Way Out

You were caught in an avalanche. To be rescued, you need to make it through the night. What thought(s) would give you the strength to go through such a scary, dangerous situation?

As an Australian, I am unfamiliar with avalanche safety procedure. However, I won’t be giving up easily. In this situation, I am assuming that I am alone and know that help is on the way. With this in mind, my first thoughts are the same as in any crisis.

St Francis of Assisi quote

Start by doing what is necessary. In this situation, what is necessary is to stay alive. Breathe. Breathe deeply and regularly.  This is will keep me calm. The other essentials for life are to remain warm and awake.  These will also be the only things possible, so I will focus my thoughts on reasons to live.  I will do this by reliving special memories, making future goals and planning a holiday. Anything that is positive and pro-life.

Negative thoughts are out. I believe in positive thinking and all my energy is harnessed in a positive direction.


It has worked. I can hear help coming. Now to put my goals and plans into action. Thanks for the reminder of how precious life is and how easily it can change.


Making A List

I am not a big list maker. Usually I have a handful of things I need to do everyday, which I can prioritise and organise in my head. However, when I have many things on my to-do-list and limited time—I create a list. The more things I need to do, the quicker I start my list.

When writing my list, I always add more things than I originally thought. Partly, I think that this is because I get on a role and partly it is because I want a few small things on my list I can tick off quickly.

I find this empowering. If I have 3-5 things I can complete in  the first two days—I am more likely to focus on achieving my goal.  Rather than only thinking about it with no follow through plans.

Adding some things I have already completed before writing my list, helps too as it shows my progress. Where possible I break  big jobs down into smaller tasks. This allows them to be marked off quickly and helps my moving forward momentum.

If you are always forgetting things or need help prioritising, make lists of the tasks required—daily, weekly or monthly—whatever works for you.


How would you cope if you were unable to access social media on a daily basis. Your choice was taken away. It is an interesting experience, which forces you to re think your priorities.

For the last two years, my husband and I have spent a week living in regional China—a place where everyone lives under the same rules. Everything is controlled by the government. This means Facebook is blocked and Google appears more limited than usual. Suddenly I felt isolated even though I knew ahead of time that this was the situation. I wasn’t blogging at the time so do not know about access to WordPress.

My adjustment was quick and as I had no choice I decided to immerse myself in the quiet. No knowledge of the outside world for at least a week, maybe two. As we were travelling alone in parts of the world that few white people go, most Chinese speak limited if any English, and we were unable to understand Chinese TV our communication was limited. We only had each other. I loved the silence and started to realise the time media and social media wastes.

When we arrived at our international hotel in Ghangzhou, by accident my husband discovered that we had access to Facebook again. I was so excited that this become my status update. On Facebook in China, I can’t believe it. We suddenly were connected to our world again. It did feel like we were breaking rules and definitely changed our holiday. We could find out what was happening at home and could communicate with other people again. This was fun but I am glad we got to experience the forced silence—it taught me a lot.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Angular

 Not to put too fine a point on it, though this week, we challenge you to show us what “angular” means to you.

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Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street—one of Guangzhou’s popular shopping precincts is full of angles and bright lights. Our hotel was on this stretch, which allowed us to enjoy it regularly.


When Harry Met Sally

When Harry meet Sally is a classic movie from 1989. It is a story about friendship, dating rules and a fear of intimacy. Everyone who saw the movie remembers the scene in the crowded cafe where Sally effectively fakes an orgasm, just to prove a point to Harry. It draws everyone in and then comes the iconic comedy line from the older lady—”I’ll have what she is having.”

I hadn’t realised how long it was since I had seen the movie until  my adult children on hearing the scene they came from upstairs to see what was going on—they couldn’t believe their ears. But what other themes does this movie about relationships address:

  • Bachelorhood
  • Coping with breakups
  • Dating scene
  • Grief and loss
  • Casual sex
  • Apologies
  • Anger management
  • Girlfriends
  • Fear of Intimacy
  • Fear of commitment
  • Guilt over relationships
  • New Years Eve traditions
  • Developing relationships
  • Commitment
  • Realising she/he is the one
  • Faking orgasms
  • Romance
  • The rules of dating
  • 80’s fashion
  • First Impressions
  • Embarrassment
  • Wanting Children
  •  Supportive Friends
  • Communication
  • Male Chauvinism
  • Male Bonding
  • Knowing it all behaviour

And for those who have never seen it or want to relive the experience—

Beating My Fear

When was the last time you took a risk (big or small), and pushed your own boundaries — socially, professionally, or otherwise? Were you satisfied with the outcome?

Technology scares me. I don’t understand it and it scares me. I had wanted to start a blog for several years and had done my research. I knew WordPress was the platform to use and in the long run I wanted a self-hosted blog. I didn’t know how to do it, but Google would show the way. Happy with this knowledge I woke up last Mother’s Day and decided today was the day—viola Inspiring Max was born.

I can still remember the feeling of posting my first blog post. It was awesome. I had taken my fear, turned it on its head and created something I was proud of.

Through my blogging journey I have developed my online voice and become more confident. When I tell people about my blog they look surprised, often stating that they would love to have one but don’t understand how they work or they think blogging is too difficult.

For all of my professional life, my private life has been hidden. Now with blogging, I am finding the balance. Although now to most people I blog anonymously, next year when my book is published—my identity will be revealed. I have adjusted to this by putting a little more of me into my blog. It doesn’t scare me now. I have grown with it. I followed Walt Disney advice when starting my blog and it has changed my life.

Walt Disney

Feel the fear and do it anyway—you never know where your journey will take you.


Weekly Photo Challenge: Achievement

Have you just run 26.2 miles, finished a long-term project, or met a personal goal? This week, show us an achievement.

New Inspiring Hope picture

I have recently completed writing my first book, which I will be self-publishing by March next year. It is an achievement I am very proud of. Recently I have began looking into cover design and am currently investigating transforming Inspiring Max’s double rainbow. What do you think?


Storytelling Is Powerful

What makes a good storyteller, in your opinion? Are your favorite storytellers people you know or writers you admire?

Story telling connects us with people, shows others something about us—who we are, our values  and attracts attention. As a Toastmaster, I use stories during my speeches to give the audience something easy to remember—a takeaway message.

I believe to be good story-teller you need to believe in your subject. It may not be your story, but if you are repeating it without passion, it will turn into a—you had to be there story that nobody wants to hear.

A well told story brings a point home. For example, I could tell you I had a natural sense of direction.

Your reply maybe “so what, so do I.”

Or, I could tell you one afternoon my sister (4) and I (6) wanted to play with our friends. We were bored. We lived in the bush and had no-one  to play with. So, after getting permission to go and visit our friends after lunch from our parents—they thought we were all going and didn’t realise I meant kids only, no adults—we set out. It took us a couple of hours to arrive because we stopped to play in the park on the way.

After completing our 4.2 kilometre adventure via busy main roads and windy back streets into suburbia—we were greeted by our friends mother. She was not happy. She was convinced our mum was playing a joke on her. We couldn’t possibly have done what we said we had. But we did. Once she believed us we still didn’t get to play with our friends—we had to find our parents.

The story shows my natural sense of direction. It doesn’t just tell. This allows the audience to imagine two little girls walking hand-in-hand crossing busy roads. To emotionally connect with them, by seeing them as their own children or grandchildren—bringing the audience into my speech through my story.

I find the more personal the story—the more I can believe the author or speaker. Stories change vulnerability into empowerment—they can be life changing.


Books Glorious Books

Whether it’s a trashy TV show, extra-pulpy fiction, or nutrient-free candy, write a thank-you note to your guiltiest guilty pleasure.

Books are my greatest pleasure. There is no guilt attached however, as I deserve to indulge in whatever I choose. I love to go into book stores all over the world. Looking at local and international books and see how they differ from Australia. On my first trip to New Zealand I brought home 10 second-hand books and very little else.

My book choices depend on my mood.  A quick glances at my bookshelves shows the following genres:

  • Self-help
  • Computer
  • Health
  • Self-improvement
  • Management
  • Travel
  • Cookbooks
  • Coffee table
  • Reference
  • Biography
  • Australian literature
  • Comic
  • Encyclopedias
  • Dictionaries
  • Comedy
  • Janet Evanovich
  • Jackie Collins
  • Danielle Steele
  • History
  • Coaching/Mentoring
  • Atlas
  • Dummies Series
  • Children’s
  • Dr Seuss
  • Roald Dahl
  • Languages
  • Memories
  • Mixed other fiction

After I retire, my ultimate goal is to have a home library. A designated space specifically for reading—with a comfortable chair, a fireplace and a window to the world. Now that will be an even greater pleasure.


Photo Credit: Google Images