#Adventure Series No.10

#Adventure Series No.10

Welcome to the grand finale of the #AdventureSeries! Introducing Paralympian Anne Wafula Strike Introducing Anne Wafula Strike; MBE, athlete, author, mother, and sporting ambassador. She is an ordinary and yet an extraordinary woman with a powerful story. Anne was given the middle name of Olympia at birth, a title of great significance for the future and the hurdles she would face in forthcoming years. Born in Kenya, Anne was a fit and healthy child before polio struck when she was two years old. This occurrence was to shape Anne’s destiny. She exceeded all educational expectations and despite her physical challenges, achieved a bachelor or education degree, and later became a teacher. Anne arrived in the UK with her Geordie born husband Norman. She unexpectedly became a mother, despite being led to believe that pregnancy would be a medical impossibility. Anne was introduced to wheelchair racing in 2002. 2004 marked the beginning of an Olympic career when Anne became the first wheelchair racer from (Sub-Sahara) Africa to compete at the Paralympics in Athens. In 2006 Anne became a British citizen and joined Team GB. In 2007 she was officially recognised by the Queen at a Buckingham Palace reception for her services to disability sport and her contribution to charity work. Her autobiography In my Dreams I Dance was published in 2010. She was appointed  an MBE in 2014 for services to disability sport and charity. Last year, Anne used her personal experiences of inaccessible disabled toilet facilities on public transport to raise awareness of the challenges that wheelchair users can experience. Anne is the founder and manager of the Olympia-Wafula foundation which helps...
#Adventure Series No. 8

#Adventure Series No. 8

Welcome to the #AdventureSeries No. 8 with John Mew.   Introducing John Mew; father of 3, rugby coach, devoted husband, athlete, survivor, public speaker and so much more. John describes his wonderful wife Christine Mew as his ‘rock’. He joined the Royal Navy in 1974 and served his country for 11 years. He was a physical training instructor, ships diver and a member of the Portsmouth Command Crew that ran at Earls Court. John describes one of his defining moments on the bridge of the HMS Coventry, during the Falklands war, when she was bombed. The ship capsized within 20 minutes. After leaving the navy, John became a commercial diver. This role took him to exotic and faraway lands including the Middle East and West Africa. Photos from top left Portsmouth field Gun crew marching through Portsmouth with trophies won through breaking world records, John ready for a commercial dive, John relaxing, debating at the Great Veteran debate, John during a recent training session, a younger John in training   When John ended his diving career in 2005, the absence of a work role contributed to his difficulties with anxiety and depression unfolding. John described ending up in a ‘big black hole’. During this time, he believes that his whole family suffered. He was eventually diagnosed with PTSD and began to receive help to overcome his trauma. The help that has significantly aided John’s recovery came some time later in the form of a Veteran charity called Forward Assist who supported John with their innovative approach and access to  life coaching through Adventurous Coaching. Both interventions embrace a solution...
Happiness

Happiness

It is my belief that there is never a bad time to ask yourself ‘what does happiness mean to me and what will help me have more happy moments in my life?’ This curious question offers a chance to focus life’s lenses and then to become attracted to those things that make you smile, add more and create joy in your life. One response to the question of what does happiness mean to you, in a coaching session gave an interesting response. ‘Happiness sits on the periphery of your vision. It’s not tangible or easy to grasp and when you try to connect with it… puff it’s gone’. Whilst to me this view felt defeatist and fear fuelled, it helped me to clarify my feelings on this subject. The feisty character within me wanted to respond with…boldly choose to grab happiness by the horns, look it in eyes and demand its presence every day. I was recently inspired by the author Elizabeth Gilbert. In her book Big Magic she describes ‘entering into a contract with creativity’. I decided that I wanted to strike a deal with happiness. I decided to give my full attention to discovering the mindset that I would need to adopt, the activities that I need to get involved in and the moments to cherish in order to nurture the presence of happiness. This has helped my happiness have the confidence to shine even in the face of worry, doubt, and fatigue. Since making this decision, happiness and I have began to collaborate, we co-created a plan and shook hands on it! If thinking about happiness...
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 not being attached to the outcomes (otherwise known as going NATO) Realising that I need 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...
Gifts that keep on giving

Gifts that keep on giving

It’s a given that people love receiving gifts. 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 people love giving gifts as much as they enjoy receiving them, and 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 would describe the escapade that would 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. A great example of a win-win! Giving this gift has...

Choose wise words

Our words have immense capacity for good if used wisely.  For a moment, I invite you to consider the power of your words. You may wonder why this subject matters such that I have taken the time to write my words about your words. It is my belief that your words if used well could enable you to create your own success, help you to express yourself, share a point of view or influence important decisions that affect your life. Do your words help you to attract the things that you want more of in your life or do they focus on your struggles and your pain points? I invite you all to pay more attention to the words that you use day to day. Notice if they are limiting you or helping you be a solution focussed individual. Use your words to attract the outcomes that you want and need in life and to help you communicate what you want to share with the world! With only a ‘tweak’ it is possible to frame your sentences in a way that generates curiosity and creates a mindset that will allow more possibility into your world.  For example, I’m struggling could become I am in the process of working out how to manage this differently.  I never have enough to money might instead be I am working out how to generate more money. Furthermore, what if your words could change the course of someone’s day, give hope and motivate others to create a life that they love or even to aim high. When was the last time that you encouraged...