Usually when I sit down to write a blog, I have a good idea where it’s gonna go, but today I actually have no idea. I just know I need to put pen to paper.

The last few weeks have been intense and since the start of the New Year, it has been non-stop. Busy with work, the start of a new side project called Soul Gathering in the City and an intense and emotional (and somewhat overdue) conversation with a family member. Generally, things have been moving at a million miles an hour and some of those things have been way out of my comfort zone.

Don’t get me wrong, I love that pace and I am really, really grateful for all the above. But right now it feels different; like I’m caught in limbo.

Where I am right now is genuinely a manifestation of a three year journey since quitting my job and travelling to Mexico to reconnect with myself; to remember what I was good at, what I enjoyed, what made me, me.

I was living a life before then that was aligned only to what I thought I ‘should’ be doing and life choices that looked like they worked so well for everyone else. I walked blindly down the rabbit warren until eventually I burnt out, quitting everything and running to the other side of the world to work with horses (a childhood passion), live off grid and take a big gasp for air.

My life has changed beyond recognition since then as has the way I feel in myself. But sat here now, it feels like I’m almost at the end of that cycle and about to start a new one; it just requires me to step up.

I love my life and am I doing what I love with every ounce of my being. I truly feel, for the first time, that I am living an authentic life. I often find myself driving along to a class, a meeting or to the shop to buy groceries for a retreat and squeeling out loud ‘I LOVE MY LIIIIIFEEEE.’

I have made peace with my childhood and my past, made peace with fear, made peace with the shackles of ‘should’, with who I am and what makes me happy, but there is something still to address and right now it feels like the hardest thing of all; my relationship with myself.

I wholeheartedly love my life, but can I say I wholeheartedly love my self? And if the answer is no (and the answer is no) then how then can I really give the best of myself to my work, my relationships and to the life that I love?

Intellectually, I know I am worthy of love, I deserve love and to become who I can be but I know through self observation and reflection, that self love and worth has always been my challenge.

What recent events have unearthed is the realisation that somewhere deep down, there is an ego root so attached to staying small, so attached to a lack of self-worth, to a feeling that is accompanied with a voice reminding me ‘who do you think you are’ that it feels like I am unable to step forward. I just need to do it, but I can’t.

This time last year, I couldn’t even write a facebook status about my business idea, but with the encouragement of a friend, I eventually did. I felt exposed and had an attack of the ego almost immediately after (sweaty palms/what will people think/who do I think I am?) before finding a peace with myself and those doubts.

Then next came sharing my writing through publishing blogs (my writing is shit/people are going to mock me/what are they saying behind my back? Who cares what I have to say anyway?)

Then last week I stepped up to the next level when I sat with two amazing women on a stage to speak my truth to a room full of people. My face and my voice with nothing to hide behind. Me, exposed.

I rode a wave of self doubt after that night and almost immediately slipped back into unconscious habits – ‘Who was I to be sat there? Was what I said even helpful to others?Did I come across as arrogant?’

The days after saw me reverting back to an old ego habit of trying to rearrange external parts in order to fix a feeling of inner unrest, clutching at or rejecting people or activities in an attempt to sooth the unconscious sense of lack – my lack within me.

A week has now passed, the adrenaline has settled, I’ve chewed the fat with a trusted friend, prioritised time for meditation and mindful practices which has led me to see clearly again and I know now that the only way to move forward, is to step forward.

So last night, sat by the fire, I got out a giant sheet of card and a pot full of coloured pens and scribbled. Scribbled down my goals and purpose for Horizon Retreats, reminding myself of my ‘why’. Scribbled a list of daily personal actions I know to do to keep my mind balanced, body active and healthy and soul fulfilled and happy, along with my hopes, dreams and intentions.

I took a long bath, cooked myself a delicious dinner and presented it beautifully on a plate as if I would to a guest of honour.

I lit a candle and meditated to the crackling of the fire. I repeated affirmations of self-worth and self-love.

When talking to a friend about all this the other night, they asked ‘are you ready?’ and at the time I couldn’t answer.

But sat here right now, I not only understand on an intellectual level, but I accept on the deepest level that self worth is not found in a person, place, job or activity. It is found within, and perhaps most importantly, the only thing that’s holding me back from loving and valuing myself, is me.

So right here, right now, I decide – I am ready. I surrender and I choose love.