Monthly Archives: May 2014

When you just aren’t arsed!

This issue of Progress was inspired by one hell of a crappy mood I was in a few weeks ago! You know the days- you’ve been sitting staring at a screen for hours with your ‘to-do’ list beside you but nothing productive has happened from the moment that you sat down. You’ve yawned and stretched a few times, perhaps gotten up to make a 3rd cup of tea and have a rummage in the biscuit tin. Held your head in your hands for about 20 minutes but bottom line, you just couldn’t be arsed to do anything. You’re not sure what’s going on with you but one thing is certain- you just can’t get inspired!

When couldn’t be arsed strikes- what do you do? How do you kick yourself in the arse when you couldn’t be arsed to even kick yourself?

The answer is you don’t.

 

If you’re running on empty, then the truth is that you’re not going to be any use to anyone anyway! You can’t help or give to others when you’ve nothing left yourself. If you give yourself a talking to, berate yourself and all that, you’re just going to feel worse.

The best thing that you can do here is to lean into it. Lean into not being arsed! (This took me a long time to actually accept! I honestly thought that I needed to be harder on myself and that’s what I did for years when this mood hit me but it never worked!)

So, acknowledge how you feel and give yourself the space and PERMISSION to recharge. Most of the time that is exactly what you need- to take yourself out and look after the most important person in your life- YOU! Watch a movie, read a book, listen to music,  have a nap, paint your nails, have a massage, go to the zoo, whatever! Do something it takes the pressure off.

You’re probably thinking ‘Eh, Paula, that’s the kind of stuff that I do when I don’t feel arsed to be productive- it’s called procrastinating!! ‘ Ah, yes but how do you feel when you’re taking that nap, or watching tv or being at the zoo? I bet you feel guilty and are thinking that you ‘should’ be doing something more productive!

That’s the big difference here- giving yourself permission to have that down time!permission

If you consciously make the decision to take some time out and recharge- you actually feel in control,  recharged and more energised afterwards.

On the other hand, if you’re procrastinating and just trying to distract yourself- you feel bad about it and it sucks more of your energy! Do you follow?

So, next time you feel like you’re not arsed to do something then give yourself permission to STOP! Take a break, do something different and recharge! Pay attention to your needs and give yourself what you need.

I hope you found this issue of Progress helpful! I’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback so pop over to the facebook page and say hi!

Until next week!

P x

Want to know what’s at the core of a Quarter Life Crisis?

The answer is Decisions…

You see, we’ve been raised with the myth of ‘having it all’! We are in fact the first generation (women especially) who have been raised and told that we can have it all! But the reality is that it is simply not true!

There is an opportunity cost for every decision that we make and that makes things quite uncomfortable for us. For example, if you were deciding whether to go to college straight after school- the opportunity cost would be 4 years salary and progression in a job. If you decided to be in a  committed relationship, the opportunity cost of that would be dating other people. If you have children and decided to work full time, the opportunity cost of that would be that someone else will be looking after them when you’re in work. If you were  to decide to stay home, the opportunity cost of that would be not making as much progress in your career as you may like. If you decided to do a part-time degree, the opportunity cost of that could be not having as much free time or money to go out with friends and have fun.

With every decision that we make- there is an opportunity cost, you are losing or sacrificing the next best alternative. This doesn’t sit well with many people because as I mentioned before, we have been raised and told that we can have and do it all but the reality is that it’s not possible! So what happens is that we sit on the fence and then we get stuck there because we’re not making decisions or taking action out of the fear of what we may lose out on if we commit to one particular path.

 This is the core of the Quarter Life Crisis- you know that you’re at a point when you need to make a decision on where you are going to go, what you’re going to do and what type of person you want to be but you’re not feeling able to make that decision and so you remain stuck and life seems to be passing you by.

Look at this time in your life as a crossroads, you’re in between who you were in the past and right up to this moment and who you’re going to be from today, tomorrow and onwards. It’s a time when a lot of questions will come up for you, questions about who you are, who you want to be, where you want to go, what you want to achieve or accomplish, where you want to live. It’s a time of confusion, anxiety and frustration which to be honest, no one really prepares us for, but it also seems to be a really normal experience for our generation! This is the New Normal guys!

What fence do you need to get off?fence life pass by

P x

 P.S Remember, you are who I work with!

Already I’ve worked with over 100 people just like you from all over the world to help them overcome their Quarter Life Crisis! It’s what I do!

I would love to help you do the same so check out www.myquarterlifecoach.com to see how we can work together or sign up for The Fairy Godmother Programme starting in less than 2 weeks on the 31st May 2014!

Do you conceal or do you feel?

This is a hot topic with a lot of my clients at the moment! Do you conceal your emotions or do you allow yourself to feel them?

It’s also an area that I have been personally fascinated with for years. You see, I used to conceal – in fact, I was the queen of conceal!  I’d put on my poker face, I’d take care of others, I’d bite my lip, I’d say yes and get swapped with work and smile politely like a ‘good’ girl. It meant I didn’t have to really engage, I’d let things just wash over me. Or so I thought!

In my effort to conceal how I really felt, I was actively engaged in numbing. Numbing is pretty much anything you do to distract yourself from feeling the emotions that you don’t want to feel. I was trying not to feel angry, hurt, anxious, disappointed, loss, empty and all those other negative emotions and it took a lot of effort and practice- it wasn’t a natural thing for me to do. I had to work hard at it but after a while I excelled but little did I know what the real cost was going to be…..

‘We cannot selectively numb emotions, when we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.” – Brene Brown

As the years went on, I lost my joy for life. I lost the magic, wonder, awe, curiosity and excitement that is present in everyday life. I lost myself. I wasn’t allowing myself to look forward to things or get excited in case I was disappointed. I wasn’t allowing myself to be happy for what I had achieved as there was always something else on the list. I wasn’t allowing people to get to know me and despite having a wonderful family and a wide circle of friends- I felt incredibly alone. Paula against the world. I put huge amounts of pressure on myself to be everything to everyone but at the same time, to myself, I became worthless. I was on auto-pilot, working hard and studying law (which I hated with a passion but ignored) because I thought that achievement or recognition from others would plug the empty feeling. It didn’t.

I had numbed everything, positive and negative and I lost myself.

But finally, after almost 10 years of actively numbing- I woke up to what I was doing! Cue meltdown, 6 year relationship ending, changing my career entirely, a lot of tears and a hell of lot of soul searching! I still have numbing days but life is amazing, inspiring and brings me so much joy now- in all areas! (The whole process and exactly ‘how’ is a long story!)

But as I said, this has been a hot topic with my private clients in the past few months. So many of them have been numbing for years and they’re recognising that their behaviour isn’t serving them and that they need to change. Some of the common numbing trends include cigarettes, alcohol, food, spending money (that they don’t have), casual sex, doing degrees, masters, PhD’s to bring them further up the career ladder (even though they know it’s leaning against the wrong wall) and the most common one I’ve seen lately is completely ignoring the whole sphere of their personal life and relationships and focusing almost solely on career! Do you know anyone who does that? Perhaps know them really well 😉

I wanted to share my experience with you so that you can be aware of what happens when we conceal how we feel- when we start to numb ourselves to life. Unfortunately, it’s far too common.

Why do we do it?

In most cases, we numb to avoid feeling vulnerable. We think we’re protecting ourselves but the truth is we are not. We’re hiding our true self from the world and the longer we hide and disconnect, the greater the risk we run of losing ourselves.

“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.” – Brene Brown

I hope you enjoyed this weeks issue of Progress! I’d love to see your thoughts/opinions and comments on this topic so pop over to the facebook page and let me know – Do you conceal or do you feel?

Chat soon,

P x

What are you paying attention to?

‘Tell me to what you pay attention and I will tell you who you are.’ Jose Ortega y Gassett

Have you ever caught yourself dwelling on something completely ridiculous or insignificant for WAY TOO LONG?

Maybe something happened during your day that caught you off guard or someone said something mildly offensive to you. Whatever it was, you knew that in the grand scheme of things, it wasn’t a big deal YET you felt a need to mentally rehash it over and over in your head and heart all day long.

Sound familiar?

I’ve done this so many times! I know it’s draining and pointless but at the time, it seems like a good way to fix something that somehow felt wrong.

I suspect it’s also a way for me to reinforce the idea that I am right and didn’t deserve to be snubbed or whatever! I thrash over and over again the whole woulda, coulda, shoulda mentality of what I would do should that happen again!

But you know what I realised, every time I give power to the little things that might seem irritating, like when someone doesn’t let me change lanes in traffic or the bus doesn’t stop when I’ve got your hand out, or someone is a bit rude to me—I’m actually choosing to be that unproductive, irritated, anxious energy.

Every time I feel that I have been unfairly treated or ignored or whatever, even if it’s something slight- if I get caught up in that then I am choosing to bring that pointless emotion into my day.

The thoughts that we have and the emotion we feel as a result really does influences our state of being. It can alter our mood which then can impact on everything and everyone that we come into contact with during the day

As the Buddha said ‘what we think, we become.’

Now I’m not for one second suggesting we should repress our feelings when we feel pissed off or annoyed but I am suggesting that we question the thoughts that create our feelings so that we don’t let them consume us! (Especially when we’re creating drama and unease over something we won’t even remember in a few days’ time.)

You see, we tend to create ‘meaning’ for certain situations which may not be the case at all and can lead us down a slippery slope! For example, if your partner is a bit grumpy or out of sorts- we think ‘what have I done?… He/she must be pissed off with me etc’ If your hours get cut back in work, we think ‘They don’t think I do a good job… I’m not good enough…etc’. Then your happiness, confidence and self esteem takes a beating!

We spend so much of our time focusing our attention on things that don’t really serve us and on what we don’t want in our lives. This takes up a hell of a lot of our time and energy! Time and energy that would be better focused on proactively going after the things that we do want for ourselves in our lives!

But if we can observe and understand how our thoughts are impacting us, we can change how we are experiencing the world on a day to day basis. So try this as an experiment this week and have some fun with it!

If something happens that pisses you off or annoys you- try to catch yourself before it spirals and then challenge your initial reaction! Ask yourself:

1.Is thinking this way going to add to my day or take  away from my day?

2. Am I attaching my own created negative meaning to this situation?

3. Then choose to release the little worries that stand in the way of your happiness in any given moment!

Life will seem much sweeter when you do!

take thatHere’s a real life example of how this can help! Saturday night, myself and my two buddies had a yummy meal out and were all excited to relive our childhood and go see Take That! Got the tickets in February! We arrived at the venue only to find out that we actually had tickets for the night before! D’oh!!!!!!

Take That wasn’t happening! Our night that we’d been looking forward to for months wasn’t happening! What did we pay attention to??

We were together, it was early and we were gonna have fun regardless! We ended up in the laughter lounge (even though it was full, the staff went out and got another table and set it up especially for us- we did of course tell them the story and they had a good chuckle!). I was so proud of us that night. It could have been easy to spiral into pity and disappointment but we didn’t and life was much sweeter!

I hope you enjoyed this weeks issue of Progress!

P x