Growth, Self-Care

Living In Alignment

Do you know that feeling you get when you are acting from a place of complete alignment? I physically feel it in my heart – it’s a warm sensation, as if I’m wrapped in an internal hug. Good things happen to me when I’m in this place – opportunities seem to appear out of nowhere, connections deepen, and conversations open – it’s a fertile place for creativity and growth. I call it my ‘heart place’.  Continue reading “Living In Alignment”

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Life Experience

Value of Vulnerability

On Friday 22nd July 2016, it was the 25th anniversary of my father’s death at the age of 38. I don’t often talk about this, mainly because it happened so long ago, but also because it’s only recently that I’ve been able to emotionally connect with the reality of the situation. Thanks to the support of an excellent therapist, over the last few years I have managed to peel back the layers of emotional scar tissue and allow myself to feel the extent of grief buried within me, and, more importantly, allow myself to mourn his death.

Continue reading “Value of Vulnerability”

Identity

Escaping Discomfort

I used to think I was a fat girl inside a skinny girl’s body. I trained for so long in a weight-controlled sport that I was always aware of my weight – usually accurate to within a 100g. But I never felt I belonged in it. At my skinniest, I would feel the absence of something tangible – but I prided myself on my discipline and self-deprivation. I always knew it was temporary, that eventually my greed would outweigh my willpower. Continue reading “Escaping Discomfort”

Life Experience

Breaking Free

For the longest time, I was unfaithful. To boyfriends/friends/partners/lovers – but mainly, to myself. I used and abused my own body. And not even for pleasure, but for power. I measured my worth in my appearance, and valued myself through other people’s eyes.

I would feel the seductive power of the male gaze, and immediately feel the need to harness it in some way – to take control and know that I held the power in this dynamic. Pleasure didn’t really play a part – and neither did I have any real sense of self-worth – I was simply addicted to being in control, and I would do anything to have it. Continue reading “Breaking Free”

Life Experience

Why weight?

For many formative years of my adolescence and early adulthood, I was obsessed with my weight. Not in a fashion-conscious, aspiring to be a model way, but in a weight-controlled competitive martial art kind of way, which seemed to validate my obsession and legitimise my disordered approach to eating. Continue reading “Why weight?”

Identity

Irishness

How do you define someone’s Irishness? Is it by their accent, their passport, their residence, their parents, their birthplace, or is it their appearance? I recently took part in a social experiment by Una Kavanagh to capture images of those of us who are Irish, but don’t look Irish, and are regularly asked “where are you really from?”. Continue reading “Irishness”

Growth

Learning To Accept Kindness From Others

What do you do when you finally step out of the darkness of self-loathing and depression, and the light of love of admiration is too bright? How do you look directly at the beauty of people’s words and gestures when you’ve spent years conditioning yourself to try to fix your broken self? How do you graciously accept a compliment when you are still coming to terms with the fact that you are capable of bringing joy? Continue reading “Learning To Accept Kindness From Others”