Where did Summer go?
I cannot believe that the last time I sat down to write was back in June! JUNE!
A whole season ago!
Not sure I even know where to start!
If you have been following my social media you will know that I spent the month of August on the beautiful island of Cyprus. A last minute opportunity to house sit and look after two beautiful german shepherds, some chickens and a cockerel!
Logistics arranged, and packing my entire business into a carry on suitcase which I clung to like an over-protective mother with a newborn, I set off with the intention of doing my best to balance working and some rest and play.
Being away gave me a real opportunity to change up the routine that I normally have. I would not describe myself as a 'bounce out of bed' person. I wake early, but I enjoy coffee with quiet time. I like a quiet half hour (ish!) before the rush of the day starts.
This is not possible with two lively dogs. Trust me when I say I tried! There was coffee but it was not in bed. Getting up at 6am, feeding the dogs, sorting the chickens, and the daily house chores, meant I was logged on and working by 8am.
By 3pm the sun would reach the edge of the table where I had set up my 'outside office' which meant mother nature dictated when to stop working. (She is a huge advocate of work/life balance!) This meant that I quickly fell into a new and very different routine. 7hrs of work, followed by the options of some relaxation by the pool, hilly bike rides and meals out at local tavernas or evening client sessions.
The goal now is to keep up the good habits that the change of scenery gave me the opportunity to create.
The month flew by and the great news is, that not only did I get to hold all of my client coaching sessions and online calls without issue, I also had lots of time to review 2019 and start to plan what 2020 will look like for Phoenix.
...Watch this space!
We still have a couple of months of 2019 left yet so I don't want to rush ahead!
We started our third and final 'Thrive Programme' of 2019 on Monday. I am very excited to run this programme again and take this new group on their journey.
These will be repeated in 2020 and places will open for registration for the first programme (starting in January) in November.
Coming up this month we have the local 'Walk nTalk' in Bristol on Sunday 15th and then our walk up PenYFan on Sunday 22nd September (weather dependent)
Both events are free and open to everyone. The Bristol walk is accessible.
Please check the Facebook Page for details, we would love for you to join us.
I promise not to leave it so long next time and will try and check in with some shorter, more regular updates on what is happening!
Off now to prepare for tonight's Thrive Group Call!
ooh one last thing >>> It is not too late to get one of the last Phoenix Planners, these are dated for the Academic Year. 4 months of the year left, get back on track towards your goals and working on you.
June 23rd - Sharing Successes. The Importance of the small wins
Every week I ask for those on the Thrive programme to check in with their successes and small wins from the week.
I also encourage anyone who I have had the pleasure to work with, no matter how long ago, to keep me up to date with their progress and let me know what they have been up to, so it was lovely to wake up to a photograph from Bethan, at the summit of Mount Toubkal in Morocco, the highest peak in North Africa in the stunning Atlas Mountains.
There really is no stopping her these days!
This was then added to by news of a client passing her financial exams, another getting through a sports county trial. some changes in habits and routine, changes in sleep routine, some great food choices, new activities tried and a change in routine to prioritise some family time!
As I sat drinking my coffee the successes, wins and updates just kept coming!
I love to hear what people have been up to and what they have achieved, and whilst this is great for me to sit and read, this is not the main reason for doing so!
When we have a tough day, or a tough week it can be very easy to sit and focus on all the things that went wrong, or didn't go as well as they should. Our brain looks for the negative, the risk, the danger. This is how it protects us and keeps us safe. We have to force outselves to look for the positives in any given situation, and especially those that are harder to find!
On some days the successes will be small but mighty. Getting out of bed, taking that shower, doing that workout, making that phone call. You may have had bigger wins on other days, however on that day, it was a success.
A win is a win - the size is not important!
On other days your successes will be bigger, they may not feel any more rewarding than those smaller wins on the toughest of days, but they also need to be recognised.
Sharing and recognising your success, whether it is on paper or on an app with yourself, in a supportive group or with someone else, is an important way to notice the small steps you are taking.
Notice how you are showing up for you and what you want to achieve.
Notice how the small steps and consistency are starting to have an impact.
"Climb your mountain, one step at a time"
Sharing them with others can help to motivate you, but don't underestimate how much they can motivate and inspire others to take their first step. What now feels possible to you may still feel impossible to someone else.
Help others to see, offer them hope that they too can make 'IMpossible' 'I'M possible'.
Where do you record your wins? Who do you share them with?
What were your successes this week?
- Feel free to share them with me!
June 20th - Walking, Talking and Learning from Young People
What a busy couple of weeks! Lots of reflections but not so much time to sit down and get them onto this blog!
One of the best things about my work is that I get to meet lots of new people, under lots of different circumstances. The last couple of weeks have been no different!
A couple of new 1:1 clients, new people at networking meetings, the monthly walk and talk and some Year 8 pupils at a Young Enterprise Event. Not to mention lots of other business people at the Business Show Southwest Yesterday!
I have met and been working with some fantastic young people over the last couple of weeks. Our teen years are so important in how we evolve and grow. It is the time when we learn key communication skills but also the important life skills of determination, reslilience (amongst others) as well as determining our core values and beliefs.
Last time I mentioned a sunny weekend. I am not sure it has actually stopped raining since! The monthly 'Netwalk' was touch and go until 2hrs before but the weather forecast told me that there was only 40% chance of light rain so we ventured out!
No sooner had the first person turned up at the meeting point the clouds opened!
We all stood in the doorway of the stunning Bristol Cathedral, introducing ourselves to each other and watched as the rain got heavier ... and heavier!
Normally we find icecream towards the end of the walk but as we stood in the doorway watching the rain 'Swoon Gelato' called us across from opposite and so it was by unanimous agreement, and very little discussion needed, that eating icecream whilst we waited for the rain to pass, was definitely the right thing to do!
We did venture out and headed to Brandon Hill, and decided to put the icrecream energy to good use and climb to the top of Brandon Tower. As always a cracking view even in the rain!
It always amazes me with these walks. It doesn't matter who shows up. It doesn't matter if they have met before or not, there is always a good topic of conversation and I always come away having learned something! A little about someone, a little about their culture, a little about the things they love, and even a little about lobsters, unicorns and pegasus. (There is no plural word for a pegasus I did check!)
If you fancy joining us on the next one you can find out more here. We would love for you to come along!
I went back to school on Tuesday, setting off to a school near Bath to be a volunteer on one of their Young Enterprise Masterclass days. I haven't been involved in any of these before and so was open minded as to what to expect.
An entire Year 8 of students is loud. A full year of enthusiastic students is very loud!
Set them the challenge of 2 hours to design a business, create a product, marketing strategy and present a 'Dragons Den' style pitch to the entire group and you get a lot enthusiasm and creativity.
I worked with a fantastic group. Employability skills is probably not high on the agenda when you are in Year 8 but but it was great to be able to help them understand how many of these skills they already have and how they will be able to put them to good use as either an employee or to run their own business.
It is a real pleasure to be involved with young people as they work this through, but also the parents who are supporting them on this journey and helping them to evolve from children into young adults. There is something about the spark in young people that helps remind me to make the most out of life and sieze the opportunities, high energy that is focused and driven can be incredibly powerful - and contagious!
I am off to sort through these business cards and follow up on meeting some new people yesterday!
I will try not to leave it quite so long before the next time!
June 1st - Change and Reflecting on my Own Evolution
The sun is shining and we are in for a sunny weekend. I am looking at the list of things I need to get done over this weekend and trying to factor in some time outside to appreciate the warmer weather and get a vitamin D fix.
It has been a pretty busy week. Last summer I wrote a blog about life changing for me as my son was moving off to college. He is now back, ready to continue his journey with a new course starting in September. It is funny how I have been reminded of the little things I have missed while he has been away .. as well as the things I didn't miss as much!
It is nice to have some company in the house again - even if he is a little disruptive!
Workwise it has also been a good week. This week in the Thrive Programme we have been focusing on change and mindfulness as an approach to helping us manage change in a positive way. Nicely timed for me considering the change at home.
Yesterday I spent the day with the wonderful Nick Elston at his Forging People Speaking Academy. It was a privilege to have been asked to speak about the 'power of emotion' when sharing your story or presenting. I stayed for the rest of the workshop and it was wonderful to watch those on the workshop grow in confidence as the day went on.
It is just coming up to two years since I first stood up in front of an audience and shared my story. I remember how emotional it felt for me in sharing the story for the first time from start to finish.
So much has happened since then and whilst my story telling has evolved, and confidence has grown, the key messages and learning remains the same. It is always a good reminder for me that I too, am a work in progress and that my journey is still one of growth and learning, ups and downs and yet still a lot of laughter along the way.
A short and sweet check in today, I have a newsletter to send out and a spin bike to build! (more on that next time maybe!)
May 24th 2019 - Emptying my musings onto 'paper'
Last year I wrote a blog a week on a variety of subjects, no real plan or strategy just sat down and wrote once a week.
This year I have been writing a blog each month to tie in with the theme of the month. So far I have written on a variety of subjects however it doesnt always give me a chance to get down in writing my more frequent reflections.
I love my work, the people I get to meet and this journey I am on. I learn something new so often and I thought it would be helpful to me, and possibly useful to you to get my reflections, musings and learnings down into a more regular blog post.
So on a Sunday morning, I sit with my coffee looking at what is scheduled for the week ahead, and wondering what will happen that at present I have no idea about I thought; why not start it up now?
Now is a good a time as any.
Not quite sure how this will work technically, but I am sure I will work it out!