Gifts that keep on giving

Gifts that keep on giving

It’s a given that generally speaking, 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, or an item that can be enjoyed more than once. Often, gifts can be passed on offering 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.  I happen to be one of those people. I love surprising people with treats and with experiences. Let me tell you about the gift I gave that kept on giving; the adventure voucher. The adventure voucher was a gift that I gave last Christmas. Struggling with inspiration and restricted purse strings, I was looking to give a meaningful and inexpensive present, and I stumbled upon this idea online. I simply created a certificate offering a whole year of adventure. Each month, I delivered an envelope describing the escapade that would unfold next. The event itself would involve no effort on the part of the recipient. This allowed me to create adventures of all sorts from a daring escapade to a simple micro adventure bringing joy to an ordinary day.  A train trip to a new location, a road trip, trying something new, a month dedicated to sleeping under the stars, a beach fire, a day of fishing in the North Sea and a bike trip to Holland were just some of the ideas that became a reality. The added bonus was that I got to participate in these adventures too. A...
Micro adventuring  (Part 2 of 2)

Micro adventuring (Part 2 of 2)

Creating possibilities Let’s begin with the belief that it is possible to have more, be more and do more. What would you want? What ignites a fire in your belly? If this is easy for you to answer, and you have made all that you wanted happen then well done…you are living your dream! If this is not the case then now is the time to crack on and make these ideas your reality. What’s stopping you? I dedicate this 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. I advise an experimental approach; try new things in order to discover what you love and indeed what you don’t enjoy. 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 keep busy enjoying the numerous activities that I already love and I want to try new things…and I want that for you too! A recent blog introduced 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, then 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. As a pen to paper sort of gal, I love creating lists. This helps...
Micro adventuring (Part 1 of 2)

Micro adventuring (Part 1 of 2)

The turn of the year tends to be the time when people evaluate where they are at and what they want from life. I call this ‘resetting the compass’. This can be a prelude to a new chapter, a new direction or a new adventure. How is this year working out for you? My guess is that your answer may depend on whether you were clear about what you wanted from your year and whether you created the plan to make great things happen. Advertisements all around us tell us to be adventurous, to live life to the full; messages that can lead us to feel that we should have big hairy audacious goals that involve visiting exotic places or jumping off cliffs . If that is what you want…. by all means 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 the challenges of a busy life that includes parenthood, an NHS job and running a business have led me down the route of micro-adventuring. I can enjoy activities on a shoestring and 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 my fingertips on a daily basis. In my Adventurous Polly video series you will see me up a hill, on the beach, biking, wild camping, building a fire with the kids, having hot chocolate by moonlight, exploring new spaces and other such things. Not rocket science but it gives me...
An adventurous new you (Part 4 of 4)

An adventurous new you (Part 4 of 4)

Staying focussed on getting what you want Whether you are a professional wanting to explore and pursue a new career adventure, a parent looking to have more family escapades, or someone looking to have a health adventure … you need a plan to turn that idea into your 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 coaching tools and tips to help yourself along the way. A personal favourite of mine is simple … write a letter to yourself! Write a statement of intent. Include in this some facts about your potential to make this possible and why this goal is important to you. Get clear about what you are committed to doing, when and how, with advice or notes to self. Write a note on your calendar reminding yourself to open your letter at a specific point in time or give it to someone you trust to keep it safe who will deliver it back to you at an agreed point in time. Another effective method when it comes to goal acquisition is having a buddy. Find someone who you can share your future vision. Choose carefully! Ensure that it is someone who believes in you, and will be firm with you. They can...
An adventurous new you (Part 3 of 4)

An adventurous new you (Part 3 of 4)

Your vision, your goals The topic of discussion in my previous blogs have been the value in taking lessons learned forward, working out what you want next and forwarding the action in a way that is fruitful. This comes from the belief that every situation we face is an opportunity to learn and grow and that our ability to achieve is closely connected to our ability to conceive the idea and believe that it is possible. This leads me nicely to the topic of making change. Having touched on ways to approach goal setting last week, I noted that guidance on how to create your vision is rather limited in the literature that I have read. Here are some strategies that I would like to share with you. Sometimes people who want to create a clear vision often create a vision board. If you haven’t heard of them, look them up or contact me for more information about how they can be used. This is a simple and creative way to explore your hopes, dreams, values and desires. If you are looking for a creative tool to help you to capture ideas, themes and the experiences that you want to have,  then you will love this way of working. This process invites you increase your awareness of what you want and in doing so become attracted to making this possible, much like the law of attraction. When it comes to making the goal into a reality, if you enjoy a formal goal-setting approach then SMART goals might appeal to you. Smart goals encourage you to focus on specific, measurable,...
An adventurous new you (Part 2 of 4)

An adventurous new you (Part 2 of 4)

What’s next? A Life coaching perspective Whatever you choose to go forward with this year, I invite you capture the wisdom, skill and knowledge that you have yielded from the year past and take it with you on the journey. My recent blog encouraged you to tease out how the last 365 days helped you to thrive, taught you life lessons and helped you to get clear about what to say goodbye to. My best hope is that you will use these facts as a foundation for a purposeful and proactive year ahead with clarity about your goals and your vision. Some people are excellent at clarifying ‘what’s next’, whilst others take a little longer to focus the vision in a more organic way. For me, unless I state my intentions, identify an action plan and set milestones along the way, then thing just don’t come to fruition. Sometimes my goals seem delusionally optimistic. Once I’ve said them out loud however, I get attracted to the outcomes that I want and behave in a way to make this possible and indeed likely. I find this to be the case in my experience as a life coach too. People come to me because they want more and despite their resourcefulness, they haven’t managed to get the outcomes they were looking for. Some people need help to fine tune the vision and get clear on what it will look like. Others who come my way might know what they want but are unsure how to get it to happen. Together, we clarify that vision, the obstacles that might present and identify...