“Whose dipping?” The question pops into my family chat group. You might think they’re asking if I am having boiled eggs for breakfast, but that’s not it.
I head to the beach, squeeze into my swim socks and walk into the cold water, wondering if the fear and dread will ever leave me.
One morning in May, my sister and I arrived at the beach to meet with the Hartlepool Brass Monkey Sea Swimmers and get some help. I’d been doing Wim Hof style ice showers since January, but it did naaah-thing to prepare me for my first dip in the North-East Sea.
“Walk in slowly. Once the water gets to your waste, drop down to cover your shoulders and wait 20 seconds.”
Said a gorgeous woman from the group.
We almost didn’t do it.
“Shall we just watch today and go in tomorrow?” my sister said.
“I got up at 5:30am. I’m on the beach in my swimming costume. I’m going in!”
We walked in slowly, trying not to scream, or run in and out of the waves like 5 year olds.
“It’s like a thousand knives all over your body.”
But then something magical happened. Everything fell quiet, my body relaxed and I was completely calm. Just like that, I’m bobbing in the waves, looking at the sunrise with a massive smile on my face.
I drove home with the blowers and heated seats on max, fumbled with the house keys and let myself in. Four hours later I got out of the hot shower and dressed in three jumpers.
At 6am the following day, we were back, shoulders submerged, counting to 20 waiting for the pain to pass.
And that’s how we became Sea-Dippers.
Some days I like to be alone and enjoy a meditationy experience, but mostly we’re bouncing about chatting.
In the sea, we are all the same.
Nothing to compare.
Nothing to judge.
The waves don’t care how expensive your car is, nor do they want to read the label on your clothes. Perhaps the only thing the Brass Monkey’s do judge is who best captured the magic in their photos.
We each have our own reason for being there. I’ve met people recovering from cancer, others have joint problems, depression, inflammation, and anxiety. I’ve heard stories of pain and struggle, leaving me in awe. What resilience people have. I sometimes wonder how they are still functioning at all. In so many ways, the sea is their therapy.
We have each been transformed by the sea. Nature. A place that doesn’t accept credit cards. Just your barely clothed body and a smile.
Join a dip near you! Free! Courtesy of planet earth.
Occasionally she throws in some waves for free.
WILLINGLY GIVE AND GRACIOUSLY RECEIVE
Don’t you find that most people find it easier to give than to receive?
For my 30th birthday, my husband bought tickets for us to see the Table Tennis finals at the Olympic Games in Athens. Yes, I am a player, and watcher of Table Tennis, Ping Pong, Wiff-Waff.
He bought them months before, and keeping the surprise almost killed him. As my birthday got closer, he couldn’t stop trying to give me clues and would occasionally blurt out `oh my god, you should be so excited!’
For 12 months I sat on the receiving end of, erm, nothing, save for the frequent outbursts of impatience and excitement. The Table Tennis was too fast for the human eye, but sitting with a pint of Amstel in Athens, watching Paula Radcliffe on the big screen was a magical memory!
You know that excitement you feel when you’ve bought someone a great gift? You’re hopping from foot to foot, clapping your hands in anticipation.
Giving is in our nature.
We love to give, but do you feel the same way about receiving? Are your arms wide open ready to receive? Are you smiling widely?
During lockdown, my mother in law started sending packages to my kids filled with little gifts and treats.
My youngest has since developed an obsession with `checking the post.’
What if we were to live with that same feeling of anticipation, that something magical is on its way to us?
Really think about this.👇
In life, you want to achieve and experience the good that you desire. Damn right you do! And you should!
In relation to your goals, your arms are wide open, impatience for them to show up in your life. A new job, more money, the trip of a lifetime, the idea that will leap onto the page and become a best selling novel. Hell yes! I am so ready to receive these things.
As soon as possible please!
Oh, but please do remember that I don’t like receiving gifts, surprises, help from other people or love from strangers. These things I do not want to receive.
Can you see the conflict here? It’s not a pick and mix sweet shop. We either expect and accept abundance into our life, or we do not. Our filtering system, cuts off the supply of all of the good that is trying to find its way to our doorstep.
If we can graciously receive in every area of our life, the message we are sending is `hey, I am wide open to ideas, gifts, inspiration, help, an idea for a novel, five thousand pounds and a scented candle.’
Open the doors and windows! Invite, expect and anticipate all the good that is ready to come to you.
How liberating is the idea that you do not have to control everything?
Loosen your grip and allow the magic to find you.
…release your strangle hold on the idea that you have to work hard to control outcomes. The belief that, when things are not going as you would like them to go, that you must work harder, and harder, and harder, and harder, and harder… There’s a point of diminishing return looming!
Allow other possibilities to find you. Expect the elegant solution and open your mind to that flash of brilliance or inspiration, the likes of which that can only find you when you stop pushing against the tide.
What does it all mean?
Some of our industries have been punched in the stomach. Some business have been cut off at the knees. The economy is slowly sinking into the ground. Our children’s education has a hole that can never be repaired.
But look out of the window.
The tree is still the tree. The bird is still the bird. The sky is still the sky. The sand is still abundantly carpeting the beaches of our planet.
The sun rises and falls. The stars still shine. The earth rotates.
Your heart is still beating, your lungs breathing. Your mouth can lift at the corners into a smile. Your heart can still love the world, yourself, each other and those most precious near, far and passed.
Your eyes can sparkle. They can read to enjoy words on a page. They can look upwards and around to sample the clouds, the rain, the sun and the colours that blanket this planet.
Our industries will go on, or more exciting ones will rise up and fill the spaces left behind. Our businesses may walk in a new direction, but they will walk again. The economy never sinks, it does what we decide it will do. Our children have the wisdom of experience that cannot be learned in books.
A Caterpillar will still become a Butterfly.
I don’t have a Mental Illness, but am I Mentally Well?
Following a personal transformation, I found my way back to happiness. True happiness, not the surface happiness that many of us tolerate because we don’t know how to feel better.
Most people assume that I got my mojo back because I left my Senior Leadership role to follow my passion, but that wasn’t it. I started to sparkle 2 years before anything in my outer world changed.
I learned that happiness and appreciation are mental habits, and if they’re not practiced in the present they are never experienced in the future. 
Many of us sit in the waiting room of life assuming ‘I’ll be happy when…’
I’ve always been outwardly happy, calm and optimistic, taking pride in the ease with which I dealt with demanding roles. I don’t recall how or when happiness turned to numbness, and wellness to dis-ease, but I can tell you the exact moment when this truth hit me square in the face!
It was December in NYC, with colleagues in the lobby of the Hilton Hotel. We were about to head into the cold to walk the couple of blocks to our end of year leadership meeting. A colleague asked how I was. Rather than the expected and usual exchange of pleasantries she actually wanted to know.
How was I coping with 2 young children? Did I have support at home? Was I taking care of myself?
I told her all was well and turned away.
What was this water in my eyes?
It’s just the sadness of leaving home the day after my daughter’s birthday, I rationalised. It doesn’t help that I feel unwell with this sinus infections (my third of the year).
I sat in the bathroom of the Hotel and, in a flash, I knew what burnout was. Me! Burn out?
The tightening prodded at my chest!
Hello! I’ve been here for a while. How much longer do you intend to ignore me?
Lorna, you’ve been running on adrenaline for so long, your body thinks there’s a Saber-Toothed Tiger permanently about to attack!
You’ve been `numbing out’ every weekend binge drinking and binge watching.
The only thing keeping you sane is your daily workout.
This was true. I’d used exercise to reset, prepare my mind and body, boost my energy and positively charge my days. For most of my career, this had served me well. That cold December morning in NYC was the moment I realised I was headed in the wrong direction and I needed to take action.
My positive outlook had mutated into a stubborn avoidance of any negative emotion. I didn’t realise that in shutting out negative emotions, I was shutting out all emotions. How can we instruct our mind not to feel negative emotion, yet still expect the good stuff? When we instruct our mind and body not to feel, it goes both ways.
- I couldn’t find pleasure in anything
- I didn’t look forward to anything
- Pain in my chest
- Continuous colds
- Frequent sinus infections
My grand declaration that something had to change, sparked a sequence of events, beginning with a 6-month personal growth process.
From the moment I took the first step everything changed.
It was 2 years before I left my leadership career to create my own business, but my joy, wellbeing and confidence started to skyrocket way before then. Today, I do what I love every day and it never feels like work. I’d do even if I didn’t get paid, but that’s not the reason I feel joyful.
As I’ve been putting together the pieces of this puzzle, I am able to explain what changed. I started proactively taking care of my Mental Wellness.
Eureka! Get this girl on Oprah’s couch!
Yes, it’s very simple and obvious. So is the idea that exercise improves our fitness, but are we all out walking, running, swimming or rollerblading 5 times a week? I started taking care of my Mental Wellness 7 days a week! Stacking wellbeing and mindset habits that made me feel amazing. I continue to get fitter and more jubilant with every passing day.
What is Mental Wellness?
The Global Wellness Institute says that Mental Wellness is more than just the absence of Mental Illness (the presence or absence of diagnosable mental disorders such as depression, anxiety, personality disorders, etc.). Mental Wellness is the extent to which we feel happy, satisfied, have strong relationships and personal growth.
Declining Mental Wellness can look and feel like stress, worry, loneliness, or sadness. It can make us more vulnerable to Mental Illness.  A study of Americans aged 25-74 found that people with moderate to languishing Mental Wellness were 86% more likely to develop a Mental Illness. 
About 15% of the world’s population suffers from a diagnosed mental or substance use disorder, but that does not mean that the other 85% of the population is “mentally well” or leading healthy, happy, productive, and satisfied lives. Many people who do not have a mental illness still do not feel healthy or function well.
A Mental Illness requires professional diagnosis and clinical treatment, but Mental Wellness is an active process of moving from languishing, to resilience, to flourishing. Mental Wellness is a lifelong process and a proactive strategy to strengthen our resources. Each of us can be proactive in increasing our level of Mental Wellness. The suggestion is not that Mental Wellness can solve or cure Mental Illness, but that practices that support and improve our Mental Wellness are increasingly recognised as positive factors for our Mental Health.
As we seek to recover from the impacts of the Global Pandemic, this is an important and empowering idea.
The GWI highlights good sleep, good nutrition, exercise, meaningful relationships, reducing stress and meditation as important factors that support Mental Wellness. I enrich my life in these areas and I have implemented a number of additional game changing strategies.
Lost your spark?
Here are some of the things you can do to start thriving and shining your light more brightly:
- Meditate – You can be a Buddha and a Badass.
- Practice Gratitude – Appreciate what you have now, and unashamedly go for more. Phone someone and tell them you’re thankful. (It’s impossible to feel grateful and pi**ed off at the same time).
- Journaling – Writing s**t down gets it out of your head and onto paper, where it can be looked upon objectively. Write about your intentions for the day, the week, the year…. Write about the type of person you are becoming.
- Do something you love every day. Paint, read, play the guitar, do some gardening, stare at the wall…
- Move every morning. Ideally exercise. Ideally outside. Ideally get some sunlight.
- Study – Read something uplifting and empowering every morning.
- Get Sociable – Phone your best friend, join a community to engage with new people, email a stranger you admire and strike up a conversation, say good morning to everyone you pass.
All of these things will have a powerful impact on the way you feel every day. You will start to attract people towards you who think and feel this way too. You will make faster progress towards your goals than ever before.
No matter how much I tell you about the benefits, you will not put these processes into your life consistently until:
- You have a big reason for doing it.
- You make a committed decision.
- You stay with it long enough to feel the benefits for yourself.
Don’t try to do all of these at once. Pick one that resonates. Do it every day for 30 days. Then add another.
I developed a 6 week system that goes deep into these powerful practices (and more) and shows you how to implement them so they stick. The results experienced by everyone who has taken part surpassed my expectations (and theirs)!
The thing that excites me so much is that a thriving and fulfilling life is within each of us, and there are things we can do to let it out. It has nothing to do with how much money you earn or what you do for a living, yet ironically, when you start to live this way your results and circumstances start to improve; often dramatically.
Somehow, when you play at this level, success finds you.
I didn’t get my dream job, because I was unhappy with my old one.
I got my dream job, because I was happy! Not happy “because of.”
 Psycho-cybernetics, Maxwell Maltz
 Defining The Mental Wellness Economy Report, November 2020. The Global Wellness Institute
 LenaGWI, Defining Mental Wellness, February 2021. Global Wellness Institute
 The Buddha and The Badass. Vishen Lakhiani.
Frequently the immediate and urgent priorities of the day prevent us from making real progress towards the goals we care about most.
We get caught in an operational loop, reacting and firefighting, rather than taking the daily steps required for long term success.
This practical article introduces a simple process that guarantees meaningful advancement towards important and long term goals, while taking care of the day to day needs of your customers, employees and family.
Let’s look at To Do Lists.
When we write a `to do’ list it feels good and can be beneficial because:
- It organises our thoughts and declutters our mind.
- We identify the priority actions that must be taken in relation to our goals.
- We don’t forget about important tasks.
- We determine the day/weeks priorities
5 Reasons they can hinder progress and productivity towards your goals:
- They’re often tasks related to immediate or short-term priorities, so we may never take the small and necessary steps towards a longer-term goal.
Having cleared today’s priorities we feel productive, but we fail to take daily action towards a longer-term goal that we really care about, which moves progressively out of reach.
- Since they often have an unlimited number of tasks, our list can become a `brain dump’, rather than a well thought out, clearly defined set of priorities that support your short and long-term objectives.
- The language `To Do List’ or `Task List’ creates a mental image of ticking boxes. If this becomes the main focus and measure of your day, you may miss out on doing something more fulfilling and meaningful, such as spending time building a closer relationship with a colleague, or customer.
- We may complete the easiest/quickest items on the list, putting off anything that’s challenging until it becomes urgent.
- They’re usually not categorised or prioritised so an important client commitment could be on the same list as ‘drop off dry cleaning.’
There is a way we can clear our mind, create focus and intention on the things that matter today and 12 months from now.
Replace your To Do List with 3 Impactful Intentions
At the end of every day, sit quietly and focus on your long-term goal, bringing the reality of this goal to the forefront of your mind. See it as if it is already achieved.
Next, think of 3 actions you can complete the following day that will move you closer to your goal. The scope and scale of the action is not important, baby steps are fine.
We are looking for daily progress.
We call these goal-achieving actions. They must be clearly defined and take you one step further towards your goal.
Write them down, sign and date the commitment.
At the end of the day, check them off and do the exercise again in preparation for the following day.
We frequently put off taking any action on something we want in the future, thinking that we need to carve out enough time to make a real impact.
Think about it!
3 actions towards your long-term goal each day is 15 per week and 60 per month.
If you have a project you want to progress in addition to your day job, doesn’t it immediately feel more achievable?
In relation to your work or business goals, we frequently get caught up in what Stephen Covey calls The Whirlwind. Daily important and urgent tasks will always come before our strategic long-term goals. The result? We get to the year end and feel frustrated at the lack of progress towards the things we know will contribute most to your personal growth and the continued success of our business or the company.
To progress a personal and a professional goal, I’d suggest creating 3-Impactful Intentions for your personal goal and 3 Impactful Intentions for your current role/business.
How and why is this different to a traditional Action Plan or To Do List?
- Language is important. The word `Task’ infers a chore or imposition and feels somewhat mundane. `Impactful Intentions’ implies a level of impact, decisiveness, energy and clarity.
- Articulating your Impactful Intentions into `Goal-Achieving Actions’ reminds you that the intentions you create must link to your goal.
- They are directly connected to your goal so advancement towards your ambition is guaranteed, rather than left to chance.
- They can be completed in addition to your other important daily tasks.
What if you miss?
If you compete 2 actions out of 3, carry the outstanding action over to the following day.
My husband is 35 days into a 90-day Spin challenge. He will complete a 600-calorie spin workout every day for 90 days.
The challenge he created permits him 3 misses and 3 carry overs. In a 90-day period he is permitted to miss 3 sessions completely and on 3 occasions he is allowed to miss a day and double up later.
You may wish to structure your Impactful Intentions in a similar way, allowing yourself 3 carry overs in a 30-day period.
The level of discipline is yours to decide and control.
Forget waiting for a respite from the number of urgent, daily tasks. When did that last happen?
If you want to make big significant progress in any area of your life, you must think and take action, beyond what’s right in front of you.
You will be surprised how impactful this simple habit can be.
It helped me change careers and it’s helping me power my successful Personal Development Business. Good luck. Let me know if this helps.
10 years ago, my husband Mark and I had a side-hustle running a weekend Coffee Trailer on the sea front, across the road from where we lived. Good coffee wasn’t around and none of the coffee chains had made it to our coastal town.
I’d wake up each Saturday looking forward to my first cup of coffee, to spend time outside and to chat with our regular customers. Hard work, but a nice break from my 9-5.
We didn’t make much money apart from the occasions that created bigger crowds, such as the year the Tall Ships Race came to Hartlepool. (I’d never heard of it either. It’s pretty outstanding. Look it up!). It brought thousands of people to the town, and on the final day most of them lined the promenade to watch the Ships arrive.
We opened at 7am, and by 8am we had already served more coffee than a typical Saturday. This continued all morning and I had to call my parents to restock the milk and water.
I glanced at the queue, panic building when I couldn’t see the end of it. I nudged Mark and told him to look at the sea of people waiting for coffee. He turned up the music, continued steaming milk, and said to me laughing, “just don’t look down.”
I smiled, understanding.
Don’t look at the queue.
Serve one customer at a time.
One coffee at a time.
We finished the day drinking beer, eating pizza and laughing at the pile of 20-pound notes piled on the kitchen table.
After our request to build a fixed coffee hut was declined, Coffee@Seaton ceased trading. From time to time, we tell the story of `Tall Ships Tuesday’ and laugh.
The metaphor isn’t precise, but `don’t look down’ has become family code for taking things one step at a time. In March 2020, as the impacts of the Global Pandemic became evident, I needed this motto more than ever.
In June 2019, I officially started my Personal Development Business and with it my next life chapter. I left my leadership role at Amex GBT to spend my life supporting the development of leaders, teams and individuals, helping them to level up their life, achieving higher levels of fulfilment and success.
When the lockdown started, my business was progressing well, but still in its infancy.
In alignment with the guidance I provide to my clients; I have a big goal. Something I have never done before; it scares me a little and excites me a lot.
Through February and March, I listened to the daily Pandemic briefings, absorbed the information and reflected on my personal situation.
- My husband had taken voluntary redundance in January to accelerate his fine furniture business.
- Neither of us were eligible for support
- I had been speaking with large numbers of people who were ready to enrol onto my course, but felt there was now too much uncertainty for them to invest in themselves.
- I had to cancel two live seminars.
- The detailed growth plans for my business were now invalid.
- We were both trying to get businesses off the ground, while home schooling.
- My existing clients were thriving, and grateful to have the information and guidance I was providing.
- There had never been a bigger need for what I do. In that respect, timing was perfect. In many other respects, timing was disastrous!
One of the powerful processes I help people to implement is how to stay in control, regardless of what’s going on around them.
In other words, even if the world around them is falling apart, they have the tools to focus on what they do have, what they do want, rather than what they do not have and what they do not want. This means they never have to be a victim of circumstances (Global Pandemics included).
For me, this meant locking into my goal even more intensely and advancing confidently. It required accepting the situation as it was, paying no attention to the things I could not control and focusing on everything in my life that I was grateful for. It also meant being a seeker of solutions and opportunities, as opposed to obstacles and problems.
These things are easy to talk about and simple to write about but challenging to carry out. When you’re in the grip of your own life circumstances, more money is flying out than is coming in and you’re now questioning everything you were sure of, life can get tricky.
I definitely teetered more than once.
I had been working 8-hours per day, confidently building my business. Then, almost overnight, 4 hours were diverted to exercising, educating, entertaining and feeding two kids (aged 3 and 8). Thankfully, Mark took a bigger share, but the interruptions were relentless.
After a day of frustrated tears, I was forced to get real about what I could expect to achieve for my business. I decided to `park’ the whiteboard of ideas and plans I had for 2020 and simplify things.
I reminded myself of the reason I moved into the Personal Development Industry. I have lists of the things I want to achieve, the businesses I want to work with, the courses and books I have in progress, but it all boils down to a simple vision.
I want to help thousands of people transform the quality of their life.
On Tall Ships Tuesday our goal was to provide coffee to everyone in the queue. We would have loved it if they didn’t have to wait 30 minutes, but that was an impossibility. During 2020 I wanted to be delivering 4 live seminars per month, facilitating my leadership development courses in person and doing more to promote my business, but during a Global Pandemic and a working week cut by 50% it was not going to happen.
Don’t look down Lorna!
- Don’t try to guess when lockdowns will be lifted.
- Don’t wait for certain industries to recover.
- Don’t try to do 8 hours work in 4 hours.
- Take one step towards growing your business each day. One Coffee at a time!
What can I do during a Global Pandemic? What do people need?
I decided on two priorities:
- To continue to serve my existing clients and continuously improve the way I support them.
- To find a way to reach and help as many people as possible during this period.
Once I let go of all the things I couldn’t do and decided on some simple priorities, everything shifted; I felt confident and calm, I was lighter, focused and excited.
I built a Facebook page called BeTheChange and started recording daily videos filled with supportive ideas and reflections.
I was invited to speak to several business leaders looking to offer support to their employees, I was interviewed for the radio, and I developed a `Furlough friendly’ course that would help people thrive during the challenging time.
I built and delivered a webinar called `Managing your mindset during uncertainty.’
I shifted my focus from growing a business, to being in service to others. This is now the only way I work. With or without a Global Pandemic.
When the schools returned in September, I launched my 6-week Mindset Bootcamp course, which became one of the highlights of 2020 for me and all the wonderful people who attended.
I am frequently asked whether the Pandemic has impacted my business and my answer is always the same. I have nothing to compare it to, but I have had steady and continued growth, a network of people thanking me for changing their life and I ended the year with some big contracts agreed and several in the pipeline.
Going back to February, had I allowed a sufferer’s narrative to take hold, I would have been finished.
What did I learn that might be helpful for you?
- To be present, happy and grateful for what I have, while enjoying working towards an even better tomorrow.
- When I am in service to others, I literally cannot fail.
- The plan may change, the goal should not.
- Recognise early what cannot be controlled and let it go quickly.
- Focus on what I want, not what I do not want.
I wish you a year of revival, abundance, health, wellness and prosperity.
When I was in a VP role, I posted a blog on the company Intranet.
I’d sat on it for months overthinking whether or not to share it. Should a “VP” share like this?
It was personal. I talked about my challenges as a female leader, a mother and shared some funny bits when everything went wrong.
A colleague encouraged me to post it.
It went viral. I thought I understood authenticity. The comments took this deeper!
Authenticity isn’t just about being true to who you are. It’s about being truly open, having nothing to prove, nothing to defend and nothing to hide.
- Nothing to prove
- Nothing to defend
- Nothing to hide
How would it feel if you showed up this way? I can tell you, it’s liberating! I wish I’d know this earlier in my career. I knew it intellectually, but I never had the deep awareness of it. I never operated 100% from this place.
I never REALLY understood the power of my voice as a leader.
Hundreds of comments like:
`I didn’t think it was possible to be a mother and reach senior positions.’
`It’s nice to know I’m not the only one struggling.’
Fast forward to today. I received this message.
“I’m grateful for your down to earth approach during XXX. An unsettling time and many senior management seemed far away and unapproachable, but the ultimate turning point was your blog which reached the masses. Making everyone at every level feel that normal life routines are part of working life and can be spoken about. It also felt inspiring that you can reach high for senior positions if you want them.”
Even though I wrote the article quite some time ago, I felt profoundly happy when this message hit my inbox.
What imprint are you leaving at this very minute that is touching someone’s life for ever? who are you helping to stand a little bit taller today?
Not Another Motivational Quote!
Part of my Professional Development involves attending week-long training events in Canada and the U.S. Typically, each morning we receive a gift and card with a quote.
`An inch of movement will bring you closer to your goals than a mile of intention’
`Silence isn’t empty, it’s full of answers.’
Powerful words to kick off 8 hours of personal growth and expansion.
Are quotes like these appearing in your Social Feeds?
Most of us probably appreciate them and they’re slightly more optimistic than the reported news. Imagine if we pulled sounds bites from the TV news and turned them into a quote for the day! We could call them ` Warning of the day,’ `Today’s discouraging thought.’
With motivational quotes filling up our social feeds, are they starting to lose their impact? Are they becoming white noise as we glance, smile and swipe up?
What do you do with them? Send them on; a quick virtual hello and an uplifting message to the world?
As a regular `Post-woman’, I believe that a steady stream of uplifting thoughts is better than a tidal wave of poison.
Where did this all start?
When a person is impacted by a great speech, or an inspiring book, which leaves a big impression they want to share it. They pull out the quote that best represents their breakthrough and it appears in your feed.
Beautiful, but diluted.
The person reading the book or listening to the speech was on a personal journey that can’t be replicated. It may have changed their life, but it won’t change yours if you smile, share and scroll.
Next time you find a quote that creates a big reaction inside of you, don’t scroll it away. Re-read it and ponder over it. Think about its meaning. Write it out every day.
This is how you internalise it and plant it into your mind. If you don’t internalise it, there will be no impact on your life. Maybe it spoke to you for a reason!
We are conditioned to read a book once and put it down. The way I study and teach is to read and listen to information repeatedly. We use processes to internalise the message and turn it over to our subconscious mind, so it becomes part of us. When this happens, you start to feel and behave differently – automatically!
That’s how we change.
Nothing changes when we read something once and scroll up. Nothing changes when you read a personal development book once and put it down and move onto the next one.
Set a small intention. Next time you read or hear something that resonates powerfully, grab it and study it for 30 days.
“When you read a good book through the second time, you don’t see something in it you didn’t see before, you see something in yourself that wasn’t there before.”
Did you set a health goal in January?
Did you want to drink less alcohol, stop eating sugar, reduce your body weight, build muscle…?
How is it working out for you?
Sincerely, I hope it’s positive. However, it’s almost June and many people are still not where they want to be. I believe there are two simple reasons for this.
- The reason for wanting your goal is not strong enough
- You’re not consistently emotionally connected to it.
The exciting part is that if there are two reasons why we can’t succeed, there are two reasons why we can.
Everything has an opposite. Thin – fat (can we still say fat?), fit – unfit (surely that’s allowed?), up – down, right – left, inside – outside. If we can find the reasons for our unwanted results, we can easily find the breakthrough required for the results we do want.
We begin by looking at the reason we set the goal to begin with. If it was New Year, you had likely done two things:
- Used the end of the year as an intention for the future changes you planned to make; another way of saying `I’ll start on Monday,’ settling your mind as you opened the peanuts and poured a glass of wine.
In January most people are talking about goals, so it’s easy to get energised and stay committed for a while. You can’t walk down the street or turn the TV on without seeing a reference to health, diets and fitness. Even if you weren’t thinking about your body weight or whether you’re in shape, you soon will be. And, even though 1st January is just another date, it feels like a new beginning. It feels like when I get to the end of a notebook, bursting to start a new one so that I can stop looking at the cluttered pages. But, by the end of January the notebook is as messy as the previous one!
Why are all the ideas of a clean start, that promise better results, quickly forgotten?
There are two simple reasons:
- Your WHY isn’t big enough
- You stopped focusing on WHY
Your WHY isn’t big enough
Your reasons for wanting to eat well and get fit start powerfully. It’s likely that you’ve been mildly dissatisfied for a while, but then something triggers the end of the line for you; your favourite jeans don’t fit/ you catch a glimpse of yourself in a window. You feel terrible. You don’t like feeling terrible, so you act – join a gym, start a 10-week diet programme, restock your fridge with green stuff and put chocolate in the bin (or eat it all in one go, which is fine since you’re starting your 10-week diet tomorrow).
The problem is that this reason for taking action isn’t powerful enough. It comes from a place of misery – the worst you’ve felt about yourself. 6 weeks into the diet programme you start to feel better and your jeans fit again. The misery that was driving you has gone. Even if you reach the end of the 10 weeks your motivation shrinks by the day.
Spend time getting to a great WHY!
Dig deep for a reason or a series of reasons that are going to keep you on the right path for the rest of your life.
Take some time to do this and find reasons that will have a powerful impact for you.
Some examples to get you started:
- Your Future – if you continue the path you are on, what will your health, body and fitness be like 2 years from now, 5 years from now, 10 years from now?
- Vanity – what do you want your body, skin, hair and nails to look like?
- Energy – how are your weekends; are you exhausted or bouncing? Can you run around with your kids/ grandkids?
- Internal Health – are your organs and bodily functions still serving you?
- Lifestyle Related Diseases – the diseases you are highly likely to get if you continue to put more damaging things into your body than healthy things.
- Maintenance is Easier – I’d rather preserve a healthy body shape/ size and weight than always trying to release weight or regain fitness.
Once you have dug deep and unearthed the reasons you want to develop (or maintain) a healthy lifestyle, ask yourself some questions:
Do I care enough about these reasons?
Is it going help me stay on track when will power is no longer in my corner?
Am I emotional about it? If not, is it important enough to you? Look again, find a reason that you care about and lock it in.
Cultivate your WHY every day
With a strong reason for your health-related goals, you must now get emotionally connected to it every day.
If your WHY is lack of energy, in your journal each day, write a detailed description of a version of you living each day with the most energy you have ever felt moving through you. Step into the feeling of the energy you want to feel by imaging it each day as you visualise it.
If your WHY is the pain of looking in the mirror, look in the mirror every day then immediately connect with the excitement of the person you will become.
The super-simple secret to permanent change is to:
- build a strong reason that you feel emotionally connected to.
- keep it alive by reconnecting to it and focusing on it every single day.
But, be aware of:
- Your internal chatter. The opinion you have of yourself will dictate your results. Create a new way of looking at yourself to compliment your goal. See the you of tomorrow and be him / her now!
- Impatience for visible results. Keep a journal and record the small wins. Notice the immediate change in your skin quality, your sleep quality, energy levels, mood etc.
- Your stories (excuses). We are so good at this but we don’t even know we’re doing it. Find out what yours are so you can begin to extinguish them.
Be kind to yourself.
Make healthier choices today than you did yesterday.
A few chocolate bars do not write off the week (or even the day). It’s a moment in time and what’s important is the bigger picture. Look long term over several days, a week, a month. If you are making the best choices most of the time you’ll get your results.
Find your big WHY, plant that seed, water and nourish it every day!
May is a special month for me. It’s the month I made the committed declaration to put both feet on a new path and step forward into a new career.
Until then, I’d delayed the decision with a reassuring lie.
I told myself that the investment I’d made to acquire the knowledge, skills and experience I needed to help people transform their lives was worth it, even if I chose not to pursue it. If nothing else, it would make me a better leader in my role as VP of Transformation at Amex GBT.
I loved the idea of who I wanted to become; a person with her own company and a mission to share the beautiful system that had taken my life to another level with as many people as possible, but I was still very much attached to my identity as a senior leader in the corporate world. I liked her. I knew her well; she was good at what she did and enjoyed her life there.
Choosing a new path was the easy bit. I had to make a committed decision to jump.
I knew that I would continue along the same path to retirement, unless I started to see myself differently. I couldn’t just think about the idea of a new me. I had to start wearing the clothes and walking around in the shoes of the person I needed to become. The person already in possession of the goal I was dreaming of.
With the desire for my goal burning increasingly ferociously, I was grateful to have the system to help me achieve it. Having already applied it to lead the successful integration of two global companies, I had complete faith that I could use it to create a highly successful business and leave my 20-year corporate career behind.
In a recent interview, I was asked to share why I left the corporate world, how I did it and what I learned.
To answer simply – I had a coach and a structured process that opened my eyes to the potential inside of me and got me out of my own way so I could go for it. I now work with others to help them do the same thing.
The people I work with get results…quickly! Within weeks, their level of joy starts to expand, they glimpse their true potential and they start to experience breakthrough’s.
This is how it happened for me. Breakthrough’s in awareness about how locked in I had been my whole life. Locked in by the ideas about who I was and who I wasn’t. A fixed perception about my place in the world and my potential for anything more or different.
I’d been settling for a happiness level of 4 out of 10, believing that’s just how it was meant to be.
We each have been blessed (and cursed) with an assortment of ideas donated by parents, teachers, bosses, ourselves and the outside world. These ideas turn into fixed opinions about our capability and potential. When I help people recognise their conditioning and how it’s holding them back, the walls come down and they see their world in a whole new way. They look left, they look right, they look all around and up at the stars and everything looks very different to them.
On the surface I had it all, but I knew there was more.
I opened my mind to a life that could be different to the one I had been living.
More joy, more balance, more contribution, more variety, more growth… When I lifted the lid, not only did I get all of these things, but they continue to come and it keeps getting better.
This is what happens:
- You realise that you’re barely using a fraction of your potential (even if you’re already successful)
- Your mind gets to work allowing all the things you’ve ever wanted to be sowed like seeds in soil. Idea seeds that you finally allow to be planted, take root and grow.
- You start to take action in the direction of your dreams.
- You feel incredible! The enthusiasm of a child! The energy of a puppy!
- Results start to come. Fast!
- You attract all the resources and circumstances into your life that you need.
- Those who don’t quite know what they want simply sow ideas. I’ve seen this create beautiful things, that people would never have consciously considered had they not been shown how.
Your mind gets to work sowing the seeds of all the ideas you’ve ever had an impulse about.
When people act on their idea impulses, amazing things start to happen.
Most people don’t act on their intuition, intellectualising the thoughts away before they get chance to become anything.
And when that happens, they remain stuck, in the same life, year after year.
This doesn’t have to be about big career change. It’s about whatever is inside of you that you don’t want to take to your deathbed, having not experienced and brought into the world.
We are all here to contribute something and leave this world better off, more advanced from us being here.
What are you here for?
I don’t believe we have to find a lightning-bolt style purpose which finally reveals what we are supposed to be doing with our life. I was living `on purpose’ up until I felt like I no longer was.
Then I changed and found out what I was meant to be doing next. I found my new purpose.
My life is very different. I am contributing in a very different way and enjoying everything. I’m an 8 out of 10 and I’ve never used the word joy quite so much.
I had the toolkit to create the kind of desire that moves mountains.
The same desire that got a man to the moon, gave us the ability to fly around the world, the internet…. Any result or achievement in this world, was created in a human mind and nourished with desire, until the idea powered itself.
I entertained a possibility, then I got excited and scared by it. Thankfully, I had the understanding to recognise when conditioning (old thinking) was trying to tell me it was a bad idea. I knew when I was procrastinating (scared). Most importantly, I knew how to push through all of this and stay on the path to achieve my goal.
If you have desire, even if your pre programmed self wants to talk you out of it, you can override the old virus code and go for it.
It goes wrong for most people because, for some strange reason they think their deepest desires can only be enjoyed by other people. Why do we believe other people are somehow more intelligent, luckier, more creative or capable than we are?
We believe a life of joy and abundance is for other people.
That’s why I care so deeply about what I do and is one of the biggest reasons WHY I made the committed decision to do it full time.
To leave my role as a VP at Amex GBT and jump.
I didn’t tell anyone about my decision until it happened. I wrote it down. I wrote it on every sheet of note paper in the hotel room. I journaled about it. I visualised it. I affirmed it. I made it my password. Within a couple of months, it was real, and I felt completely ready and 100% certain. I still do!
Today, there are life changing events happening all over the world and it’s causing many people to pause for thought.
Now is THE TIME to think about whether you’re truly living your life `on purpose.’ Here’s how I made it happen, which might get you started.
6 Recommendations if you’re looking to make ANY permanent change:
- Get a mentor and a structured system to give you the knowledge and support.
- Create a big goal, that you don’t yet know how to achieve, backed by a burning desire. To have something different, you must become someone different so you’re going to have to really want it if you’ll be prepared to change.
- Understand your negative and limiting beliefs. You need to learn how to recognise which sneaky ideas and thoughts from your past are going to talk you out of it.
- Replace negative beliefs with more empowering ideas that match your goal.
- Think from your goal not to your goal. The person with your goal thinks and acts differently. Create the idea of the person who already is in possession of your goal and become that person.
- Visualise – Frequently go to the place of your goal using your imagination to get excited by it.
4 Rules to live by:
If the change you want to make is to leave your current employment to start your own business, or jump into a new career, follow these guidelines:
- Always give your best to what you are doing right now.
- List 50 things you are grateful for in your current role.
- Make sure you are running towards something, not away from something.
- Have enough money to cover your current lifestyle for 6 to 12 months.
Don’t set a goal based on today’s limited perception about who you think you can ever become. Set a goal based on what you really want and do the inner work to become that person.
Go for it!