Step 1 to a joyful life is… Uhmm, anyone?

Last night, I got a voice note from a friend.

“Hilde, you’ve got to tell me how you do it. I’m so jealous. I wish I could just go away by myself like you do, just up and leave. I really need to figure that out. Teach me!”

Of course, I don’t ‘just up and leave’ whenever I want to. What mother, wife, worker, employer can do what she wants, when she wants to, all by herself? But truth be told, now and again I do take off and go fill my cup. Sometimes for an hour, sometimes for a few days. I got that she envied that. And I truly wanted to give her some profound words of advice. So I started typing my response. 

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There's a psychic in my bed

Personality types have always fascinated me. Mostly, of course, my own personality. How do I relate to people? How do I respond in conflict? How do I show love? To what extent do I include others in my life? In short, who am I, really?

I can tell you all about the MBTI, the Big Five, Jung, 16PF, and many other well-researched personality assessments. Nothing much wrong with them. But I have discovered the best one of them all. It is spot on. Brutally honest. As balanced or unbalanced as you are. It accurately describes your light and your shadow sides – a spectacular display of your very best and very worst characteristics.

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Hallelujah, I'm super-average!

I had always been special. Born to parents who lived in the public eye, in a generation and community where the public eye was all that really mattered, I understood the importance of applause. Lucky for the small, special me, my older siblings did not buy into the pleasing-others scenario. Or if they did, they didn’t pull it off. Whatever the reason, I got centre stage as I wooed my way through years of extraordinary eisteddfods, exams, and badges. 

Of course I was lonely and miserable.

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Why it takes courage to retreat

Who among us don’t feel a pull towards a peaceful weekend away, in a beautiful setting, with all the time in the world to do what we love doing? Women respond with so much heartfelt enthusiasm whenever I talk about our retreats. Yet, most of these women will never get so far as to book a retreat for themselves. If you feel hesitant, you are in good company. For many women, the barrier of resistance is surprisingly strong. As with most things in life that hold us back, the moment we can call it, it loses much of its power.

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