Learning to Say No

One of the things I was looking forward to when I finished work last September and started working for myself was the control I thought I would have. No more having to get up at five in the morning because my manager needed me to go to a meeting at the other end of the country that lasted all of an hour (what’s wrong with a phone call I ask you?), no more working weekends because I was given something to do at 4:55 on a Friday afternoon that was needed by 9:05 on a Monday morning, and no more having to smile and say “yes, of course,” when I really wanted to say the complete opposite and turn the air blue.
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For the most part, I am pleased to say my move into self-employment has been pretty successful. There’s been no more early, early mornings and only a few late, late nights. Where I am struggling, though, is the not saying yes part. I am just no good at it and, after a recent conversation where my brain was screaming at me to say no but I still said yes, I’ve decided I need to do something about it. And not just when it comes to work but in life in general, where I am just as bad if I’m honest. Continue reading “Learning to Say No”

Reasons to be Happy (part one)

Abraham Lincoln said, “Folks are usually about as happy as they make their minds to be.”  At least I think it was Lincoln.  Whoever said it, it’s very true.  This week, I was feeling more than a bit grumpy.  I was working on a project that wasn’t inspiring me at all and – over on my book blog – a reading slump was getting me down; not even my favourite author could get me back in the groove.
Then, last night, sat with a glass of wine and an episode of Real Housewives, I had a bit of a lightbulb moment.  Life really wasn’t that bad and the things that were getting me down just weren’t worth getting down about at all.  I went to bed feeling a little lighter and determined to see the good and feel the happy…. Continue reading “Reasons to be Happy (part one)”

Stepping outside my comfort zone

fear-2019930_1920I used to think of myself as quite a brave person, someone who would give anything a go.  Then I got older and, whilst some might say wiser, I have started to think it’s really more cowardly.  I found myself saying things like “I know my boundaries” or “I know what I like and I won’t like that” – you get the picture.  Over the last few years especially I have found it more and more difficult to try new things.  It’s something I have wanted to change and (pats self on back) have finally started to.
I mentioned the other week that I had started trampoline classes and that was a big one for me.  The classes had been going for about six weeks when I joined and everyone seemed to know each other and the coaches well.  I would watch whilst my daughter took her class and think about how much fun it looked.  Then feel scared.  I would worry… Continue reading “Stepping outside my comfort zone”

Smile (it might make someone's day)…

selfie-465563_1920A couple of years ago, at a work’s conference, I was lucky enough to hear from a guest speaker who told the story of how he had been contemplating suicide and how a complete stranger, seeing he was in trouble, had taken the time to stop and talk to him, to find out what was going on and help him get help.
It was an amazingly powerful story but one thing in particular stuck with me.  It was when he said that, as he went out on what he thought would be his last day, he had made himself a deal – if one person smiled at him, just one, he wouldn’t kill himself.  For people who are feeling sad or lonely, he said, one smile can make all the difference. Continue reading “Smile (it might make someone's day)…”

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