Viewing entries in
Living Life

10 TED Talks from Mothers that Inspire

10 TED Talks from Mothers that Inspire

On the 17th October we are launching three of the the first mothers rock interviews that we are publishing in our members magazine and via our you tube live channel accessible via our community.

So as a prelude to our channel and magazine which will raise up and inspire with unplugged interviews with mothers, here are 10 TED Talks from mothers that inspire.

A Mother's Journey to 'Living Authentically'

A Mother's Journey to 'Living Authentically'

IAm.IWant_.TheDifferenceisMindset.WhatifIhadaPA1.png

You know that feeling after you bring a child into the world, that your life will never be the same. At the same time everything prior to that point almost becomes meaningless. You actually start to reassess the world.  

In one sense when my first child was born I became brave. In another I had to redefine who I was. I was not the same 30 something me.

 

What am I doing? Does what I do mean anything? Am I even making a difference in this world? Is it worth it?

 

Suddenly there is something bigger than you, that little person that you are responsible for; you want them to be the best they can be, to live in a world full of potential that is safe and sustainable.   I had these big thoughts of how I could impact my daughter’s future world, and at the same time I was learning to be a mother. In addition to this new role, I continued to be: wife, lover, friend, and work colleague. The new role had an impact on all the others. If I did not take a step back I would lose me!

 

That’s when I transformed, having a child changed me, I knew it was an opportunity to take that energy, that power that you have as a mother and know as you want your children to know ‘I can do anything’.

 

I started to define just what that was to each one of my roles. As a mother being home for dinner and doing plays (not macbeth but magic rabbits, princesses, car races and dragons), and reading each night. To challenging my brain in my doctorate, which helped me to develop technology that automates chores saving mothers time, and research that understands what in people’s childhood makes them successful, and happy! The both aligned to giving me, and other mothers more time with our children, with our future and to have more memories than do administration and chores.

 

I transformed into the best version of me I could be at each of the roles, but realised we cannot do everything. So the key was to align the roles to what I truly loved, what I was passionate about. To stop doing things that detracted from that, and to start and continue the things that aligned to what I loved in this world most.

 

It sounds easy, but it was a journey to break down the mind set for example of ‘guilt’ and to accept help. I started to say ‘yes’ to outsourcing chores and ‘no’ to things that served no purpose or were meaningless.

 

This transformation was broken down over 4 steps, a framework which allowed me to redefine my life, and make sure I was Living Life Authentically. I am now true to who ‘I’ am as a mother, wife, lover, friend and work colleague. I learnt that you can have that authenticity as a mother, where you give to each part of you.

 

You have to be brave enough to take the step back. To admit I am not that same person as I was before kids, and take the opportunity to redefine you.

 

I want to share this framework with other mothers so that can live a life that is authentic to them. To talk them through the framework and provide printable tools, that supports them. There is very little for mothers. This now changes Sign Up for your Living Authentically Webinar and Kit.

 

I am building a community, tools and technology that is there for Mums.

How to Live Life Authentically as a Mum

How to Live Life Authentically as a Mum

IAm.IWant_.TheDifferenceisMindset.WhatifIhadaPA1.png

The phrase live authentically is one where you are true to who you are, true to yourself. Men can have a midlife crisis, but a lot of women also face a period where they are conflicted. They have a new role a ‘mother’ and suddenly that has to fit with their other multiple roles:  

  • Lover
  • Friend
  • Employee/Worker
  • Me

 

That pulls into question all the roles. Where those roles are out of sync, for example, “I’m not actually doing what I want to do in life,” “my friends and I don’t actually have the same values” or “I have no time for me” it creates a constant circle of dissatisfaction.

 

In truth the day we become mothers it redefines us. That’s the time to take a step back and ensure we live life authentically.

 

To lead an authentic Life as a mother means happiness, and it can be completed by four simple steps YEAH! On September 14th we will host a free webinar that takes mothers through these 4 simple steps, with printable materials that can be taken away and are there to support all mothers.

 

  1. You Time
    1. Passion
    2. Space
    3. Guilt
    4. Means

 

  1. Energy for You and Others
    1. Focus
    2. Outsource
    3. Sleep

 

  1. Action
    1. Say Yes
    2. Say No

 

  1. Help and Support

 

If you want help and support via a community of busy Mum’s to live an authentic life sign up for the free webinar http://www.whatifihadapa.com/free-webinar-4-simple-steps-authentic-life/ here.

Say 'Let It Go' to Guilt

Say 'Let It Go' to Guilt

bigstock-Girl-With-Balloon-47752099.jpg

Guilt is one of the barriers a mother working faces in being able to have life balance. Whether you are a 'Lean In' or 'Lean Out' mother ultimately there are only so many hours in the day, and one of the solutions is to outsource. We can either feel like we have no guilt, but drown in looking like we can do it all, or have life balance and know that the decision suits your family. The only important answer is for your individual family circumstance.

This could be difficult if you come from a heritage of your mother did the running of the house, and a great job bringing up the children. However, demographics have changed.

  • The distance in extended families
  • The career development of females
  • The sheer amount of red tape, and chores that have increased each century
  • Distance in Extended Families

Both my husband and I live no where near our parents. My Mum now has to travel within on continent to see 2 grandchildren, and to another continent to see her 3rd. That is the nature of a global village, and migration. However, that means as a mother working the support structures in place disappear. Any guilt you had let someone else have that. Your life is your life, if you need a third pair of hands then by all means grab it: a cleaner, gardener or au-pair. From the day we hired an au-pair we never looked back on the focused time I have for the kids and family. There may be restrictions financially so options need to be assessed, but if it is financially viable it is worth it's wait in gold.

Career Development of Females

On one of my last visits my Mum said 'I never realised how hard you worked.' I was working from home in the office, and I think she saw me maybe pee once that day, and quickly make a nutri-bullet soup! That week I ensured as ever I was there at dinner, bath and bedtime, but due to crazy deadlines she saw my 14 hour days. Whilst it is not always like that, there are peaks and troughs. One thing is clear it was not the reality of my Mum's world when I was growing up.

There are no extra hours in the day, no one can magic a 30 hour day. The only learnings that I have applied is to: eliminate unnecessary activities, prioritise, outsource (guilt free) and automate.

Red Tape and Chores

Seriously the worst thing is the mail box why in 2016 is there still so much paper, even if you register for 'E-statements, bills...' There are still those tasks that a 'Must Do's' and have consequences like: taxes, bills, and the un -outsourced chores. When we surveyed mothers they wanted support with red tape, and this is in my goal to support other mothers working.

If you're a mother who has guilt ask what makes sense for my family. If you're a mother judging another mother as is that my family. If the answer is 'No' then focus on the answer to your family, and not others.

We have created a great bundle of tools including how to deal with guilt.

Our New Ebook Memories Over Chores. 60 Tips for the Power Parent

Our New Ebook Memories Over Chores. 60 Tips for the Power Parent

February 29th you had an extra 24 hours.  The revolution starts now. Make more time in your life everyday.  Our ebook Memories Over Chores. 60 Tips for the Power Parent http://ow.ly/YTKiU #Killthatmondaymorningblaaa  #whatifihadapa #disrupttime #memoriesoverchores

All images courtesy of Bigstock and Shutterstock.

Negotiating Your Terms for Balance

As I have gotten older balance becomes more prevalent a need in my life. Earlier on in my profession I remember sitting with my VP in Soho and saying that “I work hard and play hard, so because I love what I do there is no distinction.” He was disagreeing with me, and at the time I didn’t get it because I do what I love.

That said the concept of doing what you love is not a new one, and some of us are blessed in the opportunity to do that. However, then I had fulfilment of esteem, self-actualisation, cognitively, financially, and intellectually but to the cost of the earlier needs without admitting it: sex, health, friendship (constantly travelling), and no partner to share my life with. I also did not have a partner or indeed children.

Now I have those things but that demanded several negotiations in my life, not least with myself. It now means that with each move I make I consider what is important to me and negotiate in that manner:

  • Physiological – Maslow puts things such as breathing, food, water, sex, sleep, homeostasis and excretion as a basic need and once we meet those needs they can not motivate us. However, one of the realisations as I have gotten older, is how this motivates my decisions more. As a wife and mother of two: time for sleep, and a healthy sex life is important. Negotiating flexible working arrangements that allow me to sleep and have a healthy sex life is a motivator. What times do you want to work? Can you work flexibly? Can you work from home?
  • Safety – security of employment, of resources, of morality, of the family, of health and of property is a second tier need. However, again my health is a predominant feature. I realised if I did not have my health, I would not be able to be there for my children, and my partner. This was not through a health scare but pure self-realisation of what was important. So the terms that I negotiated allow me to practice yoga at least 3 times a week. This is a motivator. Can you work flexibly? Are there facilities that can be accessed in a lunch hour to stay healthy? What’s the salary is it fair for the role i.e. what they would pay a man? Is it enough to live?
  • Love/ Belonging – Friendship, family, sexual intimacy – these now a significant motivators for me as life is precious and I actually consider them on par with self-actualisation. How much do you want to travel? What time will I have for family and friends? Can your spouse be based with you if the assignment is abroad? What support framework is there for your spouse? What are the people like? What social activities are there? What hours do I want to work? What are the expectations? Is it a presence or productivity culture? I am not willing to work excessive hours.
  • Esteem – self-esteem confidence, achievement, respect of others, and respect by others. Strangely enough this became less of a motivator. I no longer needed the recognition of others that was not important. However a respectful workplace is. This may vary for everyone: Are people driven off their job title? Is it hierarchical? Do people respect different people’s views? What is the challenge, and is it challenging enough for me? What future challenges could there be for me? What development is available? What is my manager’s competence and leadership style?
  • Self-Actualisation – Morality, creativity, Spontaneity, Problem Solving, Lack of Prejudice and Acceptance of Facts. An environment where I can fully realise my potential, be creative, get up each morning and think ‘yeah’, be authentic and act with integrity is a predominant motivator and deciding factor. What empowerment is there in the organisation of their employees? Is it a command and control organisation?

Some critiques have added other levels like ‘Transcendence” “Cognitive” and “Aesthetic.” In my experience many people are neglecting the lower levels of Maslow’s Hierarchy in thirst for the higher motivators. As I have become more self-aware of my needs, the base of the hierarchy: Physiological, Safety and Love can act at the higher levels of motivation.

The Evolution of Friendships

There are four things that I focus on in life: my health (physical, mental and spiritually), my family, my brain (I need a challenge) and my friends.  I am fast approaching 36 and in the last week I have spent so much time on the phone or Skype with my friends who are in different continents and countries, and arranged a girl’s night for those friends I have made in my new home country.

As time has gone on I have found that friendships die, change and grow.  All of those evolutions are okay it is no judgment on them or me, it is what it is for that time.  It contributed a little to me as a person.

Friendships Die

I have no friends left from school. Networks yes, but real friendships no.  I am still in contact with people on different social networks, but looking back at school I did not connect with the friends around me.  It was out of necessity, due to being bullied I found people to have fun with but not truly connect.  I started at a university with one 'so called' friend right from nursery who sat at the table in halls (shared accommodation) and arranged with everyone but me to go out, and alienated me.  I left that university in the first semester.  That was a defining moment for me, where it looked like I gave in, but I didn’t.  I decided to go to a different university, study and be me.  People either liked me for who I was or I moved on emotionally.  I had no thirst to be popular or even accepted.  I was going to treat people with kindness regardless but not invest energy where it was not positive back.  In that period I lost touch with that group of friends from school and formed my adult mind.

Friendships Change

Since the 1st university.  I graduated with a BA in Marketing and HR, and went on to post graduate education two masters and currently a doctorate.  In that period I made the friends that have been with me through life.  Those friends I can pick up with whenever I am back in the UK.  They Skype and we fly all over the world to see each other.  Our situations have changed over the last 17 years (my 2 oldest friends that I worked at a shoe store with).  Some of us are married, have a family, moved countries and continents, but the key thing that has allowed us to change together has been empathy to understand each other’s situation.  Where I have seen things break down in friendships, is because that person didn’t understand the other.  They didn’t appreciate the others truth.  That means that there can be two perspectives in life we all have different circumstances to deal with and lenses that we apply to look at a situation.  Sometimes we have to be mature enough to agree to disagree, because everyone has to choose their own path.   I see some conflict between 2 sets of friends where there is now a partner in their life they want to spend time with them.  In the other situation one would make a different decision that the other, but the truth is we don't live the other persons life.  Everyone has to make their own decisions. In my situation now that there are kids there is limited time to regularly get together; in fact the whole quantum time paradigm is reinvented when kids come into the equation!  With my good friends I have put myself into their shoes, and tried to get them to understand mine; and they understand.  We make quality time together.  There is always the promise that when they really need just call.  This has stood me in good stead through the life changes so far!

Friendships Grow

Empathy has been the basis for growth of the friendships that I cherish and want to keep, as well as time.  My good friends will always invite me even though I am not in the country, and leave it to me whether I can make it.  I am always considered and involved, the friends that I have grown with have a global mind-set, so have grown with me and my development living and working abroad. Most of my friends I met through my masters and yoga, so perhaps the connection that we have is the mental and spiritual challenge. The good friends that I have in Switzerland make quality time once or twice a quarter at least to meet up, as most weekends are absorbed with family time and date nights.  This year again I have an extended girls weekend.  It amazes me how 6 friends can still be so close after all these years.  My five closest friends are Godparents to my children so they are so interconnected to our lives that they grow with us.  In July I spend a whole 4 days together catching up and bonding with my friends.  The time investment is something that I cherish, and can be difficult to make with two kids under 2 years old.  However, it is precious. As my Mum always said if you can count 5 good friends on one hand you are lucky.  I would say that I am blessed.

The importance of time for the people and things that we love is what has driven me to start whatiifihadapa.  The impact that I can make by giving people more time back in their day is going to be powerful for health, family, mind and friendships.

Friendships - Let them die if they become negative, learn to change with them and provide them with empathy and time to grow.

Home

Home

“Traveling in the company of those we love is home in motion.”  ― Leigh Hunt

Tips for balance – physical requirements

As I've gotten older I’ve come to understand myself, nutrition and fitness.

When I was younger it was all about diets, losing weight things that were not sustainable.  I was lucky as I had a healthy relationship with food.  For example, I have only eaten at McDonalds twice in my life; yes twice.  The first as a child, for a child’s birthday where I hated the taste compared to my Mum’s cooking.  I asked why people would eat that?  The second was as a consultant, I was in a train station where there was no other option, so I asked for porridge.  It was quite funny as they had advertised heavily their new healthy options but it took them 10 minutes to find it!  Now it is still about eating what tastes great, but what is fresh, has no sugar and is not processed; so Paleo.  I am not recommending Paleo to everyone, but what I am recommending is that you find a healthy and sustainable diet that fits you, and the lifestyle of you and your family. For inspiration find us on pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/whatifihadapa/what-if-i-had-a-pa-healthy-food-for-my-family/

Fitness again when I was younger I joined the gym, did some spinning and running even taking part in 10 km and one 400 km run and cycle!  That kind of intensity training was not sustainable for me and my life. I found something that worked for me, my family and work commitments and gave me energy, rather than consumed it; yoga.  Again I am not saying everyone has to do yoga, but it is about finding something that you love and is sustainable. One great resource is http://tonysanchezyoga.com

 A balanced you, is about having a sustainable approach to your physical happiness.

7 Rules That Make Your Life Stress Free

1. Don't live your life by anyone else's expectations.

DontLiveYourLifeByAnyoneElsesExpectationsWHATIFIHADAPA

2. Put yourself first. If you are not breathing you can't be there for the one's you love.

Put Yourself First
3. If you really want it, go get it starting today. No what if's, or buts, what are the barriers and start to break them down.

Barriers

4. Have honest vested friendships. True friends will put their friends happiness first, even if it affects their friendship.  If a friendship constantly drains you - walk away.

Friendships
5. Don't compare there will always be someone better, or worse there are over 7bn people on the planet.   You'll just get stuck.

DontcompareWHATIFIHADAPA
6. Treat others as you would like to be treated. There is such a thing as karma! More importantly life is so much more better when we surround ourselves with kindness, acts of help and gratitude.

karma

7.  Focus on the things that matter.  The things that need to be done, that matter and that you can move.  Don't get stuck on the small and trivial.

Focus

Member Login
Welcome, (First Name)!

Forgot? Show
Log In
Enter Member Area
My Profile Not a member? Sign up. Log Out