Let's fly smoothly into 2018!

smooth landing 2018 change flourishing

Have you a good flight plan for re-entry into school and work in 2018? 

Over the past weeks many of us have been luxuriating in the slower pace of holidays.  It’s been gorgeous to have a break from routines, and to take each day as it comes, but pretty soon we’ll need to return to normal scheduling.

On exactly this subject, we were really thrilled to be asked to contribute to Pilot Pen’s back to school campaign and want to share a few of our tips with you.  Transitions are a tricky time and can bring up a range of emotions from excitement to anxiousness, so we’d love to help you plot a successful path into 2018 by encouraging competency, communication, strengths and celebration.

  1. Competency – the New Year is a great opportunity to give your kids some new responsibilities.  If you let them do some things on their own they will feel more competent and confident which is great for their wellbeing.  AND – helping our kids become more independent is excellent for the wellbeing of Mums!

  2. Communication – Just as with adults, if your child’s fears go unexpressed, the fears can feed upon themselves and increase anxiety, so do encourage your children to voice any worries they may have before school starts.  Once you’ve heard their thoughts you can work with them to come up with solutions together.  Years ago my daughter was quite anxious about the climbing frame at primary school.  We practised climbing safely to help her build her skills.

  3. Strengths – it’s helpful to point out to your child when she/he is using particular strengths of character.  Try to notice moments when they’re clearly displaying strengths like bravery or kindness or curiosity because then we can remind them when they need help to manage concerns.  For example: “Darling – I know you’re worried about being separated from your friends at school this year but do you remember how you made friends at tennis camp this summer.  You were able to use your sense of humour to get chatting with people and you showed them how kind you are.”)

  4. Celebration – Create a positive mindset and reduce back to school stress by celebrating the new school year and good things that occur in the early weeks back at school.  Talking to our kids about what went well during the day is a great way to create and share positive emotions.  When we start by paying attention to the positive it can help to put problems into perspective and discuss challenges more calmly.

If you’d like to read more of our back to school tips please check out this article:  https://www.femail.com.au/kate-wilkie-top-tips-for-getting-back-to-school-interview.htm

With love
Flourishing Mothers

PS. We’d love to hear your tips too!  Please share in the comments.

Can we put on resilience like a pair of killer heels?

As we head into the end of year festivities, I’ll probably be rummaging in my wardrobe a lot – looking for the dress or the heels that will suit the event and make me feel great.  I know it’s not all about clothes but a great pair of heels sometimes just give an extra sparkle of fun and confidence (and I love being a bit taller!).

However, a pair of gorgeous shoes can’t help with all of life’s challenges.  When challenging times hit us, or the day to day ups and downs are feeling hard to cope with, we need resilience, we need to believe that we have what it takes to bounce back and perform well despite the stress. 

We need to be able to show up and face the challenges as our best resilient self!

Who are you at the times when you show most resilience?   

A resilient person is able to work through challenges, drawing upon our inner resources, our strengths, our sense of optimism and our self-belief that we can cope (hard as it sometimes seems!) However, we each have a different set of challenges, and individual strengths and capacities that we can use.

So, what kind of person do you want to be when your resilience is tested?

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4 Steps to envision your best resilient self

Just like travelling to a new location, to make successful change, you need to know what you are aiming for so that you can work out a plan to get there.  It’s also fascinating how strong the power of imagery can be.  Once you’re able to see a clear picture in your head, you’ll automatically start to move towards it because you’ll be primed to notice when you have an opportunity to do something relevant or make a good choice.  What we focus on grows!

We suggest you consider these questions to build a vision of your best resilient self.

What are you doing?  How do you want to behave when faced with a challenge?  Are you:

  • Taking a deep breath before responding?
  • Calmly making a to-do list?
  • Willing to ask for help?

What are you thinking? What’s the story you’re telling yourself? Are you:

  • Noticing negative thoughts and trying to replace them with more positive ones?
  • Reminding yourself of what you’re capable of, and have managed in the past?

What are feeling? It’s normal to have an initial negative emotional response but what happens next? Are you?

  • Noticing the negative emotions but trying not to be swept away by them?
  • Trying to re-frame your emotions – for example could you become excited about a new opportunity rather than dwelling on how it makes you nervous?
  • Accepting that you are human and strong emotions are normal?

Where can you find support?  In tough times support from others and our environment is critical. Are you?

  • Recognising how others value you and believe in you?
  • Looking after yourself physically?
  • Letting people help you in practical ways?

Just as we can choose to make a statement with a pair of shoes, we can also choose to show up as our Best Resilient Self

We encourage you to give these ideas some thought.  We’d love to see you finish 2017 confident you know how to dial up your best resilient self.  If you’d like some help brainstorming, please contact us for a free coaching chat http://www.flourishingmothers.com.au/free-coaching-chat now, or put it in your diary to contact us early in the New Year.

with our best wishes

Flourishing Mothers

killer heels for resilience and flourishing

3C's: 3 actions to end 2017 on a high and get excited for 2018

I know it’s still October, so why does it feel I’m already in the race towards Christmas? Try as I do, it’s hard to ignore the retail promotions, shop decorations, Christmas cards, bakery mince pies and Christmas junk mail! But the clincher was when I worked out that my kids finish up school in early December. That means I have just 5 weeks left of kid-free work time.

5 weeks left of kid-free work time!

What am I going to do with it?

Because I want to make this year really count. I want to end it on a high. And I want to greet 2018 (2018??!!) with a head-start and a whole lot of excitement.

"I want to make this year really count. I want to greet 2018 with a whole lot of excitement."

Like most of us, I have various exciting projects not yet finished this year (or even started!) and a task list a mile long. And though I’m confident that 2018 will be an awesome year, it’s an amorphous fuzzy shape right now with so many exciting plans and schemes. And it will be February before the kids get back to school and I have some breathing space again to make real progress towards my 2018 goals.

Does this sound familiar? Do you also find November to February goes in the blink of an eye? Would you also like to end your year on a high? A sense that you’ve done great work? And a belief that you have great things to look forward to?

Here are the 3 actions I’m undertaking to maximise the 5 weeks I have left to myself. I offer them for you to try too. Even better, write them down, to help you focus and get committed.

  • Complete. What is the ONE THING that if you put some focus on it and complete it, you will feel good about it? Which goal do you really want to achieve that will make you proud? Which project is really going to advance your mission?
  • Commence. What is the ONE THING that if you really give it some dedicated thought, give it some shape, and make even the smallest start, you’ll be ahead of the 8 ball for 2018? What is going to give you a sense of excitement and energy around what you will achieve next year?
  • Crop. What is the THING / THINGS you need to relinquish, relegate or delegate to free you up to do the two things above? What things seem urgent but are not important? What projects are depleting you and not energising you? 
end 2017 on a high - 3C's

As I complete, commence and crop, I feel the satisfaction of achievement, the thrill of anticipation for the future, and the relief of letting go what no longer serves me. 3 actions that pack a punch!

with our best wishes

Flourishing Mothers