Monday, September 15, 2014

"When Everyone Shines But You" + An Interview + Giveaway With Kelly Martin

Kelly!  I have been so excited about this interview.  Congratulations on creating this wonderful book, "When Everyone Shines But You: Saying Goodbye To I'm Not Good Enough".  It is simply fantastic. 39 scrumptious nuggets of wisdom and guidance derived from allowing your spirit's guidance to emerge through your words.  Just beautiful.

Thank you Marla, so glad you enjoyed reading it.

Before I begin, I want to let everyone know that Kelly has generously offered to share a Kindle or eBook version of her book, with one lucky reader. This contest is open to anyone.  Simply subscribe to the email list, below, to be included in the giveaway.  The contest will end, Friday, September 19th at Midnight EST.  We will contact the winner via the email address used to sign up :)
(Don't worry, I hate spam as much as you.  I will never sell or share your email address)

(Sorry - This Contest Has Ended - You may purchase the book HERE - Thanks!)

First of all, you cover this in your introduction, but can you share with my readers why you were moved to write this book?

Writing 'When Everyone Shines But You' came from a real feeling of not being good enough. I had spent 30+ years of feeling under the radar in life, watching people I knew, both friends and family, pass me by in terms of outer success, relationship success and financial success. As I neared 40 I grew more and more frustrated by the lack of understanding in the modern self-help and motivational books I saw online and in my local book-store. The emphasis was on 'getting happy', 'thinking positively' and 'creating your reality'.

I had tried, and invested years on all these topics. I had countless gratitude journals; I had been there, bought the t-shirt in terms of vision boards, focusing on better feeling thoughts, imagining the life of my dreams, avoidance strategies through focusing on what I wanted instead of the reality before me. Everywhere I looked many teachers were professing the importance of thinking positively as a primary objective in life, but nothing was ever said about the negative being a route in to what was causing many people to feel worthless in this world.

I was no experienced psychologist or motivational speaker, but what I was, was someone who had certificates in 'feeling like a failure', awards in 'huge bouts of jealousy' and trophies in 'shame and not feeling good enough'.

And one day I knew I just needed answers, and I knew that after reading so many books and watching so many videos, that the only place this wisdom was going to come from was within me. I wanted to read a book that was yet to be written and I had no idea what was going to come out of it or what it was going to be about. I just knew I needed to start writing and so I did, and I let it flow.

One of my favorite things about this book is that I knew nothing about it until it was finished.  You were very particular about who knew about what you were doing.  Can you fill us in on what it takes to get something like this accomplished?  How you kept your "head in the game"?

Oh, this was the hardest part Marla, keeping it quiet. I was always a 'tell people my plans' and take action later, only the action never continued, because a part of me used the 'sharing my ideas' to keep me where I was, held back so I could gather more information. And because I had never completed anything to fruition, I had to keep this quiet. This was a real strong feeling inside me to keep it quiet and sacred in my creative womb, but everything about writing a book and publishing was the exact opposite of this because writing a book involves promoting – prior to the book's launch, so this was hard for me to accept.

Writing a book without a plan in mind can be challenging. The ego likes to be in charge and control every step of the way, but with this book I wanted answers and the mind did not have the answers to my life challenges. So the process was a journey through the dark in many ways. I would spend each day asking myself 'What do I need to know right now?' and some days I gazed out of the window with no idea or answer coming to me. But then something was triggered within, by a butterfly on a flower, by rain falling and the answers came through nature.

It was then I realized that this book was going to be written differently.  I was going to be a vehicle for my spirit and human selves to work together as one, recognizing that my humanity has as much wisdom as any aspect of my spirit.

I kept my head in the game with the support of one good friend, my best friend and house-mate Mike. He became my editor, proof-reader and general cheer-leader. Although the biggest encouragement came from within, something in me felt I needed to write this book and I also used jealousy as a fuel for my passions of writing; more of this is included in the book.

You have been writing about the journey of life and "questioning reality" for years.  So someone out there doesn't feel so alone, what was it in your heart that made you start questioning traditional "self-help" guidance?

I found traditional self-help guidance to be incredibly one-sided.  The exercises, ideas, goal setting strategies spoke to an assertive, extroverted individual who was in a pretty good place already, and many of the teachers I read or heard were discouraging negative thinking altogether. This did not sit right with me, how can we have the Yang without the Yin?

As I put many of the traditional self-help methods into practice, I grew frustrated that they 'appeared' to work for some, yet many people were still feeling frustrated, sad, lonely, depressed and not good enough. The more I was encouraged to feel positive the more I felt negative. I kept having this nagging question inside 'What if there is something beautiful in the darkness? Something beautiful in the negative that we are avoiding through all this 'positive thinking'?

One of my favorite themes is a philosophy you and I both have in common ~ embracing/acknowledging the negative, challenging, sometimes dark moments in life. Which totally goes against the message of many of the "manifesting", "change your life" gurus out there.  When did you discover the life-changing momentum these experiences have to offer?

The biggest turnaround was at my first mindfulness meditation class. I had been spending so much time alone in solitude that going to a new class brought up a great amount of anxiety. I had experienced intense anxiety since I was 7 years old and it was nothing new to me, but something about mindfulness brought out something different. Instead of avoiding the anxiety, mindfulness shone a light on the fears that came up in bucket-loads. I sat in the corner of the class and had a full blown panic attack. I wanted to run; I wanted to flee the room, to escape, but something in me said stay. And I sat through the panic, the intense fear and listened to very loud noises outside and began to hear the harmony in the pneumatic drill drilling, the seagulls cawing, the bells chiming and the people talking loudly outside the meditation room. And a smile came across my face. The outer noise reflected the inner noise, the anxiety. I realized the anxiety had a gift to share with me. It showed me it would lessen if I actually embraced it instead of fleeing from it through distraction techniques like positive thinking.

I love Chapter 21, Loneliness.  Discovering that we are the best friend we could have is so liberating.  What is your favorite thing to do to honor your alone time with yourself?

I actually really love to take myself out for coffee. Something about being alone yet not alone, among people, yet on retreat. Watching the world go by, being part of it yet feeling separate too. I also find mindfulness meditation helps me immensely. Sitting quietly, no music, just silence or outer noises taking place and observing the landscape within my mind. Bringing my attention to this alone time was the beginning of self-compassion for me, the beginning of self-kindness.

Which chapter is your favorite?  Why?

My favourite chapter is Chapter 25 – Too Much Emphasis On Positive Thinking May Damage Self-Worth because I find it soothes me at times of distress, when the failure story may be playing, and the mind is telling me 'I should be feeling happy/positive/joyful'. It helps me surrender into the feeling and give my human self the comfort and kindness it so very much deserves. It literally allowed me to be human as the words came through me. I read it back and felt nourished and held by gentle hands nurturing my human experience. I was no longer flawed just because I could not 'will' myself into a better frame of mind.

How has your life changed since you started accepting all the aspects of yourself?

Well, for me this is just the beginning. It's a journey and I would be lying to say writing this book has changed my world, but what it has done is change my perception of my world and how to live in life. I feel a greater confidence that I never had before and I value myself a whole lot more. Before I started this journey of acceptance I lived a life of perpetually feeling 'worthless and useless'. I no longer feel worthless, but I still have stories playing; pain arises, sadness comes, jealousy too, yet they no longer send me into a pit of despair. I am able to manage and relate to myself much more deeply now. The tender loving arms of mindfulness have created a space within me to open my heart – to me. This is the biggest change and one I am still discovering moment-by-moment.

OK.  I'm going to wrap things up by asking you where we can find you online? 

You can find me in various places online.
I do most of my writing here at:
But to find out more about 'When Everyone Shines But You' you can visit my new author website:
I also share videos of encouragement on my You Tube channel:
And share inspiration on

I can remember a time in my life where I felt like everyone was in on some secret, leaving me out of the loop. That is why I love this book.  Each chapter clears the path a little more than the next and we are left with clarity; we finally feel like we're in on it too, by the time we are finished. 

And - even better - when the book is finished we are left with a fantastic reference/resource to keep around for those days when we need a little centering and focus.

Thank you, Kelly!

Thank you for this interview.

Thank you for this book.

Thank you Marla for reading and giving such great feedback on the book, I have enjoyed this interview x

Kelly Martin is a British writer and a natural free flowing intuitive blogger who can write till the cows come home, but because she felt a complete failure at everything in her life, she never gave herself the chance to finish anything, especially a book, until now.

One day Kelly saw other people praising their books and something began to stir inside. She always felt she had a book inside her, but because she thought so differently to many people in the self-help arena she held off sharing to a wider audience, yet a strong voice within began to grow louder and she knew she had to begin to share what she knew, to share the wisdom that was beginning to drive her days and to offer support and encouragement to people who also felt like failures, who also felt worthless and useless, and for those people who felt that there was no point to their being here on planet Earth.

She watched as scores of people became enmeshed in the 'Law of Attraction' culture. She watched as people felt downtrodden by the positive thinking path, when they were unable to hold positive thoughts as they were told they 'should' be doing or having, and she said to herself 'Enough is enough! I need to voice a new way of being human' and so When Everyone Shines But You was born.

So from blogging at Kelly Martin Speaks to now, a new chapter began. The labour was filled with complications, the pregnancy was private, the going full term was overwhelmingly tough going at times, but the baby was born. The first of many more to come.

You can follow Kelly Martin across the web on the social networks below or you can subscribe to her newsletter HERE where she shares all her news and writing.

Here’s to all the square pegs, black sheep and outsiders wanting a voice.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...