Need inspiration?  Who better than Mel Robbins to help you with that?

Need inspiration? Who better than Mel Robbins to help you with that?

Need inspiration?  Who better than Mel Robbins to help you with that?

For this women’s month I have decided to feature a woman that truly inspires me in life and business.  She has adopted a no-BS lifestyle that has brought her to where she is today.

My inspiration!

If you haven’t heard about the 5-second rule, you probably don’t know who Mel Robbins is.

Need inspiration?  Who better than Mel Robbins to help you with that?

How Mel started out

Mel started out in a legal career at the Public Defender, left her job and moved to Boston so her husband could finish his MBA.  She then worked for a law firm and hated it.  After maternity leave she didn’t go back and worked in a couple of tech startups which she enjoyed.  Even though she enjoyed her job she felt like something was missing so she started seeing a life coach which inspired her to become one herself.  She started studying towards a certificate in life coaching, qualified and started her career.  When Ink magazine did a feature on her business she got a call from a big shot at CNBC for a job and that’s how her media career kicked off.  After having some issues with a deal with FOX everything came to an abrupt end.  Due to her contract restraints with them she couldn’t do anything in the media business for a year.  She felt like such a failure that she didn’t see it fit to go back to coaching.  On top of that her husband’s restaurant business was going under. Her world was falling apart.  One night she decided she’d had enough.  That morning when her alarm went off she didn’t hit snooze ten times as she usually did, she counted 5-4-3-2-1, launched herself out of bed and started putting the pieces of her life back together.  Today her achievements are awe-inspiring.

Where Mel Robbins is today

Through utilizing her own 5-second rule, Mel became one of the most booked speakers in the world.  Motivating people across the globe to get up and show up.  She’s the CEO and Co-Founder of The Confidence Project which is a media and digital learning company.  She is the Creator and Presenter of the Audible Series Kick ass with Mel Robbins.  In 2017 she published best seller The 5-Second Rule.  It was named the number one audiobook in the world and the fifth most read book on Amazon.  Her TedX Talk has been viewed on YouTube by over 14 million people.  She runs an award winning YouTube series #MelRobbinsLive giving advice and telling people about her life as a travelling CEO, motivational speaker, wife and mother of three.  On top of that she’s a CNN commentator as well.

In conclusion

The 5-second rule helped her to get her life back on track after she was dealt a bad hand and got stuck in a rut.  It teaches us that everything is achievable if you have the right mindset.

I’ve been following her on YouTube and getting daily motivation from her talks and advice.  I can recommend her to anyone that’s hungry for success or that needs to get back in the saddle and start kicking butt and taking names!

An easy guide to keeping your candle lit as an entrepreneur

An easy guide to keeping your candle lit as an entrepreneur

An easy guide to keeping your candle lit as an entrepreneur

“I have soo much to do, but I don’t want to do it”.  This is a phrase I have used on many occasions, not just with work, but life in general.  So, after much thought and countless cups of coffee, I have come to realise and accept that burnout is part of the modern way of life.  This has gotten me thinking of ways that I can cope to ensure that I do not fall victim to this modern “disease”.

Do what you love

I have worked for many years and people always said to me “do what you love”, they were right!  There is nothing more fulfilling than getting up in the morning to do something that inspires me.  Now it is totally impossible to enjoy every activity that I do, however, I make sure that 90% of my day is spent doing something that I am passionate about.

Everyone has a time of day that they are at their best. For me, a nice brisk walk and a cup of coffee first thing in the morning, sets me in work mode.  I have also found that stepping away for regular breaks, albeit lunch, cleaning or hanging washing, allows me to focus and be more productive in my work.

Get moving

Walking for me has been a saving grace.  There are many issues that have been dealt with, whilst I pound the pavement.  Exercise is a good stress release and the happy nunus that run around after exercise make me feel great.  To help avoid burnout, I have realised that I need to stay healthy.  By eating a healthy breakfast I can think more clearly and provide my brain with fuel to concentrate.  Looking after myself is key to avoiding burnout!

Now there are tasks that I cannot stand!  For example, I am not a fan of accounting and I have had to learn that it is okay to take the task and break it up into manageable pieces, thereby managing my stress levels.

How burnout can manifest itself

Burnout can manifest in many ways.  It has taken a long time for me to be aware and listen to the warning signs.  If I am tired, I take a break, if I am hungry, I eat.  In so doing I remain fresh and I am then able to concentrate on the task at hand.  I have left jobs in the past that have drained me and left me feeling frustrated and unproductive.  Why keeping working at something that is making me miserable.

I have also made it my mission to spend time with family and friends, this gives me time to express my concerns and get to the root cause of what is making me head on the path to burnout.  My family and friends have always been able to help me see things from a different prospective.

Burnout is a real thing, be aware and look after yourself, so that you do not fall victim to a very serious case of burnout!

Look for these tell tale signs of burnout

Look for these tell tale signs of burnout

Look for these tell tale signs of burnout

Burnout is a term that gets tossed around often in the workplace, but it’s more than simply feeling tired or overworked. It’s a continual sense of pessimism about your present and future that can lead to a decline in your work performance.

Often triggered by extreme pressure, burnout is far from simply a buzz word for stress. Burnout is associated with symptoms such as exhaustion, depression, and the inability to cope with simple tasks.

Even the most driven people are susceptible to this sense of negative exhaustion. Because when you don’t take the time for self-care and evaluating your priorities, burnout is almost inevitable.

Burnout is a state of overwhelming exhaustion, mental, emotional and physical. It can be caused by work pressures, lifestyle factors, even certain personality traits. It’s more than everyday stress. Burnout is characterized by overpowering, unrelenting stress over a long period. The mind and body are so beaten down that simple daily functioning seems like an overwhelming burden.

Being burned out has a tremendous impact on both your physical health and mental well-being. As the extreme stress continues, the result is often life altering illness, depression, and a sense of extreme failure. Essentially, there is nothing left to give and the body starts shutting down.

One of the main reasons why this takes place is because the symptoms all consist of things that every one of us experiences, at some time or another. As a result, telling the difference between ordinary fatigue or illness and the chronic depletion that heralds a serious problem is tricky.

Some common signs of burnout might include:

  • Having trouble concentrating or making decisions at work
  • Experiencing relationship problems at home
  • Talking negatively about your work performance
  • Avoiding or complaining about interactions with coworkers
  • Experiencing chronic stress and potential health issues

Mental signs:

  • A pervasive sense of failure and self-doubt
  • Feeling helpless, incompetent and defeated
  • Loss of motivation and interest in your job, hobbies or family
  • A very negative, irritable and impatient attitude
  • Lack of a sense of satisfaction and any feelings of accomplishment
  • Feeling detachment and distant from the rest of the world
  • Experiencing a vicious cycle of overwhelm while the world is crashing around you
  • Frequent distraction and an inability to focus or be engaged in a conversation.
  • A feeling of pushing yourself harder with no results
  • A pattern of memory loss, forgetting where you put things or what you are doing

Physical signs:

  • Extreme exhaustion and lack of energy, feeling completely drained
  • Loss of appetite, interest in intimacy or insomnia
  • An increase in sickness or a general feeling of unexplained illness
  • Frequent headaches, back and neck pain, muscle and joint aches

It’s easier to cure any condition if you catch it early, and that includes burnout. So don’t shrug off early warning signs just because they seem mild. If they’re ignored, far bigger problems could be lurking down the road.


Learning how to manage stress is critical when you’re on the path to burnout. It is much easier to avoid burnout, than to recover from it.

How New Beginnings Can Help You Deal With Burnout

How New Beginnings Can Help You Deal With Burnout

How New Beginnings Can Help You Deal With Burnout

NEW BEGINNINGS : Why New Beginnings?

That’s life… that’s what people say.  You know the song from ‘ol blue eyes, Frank Sinatra.  That’s the thing about life isn’t it?  It changes, with ebbs and flows and nothing is guaranteed.

So, what happens when life decides to knock you upside the head and you’re faced with new beginnings?  Well, you embrace them of course.  Let’s face it, change is difficult and certain changes can seriously challenge your resolve.  That being said, this is why I like and embrace new beginnings.

A Journey

For as long as I can remember, I’ve battled a little, well a lot, actually with consistency and routine.  I get bored easily and like to be challenged.  I also clash with corporate culture and authority and the older I’ve become, the more I’ve kicked back against the rules.  It’s not arrogance, nor ego.  It’s incessant determination and ambition.  I don’t settle and thus prefer to march to the beat of my own drum.  Admittedly, some of my decisions haven’t been the right ones and I should’ve zigged where I’d zagged, but, somehow, I always found the strength to bounce back and make things happen!

That’s the thing about new beginnings though.  It’s another opportunity to try your hand at that hobby, project or entrepreneurial spirit.  Sure, it takes guts, sweat and at times many tears to push through, but I think it’s worth it.  There’s a feeling of accomplishment when you’re challenged and pushed beyond the realm of your comfort zone.

I recently effected just such a change in my own life.  I was blessed to be employed by a company and initially the tasks were good for me as I had to learn new systems, processes and procedures very quickly.  At times I felt like the proverbial duck – all was calm on the surface, but below the water I was paddling for all my worth.  Just short of the two-year mark I decided to see my doctor as I was facing major burnout.  My doctor booked me off for two weeks and in that time, I had to make some serious decisions about my health and my career.  I took a bold leap and decided to resign and go solo.  As is the norm, my decision was met with disdain and many ‘how could you?’ comments, especially in this volatile employment market.  I dug my heels in though and knew, that with hard work and determination, I would make it on my own.

Finding Your Mojo

So, where to now? Onwards and upwards I say.  I’ve had sleepless nights worrying about the finances and ‘job security’, but through it all, I have trusted myself enough to know that I would make it.  Work would be sent my way.  I am sincerely grateful for the opportunities bestowed upon me.  In a competitive, global market, I have clients who choose me to assist them.  This is a big deal and I take my responsibilities and service offerings seriously.  The power of networking and taking the risk has paid off.

Ultimately, change is the only constant in our lives.  We live in a world of technological advancement that can be terribly daunting and render one feeling lost and vulnerable.  Take the challenges a day at a time and keep setting goals for yourself.  If needs be, engage with a mentor or coach to assist with those hurdles.  They’re always going to be there, it’s how you jump them that matters.

Lastly, find your mojo!  Be confident and know you make a difference!

Celebrating Everyday Heroes as a Daily Inspiration

Celebrating Everyday Heroes as a Daily Inspiration

Celebrating Everyday Heroes as a Daily Inspiration

“Celebrating the Women in your Life in Honour of Women’s Month” WOW, what a topic.

There are many Women in my life both alive and the dearly departed that have made a huge impact on my life and impact of the direction that my life has taken.

The woman who made the most impact in my life

Let’s begin with the most amazing Women that has made the biggest impact, my Mom.

What a truly remarkable, inspirational and caring person she was. My Mom brought me into this world and taught me the value of life, love, happiness and most importantly time. My Mom always used to say, “make the most of every second in your life, every second that has been wasted on the trivial matters in life and things that don’t matter is a second you will never get back”.

My Mom taught me the value of work ethic, the value of working hard in life for what you want. Nothing gained in life is for free. What you put in, is what you get out! Remember what your mother taught you, it came from the most sacred place of love that exisits.

The reason I get up in the morning

Then I have my daughter and granddaughter. What a combination these two angels are. These two angels are SO special to me. The tinkle in my eye, the reason I get up in the morning and the reason that I live life to the full.

The biggest blessing one could ever hope for is too be able to bring a child into this world. Melissa, my daughter, is such a wonderful young lady, she has brought SO much joy and happiness into my life. She works hard, focuses on the important things in life.

I truly see so much of my Mom in her. Melissa is such an inspiration to me. I am SO very proud to be able to call her my daughter.

Then we have little Mia, Mia has taught me the biggest lesson of all, LOVE, LOVE and more LOVE. Just when you thought you couldn’t love someone any more than you do, along comes a grandchild. Have you noticed the admiration they have in their eyes when they look at you and everybody around you? So much love.

How does a child spell L O V E ……. They spell it T I M E! My little Princess, your Nanny is SO lucky to have you in her life. I am constantly amazed by your beauty and the love that you portray for the little things in life.

If I could turn back the clock to when my kids were much younger, there are so many things that I would do differently. First and most important of all, I would spend more quality time with my kids. Embarking on adventures together and loving life. When my kids where younger I found that I spent far too much time working and I kept telling myself that I was doing this FOR them.

The Entrepreneur that inspires me the most

The next lady that has come in too my life, teaches and challenges me on a daily basis. I mention her now, but not last as in order of importance, Karen Wessels. Karen has taught me the value of doing what you love and doing it with all your heart. Such an inspirational lady. Karen has brought back into my life the importance of why I do what I do and to love, grow and feel challenged by what we do in our lives. Walking alongside her is such an honour.

In conclusion

In closing, I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of the very special Women who have made an impact in my life. I love you all SO much!!

I stick by the philosophy in life, “Do What You LOVE, in order to LOVE What You Do!” Take time to smell the roses for want of a phrase.

You only have ONE life, LIVE IT!

 VA Connect has a team of Virtual Assistants just waiting to be of service to you, to lighten your load! To FREE up some of your time!

5 Best YouTube channels to improve your life today!

5 Best YouTube channels to improve your life today!

5 Best YouTube channels to improve your life today!

I recently became a YouTube junky, so much so that I had to add it to my Stay Focused app so I don’t spend too much time on it during the day!  Sometimes it’s easy to go down the rabbit hole when you start looking for motivational and productivity channels.  Below I’ll share some with you that I have found helpful in quite a few aspects of my life.

  1. Amy Landino: Amy was one of the first people I’ve discovered when starting on my YouTube journey. She’s all about ‘going after the life that you want’ and her productivity and life hacks are awesome.  I especially love her calendar blocking method, it really does make a lot of sense and it’s easy to implement in your own life.
  2. muchelleb: I only recently discovered Muchelle.  Her productivity and motivational videos leans a bit more to your personal life than work.  What I love about her is that she is a minimalist in training.  So using the Konmari way she organises and declutters her life one cupboard at a time!  If you need some minimalism in your life, I can surely recommend her free program Konmari Journey – Life changing Magic of Tidying up .
  3. Jordan Paige, FunCheapOrFree: I love this channel. If you’re a parent then you’ll love it too.  Jordan has 5 kids and one on the way.  She’s a successful entrepreneur and homemaker. She shares anything from budgeting tips to how she prepares her kids’ lunchboxes.  She touches on some productivity and tips for running a successful business but that’s not her main focus.  She has a great energy and she really gets you up and going with enthusiasm.
  4. Evan Carmichael: Evan is all about motivation and success.  Sometimes I wish I could remember and apply everything in my life.  I love how he uses public figures and how they achieved success in their lives.
  5. Tony Robbins: Last but not least the dad of all motivational and self improvement programs.  You can’t help but get motivated and energized when listening to Tony covering everything from relationships to business advice. His life story is truly inspirational and his advice has helped thousands if not millions of people throughout their own lives.

Some of the other channels I’m following is Abbey Ashley from The Virtual Savvy, she shares tips and tricks specific to VA’s and Project Life Mastery which is very specific to business and how to make money online.  Something else you can find on my channel list are Liezel Jayne Strydom for some healthy meal tips and The Domestic Geek for some quick and healthy meal ideas when you don’t know what to cook.

You can find a video or a YouTuber on ANY topic that might interest you.  Find what you enjoy listening to most subscribe, load it onto your phone or iPod and next time you go for jog put something on and who knows, you might learn something new!