What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger! (Part 2)

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger! (Part 2)

Today is a particularly poignant day for me and my husband Rob. We celebrate a significant anniversary with a story of its own – Rob is two years cancer free today! Our story taught us the importance of adopting a solution focused mindset and of holding on to your best hopes when the future feels uncertain. We decided to share our ‘notes to self ‘ in the hope that you might gain in some way. Here goes … Our fabulous family of six Pursue positive thinking Assuming that the best outcome is possible and believing in silver linings is essential. This will carry you far and help you to dig deep into your reserves on tough days. Rob decided that he had a chance to change the family cancer story into a survival story. It created a ‘can do’ way of thinking for us and fed a positive mindset. Overcoming ‘a touch of cancer’ seemed like a positive re frame of what felt like a devastating story. Keep forward planning Choose to forward plan and imagine life beyond your treatment. Ask yourself what you want from your life once treatment is complete. Assume it to be possible and plan for it. Acquiring the map for a bike challenge and beginning the research into it’s viability was a mission that I delegated to Rob. He was also tasked with finding and planning a fabulous holiday in the sun as a post treatment reward. Focus on what’s possible Rather than assuming that treatment will wipe him out, Rob decided not to jump to conclusions and listen to his body. Where possible he would resume everyday routines...
Live your legacy

Live your legacy

You don’t have to be a billionaire or a genius to make a difference. People make their mark and are remembered for their contributions for all sorts of reasons. One year ago, a dear friend David Charlton died. He had lived a full and fabulous life but it was cut short prematurely . He served his country, he impacted people’s lives. David Charlton was an adventurer, a confidant, a triathlete, a doting father, a loving husband, a mischief maker and so much more. What a legacy to leave behind! His mark on this earth was purposeful and intentional. He chose to become all these things, he took time to reflect on his contributions and he lived as well as left his legacy.   When discussing legacies, and best ways to make your mark, a wonderful person called Tim McNamara advised me to “CHARLIE” it. He later elaborated and shared the meaning of this acronym; Climb Higher And Reach Life’s Inner Expectations”. This brought a smile to my face and left me pondering how I might do such a thing. After some coaching and soul searching, I decided that for me, Charlie it could involve several things: Choosing to let go of the illusion of perfection Deciding on my new mantra for living life – Go forward fearlessly with the confidence to thrive Giving myself permission to trust the process and let go of worrying about outcomes Realising that I needed to say YES to more and then work on feeling ready for it later This led me to imagine what difference it would make, if we all had a...
Gifts that keep on giving

Gifts that keep on giving

It’s a given that people love receiving gifts. Some people get as much pleasure from giving. My favourite, are those gifts that keep on giving. It could be the gift of an experience that gives joy when opened and then creates memories. Perhaps an item that can be enjoyed more than once. Certain gifts when passed on, offer value to each new owner like a good book with well worn pages. Some gifts just have that capacity to give pleasure more than once and I have numerous examples of these. Alas for now I will share only one; the adventure voucher. The adventure voucher was a gift that I gave this Christmas. Struggling with inspiration for a meaningful and inexpensive present, I stumbled upon this idea online. Put simply I delivered a certificate offering a whole year of adventure, for my partner in crime Rob to enjoy for 365 days. This involved an adventure envelope being delivered on the first day of each month for a whole year. The contents describe the escapade that will unfold at some point over that month with no effort on the part of the recipient. So far, the adventures enjoyed have involved things like  a train trip to a new location, a month dedicated to sleeping under the stars, a beach fire, a day of fishing in the North Sea, a bike trip to Holland and a few more surprises yet to come. This gift is continuous. The added bonus, I get to participate in these adventures too, win-win! Giving this gift has been so much fun that I am considering extending it...
Micro adventuring – Creating possibilities (Part 2 of 2)

Micro adventuring – Creating possibilities (Part 2 of 2)

Let’s begin with the belief that it is possible to have more, to do more and to be more. What is it that you want? What gets you excited and what are you passionate about? If this is easy for you to answer, then now is the time to get doing these things. This blog is dedicated to the ‘here’s how’ part of enjoying your micro adventures. For many people the challenge of adventuring can be the uncertainty about what is possible. This may lead you to adopt an experimental approach; try new things in order to discover what you love and feel passionate about.  It can begin with the simple act of getting some ideas down on paper and having a go. Me? I want it all!! I want to get busy enjoying the numerous activities that I already love and I want to try new things…and I want that for you too! The last blog addressed the joys of micro adventuring as a great way to get started; start small, build bigger and see where that takes you. Everything begins with an idea, then it takes shape and you get started. This can snowball. That one thing can lead to another. You grow wings, can get inspired and new ideas pop up. Cunning plans get hatched and before you know it you are going places, seeing things and loving that you are making it happen. I love writing my ideas down. It’s the best way for me to get started. My understanding of this is that the art of writing things down can symbolise the act of committing to action. It is well recorded in solution focussed therapies...

Micro adventuring -what’s stopping you? (Part 1 of 2)

The turn of the year invited us all to start afresh. Here we are a month into our ‘happy new year’. It is a great time to stop and ask yourself…How is this new year working out for me? My guess is that your answer may depend on whether you got clear about what you wanted and whether you created the plan to make great things happen. It seems that everywhere we look there are advertisements telling us to be adventurous, to live life to the full and other such clichés.  These messages can lead us to feeling that we should have big hairy audacious goals; visiting exotic places, jumping off cliffs . If that is what you want…. Go grab it! If this doesn’t feel possible or reflect your idea of fun, it is easy to write off the idea that adventure could be part of your life. For me, parenthood an NHS job as a therapist and a life coaching business have led me down the route of micro-adventuring. I enjoy activities on a shoestring. I go on small but fun escapades on a regular basis. I have come to learn that adventures, no matter how big or small are at our fingertips on a daily basis. In my Adventurous Polly video series you will see me up a hill or on the beach, biking, wild camping, making a fire with the kids, having hot chocolate under the moonlight, exploring new spaces and other such things. None of this is rocket science but it gives me so much joy, allows me to meet people and creates time for family experiences...
Staying focussed on getting what you want (Part 4 of 4)

Staying focussed on getting what you want (Part 4 of 4)

Whether you are a professional wanting to explore and pursue a new career adventure, a parent looking to have more escapades with family, a veteran wanting to maintain adventurous activities whilst transitioning to a civilian lifestyle or just wanting to have a health adventure while getting fitter… you need a plan and you need to know how to make that a reality! Research suggests that people who succeed at implementing goals do so by breaking them down into smaller bite sized chunks and having some degree of accountability for whether they are on track with the plan. There are many ways to go about this and often when people get stuck, they hire coaches to assist them on this journey. That said it is also possible to become your own coach or use tools and tips to help you along the way. A personal favourite of mine is simple, write a letter to yourself. Why not? Write a statement of intent. Include in this some facts about your capability and your values that connect you to why this goal is important and possible. Tell yourself what you are committed to doing, when and how, with advice or notes to self. Either write a note on the calendar reminding yourself to open it at a specific point in time or give it to someone who you trust to keep it safe and who will deliver it back to you at an agreed point in time. Another effective method when it comes to applying goal setting principles is having a buddy. Find someone who you can share your future vision. Choose...