by Sarah

The Happy Life Project – Project Me

November 19, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

The Happy Life Project - Project Me

I have been thinking for some time about a project that I would like to develop to help as many people as possible in addition to my one-to-one clients to build a happier and more sustainable life for themselves and those around them.  As such I am in the process of developing a free e-course for the new year and have created a private and supportive Facebook group for members to share their journey and for us all to learn together.

Please head over and ask to join the group, it will be fantastic to have you there and get to know you better and how best I can serve you to meet your needs.

You can go straight there by clicking the following link: Join The Happy Life Project – Project Me

by Sarah

Your Help Please – FREE e-course, just for you!

November 12, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

Free e-course on happiness, mindfulness, time management and goal setting

 

As a thanks for your support, I am currently working on designing a FREE e-course (about 6 weeks or so) in which I aim to help you to develop new skills to move your life forward and create the best year ever!  In addition to the learning materials, I plan to offer homework, challenges (with prizes!) and a community to build on discussion and to have a support network throughout the journey! PLUS any extras that I am sure will come about during the process! WOW, right? …and it is totally FREE!

So, in order for me to deliver exactly what you want, I need your input please.  What would you find useful to help change your life?  What issues are you facing?

Examples that I have so far are:

Letting go

De-cluttering (mind and home)

Worrying about what other people think of you

Self-confidence (to be yourself)

Positive mindset

Goal setting

Risk taking

Getting out of your comfort zone

I am open to any and all suggestions and will aim to include as many as possible into a workable course that will benefit you and other similar people.

Comment below – send me a message – share with people you know

Thank you in advance!  I am so excited to work with you and meet you!

by Sarah

Stress: Regaining the Work-Life Balance

November 5, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

Stress: Regain the work-life balance

Today, Wednesday 5th November, is the official National Stress Awareness Day (@ISMA_UK) and the theme is work-life balance.

I know from first-hand how not keeping balance of your work and life can have massive detrimental effect on not only your own life, but roll out and start affecting your relationships with those around you making the situation even worse.

Throughout my work life, I have been a very conscientious employee wanting to give my all and help the organisation to strive beyond all expectations – which was amplified when I worked in the charity sector (if you have ever worked in the third sector, you will be more than aware of the burnout that ensures when staff are passionate about the cause!)  I had feelings of guilt when I would think about taking time off which my colleagues compounded by saying things like ‘how will we cope without you?‘, ‘but who will…?’ and the rest.

It happened so much so that I would be told to take annual leave and my line manager would have me choose a time and set it in stone.  As a result, I would be burnt out, suffering from a terrible cold and be incredibly run down when I finally did take some time off that it was almost pointless to do.

It has taken me many years, many breakdowns and many burn outs to realise that work-life balance isn’t something that you should take lightly or think that other people have of that you will have it when…

The modern world is full of things that cause us to be stressed and cause us to lose sight of the things that create balance in our lives.  Things like smart phones and fast home internet connections are a big cause for the additional overload and work overlap that causes us to get stressed. I used to check my work emails from home and for about a week tried having them sync to my phone (worst thing EVER!) which meant that I never truly had a separation from work.

Stress is a huge cause for absenteeism from work, for breakdowns in relationships and for self destructive behaviour to develop.  The stronger it gets, the harder it is to get into control as you put more pressure onto yourself which in turn turns into a vicious stress fueled cycle that leads you to nowhere useful.

So in honor of yourself and your mental health here are some tips to help you to reduce your stress and regain your balance.

1. Build boundaries between your work and home life

Create a time when you will stop working and make sure you have time for relaxing, spending time with loved ones and rejuvenating for the next day.  If you must bring work home with you, limit yourself to doing it in a certain place and shut it off once you have completed the work.  Do not allow it to take over your home time by working into the night.

2. Take regular breaks during the day

Taking regular breaks helps you to clear your head and to stay mindful of the work that you are doing and also saves your eye when you are staring at a screen for long periods of time.  We implemented Stretch Clock (an online reminder for stretching and taking breaks in the office) to help with keeping the team taking breaks and getting active throughout the work day. He’s one cool dude too!

2.1 Take a lunch break

I used to eat ‘al desko‘ (eating at your desk in front of your computer) an awful lot when I was in the office and it meant that I would continue working while not paying attention to my food or the break that I was supposed to be taking.  Take time away from your desk and pay attention to the food you are eating, it breaks you from the work state and you will enjoy your food much more when doing it mindfully.  If the weather is nice, find somewhere outside that you can eat, relax and take in some fresh air.

twitterlogo Swap ‘al desko’ for ‘al fresco’ and change your scenery for lunch! (tweet that!)

3. Take your annual leave/holiday entitlement

…and spread it throughout the year.  At the beginning of the financial year I take Jit’s (my other half) holidays and plan the times throughout the year to ensure that we never go too long without having a break and it makes sure that I take time out from my freelance work too – as that can be a cause for burnout if I am not careful.

4. Take responsibility of the pressures

Be responsible speak up when your workload is getting too much or starting to overwhelm you. Your line manager will help you to work through it.  I know in the past I was scared to speak up because I thought that people would think that I couldn’t do my job, but that is most certainly not the case!  Sometimes we just say yes to way too much!

4.1. Be realistic

If you realistically can’t take on another piece of work, don’t feel that you need to say yes just to save face!  Saying ‘no’ will become your best friend in creating a good balance.

5. Plan and protect ‘me time’

Whatever ‘me time‘ means for you, create time to enjoy it. It may be hobbies, exercising, socialising, relaxing or  like me sitting in a coffee shop reading and people watching or running around with my borrow dog.  Choose time to do it and set it in stone.  Doing this regularly will help to make it part of your routine.  And on that note, don’t feel guilty about making time for yourself,it is how you will recharge and be the best you possibly can be.

6. Unplug

You really don’t need to be constantly connected to the internet/emails/social media.  It will all still be there no matter how long you unplug and leave it alone.  Turn off your phone and laptop and spend time doing something that doesn’t use power – read, play cards, dominoes or take a phone-free walk (you don’t have to Instagram your every move!)

7. Get enough sleep

Getting enough sleep at night really can help you to deal with stressful situations a lot more easily and with a fresh head you will be able to be more productive in the work day and hence not need to bring work home with you.

8. Talk about how you feel

If you are finding that you are struggling to find a balance with your work and life, tell someone.  Be it your Line Manager, HR department or a colleague. Sharing how you feel, even with a trusted friend, will help you to start creating the changes you need to start creating a balance.

9. Recognise the signals

Being able to recognise the signals that your body tells you when you are starting to become stressed can give you the heads up that you need to take a break, get away from your desk or even leave work early (if you work flexi) to work on yourself.  Self awareness is a very important technique that can help you to learn how to create the balance that you need before things have gone too far.

10. Value yourself AND your time

Most importantly you need to value yourself and your time.  You are not a human doing, you are a human being and you need to take time to recharge and rejuvenate in order to be able to do the things that you want to do.  Don’t let yourself, or others, burn you out or eat the time that you need for yourself.

It really is possible to regain the balance in your life between work and home.  Over the years that I was working myself into the ground I realised that my health was the most important thing and that without it I wouldn’t be a prize employee, great friend or lover. I would be a shadow of my former self and that was not what I wanted.

twitterlogoDon’t let stress ruin your health or your life. Decide on your balance and make it happen. (tweet that!)

 

What will you do to regain the work-life balance in your life?  What tips do you have for others?

Share in the comments below.

by Sarah

Finding Silence

October 23, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

Silence,what will you discover?

In this crazy world of busy-ness, the digital world that seems to be spinning out of control and pulling us along with it and the information overload that we often impose upon ourselves what can you find in silence?

Yes, silence. Remember that?

If you don’t then you are further into the swarm of information than you think you might be.  I would even hazard the guess that you might even be on the road to burn out. So I am really pleased that you are here reading this!

I know that our modern world evolves around getting things done more quickly and around the clock no matter what.  Automation, statistics, monitoring, evaluation and responses are all flooding into our computers and fleeting around our minds – around the clock.

What this does is tire us out and keep us in a loop of work, thought, reaction, work, thought, reaction which inevitably leads to anxiety, depression and sleepless nights creating more and more thoughts through the hours of darkness.

Are you in this place?

I have.  And I have lived to tell the tale without missing out on all the news, information and updates while I discovered what I could find in silence.  It really is possible!

To be able to take in more information and to work more productively, we need to clear out the junk and clear the mind to clear space for the ideas to move and flow and for additional information to fit in.  But how do you get create this space?

To use all the tea from the teapot, you must regularly empty the teacup. In that, I mean that to take on more information from the world around you, you need to clear your mind to allow space for the new stuff to come in.

Makes sense, doesn’t it? So why do we just keep filling the teacup even though the tea is flowing over the sides?

Well, honestly, we have forgotten where to stop. We think that if we do stop we will miss out on something, information, news, a sale, anything really. Hence so many people are seemingly addicted to Facebook!

The thing is, there is something really simple that you can do to make space in your mind and life – short of deleting your profile on Facebook and closing down your Twitter account – you can develop some silence for yourself. Create a new habit of finding space in your day and in your mind. Finding your silence.

Your silence

Your silence may be anything that involves you not thinking for a while and finding somewhere quiet to contemplate things and let go of un-beneficial thoughts. You could meditate or find a peaceful place in the park to sit and take stock.  Finding your silence can be the most powerful thing that you can do and you can do it in whatever way is comfortable for you.

I find that when I am working with my clients, silence can be the turning point of the session.  They can often discover their Ah-ha moment or find a realisation that changes the entire session.  Silence allows the conscious and unconscious to work together to make the world a better place for you, to remove unwanted things in order to create the thoughts and ideas that will benefit you now and for the future.

It may sound difficult to make mind space when you have spent so long running around in a haze of busy-ness, but you can certainly do it and really should.

Make it a habit.  Choose to give yourself the space you need and remind yourself that the more space you give yourself the better you will work, think and function.  Not only will you develop your skill in going to your silence whenever you need it – for example after a very intensive team meeting or when the kids have been arguing about the TV remote.

Put an alarm in your phone to remind you of a suitable time every single day – weekends included – to take some time out to be silent and with your on thoughts.  Be gentle on your thoughts as they are just that, thoughts.  The process of silence if the organisation of those thoughts and information, so they need to be free to circulate in a non-judgmental environment.

And sit or lie as comfortably as you can. In silence. For at least 5 minutes.

What will you discover in your silence?

How will you benefit from finding silence? Let me know in the comments below and share your greatest achievements from finding your silence.

by Sarah

Quit complaining

October 22, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

Are you banging on about something?

Have you ever found yourself banging on about something to anyone who will listen and then repeating the same thing to the next person that is unfortunate to come your way?

Complaining is a big habit that many of us (probably most!) are familiar with.  I am not talking about making a complaint to the waiter that bring you a coke instead of an orange juice, I mean getting a bee in your bonnet and going on about it instead of doing something about it.

I wonder whether you have ever noticed yourself complaining about things?

Are you a knowing complainer or are you completely unconscious about doing it?  Is there a running theme through the things you complain about?

I came to realise that I was complaining when I worked at the design marketing agency some six years ago.  I had left a job that was boring me and was incredibly excited to be back in the creative industry, even if it was as the Office Manager.  I would finally be surrounded by like-minded people with a creative attitude.  I might even be able to do some collaborative work with them, oh the prospects, I thought.

It wasn’t even six months before the realisation kicked in.  The place was a drain and were each being sucked down in a spiral of misery.  We would shrink when the MD came into the building and prey for the days that he would be visiting clients so that we could breathe and do our work without a tense agony pulling at our every being.

It was from that day that I realised that I was complaining.

I would come home from work – late as usual – and it would start.  I would open the trapdoor of thoughts, feelings and complaints and let them flood out of me and all over my very understanding boyfriend.

Not only would I let them flow out of me verbally, I would hold them internally which made them fester and grow, ready for the onslaught the next day… only greater!

I realised then that complaining didn’t actually benefit me in anyway or form.  It was a negative force that was in fact eating away from me from the inside out. (physically during my time at the agency, my 5’8″ frame was only 7.5 stones!!)

Although I can’t identify the exact turning point, there definitely was one, I somehow found the power to take action both against the complaining and of the situation that was causing it.  I asked to take redundancy and got it!  I tole the MD and all I had to do was count down the days until I was free from the prison of complaints and misery.

And do you know what?  The complaining stopped almost instantaneously.

The need to complain was gone and I was able to look for positive things in my life and build upon them rather than dwell on the negative that I was stuck into.  It opened doors to me finding rewarding work with a charity and improved my life so much that I was more energetic, put on much needed weight and found new hobbies.

twitterlogoComplaining is just a habit that keeps you in a negative space. 

Putting your energy into complaining is like trying to make yourself comfortable in a wheelie bin.  You are making yourself feel bad and know that no matter which way you take it, you will still feel rubbish.

Since this experience, I have been so much better with noticing if I am complaining and stop myself readily and swiftly. Complaints come from something that an be changed,sometimes through your own thinking and sometimes through taking action to change what is happening in your world.

My advice to you is to notice when you complain and think about why you are doing it? What is it bringing to your life?  Benefits? Hurdles? Misery?

…and take the challenge…

twitterlogoCHALLENGE: Quit Complaining

An exercise that you can try is to quit complaining for a month (or 30 consecutive days) and if you find yourself complaining, start again form day one and repeat until you complete the challenge.

To share your challenge, click to tweet! or share it on Facebook with the #QuitComplaining

Let me know how you get on? When do you find that you complain most?  Is there a running theme?

by Sarah

Oooh you’re moving too fast

October 21, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

Slow Down for Your Happy Life

Oooh you’re moving too fast and I don’t think it’s right – do you remember that song too? (hear it here) I might be showing my age here! It may not be about breaks/body/mind, but it works for me right now – and I hope that I have earwormed you too!

Anyway, it has been running through my head all morning as I have been thinking about and planning my next few blog posts.  The thing is I have learnt a lot in the last week about slowing down.  My broken ankle has meant that I have had to slow down exceptionally and to plan my time effectively because I have to be careful and purposeful.

I am by no means the type of person who rushes through life without taking the time to smell the roses, but I do sometimes get a bit carried away when I am excited about something – like my work for Your Happy Life, my NLP practice and designing programmes and plans to roll out for you to attend; all alongside my coaching clients and looking for collaboration opportunities.

It really is manageable when you plan, but when you all of a sudden have to limit the amount of time that you are standing or being active as well as making sure that there is significant room to rest your leg, it can be a bit of a challenge.

Trying to fit in

This past week, I have been working from my lounge as it is the only place that I can comfortably rest my leg whilst having everything that I need around me and have easy access to the kitchen and toilet.  It is in no way ideal as I have six cats wandering around which can interrupt coaching sessions or distract me from my work.  However, I am making the best of a situation – and my clients absolutely LOVE the cats making an appearance and are pleased how well I can work around them.

Sometimes our bodies just make sure that we take heed and reassess the situation or make us step back and slow down a bit. During this past week, I have had to make decisions about what is important for me to try to do and the things that can be left for another time.

It isn’t always as easy as it sound either!

I have had to make the difficult decision to postpone some of my new clients – which is always difficult as it is so exciting when there are new people to work with and help.  However, I need to concentrate on the ones that I already have and preserve the rest of my energy for repairing myself. It has also brought about an additional positive in that I have some time to work on the website and some other marketing that has been put to the wayside.

In addition to learning to find other ways to do things, I am also having to plan ahead so as to minimise the amount that I am roaming around the house or hopping up and down the stairs.  Despite being very organised, this has been a tricky one!  I have had to think of pretty much every eventuality and remember to take my rucksack everywhere with me so that I am able to carry whatever it is I need.  Take right now, for example, I am sitting here feeling rather chilly knowing that my jumper is in fact upstairs! (The sun has come out so I am sure I won’t freeze, so don’t rush around with a jumper for me as I also take an age to get to the door!)

What have I learnt so far?

That my body is telling me to slow down, my mind is learning to plan ahead and I am developing skills that have been dormant for a long time. It is not all a pain in the ankle!

I will be updating the blog on my learning and experience of having my broken ankle from time to time, so keep coming back for more pearls of wisdom – or just comments from the broken!

by Sarah

Broken and Bruised

October 20, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

Leg

Well, it has been a little while since I last posted a blog article and have to put it down in part to the yucky cold that I had and then to breaking my ankle a week yesterday which has had me laid up on the settee as it is the only comfortable place that I can sit and work!

You may be wondering what happened so here it is! I was out walking on the Sunday with Jit and Belle enjoying beautiful October sun and exploring parts of Lyme Park, Cheshire, that I haven’t been along in an awfully long time. We stopped for lunch, met lots of lovely people and dogs and were giving Belle an amazing run around. It was perfect.

I was taking photos to share on here and over on Intagram of Jit and Belle and the beautiful countryside when all of a sudden my ankle went sideways, I heard a crack and I was rolling along the grass.  Within a matter of seconds I was back on my feet feebly telling Jit that I had heard a crack and couldn’t stand.

Poop!  I had really hurt my ankle!

So, long story short, we had to hobble me down the valley, over the open stream, up the valley again, over a stone wall, across a field, over a 6 foot styal and over another field before we got to the car.  A whole 1.5 miles of painful limping only to be followed by a 40 minute drive and a 2 minute taxi ride to the local A&E to confirm the break and cast me up.

The things that struck me was how cheerful I was through the whole ordeal. I was aware that there was pain, but used breathing techniques to work through them and kept a positive outlook in order to get to the car.  Even with a three hour wait at the hospital, I found myself making people laugh and cracking jokes with the staff and other patients – all through the pain (without pain killers I might add as I am not a fan!)

It has now been over a week of sitting around resting and although I have had the odd day of feeling bored and very fed up of sitting I have been coping fairy well (if we ignore the fact that I shut my thumb in the hinge of the bedroom door when shutting it! Ouch!)

It is amazing how well we can adapt to new situations.  I have been on crutchers before (you can find out more in my other posts) but doing so when I have other responsibilities and have to be as independent as possible has been a challenge – think making tea!  I now walk around with my rucksack, flask and tea to make sure that I have everything to hand and can carry what I need to.

Have you ever had to adapt when experiencing a break or other injury?  What did you do to get through the time of resting and what fun activities did you find to entertain yourself in your home?

I will keep you updated on my progress but promise to bore you with the details!

by Sarah

You love it when you talk nasty to yourself!

October 3, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

you are stupid and worthless, You'll never get anywhere

What’s the point in you wanting to better yourself? You never finish anything anyway.

You won’t get that promotion, so don’t bother going tor it, it’ll only waste everyone’s time.

You’re not going to be able to earn money doing that, do you seriously think people would pay you?

I can’t believe that you think you look good in that.

 

Would you really say those things to someone?  I would certainly hope that you would not because that would make you a poisonous person that really had no regard for the feelings or well-being of other people, let alone your despicable self.

So why do you say it at all? How dare you say something like that to me, is what I say!

You know exactly who you say all these horrid things to. And it is the one person that doesn’t fight back. That takes your negative comments and assumptions and because you keep saying it to them over and over, they believe you.  You beat them down, take their power and trample all over their dreams and confidence leaving them a crumpled mess of uncertainty and loss.

How DARE you say that to ME?

Yes, you’ve guessed it.  The person that you hurt with your nasty vicious words is yourself.  Sometimes you take the words of others and make them into your own verbal beating stick and sometimes you even construct your own from things that aren’t true but you shape into the greatest weapon against your self.

It is all about self talk.

Honestly, you would never dream of saying such terrible things to someone else, so why do you let yourself get off with doing it to you?  Putting you down and taking away every ounce of drive and confidence that you had leaving you with just scraps of the person that you are?

It is because it has been happening for so long that it has just become a really bad habit that lurks in the background, that brings some sort of sick comfort to you as you can’t even imagine what it was like without it.  A crutch, an addiction.  Let’s face it, you love it when you talk nasty to yourself.  It reiterates why you shouldn’t do something and justifies why you should stay in your comfort zone and not bother moving forwards.

Negative self talk is an excuse not to challenge yourself to become successful. Click to tweet!

What are you going to do about it?  Are you happy to keep hitting yourself with the same stick and staying exactly where you are for the rest of your pathetic existence or are you going to kick it to the curb, throw out that negative voice and move a better tenant into your head?  The choice is yours and if you want to stay where you are, leave this page now.  Click out of the browser, close the tab and go back to your beating.

OK, now that we have those of you that want to get a better behaved internal voice and move towards a better you let’s get started!

As you read my statements at the beginning of this post, how did they make you feel? Did they make you feel angry that I would say such things?  Did you recognise them from the things that you have said to yourself? or something else?  Whatever it was, it will have evoked some kind of emotion.

Emotion is part of the problem as we can often devise negative self talk when we are feeling low or something bad has happened in our lives.  It sets our mind looking at the bad things and focuses our attention on what will go wrong and how we can prevent ourselves from feeling that way again.  Sound familiar?  This is how we end up beating ourselves into the tightest space in our comfort zones and as a result take comfort in the negative self talk that keeps us there.

This is where you have to do some work.  It is not going to be plain sailing, but I want to be up front with you from the outset.  Depending on how long this negative voice has been with you, it might take a while to chuck them and their ties out of your mind.  But be patient, all good things come in time.

Firstly I want you to get rid of the negative self talk that you hear this week.  Every time you hear your internal voice telling you something bad, write it down on a piece of paper so you can see it in all it’s glory.  Then repeat every time the same one or another one appears.  Keep doing this every time you get a though.

I think you will find that once it is out of your head and written on a piece of paper that it starts to become silly, daft and totally irrational.  More often than not, the negative self talk is just inflated things that we know will make us sit up and pay attention.

The next thing that I would like you to do is to think of what you would like to be saying to yourself instead. Something positive and motivating that will challenger your perceptions and nudge you out of your comfort zone.  Something along the lines of ‘I know that I am intelligent and driven that I have a great chance at the promotion’ or ‘I know I look great in this dress’.

Make sure that whatever you choose really means something to you and is something that is real to you too.  Don’t stat creating things like ‘I can speak fluent French’ if it is not true.

Write do the new self talk, take a photo and use it as your phone wallpaper or lock screen, slap it on post-its around your house and work space and keep them in your wallet or as bookmarks.  Anywhere you will see them regularly.

Now I want you to become aware.  Aware of the situations that create the self talk.  It could be when everyone has left the house for the day to go to school or work and you suddenly have some time to yourself or perhaps in the few moments before you go to sleep at night – or even at daft o’ clock in the morning when you wake up and create something to worry about to justify being awake.

Note it down so that you are aware when it happens.  This will help you to work out where to keep your new self talk reminders to help you in building a new habit.

When you know when you get the negative self talk, change the situations where it happens.  For example, if it happens in the first few minutes that you have the house to yourself, then change the routine so that your mind doesn’t have the time to fill in the gaps by playing some great music and having a boogie in the kitchen or perhaps go for a walk before carrying out your daily routine.  Be creative.

It will take some time to change the patterns that you have created, but I can assure you that it will come.  Often by surprise too.

Be gentle with yourself and give yourself some praise!  Unlike those that walked earlier in the blog, you are doing something to change your world and make it a better place.  That is certainly cause for celebration in my book!

Let me know how you get on and share some of your new positive beliefs below!

Share this post quickly and easily, just click to tweet!

 

by Sarah

Are you comparing yourself to others?

October 2, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

Dear Self, Dream big Reach high. Move forward. You can do anything.

 

Sometimes you just need to remind yourself that you have come a long way and that you have so many great strengths that helped you to get to where you are now!

Do you ever feel like things just aren’t going the way that you want them to?

Like you’re on the wrong path or not even moving on the one that you are on?

Are you comparing yourself to others?

It is a common thing with creative and driven people to find that one day they feel stuck – I get it quite often to be honest and I have to put the work in to get going again.

When you work hard and know where you want to be it can be quite surprising to you when you hit the metaphorical brick wall and all of a sudden question what it is that you are actually doing and whether you are even doing it right to move you in the right direction.

This past week, I have been ill with a terrible cold (I’ve not had one for so long that it seems worse as I have forgotten what it is like to be poorly!) which has given me time to reflect on what I am doing and where I am going.  I found that I started to doubt my direction and ability to ‘go it alone’ into the world of entrepreneurship and started to compare myself to other people doing what I am doing.

Honestly, comparing yourself  is self destructive and no help at all! Click to tweet!

I realised that I was spending my time beating myself up… for no reason what so ever!  Comparing yourself to others is like comparing apples to oranges. Everyone is completely different with different values, beliefs, directions and skills – this is why there is such a rich picking of companies, businesses, coaches books etc to suit every taste.

So I set myself back comfortably in my chair and realised that I didn’t have to be better than anyone to be successful, I just had to be my best – whatever that may be.  I created the ‘Circle of Strengths‘ to help myself and my clients fo when we hit the wall of doubt and for when we just need that little extra boost – try it with me now.

The Circle of Strengths

Imagine yourself in a circle, it is wrapped all around you and not a single bit of you is outside of it.  In this circle, I want to bring in all your strengths and feel them warmly wrapping around you.  Imagine that you can see them as images, shapes or colours and increase them in brightness and make them larger.  Feel the strengths and know that they make you who you are and exactly why you are so great at what you do.

Feel the feelings in your body, your neck, your head, your shoulders, legs, stomach and back.  How does feeling your strengths make you feel inside?

Now come back into the room in your own time and write down the strengths that you felt – do it in a circle drawn onto a piece of paper.

Circle of STrengths exercise by Sarah Irving of Your Happy Life

Whenever you feel that you are comparing yourself or are not heading in the direction you want to be going, step into that circle or look at the strengths on the paper.  Remember that feeling and keep it with you as you move forwards.

Notice that once you have your strengths clear in your head you can move forwards knowing that you are your best self and if something needs to change then you have to power to change it.

Stop comparing yourself to others and put your energy into building yourself! Click to tweet!

How did it go for you? Let me know in the comments below :)

by Sarah

Hello October

October 1, 2014 in Uncategorized by Sarah

Hello Ocober

Hello October and welcome to the run up to Autumn.

As the seasons change so do we, adapting to the shifts in weather and preparing ourselves for darker nights.

I personally love Autumn for all the stunning colours, the changes in the landscape and the time that I can have delicious stews, casseroles and other wonderful comfort foods.  I also find it is a great time to have a clear out, blow those cobwebs out of your home and go into winter fresh and ready.

What is your favourite part about Autumn?  Do you have any seasonal rituals that you do?

Share below :)

Oh and also, you can now follow me over on Bloglovin – just click the link below! (where you will also be able to find my food blog Susty Meals)

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