Category Archives: Exercise

Am I addicted?

Have you ever wondered if you are an addict? Chances are that you probably have some form of addiction or another. If you smoke, drink daily, can’t start the morning without a coffee or end dinner without dessert then you may have an addiction.

An addiction is defined as not having control over doing, taking or using something to the point where it could be harmful to you.

So let’s think about that for a moment. We know smoking is harmful to us so it’s easy to see that as an addiction, but other things are sometimes more difficult to see that way. Did you know that you should go at least 3 days a week without drinking any alcohol in order for your liver to recover? So drinking alcohol every day is damaging, even if it’s only a small glass of wine with dinner. If the idea of giving up booze for three days a week is uncomfortable – you have an addiction.

How about sugar? We know that too much sugar in our diet causes obesity and increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke. Still fancy a doughnut? Then you, my friend, are addicted!

Is there such a thing as a healthy addiction? Looking back at the definition, no there isn’t, but it’s not quite that simple.

Some people go to the gym every day. Exercising is good for us right? Yes, of course it is, but exercising every day is not. Your body needs time to recover and heal from exercise too. If you can’t have a rest day, you have an addiction. If you are exercising against doctors orders, you have an addiction. if you are exercising when you are unwell, you have an addiction. If you are exercising on an injury ….you guessed it.

How about a healthy diet. If you read my blog regularly you will now that I am always banging on about eating healthily. Veggies are good for you, nutrient rich food is important, eat you fibre blah blah blah. But if you are out with friends and can’t order off the menu because there’s nothing on it you can eat (and you don’t have specific allergies related to the foods) then you may have a type of addiction. It’s known as orthorexia, and it’s where people restrict their food choices in an unhealthy way.

Addiction is everywhere. I would suggest a few things.

First – Recognise your own addictions. If you don’t know you have them it’s very difficult to do something about them. Look at your day in a critical way and ask yourself is there any part of it that you would be unhappy if you couldn’t do. Then ask yourself – is that a healthy habit?

Second – ask those you love, and who love you, for their input. You may be surprised that they come up with things you may never have thought of. Things like excessive personal hygiene, excessive cleaning, watching too much porn and gaming often come up from other people.

Third – Try to change your routine to cut out your addiction.

Finally – Remember PEOPLE QUIT STUFF THEY ARE ADDICTED TO ALL THE TIME. Let that sink in for a moment. Just because you are addicted now, does not mean that you have to stay addicted. Yes it will feel uncomfortable. Yes it will be tricky and Yes, you CAN do it.

If people can quit heroin, you can quit smoking. If people can quit crack cocaine, you can quit sugar. I know you like it – they probably liked their heroin too.


Some people can kick their addictions on their own, and I would always suggest that as a first try. If however you struggle, that does not mean you have no other choices. Get support and help to quit your addiction from professionals who have the skills to help you.

3 Comments

Filed under addiction, Blogging, coaching, depression, Development, Dieting, Exercise, experiment, Food, Good News, Happy, Health, hypnosis, inspiration, lifestyle, meditation, Mental Health, Motivation, nutrition, Positivity, Psychology, Relaxation, Self Care, Self Harm, Self Help, Sleep, Stress, support

Blog Plans for 2017

Happy New Year!

Well, after a lovely Christmas break, I’m back to the blogosphere….How are you all doing?

Personally I love January, because I love new starts. They are full of opportunities, possibilities and potential. They also scare me a bit because of this – when everything is a possibility it can all be a bit overwhelming – there’s just too much to choose from, and in my humble opinion, you do have to choose. Anyone that tells you that this year is the one where they will eat healthy, exercise regularly, look amazing every day, make a million dollars, have the perfect relationship with their friends and family, start a new business and find inner peace is expecting a little bit much, don’t you think?

Even if all you’re planning on doing is growing your blog audience or blogging every day, it can still be a big expectation. There are so many things to blog about, but how to choose? Sometimes there is so much possibility I can’t narrow it down, sometimes I can’t think of a single thing. What to do?

For me it starts with a plan. Plans don’t have to be set in stone, they are a starting point. Write yourself a plan, but know that it can and probably will change.

The next thing I do is think about what I want to talk about – broadly speaking. As my blog here is all about happiness, health and hypnosis that needs to be at the fore of my planning – what large topics fall under that remit?

So this year I’ve decided to dedicate a month to a topic. I started last year. December was all about self care, and I wrote it like an advent calendar with a different post every day from 1 to 25. It worked quite well for me and those that follow my blog. It gave me structure and motivation to write (I’d promised after all) and it gave my followers a reason to check in – they knew what to expect. If it wasn’t something they were interested in they could take a pass, but if it was, they knew to come back every day for more.

In the same vein here are my ideas for Blogs I will be writing each month for 2017.

January – Diet

February – Relationships

March – Addictions

April – Happiness

May – Food

June – Anxiety

July – Exercise

August – Depression

Sept – Different therapy techniques

Oct – Dec TBD – I’m open to suggestions here, if you would like me to cover a topic that falls under the title of Happiness, Health and Hypnosis, this is your chance to put forward an idea! Just leave me a comment.

See anything there that you think you may be interested in – make sure you click follow to get them when they come out!

Once I’ve narrowed it down to topic areas, I find it easier to think about topics related to each big theme. Take diet for example. I can look at nutrition, staying satisfied, types of food that keep you feeling fuller for longer, diet myths, healthy goals, body image, small changes to make a big difference etc etc. So now we both know what to expect 🙂

Starting tomorrow the rest of my January blogs will be dedicated to diet. Getting right and making it easy. If you want to make sure you see them, you know what to do.

See you soon – let’s make January an awesome start!

 

2 Comments

Filed under addiction, Blogging, Breathing, coaching, depression, Development, Dieting, Exercise, Food, fun, Good News, Happy, Health, hypnosis, inspiration, lifestyle, meditation, Mental Health, Motivation, nutrition, Peace, Phobia, Positivity, Psychology, Relaxation, Self Care, Self Help, Stop Smoking, Stress, support, Worrying

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 24

It’s the day before the day!!!! Happy Christmas Eve!

Todays Self care idea is quite a simple one. Remember why you started.

Tomorrow ( and tonight ) may be full of tasks that you are doing on behalf of other people. Maybe it’s travelling with small children, maybe cooking for the family, maybe putting together toys. All of these can can be a little frustrating – especially if we don’t feel appreciated for it. If that happens, try to remember why you did it in the first place.

The chances are that the reason you were doing it, was to make that other person happy, not to get appreciation. So, appreciate yourself for doing something nice and leave it at that. If you get appreciation (or reciprocation) from the other person then you should be thrilled, but not expect it.

Another reason you should remember why you started is if you are trying to stick to an exercise plan or diet over the next few days. Nobody’s saying you can’t enjoy yourself, just don’t go crazy and undo all the good work you’ve been doing up until now.

Have an amazing Christmas everyone x

Leave a comment

Filed under addiction, coaching, Development, Dieting, Exercise, experiment, Food, Good News, Happy, Health, inspiration, meditation, Mental Health, Motivation, nutrition, Positivity, Psychology, Self Care, Self Help, Stress, support

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 23

They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder – what do you see that you think is beautiful?

All too often we neglect to see the beauty in what’s around us. In nature, in our home, in our friends and family, in ourselves.

Beauty is all around you if you take the time to look for it.

There aren’t many people in the world who can look in the mirror and honestly say that they see beauty there – and that is a terrible shame. Of course we don’t all fit into society’s pattern of what beautiful looks like (which by the way changes dramatically depending on which society you are in) but we all have beauty in us.

Is there a part of your body that you are unhappy with? Maybe you think it’s too thin, or too fat….Maybe you think it’s too saggy or too taut…..Maybe you think it’s too big or too small….Whatever it is you are finding fault with doesn’t really matter, because my self-care challenge for you today is to find a way to love it, to appreciate it, to find its beauty.

There are several methods that I find useful with this sort of challenge. I have fat ankles -let’s use them as an example.

Reframing

Ok, so my ankles are a little on the chunky side – on the upside they are sturdy. They don’t cause me any pain and they support my body. They are flexible and strong enough to keep me balanced and allow me to walk and run anywhere that I want to. I may not look as good as I would like to in a skirt, but I did get to walk all over New York last month (110,000 steps in 4 days) and explore an amazing place in person. In balance, I would rather have chunky ankles that support me, than pretty ones that don’t.

The lotion method

Now, this doesn’t work for every part of your body, but it’s good for things that are covered in skin. The idea is that you but yourself a nice bottle or body lotion. Something that smells good and that will condition your skin. You then make a commitment to yourself to use the lotion on the body part you dislike every day. Spend time rubbing the lotion in and thinking about that part of your body n as positive a way as you can. By the time you have finnished the bottle, you should have better feelings about that part or you.

Ask for feedback

Quite often the part of ourselves that we dislike most doesn’t even register as a thing with other people. I’m quite self conscious of my ankles, so I tend not to wear skirts ot shoes that show them off. When I pointed this out to a friend of mine she laughed at me at told me there was nothing wrong with my ankles and that I was being silly. That gave me the confidence to buy a dress I wouldn’t normally have done, wear it and then get lots of lovely compliments about how I looked.

Work on it

If the part of you you’re not so keen on can be improved with diet or exercise, why not give it a go? I carry my weight a little differently than most people, and even when I’m not overweight, I have larger legs than most. However, despite it being the last place to go, when I lose the weight, the ankle do slim down too – not as much as I’d like, but they do slim down. Maybe I could try some different exercises that would stretch and lengthen them too – Now there’s a thought…

So, I’m off to research ankle exercises. What will you be doing today?



It can be difficult to change how you feel about yourself particularly if you have body dysmorphia. Hypnosis is a great tool to help change your feelings about yourself so that you can see the positives in your amazing body. Don’t suffer unnecessarily – get the help you need to feel great.

Leave a comment

Filed under coaching, depression, Development, Dieting, Exercise, experiment, fun, Good News, Happy, Health, hypnosis, inspiration, lifestyle, Mental Health, Motivation, Positivity, Psychology, Relaxation, Self Care, Self Help, Stress, support, Worrying

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 11

How are you doing? Are you where you want to be? What would be different if you had started doing things differently a year ago?

Would you be thinner? Richer? Calmer? Fitter? Healthier? In a different job? In a relationship? Out of a relationship? In your own home? Running your own business? Selling your own book?

The thing is it’s not too late to do this….where could you be this time next year?

Do you have a dream? Well stop dreaming and make a plan.

That’s your task for today. Make a plan for something you want to happen in your life.

Start with a goal, then think of the three main things that need to happen to get you to your goal.

Then break down the three things you need to get done in the same way. Repeat until you have a good idea of the steps you need to take to get you to your goal. The more you break it down, the more detailed your plan will be.

Once you’ve written down the plan, assign some dates to when you will get things done by. Mark it on a calendar for next year so you know what you want to be doing. Hold yourself accountable for hitting your deadlines. You may not always make them, and that’s OK, but know what you’re aiming for.

Think about who you can involve to help you? Can they be part of keeping you on track?

What might get in your way? If you can think of anything that could derail your plan, you can probably think of a way of getting around it too. Good planning involves thinking about obstacles and how to bypass them. It also involves contingency plans for those things that you didn’t see coming.

I know making the first steps can be the hardest part when you are working towards a long term goal, but put a little faith in yourself and be brave.

Who knows where you’ll be or what you’ll be doing this time next year.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under addiction, Blogging, coaching, depression, Development, Dieting, Exercise, experiment, Food, fun, Good News, Happy, Health, hypnosis, inspiration, lifestyle, meditation, Mental Health, Motivation, nutrition, Peace, Phobia, Positivity, Psychology, Relaxation, Self Care, Self Help, Sleep, Stop Smoking, Stress, Worrying

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 10

Look as us – we’ve made it to Day 10! Way to go!

So how shall we celebrate getting to double figures on our self care journey?

How about some exercise?

Exercise is an important part of self care and so is knowing your limits. Don’t push yourself too hard but do what you need to to improve your health.Also, don’t be fooled into believing exercise has to involve going to a gym – it most certainly does not.

Let me be clear, if you have a gym membership, that’s brilliant – make sure you use it. You don’t get the benefits just by paying for it each month. You have to go and exercise.

But if you’re like me and the thought of going to a gym brings you out in a cold sweat, then you may have thought that exercise wasn’t for you and that was that. Not so young paduin – there is much you can do that will bring you both physical and mental benefits.

Let’s start easy. Put some music on that you enjoy and move your body to it. If it’s fast and frantic, brilliant, you’re getting a cardio vascular work out. If it’s slow and steady, brilliant you’re gently working your core and improving your balance. You are also creating some mental space which is so important for a healthy mind.

Maybe you’d like to do something more productive? How about cleaning the house. Change the beds, go crazy with the duster, clean the windows, mop the floors, scrub the oven. A little more cardio (the faster you work the more your heart rate increases) and a clean sparkly home as a benefit! Also if you start to think of cleaning as your chance to care for yourself and your home, you might start to like it a little more.

Do you have a garden that could do with some attention? From weeding and mowing the lawn to digging holes and clearing ponds, the level of exertion varies, so choose what is right for you. By doing this you take care of yourself, your garden and all the ecosystem that thrives within it.

We could even get out of the house for a bit and use a walk to the shops or to work as another situation where we can exercise, create mental space and enjoy being outdoors? Maybe the walk is a more leisurely one at the weekend to a restaurant or museum that you fancy going to?

If you’re feeling really energetic maybe you could go for a run…or maybe even go to a class. Yoga and pilates are great forms of exercise without the puffy sweaty bits. If you don’t fancy pulling unusual poses in public there are plenty of youtube videos, dvd’s and digital streaming of lessons that you can follow.

There are options available for all levels of fitness and ability. Just do a little something that works for you. It all counts towards your self care.


If you struggle with motivation to get started on, or maintain an exercise program, you may find that hypnotherapy could help you get into the right frame of mind.

Leave a comment

Filed under Exercise, fun, Happy, Health, inspiration, lifestyle, Motivation, Positivity, Self Care, Self Help, support

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 9

Welcome my lovely troupe. We are currently ho ho ho ing our way through December and spending each day making sure we survive (and maybe even thrive) during the festive season.

A few of the previous posts have focused on creativity. Making things, making habits, making plans etc. So today, I want to flip that on it’s head and think about destroying something.

How can destroying something be a an act of self care? By destroying something that is negative.

We all have bad habits. Go on, admit it – you do too.

They might be habits that have a bad effect on our health, like smoking, drinking or eating junk food.

They might be habits that have a bad effect on our mental health, like worrying, putting ourselves down or listening to that negative voice.

They might be habits that have a bad effect on our relationships, like gossiping, ignoring phone calls or taking people for granted.

You get the idea.

Generally I prefer to work on creating positive habits, but breaking negative ones can be just as important. It’s difficult to lift yourself up if you are constantly being dragged back down by your behaviour.

You may think that it’s too difficult to change your bad habits – particularly if that habit is addictive – but it is possible to do it.

One of the ways I help people to change negative habits is to help them frame it positively in their mind. Let’s take smoking for example. It is more difficult to quit smoking than it is to be smoke free. Quitting has lots of negative connotations. Losers quit. I’m no quitter. What will I be missing out on? Freedom has lots of positive connotations. Free, costs nothing, escaping, choices. Just a simple word change can make the whole process so much easier.

Another way to make things easier is to think about what you will gain rather than what you will lose. Taking smoking as an example again. What will you gain by being smoke free? Peace of mind that you’re not actively causing health problems? A load of money? Fresher breath? Not having to worry about where you will be able to smoke? Not needing to think if you have enough cigarettes to see you through. What will you lose? Nothing? An addiction? Cravings (non smokers never crave a cigarette)?

As you may be able to tell from the fact that I’ve used smoking as the example, I think this is the number one habit people should be working on being free from, but you should work on what is important to you.

Make the changes you want to in your life – Imagine how fantastic you will feel a year from now when you look back at today – the day you made your life better.


Many people struggle with breaking habits on their own. If you’ve tried and failed, don’t worry. It doesn’t mean you can’t do it, it just means that you could do with a little help. The good news is Hypnotherapy is a great tool to help you to be free from those unwanted behaviours. If you want to ‘quit smoking‘ but struggle on your own, get the help you need.

1 Comment

Filed under addiction, coaching, depression, Development, Dieting, Exercise, experiment, Food, fun, Good News, Happy, Health, hypnosis, inspiration, lifestyle, meditation, Mental Health, Motivation, nutrition, Peace, Positivity, Psychology, Relaxation, Self Care, Self Help, Stop Smoking, Stress, support, Worrying

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 5

Hi there, I can’t believe how quickly this is going. Day 5 already.

So, we’re up, clean and dressed, well fed, we’ve been out and we have a plan for the rest of the month – what can possibly come next???

How about we take a little care of our environment?

The area we are in most tends to be our home. It often makes me smile to see how someones’s home can be a reflection of their mind. Clean ordered environments are helpful to create a clean, ordered mind. Now, clean and ordered may not be a desirable state for you…maybe you need high energy or a creative chaos…It’s your mind you get to choose, but if you are trying to create an environment that promotes a sense of peace and calm, a good tidy can do wonders.

That’s right a tidy and a clean. I’ve hehypard the ancient art of Feng Shui described as ‘spiritual tidy up’ but that’s not really what I’m talking about. I just mean, put some stuff away, create some space and get cleaning.

By putting ‘stuff’ away in our physical world we can encourage our subconscious to put away things that you are fed up of thinking about – you know those annoyingly niggly thoughts that aren’t very helpful to you, like worrying if you sounded silly in that conversation, or wondering what someone meant when they said you ‘looked good’.

When we create space in our physical world we can use it to remember to make space in our mental world. How often do you sit watching TV whilst typing on your computer? Or listen to music whilst scrolling through your social media? We are no longer satisfied with doing one thing at once, let alone doing nothing, yet giving your mind space to do nothing is very valuable to it. If you practice mindfulness, meditation, tai chi or yoga you are creating wonderful spaces in your mental landscape and that has been shown to have amazing health benefits. From improving immune systems to combating depression, creating space is an important part of self care.

By cleaning our physical world we get a number of benefits. Firstly it’s a bit of exercise, and that is great for your mind and body. Using muscles, getting the blood flowing, increasing the oxygen getting to your brain. All good things. Secondly you are reducing allergens, bacteria and toxins in your environment, helping your body to stay healthier. Thirdly you will create a sweeter smelling, more enjoyable environment to be in. You can enjoy this yourself, but it also means that if you have guests, you will feel more confident, be more relaxed and enjoy yourself more. Brilliant!

If your home is always immaculate (well done you – what’s the secret?) then put your feet up for 5 minutes and enjoy it. Make that mental space and enjoy your home.


For most of us cleaning up is a bit of a chore but for some with mental health issues it can become a nightmare. If you struggle with O.C.D. or Hoarding you can get the help you need to feel comfortable in your own home again. Give a hypnotherapist a call and see what could be possible.

 

2 Comments

Filed under depression, Development, Exercise, experiment, Good News, Happy, Health, inspiration, lifestyle, Mental Health, Motivation, Peace, Positivity, Psychology, Relaxation, Self Care, Self Help, Stress, Worrying

Self Care Advent Calendar day 3

Here we are on day 3 clean, dressed and full of healthy food – so what now?

Get out.

It’s as simple and complicated as that – Get out.

My best advice is to go and be in nature with friends, but that’s not always possible, so let’s start small and build up.

I don’t care what the weather is like, or how you are feeling, getting outside is good for you (unless you’re severely immuno-compromised and should be in a bubble). There is something in out bodies that responds to being outside. Natural light helps our brains to operate properly, sunlight on out skin creates essential vitamins and feeling a breeze stimulates our mind. These things are good for us. Admittedly, it’s less pleasant if it’s cold, grey and rainy – but even then it’s still good for us. Billy Connolly once famously said ‘there is no bad weather, just the wrong clothes’, so go put on some ‘right clothes’ and get out there.

Maybe out there means nothing more than stepping outside your front door. If that’s all you can manage, that’s fine, but still go and stick your head out of the door. Maybe it means getting into the garden and tidying a few things up – pull up the odd dead plant or weed, encourage and nurture the ones you like, feed the birds or squirrels…whatever you fancy.

Maybe getting out can be more of a journey – a walk to the shop or the park. A little exercise can do wonders for your body and mind. Firstly you get the physical benefits, but then you get the mental ones too – the feeling of having achieved something.

Maybe it could be an adventure – now we’re really cooking! Is there somewhere within walking distance from your house that you’ve never been to? Who knows where this could lead. Maybe you find a new church or social club that you could be involved with, maybe you see a notice looking for volunteers, maybe a poster for a gig you want to see.

Then what if we venture out a little further…could we go somewhere we’ve never been and explore it by walking around it? Could we invite friends or family and turn it into a trip? Could there be food and drink? What about music or games? Maybe there are tents, yurts, tee pee’s or caravans… What have we started here???

Self care is about feeling and being the best version of yourself. If it helps you to be alone, to recharge by being in your own space, go out on your own. If you yearn to be around others, ask them to join you. If there is no-one in your life to join you, but you would like there to be, make that a priority whilst you are out and about. Look for opportunities to get involved in groups by volunteering or joining social events. Look for walking or running groups and take the plunge to join in. 20 seconds on bravery could change your life.

So put the screen away, grab a comfy pair of shoes and Get Out!


Social anxiety and agoraphobia can lead people to become stuck in their own homes. This is a tragic shame for anyone suffering from it and it’s unnecessary. There are ways you can be free to enjoy your life again. As a hypnotherapist I love helping people to get their life back, so don’t just suffer, make a change to make your life the best it can be.

4 Comments

Filed under coaching, depression, Development, Exercise, Good News, Happy, Health, inspiration, lifestyle, Mental Health, Motivation, Positivity, Psychology, Self Care, Self Help, support

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 1

Yay – It’s December! Day 1 of the advent calendar. I’ve seen many different advent calendars being sold this year. Some have nothing but pictures in, others have chocolates or toys and some more grown up ones have perfume, make-up or alcohol. All of these sound fun, but I wanted to create something which might be more useful – and FREE!

As my little Christmas gift to you I’m creating a self care advent calendar. Each day I will write a post suggesting ways that you can look after yourself. If you think that sounds a little selfish – self care – then you don’t completely understand the concept. Self care is important for those around you as well as for yourself. ‘You can’t pour from an empty vessel’ so you need to make sure you’re in good shape to help those who need you. Also, anyone who loves you will be happier knowing you are happier, so it’s good for everyone.

So what constitutes self care? It’s a broad range of activities. Sometimes self care is eating healthily, sometimes it’s having a slice of cake. Sometimes self care is a walk in the fresh air, sometimes it’s snuggling up on the sofa with a good book. Sometimes self care is being around people, sometimes it’s being alone.

Today lets start with the basics. Get up, get clean and get dressed. If you’re in a good place, that’s easy. If you’re not, it can be more difficult.

Today is the first – the start of a new month. Maybe it could be the start of something new for you? A new routine, a new way of doing your hair, a new outfit combo, whatever works for you.

If you’re in a good place – change things up. If you’re in not such a good place, get up, get clean and get dressed. If you have nowhere to go, no-one to see and nothing planned it’s all too easy to not worry about the basics. What’s the point of getting up? What’s the point of showering? What’s the point of getting dressed? The point is, it will make you feel better. Maybe a lot better, maybe just a little. Still better. Self care can be a a path travelled in baby steps. Small Challenges. Things you CAN achieve.

A strange part of out psychology is that when we achieve something – big or small – it helps us to go on to achieve other things. People often say if you want something doing, give it to someone who’s busy. Although on the surface that makes no sense (surely you would give it to the person with less to do, so that they have time to do it) but the reality is, people who get stuff done, get stuff done!

So today, be someone who gets stuff done. It’s a great way to start the month, who know’s what you’ll be able to achieve by the end of it….


If you struggle with getting started with things, you are not alone. But don’t think that you can’t change it – you can. If you struggle to do that on your own, there are plenty of people out there ready and willing to help. Look for a good therapist and get the help you need.

5 Comments

Filed under addiction, Blogging, coaching, depression, Development, Exercise, experiment, Good News, Happy, Health, inspiration, lifestyle, Mental Health, Motivation, Positivity, Psychology, Self Care, Self Help, support