Affirmation of the Week



Seriously, how often do you really listen to your body? Did you know it speaks in whispers? Well, mine does… and very quiet ones at that. It’s either that or my *ego* self is way too loud… yes I’ve been pushing myself at the gym but I am actually very body aware when it comes to sport and/or exercise… I spent years doing a specific type of sport so am very lucky in the regard that nowadays I know how far to push myself, when to hold back, and when to not exercise at all. However, in the past, some years ago, most of the time I used to ignore what my body was telling me, I listened to others and conformed to what was expected of me by them… I worked a full-time job, I commuted, I then trained several times per week, commuted, worked, trained again, a solid cycle that never ended… I didn’t eat properly, smoked, didn’t get enough sleep & when I did sleep, it was never through the night solid sleep either.

These days I try to listen more… and it’s voice is especially noticeable when I really start listening… I don’t eat chocolate (*waits for the gasps of horror*)… which considering this is a daily staple, is a huge sacrifice!  I will then often smaller portions because really, I’m thirsty rather than hungry… and may even have a 2 hour afternoon nap on a Saturday instead of slumping in front of the tv watching something that would take my mind elsewhere from where it really needed to be!  When I listen to my body and ignore the *I want I want* of the ego… which ultimately is the part of me that wants instant gratification and comfort… then I am actually looking after myself properly, feeding myself, hydrating myself and loving myself in ways that are beneficial to me.

Now this isn’t the same thing as revelling in our bodies… we can revel and relish our physical form as much as we want, and that’s a good thing…  so long as we are taking care of it… after all, it has to last us a long time, a lifetime in fact!

So I would ask, if you sit quietly and “clear the clutter” that the monkey mind continuously fills your head with, what answers do you get when asking what things do you do to your body or give to your body that, really, you don’t want, need or isn’t good for you?  Not in a *health police* kind of way (I still maintain a little of what you fancy does you good *grin*), but more in the way of (and these are just basic thoughts, feel free to add to them):

  1. do you drink enough water
  2. do you over-eat or not eat enough
  3. do you eat enough of the right kinds of food
  4. do you get enough sleep
  5. do you exercise and if so, exercise in a healthy way
  6. do you smoke
  7. are you happy in your body
  8. do you accept your body
  9. do you drink alcohol
  10. do you do drugs

On a personal note, I’m trying to drink more water, cut down on some of the types of food I used to indulge in a lot more (oh how I love white refined sugar)… and one thing I always always try to do (and fail miserably) is getting to bed earlier (Facebook = time stealer)!

Perhaps next time you pick something up to eat, drink or even take part in… ask your body… do I really need this, do I really want this, what benefit will this bring to my life… will it make me happy… and open your mind to the answer… it could be the start of a new adventure with yourself!

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead ♥

© 2012 Michelle Payne


You Are



 You are strong…
when you take your grief and teach it to smile.

You are brave…
when you overcome your fears and help others to do the same.

You are happy…
when you see a flower and are thankful for the blessing.

You are loving…
when your own pain does not blind you to the pain of others.

You are wise…
when you know the limits of your wisdom.

You are true…
when you admit there are times you fool yourself.

You are alive…
when tomorrow’s hope means more to you than yesterday’s mistake.

You are growing
when you know what you are but not what you will become.

You are free…
when you are in control of yourself and do not wish to control others.

You are honorable…
when you find your honor is to honor others.

You are generous…
when you can give as sweetly as you can take.

You are humble…
when you do not know how humble you are.

You are thoughtful…
when you see me just as I am and treat me just as you are.

You are merciful…
when you forgive in others the faults you condemn in yourself.

You are beautiful…
when you don’t need a mirror to tell you.

You are rich…
when you never need more than what you have.

You are you…
when you are at peace with who you are.

~~ Author unknown ~~

© 2012 Michelle Payne

Affirmation of the Week



Change… it’s scary… so we resist… yet unless we want our general life or self to be the same in another year, 5 years or even 10 years time… change has to happen. Now, I’m a fan of integrating things fully which then necessitates moving slowly… as I was told a few years ago, you can’t rush or miss out certain steps, as they will only re-appear at a later date… so this affirmation isn’t just about changing a thought pattern, it’s actually also a physical change!!! Yes, very often everyone at some point in their lives will need to change a thought pattern, will need to continuously repeat it mentally in order for it to take hold… but some things actually need us to physically DO!

I believe that thoughts have energy… when we think something, we are sending that energy out into the world, and then generally reaping its’ reward… and for  affirmations that’s good… however we can wish, hope, affirm and pray all the most wonderful thoughts in the world… but if we want new, we have to help ourselves physically too… we can create change, we can bring in new and wonderful opportunities into our lives, but some of them require physical action… there’s no point in wishing for a new door to open in front of us if we don’t actually step through it… we can ask the Angels, Gods, Goddesses, Guides, Helpers (or whatever higher deity you happen to believe in) for their help but in this world, on this plane, we also have to physically help ourselves!

This doesn’t have to be a big change… in fact, big changes are probably the hardest because to maintain… so why not start small?  What small change can you make right now?  It can be as small as you want… do you want to learn something new? Try new recipes? New make up? A new hairstyle? Dress differently? Do you want to be around people more? Or less? Get a new job? Move to a new town? Change your relationship?

What little step can you take to help you start to move through that door? It could even be as simple of buying a book secondhand or even looking a recipe up online… or stepping into the gym for the first time!  What new thing would you like to try and what is the baby step to start you on your way?  Feel free to comment and share with us!

This also brings to mind an email joke I received some time ago (and found on

“Flood ShmudIt was flooding in California. As the flood waters were rising, a man was on the stoop of his house and another man in a row boat came by. The man in the row boat told the man on the stoop to get in and he’d save him. The man on the stoop said, no, he had faith in God and would wait for God to save him.

The flood waters kept rising and the man had to go to the second floor of his house. A man in a motor boat came by and told the man in the house to get in because he had come to rescue him. The man in the house said no thank you. He had perfect faith in God and would wait for God to save him. The flood waters kept rising. Pretty soon they were up to the man’s roof and he got out on the roof.

A helicopter then came by, lowered a rope and the pilot shouted down in the man in the house to climb up the rope because the helicopter had come to rescue him. The man in the house wouldn’t get in. He told the pilot that he had faith in God and would wait for God to rescue him. The flood waters kept rising and the man in the house drowned.

When he got to heaven, he asked God where he went wrong. He told God that he had perfect faith in God, but God had let him drown.”What more do you want from me?” asked God. “I sent you two boats and a helicopter.”

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead ♥

© 2012 Michelle Payne

The Daffodil Principle


I read this quite some time ago… what perfect sense it makes… stop waiting… because there will always be excuses!  Today is a day to live!

The Daffodil Principle

Several times my daughter had telephoned to say, “Mother, you must come to see the daffodils before they are over.” I wanted to go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead “I will come next Tuesday”, I promised a little reluctantly on her third call.

Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and reluctantly I drove there. When I finally walked into Carolyn’s house I was welcomed by the joyful sounds of happy children. I delightedly hugged and greeted my grandchildren.

“Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! The road is invisible in these clouds and fog, and there is nothing in the world except you and these children that I want to see badly enough to drive another inch!”

My daughter smiled calmly and said, “We drive in this all the time, Mother.”

“Well, you won’t get me back on the road until it clears, and then I’m heading for home!” I assured her.

“But first we’re going to see the daffodils. It’s just a few blocks,” Carolyn said. “I’ll drive. I’m used to this.”

“Carolyn,” I said sternly, “Please turn around.” “It’s all right, Mother, I promise. You will never forgive yourself if you miss this experience.”

After about twenty minutes, we turned onto a small gravel road and I saw a small church. On the far side of the church, I saw a hand lettered sign with an arrow that read, “Daffodil Garden.” We got out of the car, each took a child’s hand, and I followed Carolyn down the path. Then, as we turned a corner, I looked up and gasped. Before me lay the most glorious sight.

It looked as though someone had taken a great vat of gold and poured it over the mountain peak and its surrounding slopes. The flowers were planted in majestic, swirling patterns, great ribbons and swaths of deep orange, creamy white, lemon yellow, salmon pink, and saffron and butter Yellow. Each different-colored variety was planted in large groups so that it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue. There were five acres of flowers.

“Who did this?” I asked Carolyn. “Just one woman,” Carolyn answered. “She lives on the property. That’s her home.” Carolyn pointed to a well-kept A-frame house, small and modestly sitting in the midst of all that glory. We walked up to the house.

On the patio, we saw a poster. “Answers to the Questions I Know You Are Asking”, was the headline. The first answer was a simple one. “50,000 Bulbs,” it read. The second answer was, “One at a time, by one woman. Two hands, two feet, and one brain.” The third answer was, “Began in 1958.”

For me, that moment was a life-changing experience. I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than forty years before, had begun, one bulb at a time, to bring her vision of beauty and joy to an obscure mountaintop.

Planting one bulb at a time, year after year, this unknown woman had forever changed the world in which she lived. One day at a time, she had created something of extraordinary magnificence, beauty, and inspiration. The principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principles of celebration.

That is, learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a time–often just one baby-step at time–and learning to love the doing, learning to use the accumulation of time. When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world ..

“It makes me sad in a way,” I admitted to Carolyn. “What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five or forty years ago and had worked away at it ‘one bulb at a time’ through all those years? Just think what I might have been able to achieve!”

My daughter summed up the message of the day in her usual direct way. “Start tomorrow,” she said.

~~ Jaroldeen Asplund Edwards ~~ 

© 2012 Michelle Payne

Affirmation of the Week



Well, although we seem surprised in the UK to yet again have been awash with rain, this affirmation is actually going to post while I’m on holiday! And unless something drastic happens in the world, I’m pretty much guaranteed some of that bright yellow gleaming orb in the sky during daylight. Days and days of sunshine, of warmth and no doubt many ice creams, cool drinks (which will no doubt include some cocktails thank you very much) and for those around the world who are enjoying summer and/or sun at home, perhaps some barbecues on the go!

Oh how we have longed for the sunlight… to be able to shed those thick bulky clothes, to stop carrying our umbrellas for fear of an unexpected downpour (actually I have been doing that for the past week)… to be able to leave our windows open and let fresh air in… to have the kids play in the garden… to use the paddling pools, the slides, the trampolines… to wander around our parks and rivers… to get out in nature and sit on green grass… and of course let’s not forget that it’s strawberry season (although yours truly isn’t reaping the full bumper harvest since the chickens have discovered they actually like fresh grown plump red strawberries… cue the theme tune from The Great Escape!).

Of course we all know that we should be careful in the sun and especially when it’s so hot… dehydration, sunburn, blisters, heat rash, insect bites & stings… are all things that can blight us if we’re not prepared or can’t be bothered… “gleaming” would be one description that could result… screaming another! And yes, the sun can be villified when things do go wrong. So let’s look on the bright side… (yes, I’m sure some of you are now humming away to Eric Idle’s voice in your head)… the sun helps our bodies create Vitamin D… and I also heard that we only need 20 minutes in the sun, without sunscreen (sunscreen will stop Vitamin D being made)… here are some benefits I found via Google:

Strengthens your immune system-critical to stay healthy and reduce likelihood of serious diseases such as cancer

Moderate sun tanning 100% safely

Up to 30,000 Lux – Most effective treatment against SAD in the UK

Energises by conditioning pineal glands

Aids sleep

Aids detoxification of heavy metals

Stimulates blood circulation

Sooths joint and muscle pains and aches

Relief from fibromyalgia and arthritis

Helps to lower blood pressure

Promotes healing of various skin conditions

Stimulates Vitamin D production

Deeply relaxing and warming

And of course let’s not forget some more important things… it makes us SMILE, it LIFTS our hearts and emotions… helps us feel JOY, RELAXES us… what beautiful gifts indeed.

Yet when temperatures do rise here, all you then hear and see are groans, gasps and whinges about how it’s too hot, too sticky, too humid… how people wish it were cooler, less bright and that their appetites have gone. Sometimes, I swear, we humans really don’t grasp when we have it fantastically good!

So let’s appreciate what we have, get outside and enjoy everything we can about the Sun. After all, we’ll all be shivering in our coats come Winter!

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead ♥

© 2012 Michelle Payne

Children Learn What They Live


Children Learn What They Live

If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.
If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.
If children live with fear, they learn to be apprehensive.
If children live with pity, they learn to feel sorry for themselves.
If children live with ridicule, they learn to feel shy.
If children live with jealousy, they learn to feel envy.
If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.
If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.
If children live with tolerance, they learn patience.
If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.
If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.
If children live with recognition, they learn it is good to have a goal.
If children live with sharing, they learn generosity.
If children live with honesty, they learn truthfulness.
If children live with fairness, they learn justice.
If children live with kindness and consideration, they learn respect.
If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and in those about them.
If children live with friendliness, they learn the world is a nice place in which to live.

~~ Dorothy Law Nolte, PhD ~~

Autobiography in Five Short Chapters


Autobiography in Five Short Chapters

Chapter One
I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.
I am lost …. I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter Two
I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend that I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in this same place.
But, it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter Three
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in … it’s a habit … but, my eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.

Chapter Four
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

Chapter Five
I walk down another street.

~~ Portia Nelson ~~

Affirmation of the Week



Very often you hear people saying “I have to” do this, or “I have to” do that.  Then one day, some years ago, I read an article that talked about what it means when we say this and then asked readers to consider changing that thought to *I choose to* instead.

Where we are at present, the paths we walk, the things we do, the people we are with… they are all the result of choices we have made in the past. If I hadn’t chosen to have left home when I did, and move then in the direction I did… I doubt I’d be living precisely where I am, with the job I’m doing at this point in time. I doubt I’d have met the people in my life that helped to shape my attitude to relationships either. The decision to intially leave home sent a ripple out into the world and set a course of action (and consequences) that  I wouldn’t realise the depth of, for many years to come!

Life comes at us in choices… even now, sometimes I find myself thinking I don’t have a choice in a matter… when I do.  When faced with something we don’t want to do, we can always say no!  Too often in life we can be our own worst enemies, we can play victim… even if sometimes there doesn’t seem to be anything that we can do physically… yet we still have a choice as to how we accept things mentally.  We can still choose to do our best and not be limited in other areas of our life. We can choose not to play the blame game, because, let’s be honest, it’s always a lot easier if something is somebody else’s fault!

Where do you feel you don’t have a choice in something? Be as specific as you can be… then ask yourself why you don’t have a choice… reasons can be as varied as being bored, not wanting to embrace change, fear of change, making others feel happy, pleasing others, worry over being seen to be at fault or to blame!

By taking control and asserting our choices, we then become responsible for our actions, for the consequences that ripple out afterwards, we become true to our inner selves, we listen to our hearts, we radiate truth, and, I believe, not only help ourselves but also others… because we can show others that it is possible to walk our talk, that anything is possible if we set our hearts and minds to it, and our lives can be filled with a lot better things than drudgery, routine, greyness, sameness, negativity, passivity… even if it is only in the way that we view our day to day lives… like beauty, isn’t perception in the eye of the beholder?

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead ♥

© 2012 Michelle Payne

The True Names of Birds


There are more ways to abandon a child
than to leave them at the mouth of the woods.
Sometimes by the time you find them, they’ve made up names
for all the birds and constellations, and they’ve broken
their reflections in the lake with sticks.

With my daughter came promises and vows
that unfolded through time like roadmap and led me
to myself as a child, filled with wonder for my father
who could make sound from a wide blade of grass

and his breath. Here in the stillness of the forest,
the sun columning before me temple-ancient,
the wonder is what I regret losing most; that wonder
and the true names of birds.

~~ Susan Goyette ~~

© 2012 Michelle Payne

Affirmation of the Week



Bodies… we live in them, we push them, we over-indulge them, we under-indulge them, we love them, hate them, like them, dislike them… we expect the most from them yet very often don’t even notice how much they do for us.

I do not know of one woman (or man for that matter) who totally accepts their body as it is. There is always something that they would change about it, from being slimmer, being lighter, being heavier, losing cellulite, toning up, having slimmer or longer legs, losing batwings, having dainty hands, clear smooth skin, the perfect pout, the perfect smile, perfect teeth, shiny hair… the list is endless!

Our bodies are marvellous… think about everything yours does, what you ask of it, expect of it… how you treat it… even down to little things like when you get out of the shower, do you smother yourself in lotion to help hydrate the skin? It doesn’t take long and the benefit is long-term.

It sounds like I’m focussing on the appearance aspect here, which I am to a degree, but the effects go much deeper…when we revel in our bodies, when we listen to what they want, it can cause a chain reaction of change… we start feeding ourselves properly (note that I include chocolate in this context *smile*), we either start exercising or exercise ourselves in a more beneficial manner, we begin to appreciate our bodies and ultimately ourselves and then treat ourselves with more respect, grace and gratitude. I could go on… but I won’t.

So this week, why not find one new thing to do this week that will show your body your appreciation of it… and if you feel like sharing, please post a comment and let us know what it is, you might be helping someone else to try something new too!

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead ♥

© 2012 Michelle Payne

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