Actively listening to enrich your life

Posted Posted in Awakening, Business Coaching, Clinical Leadership, Coaching, exams, Online Training, Resilience

I often speak about the difference between ‘hearing’ and ‘listening’, usually in relation to conversations in a leadership context, but this week I am focusing on how to listen, really listen, (and what to listen to!) as a simple form of mindfulness to help relieve stress. Listening is sometimes called an art and a science.  (In fact, I counted once – coaches are trained to listen in 11 different ways!). It is really important for our mental health to actively listen sometimes because it encourages our brain to work the way it’s supposed to.  Listening tunes our brain to the patterns of our environment faster than any other sense, and paying special attention to sounds, the non-visual parts of our world, feeds everything from our intellectual performance to our motor skills and coordination. Listening to the sounds around us, particularly sounds of nature, soothes an overactive mind and can alleviate […]

Close the Gate

Posted Posted in Awakening, Business Coaching, Coaching, exams, Online Training, Resilience

If you live in or visit a rural area, you will be aware of the need to always close a gate. It’s to keep livestock safe and to keep humans safe from the livestock that like to escape and explore the world! ‘Closing the barn door after the horse has bolted’ is a common expression to describe the futility of closing the gate too late. Did you know that there is a way to ‘close the gate’ of your mind – to be more focused, less distracted, better able to concentrate, and happier, every day? The latest video I’ve uploaded to The Resilience Hub explains in detail how to do it with a demo and the neuroscience behind it so that you will have a better understanding of how it works. If you haven’t yet signed up to The Resilience Hub you can do so for FREE here. Until next […]


Posted Posted in Awakening, Business Coaching, Clinical Leadership, Coaching, exams, Nurse Leadership, Nurses, Online Training, Parenting, Resilience

One of the biggest challenges we face in building our confidence and resilience is… ourselves! Our negative self-talk is possibly the most disempowering aspect of our mind.  It’s an extension of our survival instinct, honed over millions of years of evolution. Our mind is always watching out for danger.  In today’s world actual life and death situations thankfully rarely occur, so when it can’t identify a danger easily, it looks harder. When it still can’t find anything to be properly scared of, it makes stuff up, exaggerates small things and remains on high alert because it doesn’t like having nothing to focus on. The part of the brain that does this is the amygdala.  It serves us sometimes (like when we jump out of the way of an oncoming car before we consciously realise what’s happening).  But it needs to be trained and reassured. With practice we can teach our highly […]

When you take on too much

Posted Posted in Awakening, Business Coaching, Clinical Leadership, Coaching, exams, Nurse Leadership, Nurses, Online Training, Parenting, Resilience

Busy people often don’t think they have time for coaching. But there’s coaching principle called ‘Pausing for Performance’… …and the best example of how it works is think how you’d feel if you worked all day and through the night.  How productive would you be the following day? If you have ever woken up refreshed after sleep or a nap or if you have ever had a great idea in the shower or at traffic lights – that’s because actually your brain has been allowed to pause for performance and you can see how that has given you new motivation, commitment, new insights/ideas and vision, clarity and renewed energy. I usually try to practise what I preach – usually! – but a few weeks ago I had a lot on my plate, I took on more and said yes to too many things. Then something of reasonable importance fell out of my […]

Helping your teenager through exams

Posted Posted in Coaching, exams, Parenting, Resilience

There is plenty of guidance and advice for exam students at the moment online, but what about their worried parents, guardians, aunties, uncles, grandparents, and all who love them? I have created a video guide for anyone who has an exam student in their midst and it is available to view now in the new Parenting section of The Resilience Hub. It includes practical tips on how you can help the teenager in your life through this stressful time, with simple explanations of the research and neuroscience of why they work. Scroll down for a short introductory video. Until next week, best of health to you all, throughout exam season. Lisa. P.S. If you know someone who could benefit from this please don’t keep this to yourself!  Feel free to share. P.P.S. Did you know that I wrote a short book on this subject titled “Stay Calm and Rock That Exam” and […]

A guided tour of your body during stress

Posted Posted in Awakening, Business Coaching, Clinical Leadership, Coaching, exams, Nurse Leadership, Nurses, Online Training, Parenting, Resilience

We all know that stress doesn’t feel good, but did you know what effects it has on your individual organs? Here is a tour of your body in the minutes after a stressful trigger… SKIN: pales as blood diverted to vital organs. HEART: begins to pound, sending blood around body carrying sugar (energy) and hormones (eg. adrenalin) MUSCLES: tense in readiness for action. LUNGS: air passage dilates, breathing becomes more intense to provide more oxygen to feed increase blood supply. LIVER: glycogen is converted to blood sugar to give ‘short distance’ energy. DIGESTION: processes shut down as blood is diverted elsewhere. Mouth goes dry to avoid adding extra fluids to stomach. BLOOD: thickens to help it carry more oxygen, fight infection & stop bleeding. SWEAT GLANDS: start up to cool the underlying and overheated muscles. BLADDER & RECTUM: Muscles relax to release any excess load. BRAIN: Executive function and solution […]

The peace you seek is within you already

Posted Posted in Awakening, Business Coaching, Clinical Leadership, Coaching, exams, Nurse Leadership, Online Training, Parenting, Resilience

Silence isn’t an absence of noise. It’s a quality of mind.   If you long for the peaceful vibe of this picture just look inside yourself. Mindfulness is the best way to do that, so download an app or go to a mindfulness practitioner. It has been proven to have really positive benefits on mental health and stress management.   No time? Sit now, for 60 seconds and let your mind wander freely. No judgement, just let it go where it wants to. Gently listen to the sounds around you. Notice what’s happening in your body; your core, your heart, limbs, muscles, your face, your lungs.   Just notice, that’s all you need to do.  For 60 seconds.  That’s all. Refresh, recover, reboot. Best wishes, Lisa.   #Coaching #Mindfulness #StressManagement #Resilience

How our thoughts affect our performance

Posted Posted in Awakening, Business Coaching, Coaching, exams, Nurse Leadership, Online Training, Resilience

Research has shown that if we tell ourselves we’re not going to do well, the result is that we in fact don’t do well. Conversely, in that study when the same people who thought they wouldn’t perform well were told to just give it a go and reassured that they will probably pass the benchmark anyway, they performed just as well as other groups of people in the study. This tells us that when we do take action, even if we lack confidence or self-belief, we can usually perform at least as well as anyone else. And it also tells us that our noisy and opinionated Inner Critic has a measurable negative impact on how we perform. The more we fret, worry and listen to our Inner Critic, the more these thoughts become automatic. We train our brains into thinking negatively.  And then our decisions, perceptions and behaviours become influenced by these […]

The steps towards change

Posted Posted in Awakening, Business Coaching, Coaching, exams, Online Training, Parenting, Resilience

In last week’s blog we looked at making preparations for change – a change in behaviour or habit – maybe something that will form part of a New Year’s Resolution. This week I’m going to introduce you to a model for behaviour change that’s used in healthcare for people who need to overhaul their lifestyle in order to achieve better health. It’s based on a formula that breaks down the steps we all take when change is needed. They are: Pre-contemplation. Contemplation. Preparation. Action. Maintenance. This model will help you to easily spot the stage where you tend to falter or fall back into old habits, and when you know where that hurdle is you can better prepare for it and ultimately be more successful at putting your new healthier or better habit in place. The model is explained in more detail in The Resilience Hub – just log in […]

Study Skills and Resilience for Exams (Junior/Leaving Cert)

Posted Posted in Coaching, exams, Resilience

For the attention of Post-Primary School Principals in Monaghan, Cavan, Louth, Meath: Would your school be interested in booking me to give a talk to Junior or Leaving Cert Exam students on study skills, identifying their personal learning styles, effective time management and developing their personal resilience in the lead up to their exams as well as techniques for managing panic on the day? The talk is 1.5 hours. It’s interactive and motivational with some fun and practical elements too to hold the students’ attention. There are some written exercises to encourage reflection and self-awareness and additional resources provided afterwards to the school.  Health promotion plays a part too and I will demonstrate tips on how they can harness their own physiology to reduce stress on exam day. See photos here of a recent event in Inver College (originally shared by Inver College on social media) and what students will […]