10 Simple Hacks For Creating More ‘Me’ Time

“In truth I suspect that merely slowing down is not a very satisfying answer. What I need has less to do with my pace of life than my peace of life. At any speed, I crave a deep and lasting inner peace. And if it’s solace I’m after, I don’t need to pace myself like a turtle, change jobs or set up house on a quiet island. It is usually frenetic living, not high energy, that robs my peace of mind.”
~ Steve Goodier

 

Time for ourselves is not some airy-fairy feel good concept. Time for ourselves is as necessary as breathing. It helps us to stay tuned into to who we are and what’s important to us. Time for ourselves recharges our batteries. It fills us with nurture and new ideas. It helps soothe and heal us.

Often it isn’t that we don’t have time, it’s that we’ve become a very low priority in our own lives.

Here are ten simple hacks to reclaim some of your precious time just for you:

1. Take fifteen minutes at the beginning or end of a grocery shopping trip to have a cup of coffee and flick through a magazine at a cafe. I have girlfriends who have become speed shoppers, racing through their chores to get lovely long cafe time as their reward.

2. Sign up for a class one night a week. Not to give yourself yet one more thing to do, but to escape for a while and spend time on something you’d enjoy learning such as dancing, mosaic making, chainsaw ice-sculpture or Italian cooking. Often when we’re home we devolve into house-keeping duties or mindless screen time. Giving ourselves an outing can be refreshing and it invests time in ourselves and our development.

3. Get up half an hour earlier. Spend that time journalling, meditating, busting a few yoga moves, pulling an oracle or tarot card, or planning your day. Enjoy a cuppa, take a big breath and then let the day begin AFTER you’ve had some precious time to yourself. Not sure how to start? Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way has great instructions for Morning Pages. Why not begin there!

4. Turn off the TV tonight. Sit down and write a story. Or a poem. Or a song. Stories fire up our imagination, help us heal the past, and let us dream the future. If you enjoy the process, come back and write some more one night each week. Writing not your thing? Go take a long soak in the tub!

5. Delete or minimise your social media profiles and screen time. Use some of your time saved to go for a walk. You could ramble around the neighbourhood, drive to a park or beach, or wander through the city. You can walk in the morning, evening or even in your lunch break. Breathe. Look. Listen. And feel how your whole soul begins to unwind…

6. Delegate a chore you don’t enjoy.  It could be cleaning, gardening or shopping. You could do it once for a break, or make it a regular thing. Pay someone if you have to, use an online service or use a barter system. Give yourself that saved time. Use your few hours alone to see that movie no-one else wants to see, to go to the Gallery, or to wander through the Farmers’ Markets or the shops you love.

7. Go to bed early with a book. Books are like magical carpets that take you to other places and times.

8. Delete the games off your phones and screens.They might seem relaxing, but in truth they are a huge time suck, and don’t contribute to lowered stress levels or heightened personal satisfaction. Don’t believe me? Commit to a month without them and you’ll see what I mean.

9. Meal Plan and Batch Cook Use one day to plan and prep all the meals for the coming week. Cook large batches of food, such as soups, pasta bakes, bolognese and even vegetable and salad prep for later in the week. Or use a meal provider who can bring pre-prepared meals to your door each week. If you’re up for it, combine doing the laundry and general house-keeping chores with your cooking day to get your home ship-shape before the week ahead. This saves so much time each week! How to use the time saved? Start or recommence a craft or project. Maybe you loved embroidery as a child. Or scrapbooking. Maybe you’ve been thinking about putting a vegetable garden in the back yard, or researching the family tree. Take some time to put your materials together, and then spend a little time each week devoted to this craft or project. Let it become a kind of good medicine in your life.

10. Say NO to something you don’t want to do, and then let the time you would have spent with others be yours alone. How often have you found yourself out with work colleagues or friends, wishing instead that you were home on the couch, watching your favourite show and eating soup and toast in your pyjamas? Your time really is precious. Start saying NO when it feels like duty or hard work, and use that time on something you’d prefer to do!

Your life is precious. Don’t let it slip by without filling some of it with what you love.
You deserve to be a priority in your own life! Holding you in my thoughts, prayers and meditations,

Nicole <3 xoxo

Sneaking Back to Bed

“Laugh, even when you feel too sick or too worn out or tired.
Smile, even when you’re trying not to cry and the tears are blurring your vision.
Sing, even when people stare at you and tell you your voice is crappy.
Trust, even when your heart begs you not to.
Twirl, even when your mind makes no sense of what you see.
Frolic, even when you are made fun of. Kiss, even when others are watching. Sleep, even when you’re afraid of what the dreams might bring.
Run, even when it feels like you can’t run any more.
And, always, remember, even when the memories pinch your heart. Because the pain of all your experience is what makes you the person you are now. And without your experience—you are an empty page, a blank notebook, a missing lyric. What makes you brave is your willingness to live through your terrible life and hold your head up high the next day. So don’t live life in fear. Because you are stronger now, after all the crap has happened, than you ever were back before it started.”
~ Alysha Speer

 

I’ve had a big few days, lovelies.

A big month actually, between having intensive IV therapy to combat my superbug, and doing a load of readings and coaching for clients, and of hand-holding souls at the end of their lives, and of supporting people I care about through hard times.

This morning I woke up after a restless night, did my healing meditation for the world and all my loved ones (that includes you!) and then thought I would write my blog and get onto my avalanche of unanswered emails and messages that keeps growing while I have been busy attending to more urgent matters.

But I changed my mind.

My husband is sleeping in a dark, cool room. Harry dog has snuck up beside him.

And I am still tired.

So I am going back to bed for some more sleep and cuddles with my loved ones.

Because that’s what self-care looks like.

I hope you are looking after yourself too!

Hugs and love, Nicole <3 xx

In My Happy Place!

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“The cure for anything is salt water — sweat, tears, or the sea.” ~ Isak Dinesen

 

My Soul Sanctuary Retreat begins today.

Before my work begins, before my week kicks off, I have this. The beach, the dawn, the rising sun, the smell of salt and the foam of waves. I have my husband’s hand in mine, and a crazy cafe dog running crazy circles.

Then, after walking and swimming, there will be coffee.

My day will be begun. I will soon find myself on Retreat, and it will be wonderful, as it always is. But first, time for me. Time for my loved ones. Time in my happy place.

I’ll keep you posted all week about our goings on and lots of other stuff besides, I promise. There will be much to share.

Until then, hugs and love, Nicole xx

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Crazy, Beautiful, Sustainable Madness

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“There is no such thing as work-life balance. Everything worth fighting for unbalances your life.”
~ Alain de Botton

 

It’s a crazy time of year for me. As the end of year/beginning of the new year always is, in my line of work.

I have a retreat coming up in less than two weeks. Followed by workshops in Brisbane, my Christmas Pop-Up Shop, and the launch of my brilliant new secret project.

I have a calendar filled with client appointments for psychic readings.

My inboxes are groaning with messages and requests from people in crisis. I have family members ill, and friends.

I’ve been up in the middle of the night skyping and facebooking with international clients who have been affected by recent world events. Or by big life things. There are a lot of big life things going on just now, haven’t you noticed?

My desk (ahem, kitchen table at farm…) looks like this. (See photo above of crystals and mugs of tea, and oracle cards and magnesium powder and diarised magic into the next year.) That’s the tidiest side. The other is filled with groaning paper and book towers as I research and finish my project.

And Christmas is just around the corner.

Sounds insane, huh?

But I don’t do insane anymore. I do sustainable madness.

Sustainable madness looks like this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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It means that in the middle of the crazy I have acupuncture treatments and farmers markets and nutritious meals and cafe mornings and walks on the beach and stupidly early nights where I am in bed by 7pm.

I burn incense and aromatherapy essential oils. I play mood music. I drink good tea, and have lots of stretch breaks. I eat tasty healthy snacks. I let myself enjoy the buzz of crazy, and this push to get all the things done. It’s exciting. It makes me feel alive.

When you live a life doing what you love, when you’re following your passions, sometimes that means you’ll need to put extra hours in. Or you’ll need to say no to some stuff, momentarily, while you meet a crazy deadline, or chew madly on that impossibly big mouthful of life you bit off.

But that’s okay. If you also leave a little room for the important things that fill you up. The things that stop you burning out. The things that nurture and support you.

I am taking nearly a month off early next year, so there’s that big delicious rest to look forward to as well.

How about you? Are you doing crazy now too? And is your crazy sustainable, and even kind of fun?

I’m really looking forward to sharing my formula for crazy, beautiful, sustainable madness, and helping you to find your own recipe for this inspirational, get-things-done space. Don’t let people tell you that you need work-life balance and for every day to look the same. Sometimes our balance is chunks of happy madness, followed by chunks of rest. That works just fine for me and I bet it will help you too!

Lots of love, Nicole <3 xoxo

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Will You Join Us For The 2015 Soul Sanctuary Retreat?

“The most fundamental aggression to ourselves, the most fundamental harm we can do to ourselves, is to remain ignorant by not having the courage and the respect to look at ourselves honestly and gently.”
~ Pema Chödrön

 

I’m holding a residential retreat from November 28 to December 5, in beautiful Byron Bay. It’s a perfect way to see out the energies of 2015, and prepare for 2016. Perhaps you’d like to join us for a week of nurture and inspiration?

If I was to sum up the energies of 2016 in one word, that word would be LAUNCH. It will be a year for expressing yourself in the world, taking new directions and finding new ways of being, for starting and growing life-changing projects, for truly becoming more of who you are. A year that demands honesty and space for being yourself, sharing your gifts and moving into the flow of creativity and abundance.

But we can’t take full advantage of this prosperous energy if we come to the new year with a flat battery. We can’t take full advantage of this gift if we don’t know how to create space for ourselves and our dreams, even as we are taking care of everyone else and needing to be present to the demands of our everyday lives. We can’t thrive if we keep pleasing others while disappointing ourselves and putting ourselves second, or even last…

2015’s Soul Sanctuary Retreat will give you the tools for extreme self-care, for personal and life management, and for being able to put plans on the page that are actionable and realistic, with just the right amount of daring.

Image from yourtango.com

Image from yourtango.com

The Soul Sanctuary Retreat is for women only. It’s a week of pamper, nurture and time for yourself. A perfect opportunity for you to rest and rejuvenate, indulge in some self-care, find friendship and emotional support, and make the focus all about YOU!

Highlights of this week-long retreat:

  • We will learn some simple meditation techniques to help us connect into Universal Energy for healing and guidance, including some of the new work Nicole has channeled in for healing self and others
  • We will give ourselves space to relax and renew
  • We will learn some simple strategies for rebalancing and energizing our bodies
  • We will harness the shamanic power of plants to transform ourselves and our emotions. We will also learn how to make simple skincare and self-nurture products using recipes that combine crystals, essential oils and flowers.
  • We will learn about the Akashic Records and find out what strengths and talents we have come here to work with in this lifetime. This will help us to decide which dreams to follow, and how to best make our life meaningful and satisfying
  • We’ll identify the stories we keep telling ourselves and re-enacting – negative and positive – that are holding us back from growth and success
  • We will create our own Power Essence – a fragrance that will allow us to focus deeply on our dreams and opportunities for 2016
  • We will learn how to use the Akashic Records to travel along our own personal timeline – past, present and future
  • We will learn how to create space in each day, and each week, for ourselves and our own needs
  • We will determine our One Big Thing, and from that we’ll develop our own personal Best Daily Habits, Weekly Planning Session Strategies and a Brilliant Year Flow Plan
  • We will create our own programmed-crystal wearable art to support and strengthen our 2016 Soul Energy and One Big Thing
  • We’ll learn how to make our lives and our success more sustainable and enjoyable

There will be plenty of restful time for naps, swims, contemplation, friendship and personal projects. There will be time for meditation, and lots of channeled goodness with Nicole’s beautiful team. There will be time for healing, journaling, relaxing, spiritual goodness and lots of yummy organic food, lovingly created by our own personal chef.

We’ll also be working with the energies of the waning gibbous moon in Cancer, which is perfect for focusing on our own needs and plans, and for nurturing and mothering ourselves in order to give birth to our bigger and wiser dreams.

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Now that we are firmly in the flow of this new era of awakening, and the energy of 2012 and the preceding energetic era is firmly behind us, everything is happening more easily and faster. Let’s learn how to consciously evolve using this quickening energy.

I’m so excited about this course, and we still have a few places left.

If you’d like more information please contact Dana, my wonderful PA, at nicolecodyinfo@gmail.com

Or drop us a note below or on our facebook page and we’ll send the details through to you.

Lots of love 🙂 Nicole xoxo

sun

A Day Just For Me

Painting by Laura Sotka

Painting by Laura Sotka

“Rest and self-care are so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.”
~Eleanor Brownn

 

I’ve designated a day of rest. Today I have no agenda, no chores to do, and nowhere to be. I’ll leave the answering machine to take my messages. My emails will wait. And so will everyone else’s problems.

Today I shall sit in the sunshine with my feet in the soft grass. I’ll hang out with my husband. I shall nap whenever I want. I’ll cuddle my dogs, read a book, listen to music, or embrace silence.

I’ll fill the well back up.

Filling that well is so important.

I’ll be back tomorrow, refreshed and more ready for the flow of life again.

Much love to you, and thank you – from my heart to yours – for your love, kind words and support these past weeks. It means the world to me. ♥ xoxo

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Listening to the Universe…

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“Part of doing something is listening. We are listening. To the sun. To the stars. To the wind.” 
Madeleine L’EngleSwiftly Tilting Planet

 

I came home to our little farm tonight. As we drove down the dirt road that leads to our front gate a great weight fell from my shoulders, and I realised that I had been holding my breath for the past five years, since my serious heart problems first began, and my prognosis became grim.

I am safe now, was all that I could think. Tears streamed down my face and I clutched my husband’s hand. He understood completely, because he tells me he has been holding his breath too.

We unpacked the ute and came inside, and I set up my laptop computer. It would not let me log on. Would not recognise my password. Would not work at all. It sat on my desk and defied my every attempt to let me in, even following the instructions over the phone of a techy friend who was sure he knew what the problem is. Without my computer I cannot access my blog, my emails, facebook, any of my work, the internet, nothing at all.

I rang the computer rescue technician. He can get to my house Friday, or I can take my computer and leave it at their shop and it should be ready by the weekend.

Three days without my computer? No work? No connection?

And then relief dawned. I had my little Macbook. I never use it for anything except writing books, but at least I could still blog, and connect and do some things.

It had 8% charge left in its battery. When I plugged in the power cord just now the light won’t come on and it’s not charging. I have wiggled the cord and tried seven different power outlets. Now there’s only 7% charge.

You’re kidding me, I say in frustration.

Maybe the Universe is telling you to take some time out, my wise husband said. You’ve had a big couple of days. Big news. Maybe you need a quiet space to digest everything and just be for a while.

I realised he was right.

Thank you, Universe. I get it. I am exhausted to my marrow. It can’t just be business as usual. I need some time to think, to cry, to sleep, to dance, to laugh, to cry some more, and to process all that has just happened.

I don’t need to hold my breath anymore. I am no longer dying, I am healing. That changes EVERYTHING.

I look at my little Macbook. 6% battery. Just enough to write this blog and upload it into the scheduler for you to read tomorrow.

I’m taking a few days off. I hope you understand.

I really need it.

I shall come back to you refreshed, and with a sparkle in my eye.

I’m blowing you a kiss and waving to your sweet face. See you soon.

I love you!

Here’s to deep rest and new beginnings…

EmbracingNewBeginnings

 

PS – As I finish my post, with 3% battery charge left, an owl lands on my clothesline and my husband calls me to come talk to it. I hope I have enough time to upload and add this picture I just took, before my battery dies completely. Isn’t she beautiful? I’m sure we will have much to say to each other. I’ll let you know when I return xx

Clothes line owl