An Introduction into Mindfulness Meditation

I’m a huge fan of Headspace. I’ve been using mindfulness meditation for some time now and have found it to have made a very positive impact on my life.

Watch the video and let me know what your thoughts on meditation are.

Parenting Through Exam Time

Hello!

It’s time of year isn’t it! Has exam fever taken over your home? My son, the last one in the nest is sitting his AS level exams here in the UK. It can be a stressful time for us all. Here are some of the things I’ve learned over the years.

I hope you find something of use to you in this video. Feel free to leave a message or comment.

Our Wild and Precious Life

Mary Oliver asks us what we have planned for our one wild and precious life.

 

Self Sabotage: Why We Do It + How to Help Ourselves Out Of It

This week’s video blog came out of some issues I’ve been going through recently as well as a few emails and comments I’ve been left. It seems it’s a theme my lovelies!

 

Some Say That I’m a Dreamer…

This week’s video blog is on dreaming. Do you still have big dreams for the second half of your life? Or are you a bit of a Victor Meldrew?!

 

Living in the Moment

Welcome to this week’s video blog.

How much of your time is spent worrying about the past and about things that may or may not happen the future?

 

Words of Wisdom Video Blog

Here’s a sneak peak at the introduction to my upcoming book on conscious parenting – 40 Words of Wisdom for my 24 year old: a parenting manifesto.

Sign up for my Monday Morning food for thought emails and you’ll be the first to hear about publication – http://themidlifecoach.com/monday-morning-signup/

 

How Good Are You at Self Care?

It’s a simple question really isn’t it and I’m curious to know your response. You see I struggle with it. I forget the small actions I need to make every day to make sure that I look after myself. I’m very good at taking care of others as I’m sure you are too. Watch this short video blog and leave a comment below. I’d love your thoughts.

When I Was Younger I Wish I’d Known…

This week I’m in conversation with a girlfriend about things we wish we’d known when we were younger. Leave a comment below, tell me what you wish you’d known.

 

Best Knickers Always Video Blog

Here’s this weeks Vlog, an introduction to those of you who don’t really know me…..

xx

Roots and Wings Video Blog

Today I wished my son and his girlfriend a bon voyage at London Heathrow airport as they begin their life in Singapore.

The Power of Self Talk + My Love/Hate Relationship with my Nike Trainers

Here’s a short video on self talk….you know that voice that is running constantly in the background!

Leave a comment and let me know what your ‘thing’ is.

Show Don’t Tell | How to Create an Irresistible Dating Profile

Changing the Face of Dating Profiles.

Most online dating profiles are deadly boring right? Why? Because most people, once they register on a site, just want to fill in the blank spaces of the template as quickly as possible, so they can begin actually dating.

Irresistible Dating Profile

It’s also likely that you’re registered on more than one site which means that you’re faced with a number of blank templates to complete.

The typical solution to the dilemma? Copy/paste.

The result: drab, unoriginal profiles that tend to look a lot the same.

Your profile doesn’t have to be that way! No! Yours will be the profile playing the movie trailer….

 

So, what would it be like to create an irresistible profile?

You’ll be treating your online dating identity as an important experiment. You’ll be using your presence on several different sites to try out profiles that are different from one another. In fact, each profile will place a different aspect of your personality – a different persona – in the spotlight.

And you will not actually be telling much about yourself. Telling is boring. Anyone can waffle on about themselves, and that’s not too sexy. Every writer knows the maxim, Show, don’t tell! 

I’m going to teach you, step by step, how to show intriguing bits of yourself through your words. And, as a result, your profile will NOT drone, “I’m the kind of person that likes to curl up with a good book.”

No! Yours will stand out from the rest.

Sounds good so far?

SONY DSC

So what’s involved?

The Steps

Step 1: Identifying + Creating 3 Personas + Usernames

Step 2: Crafting a Headline

Step 3: Writing The Profile Summaries

Step 4: The Five Things I Could Not Do Without

Step 5: What I’m Looking For

Step 6: The Power of the Image

Step 7: The Optional Important Stuff

This programme is for you if:

  • you’re serious in your search for a lasting relationship
  • you’re ready to get creative and challenge yourself
  • you’re prepared to dig deep and take a look at what really matters to you
  • you’re ready to try something different because you’re fed up with your current results

This programme is not for you if:

  • you’re expecting me to do the work and write your profile 😉
  • you want a quick fix to your profile
  • you don’t like spending time thinking about what you really want
  • you say you’re adamant you can’t write and won’t write!

How much will it cost and how does it work?

There are 2 options:

3 Hours Intensive

The cost of this programme is £300 and includes:

  • a full morning or afternoon spent at The Hoxton in Shoreditch
  • pre meet up homework so that we get the most out of the time together
  • work through and brainstorm all the steps in the programme so that you have the outline you’re delighted with for your Irresistible Dating Profile
  • some pretty intensive coaching
  • tea, coffee, brunch or afternoon tea included
  • Lots of motivation and cheerleading from me keeping you on track and inspired
  • A very special offer with the award winning Saturday Night’s Alright for your profile pictures
  • An incredible offer from eHarmony – a massive 60% discount off your membership for 6 months

 

Skype and Email

The cost of this programme is £250 and includes:

  • 2 x 30 minutes one to one coaching with me via Skype or FaceTime – one before Step 1 and one during Step 3
  • Steps sent through one at a time at a pace to suit you
  • Unlimited email support as you work your way through the steps
  • Lots of motivation and cheerleading keeping you on track and inspired
  • An additional exercise helping you uncover your values and what’s important to you
  • A very special offer with the award winning Saturday Night’s Alright for your profile pictures
  • An incredible offer from eHarmony – a massive discount off your membership for 6 months

What next?

If you like what you’ve read so far and have some further questions before you decide to go ahead  then don’t hesitate to get in touch with me info@rebperkins.com. I very much look forward to hearing from you.

When Was The Last Time You Did Something For The First Time?

I was putting some thoughts together for my upcoming ebook on dealing with the invisibility that many of us feel in midlife and I came across this question…

Does lacking in confidence now mean that you’ll never do anything risky, adventurous or challenging ever again? 

And it got me thinking. You see, I’ve been putting off doing something for a very, very long time. In fact my youngest set it for me as my New Year’s Resolution and it’s taken me 6 weeks to do it! But I did do it and I wanted to share it with you.

I posted this video on my Facebook page and was incredibly nervous in doing so! I got some wonderful feedback and an old school friend has now set ‘doing something for the very first time‘ as a challenge for her friends.

So how about you? Are you up for this challenge too? What have you been putting off doing for for the first time because you see yourself as too old/overweight/unfit/set in your ways/tired/overwhelmed…..?

Join in the challenge and post your comments below or on my Facebook page. Let’s show ourselves that we’ve definitely still got what it takes to rise to a challenge and live the second half of our life on purpose!

My next challenge is to make a weekly video and create my own YouTube channel! You can subscribe here….and watch it grow!

 

Alternative Resolutions….because the usual ones just don’t work!

New Year's Resolutions...AgainWhat if instead of setting the usual soon-to-be-broken New Year’s Resolutions this year, what if you looked at it in a different way?

What are the biggest resolutions people set? Weight loss? Getting fit? Finding love? Giving up smoking? Drinking less? Guess what, by the end of the January, sadly most will have fallen by the wayside. No diet, no going to the gym, cigarettes and booze.

So let’s look at this from a different perspective

Instead why not ask yourself this question.

How do I want to feel in 2015?

(Don’t underestimate the power held within these few words.)

Open your journal and write. Let it all come pouring out.

When you’ve written as much as you can (and then some more) ask these questions.

What step can I take today to move me in the direction of how I want to feel?

What do I need to stop doing or let go of in order to feel how I want to feel?

What or who is standing in the way of  how I want to feel?

 

And now for something a little different. When was the last time you allowed yourself to daydream? Is it something you do regularly? Why not set aside some time to listen to the audio below. It just might open your mind to what’s possible for you in 2015.

 

 Audio : BLUE SKY THINKING

Click “play” to listen to Rebecca speaking about Blue Sky Thinking :

Or you can right-click to download it to your computer: Audio

 

 

So how was it for you? Was 2014 a good year or one you’re happy to leave behind?

Reflection on 2014Do you have any rituals for the end of the year? Do you take any time to review how the past year went or do the years simply blend from one into another without pause?

I think it’s a good thing to do and it’s something I encourage my clients to do. It’s a valuable exercise to take some time in silence with a journal and your thoughts reflecting  back over the year that has passed. It’s good to be mindful and take stock. Our lives pass by so very quickly and there is value in stopping to think for a short while.

I make a ritual of it. I block some time out in my diary when no one is around, make myself some tea, have a warm house, burn my favourite candles, play some gentle music in the background, open up my journal and let my thoughts flow out onto the page.

If you’ve not done this before, here are some questions for you to consider as we say goodbye to 2014. I’ll offer you some different questions in my next post if you’re fed up of making and not keeping resolutions for the new year.

  • What went really well this year?
  • Where have I surprised myself this year?
  • What have I learned this year?
  • What is working well in my life and why?
  • How will I reward myself for things that went well this year?
  • Where did I struggle this year? What did I learn from it?
  • What could I have done differently?
  • What have I been grateful for this year?
  • How am I different this year from last?
  • What were my greatest challenges?
  • What did I complete?
  • What inspired me this year?
  • What did I enjoy most?
  • If there was a theme for 2014, how would I describe it? (eg a year of consolidation, taking risks, trust, releasing, upheaval….)

Choose some of these questions to answer. Some will resonate, others will not. Take care of the ones you avoid….they just might be the ones you need to answer!

Let me know how you get on.

Rx

The Irresistible Saskia Nelson aka Saturday Night’s Alright

For those of you following me on Facebook you’ll no doubt have noticed that I’m just a little excited at the moment. You know how sometimes you meet someone and just know that you’re going to be great friends (it happened with my friend Maureen whom I met on Twitter!). There’s instant chemistry, you’re on the same wavelength….you’re almost finishing each other’s sentences. Yes? Well this is what happened the first time Saskia Nelson and I met for a coffee in Soho.

So, I’d like to formally introduce you to Saskia the talent behind the UK’s only dating photography business, Saturday Night’s Alright. She is sassy and brilliant and uber talented and she and I have something very cool planned for early 2015 if you’re single and fed up of getting nowhere with online dating.

Saskia Nelson

Saskia Nelson

Here’s my interview with Saskia when I spoke to her earlier this week about issues that affect us midlife women!

I’ve also included ACTUAL photographs of REAL woman who stepped out of their comfort zones to have their photographs taken by her. Aren’t they great?!

 

You made a career change just as you were heading into midlife. Tell me what brought it about and how much of a risk did it feel at the time?

I had had a very tough job in the voluntary sector at the point when I changed my career. The projects were a bit high profile (a test event in the Olympic Park, providing the Mayor with the only London Ambassador pod to be manned by local east London young people etc) so adrenalin and some great successes helped keep me going but by the beginning of 2013, I was worn down, stressed out and exhausted and needed to take time out to do something for me. I handed in my notice on the spur of the moment but during my three month notice period, I devised a plan to set up my own photography business which had been at the back of my mind for a while. (I had drafted up a rough business plan a year earlier).

It totally felt like a risk but one that I knew I needed to take. I remember feeling that I was going to reach burnout if I didn’t take action and I knew burnout wasn’t a place I ever wanted to go to.

photo credit: Saturday Night's Alright

photo credit: Saturday Night’s Alright

One thing that lessened the risk for me was the living situation with my boyfriend. A year or two earlier, while my job was still going really well we had put in an offer on a gorgeous dream house that we were looking forward to moving in to. It all fell through at the last hurdle but I do think that is what saved me in the end. We decided to stay in our small flat instead and this then gave me the flexibility to go it alone. To this day, I thank my lucky stars that the house fell through. I’m pretty sure I’d be living in a big, beautiful Victorian house but stuck in a job that was wearing me down, how sad that would have been? Luckily my boyfriend (who I spotted on Guardian Soulmates!) shares the same values as me so he was totally happy to sacrifice living in nice house to support me to do my thing.

 

Many women tell me that they are too old to try something new and that they feel they’re past it as far as setting up a business or even changing direction within their career. What would you say to them?

What would I say to them? Well, I would say don’t use age as an excuse not to do something. If you are going to use age as an excuse for anything it should be an excuse for doing that thing that scares you. Why the hell not? I have a trick that I use whenever I’m feeling too old for something, I remind myself of  DJ Mamy Rock. Have you heard of her? She blows me away. I think it’s important to find some role models for everything you try in life and she is one of mine – for three reasons

 1/ she embraced style and didn’t allow her age to dictate her look

photo credit: Saturday Night's Alright

photo credit: Saturday Night’s Alright

2/ she reinvented herself from a housewife into an international DJ!

3/ she never let age get in the way of anything

For these reasons she has been my hero for a while now. Sadly she died this year, but that is even more of a reason to stop fretting about being too old to do something you want to do, and just get on and do it.

 Check her out here: http://www.mamyrock.com/

 I love this quote about her so much – “Hipster culture is having a senior moment” – Los Angeles Times

 I also love Iris Apfel for her style and the fact that major labels want her to model for them and represent their brand – and pay no attention to how old she might be. Her personality and looks surpass age. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Iris-Apfel/30792291021

There are so many role models these days of mid-lifers doing it for themselves, I truly believe the women of our generation are transforming what it means to reach mid-life. {click to tweet} I get quite excited when I read about mid-lifers and older women embracing their age and reinventing themselves. Off the top of my head, I love Madonna, Neneh Cherry, Julianne Moore, Ida Keeling, Grace Jones, Ellen Von Unwerth, Helen Mirren, Judi Dench etc. I find them so inspiring and I keep them in mind whenever I think I might be too old to do something.

 

photo credit: Saturday Night's Alright

photo credit: Saturday Night’s Alright

What do you find is the biggest fear amongst midlife men and women when it comes to dating?

I think for women, the biggest fear is being able to find someone who wants to date someone of their age. What kept me going was the thought that I certainly wouldn’t want to date a guy who only wants to date someone ten years younger than himself. This encouraged me to keep going until I found someone who would value someone of my age. I had to keep at it quite a few years but I got there in the end!

To be honest I’m not sure what the biggest fears are for midlife men – I don’t think the ones I work with open up about this in the same way that women do. If I had to guess, I think some of them might feel a bit intimidated by successful women. But then who wouldn’t!  LOL!

 

What are your top tips for feeling at ease when an enormous lens is being pointed at your face?

 Ahh, I’m the worst person to ask because I hate being in front of an enormous lens. I think my top tip would be to find a photographer that you feel you can connect with. The most important part of my job is getting to know people in a short space of time and helping them relax and open up to me and my camera. Luckily I’m pretty good at doing this as I have a very high success rate at getting clients to relax. About 90% of them go away saying that although they were dreading the shoot, they actually enjoyed themselves – this is the absolute highlight of my job. I smile for days after comments like this.

photo credit: Saturday Night's Alright

photo credit: Saturday Night’s Alright

 

You were recognised by the UK Dating Awards and are shortlisted for a Global Award, what’s that feel like?

It feels amazing actually. I’ve been on a real high ever since. I have worked so hard this year with very few days off so to be able to look back at 2014 and see that I have been recognised by the UK industry but also the global dating industry is so exciting and makes all those weeks of working 6 or 7 days a week shooting, editing and blogging worthwhile.

 

What makes for a great dating profile picture?

The best dating photos for your profile are natural looking ones that capture you looking relaxed and happy. An added bonus would be if the picture gives away clues about your personality – it could be the Converse you’re wearing, the location you’re photographed in, something that you’re holding, a band t-shirt you’re showcasing – if you can use your photos to give out some visual clues about who you are, then you’ve nailed it.IMG_0458modc

 

What’s in the pipeline for 2015 and beyond?

Well, I have lots of exciting things planned for 2015 – launching a new offer called Irresistible Dating Profile with you Rebecca is right up there as a big exciting highlight. We are like a dreamteam, a match made in heaven with our complimentary set of skills – we have such a unique offer it’s going to be exciting to see where this takes us.

I’m also planning on expanding Saturday Night’s Alright to Manchester in the first instance and then potentially wider round the UK. Many of our clients travel from outside of London so I’m keen to roll out the model I’m using to the wider UK.

 I’m also planning to launch a series of new packages which will include a make-up artist and stylist. I think 2015 is going to be a busy year. I’m kickstarting it with a visit to Las Vegas just in case I win the global award I’ve been nominated for ‘most innovative company’, that would be amazing. But even if I don’t win, I’m keen to raise my profile Stateside as I’d love to take Saturday Night’s Alright global at some point in the future.

photo credit: Saturday Night's Alright

photo credit: Saturday Night’s Alright

 

Bio

Saskia Nelson is the talent behind the award-winning Saturday Night’s Alright, the UK’s only dedicated dating photography business.  She specialises in creating gorgeous photos for her clients to help them build awesome online dating profiles that help tell the story of who they really are.

You can find her here on Twitter  or here on Facebook.

 

21 Questions: A New Way of Thinking About Your Midlife

Hello!IMG_0527

Did you know that most people spend more time planning their 2 week summer holiday than they do planning their lives? I guess when I was told that it sadly didn’t come as a huge surprise.

Asking questions is at the very heart of coaching. Coaching is not about telling you what to do. Coaching is about guiding you to find the answers yourself. My philosophy is that you are the expert on your life, not me. My role is to help you uncover those answers.

I’ve created an ebook of 21 questions for you that will be a starting point to begin thinking about your life in a different way.

Some will be straightforward, others will require you to dig deeper. (Note – these are the ones you really need to answer!) Some of them will be very challenging. All of them will ask you to take a good look at your life.

Sound like something you want and are ready to do?

You’ll need a beautiful journal, something that you’ll look forward to writing in. Something large enough so you don’t feel restricted. You’ll also need your favourite pen and an inquisitive and open mind.

What would you attempt to do if you knew you couldnt fail? ~Unknown

Each of the questions is set in an inspiring picture which can be used as a visual reminder.

Each of the questions is explained and expanded on so that you are clear what is being asked.

When you’ve answered all the questions you will have a deeper understanding of where you are in your life, of what you want and in which direction you wish to head.

Are you ready to begin exploring? Head here to download your copy today.

With love always

Rebecca x

Monday Morning Food for Thought – 3rd November 2014

“Don’t let yesterday use up too much of today.” ~Cherokee Proverbdesign-8

Guilty as charged on this one my friends. And it’s what I need to read and digest and learn from today. I woke this morning with yesterday’s not so good soundtrack in my head. It’s already wasted some of my day and barged into my morning meditation. I like this Cherokee wisdom, it’s simple and profound. Are you guilty of this too?

Have a very happy Monday
Rebecca x

40 Words of Wisdom for our Children

You are enough - rebperkins.comThis post appeared in the Huffington Post during the summer and resonated with a lot of people. I have been overwhelmed with the feedback I got from it, from teenagers telling me that their father sent it to them and that they loved it, to grandparents telling me that my words meant a lot to them and were still relevant to them today. I’m beyond grateful if there is such a thing.

I’m sharing it here you with my friends in case you didn’t see it. I’ve decided that if I needed a sign then this was it. This blog post will be the basis for my next book…..you heard it here first!

 

I wanted to give my eldest a different birthday present this year and seeing that ‘words’ are what I do best, I chose to pass on some wisdom that I’ve learned over the years. Who knows whether they’ll be listened to! Would I have listened to my parents at 24? 

Perhaps these are words of wisdom for us all, whatever our age. Perhaps if our children are younger, we can set the intention to parent in such a way that we teach them this wisdom by example.

  1. You are not your job. You are not the amount of cash you have in the bank. You are not your possessions.
  2. Find your passion. Look for what inspires you. Find what you love to do and pursue it with all your heart. You may well find a way how to make money from doing it.
  3. Love hurts. But it is so much better than closing yourself off for fear of being hurt and not experiencing love.
  4. Communication and respect are the foundations for a lasting relationship.
  5. Three things are needed in a relationship — lust, love, and shared values.
  6. Never compare yourself to others. It’s a waste of energy. You are unique and have your own gifts to offer the world.
  7. Look after your health — physical, mental, and spiritual.
  8. Don’t complain. Decide what you will tolerate and get on with life.
  9. Set boundaries — work, family, and friendships.
  10. Little stuff matters — manners get you a long way.
  11. Be grateful. List the things you are grateful for everyday.
  12. Expect to fail. Failure is not fatal. Learn the lessons, then get back up and try again.
  13. Have outrageous dreams. You’ll be amazed at what comes true.
  14. Act with integrity at all times.
  15. Call your parents. They may well have screwed up but they raised you to the best of their abilities.
  16. Know your values. Let no one violate what you hold as important be that a boss or your partner.
  17. You don’t need to have it all worked out. Tomorrow is another day.
  18. Lighten up on yourself. Breathe deeply and slowly.
  19. Listen to your inner dialogue. Would you speak to someone you love in the same way?
  20. Take risks, take leaps of faith. You’ll grow wings.
  21. Be of service to others. Be interested in others. People will always remember what you did for them.
  22. “No” is a complete sentence.
  23. Don’t stress so much over decisions. Decisions needn’t be forever.
  24. Cultivate and nurture friendships. With love and care they can last a lifetime. At the same time don’t be afraid to edit friendships. 
  25. You are enough just as you are. Perfect in your imperfection.
  26. Learn to accept compliments. Simply say ‘thank you’.
  27. Be willing to show that you are vulnerable. It is in fact the greatest act of courage.
  28. You are never alone.
  29. Forgive. Yourself first and then others. We are all in this together.
  30. Your attitude is always a choice.
  31. Laugh a lot. Have fun. 
  32. Magic happens outside your comfort zone.
  33. Learn to love yourself now. It gets harder if you leave it until you’re older.
  34. Don’t worry about what other people think. They think about you a lot less than you imagine.
  35. Follow your intuition. Your guts have the answer. Every time.
  36. Happiness starts within. Do not expect anyone else to make you happy.
  37. Be financially savvy right from the off. Save 10%. Debt is not pretty. Make your own lunch for work. A cappuccino and a sandwich a day soon add up.
  38. Life isn’t a race. Stop and smell the roses. Really.
  39. When overwhelmed ask yourself, “Will this even be an issue in 5 years time?”
  40. Change happens. It’s one of the great certainties in life. Learn to roll with it.