Facilitating a Change in Perspective

Facing change can be scary as well as energising. Organising ourselves into support groups can enable deeper and more far-reaching change to take place.

Mags Clark-Smith running one of her courses.

Mags Clark-Smith running one of her courses.

If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.
— African Proverb

On reflection in our second spring we may be very used to the frustrations of the long haul. I recall hours shoe horning wriggling excited children into warm clothing before they dashed outside to play with each other and friends. Endless packing before a weekend away to visit family, long car journeys listening to 'Harry Potter', and 'Just William' before that. Those family times together are now fond memories, we went together, it certainly wasn't fast but we appear to have come a long way together.

The photographer Marjorie Salaterra has published a book called 'Her' with theatrical portraits of women that strengthen the individual identity of women and support of women for each other. She sees this as a dual goal for women after they turn forty. This focus on individual identity can encourage us to listen to our intuition and acknowledge our experience of life. Whilst support, in terms of giving, accepting or seeking support from other women can strengthen us further.

Our 'Moving Forward With Confidence' courses have a similar aim, to facilitate a slight change in perspective allowing you to begin to think about where you might like to make some changes. To give you a framework within which you will feel able to embrace those changes even if they do frighten you a little. Decisions that take you outside what is familiar, that is outside your 'comfort zone' can be quite scary, yet energizing at the same time. It seems pushing yourself beyond what you normally do can leave you feeling liberated, invigorated and a tiny bit proud! All the changes are led by you, the course environment is absolutely respectful of personal choice and it is confidential.

The slight changes you may decide to make may be fast as they might be connected to re discovering parts of your personality that have been on 'hold' while you dedicated yourself to work, family or other commitments that required your attention.The course will give you the opportunity to think about what is intuitive to you, what you feel passionately about, what skills you have and what makes you happy. With the help and support of everyone else on the course you will be encouraged to integrate those attributes into your decision making.

It's commonplace to agree that life experience is often underestimated, in the Moving Forward With Confidence course you will start to winkle out what skills you have learned along the way to this point. There will be a significant teaching component on what might be holding us back from realizing our potential. We will discuss the importance of epigenetics which refers to nurture rather than nature. That means your environment in terms of how you look after yourself, nutrition, exercise, mental stimulation, creative outlets, giving back and mental well-being. It turns out how you talk to yourself and how you think about others has an effect on your mental well-being. Who knew? That's why the course environment is supportive and positive and we imagine it will go far!

TUESDAY MORNINGS 10th, 17th & 24th MAY WEDNESDAY EVENINGS 11th, 18th & 25th MAY 2016



Dates:  Mornings 10.30 – 12.30  Tuesdays 10th, 17th & 24th May

            Evenings  7.30 – 9.30pm Wednesdays 11th, 18th & 25th May

3 Week Course – 6 hours €97 (early bird until Sunday 8th May, €120 full price)

For more information click here.

This blog post was originally published in My Second Spring.

Moving Forward With Confidence

'Warning' by Jenny Joseph 

When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me....

And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.

I love Jenny Joseph's poem, mainly because of what happened at my surprise 40th birthday dinner party organized at home by some of my closest women friends. Caroline, a good friend, confidently recited 'Warning' after dinner with a twinkle in her eye. She responded positively to our giggles as she recited with a Shakespearian air super confident with arms outstretched and flailing. I can still see her, and my heart brims with fondness.

As she delivered the closing line:

But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple

We roared with laughter. Caroline stood with her skirt in a perfect pool around her feet, she had undone the zip during dinner to make room for a second helping! Carried away by her recital she hadn't noticed until the end and howled with laughter at the irony of her words matching her actions. She was 38 at the time.

You will perhaps have similar treasured moments from girls nights, and perhaps like me, you felt turning 40 was a big deal, how could I really be that old? Rachel, who organized the party knew I was sensitive about this milestone and she had asked each of the guests to prepare a 'turn' for after dinner, Jane Austin style. Hence Caroline's poem, it was hilarious. Rachel's 'turn' was to show us fabulous photos of her when she was 15, 21 and 30 in each case we saw how fresh faced she was and recognized her infectious smile. She is a mental health nurse and always maintains a smile is a gift to give freely and frequently. Her point, aimed at me, was that as a 15 year old looking at her first photo she was horrified by what she looked like, but at 21 she quite liked it and at 30 she thought she had looked great. At 40 Rachel loved that photo of her 15 year old self, she saw her youth, exuberance and love of life. She didn't see any of the things her 15 year old self had seen, that she was ugly, too 'lumpy' and spotty. She said the same thing about each of her photos, the moral of her 'turn' was for all of us to love who we are now and not to wait 10 years before we like ourselves.

 Age can give us perspective and confidence. 

As we face changes approaching or immersing ourselves in our Second Spring we may need a little boost of confidence or a fresh perspective to help us. In our Second Spring life circumstances, our body and hormones may be changing, it's a time when we might lose both our sense of perspective and some confidence. We can gain so much from the warmth of other understanding women, a little gentle direction and laughing together as we explore what confidence really is and how to use it. As I found out on my 40th birthday, the time is now, back to Jenny Joseph's poem:

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
And pay our rent and not swear in the street
And set a good example for the children.

If you are tempted by the idea of being slightly adventurous but don't see the appeal of wearing purple, I hope you can join us on one of The Moving Forward with Confidence courses designed for My Second Spring starting in Tuesday 10th May 10.30 – 12.30am & Wednesday 11th May 7.30 – 9.30pm for 3 weeks.

Please click here to find out more:

Are you stuck in a rut and fearful of your future and potential changes?

Do you realize it's time to make some changes but don't know how?

Do you want more joy and fun in your life?

In the midst of caring for others, have you forgotten how to look after yourself?

Is your body letting you down?

If you are perfectly happy with your body, your relationships, and life, this course is not for you.


Mags Clark-Smith

Mags Clark-Smith

Mags Clark-Smith is a movement specialist trained to treat Neurophysiologic Disorders. Mags lectured in Dance and Psychology and is passionate about empowering women to move with confidence and fulfill their potential.