Shrink or Shine? See the World with Your Heart

After an eventful week here in Ronda, I had some great lessons to learn about integrating my Heart and Mind.

Here is a collection of a few inspiring things that helps me while I am working through my loneliness, challenges on my path to create what I have in mind and learning deeper more about relationships.  Enjoy this week’s reflection and please do share if you find yourself inspired!

In my study of Andalucian poetry I came across this poem on heart and mind, written in the 12th century.


We are moons in the darkness of the night; wherever we

sit, there is the head of the room.

If contemptuous fate unjustly takes away our

greatness, it can not take away the greatness of our souls.

Ibn Adha (Granada, 1098-1145 CE)


In my search for more contentment, I stumbled into this simple concept we so often forget. It is basic, it is simple and cost nothing: Kindness.


The deepest learning I had, however, was about an important junction we all face at different stage of our life: SHRINK or SHINE?

Once we step on the path of bringing our dream alive this question is inevitable. While crafting our work in the world, setting up our dream business or making powerful choices we face two roads stretched out ahead of us. One of them is calling us back to our old ways, established habits and the life we already left with hopes and courage. It is a narrow but well-trodden road with deep tranches and we know every bend, stone and curve on it. This is a public road with clear signs.


The other, the less known path is not even a path yet. It is the road less travelled with no road signs. It is a leafy avenue, inviting and adventurous, perhaps slightly frightening as we do not know where it is taking us. This is the path through the fear, doubts, guilt, vulnerability, feelings of inadequacy, lack of confidence, confusion, heartbreak and disappointments. It is a personal path, our very own private road that leads to Courage, Compassion, Trust, Truth and Integrity. It is the path of fullness.


The first road wants us to shrink, the other calls us to shine.


Shining is not the same as arrogance, cockiness, self-righteous trap that seems to be a running theme of success nowadays. It is quite the contrary! I think we must know our insignificance in this vast and wonderful universe and at the same time feel comfortable with the fact that we are all unique individuals who have a gift to give to the world. Our life journey is about discovering how we can serve the world and people with our gift. Shining means to feel at ease with this gift and give it with our whole heart.


Shrinking, on the other hand, is pulling us back to the old trenches where we accept a sense of defeat as if to say : I cannot change. My life is set, it takes too much effort to take purposeful steps. My dream is too big, too wide, too this or too that…(you know your excises). Shrinking means to refuse your gift to the world.


Last week I crossed this junction. The kids were ill, I was lonely and felt incredibly vulnerable about my work and life in this new town.  My friends are busy living their lives and I may not always make it to their agenda or their heart. In times like this, the mind gets busy and mine was active bringing my doubts and fears dropping them right in front of me. I was desperate to find my heart’s voice to keep walking without shrinking back into my fears.


After a few days of quiet nursing of the children I began to see clearly. I am fearful of many things and I will fail, multiple times. I still have not mastered the art of being alone and I still doubt my ability to write my book. I still do multiple times a week. Yet my heart is whispering that we must learn to choose the thoughts that work, not the ones that have dominated our lives and did not take us anywhere! We have 70,000 thoughts a day, we might try to choose them wisely.


What thoughts are you choosing this week?

Which ones are useful, helpful and true?

How would your life alter if you embraced them?











As driving around Andalucia last weekend, we found this village. Once a typical white washed pueblo, now a fully functioning…well, blue! Yes, it is SMURF town where we had a delightful lunch. Could not take a picture with all of us on it, so I give you this one, taken from the car by my daughter as I navigated on the narrowest road I have ever driven on…scenic, for sure and technically very challenging! (I still love driving on  country lanes!)


  • And what am I reading this week?


book3 growth mindsetbook1











2 thoughts on “Shrink or Shine? See the World with Your Heart

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