Thrive, not just survive

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So this year for me is all about “Thriving not just surviving”.

Last year and probably for the last 3 years my main focus has been on building a business but there was a small part of myself that was using this as an excuse of dealing with personal stuff.

So towards the end of last year I realised that I could no longer sustain this long term and needed to make some changes. So I sat with my whiteboard and came up with some simple changes I could make that would enable me to be a better human. Now I really wrote these only thinking of myself personally and not my business. But by ensuring that I am not just surviving personally I feel much better equipped to thrive in my business and in every area of my life.
So what changes do you need to make to ensure that this year you don’t just survive but thrive?

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What’s your first reaction?

blog headers (8)So when something awesome is happening in your life; whether that is business or personal what is your first reaction?

Are you excited, fearful or a combination of the two or any other emotion?

I think for me I like to do the combo of the excited and fearful. When big things are happening in my business there are sometimes I want to grab a pair of joggers and run for the hills even though I know that what is in store is actually awesome.

There are others times the fear of the unknown about the situation has me wanting to sit in the foetal position because staying where it is comfortable seems like the better option. So how do you combat that initial emotion to stop you from not stepping into all that is in store for you? For me actually acknowledging why I am feeling this way is the first step.

Sometimes that feeling is completely warranted as it is risky and it is a way that I am protecting myself or other times it is completely irrational. So then I actually need to assess whether what I am about to step into is actually the right thing to do and the right timing. If it is something I do need to be doing and I have acknowledged it I then hold myself accountable to my support network and verbalise that I can’t stay in this place and that I need to be pushing myself beyond how I am feeling.

Then I get on with it.

Easy right?!

Well, sometimes it is but sometimes it is so freaking hard as you know that you need to fight on ahead however you feel like sitting in the corner. How do you keep yourself pushing forward?

For me making sure that I am keeping myself balanced with work/life, health/fun and work/play is the first step.

Then I make sure that I have the goals of my life and work firmly in my head and that if I want to push through to see those happen that there is going to be a little discomfort as I step into that; the unknown, the scary and the exciting!!

blog headers (8)What strategies do you have in place for ensuring that you are living up to your best version of yourself and stepping into all that you are meant to be doing?

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Talking off a ledge

blog headers (7)Do you ever have moments where you feel like the whole world is on your shoulders or you are knocked down by a situation and you can’t seem to think straight?

Well, I can say with 100% confidence that I have found myself in this place on more than one occasion. For me often it has to do with something that has conjured up as a problem before it even exists or on a personal level if my medical condition is playing havoc and I get stressed about keeping myself alive and make wise decisions.

Often I have a friend on the other end of the phone or chat giving me the advice that all will be ok. The way this is delivered is either filled with more compassion and love or a forceful voice dependent on the situation. One instant I had about this recently was with my employee who is also my mum.

She was calling me to talk work on a Saturday.

She quickly picked up that I was not ok and I ended up sobbing about whatever I was heartbroken about. She listened, challenged and offered me practical advice. We then continued to talk about work but before hanging up I said

͞”Thanks for talking me off a ledge”
She then quickly replied ͞

“The only ledger you are allowed to talk about is general ledgers.”

Despite the pain I was feeling, we were able to laugh hysterically about her ability to find humour and make a bookkeeping joke.

blog headers (7)blog headers (7)Who do you have in the life that supports you when you feeling like you are hanging on to the ledge of life? How will you find humour in the small things in life no matter what you are facing?

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What the sheet!!

blog headers (6)I had a moment when I was looking after my friend’s kids. I adore these kids like my own and we always have crazy adventures. The daybed that is set up in the loungeroom was quickly converted from a single to a king size thing. There was already one sheet on there, however, this kid was adamant that a single fitted sheet could fit on the other mattress as well. As I was quite a few years older and had made a few more beds than him I knew I was right.

Within a flash he was getting the house phone and was using his outside voice inside “we need a parent”. I could imagine the phone conversation that would entail so I stepped in also used my outside voice grabbed the phone and said “together we can sort this out” even though inside I was thinking oh my goodness I am not even considered a proper adult I need to prove to this kid that I can do this. I ran down the stairs opened the linen cupboard and found another fitted sheet and made the bed. It wasn’t quite the same but it was good enough in my eyes. This was the second time I needed to regain composure in a situation I found myself in.

I went to a personal party earlier that day where I literally felt like I stuck out like a sore thumb where I am at a different stage of life than most. I was one of few people who was wearing jeans – clearly, I didn’t get the memo that flora dresses were the go-to outfit of the day. Someone asked how my week was and I answered honestly how it was the first week in a long time how I felt like it was going to be ok and wasn’t going to drown in work overwhelm and the exciting changes happening in my life. Inside though I was dying I felt like no one in the room was being honest and it was all just fake smiles and laughs. There was a point I wanted to yell and scream and cry however I made a sarcastic remark and pushed my feelings down. As soon as the party was over I rushed to my car and broke down and cried.

To me, I consider this a moment of success as an adult that I didn’t lose my sheet when I clearly could have and probably ruin an event and be quite damaging. I would then like to say that I have then been an adult about my feelings about this party by thinking about why and how I felt this way and what I am going to do about it. So where is it that you have a what the sheet moment and how will you be an adult about it even when you want to scream and cry?

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blog headers (5)So I used to run and have recently just commenced again. I had been doing some planning about all of the runs I wanted to participate in over the next 12 months and then just kept yapping on about how I wanted to run.

It was Monday and my usual cheerful bubbly self was in the worst mood I have been in for awhile.

My poor staff who had to put up with my bad attitude. I even had to promise that I would do some sort of exercise to release this emotion. I was already wearing my gym gear so was adamant that I was going for a run. So eventually my bad mood and I put some joggers on and went for a run.

I warmed up for about a nanosecond and then started running wanting to run

away from all of the emotion I was feeling. Ok, did it feel good to run again? Hell yes it was amazing. Did I discover how unfit I was? For sure. But did I do anyway? You betcha.

But what did I learn about commencing running again? That you can plan until you are blue in the face but actually taking action is necessary to make it a reality. That been properly prepared is actually going to hurt less in the long run; it may seem unnecessary or time wasting but it will be better in the long run. (And in my case I won’t look like an idiot trying to walk or bend my leg cause of excruciating pain). That having people support you and keep you accountable makes the whole journey so much more pleasant and less lonely.

Funny story on the encouragement point is that I had forgotten where I had parked the car and had to double back. I decided that one last sprint run would be good and make the journey back to my car quicker. I was running along with music pounding in my ears when all of sudden there was a guy coming in the opposite direction and he then yelled out to me͞

you are doing a great job”

͟ This was the encouragement I needed to keep going. So what is that you need to plan for? What action do you need to take to make it a reality? Who do you need to have in your support team to keep you accountable to achieving your goals.

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Locking yourself out

blog headers (4)I had a moment where I knew that my friend who had my spare keys to my place was going to be out of town. Her husband was also going to be out of town as well. I thought to myself a couple of days before they left that this would be a really bad weekend to lock yourself out.

Well, it was Saturday morning and I was just heading out for a run with my sister, friend and a couple of hundred other local people for a 5km organized run. So I ran out the door with a change of t-shirt, deodorant, wallet and phone. Yep, you guessed it I had forgotten my car and house keys. Oh bother I thought.

Now I would have usually panicked and would have felt like an idiot.

Instead, I called a locksmith at 8am on a Saturday morning and they advised that it was going to be a couple of hours wait. I said I would need a 20-minute call when they were on their way. As it was a glorious spring day I decided to walk to my local shopping centre and get a coffee, by the time I had done this my sister had finished her run and we were able to do this together.

I then made it home just in time for the locksmith to let me back in o my house where I was then able to get through the list of things I had planned for that morning. It was like the locking myself out was just a blimp on the radar and nothing more. I looked back on the whole situation and commended myself for how well I managed what could have been a stressful situation.

How do you cope when faced with a stressful situation? How is this better than last time you were in a similar situation? How will you take a moment today to see the progress that you are making in how you respond to situations?

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I belong

blog headers (3)So from someone who has never been to University, this has been a sore point for me as I always thought to be successful that you needed to have studied at University. I would think I would be ok with it and then I would have a business meeting at a university and I would feel the feelings of inadequacy, that I was a fraud and that I didn’t belong. I would ace the business meeting and all evidence that I didn’t belong in a university even on the grounds seemed to fade away. I was ok with how I was and saw myself differently – in a much more positive light.

I was having this conversation with a friend and it was wonderful relaying the personal growth of acceptance I have had in the last couple of months. The next day after having this conversation I found myself feeling this same feeling again but in a different environment.

I heard the words “You have every right to be where you belong.” I stood taller, felt more confident and remembered that I am more than ok with just rocking up and just being who I am no matter the circumstance.

Where is it that you need to know that you belong and be ok with who you are no matter the situation you find yourself in? Who do you need to surround yourself with to remind you of this truth?

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Head to the Heart

 blog headers (2)Do you ever have a moment where a piece of truth that you have known in your head gets deposited into your heart and you are like ͞oh my goodness I get it this makes sense to me now.͟

Well I can tell you that this happened to me recently and the whole experience was totally amazing. So the piece of truth is actually not important to the story, however, I can tell you that it is something I had been saying for years and knew I needed to believe it, however, I didn’t realise that I hadn’t really done this.

It was late one Saturday night. Ok, when I say late I actually mean it was probably about midnight when I was on the phone to a client who had become a friend. We were chatting and I was verbalising this truth and actually said ͞I get it now͟.

Something had changed and for the first time, I was able to believe it. Knowing this truth has set me free in a way I didn’t even know I was feeling bound. It has completely changed my perspective on life and how I do life. What truth do you really need to let sink into your heart, going from just head knowledge to something much?

How do you need to slow down and have the conversations that you have been running away from?

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