How can I be the best version of myself?

How can I be the best version of myself?

Is that a question you’ve asked yourself lately?

Or ever?

We spend far too much of our time worrying about living up to other people’s expectations without pausing for a while to consider our own.

What values do you hold in high regard?

What traits do you most admire in others?

How can you spend more time living and breathing as the best version of yourself?

As a small-business owner (or heart-centred entrepreneur, as I like to say) I used to spend far too much time trying to create services and packages that would appeal to all different kinds of potential customers. If someone suggested a different angle I hadn’t thought of, I’d add that too. And I got tired. Exhausted. Burnt out.

As the old saying goes, I was trying to please all of the people, all of the time and winding up not pleasing anyone! Least of all myself.

Something had to change.

Through various twists and turns, challenges and plot twists, meetings with inspiring thought leaders and taking the time to tune into what was really important to me (aka core values), my life slowly began to sparkle.

It felt feel really good. Great, in fact.

It was as if all the magic I’d believed in as a child had landed in my lap. 

It wasn’t luck though, or even hard work.

The magic appeared because I’d become aligned to my inner voice and started to truly understand that it wasn’t what I did in my work (and personal life) that was important, but how and why I did it.

Asking myself the question: ‘How can I be the best version of myself today?’ soon became a daily habit.

For many months, I wrote down my thoughts, used oracle cards and my favourite rose quartz crystals, and allowed my inner voice to guide me.

You see, it wasn’t about creating a new e-book about a certain topic, or putting out a special priced offer on a new course, what really mattered was the passion at the core of everything I touched with my love and energy.

I realised that helping other people to shine brilliantly – to be the best version of themselves – was the really important thing to me.

This was (and still is) my why.

It didn’t matter whether I helped people gain business clarity during a quick 20 minute video call or supported them by writing their website copy, sent a quick ‘how are you feeling today?’ message or offered a short training session in their Facebook group.

How I delivered each of those things – from a place of love, compassion, kindness, empathy, experience and integrity – was integral to my personal fulfilment and, ultimately, more business success.

When you begin each day by thinking about how you can be the best version of yourself, you remove the need for expectation. You’re not expecting other people to act or talk in a certain way, you’re focused on how you can be better.

Once expectation is out of the way, it’s far easier to live from a place of love.

There’s no longer any need to act from fear, sadness or anger.

Whether you’re a business owner or not, we all make thousands of choices every single day. Choose the things that are in alignment to your core values, your inner voice, your ‘why’, and together we can create a ripple effect that makes every home, every school, every workplace and every community a more nourishing place to be.

How can you be the best version of yourself today?

Lorraine xx

Are you a passionate heart-centred entrepreneur interested in finding out how I can help you to shine brilliantly? Then hop on over to my Work with Me page to find out more. 

The Power of Human Connection

Over the last three years my life (and business) has changed dramatically because of one thing:

Human Connection.

I’m not really sure if I’m an introverted extrovert or an extroverted introvert (and I hate labels anyway) but to be able to spend a high percentage of my time safely tucked away in my own home, free from the draining energy of crowds, toxic office culture and negative energy vampires means that I’m a happier, calmer and more creative person than ever before.

But, of course, it’s not particularly helpful to be at home alone when running your own small business, so I’ve found a way to form genuine connections and true friendships with incredible women across the globe.

Setting up one or two video calls each week with women who inspire and motivate me (and vice versa) is the perfect way to boost social connection and engage in powerful human conversations.

And human conversation is the key to successful sales according to my good friend Jules White, a British sales coach, motivational TEDx speaker, author of Live It, Love It, Sell It and podcast host of The Human Conversation. (She’s a busy girl!)

In her book, Jules talks about the role of empathy in sales conversations and how to create strong relationships built on integrity:

‘The beauty of relationships is they last longer than a single transaction, so by conducting yourself with integrity and empathy rather than focusing on ‘winning’ you’re likely to generate future business. Your client will come back to you when they need you, and they’ll recommend you to others. That’s the real win. This is human selling and human connection.’

I love Jules’ approach but I’m also acutely aware that many women will shy away from creating these deep connections because they feel threatened by other women. 

Why is that?

Some might say it’s a link back to ancestral times such as the Salem witch trials when women were forced to expose other women as witches in order to protect themselves and their families. Others might say it’s just in our biological nature or that it’s simply learned habits from the culture we live in today.

But…

Every week I hear stories in the online space of women copying other women’s work, branding, images or words, women tearing others down or using people to get to the top. Not only is it stressful for those incredible, hard-working women who’ve worked so hard to elevate their small business into the online space to help others, but it’s very sad for those women who believe that using and abusing really is the only way to get what they want. (Hint: It’s not!)

When women support each other, incredible things happen.

Yesterday, I had a deep conversation with Georgia Varjas, a motivational speaker, writer and mentor living in Spain, about why women feel threatened by other women. We covered all sorts of angles from confidence and insecurities to labelling and judgment. Georgia reminded me of a quote she used during her amazing talk at Helen Packham’s Entrepreneurial Leaders Live event in Brighton in June:

The tongue has no bones, yet it is strong enough to break a heart.’ (Anon)

Georgia very generously invited me into her creative process and book writing journey and shared her ideas for the theme, chapters and messages within and from our conversation we both went away feeling inspired, motivated and filled with creativity.

When you open up and allow other women into your life and feel confident and secure in who you are, then amazing things really do happen.

In addition to these social connections and genuine friendships being so powerful when it comes to raising your profile and supporting your business passions in the online space, it’s important to remember that relationships are a form of self-love and nourishment and have a profound impact on our health.

Robert Waldinger, director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, says, ‘The surprising finding is that our relationships and how happy we are in our relationships has a powerful influence on our health … Taking care of your body is important, but tending to your relationships is a form of self-care too. That, I think, is the revelation.’

The message I’m sharing with you today is that building relationships on a solid foundation of integrity, kindness and love is vitally important for our health and our businesses.

I know that I couldn’t be where I am today without the love and support of so many incredible women. And I’m so grateful to each and every one of them.

Are you taking the time to build relationships?

I’d love to know…

Lorraine xx

If you’re interested in anything or anyone I’ve mentioned above, here are the links:

Live It Love It, Sell It – book by Jules White

Jules White – Facebook group- ‘Live It Love It Sell It with Jules White’

Georgia Varjas ‘Slipping and Sliding on the Glass Ceiling’ – live talk from Entrepreneurial Leaders Live, June 2018

Georgia Varjas – Facebook Page ‘Step Up and Stand Out’

Helen Packham, leadership & Business Coach, TEDx speaker and creator of Entrepreneurial Leaders Live events

The Harvard Study of Adult Development

Don’t give up on your dreams

When did you stop following your dreams?

I know you had dreams, desires, goals. Maybe even just a knowing feeling that somewhere in life there would be more than this. But, at some point you gave up. You settled for less than you deserved. Less than you were meant to be. Less than you dreamed of.

Why did you do that?

Because the fight got too hard. It was easier to live a quiet, simple life. It was easier to stay in the job you hated. It was easier to let the kids eat oven-ready dinners. It was easier to just throw on the same jumper and jeans. It was easier to go for the natural look. It was easier to live with someone who made you feel rubbish than to put yourself back in the dating pool. It was easier to keep driving the old car that kept breaking down. It was easier to rely on your husband for money. It was easier to book the family holiday to the same place every year where the kids would be safe and entertained.

But what happened when you stopped fighting and just lived the easy life?

You resented the job you were in. Your kids didn’t thrive as much as they might have on home cooked, real food. You felt frumpy and plain and maybe invisible too. Your self-esteem took a nose dive. You didn’t trade in the car for a more reliable one. You didn’t have any need to take a risk. You didn’t travel to places that really lit up your heart.

Did that feel good?

I’m guessing not. While you were in that phase (or maybe still are) you switched off your dreams and goals buttons and forgot all about them. At least, you thought you had. But deep inside there was always this gnawing feeling that you weren’t quite in the right place or living the life that was right for you. Sometimes these feelings disappeared for months at a time. Maybe you embraced a new partner, a new baby, a new house, a new job, wonderful friends, dieting breakthroughs and fabulous new clothes. It wasn’t all bad. Hey, from the outside your life even looked great.

But then, out of the blue came one of those lightbulb moments. A realisation. A feeling. A sensation.

You began to feel fired up; that warmth in your belly and tingly pins and needles down your limbs. Your mind raced as you pieced together a few more parts of the puzzle. Yes! I can do this! This is for me! Why didn’t I see it before? And then, like a shooting star that fizzles before your eyes, the fears are back and your dreams are lost.

You pick yourself up and fall back again.

And again. And again. But just like a baby learning to walk, you have to keep trying. You really do. If you don’t try to live the life of your dreams someone else will. Someone else will be there, shining bright, on your podium. It’s your step. It may be a big one, but you have to climb it and stand on top and take your rightful place in the world.

Because, as a wise person once said, you were born for greatness. You were born to shine brightly. You were born to be you.

Don’t ever let anyone else tell you you can’t do something.

You can achieve anything you put your mind to. What would really make you happy? What makes your light shine brightly inside? What lights your soul and brings about that sparkle that others notice in you?

We make the mistake of believing dreams and goals have to be BIG with expensive material items; flashy cars, big houses, jewellery, clothes, a jet set lifestyle. But really, what lights you up might be something relatively small: spending your evenings knitting and creating gorgeous baby shawls, looking after your animals at home or spending an hour interruption-free with your children every evening working on their homework and inspiring them to take up extra learning in non-academic areas, in things that light up their little souls.

If this is you, somewhere between rock bottom and totally motivated but not sure where to start, then take a tip from all the amazing entrepreneurs out there who are making it big, succeeding in their personal and business goals and living their dream life – and not being ashamed to hide how fabulous that looks.

  • Prioritise self-care – Whether it’s regular beauty appointments or simply exercising, taking a shower and popping on some make up, just do the stuff that makes you feel good. The things that make you feel feminine and ready to kick some ass.
  • Start every morning with journaling and gratitude. Write down the things you are grateful for. The things that light up your life. The things you love about yourself. The things (or people) you’re proud of. (Note: include yourself in the ‘proud of’ category!)
  • Create a vision and set goals. Make a vision board, use Pinterest, change your laptop screen saver, stick a picture to the fridge door…. Keep your goal visual and in your space every single day. 
  • Don’t be afraid to go left when others go right; to NOT be a sheep. Follow your dreams, your goals, your beliefs and your values. If you want to set up your own business, homeschool or your kids, stop drinking alcohol or travel the world for a year, find a way to make it happen regardless of what everyone around you might say or how society makes you feel.
  • Take action. While the Law of Attraction is a powerful force, you still have to take consistent action to achieve your goals and your dream life. After all, if you want to win the lottery, you have to buy a ticket! Make the time to do your research, learning, networking, saving money or whatever it is that you need to do to get that little bit closer every single day.

 

If you could go to bed every night knowing you were closer than you were yesterday, wouldn’t that feel amazing?

 

Lorraine xx

 

If you enjoyed reading this blog you might like this one….

It’s Time to STOP Playing Small

It’s taken me a really long time to realise that the answers were inside of me all along.

But I played small.

I didn’t shout about all the gifts I could offer the world.

I wrapped up my self-worth in qualifications, relationships and (if I’m honest) my kids.

I always knew that I had knowledge that would benefit others but it would frustrate me when they wouldn’t buy my stuff.

Of course, many people did work with me, how else would I have remained in business for so many years….

But they didn’t flock to me in their hundreds.

They didn’t throw their credit cards at me.

They didn’t flow to me with ease.

Why?

Because I made it easy for them not to!

I discounted my offers before they’d even asked the price.

I posted adverts in FB just once or twice, not consistently.

I threw money at FB post boosting without any clue what I was doing (actually FB ads is still on my to-do list to learn properly!)

And….I was living a life of struggle.

Not enough money to pay bills in full and on time.

Not enough money for holidays, meals out, new clothes and shoes.

Not enough money to eat an abundance of healthy food, nor supplements to help my health issues.

In fact, my nutrition business became about helping people to eat on a very small budget.

I was doing the very opposite of EXPANDING.

I was shrinking.

And it had to stop.

Ironically, I’d been doing all the ‘right’ things for years.

Positive mindset, learning about money blocks, staying away from energy vampires…

But it wasn’t enough.

I had to look INSIDE ME.

Angel cards and moon rituals helped me to RECONNECT to me. To the spirit deep inside me that had been crying to get out for so long.

I talked to her. I cried. I journalled. I had lightbulb moments.

And then I had a dream…

A dream that confirmed what the angel cards had been telling me repeatedly:

‘Your life purpose involves reading, editing, writing or selling spiritual books.’

Boom!

There it was.

I’d spent 21 years writing all my own content for my nutrition and fitness business. 21 years of being published in magazines, speaking on the radio, running a local magazine, writing nutrition programmes, creating recipe e-books and, of course, typing thousands of words every week across social media platforms.

I knew how to write! I even had qualifications in English language, literature and creative writing.

I loved to write…. even engaging with other people’s posts I’d always write the longest responses (sometimes more is more, honest!).

So why was I holding back? Why wasn’t I using these skills to help others? What could I offer the world? How could I best serve my purpose?

Suddenly everything became clear. The kind of clarity that makes you wonder how you could ever have NOT seen this before!

And of course, once you SEE, you cannot un-see.

The Soulful Word was born.

No more procrastinating and playing small.

No more keeping my talents hidden from the world.

No more struggle and scarcity.

It was time to help other women shine brilliantly by helping them get their passion, mission and dreams into words so they could share their gifts with the world and create the impact they longed for. 

In helping others, I shine brighter myself.

So, if you’re struggling, ask yourself ‘how can I best serve?’

Then listen carefully to what your inner feminine wisdom tells you.

Don’t shut her out.

Don’t block her voice any longer.

She wants to be heard.

Then take those words, combine them with your natural, intuitive gifts (and all those qualifications and courses you’ve taken over the years) and share your amazing energy with the world.

Stand up proud.

Look everyone in the eye.

And shout from the rooftops with love and integrity.

Girl, you’ve got this!

Lorraine xx

 

If you like this blog you might also enjoy: Living your Truth in Life and Business

Living your Truth in Life and Business

Our planet is in a mess, and so are we.

Every day we see images of war torn countries, extreme weather conditions and the visible impact of human destruction: oceans filled with plastic, rainforests stripped bare and animals hunted to the point of extinction.

It hurts.

Just as the damage to our planet runs deep, so do the wounds that break our hearts.

If you’re a compassionate human being or an empath with heightened sensitivities, you’ve probably reached the point where you know that you have to do something to make a change; that you can no longer simply sit back and let someone else sort everything out. 

It’s these small changes that help us to move forward and, collectively, will really make a difference.

So, at a time when you may well be choosing to buy less plastic packaging, opt for secondhand clothes and furniture or switch to natural toiletries and cleaning products, I want to ask you to stop for a moment and take a breath.

A deep, slow breath in…. and out.

Then ask yourself this question…

What makes me feel really good inside?

The things that make us feel good stem from the choices we make that are aligned to, or in tune with, our core values. The things that make us feel bad, icky or angry are usually the things that are the polar opposites to our values (or trigger a reaction to make us take a moment of self-reflection).

In the same way as our planet has come so far from the natural, unspoilt world it was just a few hundred years ago, we too veer off course and find ourselves living a life that sometimes feels a bit wrong.

It may look like a perfectly happy, normal life to others, but on the inside we aren’t feeling fulfilled.

And frequently we feel guilty for not feeling fulfilled when clearly we have so much more than others – like a roof over our heads, a healthy bank balance, happy children and a regular, well paid job.

The same can be true in business. We may have left the security of a corporate role to set up our own small business from home and yet it isn’t paying off with the freedom and joy we expected.

Or perhaps our business is thriving but we feel like it isn’t making us truly happy; like it’s gone off track and become something we had never expected. 

In both life and business, we can easily end up living a life that pleases other people (or our customers) and forget about what really lights us up. What makes us feel good inside?

The secret to living your truth in both life and business, is to always come back to your inner truth and core values.

Think about what really lights you up – the things that give you a giant warm, fuzzy heart or butterflies in your stomach – and then do more of that!

Every time things start to feel difficult, perhaps with money problems, arguments with loved ones or frequent illness, take an honest look at what’s been going on in your life and how you may have strayed from your true path and values.

It’s not a bad thing to veer off course, if anything it can actually be helpful in giving us clarity around the things that really matter. It’s the same with following a healthy eating plan – you don’t realise how much your previous unhealthy diet was making you sick until you slip off track and resume your old habits. Each time you revert to the fresh, whole food, healthy diet you feel great again.

Time and time again we repeat this pattern and each time our commitment grows stronger.

If you feel like your business, personal life, relationships or health have gone off track, take some time today to consider what really matters to you and how you will take action to get back on course to living a life aligned to your inner truth.

Lorraine xx

If you enjoy this blog, you might like my recent article:  How to Slow Down and Align to your Inner Truth

What does Freedom mean to you?

The theme of FREEDOM has come up so many times for me recently that I’m taking it as a nudge from the Universe to write about it today!

In the online business space we hear (or read) the word freedom a lot…

  • Freedom from financial stress.
  • Freedom from insecurities and fears.
  • Freedom from feeling stuck with no clients.
  • Freedom from tech gremlins.
  • Freedom from the corporate lifestyle.

And, if you’re anything like me, you’re probably feeling a desire to break free from the consumerism culture that dominates our modern world.

Perhaps you’re thinking about how you can celebrate Christmas without the endless amounts of plastic packaging and buying presents just because you feel you should.

Or maybe you’re trying to step away from negativity and toxicity to give you the space and freedom needed to connect with more people who hold the same values as you in terms of authenticity, integrity, honesty, love and compassion.

So what does freedom mean to you in your life?

On Instagram, the hashtag #freedomlifestyle has over 145,000 posts but is dwarfed by #laptoplifestyle with 1.2 million posts! A sure sign that more and more people are looking for an existence with meaning; a lifestyle that allows them more time to do the things they are passionate about and less time simply working to pay the bills.

Do you feel you have enough freedom in your life?

Time to grab a notepad and allow your thoughts to spill out onto paper…

Do you have time freedom to do all the activities, sports, hobbies and courses you’d love to do?

Do you have financial freedom to live the lifestyle you desire, or to travel on wild adventures?

Do you have health freedom to live every day to the full, free from pain or illness?

Do you have voice freedom to speak up and share your truth or stand up for what you believe in?

Do you have spiritual freedom to just be yourself; to be comfortable in your own skin and shine brilliantly as who you really are?

Are there any areas where you feel you don’t have the freedom you desire?

If so, what could you change?

How could you make today different?

Remember, you are the only one with the power to change your life. External events may test us or take us to deep, dark places, but ultimately, you are the only one who can shift your mindset and live the life that makes you truly contented and filled with joy.

I’d love to hear what freedom means to you.

Do hit reply and share your thoughts, I personally respond to every email I receive.

Lorraine xx

 

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