becoming own boss

Productivity: A Guilt-Free(ish) Alternative To Balance

07 31 2016

A bit later than scheduled…. but we’re back from a weekend at the beach where we’ve been enjoying the sunshine (sun here in the UK believe it or not).  It really was family time at it’s best.  The only thing on the agenda was to just be.  How refreshing!

Have you ever had that feeling where you’re doing one thing and feel guilty that you’re not doing the other?  Feeling like you should be with your family when you’re working and then mentally running through your list of things to do when you’re having some time-off with your nearest and dearest?

Yep, I know that feeling very well.  We’re old friends.  But a new way of looking at it all has shifted the guilt (well, at least some of it) for me.  So, this weekend I was able to enjoy and be present without my mind running ten-to-the-dozen.  (This is a major breakthrough for my Type-A brain!)  Want to know the secret sauce?

There’s a bit of science to it but let me give you the distilled version: create seasons to go after your big goals and to enjoy.

Sometimes, you have to go all out.  You may be going for a promotion, you may be launching a business, or leading a big project.  The thing matters to you – you want to do your very best, and so you’re going to go all in.  Your focus, your energy and time are going to be skewed in it’s favour.  

The toughest part is accepting that, for a defined time, other things will have to take a back seat.  But there’s the magic – it’s for a defined time.  Mentally you know there’s a time when you’re taking your foot of the gas.  You know the seasons will change.

It might be followed by a season where you focus on fun and pleasure and time out.  Your focus, energy and time is used entirely differently.  The pace is slower.  The perspective may be more inward – focusing on replenishing your energy, feeding your soul.

The big red flag here is that it’s not about stopping and starting in areas, it’s just that you can’t do and be everything at once.  It’s a recipe for burnout and guilt in huge doses.  But what you are doing is giving the biggest share of your attention to one area at a time.

And I’ve been trying it out.  You see, I’ve been fighting the losing battle of trying to be supermum and grow a business (and the many other things fighting for my attention) and I felt like I was doing a crap job at all of it.  The proverbial Jack of all trades, master of none.  After a busy 12 months of trying to do it all, more recently I’ve been in a bit of hibernation mode for the “winter” season and taking more care of me, focusing on revitalising my ‘reserves’ and soon I’ll be ready to go again.  (It feels like spring is coming!)

And so this weekend I made my peace with taking time out.  This is exactly where I was meant to be and what I was meant to be doing…. and with the people I care about.

What ‘season’ would you say you’re in at the moment?  And can you see how you could apply this to your life (and take a bit off the pressure off trying to do it all)?

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The Love Letter... Totally Revealing

06 14 2016

Here it is.  The love letter.  Heart on sleeve, holding breath…

Dear Reader

You are truly special.  I know that to be true.  You have a unique magic inside of you, a sparkle that is just yours – no other person in the world has exactly the same elixir of talents and experience and personality and gifts as you.  You are one of a kind.  And that special combination has something to offer everybody else.  When you shine your unique sparkle, others can feel it.  Other people want to be around it.  You inspire other people to shine bright too.  Accept it.  Claim it.  Show it off!!  It’s been gifted to you for a reason.  Don’t let it grow dim.  Dust it off.  Make today the day that shining becomes your role – it’s the kindest thing that you can do for you and everyone that knows and loves you.

From Me

Read it.  Read it again and feel it.

I feel a tad uncomfortable wearing my heart on my sleeve but this is what I believe for you.  It’s my belief that every, single person has something special to share and I feel that, in my heart, I want to help people to hear it and come to feel it…. And ultimately to live it. And here’s the best part – you role model the way for other people (especially the little people).

The reason I’m uncomfortable?  I fear I may sound … rose-tinted.

But I know for any number of people that think maybe it’s a little idealistic, there may be one other person that needs to hear this and remember it.  Because deep down you know this, right?  You are my people.

When you were a little girl you may have been told you were special and precious.  Maybe you weren’t told that but, whether you heard it or not, it was true nonetheless.  And, it’s still true now you’re a grown-up.  It never stops being true.  It’s just sometimes we forget it…. Or don’t let ourselves believe it.  It feels uncomfortable to truly be you.  

(And here we come back full circle to me feeling jittery sharing this).

But I’m feeling the fear and writing it anyway.  My reason is I feel I can help.  I’ve been unofficially learning for almost twenty years now, and have officially equipped myself with training and skills over the past 5 years to move people from fuzziness and overwhelm to clarity and direction so that they can shine.

Now I’m now opening up a limited number of spots for the summer for my Luxe Intensive sessions – these are private, 1:1 coaching days to help you to get clarity of your unique value, gifts and inner sparkleso that you can de-clutter, re-focus and consciously design your future.

Here’s how it works:

Within the Luxe Intensive programme you will get:

  • Private 1:1 coaching and my signature treatment tailor-made to suit your personal needs and requirements.
  • A preparation pack in advance of the Luxe Intensive to elicit ‘spotlight’ areas for our session.
  • A personalized feedback report to summarise your Luxe Intensive session.
  • A 45-minute ‘Completion Call’ within one month of the Luxe Intensive session to create accountability, review and future focus.

What we’ll cover:

Our time is 100% focused on you.  You will get access to my personal toolkit and the session will be uniquely tailored to you and your transformation.  It can include:
Getting absolute clarity on what you really want.

Understanding your unique value, your gifts and how to use your inner sparkle to design life on your terms.

Decluttering the doubts, fears and beliefs that are keeping you stuck.

Crafting an inspired action plan.

Defining your signature style and unlocking your true identity.

Your investment:

This complete package is £250.

What you can expect:

You’ll have a ‘temperature check’ of how things are working for you right now.  You’ll get clear on the things creating ‘mental clutter’ in your life, as well as the patterns that have been holding you back.  You’ll craft a clear vision and blueprint for your future, the key ingredient for designing a life on your terms.  You’ll create an action plan so you begin creating your future in a way that feels authentic and achievable, and have a rhythm for continuing this once our work is finished.  You’ll feel energized and confident about the future.  You’ll have fun!

The lowdown:

I am offering a limited number of spaces throughout the summer.  If you feel this is a YES for you, click HERE to book your complimentary call.

 

p.s. I’ll be sharing a bit more about this whole thing via Facebook Live this week.  Make sure you’re in the group to take part – I’ll be doing a Q&A as part of this.  

 

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category: Design a business that sparkles, Design a life that sparkles, Uncategorized

Get your FREE 2015 goal planner

01 09 2015








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The #1 step you need to take to finally start creating your blissful life

07 27 2014

Have you ever caught yourself looking at someone else’s life and thinking “I wonder how she did it?” 

How did she manage to create a life where she spends quality time with her children every day?

How did she start from zero and create a successful business that she loves?

How does she manage to travel with such a young family?

Where does she find the time to exercise and keep herself in good shape?

Whatever you’ve been green-eyed about, there is one simple secret that these women know…

In my free hangout, I’m going to be sharing:

  • The simple idea that your role model knows – whether she’s the girl next door or an internationally-famous success – and that you can apply from TODAY
  • How to get your game-face on to start making your blissful life a reality
  • How you can turn an average day into a day that counts

Ready to know more?  Reserve your spot now.

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Featured on The Boss Mag: Stop wasting time on social media

04 15 2014

If you’ve ever caught yourself looking at the clock and wondering how you managed to spend quite so long checking your Facebook, Instagram and Twitter feeds, my post on The Boss Mag may be of interest.

In the post, I share:

  • How to use your intuition to guide your social media ‘play time’
  • The strategic filter you must apply before you check your social media feed
  • Why you should indulge the green-eyed monster a little
  • Time-savers you should be using.

Read the full post: 5 Steps to Know When to Stop Looking and Start Doing

I’d love to know what your biggest ‘time-suck’ is on social media and what one step you can take to break the habit.  Please share in the Comments below…

Image: Andy Bradshaw, Behance.net/One Eighty

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Interview with Jessica Nazarali: Design a health & wellness business that sparkles

04 15 2014

I’m excited to introduce you to the very lovely Jess Nazarali.  Based in Sydney, Jess is a business coach, blogger at www.livehealthysimply.com and jessicanazarali.com & co-owner of an online health food store with her husband ShopHealthy.com.au.  She started her business while she was working full-time in the corporate world and has created a thriving business so that, earlier this year, she has been able to leave her job and focus her energy and attention on her passions.  Jess has achieved so much in just a short space of time so I’m excited for her to share her story today.  

In this video, Jess shares how she designed a health and wellness business that sparkles:

  • How growing up on a farm sowed the seed for her future entrepreneurial path.
  • What gave her the confidence to take the leap to starting her own business and blog.
  • How listening to her intuition brought about a new business direction.
  • What has driven and motivated Jess to create a business that allowed her to achieve her vision and leave her corporate job.
  • Her top three tips for women who want to get started in business

Jess and I would love to hear what vision you are going to unapologetically strive for – please share in the comments below.

p.s. Here are a few of the resources Jess mentions in her video:

Marie Forleo’s B-School

Institute of Integrative Nutrition

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Designing healthy beginnings: Interview with Nichi Keuchle

04 03 2014

Nichi Keuchle is the entrepreneurial mum behind MyHealthyBeginning.com – where Nichi’s work gives children the best start in life by nurturing, empowering and supporting their mums through coaching, doula services, childbirth education and nutrition response testing.  She’s on a mission to create wellness one family at a time.  Nichi is the creator of the amazing Cheap Easy Healthy Eating System, a simple at-home programme that shows mums how to feed their families on whole food, organic meals while saving time and grocery money.  It’s safe to say it’s a labour of love for Nichi whose experience spans back to her nannying days in high school…  As well as running her business from Minneapolis, she is busy wife and mum to two daughters.

I’d love for you to tell us a bit about your story.  Why did you choose to start your own business?  What was your motivation?  

If I cut to the chase, what really got me started in the health and wellness field is from developing an ulcer at the age of 16 within 6 months of my mom’s cancer diagnosis.  It was one of the most stressful experiences of my life, working 30 hours a week in the afternoon, evenings and weekends while supporting my dad in caring for my younger siblings at the time.  

My mom was caring for her health, my dad keeping everything afloat and I had to really step it up.  I took myself to the doctor, filled the prescription, felt worse being on Zantac and so I focused on the foods that made my stomach hurt and removed them knowing if I wasn’t down with a bellyache, I could still function.  Very shortly after I had to step down from the high school gymnastics team I was on because of the pain that was left over.  Then I removed more foods.  You have to understand that at the time I wasn’t removing food groups, I just stopped drinking soda, then eating pizza, then eating spaghetti, then eating ground beef, then eating candy, and it just stuck with me.  The more I managed my food intake the more I was able to manage my health, and I knew it seemed like some secret.  

How did you go from the initial business idea to “open for business” – what steps did you take to get started?

I’ve been in business for 16 years, though much of it was quite hobby-like.  It really wasn’t until three years ago that I really got my act together.  Initially I was a nationally certified massage therapist, then, because I’m a lifelong learner, I began to add certifications and courses to keep up with my changing interests.  Not only did that keep me from feeling or getting bored, I was in a constant state of expansion, mostly doing what I loved until I came up with what I wanted to do next!  

Back then I didn’t have a coach, I didn’t have the tools and technology I have now.  It was all word of mouth and was going “fine”.  Three years ago I realised that “fine” wasn’t paying the bills and no longer cut it.

How does this work alongside your role as a mum of two?  With so much on your plate, it would be great to know how you manage “the juggle”.

I really batch my time and believe me, we have our moments.  Just the other day our 6 year old mailed me a letter from school, an assignment every child was given to write a letter expressing where they wanted help, telling me it makes her feel badly when I don’t listen to her.  It broke my heart.  We are together all the time outside of her school time, she’s like my sidekick and it made me so aware of the fact that I’m not present!  

The world of possibility in my little babe’s eyes, though, gave us such access to how we can support her needs, how we can feel more listened to as parents and what we created was this concrete agreement to really LOOK at each other when we are being spoken to.  It’s the little things.

My husband is awesome.  He’s super supportive and willing to help with our girls when I need it.  I do a lot of leadership development work so I’m gone an extra night per week and he pulls the weight beautifully.  We’ve gotten to this cool place of my success is his and his is mine – that can be everything from being with our girls to feeding them good food to taking the time we need to put into our businesses.  He’s self employed as well so sometimes this means more flex time as a family and sometimes we go days without seeing him except at bedtime.

For me, self care is my number one priority.  I am a train wreck if I don’t take good care of myself.  It’s an everyday thing for me.  I read, exercise, and focus on nutrition every single day.  Using practices such as Higher Brain Living, acupuncture, homeopathy, and bodywork are really helpful in getting the downtime I need.  Sleep has never been as big for me as in the past couple of years, so that’s become more of a focus as well.

…and don’t get me wrong.  I have my days where success simply means everyone is fed and alive!

What is your vision or goal for the future??

I get to declare it here!  Right now I’m working on a fun project to bring about a kids cooking show.  My nutrition practice is a three days per week so I currently use my other two days as a launch pad for my Cheap Easy Healthy Eating System.  

What 3 tips can you give to mums who want to establish the right diet and eating habits with their young family?

  • If you can find out early on if your kids have food intolerances, you save a lot of time dealing with the immune challenges and issues that come up later.  
  • Find that out first – I don’t mean just allergy testing.  Find someone who tests specifically for sensitivities and intolerances and then plan your eating around the person with the most items needing to be eliminated and build back up from there.  
  • Figure out what you spend most of your grocery budget on and find resources that support you in cutting that down, not what you’re eating so much as what you’re spending.  In my Cheap Easy Healthy Eating System we go over all of this in depth, especially when most families are coming from the SAD (Standard American Diet) which consists of breads, bagels, pasta and little to no variety or colour.  It’s all about baby steps and getting mums to feel confident and empowered about the choices they are making.  A mum’s choices are never bad when they are coming from a place where she’s working with all she knows.  I meet her where she’s at and go from there.  There’s a way to save money and time in nearly every scenario.

What have been (or still are) your biggest challenges/fears re: being a working mum, and how did you overcome them?

My biggest hurdle to date was working with a mentor three years ago who ended up being a fraud.  I ended up with a total loss of $30,000 along with really seeing that our marriage wasn’t working, I had my head buried in the sand, my ego all blown up and was in denial about so much of my life.  It was the scariest time of my life.  My thoughts were everywhere from “how are we going to feed our kids” to “how can I work if we can’t afford childcare?” to figuring out how to answer the kids without lying to them when they asked to go for ice cream or to the bookstore or something that required even a few bucks to make happen.  

Awful, awful, awful.  I already felt guilty for being a working mum when all I wanted was to stay home and raise these babies of mine.  That’s when I started personal/leadership development work.  I got to work on this like it was my job.  Learning about my level of self worth, how I listened to myself and what I made things from my past mean about where I was/wasn’t taking my life-talk about a transforming experience.  It’s ongoing.  I can’t put it down.  

When I look at the number of blocks, mostly around money, that I’ve moved out of the way and relationships I’ve healed, I have no idea where the energy came from to Just. Keep. Going.  There were about nine months in there that I hardly remember, the hurt was just so deep.

What’s really worked is to create our family as a team – to create an intense and intimate partnership with my husband, which didn’t just happen automatically, folks, that was a toughie.  Everywhere I can in my work I bring our girls into my “team”.  When they see “our” work as a purpose and something that brings about change and meaning to people’s lives, they feel proud of what we’re up to and are more willing to give me the time I need to finish a project or be with a client.  I can now be more present with them because there are set ways of being.

What makes your life sparkle?

These days, my marriage.  Those moments when my husband and I are laying on the couch with the girls in their “nests” with the dog on the floor and I’m reading aloud while he dozes and they play with beeswax.  That’s where it’s at these days.  Just so simple.

I also love a good, solid 24-hour work retreat.  People think I’m crazy, but it ranks up there as a total favorite of mine.  I drive about 45 minutes from my house to this little retreat farm, pay my $60 for the stay and a couple of homemade meals, another $60 for a massage.  I settle into my hermitage, open my laptop and tackle whatever project is looming.  I step aside to read for fun or go for a walk or snowshoe, depending upon the season, and go to bed early or lay down for a quick nap if I feel the urge. And, most importantly, I return feeling recharged and renewed with stress off my shoulders because I was able to really be focused and undisturbed.

 

What is the one big challenge you face when it comes to designing healthy-eating plans for your family?  What one thing can you try to change this week?  Check out Nichi’s website for ideas…

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Featured on Design Sponge: How to use an identity change to find success

04 01 2014

Today I’m featured on Design Sponge’s Biz Ladies series talking about how to switch your identity to find success…

In this post I share:

– My geeky childhood fascination with powerhouse women

– Why taking the leap into entrepreneurship is just the first scary leap

– Five tactics to see you through the next big leap

You can read the full post on Design Sponge’s Biz Ladies series HERE

Image source: {1}

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Featured on: Mumpreneur UK

03 27 2014

I’m excited to feature on Mumpreneur UK where I’m sharing my thoughts on ditching the masculine business plan.

In this post, I share:

– How my desire for freedom influences business basics

– Why a business plan gathers dust

– My tips for writing a business plan with heart/

You can read the full post on Mumpreneur UK HERE

IMAGE SOURCE: {1}

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Secrets of my Success: Meg Biram

03 20 2014

Prepare to be inspired… Meg Biram is a journalism graduate turned multi-passionate entrepreneur. After giving five years to roles in the corporate world with The Observer Media Group and Hallmark Cards, Meg followed her entrepreneurial instinct.  She’d been blogging to curate fashion, interiors and art since 2007 and, four years later, was able to turn her online home into a business.  From there her business has evolved to include a shop, online marketing and social media consulting, speaking and collaborations with brands including Kate Spade New York, Nike and Macy’s.  Meg also co-founded The B Bar – an online ebookshop.  

I’m excited to introduce Meg today as she shares the secrets of her success….

What has been the ‘defining moment’ that set you on the path you’re on today?  What motivated you to start your own business?

I don’t think there’s been a defining moment for me, I just always knew I’d be an entrepreneur. There are a lot of entrepreneurs in my extended family so I grew up thinking it was normal. I did the corporate world for five years and it just further solidified that it was not my thing.

 

How did you go from the seedling of a business idea to ‘open for business’?  How did you get started?  And how has your business evolved (into now multi-passionate!)?

When I started my blog back in 2007, blogging wasn’t really a business for most people. None of us realised that blogging itself could turn into a business so I always thought I’d be doing something else and blogging was just to help market it.  Obviously that changed as it became possible to monetise blogs, but once I left my Senior Designer position at Hallmark Cards in early 2011 and moved to Washington DC that’s when I started consulting seriously, and the rest of my businesses grew from there.

 

Tell me about your vision/goals for your future.
I’m always thinking about what’s next. I plan for it and act on my plan, but I allow flexibility and let things evolve and surprise me. I’ve got a lot of things in the works for 2014. 

 

How do you stay motivated and inspired?
I guess I’m never not motivated or inspired. It’s just innate for me.

 

What has been your biggest lesson learned?
That even sometimes good ideas I have aren’t necessarily what I want to spend my time doing. 

 

What have been (or still are) your biggest fears and challenges, and how do you overcome them?
I tend to put myself in a lot of situations that challenge me because I feel like you can’t grow or you aren’t taking enough risk if you aren’t kinda scared sometimes. So I know that as long as I put myself in uncomfortable positions sometimes, I’ll come out of it stronger.

 

[Tweet “You aren’t taking enough risk if you aren’t kinda scared sometimes” – @MegBiram via @EmmaGwillim”]
What do you believe is the secret of your success?
Persistence and hard work.

 

What 3 tips would you offer women on how to follow their professional ambitions and design a life that sparkles?
Research anything and everything about the industry you want to be in.
Talk to as many people as you can that have done what you want to do or something similar.
Make sure that what you want to do is unique to you.  Don’t just copy what other people are doing because you think it looks fun.  Dig deep to find your true passions and work hard to make them original to you.

 

[Tweet “”Dig deep to find your true passions and work hard to make them original to you” @MegBirman via @EmmaGwillim”]

 

Images: Abby Jiu

 

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