The podcast has had a refresh! And I’ve kept what you love about it – bitesize episodes packed with insight and inspiration, tools and top tips on how you can bring more calm and joy into your day right now. For this episode we’re looking at the message that you have to hit rock bottom before you can justify taking care of your own needs and wants.
In this episode I share:
Pressing Pause Episode 101 The (potentially harmful) message of self-development books
Welcome to Pressing Pause, I’m your host, Gabrielle Treanor, a coach, writer, introvert and sensitive soul with an inclination to ponder over the stuff of life. Join me as I explore how we can create, find and feel more calm, ease and joy in our daily lives.
If this is your first time listening, welcome, I’m thrilled that you’ve chosen to give this podcast a go and I hope you enjoy what I share. If you’ve listened before you may have noticed that there’s been something of a refresh! I have new music and a new intro, and you’ll see new podcast art too. I’m sticking with my original format of short, solo episodes, about ten minutes or less (this one’s unusual because it’s a bit longer) because I know you love how easily you can listen the episodes. I might feature an interview from time to time if the mood takes me, who knows?! I’m sticking with the name, Pressing Pause, because I love it and it still feels like the exact right name for this podcast.
The reason for this refresh is that since starting Pressing Pause back in 2018 the podcast has evolved and I thought it about time we had a little update to reflect what the podcast, and my work is all about – helping you to feel calmer, more at ease and in control, energised and to enjoy your life much more.
To identify what gets in the way of your calm and joy, including the social, environmental, inter-relational, and personal factors. To find calm through creating, communicating and honouring your boundaries. To understand yourself better so you can live and act in peaceful alignment with your values and your nature. To develop self-trust by practicing self-compassion, self-kindness and self-conservation. And to become more mindful, grounded and resilient so that you’re in control of how you respond and act.
And to help you feel more joy through understanding what joy truly looks and feels like for you personally. By breaking down the barriers that prevent you from accessing joy. By identifying what already brings you joy and how you can amplify it on a daily basis. By valuing the impact that joy has on yourself as well as the ripple effect of your joy on those around you and beyond. And by nurturing, nourishing, sustaining and embodying your joy.
So, if that sounds interesting to you, if it’s striking a chord, perhaps you’re nodding your head along, welcome, you’re in the right place.
And one last thing, I have some big news to share with you at the end of this episode so keep listening for that.
Now, let’s get on with the episode!
Welcome to episode 101. Recently I was talking with a friend about how many of the self-development books we’ve read are in a memoir style. They’re very much about the author’s journey from their crying on the bathroom floor moment to living a full and wondrous life.
These books can be very inspiring, packed with useful information and an engaging read.
However, I think that a message that can be taken from this style of book, whether it be intentional or not, is that before you can (justify or be allowed to) spend time, energy, and perhaps money, on taking care of your own mental and emotional health you need to hit rock bottom.
You have to have that crying on your knees on the bathroom floor moment.
I’m sure it’s not the authors’ intention but is does feed into the story we’re often sold that other people are worse off, you should be grateful for what you have, you’ve nothing to complain about, stop being selfish and get on with it. The societal message we’ve been fed for years.
So where does that leave those who haven’t hit the bathroom floor YET?
Who feel like there’s always too much to do and not enough time. There are people relying on you that you can’t, you mustn’t let down.
Who think if you could just be more organised and have more willpower you’d get your butt in gear and make everything better.
Who want to feel calm, centred, peaceful and joyful.
If you’re not crying on the bathroom floor (yet) does that mean you shouldn’t take care of yourself?
You shouldn’t take up space with your needs and desires?
You shouldn’t create space for what you love to do, what nourishes and rejuvenates, what lifts your heart and just makes you feel so damn good?
Does it mean you should let the colour fade out of your life as you get covered up in layers of people-pleasing, good girl conditioning, comparison, stress and all the gubbins that life throws at you?
Until, finally, you’re in a heap on the bathroom floor wondering how you got there?!
Nope. Nuh-uh. No way. The shoulds are big red flags waving in the air here.
We don’t want you to get to that point. Because at that point things have gone seriously wrong and intervention, perhaps therapy or counselling, is required.
You don’t have to – you don’t want to – wait until you’re a heap on the bath rug to take action to feel better in your life. What we need – and when I say we I mean you, me, the world – is for you to take care of yourself now.
To take action now while you’re still doing all the things, still feeling alright-ish, being okay about you coming last on the list – not because those things are okay because they’re definitely not – but because they’re the big, flashing, warning signs, the canary in the coal mine, that now is the time to do something.
Because… what’s the alternative?
Going through life just feeling alright-ish?
Life being a bit beige, your energy being a bit flat, trying to get through the to do list, ticking everyone’s boxes, striving to keep everyone happy?
Are you really okay with feeling so-so day in, day out? Year in, year out?
If your best friend felt this way would you want her to just put up with it?
Would you tell her to suck it up and to come back to you only when she’s got to breaking point? (Notice the when, not if.)
Yeah, I didn’t think so.
No-one, including you, was put on this earth to live a so-so life.
To grind along feeling okay, being alright and making do. Life isn’t going to be rainbows and super shiny all the time, of course not, it’d actually be pretty monotonous if it was.
But we can certainly take steps to experience more metaphorical sunshine, more ease, more spaciousness, more calm, more joy in our lives if that’s what we want.
You don’t have to be crying on the bathroom floor to make changes. No-one wants you to get to that point, least of all you. So let’s not.
Let’s take action now.
To peel off those weighty layers of life that have been pressing down on you and covering up the real you underneath.
To let go of the stories that keep you busy, keep you always on, keep you putting everyone else ahead of yourself.
To figure out what it is you want, what you need and how you can speak up about it.
To feel in control, to feel free, to feel excited, to be energised and to trust in yourself.
It’s in this mediocre middle ground where you’re treading water – you’re not sinking but you’re not swimming – that it is vital you take action. Because there’s only so long you can tread water for. Eventually you’ll become so tired you’ll sink lower and lower in the water.
While you still have energy make the choice to start swimming. You may begin with the doggy paddle but in time you’ll strengthen your strokes so you’re front crawling, back stroking and butterflying at will.
Make the choice to take action.
What does that look like for you? What are you going to do so that you don’t get close to ending up on your bathroom floor and instead bring the colour back into your life, into your soul?
What and who is going to help you with this? Doing this alone is tough and support will make a big difference so how about, for once, you ask for a hand, perhaps it’s a family member, perhaps it’s a friend, perhaps it’s a coach.
The society we live in with its conditioning, its systems, its pressure, has played a major part in how you come to feeling the way you do. And now, before you hit the bathroom floor, you get to take back some control over your own life. So, what’s the first step for you?
Thank you for listening to Pressing Pause, you can find the show notes at gabrielletreanor.com/podcast. And here’s the big announcement I promised you – The Calm Mind Club is open to join now for the very last time! After three years I have decided to close The Calm Mind Club at the end of this year, 2022, and this month, June, is the final time the doors will be open for you to join and get access to the incredible and vast range of support available to you in The Calm Mind Club. After this month there will be no more opportunities to join the Club.
So, by joining now you will get six months to soak up all the good stuff the Calm Mind Club has to help you to feel calmer and more in control, to feel less stressed about other people’s expectations and opinions, to feel more confident about who you are, and to be the happier, freer, lighter you. Some of the topics you’ll get support on are boundaries, people-pleasing, comparison, saying no without the guilt, coping with change, self-doubt, feeling more joy – and so many more.
There are interviews with amazing women who share their expertise on nutrition and mental health, the monthly cycle, breath work, relationships, decluttering, creativity and lots more.
And you get direct support from me! There are monthly Q&As plus you’ll get the new member bonus of a complementary one to one chat with me so I can help you get the most out of your time in the Calm Mind Club.
There’s so much more to tell you about, including the special offers on courses and coaching only available to members, so go to thecalmmindclub.com and read all about how you can get the support you’re looking for straight away. There’s no waiting, everything is available to you the moment you join and accessible 24/7. You can have a look around inside the Club on the info page too.
So, as I said, this is the very last time The Calm Mind Club is open to join, after this month that’s it, the doors are closed forever. So if you’re looking for guidance, inspiration, support and practical tools to empower you to feel calmer and more in charge of your own life, go to thecalmmindclub.com now and join before the doors close for the final time at the end of June.
And if you have any questions or want to chat about the Club or the podcast feel free to send an email to [email protected]
Thanks again for listening, until next time.
Throughout this website and my work when I refer to women I include people identifying as women.
If you have, or think you may have, a mental health problem that requires professional diagnosis or treatment, please consult a mental health care professional and your GP.
You can also talk to the people at Mind on 0300 123 3393 or SANE on 0300 304 7000 or Samaritans on 116 123.
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