The difference between SELFISH and SELF LOVE…

 

motivation monday“Don’t be so selfish!”, “That was SELFISH…”, “I can’t believe how selfish she is”…

None of us want to be considered Selfish. With synonyms like “egocentric, egotistical, inconsiderate, tactless, unkind” it is no wonder!

I believe SELFISH is the biggest hurdle to SELF LOVE out there and we all need to shift from a scarcity to an abundance mindset and take a little time to consciously be more considerate of others. (that is basically what this entire post is about so if you only read a bit of it make that your sound bite)…. Lol.

selfish
ˈsɛlfɪʃ/
adjective
  1. (of a person, action, or motive) lacking consideration for other people; concerned chiefly with one’s own personal profit or pleasure.
    “I joined them for selfish reasons”
    synonyms:

    egocentric, egotistic, egotistical, egomaniacal, self-centred, self-regarding, self-absorbed, self-obsessed, self-seeking, self-serving, wrapped up in oneself, inward-looking, introverted, self-loving;

    inconsiderate, thoughtless, unthinking, uncaring, heedless, unmindful, regardless, insensitive, tactless, uncharitable, unkind;
    mean, miserly, grasping, greedy, mercenary, money-grubbing, acquisitive, opportunistic, out for what one can get;
    informallooking after number one, on the make
    “he is just selfish by nature”

Selfish is a horrible word right? Self-seeking, inconsiderate, money-grubbing… Does it mean that any time you profit or take pleasure personally you are being selfish? Or it is just when you are lacking consideration for others? And how can we take action that is concerned with our own personal profit or pleasure while considering all other people? I suppose that is the golden question really isn’t it. Because it appears that any time we profit, others tend to ‘miss out’ or so the ‘scarcity mindset’ would have us believe.

“Being poor requires so much mental energy that those with limited means — be they sugarcane farmers in India or New Jersey mall-goers — are more likely to make mistakes and bad decisions than those with bigger financial cushions.

This is the psychology of scarcity, says Princeton University psychology and public affairs professor Eldar Shafir, PhD, who with Harvard University economist Sendhil Mullainathan, PhD, explores how people’s minds are less efficient when they feel they lack something — whether it is money, time, calories or even companionship.

This scarcity mindset consumes what Shafir calls “mental bandwidth” — brainpower that would otherwise go to less pressing concerns, planning ahead and problem-solving. This deprivation can lead to a life absorbed by preoccupations that impose ongoing cognitive deficits and reinforce self-defeating actions. Shafir and Mullainathan offer insights into how to ease the burden in the 2013 book “Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much” (Times Books).” http://www.apa.org/monitor/2014/02/scarcity.aspx 

The thing about studies like those undertaken by Shafir or Mullainathan is that they point to the importance of mindset in creating significant shifts and driving measurable outcomes. The effect of cognitive shifts on decision making and behaviour was measurable and showed that by adopting an abundance mindset (there is enough) versus a scarcity mindset (I don’t have enough, I am poor), you can change the whole damn outcome.

So lets apply this thinking to SELFISH VERSUS SELF LOVE when it comes to one’s own personal profit or pleasure.

A scarcity mindset would suggest that if I am profiting or receiving pleasure… then someone is missing out. As a result, in this template of thinking, the algorithm basically leads us to believe that when someone is having a good time, there has to be a line of people missing out behind them.

What would happen, if we just flipped this template for a moment. If we just imagined that if someone is receiving profit or pleasure… then those around them are also more likely to receive profit and pleasure (this is more the law of attraction type thinking). Suddenly, as there isn’t anyone being compromised or missing out because of the gain, this moves from selfish to self love… doesn’t it?

Let’s imagine for a second, if there is $100 in a kitty with 5 people in a house (a metaphor for an organisation, family or community perhaps). The kitty doesn’t have any rules, people are welcome to dip into it to use it for spoils as they need to. Ideally benefiting all in the home. If one person spends the $100 on a massage and the other 4 are sat at home wishing they could have a massage too, then technically this is selfish right? What if all 4 voted for the 1 person to go for the massage? Oh that’s nice isn’t it… that is very selfless of them. What if the 1 person who was voted for gave it to the person in the house who probably needed it the most… that is selfless too hey. The key ingredient here is environment and consideration. Having an abundance mindset isn’t just about imagining that the universe will magically provide 4 x $100 massages for the people who miss out. It is about feeling confident that even if you are missing out this time, there will be other times and that people will inherently do the right thing by each other in the community. This energy shift is key. It is also about taking the time to have a look around and see who else is suffering or in need before you go take yourself off for that massage.

If Selfish is (of a person, action, or motive) lacking consideration for other people; concerned chiefly with one’s own personal profit or pleasure… what is Self love and is it the polar opposite?

self-love
noun
 
  1. regard for one’s own well-being and happiness.

The key word here is REGARD.

regard
rɪˈɡɑːd/
verb:
consider or think of in a specified way.
“she regarded London as her base”
synonyms:consider, look on, view, see, hold, think, think of, contemplate, count, judge, deem, estimate, evaluate, interpret, appraise, assess, make of, find, put down as, take for, account, reckon, treat, adjudge, size up, value, rate, gauge, sum up, weigh up
“we regard these results as encouraging”
noun:
1. attention to or concern for something.
“the court must have regard to the principle of welfare”
synonyms:consideration, care, concern, sympathy, thought, mind, notice, heed, attention, interest
“he has no regard for human life”
2. best wishes (used to express friendliness in greetings).
“give her my regards”
synonyms: best wishes, good wishes, greetings, kind/kindest regards, felicitations, salutations, respects, compliments, best, love; More
So in understanding the meaning of these concepts/words…Surely operating from a place where we think about our own well-being and happiness is a good thing right?? Sure, as long as it isn’t just rushing in and meeting our own needs… “oh, I need a massage, I’ll use the $100 in the kitty to go get a massage because that will make me feel well and happy” – because that then moves an action of self-love to that of self-fishness by neglecting to check in with others (consideration). But what about the whole “attach mask before helping others” thing we preach to Mums and Dads out there?? Doesn’t that mean we should be lacking consideration for others if we have unmet needs? This is why the answer is in the meaning of the word REGARD.
You see, if we all go around making sure our needs are met and that we are responsible for our well-being and happiness and personal profit and pleasure – but we do it whilst having a REGARD, a consideration, a thought, a kindness, a respect… with LOVE for others…. then the benefit associated with the profit/pleasure related to wellbeing or happiness (or material or whatever) becomes SELF-LOVE instead of SELFISH – the answer is LOVE. Do things with love and consideration and kindness and thoughts for others… and you’ll never be considered selfish again…. even if you’re the one taking the $100 to take yourself for a massage (hmmmm maybe not the best example but you get what I mean).

Some rules to live by to shift from scarcity mindset and selfishness to abundance mindset and SELF LOVE to boot:

  1. Above all, do all things with LOVE and Consideration – if you’re being loving and doing things with loving energy and demonstrating that you have thought about others, shown others consideration and kindness… then even somewhat more selfish actions and motives are softened (Wow, that is a mouthful and I am certainly going to practice my hardest at this!!)
  2. Look after your health and wellbeing… (sounds so simple…. but definitely need some practice here too!)
  3. Don’t be loving on yourself so much you miss that you’re actually hurting or neglecting others in the process. (whoops, guilty here too)
  4. If there is only $100 in the kitty (metaphor for life in teams, families, communities), take the time to consider who could benefit from the resource the most before rushing in to self service.
  5. Take a little time to scan your environment and think about the needs of others (emotional, financial, health, wellbeing, happiness).
  6. Contemplate…. Consider….Think about things…. do all things consciously and with love and kindness. (I try sooooo hard with this but it is easy to slip into autopilot and miss the signs!)
  7. Ditch the scarcity mindset…. sacrifice this round for someone in greater need, knowing that there is plenty of pleasure and profit for all.

 

 

Before you judge…

Shit happens right. Break ups, break downs, mistakes, wins, promotions, winning the lottery and losing our minds. The problem is with things like fakebook and instaspam everyone feels ‘so connected’ and like they really know each other. The problem with this is that judgement has become hardwired in human nature at the scroll of a finger and the hesitation over the like button. We think we know it all. We think we know when things are good, bad, real, not real – but do we really?

Have we lost our ability to be empathetic? Connected? Curious? Caring? 

We were taught at school to walk a mile in someone’s shoes before you judged, yet somehow humans fail to do this time and time again. One of my favourite things to ponder is that judgement is simply data analysis without all the data – the point being, you cannot draw conclusive outcomes with an incomplete data set, so why is it that humans do this every single day?

You instantly know whether you ‘like’ a post you see or not…. but have a think for a moment…

You don’t know the whole story.

You don’t know the entire situation.

You can’t possibly understand everything going on here….

Yet you judged confidently…. you liked, you scrolled past, you may have even screwed up your nose and scoffed….but you have done so in a micro second. Without a conversation. Without the full story. Without the full picture. Without full consciousness.

This needs to stop.

The best thing we can do is suspend our judgement and simply be present. Engage in more conscious opinion making.

Be there rather than 17 steps ahead in the land of conclusions that you’re not qualified to make. Be present and just connect. 

This goes for children, at work, friends having a tough time.

Stop. Think. Be present. 

Holding an energetic space while a friend, colleague or child makes sense of their own situation is enough. This is also known as “being there” for someone.

We share our lives in these online places, yet we are not sharing our true selves. Many of us don’t know who our true selves are, but let’s be honest, it isn’t the pictures we share, the stories we tell. It’s the moments we are making offline that matter. The conversations. The ah huh moments. Don’t get me wrong, I love technology and the way it extends our reach and facilitates communication, I just think we all need to engage with it in a more switched on and conscious manner… we have to stop mindlessly clicking, scrolling, liking and judging.

If you’re wondering what is going on in my life right now, you’re welcome to ask me – send me a DM, or my email is sarah@thewondertribe.com.au – instead of drawing conclusions or judging, why not just ask?

Xx

The tricky thing about curiosity.

Curiosity is time consuming and can be really bothersome. I feel like sometimes when you get curious, you are rewarded with more lines of enquiry, more work, more conversation, more research, more connections, more discovery, more self limiting beliefs… rather than more wonder. This isn’t always welcome! 

When we are walking around in a state of overwhelm – the last thing we want is more to do, more to process, more to understand and comprehend. The easier option is to avoid curiosity at all costs. 

Do not ask your coffee waiter their name, where they live, what they like doing – this will distract you from your coffee. Do not ask your taxi driver who they are, when they fell in love, how many children they have. Just stick to the normal “have you been driving long today?” ‘What is the weather like” chit chat. Don’t ask your work colleagues what they did on the weekend, whether they are OK or what their favourite holiday destination is – dear god, leave that can of worms. And do not under any circumstances get curious about yourself, your thoughts, your reality, your self limiting beliefs. 

In this day and age where technology allows us to peer into the lives of others, through facebook, Instagram, linkedin and more – the need to refine the art of curiosity becomes even more important. 

It seems normal to think: Oh, there’s Sarah, her trip looked lovely, I liked the look of that breakfast she had the other day, I know enough about her now, I might walk the other way. 

But what is really going on? What is Sarah feeling, thinking, struggling with, seeking to heal or understand? Why is Sarah posting what she posts? What is she trying to say? What is she really thinking? Is she aware? Is she going through something? 

When we take the time to connect and go deeper, get curious and ask questions, we get the juicy stuff – the stuff the pictures can’t tell you, the stuff that helps you build new brain and new connections. The stuff that helps us understand ourselves, each other, the stuff that helps us truly heal and self actualise. 

We must encourage our brains to not rest on their laurels, to seek more dopamine from the new connections.

But we have to be bothered. We have to put in the effort with ourselves and with each other. We have to take the time to ask the right questions to peel back the layers to help understand ourselves, our limiting beliefs and each other. Human evolution depends on it. 

In a paradigm of constant positivity and gratitude, I took the time to ask myself some big questions, some polarising questions and they led me down a path of self discovery and healing that is changing my life. These questions opened up lots of unresolved limiting beliefs and issues for me to work through. Here they are:

1. What am I disappointed by?

2. What is in conflict between my beliefs and my reality? 

3. What am I ungrateful for? 

4. If a magic genie gave you 3 wishes, what would you change?

5. Describe your ideal self, now describe how you see yourself now… compare

I think it’s important to get to know ourselves, warts and all. Heal the parts of self that we are covering up or ignoring and tend to our garden within to unleash true happiness and wonder. I’m still on my journey for healing but the curiosity has been worthwhile, for life is but a journey from the day we are born to the day we die to understand, uncover our purpose and heal.

I’m curious to find out whether this inspired you to ask yourself some tricky questions and where it led you!
Xxx

Inward bound: How adventuring inside can nurture your inner health and unleash wonder in your world.

Copy of how to work from home with kids-3
We live in an age where people are obsessed with crafting their abs, their hair, their lips and butts and boobs – but how much attention are they paying to their inner appearance? Their inner health? Oh and I’m not just talking about your gut.

Mental health isn’t just about not being depressed. True mental health is so much more than that. It’s like tuning one of those old fashioned radios until you can hear your inner dialogue clearly. It’s being able to challenge thoughts that pop up into your head, pruning those that serve you versus the noise and distraction designed to tease and tempt you off your path.

I believe we all have a soul mission. It’s our job in this life to uncover it (easier said than done) and live and speak our truth while we do this. This is called “purpose” by some and when you’re “on track” delivering your soul mission, you will feel focus and passion and a level of energy like no other because you will be in flow.

Flow isn’t just reserved for elite athletes and CEOs – it’s something we can all access provided we listen to our intuition (tune that radio) and our heart. We can condition ourselves as humans to perform well on all fronts, we can practice and play and act out a whole manner of amazing tricks that are both impressive and feel somewhat rewarding – but deep inner satisfaction and happiness only comes when we are living our soul mission and in flow. Until you’re doing this, it’s just a really lovely cocktail of hormones (hello serotonin, oxytocin, dopamine!). These hormones are wondrous and by goodness can they trick you into thinking you’re on track and even in flow – the problem is, like any cocktail, the effects are short lived and the hangover may not be very pretty (and may take a while to show up).

How do I know all this? As a dopamine dealing wonder junkie, I’ve mastered the art of creating a whole stack of wonder in my life. I built a Wonder life. I had vision and I went after everything I could possibly dream of and worked with hubby to build it all out. We worked hard, we played hard. We travelled, we entertained, we drank all the aperol and all the fancy wine. It was only last year between a rather stressful house move, starting my consulting business, hubby unexpectedly getting the sack from a senior executive position and two small children robbing all the sleep from my life that I got so low I realised I was not in flow, on track or living my soul mission. Wow. That’s kinda hard to realise. It was like being hit by lightning. I’m living in this beautiful home in an affluent suburb in Melbourne. I have two beautiful children and a partner who loves me. I’ve launched my dream businesses and they are thriving. I’m pouring my heart and soul into everything I do and then it hits me, I’m not happy. Whoa.

Our happiness is our own responsibility – I truly believe this…. We must chase our dreams (not the dreams of others for us), we must tune in, we must do inner work, get curious and understand ourselves, our strengths, our passions, our obsessions, our fears, our desires, our hopes, our secrets, from here we can really start to listen. We can start to listen to our inner dialogue, to our heart, to our soul. Your soul isn’t going to send you an email with your mission in it. It’s not going to send you an envelope “your mission should you choose to accept it is…” either. You’ll get whispers and feelings, your head, heart and gut are there to help you… like a “warmer, warmer, cooler, cooler” sort of feedback system – people say “you’ll know” and it’s true. You’ll know when you’re on track because of that feeling of flow. Because of that car park you got out the front, the ease of connection, how simple the answers suddenly appear. Even if it’s a mountainous problem you’re facing, it excites rather than frightens you. I’m not saying you won’t feel fear… Fear is a feeling, a good one at that! It can warn you to impending danger… or it can remind you to tune in… “feel the fear and do it anyway” the rewards come next.

The first step to reconnecting with my flow was admitting I was unhappy. Admitting that I wasn’t on track and that some serious stuff had to change, I’m on the journey and each day I get amazing validation through feelings and thoughts that I’m getting back on track and getting into flow. It’s certainly a vulnerable and sometimes painful journey to be on but by god it’s worth it. Already I know this. I have moments of crystal clear clarity, glimpses of my mission, feelings that everything is going to work out. I’m awake. I’m alive. I’m feeling more on purpose and in flow than ever before, all from admitting I was unhappy. It’s like sometimes we are too afraid to feel the feels. We get busy following recipes, trying to be like them or look like that or do that thing or achieve that milestone.

Don’t spend all your time worrying about how you look or how ‘things’ look that you forget to tune into how you FEEL. How you think. How you roll! Don’t spend so much time on the outside that you neglect the inside. Let your inner workout begin and suddenly you’ll discover your soul mission, your passion, your purpose, your flow.

Some questions to start you on your inner work out:
  • What am I disappointed about in my life?
  • What secret thoughts do I have that I avoid tuning into for fear of the pain they may cause?
  • What is my wildest dream?
  • If a genie gave me 3 wishes right now to change 3 things on the inside of me…. what would they be?
  • When does time go really fast for me?
  • What does my favourite day on earth look like? If I only have one day to live how does it start? what am I doing? who am I with? where am I? what am I eating? how am I feeling?
  • What do people typically ask you for help in?
  • If you had to teach something, what would you teach?
  • What would you regret not fully doing, being or having in your life?

Ok you’re 99 years old and looking back on your life, which areas do you give yourself a 10/10 for playing full out and being 100% authentically you…(in no particular order)…

  • Relationship to self
  • Family relationships and Friendships
  • Career/Business/Work
  • Learning and personal growth
  • Fun & Adventure
  • Spirituality
  • Community
  • Sexuality
  • Romance
  • Nurturing the planet
  • Your purpose/soul mission
  • Body
  • Mind
  • Legacy

This is not an all inclusive list, what other areas would you like to focus on? What do you want to give yourself a 10/10 for when you’re 99? What is your long view for your life? A 99 year old who spent all their time worrying about how they looked may be sitting alone in a nursing home wishing they had read more books or worrying about all the relationships they weren’t fully present for. A 99 year old may be walking down the beach in excellent fitness wishing they had taken that risk in business or love instead of worrying so much about money. A 99 year old may be crippled, dreaming about all the places they wished they had been before their body failed them.

Have a long view. Think about your mental fitness, do deep and unrelenting inner work, get curious about your mindset, your soul mission, get inner fit and watch your life start to get into genuine flow.

Three wonder statements to unleash a little extra happiness in your soul.

Copy of how to work from home with kids

Believe in yourself. I’ve heard this in a Disney movie or two… a motivational talk or two… even a self help book or two. I know it all sounds good, but really, how can you believe in yourself?? How can you nurture your inner wonder?

Life isn’t meant to be perfect, that isn’t the lesson. If you never trip up, fail, make ridiculously embarrassing mistakes, then what will your spirit dine out on when you die? Imagine for a second you are looking down on your life, after it is over. You’re able to scroll through the moments like a limitless instagram scroll, each moment, a movie, a time capsule of wonder – the emotions, the experiences, the people, all in dimensions and colour and sensory explosions that you cannot even fathom in this 5 dimensional life we live. You can zoom in, you can press pause, you can also see the bigger context, the moments that led to that one, it is quantum entertainment at its very best. Within this realm, everything makes perfect sense. Every mistake, every decision, every fight, every moment…. you see that in fact it is all connected, there is nothing that isn’t perfect and there isn’t a single moment, breathe, butterfly flying through the sky that isn’t meant to be. That isn’t connected.

“I believe in myself”.

When you zoom out far enough, you realise, that the only thing holding you back is you. Your lack of perspective. Your lack of understanding. Your lack of belief, belief in the bigger picture, belief in deeper meaning, in destiny, in life, in yourself….

When you zoom out and realise…. you are able to see. You are Limitless.

The only limitations we have are the ones we place on ourselves. Our limiting self beliefs, the way we label ourselves, our capabilities, our strengths, our confidence, our abilities…. we are but the limitations we place upon our souls. Undo this right now. Take your hand and place it on your heart and on your tummy and whisper to yourself:

“I am limitless”. 

The next stop is nurturing your self worth. Without self worth, you are worthless. We are but the value we place upon our own atoms. When we nurture our self worth, when we see our own worth, when we understand the special something we bring into the world, we are limitless, we are full of self belief, we are love.

“I am worthy”.

This is feeling like a sermon of some sort…  it has just spilled from a place of contemplation, learning, deep and sorrow filled personal growth and enquiry. Take some time today to repeat these three wonder statements to yourself out loud and see how you go….

“I believe in myself”, “I am limitless”, “I am worthy”.

The greatest advice I have ever been given (so far).

I’m all about contrast. In contrast we learn, we see, we grow. So, in contrast to my post last year about the least wondrous things I have experienced as a woman in business, I will share with you the greatest advice I have ever been given…by all the people regardless of their sex, race or creed.

Despite some crappy advice along the way, I have created a career and entrepreneurial ecosystem I am proud of and I have met some of the greatest thinkers and doers of our generation. I soak up their advice like a sponge and their thinking has influenced my thinking. In the past decade I have wined and dined with some of the most incredible humans on the planet and been lucky enough to be on the receiving end of some incredible advice, so in no particular order… let the name dropping begin!

  1. “Find your business soul mate…someone who completes you” – Guy Kawasaki
  2. “Your energy flows where your attention goes, so be mindful of where your attention is!” – Dandapani
  3. “In a sea of grey, continue to be neon!” – Michael Harte
  4. “Out of 100 people, only 5 of them will love you, 5 of them will hate you and the other 90 are inbetween, play to the LOVERS!” – Lucy Perry
  5. “If you can play, you’ll win at life” – Nolan Bushnell
  6. “I can’t do it YET, add the yet, you’re capable of anything and everything” – Vicki Nally (Mum)
  7. “What you accept you approve” – Martin Nally (Dad)
  8. “Have a long view, imagine where you want to go, then make it happen” – Wendy McCarthy
  9. “If you want to own the future, you have to get uncomfortable, because out of that discomfort comes greatness” – Cindy Gallop
  10. “Think Positive, believe in yourself, believe you can… and you can… and you will!” – Sean Roocroft (married this one)
  11. “Why not? Truly, just experiment, make it work, give it a go!” – Vanessa Beggs
  12. “Sometimes you have to ignore feedback and just keep being you” – Craig Lauchlan
  13. “You’re creative and clever Sah, own it, you gotta sprinkle your Sarah sparkle everywhere you go” – Kat Turner (my awesome sister)
  14. “Live what you preach… Be present, in the moment and grateful what you have done..write what you have acheived and you will be blown away” – Steve Pirie 
  15. “If you want to raise happy and smart children, Create a lab for them to experiment, always make up after an argument in front of them, show them empathy, show them love” – Dr John Medina

See… I got some awesome advice!!!! But it wasn’t all lovely advice and happiness and roses…. along the journey I was ignored; left out, I was bullied, I was oppressed, I was harassed… and the fire in my belly grew every time I was pushed down, it made me want to show people what I was capable of. Maybe growing up in a loving family with clean clothes and food in my belly meant that I was missing the whole adversity thing… but before you imagine silver spoons and easy rides, never fear…the adversity came when I started my career.

I shared the 10 least wondrous things that had happened to me as a woman in business last year… and to be really honest, this was the G version…. #metoo #wheredoistart #toovulnerabletoshare #oneday 

I am certainly grateful for all of the contrast in my experience as it has shaped me, my thinking, my capabilities, my approach and of course my attitude. That doesn’t mean that I’d recommend a serving of harrassment, bullying, oppression or carelessness to ‘toughen you up’ – actually, on the contrary, I understand that all the emerging research by amazing humans like Roman Krznaric on empathy, Dr John Medina (Developmental Molecular Biologist and author of brain rules) who talk about the importance of relationships, connection, kindness and Carol Dweck author of mindset and founder of “growth mindset” — the idea that we can grow our brain’s capacity to learn and to solve – means that we actually don’t need to give harsh feedback or outdated advice to try and ‘grow’ people or make them more ‘resilient’ – in fact the best tools we can use to help people thrive include:

  • Empathy – taking time to connect with the person in their experience from their perspective rather than as an observer of their experience from your perspective.
  • Experimentation – an attitude of giving things a go, accepting failure, trying again.
  • Cultivating healthy Relationships – Taking the time to connect face to face.
  • Love – yep, even in business we need to focus on love not fear and take time to connect, share, be vulnerable and care.

I never really know how to end my blogs, I get into this total flow of writing blah blah blah passionate meaningful blah and then I’m like, oh, I’m done – but how do I round this out??? Hmmmm, well the best advice I’ve received hasn’t just come from magazines or books or managers…. it’s come from friends, family and inspirational thought leaders – so if I am to leave you with one thing, it’s this: what is the best advice you’ve received? Who from? How has it helped you create your most wondrous life? Oh and does that person know that they influenced you???? Cos I’m pretty sure half my list are just finding out now. Love you guys and thank you xx

How wonder can help you on your wellbeing journey.

There are a few things you should know about me.

1. I love a drink (I’m at least 65.4% Irish/Scottish/welsh according to my recent DNA test)

2. I am a happy go lucky human who adores playing with people 

3. I’m a total unco 

I haven’t always drank, in fact aside from that time my cousins got me completely drunk at my dads 40th birthday when I was 14, I was pretty well behaved until around 17 when I started sneaking a few drinks at parties… but I digress. I have however always been a happy go lucky people loving unco.

I was born unco. Uncoordinated, butter fingers, knock knees, clumsy, baby giraffe… you know the kind of kid who falls over a lot, by the time I was 3 I’d already had plastic surgery from a rather bloody bump to the head, lost 2 teeth and had countless scabby elbows and knees. Gravity didn’t seem to work on me the same way it did others, maybe that’s part of it, I’m a little bit of a floaty happy go lucky person who seemed to fall off the planet a lot… 

I grew up in the 80s and 90s with films like grease celebrating jocks and coordinated gravity attracting humans, so my unco butterfingers and knocked knees attracted me much “banter” aka grief both at school and home. My parents were young, fit, gorgeous humans who were also incredibly coordinated. My other 3 siblings were blessed with coordination and gravity worked on them marvellously, so at home, I was constantly reminded how unco I was too.

When it came to sports, I’ve always given things a go… despite the unco gravitational resistance because sports are fun and if you remember 2, I’m a happy go lucky people and play lover – my love of playing with people has always helped me get out there despite my lack of sporty skills. I did find swimming and chess which didn’t rely so much on hand eye coordination but built my confidence as a participant in organised effort and again despite my lack of hand eye coordination I gave hockey, netball and t-ball a go too – although you were more likely to find me building birds nests out of grass clippings in the field of t-ball than catching any balls that’s for sure. 

Ok so you get the point, I wasn’t the most graceful sportswoman and I attracted a lot of interesting nicknames and heckling whenever I did take part in sports. As funny as this is, it impacted my fitness and wellbeing mindset over the years.

As I grew older and friends started going to the gym or running for fitness, I found even putting on sand shoes or runners as the mainlanders called them started to make my palms sweaty. You see I wasn’t sporty, I was unco remember? I had knobbley knees and ran like a windmill, I was awkward and looked silly whenever I did anything to do with sport. Well that’s what was going through my head. This played on my mind for many years and then as a young woman I suddenly started to care about my weight. I was 20 and I cared because my boyfriend at the time kept talking about it and boyfriends have a way of influencing our thinking in those early hormone drenched moments of love and attachment forming.

Suddenly weight mattered, this meant I needed to get in shape. My motivations were questionable but got me into the gym and learning how to use various pieces of clunky equipment to work up a sweat and get summer body ready. I also learnt about food. How if you didn’t eat as much then you wouldn’t put on as much weight. One of my Aunties god love Her refers to these days as my annorexic days. No no no, I wasn’t annorexic, I still ate every day and worked out. I was just controlling how much I ate and when, obsessively. I was also weighing myself 6-10 times a day. My family were worried when I went from 55kg to 52, to 50, to 48…my aim was 45 in my head so I didn’t know why they were so worried. When you define annorexia: “an emotional disorder characterized by an obsessive desire to lose weight by refusing to eat.” – hmmmm I had a problem. Funnily enough breaking up with him led to my pizza diet ($10 for 2 dominos pizzas anyone?) and with some new friends, a new city and a new diet largely consisting of 2 for 1 meat lovers pizzas, I managed to find some kgs and some confidence and my obsessive desire to lose weight was cured…. my lack of coordination however was not.

I did find that fitness first was pretty much the perfect place for single people and braved my lack of fitness flair to keep in relative shape over the years. But the yo yo diets, accidental annorexia, the pizza diet, the sweaty gym classes never really left me considering myself as a “wellbeing junkie” – maybe that’s because I loved a drink or meat lovers pizza so much…

I tried yoga and Pilates and spin classes but whenever I was in these places I felt like an outsider, I felt like a total unco, a total fraud. 

I’d see these wellbeing humans with their perfectly crafted abs in their perfectly matchy Lycra and I would feel little stabs of envy. I wished I was coordinated and gravitationally blessed like them. I wish I could enter a gym without looking like a total unco and enjoy a class without worrying how silly I looked and how wrong I was getting everything. I wished I could go for a run without looking like a windmill. 

I have three turning points in my wellbeing journey. The first was my very first outdoor boot camp with none other than Libby Babet, my co-founder of www.nurtureher.com – Libby had decided to follow her passions and studied to become a Personal Trainer, she created her own training business “BUF” and I enrolled as one of her first customers (actually I might have been the first!) – her amazing energy and approach made me forget how unco I was and suddenly I found myself running around with the grace of a slightly more coordinated baby giraffe, forgetting myself in the moment, those classes were full of laughs and fun – an experience I’ll never forget!

My second turning point was after I had my first baby Sienna… I did yoga throughout my pregnancy and I was in awe of my body and what I had created but I had never felt so self conscious in my life. I wasn’t one of those women in a bikini 6 weeks after having a baby, while I squeezed back into my jeans, my body had changed so much and I felt embarrassed. At the same time, breastfeeding and caring for my baby was the most important thing, so I enjoyed a balanced diet and parked my insecurities… until my wedding date drew near! Sienna was 8 months old when we tied the knot and a few months before I realised I needed to fit into my dress (which I’d bought before getting pregnant). Libby came to the rescue in her gym AGOGA this time and helped me get wedding dress ready, post baby… no mean feat. I remember sending her a picture of me in a bikini the week before my wedding, a healthy size 8, I was no swimwear model but I had worked hard for my results. I never thought I’d feel ok again in a bikini after a baby but she transformed my body, my mind and helped me be a happy and confident bride! 

My third turning point was when I learnt about growth mindset. Carol Dwecks Amazing and life changing research about the power of mindset was a pivotal moment in this unco, pizza loving, clumsy little baby giraffes life. It enabled a simple shift in my thinking:  I wasn’t a wellbeing wonder yet.

Dweck talks about the power of yet and scientists back it up with their findings about neuroplasticity- watch this to learn about neuroplasticity as it is positively life changing.

So in deciding I wasn’t a wellbeing wonder yet, I found myself open and willing to try all the wellbeing adventures. After my second baby Stella, I lost my baby weight pretty quickly but my shape resembled more of a chocolate eclair than a svelt pear and I wasn’t sure where I would find the time to fix it! By this stage Libby and I were living in different states, thankfully my friend Mon from www.fitfoodfitbody.com came to the rescue with her in-home training, the convenience of her coming to me meant I not only didn’t have to think about it, I also could squeeze in between work and she totally knows how much I hate exercise so always made sure it was a fun work out whilst she distracted me! I worked hard but didn’t know it because she was such an awesome trainer or was she a life coach? Either way, it want just my body that transformed. She builds bonds and cares about her clients that’s for sure.

I’m still trying every day to embrace my body in a positive way, I don’t consider myself coordinated or sporty yet, I don’t consider myself in good shape yet, I don’t consider myself a bikini model yet ;), I don’t consider myself disciplined or “there” when it comes to my health goals… yet. I do however consider myself a wellbeing wonder. I’m embracing healthy eating habits, movement exercise snacks, barre classes and more. I’m being kinder to myself about my body, my imperfections and my shape, knowing I’m giving things a go and creating a healthy life culture is more important than a number on the scales or perfectly sculpted abs. I’m embracing that I haven’t completely lost all of that baby weight yet and that my body will continue to evolve on my wellbeing journey. I’m embracing that wellbeing is a journey, not a destination or an archetype and that we all have our own unique stories and mindsets to overcome on our personal wellbeing journey. I’m becoming an actual WELL BEING – ‘well’ meaning “in good or satisfactory way” and ‘being’ “the natural essence of a person” and its all thanks to a little wonder.

I want you to embrace the power of yet too to inspire a mindset shift, you too are a wellbeing wonder (just maybe not yet)…

😘 

Why I created an entrepreneurial ecosystem.

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Have you ever just done something because it makes sense for you, even if everyone around you thinks you’re a little bit mad, only to look back and realise how much sense it really did make? This has been my career and entrepreneurial journey to date. Inspired by shiny things that seem exciting and motivated by productivity, quality work and of course flexibility, I have build a portfolio, or ecosystem of wondrous and exciting businesses and projects that all fuel and inspire each other.

What do shoes, events and consulting have to do with each other? Well me, but more than that, they are part of my wonder ecosystem.

Years ago, I became a design thinking coach. I had recently studied Neuro Linguistic Programming and Hypnotherapy and the three things together gave me a firm footing in empathy and understanding human centred design. I happened to be pregnant at the time, which gave me a whole new sense of wonder. This layer cake of learning and goodness inspired me to think very differently about myself, my career, the world in general.

In 2013 when Sienna was born, I took a part time role as MD for www.dunstanbaby.com and a technology advisory role for The Copywright agency. Having a few interesting things to do between feeds kept my brain stimulated and my heart happy. This introduction into the entrepreneurial world inspired me to go on and launch www.siennababy.com.au and www.wiredforwonder.com as CommBank’s first Intrapreneur and of course all the other things since.

The thing about start ups is that you learn so much, so fast. Marketing, building brands, websites, technology, funding, media and PR just to name a few. Whether you’re building technology road maps or strategic marketing plans for an app like Dunstan Baby, selling baby shoes or tickets to an innovation event, you pretty quickly learn a lot of new skills and start to build this tool kit that can be leveraged across all kinds of businesses.

I returned from maternity leave to run Wired for Wonder at CommBank but soon realised that the skills I had picked up with Dunstan Baby, Sienna Baby, The Copywright agency were all relevant for developing and marketing Wired for Wonder. In fact, the more side hustle I had on the go, the more leverage, efficiency and productivity I was able to create in Wired for Wonder.

In 2017, I went from intrapreneur to entrepreneur full time and launched www.thewondertribe.co, a creative consultancy to open minds, build tribes, connect people, reimagine work and open minds for transformational change. Launching this was surprisingly easy, by this stage I knew how to build a website, a brand, the infrastructure of the business. Within days I had my first client signed up and was ready to go.

The biggest challenge in new business is knowing when to resource. What support do you need and when? It is easy to suddenly find yourself madly juggling hundreds of balls and oh the emails!

Years ago, I was trained in process mapping and engineering with Six Sigma and Lean principles. One of the key items I found in any business was time wasted waiting. I can’t stand waste. So I started to think about processes in my own business and created a sequencing program so that while I was waiting on one thing, I would start another. This is not multitasking, it is multi-sequencing and thanks to several years in Resource and Portfolio Management, I got the multi-sequencing skills. I remember sequencing large programs of work and tapping into all kids of resource discretionary effort by getting people to work on side projects that fuelled their soul while they were ‘waiting’ on other processes or information. Even the most process driven humans who seem stuck in their ways are capable of magnificent sequencing if you can set their soul on fire. I call this the desert stomach of productivity. You know, when you have no room left for dinner, but someone offers you desert and suddenly you find capacity? Yeah, humans are like this with work too.

So I designed an ecosystem of businesses that are ALL like delicious deserts for me. You know how people say “do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life” – yeah, that. I created that in my world.

Some of my businesses make me more money than others. Sienna Baby isn’t overly time consuming, but we have reinvested every $ we have made to continue to expand the range and build the business. It has opened doors and conversations and experiences to me that I never would have had if I didn’t own a product business. I think about this business in a different way and this builds my brain and enables me to connect dots in different ways. I also have a very different type of customer for this business than my other businesses. The others are largely servicing Blue Chip clients and Entrepreneurs, the customers I meet through Sienna Baby are amazing every day Mummas and Aunts and Grandparents from around the Globe.

The biggest problem for me has always been and is still emails. Having 5 businesses on the go means there are thousands of emails each week to get through, this doesn’t include phone calls, skype calls, zoom conference calls, slack messages, asana project tasks, big cartel orders – ping, ping, ping – this is one of the reasons my phone is always on silent. I take productivity seriously so this means minimising interruptions when I need to smash out big deliverables and be present with clients. This sometimes means my turnaround times are not instant. This is SUPER hard as a mumpreneur, let alone a prolific juggler with all the things on the go. I still remember writing letters to my pen pal in the USA and waiting 4 weeks for a response, so I am kind to myself if it takes a few days to respond and in turn I don’t sweat if people take a few days to get back to me. I think this sort of communication adjustment is key in this hyperconnected always on culture we live in. I prioritise my energy to make sure when I am with you, I’m all there. I have just hired my first virtual assistant to help with this – so excited.

So, now I’m running www.thewondertribe.co, www.siennababy.com.au (and about to hire someone!), www.nurtureher.com with my incredible co-founder Libby Babet, Island in a Box (website under construction) with my awesome co-founder Steve Pirie and www.wiredforwonder.com for CommBank and I’m really excited about the launch of Kitty early next year. Despite all of this madness, I am still striving to be a very hands on Mumma. I still pick my kids up at 4pm most days and make sure that we have lots of 1:1 time together each week. I get stressed every day (like everyone else) but thanks to Kelly McGonigal – I’ve made stress my friend (watch that talk and find out how you can too).

This isn’t for everyone, but for me, having an entrepreneurial ecosystem means I can have days where I am designing workshops; learning new skills, focus on curating speakers across multiple events, designing shoes or web pages or pretty marketing materials on days when I’m feeling creative and selling all the things when I meet the right people who have an unmet need (Shoes or Inspirational Events or Consulting anyone?).

If you’re worried about not having time to start a side hustle, maybe it is time to think again? Maybe the side hustle will inspire you to unlock more productivity, more inspiration? More efficiency in your life? Maybe it will make your life flow more? Maybe it is an important part of your ecosystem? I certainly never thought I would be able to find time to do all the things I now do, but somewhere in experimenting and giving it a go, I have found a truly wondrous ecosystem that drives me!

Heal your energy, heal your life 💖

As with everything I write, this isn’t for everyone – but if you’ve ever thought about energy, felt like you’ve had too much or not enough energy or felt like you’re in a bit of an energy funk, then read on…

For as long as I can remember I’ve been complimented consistently on one thing… and yeah while it’s often my fabulous hair or my emerald green eyes, the thing I want to talk about is: ENERGY 

Oh and I’m not talking about your power provider. energy – ˈɛnədʒi/noun: “the strength and vitality required for sustained physical or mental activity.” – “changes in the levels of vitamins can affect energy and well-being” – that kind of energy, the kind that impacts your well-being, your life, the people around you oh and your heart and soul.

“I wish I had your energy!”, “where do you find the energy?”, “You have great energy!”, “I love your energy” … oh hey energy, what are you? How can I get more of you? How can I improve my energy and others? Why can people sense you? What is good and bad energy? What do you do with bad energy? How can we use energy to heal? I’ve wondered about all the questions. 

I remember many years ago my bestie Nicky was giving me a hands on pranic healing and it got me super intrigued, what was this energy healing stuff and why did it feel so good? Pranic healing uses prana (energy) to balance, harmonize and transform the body’s energy processes. That is, someone else uses their energy to help you balance yours. A few years later, a course popped up on one of those deals of the day emails, “reiki 1 – energy healing certification” – Nicky and I enrolled immediately and set off on an adventure together.

I have this mind that is exceptionally scientific and good at sense making but very rarely sceptical. I’m capable of critical thinking and complex problem solving but I tend to be the person that believes people and seeks to understand rather than pick the eyes out of an argument or construct. As I get older I realise this is what makes me unique and I relish in being able to hold seemingly disparate concepts, constructs and information in my mind without feeling the need to collapse everything into neat little structured parcels, where everything is mutually exclusive and everything makes sense. This serves me well when it comes to business, to being creative and well, to embracing woo woo weird stuff. 

So rewind, around 5 years, I’m sitting in a hall about 14 weeks pregnant with Sienna with around 30 other random humans and my gorgeous Nicky and we are being taught the principles of reiki.

The Five Reiki Principles are guidelines that everyone can live by, to promote a healthy, loving way of living.


Reiki is a form of alternative medicine developed in 1922 by Japanese Buddhist Mikao Usui. Usui meditated for days and weeks and months and this healing modality formed through this experience. Like pranic healing, reiki uses one humans energy as a channel to promote harmony and balance in another humans energy field. I am not exactly sure how it works if I’m completely honest but over the past 96 years thousands of people have adopted Usui’s techniques and healed thousands of others around the world, just with their hands.

That day in that hall, I was a little sceptical if I’m completely honest and it surprised me a lot. As a side note, feeling skeptical is a really strange feeling. I wasn’t entirely sure about how someone could channel universal energy through their hands to heal me… and then I experienced my first reiki healing. Wow. It was nothing short of magical and my skepticism dissolved and my thinking evolved. This worked. It was magic. I loved it. Who am I to question the mystical capabilities of one of the most magical and awe inspiring things on the planet hey? The human being. Seriously I think there is still so much we don’t understand about ourselves, our capabilities, the universe. It certainly piqued my intrigue, I went on to continue studying reiki and became attuned as a reiki master (you level up through various attunements, interesting but always felt very different after each attunement!). 

I use reiki with my kids, on myself, on close friends and family and loved ones and it brings happiness and peace to all those who I work with. The trick? Just go with the flow. 

I was excited to hear Dr Fiona Kerr talk about the benefits of eye contact, face to face communication and touch at Wired for Wonder in 2016, my brain wondered, if we know all the wonderful benefits that physiologically occur in the brain and body from eye contact, surely eventually things like hands on healing, pranic healing and reiki will become scientific proven and credible. 

Regardless; the benefits of tuning into another human, making eye contact, listening to their woes and worries, establishing an empathetic connection and laying your hands on them in a reiki healing process are abundantly clear to me. In this hyperconnected technological world… when was the last time you stared into another’s eyes? Hugged for longer than 5-10 seconds? Lay hands purposefully on someone to help them balance and heal? For me, the decreases in cortisol and increases in dopamine and serotonin are anything but a surprise. Of course the body response is a positive one, human connection, empathy, touch, healing – this is what we are wired to do. 

So if you haven’t tried an energy healing, I most definitely recommend it! Here are some of my other tips for balancing your own energy and creating more:

1. Meditate – place your hand on your heart and tune into the rhythm of your heart beat, centre and ground yourself in your rhythm. Too often we get influenced and impacted by the energy of those around us, this clogs our energy field – tuning into your heart is a wonderful way to rediscover your centre.

2. Every morning create an energy bubble around yourself. This is a visualisation exercise to keep your energy protected. When you have good energy everyone wants a piece of it (consciously or not) and you may be unwillingly drained by energy vampires – my good friend Dandapani has some awesome tips on this! Watch his 2016 Wired for Wonder talk “the energy alchemist”

3. Rest when you are weary, eat when you are hungry, drink water all day. You are a human, your body uses so much energy every day so make sure you rest, feed, water your body to ensure you have the fuel to keep your energy levels physically high.

4. Journal 📓 ask yourself honestly what is impacting your energy? How can you balance your energy? What energy do you need to process, move, express? Stagnant energy causes illness and imbalance.

5. Create some playlists! Music is an incredible way to boost your energy, get your emotions moving (emotions are just energy in motion)!

6. Get walking or running or skipping or dancing or playing! Moving is a wonderful way to use physical energy and to ground any frantic energy (there’s such a thing as too much energy which can make you feel scattered and frantic).

Think about your energy levels each day. Do you have a lot of energy? Not enough? Are you feeling a bit low? A bit depressed or stagnant? Are you bouncing off the walls? 

Think about balancing your energy each day and  finding ways to keep energy flowing in your body, mind and soul. 

Hope you got something out of this xxx
*image source Pinterest, artists unknown – upliftconnect.com 

My favourite online learning resources to squeeze a little more wonder into your brain.

I love live events as an opportunity to learn and grow – but I find it really important to continue to invest in myself and my mindset all year round, every year. This is even more important now that I am self employed and in control of my own learning destiny. Online learning isn’t easy for everyone, but it is a wonderful way to supplement your learning plans this year and squeeze in a little extra wonder into your world.

We live in such an exciting time with limitless possibilities at our fingertips. I remember when Dad told me that he knew they were very fortunate when his Dad bought a whole encyclopedia set. Imagine having that much information available to you at home! Fast forward and we all now have google, youtube, facebook in our smart phones. Gone are the days when education was a luxury and a privilege, these days, the playing field is much more event, the world is your oyster and you can learn anything, anywhere, anytime and a lot of it is free or at least a lot more affordable than ever before!

I’m a learning addict. Nothing brings me more joy than finishing a book or an online course. I loved university but with 2 small children and 5 businesses on the go, online is the best option for me these days and I have been sampling my way through resources for the past 6 years.

What can you learn online? Anything! Almost everything. There are lots of skills and experiences that are more beneficial face to face but as a source to top up your brain, well, there are some truly amazing resources available out there. You can learn anything from neuropsychology to nutrition, NLP to coding, design thinking to leadership and of course all the alternative therapies!

Here are some of my favourite resources for learning on the go on any budget…

Coursera – All the top universities from around the globe offer amazing online learning, anything from small units to entire degrees! Enrol and learn python, data science, leadership, strategic management from Harvard, Oxford, Yale or Brown. Oh and some of them are free!

UDEMY – udemy has over 55,000 online courses, you can learn anything from how to trade crypto currency to project management, entrepreneurship and coding. The courses are all available online and available with pricing to suit any budget!

Centre of Excellence – where learning becomes life changing, you can enrol in neuropsychology, business, healing, even witchcraft. Learn at your own pace and keep an eye out for the sales, there are amazing courses available at super affordable prices.

edX – Religion, conflict and peace, blockchain or computer science – another awesome online platform for courses and programs to help you learn new skills (affordably!).

Microsoft Virtual Academy – great for tech skills!

Forme – I toured with Agapi Stassionopoulos and Joe Hubbard and the THRIVE program last year brought to Australia by Forme, these guys have some awesome online courses available, from the art of influence to the thrive program, definitely worth checking out!

Your next question might be… well where do I start? Let me suggest a few worthwhile courses shall I?

OK now go…Get curious and creative and invest in your brain!! I can’t wait to hear all of your tales as to what you choose to explore! Hope you enjoy.

Sarah xxCopy of how to work from home with kids (5)