#Lifelessons101 -Reluctance to change – how to bust through that big old block in 6 easy steps!

We all have those things we do that we would like to change. I know I do, the list is actually quite long. And if like me you have such a list it is so easy to get into a routine of self doubt, guilt and shame around the inability to make the positive healthy changes we know would benefit us and our life. In my life the biggest most glaring item on my list is my lack of exercise. I can seriously get into my stuff on this one. The guilt spiral runs deep and it has become a huge block of beating myself up (mentally) about my inability to commit to myself, my body etc etc etc. It has got so bad that when my wonderfully supportive man Mr T tries to suggest ways in which I could easily exercise he is more likely to get his head bitten off by my impression of the tasmanian devil than receive the (rightfully deserved) gratitude he should get for his support and care. In short it’s become an issue. A lifestyle habit I want to change and yet don’t seem to be able to make that shift. Until that is until this week.

I was doing so research into new coaching techniques and I stumbled upon a fantastic video by the energetic coach Jeannine Yoder on 4 questions that really investigate the blocks behind our reluctance to change in a powerful and insightful way. The technique is built upon the premise that any behaviour INCULDING negative behavior gives a form of positive benefit and value to our lives. It’s so logical. If we didn’t get something out of the behaviour we wouldn’t keep doing it. The NLP technique she described in her video is based upon 4 questions to help you analyse your behaviour from this perspective of positive value instead of negative judgement which makes the change so much easier to make because you come from a place of wholeheartedly accepting the change. I was blown away

I immediately implemented this technique into my coaching and my own development. Especially using it to look at the mental blocks I had to exercising more in my life. I tweaked and developed the technique a little (as every coach does).  And I now have this effective and brilliant formula for handling reluctance to change and smashing through the blocks to changing out negative behaviours which can be easily applied to anything you want to change. Already through my own experiences and my clients experiences in using this techniques during this week I have been amazed at how effective it is in manifesting new habits for change in a personally created bubble of motivation and I couldn’t wait to share it with you all.

So if you want to make a change in your life and are struggling to do so here are 6 easy steps you can manifest a new behaviour that serves you and your life

Step 1:  The positive things

Ask  “ What are the positive things that this behaviour is providing for you?

Dig deep and find out what it is you get from this behaviour. I was extremely shocked when I discovered a benefit for me  of not doing exercise was that it gave me the opportunity not to fail. I did not see that one before. This thought process really helped me get clear around why I liked not to exercise.

Step 2: All the benefits

Ask “ What else do you get out of this choice? What are all the benefits?

Dig even deeper and make a list of all the benefits this behaviour gives you. Keep writing them down until you can seriously not find more. My list was challenging to drag out. It took some big self admissions and yes it hit that pile of self doubt and shame. However rather than going there I kept going motivated in the knowledge I was being proactive to resolve the dramas and challenges I had.

Step 3: Keeping benefits

Now look at that list and ask yourself “ Which of these benefits do you want to keep?

Some of these benefits are things you really don’t want to let go of. For me with the exercise I knew that I needed to keep the benefits of affordability, giving myself time, the experience of not failing and the lack of pressure on myself. Circle these benefits in your list so you can really see what is most important to you.  These are the positive needs of your habit.

Step 4: Meeting positive needs

Now ask “ In what ways can you meet each identified positive need?

This is the behaviour changing part. You now look at each positive need and workout how to fulfill that need by positive behaviour. So I had to identify a form of exercise that I could easily put into my schedule, didn’t pressure me and that I would enjoy to give me a successful experience of exercise. Make a list of ideas of all the ways you can fulfill your positive needs in a healthy and beneficial way.

Step 5:  Embracing change

Identify “ Which behaviour can you wholeheartedly embrace?

Change doesn’t happen if you don’t really want it to. You have to feel in your heart of hearts that this is right for you. So from you list of ideas circle the ones that you really feel you can wholeheartedly set into action. Follow the feeling in your stomach, if something makes you feel reluctant then don’t choose it now, it maybe that you come back to it. I had written down thai chi as a potential exercise form that might work for me however it doesn’t feel right for me yet so I have chosen this. Going for walks however is definitely an option.

Step 5: Manifestation

Lastly ask “What positive actions do I need to take to create my new habits?

The last step is simply a list of the actions and agreements you make with yourself on how to move forward and manifest your new habits. So for me putting the dates in my diary of when I want to take a walk is a step for example. Make these steps achievable and realistic. If you want to start running don’t have as the first step  say sign up for a marathon. A realistic and achievable step would be plan a route and get some running shoes. 

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As I said before these is my own interpretation of Jeannie Yoder’s NLP technique found here on youtube. My clients and I love it. It brings an objective and fresh perspective and a judgemental free system to create new and beneficial habits that serve us in our lives. I hope you enjoy this process and after you have tried it let me know in the comments the new actions you are going to be taking to make your life a better experience!

Have a happy weekend <3

Old habits won't open new doors

#lifelessons101 – Why people are draining you and how to stop it happening (3 min read)

 

It’s friday night, there is glorious sunshine out of my window, the wind is blowing and the garden is calling yet tonight I am simply too shattered to go out and play. I am tired. Not just physically but mentally. I am people tired.

As a life coach, and also in my private life, I work with people everyday and I love that. I love helping and giving help to self help, I love to help people grow and I love learning from the people I help and getting the opportunity to grow myself.  However sometimes I get exhausted by it. Sometimes I just get tired of people and I also get people tired. I know those sound similar they are not, bear with me I will explain. Getting tired of people is where you simply get fed of human interaction games until it exhausts. Getting people tired is where you feel drained by other people through helping too much.

The challenge is that getting tired of people and people tired is not something we usually talk about it polite society. Certainly not in inclusive Scandinavia where doing everything together is the way life is. YET we all have times where we feel like this. AND the teaching of being tired of people or of being people tired is actually a really important message for us if we choose to listen instead of being into the drama that people are just blooming annoying /stupid/insert adjective of choice, and why won’t they sort blah blah out, and why do they leave it to you and blah, blah, blah.

We just need to look for the teachings. And when you do you will find that the teachings of being tired of people and people tired are different ,yet also both have an initial underlying message. The underlying message is simple. It is that something is not right for you in the relationships you have and the interactions you having with other people. Both of these feelings are your spirits way of say “HELLO. Something ain’t in balance. Take notice!”

And the way to take notice (or the what to do about it) is defined by the individual teachings of being tired of people and people tired. I have noticed a few and these are below with a few suggestions for healing solutions. Maybe you have noticed other teachings if you have please share them in the comments below then we can all support each others learning journey.

Being tired of people:

Everyone you met is annoying and usually in the same way. I have found this can mean two thingsTEACHING: You are surrounding yourself with the wrong type of people. Your body, well more accurately your soul, is crying out to say I need to grow in a different way, these people don’t support that growth, find me people that support the growth I need.

HEALING SOLUTION: Soul search, identify what you need and call in the right people. You don’t need to cut other people off, just set the intention the the right people will turn up and distance yourself discreetly from the people that are reflecting attitudes or growth that you don’t need. If you can figure out what exactly it is that is bugging you about the people in your life it will give you a pretty clear idea of the change and growth you need .

TEACHING: The people in our lives mirror us. Which means the people bugging you are reflecting something about you, a habit that you have that you dislike and need to face in order to feel complete.

HEALING SOLUTION: Find out what it is and work with it. You can if you want to get to know the person that is bugging you, this does often give you deeper understanding of why they are the way they are and why you are the way you are. If you really dare (and I do know this is tough I have dared and also chosen not to) tell them you that they are bugging you because of X, Y and Z and that you realise this is something about your personality you dislike and that you wish to work with and begin a healing dialogue with them.

Being people tired.

People tired can be defined as never having time for yourself and yet help everyone else. I do this ALOT.

TEACHING: You are giving more than you can give you need to save energy for you and your life too.

HEALING SOLUTION:  Check in with yourself and set boundaries. Count to ten before saying yes or offering help make sure you have the resources for everything you need to do before trying to fix someone else’s life. After all if you are broken it won’t help them will it. If you feel bad you can always suggest a solution that doesn’t involve you and you find that you have helped.

TEACHING: You are putting off dealing with something in your own life by fixing someone else. after we all know how easy it is to fix everyone else’s lives rather than our own.

HEALING SOLUTION: Stop. Check in with you. What is it you have been putting off by helping everyone else? Do it. Eat that frog (not a real one, a metaphorical one …honestly! She says shaking her head.) Do thing thing you don’t want to do for you and once it is over you will feel better, Than you can help all and sundry,

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The moral of this tale is if you are feeling people tired or tired of people check in with you. In whatever extreme emotion situation you find yourself in life there will always always be a teaching you just need to look for it. And if you check in with you and fix your stuff you will be in a much better place to serve and enjoy the wonderful people in your life.

Have a restful and happy weekend <3

 

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#lifelessons101  – Make a lovely start to your weekend by randomly making someone else feel appreciated (2 min read)

In the last two weeks I have had 2 completely out of the blue, completely unexpected messages over social media that have made me feel appreciated and wonderful. Two people who don’t know each other wrote to me independently to say how I made their day better by my positivity and that the impact in their lives of knowing me inspired them. WOW! I mean wow! They had no other reason to tell me just they thought I should know. It meant so much to me. Especially as these people are people who I like very much but, as yet are not in my close inner circle or daily life. It took my breath away, it made me feel so lovely.

In fact it made me feel so great that I thought wouldn’t it be fantastic if everyone could feel this way. We all like to feel good. And we know for a fact that by being appreciated we feel great and by  doing something nice for other people we feel awesome. So why not combine the two?

This weekend let’s make a positive bubble around the world together. It will take you only five minutes. Simply to find someone you know (but not too closely) who inspires you, makes your day better or who you simply admire as a person (not attracted to but admire). When you have chosen write this person a short message over Facebook (or your social media platform of choice). Make it honest and simple. Tell them why you think they are so great, inspiring, lovely and tell them you just thought they ought to know. Don’t ask for anything of them. Just tell them how great they are. The chances are that this person has not a clue of the impact they make in your life and probably needed to hear it. I know I did. And a little compliment can go a long way after a busy working week. Then please share this article on Facebook/twitter/your blog and pass the idea on to your friends and family.

After that go and have a wonderful weekend knowing you have made someone else feel happy.  Sometimes it’s simply nice to be nice

Have a lovely weekend <3

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#lifelessons101- The ultimate instant stress relief – Set you inner child free this weekend! (4 min read)

This week has been amazing! Honestly I haven’t enjoyed myself so much in such a long time.

And why? Well this week I have spent a lot of time doing things that has made my inner child incredibly happy. I kid you not! (Sorry. Inexcusable terrible pun… I couldn’t resist it)

Seriously though the last month or so has been stressful (even life coaches get their fair share of tough times you know – I like to think of them as opportunities to practise what I preach and walk my talk). However after finding the 3 steps to turning my monday frown upside down meant I released my inner child, she just continued wanting to play. All the time. So I thought what the heck and decided to make opportunities for her to do just that. We painted, we played games, we watched funny films and we danced, a lot. As often as appropriately possible I took the non serious approach to life and was even to be found galloping around a car park and practicing human dressage! (See the wonderful BBC tv series Miranda.)

The result? I am happier and feeling healthier. I’m definitely more relaxed and freer within myself. The biggest shock of all was that today I found out that in the middle of all of this I have also managed to complete all of my major tasks WITHOUT NOTICING IT! Somehow just by making minimal daily lists and making time for me to indulge my inner child’s whims, I have had one of the most productive weeks I have had in 2017.

Now don’t get me wrong, I get that most of us can’t always release our inner child whenever we want. Not the best idea when pulled over for a random spot check breathalyzer for example. However what I have discovered this week is that allowing my inner child to rule the roost, I have also made other people smile. Which honestly has made my life so much better on so many levels. In the words of Miranda “Life needs to be more jolly”. And it’s true. Everyone needs to feel happier. I can’t think of a single person who if asked “would you like to be happier or more stressed ?”, would opt for stress. So by letting your childish side come out you can actually improve the world around you.

You might be thinking. That’s ridiculous! I can’t be childish all the time. Well no I expect you can’t if you interpret the world childish in a particular way. Especially not if yo look down upon children as lesser than adults. However when I think about children I think about how they see and interact with the world. Children are inquisitive, they want to know how the world works. Children find joy in the smallest of things like a pretty stone, a funny face. They laugh more than us. Children are in touch with their feelings. Children find every possible opportunity to play.  Children are naturally kind and caring. They are not afraid to show love to anyone who needs it or who gives it to them. Children use their joy and their fantasy to make the world a special amazing place and create their dreams. Now that doesn’t sound like so bad a person to be. Does it?

The challenge is for us as adults to tap into our childish source without stepping completely out of our current role. So if you as an adult want  to be less stressed out. To be like the children I described above  then you need to consciously give your inner child a chance to come out. This weekend release your inner child! Do whatever it is that made your 8 year old self happy that you don’t do now. Reconnect with the you that you were to find the joy in who you are now.

Whether you decide to continue giving your inner child opportunities to come out after the weekend is entirely up to you. However I can guarantee that if twice this weekend (once on  Saturday and once on Sunday) that you do something you used to love as a child, your stress level will be dramatically reduced.  It is also so much more fun to do this with a friend, so get your friends family involved – its play date time!

Explore you childishness this weekend. And on n Monday it’s up to you to decide if you want to build a new pillow fort every day and keep connect with your inner child daily or not. Choose whatever works for you. After all it’s you who creates your journey ,so you choose what makes you enjoy that journey the most.
Have a fantabulous, funtastic  weekend – I’m off to go and run around with swords and play vikings with Mr T and friends!

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Turn your Monday frown upside down in three inspiring and hilarious steps!

Mondays uggh! Some days you just get out of  the wrong side of the bed. Today I had it on overload. At 3 minutes to 8am I was done. Even after spending time going through my gratitude list and my positive affirmations 3 secs later something new just annoyed me. Nothing seemed to be shifting my irritable negative cloud. I could have quite happily returned to my bed and slept until the weekend – you know the scenario.

So I started to think about what could make me feel better, what can you do to turn around a monday frown upside down when all the odds are against you? The universe kindly responded by showing me and now as I am sitting here writing to you I am buzzing with energy and dancing along to Don’t Worry Be Happy! (Surreal to think if I had heard this song this morning it would have bugged the heck out of me). So what’s the secret? It’s really simple and easy to follow. If you want to turn you Monday frown upside down and enjoy the rest of your day in spite of getting out of bed on the wrong side follow my three simple steps kindly taught to me today by the universe.

Open up and breath

I know this is the tough part. The last thing you want to do when you are annoyed or irritated is to stop being annoyed (humans, such weird creatures we are). However  if you want to feel happier you need to take charge internally and open yourself up to the possibility of shifting your mood.  And one of the easiest ways of doing this is power  meditating.

I have tried a lot of meditation and always struggled with it however power meditating is the most simple  and shortest meditation/affirmation technique of them all! The concept is simple. Just as a quick power nap freshens the body a quick power  meditation freshens the soul – I found this technique here at Mind Body Green (however the name is from yours truly).

Basically you focus on your breath and breath deeply into your belly allowing it to relax and become soft. Then begin internally repeating to yourself, “Breathing In, I calm myself. Breathing out, I smile.” And you keep doing this until you find you begin to smile. The corners of your mouth start twitching and as you smile you feel better and open for an improvement in your day.

Be creative and release your inner creative child

Children get the better deal. Hours of playtime, oh don’t you miss it. Especially the hours we all spent with paint brush or crayon in hand creating scribbly, wibbly stick men masterpieces to be lovingly displayed on Mum’s fridge. On a crappy day allowing yourself the freedom to doodle, draw and paint the way you did all those years ago (not so long ago for some of you) is absolutely the best medicine.

Why? Because creativity clears the mind. It craves focus which prevents you from being caught up with negative or stressful thoughts. The other equally important part of creating in childhood is that it involves interacting with colour. Colour is all around us but unless we have been lucky enough to follow a creative career path we often stop interacting with it in our adulthood. Colour impacts our moods, our feelings and our behaviours. Best of all our interpretation of colour is completely utterly personal, No-one in the world experiences and reacts to the different colours in exactly the way you do. Stands to reason that interacting with colour liberates us unconsciously.

Step two is simple – Be Creative. However I don’t want you just to be creative, to get rid of your bad mood. I want you to be as creative in a childish way. Small children don’t care. If they make a picture they love it, because they enjoyed making it. They have freedom to express their creative potential because they don’t compare themselves and their abilities with everyone else’s. Something we have all forgotten how to do.

Now I don’t mean you should regress completely and allow your inner child to take over your workplace. However an hour of childish artistic freedom works wonders on any black cloud day. I was lucky today. I got a few hours to paint and stick and glue, in an art class (the wonderful perks of studying human development means you get these kind of opportunities). However if you are at work I get that it can be challenging to suddenly get the crayons out and begin to make stick figure drawings. Luckily the recent fad for mindfulness colouring books and zentangling has made grownup colouring much more socially acceptable, plus it is a great way to be creative without having to initiate the process of the drawing. The first chance you get today grab some paper, draw or make some time to colour. Don’t get caught up in being artistically perfect, get caught up in the experience of playing with colour and the freedom of creating. No matter what it is you make, your inner child will think it is wonderful and if you end up smiling who the heck cares what you drew! (And if you really don’t want to be artistic on paper, another easy and fun way to be creative and interact with colour is Lego. I am serious. And the bonus is that there is always some small child in the world very happy to take it off your hands when you have done the making).

Be stupid and play

Do something stupid. I don’t mean stupid in the buy 100 lotto tickets way, I mean stupid the way you did when you were small. Play. We as adults are incredibly self conscious and caught up in what other people think of us. Getting out of our stuff and doing ‘something daft’ (as my mum would say) is not just a liberating experience for us but for everyone around us. The important factor here is to make sure whatever you do is physical and has absolutely in no way at all a connection to your adult life (which means going to the gym does not count).

Start a paper aeroplane competition, have a pillow fight, jump in puddles.If you dare

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Miranda daring to be daft !

go bigger and follow the wonderful example of Miranda Hart in the BBC series “Miranda” who makes the enjoyment of living alone an art form. The picture says it all…

 

If at all possible do something daft with friends, it makes you laugh more. Today in my second class of the day I was to be found wearing a giant rabbit costume whilst we reenacted a nursery rhyme dance as part of a demonstration of a cognitive and creative development activity for children (again the opportunities of studying human development).

The unexpected byproduct of this experience was the  liberating effect on the adults taking part. Suddenly dressed as fairy tale characters and dancing around playing a game each of the adults came out of their shells. It was a sight to behold.

However as you may have hidden your Buzz Lightyear costume in the darkest recesses of your loft I recommend instead of watching the news tonight getting out the Twister. Nothing lifts the mood like entangling yourself in an impossible position and howling with laughter.

And if nothing else there is always the option of dancing around like a ninny in the kitchen to your favourite music.

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You may notice that the universe today provided me with an experience of childhood which I am recommending to you. To be honest returning to a child’s world perspective, getting out of yourself, ignoring your adult mental constrictions and having a few hours playing and creating, reminds you why life is worth living and it makes sense. Try it (even if you think it sounds bonkers) you will see what I mean.

Combine the acts of breathing, creating and being stupid and I guarantee you that your Monday (or any day of the week) frown cannot possibly remain.

Life is our own adventure so choose to make yours a fun one!

 Have a fantastic week , got to dash I’m off to have a disco in my kitchen (Cue Abba “I am the dancing queen …..”)  

Happy Monday 🙂

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#lifelessons101 – Sometimes doing what you don’t want to do is exactly what you need and comes with unexpected bonuses (2 min read)

 

Sometimes doing what you don’t want to do is exactly what you need to do. I know when talking about life or personal development we talk about making informed, positive choices. Facing situations with positivity. Sending out the right vibrations. And yes all of these things have value. However there are sometimes in life where you just have to do the things you are unwilling to do. It (at the start)sucks but in the end it brings you the bigger rewards.

 

Take last weekend for example. I was at a “viking” fighting training weekend (yes when I am not running around with a wand playing Tonks, you can often find me running around with a metal replica sword, bashing and being bashed by my friends. Yep I  am a viking re- enactor. I love to fight with r a system known as  western style. It’s on one hand similar to tag with weapons and a lot of historical background! On the other it’s an amazing international and ever evolving sport.) Now in this sport I am not the best, not by a long shot; and typically when participating in training weekend workshops I often have had a tendency to hide away and not fight with the technically clever, aka the people who are blooming good and are probably going to win every fight we have. Basically I would (previously) get into my stuff and limit myself by trying to protect myself from feeling rubbish about my lack of abilities by using one or another excuse to get out of the fights with said people.

 

I know, I know a low self belief spawned, self created situation/drama.

 

And one of which I was completely  unaware of until last weekend when I found myself at a workshop (which I had chosen due to personal interest in the subject)in the company of some the best fighters I know. So I didn’t have a choice. I had to spar with them. I was simply forced into doing something I normally wouldn’t choose to do. And what did I gain? Well I gained a hell of alot. Firstly I realised this whole self limiting and self creating behaviour drama cycle thing I didn’t notice I was doing. And once I got out of my reacting mindset and into my responding humble mindset I learnt more. I even realised how I learn best (which by the way is agonisingly slow, when it comes to doing things with my own body, it’s an Aspergers co-ordination thing). From sparring with those guys, letting down my guard, I learnt so much more because their ability stretched mine and wow do I feel grateful to them and to myself for allowing this learning.

 

And the benefits of doing something I didn’t want to do didn’t stop there.

 

By day two of the training weekend I was at yet another workshop surrounded by much more able people (some of who I would consider to be the best in this sport, this time with a humdinger of a hangover). However now I was aware of it I chose the what the fuck I am doing it anyway even when I don’t want to attitude. Instead of shying away from the harder fights  (in my head) I choose them and by the end of the weekend I had learnt more in two days than I have in two years of fighting. It was exhilarating!

 

Doing exactly the opposite of what I wanted to do actually freed me from my mental constraints and opened up possibilities for me that weekend. But could that be a one off event? Nope. Being as I like to experiment. I have applied this theory all week. Even today after a week of being home sick (turns out it wasn’t just a hangover I was also sick) I had to return to school, something I really, really did not want to do. And yet it turned out to be exhilarating. The welcome, the learning, the shared jokes. Even when having to point out my opinion against everyone else’s (something I don’t find difficult in English but hate to do in another language). Once again Doing the exact opposite of what my instincts were telling me I wanted to do freed me leaving me open to new experiences. Wow.

 

Now I understand you maybe thinking “I thought I am supposed to respond to my instincts so how can doing the what I don’t want to do fit that picture?” Well asked grasshopper. From what I have learned in the last 7 days, it’s about trying it out. Our brains and especially our unconscious can be very devious. It sends out all kinds of messages and a lot of them contradict each other, making following our instincts very difficult. Ultimately I have found if there is something you really don’t want to do but dare to do it anyway you will often find that it was actually something you wanted to do, you just hadn’t realised it. The making yourself do it was just the kick up the bum you needed to get going.

 

The key to gaining the most from the experience is to (as always) remain open. If you are closed you will only ever endure the drama of doing what it is you didn’t want to do and how awful that was for you. Remain open to the possibilities presented to you when doing something you really didn’t want to do and you will be pleasantly if not overwhelmingly surprised by the benefits.  The choice is yours, its how you choose to experience it.

 

So next time life presents you with something you really don’t want to do – do it * Open your mind and try. The way I see things, any experience in life is a good thing if we learn something from it. Because by learning we grow. So open your mind and dive in. Whether it is facing your hardest opponent, returning to work after being ill or even going to a gig on your own, no matter what it is, by doing that thing you least want to do you will find wealth of learning, possibilities and experiences that you could never have found if you stayed in your comfort zone.

 

So whenever you get the chance break out of yourself, kick your own butt  and choose to do the thing you don’t want to do. You never know what adventure you may start ….

 

Enjoy the journey <3

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(*With of course taking into consideration that your and other people’s safety will not be jeopardised. Always ce careful of you and other people)  

#Lifelessons101 – Arrgh! I’m surrounded by idiots – 3 emotionally intelligent ways to deal with the most annoying of people (3 min read)

 

You know life sometimes just seems to be filled with annoying people. Everywhere you go you meet someone who is irritating or unnecessarily stupid or even worse you meet someone and it is hate at first sight. Meeting annoying people or even someone who you instantly dislike is unfortunately something we have all experienced. (If you haven’t I commend you fine person please write in the comments how you do it because we mere mortals will be happy to learn your secrets.) It’s like that person in someway shape or form manages to get under your skin, irritate every possible nerve, conscious and unconscious thought. And why? Why do we have times where we meet people like this? Well it would be very easy to say the world is full of idiots and that’s that. However we all know deep down inside that’s just not true.

 

Whenever we feel a strong emotion (especially when it comes right out of the blue) it is the universe jumping up and down with a message for us. (Note to self: it must be friday because in my mind there is now a picture of the universe jumping up and down wearing heavy wooden clogs and screaming “Notice me!”. Next note to self: you are rambling. My apologies.) So what is the message that the universe sending you when you seem to be surrounded by halfwits and people that get under your skin?

 

This week the universe has been sending me irritating people and annoying situations by proxy. I have spent most of the week observing other people’s interactions going horribly wrong so much so that  I was becoming totally overloaded and also starting to be drawn into the drama. Until yesterday someone had a conflict and in helping them I reminded myself of three life pearls of wisdom regarding why other people can annoy us so much. In remembering these pearls I was able to step back from the drama around me and use this universal message to learn more about myself, grow a little and enrich my life’s journey. Now who would have thought that from being surrounded by idiots eh!?

 

So here are three easy things to remember that will help you in any situation, with any annoying person. The trick is remembering them and applying them.

They remind you of you

Whaaaaaaat ! ( I can hear you from here). Yes it’s true. Whether its the annoyingly slow person serving at the counter or that person you absolutely hate, the reason they annoy yo is because they remind you of you. But not the good part of you. They remind you of a bit of you that you don’t like. Especially with hate at first sight.

Have a look at the person you dislike or are most annoyed by and mentally describe that person and compare them to you. For example the bossy domineering, controlling person in your workplace is actually you when you are stressed and trying desperately to hold things together by bossing other people about.

This exercise is not easy but it is INCREDIBLY enlightening. It can identify hidden fears, negative self narratives or unresolved issues and by uncovering these unciousous things we become soo powerful.

It’s their stuff

Let’s face it one of the most irritating thing another person  can do is react negatively towards you. A tone of voice or a facial expression can be the catalyst for a personal feud lasting generations or (on a slightly more realistic level) a sense of irritation and frustration that follows you round annoying you for the rest of the day. Now wouldn’t it be great to be able to let go of that. You can. Basically you have to realise that it’s the other person’s stuff. Whatever the reason they reacted it is based on something in them, their personal world. It’s not your stuff it’s theirs. So let it go. We have enough of our own emotional baggage to deal with without carrying someone else’s.  

Remembering that it’s not your stuff not only releases you from your personal dramas it also has the added bonus of freeing you up to handle the other person differently which will make whatever the situation is better.

You can only work on yourself

The two realisations above can lead you to some very important personal reflection and growth. It is important to realise when it comes to other people you are not in control. You cannot help them to have the above realizations and respond to you and themselves in an emotionally intelligent way, that’s up to them. (Well you can ofc share my articles with them! However they might not have the same impact on someone else as they do with you).

What you do have control over is you. You can control how you respond to a situation. You have a choice. And it’s your choices that make that interaction with another person positive or negative. Now I hated the person who first told me this (for about 3 mins). However it’s a fact. We have the power in us to react or respond. To live in a world of instincts or to take control and look deeper within to understand and grow.

 

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When you use these thought processes in practice it frees you up to a whole new world of interactions with other people as well as a new level of self awareness and emotional intelligence. Try them out this weekend and make a mental note of how much happier you are to be around people that would normally drive you crazy, The world is only full of idiots when you’re stupid enough to allow it to be! It’s your life, your choice, so make the best choices for you <3

 

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What planet is he/she on ?!?!?! – 5 ways to understand other people (3 min read)

What planet are they on?!?! There is not one of us who has not asked this question at least once in our lives. Sometimes understanding other people can seem like the most impossible task in the world. It doesn’t matter who it is or your relationship to them. It could be  the teacher that sets the impossible to understand assignment, the guy who never contributes at work, the girlfriend who insists on buying another pair of shoes  or the friend or child that does the exact opposite of what you believe to be reasonable behaviour, sometimes other people are just hard to understand.

Infact not understanding  other people is one of the most common day to day problems we all have as humans. No matter where we are, how we live or what we believe, this is a life challenge that we all have in common. And it is also a challenge that we all have to overcome because like or not we need other people.

But when your communication with another person is as effective as static on a radio it can have seriously negative results on your life. (You know the scenario in my brain’s cinema. In the background one long beeeeep whilst both people make increasingly larger incomprehensible gestures at each other, a situation made absolutely more  ridiculous that they  can’t understand each other because you are actually speaking the same language. You know it, you’ve been there.) Why does communication often go so wrong? There are many answers to that question however often or not, the answer is because we have an emotional investment. And it’s those emotions investments that create misunderstandings.

And that my friends is actually good news! If it’s our emotions getting involved then we can do something about it.  How ? By using Emotional Intelligence (which in a nutshell can be defined a the ability to identify and manage our own  emotions and the emotions of others). Emotional intelligence techniques are vast and many (try typing emotional intelligence into Youtube, Amazon or Google you will see what I mean).  So I am not going to go too deeply here and now. I prefer to share with you (and remind myself !) 5  ways of using emotional intelligence to help understand someone else, even when they seem to live on a completely different planet.

Remember we aren’t all the same: It sounds simple but how often do we forget that people don’t function like we do. This is especially true of people we are very close to like a lover or a partner. Just because you eat together, sleep together, train together or work together does not mean anyone you know is the same as you or has 100% the same perspective as you. We all see things differently. Infact one of life’s universal truths is that no-one will ever have an exact carbon copy of your world view. Accept it and move on. 

Not understanding is your problem not theirs: In the world of not understanding people we are fantastic at putting the blame on to other for it. Even more so if we get back up. For example many people can misunderstand someone who is chronically shy as “strange, aloof thinks she is above us”. If you don’t understand someone it’s more about you than it is about them. Take responsibility for your role, it is not the world’s job to respond to you, it’s your job to find out how to respond to the world.

Check in with yourself: Understanding ourselves better helps us remove barriers to understanding others. What do I mean by this? I mean that when you find yourself not understanding someone then figure out where your emotional investment is and how is that blocking your understanding. By doing this you will not only check in with yourself but you will also learn the habits of your own emotional reactions

Ask don’t assume: The more we ask the more we learn. Assumption is the mother of all fuck ups. We often believe we understand when we don’t or worse pretend we understand when we don’t. What would be worse for you telling someone about a serious problem at work for example and them pretending to understand or them showing you respect by asking what you mean. And don’t wait to be asked if you understand ask questions, investigate, the more you do this the more you know, the more you know the more you understand.

Experience more and improve your empathy: We all know that to understand other people we need to use empathy. And I mean true empathy here not the aw poor you,  true empathy is where we truly attempt to shift our perspective into seeing from someone else’s perspective However if you don’t try new things you have a limited base to start out from. Imagining emotions or perspectives someone else would feel or have from situations you have never experienced is hard. The more you experience the wider your empathy database will be. So get out in the world and experience as much as you can! 

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“People are strange” sang Jim Morrison (The Doors and if you don’t know this song where have you been, go directly to youtube. Now. I can wait….) and that means all of us. We are a weird and wonderful bunch that make up this species of humankind. The golden rules of understanding each other are like all the best things simple;

Respond, don’t react, be honest with everyone including yourself and be interested in each other.

If you can master these and use the guidelines above you are always going to be on the right path to connecting and understanding anyone from any planet albeit the person you sleep beside, the stranger on a bus or even the weird teacher whose crazy assignment that makes no sense!

Have fun seeing how many people you can better understand this week and see if you don’t understand yourself more by the weekend too !
Happy Monday <3

 

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#lifelessons101- 4 things to help you back on the personal development horse (3 min read)

When you start out on a new personal development regime everything goes buzzing along in a cloud of motivation and positivity, that is until you fall off the horse. Motivation levels go down and it often seems easier to give up and fall back into the old familiar habits we know and feel comfortable in. The irony is that when we are at this point it is one of the most important stages of our personal development journey. If of course we can just keep a view on the bigger picture, block out our negative inner dialogue and keep going the breakthrough comes and it’s worth it. Hurrah!

I know. It’s not that easy right.

In fact not easy at all.  And I know this all too well. This week in particular for me has been a tough one. After a short pear shaped period in my life I have been attempting to get back into my personal development routines again and pick up the good habits I had before. Should have been straightforward. I did it before I can do it again! Right ? Well yes and then no.

The challenge has been it’s just not that easy to get the same focus and drive I had before.  

Those of you that also follow the path of development know this too well. Falling off the personal development horse happens to us all. Getting on the horse again is not easy and staying on it after a fall can at first seem impossible. Added to which if you have an internal dialogue like mine (who loves to put me down) it can be fodder to add to your I can’t stick at anything, I am useless, worms, worms, worms personal narrative.  

It’s a vicious cycle and can if allowed hold you down forever, if you want it too. I don’t want it too. So I turned to my second favourite library of reference, me (the first is always a combination of Google and Mr T); and sifted through my files of life experience to figure out how to boost my motivation and let me get to the place of my next break through.

Guess what I found??  It is so much  easier than I thought  to get back on the personal development horse and ride into the future without superhuman strength. It was just a question of changing my mental approach to the process and applying these for A star guidelines. 

The 4 A star guidelines to getting back on the personal development horse:

Acceptance:

Sounds like a cliche right? However it’s not. If you don’t accept things as they are you cannot move forward because you are coming from a place of untruth. In accepting you also forgive.

You have to accept three things:

1: You fell off the horse (probably for a good reason if you analyse  it and look for the teachings) people do. But you are not going to be able to move forward if you don’t forgive yourself for that.

2: You are not unflawed. Every human is a perfect imperfection including you. If you look at two of my personal heros personal development heros Lousie Hay and Hal Elrod both of their stories tell very honestly about a human experience of growth. Both of them are perfect imperfections who are constantly working on improving their imperfections in the best way they can. None of us can do any more than our best. Have a look at your heros and role models I bet you will see that they too are just as frail and as human as you. If personal development gurus can be flawed so can you so stop beating yourself up for it.

3: It is gonna be tougher second time round because you will unconsciously compare your results to the first time you tried a routine change. This comparison is just your minds way of fighting the  changes you are trying to make because it likes to be in its comfort zone, it’s probably why you fell off in the first place.

Attention:

“Constant vigilance!” as  Professor Moody used to say (from HArry Potter. Yes I am a potter fan and a personal development junkie!). What do I mean by that. I mean pay attention to what is going on with you. If you get excuses popping up then notice them and try and work out why your mind is fighting against you. For example if you keep pushing your affirmation ritual away because you are too tired or too busy, or hit the snooze button instead of jumping out of bed to do you Miracle Morning routine then sit down with pen and paper to ask yourself why?  Why aren’t you doing it? Then find a way to work through your block instead of succumbing to it. Google is a wonderful tool here, ask and you will find inspiration if you can’t figure out how to work with your block alone. (99% of the time it is as said above your internal unconscious self rebelling because you are outside its comfort zone. In time you will feel better with the changes, you just need to keep going until your new habits become comfortable.) 

Acknowledgement:

As I always say one of the most important things you can do to motivate yourself is to acknowledge your achievements. I cannot stress how important this is. We often when ‘working’ with ourselves forget to notice and be proud of our progress and efforts. Of course the reward of personal development are the bonuses of our positive personal growth. But if you don’t take the time out to notice and acknowledge the journey you are taking and  your accomplishments, then you can get demotivated again. Make an achievement list where you list what you proud of yourself for having achieved once a week. Or if you prefer a gratitude list that focuses  on gratitude to yourself for what you have been doing to make life better for you.

Allies:

Allies is just another word for friends or people, or even strangers in the form of authors or online communities, who you can call on for help in your commitment to getting back on the personal development horse. It can be hard as hell to make life changes alone so call in your team. Right now I am finding myself surrounded by people who like to make excuses for themselves rather than take responsibility (unfortunately moving into a completely new area can have this effect). At first I found this draining and allowed it to affect me but once I realized it I have now started to call into my life people who also are dedicated to growing positively in both my friendship circle and through reading and watching personal development videos that inspire me.  It helps me keep focused and reminds me I am not alone. Writing this blog and having you guys read it helps amazingly too because when you read and like my articles I know that we are all out there working on ourselves to become better people in our way and that is immensely inspiring. For which I am truly grateful to you all lovely readers. So reach out to the universe and create the allies you need to keep you on that horse and keep going. We can achieve far more together than we ever can alone.

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Remember wherever you are in your personal development process that the times that seem the hardest are always before the enlightening positive breakthroughs. So keep on going. So what if you fell off the horse, you got back on it and you are moving forward. And by accepting that, paying attention to yourself, acknowledging your progress and calling in your allies you will keep on riding that horse  onwards growing more and more grounded, beautiful, abundant and successful every single day.

I believe in you  all <3dream-it-do-it

What to do when life goes pear shaped -an 8 step guide from my life (4 min read)

Hello people it’s good to be back!

Some of you who follow the Re:Root blog may have noticed that things have been pretty quiet for a few weeks around here, almost as if I went AWOL. And why? Well the best laid plans can go wrong.  Sometimes life just kicks in and everything goes pear shaped.  (For those of you either not from the UK or from my particular generation that means that the plan went wrong.)

And oh boy it went wrong… or did it? The answer to that is both yes and no.

On the one hand I did not plan for problems with my medication, college, telephone, money and deadlines to hit me all at once subsequently affecting my sleep so that I was functioning on totally drained resources and starting to spiral into a depressive place. However on the other hand the teachings I received during this time, the strength I had to manifest to stop myself sliding down a slippery slope of depression and the cathartic process of allowing my emotions to release has meant that I have come out on the other side a little stronger, a lot wiser and incredibly grateful for the abundance and experience of my life.

In a previous post 5 STEPS TO SURVIVING THE HARDEST OF DAYS… I talked about how to survive when you have a  crappy day. Some of the guidance here is applicable when life goes pear shaped. But usually when life goes pear shaped it is more than just a crappy day or a couple of days.  It’s something unexpected happening which interrupts the flow of your life in a negative way. It can be a week or two and if not taken control of its longer and longer, a pear shaped situation can be seemingly endless. And that my friends is dangerous for you. 

When life goes pear shaped we can choose to allow the situation to drown us or to take it head on and get your life back on track in a richer, wiser way.  

Getting your life back on track when it goes pear shaped is possible. How? With a little connecting, taking control and reconnecting it is possible to deal with the pear shaped moments in life healthily and constructively.

When and if the excrement hits the fan in your life try these 8 steps to bring it back online again.

Be in the moment consciously

When life goes pear shaped the first thing it triggers is our flight or fight response followed by an emotional reaction. A lot of life guidance out there veers us away from feeling and towards taking charge of the situation and yes while that is important it is equally important to allow our bodies natural mechanisms to function. Basically I mean at the start of whatever is happening let your feelings do the running for a few days (preferably no more than three). Allow yourself to feel what you are feeling, it’s healthy. Be sad, be angry. I don’t mean let the feeling take over you but just be mindful that you need to feel what you are feeling, Notice each feeling consciously and work it through. Journal, talk, draw, sleep, workout do what you need to do to get to the stage where that feeling is not the be all and everything.

Realise life’s not gone wrong, it’s gone pear shaped.

The words we use shape our view of our reality internally and externally. If you ask yourself why is this is going wrong you are using very negative language. Something that is ‘wrong’ is perceived as hard to fix if not irreparable.  By using the word wrong you are putting yourself in a victim role, a passive role, this has happened to you. In order to bring life on track you need to step into an active role and to that you need to consciously change your language use to change your thinking and change your situation.

Try and think of it this way: In the Urban Dictionary the expression  “pear shaped” is   

“based on the visualisation of a plan being like a perfect circle. When something goes wrong, the plan is distorted and becomes pear-shaped.”

So life has not gone wrong it has just been distorted. This mental shift may not feel like much however it is an ENORMOUS energetic shift in your thinking when you need it the most. A distortion can be adjusted or reversed.

So when you get to the stage where that feeling is not the be all and everything, turn your thinking around by recognizing that life has just gone pear shaped, it is currently distorted. And if it’s only distorted you can change it. But how…

Look for the teaching

Why did this happen to me? (Who has never thought that in their life.) This is exactly the question you need to ask yourself next. (And I don’t mean in the “why did this happen to me it’s not fair!” sense). You need to look for the teaching.

Life is constantly throwing us clues…and we ignore them, or can’t hear them or notice them but don’t do anything about them. When life goes pear shaped it can often be because a particular message has been trying to get through to us for some time and it has had to take it to Defcon 5 to get us to notice. (For example I really do believe that one of the reasons type 1 diabetes manifested in my life was to teach me to take care of myself something I was appalling at).  No matter what the situation in life there is always a teaching. And it is these teachings that help us to grow.

Integration of the teaching

What are you going to do about the teaching or the message life is sending at you? For me I recently unearthed a lot of repressed Daddy issues I thought in place and dealt with that unconsciously still affect my self confidence, even more so now Mr T and I live together .  I could ignore this information but that would result in another even bigger distortion in the future. So I jumped onto to google university and am currently doing 5 mins self love affirmations daily while I slowly work through this old wound.

So once you have found the teaching find your self a way to incorporate this into your life. It  may be a small thing or a big thing you need to do, the important thing is DO SOMETHING with your teaching and DO IT NOW!

Motivation

If you have been following the steps you have your understanding and a plan of how to incorporate this into your life. Sometimes this is motivation enough to reform your pear shaped life into a perfect circle again. Sometimes it’s harder.

If like me you have to fight old habits like falling into the depression cycle then it’s incredibly hard to “pull yourself together and take charge of your life”. However no one will do it for you. Only you can run your life. Accepting this will help with the motivation. Make sure your success criteria can be easily fulfilled. In a nutshell don’t set yourself up for a fail by aiming to high and pushing to hard to start with.  Basically take it slowly and succeed with baby steps. Success is the best motivator in the world so give yourself lots of easy things you can accomplish and slowly work through them (see below).

Be kind

Be kind to yourself and don’t overestimate your success  criteria. What I mean by this is you need to start small. To get your  life back on track you need success experiences.  However you have also been through a process so start with the little things. Washing up is a great mini success experience, as is cleaning. It also has the added bonus that as you clean up your outside world you also clean up your inside world. Once you are managing the small goals work up until you feel like you are back on track then just keep on going! Remember also to not get into the guilt cycle if you don’t make a goal for a few days or even a week. It will happen when you decide you have the right energy to make it happen.

Being Proud

It not easy to get back on that horse after that fall. However you are trying and you need to be proud of yourself for that. And I mean actively proud. You need to be your own cheerleading squad and celebrate your victories no matter how small. The small battles are often the ones that need the most celebrating. You got out of bed Yey! You opted for a healthy breakfast at the table instead of cereal from the packet under the duvet Yes! You went back to work today! It’s time for a celebratory dinner. I know it might feel false at first however there isn’t always someone to clap you on the shoulder to say well done so we have to do that ourselves. A great habit to get into at the end of the day is to write an achievement list. Basically a list of all the things you are proud of yourself for today. And make sure that you start each sentence with I am proud of myself because…………….. AND you include the little things you otherwise tend to disregard.

Call in Support if it gets too tough

No matter what we do need other people. Even Superman and Batman needed their support in the form of Alfred and Louis. So even though this article primarily focuses on what you can do for yourself, you can also ask for help. Whether it’s off loading on a friend or creating an accountability person or finding a therapist, call in the support you need. The important thing here is to make sure that this is the support you NEED. It might be great to cry on a friend initially but after a week is this the best help you need? Is this going to help you consciously turn things around?  Identify the help you need and ask for it.

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By consciously connecting with ourselves and feeling, taking control our negative thoughts and reconnecting with our lives in an altered state of understanding and motivation we can reform the distorted circle and get our lives on track again when things go pear shaped.

 

I look forward to hearing about your success stories down in the comments below. Right now I off to give myself a little self love in the form of yoga followed by a glass of water and then probably a glass of  red wine to end the day. 

Have a lovely week <3

#enjoythejourney

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