It’s Time

 

I was en route to breakfast with a friend the other weekday morning {and by en route I mean I had just started my car} and, looking at the clock on the dash, I realised I was going to be late. Again. Unless my trusty Corolla had all of a sudden become a V10, I was not going to make the half hour trip in 15 minutes.

As I grabbed my phone to text her {“Running 10 late as per usual”} I had had enough. I was embarrassed by having to write that text again and realised that I was the only one who could change that.

My Husband knows this story all too well. In drastic measures, he’s now taken to telling me a fake time {which I have calculated is roughly 15-30 minutes off real time} to ensure we’re out the door on time for important events. To my credit, I am trying. I hate being late and rushing around, but it just seems to be the way it always works out.

If it’s work-related, I won’t be late – although my last workplace had a bit of a warped sense of time which did not help my problem. One bit.

But if it’s an appointment – say beauty, physic etc – I’ll most likely arrive either bang on time or a few minutes over the clock, much to the frustration of the person I’ve booked in to see.

I know where I go wrong – poor planning and not allowing enough time spent in traffic. Sigh.

What this little breakfast outing did highlight for me was that I, like my Husband, am sick of being late.

As you read this, I’m lucky enough to be in the beautiful Byron Bay on a mid-winter getaway. Friends of ours were kind enough to have their amazing wedding in Noosa, so we’ve escaped afterwards for a bit of sun and surf. It’s done wonders for the soul and we’ve lapped up the time to read books that were gathering dust on our bedside tables, give our faces some light and generally do whatever we have felt like doing – which hasn’t been all that much!

I’m also lucky enough to be heading back to a brand spankin’ new gig when I get home. I’m so pumped! It’s a great opportunity and I can’t wait to sink my teeth into the challenges that lie ahead in the next few months.

So, this is the perfect time for me to stop and assess the parts of my life that I haven’t been all that thrilled with.

It’s amazing what being unmotivated does to you, and it’s only just now that I have started a mental list of things I’d like to change, that I’ve become aware of just how slack I have become in the last few {or more} months.

Here goes…

1. Be on time. No excuses.

For me, this means allowing EXTRA time for traffic, public transport and getting ready and out the door. This also means prioritising and not trying to cram a million things into the mornings.

Usually my mornings have gone: gym, walk pup, shower, dress, breakfast…make lunch…out the door {“shit I’m late!”}.

Future mornings: gym or a long walk with the pup {if I do both then the walk with the pup becomes a run to the park and throwing of ball to wear her out a bit}, shower, dress…OUT THE DOOR! No time for breakfast sitting down at home. I’m going to get back into the habit of eating after I’ve left the house. This seems to work best for me. It’ll also mean being far more organised with lunches and packing the night before.

Another time-saving tactic I’m going to employ is setting a timer on my phone to give me ample warning for when I need to be out the door.

Note to brain: this involves pre-thought into how long it will take to get places. From where you live now…not where you lived six months ago…GUILTY!

2. Invest more time into my Little Ray of Sunshine.

Back in March, I signed up for the amazing Rachel MacDonald’s Bright-Eyed and Blog-Hearted e-course. I was pumped! I loved Rach’s blog and it was her own that inspired me to start this one. So I was keen to hear her tips of the trade on how to reach more lovely readers and make my blog somewhere worth visiting!

Of course, then life ‘happened’ and I allowed it to be an excuse for never. really. starting.

Now, with the second round of bright-eyed students eagerly awaiting for the course to start, it’s the perfect chance for me to follow through with my intention and get this baby rocking!

3. More time for me.

Meditation. Yoga. Running. Cups of tea. Reading.

Just some of the things I enjoy and ways that I recharge. While we’ve been away, I’ve been able to do a few of them – mostly the reading and cups of tea – but I’m making the things I love a priority for me in this next phase of my life and career.

I haven’t run more than a few kms at a time for MONTHS. Seriously, months! Back at the start of March, we moved house and I’ve never found new running routes nearby. It’s time to dust off the shoes and get the blood pumping again! To help with this little challenge, I’m setting myself the goal of running a few fun runs later in the year – 10km in Melbourne Marathon, 14km in City2Sea and finally, half marathon in the Sussan Women’s Fun Run. Intentions set!

4. Following through.

Firstly, a massive SORRY to those people who, over the last six months or so, I have promised to do things for and then never followed through. Trust me when I say that I WANT to do these things for you. I just have the tendency to over commit and can’t physically get through it all.

This coupled with my lack of motivation this year has meant a recipe for disaster and I’m not comfortable with it. At all.

So, you’ll be pleased to know I’m making a list {and checkin’ it twice}. All you lovely people who I owe things to – bits and bobs I’ve promised over the last little while. They’re coming! And if you wouldn’t mind…a gentle push to get things done would be SO appreciated!

5. Going easy on myself. 

Self-love. That’s my aim. It’ll take a while to stop the degrading, negative thoughts that we’re all guilty of, but I’m determined to live the brightest, shiniest life I can! And that starts with LOVING myself {and my aforementioned flaws}.

So, for now, that’s it! My intentions for the second half of this amazing year.

I’m getting back on my feet and I can’t wait for what’s to come! Thank you, dear readers, for your patience, understanding and LOVE over the past little while. I hope you enjoy the things that lie in store for Little Ray of Sunshine.

Images from the lovely Lorna Jane’s Pinterest. Script print from the amazing Jasmine Dowling.

 

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Inspiration | Letting it all go

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I’ve made it no secret that the last month or so has been challenging {catch up here}. I feel compelled to publicly share when I have gone through a rough time as I don’t believe it’s helpful for anybody, particularly not myself, if I portray an image of having it all together and kicking goals 100% of the time. That’s just unrealistic, unhelpful and {let’s face it} makes us all feel a little crummy.

I am also passionate about breaking down the stigma associated with mental health. We talk about exercise and feeding our bodies with nutritious food – shouldn’t our minds and souls get the same attention?

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Since returning from Nepal, and while I was over there surrounded by inspiring people and beautiful countryside, I realised a few truths which hit home during the final few days of the trip. The most important one was around protecting myself – not only to allow me, and those close to me, to flourish but also to ensure that I have enough energy and time to do what I love, and not just what I’m good at.

I’m going to pump up my own tyres for a second here {bear with me!} and say that I am great at helping people. Need someone to save the day? I’m your girl! Don’t have time to bake something? Don’t worry, I’ll do it at 10pm at night when I’m home from a dinner date with friends. Stuck in a rut and have no idea how to get out of it? Leave it with me, don’t you even worry about it!

And I love helping people, don’t get me wrong. But I am a serious YES person and with that comes consequences. I’ve always been aware of this, and had thought I’d come a long way in learning to say no to people. But I learnt the hard way about a month ago that I hadn’t come far enough.

When I fell onto the plane back at the start of April, I was exhausted. Arriving back in Australia on Sunday morning, I was amazed at what good it had done me just to get out of the country and be present and focused on one thing for two weeks. It was a relief and despite the hard {but amazing!} work that came along with the trip, I feel rejuvenated and refreshed.

So here are the discoveries I made and the promises I penned to myself as a result…

I need to look after myself, so that I’m at my best and able to pursue the things I love and nurture the relationships that are important to me.

For me, this involves:

  • Eating well: I fell into the trap of picking up convenient food from the cafe and muesli bars from the supermarket instead of making my own lunch and healthy treats. My body pays me back when I don’t treat it nicely, so it’s time to get back on track.
  • Exercising regularly and moving my body every single day: I’m out of whack with my usual exercise routine and am feeling very worse for wear as a result. I remember how amazing I felt when I was moving my body everyday and realise that I need this for a clear mind and to be at my best. I’ve booked my pilates classes for the next week and have made an appointment at the gym for a program. Body – let’s do this!
  • Allowing myself time to relax and unwind: this is the trickiest one for me as I hate sitting still and am constantly up and about. Unless I’m by the pool or beach on holidays, I can’t justify sitting on the couch reading a book or a magazine. I LOVE these things but if I’m home I have a stupid belief I should be on my feet cleaning or in the kitchen. Yuck. Challenge accepted!
  • Learning to say no: see above!
  • Protecting myself: by saying no more often to things that drain me or don’t serve me well and instead prioritising things that are important to me, like my amazing Husband!

While I was discovering these steps that I need to take in order to set myself up to be happy and content with my impact in the world, one quote was also resonating in my mind…

If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.

– Tony Robbins

I love this quote! It sums up what I believe – if you’re not happy with something in your life, change it! No one else is going to do it for you. I’m sticking this on my wall and applying it not only to my life but also to my work. It’s time to shake things up!

With all these things fluttering through my head, it was a great exercise to write it all down. I wrote pages in my journal and was able to sum it up with the ideas above.

I also accepted that I have to let things that almost broke me go. There’s no point in hanging onto them like baggage, that doesn’t serve me well.

So, this is me saying I’m ready to move on. Deep breath in. Big breath out.

These experiences have made me a stronger person today, I very much believe that. And I’ve learnt some really valuable lessons from them that I might not have otherwise. So {in a way} I’m thankful for them.

So here goes!

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Love and sunshine. xo

{As a side note, thanks for your non-judgement lovelies and allowing me a space where I can be open and honest with myself, and hopefully encourage you to do the same!}

Images via Lorna Jane Pinterest

Blog Break | Bigger Better Brighter

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Hola lovelies!

A quick note to let you all know I’m taking a little step back from Little Ray of Sunshine for the moment as I throw myself  into the amazing e-course Bright-Eyed and Blog-Hearted thanks to Rachel MacDonald from the fab In Spaces Between.

I’ll be posting sporadically for the next little while {sorry in advance!} but know that with this course, you are forever on my mind! I’m honing in and knuckling down to deliver the best possible content, so watch this space! Can’t wait to bring you the bigger, better and brighter Little Ray of Sunshine!

Love and sunshine. xo

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Images: Lorna Jane Pinterest

Inspiration | Electric Feel

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There’s something great about an inspirational quote, isn’t there? You may have noticed that I’ve got a soft spot for them…ok a HUGE love of them! I find so many that inspire me, particularly through Pinterest, and I love printing them off and sticking them around my desk.

If it were up to me, our apartment would probably be filled with motivational sayings. But the ultimate would be one that is lit up in neon – ah-mazing! We’re moving to a bigger house in a few weeks and I’m getting decorating ideas already.

Here’s just some of the neon amazingness I’ve found already…{hello Etsy…I’m coming for you!}…

Enjoy!

Love and sunshine. xo
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Images: Sourced via Graphic Love and Pinterest

Simple B&W

 

 

There is something striking about a black and white print. Simple. Elegant. Impactful.

Here are some of my favourites…

A classic Pride and Prejudice quote that has any Mr Darcy fan swooning:

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Simple advice from Mr Einstein:clutter

We had this beautiful Bible reading during our ceremony and I love the idea of hanging it on our wall to remember the day. Buy a similar one here

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I handmade a similar print to this one a few years ago. Instead it says ‘Just You & Me’ but I love the simplicity of this one too…

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And some comical advice from Mr Fox…

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So many fabulous home deco options to add a bit of spunk to your walls that won’t go out of date.

Images: Pride and Prejudice quote / Albert Einstein quote / Love is patient quote / Etsy You +Me=Awesome print / Etsy Mr Fox Print

We all judge a book by its cover. And why we shouldn’t.

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A funny thing happened to me last week. I was waiting for a train home, as I do every day, when a guy interrupted my connection with my iPhone with an “excuse me?”. I looked up and judged automatically.  I couldn’t help it, and I’m sure if you were sitting in my position you would have had the same thoughts run through your head. I’m ashamed by them now, but nevertheless there they were.

I’m consistently approached by the same kind of looking people at train stations. And most of the time they’re asking if I have some change to spare. My all too usual response of “sorry I don’t have any change” {which in my defence is always correct…I never carry cash} almost slipped out of my mouth before the man in front of me had asked me a question.

Instead I stopped and let him finish his sentence.

“Excuse me,” he said, “this man is vision-impaired and…” {thoughts of how said man was using his vision-impaired friend to score more loose change again popped into my head}

“…he needs to catch the South Morang train,” he finished.

Shame fluttered over my face as I realised that these men obviously didn’t know each other yet one had asked for help to make his way to wherever he needed to be.

I explained to both men that I was catching the other train so would let this man know when his train would be arriving. Another lady nearby chimed in and said she was on the South Morang train and would also let the man know when it was arriving.

Relief flooded onto the face of the man who had interrupted my Instragraming as he thanked us over and over again for helping out his new mate.

I shuffled across on the bench, making room for our new friend, still trying to mask my shame at judging too quickly.

I let the vision-impaired man know when I was jumping on my train and that his train was about ten minutes away and I smiled at the lady who was going to help him onto the correct train.

Yet still I haven’t been able to stop thinking about my experience all week. How I was too quick to judge just based on appearance. I was recounting the story to my Manfriend over our camping breakfast earlier when he suggested I blog about it. So there you have it.

It’s made me think about how we continually judge people based on the way they look – whether it’s their clothes {designer, high street or op shop?}, their hair {polished, casual or hasn’t-seen-shampoo?} or their demeanour {professional, student or street?}. But really what counts the most is what is in their hearts. Which we can’t see and which we don’t get exposed to until we’re in a situation like the one I was in early last week.

So what I’m taking out of this experience is that before I steer away from that person on the sidewalk, I’ll think instead not only how lucky I am that I have clean clothes on my back and a home to go back to after a long day at work, but also what their life experience has been like. How tough they must be to make it through each and every day without the comforts that we all know and take for granted.

And also how beneath the rough exterior there could be a kind-hearted person, willing to help others and grateful for anyone else who assists them in guiding people in the right direction.

Love and sunshine. xo

Image: Tumblr

All will be well

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When I was little and couldn’t sleep or something was playing on my mind {don’t know what I had to worry about back then but…there you go!} my Mum used to sit by my bed as I tried to doze off, stroke my forehead and hair and say “all will be well“, repeating in a meditative voice until I finally hit slumber-land.

This week has hit us with some wedding challenges {about time really, we had smooth sailing for far too long} and I found myself repeating the same words to myself the last few nights as I drifted off to sleep.

The challenge of organising a wedding in another state and in a small town hit its toll with a few elements not quite meshing as we would have liked. There were some tears shed a few nights ago but after a good night’s sleep {most previous nights have seen me cough my way through darkness, leading to little sleep for both me and my soon-to-be husband}, I managed to get some perspective.

Rest and the addition of a lovely bride-to-be in my life {getting married at the same venue the day before} sees me almost walking on air today, knowing that all really will be well.

And, of course, a nice, long chat to my Mum. Love.

I feel abundantly blessed right now!

Love and sunshine. xo

Image: Striking Truths