30 ways to set yourself up for success

30 ways

Even when you aren’t sure what you’re doing:

It’s March (talk about stating the obvious!).
Yes but MAAAARRRCH. Month of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere and you know what that means, don’t you?
First of all, it clearly means that that we’re already a quarter of the way through this year, and there’s no going back!

It also means that there’s a radical change of energy. A charge of new life, and crispness.  Everything has a season darling and this is the season for coming out of hibernation, or summer lethargy if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere, and planting your seeds of success.

Whatever step up you’re wanting to take. Whatever possible you want to reinvent… especially if you’re NOT SURE where the hell to start

Tap into the delicious, delightful, energising Spring and start here!

1) Anchor yourself in your breathing.
Oxygenate. (Can I say this enough? I breathe, therefore I am)

2) Dare to dream bigger than you are. Then raise it by 50%.

3) Love your dream truly, madly, deeply. Like your lover. Like your child. What would you do for it?

4) Be the queen of intention. Start each day, each project, as you wish to continue

5) Start each day… the night before. Prepare ahead.

6) Get specific about what you think you want now vs what you really want most.
Act on that. (Hang in there. Long term energy and impact beats instant gratification).

7) Structure your time and energy – structure supports spontaneity

8) Ritual. Ritual. Create rituals that support your concentration, your progress, your energy.

9) Everyday Routine. If you’ve still got your pearly white teeth, daily routines can’t be all bad.
Make it positive and light. See structure and ritual….

10) Ask more of yourself – Test your limits. Test your beliefs. Test your strength. Aim higher.

11) Ask less of yourself – Schedule down time.
Aim for excellence not perfection. Relax your deadlines.

12) Ask for help. Now ask for help again. And again.
No, no. You really can’t do it all yourself and nor should you.
Ask for help. Please.

13) Do the hard stuff first

14) Banish the words ‘should’ and ‘must’ from your vocabulary.
Replace them with ‘choose’ and ‘want’. Act on that.

15) When you stuff up, be kind to yourself.
Then start over. Every second is a new opportunity to be great.
You still walk before you run.

16) Keep your promises to yourself

17) Take vitamin D3 – discernment, determination and delight.

18) Take quiet contemplation time. Alone. Every day

19) Trust your own advice

20) Believe your own experience. Every. Single. Time. Most people don’t.

21) Be soft but relentless, think “devil-possessed bulldozer driven by a fluffy toy”

22) Never give up – your end goal

23) Give up on any approach that just isn’t getting you there

24) Remember Then is not Now.
Adapt to what is going on right now.
In your body. In your life. In your world.

25) Fit your activity, rituals, planning and nourishment to the seasons. Nature is wise.

26) Act on your hunches and gut instincts. Right away.
They are pearls of wisdom to string together.

27) Inspire your mind every morning.

28) Nourish your body with soul food and water.
It will thank you by strengthening and carrying you further.

29) Look fear in the face every day, smile graciously, and elegantly give it the middle finger.
Then continue head high and curious into the face of danger

30) Celebrate something, anything, Every.Day.

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Self Love is a Verb darling. Roll up your sleeves!

Self Love

You don’t get what you want. You get what you settle for. Word.

If pure gold tattoos existed (and I haven’t yet lost hope that they do) I’d already have that scrawled up my right thigh as a permanent reminder to NEVER SETTLE. Actually, I lie, I’d just have ‘Truth’ tattooed on my ring finger in place of a ring. But that’s beside the point. Let’s get back to not f***ing settling.  

You can probably tell I’m annoyed. My mother marvelled once, back when my 5 year old self reconstructed a tumbling house of cards for the two-hundredth time with persistence and determination, that I was invested with great patience. Yep… And, No. Not always. Not faced with disrespectful, inappropriate, cowardly behaviour – from ANYBODY. Mother darling, only when it’s worth it!

So here I am, writing about self-love, and I wanted it to be all soft and smoochy, full of sparkle and compassion and understanding and, you know… loveliness. Then real life waved her ‘try this’ wand, and conjured up a whopping great curve ball of crap behaviour that I WILL NOT settle for ever, EVER, again.

And that, darling, is a very good sign my self-love is kicking in just as it should! Houston, we’re goin’ in!

If you still think self-love is simply about treating yourself, taking time out and taking the day off when you need to. Think bigger. Think deeper rather.

Self-love runs waaaayyyy deeper than a new handbag and relaxing spa retreat. It is gritty, often excruciatingly uncomfortable, sets off all your self-preservation pirates and takes a whopping dose of will power.

Self love isn’t a one off overhaul that’s done and dusted. It’s a moment by moment practice, a daily renewal of vows to love an honour yourself and a never-ending process. As long as you’re alive, you’ll be practicing. So you may as well enjoy the adventure. Knowing how to practice self compassion comes in really handy when you are a Self-Love warrior.

The beauty of Self-Love?  It’s delightfully joyful, sparklingly clear and exhilaratingly empowering at its core.

Self Love simply reinforces the very foundation of a life that you won’t ever, ever need to escape from.

I have three categories in the Self Love scale

1) The ‘easy’ self love stuff…  

Morning warm water and lemon. Religiously. A symbol of self love in that the very. first.thing I do in the morning is an act of caring for my body.

 Morning meditation. Ditto on the act of caring – for my sanity. I recommend Insight Timer. If you don’t meditate, try concentrating on at least 5 slow, deep breaths immediately before you look at your phone!

Fixing my intention for the day. Shoot that arrow!

Intention of feeling energetic and healthy = choosing a great, big plateful of fresh fruit and vegetables even when my devilish inner child would choose fries

  Intention of space and peace = pausing before replying to anything (works with preposterous demands from teenagers, painful colleagues and narcissistic bosses).

  Intention of lightness of being = prioritise joy = lunch or chat with someone hilarious. Not cleaning before the cleaner comes!

  • Planning my trail event calendar in advance so I fit those weekends in first!
  • Choosing a drink out with the girls because sometimes it’s important to let go and not always rigidly stick to plan.
  • Saying an huge YES to every amazing opportunity even if it’s REALLY BAD TIMING (like spontaneously flying to Hong Kong for a friend’s 50th) because some opportunities are just too good not to miss.
  • Wearing perfume and bright lipstick to races for the pure joy of it
  • Forgetting about the money and splurging on 5 pairs of expensive sexy silk lingerie because if you don’t do it at 47… when the hell are you going to do it. HELLOOO?
  • Investing in myself (coaching, training, mentoring, cleaner… any sort of assistance)

2) Self Love in drag as personal challenge, aka doing the thing I least want to do (until I’m doing it, or it’s done)

  • Waking before the rest of the house in winter to meditate or write in the dark in peace
  • Getting up at the ungodly hour required to work with my coach in Australia
  • Getting outside to train when I’m still working or the weather is shite, no matter how reasonable that ‘do it lateeeeeer’ voice sounds
  • Respecting my body’s deep need for hibernation in winter (getting to bed before midnight)
  • Letting others down – choosing a run over a night out/coffee/drinks with my best friends whom I adore, because I have a whopping great goal that guides me like a sun.
  • Going without food! Fasting once a month for 60 hours
  • Fixing my budget and sticking to it
  • Sitting with my ‘shadow stuff’ and being brutally honest about what’s mine and what’s not mine.
  • Giving up … when it’s braver and more intelligent to do so than to carry on

 Self love disguised as ‘being mean, not being the nice girl, not fitting in and generally being evil (Think URSULA in the little Mermaid!)

Ruthlessly letting the hell go of anything and everything that is messing with my inner peace and/or happiness, i.e. letting go of whatever really doesn’t work for me.  Person, place, activity, thing or thought.

Being exceptionally selective about what I do with my time and who I spend that time with, who I will trust to be part of my inner circle and who stays.the.hell.out whatever our history.

Re-evaluating and choosing differently over and over again. Then, is not now.

Speaking up even as I internally anticipate the oncoming tsunami: “Nope, can’t let that pass, I’m calling you on your bullshit’ or a polite but firm, ‘No thanks, that doesn’t work for me. Let’s try this.’

Doing what I truly madly deeply want, regardless of what other people will think or say.

Self love ?

It’s is about consistently coming through for yourself by knowing what you want MORE at any given time.

Strengthen it like a muscle.
Become your own lover. Enjoy the adventure…

I ask you darling if you were your most cherished beloved, what would you no longer settle for, in the name of Love ?
Your self-love journey starts there.

Self Love

Self Love

February is for loving yourself up! Selfish? I think not. Here’s why!

It’s February. The month of Loooooooove. Who needs an excuse to write about Love anyway?  Love is everything isn’t it? Even if I don’t have a date for Valentine’s day (no, that’s not a hint. OH GOD THAT IS DEFINITELY NOT A HINT!!). Ok ok – Every month is the month of love but I’ll go with the theme in February because.. any excuse for love.

Besides darlings, the only way you can really change anything for the better, help it grow, develop, blossom, bloom, bubble, sparkle and reach its potential… is through love.

Is not all deep, positive growth and change deeply rooted in love and care? 

You see it in plants, in kids, in animals… in your projects, and in YOU.

Love is the quintessential essence of YOUR thriving, healthy, happy, rewarding life.

So what the hell is self-love exactly? How do we develop it? Why is it so much easier to love others than to love ourselves? And isn’t that just ludicrous when you really think about it? Loving others and NOT loving yourself? How can that work?

 Long term answer – it doesn’t.

And to top it off, jeez, there are so many definitions of self-love flying around you’d be forgiven for believing it’s enough to have a decent manicure and a spa day so you can tick the self love box and get the medal for being a self-love champion.

Until you tumble off the podium back into self doubt.  There’s much more to self love than a new dress and a nice day out, although they’re definitely not to be sniffed at.

The way I define self love is “dancing cheek to cheek with your soul.” Regardless of what is going on around you, you’re in love with life, and totally at ease with yourself because you’re deeply connected to that wise voice of your inner compass, the pesky one that just won’t shut up no matter how rational you are. The voice that steadfastly leads you to embody who you truly are in all your brilliant potential, and ultimately gets you into lots of trouble…

Self love is about nourishing yourself, and the world, through the miracle of your very own existence.
Self-Love is a fundamental state of deep appreciation for Life and for your precious pearly Self, that flows directly from the recognition that YOU are a vitally important and integral part of the whole. 

Self Love is dynamic and fluid. A flowing mix of self-awareness, self-compassion, and the actions you choose to take – with a bucket-load self-discipline to overcome the loud, habitual thoughts that you’re not worthy. 

Worthy you are. Worthy you are of life. Worthy you are of love. Starting with YOUR OWN!

And how do you connect with this elusive state of self love?

Like this:


If you get your energy from wearing sparkly silver socks and purple Versace lipstick on your long runs in the wilderness alone (am I alone in this? Really?), while all of your friends are trying to convince you to spend a day dragging yourself round an overcrowded, over heated or over air conditioned mall, shopping. Dare to be different. You will inspire them or inspire something in them, if nothing more than bemusement and respect.

As one of my chic French friends chuckled to me one day with a raised eyebrow (imagine a sexy French accent), “I rrrrrreally dooon’t underrrrrstand at all why you want to do those crrrrrazy runs, but I rrrrespect it.” Ok, so she doesn’t invite me shopping anymore, as I heave a sigh of relief, but we meet outside on the ski fields in Andorra over a glass of bubbles where everyone’s happy.


You are extraordinary. Own it darling. Take the time to look for the goodness that you were born with and grow it. What do you do best? What do you love deeply? Identify that and magnify it. And don’t worry about the rest. What you focus on expands. Nobody talks about Mother Teresa’s or Helen Keller’s faults, do they? Everybody is too busy focusing on their extraordinary courage and dedication. How about you do the same with yourself and cultivate that instead. When you focus on your greatness, others will too.


Set boundaries. Even if that means ruffling feathers by refusing to attend the Christmas ceremony at your freezing local cathedral because it feels more like a funeral than a joyful gathering of love. Let the (ex-) husband go by himself next time. Even if that means shaking as you say a firm NO to crap attitudes and preposterous demands from your boss, your mother, your colleagues or your broody teenagers.

Every time you LIVE more INTENTIONALLY WITH PURPOSE AND DESIGN you are reinforcing your self love.

So what if you don’t know what you want to do with your life yet! That doesn’t have to stop you living intentionally. Make today the day you will do something healthy for your Self. Flex your will muscle and make that smoothie you’re craving instead of giving in to a croissant, cigarette and coffee (sophisticated continental breakfast anyone?). Make an intention to listen deeply to your heart and sign up for that course you’ve been dying to try out. Honour the whisperings of your soul by acting on them. Who knows where it will take you… the calligraphy classes that I started when I was 35 –just because I wanted to make beautiful words beautiful – lead me to designing creativity workshops for women, in India and Toulouse… Whadaya know?

Nothing is wasted. Everything has a purpose. And while you don’t have the clairvoyance to know everything and see everything in advance, the more you listen to your deepest self and dance cheek to cheek with your soul the more you strengthen your self love. The more you love yourself, and own who you are, the more you can love others, the more energy you have, the more the miracles reveal themselves to you… the more you love yourself.

It’s one big virtuous spiral that requires your courage and dedication and determination – as well as your connection to love. If you’ve ever loved an animal, a child, a doll, another adult, a plant… you know how to love. And can love yourself.

It’s already February… let’s get started!