Appreciation and Achievement

How to realise your true potential.
Start today – with resilience and courage you can endure each day with a positive attitude. In the words of Viktor Frankl ‘you can choose greatness for your life; reaching your full potential is not something that happens by mere chance but rather is the result of marching towards a destination that is beyond what you would typically try to achieve’.

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The Butterfly

The butterfly held particular significance for my wonderful friend and colleague, Walter who tragically lost his first grand-daughter before her first birthday. At that time he was updating my website, Mindcircles, and as always his inspiration came in the form of a butterfly to which he added in his inimitable way some inspirational words.

After this, and more recently, the loss of my gorgeous talented son Bruce, the butterfly held even more significance. It reminded me that life is short, and of course even shorter for some. Take a moment to think about the journey of a butterfly. It starts life as an egg, hatches into a caterpillar, then it becomes a cocoon, emerging eventually as a beautiful butterfly. It lives only for a short while and this is a lesson for us all that life is but a fleeting journey and to make the most of it while here. For me, butterflies have such a magical presence and quality as they dance on the air and flit from flower to flower. They are graceful and magnificent and their journey through life is so reflective of our own ‘spiritual’ journey.

Some people ask me if there is a message for them if they see a butterfly and my answer is yes. Like a butterfly, you start as a simple being, you learn to function in this world, you crawl, walk and run through life in your day-to-day journey, but all the time you search for a deeper meaning. Eventually many, hopefully you too, get in touch with your inner self (quite like wrapping yourself in a cocoon). Different people do this in different ways such as meditating, reading, studying spiritual matters, praying. When you are ready you emerge to share yourself with the world. Remember although we live longer than the butterfly, life is fleeting and time passes quickly, too quickly. Sometimes you don’t even realise this and suddenly the years have slipped away.

Butterflies represent change, creativity, freedom and joy. The message that a butterfly sends, is to enjoy the present moment, make the most of your existence. When you see a butterfly, stop for a moment and take a look at what is going in your life.  

Are you ready for change? Are you moving through change but still have some fears? Think of the butterfly and you have strength to move forward, face and embrace change. View it as an opportunity to grow and be creative. Don’t take life too seriously. So the next time you see a butterfly – take heed.

Year of the Dog

What is more apt than a pic of  Fudge, the beagle with her friend Darcy, the Vizsla

I am writing this blog not just to welcome in the Chinese New Year – the Year of the Dog – but also to help those (many not all) who perhaps made New Year resolutions for 1st January 2018 but have not managed to start their journey towards achieving them or have stalled in their progress.

As all of you will know I do tend to procrastinate and this year was no different. What has motivated me was watching the performance on Friday 16th February 2018 of The Dragon of the Western Sea performed by Primary 5 and 6 children from Jordanhill Primary School, Glasgow with costumes made by Primary 7. Although the children had learned the words what was amazing was the actual performance which only commenced in the morning of 16th February at 10 am and performed before an audience of parents, guests of Scottish Opera and the Chinese embassy at 2.30 pm.

The performance was to mark the official launch of Scottish Opera’s Confucius Classroom Hub status. The performance is taken on tour round primary school pupils. The opera is about the exciting voyages of 14th Century Chinese commander, Admiral Zheng He, composed by Alan Penman with lyrics by Ross Stenhouse. Pupils learn the words and songs in their own classrooms and then work with a Scottish Opera team to prepare for a performance in front of the rest of the school, friends and family.

Having been amazed by these young children learning so quickly and performing something spectacular has me thinking about my performance from now throughout the year. It is never too late to start on your goals. Keep your dreams alive.

Also what got me thinking was that it is the Year of the Dog. Anyone who has a dog knows that it is honest, loyal and are the truest friends and most reliable partner. Now I am not suggesting that you ditch your current ‘partner’ for a dog but I ask you to consider how you treat each other but more importantly how you treat yourself.

From the many social media posts (particularly since Valentine’s Day) many have talked about how difficult it is to be surrounded by ‘couples’ and feeling alone. However try to remember that many so-called couples are not necessarily happy but find it too difficult to break what I will call for the moment ‘the habit’ of being with that person. Obviously if it is abusive I can only ask you to ‘get out of such a relationship’. Dealing with relationship issues is for another blog.

Those who feel lonely I ask you to think about what you can do for yourself, take care of yourself, love yourself (even those in relationships, if you love yourself then you have much more to go around for your partner).

Start now. Take a ‘new’ view of yourself and the opportunity to renew your goals. Dream big. If you have faced challenges since the New Year (and before) then why not create your own bit of happiness. It can be something simple like wearing your favourite and taking time to connect with the most important person in your life – yourself (then with other people).

Sending positive thoughts to you all. Give yourself a hug. Send me your comments – constructive and positive stories please.

Much love to all



What is more apt than a pic of Fudge, the beagle with her friend Darcy, the Vizsla.

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Fix You

Sometimes I wish I were a boy again, running home to Mum with trousers torn at the knee and underneath, a skinned knee, bleeding like it will never stop. As I run the tears roll down my face, not because of pain although there was some, more about the ‘hiding’ I was going to get when Mum saw my trousers. Knowing what would happen when I reached home did not slow me down because I knew she would fix it; both the trousers and the knee, that overwhelming joy that ran through me because I knew that in a few hours there would be no blood, pain would be fading, my trousers would be mended and I would have been forgiven and cared for again  – FIXED.

As I finally walk away from the small grave, with broken heart and a pain that I had not experienced ever before. I wished and wished that I was running home to Mum so that she could fix it… that feeling of knowing, that in a few hours all of it would be fixed, forgiven. Life moving on as if it had never happened. If only. If only. There are times when there are just too few words left to heal us, no actions left that can help us, when what we wish for is to be carried, cared and understood, but all of those around you have no understanding, how could they… just impossible.

All that is left is the hope that tomorrow will be a more gentle place to land than today. I read this somewhere ‘Missing someone gets easier every day because even though it’s one day further from the last time you saw each other, it’s one day closer to the next time you will.’ Of all the times it has been said to me that time is a healer it was not until I read those few words that I started to believe that time is a healer and not the negative, that when said, brings out more guilt because you think time is simply fixing it by allowing you to forget. The passing of time is simply watering down the loss, not the memory, the memory stays rock solid, this way, when you meet again, the wilderness in between will matter not.