Thank you xx

Screen Shot 2014-10-29 at 14.22.23I am so excited and delighted by all the messages coming through for 30 day challenge. THANK YOU.

Seems like eating well, exercising and meditating is the order of the day, along with organisation and proactivity when it comes to work/finding new work. We’re all the same really, aren’t we?

A couple of things I’ve noticed both in myself and in other people’s comments – the tendency to want to fix everything at once (yoga, diet, work etc) followed by the tendency to beat ourselves up for how little we’ve been doing in those areas up till now.

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30 DAY CHALLENGE STARTS 1ST NOVEMBER! JOIN US!

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Yay! I am very excited to have so many people joining in the 30 day challenge.  We can be VERY VERY HIGHLY EFFECTIVE TOGETHER. It’s great to have the company, thank you.

Let’s say that we properly start on Saturday 1st November and end on Sunday 30th November.

I will post tiny messages every day to confirm that I’ve carried out my commitments for the day which are:

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30 DAY CHALLENGE – STOP BEING A DRUNKEN COUCH POTATO

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About three years ago I signed up to a very intense gym challenge with a friend.

For six weeks I went to the gym five times a week to lift weight, do squats and weird things called burpees with a personal trainer.

I had never done anything like it before. It was a total shock to the system. It was a classic case of hurting in places I didn’t know it was possible to hurt.

To add to this pain we also had to cut out carbs, sugar and BOOZE for the duration. All my major food groups, gone! My body didn’t know what the hell was happening to it.

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Habit One – Be Proactive (and stop the Poor Me stuff)

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I had to proactively read this chapter THREE times to get a handle on it. The language is so dense and full of ‘Principle Centred-Paradigms’ and ‘Character Ethics’, it’s near on impossible to read more than a paragraph without wanting a cigarette break. And I don’t even smoke.

But I’m not going to complain, oh no. That’s not what proactive people do.

So HABIT NUMBER ONE – BEING PROACTIVE.

Proactivity means that as human beings we are responsible for our own lives. Proactive people take initiative, they make things happen, they don’t blame anybody for their circumstances.

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The 37 habits of a highly ineffective person

Aristotle: ‘We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.’

Here is what I repeatedly do:

  • I drink too much
  • I eat too much
  • I complain that I’m putting on weight and am hungover and not getting any work done
  • I vow to change my ways
  • I don’t change my ways
  • I worry, analyse and go over and over things in my head.
  • I procrastinate
  • I check Facebook
  • I check my emails
  • I check Facebook again

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The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

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Right, OK. Here we go – it’s time to sit up straight and concentrate. We’re about to become HIGHLY EFFECTIVE PEOPLE. Oh yes.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R Covey (once described as the American Socrates) is one of those self-help classics (20 million copies sold in 38 languages) that most people know the name of but nobody has actually read. At least not past chapter one.

I’ve had this book for nearly ten years and have never got past the first few pages of the 300 page textbook – even though I’ve tried a couple of times. Every time I try my eyes just slip right off the page and into a deep meditation about what to eat for dinner. Or how spotty I am. Or whether I should sell some dresses on Ebay. It makes me the very opposite of Highly Effective.

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What to do when you’re unhappy? Blame everyone else, of course.

When I was in the midst of my financial meltdown – otherwise known as August – I did what you’d expect from a woman who’s spent six months trying to improve herself. I ignored the problem, watched hours of television and drank litres of wine. I engaged in what Brene calls ‘numbing’ behaviour.

I also did something else that Brene says is very common when we’re ashamed of ourselves: I BECAME A B*TCH.

I grabbed any opportunity I could to put other people down. I’d criticise people on the telly, moan about my family, get annoyed with friends and even people on the street: Can you believe the way she looked at me? What is her problem?! etc etc.

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SELF HELP IS DRIVING ME CRAZY

It probably hasn’t escaped your notice that this blog has been driving me nuts over the last couple of months. Not proper-need-medical-help nuts but ever so slightly losing the plot nuts.

Shock horror, it turns out that analysing your feelings and facing your every weakness is a recipe for crazy. There is now hardly a minute in the day when I don’t think – Why did I say that? Why did I do that? Am I self-sabotaging? Am I scared of being vulnerable?

I am over-thinking everything.

It’s making me unhinged. I now cry at almost anything – X Factor, Nationwide ads, a sideways look – and am fast becoming that person you’d back away from at parties. The one who gives a two hour answer to the ‘How are you question?'; an answer that involves therapy speak about my childhood and inappropriate details about my issues with men.

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A small good thing


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Last year mum made a vanilla and strawberry cake for my sister’s birthday.

I carried it from Surrey to my sister’s place in East London, via two trains and a bus.  Mum didn’t have a tupperware container big enough for it so it was on a plate and there was some strange net thing put over it, the kind of thing that you put over food when it’s outside on a summer’s day. Something to stop the flies.

This made travelling in rush hour pretty challenging – I kept thinking someone was going to bump into the cake and send it flying but they didn’t. Rush hour that evening was like no other rush hour I’ve ever experienced. People smiled at me, people moved out of my way, people even chatted; ‘That looks nice,’ they’d say, looking at the cake. Their face would soften. The hard, tired, determined, ‘I hate life’ look most us adopt on tubes would melt.

It was really weird. It was like everyone become human again.

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Back to the actual book… Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. Your cheat sheet.

Hello,

Happy Thursday… Just thinking that I’ve been a bit messy on this vulnerability stuff, I only really skimmed what the book is about before delving into my own various back stories… so this post is a cheat’s guide to the book so that you actually know what Brene Brown is saying as opposed to just knowing the inner workings of my mind (and immune system).

It’s a wonderful wise non-self-helpy book that touches on every aspect of life so I really do recommend you read the real thing but even for my own clarity of thought, here you go:

WE LIVE IN AN AGE OF SCARCITY

Brene starts by arguing that we live in an age of scarcity. In our media dominated world nothing we do is ever enough – we’re never rich enough, successful enough, beautiful enough etc…  Even when we wake up, our first thought being ‘I didn’t get enough sleep,’ followed by the fear ‘I don’t have enough time…’ We go to bed thinking ‘I didn’t get enough done today…’

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