Archive for Coping Strategies

H is for HEALTH

H is for HEALTH_26 top tips to change your life

Never take it for granted!

Poor health limits your options whilst great health opens many more doors.

Don’t wait till it’s too late.

Make time every day to nurture the health of all 10 parts of your life.

The Great Life Redesign shows you how to nurture your health, every day.

Carpe diem

Caroline Cameron

Oops! My 2012 Epic Failures and why they’re important

Oops! Epic Failures and why they're important

Don’t get me wrong. 2012 has been a terrific year with lots of highlights, successes and good times.  But as I look back, it dawned on me that I’ve learnt far more from the goals that didn’t stick, things that didn’t happen and the stuff that I basically, well… stuffed up!

So here are some of my biggest stuff ups for this year, along with the wisdom I’ve gained to take into 2013 and beyond.

1. Don’t commit to something that conflicts with your values

When The Great Life Redesign was published early this year, I thought it would be kind of cool to make it a best seller.  Not knowing how to do this, I invested countless hours and a lot of money in a coaching program that guaranteed to make my book a best seller on Amazon.

I did all the work and was ready to launch my campaign when I hit a roadblock.  The campaign required me to email thousands of potential sponsors (none of whom I knew) to ask for their support.   Feeling this was somewhat like spam, I uncomfortably realised it directly conflicted with my ethics and integrity.

2. When it doesn’t feel right, remind yourself of your true intent and walk away.

In spite of the considerable time and money already spent, I decided to stop the project and put my flawed aspiration down to experience.  After all, when I wrote the book, I decided that if it helped just one person to change the life they have for the one they want, I’d be happy.

Based on the heart-warming feedback I’ve received and wonderful new clients who’ve found me via the book, I know I’m on my way to fulfilling my true intent.

3. When life deals you an unexpected blow, suck it up and deal with it!

In September I took my mum and daughter on a wonderful holiday to the UK and Europe.  Laura had always wanted to go to Paris but as we went to board the Eurostar at Kings Cross Station in London we were stopped by my sheer carelessness.  Searching for my travel wallet (with passport and Euros) I started to panic as I realised it was gone!

Somehow it had been carefully lifted out of my bag when I wasn’t looking. Though the sight of my suitcase contents strewn all over the crowded platform would have looked hilarious, if you’ve ever been separated from your passport whilst traveling overseas, you’ll know how hard my heart was thumping.

4. Perspective, composure and focus will always save the day

Panic turned to anger and remorse as I realised this was going to ruin our holiday and Laura’s Paris dream. Fortunately her instant calm and rational nature helped me accept what had happened and refocus on the business of replacing the passport.  24 hours and many exasperating conversations with policy bound bureaucrats later, I was issued with a new passport and we were soon on our way.

With the benefit of hindsight, I’ll now be a lot more vigilant and when bad stuff happens, I’ll be quicker to put it into perspective, faster to regain composure and divert my energy into solution focus rather than remorse.

5. Know when to say ‘no’, before you’ve said ‘yes’

2012 took off at break neck speed for me and showed no signs of slowing down. My business was doing well and soon each week was passing in a blur. Every new client or piece of work on its own seemed ‘do-able’ but I failed to recognise and decide just how much I could realistically take on.

Before I knew it I was completely over-committed and my life had taken on one of those scenes in a Greek restaurant where the waiter cleverly spins many plates on long sticks, all at the same time.  My family, friends and non-work priorities all took a back seat as I attempted to keep all my plates in the air!

Ironically, The Great Life Redesign is all about stepping off the 21st century treadmill to enjoy a happier, slower, more fulfilling life.  Yet here I was falling into the very trap I help people escape.

As 2013 rapidly approaches, I’m committing to be kinder to myself with fewer goals and priorities, a wall planner I’ll review before I say ‘yes’,  a slower pace and more care. Oh, and I’ll also deliberately pack intuition, wisdom and perspective in my Thrival Kit to take with me, everywhere I go!

So… now I’m wondering, what ‘epic failures’ did you have in 2012?

What did you learn from them and what will you take with you into the brand new year?

Carpe Diem

Caroline Cameron

How to be Storm Ready and Survive Life’s Toughest Moments

How to survive life's toughest moments

As Hurricane Sandy unleashes its fury on the east coast of America, millions of anxious people all along the east coast are living the nightmare.

We all face dramatic storms that change our lives forever. Maybe yours have included the death or serious illness of someone you love, losing your home, prolonged stress or the inevitable but painful end of an important relationship.

Sadly, the impact of these events can be devastating, leaving you bruised and battered for years.

Yet, as bad as they can be, major life storms do pass and life does go on, albeit dramatically changed. Life itself is a series of unstable, tumultuous times and quieter periods and while we often can’t change them, we can control how we deal with them.

Regardless of whether you’re currently in the eye of a ferocious storm or enjoying relative peace and stability, it’s wise to have a ‘Storm Kit’ ready for whatever life throws at you next.

Packing a Storm Kit won’t make bad things happen. Like life insurance or airbags in your car, it will mean you’re well prepared. So, let’s pack you a Storm Kit for when the storm clouds next gather in your life.

7 Storm Kit Essentials

1. Create an early warning device

Not so long ago we had little or no warning of pending disasters. In the same way we now the ‘know how’ to predict major storms, you too have early warning devices to anticipate the events that could upend your life.

Listen to your intuition – if something just doesn’t feel right, act on it. Recognise and acknowledge the indicators that tell you all’s not well. Increased conflict in a relationship, significant change at home or work and the health and wellbeing of those you love all provide vital clues.

2. Prepare for the worst and be ready to do and be your best

Once you know that a big storm is on its way, inevitable and that you’ll be right in its path, it’s time to batten down the hatches and prepare.

If possible, get out of the storm’s direct path. Knowing what’s within your control, do what you can to diffuse stress and decide how you want to ride it out. Consciously choose how you’ll respond, put coping strategies in place and be kind to yourself.

Remember, you’re stronger and more resilient than you may feel right now.

3. Know your priorities

Write down what’s important. You won’t be able to take everything with you and that’s a good thing! Let go of  everything that doesn’t really matter. Offload beliefs, responsibilities and tasks that will suffer if you struggle to maintain them as the storm unfolds.

Focus only on what’s important to clear the clutter of what keeps you busy but doesn’t add real value. If you’re not sure what’s important, clarify your core values and beliefs and use them to guide you.

4. Call on your powerful Inner Resources

Inner Resources are those internal ‘states of being’ we draw on to give us the strength and courage to face the worst that life throws at us. In times of crisis, these include faith, persistence, calm, resilience and perspective.

Think of a time when you’ve survived a potentially debilitating life crisis in the past. What was it that got you through?

Even in your darkest hour, there will be strong beliefs and ways of being that kept you going. Having called on them before, you know with absolute certainty that you can call on them again this time.

5. Have essential emergency supplies on hand

Both practical and emotional, emergency supplies are anything to make the crisis more bearable as the storm passes through your life. Stock up on healthy food, treats that make you feel better and activities to recharge your batteries and help pass the time.

One of my clients who was nursing her father through a prolonged and painful terminal illness, found comfort working on a beautiful tapestry. Sitting next to his bed for long hours as he lapsed in and out of consciousness, she patiently stitched. While it gave her something productive to do, each stitch created a precious bond with her father that would live on long after he was gone.

6. Build a strong support team

This isn’t a time to be stoic and brave – never go through a major crisis alone! Decide who you want in your life at this time and reach out for help. We all need connection with others and this is even more important during a crisis.

Close family, friends and caring professionals will do all they can to help you out and sharing the experience will lighten the load. Even asking for help with something seemingly small will make a big difference.

7. Create a mop-up plan

Knowing this storm will pass, turn your attention to what you will do when it’s all over. Making plans for life after the storm reminds you that life will get better. Major life storms have an uncanny way of bringing you new choices.

How will life be different and what opportunities await you on the other side? Even if you can’t predict exactly how you’ll feel or what life will be like, now’s the time to start planning optimistically for the future.

Change is inevitable and making it through to the other side alive means picking yourself up and moving on, when you’re ready. Give yourself time to heal and with firm resolve, know you have everything you need to move forward to a brighter future.

Carpe Diem

Caroline Cameron

 

 

 

PS. Even if you’re not currently facing a major ‘life storm’, you may know someone who is. Please share these tips and help lighten their day.