Sunday, November 25, 2018
Hi Ladies (and Derek :) (I have one male reader that I know of),
How was your weekend? Mine was great I had the whole weekend off from the restaurant, much as I love my work there it was so nice to have time stretching out in front of me with nowhere I had to be.
Anyway, I'm popping in here on Sunday evening because I have time and energy to do so! And because I want to ask your opinion about something.
Last week I had my first business coaching session with The Content Coach aka Jo Johnson.
Jo and I have actually known each other since our twenties, we met through boyfriends at the time, we all went our separate ways and I reconnected with Jo when we realised we were both living on the Peninsula.
Jo had a successful corporate career and now has a great business working for herself as an author, writing coach and marketing mentor.
The session was so helpful for getting clarity and direction on what should come first in my long list of business ideas, projects and opportunities, and how I should focus my time. Focus being the operative word.
Here's the thing I want your opinion on:
I talked to Jo about wanting to write a series of books and to develop writing workshops, namely a workshop titled Write To Heal, and whether or not I should continue blogging under the Wholefood Mama 'brand' or switch to my name and develop my 'platform' rebranding to Nikki Fisher.
The whole topic feels slightly weird to talk about but as I know some of my most dedicated readers here are dear friends whose expertise and opinions I value I thought I'd put it out here to you, my readers :)
What do you think?
Continue as Wholefood Mama or switch and put myself out there as Nikki Fisher?
I've definitely outgrown writing about what to put in lunchboxes #spareme but I still kind of like being the Wholefood Mama, I still think it sums up to some degree who I am.
Jo thinks it is time to let it go and be more of Nikki. #abitscary
Love your thoughts. Email me email@example.com
photo is me in kindergarten circa 1978
Thursday, November 22, 2018
Are you addicted to your phone?
Go on be honest.
Perhaps you don't think you are but if you really paid attention to how much time you spend scrolling or how you take your phone absolutely everywhere you go, then maybe, just maybe you'd think 'hmmmm I'm actually super distracted by my phone'.
A little while ago River (my 12 year old son) came up with the idea that we should all do personal challenges, "Mum I think yours should be not using your phone for a whole day".
Ouch. That kind of stung a little. Is my phone use really dominating my day and my attention?
I think it is.
So much communicating between mums happens via text and through apps - drop offs, pick ups, sports practice, school activities often all that information requires me to be looking at my phone, or paying attention to it while I'm doing something else as I wait for the beep of a reply.
Social media is a whole other story of distraction that is up to me to keep in check.
I have certainly burnt toast while falling down the social media rabbit hole but I'm sure much worse things have happened because focus is on the screen and not on what is happening in the room.
One thing I'm really glad about is that Instagram wasn't invented when I was breastfeeding my babies. No mother blame, guilt or shame intended here!! But if it had of been I could imagine myself tempted in the depth of the night breast feeding and scrolling over the top of my baby's head for hours.
My sister-in-law, Davini, and I were chatting about social media distraction, Davini realised she was unwittingly losing hours of her life to facebook so set herself a social media 'curfew' - no social media during the day, only between 4pm - 6pm and even then just for a short time within those hours (her children are all over the age of 17 so she's not dealing with toddlers and babies during those hours).
I don't watch TV, I rarely watch Netflix (I know, what's wrong with me?) but I do lose myself to social media each day, if I'm honest probably for one to two hours. Some of that time is work but some of it is just pure escapism.
It's going to look different for everyone but here are some ideas:
- If your phone addiction is really bad I would suggest deleting social media apps and going cold turkey for a while.
- If you can't face that at least turn the notifications off.
- Consider not having email come to your phone. That way you won't be tempted to 'just quickly check' your email and then wind up on Instagram. You will also be more focused at your desk if you set time purely to respond to email.
- I'm guessing you set times for your children to have screen time, try setting some times for yourself AND STICKING TO THEM. One thing I have always done is turn off the computer at pick up time and not go back on it until the boys are in bed. I've had 6.5 hours while they're at school to be on screens for work I want to give them my full attention when I see them.
- When you go to the park or sporting events with your kids leave your phone in the car. Our kids want our full attention in these situations. Everything else can wait.
- At home have a place that you store your phone that is out of sight that way you won't be tempted to check it so frequently.
- Try Screen Free Sunday for the whole family.
And if you want to read a whole book on the topic take a look at How To Break Up With Your Phone.
Now put down your phone :)
Tuesday, November 13, 2018
So now I'm making space to reflect which is something we don't do enough in the busy times we live in.
If we just continually strive to keep up with the busyness, how do we ever change track if the busy one isn't getting us where we really want to be? Isn't fulfilling us?
That's why I think making time to reflect and appreciate is important.
And for me that usually means writing.
So, what's been happening over these past two weeks?
Well, I made pastry. By hand. From scratch.
I rubbed butter into flour, then poured a couple of tablespoons of chilled water into the buttery, floury mix and 'cut' the water in with a butter knife like I watched my great grandmother do a thousand times standing by her side when I was a child.
Her kitchen was a haven for me. I learnt so much and every time I make pastry I think of her and think how lucky I am to have learnt a skill that not many people learn now as part of their childhood.
I rolled the pastry out with a yellow handled wooden rolling pin gifted to me by my friend Lucy who I haven't seen in years but I have such warm memories of our old friendship, of a time when all our babes were babies and we spent more time together because life was running slow on 'baby time'.
Lucy would call me on a weekday morning and say "I'm making pikelets, come 'round" and we would sit with the children, drink tea, chat and eat pikelets dripping with butter and jam.
This year was the first year that Melbourne Cup really bothered me - sorry to my friends who love frocking up and having a flutter - first and foremost what bothered me most was thinking about those beautiful horses and what they endure, and then there is just the excess that goes with the whole thing.
I know it translates to jobs across lots of industries but there was just something about it this year that made me feel...icky. It was interesting to see amidst the photos of fashion and opulence there was also so much backlash against the Cup on social media this year. I took it as a sign of evolution!
I marvelled at grace this past week.
I have a darling friend, Tess.
Tess is amazing and wonderful and talented and funny, strong and smart, she's a damn fine cook, a natural born writer, loves a wilderness adventure, a mama to two beautiful boys, wife to a beautiful man. And, she is living with cancer.
The cancer part completely sucks. To say the least.
Not so long after Tess was diagnosed we upgraded our friendship and adopted each other as sisters, which is a gift I treasure.
Last week we got to go out for lunch together and when we arrived at the cafe, a spunky young waiter beamed a smile at us and welcomed us in, he asked 'how are you?'
Those three little words rang through me.
Tess smiled graciously, said she was good and we were seated at our table.
Despite all the pain and nausea and vast unknown that is cancer, Tess was gracious and warm and engaging with every person we encountered.
I mean, I know when people ask 'how are you?' they're not expecting to get your life story - or sometimes even the truth - but this day Tess was grace personified and it stood out to me.
On the weekend I opened the Sunday papers to see my friend Georgie and her gorgeous fam smiling back at me, a story featuring their beautiful home and Georgie's art.
Looking at those pages, well it all looks so effortless right G? :)
But we all know that behind every success story there's hard work, determination, highs, lows, wins and losses.
You see Georgie used to be a cosmetic sales manager, she was great at her job but she had a natural born talent with a paint brush she wasn't using.
We all nudged her along, 'what are you doing?!' 'you should be painting!'
I wrote the press release for her first exhibition.
The paintings were beautiful. Deep, moody hues, her signature take on florals and blooms.
Georgie worked fiercely to paint those paintings with a baby at her feet and side jobs to juggle to pay the bills and make it all happen.
And happen it has, but it took courage and faith and focus and a whole cheer squad which I'm happy and proud to be part of.
Another gorgeous talented friend (lucky me to have so many lol) leant me a copy of Lunch Lady this week, ooh how I love it! The writing is so good. The recipes simple and yummy. The design is fun, love everything about it.
And I've been listening to Ann Patchett on the Beautiful Writer's Podcast, so inspiring about committing to one's craft and just Doing The Work.
Scary moment of the week was receiving a text from a school mum friend to say that Sol had broken the news to her son that...SANTA ISN'T REAL!!!! Omg.
That's what happens when you have a big brother.
I had a chat with Sol and borrowed the advice from my sister-in-law, explaining to Sol he is now the keeper of the magic of Christmas for the little children so it's best he keeps that special knowledge to himself.
There are always so many layers to what goes on behind the scenes of people's public lives, how we all have private stories and that more than ever being kind to each other really matters.
I'm making time to count my blessings and instead of being hard myself for all the things I haven't done, I'm noting all the things I have done and moving forward feeling happy from there.
Because big hearted love for this life with all it's highs and lows, hurts and triumphs is what's needed.
(Coffee, chocolate and wine are not the answer. Take it from me and my pants that came back from the dry cleaner this week and don't do up).