THE iKiFit BLOG

Join iKiFit founder, Kim Macrae for snippets about education, life choices and self empowerment that encourage us to be the best version of ourselves - Every Single Day! (Click below to hear iKi Crews Every Single Day excerpt. Full version for sale on iTunes).

Life Coach and working mum Amy shares her experiences of how iKi helps her meet the challenges of juggling children, partner and career, while striving to be a happy, healthy strong role model. And staying sane!.

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Tell it Straight

Monday, November 19, 2018

Tell it straight

Sometimes we just need to get it off our chest. Vent. Have a whinge. It’s the squeaky wheel that gets the oil.If we don’t tell people what’s upsetting or annoying us, they won’t know and can’t be expected to help.

Here’s an interesting thing. Researchers (yes, them again) say that those people who have a good whinge are more productive workers—as long as they actively work towards DOING something about the problem.

So, stop beating around the bush. Tell people how you feel – but don’t just complain first and think later. If you don’t like the way things are being done, think it through and find a solution. Then speak up.

Think about who you should talk to and don’t go nagging behind somebody’s back – tell them straight and they will often appreciate your honesty.

Be strategic: maybe take time out to make a difference by getting involved. It might be writing a letter to your local paper, donning a pair of gloves and hat on Clean Up Australia Day or turning up at meetings of your sporting club. Maybe you should go along to that Local Council, political party or interest group meeting and have your say?

Whatever you choose, make the choice to channel your energy in a positive way instead of sitting back and complaining about the way other people are doing things.

If you see a problem, tell those who need to know, - and remember, it helps to have a real, workable solution.

Have a straight- shooting -at- the-solution- week

 


Don't wait, invigorate!

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Invigorate.

 Napping during the day is not only an effective and refreshing alternative to caffeine, it can also protect your health and make you more productive. A study of 24,000 Greek adults showed that people who napped several times a week had a lower risk of dying from heart disease, much lower levels of stress and improved memory, cognitive function and mood.

But wait – dammit! We have no tradition of siestas in Australia, so what are we to do? Taking a snooze at your desk might get you fired. Maybe go home for lunch and have a kip while you’re there? Or what about suggesting to your boss and colleagues in a wonderfully invigorated way that getting forty winks at work might be the next big productivity supercharger? Just because we don’t currently do it doesn’t mean…..

Hmmmm, OK, fair enough, that might take decades to achieve, so what to do meanwhile?

There are LOTS of simple, effective, no (or low) cost ways to invigorate- and most are also great for your health, your productivity AND for those around you.

Take a brisk walk, wander outside and smell the roses, streeeetch! It’s about ‘time out time’, mindfulness, positive attitude, working on and not in, your business. The list goes on.

Add something fresh and colourful to your meal, say something nice to your fellow workers, smile and laugh, eat an apple (crunchy is so invigorating) work on a win-win solution to a disagreement you’ve had with someone you value, do something thoughtful for your spouse or children. Put on music you love and shimmy, sing or smooch – or all three. The possibilities are endless.

Don’t wait, invigorate and have an energised week.

 


Stop the Hate? Desegregate!

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

 

Desegregate

Humans are VERY similar at the genetic level. We share 99.9% of our DNA with every other person on the planet. When we mix with others we soon come to see how similar we are, whereas when we remain separate - when we segregate - we can find ourselves focusing on the surface differences.

When we interact with others in an open-minded way we notice two things:

Firstly, that in matters of desires, fears, dreams and life goals we are pretty much the same, and

Secondly, that those superficial differences can be wonderful, empowering, exciting – think exotic flavours, sounds, fashions, ideas, that can spice up our lives.

When we mix with others, coming to understand ‘them’ can lead to a deeper understanding of ourselves. At the same time, we can be enriched by fresh ways to enjoy food, music, leisure. Life.

So why do so many people want to segregate themselves from ‘others’?

We are designed to be wary of difference – it’s a sort of evolutionary defence. In times past, strangers often WERE dangerous. Now we live in a connected, multi ethnic, multi-cultural, multi everything world in which, remember, 99.9% of the inhabitants are just like us. They want to be treated nicely and with respect. Just like us.

Sadly, we are heading down a path of increasing tribal nationalism. To continue to function as a healthy democracy we need to listen to each other in the spirit that we all care about our country, our communities, our families and neighbors.  

Remember the old saying

“Treat others the way you want to be treated”

“Treat each other nice today – you will earn respect that way”

Desegregate for a safer, fairer, funner world.

Vive la difference.

 

 


Don't be late!

Monday, October 29, 2018

Don’t be late

It’s soooo easy to be late. We've all done it, but have we thought about the impact it has? Some people seem to think it's cool, fashionable and spontaneous. Some businesses operate as if it's normal, or that it shows they’re busy and important.

But I’m inclined to believe the research that suggests that some of the ‘little things’ we do can be awful for those on the receiving end - and making people wait is right up there.

When we make an appointment and then arrive late, keeping the other person waiting, are we saying their time doesn’t matter as much as ours? Sure, we had something come up, or we just had to finish that task. But did we consider that the person we were meeting may be as time poor as we are, or have important matters to attend to? Just like us?

That person may not make as much money as us per hour, but their time is just as valuable to them as ours is to us. Hold ups happen to all of us, but how hard is it to send a text, or call? To show we value their time and them.

If being late is a habit for you and you feel it's time for a change, try these fixes:

Set your watch five minutes fast (or however many minutes you need) and forget that you ever did it. That way, you’ll always be on time and can stop stressing over being the last one at work or to drop your children at school. And you won’t miss out on the lane you want to swim in, or your favourite car space. Schedule your appointments to finish 5 or 15 minutes before the next one, so you have time to prepare and to be on time.

Or just remind yourself that other people matter.

Show the people you are working/playing/living with that you value their time, and them, and you’ll all have a nicer day.

Have a punctual week

 


Clean your plate

Tuesday, October 23, 2018


Opinions differ as to whether it’s best to eat everything on our plates, or to stop when we’ve had enough. Some say that eating all of the food put in front of us can make us obsessive or encourage overeating.

However, I grew up on a farm and subscribe firmly to the habit of eating everything I’m served. Sure, there was an element of survival involved, - trying to get my share along with 4 hungry brothers. And my mum was a great cook, so I rarely wanted to leave anything on my plate. But over the years I’ve come to believe ‘cleaning our plate’ is a principle that can relate to most areas of our lives:i.e. Learning to manage ourselves, setting achievable goals and finishing what we set out to do.

Serving up a healthy portion at each meal and finishing what’s there, is a way of learning to take responsibility for ourselves and our decisions – and to complete what we start.

If you want to cut down on your calorie intake, just eat from a smaller plate. There’s lots of psychology in eating, as in everything else, and when you see you’ve finished what’s on your plate, you know you've had enough. It's also about making the right choices in the first place.

Learning what and how much is right for us, being satisfied with what we choose and tidying up after ourselves is about taking responsibility for our lives.

Job well done every time.

Have a satisfying week.

 


Curiosity is Cool.

Monday, October 15, 2018

 So Investigate.

But why Mum?” That nagging question can be annoying but is part of developing - and maintaining - a healthy mind. Encouraging children to explore and investigate doesn’t just help set them up for a fulfilling life, it can help extend the quality and length of life as well. And it applies to people of all ages, so don’t be afraid to go along for the ride.

Lots of research – as well as common sense - tells us that the best way to stay young is to act the way young people do.
Stay curious, keep learning, be interested, get involved. Practise and model the good behaviours of young people.

If the tap won’t stop dripping, have a look and see if you can fix it. It might be easier than you thought. Or it may challenge you in such a way that you develop a whole new set of skills.
Being interested is a great way to strengthen family bonds. Try asking these two questions over dinner with your family:

1. What was the best thing that happened to you today?

2. If you could, what would you like to change about today?

This way, you’ll learn more about what the ones you love are doing and what makes them happy or sad. Also, you might find out about an issue like playground bullying before it gets out of control.
We’re never too young or old to learn, in fact when we stop learning we get old in a bad way.

Curiosity may occasionally kill the cat ---but much more often it prolongs and improves life.

Have an interested week,

Kim.

 


Dedicate to be great.

Tuesday, October 09, 2018


This weeks' word is “Dedicate"

I’ve been worrying for weeks about what to write - and then it all became clear when I remembered the “Australian of the Year” awards way back in January.

The winners have dedicated much of their lives to things they believe in.

I’m still excited because 2 of the 4 category winners are teachers: The Australian of the Year for 2018 is Professor Michelle Simmons, a teacher and researcher, and the Local Hero for the year, Eddie Woo, is a visionary high-school maths teacher. It’s great that teachers, who play such an important role in nurturing tomorrows’ leaders are being recognised and valued.

I’m inspired by the message given by Professor Simmons, who says “Quantum physics is hard. Technology at the forefront of human endeavour is hard. But that’s what makes it worth it. I believe that the things that are most worth doing in life are almost always hard to do- but when you succeed the euphoria is immense”

When we dedicate ourselves to doing something hard, we often have to sacrifice other things – luxuries, time off, hobbies – but the rewards can be immense. And here's just one of the exciting things that happen when we dedicate time and effort to something we believe in - it's gets easier. When we regularly do something difficult our abilities grow. Remember the story about the little engine who 'thought she could' 

Yes, it always takes discipline and effort, but what is at first hard gets easier with dedication. And think of how we’ll feel when it’s done.

We’d love to hear about the things that excite you: things that you’re passionate about, that make you feel rewarded, valued and respected, or that you feel 'just need to be done'.

Have a satisfying week

 

 


Learning to relate creates great mates.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Learn to relate.

Human kind is made up of multiple colour, national, ethnic and cultural groups, not to mention myriad body shapes, genders, religions, fashions, fetishes, etc, etc, etc. But we are SO the same. We all want to feel safe, respected, valued, loved and secure.

Learning to relate to others is one of the most life affirming things we can do, for SO many reasons.

For example, the Dali Lama teaches many things to help us live more productive, satisfying lives and his key lesson is to: “Exchange a self-centred attitude for one of thinking more about others. It is much easier to handle our problems when we realise everyone else has their own. A problem shared is a problem halved”.

It’s easier to get along with each other when we focus on the things we share in common, rather than our differences. Our likes, needs and dreams are similar, and even our differences are less than we think they are. All it takes is the effort to look past the “packaging”. And not only can relating to others add to our feelings of happiness, it can impact on our health and safety.

Creating positive relationships in our personal and professional life brings enormous benefits. How we speak and what we choose to say can either make people feel valued and understood or disrespected and marginalised. And let’s not forget that the way we treat others tends to come back to us. Our behaviour really matters.

We humans share 99.9% of our DNA. We are (MUCH) more closely related than surface appearances may suggest. Think of others as like ourselves and it builds better relationships. After all we are all related!

“Treat others the way you want to be treated” Not for nothing is this called the ‘Golden Rule’ or the ‘Rule of Life’

Or in the words of the iKi Rulz song, “Treat each other nice today – you will earn respect that way”

Have a caring week.

 


Education is a great investment.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Educate

I’m going to start this week with a couple of quotes, followed by the results of a research project that make a powerful point.

Somebody older and much wiser than me once told me that “The best investment you can ever make is in education.”

Another person, whom I didn’t take a lot of notice of at the time, said “The main point of formal education is to learn to learn”.

Finally, the results of a recent study:- “6 months after spending a relatively large amount of money (several thousands of dollars) on either a new 'gadget' or an ‘experience’ (holiday, education, activity) the people who invested in the experience reported much higher levels of long term satisfaction”.
Remember, the people who bought the gadgets still had the goods, while the ones who’d invested in the “experience” had nothing material to show for it. But they were happier with their investment.

Why? Because they had grown in skill, confidence, experience. As a result, they were empowered, having learned - or reaffirmed - that the more you do, the more you can do.

And that knowledge improves “quality of life” a whole lot more than material things.

At this point in the discussion let’s consider that education isn’t necessarily about going to school or doing a course, it can include practically any situation where you challenge yourself - travelling to new places, interacting with different people, broadening your horizons. DOING things that involve active engagement, new mindsets and/or some kind of change.

This week, do something educational. Learn something new. It can be as simple as opening a dictionary and looking up a new word, through to embarking on a university degree. It can be as quick as Googling information about a place you’d like to visit, right through to learning the language, planning and going on the trip.

Education isn’t just about facts and figures, it’s about ability and confidence. The knowledge that we can learn, grow, and take control of our lives.

A couple of education themed proverbs to end with.

First for the pupil. “When the student is ready the teacher will appear”

The second for the teacher. “When you teach, you learn”

Finally, for all of us. “Tell me, I forget, show me, I remember, involve me, I understand”

Have an interesting week.

 


Delegation - great for all involved

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Delegating can be good for you - and for them.  .

There's an old saying; "If you want something done properly, do it yourself" There's no doubt that in some cases this is true. However, someone else said; "I have so much to do, that I'm going to bed" Occasionally, life can be so overwhelming, we just want to stop.

Sometimes, doing things yourself is good strategy, while at other times getting help can be smart. If you’re struggling to get everything done it may simply mean you've got too much to do, or that you are trying to do things you don't have the skills or aptitude for. 

It can be good management to bring in specialists who will do the job quickly and efficiently - and there are other reasons and circumstances when delegating is a good choice.

Delegating a job can be a well-deserved reward. An occasional baby-sitter, cleaner, gardener or ironing helper can be a gift from heaven. Then, there are those times when it’s a great idea to get someone else do a task for us because it is empowering for them. If they offer, let them do it. If they don't offer, ask them. Remember the adage, "Give a person a fish and they eat for a day, teach them to fish and they eat for life". 

Sometimes you just have to let go and ask the children or partner to do some of the chores. Great teams are made up of members who play their own part the best they can, as well as helping each other when needed. 

Remember, the key to successful delegation is clear communication. Give enough instructions to make the job achievable and then trust the person you have asked to do it for you. That way they can grow in confidence and ability - and it’s a win-win for everyone.

Have a sharing week

Kim