Zen and the art of school pickup

This post is for those entrepreneurial mums like me who like to pick their kids up from school.

For years I used to arrive at the school precinct, on time or even a little bit early, only to find that I could not get a carpark for love nor tuckshop money. Every day, the same feeling: “damn! There are no parks!” So then you’re in the mindset of: can’t wait till the kids are older and they can go to the car lineup. Who wants to wish childhood away?

Over the school break the thought occurred to me to turn this whole situation on its head.  Why don’t I get to the school really early? But, instead of just hanging around making conversation, do what I have had on my ‘to do’ list for years (but never seem to get around to doing): meditate.  Yes, meditate! At first it felt a bit strange: being early, and not in a rush and actually meditating in the car.  Probably looks like I’m sleeping! I moved the seat back, pressed play on the Deepak Chopra meditation track and started breathing calmly.

Result: getting up to the school calm and refreshed and ready to enjoy the afternoon shift – my other ‘business’.

Give this instant energy boost a go. You won’t be late to the school gate again! Just don’t fall asleep in the car!! Ommmmmmm.

It’s as Easy as a Cup of Tea

Welcome to week two of our 2014 Milking it blog. As we said last week, February is the new January (who wants to change the world when they’re on holiday?) so now the kids are back at school, we’re getting down into the business of making this the greatest year of your life, business and home. This week is about your goals: seeing it, feeling it, connecting to it.

Getting the foundations right will ensure that the rest of the year flows. This week, it’s important to carve out some time to look at your 2014 goals (see the last blog) and create a compelling vision for each goal.

Why a vision? A picture tells a thousand words. It’s more efficient to have a picture of what you want than a long essay detailing the kind of house you want. Your mind naturally brings up an image when you think of any outcome you want. So by choosing those images you’re influencing that process. We all need a picture of the end result we’re striving for. When you’re cooking a meal, you start with the end result – an image of the dessert or the special meal we’re creating. You’re in the process now of planning out your life, your business, and your home in detail so you get what you want. You are a whole-brained person. You’re not just a left-brained person. You have emotion, colour, shapes, etc in your mind so you need to engage that thinking. We’re using images to engage our subconscious. The subconscious mind is the driver or the horse that gets us places. How many of us are on auto pilot?

We suddenly arrive at a destination and we don’t remember how we got there? We just get there. That’s our subconscious just driving us. We tie our shoelaces without thinking. The subconscious mind is like our internal GPS system. By feeding it the images we want, ideas will show up, people will show up. It’s all part of the neural conditioning in the brain. So by having a vision of what your heart desires this year, you’ll start to create new neural pathways which will lead to deeper insights and a journey that is aligned with your desires.

Having a vision board engages your reticular activating system – that part of your mind that obediently recalls what you want it to recall at any point in time. For example, you might be looking to buy a new pair of runners, and you decide the brand you want. Suddenly you see those runners everywhere. Yesterday you didn’t notice them, but today you start seeing them everywhere. That’s the reticular activating system at work. Like a periscope popping out from the submarine, it scans the environment and notices the things that are important to us. It’s a survival technique.

So this week, if you can find time to sit and have a coffee, then that’s your moment to create your vision board. Stick figures will do. Magazine clippings, photos, anything that reflects closely the outcome of your goals. Just make sure they are symbols. We’re not looking for perfection here, just progress.

This step in the Milking it journey will get you out of the dangerous world of negatives which is so common in our every day vernacular. We so commonly use negatives to describe what we want: ‘stress-free’, ‘debt-free’, ‘lose weight’, ‘injury-free’, ‘pain-less’ etc, etc. Remember that our brain doesn’t process the negative part of those phrases, only the key words. So those phrases would simply translate as ‘stress, debt, weight, injury, pain’. I think we’re all happy to move out of that world!

Your vision board is putting things out there that are right for you and everyone else.

There’s just one rule this week – it’s got to feel good. You’ve got to feel AHHH yeah! This is possible for me! I really want this! Yeah! You don’t want to feel like ‘this’ll never happen’, or ‘this is way too hard’. We want to look at the board and FEEL great.

When you’ve finished your board, just run it through what I call ‘The Believability Test’ – if you don’t think it’s possible for you, don’t put it up there. Just put the stuff there that you believe is possible for you. Then as those things happen, you can add to it and improve on it.

It’s so refreshing to embrace a genuinely new start to the year. We have a ton of resources in our membership area to help you with this exercise:

  • A workbook, five videos from me explaining the process
  • An hour long MP3 interview with world leading vision board expert Barbara Pellegrino (that was so much fun)
  • A forum full of Milking it members who are all getting into it and having a great time.

If you haven’t signed up yet, we look forward to having you on board. What are you waiting for?

Brigitte, Angie & the DYRTM Team

The Female Entrepreneur – diligent, capable, resourceful, courageous, energetic, active, audacious, passionate, self assured, gutsy, enterprising, imaginative, plucky, industrious and opportunistic

Today’s female entrepreneur is described as diligent, capable, resourceful, courageous, energetic, active, audacious, passionate, self assured, gutsy, enterprising, imaginative, plucky, industrious and opportunistic. Despite all these words – and many words we didn’t list – overall she is courageous.

Woman have often found challenges in business, especially when up against men, they have not only the challenges of a career to contend with but trying to balance family and work and deal with many out there who feel a woman just isn’t as effective as a man in the entrepreneurial arena.

Thankfully thinking and times have changed, as a society we have come a long way and now women are being recognised and acknowledged for the work they do, and while there is still some need for *acceptance* the female entrepreneur’s courageous spirit is shining through. Women have begun turning to the small business/solo-professional field to become fully fledged entrepreneurs in their own right.

Women are no longer accepting of the *status-quo* they are up to the challenge of creating their OWN business dreams. They have the faith they need and trust in their own abilities to push against the tide and head off into those *uncharted waters*. It is this courageous spirit that allows her to open doors, close doors that don’t work for her and to develop new business skills. The female entrepreneur of today sets herself challenging goals, is willing to face anything and has an *onwards and upwards* plan to move ahead – from starting something new to completely re-inventing herself.

It’s her desire to succeed and the need to reach for her dreams that gives her the courage to achieve her goals.

As with anything the first step is the hardest, getting your business idea off the ground is daunting, but any feelings of anxiety or uncertainty can be conquered by that can-do courageous attitude. By believing in your goals, your morals and your skills you can achieve anything you set out to do. Stay true to yourself, stay motivated, set yourself goals and stick to them and seize any and all opportunities as they become available. This is the only way you can avoid any set-backs.

Today’s female entrepreneur doesn’t look back, she doesn’t pine over lost chances or missed opportunities she keeps to her goals, letting her heart and passion guide her. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger are words she lives by.

If your courage has gone into hiding – now is the time to sit down and visualise your goals, where do you want to be? How can you get there? Set yourself on the path to achieving your goals do whatever you need to do, achieve whatever you need to achieve to live that entrepreneurial dream.

Do it not just for yourself, but for those women out there, the ones who are looking up to you and admiring you for what you have achieved – you can become the role model for the next generation of female entrepreneurs.

Getting Back into the Groove

Here in Australia we’ve all just dropped our kids off to their first day back at school for the New Year and I can hear the collective sigh of mums around the nation. No matter how many mixed emotions we all feel about saying goodbye to our kids at the school gate, let’s face it, school holidays can be exhausting.

A brief moment to stop and think about the year ahead is time well spent. As Brian Tracey said, ‘Every minute you spend in planning saves 10 minutes in execution; this gives you a 1000 percent Return on Energy”. Too right.

The good news is we’re back today at DYRTM and ready to help you unearth the new, improved 2014 version of YOU. Not that there was anything wrong with the 2013 version, but let’s face it, we can all do with some inspiration and momentum.

So this week, we’re taking the time to fine-tune our vision for the year ahead and we want to help you do the same. Why? It’s hard to hit a target that you can’t see. Getting an accurate vision of your target is very important!

Are there dreams that you don’t even want to think about because they’re way too exciting? What goals have you long given up on? Is this the year you’re finally going to start up that business? Or maybe there are business partnerships you have yearned for but not had the guts to approach? What about your health – is there a fitness goal that will stretch you out of your comfort zone (and help you shed the excesses of Christmas)? Maybe it’s time you transformed a space in your home so that it comes alive and helps you and your family make magic. And finally, maybe you just want to make some extra cash.

Whatever it is, this week I want you to decide on what it is and write it down. Start a fresh beautiful new journal on page 1 and start writing history. Yes, that’s right, you heard me: history. We’re going to walk through this year with you step by step and keep you accountable to make it happen.

You probably already know that 90% of New Years’ resolutions fail within the first 30 days. Well the good news is the first 30 days of 2014 are now over, so happily ditch those ‘resolutions’ you made on Jan 1. Now you’re ready to make your dreams a reality. We’re going to show you how to make them happen (because we’ve been helping people do this for a decade). There are plenty of techniques that we’ve learned and taught along the way and there’s a science behind getting what you want that we’re teaching our members.

Not sure where to start your thinking process? Click here and join our online program and we’ll show you how step by step.


Here’s to our success,

Brigitte & Angie & the team at DYRTM.

Today is the Day

It’s 2014. Can you believe it?? I feel like we were celebrating the millennium just a few years ago. The older I get, the more time flies.

I’m sure you all feel the same.

So speaking of time passing by, I’ve got an amazing talent of multitasking. HAHA! Who am I kidding? It’s really procrastination and avoidance. Life is moving so fast that it’s easy to push those complex tasks to the side. Take today for instance; I got up with purpose and a plan. By the time I finished my coffee I found myself trying for 3 hours to get an online streaming of the New Year’s Eve Ball dropping in Times Square. And, guess what, nothing worked anyway! The internet is such a time waster.

Anyway, wouldn’t it be nice to tackle those plans and THEN reward yourself with an online extravaganza? FORBES has some interesting insight on creative reasons why TODAY just isn’t the right time. Too busy, too broke, too stressed, too risky, too uncertain, too inexperienced, too old, too young, too disruptive. Wow that’s a lot of “TOO’s”. Sometimes those reasons are valid. But at the core of those excuses is one emotion – Fear. A friend of mine posted this photo on Instagram which I think sums of how I’d like to embrace 2014.

Philosopher William James was not understating the impact of procrastination when he said, “Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an unfulfilled goal.”

So, What are you afraid of? There’s no time like the present!

Here are 7 Strategies to get your started.

  1. Write down your goal and give yourself a deadline.
  2. Break your goal into smaller pieces.
  3. Visualize the future you want.
  4. Harness fear.
  5. Build Accountability.
  6. Reward Progress.
  7. Act bravely daily. STARTING TODAY!

Keeping Your Balls Contained

ball storageParents juggling business and family don’t have time to be picking up after the children every hour. Netballs, basket balls, soccer balls, footballs all take up a bit of space and easily fall out of buckets and baskets.

Harness that juggling act by creating an easy to reach home for all your sports balls. This one is a great use of the often under-utilised vertical space, not to mention that useless corner of the garage. If you are handy with a hammer, some nails and a few pieces of wood, then this is a super easy project. Head to your local hardware store and grab yourself a few pieces of wood and some bungee cords. Simply cut and nail 4 pieces of wood to make a square shape then attach that to the corner of your garage, make another one and attach it lower down. Grab your bungee cords and hook them from the top square to the bottom square and at the base of the bottom square use 2 or 3 smaller bungee cords this will stop the balls falling straight through.

Now you have a great storage solution for your children’s balls – this can be made to size to take as many or as few balls that you have, it’s a great way to keep your garage or shed neat, plus your children will always know where their balls are – as long as you can get them to put them back! The great thing about a design like this is it’s quick to make, can be made to fit the space you have and it’s super easy to see where the balls are, making them easier for your children to find.

12 Days ’till Christmas

Ditch the pressure and embrace the Christmas spirit 12 Days 'till Christmas

The beginning of December brings much excitement and joy about the fast approaching holidays. You can finally indulge all those crafty whims you’ve saved up for this time of year. Then suddenly you’re knee deep in Christmas cards, homemade ornaments, baking all those yummy traditional foods, shopping for presents (online because it saves more time of course). All the effort and planning we put into making sure everyone has the most amazing holiday is…..EXHAUSTING!

A recent poll from Today Show suggests that women dedicate an average of 83 hours preparing for the festive season. That’s an entire 2 weeks dedicated to all things jolly, on top of everything else we have going on!   How do you prepare for and more importantly, get into the spirit of Christmas?

Wouldn’t it be easier if you had a system for streamlined and stress-free holiday success? Your time and energy would be saved for the moments that count the most. Well you’re in luck! Did You Remember the Milk has the best Christmas Planning Resources at the click of a mouse! I love helping our members to ease that load.   Isn’t it too late to download a Christmas planner now?? It’s never too late. While you’re going through the motions right now in the countdown to Christmas day, start building on your plan for next year. With our Ultimate Christmas Planner, you will be organized in no time.   Each year in November, I open my Ultimate Christmas binder and my whole festive season is planned out for me. There is my gift list from last year, cool gift wrapping ideas, last year’s Christmas card list for updating, favourite online stores, home-made gifts planner, playlists, favourite recipes for ham glaze, Cumberland sauce, turkey stuffing, spiced nuts and all the other divine recipes that only come out once a year. Then there are the favourite charities and their instructions for how to give. I also have the same project file set up on my computer.   Other things you might add to your file:

  • Inspiration for getting into the spirit
  • Your Christmas budget
  • Gift Lists
  • Organise and make invitations and cards
  • Timelines and sequences of when to decorate and make certain purchases
  • Baking strategies
  • Christmas Dinner lists and preparation
  • New Years party planning
  • Sound tracks

That’s only a fraction of what we have in store for you. Enjoy the parties and bubbles and smile to yourself knowing you’ve done it in half the time it took last year.   Download our Ultimate Xmas Planner HERE!


Get your Energy Flowing

Being a mother with ambition leads you on a journey of incredible personal transformation on every level. Your way of being, living and working takes on a whole new dimension constantly bringing to the forefront your core needs and values (especially when these are NOT being met); your relationship, who you are as a person, what you want out of life and of course it is also a journey of legacy, of ‘being the mum you want to see in the world’, living by example and through our parenting and lifestyle choices truly influencing a future world where adults are balanced, capable, innovative and kind.

For the woman who wants to be all and do all, it is possible, on one condition.

Fuel up YOUR tank first.

Take care of your most precious asset so that it can take you where you want to go.

If you feel dull, heavy, lethargic, stressed, uncomfortable in our own skin, you’re not going to be performing as your work demands, you’re not going to feel sexy and affectionate with your partner, you’re certainly not going to be the vibrant, patient, engaged mother you want to be.

As intelligent, conscious women you know what to do, but somehow it can be so hard to fit in. It is so easy to judge, blame, feel guilt and go down the negative self talk spiral and yet when we let go of perfection it makes it all so very possible.

It’s what you do most of the time that counts, not what you do some of the time. My clients (and I) love the 80/20 concept. You do what you can when you can and the times when you can’t, it’s ok, let it go, in the grand scheme of things you’re doing a great job.

Balance doesn’t happen over one meal, one missed gym session, one day but rather over a week or a month even.

When it comes to ensuring you have that energy flow on a daily basis there’s really no way around it, you need to ensure that you’re getting those basics in, the basics that every human being needs to survive but that you only just manage to squeeze in when you have spare time:

  1. Drink at least 2 liters of water
  2. Get to bed by 11pm latest
  3. Keep your fitness up every single day even if it’s a 5 minute stretch at home
  4. Take some deep long breaths of fresh air
  5. Make sure you have healthy snacks on hand to prevent you reaching out for something that will only make you feel guilty (yes, 70%+ organic dark chocolate is a perfect choice).

Start here and the monumental shifts you’ll experience just from doing this will motivate you to take it one step further.

Guest blogger:

This post was by guest blogger Caroline Cain. Thanks for your inspiration Caroline! Caroline is a Nutritionist and Lifestyle Mentor passionate about supporting women entrepreneurs in creating an incredible life through health, mindset, living a wellness lifestyle and bringing it all back to our most important asset: ourselves. www.carolinecain.com

What really IS a healthy relationship anyway?

This month, our members were given a masterclass about relationships. In between work, children’s activities, housework and social events, relationships need nurturing. We all want a healthy marriage, but:

What really IS a healthy relationship anyway?

Sabina ReadTo help us navigate through the challenges and questions of relationships, we welcomed Melbourne psychologist and social commentator Sabina Read to share her insights from her experience working with couples and families. (Members have access to the full webinar recording in your , along with all the other webinars, workbooks and member tools).

Sabina set us straight up front: Healthy relationships are not typified by the absence of conflict and both couples being perfectly ”happy”. A healthy relationship exists when the couple are good friends and can repair quickly after conflict. Each individual in the marriage has their own ‘love language’ and one person’s way of expressing love might be different to the others which can cause pain and confusion. There is no universal notion of happiness, so just focus on what’s ‘healthy and happy’ to you and your partner. And the only way to know that is to check in with the other person regularly. Create ongoing dialog around what each other’s needs are and how you’re travelling and what’s working and not working.

  • What do most couples fight about? During the webinar we launched a poll to find out what you fight about most often. Here’s what you said:
    • Contribution to the couple or family unit (chores, roles, responsibilities) = 67%
    • Parenting = 33%
    • Finances = 17%
    • In-laws = 0%

These results were consistent with Sabina’s research. But here’s the clincher: it’s not the TOPIC that we fight about that’s indicative of the state of the relationship, it’s the way we REPAIR from the fight. It’s not about the ‘content’, that’s important it’s about the ‘process’. The process is how we RELATE to each other, the space between one another. Her advice: don’t expect to always reach a resolution: in fact, 69% of issues that couples argue over can NEVER be resolved. We just need to understand each other’s perspectives. We feel like we’re banging our heads against a brick wall because we’re having the same arguments over and over. What’s really going on is that we don’t feel understood and don’t feel validated by our partner. Give yourself permission to say ‘we may not get a resolution on this’. The goal, therefore, should be about understanding one another. That’s what we human beings desire most: ‘understand MY perspective, look through MY glasses, walk a while in MY shoes’.

  • What lies behind criticism and complaints? “You’re never home on time! You just don’t get it – I carry the load on my own every day – I’m here dealing with the kids, the dinner, the homework and you’re never here!” (Sound vaguely familiar?) Behind every criticism and complaint is an unmet need. What you could ask yourself is “What need might I have that’s not being met?” Then you can reframe the complaint to expressing a need. Give yourself permission to express your needs so that it’s valid and important and someone can hear it. Often, if we can see that our need is being heard, our pain is less acute. The need might be that I need your support at home during this end of the day. The solution? Reframe the moan!
  • Some advice for dealing with arguments:
    • Agree to take a break – in the heat of an argument, our pre-frontal cortex cannot deal with what’s going on, we get totally flooded and lose clarity and perspective. When we’re overwhelmed emotionally we need to take a break. It’s very important that we need to make a commitment to each other to return to the discussion when we have calmed down. Agree how you will handle arguments. When things are calm, have the conversation that we WILL disagree and have arguments, but let’s agree, for example, that we’ll come back to it before we go to sleep that night.
    • Share responsibility – (for the argument). Sabina often hears from clients: “If he or she was more like me, then we wouldn’t argue”. Don’t expect the other person to be like you. And don’t start arguments with YOU ALWAYS or YOU NEVER.
    • Avoid personalising in the issue – don’t name call, don’t use hostile humour and sarcasm and insult, that’s playing the man and not the ball. Stay on the issue.
    • Listen and repeat back what you heard – Often we hear our partner say something and literally in seconds before we’ve processed what they’ve said, we are ready to retaliate and our defences are up. Try this: repeat back in a journalistic style – (not sarcastically) what you heard. Check that you heard the message in the way that it was meant to be delivered.
    • Validating instead of agreeing – this means to show you understand. “I can understand that you would feel that way.” Or “that makes sense that you would like to be home earlier”. This can be confusing to people because they think that if they validate they’re agreeing and they don’t want to agree so they don’t validate. Validating doesn’t mean that we’re agreeing to come home earlier, it just means that we’re understanding what’s being shared. Validating lets your partner know that his or her perspective is important. The need to be understood is a key driver for us as humans.
  • In summary, here are some tips for keeping relationships strong :
    • Arguments are a part of a healthy relationship – focus on the process of Repair as your goal.
    • Treat each other like friends. Show genuine interest in one another
    • Self-edit criticisms by remembering that behind most criticisms is an unmet need
    • Seek help before it’s too late
    • Have high standards for your relationship
    • Bring up issues gently
    • Focus on what’s working rather than what’s not working
    • Continue courting

Thank you to Sabina for your guidance, support and for inspiring us to all to nurture and prioritise our relationships. Thank you also for sharing your valuable experience with us and igniting the passion for our most important relationships.

Not a member? Join today and gain instant access to our Milking It program which provides you with coaching, tools and resources for your success in your life, business and home.

Follow Sabina on twitter: @ReadSabina

Website: www.sabinareadpsychology.com.au

Further reading: visit The Gottman Institute: World renowned for his work on marital stability and divorce prediction, John Gottman has conducted 40 years of breakthrough research with thousands of couples.

I would love to hear your comments on this post. What do you most identify with?

For more information, guidance and to follow Sabina, visit her website:

Making Life Easy – Time Saver Tip

Time saver tip: What I love about my Ready Reference Folder time saver tip

Today I want to show you my ready reference binder and why I love it so much. It’s a simple tool and really easy to make yourself. It will save you time and energy because everything you need to refer to is at your finger tips. And the other great thing about it is that it’s in hard copy, so you don’t need to boot up your computer to see it. I keep it in the kitchen at home and take it with me to work.

The first thing to tell you is that I keep it upright in a magazine box just on my desk, just like the picture here. This is a picture from my book Paper Flow, and it shows you how I like to store it when I’m home. Then when I’m on the road, it comes with me.

So what do I keep in it? Well I keep my goals in the front. Then I have a print out of my Monthly and Weekly planner. So I can see at a snapshot what I’m doing for the week and month ahead.

I include my Paper Flow schedule which just shows when each of my recurring actions and projects are happening and my team work with me on those.

At a glance I can see my meal planner, my shopping list and my household budget. I also keep the Pilates timetable, a list of dates that I need to book babysitters for and the gym timetable.

I’ve also inserted a poem called ‘Letting Go’ that inspires me and at the back, my Emergency Numbers.

It’s really simple and flexible and you can add to it and update it whenever you need to.

It’s easy to make. You just need a display folder – mine is from kikki.K. Then you create a contents sheet at the front. You can download the template free from www.paperflowbook.com – it’s called an 8 tab divider, Paper Flow book. Then the templates for goals, emergency numbers, etc are all here at Did You Remember The Milk? So make sure you’re a member and you can have access to all of those. Use a label machine to write your name and what it is on the spine, so you instantly know what it is.

By the way, I also have this in soft copy on my phone and PC, so I can get it whenever I need to.

So that’s it. What do you think? What would you keep in yours?