So, Peter Spann 2017 – I really feel its been a turnaround year for me.
I have been feeling healthy, been a lot happier, been getting good results with my clients and made two films.
So definitely progress.
2011 to 2016 were just one nightmare after another and I still haven’t fully recovered from those dark years but a number of things happened to Peter Spann 2017 that made a real difference…
Living in Byron
At the beginning of the year I moved to Byron Bay.
Sydney was too much for me. Too much stress, too much money, too much memory.
So it was nice to be somewhere that is reknowned for its healing energy and to be close to two of my very best friends.
And it’s lovely. Mostly.
If you are a fan of Byron (and why wouldn’t you be?), you might be surprised to know it’s an incredibly frustrating place to live in.
One of the first things you need to know about Byron locals is they protest everything that even remotely looks like progress. Which is odd because you’d think the left leaning people who live up here would be open minded.
But nope, they are always talking about Byron going back to the way it was. I wonder when exactly do they mean?
The 70’s is probably about the time I think they are referring to, when Byron started to morph from a sleepy former whaling village to a surfer’s destination but really since the 80’s it’s been a tourist town.
I will concede it is considerably busier than it was, especially on the weekends when the Sydney blow-ins take advantage of the cheap flights into the cleverly named Ballina Byron Gateway Airport.
But that’s when the locals really get their whinge on – all the carparks, restaurants, houses, and most importantly, waves are full and the locals feel pushed out of their own town.
Plus the bloody potholes!
According to the 2016 census the population of Byron is around 5,200 people, but that swells to over 100,000 people during peak times like Bluesfest.
That’s 100,000-people using the roads and infrastructure that 5,200 people are paying for. No wonder whole cars have been known to disappear into the sink hole sized potholes around here.
So, I doubt if this is my forever home but it has been a lovely place to heal. I really didn’t know how bad my mental health state had gotten until I placed myself here and started to breathe, free of the mayhem of Sydney.
I really was in a bad way. I was anxious, depressed, fearful and lacking even the basics of confidence and for those of you who have seen me in the past you’ll know how big a deal that might have been for me.
And yet, at the time it seemed normal. It seemed just the way it was.
It took heart failure for me to stop and reassess.
The Road to Recovery
After being rushed to hospital late 2016, in the final phases of heart failure where my Doctor gave me 3 weeks to live (and ended up calling me “the guy who refuses to die), life came into closer focus.
I realised I was not treating myself well. I was not giving my body, mind or spirit even the most basic of nurturing.
I felt I was useless and worthless and the universe was responding by shutting me down and eliminating me from its system. There’s nothing more abhorrent to nature than something that has no use.
And even though I had all the tools at my disposal to deal with this I found I just could not. Simple as that.
Three events got my back on my feet again.
The care and attention of friends
I have written about this before.
I haven’t always been good at cultivating friendships which is why the ones that I have, those that have stood the test of time, mean so much to me.
As you know I don’t have a family.
Filling in forms I always thought it awkward to have to put my friends on the “next of kin” list.
Fact is only two people knew I was as sick as I was.
And that was sobering.
But all of my dear friends who had supported me so much in life supported me again. It was all that I needed really to get going. And I’m incredibly grateful for that love, care and attention lavished upon me.
I had to learn to ask for the help I needed. Everyone wanted to help but most did not know how. And I had to learn how to be grateful for any assistance I was given even if it was not exactly what I needed, however well intentioned.
The making of something beautiful
Undertow was my first film out of film school. It was largely funded by our amazing Executive Producer and a group of my friends, but we also did a crowd funding campaign which saw the support of a lot of friends and fans, all of whom I am exceptionally grateful for.
This film is something I was very proud of, and indeed it was probably the first major achievement for me post business.
And it was the first thing I had moved towards for a very long time.
So far it has won 27 separate film festival awards. No mean feat. And the cast and crew were amazing.
Learning My Craft
I had the opportunity to make another film – this time a web series, late in 2017.
The only way to learn a craft like filmmaking is, unfortunately, by doing it.
I say unfortunately because filmmaking is a very expensive thing to do! And because I don’t have the same level of resources I used to I rely on those good friends to fund my learning. And for that I am extraordinarily grateful.
I pushed myself hard filming MAMMON and I learnt a lot. And in many ways I keep getting better and in some I have to relearn what I forgot, or understand my limitations and find ways to improve.
Hopefully in 2018 I will get many more opportunities to make movie magic. Because that’s where I want to be.
When you lost as much confidence as I did having someone believe in you becomes lifesaving.
My old friends, who had known me as strong and smart and confident for 50+ years always believed I would get it together. But they were thinking about the Peter Spann of old, not Peter Spann 2017.
When someone new comes into your life and they see you for who you are in all your glory and all your faults, today, and they believe in you, that makes a big difference.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not faulting my old friends for believing in me, just saying it’s a difference when it’s someone new.
Having someone laugh at my jokes, asking me to tell my stories, and talking to me like I could make a difference actually made me feel special.
And that simple act started to have me thinking that maybe, I might just have some value.
Don’t go jumping to conclusions. I don’t think they know what a positive effect they had on me but I will be grateful always.
I am an observer of people.
I was out to dinner recently and the person I was with said, “I forgot that you remember everything!”.
I used to always say that if I had as much insight into myself as I had to others I would be perfect!
But this talent is not always welcomed. It is a blunt tool in my hands. I don’t know how to soften the blow for people. And after my (professional) advice had caused so much pain I am, these days, very reluctant to dish out any “wisdom” lest it is wrong and influences someone incorrectly or I am perceived as a “know it all”.
So mostly I stay quiet.
But when I am out by myself I often play a game to keep me entertained, which you may have played yourself, which is thinking about the people in front of me and giving them a persona. A life of my imagination.
Sometimes, if I am feeling particularly brave I will approach them, ask them about themselves to see how right I was.
Where is the love?
But one thing that always upsets me is couples arguing. Sometimes I wish I could just go up to them and help sort it out. It’s such a precious commodity having someone to love. Even if they can’t love you the way you want them to.
But for most people it’s ridiculously hard to suspend judgement, to stop imposing their model of the world on others, laden with expectation and fearful of hurt.
And so it was with this person. It was just quite lovely to soak up her energy, and enthusiasm and encouragement. It made me feel like a man. And that was a very good thing. Even if I knew it was inevitable that it wouldn’t go anywhere.
So, might I be so bold as to suggest to you that you don’t re-evaluate your relationship, but rather re-evaluate yourself.
Love to me is about choice. Choosing to be there. Choosing to find the energy to be nice to them even when it’s hard. Choosing to stick to them. Choosing in a moment to prioritise their needs over yours (as long as that is not a permanent state and it comes back to you). Choosing to find ways to make them happy.
Sometimes it’s easier to really dislike someone you love. Maybe if you were to take a different perspective it might be easier to really like them?
And that way, when I see you out to dinner canoodling like teenagers it will make me happy and I will be grateful that there is indeed love in the world.
The Power of a Woman
Women have had an amazing impact in my life and it’s great to see them starting to stake their claim in a world that is not always easy.
There are few men who have never done anything they weren’t proud of with a woman. I have made many mistakes.
Professionally I hope I have never fostered an environment where women were not happy to speak up or give their best or be safe.
Women have saved me from my own stupidity, my own over enthusiasm and my own pig headedness.
They have calmed me and made me better, smarter, and more centred.
And more power to you all.
One of the things that has stayed with me this year is the power of manifestation or Universal Conversion as I referred to it in my book.
The formation of a clear idea in your head which is then handed over to the universe or divine power to create for you.
It has always been my belief that divinity wants you to have whatever you need to have an amazing life. To fulfil your purpose.
It’s unlimited power of creation is just sitting there at your disposal whenever you wish to tap into it. Whether you believe in creationism or the big bang you cannot deny that nature creates.
It adapts. And it unifies and it pulls apart.
So many times, in the past I have wanted something, imagined it fully and with intention and released it only for it to appear as an opportunity in front of me a little time later.
For me it’s how I know I am linked in, connected, on path. When I am able to command something of nature and for it to deliver it to me is an acknowledgement of purpose.
And this year that skill of manifestation has returned to me and delivered pretty much everything I have needed.
Oh, I still want for much more, but my needs have been fully satisfied. I just now need to start needing more.
This year my study has been…
- Love and the strength of submission
- Service and how we can deliver our special talent into the world
- Stress management and the power of asking for help and letting go of expectation
- Universal Convergence and how manifestation can deliver everything you need
- Magic Moments – about being in the moment and living life to its fullest
To 2018 and beyond
I welcome next year with open arms and a lot of enthusiasm.
I really feel it’s going to be a good year.
For me it’s about being more open, more forgiving, more nurturing. It’s about continuing to heal.
It’s about focusing on what I need and letting that come to me when it is ready.
It’s about my health and continuing on my journey of healing. It’s about keeping to a path that is right for me, regardless of the implications.
This next year I wish you love, health, joy and most importantly purpose. For that’s what makes a difference to us all.
© Copyright: 2017 Peter Spann – All rights reserved