5 Steps To Change Your Life

First thing I want to say is, change is hard.

Wow what a revelation I know, but I used to be one of those personal trainers, AND humans that would believe that the reason people don’t change when they say they want to, is because they don’t want it enough.

I know, I’m sorry, but if you’ve followed me for a while, you’ll know that I like to be open and honest about my shortcomings, and that belief was definitely one of them!

I want to take you back a few short years ago when I was living in my gym, and using drink, coke and sex as a form of escapism from my painful reality.

I started my blog as my form of therapy as I didn’t want any advice (which is usually what we’re wired to give as humans when someone comes to us with their pain, because we can’t sit with our own pain, so we avoid and try to ‘fix’ other peoples), I just wanted to express and ‘let it out’ as it was too much for me to keep it all in.

A few months after I had been blogging about my struggles and my thoughts and feelings regarding my pain and my desire to ‘be happy,’ I remember being on a night out. I was of course still coked up and pissed,

I had an excuse right?!

And one girl in the pub beer garden said to me ‘oh you’re the guy that writes and posts all the quotes’ I actually remember being surprised that someone I didn’t know, knew me because of what I write about.

It felt great, it validated me, it made me feel like a someone and I wanted more of it!

Each week when I would sit down and write my blog I was excited for the comments and messages of validation that I would get,

I even had someone who I hadn’t seen in a few years stop me walking in to the petrol station and say how much they love my writing,

The validation kept pouring in!

Eventually I became so unhappy with my current situation, that all the validation and the nights of debauchery were no longer giving me what they used to.

It was in that moment that I became aware of the fact that I had created an identity so I could gain acceptance and love.

I had created an identity of a man who is in touch with his emotions and is really trying to get out of a dark place.

But the truth was, I didn’t want to change my life up until that point, because I was actually getting the love and acceptance I have always craved.

Surprisingly or unsurprisingly to some of you, that love and acceptance never really penetrated the wall around my heart I’d built up, which is why after a while that too was not enough.

As much as I was saying I wanted to change, the fear was that what if I change and improve my life and people no longer relate to me, or accept me, or even worse what if they don’t love me.

This was when I stopped blogging for a year or so.

I knew that my intentions behind blogging were exactly what were keeping me stuck, and I needed to find a way to let that identity go, and dive deep inside myself so I could understand who I really was.

See, sometimes we say we want to change, but the reason why we don’t is because the thing that is keeping us stuck where we currently are, is the thing that is giving us the ‘love’ we don’t feel worthy of from others.

The first step to change is cultivating the awareness to recognise that your vice (drinking, smoking, overeating, sex, masturbation) is actually serving you, and you have only adopted that as a way to ‘get through another day’

Gratitude is what is needed here, (that might be hard to embody if you have spent a lot of time hating yourself when you drink, smoke overeat do drugs etc etc so I would highly advise working with a Life Coach to help you see new perspectives, so you can show yourself the love and compassion you need to change) gratitude for the fact that you found something that helped you day to day.

The second step is to create a vision of how you DO want your life to be, that HAS to be a really powerful emotive vision that encapsulates all the feelings you want to feel each day,

Something like;

“I want to support people in letting go of all their disempowering beliefs they have about themselves, so they can really allow themselves to be loved by another instead of always pushing it away.

The reason I want to do this, is because I have spent too many years hurting myself, and others, because of the fact that I didn’t feel worthy of love.

I will feel really proud of myself everyday, when I wake up and see new opportunities to help others, instead of playing small in life.”

That was what inspired me enough to financially invest in a program to become a coach.

Slowly but surely my behaviours changed, I no longer wanted to go out every weekend and get off my head, I had a bigger purpose for my life!

The more invested in becoming a Life Coach I was, the easier it became to let the old behaviours that were no longer serving me fall away.

It wasn’t coming from a place of ‘I need to change and I need to stop doing x,y,z’ because as we all know that motivation for change never lasts.

You have to dig deep enough, and look at what those unhealthy behaviours are actually giving you, and then find a way to start giving those things to yourself, in a healthy way.

So if you’re;

In a relationship where you are unhappy and anxious everyday, then ask yourself ‘what is this relationship giving me that I could start giving myself?’

Overeating and deeply insecure about your body, then ask yourself ‘what is being overweight giving me that I could start giving myself?’

In a job you hate and feel unappreciated in, ask yourself ‘what is this job giving me that I could start giving myself?’

Usually they will be things like;

Love,

Security,

A sense of purpose,

Armour to stop people getting too close,

Not having to be alone,

Acceptance,

Validation.

They all stem from a fundamental belief that ‘I am unlovable!’ so we adopt ways to either manipulate ourselves, or manipulate others into giving us what we don’t feel worthy of receiving.

So then the question now would be…

Why am I unlovable?

Once you can unpack all of the reasons why you believe you’re unlovable, and see them from a completely different perspective, you will be able to recognise that they actually aren’t founded in facts.

So then now you can begin to think about all the reasons why you ARE lovable…

Again this may be hard to do on your own, as old beliefs die hard, so I would absolutely say invest in a Life Coach, which by the way, you putting money down is actually a commitment you’re making to yourself to say ‘I know I am worthy!’

From here you can ingrain new beliefs that empower you to start asking for, and going after what you actually deserve, and you will STOP accepting all the crumbs that you are currently settling for.

So yes, change is hard, as it’s often years of unconscious beliefs, creating a reality that victimises you, but with the right support and guidance that change really can become your new reality.

So just to recap;

  1. When you are at a point in your life where you want to change, ask yourself ‘what am I getting from the situation I’m currently in, that is stopping me from wanting to make that change?’
  2. Gratitude. Seeing the behaviours you want to change, as something that have actually been serving you up until this point, and recognising that you were only doing your best to navigate each day the only way you knew how.
  3. Create a powerful vision. Really dive in to how you want your life to look in say a year from now, what feelings do you want to experience each day and why.
  4. Unpack the fundamental belief of ‘I’m unlovable’ so you can gain new perspectives, and start creating a new reality based on the reasons why you ARE lovable.
  5. In my opinion this one is absolutely vital… hire a Life Coach because it can be easy to slip back into old habits and ‘let yourself off the hook’ when you don’t feel ‘up to it’, and also because we need to be asked the tough questions that we so often avoid asking ourselves.

If you’re at a point where you are ready for these 5 steps above, then ask yourself, ‘What is really stopping me from making that change and investing in a life coach?!’

Are you worthy of the life and love you’ve always dreamed of…

Rooting for you,

Dan.

What Is Self-Love?

You may be thinking that loving yourself is only something that cocky and arrogant people do,

Or you may be thinking that no one loves themselves,

Or if you’re a professional ‘self-loather’ then not loving yourself is something you can use to beat yourself up with as well,

‘I can’t even love myself!’

Wherever you sit in regard to your own definition of self-love I thought I would be your knight in shining armour and hit you right in the feels by letting you in to my world of self-love,

You’re welcome 😉.

First of all, I just want to go into what self-love isn’t…

Self-love is NOT:

Cocky or arrogant, in fact if someone is genuinely cocky and arrogant that is proof that they don’t love themselves because real love is not something that requires proof, it is something you just know and feel.

Conditional. If you find you can say I love myself only when things are going well but not when they aren’t then this is conditional love and NOT real love.

A destination. Self-love is a daily practice and just like any relationship requires effort. A question I get my clients to ask themselves is ‘what would I do if I loved myself?’ this will give you a new perspective and help you navigate your day-to-day life.

Egoic. Self-love wants others to experience peace and joy and does not need to trample on others for it to exist. Self-love does not mean you love yourself more than others.

Needy. Self-love does not need validation from others to feel worthy.

Jealous. Self-love doesn’t get jealous of others because it knows that whatever you desire is yours and you are more than worthy of receiving your desires.

Lack. Self-love does not worry about there not being enough of something (enough good partners, money, clients etc).

Now of course these are the ideals and as I mentioned, self-love is a journey, NOT a destination. You also can’t beat yourself up for not being ‘there’ yet as ‘there’ is always a journey that goes deeper and deeper into who you are.

But be careful, because you can create what Mark Manson calls the feedback loop from hell, you beat yourself up, for beating yourself up and then beat yourself up, because you shouldn’t be beating yourself up, and on and on the loop goes.

The more aware you become of the parts of yourself that have been hidden, the more opportunities you will find to get to know and love those new parts of yourself.

I now consider it a game,

A game of hide and seek…

Those parts of ourselves we’ve hidden from ourselves need to be found for the game to be over, but some are harder to find than others, some require us to go to new places and open different doors.

Remember though,

You are not playing hide and seek with an axe murderer,

You are playing hide and seek with a loving big brother or sister.

Self-love really is about going into those dark places and shining a light on the parts of our being that we have demonised and identified as unlovable.

Self-love is about compassionately inviting those parts of ourselves out of the dark corners and into the light.

Those parts of me that I find harder to love I call ‘little Dan’

Little Dan gets anxious and sometimes believes he is unworthy and at times causes others to feel the pain that he is in but over the last couple of years I have learnt to understand that he has been trying to save me from hurt.

Unfortunately, because he is only a young boy, he doesn’t understand that he doesn’t need to react in unhealthy ways at times and I’m trying to put my arm round him when he feels scared and under threat.

Little Dan is just a scared little child looking out for me and I have made a commitment to treat him as such instead of punishing him.

I am his nurturing loving parent that loves him regardless of how he acts.

So, by now I hope I’ve managed to shine a light on your ‘little *insert name (mind out of the gutter, clearly little Dan is feeling something to be blaming you for where your mind goes 😉 haha!) so you can recognise just how he/she reacts and begin understanding why.

In this next part my intention is to help you relate to how self-love and lack of self-love is playing out in your life and why practising self-love is absolutely vital to live a life that lights us up and fulfils us.

Relationships:

Lack of – Lack of self-love will have you believe that YOU are lucky to have these people in your life instead of being equally beneficial. You will also find yourself putting everyone else’s needs above your own because you believe your worth is in what you do for others instead of who you are. You may find yourself accepting shitty behaviour from people and allowing them to disrespect and take advantage of you as long as you are being fed crumbs of ‘love’. Instead of being alone you will invite people back into your life that hurt you without them having to acknowledge how their actions/behaviours affected you because being alone is worse than being around people that are unsafe.

Practising self-love – having boundaries that invite people to love you how you want to be loved and treated because you don’t NEED people in your life to fill a void as you are already whole.

Career/purpose:

Lack of – Lack of self-love will have you believe that there is not enough, you will be living in a scarcity belief system that will cloud your reality with doom and fear. ‘I do not have enough money and in order for me to have more I need to work more (do more overtime). You will believe that the job you have is not that bad even though you don’t feel respected you still hold on to a story that you’ve ingrained in you about this job paying the bills, this job isn’t bad hours, this job isn’t hard work or stressful and really what you’re doing is avoiding the fact that actually your job makes you miserable and makes you feel purposeless.

Practising self-love – if you feel unappreciated in a job, your self love practice will have you ask yourself ‘why am I allowing myself to be treated less than how I want to be treated?’

You will not settle in a job just because it pays the bills because you know there are multiple ways you can earn enough money to pay the bills.

You will think about what it is you really want to do with your life and career and explore your options.

You will know that your worth is not attached to your job or financial status and as a result this will liberate you so that you can really go after what lights you up, this is how you ‘find your purpose’.

Health:

Lack of – Lack of self-love in this area will cause you to pass up responsibility and make your health someone else’s problem. You will believe that you can’t change and embody self-sabotaging stories like ‘eating healthy is too expensive’ or ‘I just don’t have the motivation or time to go to the gym’ or ‘my parents were overweight so that’s why I’m overweight’. You will tell yourself you have mental health struggles and begin to identify with a disempowering label. You will live in blame of your parents because it’s their fault that you are emotionally ‘unhealthy’. You will refuse professional help and instead turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms such as binge drinking, overeating and illegal substance abuse.

Practising self-love – You will see your health as your responsibility and it will come from a place of ‘I am worthy of being healthy’ you will see your health as something that is always in your power to improve, whether that be committing to an exercise schedule each week, going to therapy or hiring a life coach. You will not outsource your health and you will make ‘being healthy’ part of your identity.

As you can see if we are not continually practising self-love daily then EVERY area of our life becomes compromised.

The biggest takeaway I want you to leave with today is,

Self-love is a practise; it is NOT something you just gain or a place you arrive at and then the journey is over.

We always have new ways we can love ourselves and the deeper we go inside ourselves, the more parts we uncover that give us an opportunity to love.

Humans really are like onions; you peel a part back and then get to heal and love that part you were unaware of before.

Then you get to peel back another layer and heal and love that part of yourself,

The thing that excites me is the fact that I will NEVER know who I am because there are always new parts of myself, I’m discovering and these new parts of who I am get to be understood and loved.

From one day to the next I am becoming more and more ME,

And I am on a journey of chipping away everything that ISN’T ME so I can show up in my life as the person that I always was before I built up the walls of defence.

Self-love is ALWAYS the antidote.

A Story About Values

So over the last few months I felt as if I was being guided towards becoming a therapist, as well as a life coach.

I sat and really thought about what it was I wanted to be doing and where I saw myself making the biggest impact.

In 5 years time;

I saw myself buying a 4-5 bedroom house,

Having a therapy room, where I would facilitate psychedelic therapeutic settings and help people through things such as PTSD and emotional abuse,

Having an office space, where me and Charis would work on the business, podcasting, day to day runnings etc,

An outdoor unit at the end of the garden for a gym,

And overall just an amazing home, next to the sea, supporting people through deep transformations.

Thing is, I was not what you would call a model student while at school.

I was kicked out in year 10, and missed a lot of school through truancy and quite frankly just not feeling like I fit in (good old religious cult programming).

So I enquired about university.

I filled in the application,

Had a friend and coach of mine write me an amazing reference,

Had everything in place, and was confident that I would be one of the people that they waiver the G.C.S.E grades for, because ‘I knew my shit’

Well this is the first sign from God/source/universe that this might not be the path for me.

They told me that I would not qualify and I’d need to get the grades to get on to the course.

So I enquired about an access course to higher education.

I done everything that was required and yesterday was my enrolment day into Blackpool and Fylde college.

I turned up at College feeling anxious, it wasn’t anxious about starting the course or anything to do with the college itself,

I felt anxious because I was unsure if this was for me.

I walked up to where it said ‘enroll here’ and was greeted by 2 women,

“Hi would you mind just popping your mask on please?”

“I’m exempt” I replied.

She turned round and picked up a brand new mask and held it out to me,

I looked at her at repeated,

“I’m exempt”

The second woman standing beside her said “could you pop a visor on please?”

Again I repeated “no I won’t wear a visor I’m exempt”

They both looked at me and then at eachother and one of them said to me “erm… I’m not sure what to do, I’ll just go and get my manager”

Bless her, she was clearly feeling uncomfortable.

5 minutes went by and in that time I had messaged Charis saying I’m getting hassled about wearing a mask.

Finally her manager came out and walked towards me.

“Hi do you have your I.D to let me know that you are exempt?”

I responded “no I don’t need to show you anything it says that clearly on the government website”

“Yes but you can print it off though can’t you?”

“Yes I can do” I said.

“But even if you have an exemption card you will still need to wear either a visor or a mask…” she told me.

This is where things went downhill.

At the corner of my eye I could see, and quite clearly hear, a young girl in front of me being interrogated about wearing a mask.

She said that she can’t wear one because she has claustrophobia, and that she will get really overwhelmed if she has anything around her face.

She was passed a visor and asked if she could just pop it on.

She was clearly embarrassed and didn’t know what to do, so she put it on and said that she might get overwhelmed and have to take it off, there was no acknowledgement from the lady that gave her the visor as she was already greeting the next person in line.

So by this point I was really trying to keep my cool as I hate seeing people get bullied, especially if they are unable to speak up for themselves!

So I calmly said to the woman in front of me still,

“How does that work if I’m exempt and the government website says that I don’t need to prove anything to be able to enter places?”

She went on to tell me that “this is just what Blackpool and Fylde College are doing to combat the virus”

I asked “so what do we do then?”

“Well to be a student here, you will need to wear either a visor, or a mask in class, whether you’re exempt or not”

I looked at her for a few seconds puzzled,

“ok don’t worry I’ll leave it then” as I turned round and walked past the line of people that had just witnessed the whole thing.

I went back to the car and told Charis exactly what happened, to which she said to me,

“would you really want to be part of an organisation that isn’t inclusive and discriminates?”

The answer is clearly FUCK NO!

If the teachers bully people, and are happy to break the law (refusing someone an education because of a medical exemption that prevents people from wearing a mask), then what message is that teaching the students?

Now if that was Dan just a few short years ago, I would of only had 2 choices available to me,

Go against my values and morals,

Or

Become argumentative,

Which shows me just how much I’ve grown.

This interaction gave me an opportunity to really see what is important to me, and whether I believe wholeheartedly in my beliefs or not.

The truth is sometimes we need doors to be shut in our face, for us to wake us up to the fact that that path is not meant for us.

Something I heard on a podcast was ‘don’t be the one to say no to yourself, let God tell you no!’

So what does this mean for my vision?

Absolutely nothing!

The only thing that has changed is the HOW.

While journaling this morning I know that the timeframe is also unrealistic…

I don’t need 5 years!

I’ve transformed who I am and the way my life looks profoundly in just 2 years!

Imagine what I’m going to do in the next 2 years with the momentum I’ve created already 😉!

My message is really one of values and trusting your intuition.

I had that little inkling, manifesting as anxiety, that this might not be the right path for me, I’ve always been one for following the road less travelled, I’ve been self employed for 8 years and I’ve always took that next step or leap forward, regardless of others telling me they would do something different, or that it won’t work out.

This is just another learning all around me trusting myself, and continuing to create what feels right to me!

Today I feel powerful!

I feel inspired and excited!

But most of all, I feel grateful for another lesson that has brought me closer to myself.

A door closing may be the very thing you need, even though you don’t understand why, your job is to let go of the need to figure it out and just learn to trust that it’s all working out exactly as it’s meant to for you 😊!

YOU are the creator of your reality!

Much love,

Dan.

Considering Moving Away?

So May 2020 me and my girlfriend moved up to Blackpool (uk) from Sudbury, Suffolk. It’s a 260 mile journey that takes about 5 hours (give or take) so a spontaneous coffee date with a friend or family member is off the cards.

I had spent 32 years of my life living in and around my hometown, never really knowing what the big wide world (Blackpool ha!) had to offer.

There were a few reasons as to why we decided to move the other end of the country, but I’ll just list the main ones.

  1. Charis (recently promoted from girlfriend to fiancée 😉) wanted to go to Preston University to do her Masters Degree in Forensic Psychology.
  2. I knew my purpose was no longer a personal trainer, and my passion was helping people learn to love themselves.
  3. I needed to spend some time seriously working on healing some things emotionally that I’d been struggling with, and I had too many distractions, also known as excuses.
  4. When COVID hit I was unable to run my gym and earn a living, I also got my 30 day notice of eviction from my landlord (still unsure what his reasons were).
  5. A couple of years prior I had gone through a really shitty breakup which caused me to adopt some unhealthy behaviours as a coping mechanism which I was still ashamed of.

My top values are growth and freedom, I knew that in order for me to grow as a man, I needed to move away from the safety of everything I’d ever known, so I could really learn who I was and what I needed from life.

Me and Charis didn’t even sit down and have an in depth conversation about moving away, which highlights just how ready we were to make the move.

Baring in mind we moved in May, when we were in our first lockdown, everything just seemed to align for us.

  • I sold my gym equipment within days of putting it up for sale,
  • We found a property that was in our budget and didn’t require any credit checks (in fact I said I don’t have a very good credit rating which surprisingly was not an issue),
  • Within the space of 4 weeks we had found a property, paid the deposit and got our move in date all while being in lockdown,
  • Neither of us had much stuff to take with us, but the little that we did have, took us 2 trips, over 2 weekends, with Charis’s little Citreon DS3, which was a blessing because we didn’t have the hassle of sorting out a van,
  • We didn’t know anything about the area and didn’t do any research, but was surprised at the fact that we had a park directly opposite with a couple of basketball courts and a little 5 a side court (I’d been saying for a few years I want to get back into football), but more importantly we were only a 10 minute walk from the beach which had been my dream ever since I can remember!

Now as much as things just felt right for us and everything seemed to fall into place, it has not been without it’s struggles, and the reason why I wanted to write this blog was because I’m sure you’ve toyed with the idea of moving away and starting afresh, and I want to help you decide if it’s right for you, and hopefully make the move easier for you if you do decide to ‘up sticks’ and leave.

Here are 10 of the most important things I’ve managed to whittle it down to when it comes to moving away;

  1. Get clear and really honest with yourself about your reasons for wanting to move. If you’re running away expecting things to be ‘better’ then I would invite you to think about the fact that it doesn’t matter where you are, your problems still follow you, unless you intend to do ‘the work’.
  2. Loneliness is a big one! If you struggle with your mental health, and specifically have suicidal thoughts, I would probably say moving away from your hometown is not the best decision, but if you feel capable of ‘doing the work’ then loneliness may be exactly what you need.
  3. What are you going to do for an income to support yourself? It will be much easier to do a job in a town that you don’t know anyone, because you won’t have those thoughts about ‘I don’t want someone seeing me working here’ which means that you can find a job, that enables you to work an amount of hours you need to to pay the bills, but also a job that gives you as much time off as you need to invest into ‘doing the work’
  4. You will lose contact with people that you thought were your friend. This is normal and can bring up a lot of feelings that are uncomfortable, but the blessing is that it allows you to get super honest with yourself about who YOU want in your life, and learn a very powerful lesson of letting go.
  5. Boredom! This is something that you may have to get acquainted with, because a lot of your usual distractions will no longer be there for you. Boredom will teach you so much about yourself, especially to listen to what it is you actually want to do long-term, that sense of purpose and direction we all need, can come from letting yourself sit with boredom for long enough to be guided towards what inspires you.
  6. Stay curious. You no longer have the pressure of a fixed identity (you can be who you want to be, because no one knows you) so say yes to things you wouldn’t normally, try things that you’ve always wanted to try, and allow yourself to do whatever it is that peaks an interest!
  7. Therapy! I would highly recommend investing in either therapy, counselling or a coach, because it will be hard to process some of your triggers on your own, and having someone outside of your immediate circle to open up to without the fear of being judged, is so powerful and hugely transformative.
  8. Online courses, programmes and groups. I invested in a group coaching programme that had people all over the world in, and as a result I have made some lifelong friends that I would never of met had it not of been for that programme.
  9. Removing the comfort blanket of all that was familiar (your hometown), enables you to get really clear on your goals. investing in a coach to help guide you and hold you accountable as you will no longer have all the distractions that you once had in your hometown will open your eyes to what is actually important to you.
  10. Have fun! It doesn’t have to be all serious, there will be so many new things, experiences, places to explore and whether or not you move away on your own, or with a partner, there will be opportunities to ‘put yourself out there’ as long as you don’t let fear get in the way!

Things I experienced personally…

Loneliness – I actually have a funny relationship with loneliness… A few years ago when I was at rock bottom, drowning in debt, and living in my personal training studio, I wrote a blog post about loneliness. Blogging for me was kind of like my therapy, or that friend that you could say anything to and they wouldn’t even raise an eyebrow.

That blog post was what inspired Charis to message me. She told me when she first read it she was also going through her own pain and hurt, and really related to my blog post. A few days later we met up for the first time having not known eachother at all apart from those few messages. Fast forward a few years and we are now engaged and planning our wedding 😉, so you could say I’m pretty fond of loneliness.

I’d been so used to supressing my emotions, and running away from myself, that I never actually knew who I was (I’m sure we can all relate to that) until a few years ago, when I had no choice to feel all the feels which became my blog name.

Loneliness became my greatest teacher, because it forced me to look at the parts of myself that I was struggling to like, let alone love.

This time when loneliness came back around I was ready to welcome him in.

I was able to ask myself questions such as ‘am I avoiding loneliness by wanting to go out drinking?’ or ‘am I using social media as a distraction from sitting with myself?’ and asking myself these self-inquiring questions gave me a new perspective, which presented me with another option.

I can NOT recommend loneliness enough!

Embrace it, listen to it, sit with it, learn from it and as my good friend Aviram says ‘stay curious!’

Relationships – Now this has been a real process, and taught me so much about expectations and letting go.

To begin with I held on to the belief that friends and family SHOULD make an effort to communicate and ‘keep’ the relationship growing. There were times when I would feel resentment at the fact that some of the people I expected to be in my life, made zero effort. It was uncomfortable AND it was absolutely necessary!

I started to again, do some self reflection, and really inquire why I feel this way around what I expect. I began realising that the only thing creating that form of suffering, was my expectations that I’d covertly put on others.

Truth is, some people are just not meant to be in your life any longer, and this does NOT mean that they are bad people, it just means that the relationship has run it’s course.

Something that I began thinking about, was how we have a belief that a friendship should last forever, yet an intimate relationship can break down and transition, but that’s deemed as perfectly normal and acceptable…

I also began recognising my lack of effort I’d put in to family and friendships, and this enabled me to be really honest with myself, and ask why I hadn’t put much effort in, and act upon that realisation, whether it meant actively working harder on it, or learning to let it go.

Again use this as a learning instead of a way to create a victim identity. Let go of the relationships you need to let go of and invest in the ones you want to improve.

Counselling/Coaching/Support – I can honestly say if I hadn’t of invested in my own healing, and personal development I would not be where I am today! I knew I had things I needed to work on personally that were holding me back from really stepping in to my power, and were causing me to play small and sabotage in life. For me I didn’t care how much it cost to heal, because the price of mediocre relationships, and the feelings of no real purpose in life were far higher than any amount of money!

Now I am always working with a coach of some sort because having an expert in a specific area of life, guide me, and hold me accountable to whatever goals I set myself, is worth it’s weight in gold!

This is something we go through in my 6 Month Deep Dive 1-1 coaching programme. Looking at ‘who are you’, and a question I always ask myself is, ‘are you someone who invests in themselves, and wants to improve and grow, or are you someone that plays small and settles?’

This always guides me towards growth!

Goals/Business – Moving away and not knowing anyone apart from each other (me and Charis), enabled us to work on ourselves individually, and our relationship, and get super clear on what it is we want for our lives.

It took me about 6 months of ‘downtime’ and personal healing work that guided me towards my purpose in life.

Growing up as a Jehovah’s witness, and struggling for years with parts of my personality that had been demonised, made me believe that I was unlovable.

Because I believed I was unlovable, guess how I showed up in relationships…

Yep, I would sabotage everything because I didn’t feel worthy of love.

Using the last 18 months to really be with myself, and see how I was showing up in life and my relationship with Charis, was exactly what I needed to guide me towards the type of coach I am

My purpose is helping people understand themselves, unlearn the beliefs and stories that are holding them back, and really learn to start giving themselves the love they so freely give to others!

So my advice to you;

If you are thinking that moving away will solve all your problems, then you’re wrong,

If you are moving away to really work on yourself, explore new places and grow as a person, then I would highly recommend taking the leap and NOT overthinking it all!

It took us a month, during a ‘pandemic’ and all we needed was £2000 to set us up for the first month.

I’ll leave you with a question to ask yourself…

‘Am I someone that makes my dream a reality, or am I someone that just talks about it?’

Are You Rejecting Parts Of Yourself?

My whole life I have either told myself I’m bad, or spent so much energy trying to control those parts of me that I thought were bad.


This has led me to reject a huge part of myself and never really let anyone in.
So many of us do this!


We hold on to the ideals of what we think we should be and then judge others for not living by our rules.


Since my childhood, and being told that my sexuality is bad, and Jehovah doesn’t like that part of me, I’ve held on to the belief that if God who loves everyone unconditionally doesn’t love me, then obviously I need to try my best to be someone else to be worthy of love.


Sex and masturbation have been so deeply filled with shame that it’s caused me to cheat, objectify, be disrespectful and hurt people I love.


As a result of this it has just showed me more proof that I am bad.


My sexuality is unsafe and when I am in sexual pleasure it causes me to hurt people.


It’s been a journey of so much pain, heartbreak and suffering but now I am ready to bring my most powerful self into my relationships, my business and the world.


Lastnight I had the courage for the first time ever in my life to fully open up about my sexuality and it felt so liberating.


Charis looked at me with such love and she said to me “I’m so proud of you and I am excited to be by your side supporting you in your most powerful version of yourself”


Everything that I’ve been through in my life has been part of God’s plan (not Jehovah, Actual God, the totality, the source of creation, unconditional love),


I needed to be brought up in a religious cult and experience such deep religious wounding and trauma,


I had to hurt my first love (as much as I wish I didn’t, and I know in time we will be able to have a friendship),


I had to go through the experience of being treated as a rapist (innocent until proven guilty isn’t actually a thing when you’re arrested by the way),


I had to live in fear of rejection all the while rejecting myself,


I have to be terrified of intimacy and only experience what it was like partially letting someone in,


I had to experience it all because without it I would NOT be able to fully understand what self rejection looked and felt like.


I needed to understand that because God has put me here to support you all into stepping into your true selves and expressing yourselves in whatever feels right for you.


No more fear of judgement,


No more settling,


No more playing small in the world,


I am a beacon of light for you all to guide you into your power so that you stop rejecting parts of yourself and holding on to all the limiting stories you have around ‘I’m not good enough’


You are more powerful than you know!


I recognise that this post and picture will trigger you into wanting to judge me,


That’s ok,


I understand,


What I would invite you to do is first of all ask yourself what is this trigger trying to teach me.


Because your ego will be wanting to keep you safe and by doing so it will cause you to put me in a box and label me.


I also understand that this will cause you to want to label me and my sexuality,


This too is ok,


It’s your ego wanting to keep you safe so that YOU don’t get judged,


I want you to know that whatever feelings this post brings up in you is absolutely perfect,


But it’s in these triggers that we learn the most about ourselves and get an opportunity to be aware of what part of us needs more love.


So I’m going to leave you now and give you the time and space to reflect,


But for now if you need a label to put on me to make you feel more safe,


Then…


I am a son of God.


If any of this resonates and you’d like to gain the confidence to be able to start showing up in your life and relationships fully instead of feeling like you have to hide/reject parts of yourself then my brand new 6 Week Breakthrough Programme it’s for you.


It’s a program that I’ve only been able to create now since fully stepping into my most powerful self and no longer rejecting any parts of me.


It’s a program that will allow you to look at all the areas of yourself that you are keeping hidden through shame and those stories that I’m all too familiar with ‘if I show someone this side of me they will reject me’


We go into self sabotage and how you are keeping yourself locked in victimhood,


I will teach you tools that will help you navigate your everyday life so you are much more aware of these patterns and know how to deal with them instead of feeling powerless.


Like I said it’s taken me my whole life, a shit load of money and even more energy and courage to get to this point on my self love journey,


So this program absolutely WILL reflect that.


So…


How can you honour yourself right now instead of continuing to play small?


Much love Dan.

Heal The Boy And The Man Will Appear

Heal the boy and the man will appear

what feelings does that title bring up in you?


When I first heard that a couple of years ago, it hit with an element of shame attached to it,


funny that considering my whole life has been a whole barrage of shame due to good old religious programming and conditioning.


rationally I knew what the term meant but what I heard was a gentle whisper of ‘you’re not a man unless you sort your shit out’ and this blog is all about ‘my shit I needed to sort out/heal’


For so much of my life I have been terrified of true intimacy, I would never let people get too close, whether you were a friend, a family member, or an intimate partner I would only invite you in so far.


Now I believe that this is our work as individuals and as a collective human race to create the safety to remove those barriers around our heart,


Firstly for ourselves, and this is what will allow us to be fully expressed in the world, which leads to unadulterated, unapologetic, self expression and the deepest connections we all truly desire.


What needed to be healed in me was a belief that I was bad/dirty/wrong/self-abusive/sinful and basically unlovable.


Now where did this belief come from?


ok…

I’ve got to pause here for a second and take 3 deep slow breaths

My inner child is now clinging on to my leg and pleading with me not to share this because he is worried we will be laughed at, judged and he is scared that it will put us back in that state of suffering i’ve been in effectively for 20+ years since it happened.


Sorry back in a second I just need to console him.


“Young Dan, I want you to know that i’m so grateful that you are expressing your fears and concerns with me, and I completely understand where they are coming from, because I too, am a little unsure, but I want you to know that whatever happens i’ve got you, and I always will have you, your loving big brother Dan”


Sorry about that everyone lets proceed…


So when I was about 11 or 12 as a young Jehovahs witness boy me and another Jehovahs witness friend of the same age began experimenting with eachother.


Now neither of us really knew what we were doing, and we also ‘knew’ that it was wrong and Jehovah wouldn’t be happy about it, but being the age we were, our hormones and curiosity were far stronger than the feelings of ‘wrongness’ that were also present.


This went on for a few months.


It came to a very abrupt ending when my friend could no longer deal with the guilt of what we were doing.


Both his parents were very ‘in’ the religion, and I think possibly this was why he felt far more guilt than what I did.


My mum was a Jehovahs witness and my dad wasn’t, so as much as my mum tried to steer me on to the ‘right path’ singlehandedly my mum was unable to indoctrinate me into those teachings as much as his parents were.


By the way I just want to be clear that I don’t hold on to any judgments about our parents being better or worse than eachother, just parents that were doing what they believed were the best things for their children.


He told me that he was going to tell his parents as he couldn’t do it anymore because he knew it was wrong.


This terrified me even as a young boy because I knew the extent of how ‘bad’ this was that we’ve been doing.


After all this came out we were spoken to by the elders (you could call them priests I suppose) and they had the job of telling us how wrong it was and why Jehovah would not approve of it.


Now as i’m sure you can imagine as a 11 or 12 year old boy, being told this by fully grown men, the message they were trying to convey was not the message that I heard.


The most vivid memory I have of this whole experience is one of me and my mum.


My mum and dad had a little table just as you walked into their bedroom with 2 chairs and this is where we would sit and have our weekly bible studies.


We used to have regular bible studies which I actually really enjoyed because it was time that me and my mum had together.


After all this came out we had a bible study about why this behaviour needed to stop.


Now this is how the memory looks to me and I can’t explain it or see it any other way.


I am standing behind me and my mum sat at the table as the adult version of me right now.


My mum is showing me scriptures from the bible explaining to me why Jehovah wouldn’t approve.


I see my mum next to a little boy feeling inadequate, feeling embarrassed, feeling scared that he had let his mum and dad down and I see him just shrinking more and more into the chair.


Strangely enough, you may think, I also see my mum as a holy being, a nurturing loving mother who was trying her best to ‘save me’ (if you’re unaware of the Jehovahs witness fundamental teachings then effectively if you go against Jehovah he will murder you along with everyone else that isn’t a Jehovahs witness at Armaggedon) and this is something i’m trying to help my mum recognise, as she holds on to a lot of guilt around raising her 2 boys in religion and how it has affected us, even though I think she also still believes the teachings.


Which by the way mum, you could never be or do anything that would make me stop loving you, my love for you is not out of choice, I don’t choose to love you, I just love you unconditionally, full stop.


Now this whole traumatic experience created a HUGE amount of shame that I have only been consciously aware of for the last few years.


This is where my absolute terror comes from when I think about letting someone fully into my heart.

The story i’d created was that if God who is unconditional love is telling me this part of me is wrong, then how can I ever trust a mere human to tell me otherwise?!


4 years ago when I went through the toughest time ever in my life after being arrested for an allegation of attempted rape, I knew then that I had created this unconsciously because I needed to heal the little boy in me that was still holding onto shame around sexuality.


funnily enough this pushed me even further down into shame and I NEEDED an outlet for this shame which at the time I didn’t consciously choose but became ‘my thing’ for being seen.


I was trying to rewrite this story into a much healthier, liberating story that didn’t leave me feeling ‘bad’.


since going through therapy (i’ve just finished this week my 3 month journey) I have been able to recognise what I was actually recreating…


So my thing became being watched masturbating either in person (while on cocaine) or over video call.


This was me crying out for the validation that in fact I wasn’t bad and I was normal.


Unsuprisingly knowing what I know now, what I was actually recreating and perpetuating, was this cycle of shame, it never filled that void, and it never made me feel good enough, all it done was leave me feeling worse and believing the story that i’m bad, even more.


The most profound thing my therapist enabled me to recognise came from a simple question that i’d NEVER been asked and i’d never even asked myself…


That question was,


“When you and your friend were doing what you were doing did you enjoy it?”


FUCK!!!!


This literally halted me in my tracks and brought me to my knees because in all of this and all of these years of holding on to this story I never even thought about if I enjoyed it!


I sat their for about 30 seconds in silence just looking at her and feeling what was coming up…


I replied,


I have never ever thought about that or been asked that, but yes I did enjoy it and I didn’t want it to stop.


Realising this and being able to admit it to myself and to her, instantly brought so much relief with it, because in that moment I connected with the real me, the part of me that had been shoved so far down and had been residing in that fiery pit of hell/shame and was now invited to come out with ZERO judgement.


She went on to help me realise that as a result of me enjoying it but being told I was wrong for it so much of my sexuality was attached to ‘well if it’s bad then I enjoy it and if I enjoy it I must be bad’


Now this was SOOOO profound and hit me straight in the truth (where we actually live, our truth, who we really are) and with that a huge feeling of self compassion engulfed me, I could see that innocent 12 year old boy in every ‘mistake’ i’d made and I could let go of all the hurt i’d caused because I too was in pain through all of it.


Now I would not be here now if it wasn’t for my girlfriend.


3 years ago when we met I had started ‘doing the work’ and i’d been blogging regularly for a few months, which was kind of like my therapy, and another way for me to be seen without actually REALLY being seen.


Anyway, she resonated with a blog I wrote about loneliness (I used to write a lot of blogs about how I was currently feeling) that blog I wrote had planted a seed and a few weeks later she reached out.


we got speaking and for 9 months built a friendship that really was the catalyst for my healing.


Charis invited me out of my own suffering and really showed me what unconditional love was,


It has taken me 4 years to feel worthy of it, but if it wasn’t for her love at a time when I couldn’t love myself, I would not be the man I am today!


Charis was my reward from God for ‘starting the work’ and has supported me and inspired me every single day,


In fact it was only because of her that I started having therapy.

She was my strength and my safety to truly surrender to love and intimacy.


These last 11 months have really been a metamorphosis of deep deep transformation, where I can now be that loving nurturing big brother or parent of ‘little Dan’ and give him exactly what he needs whenever he is feeling scared or less than.


I really see my work now as a practise of having the courage to bare all, and every time I look for something or think about something in the form of intimacy outside of my relationship, to firstly be aware of that being an old fear based programme running in the background, and acknowledge 12 year old Dan just feeling afraid.


I don’t believe that 1 partner can give us everything, but I also believe we don’t get to forfeit the possibility of first of all giving our partner the opportunity to be however that may look.


I have to first of all fully express myself and my desires to my partner, then and only then can I think about outsourcing.


This is my work.


My mission or purpose if you will, in this world, is to be a light for others to see just how beautiful unapologetic self expression is, and empower them to step more into who they truly are.


Vulnerability is my superpower,


Are you ready to uncover yours…

The Beatles meeting me and my mum 2 years ago in Liverpool.

Vulnerability Is My Superpower

We have so much fear about opening up and allowing others to see our humanness, because we’ve been conditioned to believe that being vulnerable is a weakness, I wonder why ‘they’ would have us believe that our superpower (vulnerability), you know the thing that creates strong connections with other human beings is a weakness 😉…


Ok look I’m not here to go down the rabbit hole of the elite, and how they want to keep us disconnected from our natural state, and how they want us to see ‘them’ as our saviours so we give up all our power…


No,


I’m here to talk to you about the lessons I’ve learnt over the last 12 months, and how I think they can benefit you if you relate my story to your life, and look at the crossovers between the words that are coming out of me and the thoughts and experiences that are part of you.


If we always remember that we have an invisible thread connecting us all this will help us to see the eternal ‘us’ instead of the separate me and you.


So just over 12 months ago I began a deep journey of reconnecting to myself.


I had spent the last few years holding on to an identity that I had become ashamed of and I had attached so much of that identity to Dan the PT.


I’d been a PT for years and originally my reasons for wanting to become a PT were;


⦁ I’d spent a few years just going from job to job just wishing my life away and lacking confidence, but most of all purpose, I knew there was more to life than just working 40+ hours in a shitty job to pay bills and get pissed at the weekend because I was bored.


⦁ I’d been going to the gym and had always been sporty and active my whole life and that is what made me feel the most alive.


⦁ Being a naturally slim lad all my life, and then building some muscle gave me so much more confidence, and I wanted to help other people experience the benefits that I too have experienced.


⦁ I knew that I still struggled with confidence, and the only way to grow was to step out of my comfort zone and do something I loved.


⦁ I had told one of the women I worked with that I was going to apply for an apprenticeship to become a personal trainer, to which she responded “you will never make any money being a pt and if you put the hours in here you can earn good money” btw that ‘good money’ was about £1600 a month! This gave me the kick up the arse to get out of that hell hole even faster.


⦁ I had a couple of people that doubted me and a couple of ‘mates’ that would laugh at me when I told them how much I earned, this again was more fuel to the ‘i’ll show you’ fire.


⦁ I loved the feeling I got when I would help people, even if that help was being a listening ear to someone, it gave me a feeling of purpose.

Now a lot of my reasons were to either prove to others I could ‘do it’, to build my self confidence, or to help people, and that is what enabled me to open a pt studio and grow my business in 6 months from £900 a month to £5000.


But the shit hit the fan as you’ve read in other blogs and that sent me on a downward spiral of drink, drugs and instant gratification seeking.


As I started to come out the other side of that low point in my life, I began (as I think we all do) demonising that old version of me, and instead of having a little self compassion, I began judging those behaviours in others, because I was still ashamed of those parts of myself.


This lack of empathy for myself that I was projecting onto others made me go into my shell, because in my mind I had told myself that this version of me that I didn’t like, would only come out if I had mates.


This meant that I isolated myself, which come with some backlash from people that I didn’t expect which then resulted in me attaching even more weight to the belief I had created around me being ‘better off on my own’.


From January 2020 I spent my days training clients, going for long 2+ hour walks on my own listening to self development podcasts, and the little time I did spend with other humans beings were Charis and her family.


Valentines day 2020 me and Charis had booked a lovely little air bnb (courtesy of my mum) in lytham st annes, and I’d booked us lunch at the cat café in Preston.


This was our first real glimpse of living together with the added bonus of being right next to the beach, and in a lovely little seaside town.


I instantly fell in love with the place, and waking up next to Charis those few mornings and planning our days together which consisted of a gorgeous walk along the beach (even though it was freezing cold) just made me realise exactly what I wanted, and I was determined to make it a reality.


Charis was due to be started her masters degree at UCLAN (Preston uni) in september 2020, but by the end of March the world was shut down because of a deadly flu virus 😉, I’ll leave that discussion out of this blog.


Strangely enough by the start of April I had been given my 30 days notice by my landlord on my PT studio, which came as a surprise but was actually the best thing that happened to me.


This was the kick up the arse I needed to stop PT’ing, and really figure out exactly what it was I wanted to do.


So I spoke to Charis, and we decided that we would move away from Sudbury, and move up to Lytham st. Annes.


I spent the majority of April selling my gym equipment with no real clue what I was going to do for an income.


My plan a year prior to this was to be an online coach, and build my online business to a point where I could drop most, if not all of my in person clients, as my dream has always been to have locational freedom, to be able to decide at the drop of a hat that I want to go and move across the country, or the world, and not have any ties anywhere, my therapist has told me this is due to my religious upbringing which was very regimented in what I could or couldn’t do.


But the thing was, I no longer wanted to having any attachments or reminders of ‘Dan the PT’, and as much as I loved the deeper behaviour change coaching I was now doing along side my face to face pt stuff, it was still a part of me that I hadn’t healed which obviously meant I needed to discard it just like those friendships.


The start of May we had found a property, and although the world had gone crazy and people were telling us we won’t be able to move, not once did I doubt that we would be going.


See the thing with me is, if I want something I will do whatever it takes to get it, because I never want to be on my death bed and think about all the times in my life I made excuses and didn’t go after what I wanted.


I was in constant communication with the estate agents, and after paying our deposit and fees they had told us that on the 16th May, all we needed to do was drop into their office and pick up the keys.


We were moving 260 miles north of everything and everyone we’ve ever known!


Now I didn’t really have any ties to Sudbury anymore, didn’t really see any of my family much, didn’t have a business I needed to stay in Sudbury for, and there was nothing that I had to sort out, it was literally just a case of packing my clothes and driving up north.


Charis on the other hand, was living with her family and she’d just left a job and all her friends, so for her, this really was a big deal.


We packed the car and began the long but very exciting journey to start a new chapter in our lives, and with every mile closer to our new home, brought with it more and more freedom.


We were so excited getting the keys, because not only was it our first place together, but it was a brand new chapter, and the start of OUR chapter in really building a life together.


We spent the first few days sleeping on our sofa because our bed wasn’t turning up until a week later, but looking back now almost a year on, this was half the fun (as my mum would remind me) this always made me think of the question,


‘Would you want to win the lottery?’ My honest answer is no.


For me i’m not money motivated, sometimes I wish I was, but the truth is, my biggest value is growth, and the journey is far more important to me than the ‘destination’, it’s all about self exploration that is driven by a curiosity to learn who I am, which i’ve come to realise is through the journey of learning who i’m not.


One of my favourite memories is putting together a chest of drawers with Charis while we were drinking ciders on a warm summer evening, admittedly it brought back some feelings around my first relationship, and starting a new life with someone, but it was from the perspective of how far i’ve come, how sorry I am for the pain and heartache I caused because of my own ‘stuff,’ and being hit by this feeling of ‘I never ever want my stuff to hurt someone again’


Now of course we all have things we struggle with, but as soon as we have the awareness to recognise our ‘stuff’, we have to start taking responsibility to heal, and our intention behind it I believe should be, because we deserve to experience all the love in the world, and anything that makes us feel unworthy of that love is a direct invitation to love that part harder and is exactly where ‘the work’ is.


we spent the next 6 weeks or so living as if we were on holiday, and we were just excited everyday to lay on the beach, drink ciders and eat fish and chips, we’d found 2 gluten free fish and chip shops so of course it would be rude not to!


by July I kind of needed some routine back in my life and I knew it was time to again focus on self growth, I invested in a high end coachng programme at £3200 for 12 weeks, which was an amount i’d never invested in myself before, but I kind of just knew that this was going to be transformational for me,


Self growth motivated, not money motivated ;).


These 12 weeks brought up some things that were challenging for me, but being part of a group of growth oriented men, in a container that was liberating and loving, was like nothing i’d ever been a part of, and being able to share things with zero-judgement was huge for me.


At the end of the 12 weeks I came away with a handful of really close friends that I regularly keep in touch with, and would now consider some of my closest friends i’ve ever had, you know the type of friends where you don’t have to be anything or anyone other than yourself…


Now it was far more obvious to me who I am meant to be helping!


I am meant to be helping men that have had all these same feelings of unworthiness that i’ve had, and help them out of that dark hole that we all get stuck in at certain times in our lives, and be the light for them when they are ready to look up,


I know I can now be that helping hand up for them, to start creating the life they truly deserve, while we work through all those uncomfortable feelings and beliefs together.


Now I was filled with a deep sense of purpose, I set about creating a coaching programme based around my own journey and the modalities i’d learnt and used myself along the way.


I had just created my new programme and was like a kid in a candy store, the only difference was, I knew I could have it all, there was no limits!


The next morning I wrote a post about where I was 3 years ago, and where I am now, I spoke about being arrested for an allegation of attempted rape, and how I ended up in £10k worth of debt and living in my PT studio, and how investing in myself and committing to my health has got me to where I am now.


I posted this in a Facebook group for entrepeneurs and it’s got something like 17k people in there.


My post sparked a conversation with someone via messenger, he had told me he was in a similar situation, or atleast knew how I had felt back then and he was scared of going down that path and losing the life he now has.


We booked a call for a day later and he opened up about where he currently is, and how he is ready to commit to himself.


I told him I knew I could help him and we went through how it would look us working together for 12 weeks, and that the programme was £1000.


he said ‘let me speak to the mrs’


30 minutes later he messaged me saying, you know what let’s do it, i’m in, I know this is exactly what I need!’


I always remember this moment because we never knew eachother, and apart from a 30 minute call, he put all his faith into me, and was willing to invest £1000 without any real proof that this was going to be what he needed, heck he didn’t even know if I was legit or if i’d take his money and ghost him!


Since this point my business has grown, and the more I align with who I am, and share the REAL me, the more I feel alive, and get to help other amazing men that want more for their lives!


This is where it really takes off for me…


6 weeks ago I started counselling because I knew that I was still holding on to shame around religious ‘stuff’ linked to sexuality, and this I knew was impacting how I show up in my relationship, I liken it to a part of me that i’ve locked away, and I knew that having a space to sit in uncomfortable feelings and be validated would be exactly what I need to really open my heart to the world.


Since I started my blog a few years ago I have always been very open and raw about the things i’m currently going through, the reason for this is because for me it’s kind of like my therapy, it’s a way for me to be who I truly am, I don’t know what it is about writing but I find it so cathartic, and liberating, but i’ve always held this belief that my writing has to be separate from my business.


My writing (effectively the real me) has to be separate from my business, because it’s unprofessional and I need to be a certain way for people to buy into me.


This always left me feeling unfulfilled, and what i’d done was create a huge divide, again this comes back to my religious trauma that had me believe I am either GOOD or BAD.


I now no longer hold on to that belief that I have to divide parts of myself up, it just comes down to my willingness to be vulnerable, and my motivation for being vulnerable is so I can empower others to always be true to themselves, and STOP putting on different masks in order to ‘fit in’


At the end of the day not everyone will get me, and not everyone will like me, but as long as I like me, and I follow my heart, life will always be a beautiful adventure that is full of twists and turns, and amazing opportunities, and I REFUSE to be the limiting factor in experiencing ALL of life!


All those parts of me that i’ve hidden, discarded and shamed, I am now grabbing hold of, and reconnecting them, and I promise I will NEVER abandon any part of me again, i’ve done it for far too long, and I owe it to myself and those closest to me to bring all of me :).


My business and my writing are extensons of me, and are no longer separate entities that I judge and use for validation,
I am now whole and am creating from a FULL heart, and not a heart that is begging to be mended or healed through people pleasing or playing small.


“Thankyou past Dan” as I wrap my arms around him and pat him on the back.


“You done exactly what you needed to do, you done your best, i’ll take us from here”


“I’ve got us”


Dan.

What i’ve learnt…

  1. Not everyone is meant to stay with you through every part of your life, and this does not mean that anything is wrong with you, OR them but just like day gives way to night the only permanent in life is change.
  2. You can’t think your way through life, you have to FEEL your way through life and this means experiencing ALL of it, the highs and the lows and everything in between.
  3. My worth is not attached to other peoples opinions of me, and is directly attached to my ability to love, and be loved, caveat… I am ALWAYS worthy of unconditional love.
  4. Vulnerability is my superpower!
  5. Everything I want is already inside of me I just have to shine a light in the darkness and not live in fear of what I might find.
  6. It’s ALL LOVE!
  7. I am capable of disgusting atrocities and every time I judge someone else for something I am instantly judging myself.
  8. We are all one!
  9. I am not my body or my thoughts, but the awareness behind it all.
  10. happiness is a shitty metric to live your life by, because it’s an emotion, emotions come and go, purpose, fulfilment and joy are far better things to go in pursuit of.
  11. life is NOT something that needs to look a certain way and as soon as you release attachment to how you think it should look the more you can begin enjoying this brief experience.
  12. Self-reflect, self-reflect, self-reflect!

God and Satan, morning journaling…

I’ve spent a lifetime trying to bury parts of myself that I believed made me a bad person due to my religious trauma,

Jehovah’s Witness cult for the record.

This trauma had me believe that parts of me were worthy of death and at the age of 11 or 12 that literally put the fear of god in me.

When I stopped subscribing to that religion as a young teenage boy, I didn’t realise just how much these abusive teachings had imprinted on me, and as a result I have gone through my life feeling like i’m 2 separate people,

‘Dan the good guy’

and

‘Dan the bad guy’

I have found myself fighting so hard to be ‘Dan the good guy’ but at times ‘Dan the bad guy’ has just been too strong, and in those moments all that’s been left is a path of devastation and destruction in it’s wake.

Now if that wasn’t bad enough already, it’s not even close to the damage it ensues on ‘Dan the good guy’

Does ‘Dan the good guy’ even exist? I ask myself, or is he just a character i’ve created to help me live a ‘normal life’

At times i’ve found myself staring in the mirror contemplating whether I am just being used by Satan as a way for him to stick 2 fingers up at god.

Fortunately I now believe in duality, and that god and satan are faces of the same being,

God = higher self

Satan = lower self

But what i’m learning is that intellect means nothing if you haven’t first filtered it through your heart.

That is exactly why my healing journey has brought me to therapy, so I can learn to remove the padlock from the cage where my heart lies, and usher it out into the space where we experience true love, but first that requires safety and a lot of courage to sit in the feelings of ‘Dan the bad guy’ and look through the bars of that cage to see Dan, just Dan, an innocent scared little boy, that feels unworthy of love and who is so desperately crying out for a protector.

I am still struggling to look him in the eyes and just see pure innocence and give him what he needs, because I still blame him for a lot of the heartache and pain I’VE caused, and have experienced in my life so far, and because I still feel like this scared little boy ‘Dan the bad guy’ is constantly trying to goad me.

My journey is now about looking past his outbursts, and trying to understand that he is just a child, and underneath the tantrums is a boy just asking to be loved, and until I learn to love him he will always feel separate to me.

I am learning to invite him back in and promise him that I will never abandon him ever again.

I love you Dan,

I am always here for you even if at times it feels like I have abandoned you again,

I will always love you,

Forever your protector,

Dan.

P.s. My best friend inviting me in to paradise with her.

Intimacy In A Relationship Is HARD!

A lesson that I’ve learnt the hard way and is something that me and Charis speak about a lot, is the importance of sexual intimacy in our relationship.

It’s so easy to get caught up in life and forget to invest daily into our relationship, and that very reason is exactly why in the past, a relationship I was in, ended up being more so as a best friend and not a girlfriend and sexual partner.

It’s only upon reflection we can really see where we went wrong.

You know that honeymoon period that everyone says goes…

I truly believe it doesn’t have to, and can transcend into something far greater where you become lovers, best friends and life partners,

But there is an IF…

Initially my main reasons for investing in my relationship were through fear that I would lose that ‘I JUST WANT TO FUCK YOU’ feeling, especially after I’d been there before and had really hurt someone I loved, because I didn’t have the awareness or the tools to cultivate the type of relationship I wanted, and coupled with the lack of courage to communicate my deepest desires, this led me to take the ‘easy’ otherwise known as the cowards way out…

Cheating.

Now my reasons for investing in my relationship are different, I know what type of relationship I want, and I have a duty to Charis to always try my best to communicate and stick to my commitment that we both made when deciding we wanted to create a relationship together.

I’ve learnt that 2 people (speaking about monogamous relationships as I haven’t experienced polyamory or open) that like eachother and choose to be in a relationship, just isn’t enough for a relationship to flourish, It takes constant communication, challenges, fear, love and everything in between to build the relationship you truly want.

As soon as I stop investing in my relationship and become lazy and complacent, my relationship will suffer (I know shock horror), so in order for me to have the type of relationship where I look at Charis and want to have passionate sex (or a quickie, or anything else sexually) with her, I HAVE to put the work in!

I want someone I can share my fears with (this starts with me owning them first),

I want someone I can break down infront of (this is what i’m currently working on through counselling as I struggle to connect with my own emotions and express them),

I want someone I can do nothing with (everyone loves a ‘snacks and film’ night),

BUT…I also want someone I can enjoy sexually,

And THAT comes down to how willing I am to invest in myself and my own healing (we’ve all got layers we need to peel back and learn to love).

A question I would ask yourself if you crave more intimacy with your partner is…

‘where am I not showing up for myself, where am I not showing up in my relationship, where am I NOT putting effort in and what can I do right NOW to start reinvesting?

Dan ‘this relationship stuff is hard’ Reader,

Much love.

STILL learning to love myself

As a man we have an immense amount of pressure to have our shit together 24/7 and this has led us to believe that any time we are struggling with something we have to do whatever we can to look like everything is fine.

We don’t talk to our mates about our struggles, fears and insecurities,

We don’t talk to our partners about our struggles, fears and insecurities,

And we definitely don’t talk to our parents about our struggles, fears and insecurities.

We hold all of this in because we don’t want anyone to see that we are actually human, and being human means that at times we struggle, and at times we need help, but that goes against everything we’ve been indoctrinated to believe that men just get on with it.

In other words, if we stop being a robot, and start being real, then people will see us as a weak unsuccessful man.

I’ve spent 33 years struggling to be human, and any time that I’ve felt like I could do with some help, i either dig my heels in even more and get defensive when people offer me help,

or tell myself I’m a failure and spiral down into a pit of drink and drugs to escape that story I’m telling myself.

What I’m actually learning is that being a man is not based on being an emotionless robot 🤖, in fact it’s the complete opposite!

Being a man is having the courage to be real and own your struggles, put your hand up and ask for help and support others on your way up.

I used to tell myself that ‘real men’ don’t need help, 

‘Real men’ don’t struggle with their emotions (Thankyou to the amazing term ‘man up’),

‘Real men’ have loads of money and fuck like pornstars (Thankyou to the over sexualised music world), 

‘Real men’ swoop in and save women (Thankyou Disney),

I think at every single point in my life I’ve held a belief about what it is to be a man and that ideology is always outside of myself, instead of really connecting to my own masculinity.

I am a kind, caring man who does what he can to help others.

I am also a man that struggles at times and has fucked up and hurt people he loves.

Each year that goes by I know myself a little more, and instead of judge myself for my past shortcomings I am learning to love all of me,

I am learning to love,

32 year old Dan that so wanted to be seen by his girlfriend in a moment of real vulnerability the he ended up hurting her deeply.

28/29 year old Dan that got accused of attempted rape and spiralled down into drink and drugs and as a result left him homeless.

Mid 20 year old Dan that cheated on his fiancée and broke her heart because he was so scared of real intimacy and harboured a lot of shame around sexuality.

Teenage Dan that spent so much of his time trying to be more ‘you’ and less ‘me’ because he just wanted to be liked.

10/11 year old Dan that was told that what he done was wrong and displeasing to God and he needs to be sorry (otherwise God wouldn’t love him).

When I sit back and reflect right now, I just see a boy/man that was trying to be what he thought everyone wanted him to be, or a version of him that he thought would be more worthy of love.

I’ve done a lot of questionable things in my time and they have all been as a result of parts of myself that I’m struggling to love and have been trying to hide.

Men…

I just want you to know that you can keep running and using;

Drink

Drugs

Sex

Masturbation

Gaming

Food

Relationship hopping

Being a doting father 

Work

To avoid those feelings of unworthiness, but I guarantee you, until you stop and actually start looking at it all, and learning to love it all, you will always feel lonely and unfulfilled, because it’s ALL YOU, and you are begging and pleading with YOU to love YOU.

Loneliness isn’t you not having someone externally who understands you and loves you,

Loneliness is YOU not understanding you and REFUSING to love you.

Maybe now is not your time and you’re not quite ready yet but when the time comes and you really feel the pull, use your strength to just surrender and give up running and get the help and support you need and deserve 🙏🏼❤️. 

Men I see you and I’m here for you,

Much love 🙏🏼❤️

Dan.

P.s. ego = ‘what judgements will I get as a result of this photo, it’s not safe to post this, you’re naked on the beach’

My higher self = Dan you’ve just wrote about vulnerability and judgements why are you now projecting you own self judgement?!