Abraham Lincoln and Governance

My amazing friend, Victoria Carter, wrote this and it has so touched me that I felt to share it with you all:

In my heart today, is just what government & governance is actually about.. What IS true governance? In the last couple of days, I have (again) found myself drawn to the amazing man that Abraham Lincoln was. A politician, who felt and considered every decision so very deeply… for he knew the great responsibility of governing PEOPLE. He cared most deeply for all.

Two brief examples… At the end of the civil war, he made no efforts towards glorifying any ‘victory’ (of the Union), but rather immediately set about bringing the people together (i.e. towards a truly lived ‘union’). At Gettysburg, in dedicating a cemetery for soldiers, Lincoln spoke of a “government of the people, by the people, for the people”, that those who had perished “shall not have died in vain” for this true form of governance “of the people…”, “shall not perish from the earth”.

I am deeply touched by this man’s example, so much so that I can no longer ‘give up’ and numbly accept the many ill ways our government & its systems operate, nor the fact that there are issues of great importance for all, for our times and future times, that ask us to not hold back in clearly calling for response from those who are “in power”. Lincoln earthed something for us all, but what have we done with it since?

We ALL have the power to speak up and communicate with our local members, & even our prime ministers (as Sarah Cloutier has done), on the issues we know with absolute clarity, are deeply important for all. So to those of us who may have long given up on having any capacity to truly call for change, I say, let’s shake off the cobwebs and reclaim the part we can all play – it’s about all of us, it’s about humanity. Let’s turn the tide. With deep love, Victoria
Thank you so much Victoria – true Governance comes from us all with our true voice.

The Show Must Go On?

Latin – collusionem “act of colluding,” from colludere, from com- “together” + ludere “to play,” from ludus “game” (see ludicrous).

English – collusion – secret agreement for a fraudulent purpose; connivance; conspiracy. To defraud another of his or her rights.

Esther Rantzen (English journalist and television presented who worked at he BBC from 1965-2006 and founder of the child protection charity, ChildLine) is quoted in the ITV documentary Exposure: Tthe Other Side of Jimmy Savile, “We colluded in this”.

There are now over 200 claims of sexual abuse and pedophilia against Jimmy Savile from women (who were girls) from charities he was the patron, hospitals he volunteered in, while he was at the BBC, in the girl’s home he was a patron – over a period of about 60 years. The man was a predator and if he was alive, the documentary claims he would be arrested.

Let’s start this performance with a play on words from the definitions …

  • Have we been silenced from speaking truth because we are unwittingly being deceived into a secret agreement for a fraudulent purpose?
  • Are we playing a ludicrous game together to defraud another of his or her rights?
  • Is the collusion another level of the numb stupor we are in?
  • Are we blind to the collusion of ignorance and apathy?
  • Are we acting and performing as puppets in some secret agreement?
  • Are we sticking together in the game to not be singled out in truth?

My recent letters to the PM’s were an expression I find natural and effortless. My truth is an expression of our truth and all of humanity – all equally so. So why then did I feel to control the manner and time of their release? When the truth needs telling so desperately, why do we hold back saying it?

Yes, we speakers of truth have been persecuted in the past, but that’s not happening today. The only persecution is to HOLD BACK – oh the irony.

The pain of holding back truth is now greater than silence.

The women speaking publicly about their treatment at the hands of Jimmy Savile are a tiny speck of society who are saying no to collusion in abuse. They were afraid of Savile and have not felt comfortable in coming forward until after his death. Even now, some of the women are still afraid and had their identity changed and voices digitally altered in the interviews.

We continue to accept abuse and allow it every day. These women were colluding in Savile’s ‘celebrity’ and the crumbs of attention they were receiving were enough for them to accept the sexual abuse. I know pedophilia first hand and the impact of keeping silent had a huge impact on how I lived my life. I was promiscuous, and took drugs, alcohol and food to numb myself.

In truth, the abuse continues when we don’t take responsibility for ourselves. In my case, it is an ongoing tender treatment of myself that stops the spiral of self-abuse. In holding back sending the letter because ‘it wasn’t going in the right format’, I was in truth being abusive to myself and humanity. My centralised view of myself had an impact on the whole. Thank God I’ve sent it and stopped the collusion in silence!

But that’s the game! We are so centralised and think that what we do doesn’t affect anyone else. We collude with the game and defraud another of his or her rights. We allow abuse to permeate everything and live a performance, scripted for us to be accepted and liked and not wanting to be singled out.

The show must go on. Really?

We are all invested in the collusion, as Esther Rantzen says, ‘We colluded in this’. We have allowed this lie to perpetuate and we create lies and justifications to keep our tiny world spinning around with little regard for our brothers.

The show needs to be cancelled. No curtain call. No standing ovation. One final bow. Enough.

Letter to Prime Minister Julia Gillard

October 10, 2012

Dear Ms. Gillard,

The Australian High Court passed a law on August 14, 2012 to remove branding from cigarette packets. This has created a foundation for how we legislate for true change, which is to be applauded. Nicotine related lung cancer costs the Australian Community according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare A$107m per year. Domestic Violence and Childhood Sexual Abuse cost the Government A$8bn per year – an immense difference that we choose to ignore. And the A$8bn a year does not include the costs of ongoing counselling and healing – and the emotional costs for victims is unfathomable.

Why isn’t the Government addressing the Domestic Violence and Childhood Sexual Abuse as fervently as it has lobbied for the removal of branding on cigarette packets?

Your recent exposé of misogyny and sexism relating to the Opposition Leader, Tony Abbot, is the earthquake that has cracked a chasm of truth about the appalling treatment of women and you have an obligation as leader of the Australian Government to do something about it.

Alan Jones’ consistent denigration of you is tiresome, and personally extremely hurtful and offensive, yet, by everyone not standing up to this, and as you so clearly pointed out, we are accepting it as the norm and allowing it to continue. We have allowed it to creep into our everyday lives so that when it happens we make an excuse to stay silent and collude with the abuse.

There are some male dominated industries, journalism is one – and I have worked in film and television for over 25 years – I know all about the aside remarks about my arse, snide comments, stares at my breasts, sexual innuendo, groping, put downs in meetings and judgment of my capability based on the fact that I am a woman, not on my experience or tertiary degree. I have endured the whistles from builders, groping in nightclubs and pubs and the inevitable judgment on my appearance, comments on the length of my skirt, the tightness of my jeans/t-shirt etc, etc.

I have worked my way up the ranks to General Manager for a film post production company in Melbourne. While there I had to deal with the “don’t get emotional” comments when I needed to manage a difficult situation at work. I expose it when it happens, and I can change my work environment as the manager. Men on the Executive could still be condescending and inappropriate. This attitude, and the fact that men feel this behaviour is acceptable, is perpetuated by the onslaught of soft porn and opinion-based ‘journalism’ we are bombarded with from the mainstream media today, and the denigration of women as a result.

The recent allegations, now over 120, against Jimmy Saville in the UK, and the revelations that Radio 1 boss knew about his behaviour towards girls, clearly show that we allow impropriety and abuse without question. We are continuing to allow the Abuse of Women in our society by not challenging and questioning it. These allegations have started an out-pouring of honesty of sexually abusive treatment of women within the BBC, including Liz Kershaw and Sandi Toksvig. Women’s silence perpetuates the behaviour at the BBC experienced by Ms Kershaw and Ms Toksvig and that experienced by many thousands of women, including myself.

“For women working in [the show business] industry, sexual harassment was something you just had to ignore every day of your working life”, said journalist and broadcaster Janet Street-Porter, writing in the Daily Mail about her experiences in the 1980’s “To understand a male mindset that considers fondling, groping and worse as perfectly normal behaviour in the workplace, look at what was broadcast at the time, and how women were portrayed.”

Nothing’s changed. And these instances are not isolated to the UK or Australia – they are a global issue. And the honesty will overflow as women everywhere begin to feel their confidence in speaking out.

Do children see their fathers, uncles, cousins, brothers, fathers and grandfathers treating women with disdain every day? And as a society, are we making it OK for snide comments and put-downs – absolutely. Have we then created and exacerbated a society that makes the Abuse of Women mainstream?

Is there a link between pornography and violence towards women and children? Worth mentioning in the very least, and it’s an area that our society does not want to address because men are in positions of power to make change and they like the accessibility of it on supermarket and newsagent shelves.

Reviewing the FACTS of the figures, should it be soft/pornography that is removed from the shelves as well as the brand labels on cigarettes?

According to Cancer Research UK (updated 10 May 2012), there were 48,417 new cases of breast cancer in the UK in 2009 – and that doesn’t include the cases already being treated. In the news on Monday 8th October 2012, it was reported that in Australia 37 new cases of breast cancer get diagnosed a DAY and this is expected to rise. Consider for a moment that the MCG holds 100,000 people – fill it up with those ‘new cases’, and top it up with the husbands, children, parents and siblings of those women and every year you have that many NEW people affected by our rot in society and the complacency in our treatment of women. Sure, we are seeking a cure to the symptoms, but how deeply do we want to address the cause?

“Pear shaped” and “tits up” are expressions commonly used by men and women expressing when something has gone wrong. Our colloquial language reveals that the denigration of women is part of our psyche. A woman’s anatomy has been commoditised to parts denoting something bad.

You have a responsibility, as well as a great opportunity, to consider guidelines, recommendations and regulations on the Abuse of Women to ensure we arrest this ill momentum. We need to leave a foundation for our children and our future generations that respects women and shows that there is another, more caring way to treat women that will inevitably benefit men and our society as a whole.

By choosing to ‘let this slide’ we are choosing to allow it to continue – and we have for many, many years. We need to clearly underline that we will not allow this to continue to give the opportunity for future generations the opportunity to see there is another way. On Tuesday 9th you stood up in the Parliament and gave that 15min speech which has been echoing throughout the World. It was a concise exposé on misogyny, backed up by facts, that Australia needed to hear. And not just Australia. I congratulate you on opening this can of worms. However, let this not be your final act in the long overdue need for change to our attitude to women.

This constant barrage of degradation and abuse of Women is having an impact on the lives of our children.

We are now experiencing the most accessible soft/pornography of all time and children all over the western world as young as 10 are “sexting” images of themselves to each other – they are our sons and daughters, grandsons and granddaughters, nieces and nephews. The deepest concern for us all as a society is that these children think it’s normal to behave sexually with each other.

The United Nations UNICEF Convention on the Rights of the Child states that, “The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the first legally binding international instrument to incorporate the full range of human rights—civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights. In 1989, world leaders decided that children needed a special convention just for them because people under 18 years old often need special care and protection that adults do not. The leaders also wanted to make sure that the world recognized that children have human rights too.” And, “It spells out the basic human rights that children everywhere have: the right to survival; to develop to the fullest; to protection from harmful influences …”

Do we then have a LEGAL OBLIGATION to protect our children “from harmful influences”?

There is nowhere to hide anymore.

These all highlight the lack of responsibility taken by people (predominantly men) in power to act when they are aware there is wrongdoing. By inaction, we are condoning and colluding with the Abuse. As a society, we have made this behaviour acceptable. As individuals we feel we have no power and no voice against the establishment of large organisations, headed by men. These women are our sisters, daughters, nieces, granddaughters, wives, mothers and friends.

How long are people in power going to allow the abuse of women to be ‘normalised’ to the level that it is today?

We are supposedly in a modern western society, where women have the right to choose what we study, where we work, where we live, whom we marry, what we wear, whom we date, what we eat and the life we choose to live. There are other women in the world who do not have these freedoms and are still subjected to witch hunts, stoning, slavery, forced marriages and lives of abuse.

Through lack of responsibility and passive acceptance, we continue to perpetuate a society that condones the abuse of women. This type of behaviour is legally not allowed in the workplace and, after studying UK and Australian HR law, this behaviour regularly gets employers and perpetrators into a world of litigation. Yet we allow it every day in our press and media. Why is that?

The Australian press (Courier Mail, News Corp) has made claims recently that women who seek truth and a loving way of life are gormless, mindless followers and that we don’t have the intelligence to choose how we live. The blatant approval of sexual abuse in the article is simply shocking.

There in-lies a deep fracture in the Media and how it portrays women as a whole. Less concerning is the drivel of two men’s opinion thinly veiled as ‘journalism’ – more devastating is the impact of this tirade of derogatory and misogynistic attitude towards women by mainstream media.

Your speech has been so well received and celebrated throughout western world (USA, UK), but it is getting ‘frosty’ reception by male journalists in Australia.

The Crown Prosecution Service (UK) released a transcript – Domestic Violence: the facts, the issues, the future – Speech by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Keir Starmer QC (posted 12 April 2011). His closing statement is one for reflection from a global perspective “The steps that we and our criminal justice partners are taking to tackle domestic violence risk limited success unless this complacency is tackled head on. A change in attitude is clearly needed”.

Where are we headed if all the rates of domestic violence, violence towards women is increasing year after year?

Rudi Giuliani’s decision to have a zero tolerance for crime when he was Mayor of New York City was welcomed by residents of the city. From 1993-2001, crime and related violence dropped 56% in the FBI Crime Index. New Yorkers wanted to remain living in the city and it became the “safest large city in the nation”. With decisive action, a message would be sent to everyone that order would be maintained.

How amazing would our society be if the Government were to boldly establish zero-tolerance to the Abuse of Women? If you set a zero tolerance to the abuse of women in our daily papers, it will have profound effect on home life. And the £8 billion we are spending on the results of domestic violence could be joyfully redirected.

How amazing would it be if you created legislation that made it illegal for a woman to be paid less than a man for doing the same job? How empowering for a community to feel that support and know that we have a voice and that Abuse will no longer be tolerated?

As the head of our Government, you have a responsibility to consider guidelines, recommendations and regulations on the Abuse of Women to ensure we arrest this momentum. We need to leave a foundation for our children and our future generations that respects women and shows that there is another, more caring way to treat women that will inevitably benefit men and our society as a whole.


Seriously, Enough. Our complacent attitude towards the treatment of women in our society has to stop. And, we need to step up and take responsibility for the impact that the Media has on our attitude towards women.

This issue is not going away – daily revelations about the treatment of women are becoming the norm and it cannot be ignored any further. Please advise me on receipt of this letter and I would appreciate any update on the progress in seeing these real concerns through.

I welcome your views and questions and I have colleagues in Australia who share our zero tolerance attitudes on sexism and misogyny and would be available to meet with you or one of your team to discuss this further.

On Tuesday you expressed beautifully: “And the Government will not be lectured about sexism and misogyny by this man. Not now, not ever.” Let us see you put these words into practice and live up to your powerful and just assertion.

Yours truly,

Sarah Cloutier
Dual Australian and UK Citizen currently living in the UK

Old London Town

There’s a confidence about London – self assured and knowing that it is gloriously old and refreshingly new at the same time.

And it has a propensity to rub off …

There’s a confidence in my expression in London that I love – more willing to explore and be adventurous with how I dress and have more fun in mixing up my wardrobe.

The creative industry I work in has a wonderful blend of nationalities, ages and attitudes. And each comes together in the melting pot of style and easy charm that London exudes. Walking around, on the tube and in the office, I am constantly inspired by men and women and their choices of clothes, hair styles and accessories.

Returning to London has re-ignited my creative flare to explore my expression within this amazing city and be more ME in every moment, every interaction and re-imprint my living way – time to not hold back and express me within the welcome arms in the city I LOVE.

Have fun exploring your expression … wherever you are 🙂

Brand New Day

The glorious sun rises, sometimes from behind clouds, but it is always there, reminding us of a new beginning. The sun feels like a reflection to me of the opportunity I have every day to re-set and make new choices.

Yesterday was my final day at work – as predicted, they couldn’t get me out of there fast enough and I am feeling relieved to be returning to London, and a little sad that the Melbourne journey wasn’t as I expected. I know I had very high expectations and was in illusion about what the position held and what I thought the job was going to bring to me, instead of the truth – which would be to see the job for what I would bring to it.

I reflected yesterday about a comment from a very dear friend that said “Love yourself a billion percent” – and I know that there is an opportunity for me to have another crack at that in the next job! I know that I will continue to have opportunities to bring another dollop of Sarah to the corporate world 🙂

In truth, in every moment, I can Love myself a billion percent – and with every new sunrise and in every moment, I have that opportunity to change how I see myself and give myself the grace to take the sunrise into my heart and feel that new beginning. And a sense of graceful urgency to begin each day with tender acceptance of change and my responsibility to be me a billion percent.

Yesterday, one of my female colleagues gave me a big hug and said, “I’m going to miss the energy you bring.”

London here I come!

How High?

I was chatting with a female colleague about how we achieved our ‘manager’ status in highly technical and male dominated industries; television and IT. We both worked our way up from the bottom, a strategy that benefited our knowledge base and understanding of the industry as a whole, and respect for the depth of that knowledge. And it was the only way you did it 25 years ago!

What we both felt was that there is a need to experience the whole to understand the sum of the parts. From a thorough working knowledge, we can appreciate the whole team and the process and what is expected from us as managers.

I have reflected on how much, during the early years, that I chose to behave like a man. When I was asked to do a task that involved some manual labor, I wanted to prove my strength and that I could be as ‘good’ as a man.

When they asked me to jump, I asked ‘How High?’

That was all the option I knew when I was coming up through the ranks of television – that I had to perform at the same level as the guys around me. I was graded in the top three in my year for cinematography, a very physical, male dominated sector to this day. I loved creating images through the lens and lugging a huge camera and tripod around just came with the territory.

But I guess there was something in me that realized the stress that was putting on my body. Because when I was offered my first job, it was as a camera operator for a company that produced sport for television in 1988 – I turned it down for a production assistant job that was office/location based and didn’t require manual lifting to the extent being behind the camera would have required.

There is substantially more female production staff than men, and more technical crew who are men – I feel that balance is right.

What has happened is that a high proportion of women have taken the toughness of the industry on in another way – we have hardened to be resilient and survive the workplace.

This pattern needs reflection and questioning whether this toughness is still required of me as a manager today – and the answer is a resounding NO. As a role model and mentor of younger women working in my team, my priority is to show my femininity and gentleness as much as possible. This doesn’t mean I’m a sap in the executive meetings! The quality of fragility I now choose to express is so much easier on my body and the feeling of power with it is palpable.

Expressing fragility and vulnerability in the boardroom is an effective management tool and one that I am continuing to explore. It feels much more natural for me than the alternative!

With love, Sarah

Changes at Work

On Monday we were told that the business I manage has been sold. The new owners have been in the office for the last few days meeting with all of us and going through a consultation process to get more of an understanding of the business. This deal has been rumoured for many months so the first feeling was relief.

Since Monday’s announcement, I have experienced many different feelings and emotions which has posed the question for me – how much do I see myself as what I do?

There’s the obvious financial reliance on working, and the reflection on the excess in my life. But more than that, I have been contemplating on whether they will see me as a value to them or whether they will let me go.

Read – Will they like me or not?

The deep self-doubt – which I know is not real – has shown me that I still have a need for acceptance that drives how I am in pressured situations on which my livelihood depends. I felt anxious and nervous in one phone call in particular with the new MD and was “trying to say the right thing”. I was comparing myself to him without giving myself the space to see how far I’ve come and to honour my knowledge during the brief conversation. And it stayed with me after that and left me wondering if they were going to keep me on in the new structure.

That feeling of self-doubt is feeding from all the times I was hurt at work in the past. Yelled at, criticised, undermined, patronised, ridiculed – and the list goes on. There’s a battle scar from every one.

Albert Einstein is quoted as saying – “In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity”

Once I got home, I realised I needed reassurance and a hug! With no hugs available, I had a little cry to release some of the hurt I was feeling, and phoned a friend. The support and clarity of true friendship is a God-send and the flow of that ‘let’s de-brief the day in 20 minutes’ conversation had us both laughing and realising that it’s only energy and I will be OK – I am already OK.

How the new business owners see me is their choice and I am not privy to their decision making or their master plan for the structure or my role within that. So today I will allow myself to be more ME and come back to the true knowing that I am OK and will be OK whatever the decision made in the boardroom. I have absolutely no control of that.

Another true friend responded in email to say that “If they are feeling the love you truly are, Sarah, they will either fight tooth and nail to keep you there … or get you out of the door as fast as they possibly can.”. How true is that! And still this morning the giggles over that comment keep a lovely smile on my face.

There is only one solution and that is to keep returning to love, no matter what. And to continue to keep counting my blessings and not my imperfections.

With Love, Sarah

From a Puppet to Essence – No Strings Attached!

Today I watched a documentary on a puppeteer on Sesame Street, Kevin Clash, “Being Elmo”. He felt so shy and sensitive growing up and didn’t know how to express that, so used puppets to be the vehicle. His parents were completely supportive of him making puppets and putting on shows for other children – but what I was contemplating while watching it was – Why do we hide behind a character or a created role?

Kevin is amazing and totally loves being the Executive Producer of Sesame Street and teaching children, being Elmo and working in his field – but his private life is not how he expected – spending more time as Elmo than being a husband and father had an impact and he’s divorced and his daughter had to write to him to remind him that she was going to college soon and would like to spend some time with him.

There is a truth to how Kevin expresses when he’s Elmo – a gorgeous, super gentle, loving quality/essence/expression that loves hugs and kisses and is tender with everyone, no matter what the colour of their skin, whether they are sick or healthy, young or old. And, in truth, every single one of us has those true qualities equally.

The reflection for me as I watched it was how I have spent many years not knowing how to express my essence with others and hiding behind a role or character I have developed to manage my life.

Working in film/television/advertising for 26 years has developed the ‘role’ into a career, which I love and always have (the career, not the ‘role’!). I just haven’t known that it could be possible to express and be in my essence within that. I used to say, “it’s who I am” – now that doesn’t fit anymore with the new person I see in the mirror. The old ‘role’ isn’t able to express my new awareness of the impact I have with everyone I meet.

The ‘role’ was developed over the years and was usually different with people at work, with friends and with family. I was exhausted, frustrated and felt that people didn’t understand me. Truth was that I didn’t understand myself and had no gauge of myself. All I had been shown was that you needed to get on with your career and be successful. But all the time I felt like a fraud. Like I was in a reality television show!! Always performing, on edge and a ‘forced’ persona that wanted everyone to like me. Being rejected was my worst fear.

We play a game of what we are NOT – we put out something we can’t sustain. There’s no where for me to hide anymore.

The groovy reflection of Elmo for me is the quality of expression of love we all have equally and when we allow that love to simply unfold and be super gentle and loving with others and ourselves, a new acceptance begins to break the hardness and protection I have put up as a barrier to keep myself from not being rejected. It’s been my choice to keep people away and stay in separation. Ouch.

Time to take off the puppeteers strings and express uninhibited by patterns and expectations I’ve put on myself in the past.

In slowly developing my connection with my essence, and letting people in, I have been exploring how I can simply be me and nurture the expression of my connection every day while still working in my field. There are times when I am simply me and there’s a panic that creeps in – can it be this easy?

I’m so much more than that panic and self-doubt and will have a crack at that barrier with a big smoochy Elmo hug (no strings attached!) for myself and know that when I re-connect to the love that I am I will always be there for myself and know the true essence of me.

With love,

Energetic Responsibility in the Workplace

I completed a day of manager training on Anti-Discrimination and Equality in the workplace recently. The presenter was confident on the topic in relation to policy and the law.

The day-long presentation had a lot of role-play situations with actors brought in for us to see some examples of the topic in action. This made the day go faster, but I felt they missed a huge part of how we interact and the impact we have on our colleagues every day.

The presenter was adamant, and backed up by the law, that no matter what you think, how you behave, what you indulge in, or how you react at home or out with friends – you can’t bring this into work. For example, he said, “if I have an issue with people from a different culture, I leave it at the office door and not let it interfere with how I respond to people in the office”. I agree that this is great in theory …

I asked him (and the group) to maybe see it from a different view.

If everything is energy, then we are energetic by nature. So everything we think, feel and say, has an energy behind it. That energy is flowing through us constantly. I questioned whether that’s something we can actually ‘switch off’ as he proposed.

From my own experience, it’s impossible.

How I live my life is with me when I wake up, when I get ready for work, when I drive my car and when I walk into the office, all the thoughts that have been with me during that time I bring into every conversation, email I send and interaction I have during the day – it’s obvious isn’t it? And then the whole day is in that energy, unless I choose to stop and choose another way.

So all that I am is with me all of the time.

Law, legislation and policy are drummed into us in the corporate environment and there’s a definite need to have that as a benchmark. However, if we are not including energetic awareness in the discussion, there’s no true accountability or responsibility taken – it’s all just words.

I will be writing more on this topic


A Corporate Perspective on Energetic Truth

My career in television/film/advertising is now over 26 years. Since 2001, my whole perspective on my work, and who I am in it, has changed fundamentally after meeting Serge Benhayon.

My modus operandi prior to that meeting was always to ‘play it like a man’. The career I chose is male dominated and so I hardened myself to meet men on their terms. I worked hard and played hard; working 14-16 hours a day and drinking and taking drugs excessively for many years. This was off-set (or so I thought) by running about 3 miles a day.

The hardness in my body numbed me from feeling the self-harming way of life I was choosing and was using the industry as an excuse. I was anxious, nervous and reactionary. My outer ‘sales confidence’ belied the self-loathing I felt and that drove my insatiable need for recognition and acceptance from colleagues, managers, clients and inevitably, my family and their expectations.

Mistakes have been made along the way – I have been exploring how I express truthfully at work and it’s backfired sometimes. Due in part to the words I used and in part to the fact that truth is not often expressed in a corporate environment and most people I have encountered find it very uncomfortable and confronting. But that hasn’t stopped me. I will continue to rely on the true knowledge of my own wisdom to support me in my decisions for myself at work, and know for a fact that the impact of truth on my work environment will absolutely affect people. I have a big responsibility with that.

The true knowledge is something I feel to expand on:

We are not taught to connect to the boundless wisdom we have at our disposal when we are connected to our true selves. When I am expressing or listening from my soul, there’s nothing I need to call in from outside me in response to any business situation. Obviously, my temporal knowledge of the extremely technical career I have chosen means I have a lot of tools already learned that I can call on, but when it comes with the wisdom of ME, there’s a confidence and natural-ness that is supportive and true and I will always be able to trust and rely on. True knowledge is there to support everyone equally – no exceptions.

By not being true to myself, I have made some decisions that have cost me financially and that is part of the ongoing ‘work-in-progress’ that is the amazing Sarah Cloutier! I will continue to be strong and consistent with myself and be open to show my loveliness as a woman at work. The change begins with how I treat myself first, then as a reflection to my environment.

The Universal Medicine courses, which I started attending in the UK in 2004, started a process of growing up that has empowered me to take full responsibility for how I am with myself and with others. Serge Benhayon has always asked me to be me – nothing more, nothing less. The techniques I’ve learned, e.g. the Gentle Breath Meditation, support me to re-connect with myself at my desk if I’ve been shaken by the inevitable spin that happens at work when situations occur that are beyond my control. Serge has shown me by example that there is another way to live that will energise me to perform at a level I could never have dreamed of.

No longer will I accept the path of disregard. The illness and disease I see around me every day now is a very real experience for me from the choices I made in the past – I was extremely unwell by 2004 as the consequences of my ill choices came to fruition in my body. The healing techniques of Universal Medicine have profoundly changed my physiology and the weight, tension, angst and years have fallen away and I look younger and healthier now (at 44 years old) than I did in my twenties. Today, I am truly well and make self-loving choices with food, gentle exercise and sleep rhythms that support my busy workload to ensure I am clear and ready for anything that comes my way – bring it on!

I’m proud to say that the changes my mother calls ‘miraculous’ are not a miracle, they are the result of the choices I have made to reconnect to who I truly am and to express that truth as much as I can with the deep kindness I now feel for myself.

With thanks and kind regards,