“The wound is the place where the light enters you” – Rumi
No truer have these words been than this week. Ever had one of those days/weeks/months or
even year where you’ve felt like throwing it all in?
Well that was me earlier last week. Monday morning, I woke to find myself feeling angry and despondent, ready to give up on all that I’d worked so tirelessly to achieve these past couple of years. By lunchtime Monday, I’d fallen in a complete heap. Mentally, emotionally and physically I was burnt out, done and dusted (and it’s only May!!). One might think this strange, but in amongst all my anger, bitterness and sadness, I was actually excited.
I was excited because I had seen this pattern before and knew that on the other side of completely falling apart, I would level up and achieve even more than I had thus far.
But I found myself asking “where did this anger, rage and sudden desire to throw in the towel come from?” I’d had an amazing weekend with my family and friends at the local races. I’d met some lovely new people, the kids were behaving better than ever, business was going well and I was excited for the new programs we are about to launch. So why was I feeling this way?
Thankfully I have an amazing coach myself, and after an hour of crying and counselling , I was slowly returning to my old self. You see I’ve learned in the past that the only way past an emotion is through it.
In days gone by, I would have hidden my feelings from the
world, had a silent cry in the bottom of my shower and that would have been the
end of it. I would have put on a mask to
show the outside world and just soldiered on.
But these days, I’ve learned to recognise that if I am feeling
this way, then there are probably a dozen others feeling the same way, each and
every day. These same people likely look
at people like me, who to the outside world seem to have their sh*t together and
think that my life is perfect. Because in
today’s modern society, with digital photos, filters and editing tools, we tend
to only show the outside world what we want them to see.
No one sees the broken tears at 9 o’clock at night after a
hard day at the office or a challenging day with the kids. No one sees the stress we feel each and every
time a bill comes in that we are struggling to pay. No one sees the struggle we experience some
days, just putting one foot in front of the other.
But why is this? Why do
we hide our true feelings when all we really want is connection? Do we fear we will be judged by society if we
don’t have our sh*t together all the time?
I used to put so much pressure on myself to be the best
version I could be. A few years back, I
was nearly hospitalised for exhaustion whilst doing University. I had put so much pressure on myself to achieve. I was so burnt out I was drinking Red Bull
just to stay awake long enough to study for my exams. Looking back, I know it was me, and only me
putting that pressure on myself.
These days what I’ve come to recognise is that no one can function
at their best each and every day. No one
can be superwoman (or man), each and every day.
No one, no matter who they are, how rich or poor, successful or
unsuccessful, can function at great heights each and every day.
So next time you find yourself heading towards a downward spiral, take time to acknowledge it, look for the lesson within, allow the emotion to flow through you, but most of all, take time to rest, recuperate and heal.
Love and Gratitude
Since my first son was born, I used to joke that all I
wanted for Mother’s Day was a day off from my kids. Now this statement might sound absurd to some,
but to many, it’s probably going to resonate with your thinking as a Mum at one
time or another. Especially if, like me,
you’ve been doing this gig on your own for quite some time. And I’m not just talking about the single Mum’s,
because you can still be in a relationship and feel like you’re doing it on
your own. Hell, when my Ex walked out, I
was slightly relieved because now I only had to look after two kids, instead of
This will be my twelfth year in this life as a Mum and my ninth
as a fulltime single Mum. Mother’s Day
is always a bittersweet reminder for me, for my marriage fell apart literally
days before Mother’s Day all those years ago.
I still remember opening a present from my boys that my own Mum had
helped them pick out, bursting into tears for the joy and sadness I felt all rolled
Fast forward nine years, and I’m still experiencing that
combination of joy and sadness, but these days it has nothing to do with my previous
marriage or husband. These days, the joy
is felt when my boys now old enough to pick out their own presents, cook me
breakfast in bed and surprise me with a beautiful gift. But the sadness is now felt because they no
longer seem to need me on this day. To
them, the Xbox and their friends seems of a higher priority.
As the Mum of two tweenagers, I knew this day was coming,
but now that it’s finally arrived, I am now longing for the days when I was
their world. When we used to do everything
together and wherever I went, they came too.
Today of all days, when all attempts to get them out of the house
to enjoy some time together were met with resistance, well, that was it, I just
lost the plot. What a terrible Mother I
must be to yell and scream at my kids at how selfish and ungrateful they
are. But truth be told, in today’s
modern society of disconnected families, it’s probably what many Mother’s are
thinking, but too scared to admit for fear of being judged. Today of all days, I no longer feel the need
to put on the show of being a perfect Mum who’s got their shit together. Because I am just like all those other Mum’s
out there, doing the best I can with the life circumstances I find myself
navigating each and everyday.
As a new Mum, I read all the books, trying to arm myself
with the knowledge I needed to make sure I got it right. But one thing I remember
my own Mum telling me, that has stuck with me all these years “All these books
are great, but a baby can’t read a book so you’ll just have to figure it out as
you go along”.
So, this is a shout out to all the amazing Mums out there
just trying to figure it out as they go along, you are doing an amazing
Tag and share this with a Mum who you think is doing a great
Love and Gratitude
Recently it dawned on me that when it comes to my business and taking risks, I’ve been somewhat fearless (okay, pretty damn fearless). Looking back over the past few years I started my business at a time when the Finance industry was taking a beating, which seemed to have culminated in 2018 with the Royal Commissions into Banking, Finance and Insurance.
Anyone who has seen or followed any of my stuff over the past few years would also know it was at a time when financially I was clawing my way back from Divorce Destruction.
I’ve lost count the number of cliffs I feel like I’ve had to jump off in order to get my business up and running and then to a point where I could actually pay the bills. Let’s face it, the statistics on small businesses succeeding weren’t really in my favour.
But with a lot of determination and blind faith that the Universe will always provide me with what I need, I jumped off those cliffs and have soared to achieve things I never thought possible.
The rewards have been great, I have total freedom and flexibility around my kids, around the content I produce and how fast or slow I choose to build my business.
That, my friends, is how I see risk and reward when it comes to business.
Now, on the other hand when it comes to my personal life and in particular finding new love, I couldn’t be more opposite.
In the beginning, I told myself it was because:
• I didn’t want to bring anyone into the Sh*t that was my life and yeah, that was true, my Divorce was pretty messed up (not to mention lengthy)
• Then I told myself it was because I had the kids fulltime, again, true, but my Mum only lives 100km away.
• Then I told myself I had to heal and work on myself, again, true, but that was 3 years ago.
• Then I told myself I had to focus on building the business, again, true, but this year the business achieved self-sufficiency.
So, given that I’ve run out of excuses, I started to wonder, “Why was I so fearless in business, but not when it comes to love?”
Over the years I’ve dabbled a little here and there when it came to dating (one week stints, four times a year to be exact), but few people have managed to sweep me off my feet and each time, they were just not ready to settle down. Looking back, I now see it was me, not them who was not ready.
What was the block that prevented me from moving forward. Why do I guard my heart so closely, fearful that it will get crushed again? A normal response for the first few years post-divorce, but seriously, we’ve clocked up nearly a decade and so I’ve decided this sh*t’s gotta end.
That is why I’ve set myself a new challenge to take the lessons learned from all those positive affirmations, self-help books, meditations, energy healings and anything else I’ve learned the past few years and apply them to a new kind of fearlessness.
2019 will be the year of pushing through all those fear barriers and opening up my heart again. I figure what’s the worst that can happen, I get rejected by a guy who probably wasn’t the right fit anyway?
I remember watching an awesome Mat Boggs video on YouTube about dating and rejection that has stuck with me over the years. He said “If I told you that the 17th next person you date will be the one, you’d be out there trying to get rejected by 16 guys so quick it’d make your head spin”.
So that’s going to be me in 2019. Shedding that last bit of armour that has kept me safe over the years but somehow turned into a prison, keeping me from sharing all the love and joy I know I have inside of me to give.
As I come to the end of my declaration of new fearlessness, my question to you is, what are you going to do to become more fearless in 2019? What cliffs are you going to jump off and what heights do you wish to soar to?
What’s going to be your risk and reward?
I’d love to hear from you so please comment below.
To read more of my blogs, head over to my General Blog or my Personal Blog, Sh*t They Don’t Tell You When You Get Divorced.
Love and gratitude
A few weeks ago I listened to a presentation about the different types of way we take in and process information. In the past I have read several books on similar topics, but this particular information was new to me but made oh so much sense.
I recognised instantly that I was what one terms a “global thinker/communicator”. That is, I only like to take in high level pertinent information and do not like to get bogged down in the minute details. On the other side of the spectrum are of course the detailed thinkers, who for them, it’s all about the smallest details.
In the presentation, the speaker highlighted the importance of our ability to first recognise our own communication style and then recognise others we are dealing with. Once identified, we can then adjust our communication style to greater enhance our ability to communicate with someone who may not be the same as us. In this particular case, it was how to apply it to our customers.
What I didn’t think to do was apply it to my home life.
Last night, my eldest son and I once again had a blow up about him not listening, resulting in me disconnecting the WIFI from the wall. This scene was a oh so familiar (usually without the extreme measures of disconnecting the WIFI). I’m always perplexed how my youngest and I rarely have this mis-communication issue, but with my eldest, it seems to be a weekly occurrence.
It wasn’t until he came into me about half an hour later (after sulking in his room) and asked if we could have a chat, that another light bulb moment would highlight where we had been going wrong all these years.
Wyatt’s first words to me were, “Mum do you think when you’re asking me to do something you could be a bit more specific and give me more details”. Suddenly it hit me like a ton of bricks. I had completely been misreading my son’s ability to understand the instructions I was giving him.
I’ll give you an example here, in case you’re not following. Our blow up was over the fact that he was playing on his iPad after I had told him to stop playing on the iPad.
Our conversation went a little something like this:
Me: “Wyatt, what are you still doing playing on the iPad?”
Wyatt: “I’m not playing Mum, I’m just looking for something”
Me: “I don’t care Wyatt, get off now”
Wyatt: “But Mum, I’m not playing, I’m just looking”.
After this I walked behind him and saw he was in a game called Terraria and that’s when I lost it and walked over and pulled the WIFI connection out of the wall.
Later on, in our little chat, Wyatt brought it to my attention that in his eyes, he wasn’t ‘technically’ playing, so he didn’t understand why he was getting in trouble. We’ve had this argument before when I’ve told them no Xbox and then half hour later, I catch him in a game collecting daily rewards.
You see, in my eyes, when I give an instruction like “No Xbox” I’m talking about all things encompassing that can be played or done on the Xbox because I am a global thinker. When my son hears “No Xbox” he thinks I only mean physically playing a game on the Xbox because he is a detailed thinker.
I now understand that if I don’t want him to do anything on the Xbox, I have to list out ALL of the potential things he could do on the Xbox eg. Playing a game, watching YouTube, Netflix etc.
This got me thinking, how many times do we have a blow up with a friend, colleague, partner, family member etc. over a mis-communication issue. At the time, we of course always think we are in the right and the other person is in the wrong. But how many of these issues could be resolved if we just understood that the other person just truly did not fully understand the point we were trying to make because they process information different to us.
I hope you enjoyed this article. If you want to read my other blogs, click here for my general blog or here to read my personal blog “Sh*t they don’t tell you when you get divorced”.
Love and Gratitude
I was talking with my youngest child today who has his 10th birthday coming up next month and of course we got on the subject of birthday parties. Internally I was already groaning because I just knew what was about to come next.
Recently he went to a Ninja Warrior Birthday party and of course this is now what he has been begging me to have for his party. But at a cost of over $300 I was thinking “Hell No”, you’re turning 10 not 21.
But this got me thinking, when did it become the norm for parents to go all out and spend upwards of $300, $500 and sometimes nearly $1,000 on a kid’s birthday party? Will a two year old really remember when they are an adult that you threw them an expensive party complete with Jumping Castle? And what if you have more than one child? Let’s say on average you spend $350 per party for three children every year, that’s nearly $1,000 per year. This is, of course, excluding the super expensive birthday present you got them.
Can the average family really afford nearly $1,000 per year on birthday parties?
What’s worse is that if parents can’t afford it, modern day habits (and guilt) find them putting it on the credit card and worrying about it later. If you’re like one of the 16 million credit card holders in Australia with an average outstanding balance of $3,181*, then have you considered the compounding impact of putting another $1,000 onto that debt? Especially if you’re like many households who do not pay out their credit card in full each month.
So, if you’re like me and want to find a better way to reduce the Birthday Party spend, here are my top tips:
1. Chat to the kids about having 1 or 2 friends over and taking them to the movies, bowling etc. instead of a party.
2. Have a BYOD party for Xbox/PS3/Nintendo. These days most kids have some kind of electronic device. We recently had a party where everyone BYO’d their device and battled each other right there in the living room.
3. If you have a pool or a friend with a pool, have a pool party and buy some cheap water pistols, noodles etc. from K-Mart
4. Head down to the local park or water park (if you’re lucky like Townsville) and have a BBQ utilising the free council BBQ’s.
5. Utilise vouchers sent home from school for the local bowling alley, movies, etc.
6. Purchase an Entertainment Book for your local area and utilise vouchers for activities, food and drink.
7. Utilise vouchers for Domino’s Pizza, Pizza Hut etc.
8. Stock up on Home Brand chips and lollies. Once they are out of the packet the kids won’t know the difference.
With the savings I make each year, I put towards our annual holiday fund. This way my kids still get to celebrate their birthday with friends and we as a family get to make even more memories on a family holiday.
If you plan on taking a leaf out of my book and putting your savings toward a family holiday, make sure to read my other blog “Holidays don’t need to leave you in debt”.
Until next time,
Love and Gratitude,
Freedom & Financial Life-Stylist
To read more blogs please CLICK HERE
*statistic taken from finder.com.au 2018 Credit Card report