tips

Is Your Phone More Recharged Than You Are? 8 Ways to Get Your Missing Energy Back

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If I were to ask you how often you recharged your phone, you'd probably reply with "twice a day" (if you're an iPhone user).  But, if I were to ask you how often you recharged yourself, you'd most likely reply with "does sleep count?". Recharging ourselves isn't something we tend to think much about.  We're not taught about it as kids and no one really talks about it.  It's not something that we had to think even half as much about just 10 years ago.  If we were tired, we rested.  Tiredness and exhaustion were mostly just physical.  Now, it's primarily mental, and in a lot of cases, emotional.  With technology and a direct connection to the world in our hands, there's no time to really switch off to allow our mind and nervous system to quieten.

Somewhere along the line, we started to value our techs to be more recharged than our bodies.  Tirdness is now a bit of an inconvenience.  We've become more tuned into the outside world than ourselves.  We're tuned into the alerts on our phones more than the alerts of our bodies.  Now, I'm not saying to bin the devices all together, no, not at all.  I love my phone, and these days we need them.  I'm just trying to convey the need to put the phone down every now and then, and truly take the break our mind and body need.

I had to learn the above the hard way.  Stressed and anxious from my corporate job (amongst other things), denying my dream career aspirations and, quite frankly, wasting hours a day on 'the scroll'.  My anxiety was so bad that every day was a struggle that I tried so hard to hide!  Things had to dramatically change.  So, I set out to recharge, learnt to put my health first and developed a kick-ass self-care/love routine.

Get Your FREE Gratitude Workbook Here

So, here's my (tried and tested) top 8 ways to fully recharge and start to get that missing energy back:

Sleep:

To answer your hypothetical response above.  Yes, sleep does count, and a lot!  But only if you're getting the right kind of sleep.  This is around 8 hours of non-inertupted sleep and waking before your alarm.  While this is common knowledge, sleep has lost favour.  There's Facebook and Instagram scrolling, Netflix, more condensed living, working later hours and weekends, eating later and even more scrolling, that all get in the way of a quality night's sleep.  Once upon a time it was only the neighbour's dog who woke us up, now it's our friend-from-high-school's-amazing-Italian-holiday that you're totally jealous of you've been lurking.

Soak it Up:

Get at least an hour by yourself and have a hot bath.  Get out your bath salts, candles, essential oils and a quality book.  No techs allowed.  Take the full hour to really switch off and relax.  Besides, who doesn't feel better after a good bath!

Get Active:

Get those endorphins pumping and sweat the stress away.  Stress hormones wreak havoc on our nervous system and majorly contribute to us feeling worn down.  Ever feel more exhausted from a day's work than you do an intense work out?  This is why.  While exercise puts physical stress on the body at the time, it's coupled with 'feel good' hormones that help the body clear out the stress, as well as pump much needed oxygen to your organs.  You want to get out and burn up all of that excess adrenaline.  Not only will you feel better after, you'll sleep better too!

Ground Yourself:

When I first heard about "earthing" I thought it was a bit of BS, then I really thought about it and I realised my bare feet had not even touched the earth in over a year. A YEAR! Apartment living certainly makes getting out and into nature harder, but the more reason to do so.  We all grew up playing in the backyard bare foot (remember stepping on bindies in summer, ouch!).  Take a walk in the park or on the beach, and if you're lucky enough to still have a backyard, collect the washing bare foot.  Feel those relaxing negative ions and get a bonus foot massage while you're at it!

Mindfulness and Meditation:

Probably my favourite tool in the box and one of the most misunderstood and under utilised skills there is!  If I could package and sell in a pill "total relaxation, calmness, greater clarity, more energy, understanding, compassion and acceptance with no side-effects and completely natural", I'd be seriously loaded.  Loaded.  Everyone would lap that up!  But it's free people and you can try it right now!  It's literally as easy as googling "guided relaxation meditation" into YouTube.

Find my Monday Meditation series here.

Because we're not taught meditation as children, we resist it as adults.  It seems weird, out-there and unnecessary.  People also tend to think that they don't have time to meditate.  In the words of Gabby Bernstein, "so you've got time to feel like shit instead then?".  10 minutes a day is all you need to totally turn your stress around!  Also, meditation doesn't have to be spiritual at all, think of it as a simple mind reset.

Digital Detox:

This is a big one!  We spend so much time on our (fully charged) devices, and probably one of the main reasons why we're so drained, that we find it so hard to put them aside.  But once you start to break the click and scroll habit, it becomes so much easier.  Sleep with your phone on flight mode.  Get an old school radio alarm clock and have no phones in your bedroom (remember waking up to breakfast radio..).  Turn the TV off an hour before bed.  Have an email cut off time (I suggest from the time you start dinner) and don't use your laptop in bed.  All of these things can assist in breaking the technology dependancy and the mindless scroll.

Take Regular Breaks/Holidays/Long Weekend:

If you need a day off, take it.  Plan an annual leave day and take a long weekend.  Get away, or stay in.  Sleep in.  It's what your annual leave is there for!  Take a holiday.  Got no-one to travel with?  Do a tour or retreat.  The simple act of getting on a plane and feeling far away from your 'problems' can do amazing things for your nervous system (I should know, I just did this.  Hello spontaneous trip to New York).  Don't really run from your problems, but do take a break when you need it.  Airfares have never been so cheap ;-).

Pamper Yourself:

Don't be afraid to spend a little cash on treating yourself.  Get a monthly massage, pedicure, floatation tank session, facial, lovely dinner, hot springs visit.. whatever brings you relaxation.  While I don't recommend spending all your monies on #treatyoself, I do suggest that you put yourself first and enjoy your money, especially if it's assisting your healing.  I personally get regular massages.  I need them, I carry stress in my shoulders and I spend 8 hours a day on a computer, so I don't feel guilty about spending the cash as I see it as a necessity.  So find what really assists your recovery and budget it in.

I hope these tips help bring some calm and zen back into your life.  If you've got other recharge tips or tricks, comment them below, i'd love to hear (and try) them!

xSx

Get Your FREE Gratitude Workbook here

Recipe: Guilt Free Brownie Slice

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This slice has got to be my favourite that I have made.  It was actually meant to be a cashew cookie dough slice, but the cashew centre just wasn't working for me so I cut it and made this delicious slice instead.  A friend from work's reaction was the best "omg yum, it doesn't even taste healthy", a good one to trick your kids into eating :) All you need:

Base

1/2 cup rolled oats

10 medjool dates (soaked for an hour)

5 dried figs (soaked for an hour)

1/4 cup chia seeds (soaked for 15 minutes)

1/2 - 3/4 of cup shredded/desiccated coconut

1/4 cup of raw cacao powder

1/4 cup of almond meal

1 cup of cashews (soaked for an hour - 2 hours)

Vanilla Extract to taste (I use 2 Tbspns)

Chocolate Top

2 heaps Tbspns of coconut oil

2 Tbspns of rice malt syrup

1/3 cup of raw cacao powder

ground goji berries and coconut dusted on top

Method

Prepare your cashews, figs, dates and chia seeds for pre-soaking.

Chop and blitz your dates and figs.  Be sure that you have carefully removed all seeds.

Blitz your cashews and rolled oats, then add to your mixture dried fruit mixture.  Drain your chai seeds and add to the mix, also add your coconut and almond meals.

Once thoroughly combined, gradually add your raw cacao powder and vanilla extract.  These ingredients are added to taste, the sweeter you want them, the more you add.

Melt your coconut oil in a heatproof bowl and gradually add your raw cacao powder, stirring constantly.  Once combined, add your rice malt syrup and stir until smooth.

Pour your choc mix evenly over your brownie base and refrigerate to set.

Once your slice has set, you can decorate with ground nuts, seeds, berries, coconut.. anything you like :)

xSx

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Fallen Off The Bike? You can still ride it.

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"Just because you've fallen off the bike, doesn't mean you've forgotten how to ride it"  I can't remember whether it was my friend, Mel or I who come up with that little tidbit, but as soon as I heard it, I knew I had to write about just that. We all make new commitments to ourselves, and probably daily.  "I am going sugar free", "I am going to do 3 gym classes a week", "I will start getting more sleep" etc.  But how frequently are we giving up all too easily as soon as we slide a little?  We think that as soon as we waiver a little bit, that we have totally failed, so we may as well give up now.  We've become all or nothing.  Truth is, we're going to fall off the wagon every day, after all, it's how we learn.  The real skill is how we bounce back from our setbacks.  This is the gig.  It's really about a commitment to re-trying, time and time again and not beating ourselves up when we do slide.  Eating that one tim-tam doesn't mean that you've completely reverted back to your sugary days.  You probably used eat 3 a day, and now you're down to 1.  That's great (literally taken that one straight from my life..).

After committing to commitment, you will find that it will get easier and easier and you'll shorten the recovery time, each time.  You'll start to bounce back quicker and quicker.  You'll even start to enjoy the process as you'll know what to expect and you'll quickly learn that you can do it.  By appreciating the progress that you are making and realise that you are achieving far more than you realise.

It's not about being perfect, for we will never ever be perfect.  It's about our commitment to being better, doing more (or sometimes even less), to eating better, to sleeping longer, to being more active, to meditating regularly, to saying "I love you" or "I forgive you" to someone (and yourself!), ultimately it's about feeling better more often.

Let yourself off the hook and commit to doing better tomorrow, and the next day.

xSx

Recipe: Delicious Infused Water

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We all know the 8-glasses-of-water-a-day drill, but how boring can water be though, seriously.   While there are some days where 8 glasses of water is enough, there are other times where we should be aiming for 3 litres.  It is important to be consistently drinking water, especially when we know that our bodies (us!) are around 70% water! I have created a delicious infused water blend to keep me reaching for water over sweeter drinks throughout the day:

  • Mint leaves
  • Half a Lime
  • Half a Lemon
  • 2 Litres of water

Not only is it delicious, but it helps flush nasty toxins from the body and assists to alkaline the system.

Mix up a jug of it and keep it in the fridge or get a glass bottle (or BPA free plastic bottle) and keep on your desk to drink throughout the work day.

Soda water also goes great with this mix.  Think Vodka, Lime and Soda...sans Vodka and more flavour, super refreshing.

Infused water is a great alternative over cordial for the kids!  Just chop up their favourite fruits and add them to the jug.

I would love to hear your favourite infused water blends in the comment section below.

xSx

 

My jug at home

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Better than Coffee!

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We all can struggle to wake up in the morning, but for those that are caffeine dependant, you could be doing more harm than you realise. Caffeine in small doses is generally fine for consumption, but your daily coffee, whether you're a 3 cups a day or just one cup a day coffee drinker, could be causing chaos to your nervous system, especially if you find that you are particularly stressed. Taking a caffeine detox every so often will do wonders for your system! Here are my tips for healthier wake-up substitutes.

Lemon Water I drink lemon water every day, I love it! In summer I have a jug of water in the fridge with half a lemon, half a lime and around 5 mint leaves. It's delicious, refreshing and aids the liver with detoxification. I even have mint and lemon in my water bottle on my desk a few times a week. The only caution with this one is to try and use a straw to limit the acidity on your teeth.

Morning exercise Put your work-out gear on and walk part of the way to work. I know the days that I walk half an hour to the next train station in my gym gear, are the days where I feel the most energised when I arrive to the office. Even if the walk wasn't strenuous, I still feel like I have moved my body and done something physical, especially before I spend many hours at a desk with little movement. If you drive to work, make an effort to get a 20 minute walk in before you leave (walk the dog, snoop on neighbours..) or even arrive at work early and take a walk around the block. You will certainly feel more awake after it.

Fresh air and sunlight Our bodies have a natural cycle called the circadian rhythm. We are naturally designed to wake up to light and wind down from dusk. When you wake, open the curtains and your windows. This will activate your body into wake mode.

Get out of bed when your alarm first goes off If you wake before your alarm, get up then. When we fall back asleep or take our time getting up, we are creating a sluggish state which can set the tone for the day ahead. You will also benefit from being able to take your time getting ready, rather than rushing.

Get enough sleep If you find that you are still tired when your alarm goes off (we have all been there..) make an effort to get to bed earlier. Just add 30 mins every week or so until you find the right amount of sleep for you. You will know that you are getting enough sleep when you wake up feeling refreshed. That mythical morning fresh feeling does exist and you will definitely be less likely to reach for coffee when you feel this great in the morning!

Sleep with your phone in your living room We all know the "roll over, grab phone, alarm off, click email, scroll Facebook, roll out of bed" routine. Set an old-school alarm and have your phone in another room. This will force you to get out of bed earlier to check your phone and will also create a more peaceful sleeping environment.

Cooler than normal shower Whether this shower is at your workplace after your morning exercise or right after you get out of bed, a cooler than normal shower has calming effects on our nervous system, strengthens vagal tone and wakes your senses up and leaves you feeling extra fresh!

Let me know which healthier routine options work for you and if you have any other tips that work for you, leave a comment below - I would love to hear them!

xSx

LifeCoachSam Has An Exciting New Vibe.

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It has been a while since I last posted, but now I am back- more refreshed and feeling better than ever! A lot has changed over the past year and I am feeling so inspired to bring you lots of helpful articles, guides and personal stories to continue to motivate you to live a balanced life.  The direction and focus of this website will be changing slightly.  I am feeling more drawn to wellness writing rather than writing only personal development content.  I feel like wellness covers all areas of our lives in the same way that personal development does, however, wellness allows for more freedom and balance.

This past year, a wellness-lifestyle has been my focus and a priority.  Wellness across the board; healthful food, getting back into basketball, taking time out, lots of socialising, massages, meditation classes, learning to say no, learning to stick to my new budget, fitness and adventure.   Wellness is a grounded lifestyle but it also encourages us to continually learn and grow.

To clarify, my definition of 'wellness' is obtaining health and balance across all areas of my life, essentially a lifestyle of maintaining general wellbeing through making healthful choices.

By no means have I been perfect nor totally strict on myself, but each and every week I take the time out for myself and come back to centre.  Whether that be cutting sugar for a week, or committing to increased exercise, or even getting my butt to Sunday morning meditation class, but no matter what, I always come back to honouring my true self.

As I write this blog, I am sitting on my couch still buzzing, yet feeling totally balanced from my first Reiki session.  This is just one of the new things I have fallen in love with over this past year and I will be sure to give you the full low-down on Reiki and, well, pretty much everything else that I have tried, loved, those not-so-loved and everything in between.

Throughout this journey, my intuition has become my greatest tool.  It is a daily compass.  And from this place, I am feeling so inspired and energised to bring you great content on lots of health and wellbeing areas that I have explored, re-discovered and lived this past year.

My desire for this page is to create a community of self-lovers and wellness-junkies.  Our personal wellbeing must be our first priority!  If we are neglecting ourselves, how can we show up fully to this world.  It starts with you and your relationship with yourself, and is maintained by you showing up for your greatest good.  It is not always easy, but it is definitely always worth it.

I am so excited for you all to see what is in store for LifeCoachSam.  So much goodness is coming your way!

xSx

Remember, every smile is contagious- so go spread the good stuff!

COMMUNICATION - The "3 Step Success" Series

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Effective communication 1: Listen to hear, not to reply 2: Be empathetic 3: Have open body language

🔷 More often then not, when we are in conversation, we are preparing our next response while the other is talking or we even speak over them. When we truly listen to what the other person is saying, we are able to connect on a deeper level and fully take in what is being said. This allows for the listener to pick up on non-verbal cues and therefore give a more meaningful reply.

🔷 The best way to be an empathetic listener is to put yourself in the other person's shoes, rather than making assumptions or passing judgement on what is being said. Empathetic listening allows you to be much more understanding to the speaker's situation and feelings, and therefore allowing you to give more constructive feedback.

🔷 You may not be aware, but 55% of your communication is transmitted through your body language. This makes body language vital for effective communication. We've all had a time when someone isn't listening to us, their eyes are looking elsewhere, legs might be crossed and they're hardly acknowledging what is being said. Therefore, you want to be sure that your body language is open and attentive with your body facing the speaker, arms uncrossed and maintaining eye contact.

BUDGETING - The "3 Step Success" Series

This week's topic is "Budgeting". We're coming into the spending season of the year and what better time to get on top of our spending then now. 1: Know exactly what your weekly expenses are. 2: Don't carry a credit card. 3: Carry cash.

🔷Once you know exactly what your weekly expenses are, establish how much of it is actually essential spending. Now you can allocate set amounts for saving and weekly spending. Set up scheduled transfers for your allocated savings so you're not tempted to spend it.

🔷Rather than carrying a credit card that is so tempting to use, have a key card linked to an account with emergency money (just in case). Credit card spending is a massive trap! Keep your card in a safe place at home for those essential online purchase, like flights!

🔷Since you now know how much allocated spending you have for the week, carry it in cash. It the best way to keep track of spending and you're less likely to part with cold hard cash.

Let me know in the comments below👇 which tips you'll be implementing this week and let me know how you're going implementing them. For more tips and articles head over to www.facebook.com/lifecoachsam3

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Why Saying NO is Really Saying YES

20140716-221903-80343284.jpg We are a culture of people pleasers. We feel guilty saying no, we feel obligated to do what is asked and when it is asked.

We stay back at work when we had dinner plans, we go to that bar when we really just wanted to go to the movies, or we help a friend move when we really wanted to go to our kid's football game.

When we say no to others, we are really saying yes to ourselves. We are saying yes to time spent writing that blog, or going to the gym, or more time at home spent with your kids.

When we say no, we are honouring ourselves. When we honour ourselves, we set a positive example for others to totally respect themselves too. We show the people around us that it is ok to politely say no to something that doesn't serve our highest good. It isn't out of arrogance that we say no to others, it's out of a delicate respect that we hold for ourselves.

But why is it that we feel it necessary to say yes to everything that is asked? Basically, we are scared of what the asker, and other people, might think of us. We are afraid that they might think that we are a bad person, or that we don't care about them, or simple that we are rude. In other words- we feel obligated. But we are none of those things when we say no to things that do not serve us. Are you a bad person when you say no when your friend is telling you to have one more drink? No, of course not, you are just looking out for yourself more than you are looking out for their interest in you.

We also cannot control how other people react. There will be times that someone might take you saying no personally, but know that their reaction is out of your control and it is simply a reflection of their own internal state. There will also be times when those same people are supportive and encouraging of your polite decline.

Saying yes to yourself and utilising your time doing positive and productive things, will help us become more fulfilled people, and who gets to reap the rewards of being around happy and fulfilled people?.. the very people you respectfully said no to!

Now, this isn't an excuse to start being rude, anything but, and you may also require some tact when saying no at times, but know that you value your own needs more at times, and it's up to you to put yourself first.

Take note- no one will respect us more than we respect ourselves. So set the standard for the level of respect you wish to receive and show others that its perfectly ok for them to do the same.

Leave a comment below about a time when you have felt obligated to say yes when really you wanted to say no.

Remember, every smile is contagious, so go spread the good stuff.

Knowing When to Let Go and Why No-one is Doing It

IMG_8699 As humans, we have a hard time letting go. We have been taught that if something didn't work out how we had expected then we have somehow failed or that we have been rejected. We assume that we were the problem or that we did something wrong. We then live in the "what ifs" and we continue to live in a state of "if only".

What we really need to be taught is that you were not being rejected you were being re-directed, and it's a wonderful thing. Society, as a whole, has controlling tendencies, we feel like we can control the outcome of every situation and that it must go our way and if it doesn't then we were hard done by. Doesn't that sound like a restricted life to live? Once we learn to truly let go of our expectations and trust that there is a greater plan for us, then we can start to live a more relaxed life.

To have faith in the unknown can take a bit of guts at first, but it is totally worth it. It can sound a little foreign initially to sit there are say "I know that [insert situation] didn't work out because something better is on the way" but it's true. Life doesn't have to be a struggle. We can choose to acknowledge that something/someone wasn't right for us, let it go and get back to enjoying the beauty of life, or you can sit and question "why?". There is so much happiness in staying calm and knowing that we are deserving of perfect outcomes for us at that time. Sometimes a situation simply provides a life lesson to be learnt. A lesson that will provide the knowledge we need to take forth with us on our life journey. Sometimes the hard decisions have to be made for us. We form emotional attachments to expected outcomes and we have a hard time seeing it play out in any other form.

When you find yourself stuck in the letting go process, try some of these exercise:

1: Sit calmly in a quiet room. Say to yourself (silently or aloud) "I have learnt everything that I needed to learn from this situation/person/event and its time to let it go. I release you and I have faith that something better is on its way.".

2: Talk it out with a trusted friend, but change the objective of the conversation. Talk with them with the aim to release rather than complain. Hear their advice and speak of the journey you will take to move forward.

3: Meditate! If you are new to meditation don't be scared off. All it takes is 5 minutes a day of silently monitoring your breathe to calm your mind and start to see your situation in a more peaceful way.

4: Write a release letter. Write down everything that you would say to a person that has hurt you, write down how you feel, write down how you expected something to go. Release it all, and finish the letter with a plan to move forward, knowing that something better is on its way.

Remember, you are always growing, always evolving and you are going to outgrow things. It is inevitable. You will outgrow people, jobs, homes, cars etc. Be wiling to let things go and embrace the new. This is where the excitement is, new stories, new experiences, new encounters. Be open to new opportunities as you don't yet know what you can discover. But if we stay in our limited thinking with thoughts like "this should have happened" or "if only I did this differently" you will miss all of the new and wonderful experiences you are yet to have had yet. You may be walking down a different path to the one you had expected, but have faith that it is leading to a greater destination.

P.S. Remember every smile is contagious, so go spread the good stuff!