Sunday, 25 November 2007

What relaxes you?

How is it that Christmas comes around more quickly every year? I’m sure it was yesterday I attended the obligatory work parties and family gatherings, shopping amongst the twinkling multi-coloured lights, and wrapping what seemed an endless pile of gifts. Surely I just put the tree and decorations back up in the loft…can that really be nearly a year ago?

The time has passed quickly but I’ve learned quite a bit this year that will actually help me this holiday season. I’ve learned to chill. Usually, I’m wound up tight, looking for the perfect gift, the perfect card, juggling my schedule to see everyone and feeling as if I’m disappointing everyone in the process (including myself). This year, I’m taking care of the most important person in my life…me.

Oddly enough, taking care of myself first has left me with much more time and energy to give to others and has enabled me to truly enjoy life. Taking time each day to meditate and treating myself regularly to a facial gave me the down time I needed to turn off that inner voice that keeps reminding me what I need to do, where I need to go, and who I need to see. A break to clear my mind gives me both the focus and energy I need to achieve everything I set out to do and the clarity to enjoy the journey.

What relaxes you? Come to Life Clubs this week and find out. You be taking out ninety minutes for yourself. Just think of all the time and energy you will gain for yourself and others.

Looking forward to meeting you.

Aimee, Hounslow Life Club

Thursday, 22 November 2007


This week we did some legitimate day-dreaming.

We worked out what we wanted for the future and visualised it happening. It was amazing how many of us felt calmer about our future - we could see that things were going to be good.

I'm one of those people who imagines the future - way ahead and then works backwards to see how I'm going to get there. I can do twenty years ahead, no problem. From there I can see what I want and then break it down so I know what I have to do next.

Others work from the present forwards and find it hard to visualise more than six months ahead, but even they felt cheerful about their future.

So much nicer than that day-dreaming we can all do, about whether we've left the cooker on or forgotten our keys or even left them in the front door.

See you soon,
(Westminster Life Club)

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

You say it best when you say nothing at all

Listening seems like such an effortless thing to do doesn’t it. To really understand this, we need to look for the differences between ‘hearing and listening’. Now we begin to see where the difficulties lie. Yes, hearing is a relatively effortless thing to do for most of us. In fact its something we have little control over and we can often find ourselves ‘hearing’ things we would rather not. We can’t turn our ‘hearing’ off. Anyone living next door to noisy neighbours will tell you, that’s a skill they’d give good money to master.

Now ‘listening’ is quite different. We can choose to turn our listening on or off and sadly many of us keep it turned off for much of the time. There are many reasons why we might choose not to fully ‘listen’ when we converse with people, but in doing so we miss far more than we might imagine.

One of the things that many people forget or perhaps never even think about, is that when we communicate with others, talking is only part of the process. What you will notice when you really listen is, that your communication with others and therefore your relationships with them become all the stronger for it. Think back to a time when you have felt truly listened to. It’s a great feeling isn’t it.

So listening may be hard, but it could also be the quickest and easiest way to improve your relationships with others. Now thats got to be worth a try!

And if Hugh Grant or Ronan Keating want to pop round and test my listening skills I'm all theirs!!

Leamington Lifeclub

Doesn't anyone listen to me...?

It's amazing how your energy can change once you feel you're being listened to and have had a chance to say what you think. 12 happy people at my Life Club felt heard.

What started out (or so they thought) as the same old classic moan 'Not sure I like my job...', 'Don't feel at home where I live...', 'Don't spend enough time on myself...' which friends usually deal with as a 'Not that again...', suddenly became a serious thought.

After five minutes of discovering themselves - simply by being heard - there was a lightness and a bonding in the room that was great. Those 12 people have understood listening.

And after that we just had to go to the pub and get in some more serious listening. Great for those talking and great for those being listened to.

This week all Life Clubs are going to be listening hard...

See you there,
Westminster Life Club

Monday, 5 November 2007

Riches of the heart

Money, money, money. I agree with Nina, most people feel more comfortable talking about their most personal lives rather than their finances. Its a real uncomfortable subject - we can be viewed as shallow for wanting it and envied for having it. And why is it that its mostly wealthy people that tell us, 'money can't make you happy'. Oh for the chance to prove them wrong. But I am also reminded of how many so called 'rich' people we hear of who are deeply unhappy and have had tragic lives - The Getty and Picasso families spring to mind.

I am also reminded of a story of my own when I think of this subject

Its the story of a family friend of ours. He visited us when we were newly weds, with little money, living in a freezing rented flat in Dundee. He had married the week before us and joined us in Dundee with his new bride. We ordered a chinese takeaway and as we went to collect it I over heard the conversation between the two. They were dissecting the menu and their choices piece by piece and dividing the cost of their individual meals down to the last 1p. Then I heard one say to the other 'oh yes, but if you remember, on the train here I paid for your magazine so actually you owe me £2.00 aswell'.

Their marriage lasted less than a year.

For me a generous heart, a giving nature and a rich laugh are gems in anyones personal account.

Leamington Lifeclub