in fact our only responsibility in life, to live all of ME in full connection with who I am and where I am from. All other things then will be taken care of as we are bringing the Glory of God into all of our days.

  59. ‘…to work in an environment where the quality of your presence is what is required ….’ Just reading this I can feel the absolute knowing of quality. It feels so stupendous and beyond any task that is at hand. Often in life I observe great onus on the important tasks but without the connection to God these tasks lose their essence, the purpose and magic that can be brought through them. They become confined to the world of matter, of suffering or pain, elation or happiness, mundane or monotonous, etc.Reading this line I can feel what it is to bring quality of presence to my everyday job of being me – at work, at home. Nothing is stopping me from bringing this.

  60. I know those ideas about working on through breaks, so you are seen as hard working. This is such a crumb of recognition compared with the loveliness of moving as and when your body feels to. It plays havoc with your body when you go beyond what is right for you, or get caught up in the belief that you have to rush to get things done. It really is a lifelong learning as we feel and learn from the effect our choices.

  61. It is gorgeous that you got to experience working in a way that it was about quality first before what you got done. Sadly this isn’t the case for most of us in our workplaces. So its up to us to make that decision, to get our work done but with the quality of our presence and movements underlying all that we do.

  62. I’ve heard it said that ‘god is inside you’ but it means so much more when you can describe it so clearly as you have done Vanessa. We put so much emphasis on what we do that we forget about ourselves and our presence, and that we are part of god and that part of us is forever patiently waiting for us to come back.

  63. How much do when learn and see when things are like this, “I kind of got this ‘idea’ but I couldn’t explain what that meant as it wasn’t something I had lived.” I remember always being like this, I was able to listen to things but until there was a practicality, a living part, view few things made sense. It was like when I lived it I was able to get the whole picture but when someone else told me or tried to do it for me things just didn’t work. I could understand a part but I didn’t truly know it. I’ve always been one to really be able to touch things and not try and work them out in my thoughts. It would seem we are all like this and learn very much from what we see, from movement. If this is true for all of us like it is for me then anyone that moved true would move much more than just someone that was talking about it.

    1. Unless it is something experienced and lived then how can we explain? It then becomes knowledge, something in the mind we think we know but in truth we don’t because it has not been lived. To support me, I love examples of that which is being expressed, incidents that have happened to me in my daily living. If I cannot feel an example in my livingness then it is not something I have lived and is therefore something to first hear and listen to and feel the truth of what is being presented in my body letting go of any resistance that may occur.

  64. Amazing sharing thank you Vanessa. When I was reading and putting myself into your position I can see how easily I want to ‘jump in’ and ‘go go get it done’, without regarding what I truly feel or what is harmonious. What a blessing to have things to alarm us when we are going off on a tangent like this.

  65. What you present here, Vanessa, goes against everything that most, if not all of us, are brought up to believe – that putting oneself first is selfish and therefore ‘bad’. However, taking loving care of oneself as you describe is the complete opposite and is a paradigm shift of how to live that is enhancing for all.

  66. ‘Putting Cod before God’. I found this hilarious and also powerfully wise: know what is true and not true. Your words brought understanding to my relationship with a project I’m working on at the moment.

  67. This is a great reminder, always, as it is so easy to get caught up in the busyness of the day and not listen to what feels right for us.

  68. Love it Vanessa! So many realizations reading your experience, especially when it comes to recognition at work and being seen to be capable and reliable. It is totally exhausting and something that is becoming increasingly obvious which is great really because before I wasn’t aware. What an absolute gift to be able to work in an environment like the retreat kitchen. I had a little taste but non the less amazing helping out in the kitchen last year and the harmony was nothing I have experienced before working with a group of people.

  69. In the drive to meet expectations or seek recognition we relinquish our power that comes through our connection to Soul, to God and so we forgo living the glory of who we are. When our bodies are not moving in connection to ourselves we instead feel anxiety, exhaustion and not ourselves. The more we appreciate how precious we are and the power of our connection to Soul the more we realise that there is nothing that can compare to being who we are, in honor of all that we are.

      1. Powerful medicine indeed and our connection to our Soul is the only way to live the truth of who we are, all that we are and the universality that we in truth represent.

  70. I love the lessons that can be offered in life no matter where you are, to support you to come back to yourself or teach you where you go off track…. everything that happens seemingly good or bad is then always a gift.

    1. Once we start paying more attention to those messages, that come from what our body, other people, situations etc, are reflecting to us, the more we learn to read them – and in that, see how we are constantly being offered opportunities to evolve and grow.

  71. I love the lessons that can be offered in life, no matter where you are, to support you to come back to yourself or teach you where you go off track. Everything that happens, seemingly good or bad, is then always a gift.

  72. Sometimes I have days when I feel like I don’t even have time for taking a moment to stop and connect with myself and I just have to get on with things because of the overwhelm I already anticipate from the day ahead, but that is so not true. In my connection with myself, and therefore with God, I am super productive and efficient – thanks Vanessa for reminding me of this.

    1. Yes, it is a great reminder that Vanessa has given us here and what you have added here, Fumiyo, is so true. It is so easy to believe our daily tasks are more important than our connection with ourselves and therefore with God.

    2. It’s those days when I feel that I’m too busy to stop and take a moment when it would be the most beneficial thing to do exactly that. So often when I’ve overridden that quiet voice within that says ‘stop for a moment’, something will happen to make me stop – or wish I had stopped back when I felt to. And the reverse is always true: I cannot think of a time where I have stopped to take a moment, to go for a walk, or simply focus on my breathing, and regretted it. It always supports me to step into whatever comes next with all of me, and my full attention and awareness, instead of in fragmented stressed parts.

  73. I came across your blog Vanessa and it felt like you had written it especially for me. Love the simplicity and found the way you related your wonderful learning experience really resonated with me. Thank you so much.

  74. Beautiful Vanessa. It is something I have heard a lot too and am slowly grasping. You broke it down and explained it so well. When we are in connection to ourselves life has a quality and we can flow in it. When we lose that connection it is as though we then try to control and impose upon what is otherwise a harmonious flow.

    1. Nikki, is as simple as that when we are in the flow then next is a given. When we disconnect then the flow feels a disturbance and out of control. We feel it very clearly in our body.

      1. When we are in flow we are not concerned or worried about what comes next as we are trusting. When out of flow, we want to know what is next.

  75. It is so easy to get caught up in work and all the things that need to get done, especially if you have the outside pressure of a deadline or a boss breathing down your neck, but it is not worth it losing or compromising ourselves in the process as our natural joy, vitality and capacity to deal with stuff declines repeatedly if we do so.

  76. I love what you have shared Vanessa. It’s not about perfection either, but about observing everything and when you are working from your stillness when you leave that you can see it straight away, clock it and then gently bring your self back. Why? because it feels amazing and very true to be in that space, rather than being rushed to complete and “Oh I’ll just go to the toilet when I finish this”. Thank you for sharing, a very inspiring blog.

  77. Vanessa I re-read your awesome blog and it helped me again to feel how important it is to make loving choices rather than choices against me or my body only to fulfill a need to be seen.

  78. This is the perfect blog for me to read this evening. My day has been one at work where there has been a gorgeous flow and connection to my body throughout the whole of the day. Then when I arrived home, because I only have a short window of time before I prepare to go to bed, I can feel myself losing my connection because these is so much to be done before the end of the day. I am realising that the next step of development in maintaining my connection is to call out all the pockets of where I tend to lose myself and deeply commit to holding my connection at these times and explore how this feels.

  79. Vanessa, I can relate very much to the drive that can easily come in to get something done. I am also familiar with the gorgeous feeling that is there when I simply be with me. When I feel the lovely harmonious flow, I have to ask myself the question, why do I not choose this all of the time? You have nailed it on the head in highlighting that it is often ideals and beliefs that we subscribe to that take us away from our connection with self and into an energy of drive, recognition or push – none of which are true but a mere escape away from the beauty of who we really are.

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