As 2023 comes to a close Lisa shares what she took from the year, and the trip, and will take with her into 2024.
More brave choices, more being in life, more noticing the magic.
Listen in and discover that this year, unlike the previous few, Lisa isn’t ‘hoping’ for a turning point. She’s had one.
And life feels good.
Listen to Moments + Harvest here.
Tune in to the replay of Lisa’s Workshop – No One Cares About Your Stuff and learn about how she can help you tell better stories in 2024.
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Prefer to read? Access the transcript here.
Well, it’s the ending of a pretty amazing year, hard year, exciting year thrilling in many ways. Certainly if you’d asked me at the beginning of this year what I was planning on for 2023, it did not involve what it did. I mean, wow. I remember New Year’s last year, well, at the turning of 2022 to 2023 and the night before New Year’s, my partner then and I party boy, as you all knew him, we went away for a night and we went on a beautiful walk. We’re in our favourite place in Warton and oh gosh, I had so many ideas. I really felt like I’d hit a bit of a turning point. Actually, 2022 was a strange year for a lot of us as we moved out of the covid years and we’re finding our feet again. I didn’t realise then that while I felt like I’d hit a turning point, I wanted it to be a turning point.
I don’t think it actually was. I wanted to be beyond whatever I was beyond, and I did a few cool things in 2022, and I did feel like there was a sense of something good is coming next year. Holy shit, something good has to come. Let’s just put all this behind us. And I know I’ve spoken to lots of people and I feel like that’s how a lot of people are feeling about 2023 actually. And so I get it if that’s where you are at. And we talked and walked and I had all these ideas of all these different things that I could do in the business, and I was really brimming with it. And we sat and we did one of our favourite things doing, playing some games, and we drank some lovely local beer and just nibbled on food in the afternoon sun. And it was a really nice time. I felt content in myself with him, with what we were planning, and it was really just such a perfect night. And that was kind of like our New Year’s Eve, the next New Year’s Eve, our plans changed completely and it was all a little bit all over the place.
And then the events of the start of the year just really, we had a beautiful holiday. My son was starting high school. That felt like a really big transition for our family. It was huge. It was much bigger than I could have anticipated, and then things weren’t kind of kicking off for me in the way that I thought that they were going to. And we all know how the story went now. I just couldn’t quite get it together. I wasn’t feeling good in myself. I was starting to get a little bit almost frantic about when am I going to feel like I got it again? I really thought that 2023 was going to be different, and I got quite sick and my relationship ended and it was all just like I was spinning out of control. I could not find my feet, and I knew that I was the source of what was going on, and I sort of felt a little bit like I didn’t have the ability or capacity really to move myself out of it. It just felt like I was in thick mud and I was so tired of that feeling. And so I entertained the idea in my head and then started to share out loud this idea of going on the trip. And it was something that I’d wanted. It was sitting there, it had been sitting there for a while bubbling away, and suddenly I just knew it had to be done. And if you’ve listened along that I booked the tickets and then four weeks later we left.
And it was truly, honestly, it was the best thing that I’ve ever done that trip. And I sometimes will sit and look through some of the photos and just think, wow, we really did that. We really did. And it really did feel good. When I look back, I don’t have those, oh yeah, I can remember that moment. Just so much of it was filled with golden moments. And of course it wasn’t all roses, but it just really was so great and it has completely just revived me. It’s not me trying, it’s not me hoping that something’s going to feel different. I just do feel different. Whatever I did, it was the right thing for me. And I am in a much, much better place with inside myself in Lisa, and that feels like a really wonderful thing and very much worth the investment. But I thought to see it out, I might just share with you some things that this year taught me that I will be taking into next year. I’ll just be taking into my life going forward. They’ve just kind of integrated me. I remember thinking about the trip and just thinking it has to be long enough for whatever shifts happen to be enduring.
It just could never have been a two week trip to Fiji even, although those are magical and absolutely offer extraordinary resets and insights, and it doesn’t really take me much to get into the zone of being away at all. But I knew that this needed to be something different, and I am so glad that I did that. I think the first thing that was validated for me on this trip was how worthwhile it is to really make brave choices. And I think that there’s some people who would be bit reckless or a bit whatever, but I didn’t realise when I was doing it that it was brave. In fact, the people who were telling me that I was very brave, I felt patronised by because I was like, what do you mean? You’re making it seem like I have to be really brave to do this?
What am I not seeing here? This feels like the best thing I’ve ever thought of and I’m just going to go for it. And then as it got closer and closer, I was like, holy shit, what am I actually doing? And I can see now, I did have to dig deep. I did have to believe in parts of me that had laid dormant for a while in order to be able to make that decision in the first place and then actually jump on that plane and prepare the kids for it and the house and all the things. It was a whole multilayered level of bravery. And then once we were kind of out on the road, we were just in it.
The bravery was required to just make the decision and go and commit fully. And so I want to make more brave choices. I want to kind of go for things a little bit more, things that felt maybe a little bit out of reach, things that have been sitting in the back of my mind and they never quite leave, and they knock every now and again. I’m paying attention to those a little bit more. I think they’ve got clues for us in our life and in our direction. There’s so much that we squash down because not the right time or it’s going to be too disruptive or what will that do to my relationships? Or what about the kids? Stuff like that. And I just think, wow, we get one chance at this. It was only going to be that year, that moment in time once.
And I’m pleased with how I used it, and I want to continue that feeling, not that every moment needs to be a high powered, taking a big huge risk. Let’s just pack up the house and go. It’s not really about that. It’s in all little ways how to show up braver, how to make the brave choice. It’s just a really cool line of inquiry I have with myself at the moment. And because this brave choice certainly paid off, I think also I really did start to notice I was feeling very stale with myself, and I realised I kept on choosing the same thing. And while I was choosing the same thing, we know nothing’s going to change, but in that moment, I mean I needed at that time, I can really see now so much clearer. I’ve been trying hard for a while to be together or to move through things. And when you’re going through it, it’s wonderful to want to be through it, but it’s also just going to take as long as it takes really.
But I was conscious that feeling that I had that kind of, oh, I just can’t get anything off the ground. It was becoming my story. It was becoming the story of my life. And that what happened with my marriage and to Nick and all of that, we create the narrative around it. I think writing Harvest was a chance for me to rewrite the narrative, to put me in a position of power, personal power around it all to have me reflect in brutal honesty about how it felt, and then also acknowledge that there has been extraordinary growth and beautiful things.
There has been this harvest that I am reaping from that was the seeds were sown during those really tough times. And when I wrote that story, when I acknowledged that, when I claimed it, everything shifted for me. Our inner narrative, our story is so, so powerful, and I literally had to write it out over 10,000 words to see a new truth. And so I knew with that, going through that process, I thought, wow, this year of my life, this is going to be a story. I’m in the narrative. What do I want to write? What do I want to write about how I responded to this moment in time? What will the story be? And I knew I needed to do something because I knew I could not do another year feeling the same.
So I wrote the story because I chose something different. We choose the story of our life, and if you’ve done the change method, you know exactly what I’m talking about until you are actually clear on the fact that whatever stories you currently hold are informing how you show up now, you might not actually get that. The power of that, the power of our inner narrative at shaping our choices in the here and now is so super strong. It’s really strong. And so I remember, and I think I shared it on the podcast that my psychologist, she had said, you’ve just got this really strong belief that you can’t do things life really on your own without a partner. And I’m like, oh, it’s because I’ve always had one. And she’s like, no, I think it’s something different to that. And what the trip gave me was the chance to not even worry about figuring out where that belief came from in me.
I just fucked it right off because I proved to myself it’s not true. There were actions I took there was doing, being in life to disprove the junk in my head. Suddenly I am a person who feels completely capable. And I think that this is a really, really big part of what I took out of 2023 that, and if you are listening to this podcast and if you followed me, because it’s been my obsession to kind of figure out who I am, why I’m doing what I do, why you do the things that you do, human behaviour fascinates me. It always has. And I sort of was starting to feel for quite a while that world of constant almost sort of feeling like we’re something that needs to be fixed. It’s just sometimes gets to the point where it’s not that helpful and it’s okay.
But I really have been reflecting a lot on what the whole self-help self-growth industry is kind of all about. And whether it’s is it helping or hindering us living a good life, is it, I felt like in some ways maybe it was stopping me from being in life in more meaningful ways because I was always just trying to figure it out. And so I dropped that this year. I just dropped it and I just chose to be in it, be in life, contribute meaningfully and might look like I was in my head a lot. I mean, if you’re reading the moments series of stories, there was a lot of self-reflection. Of course there was on the trip, but it was also mostly noticing what was going on around me and having that inform things. There’s only so much that scrolling the Instagram memes or even doing online courses, it’s beautiful skill building.
It’s beautiful awareness raising, but the work is with us. And sometimes I’m like, I was talking to friends about it. Well, maybe we should just take a break from all that, turn away a little bit, know that, hey, we’re pretty competent, awesome women, and just give ourselves permission to have more fun and to be in life. And it really does feel like I breathe life back into myself by doing that. But that’s not to say that I could have got to this point without doing all that stuff. We’re always doing whatever we need to be doing at exactly the right time because that’s life. It’s all perfect timing. It’s all building blocks, it’s all just whatever it is. But I have loved this recognition of I guess taking it all and myself included far less seriously and just being in life, having adventures outside comfort zone in really cool, fun ways.
It’s been great. And the weird thing is it’s led me back to myself. So many people who’ve known me for years and years and years have said, oh gosh, I know this, Lisa, since I’ve been back, oh, I just feel like I see the Lisa that I knew and I wasn’t working on myself. I was allowing life to life. I was paying attention. I let it all heal me. I let stuff go. I brought lightness and fun and joy and adventure, and that was my medicine for this year. And some years, it’s been a whole lot of energy therapy. It’s been a whole lot of talking. It’s been a whole lot of tears, all sorts of things. There’s no right or wrong, this was just my 2023 where I have found myself in my life.
I think for sure. I discovered my love of writing and I kind of claimed myself as a creative human, which I think we all actually are. But I think I found the type of creativity that really lights me up. I felt really strong is not the right word. I felt really excited by my work because there wasn’t, well, there was a sense that just sharing stories was helpful and it’s a beautiful thing when something that you enjoy and comes really naturally to you and doesn’t feel like work is received by other people and appreciated, that’s really nice. I think that writing stories, telling stories is
It’s not going away for me. And in fact, it has completely shifted my sense of where I’m going and what is important for Lisa in this next stage. And in fact, I will put in the show notes, I actually ran a workshop about the power of stories in how it shifted, how I show up online and the impacts of that. And I’m just so grateful to you for listening to the story of this trip and listening to all the stories over the years, if you’ve been here a while or more recently, because it is beautiful to write for yourself. It is healing to write for yourself. I could have written Harvest and had no one listen, and it was still the most extraordinary experience to write that story. It changed me to write it, but then to be in a room sitting on a stage and reading it out loud to real life people, that was a whole nother level and I couldn’t be the same afterwards.
And now that it’s out in the world and people can download it, and I put the link for that in the show notes too, where you can read moments or the 10 short stories from the trip and also Access Harvest if you would like to listen to that. And the messages that I have gotten just from sharing my story, from putting it out there, it was not something that I thought I would do in the way that I did it. I just knew I had to, at one point early this year, I knew it was the thing that I had to do and I did it, and it just changed a lot of things. And I’m grateful to the people who heard something in it and have let me know what it was like to listen to, because it’s a strange thing. I was in the audience with people when I was sharing it in Melbourne, Sydney, and Brisbane, and then suddenly it’s out there in the world in your earbuds, and I don’t know.
I don’t know if you, ah, it’s a scary thing. And so I always appreciate your comments. I appreciated your community and support while we were away. The way in which my online community showed up for us was something pretty special actually. It really touched me. So if you were part of that, if you liked anything, laughed along with me at anything. dmd me wrote a comment on a post, anything like that, it actually really meant something to me. So thank you. I don’t take it for granted. It’s actually hard to capture people’s attention, but I think what happened was there was a bigger story that was being told with this trip, and that’s what people related to. That’s what you related to. There were elements of, it was just a very human honest story of like, I dunno what the hell’s going on in my life and I’ve just got to do something.
While it was lovely to see all the places that we were at, I think that there was, I felt your connection and I hope you felt connected to it as well, because I guess you were seeing something very real and it was an honour to have people to share it with genuinely. If you missed all the stories, they’re in my Instagram highlights reel. There is a lot. Look, I don’t imagine anyone’s going to go and watch them all, but if you need some light relief sometimes. I think the other thing that I’m taking through is the healing power of nature.
She’s pretty remarkable, our mother earth, and she healed us in a million different ways over the trip. I feel reverence towards her and the kids and I have had such amazing conversations about what we can do to be better stewards while we’re here on earth. And I think just seeing how magical things are and having conversations with the children about whether they are going to be able to bring their children back to these things. I remember when we were snorkelling in Thailand and the corals out of this world, it was just beautiful. And the last time they’d seen coral was when we were in Bali in 2019 and we went on this glass bottom boat out to some random place to look at freaking owls and snakes and turtles and weird stuff. And then on the way back, we were going to see coral and we looked down. I mean, the coral was white. It was completely bleached. And we know what’s happening to the Great Barrier Reef. We know what’s happening to our oceans. And so there was this wow, wonderful moment and then a wow, will they be able to have the same experience here with their children? What are we doing? What are we doing? Wake up humanity.
And I think that’s been sparked in me in a bigger way. And most definitely for the children. I think it was one of the best things to come out of the trip, to be honest, appreciation for our world, for nature, for Mother Earth, who is in crisis because of us. And it’s a conversation that I’ll keep having with them and will change. It already is changing the way we do life. I think also what I realised this year as someone who felt low in energy or I just didn’t have energy for things like I would normally want to, that energy is created when you are living life and doing things that really light you up. It’s an energising thing. And I hadn’t been in that space for a really long time.
I hadn’t created something for myself that felt naturally energising. And so I was just sort of a bit complainy all the time. I can’t get, I just don’t feel energised. I just need more rest. No, I think you actually just needed to do some really cool shit, Lisa. Actually, that’s for me, my personality type, my human design, my Enneagram, all of that stuff is like, you need to be doing things, Lisa. And so that is really shifting my plans for 2024, big time, the type of work I do, how I work, where I work, all of it changing because while you get this to this point where you’re quite competent at what you do or you’ve had a level of success at what you do, and then you have to be honest with yourself and say, but it’s just actually not working as well in the way that I would want it to, and I can’t keep doing this.
It’s a confronting place to find yourself. And so the beauty of my own business is that I get to choose projects that energise me, choose work that energises me, deliver things in the way that feels really good to me. I mean, getting out in front of real live audiences. Earlier this year, it was just like I’d been plugged back into an electric socket. I’m not designed to sit here at this desk inside all the time. I’ve been working from home since 2009. What need to get out? So energy is created for me by being around people, being in different places and shifts will be made next year to do more of that. And also working on projects that really light me up. I mean, I’m going to be teaching about stories in the new year. If you want access to information about that, then watch the workshop that I did.
And really, it’s for people who are also showing up online mostly who have to market their business, their brand, their products or services. I shared a lot on that one hour session, so go ahead and watch the replay. That’ll be in the show notes. Did I say that before? I think so. And I think the final thing that, well, no, there’s actually a JI things. That’s not a number, but I’m making it up. There’s so many things, but for timeliness reasons, I think the last thing that I would share is that I really noticed the magic in life. Again, the things you can’t explain, the little tiny incidental bits that just feel quite extraordinary when you’re paying attention.
I had so many of them, and since we’ve been home, they’ve continued because I am open and available to them. Small delights, just moments of what is this real, this life that we get to live? Pay attention, Lisa, be in it because it’s all here and available. It’s actually all available all the time. But that doesn’t mean that I have to be in that space, or it’s another thing to be hard on myself about when it’s a week before Christmas and you still really, really are quite behind with your Christmas shopping, oh dear, it’s actually even less than, that’s a few days away. God, what? It’s all okay. The magic is all around. People are such amazing creatures as well. The kindness of people, the beautiful moments of connection, tenderness, openness. It’s just delicious. I just want to eat it up. I’m just in love with life right now because I’m paying attention in a different way.
As I said, I think it’s always there. I think I’ve just, and it’s been okay. There’s been a bit cloudy for a while. I’m waking back up to it and it’s good. I mean, I couldn’t help. Your senses are assaulted by magic when you’re overseas. I mean, if you followed along, I remember being in Switzerland and just being amongst the mountains. I could not stop crying. I was just crying the whole time. It was so overwhelming. Just the energy in those mountains, the feeling of being there. Wow, I just take me back. But I was committed. I knew that I needed to keep my antennas up for that stuff here because it’s still around, for sure. Feels different, but it’s still around.
So that’s my little wrap up. That is the final wrap on the trip that gave me so much, genuinely, so much. I’ll always be grateful to myself for taking the leap. And I feel really excited about next year. And I know I have said that before, but there’s going to be some big things happening next year, which I’m really, really excited to share about and I can’t share quite yet. But there will be news of that very soon, and I hope you join me on that ride too, because it’s one for all of us. Thanks for being here this year, genuinely. Thanks for being along on the ride. I feel a bit emotional saying that, but for a while there, I wasn’t sure, should I even be doing this anymore? Should I be showing up? What’s my place here? I feel a little bit bored of everything else I’m seeing online, and so I just decided to become interesting to myself and in the process, I think that also became interesting to you. And this is what I mean, we choose our stories. I’m glad I chose this one. I encourage you to think about your year, the magic that was there.
I’m sending you so much love and appreciation and thanks, and I will see you in the new year.
Hey! I'm Lisa
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