Thank you SO much for all the birthday love, I was blown away yesterday by all the messages and story shares across social media. I had a video sent to me last night from Create Greg which said ‘I see from all over the internet that it’s your birthday today’. I find social media can be such a magic place full of love and would much prefer to focus on how we can make it even more positive. I think that focusing on the kindness and positive vibes is key. I LOVE celebrating my birthday because it’s great to be here and each new year is a celebration. Our birthdays should be fully milked to the max. Lessons, mistakes and growth should be celebrated. Each year is precious and I have spent the past few days doing things that bring me true joy. So should you. As often as you can.
I love reflecting, like I did here at 35 and here at 36. Now here I am at 37. Wow Mama. To quote one of my favourite childhood films, Ferris Bueller ‘s Day Off:
Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.
That quote pretty much sums up this year. After a fun but super busy 2018, my mission was to become more present. Podcast 66, due out this weekend, will cover this in more detail with an expert on burnout. Living a more mindful life helps us to keep check on our ego and as a result we gain a deeper clarity and understanding about what we truly want. Whatever age you are, I hope you relate to these words.
Here are some of my top tips from the past year to help you keep that mojo in check.
The course I did for the first 8 weeks of this year with the mindful enterprise had a huge impact on me. I asked Gary Young, the founder, who gives some amazing advice here, what the opposite of mindful living means to him. The words he gave me were –
Reactive, fearful, anxious, chaotic, mindless and unconscious. I don’t know about you, but I can certainly relate to those words. But I can also see growth. because I am working hard to become –
Less fearful and anxious,
What helps me to do so?
As each year passes, I appreciate nature even more. Being aware that we are connected to the planet is powerful and it helps me to make better choices. that are not only more sustainable for the world but for my mind and body too. Wild swimming has been invigorating, at times spontaneously exciting and it has taught me a lot about my body. Our bodies are amazing and capable of so much. I feel totally at peace when I am swimming in the ocean, a lake or loch. We just need to stay focused, breathe and not overthink it.
I love meeting new people and being inspired by those who are doing wonderful things to make a difference.
I have also changed my attitude to running. I used to think I couldn’t run without music. This morning I had a great run with no music, podcast, audible book. It was just me, listening to the birds and feeling connected.
Our lazy spa was one of the best purchases of the year (this is not an ad). Our brains need silence to grow and to perform better. So even on the days I feel ‘too busy’, I always make time to be under the sky. If I can be in the water too or out running or walking then bonus.
Lessons remind me of our strength as humans. As I wrote recently, each mistake, rejection or negative experience can teach us so much. Use those times to become a stronger version of yourself.
I want you to think of your biggest cheerleaders in life and ponder over how they make you feel. Our brains are wired to focus on the critics but how amazing to reflect on feelings of gratitude and appreciate the people that love us. Also, avoiding the news at night, even a few days a week can really help. As I say in this short video, sleeping on anger and disgust is not good for us.
Becoming more aware allows us to push fear aside and feel deeper moments of peace. I love to do this through being in nature, prayer, meditation and amazing music. I also love to focus on touch. What helps you to feel connected? Do more of it.
I am hands down a better person when I run. But I need to keep reminding myself of this when it is tempting to fall out of love with it. Which is why there may be another small tattoo coming. I love a permanent mantra.
I made an effort to travel more this year and have made some incredible memories. Memories with those we love are priceless and are worth more than things.
Simple things like caring for house plants helps me to appreciate nature and to think of the bigger picture. If I get so busy that I forget to water the plants, I know it’s a sign that I need to slow down and reconnect. I love getting the kids involved with the watering and caring of plants so that they can start to think about mindful living from an early age.
When life hurts
When life hurts and people say nasty things we have a choice. The best option is always to breathe and ride it out before acting on impulse. Because hurt people are prone to hurting people. So keep breathing. In and out. Don’t stop. Slow down.
Speak from the heart
Being real is where the magic lies. It feels amazing to take off the mask and truly connect with people because that is what we are made to do. We are here to feel. Numb isn’t good enough. Feeling stuck or trapped isn’t either. When we feel this way we need to take action.
The ability to really listen with an open mind is an amazing life skill. Each year I want to become a better listener to deepen my relationships more. This year I have been reminded how important it is to always listen ego free with empathy.
Like it or not, we are all leaders. We are all influencers. Your words have power so use them wisely. I’ll try my best too.
Much love, Jojo x