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Healing Journal Writing
15th June 2023
My book "Why Good Women Date Bad Men" mentions healing journal writing and it is something I utterly believe is invaluable when you are healing yourself from dating bad men!
Getting your feelings down on paper, for your eyes only, is one of the best ways I recommend to all my ladies of making sense of what can be a totally confusing, self-questioning nightmare. You may make no sense whatsoever when you begin to pour it all out on the page and that is utterly and totally okay because when you are in that raw state, nothing makes sense!!
Starting to write is the hard part but oh boy once you do start you just won't want to stop. All of that frustration, that confusion, that heart ache will come rushing out of you into the jumbled up, misspelt words and who cares about neat handwriting and paragraphs, just write...and write...and write!!
So how do you start? The picture on the right is of my heartbreak journals, back several years ago when I was soul searching and soul pouring into them...3 years worth! I had A LOT to get out so I bought several of the same and I liked the design of clocks because it reminded me to "Give Time Some Time" a saying I had stumbled across that I liked so much it's one of the very first things I wrote down. I had a ring made by a lovely friend with it stamped on too and I wore it on my wedding ring finger. Anyhoo...I'm guessing I took that picture of my journals/diaries after a few months of writing because there's a mountain of them in my cupboard now!
So, you can scribble down on a notebook or you can go get yourself a special book for the task, the choice is yours. My journal writing has progressed to stickers and different coloured pens with doodles now because I am in that happy place in my life that those pages in the picture, pages of future dreams are full of but take your time to get to happy scribbles because right now you want to get alllll those befuddled and angry feelings out. So once you have your book to write in, chose a place to write it in. As you can see, I wrote mine on my bed...it was my safe place for a long time. The bed I shared with no-one else, in my bedroom that no-one had been in but me since the day I moved into my on-my-own house. I needed that. Sanctuary.
The reason to have a 'place' to write is because when you take yourself to that place with your journal, your subconscious will go "hey, we're gonna do some writing, some un-loading, yeah I can do that" and you are instantly in that frame of mind, ready to write it out and the more you do it, the quicker each time you will relax when you sit down and be ready to write in your journal. You will begin to see it as treasured time. Speaking of time, some people do it at a certain time of day, allowing 10 minutes or half an hour for being in 'their place' and journal writing, they look forward to it throughout the working day. They teach children and family to respect that time that they need to be alone and write...again that takes a few attempts but bare with it, it will happen. When my children were small, I got up in the morning 15 minutes earlier and sat with my cup of tea on the sofa and wrote a little...until they came wandering in for sleepy wake-up cuddles. Or you may be someone who takes your journal with you everywhere you go and jots down when things come to mind and that's fine too. There is no right or wrong, whatever works for you.
But WHAT do you write and why bother? Have you ever had one of those days or weeks where you just can't get out of your own head? Thoughts churn round and around and your emotions are all over the shop. You just can't figure out what's going on with you and you get more and more frustrated and more and more tired. And then it all spills out. Out of your mouth to a friendly ear and without receiving advice or solutions you already feel a million times better...just for getting it out!! That's journaling, getting it out, on paper...the good, the bad and the ugly. But the amazeballs thing about journaling is that you don't have to sensor it at all! You can be self-indulgent, you can be selfish, you can be down right nasty with your words and your journal won't hate you for it!!
So what about that advice or those solutions that you may get from spilling to a friend? Well here's the magic! Magically you DO get that from journaling. Whether it all falls into place while you write or whether you have some distance from your words, a day, a month and then you re-read them again and the solutions become crystal clear, the answers are all written there in your words. Our brains are designed to find solutions, to heal our woes and to plonk us back out there almost good as new. The human race wouldn't have survived if Mrs Caveman had sat in the cave demoralised and disheartened when her latest rabbit catching snare idea had produced no fluffy bunnies. No, she sat and she thought and thought whilst cavey hubster was off chasing lions and she drew little stick diagrams in the sand until her brain figured it out.
So get your stick and figure it out. Just write. Don't over think, just think about the bad man or the latest dating confusion you have going on and write some words. Doesn't even have to be sentences at first. Think of an event that happened or a feeling that you had. Think of a promise that was never fulfilled or something that has been taken away from you. It's easier to start with negatives because we are designed to look on the dark side of life, again primeval instinct thing (seeing danger so we avoid it) Be as negative as you bloomin well want to be and write a few things down.
You may find it irritating or draining but bare with it, put your pen down and try again the next day if it doesn't happen at first. Don't worry, that subconscious will figure it out. You may be so stifled, so anxious, so frozen that it doesn't come easy for you at first. That's okay and not a reason for self-blame, be patient with yourself.
Slowly you will begin to heal, you will feel progress and you will see it in your words as the language changes, as the things you write about change. I realised after 6 months of diary writing that I hadn't cried that day. I was very, very broken when I started to write so it took that long, it may take you much less. It was a changing moment for me and I wrote it in my diary. "A whole day without tears!" A few months later when there had been more and more 'no tear days', I went back to that original entry and wrote at the bottom "several days at a time without tears now - June 27th" and again later "a whole month and nothing to cry about!!" There is a little dancing stick woman drawing next to that scribble because by then, I was brave enough to go out dancing again!
Ch Ch Changes
15 March 2023
"Find out right off the bat whether your desires and values are
aligned with the person you are considering Dating".
Sounds easy, just ask em! We all know it’s not that simple but it actually isn’t hard, if you know how to do it. My FREE One Method Dating Guide can give you a quick guide to start you off....
When I worked with several different professionals 10 years ago, trying to understand why my dating had been a disaster and I still hadn’t reached my desire of meeting the love of my life and getting married at 45, I realised that I needed a new way of doing it. A new way of dating, a new plan. We worked together, I got my plan and I began to put it into practice. It was fun, I had a lot of dates and I met and married my ‘One’.
My Dating Course 'The 12 Step Dating Program' teaches you everything you need to know to do the same as I did, from where he is hiding out, to how to leave with dignity and kindness if it’s not working out. It teaches you how to get really in tune with what you actually want in your future relationship, uninfluenced and how you want your dating journey to look and feel, with nothing left to chance.
Society tells us that there should be mystery, romance and a magical journey to falling in love. That’s too vague. Don’t leave it to the dating fairies to turn up and sprinkle you and your date with magical falling in love dust, those girls are off creating their own magical lives, its time to get practical about yours! In today’s world we have too many variables, too much going on in our lives now to leave it up to chance. We have too many aspects that we need compatibility in, in order to lead a positively functioning life ourselves, we can’t have someone coming in and muddling that all up, we have too many spinning plates in the air. There will be romance, there will be sparks but that will be magic that YOU create and it should come AFTER the practical part.
Since forming my plan, I have completely changed my mind about the information up front part. I absolutely believe that you should give your information up front and receive it in return. You don’t want to be fumbling around in the dark with this man…not yet anyway 😉
You need to have your questions honed down that you are going to drop into conversation on that first date before you even decide if you are going to have a second one. You’re going to need to have a clear picture in your head of what you want in your relationship future in order to know what those questions are going to be. Because you don’t want to be wasting your emotional time or your physical time.
You’ll need to have your responses to his questions honed down too so that you are giving the correct information positively and un-edited so that he can decide if you are a right fit for him and not waste your time if he would know from the off that he couldn’t meet your needs and wants from your responses. Rejection is not personal at this stage, don’t fall into the trap of moulding yourself so that you are not rejected. You cannot keep that charade up for the rest of your life, save yourself the inevitable emotional battles and distress NOW.
Women say to me “Helen, that sounds like a job interview” Well why not? If you need a new job, you don’t see the word ‘Vacancy’ and say to yourself “I’ll take it”. You are going to spend 5 days out of your 7 days a week doing that job, 8 to 10 hours dedicated to it every day so you’re going to want to find out what that job entails. What the job actually is, what is the job description, where will you be working, who you will be working with and what are the components of that job. Can I do those, am I capable of that, do I even want to? You wouldn’t take the first job that you saw without finding out because you were so desperate for any job. So, are you so desperate for love that you will take the first person that comes along? Without finding out anything about them? You shouldn’t be! You are going to be spending 7 days out of your 7 with this person if this relationship works out so you’re going to want to find out how those 7 days are going to look in your future.
Are you going to be living where you want to live, surrounded by the kind of people that you like to be surrounded by and doing the kind of things everyday that will fulfil your wants and needs, in a happy life.
Notice that I didn’t mention financials when I was talking about your job search. But you know what your income needs to be when you are searching and you go for the job interviews that would promise the income that you need to cover your outgoings and extra for your leisure activities. You think about it, you see if that income matches your circumstances and your needs and wants. You wouldn’t take a job that didn’t do that.
Its should be the same with your relationship.
You have a standard that you like to live to, so will this relationship meet your needs in that area, is this person going to be on the same page as you when it comes to standards? You are going to spend your life within these parameters. Are the standards that you each individually desire to live to in place now or will there be progression of some kind. We’re not talking about gold digging here, on either side. We are talking about, do you see yourself working hard to attain a higher standard of living for yourself or do you see yourself remaining at the level that you at now, you have fulfilled your desire in that area and you are happy.
Is that compatible with him? What are his desires for his future? Will he be at work long hours because he is driven to move on up in the world or is he happy with his lot now, he has reached his desire level and fulfilled his standards need and so he will be at home lot a lot in the future because he desires to work part time or retire soon? It matters. Because if the standard you both find yourself at in your relationship future together is misaligned, it will cause resentment. Resentment from him if you are driving him to move on up or resentment from you if your life changes because he is ‘under your feet’ at home.
“Why do I have to think about all that now, at the beginning?” you say “That’s not very romantic” Well let me put it this way, do you want to travel down a path with someone you have a lot of chemistry with, get emotionally attached, maybe situation attached (living together, marriage) only to end up cursing the ground he walks on because you have NOTHING in common anymore but the physical…and that’ll probably go along with the love! It’s going to cause un-happiness for you both so why waste the emotional energy and the physical time on another failed relationship. It's important.
It’s important to get this information within the first few communications, within the first few dates before you get attached in any way so that you don’t waste your time and energy. You don’t WANT to become attached in any way to anyone who isn’t going to be aligned with your life desires because you are incompatible in aspects in the future. You will go through emotional pain again. Pain along the path as obstacles arise and contrary to popular belief, relationships ARE NOT hard, you do not have to suffer for love! And you will go through more breakup pain, more feelings of failure and regret. Why go running off down a path that will bring you those things, madness!
Now here’s the thing, have you ever been one of those people who takes a new job and thinks, “that jobs not how I want it to be right now but I will change it. I’m going to take the job anyway and I’m going to show them all how my way of working is much more efficient. That office isn’t run the way that I want it to be either so I’m going to change it! I’ll settle for less money than I wanted initially but I’ll persuade the boss to give me a pay rise, once she sees the amazing work that I am doing and all the wonderful x, y, z changes that I have made. She’ll see my true worth then as her employee and she’ll value me so much that she’s bound to reward me for it”.
And were you stuck in that job for a few years, 5 days out of your 7, giving it you’re all, becoming increasingly miserable and resentful of the other staff because they wouldn’t change the way that they worked. The office reorganisation never did happen as promised and you ended up hating your boss because you knew she could see how hard you were working and how much your hard work had improved the company but she still hadn’t given you any more financial reward for it. She had talked the talk but it never happened. Your only options were to leave and find another job or stay there un-happily for the rest of your working life.
The same can happen in your Dating life… are you a ‘changer’?
Are you a changer in the dating world? Do you check out a profile, chat on a dating app, go on a date and think to yourself, he’ll change when he sees my x, y, z? When I introduce my new plan for our relationship re-shuffle and my vision for our new office location. He’ll be so impressed by my graphs and my future profitability predictions that he’ll toss his old way of working into the shredder and we’ll be riding the waves of success together! Betcha he won’t. Betcha he likes sharpening his pencil that way and there no way he’s changing his own ink cartridge. No, there will be board meetings and disciplinaries and eventually either you or him will get the sack…because you can no longer work together. Do you see how many women fall into that trap?
We are excellent ‘changers’ as women. We change our outfits, we change our hairstyles, we change our cushions, we change our wallpaper, our leisure activities…how many men do you know that do that? That’s not a criticism of men in any way. But how many do you know that change their hairstyle regularly, the style of their clothing often, redecorate their homes every year? A lot of men like ‘SAME’.
They get things to how they want them to be and they KEEP them that way. They are settled and content and do not want to change that. A little bit of a cliche example, is that men will wear the same pair of slippers until they are worn out but women will have 5 different pairs of all varieties from slip on crock style to knee high unicorns, complete with horns and we’ll still grab that cute pair that makes us laugh in the supermarket. Men just don’t do that. Look how many pairs of men’s slippers there are in the supermarket to choose from, if you don’t believe me. Women like CHANGE.
So, do you see how we can approach dating the same way? We can be too flexible because we expect change in the relationship, change in the man. We think to ourselves, he looks alright but he lives a bit too far away…he’ll move when he falls for me and cant stay away. He’ll have to stop that golfing hobby or we won’t see much of each other at the weekends but he’ll want to spend his time with me instead anyway so that’s ok. Hmm that job he has won’t be bringing in enough money to meet ‘our’ standards so he’ll need to change that, he can take some more qualifications. Within a short time you will have mentally ‘changed’ all the bits and bobs that show up in his profile that don’t meet your desires and standards and convinced yourself they are ‘no problem’ they can be changed!
But this Good Man is showing you his NOW on his profile, what makes you think he wants to change any of it? Would you? If you met a nice guy and he said “I like your appearance but you need to change everything about your life before I’d consider a relationship with you” You’d be horrified and cross!
If you wouldn’t and you’re thinking to yourself, well I could change a lot things or yes I’ll change everything just to ‘get’ him, then you really do need my 12 Step Dating Program
Glorious, Multi-dimensional, Good Women
4 February 2022
How many reasons do you think there are that Good Women Date Bad Men? Know what I think? LOADS! I think if you and I sat in a cosy corner and discussed our own stories, our friends stories and women we've read about's stories we'd be there till the sun came up...in fact that sounds like a great evening, let's do that sometime!!
In my book I highlight '20 Reasons', some of them you may recognise in yourself and some you may not have thought of but it's important to say that every woman is her unique, glorious individual self and once you delve beneath the black and white statements on the page, there's a lot going on under the cover.
We are multi-dimensional, wonderfully complex and fabulously layered women and it's really important to celebrate that both outwardly and inwardly. Supporting each other in all our glories is so so important and empowering each other to find happiness, peace of mind, self love as well as confidence, ambition and growth can encompass all those parts of each individual. Isn't that wonderful?
So that is the basis of the online course that I offer, 'The 12 Step Dating Program' to get your dating search off to a great start and find the love of your life! If you would like more information please email me at email@example.com
Why Good Women Date Bad Men
2 January 2021
This picture was taken inside the Burj Al Arab in Dubai, both women were lucky enough to be staying there on holiday. The woman on the left was used to the luxury and quality. She had a beautiful home, a loving husband and financial security. The woman on the right was on borrowed time, no home of her own, no husband and absolutely no security. That woman was me.
Now don't get me wrong I loved many parts of my life but I was still asking for the commitment and security that I wanted and needed. That women on the right was slim, beautiful some said and she was good company, funny and loyal and trying her best but she was absolutely demoralized. Me, that scared woman smiling back at the camera all those years ago was me...I wish I could go back and tell her what I know now, bless her!
Now I have blogged for a good many years and when, not long after this picture was taken, I found myself single again and heartbroken, my blogging changed course. I began to realise that I had a story, I had experience and I had advice on how not to let yourself go down that rabbit hole and end up being that beautiful, soft, lovable bunny on the outside but a scared little rabbit on the inside. "Why Good Women Date Bad Men" started to take shape in my mind because I realised that although I couldn't go back and help that past me, I could help other women prevent that from happening to them and OH BOY did I want to do that! So that is how my book and course started, scared, broken little me with a desire to help other Good Women... I got myself out of that rabbit hole, fell in love with the man of my dreams and fell in love with me! I can help you to do that too xx