Would you like to choose to not be scared? Or is that scary?!

Today I am going to a Virgin Atlantic ceremony where Paris Howard-Hall will be receiving her wings. After 5 hard weeks training (you wouldn’t believe what they go through) she is officially “Virgin Crew” “Trolley-Dolly” “Cart Tart” what ever you want to call her. Today though, also symbolises the end of an impressive and inspiring journey. 3 years ago, Paris came to me with a serious phobia of flying.

The thing about phobias, is that choosing to let go of them, is also scary. Which when you think about it, doesn’t make immediate sense. Wouldn’t it be nice not to be scared? Naturally though, the very fact we are scared, would suggest that we believe we are protecting ourselves in some way. If we let go of the fear, then what will protect us? You would be free to fly all over the world, or learn windsurfing in Australia (where there could be sharks) go swimming (out of your depth) speak in front of hundreds of people. Eat in a restaurant (where the food could be poisoned)…just a few of the things my clients have done after one session.

I have learned that when you remove a phobia, the client goes straight towards what they were once scared of. I didn’t anticipate that when I started working with phobias. None more so than Paris!

In one session Paris:

  • Who used to panic for weeks before she got a flight.
  • Changed her will.
  • Called her Mum crying, saying she was going to die.
  • Took prescribed medication to keep her calm.
  • The list goes on, as you can imagine.

Was no longer scared of flying, in any way what so ever. So much so that she applied repeatedly to work as Cabin Crew for Virgin (only Virgin would do) That is enough really isn’t it, as far as over coming obstacles and chasing dreams!? Then though, Paris saw me again for a fear of water, because in order to pass her Cabin Crew Training, she had to swim 25 meters and tread water as well as inflate a life raft. Needless to say, she did this too.

So tonight I’m going to put on a long dress with my fanciest sequin jacket and clap a lot as Paris gets her wings. I will think of everything she has over come to be there and I will think of all the people who choose to let go of their fears, so that they can go straight towards them and I may (definitely) shed a few happy tears. It is a reminder that we can all do anything, if we put our mind to it and if you would like a hand getting started, I’m always free for a chat.

Virgin Atlantic get a strong, inspiring and dedicated team member today. Happy flying.


Have you got that Sunday evening feeling, with work looming large?

To quote Dr Zeus “Today is your day, you have brains in your head and feet in your shoes, you may take yourself, in any direction you choose”

How empowering and exciting! Not so if you feel like your feet have to take you in the direction of a place you don’t want to go of course. I wish I could take that Sunday evening (sometimes starts at Sunday lunch time even) impending doom, irritable, anxious feeling away for anyone that gets it. So many of my clients see me for it..

Assuming you have to work for a living, what direction would you like your shoes to take you in tomorrow?

I have a bit of a dislike for some social events where everyone asks each other what they do, because so often what people do, isn’t what they are. What are you?

In my line of work I have the pleasure of meeting a lot of people and what never fails to amaze me, are peoples hidden talents and passions. Artists, singers, dancers, graphic designers, mechanics, cooks etc, and yet, they are in a job that has nothing to do with their natural strengths. No wonder there’s a shared dislike for Mondays! Imagine if we all loved our jobs, Monday would rock!

Imagine a world where Mondays rock…

So, why are so many of us in jobs we don’t love? Because we believe that’s just part of being a grown-up? Because we don’t know what we want to do? or because we don’t think we’re good enough to do what we actually want to do?

I want to focus on that last reason for a moment. I remember watching a well known TV chef and my Mum saying she was awful and had no idea what she was doing. I thought, but she’s on telly! How can she be on telly if she’s rubbish? The answer is, because she doesn’t know she’s rubbish! She thinks she’s good! Self belief. If you don’t go for your dreams, other people who are less good, will, and they will succeed. There will always be someone more qualified, more experienced, more confident, more attractive with more impressive fancier long words and a flat tummy! All that actually matters, is your intention to work hard and be as f%*@#!g good as you can be.

I bet there is a politician in the States who considered running for president, but thought they weren’t good enough and I bet they’re kicking themselves now!

What makes a professional? Is it only people with degrees and letters after their name? No it’s absolutely not. Some people are just born with amazing talents, some people practice in their own time and don’t have any certificates for their efforts, some learn on the job, some read everything, some people just LOVE something. Either way, there will be a moment when it’s time to step up, or Mondays will probably never be your friend.

I watched Barry Gibb in the legend slot at Glastonbury earlier. In the interview after, he said it’s always terrifying just before going on stage. What bravery really, to have that terror, so regularly, and to over come it until you’re deemed a legend. What if all those years ago, he had thought “oh no I’ve got a bit of a squeaky voice, people might laugh at me!”

If you just don’t know what you want to do, focus on finding out what you don’t want to do and the gap will narrow.

If you think that not loving your job is part of being a grown up, I agree, I have found that as a grown up, we do seem to have to do stuff that I might not choose to! But not 5 days a week, until retirement.

Are you fulfilled and are you fulfilling your potential? I’m absolutely here if you want to talk it over and come up with a plan. Or you can do what I’m going to do this week, be more Barry Gibb…

And to quote another genius “He who dares, wins Rodney”

Happy Monday all x


Why my house might be a mess if you pop in!

The phrase “spending time” never really meant much to me, until I heard a wise man say, “if you had to pay £100 for 24 hours of life, would you spend your time differently? Would it have more value to you!” Yes, I thought.

I find when I can look at a day, in those terms, it grounds me in the here and now and we can really ask “what would the best way to spend today be?” It does mean that I quite often decide that house work is not the best use of my day! And it has meant a lot of late nights out, eeking every last penny from my day!

I know that when I look back over my life, I won’t care how tidy my house was, or how many early nights I had. What sort of life do you want to look back on? Have a think…………

An exciting life, full of adventure, love, kindness and bravery? (that’s what I’d like to see)

My theory is, that if we place a value on every day, knowing what our ultimate life would look like, we’ll make focussed decisions that will give us the life we’re looking for.

Now, there is also the danger that you could wake up in the morning and think to yourself “if I paid £100 for today, how would the day best be spent” and then freak out with the pressure! And through experience I would say that it’s fine to choose to spend some of that £100 on a bit of a nap or a box set sort of day! You’ll know when that’s money well spent.

I believe in balance, but that’s a whole other blog.

It’s a brilliant tool for helping make decisions, if you’re not sure what to do, take the job, leave the job, break up, declare your love! Travel, go back to college, think “what would I like to look back on?” And you’ll have your answer. It cuts through all the fears and things we put in our own way (maybe see my last blog Ever Been Scared But Done It Anyway?)

With constant re-evaluation, because our priorities change of course, we do have the power to create the life we want. For example, now, sometimes, an early night is exactly what I’ll want to look back on. Night night…..

Ps, That sounded rude, I didn’t mean it in a rude way!!!

Pps, Time is money, will you be frivolous or focussed?

Have you ever been scared, but done it anyway?

Then you are truly brave. I didn’t wait to hear your answer, because I know that if you really think about it, there will be a time when you chose bravery over fear, even if it was turning the light out, on your own, in a dark hotel room (one of mine) or taking the lift (despite it being a small, confined box, full of people, held up by rope gaaaaa) or walking into the interview with a smile on your face, even though you would rather run in the opposite direction as fast as your interview shoes will take you.

We’re brave. YOU.ARE.BRAVE. And we can be proud of ourselves.

Now join me in thinking (I’ll do it too) if I gave you a magic wand that you could use just once, for a one off guaranteed life changing moment, like a career change, emigrating, signing up to online dating (and actually going on a date) coming out, leaving your current relationship, joining the gym even though lycra isn’t your friend, or starting your own business, what would you choose? If you knew it would be a success and everything would work out well…….

Now spend a few seconds imagining it’s happened, how does it feel? How does it look?…

Fear of failure is the biggest thing that we put in our own way. I went paddle boarding a few weeks ago, and fell off spectacularly every single time I tried to stand up!! So I stopped trying to stand up! Then I realised that I would never succeed if I just stayed kneeling down (and my knees hurt!) So I decided that the more times I fell in, the prouder I would be of  myself, because that showed I was doing my best. Anywho…

When we let a fear of failure, stop us from even giving it a go, we have of course already failed. Lets celebrate ours and other peoples failures, in a genuine way, so that we immediately get back up on the paddle board and laugh in the face of failure fear, because we are all willing each other on to succeed and enjoy the feeling of flying over the water. There is room for us all to succeed, it’s not a competition. Who wants a life of kneeling on the paddle board? Not me.

So here is your magic wand, and I would love you to use it. What will your first brave step be? When will you take that step? And how will you celebrate taking that step (reward yourself every step of the way) If you want some support, I’m always here (we can make a plan)

I want to use my magic wand to do an inspiring TED talk on Mental Health in new Mothers. My first step, is telling you! I’m going to celebrate once I click “Publish” by having a glass of wine, or 2! I’m also going to go paddle boarding again, but not after the wine!

I’d love to hear your plans…..Lets do it together!