Read this if you’ve ever had to start over …

start-over

start-over

Do you remember the challenge we started on Monday? How are you getting on with that? Did you totally forget to do your one small thing yesterday? Or maybe that was just me?!? ๐Ÿ˜‰

So between donating blood and talking to Rent A Boss clients and, I dunno, life happening, I totally forgot to write out my goals yesterday. (That was my one small, new thing. If you have noooo idea what I’m talking about, click here, you’ll catch up. I’ll wait.)

And I didn’t even remember that I had forgotten until I was tucked up in bed ready to go to sleep again. Bother!

As I was drifting off to sleep though, I remembered that it was almost Fridayย (did I ever tell you how much I love Fridays??)ย which got me to thinking about how we could turn this ‘missing a day’ thing around.

Because we all do it, maybe it really was just me this time, but I’m pretty sure you’ve experienced this … that thing that happens when you commit to change and it’s all gung-ho and fabulous for a few days, and then you slip up, miss a day, snarl at someone you love when you’d promised yourself you were all about love and sweet thoughts.

What if we didn’t have to start over?

What if this brand new day was already a fresh start, a clean slate, ready for you to doodle on today?

And what if you were given the gift of a new doodle, every single day? Because you know what? You are.

Do you remember that really old song you used to sing in school when you were a kid?

This is the day that the Lord has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.

It turns out that that was lifted straight from the bible (Psalm 118, in case you were wondering) and it is the perfect antidote to “starting over” thinking.

Here’s to lots of delightful, imperfect, gloriously messy doodles today. Are you in?

Until Monday, keep smiling ๐Ÿ™‚
loveel

P.S. I love challenges (the fun ones at least!) Can you tell?? That’s why I built The Faith Exploration Lab. If you’re ready to ditch “starting over” thinking for good, come and join us in the lab. It’s going to be a blast!

What do you say when you don’t know what to say?

love

love

September 11th. The one day of the year, above almost all others, when I don’t really know what to say. Days like Remembrance Sunday are easier because, for most people, the events are so far off, it doesn’t hurt any more.

Plus, well, it’s a Sunday and I don’t publish the daily dose on a Sunday ๐Ÿ˜‰

For a moment I considered saying nothing. Skipping a day and coming back tomorrow. It’s been less than a fortnight since the daily dose restarted so it’s not like I’ve been all that consistent.

But that felt a bit icky.

But then this thought popped in my head … love.

What do you say or do when you don’t know what to say or do?

What one thing has the ability to cover over a multitude of sins?

What’s that command that Jesus gave, the one that knocked all the others out of the ring?

Love.

Whatever that looks like for you today. Love.

It’s not the kinda magic that can bring back loved ones or remove hurt from your memory, but the world starts to look a whole lot kinder from the other side of a hug and a smile. Don’t you think?

Love as a verb, a doing word. Here’s to doing love today ๐Ÿ™‚

loveel

Read this if it’s already been a long week

gift

gift

This is for those days when you feel like you’ve woken up the day after running three marathons.

This is for those days when every, single, single, step feels like one step too many.

This is for those days when you’re forcing yourself to smile and keep on going but all you really want to do is cwtch up on the sofa with a coffee and watch Doctor Who and Donna escape The Library, again.

This is for those days when you need a reminder that you a brilliant and wonderful and stupendous, and you don’t have to speed along full throttle to make that any more so.

This is for those days when you need to be reminded just how loved and treasured and adored you are.

Actually, that last one is for every day ๐Ÿ˜‰

Your challenge for today – if you choose to accept it ๐Ÿ˜‰ is to take some time to slow down and just be, even if you’re having a fairly excellent day and you’re speeding along like the energiser bunny.

In fact, especially if you’re speeding along like the energiser bunny! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Stop. Open your eyes and take a really good look around you. This day is a gift. You are a treasure. Smile ๐Ÿ™‚

Until tomorrow,

loveel

P.S. There’s more where this came from every single day in The Faith Exploration Lab. We start 3 weeks today. Just saying ๐Ÿ˜‰

What if it was ok to tweak and adjust as you went?

tweak-adjust

If you’re a heart surgeon this is terrible advice but for the rest of us mere mortals, there’s something to be said for having a target in mind and then allowing for adjustments along the way.

As an aside, if you are a heart surgeon, send me a tweet and tell me. If you’re also a massive Doctor Who fan, you get double points, ok? ๐Ÿ˜‰

OK, so yes, I am still thinking about that challenge that we started yesterday. If you need to play catch up, click here. By the power of the Internet, I’ll be here waiting for you when you get back.

See? Told you didn’t I. Wasn’t that neat.

So anyway, yesterday was the very first day of a brand new mini-challenge that I’m calling the “one new thing” challenge and you may remember that I told you that my one new thing, for the next 21 days only (because it feels kinda silly and pointless) is to write my 3 major goals down, every morning.

What I didn’t tell you was how. Or where.

Because yesterday I wrote them on my white board in plain view of my desk, or so I thought.

Can you guess how many times I walked past that white board yesterday? Probably, I dunno, maybe fifty times.

Guess how many times I looked at and remembered and reflected on those goals I’d written down. You’ve guessed it …. zero!

So today I’m adjusting and tweaking, just slightly, and I now have a piece of paper stuck on the wall in front of me. Not very pretty or subtle, but that’s kinda the idea ๐Ÿ˜‰

All of which got me to thinking …

Whether it be in relation to the “one new thing” challenge or something else in your day to day life, here’s your challenge for today – if you choose to accept it ๐Ÿ˜‰

Take a look at the things in your life that are “business as usual”. What might today look like if you took one of those things and tweaked it, just slightly? How might it make you smile more? Love more? Have a little more faith?

Think about it, but then, when you’re ready, give it a try.

OK? Excellent! Get to it! ๐Ÿ™‚

loveel

P.S. If you love this you’re going to love my weekly column. Click here to sign up right now for free.

Are you ready to try one new thing?

one-new-thing

Just one. Maybe something small and seemingly insignificant. But new.

Accordingly to clever old brain box Albert Einstein, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results.

And if we’re doing the same thing over and over and over and over again, day after day after week after month, that’s almost certainly true.

But you know what’s also true? You’ve got to give stuff time to stick.

I’m all for trying new stuff, new ways of doing things, hacking daily life to make it more fun, more loving, more productive, more profitable, but the one thing I’ve learned from trying lots and lots (and lots!) of different ways at doing life, is that some things take time.

It’s sooo ridiculously easy to try something for three or four days and then, because we’re not immediately seeing the results we expected, give up and try something new.

That’s not what today is about. If you love the feeling of trying new stuff only to give up and switch to another new thing after a small handful of days, keep moving. I have nothing for you today. You can come back tomorrow ๐Ÿ™‚

For everyone else, I give you the “one new thing challenge”. Are you ready?

Here’s how it’s going to work …

Today, and only today, pick one small thing, one small new thing, that you’re willing to commit to, for today and the next 21 days.

Not sure what to pick? Don’t sweat it! For the purposes of this experiment, pick any one new thing that feels right for you and give that a go.ย The fun thing about this is that it’s only for 21 days and, probably most importantly, it doesn’t need to be something massive.

Are you ready? Get to it!
Until tomorrow, keep smiling ๐Ÿ™‚
loveel

 

Read this if you feel like you don’t make a difference.

never-underestimate

never-underestimate

It’s really easy to look around at all the cool stuff going on in the world and feel like you’re not quite there yet, that there’s soooo much more your could or should be doing, and why are you such a slacker?!?

Or maybe that’s just me ๐Ÿ˜‰

I woke up today not really knowing what I was going to share in today’s Daily Dose. One of the things I love most about writing these each day is the way random thoughts and stories and ideas pop in my head (no prizes for guessing who I give credit to for those!)

And I get to share them with you in a way which sees the both of us skipping off happily into the new day. (That’s the plan at least!)

And so as I was walking back from dropping the kids home from school, I still had nothing.ย No stress, it’ll happen, I thought. I wait until I’m inspired to write but I make sure I always get inspired by 9.30am ๐Ÿ˜‰

So I’m chatting with one of the mums at school when suddenly, out of nowhere, a bug lands on my back and makes me jump! Except, it wasn’t a bug, it was the old guy from across the road sneaking up behind me while I’m chatting. He made me jump a mile!

This gent is a lovely guy. I only usually see him when the sun is out and he’s tidying up his garden at about the time the children come out. We had a quick chat and on we all went with our respective days.

Fast forward a few minutes and I was just up the road from my house when I caught up to another older chap who I say hello to whenever I see him. Apparently I say hello to lots of people ๐Ÿ˜‰

And we too stopped for a quick hello and a chat and then, finally, I got home.

And it was as I walked into the house that this thought popped into my head:

Never underestimate the difference you make each day, just by being you.

It’s really easy to look around at the massive things people are putting out into the world and feel like we’re not enough. And, yes, sometimes, we might be part of something huge, but for the rest of the time there’s just real life.

Showing up. Being yourself.

Even the big things that people do, when you break them down and actually look at them, are made up ofย smaller parts, daily actions, showing up and doing the work.

A smile. Eye contact. A conversation with a random stranger while you’re waiting in line. Holding a door open for someone. Saying “thank you” and actually meaning it.

Teeny tiny things that we oh so easily take for granted.

Never underestimate the difference you make each day, just by being you.

Until Monday, keep being the wonderful you that you are, and have yourself a lovely weekend ๐Ÿ™‚

If something’s not working, try changing the view.

change-environment

change-environment

Creatures of habit that we are, it’s all too easy to slip into the same old same old each day. Days turn to weeks turn to months and before you know it, it’s Christmas, again.

And that’s fine (actually, that’s great. I love Christmas!) but if we’re wanting to build a life that we can look back on and smile about, sometimes we need to fight against the same old, same old.

This morning, after dropping the children off at school, I tried something just a little bit different. Instead of sitting at my desk to write this email, I grabbed a couple of boxes and set up my ad hoc standing desk. A really teeny tiny tweak but you know what? It feels fabulous!

I can feel my feet firmly on the floor, bare toes wiggling.

Every now and then I move a little, roll my shoulders, enjoy the sensation of a good back stretch.

And with each movement I feel a little breeze as my dress dances with me. Summer is back in my corner of the world today and, right here, right now, I feel a little more alive and connected with the planet.

All that from three boxes!

And it got me thinking … routine is great. We all need varying degrees of certainty in our day to day lives and without it, our brains would probably implode (and that would get very messy!)

But, for those times when things are feeling a little bit less than stellar, when things aren’t quite rolling along as we’d like, how might things be different if we changed the view?

One of the things I love digging into withย coachingย clients is the impact upgrading their environment can have on day to day life. And just like my teeny tiny tweak today, sometimes the smallest of changes can make a massive difference.

And so to your challenge for today, if you choose to accept it … ๐Ÿ˜‰

How might you change your view today?

This might be a literal change of perspective (things look a lot different from where I’m standing!) or, for you, we might be talking metaphors and brain gymnastics.

Whatever it means for you, remember, our God is a creator God, and you were made in his image, which makes you naturally creative too. Allow that clever brain of yours to mull over today’s challenge and see what ideas rise to the surface.

And then give those ideas a try, if only for one day. Try stuff out and see what fits ๐Ÿ™‚

And when you’re done, let me know how you got on. I’d love to hear about it ๐Ÿ™‚

Until then, keep smiling ๐Ÿ™‚

loveel

P.S. If you love the idea of trying stuff out to see what fits, I have a brand new play thing,ย The Faith Exploration Lab.ย The very first experiment starts October 1st but there’s a sweet little bonus for early birds ๐Ÿ™‚

Does it sometimes feel like everyone else’s life is sooo much more exciting?

bethechange

bethechange

It’s no secret that I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with Facebook.

I love how easy it is stay in touch with wonderful friends. I hate how compelled we feel to only show the brighter, more entertaining side of life.

I love it when the power of Facebook is harnessed for the collective good (like the time one of my friends was able to help her mother be reunited with long lost relatives on another continent – that was ace!) I hate how easy it is for us to get outraged about stuff that actually, if we knew the whole story (something Facebook doesn’t encourage us to tell) we’d never get so het up about.

I love seeing photos when close friends and family go somewhere cool. I hate feeling left out.

I love the banter with friends who I probably wouldn’t otherwise chat with from one week to the next. I hate it when I allow myself to get sucked into the drama and, before you can blink, a whole hour has gone.

I love how easy it is to share stuff with people we probably wouldn’t get to know otherwise. I hate that I feel compelled to stick around because, otherwise, I might as well just kiss my business goodbye. (Or that’s how it seems at least.)

But most of all, I really don’t like the person it has turned me into.

In one breath I get frustrated because we only share the cool bits, which, to an outsider looking in, makes it look like life is amazing all of the time (which even for people who are really happy and content, isn’t the case every single second of every single day) but then I look at my Facebook timeline and I see I’m totally guilty of the exact same thing!

So, instead of complaining about something and doing nothing about it (again!) I’m challenging myself to be the change I want to see and I’d love it if you played along too.

It’s not about Facebook per se. For you it might be something completely different but here’s your challenge for today, if you choose to accept it ๐Ÿ˜‰

Think about the things you complain about most often and decide, how can you be the change? Decide, and then be it. Easy! ๐Ÿ˜‰

And if you feel so inclined, I’d love to hear how you got on. Click here toย send me a tweet.

Until then though, keep smiling ๐Ÿ™‚

loveel

P.S. If, like me, you think small daily actions add up to make a massive difference,ย come and see what’s happening in The Faith Exploration Lab.ย The first experiment starts October 1st but join by September 23rd to get a complimentary strategy session via email. My treat ๐Ÿ™‚

What if people didn’t notice as much as you feared they might?

people-dont-notice

people-dont-notice

The eagle eyed amongst us might have noticed that yesterday’s daily dose was the first one since April. No announcement that they were coming back. No explanation. It just showed up in your inbox.

And yes, one or two people noticed. Thank you for that, very sweet ๐Ÿ™‚

And then there was everyone else. Everyone else for whom it was business as usual. No fuss and nonsense. Just life moving forward.

And it got me thinking … you know how sometimes we make decisions which, for us in that moment, feel like a pretty big deal? And we wonder how to make it known that things are going to change or that we’re setting new intentions.

And sometimes the fear about how to get started can hold us back from actually starting.

Because what if we change our minds?

Or what if we mess it up?

Or what if it’s amazing?

What if we just started? What if we just showed up, acted like it’s business as usual, no fuss and nonsense, just life moving forward?

One day at a time.ย One small step built on another.ย What might that look like?

Because you know what? Most people are far too preoccupied with their own stuff to notice what’s going on with you even half as much as you think they do.

And sure, sometimes our very first step might not be as neat or well put together as we might like (between you and I, I lost the original audio file for the podcast version of the daily dose and the temporary version I’ve pulled together is rubbish in comparison!) but done beats perfect every time.

And so your challenge for today, if you choose to accept it ๐Ÿ˜‰

Whatever that thing is that you’ve been holding off doing for fear of what other people might think, just do it. No declarations or statement of intent needed. Pick a first step forward and go for it.

Are you ready?

Get to it!
Until tomorrow, keep smiling ๐Ÿ™‚
loveel

P.S. If you love the idea of a daily challenge, don’t forget thatย The Faith Exploration Labย begins October 1st and everyone who joins between today and September 23rd gets a free โ€œStrategy Sessionโ€ via email. I can’t wait to share it with you! ๐Ÿ˜€

Read this if you don’t know what to do next

what-to-do

Sometimes it’s really easy to know where we’re headed. We do the sensible thing and create a plan, mark a route with guide posts along the way. Sure, sometimes creating the plan is a whole lot more fun than having to do the hard work of implementing it, but at least we know what to do.

And then there is everything else.

The times when we know where we want to get to, the end result, but we don’t know how.

Or the times when we don’t even really know what the end looks like, but we’re fairly sure we’ll know it when we see it.

Or even the times when we know we want to get somewhere excellent, but we haven’t yet figured out what ‘excellent’ actually looks like for us and the people we love yet.

Frustrating, is it?!?

And yes, that was putting it lightly. Sometimes it’s a right old pain in the arse with a side-serving of other stuff we’re far too polite to say out loud.

So, what do you do when you don’t know what to do next?

On my way back from the World Domination Summit, whilst waiting to board my last plane before home, I found myself sat next to a man who I didn’t know. Not that surprising, I was at an airport in Amsterdam! Me being me, the man and I got chatting and it turns out that he was from a place not all that far from where I live, although maybe that wasn’t as much of a surprising coincidence as it would have been, had I bumped into him on my flight to Portland but still, it was a nice coincidence to hear a familiar accent.

He asked me about what I do for work and, me being me, I fudged around a bit, mentioned the project management stuff and then got to telling him about Heaven And El.

“I’m on a mission to reclaim Christianity”, I told him.

“How are you going to do that?”, he asked.

He didn’t ask it in an antagonistic kind of a way. He sounded genuinely interested and it was a very good question. A very good question that I didn’t have a very good answer to yet. I still don’t really.

And that’s where I’ve been sat, since July 15th, until today.

The summer holidays arrived and the children finished school for the six week break.

Never mind, I thought. I’ll have plenty of time to figure it out when they get back to school.

September 1st. School starts tomorrow. Do you think I’ve figured it out yet?

You guessed it, nope, I’m still stuck, not knowing what to do next.

So, what do you do when you don’t know what to do next?

I don’t know about you, but I did what any self-respecting writer does when she’s stuck, I wrote about it. I doubt it’ll be winning me awards any time soon, but it did serve one purpose … it got me taking a step forward.

Oh, alright then, a shuffling half-step forward, but the net result was the same (forward motion) so I’m taking that.

I figured that while I don’t know all the answers and I haven’t yet got a clear grasp on the “how are you going to do that?” piece, I could choose one tiny little shuffling half-step action and do that, safe in the knowledge that lots of little half-steps have the uncanny knack of working together to add up to one giant leap, if given enough time and provided the one taking the half-steps doesn’t quit too soon.

And so that’s your challenge for today, if you choose to accept it ๐Ÿ˜‰

If you think you’re stuck and don’t know what to do, ask yourself and God what that one tiny little half-step action is. Listen for the whisper (or even the loud clanging of a whole new idea that you have no idea from whence it came!) and do that.

Are you ready?

Get to it!

loveel