Soulful Sunday #60: The Other Side Of Fear

The other side of fear

Welcome to my fifty-sixth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my dreams and intentions for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

Fear is debilitating. It can literally leave us paralysed with anxiety.

There is a famous quote (and book for that matter) by Susan Jeffers who reminds us:

Feel the fear and do it anyway.

My biggest work over the last few months has been to face my fears around labour, particularly around the ‘normal’ practice of hospitals whose medical interventions often result in unnecessary trauma for both Mum and baby. Don’t get me wrong, in a medical emergency these procedures can save lives; but in a normal, safe, healthy pregnancy and birth, such interventions often cause more harm than good.  Is it any wonder then, that we hear so many horror stories about birth?

Once my fears were acknowledged, I could then begin to dissolve them. I turned to natural birthing books and absorbed myself in the thousands of positive birth stories (yes – they exist!!!) each contained. The more I read, the more I began to meet women who had birthed naturally, and with less complications (if any) than those who had birthed at the hands of doctors and drugs.

We also decided on Hypno-birthing classes to prepare ourselves for a calm birth using breath work, relaxations, visualisations, strengthening affirmations and natures own pain relief; oxytocin – all of which helped to deepen our confidence and trust in a natural birth.

Whilst our preparations do not guarantee us a smooth, uninterrupted birth with little to no complication or medical intervention; what they do provide us with are the innate tools to birth in love and trust, rather than shrouded in fear.

Of course, there are always some residue fears of the unknown and lingering What if’s? But since the only way out of my birth is through, I must ‘feel the fear and do it anyway.’

The only way out is through.

– Robert Frost

And through we shall go, in love and trust.

Soul Strolls

With three weeks to go until we meet our baby, strolling has become somewhat of a waddle! The pelvic pressure is real haha And so, after finishing my last week of work last Friday, I decided to put my feet up and rest this pregnant body.

I booked in for a pregnancy massage at Endota Spa (which was the best massage I’ve ever had, and I’ve had a lot!) and soaked up the healing vibes. I plan to spend the next three weeks resting and nourishing myself and our baby, and enjoying our last few weeks as a ‘two.’

HAYLEY_28(LowRes)

‘Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.’ – Marcel Proust

Soul Recipes

This recipe is an oldy but a goody of mine. I love using my slow cooker, and this dish lends itself perfectly to one. It’s hearty, it’s comforting, it’s delicious and it’s even healthy My Hearty Lentil Curry gets a thumbs up every time. Let me know what you think!

Lentil-Curry-Recipe-FV-768x520

Yummy lentil curry!

Soul Music

On the other side of fear lies freedom and peace. So today I would love to share this delightfully peaceful track by Ashana titled Deep Peace. Put you feet up, take a deep breath in and receive the deep peace flowing to you. Now sigh and release. You are free. You are safe. You are secure and loved.

Soul Sisters

Today I would love to share this beautifully nourishing poem titled Bliss by Aroused. A timely reminder for us to connect with our intuition within and to trust.

Wrapping you all in a warm loving hug on this soulful Sunday.

Love always,

Hayley xx

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Soulful Sunday #52: Slow Down

Nature Does Not Hurry

Welcome to my fifty-second instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my hopes and dreams for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

As I move deeper into my Third trimester, if there’s one thing pregnancy is really teaching me, it is to SLOW DOWN. As Lao Tzu so profoundly reminds us:

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.

– Lao Tzu

It’s so easy to become caught in the lists of ‘To Do’s’ and ‘musts’ and ‘shoulds’ when we live in a society governed by time. But when we let go of the need to ‘hurry’ – time expands. It is from this expansive space that our actions become inspired, rather than ruled by frantic doing.

As we move into a new week, I encourage you to slow down and tune in. Notice if your actions become more purposeful (and pleasurable) as a result.

Soul Strolls

Walking has been my favourite form of exercise during pregnancy, along with yoga. But having recently moved house to an unfamiliar area, my daily walk came to a screeching halt. For a whole month!

And boy did I feel it; physically AND emotionally.

You see, walking doesn’t just keep me fit and active, walking INVIGORATES me. It brings me new perspective and fresh insight, allowing me to step away from the daily grind to just appreciate, breathe and BE.
As I move closer and closer to my due date, it’s my hope to go slow and steady, just like nature. To trust that everything will fall into place, with little need for ‘hurry’.
Where in your life can you embrace the power of nature and SLOW DOWN, trusting that all will be accomplished at the right time?
Grasslands Reserve
Soul Food
Soul food for me this Sunday was a simple cook up with my man. Naughty, but nice. Life is about balance, and you can’t beat a good old fashioned breakfast of hashbrowns and scrambled eggs whilst listening to some country music! Sometimes it’s the simple things in life that bring us the most pleasure.
scrambled eggs!

Stapleton and scrambled eggs – yum!

Soul Music
Since Chris Stapleton’s velvety tones soothed our souls over breakfast this morning, it seems appropriate to share one of his many incredible tracks. One of our favourite songs reminds us that love is the most potent of riches, and it is with this song I wish you a millionaire of love.
Soul Connections
I’d love to share this simplistic yet profound poem titled Sip Your Coffee Nice and Slow  by Kamal at Boundless Blessings.
Head on over for a nice, heartwarming reminder to enjoy the slow.
Wishing you a slow, soulful Sunday filled with love and simple riches.
Love Always,
Hayley xx

Sacred Home

Pregnancy has certainly brought with it many physical and emotional challenges; some which have been easier to embrace than others! It’s been a constant journey of reconnecting with myself and the life-force within to fully appreciate and accept all the changes my body must undergo to create and birth this precious new life.

I can’t stress enough the importance of caring for our emotional and physical wellbeing during this delicate transition. This is something I’ve had to remind myself daily.

There have been days and weeks when my health has been at it’s optimal, and days when I’ve opted to skip my self-care practice and nourishment to reach for that comforting treat.

The key here is to monitor your self-talk and remember to be BE KIND. Be mindful of how you talk to yourself. Your body listens!!!! So no berating or self-judgment please ladies…

But just as your body listens, your body talks.

Are you listening to your body and what it needs? Rest, fresh air, movement, nourishment, gentle caresses and positive-self-talk?

There is no better time than the present to love and care for your body, your sacred home 🙏🏻 So what are you waiting for?

Love always,

Hayley xx

Soulful Sunday #51: Inspired Action

Welcome to my fifty first instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my hopes and dreams for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Hello Soul Friends,

I haven’t posted a Soulful Sunday post for two weeks, and am so grateful to be reconnecting with my usual weekly feature. In saying that, I enjoyed the break and freedom from my usual routine, which I spent camping over the Easter weekend and moving house the following.

For the last two Sunday’s I could hear myself saying…. “I SHOULD write my Sunday post…” even when I didn’t feel inspired to do so. I was present with my friends camping in nature…and then present to the process of moving house. Writing felt like a ‘should.’ This weekend, I’m feeling very much inspired to write. The space has opened up. And I am fully present to the writing process. Ahhh. Now doesn’t that feel better?

Sometimes we forget that it’s ok to ease up from our daily duties when other matters take centre stage for a while. If there is something that is feeling like a ‘should’ to you, then ask yourself:

Why do I feel obligated to do this?

What is the outcome of me not doing it?

Why am I feeling resistance towards doing this?

Is there a better time for me to attend to this or is this something I can eliminate altogether?

Then take action accordingly.

Soul Reflections

This week I’ve been sitting with the feeling of ‘inspired action.’ Letting go of the ‘shoulds’ and connecting more deeply with what inspires me. Of course, there are certain responsibilities we must tend to each day, daily duties that require our attention. Duties that, with a small shift in perspective can be tackled from a place of gratitude for renewed vigour.

But I also invite you to consider where in your life you can carve out some space for INSPIRED ACTION.  The answer may just lie in letting go of some of the ‘shoulds’ that take up unnecessary time – time fillers or distractions designed to keep us from doing what we feel most inspired to do. We all have them: responding to non-urgent emails/messages, sorting out the junk drawer, scrolling through social media, getting caught up in the drama on television or real life.

Instead, turn off any distractions and get still. Take a pen and paper and begin to free write. Let your heart run wild and free. If you weren’t bound by limitations, what would you be doing? What would your life look like? Now ask yourself – What action can I take today to bring my dreams closer to my reality?

Today, see if you can take one small step in the direction of your dreams.

Soul Strolls

Before our house move last weekend, we managed to get away for the long Easter weekend break. On a whim, we decided to join our friends camping near Mount Bogong, the highest mountain in Victoria, Australia.

We arrived a day later than the rest of the tribe, and so missed the trek to the top of the mountain. At 6 months pregnant, I didn’t feel too bummed about that. It was still nice to join our friends around the camp fire for an evening of relaxing, connecting and enjoying camp food. And to our surprise, we woke in the morning to find that the Easter Bunny had paid us a visit!

Yum!

My man looking very happy with his chocolate egg!

Soul Food

I want to share this delicious  Pork, Pineapple and Coconut Curry from one of my favourite wellness bloggers, Alice Nicholls. I opted to cook it in the stock pot which meant the pork was melt-in-the-mouth tender by the time we arrived home. I also added some Bok Choy. This is such a yummy, heart-warming dish perfect for the cooler Melbourne weather.

Australian-Pork-Campaign-2

Soul Music

In light of us catching our dreams and turning them into reality, I’d like to share this soothing track titled Dreamcatcher by Kamal. Why not have a listen and become lost in its magical melody as you manifest your dreams into reality?

Soul Sisters

Today, I’d like to share Brittany’s post, Living Large Through Little Things, who aptly reminds us that sometimes, inspired action can simply mean tending to the ‘little things’, which are actually the big things. Head on over for an inspirational, and heartwarming read.

Wishing each and every one of you an inspired Sunday. Now go catch those dreams!

Love Always,

Hayley xx

 

 

It’s Everywhere

It’s there. Even if it doesn’t always feel that way… The good. It’s everywhere.

Sometimes we’re too in our head, caught in our dramas or those of another, and the beauty is missed.

Today, find the good…

That gentle reassuring touch; a familiar smile; butter melting on warm toast; tea in your favourite mug; fresh sheets; song birds in the morning; silly dancing to your favourite tune; watching the sunset at the end of a long day; taking your next breath and exhaling deeply with a smile…

Don’t let moments like these pass you by, for they may never come to pass again.

Life is good. And today is for living.

Love always,

Hayley xx

Write Your Story

Once we accept the truth, that we are the authors of our own life, suddenly our choices, responses, and the way we choose to show up in the world become essential to a happy, purposeful existence. We are no longer a victim of circumstances.

It’s far too easy to fall into auto pilot mode; complaining, focusing on lack, grumbling about others or our situation… But the more we focus on these things, the more we find cause for complaint.

Today, ask yourself what new story you’d like to create for yourself? What future chapters do you wish to become your present day reality?

More money? Love? Health? Abundance? Generosity? Laughter? Joy?

Embrace the energy of each desired essence and begin to live your story NOW.

‘It’s never too late to be what you might have been.’ – George Elliot

Love always,

Hayley xx

Soulful Sunday #50: Own Your Power

Give up Power

Welcome to my fiftieth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my hopes and dreams for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

It’s a sad affair but one that unfortunately happens too often; we hand our power over to other people. Why do we do this? Because somehow, somewhere along the line we managed to lose our self-belief and in it’s place, developed a diminished faith in our own abilities.

But it’s time we stood in our strength and took back our power.

There is no doubt that we are highly intuitive individuals who need not rely on others to tell us how to live, especially when their advice feels counter intuitive to what our heart and our gut are telling us.

In this last week alone I have had two people, tell me that it’s highly unlikely I will be able to birth naturally. My response? I simply tossed their words in the ‘waste paper basket’ whilst sending them love.

Listen only to words that inspire, empower and uplift. Listen only to words of love.  Henry Ford had it right when he said:

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right.”

– Henry Ford

So today, believe you can. Embrace and own your true essence and power. Know that you posses all of the courage and grit required to achieve anything you set you mind to. Now do it.

Soul Strolls

It’s not often I take my camera out walking anymore. I like to keep my body light and free since i’m carrying a little person inside! But as our move to our new home approaches, I’d like to share a few shots I captured last year at my local park.

I stroll through Princes Park each night after work. Walking allows me to let go of the working day and to breathe fresh air into my lungs. My walks invigorate and nourish me. It’s a chance to clear my head and let go of any troubles I may be holding onto. Plus I get to move my body in a way that is gentle yet effective.

Here are just a few photod I’ve captured along my soul strolls to and through my local park. Hmm there seems to be a pink theme I’ve noticed….the colour of love?

 

Soul Food

This isn’t a recipe as such, but a little soul food that I arrived home to today after I woke feeling a little emotional and low on energy.

I went for a walk to restore my energy, only to arrive home to the scrumptious omelette lovingly prepared by my delicious man. He’s a little annoyed that it wasn’t ‘central’ on the plate before I snapped the photo, but as I gently reminded him – nothing is perfect, only perfectly imperfect in every way.

omelette by Daley

Soul Music

I am so in love with this track by Jai Jagdeesh, You Are Loved. Each words brings such profound comfort and joy. I urge you to listen to it again and again as I have! And as you do, ‘know you are loved.’

Soul Sisters

I usually share the words of a fellow blogger here each week, but this week I feel called to share two beautiful books I have been reading on the topic of natural birth.

Each one has empowered me on my journey towards a natural, drug free birth and has reminded me of my own inner strength and power. If you know anyone who is pregnant and may be feeling fearful about their labour, or has experienced a traumatic labour in the past – purchase one of these books as a gift. They truly are priceless gems of wisdom.

Authors Katrina Zaslavsky and Jenny Blyth have shifted my feelings of helplessness, dis-empowerment and fear about my labour, restoring within me a deep faith and trust in my innate ability to connect to my body, my baby and my birthing experience.

 

On this Soulful Sunday, know that I am wrapping you all in a warm hug, grateful hug. May you remember your strength. May you tune into your intuition. May you reclaim your power and go forth with confidence, ease and trust.

Love always,

Hayley xx