The TOXIC TRIO

roar! tame the bully Oct 09, 2019

Ever tried eating pancakes without maple syrup and lemon, or peanut butter toast without honey or jam .. Ha - 'yes, I do it all the time Marilise!' .. ok .. now I know these things belong together in my world and I'm sure you have a few non negotiable combinations for things you love to eat .. what about gin without tonic and grapefruit, or steak without chips and salad, or spaghetti without the bolognese. You get my point, right? 

For something to 'work' it needs to be combined with other elements to make it what it is. Together the flavours make the dish what it is!

This is no different in life, there is a relationship between certain elements that combine to create something .. nourishing or toxic. The scenario I want to talk about is what I call the toxic trio, found alive and well in our environments.

With all three in place feeding off each other, they create a perfect breeding ground for...

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The short fuse ..

roar! tame the bully Oct 02, 2019

I got to the point where I had simply had enough, my nerves were frayed, I was on a very short fuse, I was emotional, angry and frustrated. I couldn't see a way out of the never-ending spiral of negative energy.

I felt alone .. 

I knew that I had to take control of my path and say, NO MORE!

Putting up with the bully in the workplace is something many of us expect to do. To learn to tolerate it. For many of us, it is the culture we work in that lets us down as it appears to be 'the way we do things around here' in so many businesses.

As we climb the ranks, eager to prove we can do it, we ALLOW bad and unacceptable behaviour and when we see it, turn a blind eye to it. 

This is the journey I have travelled .. 

My situation got to the stage where I chose to walk away and change my life .. my day to day interaction with a bully, operating in a toxic culture left me feeling like everything was out of control.

Looking back its no wonder I had moments where I...

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Today, I'm 'Guilty as Charged' .. tomorrow, will be a different story

roar! tame the bully Sep 12, 2019
 
I was sitting at the table writing the last few pages of my book, my parents were visiting from South Africa and we had gone away as a family for a week in the summer holidays. The house was quiet, it was warm and light and it occurred to me as I finished the last sentence that I had just walked one of the most difficult paths of my life. I had written about topics really close to my heart, many of which were difficult to comprehend let alone share. It was in that moment that I felt overwhelmed as I realised how grateful I am for all the tears, the sleepless nights, the heated discussions, the coaching, all the time it's taken to produce it. 
 
So as I submitted the draft with pride, relief and the realisation that I literally am bricking it and yes hands up I am  GUILTY AS CHARGED   petrified of being JUDGED and REJECTED. Gulp ..
 
As a result of this, I haven't until today wanted to share but this morning I was reminded...
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When the project manager says .. You're Fired !! .. what goes through your mind?

When the senior managers in the meeting didn't even bat an eyelid when the project manager looked at my colleague, who had just raised a valid point, and said those words. 

YOU'RE FIRED

Well, my heart nearly stopped, I couldn't believe what I was hearing!

Those words ... rang in my ears ... a big ben style bell was going off in my head.

Surely I had misheard ... was it a bad joke about the latest episode of the Apprentice?

I had to bite my tongue as the room seemed immune to this statement, some people were amused by it, others just ignored it and I couldn't help but feel like my colleague was being thrown to the wolves!  

Being in a room with people who just seemed to accept this as normal was something I wasn't comfortable with, I had never experienced it, I really didn't think it was appropriate. Perhaps it was a tactic used to remind everyone that he was the 'big boss' and it was...

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Tempted to hide but hey, this time I may be surprised ... my moment of Deja Vu

Oh my ... a moment of Deja Vu ...

I had just been called into another meeting to discuss our progress, I knew my integrity would be questioned again. I was doing my best to remain calm and professional but all I wanted to do was shout ...  I couldn't understand why this issue was so difficult to understand!

I couldn't help but feel that we were wasting time, going over the same stuff again and again ... this was my moment of Deja vu. We'd been there and done that, several times, so I had a pretty good idea of how the dialogue would go ... as a result I was very tempted to hide and ignore the meeting invite. I could be spending my time being productive, but hey, this time I thought, I may be surprised ... 

Ever had one of those days, weeks, months? dare I say it ... years?

Feeling like you are on the receiving end of a constant berating and just expected to suck it up again and again.

This was my experience not so long ago and it has shown me that there are a...

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Why was I so desperate to prove myself?

You may recall me telling you the story of that Monday morning, I remember, I was heading to the office, sitting in the traffic, I could feel my anxiety starting to build, I was tapping my hands on the steering wheel waiting for the lights to change.

I was torn. 

Desperate to prove myself and bring all the best I had to offer to my role, to keep my team motivated and focused on the task in hand. My mission was to deliver and deliver well! 

At the time I had many conflicting thoughts and emotions about heading to the office. I sat there planning my day and deciding how I was going to avoid the inevitable difficult situation I knew I was returning to and remain positive and in good spirits, for the whole day. I was psyching myself up so that I was ready and focused to bring my best and yet on the inside, I was in total turmoil.

I would remind myself that all these feelings were just because I was new to the environment after all my...

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Intentional Living ... easier said than done?

Living with intention .. what does that mean exactly and why do it? 

When I headed to university all those years ago to study accounting I had a very clear sense of why I wanted to do so. It all goes back to wanting to be the person teaching and helping others, the person wearing those incredible red shoes ... you'll find more about this story in my Reigniting Your Purpose eBook (download it below).

Those RED SHOES ... it turns out are symbolic of my aspirations and values to be a strong, confident woman, an expert in her field, independent, with a passion for life and all it has to offer. Those red shoes were the epitome of where I saw myself going in the future. 

As my career unfolded I found myself climbing the corporate ladder and taking on more responsibility and starting to fulfil my dream of being the best that I could be.

In reality, the road we choose is never easy. Each decision has an impact on the way we live, how we function and what life...

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One lesson that allowed me to roar!

roar! tame the bully Jul 17, 2019

There is one lesson I have learned over the last couple of years that has helped me move forward much faster than I could have imagined, it is this : 

Show up as the BEST version of yourself every day, your most authentic self.

The biggest question for me a couple of years ago was HOW?

How to take care of me so I deliver on a professional level and in my private life. 

I remember going on holiday with my gorgeous husband and our boys, we stayed in this amazing villa and I remember sitting in the sun by the pool feeling happy for the first time in a long time. We had been relaxing, eating fantastic food and enjoying each others company. I really started to unwind and take in the fresh air and beautiful surrounds. Seeing the boys having fun made me smile, one of those huge smiles that emanated from inside my soul.

The morning sun streaming into our room, the cool breeze from the ocean, the calm water and the pull of the sea ... all things that reminded me...

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Meltdown central ... did I rip it up? ... what a roller coaster ...

roar! tame the bully Jul 05, 2019

What a roller coaster ...

This week has felt like Christmas all over again, the mad rush shopping for presents, searching for the right gift for each person, packing suitcases and planning our trip to see family in SA, organising things for our dog Stella while we are away ...

The thing I'm talking about is the mad rush and huge build up to Christmas day with travel, presents, kids running around like crazy, lunch, emotionally charged time with family, all stuff that gets done and we love doing every year ... and then its all over ... you know that anticlimax after the dishes are washed and put away, the prezzies opened and everything tidied away ... 

My day on Tuesday was a bit like that ...  

I finished my book !! hooray !! I was elated and then it hit me ...

The first draft ... 

It's only the first draft ...

From here editing and more editing ...

I felt like I had a mountain to climb ... the thought of running another marathon straight after...

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The hardest thing I've ever tried to do ...

roar! tame the bully Jun 20, 2019

When I decided to write a book in November last year, I had all these grand plans about what I would call it and what story I'd tell. I knew there was more to it than meets the eye, but I completely underestimated how much soul-searching, learning, time and energy would go into creating this book, designed to help and inspire those being bullied or bullying themselves ... 

When I had my book planning session just before I went away in November, the purpose of the book and the message I wanted to share became very clear. I spent a day with an amazing coach who started unpacking the message, the chapters their content and we developed a good structure for the book in the session.

I then went on holiday and committed myself to map it all out and my plan was to start to write and do so every day. I came up with an ambitious plan to have it all written by July and handed over to my publisher for editing by then. The pressure was on!

For each chapter to be...

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