I once played a comical side-kick to a ‘Life Coach’ from Co. Louth.
He was ‘Batty Ryan’, played by Joe Rooney and I was Katarina, a very scorpy Polish woman who stayed by Batty’s side for mainly suspicious reasons.
Joe Rooney and I endeavoured to take the piss out of the all-too-common ‘Life Coach’ or ‘Guru’ who burst onto the post-Celtic Tiger scene in their thousands circa 2009/2010.
They were going to make things better, you see, change your lives, get you right back up to the top of that corporate ladder and help you be wealthy once more.. if only you would hand over your credit card details.
Joe and I didn’t really buy into that B.S. so we wrote an entire comedy show around it; “Batty Ryan Will Change Your Life!”
The show was brilliant and I enjoyed every single minute of the tours that we did around Ireland. That particular comedy character came to a grounding halt when I got pregnant with Jacob in 2011 as alas, playing Katarina required a few energetic dance routines AND a bit of a physical fist-fist with Batty Ryan.
(Which she won, of course).
But the Tony Robbins ‘I Am Not Your Guru’ documentary caught my eye on Netflix just over a month ago.
It came at a time when I was feeling a bit overwhelmed and unsure as to what direction my life was taking.
I had been working long hours away from the kids and as Jacob was about to start primary school, that time away from him was making less and less sense.
There was also some frustration around trying to find the time to get my own things done – setting business plans afoot, getting the house in order after the extension, writing, and spending time with my gorgeous little family.
It just seemed as though those who I mattered the most to, were the ones who were getting the least of me.
So I spent two nights watching the ‘I Am Not Your Guru’ documentary around that time of uncertainty.
I didn’t like it all – some of it was very uncomfortable to watch in the sense that I felt as though his audience members at the ‘Date With Destiny’ event featured were extremely vulnerable and had spent a TONNE of money to be there.
But small parts of it resonated with me. No matter what Tony Robbins intentions are or why he exists as such an important figure to so many people, he is a self-made man who is living a life that he truly believes in and wants to live.
I liked that message a lot and felt inspired to take stock of my surroundings and do the same.
So at 7 am the next morning, I got up and hit the beach for a big walk before Ass Monkey or the kids got up.
I sat there on the sand with the sunrise and cried because I knew I was struggling, unhappy with the balance between work and family and relieved because I knew I was on the verge of a big decision.
Later that day, one of our main full-time staff handed their notice in at our family business Dynamic Cater Care and it was obvious to me: I needed to go back and focus on helping out there while at the same time, calling my own hours.
It took all of 48 hours to make that decision and put the changes in place. When you know, you know…
Jacob has started school and I am now home at 4pm, available to eat dinner with him and Eva, stay on top of what’s happening in school and read their bedtime stories, all cuddled up together the way I needed it to be.
It has made a huge difference to all of us and I genuinely feel like a happier person for it.
So thank you, Mr. Tony Robbins – you might actually be my guru after all.