How to let love sink into your bones

 

After years developing Message Eggs to share with others, I was overwhelmed and utterly delighted recently to receive them myself.

Beth and Gra set up a secret collection page, and put the word out to many of my far flung folk. I opened them fast and slow, savoured and treasured them. What a gift it is. Here’s what happened.

Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 11.19.04

The first one I cracked was from someone I wouldn’t have expected and his words were poetic and beautiful. I’m still not entirely sure what ebullient means, but it sounded great. [Stops to look it up… oh yes! Nice one Ian. Bless you!]

Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 16.39.29

I’m being courageous in sharing this to hopefully inspire others. Taking my own medicine so to speak. Now the problem in sharing our qualities,is that it brings up all sorts of cringey feelings. Have you heard these words before?

 

mandela

 

So there it is, as embodied by Nelson Mandela (who never actually said it). I’m not any more (or less) special than anyone else. But now I know I’m “ebullient” in the eyes of Ian at least. Like me, you may recoil from these words a little, but there’s a lot of information in that response. And a need for balance and discernment not to use it as an excuse to become egocentric.

Now, can I perhaps help you allow yourself or someone else to shine in writing this? I do hope so.

The disclaimers.

1. Yes, I’m biased. I truly believe in the potential of Message Eggs or any form of affirmation, kindness or gratitude practice to crack open hearts and make the world a nicer, happier place. There is much evidence for this.

2. Yes, I’m Australian. Maybe this stuff is easier for us, and our colonial cousins across the pond. But over 70% of our first 1000 punters have been English and they know how to go deep, so if we can crack on here, imagine how it will be once America and the rest of the world finds out about Message Eggs!

What happened for me is this…

Receiving Message Eggs has profoundly changed the way I see myself in relation to others. I feel more loved, valued and seen than I’ve ever felt in my life. But, and it’s a big one, the only reason that can happen is because I am letting myself really hear it (on a good day).

Allowing ourselves to receive love can be hard work. All my old scripts, blocks and filters kick in to say things like “well they don’t really mean all those nice things” and “imagine all the awful things people could say about me”. Cynicism is a huge defence mechanise against getting hurt. I had to let the love in and it had to fit with how I felt inside to be congruent. That can take time and support to truly integrate, which is why I begin training as a psychotherapist next year, to make sure there is even more substance to how we hold space, support people and offer Message Eggs.

So this is not just cute shiny eggs, this is real human work. This is potentially life changing.

Remember though, it can be as light or as deep as you want to go and every commission is different. We cater for everyone!

I now know, without a shadow of a doubt, that I am loved, respected and admired.

There is proof. Lots of it. And some hilarious, poignant memories to have shared again too.

It also helped me realise, just because someone doesn’t leave a message doesn’t mean they don’t care (hi Gus!). We all get busy, or find our own ways. With Message Eggs, we want to encourage people to find whatever works for them in expressing positive emotions. We offer profoundly personal new ways to enable that, but there are many others. It has to be authentic to work. And not everyone it ready to take what might feel like an emotional risk to say how they feel. Which is why it’s all the more wonderful to receive them!

I sat with my Message Eggs on holiday last summer, on my own-some and I drank them in more fully, with some fresh Sardinian red, being really open and present to the present. Each person who took a moment or longer to write has stayed with me, and will perhaps throughout life. I will do a case study page soon to share some. See privacy FAQ for more.

Then I wrote the key words down with a nice manga pen and tallied up the results. It was interesting to notice the words that came up most often and think about what that meant.

Inspiring

Loving

Friend

They seem like reasonable qualities to take something like Message Eggs forward.

Then I got scissors and a big sheet of paper and started to cut them out and see where the clusters where. See where the real meaning lay. I found seven by the end and placed special objects on them (the caps from flowering Australian gums I collected when back home).

The physical act of writing, cutting and moving the pieces of paper around allowed me to really feel these words and qualities. We might add something like this to a web / phone app we are developing but for now, the physical aspect really fits well.

IMG_20150925_080954

IMG_20150925_130138  IMG_20150925_130228

IMG_20150923_165820

Now they work like personal OH cards I can shuffle through and pull out, place in my life to keep inspiring me with all the love and care that went into them.

So if you are lucky enough to have received Message Eggs before, try some of all of this out. Any questions, just ask.

We continue to hear how much potential there is here for:

  • psychotherapists, counsellors, healers, social, youth and aged care workers
  • celebrants
  • personal shoppers and others

to offer meaning, connection and support to their clients.

Remember, we offer our main package for free or by donation to anyone living with major illness.

We want to hear from you!

I’ve heard of so many great ways people experience and re-experience their messages. Our Case Studies start to touch on that, and I keep hearing new ideas all the time. See Nina’s for example. Her Mum thinks Nina’s looking at her collage before Uni each day might have helped her recover from a major life event and get a First in her degree!

Co-creating this whole thing sure is a lot of effort just to find out how great people think I am. Ha! But every time my phone go “ping” I know it’s another message written for someone special, maybe one day you or yours, and I smile knowing the potential of that. Wow, just did it again then. Yay for Message Eggs!

Potent containers of love.

author

 

 

What’s been happening at Message Eggs?

Okay folks. I’m going to bash out a bit of a phew here. What a week / year / life it’s been.

Thank goodness for the Message Eggs I received recently. Seriously. Sustaining this cracked vision to love bomb the world, one sparkly, seedy egg at a time, gets a bit tiring, and I sure need a break.

What’s been keeping me going is, well, you! The people who wrote me Message Eggs (my first ever, more on that soon), the people who come and write the most amazing messages for each other, the people who commission us to celebrate the lucky folk they care about – and the people who receive Message Eggs and are so generous in sharing their stories with us.

Gra built our operating system and it’s called Panda. I have a whole metaphor about what we’re doing being bamboo for pandas. So I have this little panda face go “ping” on my phone every time someone leaves a message for someone. And if I’m feeling a bit low or tired, I go read them and my heart fills. SUCH good messages. So much more than what we usually see in greeting cards, on facebook. The kind of stuff we only seem to say to each other when we are really drunk at parties, in wedding speeches, falling in love or sitting with someone who’s really struggling.

 

Screen Shot 2015-07-31 at 18.03.37

 

11707635_10154213799384762_5340393192893797084_n

 

We even got new business cards, all different ones, featuring some of our favourite messages. Such good fun choosing which one to give, in the moment, to suit the person. This one went to Simon Gale, a new social enterprise colleague from Upstream. Too true!

I don’t know how many times I’ve told the story of what we are doing and why. It still brings tears to my eyes and I know I’m not the only one.

It’s been a year of highs and lows and everything in between. It’s the moments of flowing hum I like best really. More of that please.

We gently relaunched as Message Eggs a little over month ago, with our brand new name, website and all your inspirational, funny, heart warming case studies. Every time I read Paul’s and Kathryn’s, I remember why I’m doing this. All of them are unique and real and beautiful. Have a look if you haven’t already. New one’s coming all the time. We’ve had to water some of your comments down, they’ve been so positive! And your suggestions are all being taken on board too. We’re growing this every expanding circle together.

“He drew a circle that shut me out
Heretic , rebel, a thing to flout
But love and I had the wit to win:
We drew a circle and took him in”

– Edwin Markham

Since then we’ve taken on a series of new commissions in England and Australia, and started to plan our proper launch to the world. Three recent commissions – a 50th birthday, a 70th and a ruby wedding anniversary – all involved people getting really sick or dying along the way. In one instance, a father left a message for his daughter just a few days before he died, saying something true and pure that surely would not have been said, and needed to be.

We’ve also become a member of Social Enterprise UK reflecting why we exist – “business where society profits”. We’ve been part of that world since 1996 and aim to keep growing in how we impact the fundamental human needs to:

  • Be loved, appreciated and respected for who we simply are
  • Belong, feel connected to others who care about us
  • Feel good about ourselves and what we have achieved, no matter how humble​
  • Laugh, cry, create happy memories
  • ​Create a positive life ​story while living and, especially, before dying.

So many other milestones I can’t even think of now. But just to say, thank you. To our team and advisors for putting up with me, to you all.

I’m off to the Buddhafields Village Retreat in Dartmoor for the 10th happy year in a row, then working remotely from Sardinia for a couple of weeks re-creation. Have made a start on the book I am writing to gift to you all for winter reflection – “How to live a loving life”. It starts with self love, but it’s not linear.

Hopefully this time of self love will involve more painting than working. Let’s see if I can hold the obsession at bay. Taking oils and a microscopic photo of the first moments of life! A fertilised egg. Hopefully to be a friend’s grandchild. I’ll be painting from it and sending blessings on this little being who is currently making his or her mother rather sick. A welcome sign after IVF.

Cradle to grave love. One day there will be an exhibition.

Viva life!

Viva holidays!

See you in September.

Screen Shot 2015-07-31 at 17.42.16

 

 

 

The Compassionate Revolution

Woosh.

Great session yesterday hosted by Upstream Ideas on Social Movements. Chris Erskine from Seedbed has recently finished a PhD looking at organic, spontaneous moments of human connection towards a politics of compassion. Viva! Such a funny, honest man. I was moved to tears at the pub after, hearts open.

It made a lot of practical sense applied to Message Eggs, as well as providing huge amounts of intellectual, heartful Bamboo for Pandas (more on that later). It felt a lot like home. Kindred.

Chris’s story telling around his lifeline got us all sharing our own. His emphasis on spirituality and the need for us to look at utopianism and feminism, as well as  our own navels just made sense.

So many notes. One in particular from Jacques Lederach about ‘critical yeast‘. We grow culture together, we change things.

What seems small can grow and grow. We can all be catalysts for change.

Non-hierarchical, organic structures, more permaculture. Will be buzzing for days. Dear Brighton.

Art and creativity matter. A lot.

I went straight from the workshop into the car of kind strangers – running late for my daughter’s school fair – they drove me right there. I felt able to part the veil of what’s possible. Something shifted in the world. We talked like old friends and shared dreams and passions. AirBnB can be much the same. There are so many examples and growing all the time. I will be writing and reflecting on them more over time.

Meanwhile, here’s great books to explore some of what informs our intention for Message Eggs – The Compassionate Revolution and Blessed Unrest. Also Barbara Frederickson’s Love 2.0, Richard Sennett’s Together and Manuel Castell’s Networks of Outrage and Hope.

Celebrating each other’s gifts with the gift of Message Eggs is one way to create resilience and plant seeds of compassion.

We are powerful. We are the many.

We can grow love fresh, every moment, like bread.

 

SIGN OUR MANIFESTO

chris

compassion

sm2

social movements

 

Screen Shot 2015-06-30 at 13.11.41

 

 

Welcome to Message Eggs!

We’ve just relaunched from Metta Eggs to Message Eggs.

And now we have a splendid new website, featuring case studies from just a few of the 1000 people we’ve helped get connected and celebrate life.

After much hard work and careful handling of everyone’s individual needs on case studies (as best we could) – it’s here at last.

We had a wonderful celebration here at Eggwood in Brighton on Saturday with many loyal supporters, customers, recipients and advisors. And I was presented with my very own box of Message Eggs. Will reflect on that in my own case study, coming soon. Thank you. Beyond words really. Yes, it is a little overwhelming. Such kind, funny, thoughtful words. I am very lucky indeed. A total surprise thanks to tricky Beth and Gra and all.

Launch party video coming soon too.

Want your own case study featured?

If you are already a customer and would like to be featured in one of our case studies, do get in touch or we might first. We have many other older recipients who are a little more shy of course. Celebrating your parents in one of our favourite things here at Message Eggs.

You can choose your own level of privacy and whether or not you want to share messages. We hope you will, as the people involved love to share in them – and keep celebrating you.

GET IN TOUCH

 

 

Circle of Love

A phone call in January 2010 took me on a journey we all have to go on one day, but hope will never come. My brother in Australia, was phoning me in England, just three days after we had landed back from a hot Aussie Christmas.

In some ways I’ld been prepared for this call, by my own mother’s experiences at the same age. She had openly discussed a fact of life many choose to ignore, and to philosophies that helped me be ready. But it still hurt like hell.

My big, strong brother trying to hold it together, said: “Mum’s really really sick. She’s got secondary tumours right through her abdomen.” At this point he started to cry.

Read More