Search

Create Space

Creating, living, learning.

Attitude & Altitude

Can a conversation with a taxi driver alter your life’s journey?

 

Recently I was very privileged to have a conversation with what I can only describe as an amazing human “being” – a taxi driver.  He told me he was 80 and when asked why he wasn’t retired and taking life easy, he said his wife had died recently and he had nobody to talk to at home.  I though how sad and lonely that must be but he proceed to tell me that he took up taxi driving because he enjoyed chatting to customers.

He told me he had come through throat cancer, a heart attack, a stroke and recently had his knee replaced.  His friend introduced him to music and as a result he has been going to college, learning music for the last 3 years.  I told him he was amazing and asked what was his secret?  He replied “two things, attitude and altitude”.  I asked what he meant and was blown away when he said “It’s all down to how I look at things, my “attitude” and my love of sky diving or “altitude”.  His last sky dive was in February of this year!  He also uses Facebook!  Hands up anybody who would like to be this adventurous, tech savvy and active at 80 plus!

So can we broaden our horizons of understanding of life by studying our taxi driver?    How many widows or widowers are home alone and lonely?  How difficult must life be when a life-partner dies and leaves you all alone?  How many days might you go without talking to another adult?  What determination and resilience must it take to face up to this new stage of life?  If our mental and physical health allow, we can seek out social interaction and new challenges.  However, if our physical health restricts our movement, life’s horizons becomes limited.  Likewise if anxiety or depression are present, it might accelerate loneliness by resisting social interaction and increasing isolation.  Can we be proactive like this taxi driver?  How can we continue “being” when life as we knew it is no more?  Our taxi driver resisted isolation, he sought out social interaction – human company through his taxi business.  He engaged in new learning.  He maintained a positive attitude and took on new challenges in life and online.  And what can we do?  We can begin by questioning our attitude to life.  Are we on a roundabout, just going round and round?  In other words are we living without questioning our thoughts and behaviours?  Are we caught in ground-hog day, denying ourselves the opportunity to grow, to learn from our experiences.  We can take time out to consider ourselves, our family and our neighbours.  Let’s keep an eye out in our family and neighbourhood for somebody who might be a lonely and give a gentle check-in to ascertain how they’re coping.  Or how about visiting a local Nursing or Retirement Home. Maybe our visit could brighten somebody’s day and we might even be takenaback by how positive that makes us feel!

I wish you a day filled with happiness in your own company or in the company of others!

 

 

Advertisements
Featured post

Inclusive

20180810_125557
My “Cooperative Problem Solving” group. Feeling included was what made me look forward to every minute of this class and Theo Joosten (ICASSI Co-chair), was the type of facilitator who knew the value of creating an air of inclusion.

Inclusive…
‘an intention or policy of including people who might otherwise be excluded or marginalized, such as those who are handicapped or learning-disabled, or racial and sexual minorities.’

Have you ever booked a holiday or a mini-break and been very aware of what’s included in the package? Well, I know anytime I’m lucky enough to plan a holiday, I pay a lot of attention to what’s included as part of the deal!

If I’m booking two nights away for example, I like to have breakfast included on both mornings and it’s a bonus if dinner on the first night is included at a nominal cost.

It’s also encouraging if access to a gym or leisure centre is included at no extra cost as part of the package deal, although any of you who know a little about me will have guessed I’ll probably admire the gym from afar and spend more time relaxing in the sauna than strutting my stuff in the pool! But even so, it’s probably fair to say that inclusivity is important to me!

And maybe that’s why inclusitivity is important in other areas of my life. I’m always aware at any meeting or event of the importance of reaching out and helping others feel included. Just like I did at my recent ICASSI in Bonn. You might like to read about my ICASSI experience here Perfectly Imperfect

I seem to have a radar that helps me spot people who are just a little outside their comfort zone and I enjoy helping them feel at ease.

Years ago, for example, I was involved in setting up a local women’s club and a young mother, a non-national joined us. Most people there made polite conversation with this newly settled person to our rural community but none made a point of actively including her. As a result I tried a little harder to include her and I enjoyed getting to know this lady and watching her settle in and make friends as time went on.

Maybe it’s because I find people fascinating, or maybe it’s because I grew up in a three generational home where my Nana also loved being around people and included me in her frequent visits to neighbours and friends in our locality.

Or maybe it’s because I best describe myself as an introverted extrovert…yes, if you didn’t already know it, you can be both!

So, I like my own company and quiet time but I love people, I love being around people, I love getting to know people and I love people feeling included and being inclusive. This is probably because I hate walking into a social situation on my own. I’ve had to push through that feeling at ICASSI recently (as you can read above) and it’s encouraging to have overcome that challenge. But knowing how it feels for an introvert to face a gathering… of more than one person!… is important, as it gives me insight into what it’s like for anyone who finds themselves on the fringes of any social situations. I know, like me, they probably find it a bit intimidating at first until they find their feet!

So next time you consider a hotel break or wonder what’s included in that all inclusive package deal, spare a thought for inclusitivity in other areas of your life and spread a little of your warmth and social inclusion further afield!

Thanks for your company and for including me in your day! In what ways do you like to be included?  Have you ever felt excluded?  How did it make you feel? Have you ever gone out of your way to include or exclude others?

Much love,

Marie xx

Perfectly imperfect…

Last month I travelled to Bonn for ICASSI 2018, (learn a little more about ICASSI here.)

20180811_131247
Beautiful Bonn

 

I got this opportunity after applying for one of a limited number of places on an Erasmus programme offered by my employers.  I had been hoping, like a real live blogger, to post some updates while in Bonn but my internet connection didn’t live up to my expectations. I’m home almost a month and I’ve been unable to concentrate long enough to pen my thoughts because I’ve been paying and still am paying the price in CFS/FIBRO currency for the huge amount of energy I expended during the wonderful yet demanding week at ICASSI but I wouldn’t have it any other way.  However, thanks to insights from Adlerian Psychology, one of which is having the courage to be imperfect I can accept that a post just over a month later is not perfect but is instead perfectly imperfect. It is good enough, I am good enough and I hope you find it good enough and if not, well that’s ok with me too!

I travelled alone to Bonn, and I didn’t know anybody there except one of the faculty, Karen. I found it a little intimidating heading into the registration area on the evening I arrived. Everybody appeared to know each other, there was an exciting buzz that was upbeat and friendly, yet I felt like an outsider.

20180805_172355
Within a few days I could identify all the people seen here by their first names and within a week I probably knew at least 100 of the 300 participants by their first names.

As soon as I had my name badge on and a cup of tea in my hand I mingled about.  I knew I just had to call upon my courage and do my best to connect with others.

I soon discovered that so many people, from all over the world, have either been to Ireland or are curious about Ireland.  I sat down beside a young Asian lady, who was on her own.  It turned out that it was her first time at ICASSI also.  She came looking for me at tea break a day or two later, asking to take a selfie together and thanking me for talking to her that first evening as she had been feeling lonely and apprehensive in her new surroundings. Reaching out to encourage others takes courage too but it’s definitely worth the effort.

20180808_163730
It was so easy to smile when you were in Sophia’s company, she was like a ray of sunshine! Sadly she can’t access this blog to read my post as it is forbidden in China.

If you were energetic and wanted to partake in an exercise programme, then your day began at 7am. If not you could start your day at 9am, like me, with a Plenary session which was a one and a half hour presentation with power point delivered in English and translated into German or vice versa.

20180805_201400

Tea break was from 10.30 until 11am and morning classes started promptly at 11am until 1pm.  Lunch was available on site if you wished.

I usually walked back to my hotel to grab a quick siesta following my lunch. This helped recharge my battery for the afternoon classes which started promptly at 2pm until 4pm.

20180807_103435
If you are considering a holiday in Bonn, I would highly recommend the V Hotel. If you are a pet lover, it is a dog friendly hotel also!

 

20180807_190657
…guess who wanted his tummy rubbed every time you passed him!

When afternoon class ended there was then the option to attend short presentations from 4.45 to 6pm at which time dinner was served. There was a vast canteen area and plenty of outdoor seating which was so welcoming in the warmth of the evenings and provided ample opportunities to talk to lots of interesting and like-minded people.  Coping with the heat was challenging as it ranged from 31 degrees on Monday to 40 degrees celcius on Wednesday. Thankfully a thunder storm and lots of rain on Thursday saw temperatures drop back around the early 30’s which dare I say felt managable!  Bear in mind 25 degrees is considered a scorcher of a summer’s day in Ireland and quite rare!

There was ample opportunity for socialising every evening and on Monday, Wednesday and Friday an evening programme of entertainment started at 7pm and included a German Night, a talent show and a closing ceremony.  There was a lovely bar where we gathered to relax over a drink or two and there was always someone happy to sing or play a guitar!

There were many different courses to choose from and I decided to participate in two short courses, instead of one long programme.  I chose Cooperative Problem Solving and Encouragement in Stressful Situations. These courses were delivered using an Adlerian approach which is based on respect and social interest.  Working in small groups was a great way to get to know some of the participants better.

20180810_125557
My “Cooperative Problem Solving” group.. I looked forward to every minute of this class and Theo Joosten (ICASSI Co-chair), was the type of facilitator I aspire to be!

I’ve come away from my first ICASSI with so many beautiful memories which include lots of conversations, laughter, fun, cultural insights from participants from 35 countries, renewed awareness of the importance of community, lots of new friends and promises of e-mails, a fantastic approach to cooperative problem solving and strategies from BASIC PH to encourage myself and others through stressful situations.  Looking back now it really was A New Book…a beautiful one!

Thank you for reading and sharing in this experience with me!

I’d love to hear your comments or answer any questions you have.

Much love,

Marie xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

A New Book…a beautiful one!

Hi from Dublin Airport! I’m about to write a new page in my life and learning journey as I fly today from Dublin, Ireland to Bonn, Germany for a week at the 51st Annual Rudolf Dreikurs International Summer Institute ICASSI 2018.  I’d like to thank all of you who have read my post Success…a person or thing that succeeds.

for reading and for your thoughtful comments! A special thanks to Larry ‘Dutch’ Woller at Dutchil/onthepathleasttraveled for his encouragement and very apt quote…

“No, this is not the beginning of a new chapter in my life; this is the beginning of a new book! That first book is already closed, ended, and tossed into the seas; this new book is newly opened, has just begun! Look, it is the first page! And it is a beautiful one!”

C. JoyBell C.

Also he reminds us in his post, linked below, of the importance of adventure with this quote…

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover, acquire new friends and gain knowledge of yourself and the world.” Mark Twain

Check out onthepathleasttraveled if you enjoy insightful posts filled with wonderful, knowledgeable quotes such as in this post… About ‘Dutch’

I’m looking forward to adding more of my adventure as the days unfold!

What’s your most memorable adventure? What thing or things do you now regret not doing?

Much love,

Marie xx

Are You in Control of Your Life? *NEW POST* — MakeItUltra™

By Dr. Perry, PhD “It is our attitude toward events, not events themselves, which we can control.” ~Epictetus Every morning before I head to the office, I go online and check the traffic report. I mentally rehearse my drive, avoiding all congested roadways, and check my backup route just in case. I have a cup […]

via Are You in Control of Your Life? *NEW POST* — MakeItUltra™

Thanks to Dr.Perry for an insightful post.

If you have read any of my posts you will know that bullying is a topic which is close to my heart.  Both my children’s lives were impacted by bulling.  Bullying basically means having control over someone.  Control is one of the things taken from us when we are bullied.

I have found that the best way to help children recover from bullying is to just be a safe space for them to gain back what has been taken from them by bullies.  Be a space where they can rebuild their internal locus of control and take back control over their own lives!

Much love,

Marie xx

Success…a person or thing that succeeds.

20180717_102351
Flourish…because you can

Today I’m counting down the remaining days to my upcoming trip and it reminds me of when I was counting down the final few weeks of my first pregnancy, eagerly awaiting our daughter’s arrival. The feeling was a mixture of concern for the unknown and an all encompassing exhilaration! That feeling was denied to me on my second pregnancy as our son decided to arrive prematurely, 12 weeks early!

That feeling of concern for the unknown and an all encompassing exhilaration is back…as I prepare for my trip to ICASSI in Bonn!!

I realise I have been given an opportunity through this experience to put into practice some of Adler’s theories. Bettner and Lew’s Crucial “C’s” built on Adler’s theories, believing that in order for us to develop and flourish we need to overcome our mistaken goals of misbehavour; our mistaken opinion of our capability and our mistaken value placed on the opinion of others. By engaging with a new adventure I can discover more about this simple approach to achieving Life’s goals.

To be successful;
1. I need to believe I belong…I CONNECT.
2. I need to believe I can…I’M CAPABLE.
3. I need to believe I make a difference…I COUNT.
4. I need to believe I can handle it… I’VE COURAGE.

But the challenge for me lies in handling this new experience with empathy for my fibro/fatigue and recurrent heart arrhythmia. How do I participate rather than find excuses to avoid? How do I develop and flourish rather than stay static? How do I best balance self-care with personal and professional development? How do I build on my social interest rather than self-isolate? How do I get the balance right?

I hope I will discover how as I proceed through this new experience. Thanks for reading and it’s lovely having your company on this learning journey.  How have you overcome challenges?  How have you developed and flourished?

Much love,

Marie xx

Change the world. One compliment at a time.

Life changing events happen! We can make them happen! Start by reading this great post from Dr.Andrea Dinardo at Thriving Under Pressure.

Encouragement…might be a big word but it contains 3 small syllables, 2 of which are “Courage” and “Ment”…so don’t hold back, put your heart into it, because when it’s truly “Meant” a compliment can give the receiver untold amounts of “Courage”…go on Encourage someone today!

Thriving Under Pressure

image

Celebrate their strengths.

Today I encourage you to notice the little things in everyone you meet. Their smile. What lifts them up. What makes their heart sing. How hard they work. How they get through a day.

Show them you care.

Acknowledge them. Notice them. Lean in. Listen completely. Praise their hard work. Compliment their positive attitude. Encourage their dreams. Thank them for their service.

It only takes a moment to change a life.

Never forget how good it feels to hear something positive about yourself. Pass the good vibes on.💛💫

kindness

View original post

Self-Care Share — MakeItUltra™

Hello everyone, As you go about your week make sure to take time for self-care for you and your loved ones. Self-care can take on different forms. Below is something I came across that is a great reminder. Try to do as many of these as you can or make your own list! Wishing you […]

via Self-Care Share — MakeItUltra™

What a great reminder to practice self-care!

Be kind to yourself, connect with others, be part of something, belong, be confident, reach out, be courageous try something new and encourage others by your actions!  There are plenty of ideas here! Go on, make self-care fun!!

Marie xx

Blogging, Belonging & Becoming…

It’s hard to believe it’s been almost two years since I wrote and tentatively shared my first post about a conversation with a rather unique taxi driver.  If you have a chance please read it here… Attitude & Altitude

That post set me up as a ‘Blogger’ and after taking part in my first Adlerian Psychology Summer School Workshop, I wrote about having “Confidence” and if you’d like to learn a little more, you’ll find it here…Confidence

20170709_152802
CRUCIAL C’s…..”Sometimes the answers to our problems are there all along…we just have to try and look at them from a different angle!” Marie Clancy.

Well, now fast forward almost two years and I’m still here scribbling my thoughts, sharing my feelings and finding answers.

I’ve also taken part in two more Adlerian Summer School Workshops with the ANI (Adlerian Network of Ireland), read about their work here… ANI Clonmel, Ireland and I can without doubt say that together with all the roles any woman juggles on a daily basis, the combination of those and connecting with others through Adlerian Psychology, WordPress Blogging and my work as an Adult Education Tutor have changed my perspective to one of positivity and gratitude and have helped me flourish.

So, I can hardly believe it when, what was merely a dream of mine when I first heard of it last summer, is now about to transpire!…

I have the opportunity to travel to Bonn, in Germany to take part in my first ever ICASSI programme next week.  I am beyond delighted and still slightly in disbelief to have been successful in my application for an Erasmus, (a culture & character building programme) through my employer Tipperary Education & Training Board! Information on TETB here… TETB

ICASSI  is the International Conference of Adlerian Summer Schools and Institutes and is the umbrella body of all Adlerian Networks around the world.  To say I am excited would be a gross understatement!! 😃🎁!

Actually if I am honest, I am both excited and nervous about this week long trip of personal & professional training programmes.  I am travelling solo, not knowing of anyone else travelling from Ireland.  When I get there I don’t expect to know anybody either, bar one of the Psychologists (who all give of their time voluntarily to deliver the workshops), namely Karen John, learn about Karen here… Karen John

Karen was my first mentor at my first workshop and she helped me gain new insights which have changed how I belong and become in this world!

My health has been troublesome since Easter but I am hoping the now daily ventricular ectopics and arrhythmia behave themselves until I return home, when I have a Consultant’s review arranged.  I’m also very aware of the need for self-care to pro-actively manage my fibro/fatigue by having regular mindful moments (similar to my Just One minute Monday posts) and using my 3 P’s of Pacing, Prioritising and Planning.  Or maybe I should change that to 4 P’s and truthfully add Procrastinating!

And so, as I go about my one day today and in a week’s time head away to Bonn I know I have all I need to flourish and thrive in Adler’s Crucial C’s and if you’d like, you can read about them here…Crucial C’s

So time and energy permitting I hope to post some updates along the way!  If you have time please feel free to share your thoughts, I’d love your company! If you know of anybody attending please pass this on to them as I hope to get to know some really nice people.

Much love,

Marie  xx

Our Teachers — Untangled

I feel grateful and humbled by the teachers that I have along the way. They give me strength, wisdom and extraordinary courage to spread my wings and fly. ©Alexis Rose, Photo by Allef Vinicius on Unsplash Thank you for reading my books: If I Could Tell You How It Feels, and Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph

via Our Teachers — Untangled

Re-blog of a beautiful and thought provoking post by Alexis Rose.  But I would like to ask, can we really give somebody strength, wisdom and courage? Or can we simply “HOLD” them until they are ready to trust in their own strength, wisdom and courage?

I think every good teacher, mentor, mother, parent, carer knows they CAN be an external motivator, encouraging you along the right path but they can’t give you anything unless you are internally motivated; open to, ready, willing, to accept it and to change in a positive way; …they simply SUPPORT you, using unconditional love and a lot of other techniques and skills in finding your own strength, wisdom and extraordinary courage, which was simply buried under life’s struggles, dented confidence and injured self-esteem!

What do you think?  Do people give you courage etc or do they simply model what courage looks like until you are ready to acknowledge your own innate abilities and talents?

Much love,

Marie xx

 

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑