Sea Soul Community: Pip

A series of interviews to deepen the connections between all of us who love Sea Soul Blessings – and to give you some more ideas about how to use your cards.

Today, we’re interviewing another Pippa! And just to confuse you further, we’re the same age, both live in Cornwall, and have both broken our feet recently – how unlikely is that? So, for the purpose of telling us apart, this Pippa will hereby be known as Pip…

Here, Pip talks about the search for silence in a busy world, and the frustration of not being heard. She also shares how she uses Sea Soul Blessings with her daughter, and how the cards can still be useful, even when you’re angry at yourself and the world…

lovely laughing womanTell us a little bit about you:

I’m 47, I live in Cornwall, UK, with my 11 year old daughter and my partner. I’m a PA and freelance communicator for deaf people.

What does nature, and the sea in particular, mean to you?

It means recuperation and vitality. It’s revitalising space and freedom. It’s restorative.

How do you feel on a good day?

Inspired, proactive, confident, extroverted, sociable, clear, excited. I can take on any challenge.

How do you feel on a bad day?

Rubbish. Powerless, frozen or stuck somehow, sad, foggy, introverted, reclusive.

Who or what is inspiring or influencing you right now?

Brené Brown makes me stop and rethink – after listening to her, I can look at something afresh, and find new ways to approach the situation. Jon Kabat-Zinn is inspiring me to think more about mindfulness and its effects on our health.

What do you worry about on a typical day?

My daughter, my other half, my parents, my friends, the planet, the world – and what I can do to help any of those…

Girls running towards sea on a windy beachWhere do you find joy? 

Perranuthnoe beach.

Being outdoors – looking up at the stars, walking cliff-paths and hills by the sea – anywhere there is a sense of spaciousness.

I love sitting by the sea, the smell and sound of it.

What do you love to do, read, watch or listen to?

I’m reading Beth Kempton‘s Freedom Seeker at the moment and really enjoying that.

I love reading anything that makes me think, that offers a fresh perspective and a new approach to life.  I don’t tend to watch TV just for the sake of it, but I do choose to watch things that inspire me – and Bake Off!

What do I like to listen to? Silence and the sea. I really value the quiet, because there is so little of that in our daily lives – I crave the chance to be able to think in peace.

I also love listening to inspirational speakers – audiobooks by people like Stephen Covey. The music I listen to depends on my mood. My stressed and angry music would be something like Faithless – playing that loud always helps me to work through stuff!

What makes you cross?

Oh so many things! Disrespectful people. Not being heard. Not having a say in things. Feeling disempowered by other people making decisions without listening to individual needs and voices.

lovely lady drinking tea

How do you look after yourself?

I drink….  Cups of tea!

Getting outside. Seeing like-minded friends.

Trying to make space for silence, and for moments of peace in my life – and finding ways to reduce the sense of overload. Sometimes I just need to stop.

What would you most like to change about your life?

Ooh that’s a hard one. I’d like my broken foot to be better so that I could get outside and walk more often – and spend more time in nature, which makes me feel stronger.

I’d also like life to feel less fraught and busy and full of decisions. I don’t get enough time to be with the people I most want to spend time with, and I’d like to be able to do more of the things that feed my soul and story.  I’d also like to feel more powerful in relation to what we can do for our poor old planet.

What have you learnt about life that you wish you’d understood earlier?

beach picnic rug with flask and driftwoodIn my teens, I had to delay going to University because I was involved in a car crash. A year later, I had to abandon my studies in order to have major surgery.

My education had been so focused on measuring success in terms of academic achievement that this left me feeling like a failure – and out of place – for a long time.

I now realise that getting an A or an A* isn’t everything. Achievements like exam success aren’t as important as we’re told.

“I believe that our value lies in what we’re able to bring to the lives of others. If you achieve academically along the way, fine. But I care more about the change you can make in the world than how you did in your exams.”

How would you describe Sea Soul Blessings in 3 words? 

Thought-provoking, inspiring. Make me pause.

waves on Perranuthnoe beach, cargo ship on the horizon

How do you use your Sea Soul Blessings? What do they help you to change?

I use Sea Soul Blessings in the morning with my daughter – we draw a card or three in the car on the school run.

It’s a useful distraction on those mornings when she really doesn’t feel like going to school.

And it often provokes a conversation about something she’s been worried about but hasn’t felt able to discuss before.

“It’s a tool that gives her the confidence to talk: there’s a sense that the cards themselves understand, and she feels heard. It always shifts the mood and works as a kind of ‘pick-me-up’ for both of us.”

As for me, I use them to break any unhelpful thought pattern that I’ve been sucked into – that constant “do do do”.

Sometimes, I’ll have managed to make myself a cup of tea, but instead of sitting down to drink it, I’ll be standing on one leg in the kitchen juggling the dishes and everything else – and the cards give me an excuse to step away from that and actually take time to sit down, drink my tea, and get out of my ‘must keep doing stuff’ rut.  They are my chance to press pause.

(And because it’s still a form of ‘doing’ in a way, it doesn’t feel self indulgent…!)

“When I read the words of the card I’ve chosen, it’s as if my vision widens – and I’m able to see a new direction I could take. It’s restorative. It refreshes me, just like the experience of being in nature.”

lovely smiling lady

I also use them to support friends. If we’re talking about something difficult and it feels too overwhelming, I might suggest that we stop and pull a card together.

That offers another way for someone to feel supported and understood – a way in to a different conversation – one that allows people to open up and see a new way out of their problem.

Using the card to guide our discussion also removes us slightly from the emotion of the conversation, allowing us to start afresh.

And still – in those really hard moments when you just can’t find any compassion for yourself – it can be hard to reach for the cards… That’s why establishing a routine is really helpful.

“If you know that you always draw yourself a blessing at a particular time of day, even if you don’t feel like you deserve it – then you will still give yourself that time. You build a self-compassion habit.”

journey in a bowl

Plus, when you’re feeling cross, and you still pull a card – you get to be cross at the cards, instead of turning that feeling inwards towards yourself.

Instead of criticising yourself, you can stop to ask “Why am I annoyed by that card? What has it touched?”

Using Sea Soul Blessings has changed how I make space for myself in the day – making room for a little bit of self care and compassion that I wouldn’t otherwise give myself.

If someone was thinking about trying Sea Soul Blessings, how would you encourage them?

I’d direct them to start following the daily posts on instagram or facebook – that’s a little doorway into seeing what it’s all about.

And I’d tell them that it’s allowed me to give myself that five minutes, even when life is busy and noisy.

“Using the cards, I find that I don’t crave silence so much. I might be surrounded by chaos, but when I pause to draw a card, it creates a little bit of space, a capsule, a little bubble around me – and that offers me an alternative kind of peace and stillness.”

“When you can’t make time to meditate quietly somewhere, Sea Soul Blessings can help you to quieten the voices in your head instead.”

misty lighthouseOther interviews in the Sea Soul Community series: Pippa 

If you’d like to be featured in one of these interviews, I would love that, get in touch!

If you’d like to get yourself some Sea Soul Blessings, you can do that right here.

lovely smiling lady

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