Mindful of the Seasons

Wintertree copy

Well here we are 2015 how does your year look so far?

I use this time to reflect on the things I have achieved, the things I have learnt and the experiences that have given me tools I didn’t have at the start of 2014. It is all part of being Mindful and appreciating the moments, taking time to notice the little things and listen actively to our loved ones. This heightens the colour in our lives and we in-turn feel more fulfilled and connected – why wouldn’t you do it? I would like to suggest for at least 10 minutes everyday you try this, it really works.

10 Minute Mindful Exercise
Take off your shoes and loosen any tight clothing, especially a tight waistband or belt. Sit comfortably. If you’re sitting on a chair, put your feet flat on the floor – if necessary support them with a block or cushion. If you’re sitting on a cushion then sit in such a way that your knees are supported either by cushions or on the floor; you can sit either cross-legged or kneeling (Japanese seiza posture). Aim for a posture of stability that can’t be pushed over – like a doll with a weight in the bottom, which just bobs back upright again.

Straighten the back and raise the sternum, opening the front of the body so you can breathe easily. Keep the head straight and balanced directly above the spine, not tilted forwards or backwards or to either side. Imagine a ‘skyhook’ gently lifting the crown of the head, slightly stretching the spine. Relax the shoulders as you breathe out.

Place your hands on your knees, or in your lap in the meditation mudra – palms up, right hand resting in palm of left hand, thumb-tips very lightly touching.

The eyes may be closed, or slightly open with a soft gaze, relaxed into peripheral vision.

Let your attention travel around the body, checking in with every part, and release any areas of tension. As you become more aware of your posture, make any little adjustments you need to until you find a position in which your body is entirely at ease.

Your posture should be conducive to a state of relaxed awareness. During your meditation session, keep still, avoiding unnecessary movements or fidgeting; however do make whatever slight adjustments may be necessary to maintain your posture – habitually recurring tensions may need to be noticed and eased repeatedly. If physical discomfort arises during your meditation session, sit with it for a few minutes (it may go away); if it persists, just change your position to a more comfortable one and continue as before.

You may like to recall a previous instance of experiencing calmness and clarity; or if not, imagine what it would be like to experience that now. Use that calmness and clarity now to help you enter meditation.

Begin your practice of mindfulness of breathing by becoming attentive to the physical process of breathing, the actual physical sensations. Let the attention rest lightly wherever you experience these sensations most easily: the entrance to the nostrils, chest, abdomen, or maybe even the whole body. Simply be aware of the breathing, noticing a long breath, a short breath, a sigh, making no attempt to tinker with it or change it in any way. Just relax into it and enjoy the process. As you breathe out, release any tension, whether physical or mental, so you are relaxing with each out breath.

If you find your quality of awareness becoming dull or even sleepy, sharpen your attention and focus on the sensation of the breath entering and leaving the nostrils. If you are becoming distracted by thoughts, relax even more and rest your attention on the rise and fall of the abdomen.

If you like, you can mentally count the breaths: count from one to ten, then start again at one; if you lose count, just start again at one. Count on the in breath if you have a tendency to dullness, on the out breath if you have a tendency to distraction.

Keep the sessions short, not more than 10 or 15 minutes to begin with, or even less if necessary; a short, good quality session is much better than a long session full of distraction and dullness. But do maintain some discipline: decide in advance how long you are going to sit, and stick to it.

It’s good to get into the habit of spending a few moments at the beginning of each session reflecting on your motivation, why you want to do this, what is your purpose; then take a few moments at the end to reflect on what you have learned and to dedicate the positive potential of your meditation for the benefit of yourself and others.

If you want to harness this skill this Mindful Workshop is the best in Somerset run by Nicki Hughes.

PS I was given this exercise however I do not remember by whom – many thanks and I hope that you do not mind me sharing.

SeedSowing Seeds for Success

Spring is one of the four temperate seasons, the transition period between winter and summer. Spring and “springtime” refer to the season, and broadly to ideas of rebirth, renewal and re-growth.

As I watch those around me begin to open up, stand tall, look forward and plan ahead. The colours in nature become more vibrant and bold. A real sense of positivity permeates the air, a truly transitional period.

Clients are sowing seeds of commitments to themselves, by composing vision boards and planning their route to success. These tools ensure you keep focussed and remain authentic to yourself. The time you take to learn new skills are a catalyst to empowering you and gaining momentum to realise your goals in 2014.

The environment in which you spend most of your time be that an office / home office should be an inspirational space to help you learn and grow. You wouldn’t put a seedling in the freezer when it needs a greenhouse. Cultivating a nurturing and colourful environment enables all of my clients to sow positive seeds, put down strong roots and thrive.
It can only be a good thing!

Toms Sunshine Shoes

Sunshine Shoes

The summer is upon us and we seem to have gone from cool to burning hot in less than 7 days!
Please dont get me wrong I love the heat and how everyone is smiling and getting all that extra vitamin D that we so badly needed.

My whole wardrobe has had to change thank goodness, farewell jeans, jumpers and boots, hello shorts, t-shirts oh and new Toms.

If you dont know about Tom and his One for One philosophy you can see what he is doing at www.tomsshoes.com.

I put on my new Toms Sunshine Shoes, that incidentally help support, Charlize Theron’s Africa Outreach Project and guess how they made me feel?
Bright, bold and beautiful… oh and my feet love them, they are so comfy!
To be really honest I think it is partly the shoes but mostly it is because
I know my Sunshine Shoes have made a difference in keeping African children safe from aids/HIV.

Spread some sunshine anyway you can, every small gesture can have a massive impact on someone else’s life.
Start with smiling at people when you are out and about, you will change how you feel and possibly make someones day!

Better still, get your own pair of Sunshine Shoes and feel bright bold and beautiful.

Blue Monday

I woke up this morning and was interested to hear that today is Blue Monday where motivation is at its lowest, new years resolutions get broken and apathy sets in.

According to a press release by a mental health charity,the formula is:

where weather=W, debt=d, time since Christmas=T, time since failing our new year’s resolutions=Q, low motivational levels=M and the feeling of a need to take action=Na. ‘D’ is not defined in the release, nor are units.

The date was calculated by using many factors, including: weather conditions, debt level (the difference between debt accumulated and our ability to pay), time since Christmas, time since failing our new year’s resolutions, low motivational levels and feeling of a need to take action. (Thanks Wikipeadia)

However surely it is about our own Positive Mental Attitude, the fact that we have achieved what we set our selves, not what we haven’t. If you are struggling with fitness and wellbeing here are some top tips;

Remember why you want to be fitter / slimmer/ have more energy and write 3 bullet points.

Who you are doing it for, visualise yourself, make the vision colourful and bright of you realising your goal.

When you set realistic goals you get results – keep it simple.

Where you exercise will have a huge impact on your results make sure you create a positive space and own it.

Stay focussed, be the brilliant person that you are and when those negative thoughts come creeping in blast them with your PMA!
For me Blue Monday only means one thing, my favourite song by New Order and the turbo juice that I was going to have to kick start my Motivational Monday.

Listen here Blue Monday

What’s in a Word?

I have been lucky enough to work with a variety of clients recently on their Future Focus.

The 1:1 sessions started with, where they are now, where they wanted to be and how they were going to get there.

During the course of our sessions it became apparent that the word I was using was jarring with each of them.
I was using the word Goal, which made one client shudder and one become closed and defensive.

Goal (noun)
‘the result or achievement toward which effort is directed; aim; end.’

Aim (verb)
‘to intend or direct for a particular effect, something intended or desired to be attained by one’s efforts; purpose

Dream (noun)
‘an involuntary vision occurring to a person when awake.’

I asked them to choose the word that felt most comfortable to them and to use this going forward. This helped enormously in their understanding of the Future Focus content and in turn, made it completely relevant to them as individuals.

I am sure that you have had conversations were a word you have used has caused an unexpected reaction.Listening to the language of the person you are talking to gives so many clues. When we use words that are comfortable to others we gain greater understanding and develop deeper relationships.

We can also help ourselves by changing the words we use, such as ‘should’ which implies we ‘must’ do whatever the task is. If we stop and ask ourselves “Why should I or why must I ?” We then give ourselves the freedom of choice, that can result in a very different outcome – go on try it.

The feed back from my clients has been extraordinary its all in their words!

slpix / Shutterstock.com


We are so pleased to share with you the language of iMA , in our opinion a fabulous communication tool.

The reason companies have interpersonal conflicts is poor communication.
The reason so many companies struggle with their message is poor external communication.
Louisa has been an accredited practitioner for iMA since 2010, delivering fun workshops and seminars enabling business to flourish and communicate effectively inside and out.

What is iMA?
A colourful, colour coded, communication key!

There are four iMA Dialects.
Every person in the world speaks one dialect naturally, putting you on the same wavelength as 25% of the people in the world.
iMA teaches you the things you need to know to be able to connect effectively with the other three iMA dialects, who look and filter the world differently you.

This communication tool increases mutual liking, trust, understanding and respect, whilst reducing stress and tension, in every area of your life.
iMAs’ systematic approach is Fast, Simple and Easy:

· Inspire and motivate staff

· Develop strong and effective teams and leaders

· Increase productivity and morale

· Improve communication from the inside out

· Increase customer confidence

· Strengthen your brand

Click this link see what colour YOU are
It really is a great key to have and opens the doors to endless possibilities.
Ask about our company audits Auto Trader had one and have never looked back.

Camera, Lights, Action!

It has been a while since my last blog and April showers have hit hard and now we are in May, heading towards the Bank Holiday weekend.
I had a session with a new client this week and as we chatted he told me why he was investing this time in himself.
This is how he explained it;

I get up and go to work
I spend time at the gym
I eat fresh organic food
I have great family and friends
I am fit and healthy
I have expensive holidays
I am very fourtunate, so why I am getting no return on my investments?
My life seems to play like groundhog day!
I dont want to be in this movie any more.

We look at each other and I think about my reply.

I need to share with you that this client is a iMA High Green, he completed the online questionnaire before our session.
See what colour you are here

Characteristics of a High Green are they are process driven, organised, wonderful problem solvers, diplomatic but dont like surprises.
Bearing this is mind, my reply is lets make a new film, write a new script and search for new performers or locations.

A quizzical look creeps across his face, and as this thought beds in I ask what is his favourite film?
His response is immediate, The Bourne Identity because he likes the pace of the story, identifies with the central character and the need to know why Jason Bourne behaves the way he does.

So we set to work writing a new script in which my client is not an extra but the Jason Bourne of his own movie.
He becomes animated and connected to the task, stepping tentatively into someone else’s shoes and assuming their identity.
I can see that this shift has given him permission to change the order of things and to improve how he sees his life.

Remembering that we own the rights to our personal movie is essential to our self esteem, confidence and keeping us motivated.
We can be the Director, the Producer or the Writer – now go make a blockbuster!

Popcorn is on me!

P.S. This was written with my clients permission.
He decided that if his journey in someway helps someone else, so be it.

Route 66, 76, or 86

Whoosh… where did January go?

I am so glad that I made the time and I came up with a plan, a sort of route to navigate 2012.

It started well, collaborating on an interior design for a boarding school. Designing inspirational bedrooms and motivational study spaces for teens.

As well as working with the students on a one to one basis covering areas like confidence, focus and time keeping.

Individuals have invested in 1;1 Power Ups where walking and talking reap huge rewards, as well as 60 minutes to Success. Along with running workshops with business leaders on Communicating Effectively with your staff , Confidence in the current climate and Making Time.

None of this would be possible if I didn’t have a plan.

One of my well thumbed books is by Stephen Covey ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’ Where he asks are you governed by the compass or the clock?

If you have a compass, a plan, a route you will be effective in realizing your goals, rather than being busy and realizing nothing.

If we define the direction we want to travel and actually commit it to paper it has a higher chance of being accomplished. Writing things down like instructions, lists or goals, is a psycho neural activity and helps imprint the information.

So grab a pen, a piece of paper, a compass and plan your route for the best year ever.
Remember “Procrastination is opportunity’s natural assassin.” ~Victor Kiam

Great song from Depeche Mode


I was talking to a fascinating and diverse group of people recently about how limiting beliefs really do limit us!

When we tell our selves we can’t do something, we wont pass a test or just fail at whatever we are trying to achieve, we usually do.

I shared with them the story of when I was a student and learning to drive, in Plymouth.
Plymouth is very hilly with lots of those double mini roundabouts and at the time more traffic lights than Milton Keynes!
On one of my first sojourns out, I stalled the car several times, like many learners before me. Drivers behind me were impatient, I was self conscious and felt stupid. This had a huge impact on how I saw learning to drive.

Even before I was actually in my beautiful, turquoise, VW Beetle my parents had bought me, I knew I was going to stall the car.
Actually I didn’t ‘know’ I was going to stall the car at all.
The negative self talk in my head was reinforcing all those terrible emotions and making me back away from learning to drive.

I was lucky I had a brilliant teacher who with positive repetition and praise told me I will be a good driver.
When I did stall the car, he burst out laughing and told me it didn’t matter, reinforcing that I will be a good driver.

I don’t want to tempt fate, suffice to say no problems and no stalling since 1991,Thanks Dad!

It also reminded me of the very brilliant Caroline Casey

Caroline Casey

Remember how you speak to yourself has a massive impact on what you will achieve.
Choose a belief to change, put it in a positive sentence and repeat often in the present tense-be an Inspiration!
At the end of our really challenging session most of the Limiting Beliefs had left the room.

An Extra Hour – how will you spend it?

I saw this picture and it reminded me of a couple of weeks ago when I ran through the park kicking the leaves, enjoying the autumn colours and the sun on my face. The colours are beginning to fade along with the sun and the nights are drawing in and the clocks went back an hour yesterday!

However it got me thinking that if I could add an extra hour a day, a week or a month what would I want to do with it?

As Geoffrey Chaucer said, ‘Time and Tide waits for no man’ which galvanized me into action I grabbed my ipad and started a list…

An extra hour a day would allow me to;

Be ahead on my social media stuff
Swim more often
Have time to read those books still on my shelf
Spend more time with my children
Talk instead of text my friends
Assist more clients
Go to more networking events
Walk my dog for longer
Inspire more students

Then if I had to hone it down to only an extra hour per week how would I spend the time? Looking at the first list and understanding what supports me and gives me clarity it would have to be either…

Spend time more with my children
Walk my dog for longer


If I could only have an extra hour per month, well that’s easy based on the fact that the last two choices also motivate and inspire me, what a cracking combination they will be …

I will walk with my children and the dog at least once a month. Not sure that the children will see it that way however maybe the lure could be bacon butties or Sunday lunch in a pub!

What would you do with your extra hour?