Unpack Your Baggage

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"Getting ahead in a difficult profession – singing, acting, writing, whatever – requires avid faith in yourself. , those endless rejections, without a glimmer of encouragement from anyone, all those failed screen tests, and yet I never let my desire slide away from me, my belief in myself and what I felt I could achieve. "

Sophia Loren (b. 1934)
Italian film actress, "Two Women", "A very Special Day"

Quite a few of the people I come into contact with regularly, both in my private and professional life, are carrying an awful lot of baggage. Not the physical type, but the type that is stuffed full of the echoes of the comments they have heard since birth, bursting at the seams with the behaviors that they have witnessed, jam-packed with the talk that exists in their own heads and more. In fact, to a certain extent, we all have some of that type of baggage. It is how we deal with it that makes the difference. I've always wanted to be the person traveling through life with the really neat little bag containing only essential items for my journey. It takes some working on, but the effort has to be worth it. Do you really want to be carting around a heavy trunk instead?

What baggage do you carry around with you? Is it holding you back? Take time this week to examine your beliefs about yourself and others. Do they support you? Are they helpful to you in pursuit of your goals? Choose the positive beliefs, the lighter baggage, which will make your journey more hassle-free.
The talk that goes on in our heads can either help or hinder us. Have you actually taken time to listen to what you are saying to yourself? Do not put it off any longer. Listen to yourself. What kind of language do you use? Do you use encouraging, stimulating words? Do you use vocabulary that is stimulating, with 'can' and 'will' occurring often? No? It's time to change! This is the week to add some new words to your vocabulary – and use them. 'I am determined', 'I choose' can be used in your head and out loud so that ' they become second nature. Believe in yourself. Even if you have to do a little play-acting first!

Are you kind to yourself? Do you treat yourself with thoughtfulness and consideration? Whatever others may or may not have said or say about you, you have to understand that it all stops and starts with you. Start to believe in your own worth and treat yourself accordingly. By unpacking the negative baggage, getting shot of it and replacing it with something more helpful, not only will you feel that your load is lighter but you are likely to feel your energy levels rise as there will be less draining you. Use that energy to get active. It will add to your feelings of wellbeing and give you more confidence.

Why do you do the things you do? Of course, there are things we all have to do to get through the day which may not really inspire and motivate us (tooth brushing, for example), but I am talking about those things we have choices about. Whose voice do you hear when you make those choices? Your parents'? Your partner's? Your boss'? Be sure that if there is a choice, you make the one that suits you and your ambitions and does not leave you with regrets. What have you always wanted to try, but have not believed that you could do it? It does not matter if it's only for you to see or hear, get that paint set out, get writing, loosen up your vocal chords or let yourself go to some music. You can do it!

When you check your luggage at at the airport, if your bags weigh too much you will have to pay a fee for the excess baggage – or ditch it. Which would you prefer? Paying for all that baggage you are carrying around or traveling light and light-heartedly? Watch out world, here we come!