There I stood, in my jeans and a pretty top, with black socks and no shoes, on my way to a school disco. I was 12.
“No-one will notice,” my mom insisted.
“Yes, really,” she continued. “No-one will be looking at your feet. And anyway, your socks are black, so it looks like you are wearing black shoes.”
This was not the only time I felt completely frustrated with my mom’s seemingly careless attitude.
On more than one occasion my mother had stapled my hem on my school skirt … yes, she literally punched 10 to 15 staples all the way around until my hem was up.
“It does the job, doesn’t it?” she would ask as I stood looking at her in disbelief.
By now you may have realised that my mom was … let’s say… eccentric. There’s a fine line between genius and madness, right? Well, I would say my mom would merrily jump between the two quite often, which made for a very interesting childhood.
The night of the almost shoe-less disco was something I will never forget … I say almost because I dug my heels in and REFUSED to go without shoes. I ended up borrowing shoes from a friend. Don’t ask me what happened at the actual disco, because I don’t remember … I only remember the build up to the night because I was filled with emotion – a mixture of anger, confusion and sheer frustration.
The other day I found myself telling my son, who seems to be growing at a rate of knots, that no-one will notice that his jeans are a bit short for him. He stood there, just like I had many years ago, digging his heels in, arms crossed and refusing to go out. I stood there telling him he was being ridiculous, that no-one will care or even notice.
And then I stopped.
And the memories of me fighting with my mom flooded back.
AM I TURNING INTO MY MOTHER?
Surely jeans that are a bit short don’t compare at all to socks masquerading as shoes?
I immediately relented though and started to mull things over.
One thing my mom was damn good at was not giving a damn.
Don’t get me wrong, she cared deeply when it mattered.
But she didn’t care deeply when it didn’t.
She cared deeply about my brother and I on so many important levels – were we happy at school? were we being challenged? did we have real and true friends? were we uncovering our talents and passions?
She didn’t care about whether we followed tradition on Christmas Day (we had Chinese takeaways one year), she didn’t care much about clothes – they were trivial in the big, deep scheme of LIFE but most of all she didn’t care about what other’s thought.
And that’s probably one of the most beautiful lessons she gave me. A lesson I am only NOW just starting to well and truly apply in my life.
As humans, we tend to care FAR TOO MUCH about what others think about us, our actions, our clothes, our selfies, our cars, our achievements, our husbands, our kids’ grades, our promotions – you get the picture.
Who are we living for, anyway? Have you asked yourself this recently?
No-one can make you happy, except for YOU.
So you might as well MAKE YOU happy, and not the Jones’s down the road.
Because it’s all YOU in the end – you spend the most time with YOURSELF – so why not MAKE YOURSELF HAPPY?
When I started The Support Room, I listened to everyone else’s opinion about what I should be doing, except myself.
Nicky, you should start a recruitment agency. That’s where the money is.
Nicky, you can’t be a business coach, you haven’t had enough experience.
Nicky, you can’t be a life coach, there are too many of them out there. The market is saturated.
Nicky, focus on what you know. Don’t start something new. It’s too risky.
And would you believe I listened? I fumbled around for a few years until I finally “woke up” and started caring more about what I wanted and less about other’s opinions. To stop focusing on what everyone else thinks is the easy part and a good start. The hard part is to start listening to yourself.
Yup, that means taking time to reflect.
Taking time to slow down.
Taking time doing things that light you up and fill you with joy.
Taking time for good ol‘ YOU.
So, what does this mean for Luke and his jeans that are too short? Well, he does care about how he looks. It’s important to him. There’s a part of him that cares what others think (he’s only 12 after all), but there’s also a part of him that likes to look good, just for himself. He is very particular about his jeans actually – not too tight, not too loose – they have to be just right. And in standing his ground, he is being true to himself.
To be And really, that’s what I want most for my kids. TRUE to themselves. Because I know that being in alignment with the YOUNESS OF YOU is heaven on earth. And when you are in alignment with your own inner divine spark, with your talents and desires and with your life purpose, somehow not giving a damn about others is much easier to do.
As for my mother, I often wonder if she really would have sent me out to a disco in socks … probably. Because for her, it just didn’t matter … she just didn’t give a SOCK about it.
So, figure out what matters to you and care deeply about that.
As for the rest, life’s too short to stuff a mushroom.
As always, big love and heaps of abundance to all of you
p.s. As you might already know, I love working with people through running workshops and retreats – this is me being true to me … allowing me to truly support and help others to live out their dreams and desires – here’s a list of the different workshops running in the next month or two – hope to connect with you soon.
16 August: Chakra and Wealth Alignment Meditation
18 August: Dream-mapping and goal setting workshop
23 August: Creative Biz Building
8 September: Soul Mapping Retreat