Over the past couple of weeks, I have had the privilege of presenting a new workshop with my amazing wife and partner Christine.
We make a great double act.
It’s called ‘Fit Your Own Mask First’.
As the title would suggest, it’s a one-hour webinar where Christine and I share loads of great tools to help people to look after themselves during this challenging time.
When the feedback came in after the first few sessions, I was hit by a massive realisation.
Almost everyone is struggling.
It may not show in obvious ways. There are a lot of brave faces and ‘I’m fine’.
But I know the next few weeks and months will be challenging for many.
Our message is simple. You’ve heard them say it during the safety announcement on planes (remember flying on planes?).
“In the event of… masks will fall from above. Please fit your own mask first…”
With just over 6 weeks to go of this extraordinary year left, what can you do to fit your own mask first?
I’ll give a copy of my book, ‘Brilliant Life’ to my favourite share. Please leave your ideas here.
If you’re interested in booking Christine & I to host a ‘Fit Your Own Mask First’ session, then email us at [email protected] and we’ll share how we do it.
Other ways we can help you:
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Self care is so important and fit your own mask first really makes that clear. If I do my son’s mask first, I could die in the process and not be there for him in future. If I take care of me, I’ll be around as long as possible FOR HIM. I did see a flight attendant say ‘fit your own mask first, then do the mask of your favourite child’ which caused great amusement. Thankfully it was a perfect flight and no child had to worry about being lower down the list, but it made me laugh out loud. PS, my brother is definitely the favourite 🙂
fit your own mask first
On my daily run I keep repeating to myself how lucky I am and each day just pick one great thing I like in my life.
Its too easy to get hung up on whats not right and how strange the world is currently.
When you have created a new product or offer and it’s ready for launch. Do it, don’t have second thoughts, Just Stop getting ready to get ready.
Nothing will happen until you do it!
I think I have good habits but often they go out of the window when times get tough e.g. I meditate, when I’m too busy, I can’t find time; I eat healthily but when I’m stressed, I want ‘comfort’ food; my gratitude diary is light when I’ve not got much to feel good about….you get the idea…. I remind myself and others that this is precisely when these things are the most useful and potentially will be the most powerful, and will benefit me most if I do them when times are hard as well as when all’s well. Prioritise the good habits, whatever!
Over the past 9 months I have been focusing my mind on the beauty in things I normally take for granted. We are on the point of exhaustion having worked non stop without a break since it all started. So to try to maintain this grueling schedule and survive we are applying more of our time to business development.
I fitted my own mask first by realising that I no longer enjoyed doing my job with all the ppe I had to wear. So, early retirement which has made me realise how tired I was getting. I’m only just 62 but it’s been a good time to realise that, lockdowns aside, now it the time to get on and be brilliant.
My mask is to keep regular positive whatsapp groups chat and video and minimising any negative half glass empty around me or news more than once a day. I also came off Twitter. As many fresh air walks as I can fit in too. Also nice to start the day with small wins or jobs done – the Armed Services importance placed to making your bed.
My day to day job entails looking after my customers. My personal life entails in the main involved my friends coming to me for advice. My side hustle is coaching women going through separation / divorce. I am also a mum. I also facilitate bi-annual workshops to help women identify their values and to set boundaries. I am an inherent giver and I love what I do but at times, I do starve myself of oxygen.
This year has been a massive learning curve for me and I cannot keep giving when the needle on my tank is sending that empty flashing light. I’ve become very aware of when I am on a 1/4 tank and I consciously engage in solo activities that help me to fill it up. I realised last week that I was almost empty so I got up early one morning and hopped on a boat that took me an hour and a half away from the hustle and bustle of life to step foot on a pristine nature reserve where the only sounds I could hear were my feet crunching on the ground, the plethora of bird life and my conscious breathing. It was truly magic. This for me is how I fill my tank up. Silence, gratitude for being alive and the knowing that I am a part of this vast planet. It helps me to reconnect with who I am and to remind me why I do what I do – and that’s how to be brilliant.
It’s counter intuitive because ‘fitting your own mask first’ is an action. But actually, we’re seemingly all in action, all the time so my mask is to spend a bit of time doing nothing. Not meditating or planning or reading… just a cup of tea and slipping into freestyle thinking. Whatever comes up, comes up and whatever moves in or out is fine. Mostly it’s all junk, but I write the occassional note. There’s no goal, structure, objective or set time period. After a while the clutter and junk slows down and something quieter comes along. By occassionally creating this space for clutter and junk to pass through provides the oxygen I need every now and again. And isn’t that the point of the mask?
OS Maps sell online for around £16. If you supply them your postcode, they will post your OS Map to you with your postcode right in the centre of a specified radius. I’m going to have mine framed. It shows every available ‘walk’ that I can do in my specified radius. There are literally 100’s around where I live, and it helps me everyday to walk at least 2 miles, find a new trail, listen to music/podcasts, phone someone, or just purely walk! I’ve realised what this can do for my daily wellbeing during the pandemic, and my OS Map has been BRILLIANT for me.
I realised recently that how I deal with things can have a significant impact on those closest to me. In September my son had an emergency admission to hospital with a collapsed lung. I dropped him off at Accident and Emergency and knew I wouldn’t be able to visit. He has two brothers and a sister ( including his twin) so we called them to let them know and told them not to worry. I had seen this several times in my nursing days and I knew it could be resolved as long as they didn’t find any underlying problems. I didn’t want them or my husband to worry too much but I was more worried than I let them know and had quite a few wobbles over the next few days. There were no underlying problems and he came home after treatment with a chest drain. During his stay in hospital I had a conversation with my daughter and she became really tearful. She then said she felt like she was being over emotional and that she should be coping better. I told her that her feelings were normal and that I had a few wobbles and had felt really worried. What she said next taught me a valuable lesson. She said ‘you always seem ok when I speak to you so I thought I was over reacting and felt like I was being weak’. I realised by hiding how I was really feeling I wasn’t helping and was making things worse. I now know I need to be honest about how I’m feeling and it’s ok to need support- otherwise I put extra pressure on myself and can make my others feel they are not coping as well as they should. Putting on a brave face isn’t always the best way to deal with stressful situations. I need to fit my own mask first and not try to fit everyone else’s!
This is a bit ‘off tangent’ but I still think relevant.Forgive me for mentioning I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here.
One of the tasks saw Jordon North facing his worst fear of being trapped with snakes slithering all over him. I was concerned for him as his fear at the thought of doing was evident; shaking, sweating almost to the point of not doing it. But once in the situstion, he clearly practiced putting on his mask first by repeating his ‘Happy Place’ mantra which was Turf Moor. I applaud him on how he not only succeeded with the task, but grew as a consequence….there, said it…