Snow days impact!

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Feeling held back and caught up by the snow?

Difficult when not everyone is able to get out and about, services are closed and you feel trapped indoors.

None of the usual hustle and bustle and maybe the lack of social contact is a big change.

My husband is stranded working away and he’s been away all week, so that’s not great.

Try to avoid it getting you down.

It is away from our usual routines and activities but it is luckily short lived.

Hopefully you’re cupboards are well stocked and you are warm. If this is a challenge gather warm clothes, blankets and move around where you can. Call on contacts to share resources where needed.

If you are able, get out even for short periods in the snow

it is beautiful out there!

but ensure you are wrapped up in layers, with the necessary boots, gloves, hat and scarf.

 

Embrace the beauty of the whiteness while it lasts…

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This is unexpected time, embrace it!!

Once inside and warming up again use this time away from the usual work routine to reflect…

 

and take stock for a while…

 

What do you wish to achieve going forward?

Read around ideas and gather some information

How do want life to be in 3-6 months time?

 

What may be holding you back?

Any challenges to your health and well being you wish to change?

 

Often the first step is the hardest

but also recognising that something needs to change is the biggest step!!

 

Happy first steps…

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Looking forward…

One year on I find myself further along the road of self discovery, with greater positivity and more focus. Onwards!!

It feels easier to be looking forward…

The targets to achieve have had to be found within myself, which has been tough!

Now that the worst of the dark days of winter are over, the weather is giving glimmers of brighter weather, moving forward is on the agenda.

I’m not alone in these feelings of finding it hard, am I?

Working for myself, has been a huge change in my way of life, and at times quite a lonely place. Never worse than in the dreary Uk winter!

No distractions of a team, but none of the pressures either, which has been liberating, but also difficult at times.

Some self reflection has been necessary to move forward.

I recognise this is part of my journey and time has given me space to look at:-

  • who I am emotionally

  • where my strengths lie

  • whom I like connecting to

  • what I find challenging

  • what I need to improve on

  • where I am in my life and what next

  • what opportunities are available to me

This will make me stronger in the long run and more able to focus on where I am heading.

I need to be able to set my targets to continue to be successful and build my practice!

I have tried to embrace these steps for happiness but not always found it easy putting them into practice.

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The first one is particularly relevant, with too much analysing becoming distracting, but may be necessary at my stage of working for myself?

Some exploring has had to be done to gain self acceptance, be able to love more and appreciate more. 

This process may be tough but is beneficial for your skills and experience when working with clients, to understand their blocks and challenges.

Personally I am now more connected with how fortunate I am to have this opportunity to work for myself and build a business.

I am able to feel proud of my achievements to date.

I am engaged with what I can offer others, in order to support clients to make changes.

The outcome is I am planning future services which will help and support people to improve their well being.      So all round benefits.

This is an ongoing journey but acceptance has enabled me to move forward from where I was in my life and feel more focused.

 

 

 

 

Managing negative thoughts?

At times managing negative automatic thoughts can be difficult.

Any holiday period…with a change in routines, interacting closely with family members, or not as you would like, more time on your hands to think, plus the enhancements of alcohol or lots of rich food etc can amplify the thoughts running through your mind.

The Christmas holidays can be one of those times. Or the weeks following this when the debts need to be paid and the hangover of social events may be on your mind.

 

negative-thoughts

There are lots of quotes and suggestions on how to bannish these negative thoughts and focus on positive thoughts.

This can be really difficult to do!!

Working hard to stop negative thoughts and somehow not managing to keep them from from popping into your head and lodging there, as a rumination – going round and round, can add to the negative cycle.

Dr Judith Beck, a Psychologist and President of the Beck Institute for Cognitive Behaviour Therapy in USA carried out research in 2013 which demonstrated that women were more likely than men to ruminate. However some people are more prone to negative thinking than others and this can be genetic and/or as a result of childhood experiences.

As constant negativity can interfere with happiness, add to our stress levels and eventually damage our health we are increasingly aware ongoing negative thoughts are not good for us.

This can add to increasing feeling of failure, due to not managing these negative thoughts.

 By not trying to stop these negative thoughts, worry and obsession can be reduced.

 

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The basic premise of mindfulness meditation is acknowledging your negative thoughts which can lessen their weight. Acknowledgement and acceptance of these negative thoughts is the way forward!

Once the negative thought is accepted force yourself to challenge it.

There are many exercises you can use, based on cognitive behavioural therapy or CBT. Google or access ‘get self help’.

If your negative thoughts are making you feel overwhelmed – practice taking some deep breaths. Controlled breathing can help reduce the stress reponse and calm anxious thoughts.

Practicing meditation or self hypnosis can boost your positive feelings.

The more you practice acknowledging, accepting and challenging negative thoughts the sooner this can become the

However if your thoughts are making you feel distressed  or are interfering with your work or social habits, seek help from a mental health professional.

New year, new you?

2018!!

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What do you wish to change?

Looking for help…

to start taking some small steps

which day by day

sustained over time

will set you on a journey

to a new you?

 

We all know what we may need to do, but actually setting it into our lifestyle and moving forward with it, is much more challenging.

 

Would you like support with?

-Feeling more positive

-Eating more healthily

-Being more active

-Stopping smoking

-Pain management

I can explore with you a way forward.

With years of working with all types of people, to empower them to make health improving changes and more recent skills in coaching and hypnotherapy, we can look together at what you wish to address.

Then work on the how!

Just check out my website… and get in contact.

Happy New Year!!

 

 

 

 

The challenges of the festive season?

“Tis the season to be jolly”

Socialising, eating, drinking and being merry with family and friends in cosy, sparkly and fun filled environments –

or so we hope!

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Christmas bring lots of expectations of ourselves and others, to have a good time and for everything to be christmas advert perfect!

With family members absent, or living away, financial constraints, seperated parents, relationship challenges, physical illness and mental health issues, let alone the family dynamics when getting together, the reality can be very different.

So prepare for the onslaught to keep yourself positive through this holiday period.

Help others or ask for support as this may prevent you from feeling too fraught.

Have the food menu and present list organised well in advance, if you are hosting. Liaise with the other attendees for ideas to contribute to the smooth running of the celebration days.

Or ask what your host would like you to bring, prepare or contribute if you are lucky enough to be sharing with others, so you feel involved too.

Keep things simple – focus on what is important – spending some quality time with family and friends in convivial surroundings.

Ask someone you know is alone at Christmas to share some celebration with your group.

Volunteer some time or money for the charities supporting the most vulnerable at this time of year.

Giving to others will boost your sense of well being.

Focus on gratitude!

 

For many people it is possible to pace and plan for the festive season, but for some the additional challenges at Christmas time make this much more difficult.

Mental illnesses such as anxiety or health issues worsened by overeating and excessive drinking can be difficult to manage during the festivities.

 Consider how you would ideally like to be, despite these challenges, if you functioned at your best?

Again planning beforehand can be useful.

To access resources which could help you to manage these feelings and anxieties in the coming weeks, input from a Coach or Hypnotherapist can be beneficial for developing new techniques.

Strategies which support you to access your inner resources at crucial moments.

Not always possible right now, but be aware these tools are available for you to access in the future…

Have a positive a festive period!

Keeping well this winter!

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It is inevitable that there are infections and viruses around at this time of year.

If you eat healthily, exercise regularly, manage your stress levels and ensure good sleep habits, then you can reduce your risk of being unwell.

Quite a big ask at this busy time of the year when we often over indulge on alcohol, food, and late nights. Also we tend to extend ourselves to more social gatherings than we can handle. Mix this up with gathering in overly warm premises, close together, more frequently, where people carry illness and we have a wonderful environment for bugs to spread.

So what can I do?

  • eat healthily where possible, particularly plenty of vegetables and fruit to boost your intake of vitamins and minerals, particularly vitamin C
  • boost your immune system with a diet rich in garlic and onions, which have been shown to have anti viral properties
  • prepare well in advance for the extra organising of Xmas, with tasks completed in earlier weeks, and liaise with other family and friends who are sharing this with you to spread the load
  • this will reduce your stress levels and help spread the financial load
  • take up the offer of a flu jab if it is available to you – this protects not only yourself but young children, older people and any vulnerable adults
  • plan to have rest periods in amongst social activities, allowing you to pace yourself
  • ensure some early bedtimes to enable your body to rejuvenate itself and manage the increased workload

None of this is rocket science but we often forget these simple steps.

If in doubt one of the most protective factors for reducing your risk of illness is good hand washing.

If you don’t avoid the round of bugs, I didn’t, particularly if you are in contact with young children. Then resting, staying warm and drinking plenty of clear fluids along with regular paracetamol should make you comfortable and promote a speedy recovery. This again may involve support from friends and family.

Good luck at this busy time of year and keep positive!

Autumn mists – leaves & little dog….get out there!

The weather has turned, it’s cool & misty.

The leaves are still on the trees & falling..

falling….

Before the weather gets too miserable – get out there!!

Walk with friends, children and little dogs!?!

Anything that encourages you to get the circulation going, air spreading throughout your lungs, legs pumping..😀

A sense of wellbeing – calm and tranquility as you observe the autumn colours, smell the changes in the season, kick the leaves and enjoy the sensation and the rustle.

Great for body and soul!

Anxiety

Anxiety,  is a  little word

but with a

big impact.

Anxiety

Anxiety is the sensation of being on high alert, otherwise recognised as the “fight or flight response”.

This is a normal body function. When faced with a threat, the body responds via the sympathetic nervous system and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and shifts into gear to prepare you for action. Your body is mobilising resources to mobilise body and brain.

This normal response gives physical symptons of shortness of breath, fluttering in the stomach, racing heartbeat and sweating and emotionally you may start to feel fearful.

This sense of being ready for action was necessary in the days when we lived in caves and lived a primitive life. We often had to use our body physically and this gave an outlet for the energy build up.

Nowadays you may need to be on high alert in different situations, maybe to present a speech to a large group or a discussion with your boss if a confrontation is brewing which needs to be addressed. Then your body prepares, to sharpen your attention, so you can set about performing. This performance is an outlet for the build up of energy.

Unfortunately humans are unique in that a danger doesn’t have to be present to give us this response, we can conceptualise it. Neuroscientist Bruce McEwen says “the mind is so powerful that we can set off the [stress] response by imagining ourselves in a threatening situation”. Is it this ability that can cause people to be stuck rumminating and anticipating a stressful situation and being stuck in the stress response, leading to a state of anxiety?

We may have lost sight of where some of our body processes come from but we need to recognise them to make them work for us. Unchecked we can easily drift into symptons we know associate with anxiety.

How can we recognise our reactions, acknowledge them and make them work for us in modern life?

Sounds like action is needed!

  1. Recognition and understanding is the first step.
  2. Time out in the fresh air, dog walking, connecting with nature, or any exercise which suits your lifestyle, is a must.
  3. Relaxation of the mind, accompanying exercise, or in the form of meditation, mindfulness or hypnosis.

This gives you time to disconnect from your concerns and enjoy the physicality of movement and/or of emptying your mind – preferably both!!

If this is a challenge and you are finding activity difficult to incorporate into your week,  sessions with a Hypnotherapist can help you to identify what you need to focus on for yourself, to promote better well-being.

The outcome is harnessing the energy  of your body and mind to work with you!

“Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness…”

I love “Autumn” by John Keats.

The weather has turned, it’s cool & misty.

The leaves are still on the trees & falling…

falling…

Before the weather gets too miserable – get out there!!

Walk with friends, children and little dogs!?!

Anything that encourages you to get the circulation going, air spreading throughout your lungs, legs pumping… 😀

A sense of wellbeing – calm and tranquility as you observe the autumn colours, smell the changes in the season, kick the leaves and enjoy the sensation and the rustle.

Great for body and soul!