Dare to Blossom Life Coaching with Mary Lunnen

Reflections: Seeing with new eyes
From my archives: June 2007

Events and ways to Dare to Blossom

Reflections: Seeing with new eyes

Seeing with new eyes - that was the title of the reflections in my first ever newsletter, back in 2007. I began writing a piece that I thought would be for this newsletter a few days ago, in my journal. It was about the pandemic and how I was feeling about the 'magic and madness' of these times. Then I left it a while and kept on seeing more and more personal responses: all genuine and authentic (well, as far as I can tell anyway); all of value. All adding to the onslaught of words being written, and the cacophony of opinions expressed through the media.

So, I took a step back. I decided to 'start close in' in the words of the poem by David Whyte (that link is his general website, this one takes you to the poem on his Facebook page). This morning, when I opened my emails, the first I saw was from my friend Leslie Waugh, with her latest thoughts, with the first line 'start close to home' - such synchronicity, thank you Leslie, and for introducing me to another David Whyte poem Just beyond yourself. I hope this link will take you to Leslie's blog.

Next, I decided to look at my past thoughts for June each year, right back to 2007 (I began these monthly musings in March that year). Some are only available in my personal archives from that year, all since 2011 are on my blogspot page here, and since 2015, here on my website.

I discovered that the titles for the month of June over the years, seen one after the other, look a little like a poem, or maybe a list of writing prompts:

Seeing with new eyes
Procrastination
Watching water
Rest
Asking for help
Listening
Keeping the flame alive
Strong and True
Blossom, Fruit and Seed 
Endings and Beginnings
Midsummer Magic
Rest
Procrastination or Stepping Up
Subject, unknown

What are your first thoughts when you read that list?



I notice a repetition of themes, to do with rest and with procrastination...... and I am reminded of how often those would come up in my conversations with my coach. Now, procrastination is not quite so much of an issue for me. As I have settled into my own routine of being in my business, of daring to blossom, full time, there is more space. I realise as I write that, it probably was more a lack of time rather than my own procrastination, that caused me to feel I wasn't keeping up with all I wanted to do, although hardly surprising when I was working in a demanding job. And no wonder I felt a lack of energy,and that a need for rest that was another common topic.

A good reminder to me, again, to start close in, to listen to the messages from my body - the need for rest, for water, for food, for different foods sometimes. For quiet times. For time to reflect.

To illustrate this piece - realising I had not included any photos, I chose the one above of the koi carp in the big pool at the Japanese Garden in St Mawgan, here in Cornwall. Some of you will have seen it before. I will leave you to explore what you see without any explanation from me. (Just ask if you would like to know more about the picture.)

Returning to 'Seeing with new eyes': that was a reflection on how travel enables us to do that, especially on our return from a journey to familiar places. (I will include that piece below for you). Today it feels the other way around: after being almost completely confined to home, we are just now being able to get out a little further into what was a familiar world. I am so lucky to live in the country, and that my home is nestled within the acres of a farm. The only thing that has changed visibly right here is that there are no summer visitors coming to stay in the holiday accommodation that is part of our landlords' business.

Even when I go out shopping, I don't go into a town centre and so I don't see all the closed shops, cafes and restaurants. Of course things have changed: the safety procedures at the local Post Office, which is very small so we all queue outside, a good 3 metres apart usually, and chat with the person in front or behind us. And at the small local branch of Tesco I visit, where people are, mostly, pretty good about observing the one-way system, and the distance markers on the floor.

Ah, I pause here - seeing I am being drawn into writing about the effects of the pandemic. Something I hesitate to offer any thoughts on when I am so aware of my good fortune, and of how much others are suffering, and sacrificing throughout this time.

All of us are surely seeing with new eyes - often in very good ways, such as how much appreciation is now shown for all essential workers, particularly of those risking their own lives daily to care for those who are ill. And, those who are also taking risks, in keeping essential services running. Not least the people who serve me in the Post Office and in Tesco.

So, I return to my list/poem of past titles for June. Now the one that stands out is the one from last year, which I would have written at about this time, the end of May: "Subject: Unknown". I wrote then: "We may think we are in control, but 'life is what happens to you when you are busy making other plans' (John Lennon) And yet, somehow we learn to navigate the uncertainty, the unknown."

Yes, we are learning, somehow, to navigate the unknown terrain of these strange times, and some wonderful new ways of being together: collaborating, helping others, creating the new - are all coming about because of this big wake up call to the world.

Since I began writing this piece for you, I have been prompted, gently by Amy Palko (who has a wonderful offering on Patreon), to read that list, that poem aloud in a group on Zoom. It has such a powerful effect for me, and maybe for others so I intend to explore that more. I am also inspired to make it a regular practice, each month, to look at all those titles of my reflections in a similar way, and see what emerges for me - and offer that list to you as a prompt for your writing.

For you, suggestions for your journal reflections or meditations:

  • What are you now seeing with new eyes?
  • Choose one of the titles in my list and flow write, doodle, paint, collage - whatever feels delicious and fun..
  • What emerges? What else is there?

Finally, I decided to reverse the order of the titles, they now begin with 2019 and end in 2007, you may like to read them both aloud to yourself and hear, and feel the difference.

Subject, unknown
Procrastination or Stepping Up
Rest
Midsummer Magic
Endings and Beginnings
Blossom, Fruit and Seed 
Strong and True
Keeping the flame alive
Listening
Asking for help
Rest
Watching water
Procrastination
Seeing with new eyes
 

From my archives: June 2007

Seeing with new eyes
I have recently returned from ten days holiday travelling around Ireland.  The usual quote is ‘travel broadens the mind’ – I am sure it does.  I also think that how it does this is by enabling us to see with new eyes.  It was only after beginning to write this that I was flicking through a book of quotes and saw this one that I was not consciously aware of having read before:

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” (Marcel Proust)

This is exactly the thought that I was beginning to articulate above.  This article is written in two parts in the moments of observing and reflecting, while I was in Ireland, and on my return home.

In Ireland
I feel that I am seeing myself afresh as well as everything around me.  Much is in a way similar to my home in Cornwall, in other respects very different.

Food – lots of different variations on the soda bread recipe, wonderful local carrots.  Currency – euros instead of pounds.  Voices – a range of Irish accents. I begin to distinguish the range from the local very strong but soft accent to the slightly harsher and very quickly spoken voice of the Dubliners, and including the Gaelic still spoken in this area.  Sometimes the accent is so strong that it sounds like a different language to my ears even when it is English that is being spoken.  Fuel - the peat cuttings and stacks of peat ‘bricks’ beside the roads, alongside the intriguing shapes of ‘bog oak’ dug out from the peat.  There are even peat-burning power stations.

We are self-catering and have little interaction with other people, except in shops and along the way.  The people are very friendly and seem to like the ‘Celtic’ connection, when we say we come from Cornwall.  I have a conversation through the car window with a man holding the ‘stop/go’ board at some road works.  He tells me about the high death rate on Irish roads – ‘down to the speed, it is’.  There are shrines at the top of every pass to Mother Mary, to give thanks for safe arrival and to pray for the journey onwards?

I feel suspended in time, in a bubble, mostly doing and observing, not thinking much.  Partly because I am in company with my husband all the time, and he is active person, always wanting to be doing something – fishing, surfing, netting for shrimps around the rocks.  We know that here we are the tourists, visitors, outsiders – and that helps me see myself with new eyes.


Iskeroon Sunset

The other side of the travel experience is seeing again that people are the same where ever you go in the world.  So I feel this duality, being different, the stranger, and being the same, a human being with the same range of feelings and emotions.

Later, in Cornwall
Seeing with new eyes has continued on my return home, everything is familiar but seen afresh having become accustomed to the sights and sounds of another place.  As we drive in our gate the garden is lush and green from all the rain that has been falling.  The house smells a little musty from being shut up.  Going out the next day, it is good to see people I recognise.  Sad to realise that people are less friendly to strangers here, I have become used to exchanging a cheery wave with people I pass on the road.  I decide to carry on waving anyway!

Being away has created a distance from my normal life.  For the first day back I am caught up in catching up with emails, bills, phone calls.  A session with my life coach that afternoon reminds me to take the opportunity to use the distance, the shift of perspective, to reorder my priorities and reaffirm my intentions. 
 
Can you step back and see yourself and your surroundings with new eyes?  Do you feel you would like to re-examine your priorities?  Maybe things have changed within and/or around you, but you are still dancing to an old tune?  What would it feel like to find a new one?
 

Events and ways to Dare to Blossom
Now we are nearly into June, the new online group has gathered and we are exploring the Compass Rose in detail, one week at a time. I have returned to planning a trial group of the new 'Powerful Voice of the Quiet Ones' programme I have been developing. It is too soon to tell you more just yet, I am considering a start date at the beginning of July, and Zoom meetings in an afternoon slot, probably 2 pm, to suit those of you in the USA and Canada, as well as the UK and Europe. I know that wouldn't work for Australia and New Zealand and other points way ahead in time zones - if 'The Powerful Voice'  is something you feel particularly drawn to explore, please do get in touch. I will send out a 'special bulletin' email when the details are ready.

In September I am planning to restart the truly 'deep and slow' exploration with the Compass Rose, with one month for each place, each point, so we may dive in with even more time.

Workshops The next Dare to Blossom Workshop, originally planned to be held at the Blue Lotus at Scorrier, will probably be a virtual gathering on Zoom videoconferencing, as were the March and May events. It is scheduled for Saturday 4th July, and will be on the theme of "Power: South, Connect with Source". Booking will open soon, the basic details are here

One to one Coaching: Maybe groups are not for you? The heart of my work has always been to meet you where you are, and to be your companion as you explore your own way, as you rediscover your inner wisdom. As you  ground and balance in your centre point, in peace, before exploring the questions that brought you to connect. Simply contact me, either through the link or by replying to this email, to arrange a chat on Zoom, I call it a 'complimentary call', meaning there is no charge. What actually happens is we connect, and yes, we chat, and..... the outcome for you is that you will know a little more about how I work. You will know if that feels right for you just now. I will know if it feels right for me to be working with you (if I feel otherwise I will suggest other possibilities). At the very least you will go away with a golden nugget of some sort - I believe these exist in any, and every, interaction we have, sometimes hidden, sometimes immediately obvious.

All this is to say - please do not hesitate to contact me if you would like to know more, I have various programmes on offer, with different prices attached, including a subscription service, 'Point of Focus' which begins at £10 a month. This is for a 'Listening' where I draw three cards for you and send you an illustrated pdf of the whispers I receive from your inner wisdom. Two other levels are on offer which are the most cost-effective way to access one to one coaching with me, for 30 minutes or 60 minutes per month. You may of course cancel your subscription at any time.

Whenever it is just perfect for someone to use my coaching services, we always find a way to make it work for you.
 

Thank you dear friends for visiting with me again this month and sharing my musings.

Until next time,

with love,

Mary