Make Working From Home Work For You

Make Working From Home Work For You

WORKING FROM HOME WELLBEING TIPS

It looks like working from home is likely to continue into the New Year for many of us.

Whether you are an entrepreneur, your company allows you to work remotely, or you’ve had no choice but to work from home during lockdown, more and more of us are working from home.


The GOOD

There are lots of positives. No stressful commutes, fewer interruptions, and often, more flexibility with less structured work hours.


The potential downsides

But if there is one potential pitfall of working from home, it is overworking and never truly switching off from thinking about work. There’s just not the same closure of walking out of the office every evening and segueing into your home life.

So how do you keep a balance between work and “you” time?


1. Work regular hours

Set a start time, a finish time and break times and try to stick to those.

  • Allow yourself a little flexibility, things can come up and let’s face it, this is one of the perks of home-working.


2. Schedule in breaks
too, and make sure you take them.


3. Establish a morning routine

This is probably one of the most important, for me anyway. If my morning routine slips, the whole day slips. I walk the dog, come back and shower, do some yoga, make a coffee, sit on the balcony and write my journal, then make another coffee and it’s time to sit down to work.


4. Get dressed for work

I’m not talking dresses, power suits and heels (unless you really want to) but get out of your PJs, get out of your slouchies and get into work appropriate gear. You’ll be glad of this when you get an unexpected Zoom call, you’ll always be camera ready.


5. Productivity – Work out when you’re most productive
so you know when you’ll get most done and plan your more difficult tasks for the time of day when you know you’re in the right headspace for them.


6. Set boundaries
or rules with other people in your home so that they respect your space and time during your working hours.


7. Remove distractions
and try to structure your day with blocks of time where you will be uninterrupted.


8. Write a realistic To-Do list and try to complete it every day.

Try to avoid procrastinating and don’t carry it forward to the next day as that just leads to a daunting start with even more to do.


9. Eat The Frog

If you haven’t heard of this Brian Tracy book, it’s simple yet genius. If you have a row of frogs that you have to eat, then you’re best just eating the biggest, ugliest one first. Then your day can only get better. So do what you’re dreading most. Then enjoy the rest of your day.


10. Pomodoro Technique

If you’re anything like me, sometimes it’s difficult to get in the flow or concentration and there are so many things at home you could be doing, should be doing. My house is never cleaner than when I’m procrastinating on work I don’t like doing. I use the
Pomodoro Technique to keep me focussed for short periods.

– Set a 25 minute timer.
– Work for 25 minutes, then take a 5 minute break away from your screen or work.
– Repeat this 4 times then take a longer break.


11. Have a dedicated work area

Not all of us are lucky enough to have a spare room we can use as an office. But work in a space that you can assign solely to work and walk away from at the end of the day. If you have to work at your kitchen table or dining table, then clear all the work away at the end of the day so that you’re not looking at it when you should be switching off. 


12. Choose music to match your task and your mood

No fighting over what music to listen to. You get to choose your own music. I enjoy slower vibes for writing, funkier vibes for inspiration and sometimes I really enjoy pure silence.


13. Get fresh air

Whether it’s a walk in the morning, a bit of exercise in your lunch break or a run when you finish for the day, try to get outside, get some natural light, fresh air and breathe.


14. Go work in a local coffee shop

Going somewhere else to work means you get exercise, air and a change of scenery. The background noise can simulate your normal work environment. It also removes the chance of you being distracted by any household chores. My apartment is never cleaner than when I’m procrastinating on a work task! Two hours in a coffee shop can really help get stuff done!


15. Get a proper chair

During lockdown, many people started working from home with little or no notice so didn’t have the chance to get the right furniture and equipment. You need a chair that provides lumbar support, preferably adjustable to fit it to support you. Many employers will provide these. And a proper monitor will save you back ache too so that you’re not crouching down over a little laptop screen.

16. Socialise (whatever way it’s possible)
You’re going to miss the social interaction from the workplace and it can feel isolated and lonely at times. You could use Zoom or Skype to stay connected for meetings. Working from a café occasionally can provide some human interaction, but maybe you could to arrange to meet friends more outside of work hours, exercise together or end your work day with a coffee and a chat. 

17. Find a way to end your day so that you can switch off from work mode to home mode. 

18. Plan your meals
I quite often find myself deciding to make a nice lunch then spend a lot of time prepping, cooking and cleaning up. Prepare your meals the night before, just like you would do if you were going to the office. 

19. Keep your weekends free
You need time off to recharge. You may need to work Saturdays and Sundays but try where possible to have 2 consecutive work free days to rest, reset and recharge.

 

Why Workplace Wellbeing Matters

Why Workplace Wellbeing Matters

Why is Workplace Wellbeing so important?

Well, firstly, because it’s the right thing to do. If you employee or manage people, why would you not want them to be healthy, happy, present, engaged, feeling valued, feeling proud to work for and represent your business and doing the best job they can?

But if you’ve found yourself in a position in your business where you are trying to convince other executives or leaders why they should invest time and/or budget in Workplace Wellbeing, then here are some other benefits that could help you convince them:

Reduced Turnover
People won’t want to leave their employment with you so you will have less turnover of good people. We all know the cost of turnover and it’s not just financial in terms of recruitment and onboarding. You’ll also lose knowledge every time someone leaves. Creating a Healthy Workplace and prioritising Workplace Wellbeing will mean increased retention.

Attraction
You’ll soon build a positive reputation as an employer who prioritise workplace wellbeing and become known as a company who invest in and support their people. And who wouldn’t want to work for a business like that? That will help you attract, recruit and retain excellent people to join your teams.

Better Employee Engagement
Not only do engaged employees create a working environment that’s better for everyone, but enhanced employee engagement has been proven to deliver better business performance as people are more motivated and committed to success.

Reduced Absence
Absence means lost working days and lower productivity. In turn these can result in other employees becoming unhappy as they have to pick up the slack for those absent, leading to the negative working relationships. A healthy workplace with a commitment to employee and workplace wellbeing will reduce absence and its repercussions.

Increased Productivity
Less absence and engaged employees motivated to deliver their best means your healthy workplace will show a boost in productivity.

Improved customer experience
Customers will be dealing with happy, engaged, motivated people. Workplace wellbeing means happy customers too.

Open culture with positive communication
A healthy workplace with an open culture, encouraging positive, open communication creates a better working environment for everyone.

Mental health and wellbeing
Open conversations around mental health will ensure your people feel understood and supported. This creates an inclusive, healthy workplace for them, particularly during times where they may struggle with their mental illness.

Less conflict at work
And if there’s less conflict, there’s much less time required to spend resolving issues. Freeing even more time to build a healthy workplace, focussed on wellbeing helping deliver all these benefits.

If you’d like any more information, please email me at jules@mindbodylifesoul.com

Or you can schedule a complimentary 30 minute discovery call: https://mindbodylifesoul.com/schedule/

MY WHY: Why I Do What I Do

MY WHY: Why I Do What I Do

From the heart today: WHY I DO WHAT I DO
 

I’ve been through my own tough times personally, while battling with my mental health.

 

❤️ I do what I do so that someone else doesn’t have to go through that alone ❤️

If I can help one person overcome their personal struggles then this is all worth it.

3:43 Videobomb by a little white dog jumping out the window to join the ‘show’! 🐶
😄

The books I mentioned:

* Please note: these are affiliate links which could earn me a small commission if you buy, but they won’t cost you any extra. And of course, I will never recommend anything to you that I haven’t tried and liked. Promise.

Free MASTERCLASS: Love The Life You Live

Free MASTERCLASS: Love The Life You Live

MASTERCLASS: Love The Life You Live – Watch Here


Love The Life You Live: Uncover A Life Of Passion & Purpose


What is Love The Life You Live?

Love The Life You Life is a programme I developed after working with clients and recognising a strong repeating pattern in the processes that helped them.

The Roadmap is a step-by-step guide to assessing your life, finding purpose, making plans and how to take steps to achieve them.

Here’s a video talking you through the  exact process to help you to Love The Life You Live. 

You can also download a FREE copy of the Roadmap, and the Mind:Body:Life:Soul holistic framework (below). 

 I’d love if you could share your comments, particularly about anything you’d like to see more of. Happy to share anything that can help right now…🙏🌈💕

    FREE Downloads

    Mind:Body:Life:Soul – A Holistic Framework

    Mind:Body:Life:Soul Holistic Framework

    Roadmap: Love The Life You Live

    Roadmap: Love The Life You Live
    Designing Your Perfect Life Plan

    Designing Your Perfect Life Plan

    Why do I need a life plan? I’ve managed without it all this time, why do I need one now?

    A life plan is like a map that helps guide us towards a more meaningful and fulfilled life. It’s one that we’ve considered and envisioned for our future. Without a clear life plan we can find ourselves drifting or meandering along with no real direction, vision or purpose.

      So how do I do it?

       

      Let’s look at some simple ways to begin developing your perfect life plan.

      Step 1:  Take stock of where you are now

      List the key areas of your life that you want to review and plan for. If you’ve watched the Masterclass you’ll already have started to consider these. 

      As a guiding example, when I’m doing my life plan review, I list my key areas under my holistic mind, body, life, soul framework. So for instance, in my case these key areas are:

      – Mental health (mind)
      – Personal growth (mind)
      – Emotional wellbeing (mind)
      – Physical health (body)
      – Physical fitness (body)
      – Nutrition (body)
      – Personal style & brand (body)
      – Career (life)
      – Finances (life)
      – Connection & belonging (life)
      – Where I live (life)
      – Spirituality (soul)
      – Life purpose (soul)
      – Personal life plan (soul)
      – Daily practice (soul)

      Everyone’s key areas are different, so it’s important that you choose what’s relevant and meaningful to you.

      • Rate each of these areas how they currently are on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the best possible life.
      • Consider how you would like them to be. What would a 10 look like?
      • List the realities of your life such as your responsibilities, available finances, things that really make you happy or things that make you unhappy.

      Step 2:  Create a snapshot in your mind of your ideal life

      • Remember to dream big!  The sky’s the limit so don’t be afraid to be bold.
      • Use your list from Step 1 as a starting point then add anything and everything that gets you excited about your life like hobbies, early retirement, family time, charity work etc…
        Details are good here as it will help you visualise later.
      • Think about those things that you really love to do and notice any themes that might be recurring.

       

      Step 3: Take an inventory of your skills and talents, listing all of your professional and personal accomplishments, achievements and strengths.

      My blog post 15 ways to discover your natural skills and talents for tips on how to do this.


      Step 4: 
      Create a manifesto or personal vision statement, so you can boldly proclaim your wants, needs and desires

      This personal vision statement post shows you how to really get creative with this.

      Take into consideration your snapshot of your life (Step 2) and what you’ve discovered is important to you.

      This statement should be all encompassing and it should include everything you have already discovered about yourself and your dreams, bringing it all together in one clear statement.

      This enables you to make commitments to yourself and stand for something. It should capture the value you create and who you’re creating for, including yourself!

      As an example, here is my personal vision statement:
      “Live in a way that leaves no regrets. Be the best I can be. Use my enthusiasm and optimism to inspire growth and bring out the best in people. Have fun in my journey, keep learning. Open up, let people in, be brave enough to wear my scars on the outside. Maintain a sense of wellbeing and calm, be kind to myself and believe I deserve it.

      I review my statement every 6 months or so to make sure it still aligns but after tweaking my first few drafts, it hasn’t changed in almost two years, which shows that the initial time I spent in contemplation really got me thinking deeply and helped me create my personal guiding roadmap.


      Step 5:
        Hold this vision in your mind by contemplating it for a few moments, each and every day

      This is a vital step in the process because you are essentially reprogramming your mind towards this new way of life. The more you imprint this image in your mind, the more your mind will guide you towards it.


      Step 6:  Take small, actionable steps so you can begin moving towards this new goal

      If you take time to focus on your new way of life every day, your mind (and the Universe) will begin to create ways for you to get there.

      A bit more about me…

      A bit more about me…

      My previous life & career

      For most of my career I was an HR Director. I moved from Belfast to Manchester, UK in 2013 and even back then I had hoped to change careers but I kept getting offers of HR roles which were difficult to turn down.

      By early 2018 I was in total burnout, working 65-70 hours a week in a career I no longer wanted to do and the dissatisfaction with my job was affecting all parts of my life. I was investing all of my energy into work and, with my tank on empty, I didn’t have the energy to make a change. My “aha” moment was when I realised that it wasn’t organisations I was invested in, but the individual people at the core of the business. Although I was very successful, I wasn’t particularly suited to an HR Director role because I care so deeply about people and I was lacking the same level of commitment to the organisational strategy and success. I’d reached a point where it was financially rewarding but not in any way emotionally rewarding.

      Mental Health

      I have navigated anxiety and depression throughout my entire adult life however the heaviness and panic that swept over me at this period in my life started to take me under. I pushed through the panic attacks until I felt out of control and couldn’t take any more. Everything was failing in my wellbeing and, even when I left work to prioritise my health, I actually became even more unwell.

      The entire time I was navigating this burnout, an entrepreneurial itch had been sitting with me. I’d worked for my entire life, from the age of 16, and had been involved in the glorification of busy for over 20 years! While my life looked beautiful and full from the outside, I was lost and wasn’t enjoying or appreciating with presence, any moments of here and now. My mind was always onto the next thing.

      I was halfway through my life and I realised I couldn’t let the next half be the same. I needed to discover where I wanted to be which was difficult for me as I was passionate about so many topics.

      Breakdown to breakthrough

      My breakdown became my breakthrough. I quit my job and found the space and time that I needed to get better. I knew I needed to stop, to slow down and approach my entire life at a different pace. I stopped for six months and shed the items that didn’t serve me, my house, big car, so many clothes with labels still on that I didn’t even remember owning. My entire lifestyle shifted. I travelled to India for yoga teacher training and it was the next step in my spiritual journey. I started using my mindfulness practice to shift my awareness in how I approached everything in my life.

      Five years before I had completed a coaching qualification, introduced a coaching programme in work and had always really enjoyed coaching people. I’m intrigued by their stories and goals and I’m passionate about helping them achieve them.

      In trying to find my way out of my own burnout and mid-life crisis, I leaned on tools I’d trusted while coaching others and also sought additional resources online. None of them quite ‘fit’ so I developed my own toolkit and system to help others transform their lives too. My holistic approach to life coaching is combined with spiritual practices to help shift your mindset, shed your old practices and beliefs and create the life of your dreams.

      I shed my old mindset, rooted into my spirituality, healed my heart and started coaching other women how to do the same. I watched them recover from burnout, feeling stuck in careers, lost in life’s path and helped them to develop a spiritual practice, adopt a self-care itinerary and start to prioritise themselves in their day-to-day lives.

      In the past two years, I’ve ‘lost’ or released my job, career, home, relationship, income, lifestyle, limiting beliefs and a few bad habits. I’ve gained health, time, balance, happiness, fulfilment, appreciation for life’s simple pleasures, stronger friendships, a spiritual practice, a lust for life and an understanding of who I am and how I want my ‘new’ life to be. I’m not perfect but I’m learning how to be myself and the best part was discovering that my purpose is to dedicate my professional life to empower, motivate and inspire women to look at their lives from a different perspective.

      Since then, I’ve worked with many private clients, spoken in front of countless groups, while earning an income on my online business and I have created the Love The Life You Live: Uncover A Life Of Purpose & Passion system, a series of important life evaluation and design steps that every woman who wants to get unstuck and design a fulfilling new life needs to apply to rewrite their stories and embrace more joy, freedom and wellbeing in their everyday lives.

      In February 2020, I relocated to Palma de Mallorca, Spain and I’m living my dream life in a bright, light rooftop apartment with a little white foster dog for company. Everyone’s dreams are different. I can help you find and live yours.

      Hola Mallorca!

      Hola Mallorca!

      Well hello Mallorca!

      I visited briefly and you grabbed my heart. I explored the island and loved every part. And now I live here! I still can’t quite believe that this is home.

      16 weeks ago today I set foot in Mallorca for the very first time. When I arrived here the rain was lashing down and yet I think I still fell instantly for this island.

      I initially came here with the intention of exploring a little bit then possibly returning here later in the winter for another break from the gloomy UK weather. IF, I actually liked the island. But I very quickly realised that unless I found something I really didn’t like, how could this not be a good location for winter escapes?

      A week into my stay, my landlord in Manchester got in touch to let me know that he was putting my flat up for sale. And so, the Universe sent me a great big shove in this direction 🙏🏼  and I couldn’t be happier.

      I’ve created a fairly detailed Life Plan and a very beautiful Vision Board, both laying out how I visualise (and manifest) my future. My aspirations were to eventually retire to the sun, but before that to set myself up to live between the UK/Ireland and somewhere in the sunshine. But my landlord’s call became a defining lightbulb moment… why wait?

      A conversation with friends had initially triggered some thoughts around this. Over a few glasses of wine they were all detailing their plans for retirement. And it really got me thinking, why are we waiting to retire? Why don’t we live life now? When we’re young, fit, brave, tenacious, resilient and resourceful enough to fully appreciate it.

      So I decided to take the leap to practice what I preach to my courageous clients. Follow my heart. Follow my dreams. Follow my intuition.

      Don’t get me wrong. This hasn’t been easy. It’s been tough, exhausting, emotional and totally overwhelming at times.

      In fact it’s pretty fecking scary. I need to set up business. Find a home. Make friends. Earn an income. Make contacts. Set up a life. Set up everything! On my own. In a country where I don’t speak the language.

      Not forgetting I had to pack up the old life. Say goodbyes (even though it’s only bye for now). Pack up my home. Sell my stuff. Swear never to ‘collect’ so much stuff again! Arrange storage. Arrange shipping. Visit Ireland for more goodbyes. And repeat both trips, to sort out things that didn’t go right in the first place!

      But, fingers crossed, I think I might almost be done. And very soon I’ll be in my bright new apartment and feeling like a fully-fledged ‘resident’ of Mallorca. When I can relax into the amazing lifestyle I imagined on my Vision Board. Then breathe, relax and appreciate every single second.

      So hello Mallorca! 16 weeks ago I arrived here for the very first time. I left you twice and spent 5 weeks away. So it’s been 11 glorious weeks together so far. Is it too soon to say I love you? ❤

      15 Ways to Discover your Natural Skills & Talents

      15 Ways to Discover your Natural Skills & Talents

      1. Reflect on yourself
      2. Look back on your past
      3. Think about what you enjoy
      4. Evaluate what you’re good at
      5. Think about times you were successful
      6. Write the story of your life
      7. Ask around – friends, family and colleagues
      8. Open up time for new things
      9. Make “your” time
      10. Build on your existing skills
      11. Try things you have never tried before
      12. Take classes in subjects that interest you
      13. Travel to expand your experiences
      14. Take on challenges
      15. Volunteer to help shift your perspective
      World Suicide Prevention Day: My story, my struggle…

      World Suicide Prevention Day: My story, my struggle…

      World Suicide Prevention Day

      #WorldSuicidePreventionDay #SuicidePrevention #WSPD2019

       

      *This post may contain affiliate links which could earn me a small commission if you visit a link and buy something on my recommendation. Purchasing via an affiliate link doesn’t cost you any extra, and I only recommend products and services I trust. All opinions are my own. For more details see my disclosure policy and privacy policy.

       

      Today is World Suicide Prevention Day.

      And if I don’t share my real story with you today then I never will… I’ve been absent from social media for quite some time. Late last year, for the first time, I began to experience suicidal thoughts daily. This lasted for about 5-6 months.

      I’m better now and have been for about 6 months. I just had to take some extra time away to make sure it stayed that way by continuing to protect my mental health, wellbeing, time and energy.


      My story, my symptoms, my struggle:

      Sometimes there may not be a ‘reason’ why you’re feeling this way right now. Mine was probably a combination of multiple triggers.

      I left my career as HR Director 15 months ago. For about a year before making the decision to change careers, I was crumbling emotionally and physically, but I kept powering on. It’s only when I finally stopped that I felt the full traumatic effects of corporate burnout and PTSD.

      And as if that wasn’t enough to deal with, the menopause hit me…hard. Anxiety, depression, headaches, hot flushes, night sweats, panic attacks, joint pain, brain fog, memory loss, low libido, insomnia & more! I saw a few GPs who repeatedly insisted that I was too young (45 when symptoms started), regardless that my blood test results told a different story. These GPs sent me away each time with prescriptions for anti-depressants. But you know your own body, and I knew mine. I knew anti-depressants might alleviate some symptoms, but not the underlying cause, which I felt certain was perimenopause.

      That meant I was going through a number of major life changes while dealing with the simultaneous avalanches of burnout, PTSD and intense perimenopausal symptoms. They share similar symptoms, such as anxiety, depression and insomnia, so together they dealt me a triple whammy.

      I’ve experienced periods of depression and anxiety over many years, so I had reasonable confidence that these episodes would pass. The depression and anxiety ‘only’ appeared for a few weeks at a time but it was during those times that I became really concerned that I might not be strong enough to fight the suicidal thoughts.
      6 years ago, I lost an ex-boyfriend to suicide. Over recent years, I’ve lost work colleagues and supported other colleagues who had lost close family members. I’ve supported close friends through periods of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts. I worked in student accommodation and was responsible for supporting employees who were immediately affected when we tragically lost young residents through suicide.

      Around this time, I attended a workshop on Postvention which promotes intervention on the basis that family and friends of the suicide victim may be at risk themselves. Perhaps, having had so many exposures to suicide and bereavement, I was more at risk myself.

      I’ve been shocked and concerned by how women share that they’ve been having suicidal thoughts or ideations when they join our FB group and tell me about their current challenges. I hoped to reach personally and privately out to each and every one of them but the group grew so quickly, I’m not even close to reaching most of them yet.

      I’m normally upfront in talking about mental illness. I’ve been involved with a few amazing mental illness charities and I fronted a campaign for mental health in the workplace where I spoke publicly about my own struggles.

      But this time was different. The social isolation, guilt, sleep interruption and nightmares were unfamiliar symptoms.

      However, it was the social anxiety that really isolated me. I’ve never been particularly active on social media so believe me, I know how bizarre it is that I set up an online business and Facebook group. I pushed myself too far out of my comfort zone into the world of social media at a time when I wasn’t well enough to handle it.

      The social anxiety seemed to grow into a social media anxiety that led to me retreating offline and away from our FB group, which simply served to heighten my social isolation.

      During this time I read The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are and Brené Brown’s words affected me deeply.

      “Shame loves secrecy. The most dangerous thing to do after a shaming experience is hide or bury our story. When we bury our shame, the story metastasizes.” I could recognise my shame growing but couldn’t find my voice to share my story.

      Shame can’t survive being spoken. But I believed that to host a group and have a voice online, I had to be seen to be strong, to be invincible. I felt that I was expected to have it all sorted. When I didn’t.

      It’s easy to look back now and recognise just how much I was going through…significant life changes, PTSD, spiritual awakening, menopause, setting up a new business on my own.

      I felt I didn’t know enough about my own challenges to advise, especially when I was still finding my own way through. But what I’ve realised is that I’m going to be on this journey for life and sometimes I’ll lose my way. But I’ll always find my way back, or find my way onto another path.

      Ironically, I realised much later that I went into hiding from the very group where I could have got invaluable support. And in doing so, I kept my story from those who may have gained strength or understanding from it.

      So I kept quiet, then didn’t know how to find my voice again on the way out.

       

      My road to recovery

      Thanks to all the spiritual and soul work I’ve practiced over the past year, while battling these thoughts, I just gave myself permission to prioritise myself and prioritise my own health.

      There were days when I didn’t want to get out of bed. So on a few of those days, I gave myself permission to just stay in bed. Permission to keep myself safe and allow myself that time to get well. Strangely, most times I gave myself that permission, I felt well enough to get up.

      Alcohol: I had stopped exercising, wasn’t eating as healthily as normal, and found myself drinking in an unhealthy way. I wasn’t drinking huge amounts but I recognised that I was self-medicating with alcohol to escape from my own perpetual thoughts, and that’s when I sought CBT.

      I self-referred myself for CBT. The programme I signed up to wasn’t right for me, but the counsellor was. I give gratitude every single day that he was brought into my life. So much so, that I’m now studying a Mindfulness based CBT diploma so that I can share some of these powerful techniques with others.

      Avoidance: I tried not to allow myself to really consider how I might take action if it ever got to that stage. I also threw out almost every medication that I had in the house.

      Perimenopause: I (literally) begged my medical practice for an appointment with a women’s health expert and started HRT (in my case Oestrogel & the Mirena coil for Progesterone). HRT very quickly worked miracles for me, my energy and my sanity and I will definitely write more about that later.

      Exercise: Almost as soon as I’d started the HRT, I refound my energy for exercise. I now walk 4-5 miles in green spaces at least 5 times a week. Even in the rain. I get fresh air, exercise and the grounding benefits of nature.

      Yoga: After my Yoga Teacher Training I’d stopped practicing properly for months. I think I was partly afraid of another injury after tearing my hamstring. Ironically it was another injury that made me determined to get back into shape and improve my strength and flexibility. And now I’ve rediscovered so many benefits of my daily yoga practice.

      Clients: I also knew that I had a responsibility to prioritise my time and save my energy for my paying clients who had trusted me to guide them through their own challenges. It’s an honour every single day to be invited to share in someone’s journey and I wanted to be able to show up fully to serve them. Which brought me purpose, so important when you’ve feel you’ve lost your way.

      If you’re coming out of a stressful or traumatic experience, please seek help to support you through the impact it can have on your emotional, physical and mental health.

      In my case, I recovered through rest, CBT, HRT, a healthy, more active lifestyle, prioritising myself, my health and my clients.

       

      What next?

      So it turned out that I needed to follow my own advice and slow down, do the inner work (again) and do some heavy lifting in my personal life. This work is challenging but so important to do if you want to live a fulfilled and happy life and, now I’m out the other side, I can see how very necessary the process was, and I’m so grateful that I had all of the tools I needed at my fingertips.

      That gave me the time to rethink my business model too. I’ve refined my niche and want to specialise in working with successful women who are suffering from corporate burnout or overwhelm and want to regain balance in their lives. I’ve been lucky that my new business has taken off so well but that’s given me the chance to realise that I’d prefer to work with even fewer people at any one time so that I can devote more time to holding out a metaphorical hand whenever it’s needed.

      I had originally planned to work with a small number of 1:2:1 clients and deliver group programmes online but for now I’ve decided against the group programmes as I personally don’t want people ‘disappearing’ within a large group. I prefer to get to know them and their stories so I can be of service however they truly need be. And every person is different, I want to be able to intuitively adapt to that.

      Now that I’ve stripped back my lifestyle so much, I’ve been lucky to realise that the most precious thing to me is time. Time for my daily practices and especially time I can spend over a coffee or glass of wine with close friends and family. I’ve been working about 5 or 6 hours a day and I’d like to keep working fewer hours, while making these coaching and personal growth tools and programmes accessible to many more people.

      So I’m going to be giving away lots of resources and tools for free on my website and within this group, then I’ll be bundling some of them up into affordable digital courses.

      “Life is difficult.”

      That’s the opening line in The Road Less Travelled: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and Spiritual Growth (Classic Edition) by M. Scott Peck.

      “Once we truly see this truth…once we truly understand it and accept it – then life is no longer difficult”. “Life is a series of problems… and it is in the whole process of meeting and solving problems that life has its meaning…It is only because of problems that we grow mentally and spiritually.”

      This year I have taken the time to reconnect with myself – mind, body and soul. I’ve really tuned in and learned to trust myself and I’ve grown mentally and spiritually. “Life is difficult”. But we don’t have to face it alone…

      I’ve been away from actively participating in our FB group for such a long time but I have been checking in behind the scenes while I was getting myself back to full health. Thanks to all of the incredible ladies who have kept this group alive with your inspirational posts and quotes. I’ve lost count of the number of times I checked in and was brought exactly the message I needed, precisely when I needed them most. And thanks to those who have messaged me personally. You know who you are. I feel truly blessed to have such generosity of knowledge, spirit and energy brought into my life.

      Yet, in choosing not to reveal my struggles, I missed out on the chance to get the support from this amazing, supportive movement of women and also to share my story with those who might recognise themselves in it.

      I thought I had to be more. More spiritual, more learned, more educated, more experienced, more balanced, more successful, more visible, more everything! I was exhausted trying to be who I thought I should be, who I thought people wanted me to be. When my work is to enable women to find themselves and be themselves.

      To “Be More You”.

      So this is me. Authentic. Flawed. Vulnerable. Imperfect. Content. Exposed. Alive. And finally very much at peace with myself and my life…


      J xx

       


      How to help yourself if you’re dealing with suicidal thoughts:

      • Talk to someone you trust about how you are feeling. Help and support is available.
      • Phone a helpline.
      • Seek medical advice.
      • Don’t make a decision today. You don’t need to act on your thoughts right now. If you’ve had these thoughts before, you’ll know that you might be better able to cope in a few days.
      • If you have a crisis plan or care plan in place, follow this. If you don’t have a crisis plan, you could make one.
      • Avoid any triggers, whatever makes you feel worse.
      • Avoid drugs and alcohol.
      • Get yourself to a safe place or be around other people.
      • Give yourself permission to stop. Just get through today, try not to think about the future.
      • Do something you enjoy, like spending time with a pet or getting out in nature.
      • Do something that will help take your mind off how you are feeling.
      • Longer term, consider counselling or CBT if it’s available to you
      • Get moving – unfortunately it’s when you feel least like exercising that you could benefit from it most. Try it is you can to release some ‘feel good’ hormones.
      A job is what you do, not who you are

      A job is what you do, not who you are

      Many of us become defined by what we do. But making a living is not the same as making a life.

      It’s so important to take time to remember who you are as a person… a friend, a sister, a mother, a daughter, a wife, a partner….

      Work is only a piece of our lives, and not always what we truly want to do.

      Find your purpose, live your life authentically and fully.

      Say Yes to You!

      Please schedule a free Discovery Call if you’d like to chat more

      Mental Health: How are you today?

      Mental Health: How are you today?

      The Hot Topics poll earlier this week showed that our facebook group Love the life you live: Uncover a life of passion & purpose are most interested in talking about mental health right now.

      It’s very timely as I was at a meeting today with Time to Change (UK), a movement of people I’m lucky to be involved with who are passionate about changing how we all think and act about mental health problems.

      They encourage people to have conversations about mental health, just as they would about their physical health, believing that one conversation has the power to change someone’s life.

      Stats show that around 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health problem this year, yet the shame and silence can be as bad as the mental health problem itself.

      I was always very private about my own mental illness, only sharing it with a handful of people close to me. But a couple of years ago I was lucky to be asked to lead a mental health project in the workplace. As part of that, I was asked if I’d consider sharing my story and having it filmed. The video was shown at our annual staff day in front of about 160 people!

      That video started some truly touching conversations. That evening I had someone tell me about their long history with PTSD and another man in his fifties share his history with anorexia. And it was only the beginning. So many people came to talk to me, trusting that their own mental health would accepted and supported in the workplace and so relieved to finally feel able to share their stories openly.

      And it was one of the most freeing things I’ve ever done. Because it allowed me to stop ‘hiding’ and gave me the freedom to start being myself. My depression doesn’t visit so often and my anxiety doesn’t get a grip on me for just as long these days, but they’re still occasional visitors. I’m still shedding old thoughts and behaviours. And rediscovering the real me, my true authentic self, one layer at a time.

      Love the life you live: Uncover a life of passion & purpose is a closed group for women, so please come join our conversation. And remember you’re not alone, lots of others in the group have experienced their own mental health problems.

      So how are you feeling today? How are you really feeling?

       

      Note: Time to Change are led by 2 UK mental health charities, Mind and Rethink Mental Illness. They have a vast library of resources online, if anyone doesn’t feel comfortable sharing here, or needs signposted to professional or medical support.

      Pin It on Pinterest