Win The Battle – Lose the Armour

Summer 3

When we heard that we got our first choice school our family and friends were delighted.

I was numb. 

My reaction, “Great, I can now picture where I’ll be dropping my screaming child off. I hope there’s a nurturing person there that will peel him off me and give him a cuddle.”

Lots of people reassured me and I had the usual comment of “He’ll be fine”.  Maybe he will be this time, but maybe he won’t so I’ve been able to think about what I might do if he’s not.

I really thought I would feel better about sending him to school a year later but the reality was I was in a worst position.

I had scars.

The fights you fight for your child leaves scars.

My scars were talking.

My scars were teaching me to be wary, to be defensive, and to be ready for the next fight.

I’d been fighting and defending him for so long that I was constantly ready to attack.  When I realised this I decided I needed to get off the battlefield, smell some flowers and look at all that could be.

It was stealing me from the future.  School might be a place where:

  • My son grows and learns
  • His teacher is lovely and likes him
  • He makes lifelong friends
  • He becomes part of a community where he can make a difference
  • He learns things he’s never leant before
  • I might make new friends and our family might become part of a new community

He might laugh his head off, run to school, win an award, be part of a sports team or get a part in a school play.

For the last year the school has been the enemy, I’m still not happy with everything. I don’t think early years should have homework, I think they still start school too young but if I am choosing (and it is a choice) to educate my child in the UK under my local education system then they can no longer be my enemy.

I am not saying there won’t be other battles to fight. I am a lioness and I will protect my cubs.  But my current attitude is damaging…is damaging me actually.

Just me for now.

Although I am full of dread I am very positive about school to my son but currently my scars are talking.  So, it’s time to have a word with them:

A little note to my scars:

Thank you dear scars for fighting, for risking, for going against the flow.  You did it out of pure love for your child, a selfless act that other’s rarely understood. You stood tall, risked looking foolish and embraced the repercussions of such a decision. We are beyond grateful for your strength. But it is now time to stand down. Rest yourself, bask in the knowledge that you did it, you won. X x x

Today is a new day.

I choose to be excited.

I also know that on his first day of school I’ll still be in tears but I own them, they are mine and they are about me, his mum losing a little bit more of my baby. There is no other woman in the world that deserves to stand at those gates crying for that boy. That is my role. And I’ll do that with pride.

Over to you!

What dilemmas have you got about your family? Maybe you’ve found me because you too are wondering whether to delay your summer born.  Maybe you are thinking about home schooling.  Maybe you want to go back to work or just have some more time to yourself.

I can help you.

I am a Coach.

And if you are struggling with this issue or other parenting dilemmas a Clarity Call with me will help you and here’s why:

  • As you can see I truly know what it’s like to have parenting dilemmas. My role as a coach is not to tell you how I did it or tell you how you need to do it. But my experiences make my compassion for you strong. I will listen with an open heart. You will be heard.
  • I am not connected to your everyday life, although we will become connected. I don’t judge and my only agenda is to provide you with a safe speaking place so you can be empowered to make your own decisions.
  • I will be curious about what is going on in your life and help you work out what you need to do and then together we will come up with an action plan.

Can you imagine what it would be like if you had decided what you needed to do AND you had a clear way of making that happen?

Free! Empowered! Excited! Relieved!

If you work with me this is what will happen.

What next?

All you need to do is email me at contact@nicolahughes.co.uk to book your Clarity Call.

Thanks for listening to my story, I’m waiting to hear about yours.

Much love

Nicola  x x

http://www.nicolacoaches.co.uk

www.fb.com/nicolahughescoaches

Instagram – @nicolacoaches

 

 

 

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The Fight

Summer 2

This time last year we knew which school we were taking our first born child to.

He was 3.

He wasn’t toilet trained and he hated being a part from me (he’d never left my side when we went to play gyms and only occasionally at play groups, he even followed me to the toilet at friends’ houses and had a hissy fit if I snuck away for a wee!!)

“He’ll be fine!” Was the reply most people gave me.

I honestly didn’t think I had a choice, I was just going to have to turn up and hope some kind person would peel him off me and I’d run away sobbing. I was terrified. Meanwhile everyone put it down to me being an anxious mum or overprotective and message kept ringing out.

“He’ll be fine!”

Somehow I discovered the Facebook group “Flexible Admissions for Summer Borns”. The people on here literally saved my sanity and gave me the strength to accept he wouldn’t be fine.

When I took ownership the problem I was able to find a solution.

We decided to fight the long and unknown battle to delay his entry to school. You are allowed to send your child to school the term after they turn 5 (CSA – Compulsary School Age) but for my child that would mean missing the whole of reception and I wanted him to have a full education-just not yet. So I fought for entry into reception at CSA.  This involves filling in a form and sending evidence to the LEA of why you want your child to be delayed.  For the record we didn’t believe we were delaying him or keeping him behind we believed he would be going with his correct cohort as he was a late August born. Born a few weeks later this wouldn’t be an issue.  But for the sake of using the correct terms in the process we were delaying him.

We were very fortunate that the head teacher and early years staff of the school we had a place at were all very supportive of whatever we wanted to do. They would support our application or they would support our son in school.

I love my children but half the time I’m not sure how good I am at parenting two children at the same time and having a 1 and 3 year old was proving tough. The thought of having them both at home for the next year was awful.  Plus the cost of an extra years childcare and finding a new pre school seemed all too much.  I was reminded that this decision was nothing to do with what was best for me or what I wanted but what my son needed.  I realised that giving him an extra year at home could quite possibly be the best gift ever. (Someone please direct him here when he’s 16 and hates me because he’s got an extra year at school to do!!!)

After two weeks of deliberating, crying, worrying, not knowing what the heck to do. We made the decision to delay him.

And so the fight began

His current Pre school didn’t support us, they said educationally he was at the right level.  They failed to see him as a whole person, they failed to see that emotionally and physically he wasn’t ready.  I was devastated.

Health professionals wouldn’t support us.  Their role was to support children in school, so if they supported our application they were saying they couldn’t do their job

Some friends and many acquaintances thought we were nuts and we had several conversations that felt we were having to defend ourselves.  We were prepared to do this as we believed people needed to understand what we were doing but also the issue was rarely talked about and I wanted others to know what was possible.  But it was exhausting.

It’s a very emotive subject. Many people we spoke to had summer borns in school or had been summer borns themselves and they were fine. I wondered if people felt like we were judging them for their decision. I was so overwhelmed with our unfolding story that I didn’t have time to judge others. We made our decision based on what we thought was right for our child. It was exhausting.

We had a tough decision to make because we wouldn’t know if we’d been successful until December. If we didn’t win he’d have to join school in January or go straight into Year one in September.  It felt like a massive risk but we decided to cross the bridge we were at. He wasn’t ready for school now.  Holding all this in our mind and not knowing the outcome until December ..was exhausting.

One of the hardest things about this was trying to prove to strangers errr I mean professionals that this was in his best interest. When he was a new born I was told by several professionals that “Mummy knows best”. When did that change?  In the last 3 years apparently I know best. And it’s taken me about 3 years and another child to realise that heck yes, I do know best about my child.

Only for it to be taken away from me.

I had a horrid fight with his previous pre-school asking for their support and I actually got the opposite. She said if she was asked then she would have to disagree with me, he was ready. I remember saying to her that she didn’t even know him and had never taught him she was just the poor soul that had been chosen to speak to me (probably because no one else dared!!)

How on earth could a stranger choose his fate?

How on earth could anyone challenge what I know about my son?

Had he been permanently attached to their sides?

Had they watched him meet all his milestones much slower than everyone else?

Did they live with this sensitive and emotional little soul?

The application was written and it was time to wait.

3 professionals would be given our report and they would make a decision.  We were invited to a panel in December to ask and answer questions regarding this. Once we’d submitted the report we were able to get on with living our lives and our mantra really was, “We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”  However, the week before panel I wasn’t sleeping, I was having panic attacks and generally feeling pretty awful.

Head of admissions phoned me a few days before the panel,

“You need to hear what I am saying, 3 professionals (including an educational psychologist) have read your report and have all unanimously agreed that your son needs another year at home, you don’t have to come to panel. Do you understand what I am saying? They agree with you!”

She really understood what we had been through and wanted to make it clear that my fight was worth it. I am so grateful that she took the time to speak to me.

Leeds LEA are unusual actually. Many LEA’s do not support parent’s wishes to delay and this is a massive issue we are fighting in government at the moment.  If you do get agreement you need to get the head teachers permission of the school you want to go to and many many head teachers do not give their consent.  My story has been a nightmare but there are other parents going through this who have had bigger battles to fight.

But that day we celebrated.

All was left was to start the process of applying for schools all over again and hope we got back into our original school!!!

Don’t go anywhere, Part 3 explains how I got over all of this and how I can help you.

Much love

Nicola xx

http://www.nicolacoaches.co.uk

www.fb.com/nicolahughescoaches

Instagram – @nicolacoaches

What if it’s Not Okay?

Summer 1

Ever been really worried about something and your lovely friends tell you not to worry and that it will all be fine?

I am assuming that this happens to you a lot. I’m also assuming that you say it to your worried friends and I’m also admitting that I’ve said it too.

So there is no judgement in this blog.

We all say it!

Did you realise telling someone not to worry and that it will be fine is disempowering?

We think we are being kind and caring but actually we are minimising their experience of this problem.

Here’s a question:

What if it’s not ok?

What if you tell your friend not to worry about her biopsy and it turns out she has aggressive cancer?

What if you tell your colleague not to worry about the restructure but she gets made redundant?

You took away the opportunity to get strong and make a plan.

There is another way.

You can ask questions that help your friend talk about the problem, face the fact it may be awful and most importantly help her realise she has to do some problem solving.

Life is not a bed of roses and sometimes we have hard decisions to make and dark roads to walk down.

My Dilemma

I was dreading my summer born boy going to school just after he’d turned 4 because he wasn’t ready, he wasn’t toilet trained and he clung to me like a limpet.  Most friends told me that he would be fine.

You can read My Summer Born Story in Part 2.

Deep down I knew he wasn’t going to be fine but I didn’t know where to go with my thoughts because no one believed me.  Whenever I talked about it I was told not to worry. Everyone feels this way, everyone gets on with it, everyone is fine. The end.

When I took ownership of the problem I was able to find a solution.

You can’t solve a dilemma if you don’t truly realise you’ve got a problem.

You don’t know you have a problem if everyone says it’s fine.

Of course it’s never that simple. Many times it is fine and I am the only person I know in real life that has delayed her child from going to school so it must’ve been fine for the 100’s of parents who were worried like me last year.

I’m just asking you to think about how you could help your friends even more than you already do.

Help her open her eyes, listen with intent, wonder what it would be like to be in her shoes, voice that so she knows you’ve heard. Then wonder if there is another way.

Stay tuned for part 2 where I share my summer born story.

And don’t go anywhere until part 3 where I end the fight and tell you how I can help you.

Much love

Nicola x x x

http://www.nicolacoaches.co.uk

www.fb.com/nicolahughescoaches

Instagram – @nicolacoaches

New Year, New You?…..Nah!

The Best way to be you

Do you feel bombarded with adverts asking you to become the new you?

Do you feel guilty thinking you must make some new year’s resolutions but wonder what the point is as you know they won’t last long?

Do you know something needs to change but don’t know what?

New Year is a great time of year for Coaches, Fitness Instructors, diet gurus and the like to jump on the bandwagon that a New Year marks a New Start.

It annoys me actually. Really really annoys me if I think about it too much.

Give up smoking.  Lose weight. Start a fitness regime. Not bad suggestions really.

But selling you a new YOU like you are an old car and need replacing is, in my books NOT on!

Do you remember Trinny and Susannah? The gusty style gurus. Never once did they tell anyone to lose weight or run more. They worked with what they had and made massive differences to people’s confidence.

They would grab a fat bulgy behind of some poor woman, tell her she was fabulous and choose a pair of trousers that showed off this fabulous feature. All the while this woman had been hiding in baggy jumpers as she was so embarrassed and probably tried every diet under the sun.

She didn’t have to change.

She was believed in and nurtured and she grew in confidence. (She also had two brash women grab her behind)

She found her best way to be herself.

I’m not sure where the story ends but my fantasy is that she had the confidence to go for her dream job or call the guy she’d been secretly admiring.

I want this for you. I know you are flawed. I know there are things about yourself you don’t like, things you do, attitudes you have, hobbies you should start, practices you should take up.

I’m not inviting you to transform yourself and become this new you in 6 easy steps.

I’m inviting you to be the same you (because you really are marvellous) but more defined.

We get so obsessed about being thinner, or funnier or well thinner. I always want to be thinner, not a size 6 thin but thinner. Then one day I had this revelation that the scales didn’t predict my future. I could be all the things I wanted to be and achieve all the amazing things I wanted to do regardless of my size. (I don’t want to be a Britain’s Next Top Model by the way– which is just as well)

I need two things:

Confidence in myself & Belief in myself

So my invitation to you is this;

Do you want me to help you FIND YOUR BEST WAY TO BE YOURSELF?

I know you are frustrated, I know you don’t always know what this frustration is about, I know you are not sure what you would say to me or where to start.

But I know these three things.

  1. I know how to connect with you
  2. I know how to bring out the BEST in you that is hiding or hasn’t been discovered yet
  3. I know you can live the more fulfilling life you dream of.

Will you walk with me?

Will you talk to me?

Email me at contact@nicolahughes.co.uk and we will arrange your FREE Coaching Session. There is no hard sell, just a simple explanation of what I offer and the rest is over to you so you can try me out.

I have limited spaces so book in early to avoid disappointment.

I can’t wait to hear from you.

New Year New You? Nah

You are already fabulous you just need to FIND YOUR BEST WAY TO BE YOURSELF

Lots of love,

Nicola x x

The Balancing Act

The Balancing Act

 

I’ve heard people say that they are doing THIS for their children.

I’ve heard people say that they’ve made massive sacrifices to their life for their dream.

I’ve heard people say it’s all hard graft to get the money and the life they really want.

 

There’s something about these statements that make me feel very uncomfortable. Maybe I’ve got a lot to learn (I definitely have a lot to learn) and maybe I’m going to have some difficult decisions to make along the way. But I don’t think The Dream has to be that hard.

 

The Dream can be anything. It can be a complete change of life or it can quite simply being able to find time to learn a new hobby or skill and make time for yourself each week.

 

I’m going to look at this from a few different perspectives

 

Sacrifice

 

This is where my argument falls down a bit because I have made a few sacrifices:

 

  • I have attended weekend training courses and missed out on family time
  • I have spent my evenings developing Nicola Hughes the business, missing out on…err TV!!
  • I have spent my birthday money on branding and other bits of cash on the business

 

I don’t really see any of that as a major sacrifice apart from the fact that I missed the children but we all had a fabulous time, we just weren’t together. 4 days, 2 weekends is fine in my book. It might not be okay in your book but that’s fine because it’s your dream and you set the rules.

 

I’m not afraid to bust a gut to train for a 10k. I’m happy to sacrifice eating horrendously gorgeous food to watch my waist line for a bit. I’m happy to sacrifice. BUT, I’m not going to disappear from my children’s life to tap tap at my laptop and say I’m doing this for them!

 

What’s hard?

 

None of it really. When I read Entrepreneurial Revolution by Daniel Priestley he said that lots of people living their dream never retire because they love what they do, it isn’t work. Some nights I’ve gone to bed really late because I’ve been ‘working’ on new material and I’ve been so buzzed up and happy, impressed with myself, energised, and excited because it’s not hard work it’s The Dream coming nearer and nearer. And I love it. I might have to make decisions that feel difficult and have barriers I have to overcome and work out how the heck Mailchimp works but it’s just small parts of the overall Dream.

 

Balance

 

This bit is hard for me. It is so important for me to have balance in my life, and I harp on about this a lot. I cannot be a full time anything. I need balance. I need to spend quality time with my children, I need to do something just for me, I need family time, TV time, chocolate time, days out, days in, cooking, organising…. The list goes on. So I cannot and will not commit full time to anything in particular The Dream because I need balance.

 

If you have not noticed it is December. December is synonymous with trees, decoration, mince pies, Christmas cards, presents, advent calendar and preparing cool advent task things to keep up with all the other amazing mums, Christmas parties, jumpers, craft fair, visits to several Santa’s…. Not really much room for planning The Dream.

 

It hit me one Sunday evening. I had a list of thigs I had to do and I realised I had not prepared the advent activities I wanted to do for my pickles.  I did it so fast that I gave myself stomach ache and I didn’t enjoy it at all.

 

I had to think.

 

I thought about all the Christmas tasks I wanted to do and enjoy with the children or with my hubby. And as I was thinking about it I was wondering how fast I could get them done so I could then get the lap top out and write some content for The Dream that’s when it struck me.

 

I will NOT say I’m doing this for the kids if it means missing out on watching them put up the Christmas tree.

I will NOT make massive sacrifices if it involves the kids missing out on me being part of a whole season of life

If The Dream becomes all about graft and hard work then it’s not what it was meant to be and it needs to stop.

 

My children don’t actually care about The Dream, they want to be loved by a happy healthy mummy and daddy. And we are happy and healthy when we have balance in our lives.

 

I did consider giving The Dream up over the Christmas period because I felt such a strong pull to enjoy every Christmas moment with the children and make memories. They are 1 and 3. They will never be 1 and 3 again. Next year they will be 2 and 4, then 3 and 5. I never get this time back ever again. But I’m driven and excited and can’t stop The Dream from existing it calls me and I cannot shut it up.

 

So a memo to you both,

 

Hello December, meet The Dream!

I know you are in competition with each other for my attention but I love you both. I will not choose between the two of you. You will have to learn to get on with each other.  I will enjoy every Christmas moment and if The Dream would like to join us and inspire us while we are having fun then you are most welcome. But if you come and try and laden me with guilt then I shut the door on you because my family time is precious.

December, if I’m planning my next move or writing a blog feel free to sing Christmas songs while I work or feed me lovely mince pies to give me energy but do not come with your guilt trying to steal me away from something that is mine, that I own that I’m proud of.  Because I need this time.

December you are my seasonal joy. The Dream you are my inspiration. So let the party begin. X x

 

What’s Your Dream?

 

When you were reading this did something resonate with you? The desire to have balance, the pull between the children and something else, wondering how they can all work together.

 

I have a really awesome way of helping you get a birds’ eye perspective of your life and pin pointing which bit is out of balance.

 

That sounds pretty good right?

 

If you email me at contact@nicolahughes.co.uk  we can arrange a FREE coaching session and I will help you work it out.

 

Meanwhile, I’m sooooo curious to know what Your Dream is.  Nothing is too bonkers or too mundane for me. Come and visit me at www.fb.com/nicolahughescoaching and tell me what Your Dream is.

 

You know your friends? I reckon they have Dreams too, it’s just you never get to talk about it because you’re so busy with work or the kids. Please pass this onto them, it might be the life line they need to get them started.

 

Thanks for reading

 

Love  Nicola x x

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Jolt When you Step Back into Work

The JoltWhen you Step into work

In my Blog “Return to work – No you can’t.” https://nicolahughescoaching.wordpress.com/2015/11/15/return-to-work-no-you-cant/

I describe stepping into work like stepping onto an elevator. It doesn’t stop, it keeps moving just like your job has while you’ve been away. And when you have stepped on you got a jolt as you readjust.

The jolt onto an elevator is small.

You might not even notice it.

This Blog is about my Jolt as I step back into work.

IT IS NOT A SMALL JOLT!!

It’s a great big ruddy jolt that’s left me shouting, “Who took my life, I’ll have it back now please!!”

Ok, I’ll stop being a drama queen.

But here is a little context. I am writing this after day two at work. I work two days a week. I have two children. The childcare is a mix of grandma, childminder and preschool. We had a horrible double dose of chicken pox the week before and some family issues that wiped me out.

And hello work.

I loved being at work. I talked to adults without interruption from small people, I made a cuppa when I wanted and drank it before it went cold, I only had to feed myself at lunch time and no one followed me to the toilet and shouted, “Don’t make a loud noise mummy!” (The biggest pickle says this when we are in public toilets and he’s referring to the hand dryer that he’s scared to death of BUT he always says it when I’m sat on the public toilet and not when I’m washing my hands which in my mind would be a much more appropriate time to make his request! Ruddy kids!)

I still feel a little wobbly about the actual job I am doing and I wonder if I can remember how to do it. Plus the system has dramatically changed and I know I’m going to get frustrated with that. But I have an inner peace and good support at work and I know it will be fine.

What could possibly go wrong?

I thought the jolt I would experience was stepping through the office door. No, that was fun. The jolt was stepping in my front door when I got back. I had been gone all day. I didn’t know what had gone on, who needed what. It felt like trying to jump onto a very fast moving train. In truth it probably looked like any usual evening in the Hughes residence. But I didn’t know what to do?

I felt surplus – no one needed me

I felt guilty – I didn’t know what my children needed

I felt jealous – Someone else knew what they wanted

I felt trapped – I didn’t know how to make it right or at least workable.

I felt hungry – I didn’t know when I was going to eat my tea

I did what any self-respecting woman on a mission to be more fulfilled would do.

I planned my escape!!

I thought I’d get a new job and work 12 hours straight so I could avoid all of this. I thought I could change my childcare arrangements, I could quit my job and eat beans on toast for life.

Then, (a few days later)

I realised that I hadn’t given much thought to anyone else. So I asked and I kept asking.

I strongly but kindly said I wasn’t okay with some things. I set boundaries.

I offered possibilities. I was flexible.

We stated the obvious. We all need feeding.

We allocated jobs.

We renegotiated.

We said we would keep trying.

I enter Week 2 of work much happier.

So what is your Jolt? Are you living it right now? Or are you waiting and dreading and guessing what it will be?

Whatever it is and however you are feeling if you need help I know I can help you.

You don’t need to dread it. Just imagine how much easier it will be to have someone who understands walking along side you through it.

And if you’re living the jolt right now and can’t see a way out. There will be.

Whatever the situation you are in, if you can’t see the wood for the trees and want some help getting out or to find a new perspective get in touch with me at Contact@nicolahughes.co.uk and we can arrange a

FREE introductory Coaching Session for you.

When you have done that get on Facebook and like my page www.fb.com/nicolahughescoaching so you can keep up to date with my musings and information.

Lots of love to you

Nicola x

All Self Care Advice is Crap!

Daily Quotes

 

Apart from this, this is golden!

 

Seriously it’s gonna take a lot more than a hot bath and a walk to fix my monumental mess.

 

Do you feel you’re heading down a slippery slope but feel helpless to stop yourself?

 

Are you usually pretty resilient but this time somethings got the better of you?

 

Do you get a bit sick of self-help advice because whoever writes it must be a hermit who doesn’t have two kids a dog and a tonne of responsibility?

 

Keep reading because I am on your side.

 

It’s not that you don’t think a bit of mindfulness would be wonderful it’s just not possible and I know you aren’t making excuses, your life is a total balancing act and you’ve got a wobble on.

 

Even though you know a hot bath would be nice or 15 minutes to read a magazine would be luxury and a pub lunch alone with your partner is essential for harmony. The reality is the bath always has kids in it. There are no magazines because what’s the point of buying one, and a pub lunch!! Are you kidding? No baby sitter.

 

What are we exhausted, yet supposedly empowered women meant to do?

 

Self-care advice suggests you say NO

 

I’ve looked at my diary and tried to say no to things. I can’t delay the biggest pickles start at pre-school. I can’t cancel the smallest pickles birthday party. Could possibly cancel friends coming over for lunch but I don’t want to so I buy a massive lasagne and deal with the guilt of not providing a nourishing home cooked meal instead.

 

Self-care advice suggests look after yourself

 

I go to bed early but get woken up several times and wonder if I should just give up sleep altogether. I take vitamins. Have a good moan and a cry. Try to eat healthy but that involves more preparation. So spend time wondering whether I should eat healthily and use up energy preparing healthy food or buy pizza and feel rested but bloated and skint. Hubby intervenes and buys fish and chips and says fish oil is good. Good call hubby!

 

Self-care advice suggests yoga

 

Err no! I can’t do a keep fit class or go to anything else either. Nothing against them but I am rarely free from the pickles or I’m at work.

 

Then I had a revelation that helped me much more than any self-care advice ever has!

 

The Comfort Zone

 

I learnt about comfort zones, stretch zones and panic zones. The tasks in comfort zones feel safe, it’s easy and familiar. In the stretch zone it’s a challenge, you might feel a little panic, a few butterflies and some stress. And tasks in the panic zone you probably shouldn’t be doing because you feel extreme panic and stress just thinking of it.

 

As a passionate life coach I’d usually be talking about getting out of your comfort zone and developing yourself but not today.

 

Not when you are tired.

 

I realised that most of my day operated in the stretch zone. Even putting a load of washing in the machine was like the rat run trying to avoid being grabbed by small hands and moaned at.

 

I’m not sure about you but I can’t avoid my stretch zone, it’s good to have stretches and in theory when you’ve done it a few times it graduates to the comfort zone.

 

This is not true for the tasks that involve my little pickles, they are so unpredictable (and gorgeous) that they always add this unknown entity to life. I wouldn’t be without it but I have to admit I like to know what’s going on so I find it a stretch and I think it always will be.

 

It would be really easy to feel inadequate because I can’t handle the stretch of these simple parenting tasks. But that’s who I am.

 

My advice…I hope you don’t think its crap!

 

Nicola’s Self-care suggests: know your comfy place.

It might be that staying on the sofa all evening once the kids have gone to bed is your only comfort zone event of the day.

 

Or an hour to check your virtual world makes you feel safe.

 

Or eating a big piece of chocolate restores all the wrong in a day.

 

When I realised I needed to do these things instead of get my sorry butt to Pilates (a stretch zone for me – no pun intended). It was like I gave myself a huge permission, like a get out of PE letter from my mum!

 

Instead I looked at how I got comfort and where I felt safe.

 

If I’m not stressed and life is balanced then I’ll stretch myself some more because I’ve got a lot of things I want to achieve and sitting on the sofa isn’t going to get me very far.

 

But I really need to recognise those times and seasons and so do you.

Give yourself a get out of PE note and do what you need to do to recover from this season, because it is only a season.

All will be restored soon and you can carry on with your mission.

If you know your life needs some adjustment or you feel out of balance contact me as I’d love to offer you a free session to see if coaching is the right fit for you.

Email me at contact@nicolahughes.co.uk

And join me on www.facebook.com/nicolahughescoaching

Lots of warmth to you, Nicola x x

Also featured on www.lorifitzgerald.co.uk

What’s Your Real Obstacle? This is Mine!

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What’s Your Real Obstacle? This is Mine.

No matter what, do you find it really hard to get certain things done?

Have you got aspirations but really can’t see how you will get there?

Is something in your life rail-roading you?

Read on.

The next blog on my mind was to write about all the obstacles that get in the way of reaching our goals. I’d fully expect things like; belief in self, money, lack of knowledge in key areas, time, to name but a few.

I was going to post a picture of my mind map of jumbled mess of obstacles (before I obliterated them) and I was going to tell you how I overcame them and empower you to do the same.

Then tonight happened.

I’ve had a fairly good day of getting most things done and all pickles were fed and fairly happy.

That evening I was revved up and ready to sit at the laptop and do some work on my dreams and my big mission. I’d already overcome some obstacles of wanting just to veg out and watch mindless TV.

However, the youngest pickle woke up and screamed and no matter what would not stop. She was awake and up.

The obstacle has arrived!

I tried to explain to her that I had this awesome idea to help women;

Find Themselves, Be Themselves and Grow Themselves

And this evening I was doing exciting work towards achieving this (Okay so I didn’t have that conversation with her but you get the gist)

I look at my actual obstacle list now and think that’s all fairly easy to overcome compared to getting this one to sleep.

So, what about you?

What are your obstacles?

Do you struggle with self-doubt and wondering if you’ve got what it takes to do what you want to do? Are you juggling a million things and don’t know how to prioritize?  Are you short of money and it’s stopping you from getting a proper website or business cards?  Have you got no idea how to create a business plan?

Many of these obstacles can be identified and overcome with some thinking and support.

However, some things aren’t so movable.

What’s your real obstacle?

Maybe your partner is home really late and you never get chance to get on with it. Maybe your pickles are really little and need something from you that only you can give right now. Maybe they’re not so little but still need you.

(I wrote this blog a few weeks ago after little pickle wouldn’t sleep but this week I’m dealing with a double dose of pox and I’m ready to hand in the towel. This obstacle has completely depleted my life energy and I will need to do some serious restoration when it’s finished.)

I will always understand that sometimes it’s just not that easy.

I understand because I’m living it. Some obstacles I can move and some need embracing and soothing and when they are ready they’ll go back to sleep and let me get on. I cherish this little obstacle (Not the pox obstacle that can get gone!).

Truthfully work out if your obstacle is a big ugly excuse for not getting on with it or whether you need to accept that this is your season right now.

But there are some things you can do.

Keep dreaming and don’t lose heart. And if once a day you can grab 5 minutes to research something, write an idea down, watch a You Tube, by the end of the week you’ll be 35 minutes nearer your goal.

Then join the community of like-minded women at: www.facebook.com/nicolahughescoaching and let us know what your real obstacle is.

Love Nicola

Ps. If you realise that your obstacles are big ugly excuses that’s great. Get in touch and I’ll tell you how I can help with this contact@nicolahughes.co.uk

PPs. Don’t forget to share this with your like-minded friends.

 

My Deepest Fear Is…

My Deepest Fear Revealed

My deepest fear is..

Are you someone that does things on time or leaves them to the last minute?

When you got homework as a child did you do it on the way home or on the way to class the following week?

Will you do an all-nighter before a deadline or are you tucked up in bed feeling satisfied and accomplished?

I get it done. I am a doer. It was done last week.

I frequently say, “There are no flies on me.”

I’m sure if we read some psychology reports we would discover the reason behind those of us that get things done now and those of us that leave it to the last minute. I’m sure we are both as equally messed up.

I have spent the last few weeks glued to my lap top (my new lap top by the way for my new business!) Any blog, any ideas get written up and time spent on them. I’m getting things in order, I’m researching, I am on it.

So why oh why then am I leaving one particular aspect to the last minute? Why am I putting it off and doing everything else first.

We all procrastinate right? I hate hoovering but when I do get the hoover out I’m always interested in what I am procrastinating or dreading doing more than the hoovering.

This is a bit different and I guess there’s an emotional edge to this I need to uncover. But before I tell you about me, what about you?

What is it you are not doing?

Are people telling you, you are good at something in particular but you keep putting it off or making excuses?

What is it you really want to do but aren’t? Maybe a new hobby, learning to run, starting a business.

It’s probably time to think about why you are putting it off and what the route cause is.

Have you read my first Blog – Do It Afraid. Great, read it again.

It’s time to sort ourselves out.

Stop limiting ourselves and get on doing the very thing we could be absolutely brilliant at if only we’d give ourselves half a chance.

When I was in my twenty somethings I spent 3 years in the USA training to be a Mime Artist under the two most gifted artists I have ever met. Their performances radiated through my being like nothing I’ve ever seen or probably will ever see again.

It was powerful.

When I started this particular blog I didn’t know what the answer was, I genuinely hoped that as I wrote to you honestly I would uncover something.

And there it is.

They were powerful.

Can I be that powerful?

I am reminded of this amazing quote that you might have heard if you’ve watched the film Coach Carter.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” Marianne Williamson.

I’ll tell you now what I’m meant to be doing. I’m meant to be choreographing a mime that I can perform to a group of ladies in a workshop I am running. I can run workshops standing on my head, I do it as part of my day job. But for some reason this FEAR has infiltrated into the workshop and as it stands I have a few exercises and nothing else. At the moment the workshop would be ok.

It needs to be brilliant.

I need to be brilliant

And you need to be brilliant.

It is in us we are holding it hostage because the potential we have in us overwhelms us.

Some of you are pftting me right now because you think you have no power.

Of course you do. Why on earth would you have no power? Prove your lack of power!

There is a lightbulb inside you waiting to be turned on.

Your job is to find the switch and turn it on.

How are you going to do that?

Email me at contact@nicolahughes.co.uk and claim your free life coaching session

Then keep connected with me at www.facebook.com/nicolahughescoaching and I’ll keep sharing my journey.

Lots of love to you as you figure it out.

Nicola x x

PS. The next day I sat down and wrote the workshop and mime in about an hour. I even practiced the mime. Sometimes we just need to acknowledge our stuff, give it a courtesy nod and then shift it out of the way. If I did it so can you!

I’m Gonna Win The Lottery….Come A Little Closer, I’ll Tell You How

Win, Win, WinI’m gonna win the Lottery – Come a little closer and I’ll tell you how.

Do you dream of winning the lottery and what you will do with the money?

Once you’ve paid off the mortgage, gone on the biggest holiday ever and bought a ridiculous amount of expensive bags, you dream of being this secret philanthropist (Took me ages to work out how to spell that and don’t even ask me to say it!). Blessing your community and friends without them knowing.

Okay, maybe the last bit’s just me.

But we all dream of life with huge amounts of money.

I love asking this question of people as I love hearing the unusual things people want to do or will do.

This weekend I bought my last lottery ticket. I didn’t win. I totally expect to win and I’m devastated when I don’t. Needless to say I’ve entered about 10 times in my whole life because it’s too traumatic!

My handsome hubby tells me that I have more chance of being bitten by a shark and dying from it, than winning the lottery! And he wonders why I hate swimming in the sea!

This aside I have full intention of winning the lottery – My Lottery!

And you can win too. You can win your lottery.

If I won the lottery (sorry I’m at it again I can’t help it I’m obsessed) I’d walk into this rich life I never lifted a finger for. Once I realised I had a dream that could become a reality I wanted that and not the lottery win. I want to build something.

You can look at all you have achieved and feel proud of yourself and your kingdom. You can do it. You will win.

I fully intend to pay off our mortgage, have dream holidays and much more.

So, tonight with your partner, or dog or whoever will believe you. Write down your lottery winning list.

Hunky hubster and I did our dream list one night.  Amongst other things, I wanted a house full of Ercol furniture and he wanted a fast car!!

Keep looking at your list and keep believing that you can do it.

Let it inspire you to shape a life for yourself that you will be proud of.

Stick with me and you’ll work out how soon enough, if you haven’t already.

Join the community of like minded women at: www.facebook.com/nicolahughescoaching and tell us what is on your Lottery List because we believe you will get it.

And to claim your free life coaching session email me at contact@nicolahughes.co.uk

Love Nicola x x

If you think this will resonate with any of your lovely friends please pass it on and send them to my FB page.