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Find the One

Find the one – the 361

  1. The One
Find the One

Who is the One? How do we find the One? Does the One even exist somewhere out there? I blame Disney. As little girls we are taught in fairytales that there is a prince out there. Just one. And this prince charming will appear if we look hard enough. We CAN find him! And yes even at a ripe old age, this persists. On dating sites we still believe that if we look hard enough, he will appear. Find the One! Where is he?

2. The circle of One

The circle of One

We are taught to believe from a very early age that we are not complete unless we find our ‘other half.’ This mysterious person (the One) will complete us on every level and we can then be happy for the rest of our lives. We will no longer feel alone! The truth is that we are all alone – whoever is sitting next to us on our park bench. We can be alone in a crowd. We can be alone on our wedding day (I was!) The most alone I have ever felt was in a crowd of 50,000 people in the parade for London Pride. Everyone was taking my photograph and screaming for me but I felt so alone. It’s the reality. We are all alone – but this is not as depressing as it sounds. How about if we stopped looking for the One that will somehow magically complete us and start to look for that one piece of ourselves that is always missing – even in crowds and on wedding days? The 360 is our circle of life. What if we looked for the 361? I thought I had found the One 30 years ago when I got married to Prince Charming but – oh no! He ran off with someone younger 10 years later, leaving me with 2 children, What to do? This never happened in Disney. I had no point of reference. What next? If I believed that he completed me then I was broken, wasn’t I? I needed fixing!

3. The Quick Fix

The Quick Fix

It’s laughable now but I decided to find the One again! Yes that means that in my mind there was now more that one ‘the One’! I actually believed this and proceeded to find the One again and again over the next 20 years. Guess what? That didn’t work. If you’ve ever been divorced or bereaved and jumped straight in with another ‘the One’ you will know what I mean.

4. Hide and seek

Hide and seek

The Quick Fix doesn’t work. But it’s fun to try – with multiple partners, holidays, tv, sex, drink – your drug of choice. We are hiding from ourselves and we know it. As we get older though I think we can run out of places to hide. We are hiding from our true selves. So how do we find something else to complete our lives when we run out of fixes? Well spending time alone and sitting with the pain are essential. I agree. Neither of these options sound as much fun as the quick fixes but I ran out of options – because you can run yourself down to empty – and after 3 years by the beach I can tell you that they both work. They both heal. Sitting with the pain rather than numbing it. Sitting alone. Both of these begin to complete you as you listen to yourself. I was someone who would sleep with anyone so I didn’t have to sleep alone. Now I sleep alone.

5. Who are you?

The 361

Do you know who you are? When I first moved to an unfriendly seaside town where I knew no one, people would openly ask me ‘Who ARE you?’ It was a town that did not welcome outsiders. It got me thinking. Who was I? Did I even know? No. After 10 years’ of emotional and financial abuse leading to the loss of everything, I just didn’t know who I was. Big losses of any kind leave you vulnerable to meeting men who tell you who you are. This never ends well. Do you know who you are? Over time and through my life experiences (which have been hellish at times) I gradually lived through and then developed the 361 recovery programme to share what I learnt. The 361 helps women following loss – any loss. It helps women find the first step out of the 360 circle. The 361 helps you find the one. The 361.

Alice Smith 2019

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Find the one

What is 361 for Women? There are plenty of courses that show you how to do a complete 360 of your life. A complete review of all areas of your life – physical, emotional, spiritual and mental. There are 360 degrees in a circle and most of us exist in one circle or another. 
The weakness with this 360 idea for women in an abusive circle is that, yes, we know we are repeating behaviours with the same sort of men but simply knowing that and spotting the 360 degrees of the circle we are in isn’t enough. We are still stuck in the middle of it all. Just because we can see the circle clearly doesn’t mean we can always change it.
In addition, circles are safe. The 360 is known. The circle is known. Stepping outside the circle feels unsafe and safety is what we crave more than anything following repeated trauma. 

This is what frustrates health and social care professionals but as a survivor of emotional, sexual and financial abuse I understand this clearly. 
Why did I attract the same sort of men? Because they were in my 360 circle. Why did all my relationships work out the same way? Because I was simply spinning my circle like a hamster wheel. The only thing that was changing was the faces of the men I chose. And, yes, I chose them – they didn’t choose me

The 361 is different. Through the course, 360 gradually becomes 361. By finding the one (which is different for everyone), we can find out how to make that circle into a spiral. We are not circles, we are spirals. We can transform into an upward spiral which leads us out of abuse with our number 1 as our first step. The 361 is a positive recovery programme created from my own experiences as a teacher, mother, writer and survivor.

The first step is the most difficult. The first step out of the circle is frightening but – like the spiral contained within a fossil – if we keep walking out of it we find ourselves in new territory. Instead of looking for “the one” (which we may have done all of our lives in our circle of abuse) we start to be “the one”. We find that first step. 
By considering the whole circle first we can see how to step out of it. This transforms our life – but unlike some life coaching courses the credit for this goes to you. You do the 360 on your life. You see the patterns. You work out your first step to change that circle into a spiral. You find “the one”.

Alice Smith

The 361 is a positive recovery programme for women following losses of all kinds – not just abuse. More details at or email Alice on YouTube, podcast and IGTV coming October 9th 2019.