My blog is predominantly focused on me sharing life experiences - the fun stuff and the lessons. Today it’s all about the lessons.
The last two weekends, well actually it’s more like the last two weeks, have been super crazy busy for Dan and I. Last weekend was the Easter long weekend & this weekend just gone we celebrated the wedding of two close friends, Wojtek and Sarah. Easter long weekend was spent at the exquisite Cotton Tree Camping Grounds in Maroochydore & the wedding was held on the idyllic North Stradbroke Island.
Now I can hear you, reading this saying “gee I wish I had her problem two long weekends in a row - both in beautiful locations”.
Don’t worry I had my epiphany, I had a moment of clarity where it became very obvious that in choosing to get caught up in all the ‘stuff’, I was losing a beautiful opportunity to enjoy some wonderful experiences to the fullest extent. What I was choosing was to forsake the present moment by using it plan my meetings/appointments/emails/uni assignments and a fair bit of day dreaming about that point I would get home and be able to lay in my bed and relax.
Pretty strange choices I was making? Definitely.
I was so utterly caught up in all my stress, rushing, anxiety and busy-ness that I wasn’t truly appreciating the incredible opportunity I had to immerse myself in two wonderful weekend experiences that I have been blessed with.
This little epiphany lead me to realise that whilst I was having a blast camping, and celebrating my beautiful friends nuptials I wasn’t actually 100% and by virtue of that I was missing out on some pretty special opportunities, a beautiful view, my partners cuddles and smiles, and other little nuggets of beauty nestled in the view of those that take the moment to look, enjoy and appreciate.
As I sit here drinking a coffee at the little breakfast café in our resort complex, waiting to head home with a heart full of warm and fuzzies carried over from last night’s wedding I am powerfully reminded of the beautiful lesson I have learnt this fortnight.
Every moment, yes every single moment is perfect and precious in its own unique way and it is very easy to lose out on the beauty & lose sight of what’s really important when we are caught up in the busy-ness…in the stuff that we fill our lives, and our minds with.
Enjoy the beauty in the moment!
Peace and Love,
Today I would like to share with you all the homework we had to complete for our team conference call for Health Mastery Athlete’s Advanced…the questions and my answers are outlined below. If you feel inspired too - take a look at the questions and answer them for yourself, its a good exercise for focus :)
What are your three most important life values?
* Community (being a part of, and creating that space)
What do I value in my health?
* That it enables me to achieve all my projects, goals, hopes and dreams.
* My health also directly represents how well I am loving myself right now (and my body is brutally honest about my health assessment too!)
* It enables me to live my mandate & my values (& most importantly, enjoy the process!)
* I had an epiphany the other day, I woke up with boundless alertness and energy. I am grateful for that because I know now just what I am working towards with my detox (recovery from adrenal fatigue), my restructuring of my diet and my continued commitment to my exercise.
* My ability to demonstrate & really model a life lied well, passionately & with ease, to my loved ones.
What do I need to do to fulfil my values?
* Release my emotional attachment to eating (my stories about how only eating junk food calms me down, about how I ‘need’ to internally bash myself when I don’t eat so supportively).
* Return to a diet that is 80% raw, natural, un/minimally processed food.
* Release my need for coffee (I am two days down with no ‘need’ arising.
* Release my addiction to sugar.
* Compete my naturopath supervised detox.
* Eat as though I deserve good, enjoyable, supportive, fun nutrition.
* Continue developing my relationship of love with myself.
At the end of your life what would you regret not having accomplished?
I would regret…
* Failing to engage in loving, supportive, inspiring, positive relationships with every person I meet.
* Failing to consistently develop my loving relationship with myself.
* Using my words in a negative, hurtful, destructionary way that harmed my loved ones and my community.
* Not living my big game and in turn not leaving the world having given it all the gifts I have to offer.
* Not walking my talk.
* Not walking with people where their at.
* Living my life the way society expects & failing to rock the necessary boats.
And what do you need to do around health to accomplish them?
* I need to take action in the areas that I have outlined above, rather than taking a ‘set and forget’ approach!
What do you want to leave as your legacy? The things you did, the kind of person you were, how do you want people to remember you?
* Being, living, breathing, speaking and acting LOVE!
* Walking and talking gratitude!
* Commitment to my values and my dreams!
* Responsibility - I owned mine and set the bar for others.
* Encouraging, creating, supporting and being involved in community!
* Loving and welcoming my challenges and imperfections!
* Colour (all of them - yup a RAINBOW), craziness and love!
* That people were positively impacted for having known me, no matter the length of time, the setting or the person!
Love & peace,
Tody I am doing blog that diverts from health in some respects and in other respects & in others is profoundly related to it!
In the middle of 200, June 28th to be exact my confident, powerful, independent Nana, Lorraine, passed away - off on her journey to whatever is next. This happened after a 10 year rollercoaster journey with cancer. Over ten years Nana, experienced four different types of cancer, one of which was a women only cancer, three of these cancer’s went into remission the last, unfortunately just not the last one!
I was lucky that in growing up I got to spend a lot of time in my Nana’s awesome company. That is except for around my birthday - Nana loved to travel, I’m a spring baby & well let’s face it, Spring is and AWESOME time to travel! The upside was that I got extra special presents on her return & there were cuddles, stories & photo’s as well.
Across her 10 year journey Nana’s refused to be consumed by her illness! Instead her travel schedule became even more amazing - an a lot busier! Nana, despite the cancer’s challenges, mastered a pretty insane 10 year long bucket list!
By this stage you are probably wondering why I am sharing these brief excerpts o what is a formidable journey mad by an amazing women?
Well there is a point…on October 26t and 27th (Saturday and Sunday) this year I am fortunate enough to be walking 60kms, in memory of my Nana’s journey & in solidarity with he thousands of women & their families and communities, who are affected by women’s cancers.
Part of the weekend is fundraising, I am raising $2000 (minimum) towards support services and researching a cure for women’s cancer. The other part is the walk. It is 30km each day walking through the suburbs of Brisbane to raise awareness.
I do a fair bit of exercise and consider myself to be fit enough to walk the distance and yet I do need your help!
Will you make a contribution of $5 (or more if your able) to my walking target of $2000. So far I have raised $90 ($1910 to go).
Will you stand with women, children, families & communities who are being affected in some way by women’s cancer?
Ultimately will you help me raise necessary funds for a cure?
Thanks for your willingness to support me in this journey of solidarity & continue to check back here for more updates on my progress!
Peace, love and hugs x
** If the underlined links to my fundraising page don’t work, please visit the following URL »>
Today’s blog post is dedicated to my experience of food myths and other stories we tell ourselves about what we do and don’t eat and why it’s totally justified. Rather than regurgitating the myths outlined in my readings I am going to share with you all some of my food myths, ones I am still vehemently attached too! I hope that my experience with food rings true in some way with your own and I would to encourage you to reflect upon your own relationship with food – after all – awareness and acknowledgement are two very powerful steps towards positive change!
My top 3 food myths:
I’m exercising 5 days a week for about an hour each day SO I can eat whatever I want!
Logically this works…and it doesn’t, sure you’re working out, burning calories and staying fit, but let’s be honest for a moment here…that’s a story and a very un-supportive one at that.
I have written a little calorie example below….this is for a person who is seeking to lose weight…
Jane Doe needs 1800 calories per day for her basic body’s needs (no gaining or losing weight). She does exercise for an hour and her calories burned are 300 (focus on losing weight). Today Jane ate 2400 calories – even with her workout she is still over consuming by 100 calories that day. This is an average day for Jane.
Current studies indicate that the consumption of just 100 calories (less than a freddo frog) equates to approximated 2-3kgs of fat gain per year! Therefore if Jane continues on her current path she is looking at 2-3kg of weight gain every year despite her best efforts.
I am working out 4 days per week for 1 hour – 3 cardio session, 2 strength sessions and then some kind of physical activity on the weekend in training for various commitments I have upcoming. I am reasonably fit and have good strength.
I am also medically overweight, blowing out my calorie intake by 400 – 600 calories each day and being treated for adrenal fatigue (early phases) and malnourishment (unbalanced nutrition not a lack-thereof). I am a walking talking example of the very accurate statement “you will never out-run, or out-train a bad diet”. Not only do I eat way more than my body requires nutritionally, I also make un-supportive food choice every day. The beauty is that I know this, and even though I continue to make un-supportive food choices I am making less of them with each passing day and I am learning to stop attaching meaning to my eating. When I do consume a large quantity of chips and chocolate in a day or period of the day I am learning not to kick myself repeatedly and make up stories about how I did it because am un-lovable, or because I am fat and deserve punishment. Instead I am learning to say “I love you Alison, it’s okay we will get through this together” and then I pick myself up and try again.
I am now in the midst of replacing this food myth with one’s that say;
“I comfortably and enjoyable consume my recommended daily intake of calories for optimum function through supportive food choices and my exercise program is just an added beneficial experience of my day!”
“I eat a balanced and nutritious diet filled with yummy fresh produce and fun that supports my health because I am loved, lovable and totally worth it.”
I will eat better when I am worthy and loveable.
This is a chicken or egg myth, self-love is not something found externally, not in our relationships, our diet or our wardrobe and especially not in our weight/complexion/looks; it’s something we choose, yep – we CHOOSE to acknowledge our innate awesomeness and we CHOOSE to love ourselves NO – MATTER – WHAT!
Sure being healthy, feeling nice, having access to food, shelter and positive relationships helps – yes, eating well, exercising and having the finances to live our life the way we want is important, definitely! Just don’t go believing that myth that you will love yourself when you like what you see in the mirror, when you can buy Size 8 clothes or when you look like your favourite svelte and sexy idol. Loving yourself first however will set you on a pretty awesome path to being healthy and that could lead to weight loss and that pair of jeans – either that or you might realise that as long as you are honouring your body and healthy you are blessed and that those jeans are actually down right uncomfortable no matter how skinny you are!
Even now I think that I will love myself more when I get to that magic 60kg mark, I was 54kgs once (post growth spurts and physical development) and I didn’t love myself then – I am now 68kgs and I don’t unconditionally like love myself and I am punishing myself (mostly mentally) to get back to a mere 60kg let alone the ‘amazing 54kgs’ – if I was 100kgs 10 years from now I don’t think I would love myself anymore and I’d probably be lamenting that time when I was a beautiful 68kgs – the difference is not my weight – the difference is how I think about myself, the difference is my willingness to be grateful, happy and in love with me unconditionally.
I have found in my own journey that when my motivation is inspired by an deep seated dislike, hatred, criticism or unhealthy thought patterns; I ‘attack’ the problem in negative, angry, defensive and punishment oriented ways – I also fail regularly and in the end have a bigger problem than the one I started with. On the other hand, when I choose to make change around something in my life because I love myself and I am worthy of supportive, respectful decisions and actions, the change just flows, I find the right tools and services appear in my life and I enjoy the process and the effort required to make that shift rather that fighting it every step of the way. The only challenge in that space is when my internal self-sabotage makes an appearance and tries to fight the change that comes from challenging long seated beliefs about myself; and when that happens – I am loved, deserving and worthy.
It’s absolutely fine to identify something in your life that is not serving you and then choosing to change it – just make sure you are being honest with yourself? Are you reflecting upon something and then changing it from a place of love, or are you using it to beat yourself over the head repeatedly and in the process, justifying some internal self-hatred?
I am too busy to plan my nutrition, I’m addicted to sugar and other self-sabotaging EXCUSES!
Excuses are the realm of your internal sabotage – notice your excuses, reflect on them and then decided to recommit or just stop listening to the ‘story’ you have taken on about that issue?
When I come up against excuses it is an alarm bell saying, where’s your commitment?
If I am coming up against excuse after excuse around something I am doing then I am not sitting at the top of the commitment ladder. That doesn’t mean I don’t want to achieve that outcome or goal – it may just mean that I am more committed to a goal that conflicts with the above goal.
For example, I have a goal to stop eating chocolate, chips and lollies unless I am at a party or it’s Easter/Christmas. I have been clear about this goal for about 2 months now and still at least 1-2 times a week I am binge eating on chocolate and chips. When I sat down and though about it I realised that actually I have another goal that I am super committed too and that goal is – to use sweet and salty foods to silence my internal discomfort when I am stressed or distressed rather than reassuring myself and acknowledging that certain situations make me really upset. I have a level of commitment to each of my goals however they conflict with each other so upon my reflection I now get to decide and then recommit to the goal that serves me the best and is most important to me at the time - no judgement.
Of the three things I have talked about here the ABSOLUTE and most important thing is that it doesn’t matter if I’m not perfect right now, that’s not the point, it’s the face that I’m standing back up every time – no matter how many times I fall!
I hope that through sharing a little of my relationship with food and food myths you have the opportunity to lovingly and honestly look at your own relationship with food an shift your relationship with yourself and your food, to one of love and commitment to what serves and supports you!
Peace, love & hugs,
I don’t know if this feeling is mutual, exclusive or mutually exclusive but do you ever get that feeling that you are experiencing personal growth and development on steriods?
I am under going one of these phases at the moment, and there have been five or six of them over the last 12 months. My healer (energy balancing and all round spiritual mentor) Maria told me that we move through the elements and each element represents a particular focus (phsyical, emotional, spiritual etc) I don’t remember what element personal growth is but I have established unequivocally that being under this elements sphere of influence literally ignites gundpowder change within me. So much so that I feel like a different person after two or three days rather that over years of work.
Sometimes I don’t notice the changes so clearly and I just get that intuitive ‘knowing’ that something has clicked into place, much like a chiro adjustment or a puzzle. Othertimes the change is really clear and defined - a behaviour or belief that I once held and wanted to change is no longer an issue.
Recently I found myself becoming increasingly frustrated by the actions of another group. I was awaiting the results of a funding application to start a program that I am very passionate about. Unfortunately, the delay and barriers appeared to be coming thick and fast, and then thicker and faster (to date they still are). On one particular day this all consuming project really started to take a toll on my mental health, I was becoming sad, aggressive and diochotomous (thinking in black and white) about the project, people and barriers that were involved.
I knew this wasn’t healthy and I knew that it was increasingly imperative that I simply let go and allow the tea leaves to fall as they would. The challenge was that I simply couldn’t get my brain and my psyche to talk to each other or my body. I was a ticking time bomb about ripe to implode.
It was here that one of these PD on steriod moments occured….whilst driving to my next shift at work I become almost immediately calm, it was almost as tangible as something snapping in my head. Not the bad kind of ‘uh oh’ snapping but a releasing, relaxing, letting go type of snap. Suddenly this project which had consumed my entire space, my entire world for almost 2 months transitioned to a simple project that I was passionate about free from all of the negative, stressful and toxic emotion adn energy that I had lathered on with gusto previously.
It was a welcome relief however initially I was concerned that the snap was not as healthy as it felt. I thought that I had pushed myself to the brink and then just a little further. I started pondering the consequences of having pushed my psyche and my body that hard. For a few weeks I was thinking that my (driven to the dark side) determination and focus would start to build again and that I would be stuck in the same position of waiting until something snapped for some relief. This never happened and with each day of healthy distance from ‘that dark side place’ I came to the realisation that the snap wasn’t bad disgused as good, it was good painly packaged, as good. I give credit here to my many mentors for their gentle nudging towards this conclusion and their infinite wisdom in allowing me to learn this in my own way and my own time.
This conclusion was reinforced when I was faced with smaller projects and barriers over the coming weeks that I was now approaching in a totally different way to my previous ‘standard operating procedure’.
I have come to realise that this smaller projects and barriers where actually training or rehabilitation. They were the small exercises that allowed me to train this new muscle in a safe environment so that next time I am faced with a situation of similar commitment, focus and magituted, I am ‘strong’ enough to gather the good I have to offer and commit it 100% without allow myself to fall to the ‘dark side’ and project unhealthy, negative, damaging energy to that which I am working on.
This was such a small burst of personal development and it definately felt like it was done on steriods. It was not even an element of myself that I was aiming to work on right now. It didn’t matter…in line with my beliefs a plan was already laid out of my choosing and that lesson was slated for now.
I could continue on for hours about all of the mini lessons that have come my way (whether in line with ’my’ plan or the bigger picture one) over the last 12 months in these intense little mini sessions. Instead, I shall leave you for now with a series of quick questiosn for your own reflection….
…when was the last time you experienced growth on steriods?
…what did you learn (can be one thing or many)? …and last but not least
…have you stop to show gratitude for it? Have you said ‘Thankyou’?
Peace and Love,
I have recieved some feedback (thankyou wonderful SSL) that my last to blog posts seem to jump from on track to the websites release to putting the breaks on the project to pursue a intermediate opportunity. As such I am posting this blog to clarify what is going on and give as much detail as I am able to at this point about the intermediate opportunity that I am pusuing.
As you may have read in previous blogs I am a disability support worker and I work with adults with intellectual disabilities. I have been working in the field since early 2006 in both volunteer and paid roles.
In late 2011, myself and two others where brainstorming as part of a training day a program that would increase skills and social opportunities for people with intellectual disabilities which would be intergrative and link members with everyday (non disability specific) activities and opportunities within Brisbane. Recently my workplace was informed of an opportunity to apply for funding to run a new program which we jumped at as we only lacked funding to make the above program idea a reality. We dubbed the project - Passport Program - and went about the proccess of adding the detail and information that was necessary to apply for the funding. We have been waiting for the outcome of the funding application since early April and were recently informed that the successful applicants would hopefully be informed by the end of May - just a mere 2 weeks away. Due to my passion and involvement in the program so far I will be coordinating the programs delivery when we find out we are successful (thinking positively here)!
Whilst preparing the submission I had to do some hard thinking about the realities of managing part time coordination of the new program, part time in my current role, ful time uni and working on Tanzania. I came to the conclusion that at least in the first year of the program I would not be doing justice to any of my commitments trying to juggling them all. As I mentioned in my previous blog this new program is an excellent opportunity but not just because of the professional benefits. This new program will provide me with a number of skills that I don’t have yet that will be of immense benefit to the Tanzanian project and my efforts to network and fundraise for the equipment and costs of running the project. The conclusion that I reached has prompted me to put a temporary pause on my work for the Tanzania project so that I can learn what I need to in this new role and come back to the project with greater knowledge, understanding and resources to kick the project into high gear.
It is my intention as mentioned previously to continue blogging here to inform everyone of my progress with this new venture and what I am learning. I am really looking forward to sharing this exciting detour with everyone and coming back to A Hole in the Wall for Tanzania with renewed enthusiams and ideas!
Until next week :)
Peace and Love,
As I explored in my previous post it is looking very much like I will be pausing progress on the wonderful “A Hole in the Wall from Tanzania” project for just a short while as I pursue an opportunity that will have phenomenal long term benefits for the project when I return.
This has been an incredibly tough decision to make as Tanzania is very close to my heart for many many reasons.
I will have confirmation and more details on this opportunity by June 1st which I will of course be sharing on this blog and on my plan on PlanBig.com.au.
In the meantime I will be holding off on the release of my website until I am settled in my new role and have returned to regularly focusing on the project.
As for my blog I am very excited to confirm that I will be continuing with my blog and though the posts won’t be directly related to Tanzania all the time I will continue to share my experience, lessons and discoveries, particularly those from this new opportunity are developing my skills and how I will progress with the project once I return.
It is my sincere hope that you continue to follow my jounrey as I continue towards revolutionising education in Tanzania!
Love and peace,
So tonight I jsut wanted to write a brief blog on the progress of Teacosy in Tanzania’s website.
The structure of the website is complete, and I am very happy with it overall - the reason I have not yet released its adress is two fold. Firstly, I have a few small tweeks and corrections that need to be make to make the site absolutely true to my initial intention. Secondly, I haven’t filled the different pages with the relevant content.
That said I have the content pretty much ready to go and the tweeks are very minor so I am pleased to annouce that the weekend after easter (the 15th of April) I will be releasing the website to the public and I am very keen to hear feedback! I really ecourage you to check out the website so that you can continue to be involved in the project and thus revolutionising the educational situation of the young people in Tanzania!
Thankyou for the continued support of this project and me! I will be putting up a post on Good Friday before I head on a very important 3 day camp to refresh and revitalise and then I will be delaying my post on the 13th of April until Sunday the 15th and it will be completely focused on the website release!
So now you know the inspiration and evolution of the project and what I am doing I am going to share with you a little more about where all this is going to happen.
In the planning stage the majority of the work will be done online via social media, PlanBig, Email, skype as well as phone and face to face meetings. However at present all the work I am doing is online via email, PlanBig and social media. The meetings and actually installation of the learning pods are my predictions on how the project will develop over its journey.
Whilst I will be visiting Tanzania is 2016 to see the finished product, the coordination and installation will be managed by A Hole in the Wall Foundation with my involvement done electronically to minimise the costs and increase the fundraising that will be used to purchase and install as many of the learning pods as we can.
The second phase of the project is the trip I mentioned above to Tanzania in 2016 to see and report back upon the progress of the project. It is this trip that will enable me to visit some of the schools in the Moshi region, Tanzania who have recieved the learning pods through this project and the AHITW Foundation. The journey is 3 weeks long incorporating time at the School of St Jude, time spent in the state schools of the Moshi Region - teaching classes (hopefully with the Learning Pods) and running a sports carnival, 6 days summiting Mt Kiliminjaro and some time discovering Tanzania through the eyes of the community. The last stop will be 3 days in ZanZibar to reflect on what we have achieved personally and within the Tanzanian community. I will be using the reflection time in ZanZibar and the time when I return home to write up my reflections on the project and to share all of my experiences with everyone that has supported me in this journey. Now you know the not-so-secret locations that will be visited and used to make this project happen I encourage you to check in next week for my next posting “A Blogging Good Opportunity”
Peace and love,
P.S As I mentioned above this is my anticipation of the way that the project will proceed given that I am still in the project design and networking phase.