Category Archives: self Help

What Letting Go Reveals…..

Has your vision for you life and business become clouded?

Do you sometimes feel that you are getting in the way of your own success?

What would happen if you just let go? 

Todays blog is about the surprising benefits of letting go and the freedom it can bring you in your business and your life.

Letting go has been the dominant theme for me this year and as we hit the full moon earlier this month I found myself releasing more than I had ever imagined I was holding on to.

Early this year I made the decision to sell the home I had shared with my late husband and to find a new home for both myself and my business. My home sold quickly and I was forced to acknowledge that a huge amount of physical clearing needed to occur before I could actually move. Knowing this process would take some weeks to complete and with a strong desire to begin my new life free from the weight of possessions that didn’t belong to me, I gave myself permission to step back from my business and to continue to serve my existing clients but to let go of all of the demands of marketing. promoting and growing my business.

I focused on the process of lovingly going through my late husbands tools and equipment and items that he had collected over his 45 years of life and finding new homes and new people who appreciated them to pass them onto.

What I learnt from the process of letting go of these possessions was that clearing the clutter on a physical level will reveal a layer of mental clutter, internal belongings, beliefs and patterns that are also waiting to be cleared.

There was an invitation to let go on another level. To let go of everything that is holding you back from being who you are.

Tied up with these physical possessions was a letting go of where I had thought my life “should” be and who “should” be in it. In letting go of “shoulds” came an acceptance of what is.

I have come face to face with my perfectionism, the need for a set of perfect circumstances to arise before I can act.

I was able to see with crystal clarity the patterns that led me away from myself and from where I most want to be.

The root of procrastination and resistance rose up to met me, revealing all the ways in which I sabotage myself and hold myself back.

So why do we have all these internal scripts and processes that we hold on to?

Why do we let this internal junk get in the way of or goals, dreams and deepest desires?

Your stuff, the things that hold you back, the limits you place on yourself are a hardwired protection mechanism shaped by your early experiences. Your young self unable to make sense of the world around you developed a highly specialised system of checks and brakes to save you from the pain of loss, failure, rejection and to set you up for the best chance of fitting in and receiving love.

Call this your ego or your monkey mind, your bad habits, this hand brake to success exists in all of us.

However, just as I have recently experienced we are able to let go of what no longer serves us on both a physical and an emotional level.

To do this we must acknowledge deeply these patterns and make peace with them. Understand how they have served us and thank them for their gifts before the process of letting go is truly complete. For me this was true even though my process was an unexpected side effect of letting go of physical belongings.

What I am left with is lightness and a freshness. I am seeing with new eyes and a new way of being is revealed to me. I have clarity.

The feeling of being weighed down and the desire to feel free of self-imposed limits is not unique to me. I see this in my clients, my friends, my wider networks.

We all have within us the ability to achieve the life we dream of, so ask yourself the question………. What’s getting in the way? What do I need to let go of?

Get curious, become an explorer of your own internal landscape.

The mountain may seem high but the view from the top is incomparable.

Its time to just let go………

I’d love to hear your experiences of letting go, feel free to share in the comments below. If you feel like you’d like some more support with what you need to let go of you can book a free clarity call with me here or visit my website here

 

 

 

Undo the overwhelm!

How often do you feel overwhelmed in your business or life in general?

Over the last few months from my own experience and from hearing stories of overwhelm from many of my clients I have come to realise that overwhelm is a very normal experience and it is possible to break it down and work your way through it. The biggest downside of staying in overwhelm is that it sucks the joy and meaning out of life and that can leave you questioning the very thing you believed to be your purpose. Being on purpose does not mean that you will never experience overwhelm.

In today’s blog I want to share the 3 major ways that overwhelm can keep us stuck and get in the way of what we want to achieve.

Feeling overwhelmed is really, really, common whether we are business owners or not. If I look back at the last 12 months (my business is 11months old) I would say that I felt overwhelm weekly and sometimes daily! When I get overwhelmed I suffer from what I call “deer in the headlights syndrome” I freeze. I can neither go forward nor back. The very thought of dissecting the overwhelm, overwhelms me!

Instead I polish up my procrastination skills…I watch daytime TV, I make snacks when I’m not hungry, I check the snail mail and the email and I hang out for hours on social media. All of these things fail in every way to alleviate overwhelm and in fact often serve to intensify it.

So how do we manage our feelings of overwhelm in our business and in our personal lives?The first step to dealing with any difficult experience is to gently allow yourself to feel it, acknowledge it and accept it. It’s time to stop avoiding the overwhelm!

In my experience the source of your overwhelm will likely be :

(1)time

(2)knowledge or

(3) the stretch.

If we can work out which of these 3 are at the source then we are more than halfway to resolving it.

(1) The most common source of overwhelm is time…and not enough of it! The first step in defusing the time problem is to have a really good look at where your time is going and what time you actually have available. Identify your time drains and look at how you can eliminate these. Are there ways in which you can re-order your routine to free up an extra half an hour a day? Can you shuffle your schedule to give you some bigger chunks of time to work with?

Once you have established your time limits then look at all of the things you need to complete. Make a list…yes I know that making a list in itself can feel overwhelming but believe me you will feel a lot better once you do it. Look at each of the items on your list and ask yourself how essential they are for you to complete. Put all the non-negotiables into your schedule first.

It is likely that the simple act of making a list has reduced your overwhelm but if not you can trust me that once you start to tick off some of the items on your list you will be able to breathe again. This is also a good time to re- evaluate the standards you are setting yourself…are you expecting and unrealistic level of perfection that results in things never being completed? Make your new Mantra “done is better than perfect” and make a start.

(2) The second source of overwhelm is knowledge. This is where we feel overwhelmed because we have reached our outer limits of knowledge on a particular subject or aspect of our business. Once again it’s important to be gentle with yourself and to be accepting that there will always be things that you need to learn.

For me starting out in a new business after 10 years in the corporate world I had to admit that my marketing skills from my previous businesses was completely outdated. Social media was my new learning curve and boy was that overwhelming! The great thing is that new knowledge is so readily available now. There is always someone who knows what you don’t so find a coach or a course or a mentor who can help you to get on track to gaining the skills you need.

(3) The third reason we feel overwhelm is when we are in the stretch. The stretch is that place where you are putting yourself out there, owning your genius and testing your new skills and abilities. It might be a new program you want to offer or a new way of working or a new product or service. It may even be a new way of communicating your needs in your relationship or a new aspect of yourself you are learning to share and embrace.

Personally I find the overwhelm associated with the stretch the most challenging. Recently I have been leaning into the stretch in my coaching business and owning my true nature as a business coach. I am acknowledging that what I do does not fit within a traditional model but is soul based. My clients have been quick to accept my new moniker of soul based business coach as it aligns with how they have experienced what I do, but owning this dimension of my work more publically has felt overwhelming because of the stretch.

When overwhelm is in the stretch it’s important to know that it will feel uncomfortable initially as you grow into this aspect of yourself or your work but the rewards are enormously satisfying. If you are feeling overwhelmed by the stretch the my best advice is to go slowly, dip your toes in and test the water and feel the expansion as you do. Nurture and celebrate your small steps as you would a child who is learning a new skill.

 It is my hope that some of my suggestions will help you to relax about your feelings of overwhelm and to let go of the battle you have with yourself. When we relax about what is occurring it allows us to drop our resistance and then the way forward begins to appear. Don’t be surprised if your desire to procrastinate is strong here its normal to feel a level of resistance to your growth.  After all overwhelms best friend is procrastination and that is another blog entirely that I look forward to sharing with you soon.

Paula xx

New Year…Old Leaf?

I don’t need to tell you that it’s that time of the year……when we earnestly pledge and promise to make changes, big and small for the coming year. New Year’s resolutions in my mind aren’t necessarily a bad thing. This time of the year gets us reflecting on what the past year has been and what we would like to create for our future. I’m a big believer in that, in taking time to review and reset, to ask ourselves the question “Am I where I want to be? and to set goals for the year ahead.

For many this time of the year is about making a commitment to “turn over a new leaf” when it comes to things we want to change or believe we “should” change for our health and wellbeing. We propose to give up our “bad” habits, to eat healthier and to begin a new exercise regimen, to lose weight or to finally run that half marathon. Whatever you are proposing to change in the New year are you in fact turning over a new leaf or are you once again recycling and old one?

Often times we have the same resolutions on our lists year in and year out. So why don’t we achieve them? And why is it that we wait until the year is at an end to do this rather than at other times of the year? I have been pondering this as I review my own 2016 goals.

I am an active goal setter and work hard to achieve my goals through the year but like many of you I still have resolutions that don’t get achieved.

This year I have started my own business, graduated as a Business coach, traveled to a new country, left the security of a regular pay check. I have run a group coaching program (3 actually) and two mastermind circles. I have increased my followers both on my blog and on my facebook and instagram pages and as I write this today it will be my 30th blog post for 2016 (although my goal was 52!) but I havent lost 10kgs (I have actually gained weight!) and I haven’t ticked off the other health and well-being goals on my list.

When I reflect on why this is the case it becomes pretty clear to me that the things I have given most of my attention to are the things I have achieved the most success with. Although this is not exclusively true. At the beginning of 2016 I wrote down a list of 81 things I wanted to do in 2016 (I couldn’t quite get to 100) Without giving any time or attention to this list other than to review it once during the year I have actually completed 21 of them.

My best advice when it comes to resolutions and goals is that it’s never a bad time to set them. If you feel drawn to doing it at this time of the year then by all means write them down and make a start. but we can also turn over that new leaf at the start of a new month, a new week, or even a new day. In fact every minute holds within it an opportunity to make a change, start something new or to set a new goal.

My feeling is that we do a large chunk of our goal setting and resolving at this time of the year because we get a chance to pause. The space between christmas and the New year is when we are either on holiday or the pre-xmas work pressure has eased. We get some time to reflect, to connect and to feel what needs to change.

What if we took time out on a regular basis to do this? What if we gave ourselves space quarterly, monthly or weekly to reflect on where we are at and to re-focus on our goals? I suspect we would find motivation levels would be sustained far beyond the first few weeks of January and our resolutions would have a greater chance of surviving! So don’t let New Years be the only time in 2017 that you reflect on where you are at and what you want to create.

My resolution for 2017 is to create space every week to review my goals and to re-set and adjust them quarterly as the year unfolds.

“What you focus on grows, what you think about expands and what you dwell upon determines your destiny” Robin Sharma

Feel free to join me…or to share with me your resolutions for 2017 in the comments below

To download your free 2016 Biz review workbook Sign up here

For support setting you 2017 goals click here

 

Joining the largest nation in the world!

Have you joined it? The largest nation in the world?

Procrasti-NATION!

What I am really enjoying about this 10 day blogging challenge is that it is asking me to step outside my writing comfort zone. Not so much in terms of topic but in terms of the environment and conditions in which I write. I have to admit that I have a writing routine that has become a little rigid in that I have felt unable to write unless the environment and conditions were “right” This in itself could be considered procrastination – today’s topic- more on that soon.

Today I am well and truly outside my writing comfort zone. I am sitting in an ice cream truck on a race course surrounded by hot rods and classic cars! A great example of the freedom lifestyle- to be able to do what you want to do you must learn to complete tasks and get work done in any environment.

So no blogging procrastination for me today but I am not unfamiliar to procrastination by any stretch of the imagination. I can be as crippled by inertia and inability to act as the next person. Procrastination is also one of the key reasons my clients come to me for coaching.

Why do we procrastinate?

In my experience, from the experience of my clients and also from a conversation I just had with my partner it seems to me that fear is generally the root cause of procrastination.  What this also means is that we can try any number of tips and trick to beat procrastination but until we address the underlying fear the procrastination will return.

What are we afraid of?

It can be many things and often its different for different people; fear of success, fear of failure, fear of not getting it perfect, fear that it or you are not worthy or deserving, fear of the uncertainty of the outcome…..

How do we ditch the fear?

I am a big believer that to really bust the fear for good we need to go deep. I have a great process that I walk my clients through which helps to not only identify and understand the fear but also to hear its message. Surprisingly fear brings its own gifts.

In the short term I would encourage you to make friends with your fear. Acknowledge its presence, where do you feel it in your body?  Can you name it? Feeling and knowing your fear can free up some energy to act. Can you feel it and take action, even if its just a start. Taking some small actions now that you have acknowledged your fear may help you to relax and get things moving.

Sometimes a little bit of logic applied at this point can also make a difference. Ask yourself these questions. Will it matter in 10 days? Will it matter in 10 weeks? Will it matter in 10 months?

Hopefully some of these tips have helped and instead of continuing to read my blog you are now off to complete whatever you have been putting off! If not it could be indicative of a deeper core fear and I would recommend seeking out a coach or counsellor to help you identify and work with it.

It also helps to know that procrastination is a perfectly normal part of the creative process and often occurs when we are attempting or creating something new. In fact right now I am procrastinating about beginning to write the content for a 7 day e-course on finding purpose. I have planned this e-course out but have yet to sit down and actually write it and record the videos. The key is to be really clear on when your procrastination is about readiness of an idea to be birthed and when its because you are afraid.When you are creating something new, the germination stage of the new idea may feel like procrastination but you might just not be ready. If this becomes a sustained lack of action or a stronger resistance that’s when you have a problem.

As I wrote at the beginning of this blog having the perfect conditions and circumstances around me to write is no longer an issue so beginning my e-course is the next task on my list today!

If you would like support to get clarity, bust through bloacks and take action book a freee clarity call with me here or visit my website www.paulamcfarlane.com

This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 7

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Someone just like you!

Self employment can be a lonely business! Over the past few weeks, as I have actively been working to promote and build my business, I have been networking and putting myself out there to meet other business owners. I have engaged with all sorts of business people both online and face to face. What has become really clear from these experiences is that as business owners we all face similar challenges in being self-employed.  Being a business owner can be lonely and isolating.

As humans we are hard-wired to connect with other people, to feel accepted, loved and part of a social/family group or tribe. When we step away from paid employment to work in our own business we can lose that sense of connection, collegiality and team support.

Having a business can be a lonely existence. We can feel isolated, out on a limb and that other people in our life just don’t really get it! When we feel like this and also face challenges in our business it can become doubly hard. We have no one to bounce ideas off or even to just unpack all of the crazy, scary thoughts that are running through our minds with.

However being self-employed whether you’re a business woman or man it doesn’t have to be a lonely journey. There are plenty of opportunities for support available. From industry groups, to business coaches, to mentors, to networking organisations and online support groups. The options are far wider that you might think. Experimentation is the key, not every group/coach or organisation will be right for you and your business but I guarantee that your people are out there. If you approach finding your tribe with an open mind you may find it easier than you first thought

“What you seek is seeking you “Rumi

As a Feminine Business Coach I felt that I didn’t really fit with traditional coaching models or even people’s understanding of what coaching was. I was almost afraid to tell people what I did because I wasnt sure it would be understood or accepted. That all changed for me earlier this year when I attended RISE and had an opportunity to hear Sue Lindsay speak about the feminine way of doing business and the benefits it brings even in the corporate world. Suddenly I felt validated and legitimate and proud to own what I do. I knew that I had to connect with Sue and did something I never do. I introduced myself to her. Sue was not only lovely in person, she very generously gave me some of her time via Skype to help me refine my story and the story of my business. Meeting Sue was one of the key things that prompted me to really engage with other women business owners in a networking capacity which has been incredibly rewarding for me personally and for my business.

Connecting with like-minded business women and hearing them share experience of feeling lonely and isolated has prompted me to begin to change that in whatever small ways I can. I have begun to run Mastermind circles here in Christchurch for women business owners and I am also gathering a tribe of women online (Love your Biz) to receive support, share experiences and learn together. I am proud to be able to offer this to my clients and women business owners who are looking for support on their journey to creating a life and business they love.

If you like to join my tribe of women business owners click here

If you’d like to know about my mastermind circle click here

This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 6

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A Letter to my Lovely Clients….

Dear One,

I have been writing and re-writing this letter in my head for several days now. There are some things in my heart that I feel compelled to share with you. What I know about my compulsion to write is that if I don’t honor it, it will simply not leave me alone until I do. I have held back from this letter because it simply felt to silly to tell you, to vulnerable and really a little bit cheesy but it is my truth and it is for you.

I want to tell you how happy it makes me to be able to work with you, support you and to walk with you on your journey of creating your business. I love it that you have reached out to me for support and that I am able to serve you in this way. I have such a huge amount of respect for the challenges you have overcome to be where you are right now and for your commitment to meet your fears head on. I know and understand how hard this is for you because I have done it too and am doing it all over again!

I see your desire to feel connected to your purpose, to feel you are expressing yourself in your business and to create for yourself and your family a life of substance, a life lived in full colour and a life of meaningful success.

I know that like me you believe  in your dreams, that you can be the very best version of yourself, do what makes you happy and have success in every way possible. Knowing this about you inspires me to continue to learn and to grow so that I can be the very best support to you and your business. And learn and grow I have. These past few weeks have been a massive roller-coaster of change for me as I grow my business and create the foundations I need to be able to support you as much as I want too.I am committed to doing all that it takes to be the best possible business coach so that as you reach new heights in your business, I am also reaching them with you!

For me a big part of this journey is to be here to let you know that you are not alone. I know and understand how hard this is. I understand that you have days where you can’t see the woods for the trees and you feel like every choice you have made is wrong. I know what it feels like when everything is just out of reach and its a stretch to keep going and to make your business happen. I know how much courage it takes to face your fears, to look them in the eye and to feel your self shaking as you keep going anyway. I understand how much this costs you, financially, emotionally, physically and mentally. I know what you have given up for this and just how scary that is. But I  also know that nothing compares to the joy you feel with each and every little success that you have. I know that even on the hard days you really don’t want to go back because what you are creating right now is real and really you!.

When you look back at where you were just a few short months ago you cant help but agree with me that you have come a long way and achieved a great deal. I am so proud of what you are creating. I love that by living your dreams you give permission to others to do the same, as do I and together we are doing our bit to change the world! You are amazing and you are achieving amazing things!

I know that you are fiercely independent and that you are capable of moving mountains when you put your mind to it but I also know that its hard for you to ask for help and even harder sometimes for you to let your self receive it. I want you to always know that when you need support, when you are having a wobble that I believe in you and where you are going and I will do my very best to help you along the way. It’s as simple as reaching out. Please feel free to reach out, email, text send me a message on Facebook. Let me know what your roadblocks are, the challenges that are emerging for you, shout out your latest wins, your new plans, your desires and dreams, I am here for you.

I am really excited for whats ahead for both of us. The new programs I am creating, the community I am building with you and for you. Its my mission to lead you to deep experiences of success in your business and life. I believe in you and all that you are creating and I want you to know how much respect I have for you and your journey and how I value having you in my life. You are why I keep doing what I do!

Keep being you

Paula xx

 

 

Are You and Your Business Aligned?

The process of creating, growing and running a business may seem on the surface of it to be a fairly straightforward process. You have an idea, a service or a product you want to sell. You find a market or carve out a niche, you promote, network, pitch, advertise, build a website, order your business cards and hey presto you have customers and clients 🙂

It’s not rocket science you say….but is that all there is to it? If it is then why do some businesses succeed and other fail? Is it just good luck, good management, right products or right place?

 It is all of those things and it is also much, much more.

Your business also holds its own energetic imprint that is intrinsically linked to your own.

Your business has its own identity and is separate from you but it is of you and it is your energy, your vision, your values that underpin it and dictate the way it is perceived by the wider world.

Your vision, your mission, your clarity about what you want to create and how you want to create it, your values and how these line up with the message you are sending through your business and its culture, your sense of yourself and how that’s expressed through your business all contribute to the energy your business sends out to your potential customers and clients.

So how does this affect the success or your business?

The way your clients and customers respond to your message, whether they choose your service or that of your competitor is a reflection of the energy frequency that you and your business emit. The energetic signals sent out from your business are what manifests as a customer expressing that they had a gut feeling you were the right choice for them or even that when choosing between you and another provider of the same product or service they chose you because it felt right even though on paper the your competitor looked better or the same or was more or less expensive than you.

How can I use this information to grow my business?

When we are holding within ourselves any kind of energetic or emotional block it can feel like a dead weight in our business. We have all heard the expression “there’s no use flogging a dead horse” but is the horse really dead? Or is this a call for you to step a little deeper into owning who you are, to examine your own subtle energy shifts and patterns for what is out of alignment or what feels blocked. Is this an invitation to look at how your fear is affecting your choices both in your life and in your business? Taking a step back and allowing yourself to reflect and review your own internal position is crucial.

When something isn’t going right in your business, something isn’t going right in you.

This has certainly been the case for me…

I am an Aligned Feminine Business Coach, I work in the area of aligning, values and mission and purpose to create success in business. I work in a spiritual way; I encourage my clients to develop rituals in their business and to understand how their energy is reflected in what they create. I have had to work to understand and heal the part of me who was afraid to own what I do and who felt that she wanted to be seen as a more “legitimate” business coach. I had to understand what I was afraid of and to release myself from the judgement I held around the type of coaching I do and what part of me believed I “should” do. By failing to address these issues I was creating and inconsistent message in my business and sending out and inconsistent energy. This affected the way my business was perceived and the type of clients I attracted and also the level of satisfaction that I had in what I was doing.

So how do we address what doesn’t line up between ourselves and our business?

How do we breathe new life into that struggling horse and release what is blocked? The process of alignment or in fact any growth can be really tough but it also brings great rewards. It asks you to be very honest with yourself and the results you are getting. It asks you to be very real with yourself about what you are afraid of and where you are judging yourself or holding on to limiting beliefs. It asks you to look at what patterns you are creating in your life and in the life of your business. It also asks you to be very gentle and to offer yourself all the love, compassion and understanding that you need to fully engage with the process.

For me the process of realigning can take days, weeks and sometimes even months to truly resolve but I have found a few things that can help to accelerate the process.

  • Admit to yourself that something is off. The sooner you get real about it the faster you will find your way to the other side.
  • Seeking support for me is crucial: I am a coach that gets coached 🙂
  • Walking or any type of exercise: moving moves energy and helps to aid my clarity. I like walking the most as I can hear the messages that clarity brings that I might miss if I am doing something more vigorous
  • Connecting with spirit or any higher power that feels right for you: going within to connect with your own innate wisdom will offer you the insights you need to move forward. Meditating or using rituals that feel right for you.
  • Reading and listing to inspiration: books and podcasts that raise my vibe and help me to feel positive and help to keep me open to what might emerge.
  • Allowing myself the space to process. There is no point pushing through or holding on when it’s not working. Allow the space to process and get clear, to readjust to your new level of understanding and know that the process sends out subtle energy waves through your business that are already realigning your message.

When I shift in myself I shift in how I am expressed in the world through my business. This then leads to a knowing of what needs to be done on a practical level such as changes in structure or offerings within your business.

There is much more to your business than what you can learn from a book or business degree. The path to growth in your business is intrinsically linked to your path of knowing and understanding yourself. This is your business’s greatest gift to you. Its what will keep you in love with your business over time. Through your business you send out ripples to your world and all that come in contact with it. Your authentic message of what is alignment for you allows others to align within themselves. You may think that what you are offering in your business, your product or service is far removed from any type of spiritual growth but your desire to engage with your own process and the rewards that brings doesn’t just lift you own vibe and the vibe or your business it creates an energetic shift that reaches out into your wider community it is your subtle way of changing the world!

So I invite you right now in this moment to check in with yourself and with your business. What is feeling right for you and what is feeling  a little off? Are you getting the results you want or is their something you need to give your loving attention to? Are you and your business aligned?

Paula xx

I would love to support you to align with your business and clear your blocks to success. Email me to arrange a complimentary phone call to see if coaching is right for you pmcfarlane@clear.net.nz or visit www.paulamcfarlane.weebly.com