B-School 2015 Here I Come!I have some exciting news!

Monday 9 March (US time) I start Marie Forleo’s B-School and I am super pumped and excited!

I have been thinking about joining B-School for the last couple of years. To be honest, I can’t even remember how long I have been thinking about doing this course. It’s probably been about three years, probably more.

Let me explain in case you don’t know already. B-School only happens once a year.

Every year I found an excuse not to sign up. Always.

It was either I couldn’t afford it or I wasn’t ready or I don’t have the time. Or sometimes I would convince myself it was all three at once!

In short I just kept putting it off and surprise, surprise not much changed in the area where I need the B-School expertise.

Finally I decided to kill all of my excuses and take the plunge.

I know it’s going to be life-changing for me and I can’t wait.

So here is my question for you? What is your equivalent of B-School?

What is one thing that you have been putting off and finding excuses not to do?

The one big thing that will really change your life.

What’s that for you?

Now is the time to go for it! Now’s  the time to take the leap. Ditch all of your excuses. Be brave and go for it!

Come back and tell me how you go.

B-School is going to be one hell of a ride for the next 8 weeks. I’m pumped, I’m ready to do the work (and there will be a lot of work) and I am ready to move my life and business forward in an epic way!

Bring it on…

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As I mentioned in a much earlier post, I used to have a bit of a magazine addiction.

I loved buying magazines. One of my favourites was the Oprah magazine. My favorite part of the magazine was always Oprah’s What I Know For Sure column. For me it was always filled with insight and inspiration.

Imagine my delight as I was walking around a New York bookstore last year to see that Oprah had turned these columns into a book. I grabbed it without hesitation. I read it with enthusiasm and joy.

Here are my top 5 favorite parts of the book.

“No matter what challenge you may be facing, you must remember that while the canvas of your life is painted with daily experiences, behaviors, reactions and emotions, you’re the one controlling the brush. If I had known this at 21, I could have saved myself a lot of heartache and self-doubt, it would have been a revelation to understand that we are all  the artists of our own lives – and that we can use as many colors and brushstrokes as we like.” – Oprah Winfrey

You are in control of your own life, never forget that.

“And I know for sure that in the final analysis our lives – when the to-do lists are no more, when the frenzy is finished, when our e-mail in boxes are empty – the only thing that will have any lasting value is whether we’ve loved others and whether they’ve loved us.” – Oprah Winfrey

This one is simple yet beautiful. When it all comes down to it, it’s all about love.

“I know for sure that healing the wounds of the past is one fo the biggest and most worthwhile challenges of life. It’s important to know when and how you were programmed, so you can change the program. And doing so is your responsibility, no one else’s. There is one irrefutable law of the universe: We are all responsible for our own life.

If you’re holding anyone else accountable for your happiness, you’re wasting your time. You must be fearless enough to give yourself the love you didn’t receive.” – Oprah Winfrey

I distinctly remember reading this particular column many years ago. The piece started off talking about how Oprah’s entrance into the world was associated with shame. Being adopted I deeply resonated with this story. My start in life was tinged with shame and regret.

The words ‘give yourself the love you didn’t receive’ really struck home. So much so that it was a pivotal point in my self-love journey.

“You’re not the same woman you were a decade ago if you’re lucky you are not the same woman you were last year. The whole point of aging as I see it is change. If we let them our experiences can keep teaching us about ourselves. I celebrate that. Honor it. Hold it to reverence. And I am grateful for every age I’m blessed to become.” – Oprah Winfrey

Aging is so often represented in a negative way. Yet truth be told aging is a privilege denied to many. Aging is about learning, growth and gratitude (and don’t forget you can still have plenty of fun as you get older. Fun is not just for the young.)

“And what if you decided right now that you will stop letting fear block you? What if you learned to live with it, to ride its wave to heights to never knew were possible? You might discover the joy of tuning out what everybody wants for you and finally pay attention to what you need. And learn that ultimately, you have nothing to prove to anyone but yourself. That is what it truly means to live without fear – and to keep reaching for your best life.” – Oprah Winfrey

This is precious. I am constantly striving to live with my fear and use it to live my best life.

I will leave you with one more from the back cover of the book.

“I know for sure: Your journey begins with a choice to get up, step out, and live fully.” – Oprah Winfrey.

I could not agree more.

Grab your own copy of the book What I Know For Sure or click on the book above.

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Sexy Word of the Week - New YearOur health is one of those things we often take for granted until something goes wrong and suddenly our health is all we can think about.

When it comes to our bodies, far too many people including myself focus on the wrong things.

We obsess about our weight and go ballistic over a few kilos here and there but totally forget about the big picture.

We forget about the importance of being healthy.

We forget about taking care of our heart, lungs and other major organs we literally can not live without.

We forget how important taking a breath is.

We put off taking care of our health for much less important things. I’m guilty as charged on this one! Fear is a major factor in why we put things off when it comes to our health.

We obsess over our looks on a superficial level when we should be focusing on our health and fitness.

Here are some things to remember when it comes to our health.

  • Being thin does not mean you are healthy.
  • Being young doesn’t guarantee good health. I was surprised to speak to three of my younger friends recently to find out that they were all undergoing major surgery.
  • Being elderly doesn’t mean you are unhealthy. I know some seventy years olds that do a lot more exercise than I do. They play tennis, play lawn bowls and dance regularly.
  • A tan does not mean healthy skin.
  • Exercising all the time and appearing fit doesn’t mean you are healthy.
  • Looking pretty (or sexy) on the outside doesn’t mean you a healthy.

To be truly in touch with our bodies we need to focus on our health and not just on the pretty outside packaging. We need to understand the two go hand in hand.

Ultimately good health will shine through and make us both beautiful and healthy.

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How to cope with the rate of change

While many of us have learnt to accept change (and to even embrace it) what can still be a struggle to come to terms with is the rate of change.

As in how often things change.

When things change regularly we often crave stability only to have another wave of change suddenly upon us.

Sometimes its the constant change that can throw us off-balance.

Here are my tips on coping with frequent change.

Go with the flow

Let’s face it going with the flow is a lot easier for some than others.

If you are a Type A personality you just groaned at that suggestion since going with the flow is so not in your nature.

Here’s the kicker. If you are on the roller coaster of constant change, you have two choices either put your hands up in the air and feel the breeze on your face or sit screaming your head off through the whole experience. Which one do you think will feel better?

Don’t go all control freak

If you are the Type A personality I mentioned above you are probably thinking something like – to hell with that I will be in control of this roller coaster.

Granted sometimes that is possible and other times it’s just not. Going all control freak on every situation will only make it worse. By all means control what you can (but don’t think this means you can control the people you love) and roll with the punches on the rest.

Let go of your expectation of normal

Sometimes coping with rapid change is about letting go of our expectations of what’s normal.

I hear this a lot with work situations. Restructures, changes to government, changes to management, 2 year contracts instead of permanent employees.

The world of work constantly changes. What was normal, hiring permanent full time staff for example no longer happens in some companies and government departments. Job for life – long gone.

Ditch your expectations of normal (or what happened in the good old days!) and you will cope much easier.

Understand change creates new opportunities

When I was fired from my previous company, I was gutted.

In hindsight it was one of the best things that happened in my career. Being fired, led me to my current position which I totally love. If I hadn’t been let go I could still be working in a miserable environment. I realise now that being fired opened the path to a brilliant work opportunity.

Go with the flow, be adaptable and stay open to the opportunities that frequent change can bring. 

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How to Work Through Your Abandonment IssuesI have struggled with abandonment issues for a large part of my life.

They started when I was young. Come to think of it, they probably started the day I was born.

I was adopted when I was a child. My Mum and Dad came to pick me up from the hospital when I was two weeks old.  I always knew I was adopted and openly accepted it when I was a child.

It wasn’t until my Mum and I started having problems (surprise, surprise around the same time puberty kicked in and I discovered boys!) that my abandonment issues went up a notch. My Mum and I were always butting heads and I felt like I wasn’t good enough. Her favourite word at the time was ‘disappointed’.

I started to wonder what the hell was wrong with me if two mothers didn’t love me? I started to believe I was unlovable (a toxic limiting belief that stayed with me for many years).

Shaking off my abandonment issues took a lot of hard work, commitment and time. It didn’t happen overnight.

It’s important to point out that I am NOT a professional therapist or counsellor.  The below opinions are based on my own personal experience. If you have abandonment issues stemming from parents divorcing at a young age or a parent dying when you were young, I highly recommend seeking help from a professional.

With that said, here are my personal thoughts on working through feelings of abandonment as an adult.

Accept that you have abandonment issues

Awareness is a key part of growth. You can’t heal or work on what you are not aware of.

Admitting you have a problem with abandonment and figuring out why is a key component of working through your issues.

The why factor is extremely important. Figuring our your why can be confronting but it’s worth the effort.

Don’t be in denial

Pretending you don’t have abandonment issues won’t help, in fact it will only makes things worse. Being in denial tends to foster self-destructive impulses and actions.

Pretending you are fine or blaming someone else, will simply keep you stuck in unhealthy patterns.

Recognise the signs

Think you don’t have any abandonment issues?

Feelings of abandonment can manifest in many different ways.

Jealousy, insecurity, neediness, clinginess can all be signs of a fear of abandonment.

Choosing people who are unavailable is another example. If you have been abandoned (by a cheating partner or even a parent that walked out on the family) there can be a tendency to get involved in relationships where the other person can’t commit. The thought pattern goes something like this – if there is no real relationship then someone can’t technically leave you.

Another sign to watch out for is if you are always the one bailing on relationships without a good reason. Often people who are insecure and scared of being left by someone, get the jump on them and leave them first. Often this stems from them secretly not feeling good enough or even worse questioning why the person would be in a relationship with someone like them in the first place?

If you suffer from any of these, take a closer look at why you feel the way you do.

Deal with issues when they occur

Awareness is all well and good but what are you supposed to do when our abandonment issues raise their ugly head.

It is important to deal with loss. Don’t pretend it didn’t hurt when it did.

Last year I wrote about one of my best friends ending our friendship. It hurt like hell and bought up some old abandonment issues that I had to deal with.

When I was younger if a partner broke up with me I would be devastated. I would blame myself for everything, stop eating properly, drink too much and be miserable for months on end. I would wallow and over-analysis every part of the relationship.

This time around with a higher sense of self-esteem I took a different approach.

I processed what had happened to the best of my ability, I mourned the loss of the friendship and I moved on.

It did not blame myself. I didn’t allow myself to wallow. I didn’t make myself miserable.

I let go.

Dealing with my abandonment issues head on has put an end to my old self-destructive behavior.

See through the eyes of an adult

A lot of our abandonment issues can go back to our childhood which makes it very important to see the present and the past through the eyes of an adult.

As an adult I know that my mother did love me. We have a close loving relationship now just in case you were wondering! I understand now that she was dealing with her own problems. As children we don’t see our parents as two people in a relationship (we just see them as Mum and Dad). Often we see them as Mum and Dad who fight a lot and don’t understand what’s going on.

As an adult I can make sense of what happened. I have also met my birth mother which helped with my self-discovery process (and is a whole separate post of its own).

Accept that people come and go

Life is a series of hellos and goodbyes. This can be hard to come to terms with but it is part of life.

How you cope with change will go a long way to healing your abandonment issues.

The longer you hold on to people who aren’t holding onto you – the longer it will take you to move on.

Don’t hand your life over on a silver platter

Sometimes our abandonment issues have little to do with our childhood.

They are solely based around our adult relationships. When we hand our lives over on a silver platter to someone else we give up parts of ourselves. We take on their interests often forsaking our own, we spend more time with their friends and neglect our own. We try to be the sort of person we think our partner wants instead of who we truly are.

If our partner leaves us, we feel empty and lost because we have literally been giving away little pieces of yourself.

Keep your own identity and stay true to who you are.

Work on your self-esteem

What truly helped me overcome my fear of abandonment was working on my self-esteem.

Once you truly appreciate your own worth, you feel empowered. No more doormat behavior. No more passive aggressive actions. You feel more at peace with yourself.

Having high self-esteem doesn’t mean that people won’t come and go in your life. What is does mean it that someone leaving you won’t be soul-destroying.

One thing I have realised over the years is that someone leaving me often wasn’t really about them.

To be honest, I knew deep in my heart that some of those relationships were doomed. Some weren’t even what I wanted. Yet I was devastated when the person left me.

What I know now is that is wasn’t about them or even my feelings for them – it was about my own lack of self-love.

Once you work through your abandonment issues and learn to love yourself for who you truly are – you will find yourself in a much more loving, content place.

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The Truth About Tough LoveI emailed a friend a draft version of one of my posts recently, hoping to get her opinion on the piece.

After speaking to her, I got the impression that she thought my words were a little harsh.

After rereading the draft, I decided to delete some wording (which is the purpose of a draft after all).

But my friends comment got me thinking.

Whilst I don’t want to come across as harsh or preachy, there are times when what we all need (including me!) is tough love.

We need to face some hard truths.

We need to understand that the way to move forward is through self-discipline. 

We need to understand that sometimes the only way to get the job done is to get in and do the work.

No amount of excuses will alter that fact.

We need to be accountable and not let ourselves off the hook for not doing what we know needs to be done.

A good (albeit gentle) kick can do wonders to shake loose our endless reasons for putting things off, not following through or not finishing.

The tough love lowdown is this. We can’t keep making excuses for ourselves and expect to live an extraordinary life.

What extraordinary things do you want to achieve? More importantly what actions are you prepared to take right now to make it happen?

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iStock_Stop Using Guilt to Get What You Want

I was chatting to one of my female friends recently when she bought me up to speed on a current dating phenomenon.

It involves a lot of texting. It involves some flirting via text, a few harmless (fully clothed – be smart about this folks) photos back and forth which can go on for weeks and sometimes months. My friend reports that she often gets texts from guys out of the blue after not hearing from them for up to a year!

The interesting thing about this dating phenomenon is that it often doesn’t involve an actual date.

Do we still do those? You remember them, back when people met in person out in public and talked to each other. Pretty sure they used to call it this thing called ‘getting to know one another’.

Sure lots of people are texting and meeting in person but it’s definitely not for dates. It’s more for hooking up or known in my day as a fling. Short, brief, over. Fling.

There is nothing wrong with flings. Except when you are seeking a relationship with the person. Then they are simply empty and disappointing.

Texting is not a relationship.

People who are looking for a relationship will most likely be peeved if you keep texting but never suggest an actual date.

People who are looking for a relationship will be offended if you text constantly and then try to arrange a hook up when you haven’t even met!

I hate to break the news to you but you don’t have a relationship if you are simply texting each other and haven’t met in person. Twenty random text messages does not a relationship make.

Besides if you are texting one person (with no indication of any sort of date on the horizon) who’s to say you’re not texting a dozen people at the same time. If you are texting a dozen people, misleading each one – stop now! It’s bad form.

I fully appreciate the need to engage with a person before deciding if you want to meet them. It makes sense to see if you have anything in common first. You don’t want to get on a date and have nothing to talk about.

I’m just saying text is probably not the best format for getting to know someone. Email is the better option.

Big tip – don’t freak out if you don’t get a response to text or email 5 minutes later. People have jobs, commitments and responsibilities and may take time to respond.

If you are sitting with your mobile phone or laptop repeatedly checking messages, you might want to back away from the technology and go work on that having a life thing yourself.

Abusing someone because they didn’t write back quickly enough won’t help your cause. What it will do is send the person running for the hills (and rightfully so)!

If you mutually decide that you want to meet each other then do something about it.

Be brave and ask the person out!

If they say yes – fantastic. If they so no, take a deep breath, pat yourself on the back for being courageous and move on.

No getting upset or being nasty. Simply move on. This particular person is not for you.

Think of it as dodging a bullet instead of feeling rejected. Moving onto someone right for you is better than dating (or worse marrying) the wrong person then breaking up a couple of years down the track and having to start all over again this time with a broken heart or a bitter disposition.

Texting is not a relationship.

If you are looking for something real, don’t fall into this trap.

You deserve better.

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I don’t generally write about dating, so I would love to hear your thoughts on this one. Leave your feedback in the comments section below.

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The Joys of Being Single

With Valentine’s Day this weekend, it can sometimes be a challenging times for singles.

Let’s face it singles get a lot of bad press in the media.

With a mainstream show like ‘The Big Bang Theory’ representing all singles as lonely losers sitting at home crying to themselves on Saturday night or singing to sappy music aka Bridget Jones style it’s time to start talking about the joys of being single.

Yes being single can have it’s down moments but hey so can being married.

Singledom is often tarred with the ageist brush. It’s seems fine to be single in your twenties but heaven forbid if you are still single in your thirties or beyond! Well I say enough of that shit – it’s time to set the record straight.

Here are some of the great things about being single.

Freedom

Ahhh freedom. There is nothing quite as exhilarating as being able to do what you want, when you want. Weekends away with friends, dinners, movies you name it.

Freedom means having time to pursue your own hobbies and interests. It means doing stuff you totally love or not doing much at all. It’s totally up to you.

Granted sometimes you might have to do some things on your own but when you are comfortable with who you are and enjoy your own company – that’s not a bad thing.

Financial freedom

You work hard for your money. You get to spend it how and when you want.

You don’t have to worry about taking on anyone else’s debt or financial problems.

You can travel and work overseas

This is a biggie. Whilst it is part of the freedom package being a traveller myself, it’s worth a special mention.

When you are single you can travel whenever and wherever you want. You can take a year off and travel overseas (as someone who has done this I highly recommend it – you will have a total blast!) or you can accept a job overseas without worrying about how it is going to affect your partner or children.

You can work on your friendships

Being single gives you a great chance to work on your friendships. Regardless of your age, it’s a great opportunity to deeply connect with people in a meaningful way.

If you are single and sitting around moping about not having a partner – stop right now! It’s time to have some fun. Connect with a friend, get out there and enjoy yourself.

No one telling you what to do

This is a big benefit of being single and living by yourself. No one bossing you around, telling you to do this or do that.

No one nagging you. I know a lot of married people who secretly wish for less nagging.

You don’t have anyone to fight with

One part of relationships that I definitely don’t miss being single is the fighting.

Whilst I realize that every couple fights and disagrees on things, as we all know some couples take that to the extreme.

Some couples fight constantly, ripping shreds off each other and saying horrible things they can never take back. Constantly being at each others throats is emotionally exhausting.

No compromising for your partner

Compromise is a part of life whether you are single or not. That’s just a fact.

But let’s face it we have all seen people in relationships that compromise way too much. I used to be the ‘compromise queen’, so I definitely know what I’m talking about with this one!

Some people compromise to the point where they are completely miserable and full of resentment.

They end up giving up everything they like and hand their life over to another person on a silver platter.

Not healthy, not cool and not conducive to a happy partnership.

Being single means you are not with the wrong person 

As I have mentioned before, there is nothing more lonely than being in a relationship and feeling completely alone.

You have someone you love dearly sitting next to you but you feel completely alone.

They don’t get you, understand or respect you. You have trouble communicating and you feel like you have totally different values and separate interests. Your conversations range from barely talking to screaming at each other. Yet there they are sitting next to you.

I’m not knocking relationships, being with the right person is wonderful and a true blessing but being with the wrong person is loneliness personified.

You have time to heal and work through your issues

A lot of people through pure fear of not wanting to be alone, go from one relationship to another (often overlapping them) hurting people along the way.

Being single is the best time to get your head together and work through your issues so that you have a clear head and an open heart when someone amazing comes along.

Yes it can be hard and yes you may experience some loneliness along the way – but it’s worth it.

It’s not someone else’s job to heal your old wounds from previous relationships or childhood – it’s your job. Work through your baggage and you will have a lot more to offer someone going forward (you will also be a hell of a lot happier within yourself).

You get to spend time by yourself

I realize reading that scares a lot of people. One of the big fears some people have is spending time by themselves.

This is often because people don’t like themselves very much.

Admittedly sometimes we can spend too much time alone.

I love spending time by myself because I enjoy my own company but even I know that sometimes too much time alone can cause me to go a bit stir crazy. When I was working from home by myself (which I absolutely loved!) there were times when I noticed I wasn’t getting enough social interaction. First giveaway, I would start to feel down for no reason.

The good part was that it was easy to fix. Spending time out of the house with friends lifted my mood immediately.

Regardless of whether you are single or married enjoying time by yourself is good for your health and wellbeing.

Unconditional love

Think being single means no love in your life. Well that’s just rubbish!

Whether you are single, married, engaged, divorced, have six kids or no kids you always a form of love in your life.

Always.

Take one guess where that comes from? Inside of you.

No matter what your relationship status is you should always love yourself unconditionally. That means faults and all.

It means forgiving yourself, learning from your mistakes and your successes and being the best version of yourself possible.

This Valentine’s Day weekend regardless of whether you are in a relationship or not – rejoice and celebrate the most important relationship you will ever have – the glorious, beautiful one you have with yourself.

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Stop Looking Behind You

“Don’t look back. You’re not going that way.” – Unknown

It’s amazing how many thoughts pop into your head when you are in the shower.

After talking to a close friend about her partner recently, it got me thinking about relationships and breakups.

Mid shower I started thinking about one of my ex-boyfriends who caused me a lot of pain back in the day. To be honest, I don’t think about my ex’s much any more, so it came as a bit of a surprise.

I remembered taking him back after he cheated on me and how I moved to another city for him only to have him dump me three months later. To add insult to injury, I took him back only to have him cheat on me again.

For a moment I wondered what had become of him. For a split second I thought of looking him up on Facebook.

Then I thought –

Why?

Why the hell would I do that?

Why would I want to see what he is doing years down the track? Whilst I hope he is doing well as a fellow human being, I have no interest in knowing any details of his life now.

He is firmly in the past and that is where he will stay.

All too often we get caught up in the unhealthy habit of dwelling on the past.

I am definitely not saying you should stick you head in the sand and deny that your past happened.

You need to deal with the wounds of old relationships or similar situations will only continue to surface in your life.  But once you have done the hard yards (and some of it will be incredibly hard), it’s time to move on and not look back.

There can be positives to thinking about former flames. For me, it’s realizing how much I have grown as a person.

In many ways I am a different person now. I have a much higher sense of self-esteem (celebrations to that!), I’m not attracted to the same sorts of people I used to be, I have a completely different set of values and I am much smarter about the choices I make in my life.

Sometimes it’s not just about putting your ex behind you, it’s about putting your old self behind you as well.

It’s about fessing up to your mistakes (I did keep taking him back when I should have kicked him to the curb), learning from them and most of all forgiving yourself.

Often it’s not our ex-partners we need forgiveness from but ourselves.

Just on growth and maturity, there is something important to mention here. We naturally assume that because we get older we grow as a person and get more mature with our decisions, particularly when it come to relationships. Unfortunately that isn’t always the case. I have seen plenty of people in their 50’s and even 60’s making some damn awful relationship choices.

Be aware personal growth and maturity are not always the same thing.

The next time you find yourself wandering down memory lane, make your thoughts about your personal growth and not about your ex.

And whatever you do stay away from Facebook!

Live in this moment – right now – and focus on making your future bright, exciting and bloody wonderful!

Focus your energy and love on the future because that’s the direction you’re going.

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Pay Close Attention to Your Inner Dialogue

I had an interesting experience last week. I was feeling a bit overwhelmed and suddenly my inner dialogue came up with a bold sweeping statement that went something like this –

My life’s a mess!

I’ll give you one guess how I felt after this thought. You guessed it – I felt 10 times worse. I instantly starting thinking about all the things that weren’t going well in my life.

It’s incredible how a couple of simple words strung together can make us feel. The problem with these sweeping generalisations is that they sink in.

Imagine if you walked around thinking to yourself – ‘My life sucks’ over and over again all day.

This sort of constant negativity will drag you down. If you keep telling yourself your life sucks, surprise surprise it will feel like it does – regardless of anything good happening in your life.

Here are my two tips for snapping yourself out of this mindset quickly.

Firstly rephrase your thinking.

Make a more accurate statement. For me that was something like – “I need to spend time concentrating on the housework but my whole life is not a mess”.

It might sound simple but rephrasing statements by taking out the negativity and emotion can make a difference.

The second step, particularly if your statement is action based is to come up with a plan of attack.

If you are feeling overwhelmed and anxious (which let’s face it is when we are most likely to self-sabotage) the quickest way to overcome these feelings it to take action. You might not be able to do something straight away but you can plan to act later.

Make up a list of the top 3 things you can do as soon as possible to make you feel better.

Don’t make up a stinking long to do list at this stage – this is what I used to do and it always made me feel more overwhelmed than ever.

Focus on priorities that will help dissolve your negative mindset. They may be quite simple tasks but it’s amazing how some of the simplest things can make us feel better and more in control.

For me it’s often posting on this blog. Posting is always an instant lift for me because I know I have achieved something that is important to me.

Pay close attention to your self-talk. Rephrase your negative thoughts and turn them into something more factual (rather than sweeping generalizations).

Prioritize and take action to get yourself into the right head space to continue being the wonderful, positive soul you are.

Stop the self-bullying! Be kind to yourself instead.

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