• You Do Have Time And Energy

    you do have time and energy

    “I don’t have the time and energy,” is the standard answer when I ask someone why they don’t focus on their passion more. It seems to be everybody’s story, including my own at times. It’s so common that we have stopped wondering about it.

    Really, when you stop to think, it’s so ridiculous it borders on the insane: There’s something which lights you up, something you love so much it makes you forget time. And instead of making it the centre of your life, you slave away at a job, look after everyone else before thinking of yourself, and buy things you don’t need. After all, everyone else does the same thing, right? It’s just how our world works!

    Well, no. Just because something is common, or accepted by a majority of people, it’s not necessarily the only way. Breaking out simply requires a bit of out-of-the-box thinking and the willingness to be seen as, well, “weird” by some of your contemporaries.

    But time isn’t even the only issue; having the energy and headspace is almost as important. Almost everyone I start working with as a Coach, tells me that they’re so tired after a day in the office, or doing housework and chauffeuring the kids, they can’t possibly contemplate pursuing a passion.

    In the following, I’ll give you strategies to tackle both issues. Implemented consistently, they’ll create a dramatic shift towards a life you’ll love every minute of.

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    Time and energy crisis


    Have you noticed how everyone seems to be tired all the time? It’s an issue of epidemic proportions. This can make it additionally difficult to find the time and energy for your passion. In order to tackle it, you need to address both the physical and the mental aspects of tiredness. I suggest you consider the following steps.

    Physical tiredness:


    • It seems obvious, but ask yourself if you’re getting enough sleep. You may enjoy you late-night Netflix sessions, but wouldn’t you enjoy more having the energy to do what truly lights you up? Aim for at least 7-8 hours a night.

    • Try and establish a regular sleeping routine for a few weeks. In other words, always sleep at the same time and get up at the same time, even at weekends.

    • Take naps if you can. Anything between 10 and 40 minutes is refreshing.

    • Get off the computer and off your phone for at least two hours before bedtime. Don’t watch TV either. Read, write, have a conversation with your loved one or meditate.

    • If you have trouble falling asleep, try taking a warm foot bath before bed. Four or five inches (10-12cm) of warm water in your bath tub are enough. Soak your feet and ankles for a few minutes and then go to bed immediately.


    Mental exhaustion:


    • Establish a ritual of transition from your workplace (or time with your kids) to your home or free time. It can be something simple, like having a cup of tea or meditating for 10 minutes. Done regularly, this will help you leave the rest of your day behind and “arrive” in your own mind space.

    • Ever been almost too tired to go to a party, and then you met someone interesting there and found yourself chatting half the night? That’s because energy follows engagement. If you’re “into” something, you’ll automatically feel energetic. Use this insight by scheduling small periods of pursuing your passion. 20 minutes will do for a start. Let this inspire and fuel you.

    • Move. I can’t stress this enough. Actually, you could combine movement with your transition ritual suggested above: Take a walk after work, or if the weather is bad, dance to your favourite song or do 10 minutes of yoga at home. It can be the hardest thing to kick yourself to doing this, but I guarantee you’ll feel more energetic afterwards.


    What’s your investment?


    The main difference between succeding at change versus slipping back into normal mode, is your investment. I don’t necessarily mean money, although it does help (one of the reasons Coaching is so successful is that once you’ve forked over the cash, you’re more likely to stick with it). You can invest in coaching, training or professional equipment. But time and energy are just as important.

    Determinedly freeing up time shows your commitment. It’s why I’m always on about prioritising passion! It’s not enough to make some time on a Friday evening; if you’re serious about being joyful, do it first thing on a Monday morning. Work the rest of your life around your passion – yes, it’s possible, I see it again and again with my clients – and watch how you suddenly, magically have time for everything.

    Commit to it, schedule it, and stick with it. Life’s too short not to do what lights you up.

  • 4 Steps To Take If There’s Never Enough Time/Money

    never enough

    There are people who always rush around. “Lots going on!” is there every other sentence. They’re involved in a million different activities, and while every one of these activities sounds great, they seem to be piling up to an overwhelming workload.

    Others are always strapped for cash. I used to be one of those. In fact, I’ve currently taken on a big financial commitment which strains my finances and will continue to do so until June. Sometimes it takes me back to the way I used to feel, all the time. Then I remind myself that I’ve indeed learned my lessons and am doing this willingly! It was different years ago, when I had no control over my finances at all and there was never enough.

    You probably know at least one person who never has enough time or money. Maybe you’re like that yourself? When you look around yourself, do you perhaps wonder how others manage to make big purchases, or take time to create art or get a lot done? And at the same time, you seem to be permanently behind schedule, disorganised, and a little out of breath? Or alternatively, there seems to be “a lot of month left at the end of the money” every time?

    It might be time to find the root causes of this phenomenon. Once you know what you’re dealing with, you can take measures to turn things around.

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    Never enough: Don’t play the blame game


    Obviously, everyone has had busy times in their lives, and unless you were born with the proverbial silver spoon in your mouth, you’ve likely been short of cash at least once, too. Neither is a reason for worry! It’s just when this becomes a chronic state of things that you should get suspicious.

    If there’s never enough time or money in your life, it’s an indication of an underlying issue. It’s usually to do with beliefs we hold, either consciously or unconsciously.

    Before I continue, it’s important for you to understand that you’re not “to blame” for what’s going on. Beliefs are usually formed in childhood and become second nature to us. Most of the time, we assume that what we believe is simply “reality”.

    There’s a big difference between taking the responsibility to own your beliefs, and blaming yourself for them. Taking ownership means you’re in control. You’re empowered to change things. Blaming yourself is counterproductive and simply not fair. In other words, you couldn’t help creating those beliefs of yours, but you can refuse to continue giving them power over you.

    Taking back control


    The most effective way to get rid of self-sabotaging beliefs is to replace them with functional ones. You can do this by following the steps below.

    1. Identify your belief by watching your thought and speech patterns. Do you always say you can’t afford something? Are you always “in a hurry”? The phrases you most often use around the subjects of time or money, are likely expressions of your belief.

    3. Challenge the belief. Ask yourself: “Is this really always true?” Find examples of when the belief clearly wasn’t true. For example, if you believe money is hard to come by, remember the time when you were given money for your birthday or got an unexpected pay raise or tax return. Undermine your dysfunctional belief as best you can.

    5. For a space of about three weeks, challenge yourself every time you think or express your belief. Stop yourself immediately. Then speak (out loud, if at all possible) the belief you’d like to replace the dysfunctional one with. Example: “There’s never enough ti… -stop! I mean, I choose not to make the time for this right now.”

    6. To speed up the process, you can also use your new belief as an affirmation. At least twice a day, say your new belief out loud. Be sure it’s in the present tense and contains only positive words, as your subconscious can’t distinguish between “will” and “won’t”. For example, make it: “I have plenty of money” rather than “I’m not broke”.


    Remember, it takes a minimum of 21 days to create a new habit, and the same goes for establishing a new belief. In the beginning, you’ll feel like you’re lying when you speak your new belief. Stick with it, and you’ll notice that it starts to feel like the truth after a while.

    In order for the changes to stick, you need to follow up your inner work with action in the real work. Learn time management and money management and commit to putting them into practice. Life is too short to deal with a constant state of lack.

  • Where’s Your Time Gone?

    Time management, creative time

    Do you realise how much of our language in day-to-day conversation revolves around time? Frankly, I only noticed it when my Coach pointed it out to me one day. And once I became aware, I was stunned at how often I talked about time – or specifically, my alleged lack of it. “I’m so busy”, “I don’t have time for this!”, and of course, particularly at this time of the year: “Where has the time gone?”

    I can tell you from first-hand experience that it’s quite a journey to get control of one’s time. Which is funny, because we really are in control. But we live in a world which constantly whispers distractions to us, constantly tells us that we should do more, that we should be faster.

    Basically, the message – from media and social media – is that we need “time management”. We’re expected to fill every minute of every day with productivity. The people around us, victims of the universal brainwashing just like ourselves, echo this sentiment.

    Is it any wonder that when we finally dare to hone in on what lights us up, we find ourselves struggling to make time? We have built so much negativity and so much resistance around the subject, that it’s hard to break through this even for the purpose of doing something we love.

    I’m going to share with you some lessons I learned about the path back to sanity.

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    Mind or Emotions?


    The issue with a subject as fraught as time is that we develop deep-seated resentment and resistance. Of course, we can’t admit to ourselves that we feel like a stubborn toddler or a rebellious teenager when it comes to managing our time. We’re supposed to be rational adults, right?

    So we go and buy the next time management seminar, calendar, or scheduling system. We read books on efficiency and prioritising. Vowing that this time, we’ll really change our lives, we start putting the brand-new system into practice, only to fall off the waggon two weeks later. Then we declare that “it just doesn’t work” or that we’re simply “too lazy”.
    Sound familiar? I’m here to tell you that there’s no need to throw in the towel. The trick is to stop ignoring that tantrum-throwing toddler (try saying that five times fast!). Work with him – or her – instead, and you’ll be surprised how easy it gets.

    What’s wrong with time management?


    This is where I invite you to listen to those toddler emotions, irrational as they may seem. The truth is, that there is an excellent reason behind your resistance to time management.

    If you’re like most of us, your life is pretty much regulated by the clock. You get up at a certain time, go to work or college at a certain time, have your lunch, pick up your kids, go to choir practice, you name it, all at a certain time. These times are regulated for you by your employer, your school, your children’s school, etc.

    Now if you add a time management system in order to get to do what lights you up, part of you feels incredibly fed up with being chained to so many time constraints already. And this is the part which will rebel against yet another scheduled activity – the only one you have any hope rebelling against (without severe consequences like losing your job or livelihood, or neglecting your children). Guess which one this is? Your passion.

    True mastery


    You’ve heard me talk about Gay Hendricks’s concept of “Einstein Time”. It describes the phenomenon that time expands or contracts depending on how much we enjoy what we’re doing at any point.

    The easiest way to make use of this concept is to focus on what lights you up. The problem is, if you simply make some room in your busy schedule for your passion, if you schedule it in once or twice a week, you likely won’t stick to it because your resistance will be too great. If, however, you dare to truly prioritise your passion, the chains will fall away and time will become your friend.

    Time will expand to accommodate your needs. You’ll find that you truly have enough to get everything else done as well. On top of that, you’ll be so fired up that you’ll breeze through chores. Stress just melts away.

    The best path to mastering your time is through joy. I’ve seen it time and time again with clients, and as I mentioned above, I’m on the same path myself. The relief and ease which follows is astounding. I much recommend it!

  • One Question To Ask If You’re Always Short Of Money/Time

    Short of Money and Time

    One thing I love about Coaching is that it’s a gentle discipline. It’s the most powerful tool I know of to completely revolutionise and transform a life, but it doesn’t usually need to use harsh methods to accomplish this. Very occasionally, though, my Coach can be a little in-your-face about things.

    There was one time when I hit a wall with my beliefs about money, beliefs I’d carried since childhood, which were seriously limiting my financial abundance back then. I had worked on them before but like a boomerang, the beliefs came back around and hit me in the face. Then my Coach asked something monumental:

    “How does being broke serve you? What about it makes you so reluctant to let it go?”

    My first reaction was protest. This was ludicrous: Being broke is awful, I don’t choose to be short of money! As I sat and thought about it, though, I realised that parts of me were ashamed to rise above so many of my equally skint friends, and worried I’d lose them if I became wealthy. I also felt like I was trying to be more than my family have ever been.


    Of course, you may not have these beliefs at all. However, if you’ve been struggling with your finances for more than a year or so, chances are you’re getting something out of it. The same goes if you’re constantly pressed for time, always stressed, always busy.

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    The hidden benefit


    A heads-up before I say any more: You’re likely to feel a lot of resistance about this, just like I did that time with my Coach. I invite you to bear with me for a moment and just remain open to the possibility. Can you do that?

    With this openness, look at your life. Is there anything that you know doesn’t serve you? Any external circumstance that just seems inevitable, that you’ve been unable to shift? There might be “really good reasons” for it, but don’t dismiss it, please. If you know it doesn’t serve you and it’s still there, it’s a candidate for what I call hidden benefits.

    Which one is you?


    Ask yourself how this annoyance serves you. Here are some examples of what you might come up with, but in truth, your reasons might look completely different, so simply take these as inspiration:

    • Always being stressed and having too much on your plate makes you feel accomplished and in charge. It gives you the good feeling that you’re doing something in your life, that you’re going places.
    • Having no time keeps you in that comfortable place where you can say you’ll pursue your passion just as soon as the “busy period” is over (though in reality, it never seems to be over at all), without having to face the scary aspects of actually going for your dreams.
    • Being short of money can have the same effect: You’ll pursue your passion and live your dreams once you can afford it. By staying broke, you won’t have to actually step up and do it, risking failure, disappointment, and change.
    • You may have grown up in an environment that looks down on people with money, so you’re subconsciously making sure not to become one of the “filthy rich”.
    • You may have grown up with values that include hard work, and internalised the belief that you’re only a successful human being if you always keep busy.
    • You’re afraid your friends will think you’re greedy and not really passionate about what lights you up, if you start making money from your passion.

    Discomfort is your friend


    How do you move past these ingrained beliefs? I have to admit that I wouldn’t be able to do any of this without my Coach, so if you’re having a hard time with it, I warmly recommend getting some support! In any case, finally leaving behind what doesn’t serve you will require you to leave your comfort zone behind.

    Find actions which make you uneasy around the area where you’re stuck. If you’re downright afraid to do something, or simply “don’t feel like it” for no obvious reason, although it might advance what you really want, you need to buckle down and do it. Warning, this is really, really uncomfortable! It’s also the No. 1 reason why so many people get stuck in situations they hate.

    It requires discipline, a lot of self-love, and persistence, but you can change your finances and how much free time you have. Stick with it, and you’ll surprise yourself with how much easier it gets after only a short time.

  • Get Organised Once And For All

    get organised

    I have a friend who does so many things it makes me dizzy just thinking of it. He’s the organiser of a major project whose aim it is to establish the first true eco community in Ireland, tirelessly lobbying and putting together proposals. He’s always attending meetings and conferences and wooing sponsors, as well as scouting out potential sites and keeping interested parties informed. On top of all that, he’s a musician, a teacher, and generally a multi-passionate with a million things going on at any one time.

    How he manages to stay sane through all this, is anyone’s guess! I develop a slight inferiority complex every time I think about my own need for copious free time to myself. I’m challenged just by trying to work a job and a business, and keeping the focus on my passions at the same time.

    If you’re among those people who keep resolving to get organised and make room for the right things in life, and never quite seem to manage, this article is for you. I have tried to implement many systems before I found what worked for me, and maybe I can help shorten that journey for you.

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    To get organised, know thyself!


    The first step is to know your own needs and to organise accordingly. Many of my failures came from aspiring to systems that simply didn’t suit my way of thinking and my need for space. Most of us wish sometimes that we could be like my friend I mentioned above. However, we also know by now that comparison is not the way to go. Your life is about you and nobody else.

    I invite you to sit down and really come clean. How much time are you willing to spend on the “necessities” of life? It’s no use resolving to go to the gym five times a week and have the house spotless every night if you need creative space for yourself after work and also have a family to look after (and this is just an example).

    I’ve long realised that I’ll never be a 1950s domestic goddess but I like a clear space, and so I do a minimum of housework regularly. I also spend a lot of time doing virtually nothing, and I’ve stopped feeling bad about it. This is gestation time for ideas and projects, as well as processing time for my emotions and experiences. It keeps me sane and happy.

    Ask the right questions


    A lot of being a Coach is about asking good questions. When it comes to sorting out your schedule in the long run, there are a few particularly interesting ones you should ask yourself, and then answer honestly:

    1. Does this give me joy/light me up? If it’s passions related, it should take priority.
    2. Is this task inevitable (such as tax returns; you won’t ever want to do them, but you can’t get around it)?
    3. Will doing this matter a year from now (exercise is just one example of an activity that’ll pay dividends in the long run)?

    If you answer “yes” to any of the above, then the task or activity should go into your schedule. If it isn’t, you need to think hard about whether you should really spend time on it.

    To save time, do more


    Some weeks ago, I mentioned Gay Hendricks’s idea of “Einstein Time” (you can read the article here). Part of this idea is the observation how time seems to expand when you do what you love.

    Therefore, paradoxically, I suggest you do more in order to have more time. More of the right things, that is! This is why my Coaching focuses on prioritising passions. It quite literally expands time and helps people get all their chores done along the way. I don’t know exactly how it works, I just know it does, every time, without fail.

    If you feel permanently stressed and pressured, it’s a sure sign that you’re not doing enough of what lights you up. The problem is that most people dismiss the idea of prioritising their passion, thinking they don’t have enough time. In reality, this is the one step that would stop them being stressed in the first place! Try it, and if you need any help, let me know. This is exactly what I specialise in.

    If you keep these priorities in mind and keep asking yourself the three questions above, you should end up with a schedule you can actually stick to for once. Do this weekly – I suggest either Sunday evening or Monday morning, but any day that suits you is fine – and feel yourself relax into a schedule that makes sense and fits your unique life and needs.