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I’m not ashamed to admit that sometimes I find things are tough… and it can be lonely at points. This week I’ve got an ever growing ‘To Do List’ and I’ve been tired, so tired!

My son has realised he can climb out of his bed and earlier this week it took me fourteen, (FOURTEEN!!) times of returning him in before he stayed put and fell asleep. This was on a night when my husband was working late so I was parenting solo.

It was so hard, both physically and mentally. I felt that what right did I have to complain when I’m well aware that there are single parents out there who do this by themselves all the time and those who have multiple children. However, I quickly realised that these were my emotions and I have every right to feel them.

So I did what I needed to do to stop myself feeling overwhelmed. Here are some top tips for what you can do if you’re struggling…

  • Reach out to a friend. Having a friend and fellow mum I could message to in between those 14 times made it just a little bit easier to have some additional encouragement
  • Connect with a supportive group. I’m part of an online group of mums all with children around the same age. I posted the next morning about my previous nights and the responses made me feel like somehow I could face the next evening
  • Take each moment as it comes. Day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute if you have too. I had gotten through the first half an hour, I could get through the next.
  • Take time to breath. Just a couple of rounds of full breaths can be a big calming help.
  • Positive self-talk. Repeat to yourself that you are in control and you got this!

Taking the above steps really helped me. I listened to some advice and changed up my approach. This combined with some perseverance has meant tonight it only took three times to get him to settle so we are now winning the bedtime battle!

If you want to chat with me and discuss how I can best support you in managing your emotions do get in touch to book a free discovery call.

Thank you

I’m willing to bet that you say thank you on a regular basis. Thanks to someone holding a door open, thanks to someone for passing you an item, thanks for someone letting you go at a junction. However, when was the last time you said thank you to yourself?

There are so many things that you do for yourself that you probably don’t even take the time to acknowledge. Here are some examples:

  • Thank you for taking the time to feed yourself
  • Thank you for wearing clothes that keep you warm
  • Thank you allowing yourself a moment to watch your favourite show
  • Thank you for giving yourself some time to go outside for some fresh air

I bet that you may not take the time to thank yourself, but you’ll take the time to critique or question yourself instead! Why?

How we talk to ourselves it important. I mean, super, important.

We want to be right, I mean we all like to be right. Why? It feels great! So we looking for things that reinforce our beliefs. Let me give you an example. You might think that you are useless at maths. Therefore every time anything maths related comes up you think oh I can’t do that, I remember that time when I miscalculated and got the answer wrong. Every time you make a maths related error you think ‘yep that’s because I’m rubbish at maths’. However, there will be times when you will get an answer correct, but of course, you think that’s just down to luck…because you believe you’re rubbish at maths.

By always looking for the things that reinforce your belief, rather than challenge it, you create a cycle. You thoughts lead to words, which lead to actions i.e. avoiding anything you have to use maths. These actions become a habit, and part of your character and this impacts upon the choices you make. Such as a job you may take or a situation you may avoid. All because you are providing fuel to your negative belief, rather than being kind to yourself and allowing yourself to acknowledge the wins too.

Therefore, I want you to be kind to yourself. Acknowledge the wins, say thank you to yourself for all the small things – and challenge your negative thoughts.

If you want to discuss how you can better support yourself do just get in touch to arrange a free no obligation chat.

This saying often refers to if your house is clean and tidy then it will help you in being able to think more clearly too. However, what I’m wondering is, if your house is not tidy, how much do you mind and how does this impact you?

Let me be honest. My house is not tidy, it rarely is. Having a toddler and a dog plus my hubby and I working full time, keeping things sorted is an ongoing challenge. We’re lucky that we have weekends altogether; not everyone has that luxury.

What that means is at weekends we tend to be out doing activities and spending time together as a family. I choose to prioritise that over making my house tidy. In the week there are times when I prioritise something else too, that some of you may find truly shocking…myself.

I do my best to sit down and have lunch everyday. It doesn’t have to be a long lunch, but my little one is at nursery and it’s rare to have that quiet times. At weekends I try to have a few minutes when he’s asleep to prioritise me too. I choose to do this, rather than use this time to tidy my house because for me I feel it’s a better use of my time. You can’t pour from an empty cup so they say!

Choosing to accept that my house won’t be totally tidy, is for me, ok. Recognising and accepting this reduces the pressure I feel from the mounting to do list I can so easily create.

I practice gratitude. Those crumbs on the floor under the highchair? That’s ok, they can be sorted later, in this moment they don’t matter. I’m just grateful that I have a family to feed and food to feed them with. The lawn that needs mowing? Well I’m grateful that I have the privilege of outside space that’s my very own to maintain.

This weekend I was catching up with a friend. My house was untidy, my little boy had gotten his toys out everywhere and my dog was shedding hair too! I could have chosen not to have invited my friend over to prevent any fear of judgement. However I chose to invite her over and we enjoyed some time catching up, it didn’t matter about everything else, only reinforcing to me what my personal priorities are.

There is always a lot of pressure from external sources, the phrase ‘house embarrassment’ springs to mind and ‘Insta-worthy’ photo’s of rooms or perfect storage solutions can easily be found. However the best thing I can recommend to help you as a busy mum is just to consider for a moment what your priorities are.

Of course, a happy balance is always likely the best answer. I’d love to hear from you where you feel you sit? Does having a tidy house give you a tidy mind? Or does having a tidy house mean you’ve been under more pressure and missed out on other things?

If you feel that you are struggling with your ‘to do list’ and are getting overwhelmed, perhaps it’s time to consider ways in which you can look after yourself and keep your composure.

To find out how I can help do get in touch.

Running for the door

You know those team meetings or workshops where you each have to introduce yourself? Or worse there would be a full on ‘ice breaker’ where you feel like you there was a strong chance of your making an idiot of yourself? I would hate those so much – definitely enough to make you want to bolt out the door!

What about a work session where you were put into groups and then you had to present back to your team? Yep, I would hate those too! Not the group work, that would be ok, but when it came to nominate someone to present? Well, I would be the person shrinking lower in my chair hoping that I wouldn’t be selected.

Now, I would happily get up in front of a group at present, so long as I know the subject well anyway. To me that demonstrates how far I’ve come. I’ve practiced and used a variety of techniques to work on my fears of presenting and now I would go so far as to say there are times when I actively seek the opportunity and I really enjoy it!

Of course there is still an element of nerves. There is also still the caveat that I’m only truly comfortable if I’m confident in what I’m presenting. To me this shows that right now I’m still on my journey of overcoming this fear. But that’s ok.

I would love to share with you what I’ve learnt and still actively practice in working towards my goal of being a renowned public speaker. If this is an area you’re keen to work on too get in touch to schedule your 20 minute free initial chat with me or join me on one of our FREE webinars.

Why Tidal Coaching

I thought for ages to come up with a name for my business and I couldn’t settle on one that I liked (and also had the domain name available!). Then a friend of mine suggest using the word Tidal and instantly I liked it.

So many puns… going with the flow, smooth sea never made a skilled sailor, what boat someone is in and so on.

I loved the link with nature.. I feel we are all part of nature and we all have to evolve until find our natural flow. Recently I’ve been reading a book by Deepak Chopra – The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success and nature is a key theme. It gives the example of how a fish doesn’t try to swim, it just does.

It just felt right as a name to me. Am I a little miffed that I didn’t come up with it straight away on my own? If I’m being honest, yes maybe a tad! However, I’m not too proud that I wasn’t going to use a suggestion that I loved. I might be stubborn and head strong at times, but I listen and I go with what I feel is right.

So, just in case you were wondering what’s in the name and how it came about – that’s the story! If you want to dip your toe in (see what I did there – dip.. water.. get it?) and chat about how I can support you to move forward rather than just tread water, do get in touch and we can arrange a free 20 minute call.

Lockdown has brought a lot of pressure in so many different ways. There may now be some light at the end of the tunnel with an estimated end date to lockdown. However, have you been left feeling under pressure to have ‘achieved’ something whilst you’ve been stuck at home?

Please remember that you have all achieved something! For some it’s been balancing home schooling and work. For others just simply keeping going and getting dressed or stepping outside has been a challenge.

With potential new changes on the way it’s perfectly ok to feel nervous or scared, remember that all your emotions are valid. However, don’t let them stop you going for what it is you want to accomplish.

If you want to go for something but are perhaps struggling with the confidence or are feeling anxious in taking that first step, here are some things you can try.

Positive Affirmations
These are helpful statements that you have chosen yourself that will help you overcome negative thought patterns. Repeat your statements over and over again to help create new pathways in your brain to amend your thinking and actions.

Statements must be in the first person and present tense. For example “I am excellent at staying calm under pressure” or “I am excited about trying new things”.

Breathing techniques
There are lots of different breathing techniques to try but a simple one is just to practise breathing consciously.

Breath in through your nose and out through your mouth for a count of 5 seconds each way if you can. Focus on the movements of your body expanding and contracting. Repeat several times and you will start to feel more in control of your emotions.

Practice grounding techniques
When we believe a threat is present is a chain of events is triggered by our amygdala, the area of a brain responsible for our emotional responses. This results in physical changes taking place, such as an increase in our heartbeat and us breathing quicker. Consequently, our brain believes there is a threat, the cycle continues and we get more emotionally overwhelmed.

Grounding techniques are a useful way to change your focus to the present moment and can be utilised in order to break this cycle.

Try wriggling your toes, this can be done discretely so it’s a great tip to try when you’re out and about. Focus on the movement of each toe and what they can feel. Are the hot/cold? Touching something soft or hard?

Alternatively try the 5-4-3-2-1 technique. List five things you can see, four you can touch, three you can hear, two you can smell and one you can taste.

If you want to find out more about the various techniques I used to keep calm and composed check out the full composure toolkit that is available to download now.

How flexible are you? Don’t worry, I’m not talking about if you can touch your toes or do the downward dog! How flexible are you mentally and in your behaviour?

One of the key premises of NLP is regarding flexibility. It is stated that the person with the most flexibility controls the system. What this is referring to is how flexible you are in your approach and the decisions you make. Ultimately you are unable to control anyone else’s actions or external events that take place, however, what you can do is choose how you react to them.

A quote that you may recognise helps to sum this up.

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.”

Behaving in a flexible manner provides more interactions, more opportunities and ultimately allows you to have a greater impact.

For example, if you are attending a work meeting and you have a great idea to put forward to your team but previously when your idea has been presented you have received a lot of resistance, then it might be time to consider different options. This doesn’t have to mean completely changing your idea, perhaps begin with just considering the way in which you present it. It may be that your team are very visual and need to see your idea in order to truly understand the benefits, so if you have just spoken with them about your idea before they may not realise the concepts fully and that is why you are encountering the resistance.

Next time you are in a difficult situation or conversation be sure to ask yourself what you can do differently and you may just get a better outcome!  

It was a cold January morning and I was sleeping on a mattress on the floor in a damp one bed flat with no heating. If you had told me to fast forward 8 years or so and I would now be living in a 4 bed house that I recently bought with my husband, happily married with one son and one dog, building my own business I don’t think I would have believed you.

It’s amazing the twists and turns that life takes. Change is inevitable, if you try to avoid it, there’s the risk that it can lead to living a stagnant and anxious existence. But if you learn to say yes to opportunities and become open to change then there is more potential for you to attract what you want.

I was invited to join a group of virtual strangers on a night out, and nervously I attended. That’s where I first properly met my now husband. If I had said no, my life may have taken a totally different path.

Along the journey I had from where I was to where I am now I realised a lot of things such as my own self-worth, to better manage my own emotions when I feel judged by others and how to keep calm in difficult conversations. Learning these skills (as well as others) has made such a huge difference to the way I approach my life. Now if you ask me where I’m going to be in another 8 years’ time, I have a much clearer picture in mind.

The reason why I do what I do is because I want to ethically support others to improve their confidence and reduce their own negative self beliefs so they are able to set out and achieve what they want to too. I hate it when someone says that they can’t do something, as much as they would like to, or, they say something like that’s not possible for ‘people like me’. I wouldn’t want anyone to be stuck sleeping in a dingy flat not being able to see themselves getting the future they choose.

As I mention in my ‘About’ section, the catalyst for me was when I heard something similar from a young primary school aged child.  I set about learning NLP principles and became a Certified Practitioner of Neuro Linguistic Programming to provide me with the knowledge and skills to be able to coach others effectively, and subsequently Tidal Coaching was developed.

If you would like to develop your Confidence, Composure or Communication skills then check out the various coaching plans available or get in touch to discuss your needs.

Isn’t it funny, I bet that after simply reading the title of this blog you have a picture in your head of a purple frog or a unicorn? We just can’t help ourselves! Now, if I say to you “don’t think of a purple frog” what do you notice? You still think of a purple frog right!? At least until you realise that you’re not supposed to be thinking of one so you change the image, perhaps to a different colour or animal. So what does this tell us?

The short answer is that the unconscious mind cannot process negatives. What this means is whatever you want to achieve, you must frame that goal as what you want, rather than what you don’t want.

I remember as a child I once got told ‘don’t touch the iron, it’s hot’. So instinctively I wanted to do nothing more than go and touch the iron… I did…it was hot!! Now having an understanding of the unconscious mind, a better instruction would have been surrounding the desired behaviour, such as ‘please continue playing with your toy’.

Whether you are working within management and providing an instruction to a team member, a parent to child or setting your own goals they must be correctly worded so there is no misunderstanding between your conscious self, and your unconscious self.

Here are some examples of negatively worded commands and how you can switch them so they serve you better:

  • I don’t want to waste my money – I need to use my money wisely
  • I don’t want to be stressed out – I need to be calm
  • I don’t want to work in this job anymore – I need to gain a more fulfilling job
  • Don’t forget to put the bins out – Remember to put the rubbish out
  • I can’t be late – I need to be on time
  • I can’t make a noise – I need to be quiet
  • Don’t walk on the grass – Stay on the path

It’s simple but effective – just trying asking for what you actually want and you might be amazed by the impact this could have!

If you want to be one of the first to hear more simple tips sign up to receive the Tidal Coaching eNewsletter and receive a free mini guide on Composure.