Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Change - The Concept

This blog post is about Change. Change is a concept that many of us struggle to deal with, or we find it difficult to adapt to new situations, sometimes we need a little help along the way.

Struggling to deal with change can be counter-productive and hold us back in both our personal or working lives. Change can be large, resulting from a change in personal circumstances e.g. loss of a family member, change in job, marriage, or small e.g. a new filing system at work. Fear of change can prevent us from trying something new. No matter how large or small the change, its rarely trivial and can result in emotions such as fear or blame.

In many cases change is out of our control and if we can manage our feelings around change, then we more quickly adapt and become productive again.

Monday, 30 August 2010


Life has settled down a bit for me now and I'm going through a series of actions in setting up my business. My emotions are much calmer and I feel I have less to report about me.

One of my intentions of this blog was to set up a resource that people could use and hopefully find some inspiration, so I will start to cover a series of topics that I hope you will find useful.

The first of those will be "Change". I've already touched on Change, when I first included the Kubler Ross Change Curve.  This post gets more hits from google then any other post on my blog so change must be interesting to people.

By Definition:

"CHANGE verb ( BECOME DIFFERENT ) : to make or become different, or to exchange one thing for another thing, especially of a similar type"

But what does change mean to us?

Friday, 27 August 2010

Laws of Attraction

"All that we are is the result of what we have thought."


When I met with NLP Trainer, I stated that I was amazed by all the help and support that people are willing to give, since I started on my coaching journey. He asked if I'd heard about the Law of Attraction. After I figured out that he wasn't actually hitting on me, I allowed him to explain in brief. Basically, the more I think about my subject, the more I will see opportunities and put myself in a position to meet like minded people who can help.

I found this definition on the web:

In understanding the Law of Attraction, we come to realize that we attract into our lives whatever we give our Attention, Energy and Focus to. Whether wanted or unwanted.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Business Action Plan

Well, it actually wasn't a bad first day back. On a positive note, my Boss valued my opinion enough to ask me what I thought the new team structures should look like (although it may just be because with everyone leaving - I am the team!).

I've taken some time out to draw up a new business action plan, taking me through all the steps I need to take from taking my training course with specifics around finding my volunteer coachees to settling finally on a name for my business and getting business cards printed and a web site set up.

It takes me right the way up to the end of the year and although I will have completed my training by then, I may not yet have my final accreditation - I need to check how long this takes with Barefoot.

Also today, I met with NLP Trainer again. He has some fantastic plans of his own which involves publishing books. His ideas are fantastic and I wish I'd come up with them and I am sure that when he finally leaves my company he will be successful and I am sure there are similar ideas out there I just need a way of coming up with some.

For me, just chatting to him was truly inspirational, motivational and exciting. It spurs me on along my own journey. I am now considering creating mini-books in PDF format around career changes for sale through my web - when I set it up.

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

That Monday Feeling

It's Wednesday morning and its like a Monday, having spent a wonderful 5-day weekend in the Lake District.

It was everything it should be, waking up to see mist lying over keswick from our elevated camp-site, dry! in the main, a chance to catch up with Special Friend and Best Man Friend and a meal in my fave fave fave! restaurant - marred slightly because I didn't feel too well, but great all the same.

The tent behaved impeccably compared to its Houdini attempt last month. I'm very sad to pack it away this time, it unlikely to see daylight again until Spring.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Looking Back - Coach Transfer

Its a while since we looked back at my journey and how I got to where I am now. So following Looking Back - Coaching People here's the next installment.

I’d only had one session with my coach, when she contacted me to say she was leaving the organisation and as such our coaching would have to end.

What a disappointment!!!! This seems typical of what happens in my life.

She did however say to me that she knew of someone who had just finished their coaching training and would have a vacancy for some new recruits.

I knew the girl from way way back and had always found her pleasant. So I agreed with a little hesitancy. It was not because of who she was but because changing coaches right now was not on the top of my agenda.

Monday, 23 August 2010

Blogging Addiction - get a life!

I get a regular health and well-being 'helpline' newsletter through work every week. It covers a number of topics and I always cast my eye over them to see if anything is interesting or useful to me.

This week I was offered advice about addictions to blogging. It states:

" Blogging is a wonderful way to express yourself and share your thoughts and opinions with the world. But for some, blogging has spiralled out of control. They can't tear themselves away from their computers long enough to have a conversation with an actual person. "

Scary stuff!

Fortunately I don't believe I'm addicted. My problem stems more closely to OCD. I blog religiously in a methodical and structured way.

According to the newsletter - its curable (the addiction not the OCD tendancies). It suggests getting a psychologist involved and limiting blogging to 30-45 mins a day. In addition people should be encouraged to see what is good in their real life.

I think it was suggesting that Bloggers should "get a life".

Personally I have found blogging in a structured and OCD kind of way has enabled me to get help and support where it might not normally be available and this seems to be the same for many of my readers.

Friday, 20 August 2010

A Momentous Day

Today was a very momentous day. I fished out my chequebook (last used in 2004 following the downsizing of my handbag) and wrote out a cheque for almost £600. Yes! I've finally raised the deposit for my coaching course.

I've sold half my life on Ebay, raided every coin jar and money box in the house and searched behind every cushion on the settee.

I think I may have to beg, steal and borrow to fund the balance - I need to pay it by the end of this month.

I wrote out a very nice little letter, popped it into an envelope and strolled down to the post box with His Royal Doggyness. I hesitated for a few seconds before slipping the crisp envelope into the post box. I asked myself if I was sure. I have no doubts that I am doing the right thing and let go of the envelope.

His Royal Doggyness looked up at me strangely wondering why I'd stood still and we carried on our way to the meadow. No going back now!

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Volunteer Coachees

The lady from personnel emailed me today following my request for help around volunteer coachees. She's taken it up with someone in Training Department who would like to add me to the list of accredited coaches for the business.

This would be fabulous, except that ALL the accredited coaches at work, have all had their training funded by the company! The same company that won't pay for me to do my training - so I'm having to fund my own course. Grrrrrrrr!

Still, I can play their game and get my practice coaching supplied by them. I can make a decision later whether I want to be added to their list. At the moment its good practice which is what I need.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

What a fabulous weekend

Best Man Friend (BMF) and Special friend are here and its been a great weekend. Firstly its been fabulous to see them both, chill with them and walk with them. I love the entertaining side of it too. BMF has always paid me the compliment of coming back for seconds.

But the best part was having a brainstorm around what my business name could be. You may have read in previous posts that I'm struggling a little in getting the name to feel right and be something that no one else is using. Now I have 4 very string contenders. All of which I would feel pretty good about using and aren't registered at companies house and seem like safe internet bets too.

Special Friend and I had a face-to-face coaching session, following on from our telephone one a couple of weeks ago. The men had gone down the pub and two hours had passed before we knew where we were. Again I find it reassuring to see results happening. I CAN do this! It was good also to see some powerful emotions come to play around her goal. I know she will not struggle in realising her ambitions and I am honoured to be her coach.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

The greatness of a woman

Whatever you give a woman, she will make it greater.
Give her sperm, she will give you a baby.
Give her a house,she will give you a home.
Give her groceries, she will give you a meal.
Give her a smile and she will give you her heart.
She multiplies & enlarges what she is given.

I picked it up on facebook - isn't it great

Monday, 16 August 2010

Thanks but no thanks?

 Work really seemed to drag today - I couldn't settle into anything. I think it was largely because Special Friend and Best Man friend are coming for the weekend and I wanted to get home to clean and cook.

My work day did have one highlight though. I rang my Mentee who has been assigned through the Backing Young Britain initiative. The idea is to help her to find work. We had spoken very briefly previously and she was very reserved. My biggest fear was that like many others, she had been forced down the mentoring route by over enthusiastic Job Seeker advisers who just want to get people onto programs. Not at all! She was bright and open and really fed up of continually applying for jobs and not even getting a "thanks but no thanks " letter.

She seemed a little nervous - but then I am a total stranger so I decide to use my judgement and dispense with official form filling that BYB suggest, so we just had a good old chat and rapport building session. It seemed to work and we speak again in 2 weeks.

Friday, 13 August 2010

Business Link

Following much procrastination (there's that word again) - I finally rang Business Link today.

This is an action that has been recommended to me by many people in my network and after quite a bit of diary shuffling at work I've managed I've managed to book an appointment later this month. Part of the problem is they only have 3 appointments a week in my home (and work) town the rest are in the city which is half an hour away which makes taking time out of work so much more difficult.

Had a last minute invite out tonight from Best friend. She's childless for a week and wants to fill her time so was getting together with a group of friends. Trouble is most of her friends are divorcees and whilst not wanting to type cast - when they get together it can be a bit like witches around a cauldron with comments like "all men are the same". I know they're just thinking it'll happen to me eventually. Well it won't! I intend to stay happily married.

I only went because I wanted to learn from previous mistakes. I need to dedicate a bit of extra time to Best Friend. It wasn't a bad night - they all left their broomsticks at home - but Best friend's Friend who wants to be a coach got a bit much after a while - still at least she didn't quiz me about my coaching.

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Can I stand Competition?

We had a stall at the local farmer's show in our town to sell Hubby's artwork. We didn't cover the stall costs but it was a fantastically brilliant publicity exercise and we hope it will result in some future work. If nothing else, it was a great social event and we saw lots of people we've not seen for a while including Best friend's friend.

Best friend's friend tells me she is training as a life coach (heck!) along with other irons she has in her fire. I take solace in the fact that she has lots of fingers in lots of pies and hope desperately that life coaching is just a whim for her. I don't know how many coaches one small town can handle because of course my Coach also operates here.

I think I am ahead of her. She has completed some freebie courses and I of course have my introductory Coaching for Success training plus some live experience. Though she is a stay at home mum and therefore has more time on her hands than me.

Guess I'll just have to work even harder.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Volunteer Coachees

I've been keeping an eye out for volunteer coachees for the past few weeks. I will need three for when I start my coarse in September.

Special Friend volunteered ages ago, however I am consious that whilst I have done an introductory coaching coarse, I still have much to learn and will be of more benefit to her and her new business once I have completed my training.

However, she was keen to be coached and decided that some coaching now would be better than waiting so we got started. We can't do face to face - so we arranged to chat over the phone. I've been nervously waiting this day - AND excited at the same time. All those doubts going around my head:

"What if I let her down?",
"What if I can't help her?",
"what if she thinks I'm a fraud?"

Of course none of this actually mattered and once I started asking questions then I started to see some of the layers peel away.

What a fantastic feeling because I was beginning to have some real big doubts about my abilities to be a coach and get this business off the ground.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Beating Procrastination by Understanding Secondary Gains

Raise your hand if you procrastinate!  I can't see how many hands have just gone in the air, but I imagine its most of us.

Now keep your hand raised is you fully understand why you procrastinate.  I'm guessing there's a lot of stuff around not wanting to deal with complicated and lengthy tasks, or lack of confidence around ability to do the task or fear of consequences.

Its all normal. In NLP terms its called secondary gain. Its understanding that whatever it is that is stopping you doing something - emotionally there is some benefit in not doing. A classic example is the one about not starting the diet until tomorrow, simply because you want that piece of cake NOW! And you want it now because eating it is pleasant - it tastes good and makes you feel better.

Once you understand you reasons your can start to deal with them. Eating that cake makes you feel really good now, but long term would you feel better for loosing that extra 2lb? Perhaps you could associate some negative thoughts about the cake, rather than positive ones. Ask yourself if eating it brings you closer to your goal.

I wanted to write this post as a follow up to yesterdays. I hope it helps you, its made me hungry!!

Monday, 9 August 2010

The thief of time

We've all heard the phrase about procrastination - I know I do it. In fact its part of my daily routine. Let's face it I've been procrastinating for 5 years about taking this step in setting up my coaching business. I don't even want to think about how far into my business I could be had I taken this step 5 years ago. I have my reasons for it at the time and I have to accept that this is where I am here and NOW! and just deal with it.

I procrastinate daily, using all sorts of techniques to prove to myself that I don't. Let's face it - why exactly at work so I have 3 to do lists, a monthly one, weekly one, and a daily one - is it because I'm a super organised person and this helps me achieve my goals, or is it because it means that I spend the first ten minutes of every working day not starting that big task that I know is going to be troublesome. I'll let you decide!

Oh and don't get me started on action plans and why I have them?

Actually it all works for me, and I do achieve more as a result, but I still procrastinate at an alarming rate.

I googled it and found this.

Hope it helps.

Friday, 6 August 2010

Four's company, six is a crowd?

Bit of an odd one this.

Hubby and I were invited out by someone. There were 6 of us, but have you ever had a feeling that you weren't part of the original plans? That one couple had asked the second couple and it was the second couple that invited us. And that we might actually have been intruding as far as the first couple were concerned.

It wasn't as though anything was said and it could just have been paranoia so I stuck with it and we had a great night, but it saddens me slightly as I have a great deal of respect for everyone concerned and would love to have more nights out like that.

Perhaps I just have to accept not everyone feels the same.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Business Help and Big Ideas

Now I have got my Coaching training course sorted with Barefoot, I need to start thinking more about the business side of things. This is where I need some real help.

I met with a helpful colleague again today.  You may remember Helpful Colleague from a previous post. I wanted to thank her and update her on how I reached my decision over the coaching course. And I thought there was very little to talk about. Before I knew it I'd had an hour and a quarter for lunch and returned to my desk feeling very motivated, enthused and very much in awe of her plans. I can't tell you what they are - its not for me to do so, but what she wants to do is VERY huge and could change people's lives. I'm secretly hoping she'll need an extra pair of hands because its very exciting.

Helpful colleague is forming a very important part of the support network that I am creating, but I feel as though I am taking up all of the time we share as its about me me me. SO, I'm pleased to find out that she has little experience of the internet and wants to start a blog. I'm more than happy to help with that.

She left me with some advice. And that was to get in touch with business Link. And then,

"stop worrying about my name - it will come to me - just keep asking the universe".

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

6 monthly fitness check

Just before I went away, I had a 6-monthly weigh in and measure with my fitness instructor. The news? - a 6lb weight gain and several increases to certain vital statistics, specifically my stomach, hips and chest - exactly where I don't need it - given my already exagerated curves. I can never get trousers to fit properly as my hips are a good 2 UK dress sizes bigger than my waist.

Now, on top of that I have spent 5 days eating exactly what I want to. Ice cream, chips, cakes, not to mention the kebab. (well we were at the seaside). So that's another possible 5 lb weight gain (average weight gain during a week's holiday). That's official then - I am actually a bloater!.

So I have spent the last 3 days strictly dieting, no treats at all - its hell. This is just so that when Special Friend comes to stay we can indulge in chocolate and ice cream guilt free.

Actually, it can be a real sense of satisfaction when I know I'm been good. Its a small reward!

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Bad tempered, Irritable and Bored!

I think I have post holiday blues. I'm bad tempered, irritable, moody and bored.

I have spent most of the day airing and drying an oversized tent/kite, checking out the damage. We have two broken D rings and a bent steel pole. We are generally sorting and cleaning the camping kit ready for next time.

I am actually feeling quite close to just dumping it all - but that's not really my style.

Hubby and I took his Royal Doggyness for a stroll and I felt so much better. Then I also had time to download all my photos and we looked through both sets - they're brilliant - a great set of photos and a brilliant reminder of a fantastic holiday.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Bang, Woosh !!!

I barely slept last night. It was too warm to snuggle down completely in my sleeping bag to shut out the noise. It wasn't Hubby snoring - I'm used to that. It wasn't even the snoring from next doors tent - they went home today. It was the buffeting of a strong Northumberland wind on the end of the tent.

I lay awake for hours trying to convince myself the tent always makes the wind and the rain sound worse than it actually is and that conditions would ease before morning enabling us to dismantle the tent in dry calm conditions. WRONG!!!!

Our tent is a rather large 4 man tunnel tent with sturdy steel poles, a living area and an awning. Its a Sprayway Valley 4.  To take it down, its a case of undoing all the guy ropes, taking out a few pegs and then gently drop it down pole against pole like a game on domino soldiers.

Great theory! But it doesn't work so well in a force ten! Hubby released the guy ropes, and we were about to grab the tent and hold on with all our strength when.....

Bang! Woosh!

The whole tent spiralled over our heads, firing tent pegs like missiles, narrowly missing some young boy innocently filling his water container at the nearby tap. I watched in horror, quickly calculating the total value of all the caravans and cars that stood between my tent and the sea as it hurtled towards them. I had visions of this oversized kite with steel poles making its way across the campsite, wrecking cars and tents and then and out to sea.

Fortunately, whether it just deflated, lost momentum or the wind eased for a moment I don't know, but it paused next to next door's caravan for long enough for us to both dive on it, grab it and wrestle with it.

Phew! Close call.