Why taking a time out might just be exactly what you need #5TTT

Hi all,

I don’t know about you, but I am tired.

The year is coming to a close, some are heading into the deep depths of winter, others the crazy heat of summer but no matter what, we can’t escape the change. November is always the calm before the storm. The reminder of all we have to do within the year before it ends. We all know December is madness. Our to-do lists are the size of our arms, weekends whiz past without stopping and before you know it, it’s the big day,

I can’t wait for Christmas and all it brings. It makes me feel so much joy. Right now though, do I even have the energy for it?

So how do I get that energy? How do I bring my mind and body into December with all it needs? What advice would I give someone else who was generally feeling a bit run down?

I would tell them to take a time out.

Yes, it’s as simple as that. Take a time out. We can’t be go go go all the time, it just doesn’t work, we don’t work, we don’t thrive. Below are 5 areas where I believe folks can benefit from taking a time out. Even just one may help and it may only take a couple of hours, a day or two, maybe even a week if you have the time. Figure out where you would benefit from a time out and get ready to feel like you have the energy and drive to party and celebrate the rest of the year.chase the red grape

Work

So you are probably holding on right now… waiting for your Christmas holidays, right? Urgh who isn’t feeling like they need a holiday right now?! But there are still several weeks left, how do you want them to go? Have any annual leave left? Why not take a day or two to chill out? Have a Netflix day, do some Christmas shopping, sleep even! If you don’t have any annual leave left see if you company has a policy where you can take a mental health day. Your mind needs a break too.

If you have no option to take time off right now make sure you are putting yourself first. Take all the breaks you are entitled to. Leave work on time and get home where you can rest. Get an early night so your body has enough sleep to tackle the following day. You are number one.

Exercise

Whatever you do for exercise, ask yourself right now ‘at this present moment, is it serving me’? I get it, the gym is community, it’s so much more than just movement. But putting yourself through intense exercise day after day and telling yourself it’s worth it because of what it does for your social life isn’t the right way to go. What is your body telling you? Is it sore? Is it tired? Does it need a break, a bit of TLC? Maybe cut back on how many times you go per week. Maybe drop those weights or intensity for a couple of days and see how you feel. Or maybe just stay in bed instead. Your body will tell you what’s best, you just have to listen to it.

Diet

I’m not going to preach on what you should or shouldn’t eat. If your not eating great, you know it and you know what you should be eating instead. Don’t deny yourself or restrict yourself, just maybe eat some more veg or pass on the pizza. Get your tummy happy for the holidays. If you do eat well then great but make sure you’re not going too far. Does your body need a little more? Does what you eat make you happy?

And if like me you are pretty happy food wise but want to just take a break from alcohol for a little while then that’s always a good choice. I think a lot of folks would benefit from a boozy time out, just to reset our bodies and give it a little break from having to work hard to process the alcohol.

Routine

Why not throw a spanner in the works? I get really tired from doing the same old same old stuff day in and day out. Although I thrive from routine, I also know, if I’m not careful, it can drag me down into a rabbit hole and it’s hard to get out. Do something different. Go for a walk after dinner. Switch up one of your go to meals. Attend a class or go to the cinema on a weeknight. Break your self imposed rules. Take a time out from the grind.

Surroundings

Last but not least, take a time out from your surroundings. Maybe you are a Mum and you just need that night off from the family to spend with friends. You and your husband could book a last minute cheap deal for a stay at a hotel in your city. Or maybe you need some alone time. Work from home instead of the office. Even walking home a different way or trying out a new coffee shop can make a big difference. I like going somewhere new at the weekend. Just switch up what you see.

Don’t let yourself burn out. Take a time out instead.

How are you feeling right now?

Where would a time out be beneficial to you?

Are you patiently waiting for the holidays or longing badly for them?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

What has social media done to you? #5TTT

Hi all,

Remember back in the day when the internet started being something we could have in our homes? If you were lucky, you had a massive ‘piece of equipment’ PC and you spent your evenings talking to friends on MSN messenger about the same things you had also spent the past 8 hours of school talking about.

Fast forward a few years and I was off to university. At this point Facebook was only available to people attending select universities, and it never really fussed me. Until a few years in and my university was accepted. Of course we signed up! This looked so cool! Still, it was only something you looked at when and if you were connected to the internet… and even then it was about posting when you were having a party… and revealing said pictures from party!

Fast forward 13 years and social media has just exploded. Everyone has constant access to the internet. Everyone is on Facebook, your mum, your auntie, all of your friends. And then there is Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and so on and so forth. Has the way we communicate as a society really changed so much in the space of 13 years? I don’t think anyone could argue that the answer to that has to be ‘yes’. 

What has social media done to you?

For this weeks 5 top tips, I dug deep to look at the relationship I have with social media and what it has done to me. What does social media reveal about the world around me? What has it brought to my attention? These are my thoughts. Maybe you agree, maybe you don’t, maybe social media means something very different to you. Let me know below what you think.chase the red grape

Connection

Social media will always be worth it’s weight in gold to me, simply because of connection. Being on the other side of the world from my family and friends has been tough but social media allows me to be a part of life over there still. It allows me to keep connected with my old communities and friends. I cannot imagine how hard it would be to have to disconnect from all these important people and places – thankfully I don’t have to.

Desire

Social media has enabled me to desire more than I ever could have dreamed of. Maybe for you this desire is a good thing, you see something you want and you figure out a way to get it. It pushes you, it drives you, you can see an end. For me, desire can lead to pressure, confusion and often unhappiness. Most of the time it’s about things or opportunities I never even considered or was aware of. Social media can make me feel bad for not wanting it or not having it.

Why not me?

Yes the comparison game. Why don’t I have this? Why do they have it and not me? What have I done wrong? Do I not deserve the same opportunities? Am I no good? We glance at something, take one look and that’s all we need to bring ourselves down and tear ourselves to shreds. We no longer live in our bubble. We can see every single bubble in the world. We feel judged, we judge others, it feels like there is no escape. (Unless we disconnect… but then face being left out!).

People can be cruel… but cruel people are not worthy of your attention

The ability to be cruel, cause hurt to others and bully has exploded throughout the evolution of social media. I see good people everyday being torn down by comments online. It’s horrible. However through trolling we have learned that both online and in real life we cannot tolerate people who are cruel, people who bring us down, strangers, as well as those we know, who believe it is ok to cause hurt with their words. As much as I wish no one has to ‘learn how to deal with trolls’, it has become part of our world. What counts is that we stand up to it and realise that trolls are not worthy of our attention.

We are stronger together

Finally, I believe that social media has made me realise that we truly are stronger together. We feel with others on the other side of the world. We can be a part of helping afflict change in areas where we used to feel helpless. We can be more informed, have a strong basis of knowledge, share because we care. Yes there is a lot of ‘fake news’ out there and so much nonsense but the more time we spend with social media as part of our lives the more we realise its worth, its power and its ability to help us do good.

Be the good, promote the good, share the good and all will be well.

Have you always had social media in your life?

What does social media enable you to do?

What has social media done to you, both positive and negative?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

Jen, you’re a loser #5TTT

Hi all,

This has been a post that I have wanted to write for a while now. It may sound really abrupt, hard on myself, actually it’s downright bullying (me on me).

I’m a loser.

In my core I’m a very competitive person. I want to win. I want to be the best. I want to come out on top. I take pride and value on working hard and winning. I thrive from it.

But to tell you the truth, I very rarely win. I did well in school and university, but was by no means the best and never got the top grades. I moved into a job where I strived a lot more than I should have just to feel the sense of doing more and being more… but it never led to more. I created this blog and I fell into an even bigger hole of feeling like I was constantly losing.

Then I started CrossFit.

I realised that I was never going to win at this sport. I was never going to come first in the class, I was never going to lift the heaviest or pull a skilled move out of the bag that others couldn’t. I can’t ever win at this one – my body just isn’t able. But I love the sport. Something had to change. I needed to quit or really look at how I view myself in terms of winning, losing and competing. Otherwise I was never going to be happy. And I ain’t no quitter.

So what has happened in the past four years since I placed that ultimatum upon myself? I’m still doing the sport, but I am a lot happier in how I view myself – both inside and outside of the gym. I worked out ways on how to change my mind set around feeling like a loser if I didn’t win. And today I want to share them all with you. No one should feel this way.chase the red grape

Defining what a winner is

This was the biggest question for me – what is the definition of a winner? Coming first/ on top every time? Really?

Winning is so much more than getting that gold star. Winning means learning lessons. Winning means trying something new. Winning means doing what you can when you can. Winning sometimes means having a shower and getting dressed when you feel like all you want to do is curl back into bed and hide from the world. We win every day, we just don’t always have to compete against others to do so.

Defining what a loser is.

Someone who didn’t win right? But as discussed above, you probably already have won at being you today. So where is the loss? I understand, maybe you went for a job and didn’t get it. You feel like a massive loser. But often we feel the loss for something we never had to begin with. Mourning for that is one thing. Tying your personal worth into the loss however is not. You may have lost but you are not a loser. They are two different things.

My best has to be enough.

As I mentioned above, winning is doing what you can and doing your best. I give my all to everything in life, I can’t help but do otherwise. My relationships, my writing, CrossFit… So how can I ask anymore of myself? Your best (and that can vary dependant on days and circumstance) is all you can and should ask of yourself. Sometimes that may mean you come out on top but when you don’t it simply means that another persons best was enough for the prize that day. Don’t ask any more of yourself when you know you can’t give it.

Winning doesn’t make me a good person.

Getting the role, winning the trophy, getting an A plus… these things are great. But it doesn’t make you a good person. Yes you may get the glory, but people don’t want to be around you because you win, they are around you because you are a good person. A good person is kind, generous, friendly, welcoming. You don’t define a good person as a winner. They win in life because they are good.

Remembering what your priorities in life are.

One massive question I asked myself at the beginning was, why do you do CrossFit Jen? The answer, for my health. Health is my priority. Four years ago I was weak, I had lost all muscle on my body, I was skin and bone. I wanted to be healthy again. I wanted to feel strong. I wanted to feel human again. That was my why. Did I do that? YES 100%. Am I still doing that? YES 100%

I’ll never see my name at the top of the leader board at my box. But I truly believe that I am finally at the top of my own leader board now. So call me a winner, call me a loser, who cares. I’m doing a great job at being me right now and that’s all that matters.

Do you ever feel like you are a loser?

Do you place a lot of merit on winning?

Have you ever had to place an ultimatum on yourself?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

The mental challenges of moving home #5TTT

Hi all,

This weekend I am moving apartments. Phew.

It’s such a demanding time, stressful and everything just seems like it’s never going to come together.

We all know how physically demanding moving can be. Packing, lifting, sorting, up and down stairs, cleaning, lack of sleep etc. But have you ever thought about the mental challenges of moving home?

For this weeks 5 top tips I want to share 5 ways in which moving can affect your mental game. Take care and don’t let it stress you out. (I am telling myself this right now!).moving home - chase the red grape

Letting go of a safe space

Your home is your sanctuary. It’s where you feel safe and calm. Moving, no matter what the circumstances, means that you have to break free from this space – it’s why most of us take so long to make the big leap of moving in the first place. Embrace what this space has given you – a home, cosiness, memories and let go. Holding on makes it very difficult for your new home to provide this sense of comfort.

Reviewing your belongings

Moving means packing. Packing means arranging and sorting, viewing and making decisions on all the belongings you have of old and new. Do I need this? Do I want this? What memory does this evoke? So many questions for what is already a stressful time. My go to question is ‘would someone else get more use out of this?’ – donating always makes me feel good. For more sentimental belongings I ask myself ‘would future Jen potentially regret letting go of this?’ If the answer is yes or there is a doubt I keep it.

Overwhelm of cost

For some of us, like me, moving becomes a source of anxiety because of the financial cost. Never mind the general cost of paying different rents, deposits, transferring letting agencies and the like, it’s the hidden/ forgetful costs that pile up for me. Transferring utilities and internet, van hire, cost of packing materials, mail redirection, even down to the endless coffees and take out meals that are inevitable over moving days. Big deep breath. For most of us, this is not a frequent occurrence. Sure your savings are going to take a hit, but make the best choices, source out the best deals and be happy in the notion that although inevitable, you did the best you could money wise.

Creating a new home

You’re in a blank space. Your whole world surrounds you in boxes and bags. What do you do now? How do you create that safe space? Oh, did you notice that when we first took a look around? I don’t know if I like that. Why didn’t I notice that? Sound familiar?

Another big breath. Safe, cosy, calm spaces come over time. They come when you find a home for all your little nick naks. Don’t rush it, let it develop.

Big changes and how they affect the rest of your world

Moving home is a big deal, whether it be moving down the road, to another city or to the other side of the world. When one big change happens you start to look at other aspects of your life in a different way. One big change spurs another. We become more confident, more pensive, more ambitious. Now whether or not other changes come to fruition or these thoughts just come and go, that’s up to you. But if you can move house, what else can you do if you want to?

And for me, all that is left is to move!

Due to this I will be taking some time off and will be back to let you know how we got on with a Friday Favourites on the 15th! Keep up to date with the move etc over on Instagram – yep I will be that person who insta-stories rather than packing!

And don’t forget to check out this weeks podcast which is released tomorrow (Wed 6th). The topic is body image and it’s one heck of a podcast episode. We both speak open and honestly about our experience and it’s definitely worth a listen if you want to feel great about who you are and how you can control how you view yourself. Or subscribe over on iTunes or Stitcher and you definitely won’t miss it!

When was the last time you moved home?

Do you find it easy to create a new safe space?

Have you ever made a change in another area of your life after moving home?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

5 Chase the Red Grape Podcast episodes you should have listened to #5TTT

Hi all,

Last week David and I released the 40th episode of the Chase the Red Grape Podcast!

40 gone and here’s to the next 40!

It may seem like there are so many podcasts out there right now vying for your attention, and don’t get me wrong, I know our competition is awesome.

So why do we still record in this ever expanding market? Because we love it. It is my favourite platform to engage with you all and I love being able to truly express how I feel. Any writer will tell you that to do the same thing in words is extremely difficult!

So discussions turn heated and passionate, ideas are thrown, rants are ranted and raves are enlightened. Our goals, hidden talents, desires, flaws and true thoughts are revealed. We tell stories, relive moments that are key to us as individuals but also as a married couple and never edit out the awkward or confused. It’s just me Jen, joined by David, trying to help us all to be healthier, happier people.

So for this weeks 5 top tips on a Tuesday, I thought I would share with you all the 5 Chase the Red Grape Podcast episodes you should have listened to. Come find out what you have been missing!

(Find the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher or here on chasetheredgrape.com where you can listen though the web!)chase the red grape podcast

Episode 40 – Realities of your personality

I had to begin with the most recent one as it was incredible to record and brought up a lot of common issues. Knowing your personality and working with both the positive and negative traits of it can be rewarding in so many ways. Don’t let said ‘realities’ of who you are dictate which path you should proceed down

Episode 24 – Being a Brit living abroad

Many of you have joined us here as we made the big move from Scotland to Perth Australia. But what is it really like being an expat living abroad? In this hilarious episode we pick out the good, bad and the ugly of British culture and apply that to life here in Aus.

Episode 21 – The Open is over, what’s next

This may originally have been recorded in response to the CrossFit Open ending but it delivers an important message for any athlete looking at setting and achieving goals for the following year. Being honest with where you are at is hard but sometimes very necessary.

Episode 12 – Mental Illness – Relationships and recovery

This was a tough one to record but so wonderful to put out into the world. Many of us will be affected by mental illness either personally or regarding a friend or family member at some point in our lives. It’s good to know how you can help the process and talk about matters that need to be addressed.

Episode 35 – Comfort Zones – Are you happy in yours?

Rather than push you to break free from your comfort zone, we instead discuss how comfort zones can be bloody wonderful in this day and age. Going on the theory, if it makes you happy then do it, we show you how they can actually represent all what you want in life. On the other hand, if it doesn’t make you happy, we show you how you can break free from your zone to experience something new.

So head on over and give the podcast a listen! Please also share and tell your friends. And a big thank you to those who have been with us since the beginning – it makes us very happy!

The latest episode of the podcast will be released on Wednesday – Episode 41 – The best and worst pieces of advice we have been given – don’t forget to subscribe so you don’t miss it.

Enjoy!

Have you listened to the podcast yet?

What do you like to hear people talking about on podcasts – more personal or professional?

Has a podcast ever made an impact on your life?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

Self-compassion and giving kindness online #5TTT

Hi all,

Blogging, Facebook, Instagram, snapchat etc etc. Being a part of todays modern world means having 24/7 access to these websites and platforms. We see smiling faces, delicious food, read interesting stories but more often than not we read, look and as a result have opinions.

‘I wouldn’t do it that way’

‘No way would I try that’

‘That’s too much effort…’

‘That’s not enough effort!’

Some take their opinions to the extreme (trolls), some don’t go so far but instead make snarky comments. Others keep their opinions to themselves (thank you!) but it doesn’t stop us from feeling the way we feel. I’m not perfect. I don’t read blogs and look at pictures on Instagram and believe everyone is doing or saying the right thing. I disagree all the time and, like everyone, I let certain things really get to me. But I always reflect back – why do I feel this way? Then I give myself some compassion and the author and poster of said blog/ picture some kindness.

Let’s dive into that a bit more for this weeks 5 top tips on a Tuesday – self-compassion and giving kindness online.Self-compassion and giving kindness online - chase the red grape

Reflection

Reflecting back on why something makes you feel a certain way is important. We do it all the time in our day to day life but we somehow forget to do it when it comes to our online life. This person was not writing or posting directly to you, why have you taken it so personally? Does it expose some insecurities you have about yourself? Get to the bottom of why you feel this way.

Self-compassion

We are human. We are going to compare our lives and have different opinions. We are going to feel jealous, frustrated and hurt by what some people post. Some are pushing the boundaries trying to hit your buttons and you are falling right for the trap. But in these moments show yourself some compassion. So you see someone with the ‘ideal body’, who does 4 hours of cardio per day. You have reflected back and realised that this picture makes you feel insecure about your own body but also makes you angry at the message he/she is promoting. Be compassionate. You are human. This will happen. It’s what you do next that counts.

Kindness

Let’s carry on with the example above. You are feeling insecure and angry about that photo. You can do one of 3 things. 1) Leave an angry comment about how you disagree with their message 2) Walk away and stew for the next few hours letting it affect you. Or 3) Show them kindness.

Many people out there don’t realise what they have done would annoy you. Many folks are out there doing their best with what they know. You may be seeing their highlight reel but not knowing the struggle that goes on behind that post. They may be too afraid to show the truth or their fear. Kindness is acknowledging their right to post. Kindness is being friendly because it makes you feel good, not because you have to, but because you want to.

To follow or unfollow?

I follow people I disagree with on a regular basis. Why? Because I acknowledge their right to think differently from me. I like the questions they allow to bring up in my mind. I like that they help me define how I really feel about different issues. However, I have also followed people who have made me feel unhappy. I understand I am allowed to feel this way but the best kindness I can show this person is to unfollow them. You are in control of what you see on a regular basis. If someone does not gel with you or makes you feel unhappy then unfollow. It’s as simple as a click of a button.

Let it go

Our online lives are only going to become more prominent. We are going to be exposed more and more to things we don’t like/ disagree with. There were always people out there who thought differently to you, you just didn’t see them pop up on your Facebook feed every morning. Follow the steps above and even after you have unfollowed them, you must let it go. We all need to start either being at peace being surrounded by differing opinions or backing away from life online. Don’t let one picture or post ruin your day. Instead focus on the ones that have made your day. Keep your life online a happy one.

Do follow people online that you disagree with?

How do you react when you read something you don’t like?

How often do you unfollow people?

(Linking up with ‘Thinking Out Loud)5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

Pick your battles #5TTT

Hi all,

Are you tired of feeling like you have to fight all the time? Maybe your life feels like one constant battle. Maybe you feel like it’s one battle after the next after the next…

We live in stressful times – sometimes its external stress, sometimes it’s the stress we impose upon ourselves to be more, do more. Work, home, family, Instagram… fight, fight, fight. Aren’t you exhausted? I know I am.

So for this weeks 5 top tips I want to get you thinking about how we can all pick our battles in life. Battles are inevitable, but how they appear in our lives and how we react to them really is the key.Picking your battles - chase the red grape

Remember, life should be easy

It may sound obvious but sometimes I think we really do forget this point. The purpose of life isn’t to be hard, full of pressures and constant battles. It should be easy, fun and happy. If you can’t make your battles disappear then try introducing a new habit/ routine into your life to do something you enjoy. Taking a walk, reading a book, a long soak in the bath.

Priorities

Figure out your priorities. What do you really want to focus on? What demands your attention and deserves your attention? What battles are worth fighting? What is worth your time, energy, drive and, sometimes a part of your soul? (Or it sure feels like it anyway!). Fighting for equal pay at work = a battle worth fighting for. Trying to get your kids to pick up their socks and allowing it to drive you insane = not worth it.

Seek clarity

Are you fighting? Is it really a battle? Are you the only one in your team that feels this way? Battles can be surrounded by so much confusion, how do we really feel? In order to work this out you need to focus on gaining clarity. Make sleep a priority so that your mind can process the information and break it down into the necessary and unnecessary. Take some time to walk or meditate. Allow yourself to slow down during the madness so that you can really take stock of what is going on. Maybe you do need to be a warrior for a while – take care of yourself so that you are in the best head space to fight.

Sometimes the right thing to do is give in

You win some, you lose some, right? Well you need to let this be your mantra. If it’s not worth fighting then it’s perfectly fine to give in. You are not a loser! You are not weak! You are not less of a person! Remember this! Picking your battles means that often you just have to let go. You may not be entirely happy but you won’t have gained the stress and anxiety that often comes with fighting. And soon enough, if it wasn’t worth fighting for then the anger will disappear.

Take ownership of your choices

Whatever you decide to do in battle, fight or not, just make sure you own your choice. There is nothing more confidence boosting that taking ownership of your own decisions. You may decide that a particular argument just isn’t worth it but are you letting the other person ‘win’ if you walk away with your head held high and don’t allow it to affect you? No. You win because you took control of your own life and your own decisions, regardless of what that decision was.

You have the right to pick and choose your battles – just make sure to take advantage of it!

Do you feel like you are constantly fighting?

Are you good at assessing what’s worth fighting and what’s not?

Are you good at walking away from an argument?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

The guide to assuming #5TTT

Hi all,

Assume = making an ass out of u and me. Now I am sure you have all heard of that phrase! We assume which makes both you and I look bad.

But assumptions are creeping more and more into our daily lives, making this phrase all the more relevant.

We assume things about others, heck we assume things about ourselves! We assume paths and outcomes from choices we make, situations we are in and problems we might face. Often these assumptions stop us from making choices/ decisions in the first place. We assume so often rather than being open to possibilities, it can be a hindrance to us all.

So why do we assume? What can we do to turn our assumptions around? What elements can we practice in our daily lives so that assuming doesn’t hold us back? Lets dive into this weeks 5 top tips on a Tuesday!assuming - chase the red grape

Why the negative?

Assumptions are almost always negative. Why do we jump to that conclusion? Protection. We do it to protect ourselves from the potential hurt in any situation. We assume someone thinks badly of us or no one would want to spend time with us to protect us from the potential of it being true. We use our experiences of being burned in the past to predict the future. Sometimes we may be right, but if we only think of the negative outcomes we are never fully informing ourselves of the situation and every possible outcome. And that doesn’t sound very fair to me!

Reasoning with yourself

You have to check in with your thoughts, feelings and actions to stop being someone who ‘assumes’. What is the situation? Why are you thinking this way? Are you being negative? What would be the other side to the argument? I try to ask myself these questions when I find myself assuming a certain outcome from someone or a situation. I also point blank ask others these questions when I know they are assuming. Reason with yourself and be a rational thinker – don’t let assumptions lead to more stress in your world.

Reality

The moment has come and gone. You assumed a certain something and the result of that has presented itself. You were wrong. What do you do now? You learn from the reality. In some situations we can’t help but assume, it’s all we have. But we should always reflect on what the reality ended up being. If we want to be driven by our experiences we have to learn from when our assumptions burned us, what we missed out on, and when we should dismiss the negative thoughts.

Turn it around

These previous experiences can be turned around! Decide not to go on a trip with your girlfriends because you assume they don’t want you there? But they message you every day with pictures saying they missed you? You assumed and judged wrongly. So turn it around. Arrange another trip for you all to go on. By assuming things about others you put people in a bad light, but actually all it really does is speak wonders about who you are and how you react to things/ work out your choices. If you recognise these thoughts within yourself decide how they are currently serving you. Do your assumptions help or hinder your decisions about yourself and others?

Do you even care?

And last but not least, do you even care? So often we make an assumption about others or ourselves when in reality we don’t even care what the outcome is! So why be brought down by the negative thoughts or crazy office gossip when it doesn’t affect you or your daily life. Why assume what choices others will make when we have absolutely no control over the outcome. Why assume the weather will be bad when you have decided to have a weekend at home anyway? Leave space inside your head for what you care about. Assuming is guessing without knowing or having any proof – let’s all try to remember that when it’s controlling how we live our life!

Do you tend to assume in situations?

What have you assumed the most about yourself but have been surprised at the outcome?

Ever been burned by an assumption?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

Aim for done, not perfect #5TTT

Hi all,

Ah perfectionism. That old chestnut.

We see the word, we feel the trait within our personality, we tell ourselves that it is a positive, that it drives us and motivates us… but does it really? How can it when ‘perfect’, more often than not, is all based on opinion not fact. One persons perfect is another’s imperfect.

Perfection pushes us but not in the way we would like. Taken to extreme it can push you into many stressful, unhappy situations that, no matter how hard you try, you just can’t escape from. Many of you will know, it’s a rough patch.

But what if I told you that your aim in life should be ‘done’. How many times have you strived for perfection and as a result never achieved anything? Work, relationships, the ideal home life… let’s dive in.perfect - chase the red grape

Unrealistic goal – what is perfect anyway?

As mentioned above, the meaning of perfection in any situation can vary. It is very hard to achieve. Let’s use a really simple example of baking a cake. You want it to be perfect, it’s for a special occasion. But what is perfect? A professional looking cake? Have you spent years practicing for this moment? Does the perfect icing to you look crisp and even? But what if I told you my perfect icing was ooey, gooey and messy?

In making the perfect cake you have spent time stressing over the details when none of that will matter at all. Your friend will just be happy you put in the effort to make him a cake from scratch… and no one will notice where the icing didn’t meet up…

Better to have taken some action than none at all

Constantly striving for perfection often means that your task is never done. You never hand in that side project you have been so engaged with at work. You don’t hand over the baby blanket you have knitted for you friends new baby. Sometimes you don’t even bother trying because you know it can’t be perfect… “…and if it can’t be perfect then why try at all…” – this coming from a recovered perfectionist. Simply try – I guarantee you will never regret taking action but will regret action never taken.

Believe that your best is enough – and that your best will change

Your best is different to being perfect. Your best can change. Your best is more realistic. Your best represents you. Any task you put your mind to, aim for simply doing your best rather than an obscure notion of ‘perfect’. Your best will change dependant on how you are feeling that day, how much experience you have, what else is going on in your world. No one, including yourself, could or should ever ask more of you than your best.

Trying is believing in yourself

Get started. Do your best and try. It may not be what you had hoped for… but that’s ok. Simply trying in this big crazy world is enough – it shows the world that you believe in yourself. And folks, confidence is sexy! Confidence is free! Confidence doesn’t mean getting it perfect, it means putting yourself out there and not being afraid to fail…. because so what? You tried and that means everything.

It’s only a first draft, don’t sweat it!

Aim for done, not perfection…. because guess what? It’s only a first draft! Everything in life can change, we can change, our careers can change, our relationships, our home, our dreams…. just let it be your first draft. Don’t sweat it out.

Do what you need to do. Life is too short spend on the never-ending search for perfect.

Are you a perfectionist?

Do you try things you know won’t be perfect?

Have you ever found ‘perfect’ in any situation?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

When the seasons change #5TTT

Hi all,

The world is changing seasons. Whether you are like me and transitioning into winter or you are in the northern hemisphere transitioning into summer, we are all making a ‘change’.

These changes, even though they happen year in and out, still take a toll on our physical and mental health. I know for sure that heading into winter, right now I feel more tired, sluggish and less like the energetic me!

So how can we help ourselves transition smoothly? What can we do to give our mind and body what it needs to start the new season with a bang? Check out my 5 top tips below for when the seasons change.seasons - chase the red grape

Find a routine

Especially during the start of the transition, keeping a routine will be key to maintaining all the good habits you had from the season previous. Now when I get up it’s pitch black outside – but I still stick to my same wake up time and this makes it easy for my body to work out when I have had enough sleep and it’s time to rise. Same goes for the summer folks – it may be easier to stay up later because it’s lighter outside but stick to your bedtime and it will know when you need to sleep.

Keep moving

Who wants to go outside and move when it’s wet and cold outside? Who wants to move when you break into a sweat as soon as you step outdoors? Whether it be hot or cold for you right now it is going to be a struggle. But we all know that keeping our bodies moving and grooving is going to keep that blood flow pumping and help us stay energised. Too cold? You will warm up soon enough. Too hot? Maybe you take your workout indoors at this time of year. Figure out what you need to do to keep your body moving.

Choose foods in season

Seasonal foods are the healthiest foods for a reason. They are at their prime, aka full of their biggest nutrient bang, and are full of the energy you need right now. Unsure what is in season? Usually it’s the produce that is on offer/special at the supermarket. In season = in abundance. A win for your body and a win for your pocket!

What are you missing?

This is a great opportunity to assess your body to see if it is lacking anywhere. If it is winter, maybe you need to check in with yourself to see if you are getting enough vitamin D. I also like to have on hand access to blankets in my apartment so if I feel cold it is easy to warm up. If it is summer, maybe you need to make sure you carry a water bottle with you and keep those fluids topped up. Or you need to start seriously thinking about adding some sunscreen to your makeup routine. Maybe you need to start checking your electric fans and air con to see if it is all working correctly. Pre-empt the seasonal changes and make sure you are ready.

Embrace the change

This one is the biggest winner for my mental health. Embrace the changes of the season. Yes I may wish I was still in shorts and t-shirts every day and that I could head down to the beach for a paddle. But there is something special about winter too. The crisp cold air that you feel on your face all while being surrounded with layers of clothes keeping you warm. Crunching the leaves underneath your feet that have fallen from the trees. Digging out your slow cooker to make soups, stews and chilli. Oh and sipping away on mulled wine again… in June… yeah I may never get used to how odd that sounds!

And you may be sitting in front of your air con all day because it is too hot to do anything (me a few months ago) but just think of how good it feels to jump into the refreshing sea. How tasty those perfectly ripe strawberries and cherries are. And how refreshing that cocktail is when you sit down after a busy long summers day.

Whatever transition you are making right now I hope it is a good one! Enjoy!

Are you happy to be heading into your new season?

What are you most looking forward to?

What are you dreading?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape