The 2013 Jump! Change is good.

Most people in blog-land have probably communicated their thoughts about the new year already. I’ve taken a month to formulate mine…. and a crazy month its been. It really does feel like 2013 is a year of change, not just for me and my family, but for lots of people around us too.

I’ve been pondering what to include in this blog this year, I love good healthy food, interesting design and the odd spattering of inspiration and thats the dominating content, but I have some other things burning in my heart that I want to get out.

You see, I’m a bit passionate about seeing people doing things that they love, or really want to do. I believe that every human is made with a purpose, and that to be truly content, and getting the most out of life, we need to find that purpose. This is a multi faceted philosophy, but the most simple way to talk about this is in the area of career. (I use this term fairly loosely.)

My story is this. I’ve worked for many years in communication, marketing and a bit of graphic design. During December and January I got offered a few opportunities in this area, and so I started on the path to take them up. Partway down the path, I suddenly realised my hypocrisy! I profess this passion for seeing people do what they love to do, yet here I was continuing on a path mediocre. I literally thought to myself…

“How long will I keep doing things I’m only half enjoying, when I know in my heart, I’m meant for other things.”

I have known for a while now that I should be in a more design driven career. I’m obsessed with interiors, furniture, design, colour, problem solving, innovation to make better things, and am constantly coming up with ideas for objects, events and experiences.

So, I jumped! Out of a safe, comfortable chair into a brand new, unworn and slightly uncomfortable chair… Diploma of Interior Design & Decoration. It’s a risk, committing time and money, sacrificing the ability to generate income to contribute to the family with 2 small kids. And although I am an advocate for all things new and exciting, it was a little bit difficult!

Now I feel like I can write about this. I’ve jumped and I want to share a bit of the journey here. But the main thing I want to do this year is find others who have made or are making the jump too. People who are sacrificing in some areas to ensure they are content and purpose driven, people who are just simply enjoying what they do, people who are passionate about making a difference. I’d like to tell some of their stories too. So please keep an eye out for these, if you’re at all interested in making some changes for a more content life.

Happy 2013!


Keep Calm and Carry On

There’s a lot to be said for a kind and calm voice in times of turmoil.

I’ve been tired and cranky. 2 small kidlets and not much sleep is enough to manage just by itself, but the other elements of life don’t stop…if we let it, it can really get on top of us. And I had let it. I am an advocate for deliberate parenting, not reactionary parenting, but I realised my fuse was short, I was raising my voice at my 2yr old, who at times can be very difficult, and hard to negotiate with. Getting cross might be justified, but that is not the mum I want to be.

So I started reading some blogs and information about parenting, I have to say, there are some pretty condemning musings around. Most mums will know there is sometimes a voice whispering in your ear that tells you “You’re not a very good mum, you shouldn’t do things that way”. And it’s so easy to be swayed into thinking that. But the truth is, that you and your little cherub are an original combo. There has never been a parent/child combination like you before. So your parenting is YOUR decision. No one else’s. What works for someone might not work for others, so  I chose to brush that nasty voice aside, and make a decision about how I wanted to overcome this little hurdle.

The very simple conclusion I came to was this.

Its very hard to argue, rebel against, or raise your voice to someone who is being calm and kind.

So for a day, (one step at a time) I made a really focussed effort to be calm and kind to both my girls. No raising my voice, getting down close to give requests and instructions, giving space in times of frustration, and all the while in my head “Calm, calm, calm”.

Wow, just in one day I noticed a world of difference. For a start I had changed the atmosphere of our home by not allowing that condemning voice to bug me, or rise to the frustration it was causing, and I had taken back the reins and started being deliberate and not reactionary. My 2yr old responded so well, it took a few less asks before instructions were fulfilled, and we had more giggles and less tears.

It has now been a week, and I’ve discovered a more compliant daughter and a more content mum. Which ultimately leads to a happier home, and better relationships. I think this principle can be applied in any situation where conflict is arising. A soft word makes a much better platform for negotiation. I’ve found it easier to remain calm now that I’ve made the decision in my heart. And although sometimes I want to let out frustration in the form of a raised tone, most of the time I can control it. But it has only been a week.. 🙂

Stop complaining about what’s not there!

I’m setting myself a challenge this week.

The challenge is to stop complaining. Its not that I complain a lot, but I think if you let your guard down, your glasses get foggy, and you can get lazy in your gratitude.

We are in a time of having just had our second gorgeous baby, and not getting the desired amount of sleep. It’s very much a time that can be stressful, and your patience get short when you’re so tired. But I don’t want to wish it all away. My babies don’t stay babies for long, and I try to enjoy every moment.. even the 2 year old tantrums, and constant bodily fluid to deal with.

If you are always looking for the current time to end, you miss out on what this part of the journey holds for you. We get caught up in the amazing ‘destination’, and we miss the scenery on the way to the place we actually never  get to.

We can often look at the gaps, the ‘glass half empty’, and what others have that we don’t. But a quick change of perspective can turn your day around. Look for the things that are making you happy, there’s always something to be grateful for!

Start blessing what’s in your hands at this time, and stop cursing for what you don’t even have!

When I grow up I want to be…

When I was a kid, I distinctly remember telling mum and dad that I wanted to be a mailman. (mail person for the PC), so I could stop at everyone’s house and get to know them.  This dream was squashed when dad explained that I wouldn’t really get to meet people because I would just have to drop off their mail in the box and keep driving. But I think this gives an indication of what I wanted to do in my life from a young age. To meet people, and connect with them, and help them. I have since developed more interests and desires, but that speaks to me of my core.

I don’t think its coincidence that kids spend a good amount of time role playing different jobs and roles in society. They need to discover what it is they want to do through this process.

I only was exposed to a handful of occupations in a rural NZ community, teacher, shop keeper, farmer or mailman were pretty much the options. I am amazed now at the world of opportunity and variety there is for us to partake in. I believe so strongly in finding a purpose in what you put your hand to. We are meant to do stuff, and stuff that we love. There is an occupation, business, vocation, job or area of interest for everyone to be matched to. And if you can’t find yours, make it yourself!

As a family we are having a bit of a tough time financially, and I know that I could easily find a temporary full time role in a government job because of the experience I’ve had. I went to an interview for one the other day, and as soon as I left the room, I thought “I don’t want to be here full time, or any time.” I struggled for a couple of days about whether I was being stupid, or just true to myself. And I came to this conclusion:

I have come to the realisation that I can’t bring myself to do things just for the money. My time is too precious to be wasting it doing things I don’t enjoy. I realised that in all things in this life, you can do it for love, or you can do it for money. I am doing life for love, taking all the steps to achieving some dreams, and believing that the money will come soon after!


Why do most people struggle to feel confident in themselves? I do often, but am consciously making an effort to change that. My biggest anxiety is caused by worrying about what people think of me. I have been implementing the following activities in an effort to reduce my anxiety levels:

1. Choose good friends. Did you know that you can actually choose the people you want to influence your life? And did you also know that its totally OK to cut off unproductive relationships. People who continually treat you bad do nothing whatsoever for your confidence, they drag you down into believing that you aren’t very valuable. It takes some guts, but man its good to get rid of this out of your life. Surround yourself with people that you want to be like, listen to you, and appreciate who you are, and then be a good friend to THEM.

2. Catch your thoughts. What do you say to yourself in your head? This is the make or break of successful life in my opinion. You really have to consciously and deliberately think positive things to beat the default human condition of negativity. When my little girl wakes up earlier than I hope for, I have to take a moment to get out of bed happy to be a mum, and not grumpy that I didn’t get enough sleep and its going to set my day off wrong. My thoughts for this week… I can do anything! I am loved! I am creative and talented! I am calm…calm…calm.  🙂

3. Watch your words. Have you ever listened to the way you speak about yourself to others. I started to, and am catching myself often! I started showing my new blogpage of business self promotion to my hubby, ( its really nothing too elaborate at this stage, but he caught me downgrading myself and my creative efforts and kindly pointed out that I should talk more confidently about it. If you can just step outside yourself for a moment, and hear the words you say, you might want to change them. Be confident in the decisions you’ve made, speak out good things about what you do and who you are. It makes a world of difference to your happiness if you do!