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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Celebrate our Strengths

Thursday, June 20, 2019

 

 Who do you listen to?

Mark twain said, “The unexamined life isn’t worth living.”

I’ve been conducting iKiFit Team Building Workshops for a while now and am surprised at the number of people who don’t realise that we all experience negative thoughts. Recently, a mature, professional and competent lady who is retraining as a teacher was overwhelmed when she learned she wasn’t alone in having a ‘negative voice’ in her head.

In the workshops we discuss how we learn, leading to the understanding that we're designed to learn by recognising where we’re ‘failing’ and correcting the mistakes. As one of the most important elements of daily life is ‘fitting in’ to our group and community, we are designed to mentally compare ourselves to our peers, our neighbours, our family and of course, the people we see in the media.

Our subconscious is constantly calculating how we measure up - and endeavoring to adjust accordingly. The “problem” with this is that we all have that built in “nag” which is giving us feedback on how well we’re doing. Or not. We can be our own worst critic. While this is an important survival feature, it can become overwhelming. And then there are those people in our lives who say they're ‘just trying to help’ by pointing out our many failings.

To make matters even more difficult, we're bombarded with images of “perfect” people; - celebrities, sports stars, models. It’s easy to overlook that they have dieticians, physios, plastic surgeons, personal trainers, P.R managers and stylists to help them appear their best. Then their images are photo-shopped and filtered to hide normal human “flaws” like cellulite and wrinkles.

It can be hard to maintain a positive self- image in the face of that kind of competition. If we’re not alert, we start beating up on ourselves. Just realising that this is the way we’re built is an important first step in managing it. Knowledge is power. From there it’s a matter of developing ways of keeping our thoughts in balance.

The mature lady I mentioned had taught herself to imagine "grabbing hold of the negative thought and twisting it 180 degrees into a positive". Some people use a 'mindfullness' method of 'choosing rooms'. When they feel themselves being drawn into a negative place, they visualise themselves walking out of a dark room and into a place of light and laughter.

In the iKiFit Safe Respectful Learner workshops we come up with, - or get someone to help us create, - a Power Name. While this can be challenging, as we live in a culture where peer pressure can be strongly against seeming to be “up yourself”, particularly for teenagers, it can change a bad day into a great day. Or turn around a life.

So, if you find yourself negatively affected by that voice in your head, remember: it’s not just you. We’re all in the same boat. We all feel bad about ourselves sometimes. Examining our life is worthwhile but remember to be fair to yourself. None of us are perfect but we all have our good points and it's healthy to remind ourselves what they are.

Take a moment to listen to the ‘good guy’ on your shoulder.

Give yourself a smiley face today.

 


Reach the Skies via Blessings in Disguise

Thursday, June 13, 2019

 

 We've all heard the phrase 'a blessing in disguise' and are familiar with stories of people overcoming huge difficulties or amazing odds to achieve great things. And we all have our own stories of challenges overcome and understand that the more difficult the struggle, the sweeter the rewards.

Those blessings in disguise can take the form of ‘afflictions', ‘misfortunes' or accidents, that, with the benefit of hindsight or thoughtful perspective we come to recognise as positives - as they have helped develop our talents, build our strengths, or put us in the ‘right place at the right time’.

I was a normal farm boy growing up but when, in my late teens, I 'discovered' TaeKwon Do and found my path in life as an instructor and teacher  I also learned to my horror that I had degenerative arthritis in both hips. This wasn't great news for practicing TaeKwonDo, which requires super flexibility, particularly in the hip joints.

There were times I became discouraged, depressed and angry- Why me?- by the pain and stiffness. I had to do a lot of extra work, stretching and conditioning to be able do things others found easy.

After some years, however, I recognised this as my own blessing in disguise. My "problem" had forced me to discipline myself, -something I hadn't done before - and the extra work I had to do made up for a lack of athletic talent, as well as helped overcome a natural inclination to be lazy.

Another affliction that I've been blessed with is a spectacular intolerance of certain foods. Eating them has unpleasant results better not gone into here. There were times I felt I was missing out, but viewed from another angle it's a real blessing, as having stopped eating those foods has resulted in eating better overall. Outcome, better health.

Years ago my wife was forced out of a job, which seemed at the time to be the end of the world. Now she is SO grateful it happened as it provided the impetus - and opportunity - to find her true path.

Now, when life throws up challenge or thing don’t go as planned we’ve learned to look for the opportunity, the blessing in disguise, the silver lining in the dark cloud. It’s just a matter of perspective.

Have a great week

 


Stoke your internal fires this Winter

Tuesday, June 04, 2019

 

Stoke your internal fires this winter

Winter is here. The days are getting shorter and the cold months loom. It’s time for cosy fires and snuggling up, but winter can be a gloomy time and with no relief in sight from the drought, for many farmers and businesses the future looks bleak. So, while it may not be an option to lift our spirits with an overseas holiday or a new outfit, there are some great, free, old-fashioned ways to boost our mood.

Following is an idea I was given years ago that I’ve come to appreciate more, the more I do it.
Thanks Beth Shea for emailing this:
"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past; brings peace for today and creates vision for tomorrow." Melody Beattie from “Simple Truth”

In our busy everyday lives it can be all too easy to focus on the negatives. In fact, because we learn most of our lessons by making mistakes:- "Oh, I got that wrong, I need to do it this way next time" it can be easy to slip into an habitually negative mindset. And how many of us have had the experience of completing a task, only to have a colleague or a family member glance at our efforts and point out the faults, neglecting to mention, let alone praise, some of the good points?

This has certainly happened to me and I must admit I've been guilty of it too!
Yes, we were "just trying to help" But if we stopped to think about it, could we have done it better?

There is so much pressure in our 1st World, social-media-connected lives and we are continually encouraged to “have it all” The perfect body, life, job, house, holiday, car, family etc etc etc. It can be SO easy to feel inadequate and then focus on the things we DON’T have.

It’s worth making a habit of reminding ourselves that we are all human, with flaws, faults and failings. And then reminding ourselves of all the things we DO have. Like so many things, being grateful is a mindset that takes practice, but the benefits are immense, infinitely renewable and have nothing but positive side effects.

The more we do it, the better we get and the better we feel.
Let's take a moment to think of something we are grateful for. Now let’s think of a person we're grateful to havein our lives! Why not go and say something nice, or send a text? Go on, just do it.

Thanks for reading.