Creating space for you.

A month ago today I was on a plane bound for India. Leaving behind a very detailed spreadsheet for my husband and a million things I didn’t get a chance to do before I left. The preparation required for me to step out of our family life for 10 days was actually ridiculous, either due to my belief that they couldn’t cope without me or my insane need to control? Who knows which one, but the bottom line is they survived, the house didn’t burn down and no one was left at school at 3.30pm.

When ten days in India was offered to me through our travel business I jumped at it, almost as if I knew I had to go. India had never been at the top of my bucket list. Even though I love the kind of travel that changes you, I was apprehensive about the chaos and sheer number of people in India. Never mind all the tales of Delhi belly that everyone warns you about. Funnily enough be careful what you manifest because I was one of the few in the group to get sick.

I found myself saying yes to this trip even before seeing the itinerary, just an inner knowing that I had to go. Perhaps the gods were steering me there because everything about this experience has felt karmic and exquisitely timed.

We all know that travel changes you. It opens your eyes to corners of the world you haven’t seen before. To foods you haven’t tasted, cultures you are unfamiliar with and introduces you to people you’ve never met. It makes you think about your existence, your connection to other worlds and gives you the opportunity to experience your own self in a different way. When you are living your daily life at home you are well within your comfort zone, and when you step out of that to travel and see something new, you take a journey within yourself. I love that feeling, I find it addictive and I will chase that for the rest of my life. I know my travel industry friends will relate to this.

The timing was perfect for me. Although I love my life and I’m grateful for all of the blessings and people in it, personally I was at a bit of crossroads. Earlier this year I set up my Coaching business with plans to grow and expand it whilst at the same time I have a thriving travel business which I also love and enjoy. What to do? Grow one and transition out of the other or do both and see what happens? On a personal level, we had just been through a final and unsuccessful round of IVF after a 7- year break, leaving me a little confused as to what was next for me. The highs and lows of IVF had struck me down once again and I was in a bit of a funk to tell you the truth. Going to India didn’t answer all of the questions, but it gave me the opportunity to step back from my life, be in the moment and only have to make decisions for myself for a week or two. When you have people at home depending on you, especially little ones, a workplace that needs you to show up, family and friends and responsibilities at home, it can be hard to find space for yourself. Let alone make big decisions about your future.

Although this trip was no great hardship, 5 star Taj hotels and even a 2 night stay in a Palace, I was away from home, out of my normal routine and able to hear myself think. Whether you do this in India, or at home on a Saturday afternoon for 2 hours in your own backyard, this kind of solitude and time for yourself is so deeply rewarding for your soul. My solitude came on planes, car trips and and spending time in nature but this can just as easily be achieved by attending a course, going out for a coffee, reading a book or heading away for a weekend. You may not always feel the magic at the time but when looking back you can no doubt see the benefits. I made new friendships and connections that I know I will have for many years to come, I spent time reflecting and engaged in meaningful conversations and many moments in fabulous belly laughs…we did a lot of laughing on this trip. So really just time to be Jo. Not Mum, wife, daughter, coach, travel agent, not friend. Just Jo – pure and simple.

I value all of those roles in my life and sometimes we get stuck in them forgetting who we really are and what lies beneath.

What do I really love to do, what makes me tick, what motivates me, what thrills me and what makes me feel full on the inside? These are parts of ourselves we can forget about when we are stuck in our daily roles. Stepping out of these roles just gave me the opportunity to strip it back and get clear on my purpose for doing what I do.

Do you need to travel to do this? Not necessarily, but it’s a great jump start and for me India just took me back to basics and reminded me of the things I love about life. What I’m passionate about and what brings me joy.

What would it take for you to leave your life for an afternoon, an evening, a weekend or even 10 days?

What would you want to experience and learn about yourself?

Would you allow this for yourself and do you believe you deserve it?

I truly hope so…because that knowing, that you do deserve it, can open so many doors and opportunities for you.

I will be forever grateful for India. Since I’ve been back I have clarity on what’s next for me and for My Soultime. I’m excited about combining my two loves, travel and personal development, and look forward to sharing it with you all very soon. Let’s just say there will be workshops, weekends, retreats and escapes for the taking.

Love and light.

Jo


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