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Are You Feeling Deprived?

Are you feeling deprived?










Are you feeling deprived?

When I have session with a client I ask them “Are you feeling deprived”?  It makes everyone think and they usually say yes.

Typical answers that clients share are:

  • Sleep
  • Emotional support
  • Time to myself
  • Physical energy
  • Not catching up with friends
  • Companionship
  • Peace
  • Hope
  • Touch
  • Peace and quiet
  • Not having a relaxing day without a meltdown
  • Someone who understands.

Awareness id a powerful catalyst for positive change and in time when you start to recognise when you are feeling deprived, you can put self care into practice.

I have come to learn that over giving is often a sign of deprivation – a signal that a need isn’t being met, an emotion isn’t being expressed, or a void isn’t getting filled.  For example, while you might dedicate hours to coordinating the family’s social calendar, you may actually be yearning for deeper and more meaningful connections, stimulating conversation, or greater intimacy with yourself.  You might also be available and generous with others because on some level you have an unconscious desire to get what you give, whether it’s acknowledgement, affection, recognition, or support.

Becoming away of how you feel deprived can be a key to recognising what needs to shift emotionally and physically.  In what ways are you starving yourself of what you need to live a rich and fulfilling life?

Since awareness in and of itself inspires change, I’d like to challenge you to spend the next 30 days becoming skilled at seeing the ways, big and small, that you deprive yourself of what you need.  Rather than feeling like a victim to something outside of yourself, when you realise that you alone are responsible for over giving, you can actually empower yourself to do something about it.

Discovering where you feel deprived

This challenge is a call to consciousness – becoming more aware of how, why and where you feel deprived.  It is handy to have a little notebook handy that you can take everywhere with you.  Whenever you feel overwhelmed, frustrated, burdened, or resentful, stop and ask yourself:

  • Where do I feel deprived?
  • What do I need more of right now?
  • What do I need less of?
  • What do I want right now?
  • What am I yearning for?
  • Who or what is causing me to feel resentful and why?
  • What am I starving for?

Your answers to these questions will help you to identify the areas of your life that are calling for greater consciousness, an increase in your awareness of what needs to change to keep you from feeling deprived.

If you would love to join my It’s Time to Look After Me, we look in depth in this are.



It is Time to Shed the Darkness

DarknessDo you feel burdened with your life?  It is time to shed the darkness.

Darkness is everywhere and it is growing.  We are constantly being bombarded with hate through media outlets, Governments, social media etc etc etc.

This has been highlighted recently when Stuart Kelly took his own life due to the huge amount of abuse and hate mail since his brother was killed in a one punch attack.   He had to endure so much hate towards his family because the NSW Government changed the Lockout Laws in any hope that no one else would be killed.  What absolutely astounded me is that his brother was the one killed by the punch………..not the one who threw it.  Shouldn’t these individuals be sending the letters to the person who committed the offence?

A conversation I participated in on a page in an Autism group brought up the divide that is becoming more apparent within the Autism community.  I reflected on this because it is becoming more and more apparent and it is breaking my heart.  The divide is occurring because people are so judgemental towards each other and individuals feel they have a “right” to be judgemental, rude.  People wear their rudeness like a badge of honour and think it is a fantastic trait.

Each of us needs to desperately look at our interactions to reduce the darkness in our mind, body and spirit.  This heaviness could be heaviness in our moods, stress levels heavy work load.  By replacing this darkness to lightness you will feel more fulfilled with vitality and energy.

To lift the darkness into lightness some great strategies are:

  • Think before you make comments on social media and refrain from judgements, rudeness.
  • Show more compassion and listen to someone.
  • Meditation.
  • Exercise.
  • Eating well.
  • Doing something for you everyday in self care.
  • Listening to music.
  • Spending some quality time with your family members.
  • Take action and stop procrastinating.
  • Being grateful for what you have.
  • Stoping the negative thoughts and labelling them as unhelpful.


Extreme Self Care is for Selfish People

Extreme Self CareExtreme Self Care is for Selfish People!

Did you agree or disagree?

What is the difference between self care and extreme self care?

Do you personally think that self care is selfish because you are a mum or dad and you should be looking after the children?

At this moment, I am writing this post and enjoying a nice glass of wine.

Could a glass of wine be seen as part of your self care?  Yes it is.

How can we be the parent that you want to be (a did not mention “the perfect parent”) if you are not looking after yourself?

The truth is that when we decide to care for ourselves in a more attentive, proactive, and soul nourishing way, we’re forced to confront a cultural view that selfish is a dirty word.

Can we be a good mum or dad to our children if you are not looking after yourself?  No you cant.  All you will end up doing is destroying your immune system, being exhausted and not connecting with those around you like you want to.

When we care for ourselves deeply and deliberately, we naturally being to care for others – our families, our friends, and the world – in a healthier and more effective way.  We become conscious and conscientious people.  We tell the truth.  We make choices from a place of love and compassion instead of guilt and obligation.  We begin to understand that we’re all connected, and that our individual actions affect the greater whole in a more profound way than we ever imagined.

The art of self care takes patience, commitment, and practice.  It initially requires a willingness to sit with some pretty uncomfortable feelings such as guilt – for putting your own needs first, fear of being judged and criticized by others, or anxiety from challenging long held beliefs and behaviours.

As a telephone support worker for PANDA supporting mums and dads suffering through Postnatal Depression the importance to spend at least 5 minutes in a day with some form of self care activity.  If anyone told me that they didn’t have 5 minutes, I would say that is crap.  We all have five minutes which we could put to self care activities.

It could be enjoying a coffee whilst looking out the window, reading a magazine, a book, watching TV.  Whatever it is for you to enjoy.  Just book it in to do it once a day and make a commitment.  You will be surprised on how it will make you feel both physically and mentally.

The One Question That Is Never Asked!

The one question that clients fail to ask about 98% of the time is…………………………………………….


Self care is extremely important.

For parents of children on the Autism Spectrum Disorder and Sensory Processing Disorder, the question how do I look after myself is rarely if ever asked.  This is a major concern for me.  During conversations early on in programs, I probe with the question how do you look after yourself and I usually hear crickets.

What I do hear is a lot of excuses.  Being a parent of a child on the spectrum or with SPD can be extremely exhausting.  There is simply so much to do for instance predicting and minimising meltdowns, getting them to appointments, doing tasks set from therapy sessions, fitting in ABA therapy sessions and let not add in the cleaning, jobs etc etc.  All the above tasks are time consuming as it is in my own household.

But what about YOU?  The biggest excuse for it is that I don’t have time.

Do you have time to get sick?  Do you have the time to fall into depression?

Your children need a well mum and dad physically, emotionally and spiritually.  They pick up when we are flat, when we are sick and not ourselves.  We do not have super powers that make us invincible.


Taking time out in your day for a minimum for 15 minutes per day is not a lot in the scheme of things.  Imagine just having 15 minutes of doing something for you.  It could be just having a cup of tea.  Picking up a magazine to look at. To have a coffee with the friend.  To go for a walk. To stare out the window.  To walk around the shops.  Dancing around the house. Watch some TV. Imagine doing that everyday.

How great do you think you will feel?

Believe me you will feel amazing.  I always have a massive to do list.  But nothing is more important to me than spending a minimum of 15 minutes just to focus on me.  Believe me it helps to get you out of bed in the morning.  Everyone has 15 minutes somewhere in their day to focus on themselves.

Nevertheless, it is not easy to get your head around you, let alone to make it a daily habit.

It is time you take action and concentrate on you.  You will not regret it!  Suffering depression will suck you dry and you will not be useful to anyone.  I know, I have been there.

I offer a “It’s Time To Look After Me” program for all my clients.  This is one of my favourite programs to watch mums and dads start to look after themselves.  If you want to take action, this is the program for you.  Do not hesitate.  Just do the program.

Diagnosis Process Is Exhausting for a Family with a Child With ASD

Today I was filling out an pragmatic assessment for Emma before she heads to school next year.  When completing this activity, I remembered how the diagnosis process is exhausting for family with a child with ASD. The one thing I hate is writing about my children and assessing their behaviours.  It is extremely draining especially for the parents who are filling out the forms for the diagnosis.  My suggestions to get through this are:

  • Spread it out everyday instead of all at once.
  • Go spend time with your child
  • Remember that you are doing the best thing for your child’s future
  • Make sure you fit in something for you.

Book reading

Strategies to Help When You Feel Like a Crap Parent

mother love

We all will have days when we feel like a crap parent. I know I felt like this over the weekend.  I do not think there is any parent out there who would not feel like that from time to time.  But here are some strategies to help when those feelings come along.

1.  Know that this is just a feeling and it will pass.

2.  Put some happy music on and jump around even with the kids.

3.  Do something for YOU even for 5 minutes.  Having a cup of tea can be very soothing.

4.  Have a glass of wine when the children go to bed (or before 🙂 ).

5.  Know that you are doing the best you can and it is not easy.

6.  Call a friend and talk to someone about what you are feeling.

7.  Put a DVD on that is happy.

8.  Find an enjoyable book to read. 

9.  Think about your children and think about all their strengths.

10.  Think back to a happy memory that always makes you smile. 

It is okay and very normal to have crap days. You are not alone!

We All Feel Depressed Now and Then

Do you beat yourself up if you feel depressed for more than a couple of days?  I know over the last 1.5 weeks I have been.  But I kept telling myself that we all feel depressed now and then.  The weather has changed in Australia to being cold and it is quite typical that people feel depressed during the winter times.

I have not felt depressed for 1.5 weeks for ages and it was getting to the stage where I was going to contact my psychiatrist.  I knew the reason for my depression was stress related as everything felt like it was getting on top of me.  I wasn’t eating properly, definitely not motivated to exercise and my tolerance was pretty low.  But I thought I really just had to ride it out and hope it would end soon rather than later.

I also wrote myself a list of what I felt I had lost control of and if it was things I could control I have been making sure I got on top of them.  My list consisted of:

  • Eating what the dietician suggested at all times and keep to the routine.
  • Get up in the morning (eek its cold and dark at 6am) and exercise.
  • Drink more water
  • Take time out for me and read a book
  • I found a schedule template on Excel so I am using that to plan my entire day.
  • I am having cuddle time with the girls in the morning
  • I am making sure that I am not yelling at the girls.

Always remember that we all have down days now and then and it helps to talk to someone.  Finding out the reasons for the stress and completing tasks that you are procrastinating about so they are no longer on your mind.  But the most important part is be kind to yourself and do not beat yourself up.

What Happens When You Don’t Look After YOU!

(hangs head) I am ashamed to admit that I have not been looking after myself.  My world has been full of pressure, stress and lots of excuses into why I have let my self care fall to the gutter.  Do you know what happens when you don’t look after YOU?  You are in for a world of more pain.

I am not going to go into all my reasons for not looking after myself as believe me there is simply no excuse.  But I will share with you what happened as a consequence.

  • My neck injury became sore again (Emma puts it down to the mice that caused havoc in our house)
  • My teeth were constantly hurting because my neck was sore
  • I had constant headaches
  • My whole body felt tight and horrible
  • I wasn’t sleeping well
  • My anxiety has been through the roof
  • I have not been the most enjoyable mum to be around
  • I have not been the best wife either
  • I snapped at my poor husband when it was not his fault (got to be the first in everything)
  • I have no motivation to train
  • No motivation to do anything
  • Getting one cold after the other

Now what did I succeed in not looking after myself?  Absolutely nothing at all.  I went to have a sensational Bowen Massage with Jo from Melbourne Hyperbaric Oxygen Melbourne and my goodness the pain that I felt solely because I was not looking after myself was simply not enjoyable.  Mind you I feel great now as Jo improves the entire body and not just my neck issue.

If you know that you are not looking after yourself, I really encourage you to sign up to my Reawaken You program so that you do not get to the stage that I do.  Looking after yourself FIRST is imperative to not only your well being but you will be a better mum and wife.



Why Do I Feel Selfish For Doing Self Care Activities?

This is one of the most common thoughts when people think about self care is that I am being selfish.  But let me tell you right now is that this is the biggest myth ever when it comes to self care.

If I asked the majority of mums and dads who is their biggest priority within their family, most would say “the children of course.”  But why is your children their biggest priority?  What about you and everything you do?  You may be running a job, looking after children with special needs, you may be on the road to recovery but I always say to my clients is what about you?  The answer to that is usually there is not enough time, I do something once a month.
I am sorry that is not enough?  If you have read my personal story, I have had all the excuses why I couldn’t do daily self care activities.  I looked after my mum who was unwell, I as a workaholic, I survived major depression and postnatal depression and I have two children with autism.  I spent approximately 7 months in a mother/baby unit and a psych ward after my second child was born and it was there that I really learnt that not putting myself first and taking time each day for some self care, I was not going to beat the depression and what is worse I will be no good for my girls.
I am not sitting here saying that I am perfect at doing self care everyday so this month is going to help me as well make sure that self care activities occur everyday.
Do you know that research states that everyone should take a short break every 90 minutes to be productive? If your partner is at work encourage them to take time out often for a small break.

We Only Talk About The Children

How often do we hear that when you have time with your partner you only talk about the children.  For Steve and I we make time for children talk as that is always essential that both parents are on the same page in regards to the girls.

But when we are just spending time together we try our very best not to talk about the girls.  I do remember our first date night and we went out for dinner not far from home as it was our first time leaving them.  But we made the rule that we were not allowed to talk about the girls.  My goodness let me tell you it was like a first date because we were so used talking about the girls, we became out of practice about talking about other things.

It is a great time to touch base with each other and see how both individuals are travelling and talking openly to each other.