Wow! 16 years, where did the time go?

Sixteen years ago today, I woke up with what I call the ‘can’t help its!’ You know that feeling when you could burst out crying at the slightest thing?!  That was me.  You see I was leaving everything that was familiar to me in the workplace.  After 19 years working for the same organisation, I was about to leave and set up my own business. Continue reading

An excuse to indulge

Wow, don’t you think the days are passing by quickly?  I can’t believe it’s March already.  I’ve been meaning to say hello for ages, but time has marched on with both work and personal life being very busy … in a positive way.  However, I realise that my writing has been the one to suffer, which means I haven’t appeared in your inbox!   You see I made a pledge at the end of last year that I was going to be kinder to myself Continue reading

Day 24 of F.O.O.D. – using NOUGAT to help you say ‘no!’

Wow, I’ve made it! Day 24 of my FOOD Advent Calendar and I’m sharing my Christmassy NOUGAT to help you reset some boundaries. In many conversations this year there seems to be an expectation we’re available 24/7 just because we’re WFH. This isn’t sustainable. Let’s practice being more assertiveness otherwise we’re going to suffer from burnout!

When you say ‘yes’ to something, you say no to something else. Prioritise the right things

If you find it hard to say no, observe others who are good at being assertive. What techniques would work for you?

Understand the triggers that make you say yes when you really mean no.  Is it because you feel you ought to, or embarrassed to say no?

You will know when you really want to say ‘no’ because your gut feel tells you. Listen to it and tell the other person how you feeling using the ‘I’ word

If the other person is acting aggressive, make sure you stay in control. Remember your attitude affects your behaviour which in turn affects their attitude and behaviour.

Words are only one piece of the communication! Tone and body language can often give us away! Try practising saying ‘no’ out loud in front of the mirror so that your tone and body language are congruent with your words!

 

Day 23 of F.O.O.D. – BAKE to take the stress away

Stress means different things to different people as we all have such different tolerance levels. But at the end of the day, it’s what we feel when we think we’ve lost control.

For Day 23 of my F.O.O.D. Advent Calendar I’m going to share my BAKE technique. You’ll always find me in the kitchen when I’m feeling overwhelmed; it’s one of my happy places. Here are some ginger biscuits I prepared earlier!

When we feel stressed, we often let our beliefs run wild. What stories are you are telling yourself? Could there be another way of looking at it?

Sit down and draw a four square grid on a piece of paper. Label each square ‘avoid, alter, adapt, accept’ then work through each element. For example in avoid could you pare down your ‘to do’ list? In alter is there a way of sharing your feelings rather than bottling them up? Could you adapt your standards and perhaps accept forgiveness could play a part?

Be kind to yourself. If you’re not being kind to yourself, you can’t be kind to others. Is there a way you can reward yourself when you achieve a milestone? It could be going for a walk at lunch time.

Finally have belief in yourself that you can achieve what you set your mind to achieve. When we have self efficacy, we are more likely to get the job done

Day 21 of F.O.O.D. – Using PEACH to network

I’ve chosen a PEACH of a subject for Day 21 of my F.O.O.D. Advent Calendar …. networking; a lifeline and survival mechanism in these challenging times.  Here are a few ingredients to help you.

Do your preparation. Turn off distractions. Practice your elevator pitch. And don’t turn up with your friends otherwise you’ll only network with them!

This leads on to events. Choose the events that work best for you and meet the objectives of you attending in the first place. Where are you most likely to meet your perfect client?

The biggest tip I can give about attitude is that you never learn anything about the other person when your mouth is open! Be curious of others. Remember that networking is a mutually beneficial relationship and if you get it right, you should be able to sell other people when you leave, and they you!

People buy people first. What are the characteristics that you demonstrate consistently? Are you sincere, authentic, respectful?

One of the biggest hurdles in networking is to feel confident entering a busy room. Ask groups if you can join them. Pick someone that’s standing by themselves. But remember to circulate. You are there to meet people