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March 8, 2018

There's a lot to lose as a poor listener. Tuning out when others are talking is ultimately unsatisfying and can seriously undermine important relationships.

I am the fourth child in a family of six. As a typical middle child of a big family I grew up mostly wanting to be listened to – not so much to listen.

In the past few years I have been consciously trying to cultivate the art of being a better...

March 1, 2018

Being creative isn’t easy, even for artists, musicians or others who do something creative as their full time job.

At times, the ideas come easily, and other times the task of summoning creativity can feel daunting.

There’s lots of research on what prompts creativity, and it is also well documented how being engaged in something creative can be good for your health and wellness.

If you’re looking to live...

February 11, 2018

After a holiday or at the start each new year we can feel inspired to make some changes to the way we live.

The changes might be to:

  • Get fitter

  • Quit smoking, drink less

  • Eat healthier food

  • Waste less time on Facebook

  • Become a better listener

  • Stop having negative thoughts

  • Be less stressed

  • Shop less, declutter the house … whatever it is

But how do we make real chang...

November 27, 2017

Many of us enjoy gardening - or at least enjoy sitting in the garden. But as I have discovered, you have to bring an attitude of slow to gardening or it can just add to your stress! 

The first step is to relax and learn to enjoy the process - including things like weeding. It's about being in the moment and savouring the sensations rather than seeing gardening as another chore or simply as 'outdoor ho...

November 15, 2017

Don't use craft  or your passion for upcycling as a licence to hoard large numbers of things – even if that does include craft materials or items to one day be transformed into something else.

#  Be realistic about how many projects you can work over at any given period. Aim to complete one project at a time and put the finished item to use before starting another.

#  If you have no use or space for t...

November 9, 2017

What happens at home matters.

Most of us live with more clutter than necessary and the idea of living a more simplified, uncluttered life with less stuff sounds very attractive.

Clearing clutter makes our homes look bigger, reduces mess, makes cleaning easier to achieve and clears both the physical and mental space that enables us to be more creative.

But where to begin? Many begin to feel overwhelmed...

October 5, 2017

Mending is crafty  - in more ways than one. Sewing on a loose button, patching a tear, stitching up a burst cushion is smart behaviour; it extends the life of you clothes and furnishings and saves you money. There's also something about the practice of mending that's satisfying on a deeper level.

The careful drawing in of loose threads, the closing of a ragged hole into neat stitches ... to save someth...

September 20, 2017

The slow movement is a cultural reaction to the idea that more is more or that faster is always better.

Here are a few more thoughts on the subject. 

Slow is:

  • About choosing to slow down the pace – to savour the minutes rather than wishing time away.

  • About thinking of ways to get more from less, to aim for quality over quantity and to embrace better over more.

  • It’s about doing th...

September 8, 2017

The idea of a simpler life sounds great – but where to start?

One response to the demands and expectations of modern life is the trend of Slow – a wide-ranging but loosely structured movement that's spread throughout the Western world.

It all started with the Slow Food Movement – which officially kicked off in 1986, when the Italian writer Carlo Petrini joined others on Rome’s historic Scalinata della...

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February 1, 2018

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