mental health, Mindfulness, stress, anxiety, depression, help, support, Uncategorized, wellness

What Does Success Mean To You?

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I’m quickly learning that running your own business from home comes with its downfalls. Somedays you feel like you’ve made the best decision and you’re on top of the world, whilst other days you question WTF you were thinking trying to do this all. You realise that most of your time is spent alone in front of a laptop in your sweatpants.

When your well-dressed husband, who has been out in the real world comes walking through the door with a sense of achievement, you feel a tad jealous. You get paranoid that it looks like you’ve done nothing all day, so you start listing all the medial tasks when he asks how your day was, only to see that he’s still so preoccupied with his emails. You feel like you almost want to be back in the structure of corporate life, where you worked for someone else and most importantly, had a steady income each week.

This has been the topic of conversation for us lately. A few weeks ago, I finished up a part time contract role and had to face the reality of putting my heart and soul back into the business, 100 percent. All of Me. This was what I’d wanted for the last 10 years, so why wasn’t I jumping into my business with the passion and excitement that I expected? I sat quietly and had a light bulb moment. I only feel successful when I am making money, when I can see that same dollar value in my bank account every week. That’s when I feel like I am worthy in my life. I’ve also been in sales for 15 years, so like a well-trained soldier, my discipline or craft was making money. My mindset had become so used to measuring my self-worth via two scenarios; how much money I was earning and how much money I was making for whoever I was working for. In the early days of my career, someone so eloquently told me that I was “Only as good as my last sale.” Well how very motivating and inspirational! As the years went by, the messages were pretty much the same, just delivered differently and packaged up in pretty little bows disguised as compliments.

You see, what I’m starting to learn about myself is that money comes and goes. I haven’t turned into a full tree hugger burning notes while chanting around the camp fire! I still believe we need it to survive, but our mindset around success and how we define it needs to change. Just because I technically didn’t convert a sale this week, it doesn’t mean that I’m worthless and not working hard, or more importantly, working towards a purpose. We need to go easy on ourselves and remember that money and material possessions don’t define us and we are more than enough without the bells and whistles. Success can be anything you want it to be. For me, it’s helping a client see clearly when they feel like everything is hopeless, or dragging my butt out of bed at 5am to get to the gym. Better yet, it’s knowing that I can now cook at least 4 decent meals a week! Not kidding, a year ago “I used my oven for storage” as Carrie Bradshaw from SATC would say.

I want you to sit still for a moment and ask yourself “What makes me feel a sense of achievement that doesn’t involve money or possessions?” Only then will you start to feel a wholeness that can only be achieved when we connect deeply with our hearts and not through our wallets.

Mindfulness, Uncategorized, wellness

Winter Comes and Motivation Goes

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It’s day four of our Aussie winter, but I already started saying goodbye to some healthy habits last month, as the cold came in. Waking up at 5am for the gym? FORGET IT. I’m too cold, too tired and feel like a bear going into hibernation. It was also my first month juggling part time work and the business, so meals have just been whatever we can get our hands on, plus a few cheeky orders from menulog and uber eats!

And there it is, I can feel you checking to see who has written this; “Hang on, this chick is a life coach right?” I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again… I am not perfect, nor do I claim to be. What I do know is that the changes over the last month have taught me to go easy on myself.

My priority has been to build the business and put my head down into some serious work. The results? I may not look as bronzed and healthy as I did in my website pics, but I’ve met some amazing clients. Every time they walk out of my office, I feel like my heart is going to explode with joy. Too mooshy for some of you? Well, it’s the truth and if I have to go easy on my strict health routine for this period of time in my life, then so be it.

I’m not saying to throw it all away when winter strikes and work takes more hours of the day than usual. What I do want to encourage people to think about is the four seasons. Not only does this happen with weather but is inside of us and effects every aspect of our lives. Right now, my body is in full on winter mode. Apart from the hairy legs and unmanicured toes, this means that I give myself permission to sleep more, eat more and be indoors more than usual. If I didn’t go to the gym this week, it’s ok. For me it’s more important that I’m moving. This could mean I go for a walk, do a yoga class or just a few stretches on some days. If your body wants to slow down let it. I mean, don’t go full sloth for 3 months, but also don’t put massive rules and restrictions on yourself.

What you can do is take your vitamins and stay away from sick people, Better yet, if you are the person who happens to get sick? STAY HOME. Don’t be a hero and go into the office. Give your body time to rest and also give others a chance to stay well.

This time of year reminds me of having a nice red wine by the fire in a pub, or sitting under a thick fleece blanket excited to watch Game of Thrones (can’t wait for the final series next year!) Just like the seasons, we can’t expect ourselves to be sunshine all the time. We need the winter to appreciate the summer and vice versa. Remember, be gentle on yourself and enjoy the hibernation while you can.

 

 

mental health, Mindfulness, stress, anxiety, depression, help, support, wellness

Mind Empty or Mind Full?

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Over the years people have asked me what I’m into, what I want from my career and what I like to do in my spare time. Sometimes I’m referred to as a ‘hippie’ a ‘tree hugger’ or I get asked; “Are you into those crystals and oily things?”

My answer – I’m into anything that makes me happy! Which includes practicing mindfulness, something we can all fit into our lives even (especially) if you spend a lot of time in the corporate environment. Mindfulness simply means giving your undivided attention to the present moment, something we can all do and have probably done before.

Have a think about the times in your life when you have been so immersed in something that everything else just slips into the background. Cast your mind back to a movie you were so engrossed in that you just couldn’t take your eyes off the screen, playing in the park with your kids and pushing them on the swing, or maybe just sitting down after dinner is done and enjoying some chocolate or a glass of wine!

All these moments in time help us understand that life is to be enjoyed. The moments where we stop multitasking and really start to see everything in front of us for what it is. This allows us to slow down, relieve stress and keep life in perspective. We can be in flow with the present instead of getting caught up in our minds asking ‘what if?’

Are you struggling to find time to be in the present? Simply stop where you are right now and pay attention. Notice the smells and sounds around you… what can you see?… slow down your breathing and listen to it. Following simple steps like these can help you feel ‘in the moment’ no matter where you are or what you’re doing. Being self-aware is the first step to mindfulness. Time to Exhale is all about making it possible for people to reconnect with themselves and find balance in their lives. Mindfulness training is just one of the things I would love to help you with.

To raise awareness for Mindful in May, I will be offering 2 for 1 sessions to anyone who books with me across the month, so if you refer a friend your session is free! For more details email me at – mel@timetoexhale.com.au

 

mental health, wellness

My Story

coming soon
You know that question teachers ask when you’re trying to figure out who you are; where do you see yourself in 10 years?

My response;

“Well gee I don’t know, I’ve only just worked out how to sneak into the club on Saturday night with my fake ID!” (thanks cousin Tina…)

The one thing I’ve always known though, is how much I loved talking to people, and helping others when they felt like their world was imploding. It was so good when someone walked away feeling happier from a conversation we’d shared. So I thought about becoming a psychologist, a teacher… Or perhaps even an actress during my drama phase at school! Where I did eventually find myself, was in the world of media sales; and what a journey that was.

I’ve spent the last 15 years talking, selling, presenting, and eating, drinking and laughing with some of the most amazing people I’ve ever met; many of whom remain great friends of mine today. I loved what I did for the first few years, and it made me feel so connected to people, but something was missing.

I started to feel burnt out and no matter what I did, I just couldn’t shake the stress and anxiety that was building. I wasn’t living my purpose; in fact I was avoiding it like the plague. I finally reached breaking point one Sunday morning, when I had a panic attack while making a cup of tea. It took a lot for me to walk away from the career I’d built, but I did.

I created Time to Exhale so that I can help others who are going through a tough time like I was. We can all get back to being the best version of ourselves, which doesn’t involve an overnight fix, or suppressing feelings until they disappear (because they don’t).

My journey didn’t happen overnight, and it’s one that sees me learning new things about myself every day. I have a great team of people around me. Some of them are coaches, and others are my natural therapy gurus. We all need a little help sometimes, so don’t be scared to reach out when things aren’t feeling right.

Welcome to my community!