Tag Archives: Change

Life is a daring adventure….

“Life is a daring adventure or nothing” one of my all time favourite quotes and it sums up for me what life is all about. If you aren’t trying new things or challenging yourself on a regular basis then  you arent growing or expanding and life becomes stale, predictable, boring even.

I get that adventure isn’t for everyone but you don’t have to be an adrenalin junkie to put a bit of adventure in your life. For me adventure is trying new things, visiting new places, new learning and moving to the flow of life,embracing change as it comes your way.

The last few years have seen me do a bit of solo adventuring. Travelling to parts of the world I have never visited and seeing things I have always dreamed of. I have embraced solo travel and also the joy of going on retreats with other like minded souls. I love the expansion I feel when I discover new places.

This year my adventure has been a lot about leaving a 10 year corporate career to step out on my own. Learning new technology and ways of working and marketing my business. Mastering new skills can be quite and adventure!

I have also traveled this year with my partner and with friends. Once again a new experience, a different adventure. The biggest benefit of new experiences regardless of how risky they are in the physical sense is that you learn to feel grateful for what you  have and also learn to adapt to new situations more quickly.

Todays adventure might seem really simple to most but for me it was another opportunity to change my view. To see the world differently, to see myself differently. Today I went to an open home to look at a house with some land. Seems simple doesn’t it but to see it that way is really only seeing the surface. Attending and open home implies an openness to moving, living in a different environment and essentially changing everything in your day to day experience from where you buy your coffee to route you drive to work.

I am not going to buy this house or even make and offer but it was and still is an adventure. A new adventure loaded with possibilities, new dreams and new magic!

I wonder where this adventure will take me 🙂

If you would like support to shake up your routine and fit more adventure into your day then click here to book a free clarity call with me or visit my website www.paulamcfarlane.com

This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 8

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Get into your Groove

Getting into a good groove with your business to ensure your are productive and efficient in the time you have available is essential but also takes a bit of work and sometimes creativity.

When I stepped out of my full-time job into my business it took some time for me to feel connected and comfortable with a new routine. I had been working in the corporate world for 10 years with a heavy travel schedule and having unstructured time was foreign to me I wrote about it here Coming back to what works… Since my realisation a few months ago, that I no longer had to fit into a routine prescribed by someone else, I have been experimenting with structure, routine and tips and tools to make my working day both enjoyable and effective

The easy part for me is that I love what I do so much that I am eager to get started every day. I am in my office and ready for “work” by 9am. The hard part has been finding a routine that works for me and minimises distractions. I can get caught up with emails and Facebook and friends who know you are at home phoning or dropping by for coffee or asking for favours as they know my routine is flexible. I am learning that I need boundaries to ensure that I maximise my time.

I have used the pomodoro technique to good effect and now teach it to my clients. I find it quite satisfying to tick off time blocks and complete tasks. You can find out more about the pomodoro technique in Natalie’s post today here

I have also discovered that I like to vary my workspace. Although I spend the majority of my time in my office I like to go to a cafe to write my blog. I find the noise and chatter in the background of people going about their lives around me, allows the words to flow. I can get into my writing zone.

What is working for me best in terms of structure is to grid up my day into 30min slots and block out time for client work, work on the Biz, writing, exercise, appointments etc. I put this plan together as I book appointments each week ensuring I am leaving space for other tasks that need completing. Then each day I am using a second grid to mark out what I actually did to compare to my plan. This is highlighting for me where my greatest time bandits are and what times of the day are most productive for me. I am also getting a good idea of how long each task takes from tracking it this way.

I also include in my planning grid space to record my top 3 tasks to achieve each day, clients I need to contact and any other essentials that need to be taken care of.

Getting really clear on your top 3 tasks each day is especially important if you have limited time to work on your business., as the saying goes if you fail to plan you plan to fail!

The best part of creating structure and planning for your business is that it is entirely yours and you have the freedom to change it, tweak it and adjust it as much as you like until you find your groove!

Todays top 3 Tasks

Write Blog post for challenge

Prepare content for 7 day purpose guide

Clear clutter from my desk

If you would like more clarity, and structure around what you do and action steps to take book and free clarity call here or visit my website www.paulamcfarlane.com

This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 5

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Are you Bringing yourself to the table?

This time last week I spoke at a women’s business networking event about bringing more of yourself to the table in your business. I was surprised how much meaning my message held not just for the audience but for myself.

In the week that has passed I have reflected on where I too am holding myself back from my business and have found myself engaging more deeply with my fears and stepping forward into parts of my business that I had been holding back from. It has been easy and natural and I have enjoyed it more that I imagined I would. My fears have taken a back seat to what I really want to achieve and I have been riding the high of taking on new challenges and nailing them!

But it wasnt always this easy, some days even thinking about doing some of these things caused me pain and anxiety.

Today I want to share with you some of the steps I have taken to change this and how to recognise if you too are holding parts of yourself back from fully engaging with your business.

So what does it mean to bring more of yourself to the table in your business? and why is it something that we need to consider?

As a business owner you have stepped into a world that asks many different things of you. You are the face of your business, you are the accounts person, the debt recovery specialist, the advertising guru, the marketing expert. You are responsible for strategic planning, cashflow forecasts, recruitment and the training and running of your team. Sounds like fun doesn’t it? In addition to this you may also be a Mum, wife, partner, lover, sister, daughter, friend etc etc. Are you starting to get the picture?

All of the roles we perform in business and in life ask different things of us and often things we havent had to do before or that we know arent our areas of strength, sometime it can even be hard to do the thinsg we know we are good at because we are afraid to really put ourselves “out there”. Our ability to step up and engage is directly affected by our fears and our self belief

I suspect like me you likely got into business because there is something you are passionate about, something that you love doing and your business allows this. However there will be other things that scare the living daylights out of you. It’s the scary places that we hold ourselves back from because we don’t feel our power and our passion in those parts of the job.  We are afriad because we are holding on to old conditioning and beliefs that arent serving us.

For example when you pitch to a big client for a new contract you may come face to face with your fear of not being good enough and the part of you that doesn’t believe she can really pull it off.

When you have to sit down and get real about the numbers in the business or prepare your paper work for your accountant you may meet the part of you who is afraid she isn’t smart enough, who doesn’t believe she can do it and who carries the belief that she just isnt good at maths.

When things in your business start to really take off up comes your fear of success, or your belief that you don’t deserve it or that the higher you go the harder it will be when you fail.

When its your time to shine in your business you will feel your fear of rejection, your fear of being seen and your belief that you are not worthy.

This all translates into lost opportunities because you said no when you should have said yes. It puts the contract in your competitors hands because you really couldn’t bring yourself to the table. And it will see you procrastinate and procrastinate on jobs you know you need to get done because you just cant seem to make a start. It will have you watching others enjoying the success that you crave.

The good news is that you can change the effect your fears and negative beliefs have on your business and on your life. You can move forward and have what you want quickly and easily if you choose to and the rewards will be great. You will not only enjoy more success and growth in your business but you will feel more deeply satisfied, connected and engaged in what you are doing. You will have more joy, fun and freedom in what you do.

So how do you kick your fear to the kerb and up your self-belief? I’d love to tell you its easy but the truth is it will challenge you to do this. The good news is that over time it does get easier. A lot easier.

I woud encourage you, if it feels too hard to seek some support from a coach. Two heads are better than one and a good coach will be able to help you identify  what the issue is faster and hold your hand as you work through it.

In the meantime here’s 3 strategies to get you started.

(1) IDENTIFY: make a note of what you are avoiding and putting off doing in your business. What tasks and activities fill you with dread? When we know where we are holding back it becomes easier to take action

(2) FEEL: engage with the feeling you have when you think about doing these things. Let the feeling tell you its story. Where does it sit in your body? How big is it, what colour is it, if it had a name what would you call it. What other tasks and activities make you feel this way. When was the first time you remember having this feeling? When we become familiar with our feelings we can identify when they are impacting on what we are doing and we are in a stronger place to work through them.

(3) AFFIRM and attempt: now that you are really familiar with the feeling, acknowledge it when it comes up for you. Using an affirmation may help such as “even though I am feeling not good enough it is safe for me to start writing this pitch” Even though I am afraid of not getting it right it is safe for me to start my paperwork” Then make a start. it can help to have a timer and set it for 5 mins even though you are feeling your fear you are going to work on it for just 5 mins. Once you make a start you will find that you are able to work on it for longer than you think!

By engaging with what holds us back we are empowered to move forward. By engaging with our fears we begin the process of healing the parts of ourselves that are wounded, afraid and holding on to beliefs that no longer serve us. You can let your fears and lack of self belief dictate the level of success you experience in your business or you can at any moment take back your power and choose a different way. Its really up to YOU

So take a moment to reflect on your business…..where are you holding yourself back? where are you not bringing yourself to the table.

And then decide to step up and engage. You can do this. I know you can 🙂

I’d love to support you with this process and to answer any questions you have along the way. Feel free to share or ask questions in the comments below or to send me an email pmcfarlane@clear.net.nz

 

 

 

The Problem of Purpose

In my work as a Business Coach one of the key things my clients are looking for in their work is to feel a sense of purpose or to feel that they have found their purpose in life. I really understand this desire for purpose as I have felt it and searched for it too and it is precisely what lead me to what I do today.

Why Purpose?

Why do we feel this need to have a deeper level of meaning in what we do? For me the search for purpose arose out of loss in my life. Losing loved ones called me to ask the “what am I here for” question and garnered within me a desire to know that in my short time on this earth that I lived fully and happily and had a positive impact on others. Knowing loss has created within me a desire to live each day in meaningful way.

For others the motivation to find purpose comes out of experiences of feeling that there is more to life that the material things we are able to attain or achieve or conversely from a desire to achieve in life. It can also come from a desire for a greater sense of connection with others, with loved ones or community or the environment, from a sense of wanting to make a difference. The search for purpose can come from a desire to do something just for yourself after years of putting the needs of others first or doing what others wanted or approved of.

Regardless of what motivates us to find purpose that process of uncovering it can feel like looking for a needle in a haystack. It feels both illusive and that we “should” know what it is. We hear “you’ll know it when you find it” which can create a sense of “Why is it not happening for me?”. We can feel some how inadequate that we are unable to know the secret, that we haven’t had that “aha” moment when we meet our purpose head on.

From my experience it seems that there are a number of Myths about purpose that actually get in the way of us finding it. Today I’d like to bust a few of those myths!

(1) You are less of a person if you haven’t found your purpose! life is a journey, not a destination! so maybe you have yet to feel a sense of purpose, that doesn’t change the fact that you are you, you are unique and talented and beautiful. Instead of beating yourself up because you feel your not “there” yet use this time to celebrate where you are and who you are! Explore your desires, what you want your life to look like, and who you want to spend you time with. The better you know yourself and your wants and desires the closer you are to discovering purpose.

(2) Your Purpose is out there waiting for you to find it if you could just look in the right places! Your purpose is not separate from you, it will not necessarily be something that you “find” and suddenly discover is you. What if you are your purpose? Yes I know, I was a little challenged by that idea when I first heard it too! But what if your purpose is to express yourself fully and authentically in the world? What would that mean? How well do you really know yourself? Do you know your values, your strengths, your patterns? How much of what your know about yourself has been shaped by other people’s beliefs and behaviours rather than from your own deep desires or by what feels right for you? Uncovering the truth about who you really are will lead you to your purpose.

(3) Your Passion is your purpose! That actually may be the case but what if you don’t know what you are passionate about? or what if you are passionate about wine or French poodles or swimming in the ocean, how do these things become your purpose? Your purpose isn’t necessarily a thing that you do with your life. It can be the qualities that you express in your day-to-day interactions, it can be how others feel when they are with you rather than your life’s work or career. What qualities do you bring forward in life? Are you a giver who feels joy from giving to others or a doer who feels happiest when doing practical things. Do you grab life by the horns and feel inspired by adventure or are you more measured and considered, radiating a sense of calm to all those around you? Do you love to solve problems or to come up with new and resourceful way of doing things. Understanding the qualities that it feels good to express will lead you closer to a sense of purpose.

(4) I’ll know my purpose when I find it, I just have to keep looking! Finding your purpose wont necessarily happen in a light bulb moment, it might be more of a slow burn that creeps up on you when you least expect it. That’s why its important to take the time to get quiet, to let go of the search and to just be with yourself. Give yourself a moment to notice what feels good and what feels out of sync for you. One of the biggest clues to being on purpose is a sense of being in the “flow”, everything feels easy and light and leaves you buzzing. Notice what lights you up inside and what is occurring in these moments. Your purpose might be more subtle than you imagine, don’t rule anything out!

(5) Once I find my purpose everything will fall into place. Living your purpose is actually quite possibly the scariest thing you will ever do! It can feel raw, exposing and vulnerable. You will still face challenges even when what you are doing is absolutely your purpose. Stepping into your purpose will ask you to show up as who you really are. No filters, no matching what you think others want you to be, just being you. Your fears will not suddenly disappear because your purpose has arrived. Living your purpose will often ask you to show up and be true to yourself despite the fact that its scary and despite the fact that you feel afraid. But its worth it!

So have you found your purpose yet? If not you are not alone. You have my invitation to take the pressure off yourself to be “there” now. You have my invitation to explore, to taste test, to discover and uncover. Allow your purpose to gently find you in your exploration, in your noticing, in your discovering and understanding of yourself. Allow it to creep up on you from where your hidden talents lie and your desires and dreams meet and become your special magic. The special magic that is YOU

You are your purpose!

I would love to support you to discover your purpose! 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

 

 

Dont Die with you Music Still in you

This time last year I had just returned from Hawaii where I had the great honor of learning from the late Wayne Dyer at the Hay House Writers workshop. Wayne’s words have been on my mind this week as I have been gearing back into creation mode after my break in Indonesia. Wayne talked about one of the his key motivators in life being a message he wrote to himself after reading Leo Tolstoy’s “The death off Ivan Illycich” which had been given to him by his Uncle Bill. ( you can hear Wayne talk about this here https://vimeo.com/19672457)

The message  ” Don’t die with your music still in you”

This statement resonates with me on so many levels. We all have so much unshared, untapped talent, wisdom and insight that we keep to ourselves and don’t express. We hold on to our gold because of feelings of not being good enough. We let our fears get in the way of what it is we truly want to do or be in our lives.

I bet even in this very moment as you are reading this you are aware of a part of yourself that you don’t give life to, or a talent or desire that you keep on the back burner. You allow your job or circumstances to take precedent over what you really love and what you are really good at.

Sometimes we just get in our own way. We are afraid of what other people will think or what it will mean for our lives or our families.

I totally understand this

I get it

I have done it myself and still do in certain areas but less and less.

For me losing some very precious souls over the years has shown me how much it costs us mentally, physically and emotionally to deny parts of ourselves, to deny what we truly desire. I have been struck by how much the world has lost when these same loved ones have passed without ever really sharing themselves fully with the world.

It breaks my heart to know that others wont remember them for who they really were, they will remember who it was they allowed the world to see.

It broke my heart until I realised I could do something about it.

I could be part of the solution not part of the problem. I could do something about it by sharing myself more fully with the world. By sharing my talents and skills and by showing up as myself, no cover up, no disguise or what is “acceptable”

I could do something about it by supporting others to share their music too.

It has felt scary. It has felt vulnerable and it still does some days but it has also lead me into a new career that I love. It has given me the job of supporting others to share themselves with the world. To share their music from a foundation of what feels right for them and what is true for them.

I have been given the gift of self-examination. I have 46 years of experience of calling myself to understand more, to feel more, to do more and to be more. Life has become my toolbox for working with others, for uncovering truth, values, deciphering the code of fears and blocks and stuckness.

I am intimately acquainted with the challenges of change and loss and grief. My painful experiences serve as a balm to soothe and hold others through their own. I feel very blessed to walk this path.

I feel blessed that I can honor those I have lost and support those who feel called to work with me through my own understanding of why this is so important. Why you and me and you and you and you and you all have something very special to bring to the world, to your family and your community but most importantly to yourself.

Your impact as an individual in this life you are living can never be underestimated.

So lets write that symphony that’s inside you, lets gather the notes that are your music and find a way to bring it forward, to let your melody out into the world.

It’s never too late to answer that call within, it’s never too late to become more of who you are in any aspect of your life. Get support, make a change and most of all don’t die with your music still in you!

Paula xx

If you would like to try coaching email pmcfarlane@clear.net.nz or phone me on 0274327601 to set up a complimentary 20 min call to see if it’s for you.

Why doing the Inner work of business is the key to your success

I had an interesting conversation with my partner after posting last week’s blog. Essentially he wanted to understand why I was posting about the masculine and feminine we all have within if I am a Business Coach. Shouldn’t my blog posts be more about business planning, generating start up capital or managing cashflow?

In a sense he is right, all of the financial components of a business are really important particularly in the start up phase and whenever you are moving to a new phase of growth and development. However I believe the personal factors are equally, if not more important.

Starting your own business is an incredibly challenging experience. It will put you face to face with your deepest fears and your strongest desires. You want, with all of you heart for your business to be a success in every way, but if you don’t take the time to work with the parts of you that become “frozen in the headlights” then it will always be a juggling act to keep your head above water.

You see the limiting factor in your business is YOU. Your confidence, your self-belief, your need to be seen, heard or loved, your fears, your emotional wellbeing, your ability to trust. All of the parts of you that need your attention will get triggered as your business goes through the stages of growth and development. The work of addressing your needs and your fears is as crucial as getting your financial forecast right.

For example, if you don’t believe in yourself and what you are doing this can translate into customers that challenge you, question what you offer or who choose not to use buy your products or services at all.

Your fear of failure can limit your confidence in taking steps that will grow your business exponentially.  Your need to be perfect will stop you from taking crucial steps and will also hold you back from taking on staff when you need to.

In any part of life, our outer world reflects our inner world so to really succeed, to really create work that sustains us financially and fills us up on an emotional and spiritual level we need to step up to the plate and do the inner work.

The inner work is not easy, in my experience, working with, understanding and moving through fear is more challenging than any degree program I have participated in. But it also reaps the greatest rewards.

When you make a commitment to yourself to take care of your inner business you free up your energy for more joy, creativity and satisfaction in your working life. You allow yourself to enter the holy grail of living your purpose. Work becomes a place where you can truly be yourself without fear, without filters. From that place it becomes much easier to grow a business that aligns with who you.Your energy and motivation to complete tasks and take action on the ideas that will grow your business becomes effortless and that is the true recipe for business success. From the place where your inner world aligns with your outer world, that’s where the magic happens.

So when things in your business aren’t working or you are feeling stuck, overwhelmed, or exhausted then, as my partner so eloquently puts it, some “tree hugging” is in order! It’s time to look for support to do the inner work, it’s time to look within.

As a Business Coach I work primarily in the area of emotional and spiritual alignment. Together we walk the inner journey of uncovering the parts of you that are missing in your business with the goal of creating a sustainable business that you love.

If you feel you need support to do the inner work email pmcfarlane@clear.net.nz or phone me on 0274327601 to set up a complimentary 20 min call to see if coaching is for you.

For the month of May I am offering 3 x 45 min coaching sessions for the price of 2 and I have just 3 spots left.

What is your default setting?

This new lifestyle I have embarked upon, so much slower than the racing pace of my former job, has given me space to really examine my own inner workings.

This has always been an area of interest to me. I have self analysed my way through life’s hurdles to this point and also accepted the support of others when I felt it necessary. Some of this has been shared here on this blog in the hope that someone else reading it might find it useful but also for the relief of spilling it onto the page. Writing is my pressure relief valve!

Last week I took a deep dive into my darkest feelings about myself. Feelings the “self help” world would call “limiting beliefs” This week I have felt lighter, extending myself the hand of understanding and gently inching forward beyond those limits.

What has persisted is a sense of restlessness. In an effort to free myself from my inability to settle into any distinct routine I have taken my own advice. I have slowed down, got acquainted with my restless feelings and I have resumed my meditation routine.

What has come from all this self contemplation is an awareness that I am waiting for instructions! I am waiting to for someone to tell me what to do next…..

After 10 years in the fast paced world of Sales where life is governed by call cycles booked 3 months ahead and targets to be measured by every step of the way, I have become very used to working to someone elses instructions. So used to it in fact that without it I have been left completely overwhelmed by the decision of what to do first, what to do next and what to do after that!

This awareness was quickly followed by another….I can give myself permission to do whatever the hell I want!

I am having to do a Factory reset on myself because all of my default settings are out of whack!

I am defaulting back to the routine of a life I no longer belong to – I don’t want to go back to and I am realising how conditioned I was to respond to life in a certain way.

There was essentially nothing wrong with this in the context of the role I was in. I was very successful and achieved results I am proud of however I no longer need to operate from the same defaults. I am in a position to take time to discover new ways of operating, new defaults settings for my working life.

My restlessness and procrastination has had a purpose to it. A deeper understanding of myself and the freedom to redesign my operating system. That’s where the JOY is! Paula Version 5.0!

Life’s greatest opportunity is that we are not limited by our default settings. We can always upgrade our operating system to perform in a more joyful way….

If we are prepared to give ourselves the time and space to discover this. To take a step back, a wider perspective, to appreciate all that we are – the good, the bad and the downright annoying! There is magic in the process I can promise you that!

Are you coming up against parts of yourself that are getting in the way of your success? Feeling stuck or blocked? I can help. email me at pmcfarlane@clear.net.nz to set up a free skype call to see if coaching is right for you.