purpose

Time Tracking For Success.

08 07 2016

So, you might remember, I learned a little lesson a few weeks back.  I had a lightbulb moment and set new intentions.  (You can read the post here)

Yep, well, old habits die hard it would seem.

know my priorities.  Being the avid goal-setter I am, I know what tasks I should be doing to ‘move the needle’ and get me closer to them.  But knowing them and doing them are totally different.  I know to achieve the toned tummy I’m going to need to build the muscle, almost daily.  Do I do it?  Nope.

I’d like to say my new intentions slipped because of some worthy cause but, the truth is, I know it was a few bad habits to blame.  The biggest of all is procrastination. 

John C Maxwell, known as one of the greatest thought leaders in management, said “the secret of success comes down to your daily agenda.”  He believed if he were to spend 24 hours with someone, following them through their typical day, he’d be able to predict where their life was headed.    He says:

“You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily.”

(Abs, we’re on.)

So, with that in mind, it’s time for a bit of a reality check.  If, like me, you get to the end of a day and wonder exactly what you did with your time, then this is for you.  If you’re making little (or no) progress in achieving something that’s been on your goal list forever, this is for you.  Or, if you know things are just out of balance and you’re ready to make a change, this is for you.

It’s so simple to do, but so powerful.

Record and Review.

To see where your time is going, you’re going to have to get it down on paper (or digitally, if that’s your thing).  Don’t rely on your memory.  Track it.

I’ve created a tracking tool you can download here.  The magic is in ‘coding’ your tasks into priorities.  It will give you a great picture over 24 hours (just like Sir Maxwell suggested).  My suggestion is to do it for a week to get a great record of ‘normal life’.

But… that’s ‘normal life’.  In your normal life are you achieving what your heart desires?  Are you living the life you want to?  What kind of future are your daily habits creating?

I find this is a powerful first step in making a change.  You need to know where you are, what your starting point is.  Then you’re so much clearer on what needs to change to start shifting you towards a new direction.

Download the Time Tracker For Success cheat sheet here.  And I’d love to see your results – what did you learn after day one?

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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 Time Management Lesson I Learned From My Sick Bed

07 24 2016

Stuff happens, eh!  I had exciting plans for the week, and the English summer finally arrived… and then I came down with a chest infection and felt rotten.  Those sunny-day plans went out of the window.

With two little ones there are no ‘sick days’ as a buffer.  I powered on (albeit in low-gear!) taking care of the essentials – all fed, watered and entertained.  Same hours in the day but the priority was very different…

And here came my lightbulb moment.

Outside of caring for the boys, my priority was rest and repair.  I culled my planned-out week.  Tasks, chores, outings HAD to be cancelled or postponed.  Getting back on my feet was the aim of the game so (when I could) I slept, I watched movies, I ate better, I had bubble baths.  I was generally a lot kinder to myself than usual.

A typical week would have these ‘indulgent’ things way down the pecking order.  The tasks, chores, errands would come first.

But could I get the best of both?

With a bit of time management, hey?!  Or, how about this, how about a bit of purpose management. 

See, we can’t actually do anything about time.  It’s a definitive – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Always has been, always will.  (I’ve heard this so many times but it’s never quite hit home.)  So if I’m managing my purpose with the time I’ve got rather than robbing hours here and there (yet often feel I’m running half an hour late for my life!), maybe I’ll start making time for the things that count.

And yes, my own health and wellbeing count.  Yours too.  But I’d bet my bottom dollar it’s not reflected in how you currently manage your time. 

So, how about if you manage your purpose rather than your time?  What is it you’re wanting?  How do you want to live?  And love?  And feel?

If you were to take obligations out of the picture for a moment, just imagine what you would purposely choose to do with your time.

So, Sunday night is the night of my ‘weekly review’.  As I go through my usual routine (planner, calendar and a glass of wine all essential!), I’ll be looking at my week with fresh eyes.  And I encourage you to too.

Let me hear what you think.  What would this week look like if you started with purpose first?

To a week that sparkles (with purpose!), Emma x

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Times They Are A-Changing: A Note On Being Authentic

07 03 2016
Things here feel in ‘transition’ at the moment. Have you ever had that feeling that you’re getting ‘tugged’ inside to make a change?
 
In the (almost) five years since we got married, and had our two boys, it’s been an ongoing transition… and I feel like the bigger transition has been INSIDE ME. 
 
If you’re a mum, you might be like me – what you want to create for yourself and your family has shifted a little.  YOU have shifted a little.  Yes, you’re still that same girl at heart but maybe the 2.0 version!
 
How about you?  What was it that you felt called to do or be pre-kiddos?  And how has that shifted now?  Who were you before and who are you now that you’re someone’s mum as well as YOU?
 
One thing is crystal clear for me – that’s who I want to help and my BIG WHY. 
 
But how I want to work and create that has (and is) shifting.
 
So, I’m going against the grain.  The ‘perfectionist’ in me wants to only present the finished product to you, once I’ve worked it all out, but I’ve decided to share the behind-the-scenes with you as I work through the process of change…. (I’m sharing this behind-the-scenes with my gang in a secret group – click here to get in)
 
So, my ‘why’ (aka the thing, the purpose, the cause that inspires me to do the thing I want to do) is:
 
I want to help mums to be seen as who they really are.  Helping you to rediscover your true you, who you want to be and what you want to be known for.  To use my mindset expertise to help you clear the ‘stuff’ holding you back.  And then to help you design a crystal clear ‘personal brand’ so you can be seen and shine – and inspire your children to do the same.
 
This is awkward.  I can usually find the words I want but here I struggle to put it succinctly.  (Personal brand sounds superficial as it’s way deeper than that…. Hmmm?) So, how about this? 
 
“My purpose is to help women be seen for who they really are so they can nurture their passions as well as their family – and be role models for the little eyes watching”. 
 
What do you think to that?  That’s what inspires me and I’m going to be in ‘creation’ mode as I evolve what I can do to help do that (and craft a clearer way of articulating it!).
 
I truly value your opinion so if you have something to say comment below and share your thoughts.  When it comes to how you feel about you, what is it that you struggle with or have a negative feeling about?
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Get That Holiday Feeling... Without Needing To Leave The Building

06 27 2016

Back in my corporate days, I made my desk home.  I had a few subtle photos of family and friends on the backboard of my cubicle, and a happy holiday memory as my computer desktop background. 

The vast (and noisy) open plan office with sealed windows didn’t really suit my introverted work-style.  The political game too forced me into avoidance mode. In fact, truth be told, I craved quiet time, fresh air and an environment of collaboration and, sat there, I was screaming inside.  But then, one look at that holiday picture and I breathed a little calmer.

That ‘holiday feeling’ washed over me and I felt an escape.

What is that strange magic?  Can you feel it too? 

Revisit a holiday memory and you get that wash of calm and bliss and contentedness. 

“This is the life”.

The beauty is that you can go there whenever you like.  You may have heard this before – your mind knows no difference between what is real and what is imagined so you can fake that holiday in your mind to kick that feeling into action.  BUT, what you know and what you do are two entirely different things.

Crikey, I’m trained in this** but still I get elbow-deep in the day-to-day and forget this super-power…. We can be on holiday at the flip of a mental switch.

Ironically, it took a break away from the routine to remind me of this.  The science bods call this a ‘pattern interrupt’.

With two pre-school children our household runs on routine.  It’s a team effort to get us all up, fed, dressed and out the door each morning… and that works great for running a tight ship but it does run the risk of hours blending into days then into weeks before you take a breath and just be.  You know, like those moments on holiday when you have no plans, no agenda and can just enjoy a drink in the sunshine with your closest kin.  Bliss. 

So, here I am suggesting you create your own pattern interrupt, a mental mini-break.  Find a space where you can clear your calendar and just be.  (*Cocktails optional)

Does that feel uncomfortable?  Think, if you can, of being in holiday mode.  The time is carved out for respite and relaxation and to just enjoy the moment with no set plan.

The funny thing is, just like when on holiday you get that fresh perspective, by taking a mental mini-break you’re more likely to get the clarity and breakthroughs you’ve been over-looking.  By slowing down you can speed up when you get back to it.

Good old Einstein had it nailed: “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

Or maybe Madge put it best:  “If we took a holiday, took some time to celebratejust one day out of life – it would be, it would be so nice.”

Give it a try! 

Here’s to a sparkling week ahead, Emma  x 

**NLP Practitioner

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Well THAT was embarrassing. Did you see it?

06 19 2016

Let me just acknowledge the elephant in the room.  I disappeared for a while.

Maybe I owe you a little explanation.  I’ll come to that in a moment…

The reason for sharing with you is I believe I can shed some light on what NOT to do if this story is something you can relate to.

I’ll also share what happened when I took the leap – and it totally back-fired!  

So, back to the point, I disappeared.  I checked out for a bit.

If truth be told… I was hiding away from you guys.  You see, my passion is helping people to be their best selves, helping them to live their sparkle and yet, rewind a year, and I felt so far from that myself.

I felt a fraud.  I felt I needed to be the finished product to be able to help you.  I thought I needed to go away and fix parts of my life first.  It’s the perfectionist in me – I wanted to do this thing right.  If I was to help you then surely I’d need to be an expert in, and perfect in, all areas.

Writing this to you now I realise how ridiculous it sounds.  Yet still a part of me whispers “who am I to be able to help anyone else when there’s still things I’m working on?”  Old habits die hard, as they say.

But striving for utopia is perfectionism on over-drive.  It’s me procrastinating on the one thing I feel really called to do – to help, to write, to show up in ways that help you create your best life.

So, what not to do?

Don’t wait for the perfect time. There never is one.

Don’t wait for the perfect opportunity to show up.  It won’t.

Don’t wait to feel like you’re ready/perfect. You won’t – nothing changes unless YOU change.

What’s standing between you and what you want?

I’ve spent the best part of my lifetime hiding and actively avoiding attention.  But deep down I know that standing between me and what I want (helping people on a bigger scale), I need to come out of hiding and push my comfort zone

So this week I decided to be brave.  I love to write to you but I know sometimes I hide behind the written word. Speaking up is my challenge.  I made a commitment to my awesome coach to “show my face”.  I gave my word that I’d share on Facebook Live.

This was majorly uncomfortable.  By showing up on Facebook Live I had to do the opposite of my default attention-avoidance, as if I was saying “look at me, I’m here and I have something to say.”  That is hugely out of my comfort zone.  It’s LIVE people – there’s zero room for perfectionism.

My insecurities were laid bare – insecure in the value of what I had to say, how I was saying it, how I was looking while saying it.  To me, I was raising my head over the parapet and opening myself up to being judged.  (That’s not to say that’s what I expected of the gorgeous peeps who might see it but they were the warning bells clanging by that ‘chimp brain’ of mine that’s trying to protect me.)

And I can’t tell you how (embarrassingly) long my finger hovered over the scary “Go Live” button.

BUT THEN… The utopia came to mind.  The life I imagine and the ‘me’ in it tapped me on the shoulder and, instead, I asked: “What would that Emma do?”  So, I pressed the button and I did it.

(Did you see?  It was a disaster.  The sound did not work!!!  I  chatted to myself for 8 minutes! EMBARRASSING. But I did it and I left it up there as proof, imperfect as it is!)

And here’s the lesson I’ve learned that I want to share.

I’ve come to learn that success is in the little victories.  I’d been focusing on the end game – striving for that finish line of success before I can help.

What’s courage anyway?  To me it’s letting your want/need for something be just a fraction bigger than your fear.  It’s a succession of moments like that, each moment getting you that little bit closer to your desired you and desired destination.

So, I ask again.  What stands between you and what you want? And what can you do to have courage (that’s just a tiny bit bigger than your fear) for one bold moment this week?

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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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What More Do You Want? 5 Tips For The Girl Who Has It "All"

06 09 2016

Be kind for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle” – Plato

Appearances can be deceptive.  What looks glossy on the outside might be very different when you take a closer look.

Social media has got to be a prime example of this.  Someone’s newsfeed is a highlights reel of their life but maybe not the truest reflection.  You might be like me – posting pictures of the magical moments with your kiddiwinks when everyone is fed, happy and absorbed in play…. You’ll find the meltdowns and dinner-time battles on the virtual-cutting-room floor! 

Just think for a moment: maybe your life looks picture perfect to someone else?

How does that make you feel?  If you’re content and at a point of bliss, you’re likely to feel proud and grateful.  Positive.

If, on the other hand, you know that what your life looks like isn’t true of what it feels like, then you may feel a bit of discomfort.  Guilty?  A bit of a fraud?

Life can look good but you might still be craving something more.  And that’s ok.  It’s just a whisper from your intuition that is nudging you to explore it.  It’s like an itch you need to scratch.

You can have what many people desire and still want more.  Not in a greedy way, but in a way that means a part of you is looking to express itself, or to be more fulfilled in some way.

Feeling guilty about that or trying to ignore it isn’t the answer.  It’s there and it’s simply a message to do something about it. 

So, how can you dig a little deeper and find out what that niggle is? 

There’s no simple answer as it can take some exploration but, on some level, you already know the answer.  Here’s a few suggestions to help you listen in to that whisper:

  • Be quiet: Spend time in silence.  We’re so busy doing that often we lose connection to who we are being.  By slowing down you’re allowing the time and space to tune into yourself, your inner knowing.  Try guided meditation, or mindfulness or simply listening to some relaxing music with your attention on your breathing.
  • Free-flow: Flow of consciousness writing is a great way to connect to your intuition.  Grab a journal, a pen and some quiet space and just allow your pen to write whatever comes to mind.  No censoring just let it come out.  Don’t be tempted to second-guess or correct what you write, or even to question if it makes sense, just keep going.  Let it be an outlet for any of the thoughts in your head or any of the emotions you may be feeling.  Once you clear past the clutter you’ll then find that you get deeper-level insights.  By doing this regularly, you’ll get into the practice of connecting with your true self and you’ll be surprised at the insights you’ll get from this.
  • Get support: Like a blind spot when you’re driving, sometimes you just can’t see it yourself.  You may need someone to ask you the right questions to get to the answers that are already there.  Your thought patterns and beliefs are hard-wired and there to protect you.  Often a niggle can be a need for something to change so your brain goes into protection mode.  By having someone else guide you, you get a different perspective and can ‘see round’ old patterns of being and behaving that have kept you stuck.
  • Follow your yes: Any opportunity that comes your way, say yes (well, within reason!).  Don’t think and question – if it feels right, go for it.  Experiment, play, have fun.  Follow your bliss 
  • Accept the help: I created the FREE Clarity Session workshop to help feelings just like this.  If you haven’t yet accessed this mini workshop I gifted to you, you can access it here. 

I’d love to hear from you.  Share your behind-the-scenes story, the more ironic/funny, the better.  When have you posted a photo on social media when things weren’t quite so rosy in reality? 

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Spend a Fiver, Change Your Life

03 24 2016

Have you ever been wandering around a clothes shop and spotted something for someone else, thinking “that is so her“?  Something about a simple item of clothing represents somebody’s style or character and what you believe about them.  

The same process happens on a deeper level in your head and about you.  What you believe about yourself will impact your choices – ultimately sending your life in one direction or another, often at 180° angle to each other.  

In my first Livestream (so please excuse the novice techie issues at start and end!), I share why this happens and how a £5 investment can be the first step towards a life-changer.

And then I’d love to hear from you.  What will you stick on YOUR mirror?  (Share a selfie on my Facebook page if you’re feeling brave!!)

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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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