What’s your next move x

Your life is in front of you, not behind you.

You will be put in situations where you have to make a decision, a choice whether you like it or not – and you will make that choice with the information you have at that time.

However it ends up, wherever it takes you, own it and look forward. That choice is going to lead you to the next one because thats what life is. A series of choices only you can make.

Don’t let fear keep you stuck in one place. Don’t let the fear of making one wrong decision stop you from experiencing life. Even if it doesn’t work out how you thought it might, it’s lead you right to where you need to be at the right time.

Here is where you ask yourself – what’s your next move?

Dear Owen x

Dear Owen,

Today we became a family of four.

We finally made it here and it feels more amazing than I could have possibly imagined.

After years of trying and after losing one, holding you has brought us to the end of one journey and on to the next.

Fertility is strange. It’s unfair and beautiful and cruel all at the same time. It’s unpredictable and comes with no guarantees.

You join our family after soo many years of imagining you. Of picturing what your face might look like, what your name might be and how you would fit in my arms, but also your brothers. How you would sit on your daddy’s hip and how your first steps would sound on the wooden floors of our home.

I’ve experienced every emotion available to us humans in the process of you entering our world. But there is no emotion stronger than the love I have for our little unit, for the life we have in front of us, the experiences we are about to have together.

You are one lucky kid. You have one of the most dedicated daddy’s in the world. He will love you more than Liverpool, he will do whatever it takes to protect you and to help you become an amazing guy yourself. He loves your brother ridiculously and his heart has already grown ready to love you just as much.
Just know that you’ll end up wearing a lot of red in your lifetime, and you’ll soon learn You’ll Never Walk Alone… Your daddy is an amazing example of how to be a great man and he will raise you to be one also. This is what our world needs my little one.

Your big brother has waited soo long for you to get here and he will probably try and get you to mark an afl ball before you can even sit up yourself. Go with it… he is a cool kid who has empathy and passion and loves something with all of his being. He is brave and strong and amazing and I cannot wait to see how you look up to him as you get older. It’s a relationship for life x you would kick when he spoke to you in my belly and he would hold his hand over you just to try and get a feel of what you were going to be like. He loved you before we had you x

The rest of your family couldn’t wait to meet you either and you will build some amazing connections with each and every one of them. We are soo lucky to have amazing people in our family x

Mummy has some amazing people in her life that are going to love you like you are family and this is going to be something you treasure. You may not be able to understand one of them with her Irish accent, but I know you’ll know her once she holds you because she has been around you before you were even an idea.
I am soo glad you have made it into my arms and I promise you that this big big world is amazing and anything you want to do in it, you can and I’ll be wherever you decide you want me to be. This is your journey and I’m here to walk beside you.

Let’s do this kid x

We only have a few x

There are good and bad things that happen in the world. At times it might feel like the good things happen to the same people all the time, and the bad keeps weighing the same people down.

To me, you need to change your mindset. Stop looking at what everyone else is getting and focus on your own.

Give us much as you take, word hard doing something you love, be grateful for the moments you have everyday, know what makes you happy and spend your time living out those moments instead of wasting them watching someone else live out theirs.

We have only a few – make them count

When your heart breaks… every fourteen days

This morning I heard the sound I dread every fortnight – the sound of suitcase wheels turning over and over on the hallway tiles, making its way to my front door, ready to break my heart all over again. 

It’s fly-out day here today – the day that comes only once every two weeks, but the day that rips your heart out and somehow, at the same time makes your family a little stronger.

Life as a FIFO family is fairly new to us – and I will tell you this much – it’s fucking hard.

Its sad, it’s lonely, it puts a whole lot of pressure on the shoulders of the parent who stays home – the kids, the cooking, the cleaning and an empty bed, becomes their every day whilst the other one flys out (the airport is no longer a glorified place to boast about being) to a tin shed for an airport with the most amazing views of nothing but a red tinged dirt. They work massive days feeling empty whilst their loved ones are at home, getting taller, making sentences and getting ‘used’ to life without mum/dad. They then go home (a metal box) to a single bed with nothingness and too much time to think.

Before you climb that horse to your perch high up there behind your keyboard – yes I know.

We chose this lifestyle. We chose to feel lonely. We chose to put the pressure on our family. We chose to live together – seperately.

But just know this – the money is not MASSIVE for most FIFO workers, sometimes its the only place people with certain qualifications can get work and no, for many, the work is not stable.

SO… Why do we do it? We do it because the little bit of extra money is worth it for us, we have a family goal and we are able to fast track our way to reaching that goal. When it came to choosing between a local job and this one – we went with the FIFO role as it gave Paul a whole new skill set, qualifications and opportunity. Brisbane didn’t have anything that could offer this. Career progression is important and for however long we need to do this, we will.

The hardest thing for me has been juggling the business, the housework, the crucial need to feed the child and I, and generally doing life 😀

However it has made me a little stronger – though I believe Ill be grey alot quicker. I get to fall in love again every two weeks. Liam and I are closer, and I have learnt to ask for help (big deal for me).

Last week after cleaning up spew because we all got sick, to a massive proposal for the business, I had a little emotional moment on the floor of our kitchen where my 2.5 year old came over and hugged me and said ‘Don’t be sad mummy’… It was clear I needed some help.

Tomorrow that help comes in the form of someone to help me at home – and I cannot freaking wait!

PS Happy Fathers Day Paul! Im glad we got to see you, even if for a small amount of the day xoxo that roof is going to be worth it xoxo

What are you known for?

I was reading a book recently microDOMINATION by Trevor Young and it got me thinking:

What am I known for?

I decided to put it out there on Facebook to find out what I was known for, and some of the comments were:

“Never sitting still” – Tracey Mathers

“Being indefinable” – Liz Gibbins

“Driven, entrepreneurial and focussed” – Lauren Sweeney

and most others were along the same lines as BUSY!!

 

What I realised is that as much as I don’t really feel busy, to the world it looks like I never stop, I’m always on the go, and am bored easily.

I still get at least 8 hours of sleep a night (quality has declined since having a child) but I still get sufficient rest.

I have me time. I go to the movies, I get a massage once a month, I go to the hairdresser etc… But asking this question publicly has me thinking – I don’t really ever stop – well I don’t do nothing. I’m always doing something.

I also went on a mission to do nothing one day – and it’s really boring! What is the point of not living life to the fullest? Why not fill it with beautiful opportunities to do the things you love.  I watch Neighbours and Home and Away, I play with Liam and his animals, we eat together and I am there most nights he goes to sleep.  Doing nothing is a waste of time.

After asking the question publicly I then wrote my own list – some of the items were similar – Always on the move (my Grade 5 teacher used to call me BP – on the move), it is obviously a trait that isn’t going to change anytime soon, creative, busy, passionate, motivated, and messy (YES PAUL I KNOW I AM).

I also did my annual SWOT analysis on myself (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) and have realised that 2013 I finally turned one of my weaknesses into a strength, but had added another weakness into that box instead.

My strengths are:

DRIVE | CREATIVE MIND | ABILITY TO PROBLEM SOLVE | PEOPLE

My weaknesses are:

DOESN’T FINISH THINGS | EASILY DISTRACTED | MESSY

My opportunities:

SPEND TIME WITH LIAM | LEARN | MAKE MONEY | CHOICE AND FLEXIBILITY IN LIFE

My threats:

FINANCIAL | BURNOUT | TIRED | MISS LIAM GROWING UP

 

By consistently evaluating where I am with my life, and adjusting things to keep my life balanced, it means that my definition of HAPPY is simple to achieve. It is when I get too BUSY that the balance is gone and something has to change.

To me the key to happiness is knowing who you are, where you are at in your own life, what you want and remaining agile. It is about setting up your life the way you want so you can be flexible to change when you want to/need to without permission.

What are your strengths?

Working out what you want to do with your life

With this year’s bunch of seniors finishing school this week, and a conversation I have had with someone at a recent event, I decided to write a bit about how I think you can work out what you want to do with your life.

I understand that there are many people out there who are in their 30’s, 40’s even 50’s who have spent their lives doing things they don’t actually want to be doing let alone even liking it.

When I ask the questions ‘what do you want to do with your life?’ or ‘Do you love what you do?’ the answer to this is usually ‘no idea’ or ‘no definitely not, I hate my ______’. My first thought is ‘why the f&#* are you doing it then? Do you not know how short life is? Why are you wasting time?”. Then it occured to me… some people have never actually asked themselves the question ‘What do I want to do with my life?’. They have literally ‘gone with flow’ and simply ended up where they are.

When was the last time you asked yourself what you are doing with your life?

I dislike people complaining about Mondays immensely… Mondays is just another day to live the shit out of… to embrace with both hands and give it everything you’ve got.  It isn’t a day to mourn the loss of your ‘extremely short’ weekend, it should be a time to wake up refreshed, renewed and motivated to go out and do stuff, stuff you LOVE doing.

Don’t get me wrong, every job has a level of boring to it, there is general stuff that has to be done that you may not like to do, but by doing it you are ultimately achieving the stuff you LOVE doing (for me, the boring is data entry and admin). Ultimately, for the past 18 months, I haven’t felt like I have really ‘worked’. I haven’t really hated having to get up and go and do something. I mean, sure I’ve had days when I’d rather do nothing, and on those days, you know what, I can do nothing because that’s the life I have created.

I choose to work for myself, I choose to do all the things that I do and on a daily basis I am generally happy with my life.  I know I am extremely content with being self-employed.

I’m always hungry to keep achieving or starting new ventures, chasing new ideas, but I am also realistic when it comes to change, being able to adapt and having flexibility within your routine. You need to be in this day and age.

On occasion I have helped a few people realise their dreams by figuring out what it is they want to be doing and living their days doing it. So I thought I would share a few of the questions I ask and exercises I get them to do.

First I get them to get a pen and paper. I ask them to spend two minutes writing down absolutely everything they can that makes them happy, that they smile when doing, that comes to mind, that they wish they had done, places they want to visit, how many kids they have/want to have, what they think of their friends family etc/ anything they find as positive in their life and what they would like in their life. Single words, sentences doesn’t really matter as long as they don’t stop writing.

I then get them to spend two minutes writing down the things the hate doing, don’t like, food they don’t enjoy, people in their life that make them sad, jobs they hate doing, chores they deliberately skip doing, so on and so forth.

We then have a look at the lists and put into dot points the Good and the bad of their thoughts. We look at the things they like to do, that they get excited about, and then look at the things they don’t like doing and work out solutions as to how they can eliminate some of these bad things and surround them with more good stuff.

We look at their life overall – job, relationships, home, health, financial state and try to categorise their ‘brain dump’ under some of these headers.

From this we then look at where big changes can be made (i.e- change of job, change in diet, moving out of current home) which will turn negatives into positives.  We prioritise based on their needs at that time and put together a plan of action to take one thing at a time.

Most of the time I find when you turn what you think is a life full of negatives, and add a little positive the snowball effect carries over until your frame of mind changes where you have a lot more positives then negatives going for you and when a negative comes up you can find a solution, or have learnt to let it go because you know what it is you love to do…and you are DOING it!

Stop complaining, whining and whinging, shut up and do something about it… You are the only one who can make the changes so that you spend your time doing things you love, than things you hate. Its pretty simple, in my opinion.

 

You need a problem you want to solve – STEVE JOBS

I just finished watching the movie ‘Jobs’. The one that sort of came and went quietly from the cinemas… Some reviews were positive, most negative. To me, the movie was great. It was as if they wrote the script straight from the book, there wasn’t really anything new to learn about Jobs, however it still did what I expected it to do. It motivated me, it made me smile, it made me realise I’m still one of the crazy ones, and I cherish that.

The line that stuck with me as the credits played was the ‘You need a problem you want to solve’.  It was just so simple. Everything around us was created as a solution to a problem.  The reason we are still creating, and why there is always chance for innovation is because there will always be problems that need solving.

You need to be the crazy one, the one who hates rules, you need to think outside the box, fall in love with the different, and be the one who invents the next big thing in whatever it is you are doing.

You don’t have to do just one thing. You can do whatever it is you want to do. You can solve as many problems as you like, but the solution will come if you have passion, if you absolutely wholeheartedly believe in what you are doing.

If you do it just for money, it will more than likely fail.

So I put my businesses/life etc up against this line and sure enough – all of them are solutions to problems that were out there, and it’s not just my problem, it is others as well (meaning I have a market for these products/services).

If you are solving only your problem you don’t have a business.  You need to find a problem many people are having, so that your solution can help many people who will be willing to pay for it.

So my problem solving mission at the moment – to get my office sorted and organised! Bring on tomorrow with a day of entertaining a toddler whilst sorting through filing cabinets! I shall sleep now to create a solution!