Make the ordinary extraordinary

Make the ordinary extraordinary

Gratitude is an emotion not an activity we do with our heads. 

The magic of gratitude is that we find the ordinary extraordinary.

How we do this is by being present and seeing all that is before you and beneath you. This can be a beaten up sofa that holds memories of lots of laughter, cuddles, conversations and even maybe the start of an addition to the family. We can choose to see it as past it’s prime or we can view it with love that it holds so many memories.

If the kids have made a mess with their toys, we are grateful that we have the kids. We are grateful we had the means to buy the toys. We also have the gift of playing with them, observing them. We have the choice whether feeling abundant or irritated because of the untidiness. 

Make the ordinary extraordinary everyday and your life will become so awesome, it will be unrecognisable. 

If you want help to realise this, here’s an extract of the book Gratitude Prompts free

Ten obstacles to gratitude

Ten obstacles to gratitude

In the years that I have introduced gratitude into people’s lives, I’ve noticed there can be obstacles. If you naturally developed a gratitude practice, this may be news to you. 

I briefly set out the ten obstacles to gratitude:

1.  ENTITLEMENT 

Where there is entitlement, there’s a sense of self absorption that the person is owed, it is their right to have…. This shows up in how people behave when driving and at work to give two examples.

2.  VICTIMHOOD

Today more and more people regard themselves as victims. Feeling victimised has grown socially acceptable in recent years.

3.  RUGGED INDIVIDUALISM – “I can do it alone.”

This is about a mindset that is geared solely to personal achievement and soon loses track of the roles others played in shaping our success. 

4.  MATERIALISM

When we are motivated by what we can acquire or replace, we rob ourselves of the pleasure of all that we have already because there is always something more to get. Any sense of satisfaction is illusory to those consumed by materialism.

5.  TAKING IT FOR GRANTED

We are numb to all we have – the acts of kindness bestowed upon us and the innumerable invitations to gratitude that surround us. 

6.  MANIPULATION

People who manipulate are rarely able to give any type of gift, whether it be a present or compliment without strings attached. Manipulators ae only concerned with their welfare not ours.

7.  SUFFERING

This is both a rich source for deepening gratitude or poison undermining it. Often times, gratitude blooms from the barrenness of suffering. Suffering becomes a poison when the person loses sight of everything apart from the pain.

8.  AMNESIA

Gratitude is said to be the heart’s memory. Without it, our hearts would ache. When the memories of gratitude fades, the feeling of deprivation surges unimpeded. Amnesia is a breeding ground for sadness. Without gratitude, we are resigned to the feeling of isolation. 

9.  LACK OF REFLECTION

We live in an age of information overload and this robs us of ‘downtime.’ Time to be. Time to contemplate. To process. Time to listen to our intuition. 

10. NEGATIVE MOODS

When we are weighed down by sadness, preoccupied by envy, seized by anger, afflicted by guilt or dogged by any number of other negative feelings, we shut the door to gratitude. We become so self absorbed by our distress that we become stuck. We become seemingly imprisoned and unaware of the many invitations to be grateful. 

Gratitude serves as a helpful antidote to countering discord. 

Where there is unawareness of the obstacle or how to dismantle, it may be more expedient to enlist the help of a coach or counsellor. 

Most of these obstacles can be overcome by making a decision to become aware of all that is in front of you regardless of the quantity or quality. You can receive an extract of the book Gratitude Prompts to get you started  by clicking here.  

Reflections of the 30 Day Challenge

Reflections of the 30 day challenge

For the month of November, I went without TV, unnecessary human contact and focussing on what I want in my life.  Well, that’s a pretty big list. The aim was to raise my vibration, to feel even better than I already did.

In the most part, the no TV wasn’t too much of a problem. When I did want to indulge, there were plenty of Christmas films that didn’t have a harsh word in them. Everyone was so well-behaved. 

Living on my own, I thought I would struggle with limited human contact. I had friends who kept me in positive conversation. All good there. 

I started each day with a 20 minute meditation where I was in a positive feeling without thoughts intervening. Most days went to plan. Other days, it felt as if my brain was too fired up to lay down those electrical impulses. 

Writing a positive aspects journal was new for me and it was illuminating what occurred. I used this journal to write about my future day – what I would be doing, how I would be feeling and the knock on effects of that day. Somedays I wrote pages about my life in the next 6 months, in the next year or so and even in the shorter time frame of eight weeks. 

Here’s really interesting discovery. The more I wrote about the same activities, the more detailed they became. Those details were previously unknown to me. Now, I have a detailed plan on what  I am to be doing for the next six months. That is awesome and a real highlight of the month. 

I also noticed that my negative self talk diminished over the month. I became so aware of the same old thoughts that I was able to change my thoughts immediately. 

What am I taking forward?

🔥Definitely continue with the daily meditation

🔥Maintain the positive aspects journal

🔥Take care with the programs I do watch on TV Do it again in a couple of months time 

If you would like to do it with me in February 2019, please leave your details below. 

Join in the next 30 Day Challenge
I want to raise my vibration so I can bring more of what I really want into my life.

 

Blow away the seeds making room for change

Changing marketing channels in 2019

Ever adopted a methodology as a way of finding out whether it suits?

Well, that’s what I’ve done over the past 12 months. I started out wanting to know how to reach people who wanted to learn. At that time, it was learning how to avoid the traps of ageing that our society encourages us to follow. The teacher I found, who appeared to be successful using the model she taught, said that you need to have one on one clients first. This wasn’t what I wanted but, I went along with it. 

I don’t know how many people are successful with that model and it doesn’t matter. What matters is the platform. See, Facebook loves people who are connected. If you show interest in a person’s posts, then their posts will show up in your feed more. It doesn’t mean your posts will show up in their feed. This is purely one sided. 

The topic of dissertation for my masters degree was on small business networking. At the time there wasn’t much written about networking and relationship marketing. This was in 1994, so quite some time ago. 

I created a model of networking, ran workshops to educate fellow business owners and tracked their successes or not over the next year. Did the model make a difference?

The upshot was yes. We need both density and diversity for our business to grow. Density means we need to have a group of people who knows us and each other. They then create momentum around word of mouth. Now, facebook is very good at density. It loves that we are interconnected.  It is not so good at diversity. 

Diversity is where we meet other people who may not be connected with everyone else. Think about one of your colleagues referring someone from their own network or attending a conference and meeting people totally new to you. These connections are vital for business growth. As you grow a new ‘network cell,’ the density increases and momentum builds. Unless you run a group or run ads, it is hard to find and nurture diversity. Instead, the posts you see are increasingly those you are connected to and their close associates. Fun if you want to build a social network, not so fine if it is also a business network. 

This started me thinking about raising the diversity side. Over the past few months, I looked at Pinterest, Instagram and Linkedin. Even though, I have a presence on these, my efforts are really on approaching owners of networks either with blogs or podcasts and being a guest. 

This means I create my own flock from the diverse environment and create density through community building. This may not be the best route for you. Think about it though, if you think differently or your services are different to the run of the mill, it maybe what is missing now. I know we all feel that what we bring is special. What I trying to explain and possibly doing badly is, we can be special with how we help people with weight loss, confidence, law of attraction or business growth. These are established areas that people understand and are looking for the person of best fit. 

On the other hand, there are those emerging areas such as parenting, ageing, grief, mindset (and ‘emotionset’) where there is an aspect of education. We can do that two ways, educate our current network and build momentum that way. Alternatively, we can send our message out to a larger audience in order to attract those who are already searching for answers. This is where I am directing my attention. 

I am grateful for meeting all the people, making friends with several and with some having a real impact on my life. Without the last year networking, it would have been much lonelier. 

Are you changing how you are marketing and networking in 2019?

 

Blow away the seeds making room for change

Gratitude is more than 5 a day

Gratitude is more than your 5 a day

 

Surely, there’s not much more to gratitude than writing five things, or even 3,  you are grateful for each day. That seems to be the standard advice and activity on the net.

Keeping a gratitude journal will certainly do something and it will do more if you write out each statement like this:

I am grateful for ……..

Even better, take it a step further, list 5 different things each day for 90 days and then you really start seeing some benefits. 

This is why there is a lot about gratitude bing powerful yet, there is a gap between this and experience. 

Don’t get me wrong. the five entries per day is a great place to start. It is the beginning. 

Gratitude, and I like to use appreciation as well, is more of an attitude or a lifestyle change than quickly filling in the 5 things before dropping off to sleep or start the morning rush. 

As you already know, making these sort of changes require a bit more application. 

Consider viewing every action through the lens of appreciation

To grasp gratitude, consider viewing every action through the lens of appreciation. This includes driving the car, being on social media, watching TV, spending time with family, dealing with customers, staff or even your boss. 

There’s a lot of science to show how we approach a situation has an impact on its outcome.

As you go about your day, pause and look around for what you can be grateful for. These can include the furniture, car, food, drink, colleagues, family, how you overcome adversity, how your life experiences so far has led you to be here, nature, your hobbies… the list is endless.

There is so much more to gratitude than your 5 a day. 

The benefits of practicing gratitude are that you become kinder, more generous, more favourable opportunities arrive and life becomes less of a struggle. We all want that, don’t we?

 

 

Savouring the first cup of coffee of the day

I love the smell of just poured coffee. I love the froth on top even though it’s black. I love how it sits patiently waiting for me to take the first sip. Whilst, at the same time, it beckons me to indulge. 

Ooh! I love how the first sip is a mix of froth and liquor, just enough to wet the lips and heighten anticipation for more. 

Sunrise on day 4 of the challenge

Whilst preparing for the next sip, I take in my surroundings. I am comfortable on the sofa, the birds add their chorus to the morning airwaves, even the chooks (hens) play a part. I feel the sun on my skin and it feels so warm; a warm embrace. I breathe in the rays slowly. The day is full of promise. I am open to all it has to offer and it sure feels good. 

Am I ready for the next sip?

This time it is two two sips and now the coffee wets mor of the inside of my mouth and it feels yum! The taste buds are engaged and excited to have more. How can i refuse?

As I reach for the cup, I appreciate my arm for its strength and scope of movement. I also appreciate the strength of my hand to pick up the cup even though the index finger is bandaged. How marvellous is our body?

Now, the coffee is a bit cooler, I am able to slurp two mouthfuls for the taste buds to savour. I love the cleanness of the the taste and the liquor not having any fat. I smile with each mouthful. The taste improves as the coffee cools. 

As I sit here listening to the birds and the rumblings of human activity, my mouth is alive with plump taste buds urging me to take more slurps. I smile as I love witnessing micro movements, micro desires that I may have missed unless sitting in the now. 

Delicious frothy black coffee

Ah! It feels good. The combination of the warmth of the sun on the outside with the warm of the brown nectar reaching my stomach. A warming glow starts. Just the thought brings more joy, more smiles. Wow! This is starting to be a heady combination of joy and physical warmth of both the inside and the skin. 

Time for another sip, erm mouthful! Ah! The coffee is now only slightly higher than body temperature. It feels more at one with me as I savour each drop along with the feelings or  euphoria. Now, to maintain this for the rest of the day. 

There’s now an eagerness to finish the cup in order to make a second one to in someway force the extension of this beautiful feeling and to catch the remaining moments of the sun streaming into my room. 

Let me know how you experience your first cup of coffee. 

 

Savouring, can’t be beat

30 Day Challenge for boosting my vibration

Who wants to have 30 days with no TV, with no unnecessary human contact and really getting in touch with your higher self?

Well, this is what I am going during November.

I am on Day 3 and will be posting most days during the challenge.

So far, it has been an awesome time. I haven’t missed watching TV as I have access to high vibe books on aubible, conversations on podcasts and viedoe on Youtube. The big thing though is to increase your relationship with your higher self. This is easiest when left alone together.

I have a journal where I record the Positive Aspects of life. Over the next 30 days, I will be writing in there as if I am sharing with another person. Wait! I am sharing with another person – my higher self! Already there have been so many aha! Moments and it is only day 3. I am really looking forward to the next 28 days. It is really going to be awesome.

Here is one entry in the journal:

I love waking up with the sun. It is so magical to start the day basking in the early morning sunshine. I felt so good upon waking that I made some unleavened bread dough before making coffee. I noticed how different the bread dough was this morning with the strong white flour, I had run out the last time. 

I love making unleavened bread

I bought coffee yesterday and made a cup. Ooh! It tasted great. It feels so good to be sitting in the lounge in dappled shade writing this as well as drinking my coffee. 

I am looking forward to doing this challenge and writing about it. I see the value of withdrawing from the current reality to create a stronger connection with source. And, even when experiencing contrast (feeling less good), I see it as such and letting it go. Just like I did yesterday when asked about Evie. I want to be able to talk and write about her without falling into contrast. 

I love sitting here in the sunshine. It feels so good. I can hear the lorikeets chatting in the plants. I can hear the whirr of the lift as people are starting their day. A new day. New possibilities. 

If you would like to follow along, please leave a comment. Anyway, I’d love to know how you feel about this post.

Lorikeet at the 30 day challenge

Feeling good in under 3 minutes

We know about gratitude. We are brought up to say ‘Thank you’ when receiving things that it becomes so ingrained, an automatic response. Is this what it’s all about?

Consider another perspective, humans can have a tendency to take all the good things for granted. Unless we remain open to all that is around us, we can take for granted someone bringing a drink for you; the sun shining; clouds giving rain so plants can grow, instead we can be consumed by what isn’t going to plan or the annoying habits of those around you.

How often have you brought your bad mood home with you? Whether it is irritation or annoyance that a meeting didn’t go as you would’ve liked, you open the door to a loving and joyful scene. Instead of relishing the moment, a grumble erupts and effectively bursts the joy and love from the smiling faces or even the wagging tails.

There are lots of ways to becoming present whether it’s adopting a mindful practice, starting the day with 20 minutes meditation, showing appreciation and a gratitude practice; they all work.

Though time can be an issue and that’s why I am recommending gratitude.  I extend gratitude into appreciation.

There is no better feeling than of appreciation for everything around; for being grateful for being grateful for all the experiences that brought us here to this moment.

I’ve found the easiest way to feel good is to see, I mean, really see, who and what is in front of you and show appreciation and gratitude.

It can be in the car driving the kids to school, and even though the morning can be stressful, you wouldn’t change it for another life.

watching the sunrise

It can be looking out the window and whatever your eyes can see, there is beauty. It’s a choice to see the good. Seeing the good connects us with our feelings of joy, love and appreciation. whilst in these feelings, we are aligned with who we are and can be. Ideas flow. Face smiles. eyes sparkle. Time slows down.

Even at traffic lights, see the flowers, birds, trees, sky and marvel at the amazing world we live. Make it something you do every time you stop. Notice how you feel. If you have passengers, invite them to join in.

When a sneaking little grumbling thought arrives, choose to see what is beautiful around you.

Leave a message on what happened when you slowed down and saw what is in front of you.

 

Appreciation and Gratitude

No one likes being taken for granted. It feels as like being a doormat, an ATM machine or an unpaid taxi driver. Yet, the demands for your time, money and skills become a drain. I am sure there are times in your life, dear reader, when some or all of these things have happened either as a giver or as a receiver. 

Taking people for granted can be a killer for the longevity of relationships whether at home or at work. There is a simple activity to reverse the trend. Simply, take a few minutes to show your appreciation.

Showing appreciation is delicious. Just thinking about it now fills me with joy. this is both showing and being shown appreciation. 

First all be present, if you want to start from now, watch what the significant person/persons do. And where it connects, express your appreciation for how they conduct themselves, how they helped someone, that they gave you a drink before you asked.

Saying these things show you are present and like having them around. 

Don’t under-estimate the small things. Actions taken like greasing the engine, they aren’t glamorous, they have to be done regularly otherwise the engine would seize. With appreciate, sure you can splash out and buy a gift, but this isn’t really necessary. 

When you appreciate someone, or something in nature, you are, in effect, saying thank you to them for being them. Like kindness, it is two way with the giver of an appreciation filled with gratitude as well as when receiving the smile and thanked. If the receiver doesn’t, then there is still the time of giving. 

I write about giving and receiving because there have been times in my life that being grateful for receiving a smile in recognition of my appreciation, act of kindness has really made a difference to me. It spurred me on when in a dark hole. 

Your situation may not be so dark, I hope not, so getting the thank you smile may not be as helpful. It doesn’t matter. Take what you want from this material. Providing you count your blessings daily, the days will sparkly and shine. 

I don’t want you to get the idea that you are only doing kindness and appreciation in order to receive a thanks. The thanks is a bonus.

 

appreciate nature

Shade to Light

When something horrendous happens, our brains automatically shut off the pain as protection. We need some time initially, to come to terms with what we’ve been told has really happened. It’s not a dream. 

Reality sets in all too soon with making arrangements. 

Each day passes and you feel a little bit better. 

Fast forward two years…..

You are still feeling good,  but…. mmmm! There’s the BUT

I remember feeling good yet, there was still a haze, like I was punching life whilst inside a paper bag. I could feel the resistance and it is nowhere and everywhere. What is this all about?

It was already a slog getting to this point. I wanted to wake up and life would be rosy. I would be attracting clients; making new friends…. communicating without the paper bag in between us. 

Don’t get me wrong, I had already picked up loads of gems in the darkness. My life had been transformed. After all, I had changed country, made new friends, found a new way to earn an income. What is this paper bag all about?

The paper bag

For me, this was about protection. 

Protection from being hurt again, of throwing myself completely into something and find it disappears. I know totally irrational. Feelings have a tendency to be irrational. 

Once I got a handle on what was happening, I could start to dismantle it. 

I created affirmations and mantras reminding myself of my new life and how I wanted to show up in it. 

I stepped out and met new people every week. Early on, I met at least two new people every day. This doesn’t mean I made friends with them. I engaged in conversation. Sometimes it didn’t amount to much, other times it became more like a paragraph and it extended each time I saw them. 

Little by little, of course, I didn’t notice in the beginning, or even for months, The paper bag was beginning thinner and translucent. It’s role of protection became less important. 

What was truly empowering was that where I found people didn’t quite match how I wanted to be and interact, they ceased to be a part of my life. This may seem harsh. I felt it was harsh at the time. It felt so important to have people in my life who got me, who accepted me for who I was, I am and still to be. 

Looking back, this act alone helped remove the paper bag. See, I emerged true to me. Coming out of a transformational experience with grief, it is really important to be true to who you are. 

Some two years later, I am part of some amazing groups of people of different ages and interests. These groups and people are still evolving and growing. It excites me just to write these words. 

Some days, even now, I feel like the paper bag reappears. Days like Mother’s Day can be especially hard. 

Learning

Another strand for increasing your shine is learning. All to often, we experience grief alone. Just like love, grief needs to be in the company of others. 

By opening to our vulnerability, we become stronger. 

By listening to other perspectives, ours become broader. 

By becoming open, we drop being so judgemental.

By making a habit of baby steps each day, we climb to the summit and beyond. 

Of course, there is introspection and reflection. These are two necessary activities but not to the exclusion of opening ourselves to other ideas. 

This is one of the great things about social media. We have so many opportunities to be part of groups that aren’t in our neighbourhood. With social media, we can gravitate to people who have shared interests even though they may live miles away. 

Slowly, slowly, our light starts shining brighter. 

A first it is a tiny flicker. 

Over the months, it grows to be bright and constant. 

Yes, we are out of the paper bag. 

We are ready to live our best life. 

We are ready to live our purpose however that means for us. For some, it will be taking to a bigger stage. For others, it will be about being the best neighbour. 

The beautiful thing is that what we do is irrelevant. As long as we are being true to ourselves, living from love than fear, everything will be right for us. 

 

Want to learn more, I am running a free webinar, please register – bit.ly/Shadetolightwebinar and come at the time or watch the recording.