2011: Good habits as a state of mind

Past results

It’s almost 2011 and like every year since I was 13, I am thinking about what new resolutions I should endorse. I am not original in the slightest. My resolutions are usually made up of things I will start doing e.g. calling home more or swimming at least once a week or simply telling myself to take better care of myself (I know I shouldn’t need to tell myself that but there you have it). I never give much thought to how I’m going to achieve these things. Sure enough, I score less than 50% at the end of the year and end up feeling daft.

What to change

This year I want to form habits, good solid habits that I believe will make the next one-third of my life better than the preceding years. If I take little steps, I may indeed find it easier to be kinder to myself all round. I have read that a good  mental state, free from worry, can lengthen life expectancy. I’m talking about being happy with where I am, be it at home or at work. It’s about taking each day at a time and worrying less about the things I cannot change. So if I make a resolution like”Worry less”, it’s unlikely to help. I have to create habits that I will practice in bite sizes throughout 2011. I am inspired by The Simple Mom and a book I once read called, ‘Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff (and it’s all small stuff)’ by Richard Carlson, Ph.D. I actually read this book twice.

Be of a sound mind, soul and body in 2011(photo courtesy of http://www.istockphoto.com)

What habits?

I will break down my resolution into key action habits. Just to reiterate, the resolution is to take better care of my mind, soul and body. I reckon that cultivating one habit will take four to eight weeks to master and there will be several habits that need mastering so there are lots to work on in 2011. These will include but are not limited to:

  1. Starting and ending the day with prayer (no matter how hectic!)
  2. Having breakfast everyday
  3. Nurturing my friendships
  4. Playing golf more often
  5. Finding another sport to be passionate about (snowboarding?)
  6. Reminding myself everyday that I have every reason to be happy (I do!)

And I will generally stay positive and encouraged within myself. I have found that life seems to be constructed to bring people down. There are always those that will discourage you and there will be situations that make me want to give up. In 2010, I achieved a lot at home, in my studies and at work. I will continue to push back at life to achieve more in 2011. Maybe I will even stumble onto that business idea. Who knows? I am turning deaf ears to the government cuts in the UK and the predictions of doom. Good habits for my mind, soul and body are here to stay.

Inspiration:

New Year – New You! The Path to Successful New Year’s Resolutions « The Simple Mom.

Winter just got better!

Last week at my daughter’s nursery, I bumped into one of the other mum’s who was wearing a STUNNING black winter coat. I have an eye for these things and I couldn’t keep my eyes off her. I’d never spoken to her before (I’m not in the clique) but I worked up the courage to say, ‘My, my, where did you get that coat?? It’s gorgeous.’ She proceeded to tell me that it was from a store near where she lived and that she had bought the last one. Damn! Fortunately, she was a darling and told me the designer for good measure: Betty Barclay.

I tried really hard to get the image of the coat out of mind. But there was no way, I was hooked! The coat has a wet look to it, a quilted surface and a hood with faux fur. It was glorious (I’m still mesmerised!). Anyway, I started my quest for the coat using the trusting Google.com. I put in ‘Betty Barclay’ and it came up with several web links. Hmm…’I’ll click on this one.’ I thought to myself. Nope, no black wet look coat. The thing is I had never heard of Betty Barclay before this enchanting encounter so I wasn’t sure what to expect. There were a few online stockists but only one actually had the jacket. So, after what felt like hours (it was probably about 20 minutes actually), I stumbled onto TheHouseDesignerWear.co.uk. They had it!!! But wait… I just went from a size 10 to 12 in the last 6 months….They only have it in 10 and 16. Deflated.

Betty Barclay Wet look Faux fur jacket (The House Designer Wear, 2010)

Feeling courageous, I called the contact number on the web site. What a lovely customer service lady! Even though they didn’t have my size, she offered to call another store and call me back after checking for it. She even offered to put it on the website and call me immediately so that I can purchase it. Did I mention that this coat is £260? Extravagant, even for me. Anyway, the coat was completely sold out in size 12 as the nice customer service lady later informed me.

Then the next phase of my search started (thanks to Google again). I started to look for jackets that resembled the Betty Barclay one. I confess that I didn’t have to look far. I found one on asos.com before I could say ‘Black Wet look jacket with hood’! And there it sat, prettier and CHEAPER than I had imagined! Yay!! It was a £100 and looked like it was worth much more. Long live Asos.com :-). Even better, they had it in size 12 (it eased my irritation about gaining weight). The designer is Vero Moda. Alas, it was ‘Add to Cart’ – no questions asked. Excellent!

Front view of a beautiful jacket (Asos.com, 2010)

I got a real buzz from my search. Now I think I might enjoy looking for clothes that resemble big designer brands and buying them at a bargain. LOOK magazine is filled with such grand searches. Hmm, there may even be a small business opportunity. Steady now…. Anyway, it was all in a day’s work (well, a couple of days) and now I am fiercely looking forward to winter. Happy shopping for your winter jackets if you haven’t already done so (remember you can have more than one 😉 ). NEXT and Debenhams also have many great jackets of different styles. Tis the season to be merry……K’s got a new coat (doing silly “bubble n’ shuffle” dance from the 80s)…la-la-la-la-la-la… ;-).

Check out the back (Asos.com, 2010)

Here we go

I fell in love with the world of business twice.

The first time was when I was eight years old, eager to sell a cardigan that I had successfully knitted. I didn’t make very much on the cardigan but this first sale gave me enough of a buzz to ignite a curious thirst for the answer to the question: what makes people buy? Or more appropriately, what will make people definitely NOT buy?

Becoming an addict was inevitable when I met with business again
in my working life. I love the buzz created in satisfying customer needs (and exceeding their expectations) as they go through different stages of their business lifecycle. What I find fascinating, is the obvious need to change tactic as customers change. I say
obvious but it is not so obvious or rather, it rarely happens that a
business changes its tactic (and previously held beliefs about consumers). The larger (and more global the company), the harder
it is. It’s like trying to turn the Titanic around in the middle of its
course! Practically impossible.

As I continue my journey through my current MBA studies, there is
no doubt that I will make observations that have perhaps been
made before. However, it will be from my point of view (which has
to different, right?). It will be from the eyes of a full time mother, wife and employee. A person who is taking on the whole world and
seeing immense possibilities in business. Some of it will be just a
dream but hopefully one business idea turning into reality will be
enough. It will make my addiction worthwhile. Welcome to My Business Addiction…..

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