It’s written in the stars

This week I went to see Ceci, the psychic beautician. I always like to stop by in early January, not least because my legs definitely needed to be dealt with, but almost as important, to hear what she has to say about the coming year. She was the one who, among other things, warned me of dramatic times ahead in 2020. You will be pleased to know that she is feeling more optimistic about this year!

She mentioned two things that pricked my interest. Firstly, in numerology, the study of numbers and their energetic influence on your life, 2024 is an ‘8’ which is considered a good omen. While 7 is more inward-looking and a time for reflection, an 8 year moves us forward into a quite different phase.

It is about action-taking and brings with it an energy that allows us gets things done with relative ease. It’s not to say there won’t be challenges but overall it’s a year of promise and growth. As one of the astrologers said:

It’s time to embrace a new outlook on life and trust that your experiences can help carry you through the unknown toward a greater calling.

How exciting!

Secondly, she told me in the Chinese zodiac, it’s the year of the Dragon. Considered the most special of the 12 animals, it is thought to bring unprecedented opportunities.

In short, it’s all there for the taking.

But how?

Optimism alone won’t make things happen. Nor will just setting a resolution. The formula for success is more complex. If we are to fully harness the opportunity this year offers, it will need careful planning and an understanding of the brain and all its cunning tricks!

On the basis of my own experience, and that of the women I work with, here are four key factors that can make or break the situation:


Get completely clear on what you want to achieve, and more importantly WHY it matters. At the heart of the ‘why’ is the where you will find all the motivation you need. By revisiting it regularly, it will keep you moving forward even in the times when you so want to give up.

As an example, ‘losing a stone’ is negative and incredibly flat. You can’t imagine it carrying you through when the going gets tough. Losing a stone so I can move around more easily, stop my back from hurting and have the energy to do all the things I want to do’ immediately feels more likely to get results.


Some people work with vision boards to bring their goal to life. Others spend time every day imagining how it will feel when they reach their destination. It’s helpful to use all your senses to do this to really bring it alive.

Visualisation is actually backed by science. It is proven to strengthen the neural pathways and helps the brain to plot a route to success. As the saying goes, ‘What the mind can conceive, the body can achieve‘. The world of sport has long since discovered this. So powerful are these techniques that they are often credited with the difference between winning and losing.


When you have tried before and failed, that experience stays with you. Like a giant filing cabinet, the brain holds onto experiences, and references them when confronted with a similar situation. It is particularly fond of negative ones and prioritises them at the top of the pile.

We all have a ‘negativity bias’ and for good reason. We evolved that way for protection. The impact of anything deemed to be a threat is amplified with a view to keeping us out of danger. Understandable when coming face to face with a wild animal. Not really necessary in most of the situations we face today. Nonetheless, its power remains and unless we are aware of it, and choose to short-circuit it, then it will skupper progess without you even realising.

Even when you do know about it, it still needs managing. I have recently been working on something that is way out of my comfort zone. Monitoring my brain’s reaction to it has been truly fascinating. It is no word of a lie when I say that some days I put my hands over my ears and chant ‘la la la la la’ loudly to shut it off. The chef thinks I have totally lost the plot!

Small steps

I also speak from recent experience when I say that small steps are absolutely the key to success. I think it is really important, critical even, to think big (although that in itself is a challenge for the brain because you are asking it to step beyond its current scope as this very interesting article illustrates – thanks Lorraine!). However, having set the destination, the path to success comes in very, very small increments.

Instead of being scared, daunted and sending the brain into complete meltdown, think about one very small and manageable step which will get you closer than where you were before.

I have long since preeched this approach, but I have now seen its effect first hand. I have torn down so many barriers and moved so far forward it is staggering. The momentum builds and motivation rockets. I feel my brain is now working with me rather than against me and I can testify that it’s not only way more effective, it’s also a whole lot more comfortable.


Before I finish, you may remember that this time last year I wrote about the concept of having a ‘word of the year‘. Mine was ‘clarity’ and many of you shared yours.  Kindness, equanimity, perspective, and bravery all featured. I thought you might like an update on this year’s: it’s adventure. I set it before I saw Ceci and having read what might be on the cards this year, I am feeling like I am in for an exhilarating ride!

Here’s to an amazing year. Big plans, small steps.


  1. Lorraine Bewes

    Thank you so much for this inspiring blog, Lindsay. I love your message: Plan big, step small! Having made the big step of buying our land project in France, 2024 looks a bit daunting but you’re right to remind us to be excited and embrace each small achievable step rather than being anxious what might not happen! The French have a lovely phrase for this too…’Petit à petit, l’oiseau fait son nid…’ Thank you again and looking forward to hearing all the Mespot group’s adventures (nest building or otherwise) in 2024! Lorraine ☺️🌸

    • Yes I know the phrase well – the chef reminds me of it on a very regular basis!! Definitely lots to be excited about for you in 2024 and what you have achieved so far is exceptional. Don’t forget the down time though!!

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