Time out – are you craving it?

Do you need time out? Ever look around and feel that you want more out of life? Feel like having a tantrum, stamping your feet and screaming at everyone?

Hey, it’s okay to admit it. You’re not alone!

If you’re in a busy career, a high-pressure job, or just generally undergoing some serious stress in your life it’s pretty normal to feel that you’re going to have a meltdown. The pressures of day to day living can really mount up.

Maybe you’re juggling a family.  Kids, partners, elderly parents or perhaps all of those. Maybe your workplace is putting on extra pressure.

Whatever the reason…..

It’s important to give yourself permission to get off the crazy train. Permission to take time out.  Time to be kind to yourself. Time to refresh, reframe and relax.

In my own life, I am constantly juggling a series of demands placed on me by family and business obligations.

I avoid the crazy train by carving out time for myself each day.  Time to meditate, time to reflect and to journal as well as several times a week getting out on the water in the dragon boat. It’s my personal self-care plan, and how I refresh, reframe and relax.

It’s not an easy thing to do. To make time for yourself. It takes discipline and cultivating a habit.

If you’re not in tip-top condition then how can your business thrive? How can you be expected to look after your family? How can you make solid decisions?

Make a little time for yourself today

5 minutes to meditate, 10 minutes to journal, 20 minutes to go for a walk.

Whatever you can manage. Anything is better than nothing.

Do one or better yet do all of these things. The main point is do something for yourself.

Go on, give it a go and see if you feel any different. I bet you will.

If you’d like to discover more about looking after yourself why not join me in beautiful Bali for 5 days dedicated to Brand YOU?

A sacred time out where you’ll discover how to make time each day for yourself, how to stay on track in your busy day to day life by empowering yourself each and every day.

Our sojourns take place twice a year and have been put together by Andrea Wicking, and myself especially to help you refresh, reframe and relax. 

Michelle

If you are experiencing a crisis Lifeline is available 24/7 on 13 11 14

Michelle Hanton is a multi-award winning bespoke business strategist, working internationally as a consultant, coach, speaker and writer. She has a keen interest in the not-for-profit sector and is the former CEO of Lifeline Top End, and founder of Dragons Abreast Australia, a national charity dedicated to the promotion of breast cancer awareness.

Is Brand YOU in Tip Top Condition?

Is Brand YOU looking a little frazzled around the edges? Perhaps you’re feeling a little overwhelmed?

If you’ve answered yes to either of the above questions, then it’s time to start thinking about taking time out.  Time dedicated to Brand YOU, refreshing, reframing and relaxing.

If you’ve got kids and family to look after it’s not always so easy to get away. I get that. I know there’s often that feeling of guilt when leaving them behind. Going off without them. Or if you’re in business perhaps not wanting to leave the business.

You know what?

You need ME Time. We all do.

ME Time is dedicated to looking after your own needs because if you’re not in tip top condition, then you cannot look after your family or your business properly.

Time away – dedicated to Brand YOU

Have you ever considered a retreat?

There are many different kinds of retreats. But the common element is that a retreat is dedicated to focussing on yourself.

It’s usually means everything is taken care of for you.  No need to worry about being alone to fend for yourself in a strange place.

No meals to think about, no pressing deadlines – just time to be in the moment dedicated to yourself.

Some retreats are dedicated to weight loss, natural foods and all that other great stuff. Some even have curfews and no talking times. It’s horses for courses BUT that’s not my kind of a retreat.

If you like being pampered, eating delicious meals that you didn’t have to prepare,  perhaps sipping the odd glass of bubbly, a cocktail or two and… learning new things then we’ve got something in common!

Doing your homework

There are some great retreats around the world, but before committing your money it’s important to check out the organisers.

Do they have solid business reputations? Are their behaviours ones you respect? Have they got integrity?  You’ve got to know these things as you’re spending time with them! To be able to relax and know you’re in good hands is so important.

Bali is widely recognised as the Island of the Gods. There are the real touristy sides but there is also a whole other side to this country.  Andrea Wicking of Salty Plum Events really knows Bali well having been there countless times!

Andrea and I are combining my experience teaching, training and leading groups of women on travel adventures, with her wonderful event management skill, attention to fine detail and deep knowledge of Bali.

The result is we’ve put together a delightful sojourn in Bali, planning every little detail to ensure the very best experience!

Designing the sojourn especially to refresh, reframe and relax has been paramount.

Pampering massages, a bit of shopping, delicious dinners each night and your own beautiful double room complete with ensuite – no twin sharing – in a tranquil private villa.

You do as much or as little as you like! The perfect way to revive Brand You!

There’s also the opportunity of working one on one with me.  You can have your sessions focussed on personal or business development in total confidentiality.

Sound interesting?

Discover more about joining us for 7 days dedicated to Brand YOU.

Michelle

Michelle Hanton is a multi-award winning bespoke business strategist, working internationally as a consultant, coach, speaker and writer. She has a keen interest in the not-for-profit sector and is the former CEO of Lifeline Top End, and founder of Dragons Abreast Australia, a national charity dedicated to the promotion of breast cancer awareness.


Memory Monday #2 – In the Air

We’ve dug through our archives to bring you this article for Memory Monday – something light and uplifting.

When a Dragon Sister mentioned going on holiday to Venice and a luxury cruise, I thought, ‘Well that’s OK for some. Some of us have a job to hold down, a family to hold together and myriad obstacles to abandoning all responsibility in favour of racking off on some self-indulgent girls-only jolly!!’

However, where there’s a will, there’s a way; and the more I thought about it, the more I thought: “I will!!”  Mindful of the fact that it may well be a very long time before I ever make a dash for Dragon Sisterly debauchery on this scale again, I kept a little travelogue of all the happy happenings along the way.

‘Jetting off’ to Europe has a connotation of speed, glamour, pizzazz about it, which in the interests of honesty, I have to say is a far cry from reality. The trip from here to there in cattle class is more akin to a slow boat to China but is it ever worth it!!

Oz – Dubai:   A 14 hour flight with Emirates Air manned (bizarrely) by an entirely Spanish cabin crew. I discover early on that my movie gubbins are not working and I finally give up the ghost after being pinged back to the beginning of Benjamin Button for the 3rd time.

The steward who promised to check it out vanishes without a trace. Which doesn’t matter since it is obviously a technical problem only fixable by NASA and handsome as this Spaniard is, he seems more at home with the coffee pot than mission control.

Speaking of which, the coffee is curiously scarce, being served a la Manuel chez Fawlty Towers in the middle of the meal. The options are (especially if you’re slow with your nose bag) to drink coffee before your main course, cold at end of your meal, or do without. I ask one trolley dolly “will you be back with coffee?” She says “No!!” but smiles prettily before whipping away the precious pot. And, obviously, don’t hold your breath for a refill – because you’ll need an oxygen mask before that happens!

Happily, all drinks are free except champers ($8 a glass). Sadly, I choose the white wine which is barely chilled (tepid) and if you want more than one drink you have to go on a “seek and detain” drinks trolley mission.  In short, beverage hospitality is not at all forthcoming!! Otherwise, the cabin crew are very nice in an overall charmingly inattentive way!

I have a long chat with a lovely elderly Rhodesian (now Zimbabwean) chap most of the flight. We amuse ourselves with quips about the Latin lack of alcohol and whether Basil Fawlty is in fact the captain. Total sleep managed: 2 hours.

Transit c.4 hrs Dubai, United Arab Emirates:   I find I am disappointed in the airport, having heard of it being lavish, luxurious, spacious and everything you’d expect from one of the world’s oil sheik capitals. No doubt it normally is but as luck would have it, a new airport is under construction, consequently the current terminal has us jammed in like so many sardines in transit. The only seating available is in eateries or lined up at the departure gates. Duty free shopping, taking up all available space, which is quite understandable. So, with nothing better to do, I go shopping. Alcohol is delightfully cheap and smarting from my recent in-flight depredations I purchase 1L each of Gordon’s gin and Bailey’s liqueur for a paltry AUS $46.00.  Ah, things are looking up!

Final leg Dubai-Venice 6 hrs.:   The closer I get to Venice the better everything becomes: I find myself seated next to a Brad Pitt lookalike and the movie thingo is working perfectly. I am however, too knackered to enjoy either.

I really should have slept when in the company of the aged Boer and the defunct movie, then I could have had lovely eye candy and in-flight entertainment for this leg (both featuring Brad Pitt!). How daft am I?! Instead, I move to get an extra spare seat, stretch out and manage 2 hours zeds. (Dreaming of Brad punting me down the Grand Canal, singing something soppily romantic in Italian).

Touch down!!   I arrive at Venice airport where I am met by a Dragon Sister. We jump on a bus for the 20 minute ride (which costs E3) to Piazza le Roma, Venice’s bus station. This is the end of the line for all motor vehicles. From here on you have to get about on leg power or on various modes of canal craft.

Luggage with wheels and travelling light suddenly become a crucial for the jet-lagged traveller. I’m relieved that Dragon Sisters have factored this in and it is only a 2 minute walk over only one bridge (ponte) to get to our destination, the Sofitel Venezia.

This is radically different from the tower block Sofitel Hotels I’m familiar with in Oz. It’s a lot smaller with lots of marble, chandeliers, a curving marble staircase and other-worldly bijoux charm about it. My room is decked out in antique-style decor with an en-suite bathroom and two balconies (admittedly they are the size of airline loos) overlooking the canal and the Papadopoli Gardens and pontes.

Amazingly, all vestiges of fatigue disappear. Having briefly appreciated the merits of my new home, I dump my bags and hare out the door to explore. Ciao Venezia! Here I come!!

Nowette Awl

This article originally appeared in our Dragons Sisters Newletter 2010. The Sofitel is now Hotel Papadopoli Venezia – MGallery Collection. Nowette Awl is a fairly regular participant on our trips and a closet scribbler who keeps us entertained with her takes on the trip!

If you are interested in participating on our Jollydays, drop us an email and we’ll keep you posted of the next adventures.

Memory Monday #1

Yesterday saw Michelle diving through our photography archives (fancy word for old hard drives) looking for a photo to use in the blog that was posted on her personal blog. 

There were so many wonderful memories in there, both personal and professional moments, that we’ve decided they need to come out and be shared. After all, it is the past and our experiences that shape the people we’ve become.

Looking into the vaults of our memories serves several purposes:

  • to remind us of the past
  • to inspire us to take action moving forward
  • to relive magic moments and just get that general feel good vibe that stays with us through the day
  • To give us a giggle at some of the hairstyles and clothes!

So, we’re initiating Memory Monday and this is the first entry.

Camino 2013

This particular photo today, is from a magical experience walking the Camino. There’s a whole series of blogs on the trip here.

We hope you’ll enjoy the journey down memory lane with us. If you’ve got comments, we’d love you to post them here – especially if you have been a part of the journey 🙂

Michelle & Yvonne

PS If you’re interested in registering for our next Dragon Sister adventure – just drop us a note and we’ll pop you on our mailing list.