Tag Archives: connections

Gardening to improve relationships

I have always found myself feel happier when gardening and when this has been shared with others, I have found my relationship has got stronger.

Doing anything with others such as a project helps bond and deepen relationships. In this instance, it’s gardening but I could say the same for photography, cooking, art…anything that you can have fun with.

When you are doing a project with someone, the focus is on the project and somehow, the connection blooms, conversation flows, silences are comfortable. And at the end of the day, you can not only enjoy the achievement in the garden but spend time in the garden enjoying the deepened relationship <3

The absolute joy the kids felt seeing their sunflowers get so big!!

Getting the kids to help with planting out seedlings with hubby. Precious, fun family times <3

If you’d like to join me on my new 6 month gardening to improve wellbeing program, please click the image below. We’d love for you to join us <3

Not alone in our loneliness

Loneliness seems to be a theme for this week; everyone I am meeting from new mums, elderly neighbours, dog walkers to self employed colleagues. Everyone is feeling lonely.

Maybe it’s the time of year? The quietness after Christmas? Trying to get back into a routine? I don’t know, but it seems everywhere.

What I find quite interesting though, is that we all feel it. New mums feel it being stuck at home with a new baby, self employed colleagues working long hours on their own and elderly not having things to do to pass the day.

It’s interesting to me that so many people from different walks of life all feel similar things. I personally think loneliness happens when we don’t connect with others at levels we need. When we don’t feel any resonance in others, when we don’t see anything of us reflected back when we look at others.

And in all these cases, these are new situations where people are trying to find a new set of connections because the others have gone or not the same; maternity leave, leaving work, retiring etc.

It takes time to set up new connections, so please be gentle with yourself but do know, it will happen. Maybe the first step is becoming comfortable being alone and being with the quietness of lack of others? Maybe we need to learn how to be when we are not with others; what would we do? What interests us? Excites us? We are pack animals but I believe we also need breathing space from others otherwise how do we know who we are? Especially when embarking on a new identity; New Mum for example.

I know I have talked about loneliness in super simplistic terms and appreciate there is so much complexity to it along with a host of emotions but hopefully this has brought Loneliness to the surface for you and will help you look at your own situation and reflect on it.

What are your experiences of loneliness? What are your thoughts on it and how to help yourself?

Time to talk

I’m sure many of you  have seen Time to Talk being promoted on social media and hopefully many of you were brave and talked about your experiences with others.

I wonder how it was for you telling others about something so deep and secret, laying yourself vulnerable to others?
Were they surprised?
What did their reaction bring up in you?

But now what?

Starting the conversation is just the first step, in my opinion. There is so much more that needs to happen but the first step is often the biggest and hardest.

What else?
I feel we need to educate those around us on how we live with our illnesses and what it means to us.

I have always tried my best to be as open as possible with my family (hubby and kids) about how I was feeling and what I needed at the time; some days I needed nothing and had the energy of 10 mamas, blasting through chores and being in control. Then there were the other days when getting out of bed was the most difficult task in the world, my head feeling like lead and no strength to lift it.

It is important to know your own highs and lows, good and bad days to be able to ask for help, to delegate, to seek support, to be cared for in the way you need. This might be another tough step because most of the time, we have got so good at hiding how we are and our feelings from ourselves.

If those around you love you, they will step up and support you. If their reactions are less than you’d hoped, it will be hard to digest and deal with but at least you know where you stand and you are being honest. Perhaps you might need to change your relationship dynamics and put some boundaries in place to help you feel safe? Only you know what you need to do and who is in your support network and where they stand.

Mental health is very unique in how you can help heal and feel better because it is these very connections that hold the power, the magic and the healing. It is very important to get your support system right, to keep yourself safe and to only share what you feel comfortable with.

Talking about it is the first step but mind how you go on this journey and keep safe xx


Image result for connections

One question I always ask clients before I start working with them is:

Who is in your support network?

Think about that for a moment and write them down:

Are these people around you supporting you in the way YOU need? Studies have shown that connecting with loved ones do help you feel happier.

When a new baby comes into the household, everything changes. Even the dynamics between you and your partner will change. It is very important to be aware of these new dynamics and manage the change.

Have a think of your support network and ask yourself these questions:
Am I being listened to?
Do I feel drained or energised after seeing people from my network?
Are they respecting my boundaries?
Do I need to set some emotional boundaries? Maybe even making appointments in my diary if some are taking too much of my time?

There are a lot more questions you can ask yourself but the important thing is that you are concentrating on looking after yourself first. If you are not on top form, you might not be able to give as much as you want to your new baby.
Remember the safety messages when you are on an aeroplane? Put your own oxygen mask on first before anyone else.

You have permission to live your life YOUR way by being lovingly assertive and creating boundaries if needed.