ONE goal – you’ve got this!

Do you start your New Year like me with the whole ‘New Year, New Me’ mindset only to find end of January you have given up on pretty much everything you aimed to achieve?

Why do we do this to ourselves? All it serves is the purpose of us ending month one deflated and fed up!

I look around me at all the people around me who I consider to be the go-getters, the people who seem to have all their ducks in a row, the goal achievers; I look to find out more of what they do to get out there and achieve. If you ask them, as I have, they will more than likely reel off a list of things that all seem perfectly achievable and easy to implement, which in an all or nothing approach to life I will attempt to do both instantly and simultaneously! The result is, of course, I set myself up to fail because I start too many plates spinning all at the same time. It get overwhelming, plates start dropping and just like that Boom back to the start again.

Time to stop the madness and change. Time to start with ONE!

I have a list of things I would like change in my life going forward, many of which are probably similar to other people, maybe even to you who is reading…I made a list (I like a list!):

Loose weight
Get more exercise
Practice gratitude
Start my day with affirmations
Be more organised
Pass my exams
Qualify for my new career
Get organised
Read more
Get new project off the ground…it goes on but you get the idea!

The end goals always remain the same in my life but this time I’m altering the plan to one which I think is going to work.

Focus on ONE. Your dreams are not unachievable, you can totally do everything you imagine, you just need a little help to take it forward in bite-sized portions; obviously small ones if it’s to loose weight like me!

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We don’t run a marathon by deciding to go out and just start running and that that day you are going for the full circuit, we need to train, build up, prepare, one day at a time.

It takes 28 days to create a habit, 90 days to create a new lifestyle.

One day at a time, take an item on your list and give it a go, by the end of the month you can be on a fantastic new journey to the new you…one which YOU CAN ACHIEVE.

Celebrate the small things, every day, every step you are ONE step closer to your goal and that my friend is something to get very excited about…just like that ONE step at a time!

#YouGotThis

For more information on how to problem solve, we recommend:

How to fix almost anything by Dr. Chris Williams

Mia is a busy mum with four children, a crazy bull dog and two rabbits. She works within the family business and is currently studying to help with a new venture.

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Poetry – Pass it On

A smile can be contagious,

Passed around for ages,

Used at any time,

come day or night,

rain or shine.

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To know that someone cares,

and notices you there,

So take the time to smile,

it will travel round for miles.

The effects you may not see,

of others just like me.

So pass it on and keep it strong,

lets throw this smile far and long.

Tara lives in Gillingham and enjoy writing poetry, walking, and seeing family.

Time for a Winter Habit Over-Haul

This year has presented new challenges for us all to deal with. We have faced the reality of finding new routines, new ways of working as well as adapting to periods of isolation.

Adding shorter days, and the cool, wet weather that winter brings can make it hard to find motivation.


The importance of our daily habits


Since I am Canadian and have been unable to visit my family and friends in Canada like I would
normally do a couple of times a year, I have made 2020 a year of learning and growth for me. Each day I spend time reading a book or listening to a podcast by inspiring authors. This has been invaluable in keeping me motivated through this unprecedented time.


What thoughts do you have on a regular basis? What activities and habits do you incorporate into your daily life?

Our future success is determined by our daily habits. Building good habits is one of the key ways to improve your life and our daily actions and thoughts are indicators of our future success.


Evaluate Your Habits

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A key shift for me in 2020 has been to shift my mindset to focus only on those things that I can control. Regardless of what is going on around me, I try to focus on the positive things and be grateful for what I have and experience.

What do you daily to enhance your life? When you consider your daily habits, which ones gear your day up to be positive, make you feel good and set you up for success?

Building good habits is vital to our overall health and happiness. As you evaluate your habits, consider which ones are holding you back. It is important to break the bad habits to free us to move forward in our lives.


Plan for Self-Care


A key element for me is to carve out time each day for fresh air and exercise. I have seen some incredible places near my home (learn to love where you live!) and shared some incredible miles
with encouraging and supportive friends through 2020. I now wake up earlier each day to give myself a chance to journal or read before the business of my normal schedule begins.


Set yourself up for success every day. Make time for self-care and remember that self-care is not self-indulgence. It is committing to yourself first to become your best every day. The simpler your
daily plan, the more likely it is that you will follow it. Each day, commit to incorporating 1 new positive practice in to your schedule.


Ideas for Healthy Habits


*Commit to drinking more water


*Commit to getting movement in each day (don’t worry about fitting in long or strenuous workouts, just find time each day to move your body!)


*Commit to reading a book. Bonus if you can determine one aspect of your life you would like to focus on and find an expert who has published a book in the area.


*Commit to waking up 10 minutes earlier to start your day with intention!


*Plan your meals. Eat as many real foods as you can while eliminating processed foods.

*Scribe/Journal.

*Be grateful. Express Gratitude. Give thanks.

‘Your days are your life in miniature. As you live your hours so you create your years’ – Robin Sharma

Janice is Canadian, currently living in Walderslade and is a health and wellness coach

Community Pastor’s Corner – finding light in the dark

As I write this, it is pretty much dark already and it’s only half way through the afternoon. Short winter days and overcast weather can make it feel dark all the time. And this year more than most, many people are heavy of heart.

Advent is the Christian tradition of waiting for the coming of Jesus – his birth Christmas, his coming in our own hearts and the hope we have for his return one day. It is a time where we wait in the dark for the coming light.

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It doesn’t take much light to change a situation, just try lighting a match in the dark. And in the middle of all the rush to get food and presents and worry about who we are permitted to see or who it is sensible to see this Christmas… Why not pause each day to allow a little peace and a little light into your life?

Breath prayers are said, as you might guess, as you breath in and out, a sentence at a time. Someone I respect greatly taught me this one, concerning Jesus:

You see me

You know me

You love me

Why not try it? Just pause while you wait for the kettle to boil, or as you put your coat on to go out the door, or while you wait in the supermarket queue. You might be surprised at what a difference such a small prayer can make. Like a match in the dark, it can pour light into your soul and lift you from the worries you carry.

Three things life has taught me about taking care of myself

I have always been a ‘happy go lucky’ person throughout my life until I had my daughter 11 years ago and unfortunately suffered with post natal depression which led onto longer term depression.

I was in a very bad way for many years and ended up on anti depressants and was addicted to sleeping tablets. My weight ballooned and I was very unhappy.

Fast forward to now and luckily things are very different for me!

It has taken a lot of hard work but I am off all medication and lead a very happy and content life.

There were three main things that helped me change my life and take care of myself:

  1. Diet and exercise
  2. Reading/listening/writing (self help)
  3. Self care

At first I just started walking. This had a huge impact on my mental health. Getting outside in daylight, moving my body whilst listening to music felt amazing! I soon started couch to 5k and my love of running began. I totally got the “runners high” and got a little bit addicted to that feeling after a run ! I then joined a local gym and started weight training for the first time. The running and weight training transformed my body and I am happier with my physique these days.

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I also changed my diet (I lost 3 stone). I cut out a lot of processed food and began calorie counting. This also had a huge impact on my mental health – I now realise if you eat rubbish – you feel rubbish!

  1. Reading/listening/writing

Every evening I would read some kind of self help book and start to write down all my feelings. Getting them out of my head and onto paper really helped. I also started to write daily gratitude lists and this really makes you appreciate even the smallest things in life. I also listened to lots of podcasts on positivity and self care etc.

  1. Self care

Although I see the 2 items above as ‘self care’ I also did the following:

  • Removed myself from stressful/negative situations
  • as an introvert I allowed myself plenty of alone time to re-charge
  • Occasionally treated myself to beauty treatments at a salon
  • Spend quality time with family

I now understand that happiness comes from within and no one is responsible for your happiness but you.

I now have the ‘tools’ I need to keep myself on track and know what I need to do to get myself back to my ‘happy place’.

Now I am in that happier place I want to share my story and help others. I have recently set up a private Facebook Positivity group (called LOA/Positivity Community) for like minded positive, happy people!

As they say… “take one step at a time”.

Good luck with your 3 steps!

Andrea is a mum from Walderslade who loves running, finding new self care ideas and helping others keep positive.

A moment to breathe

We all lead such busy lives, and as we enter the Christmas season, it can get even faster. Added in of course this year are the pressures covid19 bring.

So it might seem odd for me to be saying, “take time to breathe” but actually, a moment each day where you can decompress a little, will provide great benefits to both you and those you love. Allowing the stress level to go down a bit means you have more energy for everything else.

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It doesnt have to be anything buig or long – perhaps a cup of coffee and watch clouds go by, or a warm bath at the end of the day after the kids have gone to bed. Or perhaps a chapter of your favourite book or half an hour given over to a craft project you have forgotten.

Or playing crash bandicoot crash team racing with my husband (yes that might just be me). the point is, it is (half an hour if you can, but ten minutes will do) some time to get off the worry mill, and enjoy the moment.

How will you find time to breathe?

Mindfulness an easy start

Mindfulness is one of those things you see talked about all over the place. But what is it? And what is it for?

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Mindfulness covers a whole bunch of techniques all aimed at helping you live in the present moment, rather than caught up in the past or the future. And the point of it is to help you live the life you have, rather than being eaten up with shame or worry because of past or possible future events.

So where to start if you have never tried it before? Why not have a go at these three activites:

Activity One: Mindful Eating

Find something small that you like to eat. As you eat it, concentrate of what it smells/feels/tastes like. If distractions come, simply note them and go back to concentrating on what you are eating.

Activity Two: Have a go at Zentangles.

There are lots on Pinterest, or simply google how to make a Zentangle. It is a way of doing something creative and in the moment.

Activity Three: What do you see?

Go look out of a window and look to see how many man made, and natural things you can see. Take your time, there is no hurry. Note them down if you like.

How did you feel after trying these? How easy or hard was it for you?

If you would like to join in the self care conversation, head over to The Self Care Hub on facebook.