1. The days are long but the years are short - Many people in business fall into the trap of feeling overwhelmed and focus in on the daily tasks at hand. The trouble is, the years pass by regardless of where you focus, so taking time to make a master plan helps you to see the bigger picture and work towards it.
Nothing would give me more pleasure than telling you that after 11 years as a coach, and studying the ins and outs of happiness, that there’s a golden light at the end of the tunnel where you live happily ever after and life is a long string of joy, love bubbles and blissful moments. However, I don’t deal in bull... dust, I deal in positivity, and quite frankly, there is no pot of gold to find. (Sorry.)
What I have discovered, is that regardless of how positive you are, life still throws you challenges. No matter how mindful, engaged or compassionate you are, bad stuff still happens and weather you’re generally more optimistic or more pessimistic, when disaster strikes, it still sucks! The pain feels the same regardless of your disposition, it’s what comes next that separates us. I think most people believe that the optimist is like an endangered species on a protected list that is simply immune to disaster or negativity, not so my friends. The optimist is the guy working overtime to make sure that when disaster strikes it doesn’t’ take him (or those around him,) down with it.
I get a lot done. I manage to enjoy large parts of each day. I make time for my kids, husband, family and friends and I exercise religiously and take time to meditate each day. I’m not some sort of super hero or energiser bunny, and I’m certainly not perfect, I simply have really good habits that work.
Habits are essential to success. People with positive habits will consistently move towards their goals, while others with weak and inconsistent habits will progress much more slowly, if at all. Taking time to set up good habits will make life monumentally easier and help you become more resilient when things go pear shaped. Today I want to share with you some of my habits and hopefully inspire you to develop some of your own.
For those of you that know me well, you'll recall that my kids have always struggled with separation anxiety. I like to tell myself it's because I'm a much better option than going to school, but in reality I suffered exactly the same debilitating level of anxiety as a child, each time I had to leave my Mum.
My husband was recently accused of bullying…. By our six-year-old daughter. Laura came home from school telling me how she learned all about bullying at School. Later that evening when my husband, very respectfully I might add, asked her to put her pyjamas on for bed, she turned around, put her hands on her hips (with all the theatrics of an indignant six-year-old) and said “Stop bullying me Dad!” You can see by the picture how strained their relationship is. LOL.
Generally, in our society, we focus on the problem not the solution. Teaching children about bullying gives them a vocabulary that expands their thoughts in that direction. Every three hours, one person in Australia chooses to end their own life, that’s approximately 8 people a day and is greater than our National road toll, tragically, in 2015 our suicide rate was close to three times that of our road toll.
Well, It’s been over three weeks of Skateboarding every day and I’m happy to report that I’m definitely getting better. I can slow down, (which is pretty important) I can turn in figure 8’s and I’m starting to really enjoy cruising around the streets with the kids. In fact, today I’m grateful for the rain as my left calf is killing and it really needs a few days off!
There are a few things that I think are really cool about skateboarding and I wanted to share them with you because they are pretty applicable to business in general.
In today’s fast paced society it’s hard enough to be happy when we’re on holidays, let along being happy at work! There are so many demands on our time and more often than not we feel overwhelmed and stressed just thinking about trying to reach that elusive goal of happiness.
The good news is that happiness is no longer a pipe dream, it’s no longer a self help fad and with the field of positive psychology exploring new ways to help individuals and organisations to flourish every day, happiness is now more available than ever... and has the science to back it up.
This is a fantastic book and it touches on many of the concepts and ideas that have been floating around but been intangible to me until now. I love that it’s so easy to read and the concepts are very well researched and set out simply for the ‘average’ Joe.
Tamara Campbell is a wonderful local woman who performs internationally as a physical comedian, with her character Kiki Bittovabitsch. Recently, Tamara presented this speach at a local arts festival and when she sent it to me I really wanted to share it with you. .....
I feel that life has a small frivolity window for adults, a time when you can, if you really want to, play again, risk, like a 20 something with the knowledge of an adult, a real adult - and I believe that as an artist this time can be extraordinary.
Here is my reality board. It's a photographic journal of our best memories and fun times and it lives in our bedroom where I'm constantly looking at it. The reason I created a reality board is because I want to focus on what I do have and how wonderful my life is already. No, It's not perfect, but there are certainly perfect moments and when this is in front of me, it acts as a great reminder that it's people that are important, not things or even accomplishments.
I know lots of people create dream boards, and with my understanding of how the brain works now I get why sometimes a dream board can actually create more angst and frustration than happiness. You see a dream board is a map of where we want to go, what we want to have, things we want achieve and who we want to be. The only problem is by constantly feeding your mind with what you want your sending a subconscious message to yourself that what you have isn't enough, aka it doesn't' add up to happiness. I'll always have goals, dreams and desires, but my happiness has to come first.
In 2009 I decided that I wanted to write a book. Not a complex or intellectual book, just a simple coffee table book that collated the best of what I'd learned about happiness and how to bring it into your life for good.
I traveled overseas for around 18 months beginning in 2002, and made my way around America, Canada, over to the UK, a little of Europe and home via Thailand. It was a beautiful trip and I feel like it was pivitol in growing into the person I am today. I remember being in Thailand and not wanting it to end, not wanting to come home to reality because I thought reality meant work, responsibility and boring monotous routine! Who'd want to come home to that!
Here's a great little article from my Mum, Yep, she writes really well, and in this case I just had to share it. I think you'll see where I get my positive mindset from! LOL.....
Yes, it’s true! The greatest gift ever- Love is free to all to share & rejoice in. That's amazing- you only have to accept it & pass it on, sharing it with anyone. From this love spreads happiness, kindness, caring & the joy of living. There is nothing better.
If we exist on a mental wellbeing scale of -8 to +8, psychology traditionally has worked to assist people to move from the negative up to neutral. The role of positive psychology is to study how to and then assist people to move from neutral to a high positive.
Positive Psychology is the science and research into positive subjective experience, positive individual traits and positive institutions. The aim of which is to improve the quality of life, fulfilment and experience for individuals, communities, organisations and intuitions.
Recently I've been reading Roy Baumeister's book 'Will Power' and it's information is critical to anyone that's trying to improve their lives, and I think that's pretty much all of us! I created a workshop around 'wise up to willpower' based on his book and other new info I've come across, here are the key pieces:
Whether you’re thinking, feeling and doing positive things to improve our world or weather your thinking and feeling negatively and bringing yourself and others down you’re impacting both the people and environment around you. It doesn’t matter whether you’re at work, home or simply walking along the street, each moment of your life you have the opportunity to contribute and make the world a better place.
When you think positively and consider others, your emotions and actions shift to a positive place and have a knock on effect to the people around you. Remember, both positive and negative thoughts create ripples, are you contributing to a better world today?
Shelly Birger Phillips is a wonderful parenting coach and has a beautiful philiosophy on connected parenting. Here's a snapshot of her top 8 tips, keep in mind these are just my my interpretations. I've added Shelly's website at the end so you can grab her audio program or connect with her for coaching.
1) Care for yourself first – only with full energy can you be the best person and parent you can be. How can you achieve self care? What can you do to improve your personal quality of life? How can you be more engaged and energetic with your kids?