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Mind your language and rock your world

Mind Your Language and Rock Your World

How often do you mind your language? I’m not talking about  %*$#^ words, but language like always or never. What about should or can’t? How many times a day do you say sorry when it wasn’t your fault?

Minding your language can have a hugely positive influence on your daily life in a remarkable way. You can rock your world by making simple changes in the way you speak.

A fixed mindset bases things on past experiences and shapes future experiences. It can literally stop you in your tracks. Having a flexible mindset means you’re open to possibilities and believe that change is possible.

Every Friday I volunteer to lead a group of ladies on a mountain bike ride through the local hills. With no snooze button we intrepidly don our riding clothes and hop on our bikes to meet at dawn, when we ride into the sunrise.

Sometimes there’s only a few of us and sometimes there’s 15. It’s a mixed group, all with one goal;

To improve our health in body and mind and to have fun.

It’s where I first really noticed language and the negative effect it can have on us. The limiting beliefs that are reinforced when we use language that puts in a fixed mindset. Your mindset can be fixed or flexible.

When you’re mindset is ‘fixed’ you commonly uses words such as always, never, can’t and don’t.

On a Friday morning at dawn, the lady mountain bikers are riding in the rocky hills on a single trail (one bike width) and one stops at an obstacle. She comments ‘I always get stuck here’ or I can never conquer this rocky section’ and then apologises profusely for holding up the person behind her, ‘Sorry, I always hold everyone up’. She carries on riding with the negative voice in her head telling her she’s not a good mountain biker and she’ll never get better. She always holds up the person behind her. I’ll never be able to ride that trail without stopping.

What if she used the ‘mind your language’ technique.

‘I get stuck here, at the moment

‘I can’t conquer this section, yet

‘Thanks for waiting while I get going again, I’m working on my skills’

‘I can’t ride that trail without stopping yet, but I’m working on it’

Minding your language gives you a better chance of success. Of conquering things that you thought were never possible. Of quieting the negative thought chatter.

The first step is awareness.

Notice what you say and how you say it. Are you sabotaging yourself?

‘I always fall off my bike’. Guess what? Your brain takes that as a fact and will create your reality. I see this happen so much, especially with women on their mountain bikes.

Sleep is another great example where our language can be more mindful.

‘I can never sleep on an aeroplane’

‘I can’t sleep when it’s noisy or there’s a light on’

Yes you can, but not when your brain is suggesting otherwise. If you keep saying you can’t ever sleep on a plane, chances are you won’t ever sleep on a plane. Switch your mindset to flexible made and try; ‘I can’t sleep on a plane, yet’ and see what happens.

And while you’re at it, drop the ‘should’.

‘Shoulds’ send us into the past or the future and can riddle us with guilt which is a major stress creator. We all want a life with less stress.

Mind your language and swap ‘should’ for ‘could’. If I ‘should’ have I ‘would’ have.

I should go riding in the morning but I always hit the snooze button and I can’t get fit. I should’ve gone riding but I never get up as soon as my alarm goes off.

Next time you find yourself in a fixed mindset shift to the right (or left). Your brain will be less chaotic and amazing things can happen.

 Things you ‘never’ thought possible.

Mind your language. It’s a game changer.

How aware of minding your language are you?  I’d love to know what you say a lot without realising. Share in the comments and rock other peoples world too.

 

 

How to get more done in less time

Getting more done in less time is a skill you can learn. There’s one thing that’s certain in life, there will always be things to do. Whether you’re living in a big city, on a farm or in a remote tribe there are always things that need doing. Managing those things is something we’re never taught, at least not in school or at university.
Google ‘time management’ and you get 159 million results. That’s a scary amount and it means there’s a lot of people who are struggling to manage their time well. We all have the same amount of time in a day and mostly, it’s our choice how we spend it. So how do you make wise choices?
Here are some ways to get more done in less time and to help you work out how you are filling your days.
WHAT DO YOUR DAYS LOOK LIKE?
To begin with, look at how you’re spending your time now. Then look at how you want to spend your time and merge the two. It is possible to get more done in less time. You can’t keep doing things the way you’ve been doing them because if nothing changes nothing will change.
     Before you start, the big hairy audacious question is; what’s on your plate and is it too full?
As a new Mum with a part-time business as a health practitioner, I started seeing a ‘life coach’ to help me get more done. I felt that I was juggling all the balls in the air and all I needed was some time management skills to help me organise things better. When my coach sat me down and said ‘Amanda, time management is not your problem, you are trying to fit too much into a 24 hour period and it just isn’t possible’. My first thought was ‘Well, clearly you don’t know what you’re talking about, I’d better find someone who does’. Fortunately for me, I stuck it out and it turns out that my life coach was right.
     There was so much on my plate it was overflowing.
When you go to a smorgasbord dinner and start at one end. By the time you finish your plate is so full of so many different things. You sit down and look at your plate saying ‘I can’t eat all that’ and promptly do before you get up for more because it all looks so yummy. How much better would you have felt if you were selective in what you chose, with a small amount on your plate?  You could really enjoy your meal without feeling unwell. Your days can be like this too, with space and clarity.
     How are you spending your days?
Are they with intent or are you running from one thing to the next and scheduling so many things in one day that you’re always running late and things get chaotic. Crazy even.
If you work full time as an employee, you have even less time to manage but it’s still easy to pile your plate with too many things. Social media and TV (with cable and Netflix) can be torturous time sappers if you let them. How you are spending your time is a choice.
Start by looking at what you are putting on your plate. Are you saying yes to too many things that you’re not enjoying doing? Getting more done in less time starts with looking at what you need to get done and if all those things are really what you want in your life.
     When you’re doing the things you enjoy and filling your days with those, getting more done is easy because your plate has space on it.
WRITE A LIST OF ALL THE THINGS YOU DO
Start by writing a list of all the things you do, the negotiable things like meetings, committees, shopping, surfing the net, TV, meals out. Give each thing a fun factor out of ten and assess whether there are some things that you could do without. Ignore all the reasons why you do those things and just ask, am I enjoying having that thing in life? If the answer is no, it’s time to let it go.
You can do more in less time by starting here.
Taking a helicopter view of what you’re filling your days with and then asking yourself what you’d like to be filling your days with.
Doing this alone isn’t easy and I’m giving you permission to ask for help. Share this with a friend if it helps. There are so many time management tips it’s overwhelming. This is the best place to start. Work out what you’re doing and if you’re enjoying what you’re choosing to do? By letting go of what you’re not enjoying you’ll be more energised and have more time to spend on the things you love which is what life’s all about and you’ll be getting more done in less time.
What does your plate look like? Overflowing or neatly placed with space in between. I’d love to know in the comments. You’ve got this!

My morning routine with a journal entry extract

A DAY IN MY LIFE

Sometimes I wish I was a 9-5’er, with weekends off. Wouldn’t life be easy with the same routine every day? It’s funny how the grass is always greener on the other side. How we default to thinking that ‘other’ people have it easier than we do. They don’t and the grass isn’t greener. I’m sharing this with you to highlight the benefits of a morning routine and having a journal.

What’s important to remember is that we are in the driving seat and we all have the same 24 hours in one day.I’ve created my life to be different to the 9-5’er and here’s what it looks like since I started doing a daily journal exercise. I’m embracing the fact that every day is different.

How do I share my daily routine when every day is different? I’ve chosen one day of my week. This is a typical Thursday and includes an excerpt from my journal.

MORNING ROUTINE

5am Alarm goes off. I get up using the mantra ‘It’s what I do’. Prepare and drink a warm glass of water with a slice of lemon

5.10am Meditate for 5 -15 minutes

5.30am Make a cup of green leaf tea, Gen Maicha (Japanese) is my go-to morning tea

5.35am Journal time (see below)

5.45am Prepare for bike ride (fill camelbak with water, lights on bike, get dressed)

6.00am MTB ride

7.30am Home. Refresh. Breakfast.

8.00am Take a carful of teenagers to school (my two plus their friends)

8.20am Kitchen tidy after morning mayhem.

9.00am The Lilac Lounge home office – coaching prep

9.30am 1:1 coaching clients via Skype

10.45am My own 1:1 coaching (Skype to Singapore)

11.30am 10 minute meditation

11.40am White space

 

REST OF THE DAY

12.00noon Create and eat lunch (& dinner prep)

12.30 Drive 10 minutes to Podiatry Clinic

1.00 – 6.00pm Podiatry clients

6.00pm pick up youngest teenager from ballet class

6.30pm Dinner with family

7.15pm Relaxation Yoga @ The Space (coordinate husband to collect eldest daughter from work @ 8pm)

8.45pm Home and prepare for bed /available to chat with teens

9.30pm Sleep

 

JOURNALLING
This is something I highly recommend. Using a journal is a great way to start the day and give yourself clarity, direction and reflection.

  • At least 3 things I’m grateful for
  • 3 affirmations
  • 3 ‘amazing things that happened yesterday’ list
  • A ‘what would make today great’ list

A few pages of my journalling this year look like this;

 

I’ve stopped doing the ‘I could’ve made today better if…’ section because I found I was foussing on the negatives too much. It might work for you. I’ll add it back later and see if anything’s changed.I’ve added daily ‘blah’ or brain dumping sessions and intend to make these a habit. When I do take time (5 minutes) the results are awesome. It’s a bit like decluttering your pantry but you’re decluttering your brain. It creates so much more space so it’s not all jammed in trying to be heard. Highly recommended.

I’ve added daily ‘blah’ or brain dumping sessions and intend to make these a habit. When I do take time (5 minutes) the results are awesome. It’s a bit like decluttering your pantry but you’re decluttering your brain. It creates so much more space so it’s not all jammed in trying to be heard. Highly recommended.

MOUNTAIN BIKE RIDING

Five years ago at the age of 42, I found a way to move my body that I love. I’ve gained friends for life through mountain biking and have grown internally beyond measure. I’ve ridden in places I never imagined and pushed myself that magical place outside my comfort zone.

My mountain bike rides vary and are based on a programme from my mountain bike coach (in Melbourne). Thursday’s are usually interval sessions, like 15 x 200m repeats at maximum effort on a hill plus extra kilometres. I journal about mountain biking to help me stay clear on why I ride.

MEDITATION

I use guided meditations on the app Yogaglo. There’s so many options, read about them here. Everyone can learn to meditate, you need to find a way that works for you.

BREAKFAST

Breakfast is different every morning. Usually savoury. It might look something like this.

Egg & Veg Wrap Recipe

2 eggs whisked in a bowl

1/2 grated carrot

a few snow peas thinly sliced

handful spinach leaves

1/2 avocado, sliced

fresh herbs chopped

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

coconut oil

To cook

Heat coconut oil over medium heat and fry egg in two batches to resemble crepes

Add all other ingredients and roll crepes to resemble a wrap

COACHING

I’ve invested in one on one coaching for over 12 years. It’s been invaluable for personal and professional growth and given me skills and expertise to share with my own clients. It provides accountability with a reward system which works really well for me. It’s also given me access to incredible resources that have been invaluable. Most of all it’s taught me to be kind to myself and take time out every day. It helped me realise that I was trying to fit way too much into my day and would get frustrated that I couldn’t make it work. Now I’m sharing that with others and it brings me so much joy.

Most of all coaching has taught me to be kind to myself and take time out every day. It helped me realise that I was trying to fit way too much into my day and would get frustrated that I couldn’t make it work. Now I’m sharing that with others and it brings me alot of joy. I’ve shared my morning routine with my clients and encourage them to journal too.

RELAXATION YOGA

This is a new addition to my week. Yin style yoga at the beautiful ‘The Space’, a ten minute drive from home. It’s a great way to ‘make’ me do a long yoga session and sets me up perfectly for a relaxing nights sleep.

So there you have it. My day (on a Thursday) in a nutshell including an excerpt from my journal.

I’d love to answer any questions or give you more detail if you want it. Let me know what you’d like to know in the comments box below.

 

 

 

Getting back on track after a short (or long) break

After a holiday it’s normal to get home ready to make a zillion changes to your life. It might be wanting to eat better, sleep more, start a new business, change career direction. It’s a common theme in my life, especially this week after a trip away.

Easter brought me six days offline, not by choice (though I loved it) and it wasn’t unexpected. I was camping at Karijini National Park with my family for 5 nights. There was no mobile reception and no WiFi. I admit to having mobile reception when we drove through a pocket of technospace for about 4 minutes.

Camping at Karijini National Park was an amazing time to recharge, offline.

Karijini is pretty much in the middle of nowhere (North Western Australia) and a 5 hour-ish drive from where I live. Its’s red rock gorges covered in spinifex (a spiky, unfriendly small shrub that’s lime green colour contrasts beautifully with the red dirt), white gum trees, waterholes and vast blue skies are awe inspiring.

We camped at a site you can’t book in advance where drop toilets are the only facilities. We used solar power for our camp fridges and solar showers for cleaning our dusty bodies.

The days were spent exploring and walking or climbing in and out of the gorges, rewarded by incredible scenery and a myriad of swimming opportunities.

It’s a place that gets into your soul. Deeply.

It’s also a time where you can think. Perhaps a little overthinking and this is my point. It’s the overthinking that I find (and I’m sure I’m not alone) gets me into one of two states. Overwhelm and analysis paralysis or so ready for change in at least one life department that I start to make it happen.

Mostly, I tend to overthink everything and do nothing. This time is different.

I’ve learnt about the importance of creating habits to bring about change.

That it’s not about discipline or will power but the formation of small habits to bring about the change you want.

If you feel overwhelmed after a holiday, short or long, and then get stuck back on the rollercoaster that life can be (if we let it), know that it doesn’t have to be that way. Change is possible and you can do it.

Firstly ask yourself why you want to change and then the how is easier.

The why has to be something you really want, not what you think someone else might want you to do.

If it’s not, you won’t create the habits you need make the change.

Don’t let overthinking get in the way of taking action. If you want to get up in the morning at 5am without pressing the snooze button there are simple actions you need to do. When your alarm goes off at 6am you need to take the first action. If you lay in bed thinking about how you feel and if you want to get up, chances are you will not get up.

The first action is swinging your legs over the edge of the bed and connecting your feet with the ground. That leads to the second action once you are out of bed. For me it’s a 5-10 minute guided meditation followed by a cup of tea and 5 minutes of journalling. I then go for a bike ride or do creative work while the rest of the house is sleeping.

What I am doing in the morning is decided the night before.

How I will move my body or what I am creating is determined before I go to bed. If I don’t have these choices made, it is too easy to roll over and go back to sleep cursing myself for not being disciplined. I may need to be disciplined in the very beginning whilst I’m creating the habit but once the habit is in place, it’s a habit and it just happens.

If you let thinking about the action into your mind you won’t take the action you need to.

Some habits are harder than others to create. If you fall down, get back up again and start over. Tweak and repeat. One habit at a time. By doing things one at a time you are much more likely to create sustainable change.

Next time you have a day off, a short or even a long break (highly recommend some Wi-Fi and phone free time) come home with the intent to change one thing.

Start with something easy and be kind to yourself along the way.

Habits make life more enjoyable and give us more time to do the fun stuff which is what we all need more of.

If you want to read more on the subject of habit changing James Clear and Gretchen Rubin are the gurus in my world. Gretchen has an awesome quiz to find out your habit tendencies here. I’d love to know what your habit tendency is. Post in the comments below.  And get habit changing, it’s easier than you might think.

 

How to give your immune system some love with this easy drink

in the city

We all have a time in our lives where we feel below par. For many reasons our sleep gets compromised, we forget about ourselves and become overly busy. Mostly, we know what to do in these times but doing it is not always easy.

We have the knowledge but we need to turn it into action.

As a lifestyle coach, my job is about creating change in peoples lives and guiding them to turn knowledge into action in easy, manageable ways that are fun and proactive. This takes time and commitment and change does happen but there are times where we need to a quick fix. Our immune system is down and we need to pep it up or face hitting rock bottom. And no one wants to go there. Ewwwww.

Here’s a simple pick me up to boost your immune system when you’re feeling rubbish, people around you are snot-filled and coughing and you need help!

I have most of these ingredients on hand in my fridge or pantry so I can whip this up whenever I need it.

‘Get Me Well Now’ immune booster drink

1 lemon quartered

2-4 cloves garlic flattened with the back of a knife, skin on

4cm piece of ginger sliced 3mm thick

2 tsp turmeric

1 tsp cinnamon

1-2 tsp raw honey (optional)

1 red chilli  or part of (optional)

Place all ingredients in a large mason jar or similar and cover with hot water, just off the boil. Wrap with a tea towel and shake, making sure the lid is tight. Let it steep for at least 5 minutes and then pour through a tea strainer into a glass and drink all at once or sip slowly.

Keep topping with hot water and adding more turmeric and cinnamon along the way. You can keep the brew going for a number of days.

Garlic has anti-bacterial and antifungal properties and helps boost immunity.

Turmeric helps stimulate the body’s immune system. It has antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties that also help strengthen the immune system.

Cinnamon is anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial and said to be one of the most beneficial spices in existence. And how fabulous that it’s delicious too!

There are loads of things out there that claim to be immune boosting. If you have a favourite, I’d love to hear about it.

When you are back to wellness and feeling fabulous you can keep working on your immunity and building resilience.

In the meantime, enjoy your ‘Get Me Well Now’ immune booster drink.