Do you recall when you started your business; when you woke up each day full of ideas and couldn’t wait to get to work?  Unfortunately, when the novelty of something new fades and the day to day requirements of running a business take over, you can find yourself in routine that dampens the enthusiasm.

One of my first businesses was walking and boarding dogs.  I love animals and I enjoy creating my own schedule.  I was very excited. The business was growing, yet I was bored. It had become monotonous and I really didn’t enjoy the marketing which was required to keep it going.  These were things I could have changed, had I really looked at it.  Instead, over time I slowed down the creation of new clients, and basically ran my business into the ground. I have learned a lot since then.

Boredom is feedback telling you that it’s time to adjust what you are doing.  Often, we wait, hoping it will go away.  Unfortunately, that’s akin to an ostrich sticking its head in the ground.  Everything is still the same, you are simply tuning it out.  There is good news, it is possible to use the boredom to re-ignite your creativity and grow your business!

Be willing to commit to your own happiness

Because I am unwilling to remain bored or disenchanted I now re-create my business as is required.  I learned to listen to my boredom. I question what I really desire my business to be, and what is and isn’t working. Above all else I commit to my own happiness.

Be willing looking at your business and be honest with yourself about what is really going on.  What was your vision when you started your business?  Perhaps your business has strayed from what you desired to create.  Or, it’s possible you created what you desired, but it doesn’t fit your life as it is right now.  Is your business fulfilling overall?

Money follows joy, joy doesn’t follow money.  The happier you are with your living and in your business the more income you will invite into your life.  Don’t fall into the trap of waiting for more money to show up to choose what makes you happy.  When you have a business, it is a large part of your life.  Make it work for you!

Ask Questions

When you ask open-ended questions from a space of pure curiosity, you are inviting possibilities to show up.  Let go of any conclusions.  If you have pre-determine what will the answer should be, you won’t be able to see anything else.

For example, you can ask: What do I need to change to re-engage with my business? What is possible here that I have never considered?  Who or what can I add to my business to make it more enjoyable?

Play with the questions, and know you aren’t looking for a concrete answer.  What you are asking for is awareness of what is going on and how you can change it.  Notice what shows up and any ideas that come to you, and follow what is light or expansive.

Be You

 This may sound obvious, after all, who else would you be?  However, many entrepreneurs are trying to fit into some image they bought into about what a business owner is supposed to be like.  There are certain norms we accept as absolute without even realizing it. Have you bought the point of view that you have to be superwoman and do it all yourself, working so hard you give up you in the process?  Allow yourself the time to have a full and fruitful life, don’t let everything outside of work fall away. Remember, money follows joy!

Is your role in your business one you enjoy; if not how can you adjust it?  Consider delegating tasks to someone who would excel at them. Or, hire someone to do some of the things that detract from your enjoyment.

Is how you work working for you?  If you are most productive in the morning, take advantage of that. If you do best with lots of time outside, allow yourself some breaks to take a quick walk or feel the sun on your face. Use the flexibility of having your own business to your advantage and allow yourself to shine.

Had I used these tools with my dog walking business, I would have known I required more variety and that doing it all myself wasn’t working.  I could have added some doggy adventures in places I love, like hikes in the mountains or beach outings. I could have hired another dog walker – increasing income without overscheduling myself.  And I certainly could have hired someone to help with marketing. The possibilities were endless.

Play with your business

Invite a sense of adventure back into it, and allow it to be fluid. Don’t be afraid to make big changes. One key to success is being present and interactive with your business to find out what works, and then not coming to a conclusion that you have found the answer.

Always be willing to add, remove and change elements of your business.  If you try something new and it doesn’t work, change back or tweak it until it does work. Instead of judging it as a failure look for the information the situation is giving you. Choice creates awareness and invites more possibilities to show up.  There is always something else you can choose.

When the fun of creation gives way to maintenance, boredom is not far behind.  Find the joy in playing with the recipe of your business; add an ingredient, change the quantities of certain elements.  Make improving your business recipe an ongoing target and you are sure to stay engaged, and your business will be even more successful!


Gabrielle Vena is a life coach and business mentor with a background in counselling psychology and psychotherapy. She is a certified facilitator of several Access Consciousness® special programs, including Being You and Joy of Business and is a certified practitioner in Reiki and Integrative Energy Therapy. Learn more about her at www.gabriellevena.com


If you’re a writer or creative, you’ve probably heard about writer’s block, and experienced it at some point. While some think it’s an excuse to not work, others consider writer’s block a real issue. I should note – though it’s called writer’s block, it happens in any kind of creative endeavour!

“There’s no such thing as writer’s block. That was invented by people in California who couldn’t write.” ― Terry Pratchett

If I’m to be totally honest, ironically, I developed a slowdown in inspiration just writing this article. So, there you have it, you’re not alone. In fact, many professionals have been known to have writer’s block, including; Author F. Scott Fitzgerald, composer Sergei Rachmaninoff and even songwriter Adele.

“I think writer’s block is simply the dread that you are going to write something horrible. But as a writer, I believe that if you sit down at the keys long enough, sooner or later something will come out.”- Roy Blount, Jr.

Do the long blank stares and lack of concentration sound familiar? Not sure how to begin? And after scrunching up the 20th piece of paper, you still have no idea what you’re doing? Then you need to keep reading!

Writer’s Block is a condition that can alter your ability to create and complete work and as the name suggests it has been known to mostly affect writers, but let’s face it even if you’re not a writer, you’ll understand the feeling of disconnection from tasks. The on-set of Writer’s Block can occur from stress, illness, low self-esteem and personal pressures. With additional distractions thanks to technology, social media and daily pressures our ability to stay focused is weakened.

“Don’t waste time waiting for inspiration. Begin, and inspiration will find you.” ― H. Jackson Brown Jr.

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed and uninspired here are 6 ways to move past any creative blocks and stay focused on the goal.

1. Keep it simple

Doing things in small simple steps helps me to feel less overwhelmed. Plan your workload, and if you need to complete a task that requires your full attention, clear your schedule. Give yourself enough breathing room to think, that way you won’t feel pressured by time.

2. Get rid of the distractions

This is a strictly ‘Do Not Disturb’ zone, leave your emails, phone and social media (for now) Don’t tell me you can’t multitask, I bet you can’t! I don’t believe anyone who says they can! Besides, why would you want too? Do you really expect to write your next bestseller or create a new masterpiece while swiping left on your mobile? I don’t think so!

3. Get away from it all

When work gets too much sometimes it’s best to take a break, it doesn’t have to be a long break, unless it’s a holiday you need! Sometimes all it takes is to go for a walk, exercise, meditate or have a nap. But, don’t forget your notebook if you do go out. In fact, annoyingly my inspiration always hits the moment I leave the house. I don’t always remember to take my notebook, it should be strapped to me!

4. Phone a friend

Okay, okay I surrender, please help me… There’s no better advice than the one of a friend. If you know someone that could help you out, ask them. The issue might be an obvious one, even though you’ve been staring at your blank screen for hours. Lock me up and throw away the key, I’m guilty of not putting up my hand too!

5. Start something new

Yes, you read right! Move on to the next project. Just like taking a break, working on something new just might give you that ‘Ah-hah!’ moment you’ve been searching for. And if you’re not keen to start something else, grab that note book and start doodling, just taking your mind off the issue at hand can work wonders.

6. Clear the clutter

A cluttered work space can muddle your mind and inhibits the flow of ideas. Clean up the space you work in, and instead replace the chaos with things the make you happy. Photos, stationary, a beautiful journal, your favourite books. Surround yourself with everything you LOVE. This’ll spark up inspiration, help you find solutions and hopefully clear your Writer’s Block.

 

“Writing about a writer’s block is better than not writing at all” ― Charles Bukowski

Even if you’re not feeling motivated, using these 6 simple steps daily, is good practice to becoming the most productive you yet! So, what are you waiting for? Now is the time to make that plan, write your bestseller novel or paint the next Archibald prize winning artwork. And as I love to say:

“A blank page is like a blank canvas, this is where the magic begins.”

 

Nicharla Malouf is a freelance writer and designer. She is the creator of La Muse Journal, a site aimed to inspire young designers and creative professionals to follow their passion. Her previous experiences in fashion, marketing and design lead her to her current career in writing where she combines her creativity with a systematic approach when it comes to content solutions and marketing strategies.


The day you decide to step out, take a risk and seriously pursue your passion is both an exciting and a scary one. It doesn’t matter if you’ve given up your job (what’s financial security?) or are working toward your dreams on the side (what’s free time or a social life?).

Either way, it is a wonderfully liberating experience that will bring you great joy. But there are also a number of myths you’ll encounter during your journey. These myths can bring you to a screeching, demoralising halt. Below, I’ll debunk those myths and bring you the truth about this journey you’ve begun, or will begin!

Let’s start with the easiest one.

Myth: You will be good at your passion from the outset

Yes, there are some geniuses who get everything right the first time. Their first business plan is perfect. Their first fashion line is a runaway success. Their first artwork is picked up by a prestigious gallery. These people are the rarities.

What does it mean if you’re not one of them? The key phrase in this myth is “from the outset”. Your family and friends may have told you that your plans or your work are absolutely brilliant. But that means nothing in an increasingly connected world, where the marketplace is formed from an international community.

You may start at a slightly higher level but like any craft, you will need to work hard and continually improve. The difference is, because you’re passionate about what you do, you will have the motivation to work harder and sacrifice more than the others who are doing the same thing for the fame or the money.

Myth: You will wake up every day feeling excited and energised

Or if you’re pursuing your passion on the side, on the days that you’ve set aside to work on it.

Because you’re working on something you’re passionate about, you’ll be ready and raring to go every day, right? You already get such joy from doing it as a hobby, why wouldn’t you be excited to wake up to it every day?

Not quite. It’s true there are many days when you can’t wait to jump out of bed and get started. But the truth is, there will also be days—even entire periods of time—where you hit a block and lose inspiration or motivation. There are only blank plans, blank sheets, blank canvases before you no matter how much you push yourself. There will be times when you simply don’t feel like doing anything and think, This sucks!

the truth is, there will also be days—even entire periods of time—where you hit a block and lose inspiration or motivation

This is especially true for projects that can go over months, and sometimes even years.

You should not feel guilty. It’s perfectly normal to have ups and downs along the way. It doesn’t mean that you’re not passionate enough or that you’ve made a mistake. It’s okay to take a short break, relax, and let yourself be unmotivated for a while.

There are also times when you need to keep working despite how you feel. You may not be excited at all, but you need to plod on. Stick to your plan even though you don’t want to do a thing. Take one more step, then another, and another, until you reach the point where you find your spring again.

Because you have that innate passion and believe in you’re doing, because you have your goal and know why you are doing it—that is what will keep you going.

Myth: You don’t need to worry about the business side of things because others will do that for you

This myth applies to those whose passions aren’t rooted in the business world. Perhaps you love cooking, or creating, or inspiring others. You’d like to make some money from what you do, but you also want to focus on what you love and not be concerned over the pesky business side of things. There are people who can manage all that for you, aren’t there?

Let me be clear. It’s not a bad thing to have someone else managing the commercial aspects of what you do. But it’s a bad thing to blindly entrust everything to them without understanding the ins and outs of the business yourself.

You don’t need to know the nitty-gritty details or be an expert… [but] you must know enough to be able to question their plans and decisions

Understand the job this person will be doing and the choices they will have to make (eg. standard marketing techniques for the industry, the average rates or prices, the average commission for the person you want to hire). Look into common scams and understand the risks of any approaches you might take to commercialise what you do.

You don’t need to know the nitty-gritty details or be an expert. That’s what you’re hiring someone else to do. But you must know enough to be able to question your expert’s plans and decisions, and what they want to charge you. And you must be able to understand their responses and weigh them up against your other options. It’s not all that exciting or all that fun, but understanding the business is a crucial aspect of pursuing your passion long-term.

Myth: It’s not really work

This is a phrase that I find incredibly frustrating. Other people use it to imply that because you’re doing what you love, it’s not worthy of being classified as actual work. Especially if you’re doing it part-time around a paying job. You’re expected to work at your passion then come out fully refreshed and ready for ‘real’ work because it’s something you know you were meant to do. It’s the same as relaxing over a good book or a nice glass of wine, isn’t it?

What others don’t realise is that pursuing your passion means long days and longer nights. It means constantly challenging yourself, reworking or reinventing your previous work because it doesn’t meet your standards, and sacrificing other aspects of your life to accommodate.

But you choose to, so it must be enjoyable to do so! It’s a choice, that much is true. That doesn’t mean it’s not work, and it doesn’t tire you out the way the daily 9-to-5 grind does. If anything, it’s even more tiring because your love of what you do pushes you further. You choose to pursue your passion because it’s meaningful to you, and worthwhile.

Myth: You’re not allowed to complain

You are doing something you truly love and believe in. Therefore you wake up excited and loving life every day. What you’re doing isn’t work, it’s just you having fun. So if you complain, you are a horrible, ungrateful person.

If you’ve read the rest of the debunked myths, you know exactly why this is completely untrue.

It is okay to have bad days. It is okay be upset and/or angry those bad days. Pursuing your passion does not mean your life becomes all sunshine and rainbows. You will struggle and you will fall sometimes, but others need to know about this so they can support you and help you get on your feet again.

It is okay to complain about what you are doing.

But even in the worst of it, don’t forget to remember why this is your passion. Don’t forget why you fell in love with it in the first place, and why you want to pursue it.

And don’t forget to be grateful that there is something in your life you love so much.

 

Leanne Yong is the Managing Editor of Leaders in Heels, an author, and pursuing her passion has now led her to the job of Games Master at Next Level Escape. She loves watching women find and grow their passions, and helping them to dream and define a life they love through Leaders in Heels.


FindYourVoiceTabby Biddle has written a book that has been called a ‘practical, courageous and urgent call to action’ for women of all ages. Titled Find Your Voice: A Woman’s Call to Action, the book shows women how to find their purpose, develop their political voice and step into leadership. It was released in paperback on April 30th, and is available for sale on Amazon.  We asked Tabby a few questions about her work via email.

Why is it more important than ever for women to find their voice now?

Women face discrimination and gender-based violence the world over, and it is time for this to stop. One out of five of us will be raped or be a victim of attempted rape in our lifetime, according to a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. One out of three of us will be beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused by an intimate partner. We are the majority of the world’s poor, are two-thirds of the illiterate population, and own just one percent of the land worldwide. Most of this is happening because women’s knowledge, wisdom and opinions are underrepresented around the world.

In every country and in every industry, women are undervalued, underpaid and often completely missing from positions of power and authority. In the U.S. for example, women represent only 19 percent of the voices in Congress, are only 10 percent of governors, and, in the nation’s largest cities, only 13 percent of the mayors. Globally, women represent just one in every five parliamentarians. This is a big problem for us personally and for the world.

” In every country and in every industry, women are undervalued, underpaid and often completely missing from positions of power and authority.

On the personal level, our voices are absent in addressing the issues that most affect our lives and the lives of our children. This translates into laws, public policy, and resource distribution that don’t accurately reflect the truth of our lives, and therefore don’t support us. This keeps us in an inferior position.

Globally, I believe that the absence of our voices perpetuates the cycles of war, poverty, violence and oppression. Without women’s wisdom at the table, aggression, competition, and power over, rather than power with remain the name of the game. But we as women know this is not a natural way of living. It’s through our voices that we have the power to change this.

When you say ‘find your voice,’ do you mean artistically, politically, or do you mean some sort of personal expression?

I mean all of these. They are all connected. I believe that in order to be politically effective, a woman first needs to find her personal, authentic voice. What does she stand for? What does she care about? What does she want to change in the world? What is her greater vision?

” In order to be politically effective, a woman first needs to find her personal, authentic voice.

For some women, they will need to take an artistic path to find out these answers. Through writing, singing, dancing, poetry, painting, spoken word … you name it. I have found that a woman’s artistry can be the key to unlocking her voice. Since so many women of today grew up in a patriarchal culture that taught them that their voice was not as important or valuable as men’s or boy’s, and that it was better to keep their opinions to themselves, be a “good girl” and remain silent, their authentic voices got lost, even to themselves.

Many women I have worked with have told me stories of being belittled or mocked for their creative expressions as young girls and therefore have carried a lifetime of shame around their voice and self-expression. They also learned to not trust their creative impulses, which is a definite hindrance when it comes to finding and knowing your voice.

What I have come to realize through my work with women is that her ability to find her political voice and take action on it is thwarted if she cannot creatively express herself. This is because it tends to be her creative expression that is the doorway into her soul’s greater purpose. When a woman starts to reawaken her expressive self, she unlocks the door to her unique expression as an activist.

Hillary Clinton has declared her candidacy for the U.S. Presidency, potentially inspiring women everywhere to find their voice. What’s next for women who may be feeling the call to speak out about gender discrimination, the wage gap, or in the U.S., ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment?  What, in your view, is the best way for a woman to express her political voice?

I think there are many ways for women to express their political voice, depending on their inclinations, gifts and talents. With that said, I think becoming a blogger is one of the quickest and most accessible ways to get off the sidelines and create change.

While male voices dominate mainstream media and key thought leader forums, blogging is a whole different story. This is where, because there is no gatekeeper, women can challenge the status quo, can shift the conversation, and can move the needle on most any social issue.

Here in the U.S., for example, there is a group of women bloggers who call themselves MomsRising. They are using the blog format to speak out about things like paid maternity and paternity leave, equal pay, flexible work schedules, healthcare, affordable childcare, early childhood education, and gun safety. By building their membership from just a handful a women, to now over one million members, they have played a key role in advancing economic justice policies for women and families in the U.S. This includes passing the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, winning protections for pregnant workers in Maryland, winning the passage of paid family leave in Rhode Island, updating the federal nutrition standards for child care centers, and protecting key early childhood programs like Head Start.

Does that mean that you have to run for office, or are there other ways to express your political voice?

Having a political voice does not mean you need to run for office. But you certainly could. If this is your bailiwick, go for it. We need you. On the other hand, if running for office is not on your dharma path, there is still a lot you can do.

Having a political voice means using your voice anywhere you are in a way that represents what you believe in, what you value, and what you stand for. Remember the catchphrase of the women’s movement of the late 1960s and early 70s, the personal is political? There’s a good reason for it. The changes that you want in your personal life are political. Your relationships, your role in the workplace, your income, your role in marriage, your feelings on motherhood, your feelings about your sexuality, and your personal safety are inseparable from the larger social and political structures that exist.

” Having a political voice means using your voice anywhere you are in a way that represents what you believe in, what you value, and what you stand for.

But right now, so many women’s political voices are silenced because too many of us don’t think we even have one. Since the prevailing voices in the public spotlight are predominantly men, stepping into the spotlight with the truth of who you are and what you stand for as a woman is political change.

A woman can express her political voice through writing, speaking, blogging, dance, movement, song, music, spoken word, painting, poetry, storytelling, performance art, videos, filmmaking, mothering, a leadership position and so much more.

When you express your truth as a woman, in whatever expressive form, you not only liberate your own self, but you open up the door for other women to express their truth as well. And as this happens, we start shifting the tides of society. The ripple effect is set in motion and what’s out there in the public consciousness changes.

This is feminine activism. When women embody their feminine authority and speak their truth, this re-orientation inherently shifts the status quo, and is social and political change.

Summarising, could you please share three takeaways, three things that our readers could do or implement starting from today to better express their voice. What should be our action list for today, next month, next year?

The first thing I recommend is starting up a morning journaling practice, if you don’t already have one. Journaling is one of the best ways to unleash your inner voice and listen to what She has to say. By giving Her some unedited time in your journal every day, you let your voice know that she is important and that you care about what she has to say. This will do wonders for you being able to “find your voice” and go out there in the world and use it. When you write, let it be a stream-of-consciousness. Just let your pen flow. No editing along the way. You want to “un-silence” your voice and not restrict her in any way. Try writing for 10 minutes every morning for one week and see what you discover. Give yourself writing prompts. One morning ask yourself: What do I see happening around me that feels unjust? Another morning ask yourself:  What is the change I want to see in the world? Another morning ask yourself: Who are the people I want to help and why?

The second thing I recommend is making a Creative Expression date with yourself, weekly. Commit to this for one month. Mark out 30 minutes in your calendar each week to engage in some form of creative expression. How do you most naturally express yourself? What is fun and liberating for you? Singing, dancing, poetry, spoken word, painting, photography, drumming or some other form of creative expression? If you are not sure, check in with yourself: What did you love to do as a 9 year-old? This is probably a good indicator for you to follow. Whatever your form of creative expression is, commit to this time as a sacred date with your feminine soul. Allow the art form to be a container for your feminine soul to be expressed. Combined with journaling, this will unlock more and more of your voice.

Finally, I would recommend doing some type of embodiment practice at least twice a week, for a month. For this embodiment practice, it should be something that will connect you with your hips and womb, which are powerful storehouses of your feminine wisdom and power. Some good options would be yoga, dancing or simple stretching. I also have a good number of guided embodiment practices in my book. Connecting with your body in this way will help you more easily access your wisdom and intuition, which are both very important ingredients for finding and expressing your authentic voice in the world.

Once you get these practices into your daily and weekly routine, you will have more trust and confidence in yourself and your voice. In my experience, the next steps to express yourself will reveal themselves to you. Your inner guidance will tell you what to do next year.

For more information about Tabby, visit tabbybiddle.com.

Find Your Voice: A Woman’s Call to Action is available on Amazon.


Very recently I was reminded about how good it felt to be pushed to my absolute limit and forced to draw on just about every one of my personal resources. And no, I’m not talking about boot camp. It certainly didn’t feel good at the time – or in the lead up to the event itself. In fact, in the lead up to what I’d imagined was going to be the “mother of all awful meetings” and one that was likely to have a significant impact on my professional direction, I experienced such extreme stress that I felt nauseated and edgy. I felt like I might explode. I felt like my throat would collapse and I would be so starved of oxygen that I would mummify right where I sat. In fact, despite providing stress and anxiety management strategies to hundreds of people over the past decade, in those moments I forgot to implement any of them. By the time the big event was upon me, I had worked myself into such a state that I had created catastrophic scenarios in my head that were so absurd, a colleague suggested I become a screen-writer because “nobody could make up these ridiculous outcomes”.

Yet, when the meeting started I experienced a wave of calm. It was almost the opposite of the flushes of sweat and bile that I had felt in the preceding days. That was when I realised that all the worry, energy, and sanity that I had spent building up this meeting in my head had been largely unnecessary. Of course, there was an element of what I term ‘positive stress’ involved as well, which assisted me in suitably preparing for the meeting. Overall, however, the degree to which I had let the panic build could only be described as a vast overreaction. When the meeting was finished, I felt like I had achieved the equivalent of running the City to Surf (which is unlikely to ever happen) and experienced a flush of personal pride and relief that I had not felt in a long time.

4 Tips on Stress Management

This prompted me to think about how we can all creatively harness the power of positive stress and manage emotional distress for future business events. Here are my top four tips on stress management:

List your achievements

During times of extreme stress it can be difficult to readily identify your strengths. Often, overwhelming feelings of distress lead to a sense of doubt that some refer to as feeling ‘like a fraud’. But, you’re not a fraud, you’re a woman with experience and skills that you have developed over time. By listing your achievements in writing, you are developing both a succinct ready-reckoner of your abilities that will remind you exactly why you are qualified to undertake whatever the stressful event is, and evidence of your previous successes. I suggest folding this list and taking it with you in your pocket or handbag, as a tactile comfort.

Journal how you feel immediately afterwards

This will be helpful for the next time you are faced with a stressful challenge. As I described above, the overwhelming feelings following the successful completion of a stressful event is typically a mix of positivity and relief. In the lead-up, however, it is extremely difficult to remember this. By journaling your feelings immediately following your successful completion of a stressful event, you are producing an authentic record of achievement with which to prompt your future-self that you’ve already made it through past stressful experiences. This can actually be far more effective than hearing others tell us “you’ll make it through, you’ve done it before” for the simple fact that it is experientially written by ourselves.

Often overwhelming feelings of distress lead to a sense of doubt that some refer to as feeling ‘like a fraud’. But, you’re not a fraud, you’re a woman with experience and skills that you have developed over time.

Challenge the most absurd possible outcome you can imagine

You have already imagined it, why not put it into words and take it on? This could take the form of writing, drawing, or talking about it with a friend or family member. What is the realistic likelihood of this outcome happening? What evidence do you have? Most of us have a tendency to rapidly magnify fears or come up with a myriad of potential negative outcomes for any scenario. Typically, what you will find is that the more you explore your absurdist possibilities, you will be able to rationalise and re-gain perspective. In my case, my most absurd fear was being sued for providing factual evidence in an appropriate peer setting and ending up being picked apart on The Project or Sixty Minutes – the likelihood of that happening was minimal, and by challenging it, I was able to re-gain focus and perspective without being crippled by a ridiculous mind-trick.

Get your groove on

Everyone has a ‘power song’, mine is Gold by Spandeau Ballet. A power song is like a theme tune, a song that builds your confidence the more you listen to it. Listen to this song as many times as you need to in the lead-up to your stressful event – play it on your iPod, in your head, hum along with it – keep it going subconsciously. This will assist in not only distracting you from your distress, but also reinforcing those positive feelings about yourself that your power song promotes.

Obviously this advice is aimed at providing generalised tips in a humorous manner, and if you experience ongoing distress I recommend that you speak with your GP or psychologist for more specific strategies, as well as reviewing the useful online resources at www.beyondblue.org.au.

                               

Lauren Maxwell Lauren Kremer

Lauren is a Rehabilitation Counsellor and Career Development Consultant, with close to 15 years of experience across the two fields. She is the founder of Headstrong Women, a specialist women’s career development service, and thrives on innovation and creativity to empower women to reach their potential. Find out more at www.headstrongwomen.com.au or on Facebook.

                                      
Featured photo credit: Helga Weber via photopin cc