my brain changers: june

'on changing the way i think'

what are my brain changers
come stay share your thoughts

'on unbecoming'

i first watched 'groundhog day' a few years ago. i loathed it. i found bill murray's character exasperating and andi macdowell's rita equally as irksome. her optimistic naivety felt uncomfortable. i didn't find it remotely funny. i was thoroughly disappointed it did not live up to my 'culturally and historically significant' expectations. 

we recently watched it again. life experiences and introspections aplenty since the last viewing. and it stayed with me. expectations free, i saw it anew. the way i couldn't have done before. the way that now made total sense. the unbecoming of bill murray's cynical weatherman felt acutely personal. aware of the mental effort and time it takes to start paying attention in a particular way, on purpose and non-judgementally. fascinated by how the mind interprets everyday experience and transforms emotions. falling down and muddling through counts way more than standing upright. contentment is a byproduct of intentionally celebrating natural highs. little reasons make up the big reason to live. create what you want right now and see what happens. make way for chances and trust yourself to deal with whatever comes your way.

have you seen it? does it speak to you? tell me

coffee in mirror

'on choosing curiosity over fear'

my recent interest in creative living was inspired entirely by elizabeth gilbert. her 'big magic: creative living beyond fear' changed my mindset and cured me out of an inner void. it urged me to find subtle but restorative meaning in creativity. the everyday kind. i talk about the effect it had on me in more detail when introducing 'creative companions' series. this conversation between elizabeth gilbert and krista tippett for 'on being' podcast was a timely reminder to keep on choosing curiosity


'on new song discovery'

billie marten's 'bird'

'on conscious parenting'

this insightful supersoul conversation between oprah and dr. shefali tsabary, a clinical psychologist, really struck a chord with me. it vocalises so much of how i feel and think as a parent. it confirms and explains my struggles. it uplifts and inspires me to keep on trying. the idea that a child shows the parent where the parent is yet to grow is something i subconsciously wrestled with and resisted. i have since embraced it. and while it doesn't take away the daily parenting trials, it helps not to be so afraid to look at my deeper self. it helps appreciate the connection with little humans through ordinary everyday moments. i hope it helps some of you also.  

'on new favourite book'

'birds art life death: the art of noticing the small and significant' by kyo maclear

a friend lent me a copy. i wouldn't have ordinarily picked it up. i am not a birder and a book about birds felt very out-of-character. yet i savoured it chapter by chapter. falling slowly in love with her writing and way of seeing. feeling like my coming across this 'sketch book' was somehow meant to be. timely. quietly addictive. insightful and hopeful. i have since bought my own copy. to return to and underline at will. 

'on words underlined'

  • 'when you enter a mindset, you enter a new world. in one world - the world of fixed traits - success is about proving you're smart or talented. validating yourself. in the other - the world of changing qualities - it's about stretching yourself to learn something new. developing yourself.' mindset: changing the way you think to fulfil your potential, by prof. carol deck
  • 'it’s harder to look at yourself with this same sense of compassionate detachment. practice helps. as with exercise, you may be sore the first few days, but then you will get a little bit better at it every day. i am learning slowly to bring my crazy pinball-machine mind back to this place of friendly detachment towards myself, so i can look out at the world and see all those other things with respect. try looking at your mind as s wayward puppy that you are trying to paper train. you don’t drop-kick a puppy into the neighbour’s yard every time it puddles on the floor. you just keep bringing it back to the newspaper. so i keep trying gently to bring my mind back to what is really there to be seen, may be to be seen and noted with a kind of reverence. because if i don’t learn to do this, i think i’ll keep getting things wrong.' bird by bird: instructions on writing and life, by anne lamott

'on good things'

  • me watching him watching the stage. awe and wonder on his face
  • our first ever rose blooming. blush ruffled coy and tentative
  • her legs in shorts. scrapes, bumps, bruises and all. somehow still little, yet already grown up too soon
  • evening whisperings of the garden
  • kefir moustaches
  • scent of home grown mint. in tea. in smoothies. freshly picked and unwashed in little mouths
  • emphatic t's as he tells us the name of his favourite bird 'greatttttt titttttttt'
  • scolding coffee sips
  • theatre date night
  • sprinkler squeals
  • being fast asleep by 9pm. two nights in a row 

have a gentle week and thank you again for your company