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6 Truths you need to know to let go of anxious thoughts

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Do you find that you’re sometimes overwhelmed with anxious thoughts? Do you wish that you could just press the off switch on your mind, so you didn’t have to listen to your thoughts going on and on and making you even more worried and anxious?

To watch my video click here:

If you’ve never been able to stop worrying, I’m going to introduce you to 6 truths that will help you zap away those anxious thoughts and loosen their hold over you.

I’ve always been an anxious person and for most of my life I found it impossible to turn off the worries. Perhaps more significantly, I felt it was a part of me, a fundamental part of my character and self-identity that I was never going to change and that I would have to learn to manage as best I could. 

I felt the only way to deal with my anxious thoughts was to put them under the microscope, If I analysed them, tried to discover their origin and reasoned with them, I figured, then I’d be able to rationalize them away. Understanding was my go to way to deal with them.

Except if I’m honest this strategy never really worked.

This method was a train track to doom and gloom because one negative, anxious thought led to another until I was swamped. Giving my full attention and spending quality time with my worries, if anything, encouraged them to grow and multiply. 

So what changed?

When I was introduced to a deeper understanding of how humans work at a fundamental level known as the Three Principles, my perception completely changed about the nature of my worries. I very quickly realised that these new insights had led me to a very different relationship with my worries, one where I dramatically reduced the time and attention I gave them and subsequently their power over me started to drift away.

So what did l learn?

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Many of my anxious thoughts were about me and my relationship with others in my world, or worrying about the future, but once I fully understood that I didn't have to trust or believe them, I began to attach far less importance to them.

 

If thoughts are not the truth they have no power to hurt us and I no longer needed to cling to my metaphorical teddy for comfort. What was also interesting was that activities I'd always clung to to try and soothe my anxiousness, watching mindless tv or scrolling indiscriminately on facebook , also drifted away.

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We can’t control our thoughts and it's impossible for us to control which next thought is going to appear in our mind, in that respect we're not in the driving seat. But where we do have control, is in our decision whether to follow them or not.

 

Our thoughts and the way in which they come and go, is part of being human and of being conscious beings. We're not flawed or somehow wrong because we have them.

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 This isn’t about positive thinking or trying to control the down thoughts.

You know one of the ways we try and deal with anxious thoughts is to turn them around, make the positive, reframe them or maybe keep them tightly under control but in a way this is giving ourselves unnecessary work.

 
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If we understand that all thoughts are just passing through and another one will be along very soon, there’s nothing to be done with them.

 

So what I want you to take away from this is that when we have anxious thoughts, it’s not a reflection of us, it's not about who we are. And if we do have worrying thoughts, we don’t need to follow them and allow them to led us onto the next worry or concern.

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There’s nothing to do about an anxious thought except just see it’s simply a thought, one in a long line of thoughts, no more or less important than the one that proceeded it or the one that will come along very soon. 

These truths have enabled me to transform my relationship with worry and anxiety and it's been such a relief to let them go. I  hope they do the same for you.

How to get out of a low mood

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If you’ve used technique after technique to try and deal with your low mood, if you wonder if it’s just you, I'm going to outline how to transform your thinking about low moods and what to do about them.

For me, this understanding which I’m going to share with you was a complete game changer in my relationship with low moods. I’m going to talk through four points to help you deal with your moods

I’ve always been a genius at getting into a low mood if I say so myself. And often the problem wasn’t so much the low mood itself but the thinking that I got into when I was in one. I’d worry that I’d always feel this way, that I got into these moods because of who I was as a person – that I was a failure, or it was my fault so much so that I’d end up turning myself up side down. Then I’d send in the low mood troops and use up a lot of energy trying to zap my low mood.

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So here’s what I discovered when I discovered the three principles or inside out philosophy. 

 1. Low moods are part of being human.

Everyone gets them, no matter how evolved or happy we all are, there are always days when life looks a little more grey. They’re not a reflection of me and my worthiness or not. It’s just part of the human package. This was a huge relief and it took a huge weight of my shoulders and knocked the self analysis right out the window

2. The dance between moods and thoughts. 

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Like most people, I’d always assumed that how I felt was a reflection of circumstances in my life. Is my family life good? What are my finances like? Do I have fun nurturing friendships? The answers to these sorts of questions determined how happy I am. Or so I always believed.

Turns out all these things are not the cause of how I feel. The cause of my feelings are a result of my thoughts about these areas of my life.It’s a bit like going to the cinema. We can all watch a film and have a totally different feeling about the same experience. Some people will love it – best film ever. Other people will think it waste of time – it’s their thoughts about the film that make the difference between happy coming out of the cinema or sad. I talk more about dance of mood and thoughts in other videos but for now I just want you to ponder on the nature of thoughts with me.

3. Thoughts are like clouds

You see thoughts are like clouds –they drift across our mind and we have no control over our next thought and in many ways we just don’t need to worry about them or hold on tightly to themtreat them lightly and allow them to keep on drifting past

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4. You don’t have to try and manage low moods. 

If you have one, just notice it and then get on with your day as best you can. You don’t have to try and fix it or read hidden messages into it. Know it will pass and the less you fiddle with it and try to fix it the quicker this will be

Now you know exactly how to create the most amazing, perfect midlife crisis for you. But what if you then decide you’d like to overcome your crisis? Well I’ve got an audio where I share how I did this and the link is below.

How I overcame my midlife slump

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Mine was a classic midlife crisis. Waking up in the middle of the night, head pounding, thoughts racing, terror.

During the day, dull, worrisome thoughts that I was getting old, over the hill, nothing left. Gradually I withdrew from life and my world became narrower as my mood became consistently lower.      

This went on for a few years.

In March of this year I finally wrote a post in a supportive facebook group for midlife women about my feelings. I got some wonderful support, felt much better and got on with my life. I completely forgot about the post.

Quite by chance, three months later when someone commented on what I’d written, the post popped back up again and as I re-read it I could hardly believe what I was seeing. It was as if I was reading of someone else's plight and I realised in amazement,  I'd come a long way, quickly.

So this account is some of the steps I took from doom and gloom to genuinely enjoying my life and feeling positive and hopeful about my future. This sort of journey is always such a personal one but if you're in a slump yourself, I hope there is some comfort or inspiration that you can take away from it.

Slow steps forward

When I wrote the post, I'd already begun slowly taking action to improve my life, What triggered these steps, I’m not honestly sure but together they very slowly helped me feel more positive.

Reaching out again to others

Part of the angst of that time had been caused by shutting myself away and withdrawing from friendships. My journey back was to find support and fun again in those around me and despite my initial scepticism, I became involved in an MLM business that gave me a much needed community and focus.

I got physical

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I’d always enjoyed exercise but at this point, I made swimming and the gym and long country walks a priority and I noticed that this also helped my mood.

I made my own happiness a priority

Having my daughter at the age of almost 41, I realized that I’d made looking after her my priority and over the years, had stopped doing the things that gave me pleasure. Gradually I gave myself permission to start doing things I enjoyed again, without guilt - coffee and a good book in the afternoon or a rug on the lawn if I felt like it. 

 

When I wrote my “I’m feeling down and need some help” post, these actions were only just starting to take effect but they had given me the courage to write about how I felt because for those years when the thoughts were just swirling around in my head, I’d not been able to look at them in any objective way, nor had I spoken to anyone about them.

Their power over me had been absolute and I’d felt helpless.

But in writing out my feelings in a post, I also gained support and advice from others that made me realise I was going through something that wasn't a reflection on my unique inability to keep things together. Others had gone through similar and most importantly, come out the other side.

And whilst the earlier steps I’d taken had already imperceptibly started to improve my mood, writing the post was the start of gaining momentum.

I kept reading, exploring and searching for answers.

Trying to find answers and more guidance, I read anything that sparked an interest - NLP, spirituality,  personal development and finally I reached Michael Neill’s books The Space Within and The Inside-Out Revolution.

Here, it all got really interesting!

Up to this point, the climb out of my midlife slump had been slow. But reading these books and the 846 related books in rapid succession afterwards (I exaggerate but only slightly!) led to massive transformation and this is what I discovered.

The fast route out of my midlife slump.

I became more aware of the nature of my thoughts and quickly their power over me decreased.

Thoughts come and go, some good, some difficult or upsetting.

These thoughts are 100% responsible for how I feel. I may think what happens to me is the cause of stress and anxiety - having a row with my pre-teen daughter, an unexpected large bill arriving in the post. But these aren’t the root of my unhappiness. My feelings aren’t a reaction to the world and life events, but a reaction to my thoughts about these situations.

I’m living in the feeling of my thinking. So my feelings are never a direct, objective reflection of my life but a reaction to my interpretation of what is happening to me.

My midlife insight and "ah-ha" moments.

The downs I’d experienced were due largely to believing my thoughts, thinking they were reality, a true reflection of my midlife worth and future life prospects.

But these thoughts were never the truth. 

When I finally deep down “got” my feelings were due to believing my faulty, inaccurate thinking.

That was huge.

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I realised the feelings these thoughts generate, come and go.

Thoughts about my age, the menopause, midlife, come and go. Some days they're focused around the new opportunities that I can now see surround me. Other days, my mind is crowded by preoccupations about what’s being taken away (smooth skin, youthful looks).

Now sometimes, yes I still worry about drooping and sagging body bits and regret past opportunities but I know these thoughts and feelings will pass. And if it's a useful thought about needing to take more exercise or eat less chocolate, I take action without letting the thoughts run me down for days.

We all have up moods and down moods – that’s part of being human, not a reflection of how great a person I am or not. And when a bad mood strikes, I don’t need to try and think my way out of it, just simply let it be and pass in it’s own time.

Finding my own inner guidance system

My thoughts are not who I am, I’m someone far richer and deeper than this.

As I listened less to my thoughts and took them less seriously, my mind became quieter. And once this happened, something miraculous took place. I found I could tap into the deep part of me, a place that was always available for inspiration, always doing fine no matter what crisis /drama showed up in my life.

To realise that I don’t need fixing and to become aware that within me lies a foundation of emotional and mental wellness that I can draw upon, a guidance system that's there whenever I need it.

This was significant and life changing.

Into the midlife sunshine

To overcome my midlife crisis, I haven’t needed to leave my husband and daughter, travel the world and dye my hair orange (although the last two are still interesting possibilities).

It's taken an internal shift, a fundamental change of how I see my reality.

A huge burden has been lifted off my shoulders and in the end, it didn’t require effort or work. I’m feeling more peace, contentment and without wanting to sound too smug zen my awareness of my ability to live happily in the present moment has taken root.

And now I know I’m finally free to start creating an exciting future, one that offers more possibilities than I could ever dream of five years ago. 

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If you’d like help to get out of your own midlife slump and you know you want to do more with your midlife (and beyond) even if at the moment you haven’t the foggiest what that might look like, get on a free Flourish call with me.

Just click the link to sign up.

Together we’ll explore what your version of a great midlife looks like and we’ll get you moving forward.

My guarantee: You will make progress during our conversation.

We'll also talk about whether 1:1 coaching with me is the right next step for you. For details of my current coaching package there is more info here.

I look forward to talking to you. 

Wake up to your midlife power

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Midlife for so many of us is a huge wake-up call. This wake-up call may have come in the form of a significant birthday, the death of someone close, your children leaving home, or seeing an old photo and realising how much you've aged. For me, it was an illness, a migraine that went on for days that had me terrified that I had something really serious.

For others it might simply be an uncomfortable niggling feeling that something needs to change, that our life needs to be different in some way.

It doesn't matter what has brought us to this point but what I think is really vital is that we don't allow the significance of this message to fade no matter how harsh it feels to us.

The truth of midlife

Change is happening whether we like it or not. Our body is changing, our looks are changing and no matter how young or old we feel inside or try to fight it, time is working it's magic. How society views us is changing, our role in our families is changing as our children grow and move on. 

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Time passes very, very quickly. Think about how little time seems to have passed since you were 20, 30. I don't know about you but it seems minutes ago I was that age. Your life is limited - sorry folks but it's not going to go on for ever and I think at midlife this hits us to varying degrees.


Midlife and society

It's fair to say that western culture, doesn't view this time of life (and beyond for that matter) with any great enthusiasm. Think of all the jokes about men buying huge bikes and having their midlife crisis. Think about women past their menopause who are seen as dried up, used up and invisible.

Think of all the talented actresses who bemoan the fact that their are no juicy roles for women past their 40s although that is starting to change.

Put it bluntly and women of our age are seen as past their sell by date. This age, the age we're at is not seen as a wildly positive time. It's seen as a time of loss of letting go of becoming less than we were.


Your opportunity for midlife

If you're reading this it's because you know inside you that something in your life needs to change and that in some way that change starts with you. Something in you needs to be bigger, more magnificent, more joyous and you need to be a fuller, brighter expression of who you really are.

There is another way. There are signs that many of us are starting to challenge this view. There are examples of older women who are challenging assumptions about age and who look vibrant, fantastic and full of life.

 

Midlife can be a time of upheaval, letting go of our youth and the assumptions we had about ourselves when we were younger and embracing the new.

And it can also be a time of rejuvenation, of letting go that which no longer serves us and forging ahead with a new version of ourselves. It gives us the opportunity to transform this stage of life and make of it something inspiring, empowering and world-changing huge.

Big hint - these years could be the best of your years. Are you up for the challenge and the opportunity? 

This could be the time when you.. 

  • Let go of fear because as we get older, what other people think of becomes far less relevant.

  • Stand tall and proud You celebrate how far you've come, who you are.

  • Start using all of your gifts - no excuses

  • Make the most of every single moment, every single day

  • Tap into the wisdom and guidance that's in you

What have women our age got to offer?

We know ourselves - we've seen life so we're got a far better understanding of who we are, our values. We've got life experience and skills sets galore. We've raised families, kept down careers, kept ourselves together physically and mentally. I want women our age to start standing up and speaking up for more wisdom and light in this world. We're not broken and we don't need fixing, yes we may need healing whether that's emotionally, spiritually or physically but who and what we are is perfect.


If you have an urge to contribute more to life, to use your skills, now is the time to start doing that now. You know how quickly life passes but there is time to make your life a shining light for yourself and others.


All you have to do is find that passion, that spark that ignites you and follow it step by step.I can't wait to see what you create and become in your midlife.

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If you’d like to unleash your inner power and you know you want to do more with your midlife (and beyond) even if at the moment you haven’t the foggiest what that might look like, get on a free Flourish call with me.

Just click the link to sign up.

Together we’ll explore what your version of a great midlife looks like and we’ll get you moving forward.

My guarantee: You will make progress during our conversation.

We'll also talk about whether 1:1 coaching with me is the right next step for you. For details of my current coaching package there is more info here.

I look forward to talking to you. 

Why telling me I'm too old to start a business brings on my cross, pouty face

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Having coffee with an old friend last week, I realised that one of my hottest of hot buttons is someone using the "too old for that" phrase.

"You shouldn't move - you're too old to make new friends."

"I'm too old to start a business although I'd love to."

"You're far too old to take up abseiling / pot-holing / bungee jumping"

I've heard these sort of comments a lot recently, remarks that made me want to stand on the nearest table and start shrieking with frustration (I don't because I'm introverted and English) or at the very least, demonstrate my very best cross-patch, pouty face. 

And the reason they make me so mad is that because:

1.) At the age of 51, I feel I'm far too young to start restricting myself in this way

2) Hey, it's not over, until it's over

3) By the time I've reached 93, 51 is going to seem like my teenage years.

Now, of course, I'm not denying that I'm too old for some experiences. I'm way past it to win Young Speller of the Year award and no doubt passed the age limit years ago to join the Become a NASA Astronaut programme. But the point is, I think many of our self-imposed age restrictions are crazy, wasteful and downright bonkers.

Start ice skating at 46 never having been on a rink - why not, I did it!

Learn scuba diving in a local pool like my Alexander Technique teacher who decided to do this when she got to 80. 

"I got my certificate, but wasn't that keen on all those tubes and underwater breathing. So then I turned to t'ai chi and I love that, it's part of my morning routine. The next year, I decided to learn Esperanto and I've never stopped. It's a fantastic language and recently I came out with a distinction, passing the exam with 83%." She later said when interviewed.

The point is, that we don't have to decide once we hit forty that life has to follow a predictable course with no room for growth, expansion or change. That's why my toes curl in delight every time I hear of a couple who have married in their eighties or a business leader who is still teaching in her nineties, or of a woman who has taken up weight lifting in her seventies. 

Now I know you can argue that aging can be far more difficult for some people through accident and illness and I'm certainly not denying that luck can have a hand in how we live our later years. But our attitude towards aging is also a major influence in what we're prepared to grab with both hands in our midlife and beyond, how we respond to life's challenges and how we nurture our spirit.

That's why I'm delighted to see that more and more of us over the last few years are deciding in increasing numbers to join younger women and to step into online entrepreneurship. We’re creating businesses that are thriving and flourishing all thanks to the amazing power of the internet and social media and entrepreneurship in this age group is soaring.

Technology provides opportunities that even a few years ago would not have been open to us without wads of cash. and reaching out across the globe, we can now easily find customers on the other side of the world. 

So if your dream is to start a business and use all the amazing experience and wealth of knowledge you've gained over the years, start it now. Don't stop yourself by listening to thoughts that it's too late, or you're too old - this is simply not true. Keep developing your expectations of yourself in midlife, push yourself a little and enjoy the exhilaration of knowing you rose to a challenge.

Women all over the world are building businesses teaching others how to exercise and eat healthily, run a business, develop artistic skills, you could be one of them and now is the perfect time for you to begin.

There are always reasons why it's never the right time to start your business. You may be too young, too inexperienced, not photogenic enough for your website shots, too short, the wrong colour, not glamorous enough, too fat, too thin, being too old is just one in a long line of (dare I suggest), excuses rather than reasons.

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You may feel that the technology is beyond you or that the complexities of running a business are likely to send your mind into a spin but there is always a way to learn a new skill, to develop the knowledge or to find someone to help. Believe me, you're more than capable of this.

Midlife and beyond doesn't have to be a slow, increasingly speedy decline to The End. It could be the start of one of the most fulfilling chapters of your life but it starts with a decision. You have to make a choice and you need to make the commitment to keep on learning and growing. 

So when are you going to get started?

Why I'm head over heals in love with doTerra essential oils

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Have you ever fallen in love?

Was it an “eyes meeting across a crowded room” experience for you or was it a gradual, slow burn process?

My falling in love journey with doTerra was gradual and hesitant at first as I was already in an essential oils relationship, I was a one-supplier woman.

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But then it seemed I was stalked by the lovely doterra fairies (in the nicest possible way). And for a time, everywhere I turned, there they were.

A local friend held a class. A business leader I followed from the States started talking about their role in helping her towards success. An Australian guru did the same. A book I randomly picked up talked about the doterra business model.

And sometimes when you keep hearing the same message over and over again from different sources, sometimes, you've just got to hold up your hands, roll your eyes to the sky and surrender to the inevitable.

My reasons for surrender were many.

I love, love, love the product

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The first overwhelming reason why I’ve fallen in love is because the oils are such an incredible product.  They’re not something I’ve used once or twice and thrown in the bottom of a drawer. They’re in me, on me and around me on a daily basis because they are so wonderful and such a joy in my everyday life.

The first product I bought was the emotional range – a range of six essential oil concoctions for different emotional states and very quickly my little box of oils and I became inseparable.

Feeling down, I'd reach for the "hug in a bottle" CONSOLE with its blend of frankincense, ylang, ylang amongst others. Needing a little more zip and inspiration I'd reach for PASSION because who doesn't need a little jasmine, vanilla and friends? 

They smell pure, powerful and real as opposed to the fake aroma that comes from a bunch of synthetic chemicals. They opened up another dimension of sense to me that I can use with awareness and brought a richness and depth to my world. And yet, perhaps their most profound gift has been in providing me with an easy tool to manage my emotions that takes no longer than it takes to open the bottle and inhale the scent. I can breathe in Motivate, sign and allow Cheer to do its magic, inhale slowly,calmly and deeply with Peace.

 

A handy health resource

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I started using them on my family.

Thankfully, none of us have major health issues, but just in little, everyday ways they eased everyday niggles and became part of our life. Lavender to soothe burns, peppermint to help tummy aches, oregano and meleleuca for those tricky fungal, foot issues.

Being able to reach for a quick solution rather than wait for three weeks to see a doctor or pop to the pharmacist for a straightforward problem made me feel empowered and more able to manage our health.

 

Endless "make it myself" fun

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I'm a bit of a "making my own chutney, curtains and lampshades" kind of woman so any chance to be creative is perfect for me. Mum and daughter time with my ten year old has given us masses of fun creating goodies out of the oils in our kitchen.

So far, we've made our own natural products and essential oils lip balm using my daughter's favourite blend - lavender and grapefruit. And future projects are going to be our own scented candles perfect to hygge the home as we move into my fav season of autumn and our own hand soap. 

I also started using them in cooking and can whiz up a cheeky little salad dressing with a drop of wild orange oil at the whip of a hat or add an extra drop of ginger to enhance the taste of a little gingerbread man.

 

Reducing the toxic load

Again this was never for "we've come to a crisis" health reasons but for irritations with the synthetic - my head does funny things when confronted with a synthetic- perfumed candle and plug-in aroma chemicals, without mincing words, always starts a headache or makes me want to vomit. 

So for many years I've been interested in reducing the toxic load in our home and making it a no-go zone for unnecessary chemicals that promise much but sneakily, undermine our health.

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And when I started researching chemicals found in everyday cleaning products, I was shocked at their potential for harm.

So having a box of little oil jewels that I can tap into at any time to make up an extremely effective cleaning product or to perfume myself or my home in a health-enhancing rather than health-detracting way, is liberating.

Interestingly, a month or so after using doTerra oils regularly I had to throw away a bottle of expensive perfume that I have used for decades as all I could smell, was chemicals - and we're talking not in a very attractive way!!

Connecting to others

But the essential oils aren't just about me and my family. They've been a fantastic way to connect with others on what's quite frankly a deep and wonderful level. I'm an introvert and am happy spending a lot of time being on my own but it's been so joyful to realise that there are wonderful women around me and that being with them and sharing the oils is such an amazing gift.

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I love the company

Connection to others, isn't just about the people I'm meeting personally but expands to the doTerra company as a whole. Without exception, I love the people I'm meeting and I can't fault their integrity.

Before I started using the oils I did my own google, search to find out more and very quickly discovered that doTerra is committed to the quality of their oils.Every batch of oil they produce is tested, tested and tested again to assess purity and not just in their own laboratories but those of independent third parties. 

Co-impact sourcing

Every oil is sourced from the plant's natural environment,from every corner of the globe and brought to us through socially, ethical and environmentally- friendly means. Yet what I love about doTerra is the care the company gives to the local farmers and distillers, paying a fair price, helping them form co-operatives and providing training and support. 

They also provide huge amounts of financial support in the wider communities providing schools, access to fresh water and other vital facilities. 

So with these oils we connect with ourselves, to those near us and then through the company with those on the other side of the world. 

So isn't it time you fell in love? Open a bottle, breathe deeply and let those wonderful oils work their magic

How to keep motivated (even when success is taking it's time)

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When I was a child, our holiday car journeys always followed the same pattern.

Children and cases were bundled into the car, there would be a few false starts during which time forgotten essentials would be retrieved and “this is the last time” checks made to make sure the cooker/ iron had been turned off.

And then finally we would get going.

Ten minutes later, the first round of “Are we were there yet?” would be asked, a question that would be repeated continually throughout the three hour journey and met with decreasing levels of patience from my parents.

Recently, I was reminded of these holidays when I took some time out to reflect on my own online business and realised that I had been making it all far more stressful by constantly asking myself the "Am I nearly there yet?" question.

"Am I nearly there yet?"

You see when I first started, I was completely obsessed with the goals I was trying to reach.

I'd thought in great detail about the business I wanted to create. I knew what my monthly financial goals were, how many email subscribers I wanted and had masses of ideas about the blogs and e courses I wanted to create.

I got completely hung up with what I wanted to achieve and my final destination. 

But constantly thinking about my long-term goals and wondering if I was ever going to get there or how far it was, became exhausting and frankly, deeply demotivating.

Because it kept reminding me how far I had to go. And it kept reminding me of how little progress I seemed to be making.

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Result – vast qualities of “make me feel better” ice cream consumed with a mega helping of overwhelm.

Despite my initial expectations the business hasn’t been a quick sprint to huge numbers of adoring fans and online super stardom. The reality has been a  long apprenticeship with much to learn, a couple of false starts, numerous mini mind set shifts to make along the way and lashings of hard work.

But in a way, I’m more than happy with how it’s all turned out because through all the episodes of self-doubt, wondering if it's really all worth it, when others think you are losing the plot and your mother wonders why you don’t just go out and get a “proper” job, I’ve discovered the secret to motivation.

And it’s a deep-seated motivation that I truly believe can sail me through any storm of obstacle and setback.

My discovery?

It’s about enjoying the journey. Being fully present with each small task and not constantly asking myself if this is going to be a success. 

In a way, you could call it business mindfulness.

I realised that if I was going to develop the staying power to just keep at it, teeny tiny step after teeny tiny step with no immediate confirmation that my work was any good or worth doing, I had to find another way.

The way of the mindful task.

In one of those happy coincidences that can fall into our lap sometimes, it was at this point that I came across an episode from Marie TV* which confirmed this.

She points to research by University of Chicago business school that showed that people were able to keep going longer if they found something intrinsic in the task to enjoy rather than just focusing on the end goal.

In other words, put your attention on the joy/ excitement/ deep satisfaction you can get from focusing on a task and doing it to the best of your ability.

This is the way to keep yourself motivated when it feels as if you're making little progress, your goal seems an eternity away and  you're tempted to reach for the ice cream bucket.

So keep taking the steps, remind yourself how far you have already come and most importantly, enjoy and savor the journey, 

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If you’d like to discover more about staying motivated and you know you want to do more with your midlife (and beyond) even if at the moment you haven’t the foggiest what that might look like, get on a free Flourish call with me.

Just click the link to sign up.

Together we’ll explore what your version of a great midlife looks like and we’ll get you moving forward.

My guarantee: You will make progress during our conversation.

We'll also talk about whether 1:1 coaching with me is the right next step for you. For details of my current coaching package there is more info here.

I look forward to talking to you. 


Why midlife women are so brilliant

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A love letter to all us women in our midlife...

Today, I would like you to pause, briefly (because hey, I know life is busy, busy), So let's stop for a moment and celebrate the gloriousness of the woman in her midlife. Let's cast off any lingering doubts that we're past it, invisible or the victims of ageism and start shouting out to the world, that we're middle aged, thrilled to be this age and standing tall and proud.

Let's celebrate ourselves for being magnificent and amazing and for all that we are and do and give ourselves one giant big group hug across the world because..

We love and care so deeply for our children, our partners, our wider families, our work, our communities, our world. We put others first whether our children, those in need or dear friends because not to do so is unthinkable. We wipe tears,listen to woes, cheer and commiserate.

We know that love for everything in our world, isn't just about a feeling, it's about showing our love through our actions. And so we work, work hard, to create better lives, a better future, a better world.  We get involved, we campaign, do the voluntary work, create businesses that nurture others.

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We keep going. Through the setbacks and the tragedies we show strength and determination and grit because whilst sometimes we would love to sit in a corner and have a short weep with a box of tissues and an even bigger box of chocolate, we know that life is about staying on the path. It's about showing up and keeping at it and not letting any setback or dismissive comment stand in our way.

We keep working on ourselves, pushing our boundaries mentally, physically and emotionally, challenging ourselves. We're not willing to accept beliefs that we're getting on, that life is a slippery slope and we're getting towards the bottom. We're prepared to fit the limitations and glass ceilings whether imposed by us or others.

We're willing to have fun, to laugh and see the beauty in the world and let our hair down with those we love. We're happy not to take ourselves too seriously, we take part in events for good causes, running with shower caps on through mud, hurling ourselves over obstacle courses if that's what it's going to take to raise awareness and money. But we also love any excuse to celebrate (cake and bubbly optional) the joy and blessings we have in our life.

 

I love us because we are flipping magnificent and brilliant and if you are struggling today (or even if you're having the best day yet) I'd like you to remember all that we are and do and have a smile in your heart.

So lets join together, eat cake and celebrate!

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If you’d like to discover more about changing your life with more ease and you know you want to do more with your midlife (and beyond) even if at the moment you haven’t the foggiest what that might look like, get on a free Flourish call with me.

Just click the link to sign up.

Together we’ll explore what your version of a great midlife looks like and we’ll get you moving forward.

My guarantee: You will make progress during our conversation.

We'll also talk about whether 1:1 coaching with me is the right next step for you. For details of my current coaching package there is more info here.

I look forward to talking to you. 

How my coach helped me turn Scared and Stuck into Flying and Fearless

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To move forward in life and business is to learn and grow and develop. And yet moving forward from underneath the fluffy blanket of comfort in your life, in your business is scary.

I'm talking setting out in a tiny boat with only a cheese sandwich, flimsy sail and oar for company, scary.

And if that's not bad enough add it's evil twin "stuck" to the scary and you've got a recipe for freak-out mode.

But to change we have to be willing to take the next step forward and do something different.

I can't tell you how fed up I was with being stuck and scared.

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I was soooooo fed up with asking myself the same tired old questions time after time. Is this going to work? Do I have it in me? Am I doing the right thing?To be honest I spent so much time with these questions going round and round in my head that it felt as if I was working hard on my business. But promoting myself and my work should have meant reaching out to people, letting them know what I was selling, getting people on calls to people. 

In reality what it meant was thinking about doing all of this (in such detail that I could convince myself that I was actually doing it) and then falling into a quagmire because the results I was hoping for were as elusive as seeing a fairy ring in the garden. Dah! 

And then there was Scared. Scared to reach out, frightened to get on a facebook live even hesitant to tell everyone I was open for business. I was happy writing a blog every two weeks - comfort lay in that direction and at least I could convince myself that I was working hard. The self deception lay in thinking that if I kept on doing this that life would change. But the truth is that it's no use doing the same thing over and over again if it's going to take 385,000 years to get you there.

I desperately needed a coach.

Out came Scared demanding to know where the money was going to come from. But show up it did big time once I'd set my mind to it and in hindsight I think Stuck had just got to the end of her tether and was going to win that fight.

And getting myself a coach rather than investing in endless group programmes has been my life saver.

How my coach has helped me move forward

Which felt strange because as a responsible adult I thought I had been doing this for years. You know getting married, buying a property, raising a child. But advanced level responsibility requires something more than this. It meant looking myself firmly in the eye and exposing every time that I was not following through because (and here come the excuses), I wasn't talented enough, wasn't ready because my website, you tube channel, business cards and reception area weren't ready. It wasn't going to happen because that was the way it was for me. Excuses. puses! Blaming something outside ourselves for failure means somewhere along the line we're not taking responsibility. At some point we just have to make the decision that it's only us that can make the choice if we are to succeed or not and from there start taking the actions that are going to lead to success. 

The problem with going round in circles for too long is that it makes you dizzy and your thinking fuzzy and it's very hard to see a clear way ahead. My coach told me what to do - get clear on what you're selling, develop your package. There's nothing like being given a direction to help you get clarity. And she helped me see what was right in front of my nose. 

 

My initial intention with this online business was to earn a little extra money a month to help with the family budget. That's what I thought I was capable of and that's were I was convinced it was all going. But my coach had other ideas. She was thinking more along the lines of starting a Movement big. And by the end of my time with her I was also thinking larger, much larger. Full stadium, You tube channel, book launches, the works. I would never have considered these possibilities before thinking them too far out of reach. But the funny thing is, once someone else starts subtly drip-feeding these visions into you, you sort of find yourself inexplicably believing them too. And once the belief takes hold, it's just a case of time because it gives you the drive to take one step after another, after another. 

 

Doing anything scary and new is taking a leap of faith. Doing a webinar, getting out there on facebook live all required throwing myself into it. And the worst most scariest......having a set of profession photos taken. But having a coach tell you that you can do it, that she has your back, gives you enough hand-holding support to feel you are not alone and that you can take that leap.

 

Not just the bits I liked doing, the activities where I could sit in my cozy cave and develop a deep and meaningful relationship with my laptop but all of it. There is nothing like the gun to your head feeling of having to report back to someone else on a weekly basis explaining what you're got done....and what you haven't. Not that she was ever in any way anything other than supportive but you know. I didn't want to look like a time waster or a fool. 

 

As I was writing this it occurred to me that Stuck and Scary had changed into Flying and Fearless. That's not to say that I'm sure they won't be making me another visit at some point. That's the way of it but I know now that they have another side to them. 

So if you're where I was with Stuck and Scary, please I'm begging you, do something about it.

Don't waste anymore time on the obnoxious pair.

Shove them aside and start making progress, real progress because all the help and progress I made with my coach, I can help you with too. Book a call with me and we'll look at how together we can turn them into Flying and Fearless. I can't wait to meet you xx

How a midlife evolution could sprinkle sparkle into your life

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Uncharacteristically, I recently suffered from a severe case of hypochondria that left me floored with anxiety.

Don't get me wrong, I was unwell but in hindsight, it was a case of a slightly strange migraine rather than the start of a far more feared, sinister illness.

Thankfully, my imminent demise was just a mind experience, but for a few sleepless nights and anxious days, it was full-blooded, hitting me over the head with a large brick, real.

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In other words, I think it's fair to say I've just had my own mini "midlife crisis".

This term, was first used by the Canadian psychoanalyst Elliot Jacques in the mid 60's to describe the sort of soul searching that can hit us anywhere between 40 and 60. It's when we start to deeply understand the the full implications of the "life is short, it passes quickly and you'd better get on with it" advice. 

If I'm honest, it's everything my wise grandmother used to tell me in my young days, but I remember secretly replying with a silent roll of the eyes and equivalent of today's "whatever!".

The problem though, for me is that the word "crisis", implies throwing away all we've built up over decades with a nonchalant shrug of our shoulder, leaving devastation behind us. It infers pain and turmoil. And ignoring the inner stirrings until they reach such a fever pitch that they explode destroying not only that which needs to go but also what's good and works in our life.

So I'd like to suggest that the softer, more gentle version (and don't get me wrong, this doesn't need to be a less effective route) is a midlife evolution. Reevaluating who, where and what we want from our life can be a life affirming, powerful step.

And a midlife evolution hands us this opportunity for change so that the rest of our years can be the best of our years.

How can we live life with more zest and make sure every day is sparkle-filled?

Having been through that experience, I was determined that I wasn't going to let it's lessons simply drift away into the debris of everyday life. So I racked my brain, dredged up all my experiences of courses I'd been on over the decades and books I'd read and came up with a list of questions which I felt would enable me to live my life with renewed zest.

  • How have you lived your life to this point? What are you proud of, what have been the low spots?

  • How do you want to live and who do you want to be in the life you have left?

  • How can you live your life with more love and how can you show those you love how much you love them every single day?

  • How are you going to take greater care of yourself?

  • What do you need to let go of or change in your life?

  • What rules of wisdom have your gained from your life experience?

  • How can you make every day count?

What these questions can do for our life

We start taking notice of all the little magic moments and appreciate all the wonder and beauty we have in our lives, right now

  • I love my daughter for needing to be asked 19 times to put her shoes on for school.

  • I delight in the fog that hangs heavy over the house.

  • I marvel at the abundance in my fridge because whilst the contents don't make up a meal, the 1/2 eaten pots of jam and carton of small week old tomatoes, whisper of future pleasures.

We start making changes (and no this doesn't mean we have to swop our partner for a younger version and emigrate to somewhere sunnier). Even the small, more discrete and subtle steps can add up to greater fulfillment and more zest for life

  • I embraced more pleasure in my life and took up flamenco dancing - something I have always wanted to do

  • I worked on creating an online business that would sustain me

  • I started exercising again after many years of feeling too tired, too busy, too past it

We make every day count ( as one day it will be our last)

  • I starting making daily enjoyment a priority in my day - long baths, loving simple rituals like tea and cake (I stopped feeling so darn guilty about simply enjoying myself)

  • I spent more time showing my daughter how much I love her by slowing down and taking the time to listen and play around with her

So what's stopping you now from taking some time and reflecting on your own life? My deepest, most heartfelt wish for you is that you take this time to think about your life, to make it sparkle so that the rest of your years, can truly be the most magnificent they can be.

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If you’d like to discover more about changing your life with more ease and starting your own midlife evolution even if at the moment you haven’t the foggiest what that might look like, get on a free Flourish call with me.

Just click the link to sign up.

Together we’ll explore what your version of a great midlife looks like and we’ll get you moving forward.

My guarantee: You will make progress during our conversation.

We'll also talk about whether 1:1 coaching with me is the right next step for you. For details of my current coaching package there is more info here.

I look forward to talking to you.