Time to change course?
MAY, 2018
Photo by George Hiles

Time to Change Course?

by | May 21, 2018 | Life's a Journey

What if it were easy, desirable even, to let things go and set a new course?

(Emptying our attic showed me it can be.)

The Big Move

It’s not so far relocating to France from the UK, but it felt like a big move. The removers showed up with our stuff shortly after we’d arrived and most of our packing boxes went straight into the attic of our new (to us) house, unopened. The seriously old and neglected house was going to get worse before it got better. Unpacking would have to wait.

Years passed. The boxes stayed put.

Progress on renovation was slow. What with working, settling into living somewhere different, learning French and finding our feet, the house received our attention as time and resources allowed.

old house in need of renovation
Seriously old house!
Photo by Nolan Issac

My Mind is an Attic (apparently)

Today progress is ongoing and we still have stuff in the attic, but nowhere near as much because we had to empty it for a major renovation project. A great opportunity to sort though everything, trim down, give away and throw out. Emptying it was surprisingly quick and easy. It was fun, cleansing and liberating. We felt we’d shed a burden, we’d moved on.

Later, enjoying an aperitif in the garden with my husband, we talked about clearing out the attic as a metaphor for the mind. In the same way that it was completely ok to say goodbye to all that stuff in the attic, I could see how some of the thoughts I’d been holding on to had outlived their usefulness, too.

“We felt we’d shed a burden, we’d moved on.”
Somewhere along the line I’d stopped treating those thoughts as important. I’d let them go without realising it and found more space than I was expecting in my attic-mind.

More space for setting the new course that I was now on.



antique rocking chair in the attic
girl setting a new course with her backpack
gee backhouse the compass lady
Gee Backhouse
Creator of Wearable Compasses & Meaningful Jewellery
If we’re not careful, not aware, habitual thoughts can masquerade as our moral compass and lead us in the wrong, or at least an unhelpful, direction.

The French have a saying “ne pas perdre le nord” which means don’t lose your north. Maybe it’s this whole meditation thing I’ve begun doing, but right now I prefer the idea of not getting caught up in an old north or a north that’s a bit out of whack. Which is all part of why I make wearable compasses.

Now, what can I tidy up next?!

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